Creative expression through the written word

Archive for May, 2017

Disconnect to really connect

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We were blessed with an opportunity to spend Friday night – Monday morning at a friend’s property up in the mountains in Darrington. It was an opportunity to completely disconnect from our busy lives and just be. It was awesome.

Our biggest question over the weekend was wether to get in the pool or air by the bonfire. It was delightful. There was the beauty of nature all around us and the joy of good friends. We ate, we drank, we took mid-day naps, we laughed, we met new people, we swam, we loved on dogs, a cat and several kids.

The best part, which I wasn’t sure about, was our phones not working. I’ve become quite accustomed to being connected to the world through my little hand held device. However, after the first hour, I didn’t miss the outside world. I didn’t miss checking my emails, following all my WhatsApp posts, all my social media stuff. I actually went an entire day not even knowing where my husband had plugged my phone in to recharge for when we left.

Giving ourselves time to disconnect actually allowed us to connect with our friends and with each other. It was the best Memorial Day weekend I’ve spent in years. The best part of it is we have been invited to come back any weekend we want through the summer and early fall. Just the thought of all that relaxation has brightened my world.

If given a chance to disconnect from the world for awhile, do it. You will be happy you did.

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The Top Three

Someone asked me the other day what my favorite experience has been to date. I had to think about it. I’ve enjoyed my life and I’ve had some great experiences along the way. The conversation made me start thinking about those experiences so I decided to share my top three.

My first favorite experience:

Well, I guess that would be being Miss Blaine 1985. That really changed my life. Changed my perspective on a lot of things. I learned how to interview, how to sit, stand, walk and present myself. I learned how to speak in front of a crowd and I learned self confidence. I also learned a lot about what it takes to represent your city and how to be politically correct. It was a lot to learn and a huge responsibility for a 17 year old. 

My second favorite experience:

This might sound funny to some people but I loved my first cruise. I’ve been on a couple since then but the whole experience of a floating hotel and entertainment center was awesome. You can eat 24 hours a day. You can drink 24 hours a day. You can layout in the sun. You can explore all the destinations you are in port for. It was fun and relaxing and I would cruise again in a heartbeat. 

My third favorite experience:

To be honest….this experience actually scared me at first. I went to São Paulo, Brazil for work. I had never travelled internationally and I had never done it by myself either. I heard lots of scary warnings about theft and attacks and I was worried about being alone. I was forced out of my comfort zone and despite my fear I went and it was amazing! I loved it. I learned I needed to plan better for connecting flights and that I just needed to relax through customs. My biggest take away from this experience was that I really love foreign travel and I want to do it more. 

I hope to have many more adventures and experiences. It’s all about staying open to opportunities and being willing to push through your fears. 

Sun or Shadow

I’m an event planner by trade and yesterday I had an event. It was gorgeous weather and everyone was out enjoying it. I was enjoying it as best I could but from where I standing I was half in the sun and half out of the sun most of the event. I moved into full sun whenever I got the chance but it wasn’t until later that evening when I got home that I got to see the results of my day in the mirror.

My whole left arm was a nice pink turning red from the sun. My face was pink on the left too but not as dramatically as my arm. I had little splotches of pink on my right arm but it was very uneven. My husband and I just laughed and I put on after sun lotion with the hopes it wouldn’t be so noticeable in the morning (Which it wasn’t) but it did give me a perspective about life.

Lets say the sun is us, living our life to its fullest and the shadow is us, hiding our gifts, talents, and dreams because we are afraid or don’t believe we can have what we want. There are aspects of our lives where we are more than happy to stand in the full glory of the sun and let ourselves be seen. To express our divine perfection. Then there are areas in our life where we hide in the shadows afraid to be seen. Afraid to let anyone see our talent because they might expect us to actually do something with it. Afraid to dream because we don’t believe we have what it takes to achieve those dreams. We hide just out of reach of the sun, playing it safe but longing for the warmth of the sun.

However, when you take a look at yourself what you are left with is an uneven life. If we focus on only the areas where we feel comfortable being “seen” then those areas grow out of proportion creating a huge division in our inner soul. Creating darker shadows for us to hide in for the other sides of us. We can choose to stay in the shadow and live an unfulfilled life. A life of regret and frustration. However, if we step fully into the sun in all aspects of our life and find balance in expressing our gifts and talents then we become a nice golden tan, healthy and happy.

It’s not easy finding balance, one can easily get burned but if we are aware and focus on balanced living we will find ourselves enjoying all aspects of life and being fully engaged in the living out of our passions, gifts, and talents. It is the kind of life worth living.

So today has been about me exposing my talents and dreams to the sun. The shadow is no place for me. I want to glow with the radiance and warmth of the sun.

Choose Wisely 

Choices are neither good nor bad. We define them by our own internal filters. Society, family upbringing, religious beliefs,  political beliefs, education, life experiences, all of these things form these internal filters. The thing is, once our filters get formed they almost never get swapped out for cleaner, clearer filters. We just aren’t aware that we are living our entire life through them. If we were aware on a conscious level of these filters then we would pay more attention to how they effect our choices, attitudes, opinions and beliefs. We would upgrade them. Change them. 

When I was 17 I heard this man speak (for the life of me I can’t remember his name)  and he said something that has stayed with me ever since. “All Life is Choice but not All Choices are Life.”  I think of that every time I am faced with difficult decisions. I have recently found myself in a situation where I had an option to respond to someone’s life choices that I don’t actually understand and I knew I had to be aware of my choice in how I responded. One way would lead to healing and acceptance and one way would lead to anger and divisiveness. I was entitled to my own choices, my own reactions but in that I have the power to choose the option that brings Life to the relationship of me and this other person. 

I’ve raised my kids since they were little that life is all about choice. The choices we make and the consequences of those choices. It’s was the best way for me give them a foundation on how to get through life as a productive, functioning adult. To stand up and take responsibility for their choices. Whether they define them as good or bad choices. 

There is this line in Indiana Jones, The Last Crusade where the Grail Knight tells them to “choose wisely”. Of course the bad guy doesn’t, gets consumed in a ghastly way and then the Grail Knight says, “he chose….poorly”. When Indiana chooses and drinks from the cup the Grail Knight says, “you chose wisely”. I fee like that is the conversation hat goes on in my head all the time. Some days my choices consume me and I know I’ve chosen poorly. The goal is to have he voice in my head saying, “you chose wisely.” more often then not. 

So here we are, living life and yes, it’s chaotic and messy but we have the power to choose how we move through it and what filters we allow ourselves to see the world through- my suggestion to you- CHOOSE WISELY!

Deja vu glitch

I would say that a majority of the people I know have seen the movie The Matrix, starring Keanu Reeves. I just recently learned that there is an entire online community of people who hash out the meanings and symbolism of the trilogy. Who knew?!

If you have watched the movie you know the scene where Neo sees the black cat do something and seconds later sees it do the same thing again. He thinks its deja vu. (Insert deja vu definition here: having seen/experienced a situation before) he is told by Trinity that it happens when there is a glitch in the Matrix. (Insert my interpretation of the Matrix: the illusion of the environment around us keeping us from the truth). Patience…..there is a point to all of this…..

I feel like I am in the middle of my own deja vu Matrix glitch. For the past two years  my life has been stuck in this limbo place. No movement forward and if anything just sinking deeper into the mire. At the start of the year things dramatically changed and for the past four months I have watched things improve… the mire becoming solid and turning into steps as we climbed out of the place we were in. Sounds great right?

And the black cat walks in front of me…then I see it again. Not literally of course but a situation happened (the black cat) and I find myself back in the place I was in before the start of the year. My own personal glitch in the Matrix and I’m left sitting here trying to figure out how the hell I am going to find the red pill. 

“You take the blue pill, the story ends. You wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill, you stay in Wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.” Or as I interpret it, you get to see the truth and become a master of your environment, an aware creator of your life. 

I’m tired of repeating this pattern in my life. Bone tired. The funny thing is that from outward appearance the place I find myself in isn’t of my own making but rather someone else’s. However, I am a firm believer that we do co-create our reality with the divine so…… I have to own this is mine too. 

So here is my thought to ponder… how do you see past the illusion that seems so real to the truth of what is possible? Not for a minute but permanently. You know, the “I took the red pill and I can never go back” kind of permanence. The I will never “deja vu” this experience in my life again truth. I logically know what is needed. But how does one co-create with another person if they are not on the same page? Same mindset? Same truth? Same vision for something different? The struggle is real. Far too real. 

So here I am….following the white rabbit…looking for the red pill. 

The Counterpoint Brigade

Life is crazy. Hectic. Chaotic. You can have absolutely perfect days and days you barely make it through. All in the same day even. A good friends brother had a saying that I’ve adopted…. “This is life and I’m living it.” It is not good or bad. It simply is what is. For every breath, the Now in front of us is life. 

I try to remember that but I am as susceptible as every other person in this world to the experiences of life.  I fall into the whirlwind that is my life and get sucked along, trying to keep my mind focused on Truth while feeling totally out of control to the craziness that is my life. 

But I have a secret…..

Drum roll please…… enter the Counterpoint Brigade. Uh, what? I have collected into my life these amazing men and women who are by description:  wild, crazy, zany, fearless, strong-willed, opinionated, over-the-top, and experts at life experience. They are the people I go spend time with when I need to “get my head straight ” and “my heart figured out”.  

They don’t even understand how much they effect me. Spending a hour with any one of them transforms my outlook on life- every single time. No kidding! Spending time with one or more together is like bathing in a pool of sanity when everything else in my world is insane. 

Want to know the funny part? I think we laugh more and can be the weirdest  around each other. Most people would think we were crazy people but I guess that’s why I call them the Counterpoint Brigade. What seems one way from the outside is really the complete opposite.

Some of them might know they fall into this group but I’ve never openly acknowledged it. I just know when I need them and i know it was right when I walk away from an encounter with them focused, happy, and ready to tackle “life” again with all its crazy aspects. 

These people are the unsung heroes of my life but I literally wouldn’t be who I am without them and I hope that to someone out there that I fill this role in their life too. I hope that people are the better for knowing me and that when people walk away from an encounter with me that their life is touched, refocused, balanced, energized. 

May we all touch each other’s lives in such a meaningful way. 

Only a Writer

“A writer is a world trapped in a person” – Victor Hugo


Unless you are a writer, I don’t think people truly understand this. It’s hard to explain to people that there are worlds, characters, ideas and concepts that never leave you. That are never more than a heartbeat away.  It’s even harder to explain how those worlds and characters interact with you before you ever get them down on paper. 

I used to tell people I would write when the voices got too loud and I could not ignore them anymore. It may sound weird to some but yes, I am actually having conversations in my mind with different characters. Things happen around me and it sparks off an internal landscape that grows and shapes itself until I can’t ignore it anymore and it has to go somewhere. 

I dream about stories. I dream about characters. I get frustrated when what is in my head doesn’t come out on paper the way I experience it in my mind. I write and think it’s awful. I get anxious about other people reading my work because it’s such an integral part of me that their feedback has the power to destroy me or lift me up. 

I struggle with ending’s because, for me, their stories don’t end. Where do you call a life finished? Complete? As I write romance is that the moment when they recognize in each other a great love? No. For me that is the beginning. 

Ernest Hemingway Quotes. “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” I understand that. I feel it. I experience it. The thing is, it’s like a kind of madness I cannot escape even if I wished to. This is the burning flame within my soul and a good day is when I fan the flames and let them burn higher. 

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