No More Shame

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Just me – no makeup no filters

I don’t hate the way I look today, which for me is a huge accomplishment. Even bigger, I am not judging myself as good bad or ugly based on the way I look today. Why? Well, I’m actively in the process of losing some weight, I eat clean and vegan 99% of the time. I am getting more exercise and I belong to an incredible emotional eating (EE) group that is teaching me how to understand that feelings and urges are feelings and urges. They pass, I can separate myself from them. I can observe them. They are not me. But even if I wasn’t doing all that, I am learning to love myself, no matter what my size is. It’s a strange, but delightful feeling to reconnect with my body. We’ve been so distant from each other for so many years.

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Social Anxiety Be Gone!

anxietyWhen I first took the plunge and decided to publish A Girl from the Hill, I never considered the next logical step – selling A Girl from the Hill. I was clueless about the feelings that come from creating something, sweating and crying and laughing and agonizing over this baby of mine, only to then try to convince the rest of the world that it’s worth their time – and money.  Holy crap, I said to myself then and still say now. This marketing stuff is not easy.

I am not sure what I expected, for though I’m expressive, I’m just pathetic at networking, small talk, and walking up to people and asking them if they’d like to read my book. No, I’m the person who will sit with a million boxes of books printed and ready to sell in her living room, calmly waiting for the crowds to arrive. My ninety-year-old mother is a better salesperson than I am. “Didja know there’s a book about me?” she crows to anyone who will listen. And they listen.

So I’ve been trying to sell my book, and having all kinds of interesting adventures in the process. The best part of the selling process, besides making money, is, and I never thought I’d say this, meeting people. Not only meeting people, but talking to people. About me. And my book. And a whole bunch of other things that are important to us. Yes us. I am learning to become engaged, and hopefully, engaging.

You see, I often dread the thought of new places with new people. Even familiar places with familiar people. Call it social anxiety because that’s exactly what it is.  It isn’t apparent to people I work with, and I enjoy leading teams and projects successfully

Tonight, though, I wanted to take a moment to mention how incredibly fun it has been so far to talk to new people about writing and books, especially my book, these past eighteen months. Really, it’s been great therapy to share part of my life with others and not feel responsible for their happiness at the same time. Maybe they like me and my work, maybe they don’t. But I will not pass out and die if they don’t approve of me. Who knew?

The other aspect of this whole marketing thing that I’m grateful for is the writer friends I have made along the way. Whether it’s my blog buddies who write great stuff and urge me on when I blog, or the writers from ARIA or  ASTAL who share their work and their advice with me, and whose work provides me with the inspiration I need to keep writing even if it’s for 5 minutes a day.

So thank you all, who I’ve met so far on this journey, who write, read, share, and who have helped me grow as a person and a writer. Looking forward to next weekend at the Scituate Art Festival, when I’ll get another opportunity to reach out and find some more reasons to feel grateful and inspired.

Eddie Haskell Wasn’t So Bad … Oh Yeah He Was

EddieWatching way too much retro TV this weekend when I should be reading and writing. But last week’s long relentless stress from all angles, to the point that I felt like a baby harbor seal dodging clubs, left me with no alternative than to veg out and regress back to the days when everything was normal. Normal ish.I almost felt bad for Eddy Haskell today. Everyone knows he’s a phony. Ward knows. Barbara Billingsly knows. Heck, Wally even knows. But he stands by his best friend. Puzzling perhaps, and perhaps someone could write, or has already written a doctorate thesis on The Eddy Haskell Syndrome and the Wally’s Who Love Them. So I won’t do that here. You’re welcome.

I almost felt bad for Eddy because he thinks the only way he can get attention is by making others look bad. Like the Beav, who Wally loves like a good brother should, telling him when he is acting like a creep versus sticking up for him against his best friend-bully. I almost felt bad for Eddy because he feels like he must act like, well, Eddie Haskell. He knows that he is merely tolerated at best. But he’s too proud to admit his failings and appear normalish. The facade is too important, and really holds a life of its own, leaving poor Eddy as an empty shell. Eddy the Narcissist is another thesis out there waiting to be written.

No I’m not high. I sound like it though don’t I? I just find it interesting Continue reading

Ain’t nobody gonna steal my joy. Repost from Sethsnap

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (soundtrack)

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (soundtrack) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ain’t nobody gonna steal my joy..

I love that ain’t keeps showing up in my posts.  Such a powerful word.

I agree with Seth, and he does such a fantastic job expressing the sentiment in his photos

May we all persevere, and let’s just share our joy so it cannot be stolen.

I Coulda Beena Contenda- but She Actually is One

 

Trinity University (Texas) women's basketball ...

Trinity University (Texas) women’s basketball team, 1915 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My daughter stayed home sick yesterday with a cough and scratchy throat. She is pretty tough as sixth grade girls go, so when she does complain that she’s not well I take it seriously. My husband, upon getting home from work, suggested that Julia get ready for basketball practice that evening. I began to protest, saying that she felt better but questioning his judgment.

They are going over plays for the tournament this weekend. Even if she doesn’t play, she should be there to listen, he said. When I crinkled my nose, his response, though not shocking, got me to really thinking.

“She’s an athlete,” he said. “She’s a competitor, and she wants to be there.”

My daughter is an athlete. It’s official. She is an amazing basketball player, really. Those who have seen my brags, or as my friend Leslie termed them, my ‘shares’ on Face Book already know how good I think she is. Her strength, endurance, and talent amaze me. A gifted athlete. She’s also a gifted singer, actress, leader and writer. Many things that, at one point or another in my life, I thought I’d choose to be. Recently she took one of those occupational IQ tests at school, and got matched with one of two careers – teacher or clinical psychologist. Just like me when I was in Junior High during the Stone Age.

The biggest difference between my daughter and me, aside from our height and hair color, is that instead of just daydreaming, she is doing it. She has so many doors opening to her, even at the young age of 12, that it’s mind-blowing. The times we live in provide young women with so many opportunities. More than they did 35 years ago when I was her age? Yes, surely. And way more than my mother had back in the 40’s.

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Surrender

Autumn Surrender

Autumn Surrender (Photo credit: James Marvin Phelps)

Surrender.

Debra’s blogpost hits home in so many ways. She is such a wonderful writer, with words that penetrate my heart and soul.

On the surface she blogs about a back injury. Underneath, it’s about living in the moment, even if that moment sucks, in order to break on through to the other side, so to speak.

And it’s about compassion not just for others, but for yourself. Yes YOU. So many of us are so hard on ourselves, and have unattainable expectations for ourselves. Guess what? Sometimes its okay to say I’m afraid, in pain and not in a good place. Sometimes that’s the only way to get out of that place at all. Surrender is, in her words…

having compassion for myself the same as I would have for anyone else…

Sounds easy, but I know so many people who are suffering right now, and while they are going through bad times are beating themselves and berating themselves. Why does this have to happen to me? What is wrong with me? What did I do wrong? I should have known better. Work/School/Life/Love (pick one) is always going to be miserable for me because of me.

I do it myself.

My wish is for all the people I love to find a way to surrender to the pain, and while living through it remember that they didn’t cause the pain. My prayer is that they move away from the pain and towards happiness.

Do You Believe In Miracles?

Do You Believe In Miracles?.

I do.  Always have.  I didn’t think they could happen for me, but I did always believe they could happen for others.

It’s taken me a long time and a lot of reflection to understand that anything is possible for anyone who believes.  That’s what faith is all about.  Understanding that we all are worthy of happiness and goodness and love as long as those are the things we reflect in our own lives.

There are those times when it’s impossible to understand why things go wrong.  To see the good in anything.  It’s not always an easy search, and I have often failed in the past to understand why something bad has happened to me or to someone I love.

My daughter and I talked about this one night when she was afraid to take a chance – when she felt she would fail.  When I told her I had done this before- passed up opportunities that would have put me in a better place career and finance-wise, she replied, “But then you wouldn’t have met Daddy and you wouldn’t have had me.”  She was right- for she is truly my very own miracle. Continue reading