Ravings from a Maryland Mad Woman in Minnesota

Have I gone mad? I'm afraid so. I'm entirely Bonkers. But I will tell you a secret, All the best people are. All writing is for your entertainment, I do hope you enjoy.
So, I haven't been around for several months and all after planning to post every week. I often say the Universe likes to laugh at my long-term plans. This year’s twist from the all might Universe is moving to Minnesota. Somewhere in late months of Spring, my husband’s company decided to open a new office and my husband was the man to do it. Well, the plan was set in place but was not solidified until June. Which gave us a month to pack up a four-bedroom house, three kids, two adults, a cat, a dog and a bunny and move to Minnesota.

I, myself, took this opportunity to go through our precious collection of stuff and get rid of things not being used. My son’s did the same; one on his own and one with my help. My husband and my daughter did not and found they have brought a bunch of stuff that they did not really need at the expense of things that we should have brought with us. All things that can be replaced but would have made life easier… so word to the wise. When packing, “Clean out the past, pack up the present and prepare for a much better future!”

Spring is here!

I cannot tell you how busy I have been. As busy as you, no doubt! Taking calls, homeschooling three kids and gutting--- I mean doing the spring fling aka spring cleaning! It has not always been this way. I used to fight clearing and cleaning. I hated the idea of going through stuff that had accumulated. Presents that well-meaning people bought us, but we haven’t gotten around to using even after months, yes, now we re-gift. Trying to decide what should be kept, always afraid that if I got rid of something, suddenly, I would need it.

I keep saying that I am going to get better at it but somehow the same thing keeps happening over and over and I am done with it. I am going to apply my life coaching as well as a program that I just learned about and share my journey with you!

My three problem areas are:

Clothes are small individual items that when they band together take up a lot of room, in drawers, on the floor and ultimately in huge piles on my laundry room floor. We call ours Mount Washmore, it isn’t original but it is our personal mountain. Clothes for myself, my husband, our two boys, 16 and 9, and one girl, 12.

My living room is the first room you see but is rarely used. It is also a huge room. There is a sitting area, a front table just by the door, a desk that you can’t work at because it has too much stuff on, and under it, my sewing area is also there and has boxes of stuff that hasn’t been gone through yet.

Probably redundant but my laundry room is chaotic at best. It is a good size room, horribly organized and I just can’t figure out how to make it better… but we are going to focus on it and find some solutions.

Everything in my house that is not being used is clutter. Deciding what to do with clutter is just that a decision waiting to happen. Ha! Clutter is like static; its potential is waiting on you to decide what to do with it. Also, now that I think about it. Clutter is that static sound you hear on the phone that distracts you from hearing the person you are talking to.

This week, I am going to work with my children on what clothes they have and what they need.

From thoughts to stuff, we are surrounded by clutter. Clutter of information, clutter of thoughts and clutter of stuff. My neighbor across the street cannot live in his home because it is full of boxes of clutter. We were never taught how to deal with all the stuff that comes with life. We shuffle clutter from here to there. We stuff it in boxes and store boxes of it in unused rooms and storage lockers. Sometimes we never see that stuff again and it is our loved ones that must pay for the storage or go through it bit by bit guessing at what we would have wanted kept and probably keeping the wrong things anyway.

As a child of a hoarder and never taught how to clean, organize or even structure my life at home nor at school. I have had to climb the hard way and I have fallen many times. I have spent hours making a to-do list only find that I don’t even know where to start or worse losing the list and with it all the hard hours of work. I have moved clutter from one box to another and rearranged it sometimes making a bigger mess than when I started. After many years of reading and trying this program or that program and feeling like a failure when what they suggest doesn’t work, I have begun to put pieces of this and pieces of that as well as my life coaching skills to work for myself.

A personal program has emerged. An actual plan of action has developed. How to make a to-do list that really works on paper or digitally depending on what works best for you. I can help you apply these principals so that you too can get anything done in much less time than you can imagine with less effort than you have been exerting now.

Have the life you were meant to have, have more time (and space) to do the things you really want to do. When you are ready to stop spinning your wheels, give me a call. I can’t wait to start this adventure with you!

This week, I met a wonderful lady, she is a mother, has early stages of MS, takes care of her husband who has a Traumatic Brain Injury, survived cancer and buried her best friend and her husband’s father this year.

Holy Cow!

What do you say to that?

Honesty for me is the best way and as heartfelt as I told her I didn’t know what to say. Congratulation? At least on surviving cancer. I told her that I thought she was amazing and couldn’t imagine what I would do in her place. She was touched and let me know that she rarely heard her efforts acknowledged.

Unstuck, that gives advice and perspectives on how to live life more fully, has a free etiquette guide. (http://landing.unstuck.com/40-moments-fb/) They have 40 uncomfortable moments and how to survive them with etiquette and grace. We could all use a little more grace in our lives.

My goal is to post once a week on Friday. While I had worked on something relating to happiness when yesterday came, I was feeling very sad. My spouse has just left the day before for a work trip that will last about a week.

Everywhere are reminders that he is not home. Toiletries no longer taking up room in the bathroom, rings missing from the dresser, his favorite hat and keys no longer hanging where they normally do. I felt incredible loss at he not being home. The miles between us felt like, well honestly, it couldn’t get much worse.

Today, I don’t know, I still feel the loss of his presence. I know he will be home all too soon and this feeling will be a memory at least until he goes on the next business trip. Even I can become stuck in emotion that often is temporary but it feels like it will last forever.

This morning I played my favorite song, Cheshire Kitten. It is a song that has a very Alice and Wonderland feel and reminds me that “if I lose my smile, remind me, that we’re all mad here and it okay.”

I know I am not okay and that is okay too, okay?

I guess that is what I want to talk about… not being okay. I have had many friends (you know you are all my friends) tell me about their troubles. The word "troubles" sound light in comparison to a friend who is dying of cancer, or another who has lost a loved one from breakups to death, or even the mother who has a child with behavior problems that just seems unending but that is what they are troubles.

They cry and talk and vent and in the end, while they tell me I have made them feel better in the sharing, they simply are not “OK.”

It is okay not to be okay, okay?

Yes, I know cheese to say something that is already in the title but it is worth repeating because I don’t think we hear it enough. People ask us how we are and the most common response is fine or okay. Do we really mean it? How would someone respond if we said any of the following,

“I feel like crying.”

“I’m frustrated.”

“I’m stressed.”

“I’m angry.” Or any other emotion that is considered less than okay.

Many of us don’t know how our friends or even family would respond because we have never tried. Those closest to me know, first, I would hug them. Hugs are powerful things that we don’t often give as freely as we should but I try to hug a visiting friend at least three times and that is just for a short visit.

Next, would be for me to listen. Just listen. Being heard is also something many of us are missing. We don’t listen to each other. We hardly listen to our inner thoughts so it is difficult to really listen to someone else.

Sometimes I give suggestions or ask questions so that I can reach an understanding of what they are going through or maybe find a sliver of a silver lining but I never judge and I always leave them with a sense of helping to carry their burden and that it is okay.

It is okay to not be okay and it okay to allow themselves time to feel the way they feel.

So, I just want to say, while we are all looking for happiness when we hit those bumps in life,

It is okay, not to be okay, okay?

I apologize to my readers for not posting in a couple of weeks. I had the best of intentions to post weekly but life gets in the way like it usually does but maybe not in the way you think. Between politics that have depleted me and thinking and maybe overthinking these posts. Something just didn’t feel right, they felt forced, based a lot on what I was learning. While the life coaching skills I am learning are of benefit to me, they are not what I want to post. It is not what my heart speaks.

So, here we go…

Music is my therapy and often my motivation. I have been motivated by a music band for some time now. They are an alternative, fast paced band and preach wellness. No that is probably not quite right but growing up I listened to a lot of Linkin Park songs like Numb and to some degree Flyleaf like “I’m so Sick” that sing about mental illness. Even Evanescence has a song about hiding from all the “rampant chaos.” After listening to lyrics that felt like whining for years, discovering Icons for Hire was an amazing transformation for me. “Make a Move” was the first. “Test my reality, check if there’s a weak spot, clingin’ to insanity in hopes the world will ease up. Try to make it look like it’s all somehow getting better; ‘cause I know how to play it pretty good against the measure…” The song talks about the pressure we all have on us. That if she has the answers, she’d write them out but all she’s learned comes second-hand and we dare not use what we don’t understand. Further, she points out that the disease we have is "compromise."

While most people think of the give and take that compromise can inspire, I believe, in the instance, she means accepting standards that are lower than is desirable. She begs for action, knowing that those who don’t take action, play our part because we are scared. “Somebody make a move, somebody make a move… please somebody make a move.” Make a move… do not be content with compromises you cannot live with. Make a move… Give me a call, let’s talk about how to get your life going in the direction you want it to go.

Today I found that it is Friday. So happy Friday!

I promised, resolved to write a blog every Friday. It isn’t like I hadn’t thought about it. Even wrote a note or two but I woke up today without a blog to post. Why does this happen? Why do we do (or not do) the things we promise ourselves?

What stops us from doing the things we know we should? I could blame my children; they were getting back into the swing of doing their studies again. I could blame my husband; he needed things from me this week. Maybe I got side tracked by my video game I play. However, let’s look at it from another way.

When I was a teenager, opening my first bank account with my father, on the wall of the cubicle of the desk we were sitting at was a photocopied “poem.” It read, “Watch your thoughts, they become words; watch your words, they become actions; watch your actions, they become habits; watch you habits, they become character; watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.” I was struck by the domino effect of it.

Now, this quote has been accredited to all sort of amazing public figure from Ralph Waldo Emerson to Gautama Buddha. Many people have been known to say it, but whoever said it, there is something missing. There is something that gets in the way before our thoughts. Our feelings.

We rarely acknowledge our thoughts or watch them. Like an unsupervised young child running around with pointing objects, our thoughts float around attacking our day. Keeping us from the actions we want to do and encouraging us to do the things that while might make us immediately happy, keep us from our goals.

Wow, did I just call us a bunch of children with pointing objects? Yes…. And no. Just before, or maybe at the same time as I thought, “I should work on my blog” it was my feelings that kept me from doing it. I do not like writing very much, I never have. I can remember writing my homework essay the night before and getting a respectable B minus to a C. Why did I need to try harder? I might add I have ill feelings about school too.

My thoughts fueled or perhaps not fueled by my feelings power my actions which create results. My inaction found me panicking, much like in school, to think of anything to write. We all, have our demons (unsupervised children, with pointing objects) to deal with. My feelings, well, I still don’t like writing but I do like making people feel better. I love listening to people with all their ups and downs and helping where I can. Writing has helped people to know me better and to make more people comfortable calling. Some people who haven’t even called me and really have no plans to have written to tell me they have benefited from reading something I have written.

That alone makes me very happy. Why would I be happy about benefiting someone who isn’t paying me? Because it is not about the money. It is about helping people.

Okay, this road to happiness is going to be a long and winding road. I may need to work on this whole taking action idea… until next week!

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So in my last post I mentioned my New Year’s Resolution is to help more people and to that end I have begun taking a couple new classes.  One is to become better at putting myself out there as a business person (something I find very difficult at times) and the other to continue my education as a Life Coach. One of the firs things the first class has encouraged me to do is to tell you about me.  You need to know who you are talking to and it is one of the first conversations I often have with callers.  About me… hmm… as many times as I have been asked that it is still something I find hard to find the words for but I will try my best.

As with everyone else, I wear many hats.  I am a daughter, sister, mother, wife, and friend but then I guess many are… I am and homeschool teacher; my three kids, 16, 12 and my youngest will be 9 soon.  I am a gamer; I love interacting with my tribe online as we work together.  Most of all though, I am a Life Coach and have been so most of my life.  I am not sure that most people know what a Life Coach is and the difference between a Life Coach and I wonder if that is not something better for another post.

The short answer though is that a life coach is someone who listens and encourages people on stuff dealing with personal challenges.  It is not therapy.  I am not a licensed therapist and I am not about analyzing you.  From a very young age, long before I ever heard the word Life Coach, I have been helping people.  Yes, children are often helpful in their young sort of ways, but I don’t mean taking out the trash or clean someone’s dishes, although I did that too.  Growing up in a diverse community with many lifestyles.  One of my first memories of helping someone was a childhood friend who was dealing with his mother leaving his father for another woman.

Now, it is less of a big deal but back in the 80s?  It was huge!  My friend had to deal with questions from adults and kids.  Questions he didn’t have answers too.  Even how do you feel about the situation were overwhelming for him.  I remember talking for hours with him about what was going on at each home.  Eventually, how much pain he was going through, not just because his parents had split but mad because his parent’s and especially his mom had put him in this situation.  We talked the situation to death and to this day, he has told me he values those conversations because he was finally able to move past the pain and anger and see how much happier his mom was and in turn he even helped his dad accept the situation.  Both are married again to different people and they work together to be a (somewhat) unconventional family.

Over the years I have had many diverse friends from all sorts of lifestyles; really nothing except my almost teenage daughter phases me anymore.  Come on, no one is perfect!  In the past, the person I help is someone I meet for only a few minutes.  I am still surprised when a person in the grocery store line tells me their life story; I am told I am easy to talk to.  When a friend of mine recorded a program about Life Coaching, I was like, I want to do that!  Silly me, I had already been doing it for years.

I have read a long list of books, and taken classes and workshops but when it comes down to it, mostly what I have is life experience.  I also have a strong love of people, especially broken people because I have been broken a time or two.  No, I am not about fixing people.  Broken people don’t need fixing. They need someone to understand and help us understand that it is okay to be broken.  We need a friend, someone to help walk with us and remind us that everything will be okay.  Sometimes that it is okay, not to be okay.

A few years ago, I counseled a bipolar friend who was diagnosed with diabetes and stage 4 prostate cancer all in the same year.  (It is okay to cringe, I still do.)  He wanted to give up before he started, he was so scared.  I told him that was his option, and that I would miss him as would many others.  I don’t know if it was my impact but he decided to fight.  His therapy to slow the cancer was estrogen shots which essentially gave him menopause like symptoms.  His already unstable mood swings were, well, even more unstable.  While I would have talked to him until the end of time, sometimes all he needed was to be hugged allowed to cry and reminded that it was okay, not to be okay.  In the coming months, we found out that the cancer had moved to his bones and while he would not admit it, it was just a matter of time.  He died peacefully in his sleep, he is my friend and I will always miss him.

Even the occasional caller, I consider my friend. I am often asked, “If you were really my friend, would you be okay with” this or that and the honest answer is yes.  The truth of the matter is, I consider all of my callers, my friend.  A friend is defined as one who is attached to another by affection or esteem.  I don’t stop thinking of someone who calls me as soon as the conversation is over.  I care, and because I do, I keep thinking about you after you have called.  Even when it is a one-time caller who just needs a friendly voice for a few minute.

I love the longtime friend (the repeat caller) not because it means more money.  I get calls all the time, I have even had to extend my hours so that I can fit more people in.  I keep my cost as low as they let me, not because I don’t value my time but because I know right now how hard it is to spend money on yourself (and because I have been asked so often, I save the money for vacation and to further my children’s education because I often find it hard to spend money on myself.)  I love the repeat caller because I want to hear how you are doing.  I want to know the tiny changes you have made after we talked and how it is changing your life in wonderful amazing ways.  I want to be there when you hit little snags and bumps and be there to cheer you on and tell you it is okay, because no one is perfect and every day is a new day, a new chance to be the you, you want to be.

So, I guess, when it comes down to it.  While I am many things, mostly, I am all about you and what it will take to make your life better.  As cheesy as that sounds, I am serious.  When there is someone in need, I feel the need to help in whatever way I can.  I love, love, love, helping people through the messy, emotional, rough stuff because I know that I can.  It is not always easy for either of us but it is always worth it… you are worth it.

P.S. I am sorry for any spelling or grammar mistakes. I try my best and it is something I am working on but I tend to type the way I talk which can get a little messy and emotional sometimes.  Feel free to message me your story before we talk on the phone.  It can be therapeutic to get it out on paper (even digital paper) and honestly it saves you some time so we can get to helping you sooner.

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My New Year’s Eve was surrounded by food and my close immediate family, my husband and three children. We gamed and had a Pirate’s of the Caribbean marathon. We made a series of appetizers starting with vegetables, chips, dips to tasties we cooked in the oven. My youngest spent most of it gaming on his Xbox, myself on a multi-player game that involves dinosaurs. As midnight approached our family activity director, my daughter, found a local station doing the countdown, got fancy glasses out and filled them with bubbly juice. About a few minutes before, we all gathered standing in front of our boxy television, glasses and a piece of homemade chocolate, made by my daughter in our hands.

Chocolate I can’t eat for over a minute? I took a nibble, my husband took my lead and then my youngest. Which caused my daughter to chide us and tell us to wait. We fell into a laughable group watching the clock, eating chocolate and sipping juice meant for the New Year. As my daughter began to lose her mind, getting more and more upset. I turned to her and laughing said, who would have thought that we would ring in the New Year laughing and being irreverent. She stopped nodded and let go of what she thought we should do and enjoyed what we were doing. We drank our juice, ate chocolate and watched fireworks on the television and then went outside to see if we could see any of our neighbors setting off fireworks nearby. Eventually, we all tottered off to bed to dream amazing dreams for the future.

Every year I hear many people talk about their New Year’s Resolution. This is the year they are going to lose weight, stop smoking… the list goes on and on. Only to see them give up in months if not only a few days. Why do we stop trying?

From my earliest memories of grade school, we were encouraged, if not forced, to come up with New Year’s Resolutions. Do better in school, read more, again the list is endless. However, it was never more than a writing practice. Nowhere was there a follow up to how we could put those intentions into action. The word resolution comes from late Middle English from the Latin word resolution, which means to loosen, or release. Even the word, resolve means to find a solution to- When we resolve something we decide on a course of action. The sort of thing we don’t do to our New Year’s Resolution.

Back to the things that I hear every year... When people say, I want to do this or that this year. What I really hear is that if I can just get this job, or fit into this dress, I will be happy. Everyone wants to be happy, right? They dream of a time they are happy all the time.

I am a Life Coach and what that really means to me, is that I am a guide to happiness. What we all really need is to take control of our lives. In this crazy word, there is not much we can control but we give up our personal power and in turn our happiness when we let someone else control our lives. When your feel like giving up, I am here. The people I talk to matter to me from the first time we meet on the phone. If you are ready to make a change this year… give me a call!

Oh, my New Year’s Resolution this year? I am resolved to help as many people as I can this year. Let start with you.

Life, to me, is a series of experiences. While I have not had a perfect life, I feel very blessed that I have not to have had to life through many experiences. Every once in a while though, the Universe throws me a curve ball. Just a taste that helps me understand others a little better.

Over the Thanksgiving holiday, I broke a tooth. A big chunk of my molar, all the way in the back, just fell away leaving a jagged edge and gaping hole.  By Sunday, I slipped in an out of sleep as I fought the pain that covered half my face. My husband woke up and called our dentist.

I hate doctors and dentists even more!  It sends me into a panic attack to have to go for anything medical. My husband, trying to make me feel better, assured me it would be a simple extraction and I would be done and could go home and get some well needed rest with less pain than I was feeling.

Instead, I had a root canal. For anyone who has never had one, let me explain with as little gruesome details as I can. They take an x-ray of the tooth to make sure of how far the damage has gone. The doctor then proceeds to put a needle in your mouth, it is tiny but he pokes and prods with little jabs. He tested the area with cold air and jabs a little more if there is pain, which for me there was.

When I was properly numbed up, using a variety of devices that I couldn’t see as they were too close to my mouth for my eyes to see properly, he cleaned out the rotten part of my tooth and packed it with something that would both medicate and keep stuff from falling in the deep hole at the back of my mouth.

Trauma over, I left with a couple prescriptions and an appointment to come back in a few days. The experience was yet to come. While I was still in the dentist chair, I realized that not only my mouth was numb but also my nose and part of my eye lid. As the Novocain, that is what the dentist shoots in there with his tiny needle, tried to dissipate, it spread across almost the entirety of the right side of my face.

I looked and for a few hours, felt like a stroke patient. My face was fairly unresponsive and face took on a Picasso appearance when I smiled. While my kids and husband found it funny, I found it frustrating. My smile and appearance were the least of my problems. I found it difficult to eat, drink or smoke. My top lip was almost completely not compliant to my wishes.

As the feeling slowly returned, there is still a little part of my check that feels funny. The entire experience left me feeling an appreciation for what stroke patients go through. Often only in the face and leading down one side of the body. Things just disconnect! Okay, I am sure a doctor could explain that better but a doctor, I am not. They stop responding and try as you might, the body just doesn’t respond. My experience was blessedly short but it made me realize how much I take for granted. All in this month that I am trying very hard to be thankful.

Even the smallest things, we should be grateful for everyday.

I have had my share of problems with technology. Especially, here on Ingenio but customer service has been so great in helping me with all the problems that have popped up. I was starting to feel like I was jinxed. However, problems keeping a connection seem to have been solved and to help catch up this week, I have extended my hours from 10 AM to 4 PM to 9:30 AM to 4:30 PM. Calls keep coming in and I am thankful to all my callers and enjoy talking to you all so much. I will be offline Thursday and Friday so I will probably keep my hours extended for as long as it takes to catch up with everyone. Of course, who knows, I may end up with even more callers and may need to keep them extended anyway and I will be thankful for that as well.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

November is almost over and Thanksgiving is upon us so I should be feeling thankful. I have a wonderful brother who is opening up his home to us for the holiday. Currently though my house is infested with fleas and mice. Okay, infested is probably a strong word, animals now treated properly those last remaining fleas have gone insane. Flea probably brought by mice but we live in an old house on the edge of a wild area full of wild animals that probably live in harmony with the mice and fleas. I am finding it harder to live in harmony with the little critters and we are taking steps to ensure their departure and ensure they and others like them don’t return.

Ha! But little critters are not really meant to be my topic. November is mental health month though I am sure there is one in the Spring as well. Mental health, is obviously, a passion of mine and one that I think is important to everyone’s “search for happiness.”

Like the little critters in my house, we all have to takes steps to ensure that our mental health is where we want it to be, and continue to take steps to do what we need to be happy people. Gratitude is one of the first baby steps, and we hear about it all the time, especially this time of year. Now, I think, what does someone homeless, on the cold streets, have to be thankful about? I am not sure. Maybe thankful that my children and I have passed by and put a buck or two in their collection pot? I think the next time I see one I will ask. Seeing people like that, make me thankful for so much of my life.

One of the next steps is to practice acts of kindness, which this time of year just screams for, doesn’t it? Give canned goods to the Boy Scouts, give money to those Santa’s ringing bells, give money at church for special collections – we are all asked to dig deep and give what we can. I try to give time. I don’t have much extra money, like most people, and I find my time valuable so I give my time to one group. I don’t give my time to just one group, sometimes it is just one person. I practice, random acts of kindness.

There are several ways to practice random acts, and I suggest you visit https://www.randomactsofkindness.org/kindness-ideas for ideas of your own.

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From the first time someone asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I have answered “happy.” It was not until I was in college that some chided me for such an answer. He pointed out that many people say they want to be happy but do not think about what it takes to make them happy.

I was not unhappy and while I have not lived a perfect life, I feel blessed but it was in that moment that it made me believe that I needed to know what would make me happy. About this time, a new friend lent me a copy of the Tao Te Ching (a book of ancient Chinese wisdom). There are many translations (over 300) and I encourage everyone to find a copy that speaks to them. It is a small, simple and very unassuming book full of short passages like, “The Way that can be walked is not the eternal Way.”

To be honest, the first time I read the book, I felt confused and enlightened at the same time. Here I am, a young adult, struggling to figure out who I am and who I want to be… not even thinking about how it is that I will get there. It caused a lot of unhappiness, in my search for happiness. Why was I not happy?

I was going to college classes, as young adults are encouraged to do, had a wonderful job that gave me flexibility and a close collection of wonderful friends. I still was unhappy because not only did I not know what I was looking for… desire got in the way. Desire is a strong feeling of wanting to have something or wishing for something to happen: but I did not know what I wanted to happen. I got engaged, married to a wonderful man, had beautiful, nearly perfect children but still I was not happy. It was not until I was surround by my unhappiness that I read the Tao for yet another time. (Each time I read it, I learn, am enlighten and confused in new and wonderful ways.) It was the topic of desire that caught my attention. Even though it is at the very beginning of the book, my soul was not ready to understand this mystery.

“Free from desire, you realize the mystery. Caught in desire, you see only the manifestations.” I wanted, I knew not what, and at times I wanted to know what I want. When I stopped wanting, which is harder than writing the words or simply deciding to stop wanting. How does one stop wanting?

It a changing habits self-help book that I do not remember the name of, it talked about replacing a bad habit with a good habit. What does one replace wanting with? Slowly, oh, so VERY slowly. I began looking for the things I had. Being grateful, for the things I had, simple tiny things (baby steps, baby steps became my mantra) like a roof over my head, and full bellies every night.

I know it had probably been told to me over and over as a child, to be grateful for what I have, it was when I engaged to practice it that I truly understood. It was as if the world, or my part of it had changed. Slowly, I lost focus on what I thought I wanted and enjoyed what I did have. I was more mindful with my family, my children and husband, my friends and my life. I began to understand that the “mysteries” of life were exactly what I was seeking but it was yet a first step.

So I ask, with November just around the corner, a month of thankfulness, what are you thankful for?

It is silly but I am always slightly sad when a caller says good-bye because I have helped him or her through a crisis and they no longer need me. Often when someone calls me, they are looking to discuss something really bothering them or a crisis in their life that has them so upset they can’t think straight. I eagerly get to hear about them, their life, their dreams, their goals… call by call, I am happy with all the progress we have made and proud of the changes that they make. From the beginning, I know that one day, and probably sooner than later, I won’t hear from them every week. I come pre-fired. I know that I will enjoy the time we have together and I will think of them often, wishing them well, occasionally I hear back from them as a check in or when another crisis happens. Today, I am sure I will not hear from someone much anymore. I am sad that I won’t but I am still happy that he seems ready to fly on his own.
I always say the miracle of modern technology is that it is a miracle when it works. I often wonder at the simplicity of running away from technology, well, modern technology because my favorite technology is running water! Anyway, I appreciate all the assistance I have received from the Ingenio/Keen team that has been helping me diagnose and figure out why some calls go wonky and why at times I can't get messages and pages to load and why I haven't been able to access my blog. I will be trying to fill in missed dates if I can find the files I saved them in but rest assured more will be posted as this raving mad woman's rambling thoughts fall onto the page.
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