Monthly Archives: October 2013

My fear of change caused me to lose it (again) in a very quite place …

I went back to yoga last night.  I took the summer off from going to class.  And, why not?  Summer is a beautiful time of the year and training allows me to be outside.  But, now it’s getting colder (although I did get a balmy and beautiful 6 mile run in this morning) and it’s time to head back inside.

As you know, I don’t often take quiet time for myself.  Things are moving pretty fast for me, not only in my professional life, but in my personal life as well.  Moreover, I am watching the absolutely screaming speed at which my kids are growing up.  My daughter is now communicating with rowing coaches from D1 schools and I can see the writing on the wall.  My boys are really young men … those are the things that caused me to lose it last night.

In those final moments of yoga class, when you are supposed to release everything in your body, I began to think about change.  Is it possible I won’t be single forever?  What’s it going to be like when my kids go off to college.  Will everyone in my life be there in five years?  I started to cry.

Why can’t things just stay the same?  The people in my life, my kids being here?  Do I have to keep getting older? 🙂

I get the whole change thing.  And, I get that I will love the next phase.  But, can’t I just keep it still for a bit?  Don’t you ever wonder about that?

Maybe this is coming up because I can see big changes on the horizon.  Maybe because at that moment I wasn’t moving 1,000 miles per hour.  Or maybe, I got scared because I just love this moment.  The one right now.  I like the way it is.  Maybe I was that way last year too.  Maybe I loved that moment as well.

What ever the reason, life’s already changed from last night to today.  So, I didn’t get my wish.  But, I did get to read this to my son this morning who said, “It’s good but it’s sad, how fast life goes. I guess we gotta enjoy it.”  He’s so right.

Have a wonderful day.

He blessed me at the elevator.

I had an odd experience as I was leaving the office yesterday.  I was not paying as much attention as I should I walked to the elevator for our parking garage.  However, as I got close, I could see a man stepping out.  He was not very tall, old(er) and quite thin.  I could see that the door was about to close (he had already walked out), so I figured I would ring for the next elevator.  Yet, my eyes were focused on this guy, when I saw him stick his hand between the doors of the elevator to save it for me.  I quickened my pace to get there.

The only problem with this gesture (which we’ve all made before), was that he was looking at me (not the elevator doors) and I could see that the elevator was clearly going to close on his hand.  In a split second, as the door was almost closed, I grabbed his arm and pulled it out.  I gasped out loud when I realized how close it was.  I could feel the air from the door as his hand brushed the inside from how close they were to closing.   At that moment, we both realized how close that was.

We stood there looking at each other.  I asked if he was ok.  He didn’t seem to speak english (or it wasn’t very clear, anyway).  He immediately grabbed my hands and started to kiss them!  Mind you, I am in the middle of the skyway at 4:00 p.m.!

All I could really could get was him saying, “I bless you.  I bless you.”  Then, he seemed to bow to me and the next thing I knew he was gone.

Wow.

Clearly, one lesson for me is to watch when I stick my hand in the elevator door!  It’s usually not my smartest move.

The other lesson, is to slow down.  It’s hard for me to remember a time when I stood at an elevator, or on one, and haven’t grabbed my phone to check it.  It’s the first thing I do.  I never pay attention in those situations.  But, had I been on my phone this time, I would have missed what he was doing and his hand could have been severely injured.

I guess I’d better pay more attention.  I’ve got a weird feeling this event will come back to me in some way.

I hope you have a wonderful day!

Jessica

 

I think I was supposed to learn this (and 10,000 other things) long before I qualified for AARP.

I’m really bad at this aspect of life.  This notion of letting things just happen.  Ray Bradbury had a great quote that I’ve often  tried to use, unsuccessfully: “Learning to let go should be learned before learning to get. Life should be touched, not strangled. You’ve got to relax, let it happen at times, and let others move forward with it.”  

Although I don’t espouse religion in this blog, I thought this quote was important one.  Bradbury, interviewed at 90, said, “I’m a Zen Buddhist if I would describe myself. I don’t think about what I do. I do it. That’s Buddhism. I jump off the cliff and build my wings on the way down.”

This is something I struggle with.  I constantly want to analyze every decision and “figure it all out” before I make a move.   I know you’ve got to jump before you fly, but that’s easier said than done.  I’ve got a little over a month to make some decisions and I am analyzing each and every possible scenario, ad nauseam.

I’ve decided that if I just open myself up and allow the answers to come to me, they won’t eat me alive in the process!  If I’m focused on being grateful from each and every minute I have, I may see things that will help me make my decisions.  And, let’s be honest, the real truth is no matter which direction we go in life, it (whatever it is) will be OK.

I have a feeling there are others of you like me, in this regard.  You need not identify yourself!

As nebulous as it sounds, I think we just need to let go of our attachment to the process and maybe even the result, and see what happens.  Then, each day, we can look at what’s in front of us and take action based on that information only … not the information from our past or guess about the result from the future.  Sounds easy.  But, I know it’s not.

I once read the following Chinese proverb:  “When you feel confused, take a pillow and go to bed.”

This, of course, is the essence of letting go.  I think I’ll be sleeping a lot in the next month! 🙂

Have a great start to your week!

Day 1: No Sugar. Or, in the alternative, Day 1: Serious B****!

A number of years ago I had a gall bladder attack.  No one believed me at first. “You don’t look like a gall bladder attack candidate,”  I kept hearing.  Yet, I had to change my diet and I eventually needed surgery.  One less organ never killed anyone.

I got back to normal but somewhere along the way (actually at a restaurant when the bread basket was handed to me), I learned that gluten was causing some problems for me.  When I went off, to see if I was right (Sadly, I was), I was hungry for weeks until I figured out what to eat (I’m still missing my bread).

Recently, some friends said they were going on a cleanse.  “A what?”  I asked.  Apparently this cleanse cleans out the “toxins” and helps you start “fresh.”   Sounds interesting, since I am definitely full of toxins (and other unmentionables) and could use a fresh start.  Plus, I’ve not been feeling fantastic as it relates to food and I’m not sure what’s causing the problem.

So, I do what any bright woman would do … I searched the internet to self-diagnose.  After reading about all these food ailments, I came across one that fit my symptoms.  I could feel the depression setting in as I realized that I might have to cut out this “food” item out for a while.

Hello, my name is Jessica and I am addicted to sugar.

I never considered myself an addict but here were my symptoms:

1. Raisins or sugar in my oatmeal in the morning and a glass of chocolate mile.

2. Toast (gluten-free) required honey or jelly, with milk, chocolate, if possible..

3. Chocolate after every meal.

4. Ice cream cravings every evening (Chocolate Moose Tracks).

5. And, recently I started sprinkling chocolate powder in my black coffee.

I’m an addict.

Yesterday was Day One – no sugar – and I felt like S***.  I wonder if that should tell me something.  I was kind of edgy, not my usual pleasant person at the check-out at Target, got frustrated with the man at the gas station who was talking on the phone even after his pump had finished (and I needed it!) and just generally tired.  I went so far as to walk by the chocolate aisle at Target just to be sure I didn’t want to buy ANYTHING.

But avoiding processed sugar means eliminating all my favorite foods, ketchup, mayo and even my sugar filled yogurt!  I’m even supposed to eliminate all fruits, but there’s no way I’m skipping my daily banana!

Please, just shoot me now and put me out of my misery.

My goal is a week.  I’m not sure I’ll make it without serious withdrawal symptoms.  Kids, you might want to go stay with Dad for the week.

Have a great day (and eat some chocolate for me).

Sex, drugs and rock and roll?

This sounded great in my late teens/early 20’s (although I had no idea what it all meant!).  Now, here I am in my 50’s and while a form of dissociation from all my responsibilities for an oh-so-brief moment sounds good, I’m frankly just too tired for any of these items (although, one of them I’m really not ready to give up just yet!).  What’s happening to me?

Lately, I’ve noticed a few “odd” things about my life:

1. I find I’m wanting to go to bed before my kids seem tired.  In fact, I want to go to bed right after dinner and I’ve still got a kitchen to clean, laundry, work and likely another meal to make!

2. I’ve noticed that what I think of as rock and roll (my high school music) my kids now call the “oldies” station.  Really?  I’m 51.

3. Last week I got an alumni newsletter from my high school.  The highlight?  Someone’s grandkid just got into a local college.  OMG!!!

4. Sex?  Huh?

So, maybe I’ve got to find some more reasonable trifectas.  The things I really can do in my 50’s:

Swim, bike, run.  Ok.  Decent start.

Cook, clean and do laundry.  Yuck, but can do it.

Drive, drop off, pick up (all the while never getting out of the car).  Yes.

Eat, drink and pass out by 8:30 p.m.  Happening on a regular basis lately.

There are also things I know it’s time to give up:

Doing (or trying) the splits, the limbo and wearing my I Dream of Jeannie costume (do you people even know who she was??).

Having multiple Jello shots, more than one glass of wine and karaoke after either one.

Joining the circus, joining an ashram or a going on a 7-day bingo cruise sponsored by AARP — there’s one in my new magazine, which I’ve got to tell you looks cool because all the older people look so together in the ad!  Although at the rate I am going just a trip to St. Paul to play bingo would be a vacation!

Single spacing my holiday letter, taking pictures of the kids in the summer wearing winter clothes for the holiday letter (while they curse at me) and even thinking I’ve got the time, energy or desire to send out the holiday letter (don’t hold your breath!).

Here’s my thought: when I finally get a chance to breath, I may just try on my old cheerleader outfit, do a little rock climbing or even pull out that jello shot recipe.  Until that time, however, you’ll catch me on the couch, pretending to work with my eyes closed at 8:22 p.m. (if I even make it that late!).

Have a great day!

“Good Morning!”

[Scene: 7:00 a.m.  Kids getting up.  I’ve been up for an hour or more (maybe even a 6 mile run)]

Me: Good Morning!  How’d you sleep?

Son: (grunt)

Me: What can I make you for breakfast?

Son: (nothing)

Me:  How about some waffles or oatmeal?  Maybe some cereal?

Son: (nothing)

Me: I can make hard-boiled eggs?  How about hot chocolate or hot apple cider?

Son: (nothing)

Me: (loudly) HEY!

Son: (looks up) What?

Me: Come on.  I’m talking to you.

Son: What?

Me: What do you want for breakfast?

Son:  What do you have?

[Closing Scene: Frustrated 51 year old mom, now thinking it’s not too early to open a bottle of wine.  It’s 7:05 a.m.]

 

Welcome to Wednesday everyone!!!  Want to come over for breakfast?  X0

 

The One who lives inside you.

My friend shared an amazing story about a woman who realized, 17 years in to her marriage, that she was unhappy with who she had become and who her husband was.   This isn’t a blog about marriage (that was so yesterday!), this is a blog about what she learned about herself and how much I have to learn about myself.

I am a typical woman trying to do it all (unsuccessfully at times) and I often look externally for The One.  The One who will give me support.  The One, who will love me.  The One, who will do the laundry, the checkbook, the grocery shopping …  (ok, maybe not all that!), but you know what I mean.  This is normal.  But what I often miss is The One inside me.

The One inside me can be very harsh.  It can get angry with me, frustrated with my behavior and down right critical of me.  The One is really my long running tape.  Yet, The One inside me really is my voice.  It’s the one that I need acceptance and love from.  It’s the one that will help transform my thoughts and feelings.  It’s the one who will remind me of my flaws and then forgive me for them at the same time.

As she wrote, sometimes people reinforce the not-so-good in us and then we develop false and negative beliefs about who we are.  However, it is our inner voice (The One) that we need to help us see ourselves through our own lens, not someone elses:

There is no Prince Charming, no winning the lottery or magic bullet. Life is a process and experience of joyful times and challenging times. When you have found The One deep inside of you, your ability to navigate through all of these times with grace, acceptance and continuous learning happens naturally. You experience a freedom and a love that you may have never thought possible.

So, tell The One inside you how much you love and appreciate him (or her).   We all need to access that inner voice … the loving and positive acceptance of who we are … flaws and all.  Listening to that voice, The One, helps us to make our lives our very own.

Have a wonderful day!!