Hello Beautiful People! I'm so excited because I'm learning all about Pinterest and how to set it up on my blogs. This is going to be awesome because you can now use Pinterest to save any inspired posts to your board. This photo is an amazing vegan dinner that was ordered at Salt Life Food Shack in St Augustine. I often ask restaurants to modify orders to take off the animal meats to make dishes vegan. This way I can go out to eat almost anywhere and eat. My dinner guest ordered this entree and it was so good that I kept sneaking my fork over to this plate over mine! Food thief! Hey what can I say, I like to eat:)
One of the hardest things for me to do when I went plant based was to learn how to order foods from restaurants so that I can join my friends. Socially, being vegan was isolating me because I didn't have the courage or know how to customize orders at restaurants. I often stayed home feeling like I had to make my own foods because restaurants didn't have something that I could order. This was a real drag because I still love all of my friends no matter what and I wanted to spend time with them. Also, where I live there are only a small handful of vegan restaurants which I found limiting. At restaurants if I asked them to take off the meat or cheese then I would look at what is in other dishes to see what they have in the kitchen. Then I would ask them to substitute a vegetable, fruit or nut instead of the meat of cheese or simple ask for extra vegetables. The first time that I custom ordered, I was surprised at how accommodating restaurants were to my special needs. Not all places but many were willing to bend over backwards to meet my needs. What a relief! I was often scared to speak up because I didn't want to be high maintenance but I also wanted to be happy with the food that I was paying for. I needed to deal with my throat chakra issues and learn to speak up and request what I wanted. I feel like every request is planting a seed to restaurant owners to add a plant based option on the menu as well. Please, politely speak up if there is something that you want but you don't see it. Over time, with enough requests we will see restaurants creating more and more plant based entrees. We need to band together to create the change that we'd like to see.
Now I love going to restaurants because I'm often inspired by what different places have to offer and I can then recreate at home. I am often cooking for others and I find that I make the same 10 dishes over and over again so I love learning more things that I can add to my rotation. I'm a fan of simple dishes with a limited number of ingredients. I found that if the dish was too complicated then I simply didn't make it that often. My goal as a health coach is to give you options that are simple, delicious and affordable. You can be successful eating plant based. You might have to start one meal at a time, slowly converting your repertoire of regular dishes to healthier plant based options. Your health is so important so never underestimate the efforts that you are making even if they seem small. Cumulatively they add up over time.
There is a new documentary out called Game Changers and it talks about how plant based helps to increase athletic performance. I have been plant based for 10 years and I can attest that my athletic performance has been soaring, even in my mid-40's. This is very exciting to me and I feel amazing. I want to share it with the world. I specifically am doing a high raw low fat plant based diet that is high fruit. If you want to learn more about what I'm doing, then check out my book on Amazon Kindle called Health Through Fruit. I poured my heart and soul into this book about my personal journey going plant based. It's only $4.99 and I wrote it specifically for kindle so it's a shorter book at about 40 pages. I love hearing from you so please feel free to reach out to me anytime and let me know if there is anything that I can help with:) . I'm here for you to answer all your questions! Also, I am available to speak at public speaking events or at your companies wellness days. Let's connect! Much love to you all! Peace!
Hello beautiful people! I'm so excited to be writing again and connecting with you! I've been hibernating in the world of learning entrepreneurship. I realize that I have a lot to learn and I am throughly humbled. In the process of working in my business and not on my business I learned from an Assisted Thai Yoga client of mine about Adult Children of Alcoholics, ACA. I never heard of that before so just when I think I got everything down someone comes along and teaches me more. I've been having blocks with turning my business into a membership site mostly because it seems so overwhelming to me. I have a lot of technology to catch up on and I have to believe in myself and this project a lot to make it work. I have to admit it's kinda scary but also exciting. In the process of learning everything I realize I can have more fun than I'm having. I realize that I like to have a lot of control with building this business and if things don't go as planned then I'll get frustrated easy.
I happen to be an ACA adult and I'm realizing that my need for control stems down to my childhood. ACA children often grow up to be co-dependents. I was in major denial of this for awhile, mostly because I didn't know all the things that entailed being a co-dependent. Also, who really likes to look at their shadow side and admit that something is wrong. There's humility needed to look at our dark side so that we can shed light on it and expose it. Through awareness we can start to consciously make changes. First we need to understand what it all means. I had a traumatic childhood growing up. There was a lot of verbal abuse in the home and as my four brothers got older, it turned into physical violence as everyone was reacting to the abuse. My father drank a six pack a night and sometimes more on the weekends. He never admitted it was a problem and never stopped drinking. My mother is a narcissist and the two of them together had lots of arguments. Terrible things were said to everyone in the house and the police were at my house often to break up fights. ACA adults strive for control because in their childhood they never had control. Common symptoms of being a co-dependent are people pleasing, seeking validation, an enabler, caring more about what other people think than yourself, spending more emotional or mental time taking care of someone in a relationship than the other person spends on you, victimization, minimizing out feelings, feeling stuck, complaining, evading responsibility amongst other things. I don't blame my parents as I know they also were victims of ACA and narcissism but I do want to understand it and understand the patterns so that I can make conscious changes. They simply did the best that they could with what they knew.
Wow that was a humbling list for me as I realized that I fit into almost every symptom. Bottom line, there is a gap between my intellect and my emotions in that my emotional life wasn't taken care of as a child. Co-dependents often grow up in a chaotic war zone as a child. This set them into a constant fight of flight mode calculating their moves, if I do this then I won't get yelled at, etc. We often come into a state of hypervigilance and not feeling safe or secure. We stop seeking pleasure and simply try to avoid pain. It becomes hard to keep our head straight in school and we miss out on learning self because we spend so much time worrying about what's going on outside of us. Our connections to our self are turned off and we suppress our feelings.
When we begin to make changes out of co-dependents then it can be difficult as our old crowd might not like the new us with better defined boundaries. Also we have a tendency to attract other people who are as dysfunctional as we are. Co-dependency is a learned behavior and the cool thing about this is that we can unlearn this behavior too. I found myself with an incredible desire to be a healer because I was so broken. In the process of healing myself, I realize that I can help others come out of this. I still have so much to learn but it's exciting as I feel that light shining on my darkness and allowing me to make changes in my life so that I can start living that life that I always dreamed of. I really want a beautiful life and I'm willing to hold myself 100% accountable for everything that is happening. I'm tapping into my power and dropping the victim. It's as if my old self, my false self is dying and I'm re-born. I understand myself and my triggers more. As I become less critical of myself, I'm becoming less critical of others. I really do believe that we live in an abundant world. Instead of letting my need for control seize my day, I'm starting to ask myself, "I wonder what will happen today".
I hope my story helps you in some way. Talk to me and tell me if you also experienced anything like this and how you found success in turning your life around. Life is good and becoming conscious is a beautiful thing. Sending you all lots of love and light!
Hello Beautiful People! I'm super excited because I self published my first Kindle book on Amazon, Health Through Fruit!!! I started this project about a year ago and the task seemed daunting to me. I was completely overwhelmed with the organization of the book and which ideas to implement. I watched a youtube video on how to write a kindle book. I was thinking, I write a blog, this should be simple right! Ha! I signed up for an eCourse to hold my hand through the process because I just couldn't wrap my mind around it without some guidance. I took the course six months before I actually finished my book. I got really motivated and wrote out all the chapters in my book. Then I proceeded to write and I did finish a few chapters but then stopped.
Life seemed to creep in and the business of daily activities too over. I'm not really sure what happened but in a way sabotaged myself. Doubt and feelings of vulnerability got the best of me. "Who am I to write a book?", "Am I qualified enough?", "Do I know enough?", "I'm not smart enough to write a book?", "People won't like what I have to say?" It sounds ridiculous looking back on it. I had fear of being judged. The bottom line with any creative work is that we are our own worst critics. We need to let go of the need for perfectionism and let it out. I watched videos of famous authors and their experiences and was re-inspired. Famous writers like Elizabeth Gilbert would say how they like to write fast so to get it out and not go back and revise. However it comes out is perfect. Wow, what a relief that was to hear. We all have a unique voice and story that only we can tell. Letting go of our inner critic is the key to developing our creative force. If I can do it then so can you.
Somehow I muster up the motivation to finish my book. It's a kindle book and really only needs to be around 40 pages. I can do that! At first I was making it too complicated so I simplified some of the chapters to make the flow and the read smoother. I sit down in front of the computer and one key stroke at a time I finish my first eBook! I can't even begin to tell you the pride and excitement that I had when it was finished. I had a cover made and viola! I upload the book to kindle and now it's available for sale. Hooray!
My motivation behind writing this book is to help people find excellent health! Health can be fun, tasty and simple. I watched lots of friends and family suffer with autoimmune diseases that were avoidable. I discovered incredible health benefits by eating fruit. After I changed my diet then I saw my health soar! My ex-husband cured his Lyme Disease. I healed my eczema and my chronic sinusitis. I feel amazing and I can't tell you how good life gets when you feel good. My yoga practice has taken off and I attribute it to my healthy fruity diet. Read about my personal journey to health by traveling deep into the Andes Mountains in Ecuador in search for some answers. I found them and I share them all with you in my book. I sincerely wish you happiness, love and health. We live in our bodies. Our bodies are the most magnificent machine that we will ever know. Let's learn how they optimally run to avoid diseases and to enjoy good health. Much Love and Light!
I went to visit my dad in his memory care for Alzheimer's in the morning and I had a blast. I honestly have a hard time going to see my dad because it can be very sad. It's hard for me because there's always some drama. My mom goes in there and tells everyone they need to work harder and pisses everyone off. I have staff calling me all the time about this problem or that. Grandma keeps taking him to the non-memory care and will go to the bathroom and leave him alone. My dad has been falling almost everyday. There have been times when he is slumped over asleep in a chair or he won't sit down. Lots of times, I'm sitting with him and I'll do Thai massage with him and he falls asleep in 10 minutes. Sometimes I think, this is it, he's near the end and I leave crying. The other day I was just in the ER with him because he cracked his head open after a fall. When I saw blood and a hematoma on his head I had a melt down. I thought I was ok with his death but I realized that I was just good at avoiding the reality of the situation.
Today was different. I've had a friend tell me that Alzheimer's patients can have lucid moments where their memory kicks in. It was trippy for me because it was like my dad came back from the dead. I walked in there and he wouldn't sit down in his chair at breakfast. There were two people trying to sit him down and he was clearly confused. I came over and asked him to sit down. I checked his clothes and could see they were wet. I said, "We need to get him dried up. How can you eat with wet pants?" He's holding his orange juice cup and swinging it around and I look at him and say, "Jesus Christ, stop whipping that fucking thing around like a weapon," as the juice barely stays in the rim. I grab the cup and put it down and we look at each other and burst into laughter. He laughed like how he always laughs squinting his eyes and showing all his teeth. I smirk at him. I tell him how I can just see orange juice all over my lap and I don't like that. He'd be laughing his head off so let's move this cup over here, at the other end of the table. We go to help change his depends and clothes and he's ready to eat.
My dad has a wicked crass sense of humor. He worked at The Chicago Board of Trade for 20 years and in order to survive on the trading floor, a certain amount of swearing was required. I switched out of my polite self and started joking with him like there was nothing wrong with him spitting out cuss words one after another. Every time I swore he would just start laughing and laughing. There just seems to be something so suffocating about the formalities of life sometimes. Don't get me wrong, my dad can also be a very elegant man and charm your pants off with his wit and clean language too. Sometimes, in private it's just fun to swear. He loved it and I loved seeing my dad laugh. I started telling him story after story dropping the F bomb and Bitch this and hell with that. I actually had him laughing so hard that he was crying. He kept trying to dip his candy in the ketchup and I look at him and say, "What the fuck are you doing? That's disgusting. Here let me help you." I pry the wrapper off this gooey piece of hard candy and say, "Wow, they know how to treat you right. This place is like the fucking Ritz Carlton. You gotta be kidding me, my hands are sticky as hell? You want the other one, geez how old is this? What a dump?" I told him that the price for his home was a small fortune and that it might as well have been a five star hotel. "Where's the swimming pool?"
We leave breakfast and go sit down on the couches. No-one is around so I can swear like a sailor. I tell him all about his grandkids and how River is in charge with his soprano scream and Pepper is a ninja, climbing everything making me nuts. Grandma asks for help all the time, "move this here", "that doesn't go there", "will you get this from the car". I tell him how I'm running around like a chicken with my head cut off taking care of these three crazies. We call some of my brothers and try to FaceTime them but it doesn't work. I say, "This is a God dame joke, you pay $1000 for a iPhone and the piece of shit doesn't even fucking work. What a piece of crap?" He just starts laughing for like 10 minutes. So do I. I put my arms around him and hug him because this is my dad. This is my funny, dad who loves teasing and swearing and joking about life. It might sound bad to hear all the cussing but if you are on the verge of death, you don't give a shit about formalities and just want things to be real. I was as real as I could possibly be with him. Let's face it, the situation that he's in sucks and I just started calling it like it is. He was relieved to hear someone else say what he was thinking. He has a hard time getting everything out that he wants to say so I do most of the talking. I was just happy that he seemed to understand and love my stories. This is a big deal for someone with Alzheimer's. It was like I was having a conversation with my dad before he was sick. It felt so good to really talk with him even if he didn't catch everything. Energetically, a conversation happened with his responses and disoriented speech and it was so touching. He was there, like really in there and for a brief moment, I got him to laugh and it warmed my heart for the rest of the day. I felt love. I know he did too. You know when you just know. It's like electricity connecting two people. We see it with the connection of our gaze locking into each other and we feel the warmth deep within our hearts.
As I drive home, I felt happy and sad. I wish I could bring him home. I want more moments like this. The problem is that I can't be at the house 24 hours a day. He's needs 24 hour care. My mom is too weak to handle him by herself and I have 2 small children. I'm afraid he would get out of the house and get lost in the woods and die. That really happened to a resident at my dad's home. A man got out who really needed to be in memory care and got lost and died in the field behind the home. I would have to put locks on the tops of all the doors so he can't get out. I just can't do it. I cry in frustration because I would love to have my dad home. I cry because I miss joking with my dad and I know he would be happier at my house. One of the nurses said that they never saw him laugh like that and I need to come more often. I tell the nurse what an awesome person he is. I tell her about all the good things that he did for his children and how he is a good man. They don't know, they just see a sick man. I know his soul and he knows mine. A lot is said between us energetically with a simple smirk, a glance, a gesture and of course a swear word, ha! I had a good fucking day, I hope you did too:) I love the shit out of you all! Really, I do:) Peace out and laugh!
Hello my lovelies,
I've missed you all. I've been busy finishing my home sanctuary project and researching business stuff. I want to create more structure to my business and launch a membership site. Honestly it seems overwhelming but we'll see what comes. My goal is to help people heal themselves. After doing a lot of bodywork, I realize how everyone is suffering from some kind of pain. Sometimes this pain is physical aches and other times this pain is emotional. I work in a yoga studio that is kind of conservative in its clothing choices often wearing long pants and full shirts. I teach some of my hot classes in booty shorts and a little sports bra. Let's just say I stick out a little. It's not because I think that I have the most perfect body or to show off but because I don't believe in body shaming and I think the human body is beautiful, flaws and all. It is also more comfortable in a hot yoga class to wear less. You are cooler, there is less laundry and you dry off faster so you have a more comfortable drive home instead of driving home drenched in sweat. I have completely accepted the body that I've been given but I didn't always feel this way. There is an incredible amount of body shaming out there where people are literally not comfortable in their own skin. They are hating this flaw or that flaw and they cover up to hide whatever it is that they don't like about themselves. I'm here to say this in crap. Love yourself. If you are not happy with how your body looks then eat right and exercise consistently AND then love whatever the result is.
Remember that we are not our body. You can get many of your body parts cut off or replaced and you are still in there. Our bodies exist only so our soul can move around in the world and evolve in earth school. It is our vehicle to explore the world. Take good care of it, it's never too late to start and then love it. One way that I got over my body shaming issues was to go to a nudist resort. That's right baby, get naked in public. For me it was the ultimate body acceptance thing that I have ever done. I have scars and flaws and yes I'm guilty of wanting to hide my imperfections. When you are naked then you are hiding from nothing. Trying to relax and meet and talk with people in a nudist resort naked is hilarious in a way. It's super unconventional but so liberating. When everyone is naked, you get to see people's scars, wounds and things that might make someone insecure. When I went to a local nudist resort near me called Cypress Cove, I had an enormous amount of compassion looking at everyone. People there were fearless, open and completely accepting of their bodies. Many people didn't have the most ideal bodies but I admired their acceptance of themselves and their courage to show it off, imperfections and all. I would look around and see, wow, this woman had breast cancer and a mastectomy, that guy had a surgery and these guys are not ashamed of themselves.
I'll never forget the first time that I went to Cypress Cove. I thought I was going to die. I sat in the car a long time before I got out naked. Ahhhhhhhhh! I finally muster up the courage and go for it. I walk over to the pool area and of course you think everyone is staring at you. OMG! Run back to the car, I think. Then I think, walk don't run naked, lol. Then I think, fuck it. As I find a lounge chair by the packed pool I try to relax. I go in the pool and I can see a woman had a reduction. I want to connect with people to ask them about their experiences and she tells me that a nudist resort healed her social anxiety. She used to have it super bad. Then she would go to the resorts and when people have their cloths off everyone is even. Cloths often show people their status in life and then people treat each other differently accordingly. When everyone has their cloths off then you can't see someone's status and you get to see their ouchies. She learned to connect with people in an authentic way and then was able to carry that over into her everyday life. I was impressed because I honestly thought this place was going to be some kind of perverted orgy but it wasn't at all. It was simply people who wanted to enjoy the outdoors in a safe environment with other like minded people.
Another way to get over your body shaming issues is to get naked in nature alone or simply walk around our house naked. Don't be afraid to look in the mirror. It's also cool to see progress as you get into shape. Love wherever you are at and enjoy the journey. You are beautiful. If you want other people to love you then learn to love yourself unconditionally. Lose the judge inside of you. You'll notice that the less that you judge other people, the less that you will judge yourself. This may sound like a crazy way to heal your body image issues but it's not. I was super modest growing up and I never wanted anyone to see me naked. This was hard for me to get over. The funny thing was that I was the most insecure when I was young and beautiful. I'm much older now with more scars and flaws and I have more confidence than I did when I was young. You don't have to get in front of people, you can also get naked alone but the point is to love your body. Touch yourself everywhere and say, "thank you God for giving me this amazing body". Now go get naked, lol! And tell me all about it because I want to hear your stories! I'm all about running to your fears to get over them. I want to create a fearless life and for me, this was one of them. Sending you all much peace, love and body acceptance. You are beautiful!
Hello beautiful people,
I have been so busy with getting my kids to school, construction in the house, relatives visiting my dad, dealing with my father's illness and visiting a festival. I am just getting back to writing again with some fresh inspiration. I was able to meditate again in my pool house right after I dropped off my kids. It was settling. I feel calm. I don't always feel calm, just so you know, especially with the hustle of getting my kids to school on time and running into issues like they left their shoes at daddy's house and they have to wear an old pair that is tight. It's a crisis for the kids and I try not to let it get to me but it did this morning, just for a moment. Needless to say meditating was a pleasure and it reels me back.
I recently went online to start dating again. Let's face it, I work in a yoga studio around women all day and when I'm not doing that then I'm with my kids. I decided to go online. I have dated online a few times and each time I've gotten a little more comfortable with it. The first time that I was online, I had negative feelings like, "I'm a loser for doing this" or "I feel pathetic, why doesn't anyone want me" or "I must be desperate". I'm here to tell you that all this simply isn't true. We live in a busy world where people spend a lot of time at work. If they are not working then they may be with their families. Life gets even busier if you have kids. We would have to become experts at introducing ourselves to strangers at the grocery store or some place like that to break out of our circles. Yes, obviously meetups are helpful. Any situation that puts you in front of new people helps. If you feel uncomfortable then I encourage you to embrace it. Do it more so that you can challenge yourself out of your comfort zone. The soul wants to grow so learn to face your fears. For me I learned to face online dating. I think there are lots of people alone and we simply don't know who is out there, so put yourself out there. Take a risk and see what happens! Yes you may have to filter through some people but if you are not meeting new people on a regular basis then you might want to consider going online. While in the process of online dating I learned a few tips that may help you in the future. Here they are:
Tip #1: Make sure the person is really single, available or you know the status of their situation and are ok with it.
Sometimes people are separated but not legally divorced yet. Yes this shouldn't matter for the most part but the ex can make it difficult for you for your new budding relationship. When legal finances are on the line, I recommend waiting until someone is legally separated. Save yourself some heartache and don't be afraid to ask the tough questions. Also, some people are in open relationships online. Ask and get involved if you are still interested. Simply make sure you know what you are getting involved in. Communication is king. Ideally, it is attractive to for me to see that someone isn't afraid to be alone for a short period of time to heal after their last relationship. It shows me that they are whole, independent and they've had some time to work on healing their hearts. It also tells me that if they have some fear then they are not going to go running back to their ex.
Tip #2: Make sure the person really exists. Don't get Catfished!
There are people who go online using fake photos and or they are still married and looking to get off on a phone sex relationship but if you actually ask to meet up then they will never meet up with you. The technical definition is :
Catfished: lure (someone) into a relationship by means of a fictional online persona.
It's easy to think that when you have a texting relationship that you know someone. You don't and you won't until you actually meet them. There is something about actually meeting someone and looking them in the eyes that tells me if they are a sincere person or not. Let's face it, if someone has shame or fear about something then they won't tell you the truth. They are scared. You have to be a little bit of a detective to filter through people to see who is really available and honest. I personally like to meet up right away. It tells me if it is convenient enough to meet up with them and if they are a real person. It will also tell you if they really look like their photos!
Tip #3: Ask for a recent photo!
Lot's of people use photos that are 10 to 15+ years old. It seems obvious to put a recent photo but many people don't. They don't especially if they gained weight or went gray or some other reason. It's simple enough to ask so you don't waste your time.
Tip #4: Make sure they have a job and can take care of themself
There are some people who say they are in between jobs. Lots of time can go by and they may still be in between jobs. You don't want to be taking care of someone else. Life is hard enough. Ideally you would like to be running with someone in life verses carrying them. If they have financial problems then it is a sign of a spiritual problem that they may feel like they are not worth it. They also may be supported by their parents and while they may say they want a future with you, the chances of them leaving that comfortable nest egg at home is rare. If you want a partner then you have to talk about finances as tough as it may be.
Tip #5: If they have children make sure they have an amicable relationship with the mother
You may be thinking they are an ex, who cares. Well it won't matter much until they are passing the kids back and forth between houses and the children report about how their visit went. I personally found myself in a situation where the guy ended things because the baby mama was jealous that their child had a blast with my children. All of a sudden this guys court hearings for child support are more demanding and he asks for space for things to "blow over". I also know friends who are in relationships and their partner's ex's are trying to make their lives miserable. I'm not saying don't get involved in this type of situation if you really love someone but make sure you are aware of what's going on. It may save you some time.
Tip #6: Don't go for addicts
It is hard to meet someone who has absolutely no addictions like coffee but definitely stay away from alcohol and drug abuse. If you don't do it and they do then there is a good chance that it will drag you down with them. If they are using their addictions to comfort themselves then maybe they are not a truly happy person. Addictions are a spiritual problem and it says that their soul is wounded. I'm not saying that these people don't deserve and need help but you may be better off waiting until they deal with their issues before getting involved.
Tip #7: Look for people who have done some work to heal their soul and do the same
Finding a mentally stable person is not as easy as it sounds. People hide their pain and for good reason, people are wickedly judgmental. In a perfect world you would meet someone who has done a self study of some kind to raise their vibration. If they know anything about meditating or higher consciousness then you are know they are a more grounded person. Unfortunately self work means that you have to do the work yourself! No one can do it for you because you have to go inside. Only you know your pains. Only you know the things that make you feel hurt, fearful or shameful. Only you know the grudges you are holding and the people that you have not forgiven yet. What have you done to be the best person that you can possibly be? Now look for someone who has done the same.
Tip #8: Don't be afraid to say no thank you
If you are not interested in someone then it should be that simple. You shouldn't have to come up with a million excuses to explain yourself. Don't worry about being a people pleaser, even if you really like someone as a friend. If there are no romantic feelings there then there aren't. Don't deny your truth and allow yourself to have healthy boundaries.
I wish you all the best on your searches for love. I hope this helps and of course I would love to know your online dating tips, do's and don't as this topic fascinates me. Who doesn't really want to be seen, known and loved unconditionally? We all want to be loved and I think you all deserve it. Now for the fun part, how to match yourself up with the best fit/person for your life. Follow your joy. Life is supposed to be blissful. Find someone who wants to share this blissful journey with you. Much peace, love and light! I love you all:)
I have been working a lot lately and I've felt tired. I teach yoga and TRX and yesterday I subbed 3 classes which is unusual for me. Whenever I feel tired I make sure I am getting a lot of rest to recover. You don't often think about how important rest is in the training process. I am willing to say it's critical. You are not going to have excellent workouts when you are tired and run down. My workouts of choice are hot power yoga and TRX. It's mostly body weight except for a pair of 5 lb dumbbells. I don't spend all day working out. Most days I work out between 45 to 75 minutes a day. When I work out then I like to have quality workouts. I like to do a little extra in my TRX classes opting for the advanced options if presented. I'm trying to shoot my heart rate up to get the best caloric burn for the time that I'm exercising. When I go to a power yoga class then I know how to add advanced options into the routines so even if I go to an intermediate class then I know how to make it challenging for my fitness level. I love going to advanced hot power yoga flows as my first choice if available. I like to get in, have a killer workout and get out.
I used to spend 2 hours at the gym in the past and I didn't have the fitness level that I do today. I was still a little chubby. I knew it wasn't my workouts, it was my diet but I didn't want to admit it at the time. I eventually changed my diet to a whole foods plant based diet. I am high raw on this diet following a book called the 80/10/10 diet by Dr Douglas Graham. This book has changed my life. I eat a lot of fruit meals, especially early in the day. For example, today I ate 1 pineapple and glass of orange juice (the real kind that is freshly squeezed). When I eat easy in and easy out foods they use less nerve energy to digest which means that I have more energy for my workouts. Heavier to digest foods use up a lot of nerve energy to digest and assimilate into the body. Nothing is more readily accessible for the human body than fruit. Every cell in our bodies eats glucose and fruit is already in a monosaccharide form, meaning that your body doesn't have to use any nerve energy to digest it. Yes, I gave up ALL animal products and processed foods but I don't miss them! I feel so amazing now that I never want to lose this feeling.
The other key ingredient in my workouts is REST!!!!! I make sure I am getting lots of rest and recovery in between workouts. If you are feeling tired and run down the only way to rebuild that nerve energy is through sleep. You can't oversleep! Sleep as much as your body is asking for. Eventually your body will get enough and you'll be laying in bed wide awake ready to do something. If you feel tired then listen to your body and sleep. It is so important for a good workout. When you have plenty of rest, then the next day you will have lots of energy for a quality workout.
When you sleep, make sure you are in a serene environment. It should be quiet and dark with a comfortable temperature. Stop eating at 8pm or 2 to 3 hours before bedtime for better sleep. You want your body resting and going into that deep REM sleep instead of digesting food while you sleep. Stop drinking alcohol and caffeine for better sleep as well. I know this one is easier said than done but I have given both of these things up and I feel better than I ever have. Most importantly, I sleep like a baby! If you can get to bed early enough so that your body wakes up before your alarm on it's own then that's ideal. Excellent sleep will improve your moods, your workouts, your energy levels and your life. Seriously think about how happy sleep makes you feel. Most people can benefit from an extra hour of sleep a night. Try it and see how your energy and moods shift for a more positive outlook on everything.
I hope this article helps you improve the quality of your workouts and your life. I'm available for private health coaching and private yoga personal training so if there is an area of your life that you need help with then call me! 352-603-0025. Much love, life, health and that precious SLEEP!
Hello everyone! Let's face it, guns scared me! When I was young, about 12, my dad took me hunting. He gave me a rifle to use and we took our hunting dogs out to the Wisconsin wintery fields to hunt pheasants. When our dog scared the bird into the sky, I was standing behind my dad. I shot the rifle before and there was such a strong kickback that I was scared that I would accidentally shoot my dad, so I never pulled the trigger. He shot the peasant. Afterwards we tried shooting clay disks and the gun really hurt my armpit as it kicked back. Another time, my older brother had a pellet rifle in our finished basement in Schaumburg. He used to shoot into a target that had a catch behind it. I picked it up and aimed it at the bathroom mirror and pulled the trigger and it shattered the mirror. OMG, I didn't know it was loaded!!! I was around the same age. That really scared me and I didn't shoot a gun since until now.
I have a friend who I am encouraging to be healthy. He has made a lot of lifestyle changes and he has put himself outside of his comfort zone in order to make changes. I'm really proud of him as he is facing his fears. I told him how my son is really into Halo video games and how my son likes guns because he says they save people. I said that I like that he's into video games but I wish it wasn't so violent and I was scared of guns. When he found out that I was scared of guns then he said he would take me out shooting. Everyone should know how to shoot a gun he says, because you never know. Not only that, guns are dangerous if you don't know anything about them. Learning about them and educating yourself is much safer. I resist but I tell him ok because I see his point. If he is going to face his fears then so can I. Waaaaaaaaahhhh!!!! I also think, I have a son, maybe I should learn something about what he likes.
He knows a retired police chief and we go out to the police range in Ocoee, FL. We have to drive down a sandy road to get to the bunker. There are targets lined up and a big sand hill behind it. I shot a Ruger 22/45 mark III .22 Caliber pistol with a suppressor from SWR (spector model) on it so it was really quiet. I pulled the trigger and looked at the target and couldn't see a bullet hole anywhere. It's really hard to make an adjustment when you can't see where it landed! I completely missed but I thought I was aiming right at it! We were about 15' back. His police chief friend proceeded to ask me which eye am I using as I aim, the right eye, the left eye or both? Wow, when I played with this then the target seemed to move. Sometimes I used my right eye, then the left and then I would go cross eye. I shot again and I hit the paper but not the target, there is a person and a bulls eye on his chest. I hit the white part of the paper. There are about 10 bullets in the gun and I shoot them all. None of them hit the person, all hit high on the paper to the left. What the heck!? How is that possible? I'm aiming right at the target and still missing! This frustrates me because I like to be good at things. There's some skill to this. We walk closer to approximately 7 feet. Yay, I am consistently hitting the target but but I'm still high and left of the targets neck. I make super subtle adjustments pointing the barrel of the gun down a little and I hit the bulls eye target! Finally! This is fun! I always love a challenge:)
I learn how to load the gun. There is a knob on a spring that I have to pull down as I diagonally insert the bullets. That knob is hard to pull down. I think about if I was really in a combat situation, how long it would take me to load my gun. Right now it's taking forever so I probably wouldn't last long. When I put the chamber in the gun I have to wiggle it a little to get it lined up right. I'm not smooth about it but I learn. Then I pull this button down and it releases the back of the gun. I hold the gun in my right hand while my left hand cups underneath the gun. I stay at 7" so I can get more consistent. I play my eyes as I aim, right eye, left eye, both eyes. It seems simple but it's not. The police chief and my friend tell me to get consistent up close and then slowly move back. I shoot for about 3 or 4 more rounds. By the time that I got to the 4th round, I was hitting the bulls eye target consistently. We don't have much time. The police chief demonstrated shooting a can with a gun without the suppresser. It's way louder and the can bursts open. I'm glad I had ear muffs! They have V8 cans, soup cans, etc to shoot so create and explosion effect. Yucky!
I ask my friend, if I really was a bad guy then why would I ever shoot a gun without a suppressor. The suppressor is the barrel on the tip of the gun that muzzles the noise of the shot. It sounds like a pellet riffle when shooting. I would want to be stealth like if I wanted to get away with something. He said there is an 8 month wait period after you apply for the suppressor. It costs like $700-$800 dollars and then you have to have another machine to thread it on the barrel of the gun. It has to be put on straight or the bullet can hit the wall of the suppressor. He says he has another friend who is a machinist who builds all these custom guns for people and loves it. Wow, I avoided that whole world for so long that I didn't even know a profession like this existed but obviously it does. I went out with someone who was carrying a gun and I accidentally felt it and stopped seeing him because on of it. That's how much guns kinda freaked me out. In the past I was an actress and I wanted to learn about guns simply so I could get cast in different roles. I was willing to face my fears for that but never did, until now:) . Thank you Gary for pushing me outside of my comfort zone and getting over my fear of guns. There is a lot of skill to shooting ! Learning how to use a gun can avoid accidents. Peace, love and light to you all. Be safe!
WAAAHHHHHHH! I've been wanting to quit caffeine for a long time now and I just haven't been able to do it. Let's face it, I'm totally addicted to coffee. My friend Amber Dellich started a "30-day cut the caffeine & alcohol challenge" group on Facebook and I joined! Maybe you would like to join too! I have been able to quit drinking for a day but I quickly end up going back to it. I'm only on day 3 and so far, I am feeling the withdraw symptoms pretty bad. I am experiencing splitting headaches. They are bad and it makes me want to sleep. This sleepy feeling is my adrenals catching up. When I drink coffee I'm not getting any energy from it as coffee has zero calories. The caffeine in the coffee taps into your adrenal glands and uses your back up batteries leaving you extra tired. The only way to properly regenerate nerve energy is through sleep. So let's just say that if you play then you're going to have to pay. To be honest, I don't ever want to feel like this again and these withdrawal symptoms makes me want to permanently quit drinking caffeine. My body will feel sleepy until my adrenal glands have recovered.
Your adrenal glands are a part of your endocrine system. Your body works as a whole therefore it is impossible to impact only your adrenal glands and not any of the other glands in your endocrine system. The other glands in your endocrine system are: hypothalamus, pituitary, thyroid, parathyroids, adrenals, pineal body, the ovaries and the testes. The endocrine system is a network of glands that secrete chemicals called hormones to help your body function properly. Hormones are chemical signals that coordinate a range of bodily functions. If your hormones are out of wack, then caffeine can be throwing them off balance. There is so much to learn about the endocrine system but I want to stay on topic:)
I've been studying Natural Hygiene for awhile now and caffeine is a no no. One reason why is that caffeine is an acidic drink. Our blood wants to maintain a slightly alkaline pH at around 7.4. Coffee's pH is around a 4.5. Some caffeinated soft drinks like Coke is at 2.52 which is very acidic! Your body has five primary alkalizing minerals: Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium, Manganese and Iron. When you drink or eat acidic foods your body dissolves it's alkaline minerals to neutralize the blood pH to maintain homeostasis. Essentially your body is dissolving it's bones where most of these minerals are stored into the bloodstream. Then your liver and kidney's have to clean the blood which uses nerve energy which is what Natural Hygienist would call enervating. These minerals re-formulate in the kidney's into kidney stones and we pee out our bones. People with Osteoporosis, Anemia or many other diseases would benefit from eliminating all acidic foods while simultaneously eating alkaline foods such as fruits and vegetables. Top acidic foods are meat, dairy, teas, coffees, alcohol, etc. Top alkaline foods are your greens except spinach, chard, mustard greens and beet greens because they contain oxalic acid in them creating that acidic effect. This rolls into a much bigger topic about which foods are acidic or not but we'll leave that for another post. I simply wanted to explain why giving up caffeine is beneficial because most caffeinated drinks are acidic. Stop putting acidic things into the body that your body has to clean up later. Conserve your nerve energy for your sports.
When your body dissolves it's bones to neutralize the blood pH then it can cause arthritis. Let me explain, your body wants to clean the blood all the time. If there are extra minerals in the blood then the body puts them into the places that cause the least damage, your joints. It is also common for calcium deposits to build up in the feet leaving hard bone growths on the feet. This extra calcium build up can also come from your water supply. Distilled water is best because your body can only absorb organic minerals from plants. Inorganic minerals are plant food, then the plant change the molecular structure into a format that the human body can easily assimilate. Ideally you are only drinking distilled water when thirsty. When you are eating a lot of fruits and vegetables then you may drink less as there is a lot of hydration in these foods. The more that you cook your foods then the more water you may be drinking since cooking evaporates most of the water from foods.
Another reason is that caffeine is a diuretic. It drains the water in your body leaving you feeling dehydrated. I know this to be true as I race to the bathroom after my morning coffee's. It's an irritant on the bladder that can make you have to urinate more frequently and more urgently. If you have this issue, then quitting can help. You need that hydration so you don't get constipated. The water in your body helps to flush things on through. If you want a flatter looking stomach then you want to stay hydrated so that you are literally not "full of shit". I know it's gross but it's true. Move the poo on out! Think easy in easy out foods all the time so you are not carrying around anything extra. The toxins that are in the stool can get re-absorbed back into the blood stream if they are stuck in the intestines waiting to move on out. Stay hydrated and avoid diuretics to have a healthier digestive system.
Bottom line, I've known about these facts for a long time and I have wanted to quit but I needed some encouragement. Many times we have emotional attachments to our addictions. I have lots of memories drinking coffee on the train with my dad and my mom making it for me in the mornings, amongst other things. My friend Amber is certainly a good encouragement. My mom makes coffee for herself every morning and is happy to make more for me if I want it. It's really me who has to learn how to have the discipline to resist. If she doesn't want to change then that's her choice and I have to respect it. However, I do wish she would quit soda and coffee as she regularly has painful kidney stones and she just had a surgery where a stint broke up a large kidney stone into smaller ones so they could pass. Lead by example, I have to go first and be strong:) . I know I'll feel a lot better letting it go. If you are inspired by this post then please join the group, 30-day cut the caffeine & alcohol challenge, on Facebook. If you aren't ready to kick the habit then just know that I understand and I love you guys anyway! Thank you beautiful Amber for inspiring me:) I love you guys. Peace, Light and Good Luck!
I had someone mention MGTOW to me and I was like what the heck is that? It means Men Going Their Own Way. It seems to be in response to the feminist movement of Me Too. Men going their own way is essentially men deciding not to get married and risking their finances on a woman. Some of these men are abstaining from women all together and some men are opting for an escort for companionship verses a wife or girlfriend. They feel like the legal system is set up for them to fail and in not in favor of men. From the videos that I see and from what I've heard, men don't want to get "financially fucked" after a divorce and have to pay child support and alimony forever. They feel like the feminist movement to protect women has gone overboard. Men are afraid to advance with a woman in fear of a woman shouting, Me Too. They are also afraid to shower women with gifts, dinners and spending money because they don't want to get used. They are standing up and saying that they have value too.
Wow! This is all I have to say. As I hear about Me Too and MGTOW, I can objectively see both sides. Yes, women have been exploited in the workplace, home and social circles. It happens all the time and yes I can say Me Too. What needs to happen to change this so that people can still get together respectfully? How can women voice their boundaries better? This makes me sad for both of these two situations because I see females alone and I see men alone. Both sides are afraid to get together. It has been said that both of these movements create a victim mindset instead of taking responsibility. For me luckily I was able to work things out with my children's father where we share custody and all finances for the kids. We didn't do it through the court. We did it through mutual respect, communication and kindness for each other.
When I first heard about MGTOW, being a single mom, I was appalled. I couldn't even look at the videos or hear about the subject. I felt angry. I felt angry because I never asked for anything from my ex-husband. The complaints that men were saying weren't anything that I experienced in my personal situation. After a woman gets pregnant, they are in a very vulnerable situation. The baby demands so much from the mom and the mom's need help. I personally know single mom's where the dad hasn't helped in the child's life by spending time or money. I think this creates a wound in society because it impacts the woman and the children. I can look on single mom boards and I see tons of single moms raising children alone. They are lonely, sad and have given up on men. It is incredibly difficult for these women and the children suffer too. I also know of situations where men have to pay alimony until the woman has moved on with another spouse. How long can that be? Indefinite. Many men don't want to deal with the responsibility of being a parent. They are afraid of having to pay child support for a long time. There are more single mom's out there than ever before and men are now abstaining from some women, fighting back with the MGTOW movement. How can we do better than this? We can pretend that we don't need each other and live our lives alone but what would be better is if there was some kind of compromise where both sides feel safe and secure.
Women can fear that a man is going to leave them for a younger more beautiful woman when they age. Beauty seems to be a woman's currency. For men, it seems to be security more than looks. Either way, these are both needy ways to date. Beauty can fade at any time and security from a guy can also change at anytime. How are you prepared to take care of yourself? How can we date for the pure enjoyment of someone else's companionship verses what we can get out of the situation? Love should be fun and joyful and it saddens me to see so much fear and separation out there. Have women taken things too far with how much they are asking from a man after a divorce? I am willing to say yes, I'm sure some women have (not all) and that has created a ripple effect of discontent among the male population.
I think people benefit from taking some alone time to develop themselves. This doesn't have to last forever but not many people do self work. Self work helps you to create a more confident more secure person. When you know and like yourself better then you are able to make better decisions about who is a good match for you. Many times people date to cover up a wound or some pain that they are feeling and they are not getting together for the right reasons. When we take the time to do self work, to evolve our souls, to take care of our minds and bodies then we can come into a relationship and create synergy verses one side needing something from the other side. Instead we can co-create and develop a beautiful life together.
If you want to know more about the movement then watch the video below. If you are a single woman and wonder where are all the men, well, some are abstaining. They are afraid to approach someone in fear that someone will shout, Me too. What are your thoughts on this topic? Have you heard of it before? I'm curious to hear from you on how this situation can be changed to bring people together verses the separation that it is causing. After all, life is better when we live it together with love. Much peace, love and light my beauties!
The third chakra is an amazing chakra! This is the source of your internal power. It is the fire that manifests your dreams and heats up your solar plexus! Manipura is the name of the third chakra and literally means Mani - Jewel and Pura means City or Town. The mantra and the animal associated with this chakra is the Ram. The color is yellow and the location is at the base of the naval. Precious internal jewels are a part of the Manipura chakra such as pearls of clarity, self-confidence, bliss, self-assurance, knowledge, wisdom and the ability to make correct decisions. They symbol is a lotus with ten pedals. When I do a yoga class for the third chakra then I do sequences that activate your solar plexus or core. I often start a third chakra class with Kapalbhati breathing or the breath of fire to activate your core. It regulates your digestive organs and pancreas which secretes enzymes used in breaking down and digesting food. Health problems result in blockages in the third chakra such as digestive disorders, circulatory disease, diabetes and fluctuations in blood pressure. When the energy in this chakra is balanced then you find strength and balance in your life. This energy center is your sense of self, sense of purpose, personal identity and individual will.
I love reading about the chakras but I especially love hearing how they apply to people's lives. How did this apply to my life? How can I find value in this information? This chakra is how we relate to and understand ourselves. As I was doing research on enlightenment, I read that knowing yourself is one of the biggest spiritual goals. This sounds like a very simple question but it's not always. We are born as our true selves and as we grow up we learn a cultural conditioning of rules so that we can fit into the social circle surrounding us. In the process we sometimes compromise our true selves, wants and desires to please our social circles. Over time we can forget ourselves because we get so buried in the social conditioning. Getting to know yourself is simply, questioning your beliefs, putting them to the test and see what is actually true for you and what isn't. For me, I like to call it finding your authentic self. This is the self without the mask that we wear to blend into society seamlessly. It's taking off the people pleaser and being radically honest. Sometimes we put on a happy face and pretend like everything is great when deep down inside, we get an uncomfortable feeling like something is off. Imagine if all of your thoughts we said out loud, you would do more to change your life so that those thoughts were positive instead of negative. You wouldn't be able to lie and say you like something to be polite when you really don't.
Being a gregarious species we are made for each other. This doesn't mean hurting others or anything but learning what makes you happy and expressing that in a positive way. It's learning that maybe some of the social conditioning isn't serving you and if it's not then having the courage to go your own way. We all have a right to explore our lives without judgement. What works for us and what doesn't. It's creating healthy boundaries so that you can live the life of your dreams. Find something in your life that you love and become an expert at that. How can you become the person that everyone goes to for guidance and help on the thing that you are an expert at? When something gives you joy then maybe that is the thing that you should become an expert at. Tap into your creativity and manifest your passions into reality. You are capable of so much. If you don't know what your passions are then I suggest looking back at your childhood. What did you do for fun when money wasn't an issue? How can you continue doing those fun things and make money doing them? The exploration process should be fun and allow yourself to change your mind. Sometimes you have to test drive different things to discover your truth.
Look beyond what you think is capable for you in your life. You never know what is possible but let your mind work for you instead of against you in those looping thought patterns of pain. How can you use your imagination so that your thoughts come into form? This is the power of the third power. When you start to see how strong and powerful your fire really is then you can do anything. Start to believe. Start to dream your wildest dreams. What does your dream day look like? What are you doing? How long are you working? How do you spend your time? Next, start moving one step closer to the reality of that dream, one step at a time. You will see that your self confidence and self esteem will naturally become more solid once you realize how capable you are. Push through the limits of possibilities. Push through your fears. Face them and push past them! You can do it! I can't wait to see all the cool stuff that is bursting to come out of you. Meditate, dream, believe and manifest. I believe in you. I love you. Peace out beautiful people.
Hello Beautiful People!
How are all you doing today? Yesterday I went to a group Reiki Healing. It was awesome. I walked into my friend Kolleen's house, a Reiki teacher as she was hosting a group healing. There were about 10 people sitting around the kitchen table filled with food. Everyone was talking and going one by one opening up about what brought them there. I was a Reiki virgin and Kolleen didn't want me to say much because she knew I was going through a lot with my family and she wanted to see if the group could pick up on anything. Somehow I was drawn to this group as healing was calling my name. She has a front room filled with chimes on the ceiling, a massage table, a bench, crystal singing bowls, a big mirror and all sorts of metaphysical decorations. Her house is peppered with energy related garb which kept my eyes wandering from one object to the next. Everything has a meaning in this house. We turned off the lights in the Reiki room except for white Christmas lights around the singing bowls.
Before we begin all the healers find different ways to protect their energy. I imagine I have a puffy white hairy padding all over my body. The first person for a Reiki healing layed down on the massage table. Kolleen then proceeded to hold a pendulum over the persons body starting with the feet and then scanning the full body to see where energy was being blocked. If the pendulum for her turned counter clockwise then all was good and if not then we needed to work on that part of the body. Once she was done everyone began. She started ringing the different singing bowls which corresponded to different chakras. I was sitting on the bench observing and then someone told me to join in and hold my hands up. I found myself wanting to touch the person in unusual places, like I wrapped my hands around her throat. Right as I did this I felt like I could see a bear in her. Her whole face became a bear and I had an insight that she was repressing a lot of anger, like a bear and she needed to voice it. Then I moved my hands to her eyes while everyone else was working on all different parts of her body removing negative energy. I stood at the top of her head, spread my fingers wide and lightly pressed my palms over her eyes. As I did this I felt like I was invoking the ability to see things as they really are instead of what she perceives. Then I wanted to press her left trapezius which is her feminine side. Maybe she needed to embrace her feminine? I pressed with one hand while the other hand was pulling the negative energy out of her and then I would throw it away. "Holy Shit", Kolleen says, the energy is very powerful for her. She has to leave and open the front door to throw away the energy and then she lights sage. The session is over and we have a mini discussion about all of our experience.
Everyone leaves the room and then a new person goes in to lay on the Reiki table. We all wear our energy protection and go back in. As we are doing this I have flashbacks to my childhood. I used to go to sleepovers with my girlfriends and at night we would do energy work on each other. We would play with the Ouija board, spelling words from other spirits. We would lift each other up with one finger by everyone gathering around our friend laying down and say "Light as a feather, Stiff as a board". We also would hold onto a pillow and rock back and forth while we fell into a trance and the other friend would try to take the pillow away and we would have another force preventing us from letting go of that pillow. It was great fun. I jump back to the Reiki room and I see adults playing like children sending love and healing energy to the wounds of our friends. This energy is real and somehow as adults we often ignore it. Life gets busy and we often ignore our energy and feelings. As we were doing Reiki, my imagination runs wild with images flashing before me. I saw this guy's inner child yearning for nurturing and protection. His legs needed strong grounding so I worked on his shins rooting them deep into the earth so that nothing could knock him over. He is strong when I am done. Another girl, I feel her pain, her delicate softness and how she needed to be energetically hugged. It was an amazing experience. I have to leave soon so I go next....
Everyone leaves the room, Kolleen throws the energy out the door. I go in alone and get settled on the table. I close my eyes and I fall into myself. I feel Kolleen's energy with the pendulum tracing my body. I'm dying to peek my eyes open and see where the heck that pendulum is swinging. I wish I could see a recording of my session so that I can have an out of body experience and witness all the energy work going on my body. I hear the crystal bowels ringing me deeper into my journey. Someone covers my eyes and everything goes black except for one bright shining white light. Then it's gone and I see a small rainbow aura followed by a golden bright yellow light beaming. It is beautiful. Then everything goes black again and I feel like I'm walking down a dark tunnel and hands are reaching out for me in all directions and they are all trying to take something from me. They all want something and everyone is taking everything I have but somehow I am ok because I died. My energy shifts from fear to fearlessness and I feel an overwhelming joy. I feel like I am so darn lucky. I am going through an incredible amount of turbulence in my life but somehow I am happy and grateful. I have so much. I have two beautiful kids, a beautiful home sanctuary. I've energetically released a lot of anger and pain towards people in my life and I'm doing my best by them. My kids have a loving father who helps me so much. I am surrounded by a loving community of friends all willing to offer a hand, a hug or a shoulder to cry on. I feel lifted. I have this yoga body that allows me to play and move in the most joyful ways, 20 years after I originally fell in love with dance. I get a second chance with my love of movement. I am reminded to play, have fun and have gratitude for all that I have.
When I am done I explain the journey that my Reiki session went on and Kolleen expertly helped me see that I had an energy shift from my old way of thinking as a victim to being super grateful for all that I have. I had a shift in beliefs that freed me from my old chains. I feel bliss from victim to gratitude. One of the Reiki girls tells me that I carry anger in my gallbladder. Yes I used to carry a lot of anger, maybe there is some still buried in there. I used to be able to burn everything down just with my eyes because I was so angry. Somehow that tension and pain left me. It's gone and I'm free, at least for now. I'm super grateful for this incredible and selfless group of Reiki masters. I feel honored that they would invite me to their house because they knew that I was dealing with two sick parents, one with advanced Alzheimer's and the other who is beginning to fall with Parkinson's. Their loving energy gives me strength to go through the storm.
I leave the house and give everyone a hug goodbye. Everyone offers something, help with senior care, you can borrow my Reiki book, hugs and I love you's to strangers who I now share a loving energetic bond. It was a great night. If you haven't tried Reiki then you must. Allow, trust and enjoy the love and healing. Much gratitude beautiful people, we are love. Peace and Light. If you want a Reiki session then let me know and I'll pass on your information to Kolleen. She can do remote sessions as well if you do not live in Clermont.
Hello Beautiful People! I would like to share with you about the second chakra and my experiences with balancing my own. I continue to learn and work through balancing all of my chakras. The word "chakra" in Sanskrit means "wheel" or "disk". It refers to a spiritual energy within the human body, of which there are seven energy wheels, starting at the base of the spine through the crown of your head. Imagine there is an invisible Prana, or life force, spinning energy where matter and consciousness meet which keeps us vibrant, healthy and alive. The wheels correspond to massive nerve centers, major organs as well as our psychological, emotional and spiritual states of being. It is important that our seven main chakras stay open, aligned, fluid and balanced. If there is a blockage, energy cannot flow and we feel stuck or trapped in an energy pattern. The goal is to balance all seven chakras so that we can begin to energetically thrive. Diseases begin energetically through our mental and emotional patterns. If we can energetically change and heal our emotional states in a positive way then we can release negative feelings and emotions which cause our illnesses. We can begin to live a fulfilling life with joy and peace. The present moment unfolds before your eyes as you let go of past hurt and future worries. You begin to feel safe, secure and a sense of belonging in the world.
Let's talk about the second chakra. This is a very cool chakra, they all are really! The second chakra is your sacral chakra and it correlates with your sexual creativity. The color is orange, the key is D, the element is water. Essential oils that are nice for the second chakra are: cardamom, clary sage, neroli, orange, patchouli, rose, sandalwood, yang ylang. It is located in your lower abdomen to navel area. The energy connection to the body is the sexual organs, large intestine, lower vertebrae, pelvis, hip area, appendix and bladder. The chakra relates to our relationships with other people and our need to control our physical environment to some extent. The energy in this chakra enables us to have a sense of personal identity and protective psychological boundaries. The fears associated with this chakra are fear of loss of control, or fear of being controlled by another. The strengths associated with this chakra are the ability to survive financially and physically on one's own and to defend and protect oneself. Here resides the "fight or flight" instinct. The sacred truth of the second chakra is Honor One Another. The purpose of all of our relationships is to become more conscious whether the relationship is casual or more intimate. Much of this information comes from Carolyn Myss's book titled Anatomy of the Spirit. Please check it out if you want to read more.
So my second chakra was out of wack! I have been divorced for two years now but definitely the divorce shook me in ways that I wasn't expecting. I was with my ex for over 10 years and I didn't realize how afraid I was after the separation. My primary fear was fear of survival. I worked with him and his dog training business for most of the time that we were together. I had to decide, would I still be a dog trainer without him? This is a good question to ask yourself if you are with a partner and working together. Are you doing it to help them live out their dream? Would you still be doing this if that person was no longer in your life? I had the classic dream of building a life, a business and a family together. What I didn't realize was that in the process of doing this, I was giving up myself. I was giving up my dreams, my life, my business of choice for the benefit of the family. I wasn't taking care of myself, I was taking care of everyone else. When I shockingly realized this it was like a humble slap in the face. Looking back this seems so obvious but for me I was completely blind sighted by my own denial of the situation. After we separated I found myself angry. I was angry that I was doing everything for the unit and not myself. I was angry that I was coming last and most importantly that I was desperately unhappy. I am a very hard worker and I worked very hard at my classical dream of the life, business, family unit. When everything fell apart I was crushed. I had to let things go and start asking myself, what would I be doing if I was the last person on earth? How would I be spending my time? What is my passions in life? How am I going to start over?
Starting over was a very slow gradual process for me. Yes I could have gone out and gotten any job but I had a strong calling to take a chance and live out the life of my dreams. How can I do this? At the divorce I found myself as a single mom with 2 young children, a 2 year old, a 4 year old and both of my parents were very sick with Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. It seemed like my whole world was crashing down on me. My ex was able to move on with new partners where I found myself craving being alone. You would think I would have wanted to move on too, I did, but I found myself with very little time alone to develop my new life. A new partner would take up the little alone time that I had. Yes I would have a partner but I would find myself in the same co-dependent state that I was in before. I wanted real change with real options and results for myself. I sometimes wonder if I made things more painful for myself that they needed to be but either way, I was hurting BAD. I spent the last year of my life alone and in a full out hustle to develop the new life that I wanted to live. I had to focus on my finances to stabilize them with the new business that I was growing. Without financial security, my second chakra would be out of wack.
I found myself doing a lot of visionary work to create this new life that I wanted to live. This started with a 30 day meditation project where I meditated in silence for 30 minutes for 30 days. I was in complete resistance to meditating because I am a do'er and sitting and doing nothing seemed like a complete waste of time for me. Not doing anything and sitting with myself was the best thing that I could do for myself. I found myself wanting to forgive everyone in my life and in the process forgive myself. This incredible healing journey overcame my energetic body and I now live a much different life energetically. I had to shed many tears, completely stop everything and ask God what should I do. I started to listen to everything that was being presented before me. Nothing was an accident, I thought. I started building my business one step at a time. I threw myself into my yoga practice which I am madly in love with and in the process I am developing the body that I always wanted. I made up with my mom whom I was angry with for the past year and a half. It mended my relationships with family and my father who really needed help. I started fixing things that were wrong with my house creating a strong foundation for myself and designing it creatively to accommodate my preferences. For the first time, I am beginning to live the life that I wanted to live. I am starting to feel control over my own environment where I didn't feel that before.
Creatively speaking, alone time is the best time for creative development. I didn't realize how important this was until I had it, used it for creating and was amazed by what was coming out of me. I started expressing myself creatively through my yoga practice. I would spend lots of time looking up the best teachers, going to the best teachers classes, learning, applying and designing the yoga classes that I wanted to take. They weren't being offered anywhere and this was what I had to offer. I have a desire for strength work in my yoga practice with the vinyasa moving meditation and creative choreography. If you haven't come to one of my classes yet then I personally invite you. Please come, share with me, if anything is too difficult then take a child's pose for a moment and continue on when you are ready. I want to meet you and connect. This is the other area of my life that has shifted. I learned how to be more compassionate through my struggles. Now I can really listen to someone and feel deep compassion for their journey. I'm learning that no one has it super easy. Through this compassion, I'm finding my relationships are better. I'm becoming a better friend. I'm not perfect but I'm trying.
Creative writing starting flowing through me. I started by writing about my 30 day meditation project and realized I really like writing. Somehow ideas and words are flowing through my fingers on the keyboard faster than I can physically type them out. This was really cool for me to experience because I never thought of myself as creative before. Then someone said it to me, "You're really creative" and I thought to myself, "Am I?". "Yes!" of course I am! We all are creative! Maybe some of you simply haven't spent enough alone time yet to play and find out where your creative energy lies. Maybe it's in cooking, cleaning, organizing, writing, music, dancing, building a business, anything. We all have something! You have something very unique and special to give to the universe that only you can deliver. Find out what that is! I promise you it is so fulfilling to tap into your creativity. For me, it's how God speaks through me coming up with something more cool and amazing than I could have done on my own.
Finally, my sexuality. I really struggle with talking about this one because I have been open in the past about my life. I found out that people harshly judge you based off your sexuality, if you are a good person or not. For the most part, I am choosing to become a much more private person, protecting myself unless I trust someone. In general, for awhile I was exploring my edges trying to find out what felt comfortable for me. Then I went into the complete opposite, finding myself in seclusion and stopping everything as I wasn't finding what I was looking for. It's been a long time now and I decided to see what's out there once again. I am careful with my time as I don't want anything interfering with my creative alone time but I also realize that I'm lonely and that life is better when you have someone to share it with. As far as sexual expression goes, that takes shape with everything that you choose to wear and how your present yourself. If you want to feel sexy then it could be something as simple as putting on long dangling earrings or perfume. You get to creatively decide how you want to express yourself. I love people who are unique and who break the conservative social rules that seem to take shape nowadays. Life is meant to be expressed uniquely. I invite you to express yourself as I can't think of anything more refreshing than to see the unique beautiful person unfolding before me. You are creative. You are beautiful. You are sexy. Explore it and discover the beautiful treasure within you waiting to be found. I love you all. I don't claim to be a chakra expert but I can show you how they applied to my life. I hope this helps you on your journey to live the life of your dreams! Peace, love, happiness and a balanced second chakra!
Hello beautiful people! Holy cow! The other night I was soundly sleeping in my daughter's bedroom since my house is getting remodeled. I normally close the windows at night except this night my air conditioner goes out because the system needs more freon. I have to wait until tomorrow for the service man to come. It's hot and I can't sleep as comfortably as normal because I'm sweaty. I have to turn the fan on full blast which blows my long hair on my face. I have to pull my hair back, twist it and sleep on it. I finally fall asleep. Now I'm in a deep sleep after at least an hour of tossing and turning until I could finally settle down. It's peaceful. Several hours go by and I am out. All of a sudden I hear loud scream outside along with a purring noise. The screams are frantic and blood curling. They are a loud terror as the animal frantically tries to get away. I'm just on the other side of the screen for my window! Yikes! I hear a noise that sounds like a rolling of the tongue. I think it's a raccoon but I'm not sure. I found baby raccoons in my yard once so I know they are out there. I live across the street from a forest and there is a retention pond behind me so I have wild life around me. The screaming continues and is so panic stricken that I pop out of my bed like a Jack in the Box and look outside. It's really dark and I can't see anything. I turn off my night lights so I can see better. I can't see anything so I go back to lie down. I hear one more final soprano scream followed by bones cracking. Then there is silence. OMG!!!! I'm totally freaking out. It's like 4am. I try to go back to sleep but the adrenaline is pumping. My ears are alert to all the sounds going on outside. I hear slurping as flesh is being torn off the bones. Then I hear a screech as I hear teeth scraping and cracking bones. It takes at least 20 minutes for the animal to eat the other animal. Then I hear nothing and I can finally sleep. All I gotta say is that I'm never gonna want to camp in my backyard with alligators, raccoons and I've seen wild boar out there two times too! Waaaaaaaahhhhhh! This city girl got scared! Sometimes you might think the country is safer and to be honest, I feel safer in the city.
Ok, of course I can't just look at something like it was a random act. Everything happens for a reason in my opinion. I look up raccoons and what this spirit animal means. This is what I found...when you encounter the raccoon symbolism, you are being asked to let go of a situation, person, belief or habit. Go inside and see what is stopping your progress. They can also be a signal to accept the gifts being offered to you by the universe right now. Remember to leave no stone unturned in your quest for resolution with the current problem you are facing. Take time to look at the whole picture as raccoon spirit animals have the ingenuity to resolve the problem. People with the raccoon totem tend to be shy and charismatic at the same time. They are very sociable once they get to know the people around them. These people have an insatiable curiosity. This noises the dangers of what they are exploring. They thrive on new experiences and activities and are excellent problem solvers. This power animals energy displays calm and serene person under pressure. They strategize their responses to chaos. They are tactile and use touch before all other senses.
How in the world does this apply to my life? I do have an insatiable curiosity for the truth. The truth is what drives me for whatever reason. Sometimes the truth is ugly but within the truth lies the answers. Don't be afraid to look at the truth. Yes sometimes I've found myself in a lot of danger while in the quest for the truth. And, when I've found myself in trouble from my seeking, I've been very ingenious in solving the problems. I feel like the universe is guiding me all the time, all I have to do is answer the call. In the meantime, I've been on a path to enlightenment and I've been letting go of lots of beliefs that are no longer working for me. In the process I feel more free, light and fearless. I'm learning to love and let go of control and in the process somehow life has been more beautiful this way. I am naturally super shy but I've learned to get over my shyness and I've learned to be more charismatic sometimes. Right now, it feels like the universe is holding my hand through this scary yet exciting time of my life. I gladly accept all the gifts that I receive right now as I feel like I've also given a lot as well. Peace out my friends. I'm sure I can read into this further but I don't feel a need to. I have all the answers I need. Life is good. I love you! Adios amigos!
I was chatting with a dear friend of mine today and the topic of vision came up. This is something that I've thought about many times as I am attempting to create the life that I want to live. I have been meditating, creating a beautiful home environment and developing solid relationships along my path to help foster this creative process. I have been completely transparent and opening my heart to heal so that I can move past the pain and into the creative process. Creativity is blocked by negative emotions and thought patterns. It's easy to say, "just let that stuff go" and then really doing it. You can say you forgive but how do you really sincerely do it so that it's released from your emotional psyche? For starters you have to get real, really real. Become super honest with yourself and don't be afraid to spend time alone so that you can walk down the healing path. Find any pain that you have and feel it. Feel it so that it can pass you instead of clinging onto it. Feel it so that you can release it once and for all. Release ALL negative feelings about everything. The healing process may take some time so be patient with it. Michael Bernard Beckwith says that the faster you forgive, then the faster your healing process will happen. Next think of anyone that you might have hurt. How can you make amends energetically? A phone call, a message or a meeting to say you are sorry for anything that may have happened can go a long way.
Next release any fear that you may have about anything. Trust that the universe is on your side and replace fear with love. I read that fear is simply false evidence appearing real. There is really nothing to be afraid of. Coming into the present moment helps us drop this fear as we can now get out of the past and the future. I've been watching Eckhart Tolle lately because I've been actively working on a path to enlightenment. I've had laser focus as the storm of my life swirls around me. Somehow by staying centered, staying still, forgiving, softening and simply stopping, the storm is quieting down. I'm find my inner being coming in and out of presence. If I fall into the past or the future then I simply witness it and come back into the presence. I'm finding that I can hold the presence longer and longer with practice. Stay alert to anything that may happen in the present moment. Tap into your senses and create a sharpness to what is going on around you. The more present that you become, the richer and fuller your life becomes and the faster that the universe works with you. Stay open to what may happen in front of you. The universe is working for you all the time. It's simply up to you if you want to start paying attention to the inner guidance that is within you. Pay attention! This is important as this will affect the quality of your life. Believe that you are enough, that you are worth it and that good things can and will happen to you. What is happening in your presence right now?
Begin to cultivate your creativity. When we tap into the present moment then we can start a creative journey. Creativity needs presence. Thought turns into form as if God or the Universe is speaking through you with a greater intelligence than anything that you can come up with on your own. When you create, don't judge, just go with it. Time and practice will refine your creative skills. You may trip, fall, mess up or get criticized when you first begin to create. Keep going. Let your heart guide you through the process allowing the softest most tender parts of your soul to be exposed. The rawness of what you create will be the thing that most attracts people to your projects. An example is that, I took a screenwriting course in Chicago. My teacher said, "Write from your heart. Feel your heart weeping as the words fall onto the page. Write about yourself as you are already familiar with all the wild details of your life. You are already so interesting". If you are not a writer then find how you can put your heart and soul into everything that you make.
Joy can often be your guide through this creative process. When you take a risk you are demonstrating courage. When you find courage then you are overcoming fear and finding an inner happiness that doesn't leave you no matter what is happening in life. What is your passion? If you don't know it then meditate on it. If you still don't know then experiment with life, try things and play. If you continue to play without criticizing yourself then it will happen. This is why it is nice to play with children sometimes. They are so creative and use their imaginations without judgment. My 4 year old and 6 year old interrupted me three times while writing this post for a wrestling/tickle session. Yes it took me a lot longer to get the job done but their giggles free my soul. They are a constant reminder to me to relax, play and laugh.
Now let's apply this to your life. Ask yourself, how do you want your life to look? What does a perfect day look like to you? How much time do you want to spend on your creative projects? Do you want to travel? What do you need to do to allow the vision of your life come into fruition? You can work really hard in life and get nowhere as if you are on a treadmill going nowhere. Things come to you at random. You run around in a million different directions unclear. This affects your ability to make good decisions. When you take the time to become clear about what you want in life then things take faster. Less effort is used and "the way" is shown with a laser like focus. Everything in your life becomes easier. You know you are on the right path when life seems to start to work for you that against you. I have a very successful friend who has it tattooed on his arm to "Try Easier". This inspires me as I often work hard try hard but I have been on that treadmill. Honestly, I'm tired of the treadmill. I want to throw it away and try easier myself. Develop your creativity so that you can envision and design the life of your dreams. It can happen!
To summarize, heal yourself first, drop any fear, develop creativity through presence, ask your heart, find the joy and envision the life of your dreams. Think of all the details and laugh at the wildly fun things that you can think of. Allow yourself to envision the most beautiful, most wonderful, most amazing life that you can think of. Once you are clear, somehow the universe starts to give you answers as you tap into your inner voice. Get quiet and allow the universe to do it's magic. Things are waiting to be born through you. I hope this helps you see that I'm not writing this blog only to cry over the past. I'm writing this blog so that I can heal. I have plans. Creative plans. I am envisioning awesomeness. I can't wait to see what's going to happen next. I am documenting my journey so that you can join this wild ride that I am on! Come with me! I hope this inspires you to find a vision for your life and create your most beautiful life! Much love, light and happiness beautiful people. I love you all!
Wow, I love this Chakra! It resonates with me so much as it was one of the chakras that I needed deep healing. The color of the root chakra is red. It is located at the base of the spine near the coccyx. It is energetically connected to the spinal column, rectum, legs, bones, feet, and immune system. The first chakra is the foundation of emotional and mental health. The first chakra is our base for logic, order and structure. The root chakra is connected to the feminine spirit of the earth known as Gaia. Fear of physical survival, abandonment by the group and loss of physical order start in the root chakra. It's strengths are tribal identity, bonding and the tribal honor code; the support and loyalty that gives one a sense of safety and connection to the physical world. The sacred truth of the root chakra is All Is One.
My roots were completely ripped up out of the ground and I was lost not knowing what to build upon as my foundation wasn't there. It started with a big move. My ex-husband got really sick with Lyme Disease. It efforts to restore his health we moved to Vilcabamba Ecuador, a low cost of living, healthy vegan community for him to rest. We were in the hustle and bustle of life and grew his dog training business to be a successful enterprise. I was a voice-over and commercial actress in the city and that was doing well too. The down side of all this success is that we were working all the time. With an animal business, it is very difficult to get downtime as they need care 24 hours a day. And to top it off, we were newly weds with a newborn baby. I was scared that his lyme disease could become life threatening. He dropped to 150 lbs at 6'3". We sold everything we owned including the business and moved to Ecuador to restore his health which he did. I had some much needed downtime to be a mommy and he got to rest a lot and be surrounded with a like minded community.
When he was feeling better we decided to move back to the US. We chose to come to Florida because my parents were here and they were on a cruise for a few months and we could stay at their house while we looked for a place to live. I wanted help with the baby just in case anything happened to him. I knew I needed at least one other person to help me. My relationship with my parents was strained. My mother was jealous that I went wedding dress shopping one day with her and one day with my mother in law and I chose the dress with my mother in law. It was cheaper and a better dress, it wasn't personal. It kicked off our marriage with a lot of resentment as she sent vicious emails to all my in-laws calling it a Hager dictator take over wedding, calling my father in law a drunk simply for taking a silly picture with my with our tongues to the side and telling my mother in law that she stole a mother's right because of the dress. It got nasty. I was horrified. I felt alone on my special day. Everyone acted cordial the day of the wedding but the awkward tension was there between me and my new husband further rocking my new roots.
When we moved back to Florida we attempted to repair a broken relationship with my parents. After all they were my family and there was a lot of good that happened too. I was pregnant with my second child right when we moved back to Florida. I always wanted babies ever since I was a little girl and I always wanted to share this with my mother. I never imagined all this fighting would happen. My ex-husband didn't like my parents, for obvious reasons. My mother looked at him like a blue collar worker and he was beneath me because he wasn't a doctor or lawyer. It made it almost impossible to get everyone to get along. My son had an accident and cracked his head and my mother called the police and DCFS on me only to complicate things further. There is a long history of family disfunction with the family that I grew up with. The fighting with my parents caused tension with my four brothers and they had their own issues with my parents. At this time my ex and I divorced. I had 2 babies, a 2 year old, a 4 year old. I moved to a new city where I knew no one. I had to start my career over as I was running my ex-husbands dog business with him for 10 years and my parents get fatally sick at only 68 with Alzheimer's disease for my dad and Parkinson's with my mom. I had a boyfriend in the middle of all of this and everything fell apart. Oh my god, what am I going to do? I had anxiety and panic in me like I've never had before. I had to re-invent myself. I had to start over as my roots were completely ripped out of the ground. I was a single mom of 2, no career, no friends and no family in a new town. I was thinking "Thank you God". How much can a person take.
Somehow I walked into One Yoga & Fitness in Clermont, Florida at the height of my personal crisis. I went through the 200 hour yoga teacher training and one month before I graduated the studio owners split up. My ex-husband was invited to teach dog yoga at the other studio and my ex-boyfriend was asked to help out with the build out of the other studio. What do I do? There was some shuffling as I had to decide, who was my tribe? I tried out the other studio and after two months I was back at One Yoga & Fitness with Gina Keefe. Gina & I cried together over the split and I opened my heart to her as I was at a complete loss in my life. She scooped me up like I was her broken baby bird that she had to protect. She emotionally grounded me as she showered me with her love, support and kindness. She never judged me and she started to mentor me one step at a time. She was like another mother for me. She helped me re-build a career, step by tearful step. My other teacher Shelly and Gina helped me mend my relationships with my family and I had to learn about the humbling power of forgiveness. No matter what happened to me with my family or ex-husband, I still loved them. I was hurting. I needed to soften and change. I had to learn that my mother's attacks are really her unhealed wounds and not really her. It was simply a fearful aspect of her personality. I changed the way that I reacted to her to have much more compassion and we were able to mend our relationship. I needed that so bad because I wanted them to know how much I did love them, especially now that they were so sick. I also had to find forgiveness with my ex-husband. He loves my children as much as I do. My ex-husband was simply tired of being picked on and I had to learn to respect his boundaries. We are the parents of two of the most beautiful people that I have ever met in my life, my children. I want them to grow up with love.
Now, I am on my own, alone but somehow I have strength because I took the time to heal my broken root chakra. I am actively building my new business, re-modeling my broken house, mending relationships and creating new friends who are becoming my new family as the one that I had is changing. Never give up hope if you feel like you have been up-rooted. So much beauty comes out of the mess if you lift up your head and move forward. All I can say is that it really helped me that Gina held my hand the whole way through. I have so much love for this studio and as Gina once said, "Yoga changed my life". For me it really did. Much Love & Light to you all. I love you!
When I was in high school I had an insatiable desire to be liked and to be popular. There was a lot of turbulence in my family growing up and I didn't look to my family for emotional support. Instead I looked to my friends for the love and support that I wasn't getting at home. I would think, I hope I'm funny enough, pretty enough, cool enough, enough of whatever it takes to be liked. I would crave this attention so much that I would often sabotage myself in efforts to get one more approval. We all have this desire to connect and to be loved. I was coming from a place of lack instead of a place of abundance.
I'm about to substitute my friend Jenny's yoga class. Jenny is a very popular teacher and I'm finding myself falling back into the insecure feelings of I hope they like me. As I wait outside the room, ready to go in, I hear Chad's TRX class thumping to Footloose. Wait, Rocky just came on. Students are laughing and shouting I love Rocky. I hear Chad shouting workout routines like a drill sergeant and the students grunt, groan and love it. Chad is a very popular teacher. I feel intimidated but then I think why do I have this neediness to have everyone like me? Do I like me? Yes, I do like me! I'm different than these teachers but that's what makes this yoga studio so great. We all have something different to offer. As I'm about to go in, I change my thinking to how can I serve. All my students want to connect otherwise they would be home doing yoga alone. I want to connect with my students and I have to assume that if they showed up that they want to connect with me too. I love my students and I love seeing them grow. Nothing excites me more than to see a miraculous transformation within them in body and mind. Healing, self care, self love excites me because these were things that I needed. If we are truly one, then I'm not the only one who has ever felt this way. There is an abundance of love to go around.
As I sit here waiting, I think about Eckhart Tolle's The Power of Now. I am anxious about the future. I'm am anxious about a class that hasn't happened yet. In the process, I lose myself in the Now. Along with changing my thinking from I hope they like me to How Can I Serve, I also remind myself that the future is just my thoughts. My thoughts are just a made up story that isn't real. Come into the present moment. My thoughts are meaningless. My thoughts are simply complaints and my not enoughness is what my ego identifies itself with. I can choose to be present and let the ego go. As Eckhart Tolle says, "The essence of now is who you are. Or you fall into a false sense of self if you are not presence. This is the ego with repetitive, unconscious, thought patterns and emotional patterns. Trapped in the story. Wisdom can only be found in no thought. Wisdom comes from stillness. Be aware of the inner energy of the body. Tap into your sense perceptions. A high degree of alertness. Bring in thoughtlessness. Thoughtlessness implies more consciousness. To awaken. The compulsion to think is just a habit." Thanks Eckhart, you make it sound so simple! But that is just it, it is simple. KISS, Keep It Simple Stupid was an old computer programming rule that I learned back in my coding days when I was hired out of school to save the world by fixing the Y2K bug. Keep the anxiety at bay by simply coming into the present moment. Yes I still fall into old habits, but I am developing an awareness to actively change my energy. I hope this also helps you to come into the presence.
I read this blog to the class and it felt like almost immediately my nervousness was released the moment that I made my confession. We did a connection circle where we start in a line and connect with one another by looking into each other's eyes for 10 to 15 seconds and then move to the next student. At the end of the circle two girls were crying. It was touching to see how much others also wanted to connect. I felt the love and warmth of the room. One girl was new to yoga and I kept checking on her as many of the moves were new for her. I was happy to see her working through the awkwardness of doing yoga for the first time. It's not easy to get out of your comfort zone but she was doing it. Go deep into the present moment and find all the love and happiness that you desire. Much Love & Light to you all!
My dad did some amazing things for me. One of them is that he helped me move to Santa Barbara, California. I graduated at 21 years old in Finance from University of Illinois in '97 when there was a big technology boom. I had five job offers as companies were hiring people like crazy. I remember the two best offers were from, EDS and Unisys. With the Unisys job offer, I could live in Chicago, my home town, but I had to travel Monday through Thursday. With the EDS offer, I had to move to the client site and I had to go on their two year system engineer development program. I said I would go with EDS if I liked the city that I was going to move to. They asked me about Kansas City, I said no. They asked me about Detroit, I said no. Finally they asked me about Santa Barbara, CA to work with the clients Delco and Litton. Delco makes turrets for army tanks and Litton makes rockets. EDS, also known as Electronic Data Systems was the company that Ross Perot started. I took the offer in Santa Barbara, CA and I was super excited!!! First thing that I had to do was look it up because I had no idea where it was in California. It was on the beach and I can learn to surf!!!! Hooray! The pictures of Santa Barbara were so beautiful. There was lots of fighting at home especially with my brothers and I was thrilled to get away. Far away. Santa Barbara, CA was over 2000 miles away from home for me.
The problem was how do I move my car there and my stuff? I decided to drive there. "Over my dead body", my dad said. He was afraid for me. "Oh yes I am" I said. I was always super independent. My mom used to call me a GDI, God Damn Independent, because I had no fear. I wanted to see the world and I had a lot of excitement about doing it. "I'm coming with you", my dad said. "Oh dad, you worry about everything", I said. "You have no idea what kind of danger you can fall into", he said. I was so happy! He really did do a lot for me, including driving me to my new home in California. I packed my Honda Accord up with as much as I could fit in the back seat and the trunk and we were off. I said my goodbyes to everyone including that boy that I was in love with in college. We were hugging and crying for a long time before I left. I was young and I wanted to explore. Adventure awaited.
We drove down the long winding driveway waving goodbye and were on the road. I love road trips!
Isn't this the greatest dad? He just nodded his head. He was a good sport and we visited a friend for dinner in St Louis who made us huge steaks. This was before my vegan days. Then we drove some more from there before getting a hotel in Kansas City. We got breakfast and took off right away. All he could talk about was some horrible accounting job assignment that he was put on in Haines, Kansas. We hit the flat lands and saw nothing but tumble weeds for hours. As far as he was concerned, we could flush Kansas down the toilet. He had a crude sense of humor but of course this was only because this part of the drive wasn't as pretty as the rest.
Next we went to see another friend who lived in Gunnison, CO where she went to college. I made my poor dad take the long way with all my stops. I was just so excited to see some things along the way. My friend worked in a bar and we went out all night while my dad went to bed early to prepare for the drive. The next morning I was cursing to myself that I would never drink again as I nursed my hangover with some water while I struggled to sleep on the arm rest trying to hide from the sun. My dad had no mercy to let me sleep in longer, "let's go" he said. He would giggle at my misery. Actually this was the time that he really loved to tease me the most calling me a snake with a huge giggle. Next he wanted to go the four corners in the US. It's where you can lay down and put one arm in one state and the other arm in the other state and one leg in a different state and the other leg in a different state. You have 4 body parts in four different states. You snap a photo and hit the road. We saw some beautiful colored rock formations in Arizona and spent the night in the Arizona desert. When we woke up we through Monument Valley. I was loving out trip.
Of course we had to stop at the Grand Canyon on the way. When am I ever going to be in this area again dad? He agreed and we went. When we got to the Canyon, he told me about a joke where you could jump down from one rock to another and it would look like you were falling into the canyon. I thought this was hilarious so we took a bunch of pictures together "falling" into the canyon. He couldn't handle watching me pretend to fall into the canyon any longer and walked back to the car. "What's going on dad" I asked. He said that he loved me too much and he couldn't stand the thought of me really falling into that canyon and getting hurt. I stopped joking and we take off. He has a real soft tender side to him. This was the part that I loved the most.
Before you know it we were in the Mojave Desert in the middle of the afternoon in summer. There is absolutely nothing to look at for hours and hours. "Are we there yet?" I kept thinking. They had call boxes every mile or so because so many cars break down in the desert. "That will never happen to me", I thought. Putt, putt, putt...my car breaks down in the middle of the Mojave Desert! My dad was right in that dangerous stuff could happen and it did. We walk to a call box as it was pre-cell phones. "Watch out for rattle snakes" he said! "OMG, I'm going to die" I said. He just laughed his silly laugh. Ugh, we were so close!!! The tow truck driver picks us up and all three of us had to squish into the front of his truck. He towed my Honda to a mechanic in Barstow, CA. On the drive there he was telling us about his other job as a mortician and all about embalming bodies. Yikes!!!!! He talked frankly about it as if it was no big deal. Normally I wouldn't have been scared by this but the fact that we were stranded in the desert listening to the details of a morticians job was scary. My poor dad, the things I put him through.
We made it back to Barstow where we dropped my car off at a mechanic. We had to stay at the hotel next door. It was crazy. We thought it would be a simple fix. My ignitor coils melted. The mechanic needed parts but had to go to LA to get them. We stayed in the hotel for about three nights waiting and then said let's get a rental car and go. So we get a rental car and drive the rest of the way to Santa Barbara. I had to get to work on time and I spent too much time on the road. I didn't want to miss my first day. My mom flew out and picked up the part they needed in LA then drove out to Barstow and gave the mechanic the part. "Here, fix it now" she said. She was upset and felt it was a scam to get you to stay at the hotels and use a rental car longer. Then she drove my car the rest of the way to Santa Barbara, CA. My mom saved the day.
My parents dropped me off at the most adorable beach hotel with a big sunflower room with kitchenette two blocks from the beach. The company was paying for me to stay there for a month until I found a rental. Santa Barbara, CA lived up to its gorgeous reputation. In my opinion, it is the most beautiful city in California. It has the only east west mountain range in the state of California, blocking the smog from LA. The city is on the ocean and the Santa Ynez mountains are right behind you. I ended up renting a room from a rooms for rent ad and started my first job out of college at EDS at 21 in Santa Barbara, CA. I can't believe I'm here, I would think. This place is like a dream come true. And it was, for awhile. I have to offer huge gratitude to my parents who helped me so much with this move. They were the best. There were lots of happy moments. This was one of them. Santa Barbara was a Spanish city with white buildings, red tile roofs and flowers everywhere. It has the best sunsets and the most beautiful downtown with outdoor malls, plazas and yummy restaurants. I was in heaven! Much, peace, love and happiness you all. Does this remind you of any road trips? I hope it brings back fond memories!
I started writing when I was 18 years old when I was in college at the University of Illinois. I fell madly in love with a boy from my high school who went to the University of Iowa, 4 hours away. It was a time before cell phones and dormitory life. There was so much to do at the University that I didn't spend much time in my room which made it hard to coordinate phone calls. We literally had to make appointments to talk. Another way that we shared our love for each other was through love letters. I was so completely caught off guard with falling for this guy. I dated but I didn't have the deep feelings like I had for this one. We didn't try, it just happened. He sent me the first love letter and I was giddy beyond belief skipping around twirling my "I Dream of Jeannie" high pony tail. It was amazing how his words could light me up like a Christmas tree star. In his first letter he told me how special I was. This may seem like a simple thing to say to someone but at this time in my life, he had no idea how much this meant to me. Nobody ever told me that besides my parents before. I would hug the letters, smell his cologne and re-read them like they were the most precious pieces of paper that I have ever touched.
I would read them to my roommate as we would giggle with joy after each loving word. I would throw myself down on my pillow holding the letters to my heart saying his name, over and over again in a soft whisper. "You lucky bitch", my roommate would say. She made me laugh so hard. I had the best roommate ever who was just as excited as I was with each new letter. I began to write him back. I was never so open and vulnerable. It was so fun to tell someone how much they meant to you and it be mutual. I started to get more creative with the letters by changing colors of my markers with each new sentence. I added perfume and I kissed each envelope with gobs of red lipstick. I decorated the envelopes with sparkly puffy paint that took a whole night to dry and then I would flip it over and puffy paint the other side. These were some of the most colorful, sparkly, smelly letters that I have ever scene. He would write me back with something even more sweet. Before I knew it we were making cassette tapes for each other with our favorite love songs on them and sending them in the letters along with dried up roses. He was my baby and I told him this all the time.
I really loved him so much. I couldn't stop laughing whenever I was with him. He would somehow borrow a car and drive down during the craziest snow blizzards just to see me for one night. I couldn't believe someone would do all this just for me. We would stay up all night not wanting to waste a single minute. It was tricky in that I had a roommate. We would hang out at the bars as late as they stayed open and then we would make out in the dorm lounge all night. I would try to stay out of my dorm room until the morning. There was a serious lack of privacy most of the time that we dated. It seemed impossible to be alone with him but when we were, it was magical.
He used to surprise visit me. There would be times where I couldn't see him for 6 weeks and I would be walking down the quad and would see a Detroit Tigers hat with this duck tape on the back just like his hat. I would stop dead in my tracks while he would jump out of a bush. I would scream and hug him and cry. I missed him so much. He surprised me many times. One time I just got out of the shower and he called and he said hang on. So I did. I was at my sorority house where my room was on a floor with nothing but other female only dorm rooms. I hear a knock on my door and he burst into the room. "Surprise", he would run in with a handful of balloons, flowers, hugs and kisses. I completely fell over on the bed screaming with shock. He always got me. I was never prepared for his surprises as he was very creative. He would laugh and laugh and laugh and I would laugh too. He was hilariously fun. Of course we had no place to stay so I had to sneak him into the sorority house at night. He showered there in the middle of the night wearing my robe and towel on his head. He just needed to hide his hairy chest! At least I had a private room while my roommate slept in the dorm room filled with bunk beds.
I wish we could have gone to the same schools. Transferring was not an option for me as my parents refused to pay an out of state tuition. They also wanted me to graduate in 4 years and there was a lot of pressure to finish on time. I was happy to be in school as my home life was at the height of fighting. I wanted to do anything to stay away from home. This also created more issues because during summer breaks we had an opportunity to be together in our home town but I wanted to stay in summer school over going home again. He stayed with me one summer and it was a blast living with him. I felt like a real adult, playing house with him, making meals together. The distance wore on us over time but the love letters kept our college romance alive. We did every romantic thing you could imagine. I didn't even know I liked romance so much until it was happening and we were creatively coming up with more and more romantic things. I openly admitted that I was cheesy. I often said I was like cheese whiz! I could write about this forever.
One time I made him a candle lite dinner in a hotel room with flowers, beautiful music and a homemade meal. I made the dinner in my sorority kitchen the night before. I pre-made everything including the salad with salad dressing. I made every cooking mistake you could think of. He politely ate my droopy lettuce and I pretended like everything was delicious, just like I imagined this special night would be. My stomach starting gurgle with the worst pains ever. I felt a fart coming on and squeezed as hard as I could. I surrendered and ran to the bathroom with the worst diarrhea afterwards in this tiny hotel room. I turned on the water and tried to be quiet pretending like nothing was wrong. My only give away was that I was in the bathroom for like a half an hour. Every time I thought I was done, more came. How embarrassing!!! He thought it was funny. "OH MY GOD", was all I could think. I was humiliated that this happened during my special romantic dinner with him. He loved me anyway and we had the best night despite my cooking fouls. I will never put salad dressing on a salad the night before again! NEVER EVER!
Recalling these memories still makes me shine. Honestly I was laughing through writing this whole post. I started writing with love and the joy has never left me. As I continue to write, I pour my whole heart and love onto the page. In my opinion, that is the only way to write. Many times I have cried and laughed through my posts, scared to press post but I do it anyway. I want to live. I want to write. I want to love. We are no longer together but he holds a very special place in my heart. He always did. Peace, love & light beautiful people! Tell me, did you ever write love letters? I'd love to know:)
One of the first weekends of my yoga teacher training we opened up our dialogue. We were just casually talking about something I can't remember but I remember saying "I don't trust anyone." I said it pretty casually without really realizing the impact of this statement. It just slipped off my tongue so somehow it was in me. We were sitting in a circle and my teacher had me look at everyone and say "I don't trust you". I was thinking this is ridiculous but I went ahead with the exercise anyway. I started to go around the circle and said "I don't trust you". Then I looked at the next person and said "I don't trust you". And the next, "I don't trust you". And the next, "I don't trust you". I continued on until I said it to everyone in the room. By the end I was in tears. I did have trust issues. The realization of this fact hit me like a brick wall. Let's face it, if you are an adult, chances are that you have gotten hurt at some point in your life. In the process of protecting ourselves we energetically shut down. Or at least I did.
As I was going around in the circle and saying "I don't trust you", different reasons popped into my head on why I didn't trust them. My mind was brilliant at coming up with little stories of fear that weren't true. They were just my imagination and they weren't real. The problem not trusting anyone is that you are spending a lot of time alone as relationships are built on trust. When we were doing this trust exercise, what I really was saying is that I want to trust you but I'm scared. I wanted to open up to this new group of people. I was dealing with serious issues and I needed to be able to be open about what I was dealing with because I was having a hard time doing it alone. If we stop taking risks on trusting people then we are missing out on a lot of joy. Our relationships make us feel happy. Love makes us feel happy. We need each other to hold hands with as we go through turbulent stages of life as well as share in our successes. Our lives become more rich when we open ourselves up, trust and love one another.
Throughout the yoga teacher training, we all opened our hearts and worked through all of our chakras, the yoga sutras, Bhagavad Gita as well as energy work. Once I realized that I really didn't trust anyone, I made a conscious effort to take a chance on this beautiful group of people. I opened up my heart and I talked about my healing journey as I was actively making changes to improve my relationships and life. Our group bonded and we became close because we learned to trust each other. I learned that everyone is scared to some degree to open up. I was ready and simply went for it and I'm so glad that I did. Really connecting with someone is so special. When it happens and it is real, somehow we don't feel so alone. Life becomes more interesting and people are absolutely fascinating. I love learning about other people's lives. We yearn to be known and to be heard.
When we learn to authentically connect with each other like this on a deeper level then everything else seems boring. Who really likes shallow small talk? I mean, it's ok for a little bit but then it's simply more fun to really connect. Life is real. Life has many ups and downs. Life becomes more joyful when we have people to share our ride with. I learned to trust this group of people and love them. And yes, life became better. I'm glad that I got over my trust issues. I'm glad that I took a chance. I moved from Chicago to Clermont, FL and I was lacking depth in my new relationships. I was lonely. I really wanted real friendships with people whom I can really care about and love. I wanted community in this new town that I was living in. Take a chance and open up. Yes you might get hurt but don't stop being kind and loving. You will find your people if you keep trying. As Michael Singer, the author of The Untethered Soul says, "go into new situations with a beginner's mind. Don't let past experiences affect new ones." I'm so glad that I did this yoga teacher training. I feel joy despite the obstacles that I am facing. Much peace, love and light to you all. What do you think about this post? Does it resonate with you? Please feel free to comment as I really do want to know you.
When I was about 16 years old I was searching my dad's office for something, I can't remember. I open his roll top desk, open all the little drawers inside and then opened a side drawer. He used to lock this desk but for some reason it was open. I was innocently looking for something office related. Instead I found a letter in an envelope. For some reason I pulled it out, I don't remember why. This was 27 years ago for me. I read the letter and it was a note that said, "I wish I was a better dad. I wish I was a better husband. I wish I made more money at work. I wish I was a better looking man. I wish"...and it was a list like this then went on the full page. At the end "I don't know how to do better. I am not good enough." At the end it said "I want to kill myself". It devastated me. I quickly folded the letter and put it back so that no one would find out that I accidentally found it. I never told anyone that I found that letter. It scared me down to my bones. I was in a panic and was thinking, "when". I still have time to tell him that he is enough, he can change anything that he is unhappy about and that I love him. I was dedicated to being his friend and help him find happiness.
We lived in a big house but we often hung out in the small sunroom in the corner of the house. We had a hammock hanging from the walls and a hammock chair swing overlooking our yard. There was a tv in the corner of the room. My dad was often drinking beer, I think it was Old Style. I would sit back in the sunroom with him and talk about life. I would ask him lots of questions about life, what to major in, where to go to college, etc. He would tell me how unhappy he was. My father suffered with depression for a very long time. Most of his adult life. He always seemed sad to me. He told me that life was cruelly lonely. I was thinking, how can that be, you got me, my brothers and mom. At this time, my brothers were starting to fight and get into mischief. I was up to my own shenanigan's but I was better at hiding it. We move to a new town when I was 15 and they were 11, 11, 13 and 18. He was frustrated and said he had no control over them and didn't know what to do. He was unhappy with my mother. They used to have terrible screaming fights. When I was younger, I remember my mother calling the cops on my dad. We spent hours talking about how unhappy he was. I didn't know it at the time but this is called "emotional incest". Emotional incest is when a parent looks to their child for emotional support or treats them more like a partner than a child. The problems that he was going through were too heavy for me to deal with, I was just a kid really. I was dedicated to making my father happy so that he wouldn't kill himself. The fear was real for me but somehow I blocked it out and never talked about that letter.
To make matters worse, my mom would sneak around the door of the sunroom and hear my father complaining about his marriage to me. She would get furious and would scream at him to "go hang out with your other wife". It was devastatingly cruel. I couldn't tell her what I was worried about and now I didn't trust her. I really should have been talking to an adult about what I was going through but clearly not either of them. I felt fear for my father and betrayed by my mother. My mother did work super hard and she expected everyone to help. Specifically I remember her coming home with groceries and if we didn't stop and help her right away then we were screamed at. Now that I'm an adult, I understand why she was tired and needed help. I just didn't see it as a kid. I just saw my mom as someone that I couldn't trust because I never knew when she would turn on me. Of course she's my mom and I loved her. She has a very likable side to her and I often wanted a better relationship with her than I did. I graduated at 17 years old and was off to college shortly after this incident.
The reason that I think of this now is because my dad is very sick and I keep having all these flashbacks. I also want better relationships in my life and I am doing some self inquiry on where I seemed to be stuck. My ex-husband was depressed most of the time that I was married to him. I think I thought I could save him too. Maybe his sadness is what attracted me to him. It was so familiar. I was thinking about this because even though I have a lot of people around me in my life, I somehow found myself feeling lonely tonight. Maybe it was just the first time that I have been alone at night in some time. Lately my mom is here or my children. My mom is in Chicago and my kids are at their dads and I got to meditate for the first time in awhile. As I meditate I have these panicky urges to do something. I resist them because I know that doing something is just distracting me from dealing with myself. I want to go clean my house, go check out this new/used bedroom set for my girl, visit my dad, hang with my ex and kids. Instead, I do nothing. I just breath and tears roll down my face. Sometimes I feel like I did all this spiritual work on death and I'm ok about my dad's situation but lately I feel sad. It seems to come and go in waves. You never really seem to get over it. It just seems to hurt less over time.
I've been able to visit my dad alone at his Assisted Care Facility, Crain's Lodge. When I see him, he is so docile and weak and I never saw him be aggressive. I don't doubt it if the care facility says that he has been. When I am with him he is tenderly sweet. His speech is so disoriented but it sometimes ends with, "this is what you have to do. See?" He is still trying to parent me even though he is sick with Alzheimer's and can barely sit up or stand up. He talks in a really soft kind voice. When I see him lately he is hunched over really bad. When I come in, I crouch down by his feet and tell him about my day or I try to move him to the couch or take him for a walk. The other day I helped to feed him soup because the spoon kept going on an angle and spilling the broth everywhere. He was hungry. I plan to ask the facility what his medication is because when I first moved him there he was moving around a lot better. I must be coming right when he gets his medicine or they up'ed his medicine. Either way, I talk as nice as I can to him and I often hug him and tell him I love him. I know he can read my energy even if he can remember me. He seems to remember me but he can't say my name. I often remind him, "I'm Amy, your daughter".
I am reading a book called "The End of Alzheimer's" and this book gave me some hope. Sometimes hope feels like a wicked thing but it's all we have. This book talks about how switching to a mostly plant based diet, can help stop or reverse Alzheimer's. No dairy, no soda, no fatty treats like cakes, cookies or ice cream, no trans fats or fried foods, no alcohol, or processed foods. Basically eat clean. If you do eat meat then this book recommends that it only be a condiment. I personally recommend getting off of it. If I agree with everything in this book or not, it doesn't matter. The bottom line is that they were specific case studies of people who reversed or stopped their Alzheimer's. I got a glimmer of hope. I know I can help my dad if I can take him home with me. The only thing is that I need help with him. He needs 24 hour care. I feel like this is his only hope. The assisted care facility, Crain's Lodge, feeds everyone a basic Standard American Diet, SAD diet. The use white bread, desserts and sugary drinks. It's all typical American fare. He'll never get better there. If I bring him home then I also have to deal with my mom's own eating addictions. I think she'll give him whatever he wants. She doesn't believe me.
I can't help but to wonder if his condition can improve with diet change. I can help him improve this significantly. I feel like at this point, he has nothing to lose, everything to gain. He will still be a handful so I would have to hire help on care.com. This hope that I feel is the same hope that I felt with trying to help my dad when I first found his suicide note. I can help but I also need help. I would have to add combination locks on my doors and hire a caretaker. I still can't help but to feel like I can't give up on my dad. It's his life. He is young. He deserves better. He would do anything for me. Alzheimer's is a terrible disease. He is robbed of everything that is him. When he is loved, then he is absolutely the kindest, most gentle person I know. He needs help eating, dressing, bathing, going potty, everything. His disoriented speech is a big thing that I notice. He wants to talk but he can't seem to get it out. He also wants to walk, all the time. I would have to walk him everyday. I just worry about being stuck to my house.
After my meditation I was reflecting on how I would talk to my dad as a kid and try to "help" him by being his friend. I was thinking that despite all my efforts to make him happy, I now realize that no one can make you feel anything. He had to find happiness all on his own. Besides, thinking back, my advice that my adolescent self was giving him was terrible. I often told him, "just get divorced", problem solved I thought. What was nagging him was his soul. His soul needed to be healed. As I realize that he had to find his own happiness, so do I. I am searching somewhere deep inside and breathing. You know, it is nice to be alone once in awhile. I feel better already. Thank you for listening. I love you all. Peace. Pray. Love. And please eat more fruits, vegetables and get 15 minutes in the sun for vitamin D as much as you can. It's in the book:)
Have you had any experiences with flying monkey's working on behalf of a narcissist? I personally experienced and saw this happen to me and a dear friend of mine. It's scary to think that there are people out there who intentionally try to hurt you especially when you have done nothing to warrant this abuse. Abuse is exactly what it is too. Narcissism is a spiritual reality in which the person operates on a lower level (using their primitive brain). They lack empathy. They are all about their own success, getting ahead and not caring who they hurt. A flying monkey works for the narcissist and may pretend to be your friend only to report back to a narcissist. A flying monkey might also not even know they are working for a narcissist, especially if the narcissist is a skilled covert narcissist. The narcissist can often play victim to and blame the innocent target. The narcissist is spreading a smear campaign against the target and flying monkeys do whatever the narcissist says out of fear of being ousted from "The Group". I often think about the power of "The Group" and how good people will do things that are not so kind in efforts to belong to "The Group". "The Group" leader, a charismatic narcissist, is often a very likable person that people want to be friends with. They overlook the evil things that the narcissist has done simply to be liked by this leader and the power of their group. Creating awareness can help protect you from abuse. This term is not formally used or taught in medical practice but it's real. If you find yourself in this type of situation then you can recognize it and do things to get out of an unhealthy situation. Find people who really love you and who do things to elevate you. If you energetically feel negativity from someone then trust your instincts. Protect yourself because not everyone is evolved enough yet to know that love is god. Love is at the core of our being and our natural state. If anything feels the opposite of love then stay away. Famous narcissists are: Adolph Hitler, Ted Bundy, OJ Simpson and Kim Kardashian. The term Flying Monkeys is defined in the dictionary:
The definition according to Wikipedia is:
"Flying monkeys or apaths, is a term used in popular psychology mainly in the context of narcissistic abuse. They are people who act on behalf of a narcissist to a third party, usually for an abusive purpose (e.g. smear campaign). The phrase has also been used to refer to people who act on behalf of a psychopath, for a similar purpose. The term is not formally used in medical practice or teaching.
Abuse by proxy (or proxy abuse) is a closely related or synonymous concept. The term is from the flying monkeys used by the Wicked Witch of the West in the 1939 film Wizard of Oz to carry out evil deeds on her behalf."
Flying monkeys can be anyone who believes the narcissist's fake persona including the narcissist's spouse, child, friend, sibling or cousin. According to popular psychology author Angela Atkinson, flying monkeys are usually unwittingly manipulated people who believe the smears about the victim although they may be another narcissist working in tandem.
According to narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) author Sam Vaknin, and other writers, proxy abusers can come from a number or sources:
The flying monkey does the narcissist’s bidding to inflict additional torment on the target. It may consist of spying, spreading gossip, threatening, painting the narcissist as the victim (victim playing) and the target as the perpetrator (victim blaming). Despite this, the narcissist does not hesitate to make flying monkeys his or her scapegoats when and if needed.
The flying monkeys may make it seem like the narcissist is not really involved, and they likely have no idea that they are being used. Multiple flying monkeys act as a mobbing force against a victim. In divorce conflicts, the children can be used by one party as a weapon against the other party.
Motives behind the narcissist's support group can be multiple. Service providers may be seduced by the narcissist's charm into taking a one-sided perspective. Family members may in good faith attempt to sort out the "problematic one". The codependent may seek to participate in the narcissist's omnipotence, or use them as sanction for their own aggressive instincts. Alternatively, others may simply be swept up by force of personality to define the situation along the narcissist's own lines."
Currently my house is under construction for remodeling. I am normally a very frugal person who doesn't spend much money on myself. At one point, I almost sold my house because there was so much work to be done to it. My mom needed help and moved in and that was how I made the decision to upgrade my house. With my mom there, I wanted it nice. She was going through a lot being separated from her husband who is in an assisted care facility. I had the original kitchen and bath in my house from the early 90's. It wasn't bad but it also wasn't that beautiful serene environment that made me happy to come home to. My mom is at the house full time and I have 2 children who spend a lot of time at the house. I also do a lot of work out of my house. The choice to invest into my house seemed like a no brainer. Moving cost money and the housing market is at a high point. It would cost me a lot to move and I would have to spend a lot to get what I wanted. I saw a lot of places and the taxes were also a lot higher. I decided with the decline of my parents health, that I needed to stay put. It was too much stress for me to deal with their illness, raise two kids, work and move.
I had a friend come to my house who is a designer, Silvana. Asking her to come visit was the best decision ever. I have fixed up the house a lot already and in the process, some things turned out great and I also made mistakes. I wanted to avoid anymore costly mistakes. She walked in the house and immediately was eyeing things up and down saying "um hum". When you walked into my house before, you walked into a cheap white tile foyer. Then if you looked left and right, those two rooms were forest green carpet, yucky! It you looked straight ahead you can see where I took out the maroon red carpet and put vinyl wood flooring down. I loved this vinyl flooring but in Florida, it would be better to put tile. In the kids bedroom I had tan carpet. My bedroom, the same ugly forest green. In the kitchen there was more cheap white tile. I honestly hated it. I wasn't sure how to fix it or what to do. Silvana's first suggestion was to not break up the flooring. She said I should do the same flooring throughout the whole first floor and choose a light color to make the smaller rooms look bigger. I followed her advice and all I can say is WOW! It is amazing what flooring can do for the look of your house. This will also be helpful for my mom with a walker as there won't be any transitions. I'm also adding in grab bars in the bathroom for her.
Silvana said that nothing goes in the house. She said when I walk in from the outside it was very warm light tan and then when you walked inside the rooms were a very rich terra cotta color. If you kept walking then I switched to cool colors with light blue. The rest of the house had cool colors and the lanai switched back to the warm light tan. She recommended to keep the theme of the house the same. If I wanted cool colors then keep cool colors throughout. I changed the terra cotta walls in the front rooms to a very light gray and a slightly darker gray to match the floors and to make the rooms look bigger. I changed the living room and kitchen to a white wash color with a light gray accent wall. White wash looks better with gray than off white she says. My bathroom and kitchen have been gutted and should be installed within the next few weeks. I have white cabinets, stainless appliances and a soft gray quartz counter with subtle sparkles being installed. I can't wait for the sparkles! Sparkles brings me joy!
New wall colors, new flooring, new kitchens and bathrooms are THE BEST! I spent so much time calling plumbers over the past few years to come over to fix leaks. I had electricians to the house. I hired carpet cleaners, I painted the house myself 2 times and still somehow couldn't get it right. My friend Silvana said, spend the money. The house is the most important thing. It's where you live and it should be a calm, serene sanctuary that you look forward to coming home to. "It will change everything for you", she says. "Your moods will be happier, your productivity will be more and it will feel good." Right now everything is still a mess but I am bursting with excitement as I see one thing put back to place at a time. Honestly, I hired a good contractor if you ask me. I got lucky and so far I'm having a very positive experience. There is someone at the house everyday working. The whole project will finish faster than expected and overall, I'm thrilled! I'm finally creating this amazing beautiful place to live in that I've always wanted.
I love the light colors. Silvana says, keep it simple. Do only two tones, with light colors. Then you can always add accent pieces with color if I want. Keep the calm simple two tone look. I love the windows that overlook all the trees in the backyard. She says to get simple wood furniture to bring the outside inside the house. Don't buy bulky couches with big arm rests. Buy furniture with simple lines and furniture that isn't so big as it uses up so much space. I'm already planning on swapping out my king bed for a queen and bringing in smaller furniture. I also swapped out the ceiling fans and light fixtures so that everything matches the theme of the house. It's going to be great! Step by step, it's coming together. There is a lot of stress in my life right now dealing with two aging parents and two small children however, I'm glad that I'm doing something for myself! This brings me joy and this is what is balancing the chaos.
If you have ever wanted to improve your house but you are on the fence then all I can say is, do it! You are worth it. Silvana was right, it has changed my moods. I feel grounded like I can grow strong roots and enjoy a beautiful creative space. I can't wait to show you the final product. Sending you lots of love and light! Besos!
P.S. If you also want a consultation from my friend Silvana, then it's worth it! Here is her website with contact information: silvanaliving.com . She tells me, "You see how important it is to LOVE where you live. To me it's an important base for a joyful life. It's where your inspiration starts!" Thank you Silvana, love you very much plus I'm inspired!
Also, my contractor Carlos Jimenez, from Fix Plus has been doing a great job! I will post some more photos soon and you can see for yourself:)
My mom retired with a full pension when she was 55 from teaching Special Education for 35 years with her PhD. They owned their house outright and wanted adventure. They did everything the "right" way and had a beautiful retirement cruising the world. My mother generously took me and my children on one of her world cruises. She felt like a cruise around the world was better than any education I could get. They would go on a cruise for a few months and come back to their home in The Villages for a few months. My dad was the former President of the Woodshop in The Villages, his playground. He would often come back, go to the Woodshop and carve caricature dolls of silly people. He has a childlike sense of humor. His house has stuffed animals everywhere, on the entertainment system, on his nightstand, on the shelf above the hallway to the bathroom in his bedroom. My mother fell in love with Bridge. It was a dream retirement where they could wake up every morning and decide what they wanted to do for the day. They never had to worry about money as those pension checks religiously kept coming.
My brother, Eric, worked for United Airlines so my mom, a skilled bargain hunter, got 1/2 off her cruises. About four years ago my father was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. This was devastating for him to know he had Alzheimer's. If we ever talked about it he would often burst into uncontrollable tears. This was very strange for me to see as this was my father, the smartest and strongest man I knew. He was an absolute genius. He loved things like his telescope, outer space, wood carving, science, history books and art. As he would often say, "I'm a happening dude.". He also had a wicked sense of humor. He was wittier then heck with his sassy comebacks if anyone was heckling him. He always loved a good heckle. He had a heart wrenching softness to his self deprecating humor. He would often say if you don't want to hurt anyone but you wanted to make a joke then make one about yourself. Everyone loves a good laugh. When I was younger, I used to crawl into bed with my parents and watch tv in between them. My dad would bring out one of his favorite stuffed animals, Betsy the cow, and talk like Betsy. He had different voices for many of these prized stuffed animals. He was like a big kid.
In December 2018 my parents were medically evacuated off of their 3 month Asian cruise ship. At this point my parents have been retired for almost 15 years and spent the past 8 years going on river cruises, cruises around different continents and cruises around the world. It sounded lavish to me but my mom said it was cheaper for her to cruise than any assisted care facility. On the cruise ships, they did their laundry, made their food, cleaned their room, everything. It made it a lot easier to care for my dad on the ship. If he wondered and got lost then he couldn't go too far. He was medically evacuated off the ship after a three month Asian cruise on their way home in Hawaii. My father was having incontinence. He started peeing in the hallways and literally dropped his drawers and pooped on the roof deck. I don't know if he forgot where the bathrooms were or what but it happened. He would never do anything like this when he was healthy. I know my mom was cruising with his as long as she could until she couldn't anymore. She often uses a walker and she would leave it outside her room before she would leave and he sometimes would see it and take off down the hallway. I wonder if this was another one of his jokes or if it was his disease. Either way, my mom was left there helplessly shouting for him to come back.
She said it was a nightmare trying to get home from Hawaii. She has her own illnesses with Parkinson's, Crohn's Disease and kidney stones. She ended up flying to Chicago to see my brother's Brent, Eric & Kirt, she was worried this would be my father's last trip in his hometown. Then she flew to Rochester, MN to go to Mayo Clinic. She has been going to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN for years. While in Chicago, my dad boarded an EL train by himself and ended up in a suburb on the south side an hour away. My mother had to file a missing person's report to find him. In Minnesota he left the hospital where she was getting treated and my dad was picked up by the police. Finally she flew home and was in the middle of selling her house in The Villages. She was going to move in with my older brother, Keith and he helped her find an assisted care facility in Safety Harbor, FL where he lives. My brother started an addition on his home so that she had her own bedroom near my father's home. In the meantime she needed a place to live and moved in with me as her house in The Villages, FL sold. While living with me, she loved the kids and she also liked that my job was more flexible and part time so she decided to stay with me. I never thought I would be living with my mother again, lol. My brother, 6 months later is still dealing with a construction project for an addition gone wrong, poor guy. He hired the wrong contractor. I told him she can stay but we needed to move my dad for two reasons. First he was being really sedated at the home where he was at. Second, I wanted her to stop driving 2 hours one way, 4 hours round trip to see him. It wasn't safe for her to drive so far to see him in her condition.
For my older brother, Keith and I, this was the start of our journey with taking care of our parents. The roles have been shifting. We are now more the parents while my parents are more the dependents. It has been an emotional journey especially as I learn more about Alzheimer's and that devastating side effects of the disease. It's terrible to hear that people can suffer with it for 9+ years. When they were medically evacuated, I felt a deep sadness. My dad was my friend. I used to walk with him and talk about life. I knew, we would no longer have our talks. He used to help me with everything. He helped me paint my house, coached my softball, took me on vacations, helped me with my school work, picked me up and dropped me off so many times amongst so many things. We used to wrestle, me and my four brothers as we all used to team up in efforts to take my dad down. He would be crying with laughter on our front lawn as we flexed our kid muscles and jumped on his back. He was careful with us and we loved it. Memories come to me in flashbacks now as I am with him in the silence. His speech has been the biggest thing to go as he can no longer remember all the words that he wants to say. I can only imagine his frustration. I'm currently in the middle of his care. He is now at Crain's Lodge in Clermont, Florida in their memory care. It has been a big adjustment for my mom to be separated from my father. She spent 47 years sleeping next to him now having to learn to sleep alone. I think for her, nights are the hardest as she misses him. I occasionally watch a girl movie with her to bond so that she isn't so lonely. During the days she can now visit him. For now, there is peace.
I am happy that they got to travel before all this happened. Overall, I am blessed. I just graduated my 300 hour yoga teacher training and at my yoga class where we were getting our certificates, my mom knocked on the door. She surprised me by bringing my dad to see me graduate. She said, "Amy, your father would have done anything for you. He would have wanted to be there." I was his baby girl, his only girl. Thankfully one of the students works with memory care patients and helped him find a seat while our graduation certificates were being handed out as tears rolled off my cheeks. This whole year I've been fighting to not cry but when it happens then it comes out silently but heavy. It was very touching to have my dad there and my mom never ceases to surprise me. She can be tough but she can also be super sweet and soft. She tells me she is so proud of me. As one of my Thai yoga clients says, "Nobody will love you more." Isn't that the truth? Peace.
AsHello beautiful people,
I just finished creating this new Assisted Thai Yoga video. Yes, I have to work, lol! I'm really putting in a lot of effort to grow my business and to share the healing art of Assisted Thai Yoga. I truly know this service will help so many people as it helps to lengthen the body, remove energy blockages and stretch the muscles, all in a therapeutic setting. I met this beautiful couple at an event that I worked and they offered to barter Assisted Thai yoga for filming my video. Yay! This video is my foundational flow in fast time. This session is normally 90 minutes but I did the flow quickly so you can see the full flow. Who wants to sit through 90 minutes, right? Many people ask me what Assisted Thai Yoga is and there is no better way to describe it other than to simply show you.
I was first introduced to Thai Yoga in my 200 hour teacher training. A few months later, I met a friend who was trying to book an appointment with a lady in New York who does Thai work and he couldn't get in for over a month because the service was in demand! Once people try it, I often get people who want to come back again and again. It's different than a massage in that I don't use oil. You keep your cloths on. I use a Thai mat on the ground verses a massage table. It's a little more interactive than a massage because it involves three dimensional yoga stretches verses a two dimensional service. If you haven't tried it then it's simply a MUST. I really mean that. You haven't spoiled yourself yet like you will during an Assisted Thai Yoga treatment. It's the ultimate in self care as there is something about holding onto your issues in your tissues. When the body opens then we can release that tension that is binding us up. There is also something healing about a loving touch. We want to be connected so much and it's amazing what a nurturing touch can do. I often feel bonded with my clients right away as I feel their wounds. I haven't worked with one person who isn't suffering in some way. People are either holding onto emotional wounds or there is an injury or tightness that they are working through. I really want to help people heal themselves. I want to see my clients happy, healthy and thriving. It's my life passion and there is nothing more exciting to me that to see my clients transform into the beautiful loving healthy souls that they are, healed.
After my friend told me that he couldn't get an appointment in New York for a month, I was curious. I started to do a lot of research and I came across a video by Michael Sitzer. He had a fast time video and I was super impressed by his work. When you want to provide a great service, you find a great teacher. I watched tons of videos and Michael's was one of the best. I had to go to this teacher. I saw that he had workshops in Atlanta, GA and I instantly booked and drove back and forth there a few weekends and another in Asheville, NC. Training was a beautiful experience. We often live our lives guarded, almost as if we are waiting to get hurt. During training, everyone was so open, eager and giving. Everyone, soaked up the information and generously showered each other with so much love and kindness. It really was a beautiful experience. I love it and I'm super happy to share it all with you now.
I presented the Assisted Thai Yoga sessions to Gina Keefe at One Yoga & Fitness and being the pioneer that she is, she offered her space for me to do sessions. This was a new service that the studio has never seen before. How can I encourage people to try it? How can I show people how awesome this service is? Live demonstrations are honestly one of the best ways to see what to expect. The other way is to show you with a video so that if you missed a live demo then you still have an opportunity to check it out.
Assisted Thai Yoga is a combination acupressure of Chinese Sen energy lines, Indian Ayurvedic Yoga postures and a Buddhist Loving Kindness meditation. You get to simply walk onto the mat with comfortable cloths, ideally without buttons or zippers for obvious reasons, and bliss out. This time is yours, undistracted with a therapeutic healer focused 100% on your well being. I can't think of anything more incredible than that.
Come see me. Let me take excellent care of you. I want to help you relax and enjoy this beautiful art. Call or text me today to make an appointment, 352-603-0025. Much Love & Light!
Hello beautiful people, This is my health blog designed to encourage you to live your best life. Hopefully my experiences will positively influence your life somehow!