Svaha ~ May a Blessing Be With You…

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Tracy headshotWhen we created Tara Cronica we wanted to have a website dedicated to inspiring women to live their most authentic lives. When you spend time with your girlfriends you leave feeling empowered, in turn strengthening your female energy and the bond between you. We chose the Buddhist Goddess Arya Tara because she is the Protectress of Earthly and Spiritual Travel along the road to Enlightenment. The word Cronica is a Brazilian form of poetic writing that’s purpose is to explore the lyrical beauty in everyday happenings. When you combine the two you have female energy trying to find beauty in everyday. That is what we try to do here on Tara Cronica. We share ourselves with you hoping to form a connection that creates a bond and source of well being. It seems we need that more than ever, human connection that joins us all together as one.

I do believe that when you focus on the positive instead of the negative, change is inspired. When you use your voice you inspire change, not only within, but in others as well. We try not to focus on the negative, as it only attracts more.

I wanted to touch briefly on the tragedy that took place this week at Sandy Hook Elementary School. There were far too many young spirits taken from us. I say from ‘us’ because we are all connected by human spirit. I say young simply because of their age. The adults who died were Hero’s doing everything they could to keep our children safe. We all feel a loss when something so tragic happens in any community. My heart aches as I am sure yours does watching this tragedy unfold.

Today I feel numb. I feel deeply sad for those who suffered a loss, the children who were taken and those little spirits who will have to find a way to make sense of this in their innocent minds. We will grieve together with the world and eventually carry on but will not forget those who were taken and those who showed such courage.

Although it is hard today to see any lyrical beauty in this happening we can shift our focus on the human beings who make this sadness a little easier to swallow. Dawn Hochsprung the school Principal, Victoria Soto, a beautiful 27 year old first grade teacher, Mary Sherlach the school psychologist, Rachel Davino, Anne Marie Murphy and Lauren Rousseau. Their brave actions will always be remembered.
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It is time for everyone to use their voice to create the change that is needed to help prevent another tragedy such as this. Let us not focus on the who that was behind this but why it happened and how we can prevent it from happening again.
Svaha ~ May a Blessing be with you!
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Pink Shirt Day ~

Bullying must stop! Every seven seconds a child is bullied in Canada, unfortunately a great number of these kids end up taking their own lives to escape the pain they feel every second of every day. I can’t imagine having a child who feels so bad about themselves that they wish to end their life because of words so strong and hurtful they feel powerless against them.

We need to give our kids love and encouragement and be aware of what is going on around them. No child should ever be made to feel like their life is not worth living. We need to help educate our kids and make them aware that they may not be the only person making another child feel bad about themselves, and it could be their words that make the difference between life and death. Choose to encourage not to discourage!

500 students, teachers, parents stand up against bullying in Richmond at Aberdeen Center Mall.

This video was an assignment a young girl made for school which is also very powerful.

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Children

James and his mom.

I’m reading Joan Didion’s new book Blue Nights right now.  In it she examines her thoughts, fears and doubts about having children, illness and growing old.  Didion lost her only child, her daughter Quintana, in 2005.  In her book The Year of Magical Thinking, Joan Didion addressed the death of her husband, John Gregory Dunne.  That book was published only months before her daughter passed away at 39 years old. In The Year of Magical Thinking she talks about her daughter who was in the hospital, very ill, on the night Joan’s husband died from heart failure.  I remember the lump in my throat when I read that Joan had to break the terrible news to Quintana more than once that her father had died.  She was slipping in and out of a coma and when she awoke she wanted to know where her father was.  She was devastated by the news of course, but then would slip back out of consciousness and not remember any of it when she awoke the next time, so poor Joan had to explain it all to her again…and again.

When I finished reading The Year of Magical Thinking I so hoped that her daughter would recover and mother and daughter could be there for each other to lean on and for support.  So, when I was finished reading the book, I Googled “Quintana Roo Dunne” and there it was.  Real life doesn’t always offer a happy ending and sometimes it kicks you hard when you’re down.

I’m still reading Blue Nights and so far it has really got me thinking about my own son, James, and also my step children and their relationship with their father.

I want to share some lines from Blue Nights that really struck a chord with me:

When I began writing these pages I believed their subject to be children, the ones we have and the ones we wish we had, the ways in which we depend on our children to depend on us, the ways in which we encourage them to remain children, the ways in which they remain more unknown to us than they do to their most casual acquaintances; the ways in which we remain equally opaque to them.
The ways in which our investments in each other remain too freighted ever to see the other clear.
The ways in which neither we nor they can bear to contemplate the death or the illness or even the aging of the other.
As the pages progressed it occurred to me that their actual subject was not children after all, at least not children per se, at least not children qua children; their actual subject was this refusal even to engage in such contemplation, this failure to confront the certainties of aging, illness, death.
This fear.
Only as the pages progressed further did I understand that the two subjects were the same.
When we talk about mortality we are talking about our children.
Once she was born I was never not afraid.
I was afraid of swimming pools, high tension wires, lye under the sink, aspirin in the medicine cabinet.  I was afraid of rattlesnakes, riptides, landslides, strangers who appeared at the door, unexplained fevers, elevators without operators and empty hotel corridors.  The source of fear was obvious: it was harm that could come to her.  A question: if we and our children could in fact see the other clear would the fear go away? Would the fear go away for both of us, or would the fear go away only for me?

Every time I read those lines I cry. I’m not sure why, but I do.  I think it may be the truth in them.  The truth that we cannot see the other clear and that we remain so unknown to each other.  I am also a daughter and know from that perspective that this is true.  And the fear.  The fear never goes away. I guess I cry too because when my own son was small I knew him so well…but that time was fleeting and has long since passed by.  My husband feels the same way about all of his children.

You are joy, looking for a way to express.  It’s not just that your purpose is joy; it is that you are joy. You are love and joy and freedom and clarity expressing. Energy—frolicking and eager—that’s who you are. – Abraham

That’s how we remember our children – when they were small; that’s who they really were and indeed still are deep down, in fact that is who we all are …deep inside.  Fear pushes it back and then we forget entirely who we truly are anymore. I feel the loss of those early days and I suppose that is also what makes me cry when I read those perfect lines written by Joan Didion.

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I Want My Children to Know…

If you found out you were not going to be in your child’s future to talk to them about life and love, what would you want to say?

I remember seeing a Documentary years ago of a Mom who was dying of cancer. She recorded videos of herself where she gave her daughter encouragement or advice at specific milestones in life, like getting her period or her first date. It was heart breaking to watch. It must have been the most difficult thing she had ever done in life besides say good-bye. To have the courage and mind set to sit down and gather your thoughts let alone articulate advice you are not ready to give is overwhelming to even consider.

Her daughter would watch the videos when the time presented itself. Although it must have been difficult for her daughter to watch I am sure every word spoken was savoured. The strength of this woman was amazing and stayed with me for years. A Gift…

Things I want my Daughter & Son to know;

~ You’re perfect just the way you are.

~ Stay true to self.

~ Express your feelings no matter what they are; to whom ever they were meant to reach.

~ Never go to bed mad…

~ Always, always kiss your partner before they leave.

~ Never hold a grudge and never seek revenge no matter how hard it is.

~ Always forgive even if you can’t forget. In time you will.

~ Don’t spend too much time crying over the opposite sex, they are worth it but things always work out the way they should and only experience will show you that is true.

~ Never say never, because one day you will…

~ Love with your heart…reason with your head.

~ Touch is something that should never cease with your partner.

~ If you would rather be alone…make it happen.

~ Don’t let anyone take advantage of who you are.

~ Be open to everyone who walks through your door.

~ Don’t judge, it’s just not nice.

~ If you are going to say something about someone, be prepared to say it to their face.

~ If you are unsure of a situation and it involves making a choice…imagine me standing by your side and ask yourself…would I do this if my Mom were here? If not think about it a little longer.

~ Don’t gossip words hurt the most when used to make someone else feel bad.

~ Inspire one person everyday with something you do or say.

~ Your actions will speak much louder than your words.

~ Only marry for Love, not money, love will be there when money isn’t.

~ Never let anyone manipulate your heart. They shouldn’t want to.

~ Love deeply it is the only way.

~ It’s okay for a man to cry, it shows they will be a great Father.

~ Don’t fight unless you are truly passionate about what you are standing for.

~ Do unto others as you would have others do unto you…it’s a Golden Rule for a reason!

No one really knows how much time they have left on Earth. It’s so important to communicate and talk to those you love when the opportunity presents itself. I think what I would miss most was my kids sense of humor in the moment. The spontaneous sparing of funny things said…kind of like the old saying ‘I guess you had to be there.’

Be there because you can and are!

Svaha ~

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Svaha Spirit Series ~ Soldiers Returning Home

There are Heroes sprinkled amongst us, you just have to look. We are blessed if we meet one, proud if we know one. They step out into a world that many of us don’t see, trying to make a difference, and they certainly do.

This video was incredibly touching! It shows us how lucky we are to have our loved ones close. It reminds us how fortunate we are to live in a Country that has freedom, and it makes us appreciate every single moment we have. I am grateful to all the Heroes who dedicate their lives to make our world a better place!  Even if you just watch the first few moments, you will feel the incredible love! Svaha ~

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Keep Your Kids Safe!

This is not a topic I would normally discuss here on Tara Cronica but I feel that this information should be shared. I recently watched a video series on the Oprah website that dealt with ‘Inside The Mind of a Child Molester’. I found the show disturbing at times because of the honesty but also VERY informative. It’s an inside look at how sexual predators picks and groom their victims. No one really likes to discuss this sort of thing but I feel that it’s a topic that if approached from the mind set of learning, or teaching, it benefits everyone.

I consider myself a very aware perceptive person especially when it comes to the safely of both my children. I was just as aware as a child, street smart is what we used to call it ‘back in the olden days’ as my daughter would say. I talk openly to my kids, not to scare them, but to make them aware that not everyone in this beautiful world we live in is of good intent. Some individuals are in need of help but don’t know how to get it, some eventually do, but at the cost of a child losing their innocence. I try to educate my kids about those individuals and teach them to trust their instincts. Mine have kept me safe for a very long time. (touch wood)

Recently a Sex Offender/Pedophile that lives close to my neighbourhood, who was caught, convicted, served ‘some’ time, has been released back into the community. I know there are hundreds, if not thousand we are unaware of but when this happens in your community you are forced to deal with it up close and personal. I was starting to give my son more freedom, now I am having to make him aware again that there are adults out there that cannot be trusted and don’t have his best interest in mind. Sad but true. Some parents choose not to have this conversation with their kids in fear that they might not want to go outside and play. That is a personal choice that I completely respect. I think educating our kids of realities that can change their lives forever is necessary! It’s a very fine line to navigate for sure.

The purpose of writing a post on this graphic topic is to share information that can keep your kids safe, and empower them instead of instilling fear in them about some of the realities in life.

I was with a girlfriend a couple of years ago at a public venue when we were followed and watched by a lone man who seemed more interested in our kids than the displays. We made our kids all aware of this man and told them to stay close, not to worry we were watching him. The hair on the back of my neck stood up and I physically shook when he was in close proximity, it was that strong of a feeling for me. No one has ever made me feel this way before. I felt so strongly about this I photographed him without his knowledge just in case there was a problem. Later my son told me the man had asked him to go with him in passing, he didn’t go. But he delayed in telling me this information which would have changed the entire situation for me. I would have immediately called 911 had I known this. Kids don’t think like we do, in my sons mind he dealt with the situation by not going. Kids also don’t know what information is relevant at the time.

After talking to a friend of mine who deals with such individuals, he told me we did the right thing. My kids learned a valuable lesson that day. I was aware and didn’t turn a blind eye to my instinct. My worst fear was challenged but in the end my kids were safe. It confirmed to me that you MUST TRUST YOUR GUT, when the bodies physiology actually changes when someone is in your presence, it’s for a reason! Trust your intuition! I was told most people ignore this feeling because they don’t want to appear foolish or cause a fuss.

What I passed on to both my kids was that it’s not only girls this happens to, my son also has to be aware. Kids who are confident and secure in their families who talk openly to their parents are at less risk than those who are neglected. Kids need to know that if they tell, we as parents have a better chance of preventing it from happening again. And most of all IT’S NOT THEIR FAULT!

This video series will tell you what to look out for and some signs that will put up a red flag! Over 90% of child molesters know their victims and are trusted by them.

This is a short clip of “Inside the Mind Of a Child Molester Part 1”

For the entire Video Series go to Oprah.com

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Is Santa Claus Real?

Tracy“Is Santa Real?” Here’s a question all parents are hearing as we count down from weeks to days before the most exciting day of the year for a lot of children around the world.  I have an 11 year old son and a 8 year old daughter who have obviously been talking about Santa as the excitement builds with Christmas morning arriving soon.

I still remember the the Christmas Eve my cousin Sherene was in my room looking out my window in hopes of seeing Santa Claus.  She was much older and I had a hard time sleeping, as most kids do on Christmas Eve.  Santa was en route so how could anyone sleep.  All kids wish deep down that they might actually get a glimpse of Santa each year coming down the chimney and so we try our hardest to keep our little peepers open as long as we can.  Sherene was looking out my window when all of a sudden she exclaimed “DO YOU SEE HIM, DO YOU SEE HIM!!” her eyes bulge open like saucers as she pointed into the sky way off into the horizon.  I squinted with all my might and there he was Santa Claus being pulled in his sleigh by his 8 reindeer!  I still remember the excitement that filled my entire being.  Ahhh to be 7 again…pure magic!

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My son asked me years ago if I believed in Santa and I told him my story once again.  He smiles each time and I can tell by the look in his eyes he is swept up in the magic and spirit of Christmas.  This year he asked me again, knowing what I was going to say ” If you don’t believe you don’t receive”.  That wasn’t quite enough for him this year, he took it one step further as I thought he might at 11.  He tried to put it back on me.  He said okay Mom but when I have kids and they wake up really excited Christmas morning and you didn’t tell me it was you and there is nothing left for them under the tree it will be your fault!!  I  assured him there would be gifts under his tree for his little ones.  He told me then that he too believed in the “Spirit of Christmas”. My 8 year old daughter on the other hand put it like this,  she looked me straight in the eyes and said ” Are you Santa, not waiting for a response she carried on, cause if you are that would be really really disappointing” and she walked away.

If you have kids who are questioning the spirit of Christmas you need to watch “The Polar Express” , it will set everyone straight!  When either of my kids ask me if I believe and I expect it to happen each year I take a moment and remember back the night I saw Santa in his sleigh with his reindeer in the horizon and I tell them that I believe because I saw him with my own two eyes.  I was one of the lucky ones, and I know I am not alone.  Christmas is about giving so this year make sure you do your share of giving to others in the Spirit of Christmas!

If you would like to track Santa this Christmas visit “Norad Track Santa” there are lots of fun things for kids to explore on this site!  Another great site for kids is NorthPole.com.  And if you want to find out if your on Santa’s Naughty or Nice list check out Santa’s Nice-o-Meter.

Happy Holiday’s Everyone !!

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Daddy’s Little Girl~

TracyIt seems that lately a lot of my male friends are either about to become a “Daddy” or just recently became one.  I melt each and every time they tell me how enormous their heart grew upon arrival of their “little girl”.  There is forever something special about the bond between a dad and his daughter.  Just as there is a special bond between a mom and her little boy, any way you look at it a parent and child experience love like no other.

I can relate to my dad friends because my daughter is a daddies little girl.  I have experienced the powerful love between a dad and his daughter with my own dad and now I get to experience it with my daughter.

When you spend as much time with your kids as I do or you work from home, everything from school seems to be addressed “To Mommy. It’s because I am the one they see the most.  Moms are usually the first to hear of everything that happens in their child’s day and unfortunately sometimes by the time dad comes in the door the moment has past or lost it’s excitement.  Similar to “I guess you had to be there”.  Kids need to know how important it is to share their excitement with daddy too.

I think dad’s get the bum deal when they miss the excitement that comes in the moment of their kids achievements, all because they are hard at work.  I was watching “Modern Family” and loved what Jay,one of the characters said, “90 percent of being a dad is just showing up”.  Isn’t that the truth!

Daddy’s hard at work while mom takes care of the bruised knee’s and endless other tasks on her list of things to do.  Mom gets most of the credit for doing everything, because they do do everything (at home) but without the dad’s who work hard all day we couldn’t do it nearly“as well”.

Every so often Daddy’s get the Grand Prize from their babes that makes their hearts melt right in their little hands!

All my new dad friends this is what you have to look forward to!!

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Thanks Scott for working so hard so that I was able to be at home and not miss out on any part of being a mom!

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Tracy Talks Aging Parents Adult Kids & Twaddle~ Edited Version !

TracyWe are here to inspire thoughts, provoke comments, create change, stimulate conversations and make our viewers look at themselves, as we have, and ask “Am I living my life authentically, with no regret, passionately?” “Am I being the change I want to create?”

My posts are based on My opinions! Tara Cronica is based on our opinions, our views, our perspective.  The way you can get involved is through the comments, if you keep them polite and respectful, otherwise your comments will be yours and only yours.  We love to be challenged, in fact it makes us giggle.  We write about what we feel passionate about which is varied among the three of us.  Suggestions are always welcome!

When someone ruffles my feathers I try to keep in mind that they don’t start out their day thinking “I am going to cause as many waves as humanly possible today.” Some of us, me at the top of the list, like to stir things up to get conversations rolling but never to intentionally be negative or hurt ones feelings.  I am not inside your head, and you’re not in mine (Thank God!) so we don’t really know what’s going to cause a riff at any given moment.

Aging Parents, Adult Kids~ I agree with Dr Joy Brown that children are obligated to have respect for their parents but I think that respect has to be reciprocated.  We pass an age where I think the playing field levels.  We become friends with our parents and their advice is still heard but perhaps not always taken.  What might be a mistake for them might not be for us.  I know it will be hard as my kids become more independent to keep my thoughts to myself because I get that as a parent we want what’s best for our kids.  In the learning years our job as parents is to guide our kids and it’s got to be difficult to stop that when they get older.  I know as a Mom my son will always be my little boy, same goes with my daughter.  As parents we take what we liked from what our parents taught us and add what we feel comfortable with and that is our ‘Parenting style’.  It’s all a guessing game really!

The motivation behind having children for me was to have little slaves serve me and clean up my house when I can remember it, not in my twilight years when they may as well be the neighbours kids because my memory has failed me, go for the brownie points early kids while we remember who did what…kidding.  I am not really keeping tabs, that will start much later when the buy in is significantly higher. hee hee.

I had children to bringing other souls into the world and have the life experience of taking care of them while watching them grow and go off on their own.  I will do my job to keep them safe and if asked will give my humble opinion.  I will not ‘expect’ anything in return when they become adults.  I hope  my kids want to spend time with me and I will do everything I can to make our time together memorable.  As the roles reverse and I become the ‘Aging Parent‘ I do know what role I want to play, I want to be involved and will take care of myself so that I can be very much a part of my grand children’s lives.  All of my grandparents were not a big part of my life for various reasons except my Nana, (Vilma Westerholm) who spent a lot of time with me.  I have written about her and I hope my kids kids feel about me, like I felt about her.  It’s a Special bond that you only get the opportunity to create for a short time in your life.

I think naturally as human beings we like to help out where and when we can because it feels good to do something for someone else.  We can say no if we are not able to.  I think if you continue to bail anyone out repeatedly whether a child/teen/adult it serves no purpose at all for their own growth in life.  You become an enabler and are no longer being a help.

If we do things because we WANT to not because we HAVE to, it truly makes the difference.  Each person has the right to say “No”.

When you expect something in return you are doing things for the wrong reasons.

I will do everything I can to help out my aging parents because I want to not because I have to, but it is a two way street.  They too need to compromise to make it work.  Same goes for my children.

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Imagine If You Can…

Bonnie Johnson's PostImagine if you can…you are a young person and you’ve fallen in love.  In every waking moment all you can think of is the person who has captured your heart.  Even your dreams are sweet scenes of passionate moments together.  Every thought is consumed by how much you want to be with them.

Imagine then, that you are lucky enough to marry this person.  You are only in your twenties and you have so much to learn about life and even about yourself.  You know passion intimately at this stage.  It is alive when you make love and also when arguments arise.  You begin to grow up together.  You have no choice.  You now have babies to love and raise together.

The next two decades have you side by side working to raise your children and carve out a comfortable life.  You both are working so hard that sometimes you forget to notice each other and then suddenly you stop what you are doing.  And you see them again like it’s the very first time.  Every cell of your being tingles with love and appreciation for this person.  The one.

Your children have moved on now.  Life slows down a little.  Together you marvel at how quickly those previous years flew by.  You slowly get reacquainted with each other and fall into comfortable patterns of routine.  You are best friends.  Words are not always necessary.  The love you share is solid.  Neither of you doubts the other in any way.

The years seem to accelerate now.  You have shared so much laughter and joy but there has been some terrible sadness too.  One of your children has passed away after a battle with cancer and it almost kills you too.  On the days you felt you couldn’t tread water any longer and you just wanted to stop moving and sink below the surface, your loves hand was under your head holding it up. You took turns then propping the other up.

Time goes on.  Many things change.  Your children’s children are now having children.  You live together in a small space because you realize it’s all you really need.  The days seem endless at times but then why does Christmas seem to come around faster every year?  Each of you has body parts that ache and some parts have even stopped working altogether.  You take turns complaining.  You are pretty sure your ailments are worse than theirs are, but you worry about them too. Your friends and relatives are dying regularly now.  It makes you stop and take stock of how far you’ve come and again, how grateful you are to have shared this journey with your love.

You have been married now for sixty eight years.  Sixty eight years!  You have been together almost everyday for all of those years.  The health of your partner has declined to the point that you cannot look after them by yourself any longer.  They are moved to a facility where doctors and nurses can care for them.  You are left alone.  They are left alone.  You each worry about the other one because you know they are so lonely and afraid.  You want to be the one to prop them up again.  You know how to be there for them better than anyone else.  The rules of the facility don’t allow you to be together though.  You both have to be equally and identically incapable before they can put you together.  When does that ever happen?

Imagine if you can…a full happy lifetime spent with your love but in the end you are not “allowed” to be together.  It’s against the rules.

It’s just not right.  Something is very wrong with our system and how we care for our elderly.

Bonniegrowing old together

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What Makes You Feel Grounded

Bonnie Johnson's PostI think it is really important to ones well-being to feel grounded.  If you do not feel grounded then you feel out of balance, stressed, harried and scattered.

When I was in my twenties and early thirties I often felt like I was ungrounded.  Life just managed to pull me in too many directions at once.  My trick to get back to feeling grounded in those days was to go and stay with my grandparents for awhile.  They always lived in out of the way quiet places and their life style was slow and calm.  It felt so good to melt in with their pace for awhile.  Now that they are both gone I have had to come up with other ways to feel grounded.

I think being grounded means that our body and mind are integrated and to accomplish that it’s important to take yourself out of your own head a bit.  Most of us live too much in our heads and lose awareness of the rest.  I’ve discovered a whole bunch of different ways to feel grounded again and here are a few of my favourites:

1.  Notice nature.  Even little things like walking on the grass barefoot, studying a spider at work in its web, watching a robin pull a worm, playing with my dog, etc.

2.  Hanging out with my best friend.  Talking or not.  Just being with someone you know so well and trust completely can be very therapeutic.

3.  Cuddling with my husband.   Feeling love wrap around you…can it get any better than that?!

4.  Meditating.  Breathing deeply and focusing on nothingness.  Can’t feel scattered when you do that.

5.  Exercising to great music.  That’s why I love going to Zumba class so much.

How about you Jacquie and Tracy?  What makes you feel grounded?

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In high school I remember being introduced to basic psychological concepts having to do with maintaining mental equilibrium and what could happen it they were to suddenly disappear.  We all intuitively accept that when we go to sit on a chair it’s going to hold us up.  We have implicit trust in the structural integrity of that chair not to let us fall.  Sure, sometimes a leg does break and we take a tumble, but we can rationalize that it was old, or a joint gave way, and so we don’t lose faith that the next time we bend to sit that chair will hold firm again.  Can you imagine what life would be like if we couldn’t trust these basic tenets?  Frightening.  We’d be second guessing every step we’d want to take or every move we’d want to make and our nerves would be shot.

So,  faith and trust ground me when I feel I’m starting to float away and lose that gravitational pull.  Faith that the people I love know my heart and understand me, and trust that most people in my life really do have the best of intentions and are honest and intrinsically good.  If I didn’t believe this then it would be like living in a vacuum.

Being grounded is not a natural state for an artist, I think.  I’m always on the move, dreaming and scheming and planning and pushing, and this sometimes leads to feeling disappointed and adrift.  Setting up the easel and painting is good way for me to refocus, but it’s ultimately the conviction of my own thoughts that gets me back on track.   Whatever method you use to eliminate distractions it’s still your own head that makes the choice between calm and confusion.   The trick is to be honest with yourself, even if you can’t be with others.  Ask yourself the hard questions and expect hard answers.  It’s the only way to grow.

TracyGreat topic Bonnie, especially because after spending 10 days with you and John I felt just that.  It’s so important to stay grounded and finding ways to do that is the key.  For a free spirited Aquarian that can sometimes be difficult.

What makes me feel most grounded is when I spent time with close friends.  I always leave feeling grounded and centered once again.  Certain people in my life just seem to have a grounding effect on me.  Life can so easily get out of balance with how busy we make our lives, so you have to take time with those who bring you back to your roots.

My kids ground me daily and show me what is most important in life, which is living in the moment and just opening your eyes to what is right in front of you!

When I help someone I also feel a sense of grounding, it makes you realize that the little things in life that you do for others makes your life feel balance just a little bit more.  Meditation is also a great way to get reconnected to the earth.  My favorite form of meditation is running while listening to inspirational music.  After a good long run I feel like my slate has been cleared.

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Empty Nest

Empty NestAugust 9th, 2007 was a very difficult day for me.  In fact, in the weeks leading up to that day I found myself in tears often.  It was the day my son stepped out of our nest, spread his wings and flew away.  He  headed off to attend a university in Florida 2900 or so miles away.  It was bittersweet really.  On the one hand I was proud and happy to see him take the next big step in his life and on the other hand I was tremendously sad that he was leaving.   Other parents I knew also had kids going off to a different town/city to go to a college or straight into a new job.  My son just happened to be going really really far.  I felt panic at the thought of not being able to jump in the car and go rescue him (or at least comfort him) if he needed it.  He was not only on the opposite coast but in a different country.

I felt broadsided by the sadness.  I had the feeling of having forgotten something wherever I went.  What shocked me the most was that I had been a full time mom for 18 years and suddenly felt like I had just been handed my pink slip.  Thank you very much but you’re not needed any longer.  Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.  Logically I knew that I was still his mom but it felt, at the time, like my purpose had been snatched from me.  This took some getting used to.

1 year, 6 months, and 22 days later I’m pretty much over the sadness…mostly.  It is true that you start to enjoy the freedom that you forgot was yours before you had children.  You also come to realize that they may be miles and miles away but they do still need you.  You are still a very important person in their lives.

I’m sharing this for three reasons.  One, I hope to remind moms and dads out there with young children to live in and cherish the moments you share with your children.  I know it’s a cliche but time really does fly by.  The second reason is to offer a bit of a “heads up” to those of you who will be going through this eventually.  I’d never been told how difficult it can be and I wish someone could have warned me.   The third reason is just to let anyone else out there experiencing a newly empty nest that it’s ok, and yes it will get easier.  You are still on the job, the hours may be a little different and the perks have changed, but you are still vitally important and needed.Bonnie

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