Sunday, October 26, 2014

She

Things have been deep and real around here for a little while now. I haven't shared my writing during it. All of our projects have halted. We've worked on new ones instead. I am working it out. I am writing about it. 

During this needed hiatus, where focus is in other places, I have been keeping my need to write going by developing characters for some non-fiction short stories I plan to share one day soon.


For now, I'll share this one that started as a character and became a poem. Something that reminds me that we all have something going on deep down underneath. And that's okay.





She

She has a sadness about her. The type of sadness that is deep and black and palpable. Thick and sticky like tar. That doesn't wash away with rain or a clear blue day. 
It is what poets call sorrow, and what she calls consciousness.


Her smiles and clear-eyed existence can mask it for a while. Then the sorrow comes back in and she hides away until it passes. Until the tar can be covered over temporarily with white cotton and lace.



There was always something a little different about her. There was always a distance. She longed to be connected, to give and receive. The distance made it impossible and very few made the journey through it to sit beside her. Those few were rewarded with love and pain. With doubt and certainty. With truth and question. 
With tar and white cotton.




With Much Love and Warmth,
Chris


Sunday, July 20, 2014

NEW HABITS Summer 2014: Day 20


If you have not, please read 


Day 20
WAYPOINT: Focus on the positive.

Close your eyes and think of your happiest moment.
Answer the questions below. 


  1. What is the memory?
  2. Why did it make you happy?
  3. How old were you?
  4. Did you enjoy thinking about it?
  5. Were there other events that were close seconds to this one?
SHARE: Take time to share your answers with your family/friends or those that you may be close to you.




Happy New Habits!
Much Love,
Chris

“Nothing is ever really lost to us as long as we remember it.” 
                      ― L.M. Montgomery

Saturday, July 19, 2014

NEW HABITS Summer 2014: Day 19


If you have not, please read 


Day 19
WAYPOINT: Focus on the positive within you.

Record 3 things (traits, attributes, talents, etc.) that you 
like about yourself.
 Please be sincere, specific and thoughtful in your answers. You can decide, as a family, to share or not.




Happy New Habits!
Much Love,
Chris

“Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.” 
                                     ― Voltaire

Thursday, July 17, 2014

NEW HABITS Summer 2014: Day 18


If you have not, please read 


Day 18
WAYPOINTWrite 3 things (traits or attributes) that you love 
about each member of your family

 Please be sincere, specific and thoughtful in your answers. Then set a time today or in the next day to share your answers with them.

Why are we doing this? Often, we focus on or tell others what what we don't like and not enough about what we appreciate about them.

*This is one of my favorites. Even if you do none of the others, do this one.

Also, this is a great practice for when you have bickering siblings or need a quick reconnect with friends. 



Happy New Habits!
Much Love,
Chris

“Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.” 
                                     ― Voltaire

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

NEW HABITS Summer 2014: Day 17


If you have not, please read 



Day 17
WAYPOINTNo Complain Day
  • Does the weather stink? Don’t talk about it.
  • Was your commute frustrating? Let it go.
  • Do you have too much work? Just get it done and move on.
  • Can't go do what you want and have to work on the house or go grocery. It's okay, you got this. Think of how you will feel after!
  • If others complain to you, just listen politely and move on.  (The phrase “Sounds like you are frustrated” works for me.)

Today, we are going to practice to let these minor problems go. Focus your energy on what you can control. Use the soothing word technique to help you cope, if you need.
Make notes in your journal (optional).
I love this quote:
To complain is always nonacceptance of what is. It invariably carries an unconscious negative charge. When you complain, you make yourself into a victim. When you speak out, you are in your power. So change the situation by taking action or by speaking out if necessary or possible; leave the situation or accept it. All else is madness.
Eckhart Tolle
There is a strength in empowering yourself or choosing to let go. (See my other favorite 'complaining quote' below. 
HINT: We will do this one again!



Happy New Habits!
Much Love,
Chris

“Stop complaining and do something... Shut up! Rise up! Grow up! And show up! See you at the top!” 
                              ― Israelmore Ayivor

Monday, July 14, 2014

NEW HABITS Summer 2014: Day 16


If you have not, please read 



Day 16
WAYPOINTLook around the room you are in from time to time over your day.

Find the following:
1. 6 rectangles

2. 5 circles

3. 3 triangles

4. 2 other shapes not mentioned above (you choose)


Were these easy to find for you?
Why are we doing this? We will count this as a 'mental resilience' so know that for every time you do this, you are earning more life! (Not sure to what I'm referring, watch Jane McGonigal's talk as a refresher.)  



Happy New Habits!
Much Love,
Chris

“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.” 
                             ― Plutarch

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Vacation Mourning

There is a build up for weeks - even months. Getting a hundred things done, going shopping for clothes, snacks and anything that will make the travel easier and more carefree. We plan and pack for hours or days to make sure we have everything we need and BOOM! It's all over.


It's over until the next time. Months or a year from now. Sometimes it's good to be home. It's nice to sleep in our own bed and get some normalcy back. Talk about and revisit the trip. Look at pictures.

Then the sadness is there. A drop.

Often I feel tired - even cranky - after a vacation. We have so much work to do to 'un-do' everything we did to make the vacation great.

It's not that I don't enjoy my life. I just love having the lack of distraction that means I really watch and listen to my children. I really engage with my husband. I really relax. That 'in the moment' living that we work so hard to have every day is almost effortless when you are away. 

2013 State Park Fun
We make new memories. For some trips, it's the simplicity of making lunch or picking up a wayward toy that I can fully enjoy because it's not taking me away from something else that I am supposed to be doing.

When you work for yourself, you can always be working. There is no time when the work truly stops. For my business type (enrichment education), there are really only a couple of times a year that you can really step away without guilt or worry. That is the time that you look forward to recharge and refresh me. To spark new ideas.

This year I didn't get that time. We had a medical emergency come up and had to use the time and money to travel for that emergency. Happily, the medical part worked out and all is okay. So I should be grateful and just be happy that there were no major consequences, right?

Instead, I just feel sad. I've been irritable and unable to focus and many other signs of depression. I recognize it. I am doing things to fight it like being grateful, spending time with my family and friends, exercising, etc.

However, I think it's important to also name it. Call it what it is. I am mourning the vacation that I didn't have this year. I am mourning the loss of something I looked forward to for months. Something that kept me going during the crazy busy times and the guilty days of telling my kids I can't play today.


It wasn't anything fancy. Just a few days when my out-of-office email was on and I could go swimming with my children. When I could sleep in and not wake up feeling guilty for not starting earlier or getting back to that person immediately. A week that I was only accountable to the three people in my family and could give them (and myself) full attention they deserve.

However, when I get really honest, I would be mourning it, even if it happened. Because what I've learned about vacations is they all end and there is always a sadness that follows. There is always a longing for more time and more adventure.

What is there to do for poor schmucks like me? One thing is figure out a way that your day-to-day life can feel like an adventurous vacation. Our New HabitsWaypoints do help us stay connected and to be mindful. We are also working on less distraction and even more purposeful living with our Revolution of Dematerialization, though this is a big project and is taking some time.

I don’t expect everyone to understand. I know many people don’t get to take any vacations. I’m empathetic to those far worse off than me. However, I still have these feelings. I am still being affected by this ‘loss’ and trying to work through it.

Am I the only one? Do others have the post-vacation sadness?

Much Love,
Chris