Yep, yep, I have been off the grid for a bit here. But now I have something that I just have to share. Today I received my advert that will be in Sybil Magazine next to my column for the ENTIRE year of 2016!
It also previews what I will be doing for the next year….I just read it – whew, that is a lot of stuff!
Tell me what you think: Like it? Hate it? Love it? Neutral? I still have time to make changes..
So with writing the articles and getting ready to kick off this major BANNER YEAR!!!! – I am a bit invisible at the moment!
But OH BOY wait until you see what is about to happen!!!!
I think it’s time for me to take a break from focusing on MS. I say that because even though I am all about not letting it stop me, it actually does when I think about it too much.. Remember those sayings like:
You become what you think about.
Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve,” Napoleon Hill once said.
“The mind is everything. What you think, you become,” Buddha taught,
Well I don’t want to become Multiple Sclerosis or any disease for that matter. I have no intention of doing that, so what if, just maybe, I spent the next month focusing on something other than MS – not writing about it – or complaining about it – or letting it get me down in the dumps.?
I wonder if I go on an MS fast, what will I feel like at the end of the month.
True it is November 2nd, so I missed a day, but I am going to give it a go. 29 days without the letters coming out of my mouth, pen or keyboard! I am going to be MS free.
So here is the question, without my faithful companion to talk about, what will I focus on this month? The world is so big and colorful and bright, the air is feeling balmy and clear, the people on the street all offer different types of expressions, what have I been missing?
And now that I am replacing two letters in my brain, I need to think of something, one thing that I will work on this entire month and give it as much attention as I do the disease. I will look at groups to join about it, people to engage with that are involved in it, and find a whole new tribe of folks who know nothing about what it is to live with the Monster.
Yes that is what I am going to do all month. I haven’t decided on what that focus will be just yet, after all it is NANOWRIMO so I could use it to write a novel, but I am just not ready for that this year, I could work on my spiritual evolution, that always needs some attention, or I could concentrate on a way to make a difference in this world. Even with my limitations, even though I am only a regular woman, I can focus on something that will help others and help create positive change.
When I get back to you I will tell you what my focus for the month will be.
I am amazed today at how foolish we human beings can be.
Not just the folks who do those stupid tricks when they were told, “Do not attempt to do this at home.”
That’s easy. We all know how foolish they are.
I guess I am thinking more about the rest of us. Us, well meaning people who are living our lives, trying to do the right thing and at the same time often overlooking the faults in our own behavior.
I will give you an example.
A very good friend of mine has been trying to meet with me for coffee or just to talk for a LONG LONG TIME. Now, it’s not that I don’t love her, because I do, or that I was angry, because I wasn’t. She didn’t do anything to cause me NOT to want to see her. In fact she has always been extra sweet to me.
I, on the other hand, was the one shutting the door. To her credit she never gave up and continued to wish me well on Facebook.
But this year on my birthday I promised myself I would take a good long look at my ‘ugly side’. So here is what happened.
We went for coffee and what do you know…….
Both of us had been going through things that were trying and difficult. Both of us could have used some support. Both of us needed a friend. And the sad thing is , we were both going through it, blocks from each other, and alone.
What did I learn from that?
I admit it. I was foolish.
What ever it was that kept me from picking up the phone or sending that text, was not only foolish it was just plain WRONG. I can’t use depression or insecurities, or “I have been busy’ or any other excuse because that is not how I should treat a good friend.
Sad for the hole it left, but happy that it has been healed.
If you have let someone slip away because of neglect, or anger or because you are just to darn busy,
Make the call,
write the email,
go and visit.
Don’t let special people in your life simply fade away.
Make it a point to reconnect with one friend or loved one today.
Not only will it make you glow,
You might just be the medicine for someone else’s soul.
I want to find out how Art can help people with Multiple Sclerosis, so if you would please take the survey attached – it would be wonderful!
Or…..you could call this time to confess.
I made the cards a year ago for The Color Of Woman Teacher Training by Shiloh Sophia http://www.colorofwomanschool.com
and at the time they were absolutely spot on about where I was in my life and what I had planned to do. Nice stuff, just read them….
FAST FORWARD – 1 year and 5 months
Yeah you guessed it, none of these lofty goals have been acheived. I’d start and stop and start again and then finally I gave up!
Yes I said gave up….so life has been passing by, another candle coming up on my cake and Lord knows I am not getting any younger or more intelligent. Which means every bit of the brain that I still have working really needs to do just that, start working. I mean it is my legacy I am talking about here.
Have you ever really given thought to what legacy you will leave in this world? If you are reading this and you are in your twenties, or thirties, or even forties you probably have better things to do ….yep that’s what YOU THINK.
If you have past the 50 yard line, then hmmm, wanna take some advice from someone who doesn’t do what she knows she should?
YOU BETTER GET CRACKIN’!!
I have no idea how many days I have on this earth to do what I feel i need to do, but no one does. No matter how young or old. And time sneaks up on us like a villian in a B movie…first you think you are perfectly safe and cozy, then BAM there it is ready to take you out.
Do the thing you think you want to leave as your legacy. Do it now if you can. And if you can’t do it now, then at least start making steps towards it, cause that clock is ticking and if you don’t work on it you will be the same you 10, 20, 30, 40 years later sitting in a dirty, old rocking chair having that regret that every sad, miserable, dying person has –
It’s not the things they did they regret, it’s what they didn’t do.
Enough…I have to get to work.
I have no intention of debating the appropriateness of the word God in this quote. I am just going to say you can substitute whatever word you need to use that makes the same point. Universal force, Allah, Jehovah, etc.
The reason the I grabbed this quote by one of my very favorite authors (you know THE ALCHEMIST) is to clarify the feeling I have been feeling recently. Dissatisfaction with – hmm- just about everything. I have to admit, this is a familiar place for me. As a writer and an artist and self-identified outsider, it just seems I was cursed/blessed with this little niggling urge for change that won’t go away.
I have waited ever so impatiently for years to have a sense of satisfaction that other people seem to feel with life. But this thing persists in me and from time to time it stirs up and causes a heaviness in my body, that descends like the air before a Midwestern storm.
It has often been the thing that fueled my insatiable wanderlust. Or my penchant for changing careers…(although a lot of the job-hopping had to do with the fact that I wasn’t supposed to be doing what I was doing with my life.)
And now it is banging at my door again. Something is trying to tell me I need to make changes. Drastic, irrevocable changes. Not in a year or two but NOW. I need to move forward, change everything, step out in courage and go full force into the unknown like I always have.
“Okay so what? Stop blabbering about it and just do it”, you say. And so I will,- But:
- I am getting older
- I have Multiple Sclerosis
- My energy is not what it used to be
- I need more money
- It’s too hot
- I’m not quite ready
- It is still too hot
Oh, I could go on. But the truth is. little old intrepid me has started to feel FEAR.
Fear of moving forward. In fact, fear of moving at all.
And that reminds me as much as anything that it is time to pull up my big girl pants and do something extraordinary, something completely, mind-blowingly FEARLESS.
Because if I start giving in to the fear of not being worthy, healthy, strong, or adaptable, I will become the embodiment of all of those quicker than you can say Howdy Doody!
I know as well as anyone it doesn’t take much to squeeze the life and energy out of a person. We do it to ourselves all the time. I have seen it happen to many in my MS community, and I have seen it happen to many friends my age who are not facing chronic illness.
I can sense it happening to me.
Which is why I realize I am in a fight for survival. Not the survival of a terminal illness, but the survival of my will, character, and spirit.
Yep, you are darned right I am dissatisfied with the way things are in my life right now.
I have become too comfortable, it has gotten too easy to just let time go by without really trying to do something meaningful, adventurous and fulfilling.
It is so temping to let the clock tick unchallenged. In my world, TV, movies, and the Internet are mortal enemies. I have to slash them before they conquer me.
You bet that dissatisfaction is persisting, and it is telling me it’s time to make changes and move forward.
Do I know exactly WHAT changes I need to make?
I have some ideas, some BIG ideas.
But what needs to happen here is movement towards making those ideas become reality. They cannot just remain BIG ideas or they will forever be lost…and one day, they will be on that list of the things I REGRET not having done with my life.
Where is this all going to lead? Hopefully towards a few moments of satisfaction when I don’t have constantly feel that urge to move on, and blow up everything in reach, simply for the sake of massive change.
Then again, I have a suspicion that no matter what I path I forge, no matter how I decide to shake things up and cause a stir, as long as I am breathing, I will always have a bit of Kali, the destroyer, Yemaya the Yoruban goddess of the sea, and the independence of Artemis running through my blood.
To Be Continued…………
So the challenge for today is to answer the following:
- What do you especially like about yourself?
- What would you change if you could?
Let’s start on the positive…
What I like about myself.
I like that I am 62 years old and can still rock weird glasses, tattoos, dreadlocks, and Dr. Martens. I like that I don’t do it to be young or trendy, I do it because it is who I am.
I like that I wear 13 silver bracelets on one arm EVERYDAY, and a silver cuff given to me by a Long Neck Karen girl named Moo-chi on the other. I like the fact that I really hate gold and diamonds, but I love silver and semi-precious stones. Which means I like that I am not pretentious. Not that everyone who likes diamonds and gold would be. But if I said I did, I would be lying.
I like that I really don’t know anyone like me. I am an endangered species, a one of a kind. A precious treasure.
I like that when I truly, and I do mean truly, set out to do something, I do it. Law of attraction, stubbornness, obsessive? I don’t know which of those is the reason, but it works for me – when I TRULY work it.
I like that I just got my DNA done and I am an incredible mix of people from all over the world. The Baltic, The Mediterranean, Northern Europe, West Africa, North Africa, Great Britain, India, and the Western Semite countries. All wrapped up in one 5’1 ½” person.
I like the fact that I never want to stop learning, or teaching, that I am an incurable researcher, and student of life.
I like it that I love animals, and they love me. Sometimes, I think I like them best of all.
I like my face, my brain (not so sure about the MS part of it) and my ability to keep going when I know I could have, and maybe should have stopped long ago.
I like my continual search for spiritual self-awareness. I like that it defines a large part of who I am. And I like knowing that I was probably meant to be a nun or some type of monastic…even though my marriage record belies that fact!
I like that when I go to the D’Orsay Museum in Paris, I can stand in front of a Van Gogh and unashamedly cry real tears.
I like my temperament, not my temper, which I must say has mellowed with age to almost non-existent…
Except when someone cuts me off in traffic
I like that I have been blessed enough to have such a wonderful supportive family, who I feel love from everyday.
And, I really truly like knowing that I have so many things to list in the like column. There were times in my life when the LIKE list would have been a couple of sentences.
NOW, for the “What would you change?”
Okay… first of all I would get rid of this nasty little thing called ADD. I have the dreamy non-hyperactive kind. The kind that makes me less organized that I would like. (Oh, who am I kidding? A desk with more than two papers on it throws me into a panic!)
I would have a place for everything and everything in its place. (I do try, I really, really do!)
I would not procrastinate. Or have twenty projects going at the same time.
I would be a whiz at self-promotion.
I would know how to sing without gathering all the dogs to my front door!
I would be more thoughtful of other people.
Less focused on pain.
More forgiving over long gone hurts.
More in touch with my heart chakra.
I would work harder.
I would keep my mind on the infinite power of creation, and I would give thanks everyday without fail.
There you have it. My two lists.
NOW IT’S YOUR TURN !
I don’t like feeling all alone out here!!