sharing my life experiences, reflections and insights as a mother, a writer, an Occupational Therapist, an unschooler, and and a spiritual being having a human experience

Archive for the ‘my 500 words’ Category

Cool, quiet? Sunday

I woke up today on a Sunday morning and had the idea to take a walk. I looked at my weather app, 64 degrees.

64 degrees!?!?!

It is July in Charlotte, NC and we don’t usually see 64 degrees even at 8am.

I got dressed and grabbed my headphones and found resurrection Sunday on iheart radio and off I went.

Now I am perched on the trampoline with a pillow and some towels with my iPad and keyboard in the quiet.

Quiet?

“Mom, mom, there is something I have to tell you. Do you like pears?”

My 9 year old comes bouncing on the trampoline to tell me pears are growing on the pear tree in the front yard.

I explain that it is a pear tree and has had pears on it before but they usually don’t taste good.

He is very excited. I am less than thrilled that my quiet has been invaded.

I try to smile and acknowledge his excitement in the discovery.

And off he goes… on to his next adventure.

The WiFi goes in and out on my iPad and I have to enter settings several times to reset it.

There is an amazing breeze blowing trees that surround me in my backyard sanctuary.

The sky is Carolina blue

The humidity is low

The air is cool

It’s a beautiful day, like an early spring day here in NC

Amazingly, I am home from work on this beautiful Sunday.

If only Bluetooth and WiFi would work continuously so I don’t have to keep going into settings to fix them…

I am in the quiet right now, no music, no children….

Well, to be fair, I texted him first about my personal hot spot not working.

So now. my oldest is texting me about things before he goes to work

I don’t mind.

Motherhood is my first priority.

Now it is quiet.

cicadas? Or something like that chirps

Crows fly overhead cawing

Neighbors dog barks

Wind blows the tall trees

And the leave rustle

A siren in the distance

Not a peaceful sound…

Or it can be, knowing someone is getting the help they need

But it brings knots to my stomach

Deep breath

I release the stress of the siren sounds…

The sun shines down on my back creating a glare on my screen

Showing all the dirt and smudge marks on my iPad screen

The temperature is perfect

A loud banging noise..

From my house?

No, not my house

The sound of cars…. and an airplane

The leaves rustling in the wind is my favorite sound

I could curl up and take a nap

I have been sleeping a lot lately

I figured my body needed rest

And yet…

I seam to sleep a lot and still feel tired

Warning sign

Shiloh, my beagle, comes running through the back yard, sniffing the ground

I don’t think he realizes I am here

Until I call his name and he freezes, tail perked

And then runs over and lifts his nose onto the outer edge of the trampoline to discover it is me

And off he goes again, running through the yard

I realize this is the reason I put music on to write

Music helps me focus

Today my husband was going to take 2 of our kids to Raleigh for the kids camp my sister runs for kids and dogs.

The plans changed so they are leaving tomorrow now.

I was looking forward to having a Sunday at home by myself.

I will have the next two days home, yet I also will be going into work both days.

Then Wednesday, I drive to Raleigh to do a parental swap.

I have right now, here outside in this beautiful weather, sitting on my trampoline.

I lay back and look up to see a hawk flying overhead with the moon in the bakyround

Then another hawk appears

I watch them soar, floating through the air

And then they are gone…

Life moves quickly until we stop and sit still for a moment

My pets know this, the dogs and our cat

Shiloh, the beagle, is sitting still and staring at a fence right now

A wooden fence

There are vines growing on our metal fence and our neighbor’s wooden fence sits against the metal fence

Shiloh sits still, turning his head from side to side on occasion as if to be looking up and down the fence

I call his name and he turns to look at me and then resumes his watch

If only I could enter his mind for a moment

8% battery on my iPad and my keyboard battery must be running low too

It is so peaceful out here and yet my battery will be dead soon and nature calls…

I know I can come back out here and yet, somehow I know once I go in, I won’t come back to this peaceful place on the trampoline to listen, to think, and to write

I need to make meatballs today for my husband to take for a meal on the trip

Life

For now, I sit and watch the leaves move in the wind

I take this moment to be still and peaceful

Quiet

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Waking up at 2am

I woke up at 2am and made the mistake of looking at Facebook. A Facebook “friend” had shared a video of a Pediatrician speaking out agains transgender youth, speaking out about the dangers of medications and procedures for transgender children. From her video spewed mountains of hate for LGBTQ individuals and references to the Bible and God and Jesus and a debate on gender and sex.

Ignorance

First, I made comments back on the post and to the people spreading hate and ignorance.

I took my frustration and decide to write a blog.

My blog turned into a blog about all I have learned from my children.

Love

Love is stronger than hate

The opposite of love is fear

People are afraid of what they don’t understand.

Come from a place of love

This is my goal in my writing, to come from a place of love.

So now I have been awake for 4 hours?

Has that much time really gone by?

I am not sure what time i sat down to write, must have been by 3am.

It is now 6:28.

How I spend my time.

I wrote one blog in 3 and a half hours

And spent much time reading other posts on Facebook.

Hmm…

How I spend my time…

I am now paying attention to how I spend my time

The first step in changing my actions is to pay attention to what I am doing

And ask, Why?

Or maybe more poignantly, what purpose has it served for me?

Today, I have learned that I can read something I completely disagree with and from that create a post of love. That I can pull inspiration from unusual places.

And what I write about might not be a response to what I have read.

I have also learned that I can choose how I spend my time.

I have learned that I have been craving quiet time alone

Time alone in my own thoughts

That is renews me to have time to reflect, to listen to inspiring music and read social media and then turn to writing.

We all can be influenced by persuasion even in the absence of facts and science.

Facebook and social media is full of so much misinformation and it is a source of real information, truth and honest news.

Like life, it is a dichotomy.

Now it is 6:30am and my alarm goes off telling me to get up for work.

I am now ready for a nap.

Yet, I will get ready for work.

Inside their is a struggle of resistance, wanting to spend my day writing and reflecting rather than entering the world of geriatric healthcare for the day.

Yet, I know I can choose how I spend my time.

I can choose to make time to write and reflect and have quiet alone time.

I can and need to make these choices actively no matter what is happening with my family and what time my children wake up.

I can get ready for work and go to work now and nap later.

I can take this idea with me today and remember that I am more than my job working in healthcare as an Occupational Therapist.

I can create time for writing and pursuing parenting coaching business just as I make time to go out of the home and work to bring home income for my family.

Everything is temporary.

I can earn an income in more than the traditional way of working at a job.

I can have faith.

I can live in this world and not be of it

I can work at a a job and pursue a passion and and pursue earning a living from a business.

I can transition my time slowly or however it unfolds…

I can embrace the change.

Today is June 4, 2018

I went to a new psychiatrist today. This is my third psychiatrist in 2 1/2 years. I have not been happy with the psychiatrists I have seen. I have been disillusioned by the majority of the mental health community that I have encountered for myself and my children.

Today, I went to my appointment with a plan to be completely honest.

Refreshingly, the psychiatrist asked what brought me in today and I spoke frankly with her and she was real. She listened to what I said and spoke to my questions respectfully and authentically.

I decided quickly that I liked her.

She did not know what EFT was but she initiated asking me about it. She heard my perspective of my experience of depression and respected that I felt it was bipolar depression. She stated she was going to keep the major depressive disorder diagnosis for now, not sure why, but whatever, it does not really matter. She did understand Bioplar 2 and spoke clearly about it and asked specific questions about my experience.

I felt heard.

After the appointment, I thought about the law of attraction.

I was ready to be honest with the doctor and also wanted to be heard and that is what I experienced.

When I was depressed and sought a psychiatrist, I found one in an old building with no working air conditioning and so she ran a fan which affected my ability to hear her confounded by her soft voice, accent, and my hearing loss. And she only accepted cash payment, very inconvenient for me to have to have cash on me. I don’t have a local bank and so finding an fee free ATM is a challenge. Last thing I need when I am depressed is more challenges, hurdles, to going to the doctor that I most need to see.

When I was hypomania, bordering on manic, I saw a psychiatrist who although very open to alternative therapies and resources, was easily distracted and lacked focus.

Hmmm..

Something very funny about all of this.

The law of attraction is powerful.

I also worked today, at my newest job. The job where I feel like a queen in a palace. Quite an unusual feeling for me at work. I worked longer than I had told them I could work, but it worked out ok because the reason I had to leave early changed, an appointment I was supposed to have in the afternoon got canceled.

I have put in many hours at this new job and am happy to do so. I am getting the best pay rate at this new job, the best and the first time I have had a true increase in pay in over 20 years. Crazy, huh? No, I work in health care.

I went to get a massage today. A good friend offered a special on massages this month, 90 minutes for the price of 60minutes. I couldn’t pass it up, an opportunity to support her, get a great massage, and see my dear friend who I have not seen in a while.

I think I am now clearing toxins.

I feel like I need to exercise or something.

Restless discontent.

Maybe it is the fact that my husband, Don, and I are speaking in just 3 days and I am beginning to feel the panic of do I really know what I am doing speaking to a group of people about parenting?

This Panera closes too early, 9pm. I am used to the Panera that is open until 10pm. They are cleaning the floor already at 8:30 and out of 2 kinds of tea. I got prickly pear and don’t like it.

Restless discontent

That state of being agitated and bored and edgy yet uncertain

Not knowing what is going to happen next and ready to move forward

To move out of this feeling of unhappiness

Was I feeling unhappy?

life has been wonderful lately

Yet, a part of me is grieving

Grieving a loss

My life is about to change

Change in a good way

And yet, a change is still change and loss

Does change have to be loss?

No, yet it is a loss of the way life was…

And the way it was… despite the challenges, was familiar

I am entering into unfamiliar territory

I started 2 new jobs for 2 new companies recently

I lost my hours at a job I had been at for 8 years

They are choosing not to use me and also have changed policy so that even if they choose to use me, there would not be many hours for me

Body Language

A song by Queen plays as I write

Strange combination

Yet, body language is such a perfect image

For change, speaking to people

Not exactly the way Freddie sings about body language…

The way we communicate with each other

Communication includes how we say what we say

Respect

Consciousness

Collaboration

The three tenants of collaborative, conscious parenting

Moving through the restless discontent

The only way out of the mud, is through the mud…

Diving in deep

Deep into the mud

And Journey sings…

Workin’ hard to get my fill

Everybody wants a thrill

Payin’ anything to roll the dice just one more time

Some will win, some will lose

Some were born to sing the blues

Oh, the movie never ends

It goes on and on, and on, and on

Don’t stop believin’

Hold on to that feelin’

Aunt Rosemarie

In loving memory of my dear Aunt Rosemarie

December 20, 1953- January 20, 2018

The first thing that comes to mind

Is my first year living on my own in Charlotte

I moved there in November of 1992 from Pennsylvania

I worked at the rehab hospital and only had off on Christmas Day

My parents were in Pa and my sister 3 hours away

So I spent the day with my Aunt Rosemarie, Uncle Stan and his 3 kids

They lived in Greenville, SC just an hour and half away

I was 23 and have fond memories of talking with Stan’s 3 kids, who are all about my age

I got together often with my Aunt who traveled to Charlotte for her work

She adopted Zach in January of 1997

I vividly remember her telling me she was adopting, maybe the month before

I recall thinking, that’s why you bought the mini van…

I found out I was pregnant in March of 1997 and can see myself holding baby Zach

Looking forward to becoming a mother as well, the same year as my aunt

I know she lived in Ohio In the 70s when we also lived there

And I do recall her being around throughout my life

Yet becoming mothers together in 1997 made me feel closer to her than I had ever felt

We met up at my parents house on Lake Murray and Zach called my son, baby Harrison

Then one day, they were nearly the same age

They came to Harrison’s Christening, Zach at just over a year eating everything in sight

My parents took Harrison to Atlanta to go see my cousin Stephen skate, meeting up with Rosemarie and Zach

They played uno with Grammy and stacked the deck when she was not looking

In many ways, Harrison and Zach were two of a kind

Abby came along 4 years later and I remember how tender Zach was with baby Abby

Obviously learning from his mom who loved children dearly

My aunt Rosemarie had 3 careers before becoming a mom, but like me, being a mom was the best

I remember how much energy she poured into becoming a mother and to Zach when he came along

She inspired me in so many ways to be the mother that I am

I remember going to Aunt Rosemarie and Uncle Stan’s wedding in 1988 in Annapolis, MD.

My parents were on a trip far away

But My sister brought my brother from eastern PA and picked me up at Elizabethtown College and then we went to MD

I realize now that my Aunts and uncles have really been more like cousins to me, many of who are so much closer to my age than are my much younger cousins

Aunt Rosemarie was only 16 years older than me, just 5 years older than my husband

It is so bizarre coming to Atlanta and not getting to talk with her

She was the center of family gatherings, hosting 3 family reunions here in Georgia in the summers of 2011, 2013, and 2015

I am so glad I came to all 3 and spent the time with my family

There is a hole without her present

And yet, I feel her close to my heart

Urging me to write and share my truth

I could go on with more memories and yet I will close this post with the inscription from inside her memory card

I’ld like the memory of me

to be a happy one.

I’ld like to leave an echo

whispering softly down the ways…

Of happy times, & laughing times,

and bright and sunny days.

I’ld like the tears of those who grieve

to dry before the Sun,

Of happy memories that I leave behind

when the day is done.

Depression and Bipolar 2: January 22, 2018

Coming out of depression

I have diagnosed my self with Bipolar 2. I swing from depression to jypomania.

I have seen this tendency throughout my adult life and it became exaggerated after Don’s heart attack.

When I came out of the depression back in 2014, I think that was the year, is when I saw how depressed I had been and for how long. I couldn’t fully see the extend of the depression until I was out of it.

It was quite a realization to look back on years of my life and see how I had been barely functioning slowly sinking further into depression.

So many life challenges had entered my life that had drained my energy and suppressed my true self.

What is depression?

Not being who you truly are

I always think of mud, being stuck in the mud, moving through mud

Slow and difficult, extra work to do everything, to get through each day

Drowning in water, but not quite, trying to keep your head above the water

A continuous doggie paddle

Slipping into the water, unable to breath and then coming up for gasps of air

Just enough air to keep going

Through off your mental chains. (Thank you Howard Jones)

Jacob Marley’s chains

Dragging you down

Then I slipped back into depression, I could see it slowly creeping up on me

I could feel it taking a hold and yet I couldn’t stop it

I couldn’t see how much lower I would sink, Thinking at each stage that “this” is the lowest point

Only to find myself further down the spiral, lost and wondering,

“How the hell did I get here again?”

PRESSURE

Pushing down on me, pushing down on you

These are the days that it never rains, but pours

It is the terror of knowing what this world is about,

Watching good friends scream, let me out

Turned away from it all like a blind man

Insanity laughs

This is our last dance, this is our last dance

This is ourselves, under pressure

Music moves me through the memories of depression and what it feels like

And music helps me move forward and out of the depression

I am way too young and I won’t stop running!

I believe the tables will turn

I won’t stop dreaming

This isn’t over, it’s never over

Facing forward, lights out, I wont stop running

Falling backwards, I won’t stop running

I will take another sunrise….

I am way too young and I won’t stop running

I am living it all

Tearing off the labels….

This isn’t over

This isn’t over

I am way too young and I won’t stop running

Thank You to Queen and lyrics of Under Pressure

Thank You to A Great Big World and lyrics of Won’t Stop Running

My 500 Words, I Am Writing Again! (day 14 and maybe my 4th day writing, but who’s counting)

I need to practice self forgiveness.

Self forgiveness for all the days I did NOT write.

I could make a list of reasons why, excuses. Yea, my son got the flu and then I got sick and….

All that matters is here I am now writing.

It’s January 14 and I am writing again!

I have now spent more time writing in January than in the previous, I don’t know how many, months. I am writing again. That is the reason for my participation in this writing challenge. It’s about self growth and not a competition to see who can write every single day and write the best pieces. Deep down, the perfectionist in me still tries to rare its ugly head. Beginning my blog was a huge step for me in letting go of my unrealistic perfectionist ideals. I told myself to publish and go back later to edit. I was the type of person who would have indefinitely had a million writing pieces in ” still editing” mode.

Typos, misspelling and grammar mistakes still make me cringe. As an effort to embrace my humanness, I type on, even though I haven’t figured out where spell check is located on the word press app. And I publish without much editing and sometimes with no editing at all. I publish to push myself forward and to share my journey. I can see already how much my writing has improved when I read old blog posts that I have written. I see how I have improved on not getting so long winded and using formatting and links to improve my blog post. Sure, I have a lot more to learn and improve upon. It’s a process. See, the perfectionism still has to have a say…

I wanted to write yesterday, i felt much better yesterday after feeling awful from illness the day before. I thought about writing and all the other things I wanted to do with my unexpected day at home, off from work because of being sick. Yet, somehow life happened all day and never got to writing. By evening I had a splitting headache and bad heart burn. ended my day with a movie with my husband and. youngest son. We watched Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory the day before when he was really sick and I didn’t feel good and so last night we watched the newer movie, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Jason liked the older one better! That’s my boy. He even liked it despite being a musical. He typically is not a fan of musicals.

Embracing where I am.

Being ok with my choices.

Accepting myself for my decisions and my feelings in each moment.

Letting go of perfectionism

Today i am home from work again because they found coverage for me when I told them Friday that I wasn’t sure if I could work Sunday. I usually work a full day on Sunday. No work = no pay. Yet, I need to change that mindset.

No work= working on writing

I am writing.

I am moving forward.

I am continuing to move forward even when I have set backs.

Even when…

I am moving forward in the way that is best for me

Writing in the morning several days a week is a good goal

One step at a time

I am writing today.