Being Conscious

As I sit here tapping away on my keyboard to “Radio” by Hot Chelle Rae (how cute is that song?) and sipping on my protein shake following a decent workout, I’m pondering a thought from Honest Rachael, who posted to the world about spreading a little more love throughout the entire month of February.  I loved her insightful blog post and commented that I would join her in spreading a little more love throughout the month.  The thought I had this morning, though, is that in order to spread love or give of ourselves or do anything somewhat extraordinary (which happens daily for some people) is to BE CONSCIOUS.

If I just go along my merry way, letting life take me where it will, then I will most likely be tossed to and fro (physically as well as emotionally) without truly regarding my own personal power to do something.  I can do my little workout each morning, spend time in personal devotion, write a blog, do dishes & laundry, cook, clean, and do whatever else I do in a given day with little motivation or notice of the days and weeks and months and years that pass…or I can be conscious of my life and my time and live deliberately–making goals and feeling accomplishment and power and influence.

I have been touched by those who live to conquer fear and reach their goals–no matter how lofty and far-reaching.  One of these people is Evan Sanders, who recently completed a book and writes a blog about becoming a better man.  I admire his courage and leaps of faith as he has struggled through adversities with amazing positivity and the vision of what he wants to do and who he will become.  Way to go, Evan!  Just reading a post from him gives me a push to keep going and want to be better.  🙂

Well, my protein shake is almost done, and I need to hit the shower…but I will leave you with this question, a thought, and a few Happy Monday tunes.  First the question:  How can you be more conscious of your decisions and the way you spend your time?

Here’s the thought:  You have personal power and the love you show may be someone else’s inspiration…so get to work!!!!

And, of course, the music: 🙂



And, as always, HUGS!

Feelings…

I was a bit startled when I typed the title into the little box above where I am writing now that I had this flashback to the movie Big, where Tom Hanks (as the “big,” grown-up character of himself has to sing, “Feelings” for his mother in order to prove to her that her son is indeed okay).  Aren’t minds peculiar sometimes?

Through last week’s trauma experience (I use that term a little loosely–as in the experience was not life-threatening but indeed traumatic for me and our son and our family), I have remembered how I have dealt with trauma in the past:  I go into this place of numbness.  I shut down my feelings.  I think I’ve been practicing this behavior for many years.  And, I think the root of the feeling is fear.

Well–I would like to report a breakthrough.  Are you ready?  I’m not sure I am…but here I share anyway!

I allowed myself to feel.  I allowed myself to share with others my fear.  And I allowed myself to share my experience with others.

On Wednesday, (surgery day), I sat in the waiting room with a buzzer (similar to the one you may receive while waiting for a table at a crowded restaurant) for a moment without phone or book or watching the television on the wall.  I just sat still and processed the last few days, prayed a bit, and felt.  I took deep breaths.

And I started to cry.  My eyes welled up (though I didn’t let tears fall…I’m not that uninhibited…yet), and I felt the fear and the hope and the trust that all would work out for the best.

And, I’m happy to say that so far, it has.

Hugs!

Allowing Happiness

One of my writing habits (I would say “quirks,” but I imagine that I am not alone in this practice) is having something to grab and snack on while I write.  I know I need my blood sugar up in order to function…so I am typically snacking on something sugary but will occasionally go healthy with something like fruit or salty with chips/pretzels/crackers, etc.

Well, a few weeks ago, my preschooler approached me, seeking the Skittles that sometimes (often) sit beside me while I am writing.  I only buy the bulk-sized bags.  Like super-big.  The largest ones I can find.  And, I do share.

So, I had my big bag here beside me…and I pulled out a handful every now and then to put on the counter, then grabbed one or two at a time and popped them into my mouth. Well, my preschooler came up beside me, grabbed a purple (which he knows is my favorite color) with his pincer grasp, and turned to me with the words, “Open your mouth.”

He rarely tries to feed me, so his words and actions brought a smile to my face…which made my day a little bit lighter.  He popped it into my mouth, and I chewed it while retaining my smile.  🙂

I’m amazed at the intuitive nature of the beings around us and of the way they can bring happiness to us if we will but allow that feeling to flow into our hearts.

Well, I’m signing off for the weekend and hope that you…and I…will have a lovely (lighter) feeling…and days full of peace and hope for the future.

Give and Take

Sometimes we try to give more than we have…sometimes we take more than we should.

When we are children, we often take…and take…and take some more.  We take knowledge from teachers, wisdom from parents, and energy from the world.  We take life, money, hugs, kisses, tears, and habits from those around us willing to give.

When we have children, we give…and give…and give some more.  Sometimes parents feel no end to the constant giving of time and energy devoted to raising our children, loving them in the way they need to feel love, and disciplining in a way that is meaningful to them, as well.

When we are sick, we take…and take.  We take medicines, energy, and support from our caregivers.  We take healing from prayers and hope and faith.

When we are well, we give…and give.  We give treats to neighbors, kind words to those feeling lonely, carefully typed comments on someone’s blog.

When the holidays come around, we give.  We give canned food to shelters, toys to children, and money to charity.

When we get married, we give…and take.  We give ourselves to one another in the name of union and love…and we take companionship, love, connection (which hopefully is shared more than taken).

Where are you on the continuum of giving and taking…and which feels more fulfilling?

I follow the posts from HONY (Humans of New York) on Facebook…and the post came yesterday that Brandon is taking a trip after no breaks for two years.  He has given many people a view of New York through its people that we could not experience without the power of his photography and the internet by which he shares his images.  He has given for two years and (hopefully) will now be able to take a break and bask in the blessing of the gift he has given the world through this creative project he has undertaken.

My husband asked me the other day, “What do you find most challenging?”  A flood of thoughts poured into my mind, including my writing challenges, keeping up with kiddos’ schedules and homework assignments, making time to refill myself so I have something to give…but my reply came simply, in one word.

“Balance.”

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The Product of NaNoWriMo 2012

As promised, I am recording for posterity (and my lovely blog readers) the lessons I have learned over the past weeks since I made a spontaneous decision to enter NaNoWriMo 2012.  (I was serious blogging about whether or not to do it…having done no outlining or anything…and just did it on a whim thanks to the encouragement of a few lovely voices!…& I thank you sincerely Marissa and Darcy!)  Here we go, in no particular order…:

  • Prayer works.  (Not that I didn’t know this prior to Nov. 1, 2012; it was just reaffirmed to me….)
  • Productivity produces energy.
  • Support from those you love is vital for success!
  • Goals can be accomplished…(and a lot more, too!).
  • I CAN WRITE!!!!!
  • Being purely creative is energizing.
  • My family, friends (& I) love me!
  • Even with road blocks (scheduling, sickness, holidays, etc.)~keep moving forward….! (See Meet the Robinsons for more info on this topic.)
  • God is aware of me and loves me!
  • I HAVE A VOICE (and an important one, at that)!
  • I can cultivate creativity…and a writing mood.
  • Breaks are important.  (I took every Sunday off…and a few other Thursdays sprinkled in the month, as well.)
  • When all else fails, have a dance party with the kiddos (…or with friends…or by yourself…)!
  • Have munchies around always.  (I had a Swiss Cake Roll emergency…luckily for me, I did have some left-over Double Stuf Oreos which satisfied the chocolate/creamy craving.)  🙂
  • Buy back your kids’ Halloween candy and use it for NaNoWriMo snacks…and to last until NaNoWriMo is over and you start making Christmas candy.
  • Spotify created great mood music when I needed it…and was a great resource for the karaoke scene I wrote.
  • You can always edit later.

In the past few days, I have listened to some of the songs on Alicia Keys’ new album–and the chorus and several lines of this song resonate with me.  I do feel like a “Brand New Me.”

The only time I recently felt this kind of growth and accomplishment is when I worked and trained for (& completed) a half-marathon with a dear friend of mine…something about measurable success.  Hopefully, though, I will write more novels than the number of races I’ve run…! 🙂

Hugs!

When the going gets tough…

So, last night I was at a loss…or lost…or something…completely not myself.  Without going into detail, let’s just say my world was not rocking along smoothly.  Sure, I had 47,455 words toward my NaNoWriMo goal, and everyone was clothed…well, pretty much everyone since the preschooler removes his shirt often lately in the name of being the Hulk…and we fed everyone…but the clutter of the house and the weight of two weeks of an unhealthy household and people being reinfected (plus little to no sleep the night before) was hurting my heart…not to mention my head.  When I’m tired, I find that my will to be positive is depleted to almost nothing…you?

Anyway, right before I went to bed, I sent a post out to my dear Facebook friends asking for some prayers (since we were doing pretty much all we could of ourselves and needed strength we didn’t possess).  Several people commented and liked the post…even within moments…and the positive energy sent in our behalf brought a lighter feeling to our home and healthier feelings here.

I wonder why I didn’t ask sooner.

Sometimes I wait until I am at the end of my rope to ask for help.  Why is that?  I’m not sure, but I’m thinking about it today….  I know that I don’t like to bother people.  I also know that I feel like what happens is my responsibility and that I should take care of whatever it is.  And, I’m sure other reasons exist.  I will keep pondering….

This song has been running through my head today, though, as I have thought of how awesome I feel when I ask for help from others and they come running.

Just seeing the positive comments from friends has helped me feel that I am not alone in the universe…that people love me…and that together we can get through this life (and enjoy our time here, as well)!

Asking for help empowered others to offer positive energy that I desperately needed.  And, I imagine their burdens were made a little lighter, as well.  🙂

And now, I’m off to more writing and word counting…2 days left of November…and NaNoWriMo…(which I will miss)!

Christmas is coming; the geese are getting fat…

Do you remember that song?  I didn’t ever know what a hay-penny or a half-penny was until singing that song one day and wondering.  So, I did what I thought I should.  I asked my mom.  It’s what people did back in the day when we didn’t just Google all our questions.

Speaking of Googling questions…I have sick people in my home.  One actually woke me up around 2:23 a.m. to say she felt crummy and couldn’t sleep.  An hour and a few doses of medicine later, she wanted a shower.  Finally, about two hours later, she was headed to sleep, while one of her younger brothers found his way into our room.  I will spare you the other details, but let’s just say we didn’t sleep much last night.

Back to Googling, though…my dear husband is home again feeling yucky, as well (and, after little to no sleep last night, who can blame him?), and, when I sat down at the computer to begin my typing for NaNoWriMo this morning, he said, “If I were there, I would Google home remedies for colds/flu.”  I was curious, so I Googled the topic.

And guess what?

The Glorious Internet Fountain of Knowledge (through WebMD) said we should drink lots of fluids, take Vitamin C & garlic, use steam to clear sinuses, and take some cough medicine and Advil or Tylenol for pain.  Really?  We’ve been doing most of that for over a week, and still people are feeling gross.

Well, maybe I should take a moment and be grateful that most of my children are well and still going to school…and my cute preschooler is bubbling with energy (which really is a blessing…except when I want a nap!)…and I’m only about 1,000 words behind for NaNoWriMo…and still writing!  🙂  Life really is good.  And, I get to spend a little extra time with some cool people I love…helping to deliver cough drops and OTC medicines and watching movies.  If I can stay positive in light of all that is going on, then I will be okay!

Hope you are healthy and happy and still reading and writing, too, as the holidays approach!