The Truth about Love…

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I walked nervously into the room to meet him for the very first time. I had a feeling about who he may be. It was that feeling that had been missing for a very long time. I was dangerously close to giving up, that it may never cross my path again, but there he was sitting waiting for me. It felt surreal from the instant we spoke, sharing freely who we were and what lead us to this moment. I had finally stepped in without fear, without doubt, without hesitation, my mended heart was ready to love again. I felt it.

I looked into his eyes and felt a sense of calm, like coming home after a long time away. It felt right, just as everyone who has ever loved has felt, when it was.

We all have our feeling hurt, our hearts bruised or even broken into tiny little shards of glass never to be the same again. Maybe the broken pieces are not meant to be put back in place, for we are never the same after heart break. When we accept our cracks, it shows us that we can still love the imperfect, the once broken. Who we are doesn’t fade with cracks, we just need to find someone willing to fill them with love and understanding. That is pure raw unfiltered love.

So when your heart is shattered on the ground, gently kneel down and gather the pieces to keep them safe, collect your thoughts and summon up the courage to rebuild what you once knew.

When you cross paths with that person, maybe even your person, and you can feel an emotional storm brewing in the distance. Take a deep breath and allow the storm to blow through you. Allow the ominous clouds of emotion to form around you, you have no control of the wind that creates them, so let the storm begin…enveloping you in it.

Passionate Love is a force meant to be much more powerful than you have ever imagined. It’s love coming for you.

The only question is…are you brave enough to surrender to it?

Ed Sheeran says it beautifully…

Photograph
Ed Sheeran
Loving can hurt, loving can hurt sometimes
But it’s the only thing that I know
When it gets hard, you know it can get hard sometimes
It is the only thing that makes us feel alive
We keep this love in a photograph
We made these memories for ourselves
Where our eyes are never closing
Hearts are never broken
And time’s forever frozen still
So you can keep me
Inside the pocket of your ripped jeans
Holding me closer ’til our eyes meet
You won’t ever be alone, wait for me to come home
Loving can heal, loving can mend your soul
And it’s the only thing that I know, know
I swear it will get easier,
Remember that with every piece of you
Hm, and it’s the only thing we take with us when we die
Hm, we keep this love in this photograph
We made these memories for ourselves
Where our eyes are never closing
Hearts were never broken
And time’s forever frozen still
So you can keep me
Inside the pocket of your ripped jeans
Holding me closer ’til our eyes meet
You won’t ever be alone
And if you hurt me
That’s okay baby, only words bleed
Inside these pages you just hold me
And I won’t ever let you go
Wait for me to come home
Wait for me to come home
Wait for me to come home
Wait for me to come home
You can fit me
Inside the necklace you got when you were sixteen
Next to your heartbeat where I should be
Keep it deep within your soul
And if you hurt me
Well, that’s okay baby, only words bleed
Inside these pages you just hold me
And I won’t ever let you go
When I’m away, I will remember how you kissed me
Under the lamppost back on Sixth street
Hearing you whisper through the phone,
“Wait for me to come home.”
Songwriters: Ed Sheeran / Johnny Mcdaid
Photograph lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
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Beating for Love ~

 

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When did I stop jumping into love with my eyes wide open, fearlessly filled with passion? Feeling the wind beneath my wings, sweeping me away has become a distant memory. I struggle to extend my arms to reach for his, as he walks toward me with his heart on his sleeve. He is not afraid of love. He too has fought for love and lost but survived.

When did a leap of faith become a fear? When did my heart stop beating for love?

Our heart is not meant to be guarded and held safely behind the walls of our chest. If hurt and pain have brought me here, I have no choice but to put my heart in the hand of the devil and ask my angels for forgiveness. Forgiveness for not opening my heart or scaling my walls in search of freedom, for the pure purpose of love.

I want to care not, where the path will lead, with whom I will walk it and for how long the journey will last. For the details of this are not what’s important, but only that you are willing.

Why do I shy away from the hand that reaches out to touch my soul? When did my heart stop beating for love? When did my heart stop beating for love? When did my heart stop beating for love?

I shall surrender to myself and allow my heart to start beating to the rhythm of love. Love is the meaning of life itself. Love is meant to feed our minds and free our souls. Love is meant to be.

Life flows through our veins allowing us to feel our existence beyond our human flesh. We were created to love. We were created in love. We are love.

Age and Wisdom have brought me here…ready to love again.

Tracy

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Come Back Home ~

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10489785_10152160567902032_2869315922428771213_nI believe we all require time on our own when a relationship comes to an end, regardless of how long our chosen partner was a part of our life. Just like we need time on our own to grieve the loss of a loved one. We need to ‘come back home’ so to speak. I always took time to come back home in my younger years. Once, I literally came back home and slept on my parents living room floor to rebalance my life that was spiralling out of control because of what I thought was love. My intention was to be there for a couple of months, which turned into a year. We laugh about it now and say I came home for retraining. Without the love, support and guidance of my parents, I would not have come through that time in my life with the confidence they gave me by being there. I didn’t need to always have a man by my side. I wanted one, but the right one and that was the lesson I learned from them. That lesson has stayed with me today.

It took two years to even entertain the idea of adding a man back into my world when my marriage ended. Even though I was placed softly back into the world of dating, I fumbled and faltered more often than not. At times I felt like I was in a dream running in slow motion, trying to gain my footing but couldn’t no matter how hard I tried. I wasn’t ready. I didn’t know what I wanted or who I had become so how could I possibly put out what I needed or wanted from another human being.

Life get much more complicated when you find yourself solo in the later parts of life. Responsibility of family and work makes it more difficult to make an attempt to walk with someone down a path, that now feels foreign and unfamiliar.

We all question whether we are worthy of love at some point in our lives. I know I have many times. If you take time to rebalance and sift through your inner thoughts, self doubts and fears, your dreams, desires and feelings will come alive again. We don’t all take time for ourselves which makes each union slightly off balance until we clear our mind, body and soul of what was left behind. If we don’t eliminate the fear of not being enough from our core, we can’t be enough for anyone, including ourselves.

Life is meant to be shared, we all matter in the world in which we live. We are all connected and need to treat one another with the love and respect we all deserve! Honesty and integrity are character traits we choose, just as we choose to smile each day and accept those who cross our path with open arms and a warm heart.

Time is always on our side, if you value the work you need to do within in. There is no rush when it comes to love. What matters most is that we learn to love ourselves before we try to love another.

We live, we learn, we love, we matter…every single one of us!

~Tracy

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Svaha S.S ~ What is Nirvana?

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IMG_0066Enlightened Monk Thich Nhat Hanh gives his insight on Nirvana ~ ‘the cessation of all suffering, the removal of wrong perceptions. Wrong perceptions is the cause of fear, violence and hatred. Removal of wrong perceptions is the only way to peace.

Nirvana is the removal of ideas that serve the base of misunderstanding and suffering.

We fear death because of our perception of it. There is no death there is no birth. We can not become nothing, there is a transformation and continuation…we do not die, we continue.

Non-fear is the true foundation of great happiness.

Nirvana is the capacity of removing wrong notions, wrong perceptions which is the practise of freedom. Nirvana can be translated as freedom, freedom from views. In Buddhism all views are wrong views. When you get in touch with reality you no longer have views you have wisdom you have a direct encounter with reality and that is no longer called views.’

Svaha ~

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Appreciate What You Have ~

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IMG_4459My glass is always half full! I consciously look for the lesson in unfavourable circumstances and can usually pop my head above the swirling chaotic clouds to see the sun-shining bright in the distance. If I do get swayed to the dark side I don’t stay long. I allow a few streams of tears to flow and move forward. My girlfriend/therapist Tannia and I have a one day limit to wallow in any unpleasantness and then we “suck it up buttercup” laugh like hyenas in heat and take a step forward. I am grateful for so many things in my life

Starting today…

~ Appreciate what you have ~ Focusing on what you have instead of what you don’t will immediately bless you with gratitude.

~ Focus on what matters ~ Health matters. Your body is a gift, we are all miracles of life.

~ Decide what your purpose in life is and go for it ~ What makes you most happy? If you are not doing it, ask yourself why? If you have fears, face them! Step out of your comfort zone and see how exhilarating it can be. “Fear is the Thief of Dreams” ~ Gandhi.

~ Take on challenges that scare you ~ Nothing we experience in life is a waste of time. We live and learn with each life experience growing and unfolding along the way. Change is good, healthy even, if you step back and view it from a positive perspective. When a door opens step through it and see where it takes you!

~ Find balance ~ If you work too much, learn to play. Take time for yourself and give your time to things that make your heart race, and cork pop!

~ Love your body enough to take care of it ~ You’re beautiful! Embrace the skin your in! You can scar it, stretch it, burn it, mark it, tan it, and peel it, you are always in it, so you might as well take care of it and learn to love it! If you don’t love it, why should anyone else.

~ Treat others the way you want to be treated ~ Be conscious of your attitude and your actions. Karma has a way of finding those who don’t play fair. Always remember ‘this too will pass’ good or bad. Life is a circle and what goes around comes around…eventually!

~ Set a good example ~ If you want to empower others in your life, you need to start living the most empowered version of yourself first. You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream. Dream BIG! Believe in what you want so much that it has no choice but to become your reality. And don’t ever compare yourself to anyone else, stay focused on your own journey and leave footprints behind.

“Be the change that you wish to see in the world!” ~ Mahatma Gandhi 

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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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Fear is the Thief of Dreams…Gandhi ~


I was talking to a man-friend of mine about living life with no fear. We both agreed there is no other way to live. He believes “fear usually lives in things unfinished or never done.” I think timing can also play a key role in dreams or goals unfinished or never done. We need to stay tapped into our passion no matter how little time we have for it, keeping our dreams alive!

“Don’t dream your life, but live your dream” ~ Mark Twain

Do you ever wonder why you do certain things? Why do you connect so easily with some but not others? Why did you take Spanish out of the blue? Do you ever wonder how something you’re doing now is going to relate to your future? It’s all about connecting the dots. I often wonder what is the purpose of me writing? Its not for the huge paycheck. Here’s why ~

“Writing is the only thing that, when I do it, I don’t feel I should be doing something else” ~ Gloria Steinem.

It’s about passion. I am passionate about love and life and write in hopes of keeping my passion for it alive. It’s all about sharing my passion and hopefully inspiring those around me while doing so. When you do what you’re passionate about you find what you are seeking in life, changing the energy around you. You can’t inspire others if you are full of regret because of things unfinished or never done. Even if your passion is a hobby, do it for the simple pleasure of doing it.

My life with no fear is pretty simple ~ live each moment open and honest sharing what life has to offer with those around me. I get inspiration from nature, in particular water. I can sit for hours in awe of its vast magnificence. It both calms and excites me. It has such power and peacefulness. Turbulent on top yet tranquil underneath where there is an entirely different world waiting to be explored if we just dip below its surface without fear. Dip below the surface of life and see what it has to offer. We often fear the unknown, yet our world is surround by it. “Fear is the thief of dreams” ~ Gandhi.

Music also inspires and stimulates my creative thoughts. Music opens me. It sends me back to where I’ve been and takes me to where I dream of being. It stirs my soul, balances my being and tunes my emotion.

Unique human beings also inspire me. I admire those who live outside of their comfort zone, very few have the courage to do so. I have only written about a few but there are many. I crave those who make me think and feel emotions that frighten me. I have the desire to write when emotions are stirred deep inside. Then is when I feel truly alive.

So if I were to be living my dream with no fear I would be gazing into a body of water with music in the air writing passionately about life and love, in the company of a man who stirs all of my emotions. Living your dream doesn’t have to be complicated. It’s about making memories and each moment count. It’s not about what you have, it’s about what you do with your passion.

When I saw the movie Romancing the Stone with Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner I wanted to be her. A romance novelist on an adventure, in the end she finds her own love and sails away living her dream. I want my life to be filled with adventure, love and passion worthy of inspiring me to write. I want to write about real romance, not harlequin romance, real romantic adventure.

That’s MY Dream!

Life is what you make it. If you do what you love I think everything else just happens. Follow your passion.  Make your dreams a reality…jump!

I must be in tune with the Universe because this was the Postcard from Gusto this glorious morning…

Click to enlarge postcard….

 

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Just Let Go ~

 

Sometimes you just need to just let go with both hands! You don’t need to turn your back and walk away, just loosen your grip and let it slip, whatever ‘it’ is. It might be a job that isn’t inspiring you, a new romance that can’t quite find its way, a relationship that doesn’t feel right anymore but you can’t put your finger on why, or an answer to a question that keeps eluding you. No matter what it is if you give it back to the Universe and surrender I guarantee you will feel free and untangled. Clear your mind and let go of any thoughts that relate to what you are questioning. Set them free. You can only do so much to make things happen in life. When you feel you have done all you can it’s time to just let go.

After you let go you can look at what you set free with a clearer understanding. It will start to make more sense once you create some distance. Your mind can subconsciously process what it needs to without all the internal dialog interrupting constantly. It’s the same as when you can’t remember a name so you put it out of your mind and when you least expect it the name comes rushing back making you blurt it out loud. Have some faith in the magic of the Universes power. Sometimes things happen for reasons unclear to us. We need time to see why we didn’t walk down the path we thought was ours.

Trust your instincts! Do what feels right for you. You might be questioned from those standing on the side lines but again loosen your grip and let them slip! No one knows what’s best for you better than YOU! Staying true to yourself is all that matters in the end.

We get influenced by our fear of not having or doing what others perceive is right for us. We fear losing what we ‘had’ more than we have the insight to see what is ahead. ‘What-ifs‘ start to drift through our thoughts like the boogie man whispering…“careful there may not be another.” Don’t listen! What ever you let go of there will always be another ready to take its place whether it be a job, romance, sailboat, car, motorcycle, airplane ect. However, there is not another you so make you happy and all else will follow. In the end it either wasn’t meant to be or what you let go of will find its way back to you when the time is right.

There is always another romantic notion to ponder, job to explore, relationship to build or any other idea you let go of. When you have the courage to let go of something that doesn’t make you feel good or true to yourself, you are empowered by your action.

Just let go…and be  ~

P.S..as you all know I receive Postcards from Gusto. I couldn’t NOT share this mornings with you…funny right? Check it out! Timing is truly everything ~


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Unresolved Romance…

Is it me or has EVERYONE had an unresolved romance at some point in their lives? I’ve had a couple. One was a marathon that lasted years and the other was over before it started that left me wondering what happened.

These romances can be viewed two different ways; one with my hopeless romantic mind that sweeps me away to my happy place in the clouds, and the other, reality based that comes crashing down right in-front of me missing my head by centimetres screamingHE’S FROM URANUS NOT FROM MARS LET IT GO!” Okay not ALL men are from Uranus but I’ve personally met a few to back that statement up. My problem, I still want to believe in romance and love. Reality can bite me!

Now that I’ve matured (HA), sorted out my unresolved romances, gained wisdom (Double HA), don’t believe everything I hear even if it’s a really great compliment (depends on the compliment), I can jump in with both feet with no fear of someone coming back to haunt me. I’ve learned to take everything slower. (Okay that’s such a load of crap I can’t believe I actually wrote that!)

When you meet someone who knocks you off your feet its hard to ignore. If you meet someone who knocks you off your feet and you have an unresolved romance, you’re not seeing the whole picture clearly. If you can’t jump in without looking back, you have an unresolved romance on your hands.

What I do know from my own experience is that if you don’t resolve a romance before you dip your toe into another one…it gets messy. Unresolved romance can hover over you like a black cloud if you don’t sort it out.

It’s important to start fresh and don’t bring old romances into new ones. Tidy up your house, tie up loose ends so you can jump in with both feet and NOT look back.

Live in the moment, ignore your ego, no regret, take chances, trust, open your heart and have no expectations. When you do resolve romance, it allows you to move forward to explore the possibilities standing right in front of you. You simply can’t have a plan when it comes to romance, but you need to enter into it feeling free and good to go!

 

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Love & Relationships ~

Relationships show us that every human being is wired differently! Sometimes REALLY differently. I’ve been blessed with relationships in my past; some have taught me what I wanted and others have taught me what I don’t…the basic point of having one in my opinion. Every now and then you get one that changes the way you breathe! It makes ever breath soar. It creates a mood inside each cell of your body that screams “I’M ALIVE”! It makes you want to be a better you having them by your side. Those relationships usually only come around once in our lives, if were lucky we get another one that appears out of the blue that makes our world a better place.

I’ve learned that honesty from the start is the only way to enter into a relationship. My grandmother’s advice was “start out the way you mean to end”. Honesty sometimes comes with a price. Not everyone wants honesty or can handle the truth as Jack Nicholson said to Tom Cruise in the movie ‘A Few Good Men’! Not everyone knows how to process the truth. There is so much dishonesty and adultery in relationships these days that it’s hard to decipher who is telling the truth. I trust until proven otherwise but that too occasionally give your heart a sting that’s hard to forget. We only really know what’s going on in our minds.

I’ve been stung more than once.  It’s not something anyone gets used to…it hurts. We all know the feeling when someone ends a relationship with us. It doesn’t matter if we have been with a partner for 10 years or 6 months it’s still painful. A pang in our heart is like no other feeling. A mild electric sensation gently washes over our entire body, knowing that what we had is ending right before us. Sometimes it’s about communication and things work out. Sometimes there is nothing we can say or do; it is out of our control.

We all think about what it would be like to have someone we love deeply by our side forever. I am not sure I believe in forever anymore. I desperately want to. Sad but true. I want a forever man who won’t give up or walk away because of fear or any other reason. But even me the hopeless romantic that I am has doubt some days about love, as we all do.

When we first meet everything is fresh and alive. Words are spoken from the heart. We feel exhilarated by the thought of the other person being in our presence. We can’t wait to see or hear from them. Anticipation of our next meeting grows. We fall in like which is the base of every important relationship. We wittingly get caught up in the bliss. The fall from like to love is reflected in the eyes of new lovers. There truly is no greater experience than strong, passionate, intimate love for another.

Love is meant to challenge our mind, body and soul. We have to want love more than anything else to make it last. Love is a journey like no other. True love has no boundaries.

Love knows no fear.

 

 

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Are You Comfortable Naked!

I want the truth. Are you comfortable with your naked body? More specifically, are you comfortable with your naked body with your partner in the room? I know every woman who is reading this has questions such as; “what kind of lighting are we talkin about here, is it day/night/candle…is he naked…or just me…do I have a tan…am I my ideal weight or do you mean RIGHT now?” STOP!

Okay specifically…”Are you comfortable being naked right now in daylight with the blinds open southern exposure at noon with your husband/boyfriend/lover (pick one!) standing or lying naked right beside you no covers no tan white skin completely natural having just ate lunch?” Okay minus the having just ate lunch, I’ll give ya that one. I know what you’re thinking, I’ve been buck naked in this scenario and that’s why I’m writing about it. You’ll never know for sure! (insert cheeky grin here) I’ll enjoy the speculation immensely…I don’t kiss and tell 🙂

For some women undressing in front of the one they love, is so horrific poking a sharp stick in their eye would be less painful! It’s some women’s worst fear to drop their dress, let alone the panties and bra that are under it, in bright light! Add the starring eyes of the one they desire, nightmare complete! I guarantee your partner is in awe at the spontaneity and confidence you ooze for doing it in the first place, not any bits you’re unhappy with.

If we make this man someone you only lust after, apparently the pain is less severe. Sweeeeet! Kidding! I find that strange, weird even that psychologically we are more comfortable stripping down with a man we don’t know. The man we love, adores us for who we are, not just our physical appearance. The man we lust is there for approximately 3 minutes…okay maybe 4…5 tops, before you see the back of his head exit stage right! lol

I know we don’t really care what the man we lust really thinks because we just want their body and mechanics for a simply pleasure! Shouldn’t we be more comfortable with the man we love because we know he will make sure we are simply pleasured! 🙂

I suppose our partners should feel good knowing we care what they think, but if they knew we held back because of our own insecurities, I’m sure they wouldn’t understand! Men desire women curves and flesh regardless of their size or shape. I don’t think there is a man out there who would turn down the woman they love if she was standing naked in front of him! It’s about love and trust.

Aging is hard on our bodies but our minds hopefully out weigh any insecurities we might have allowed to attach to our physique over the years! We know better than to be so critical, it’s a slippery slope! And if we put this kind of pressure on ourselves aren’t we putting it on our partner as well? We are our own worst enemy in this scenario ladies! Men see us as we should, from the inside out! For me, aging is about accepting who I am right now…and now…and now regardless of my size, shape or wrinkle count. If someone can’t love me for who I am, then the hell with them!

Embrace who you are ladies, naked in bright light! Natural beauty is the sexiest, ask any man! We’ve touched on The Naked Truth once before here on Tara Cronica…Tag Team Sunday: The Naked Truth, still feel the same ladies?

Okay I gotta fly, I am getting a spray tan today by a complete stranger, naked of course, just in case I find myself lying naked in daylight with the blinds open southern exposure at noon with my ______ lying right beside me naked, no covers, completely natural, if you don’t count the tan! Baby steps ladies…baby steps! Now go get nekid and rock your mans world…cause he wants to rock yours too!

 

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Friday the 13th ~

A Friday occurring on the 13th day of any month is considered to be a day of bad luck in English speaking cultures around the globe.  We have had three this year!  However in Greece and Spain,  Tuesday the 13th takes the same role.  The fear of Friday the 13th is called paraskavedekatriaphobiaParaskevidekatriaphobia is a specialized form of triskaidekaphobia, a phobia of the number thirteen.  Say that three times really quick!

Today some people will be so paralyzed with fear they won’t get out of bed.  Others will refuse to fly, buy property, or even sign a contract.  All because it’s Friday the 13th, and they’re freaked out.  It’s been estimated that  in the U.S $800 – $900 million is lost in business on this day because people are not themselves.  Add the hysteria related to the H1N1 and we are basically at a stand still!  I have a Silpada Jewelry Party tonight so I will let you know if I feel the curse when it comes to sales!

Symptoms can range from mild anxiety to full-blown panic attacks.  The latter may cause people to reshuffle schedules or miss an entire day’s work.  I am aware of the day but have never changed anything because of it.  Have you?

When I was doing research for this there was endless amounts of statistics and reasons why everyone is freaked out.  Here’s the short answer, you get back what you put out.  So by thinking something bad or negative is going to happen to you today, because of age old superstitions, it probably will.  When we generate negative energy around us it attracts negative energy.  Think about what is positive in your life and that positive thought is sent out in the Universe.  That thought creates a positive energy and it changes the way you think.  Trust me it works!  At least try it!

LEGEND HAS IT: If 13 people sit down to dinner together, one will die within the year. The Turks so disliked the number 13 that it was practically expunged from their vocabulary. There are 13 witches in a coven. Many cities do not have a 13th Street or a 13th Avenue.  Many buildings don’t have a 13th floor.  If you have 13 letters in your name, you will have the devil’s luck (Jack the Ripper, Charles Manson, Jeffrey Dahmer, Theodore Bundy and Albert De Salvo all have 13 letters in their names).  Tracy Westerholm…15 phew-ff !!  If you wouldn’t mind emailing me if your name has 13 letters I’d appreciate it !!  Just good to know, but not to worry if you do, I’m not really buying it BONNIE JOHNSON! LMAO! (maiden name is the same, lol) I still love you!

On a positive note~ The date is also well-known in the motorcycle community.  Since 1981, motorcycle enthusiasts and vendors gather every Friday the 13th in Port Dover, Ontario, Canada. This tradition started on November 13, 1981 by Chris Simons as a gathering of approximately 25 friends.  The event has grown substantially, with an estimated 100,000 people attending in August 2004, as well as music bands, vendors, a bike show, etc.  That’s more like it!!

If you are a triskaidekaphobe or a paraskevidekatriaphobia you need to think positive thoughts and you will change the negative energy to positive energy.  Really simple!  Think negative, attract negative.  Pretty easy for those of us who don’t share this phobia.  Those of you who are struck with fear today need to regain control of your thoughts.  Concentrate on the positive!!  You can do it !! I know you can !!

Tracy signiture

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Does Size Really Matter?

TracyOkay, get your mind out of the gutter. It’s way too early to be talking about that…I had another draft scheduled this morning but Jacquie’s post ‘Yup, Talking Body Image Again‘ hit a chord with me because I, too, can relate.  In the big picture, does size really matter?

I tuned into X-Weighted with Paul Plakas this morning and it really moved me.  Let me explain.  This beautiful overweight women Sharla signed up to be on TV to help motivate herself to lose weight.  She was 234lbs to start and her goal was to ride her bike 50k while towing her daughter Toni who suffers from Cerebral Palsy.  Sharla could not be successful at her current weight and fitness level.

When the layers were stripped off  why she had not been successful before (the part I love the most)  it was because she was hiding behind her child’s disability and feared failure.  To see this women come to that conclusion herself brought tears to my eyes.  She started out with the support of her friend and, because of her friend’s own fears, her friend quit and she had to go it alone.  She reached her goal and lost 50 lbs and looked fabulous!!  She is not a small women by designers standards, but very average in real standards, so I could relate.

She empowered herself by changing her mind set;  it was not about losing the weight but about losing the fear of failure.  When she no longer feared failure she was successful. And that’s the message I got out of the show.  It didn’t matter what size she was- I didn’t pay attention to that part- what mattered was that she was fulfilling herself and by doing that she found happiness within.  Her friend had fears of her own that she was now aware of and could start stripping the layers away herself in order to reach toward her own goals.

I was thin my entire life, almost too thin at times looking like a bobble head, eating popcorn for dinner, fitting into size 5 jeans.  After my first child my thyroid shut down (Hypothyroid).  I could run 30k a week and still not lose an ounce.  I was fat according to my standard and hid behind baggy shirts and tights.  I know what it does to your self esteem when you have a weight issue because I have been there and I couldn’t do a thing about it.  Having been so lean all my life it was one of the most difficult things to come to terms with.  But when put into perspective I was not dealing with cancer and I was alive.  I learned over the years as I dealt with my thyroid that those around me didn’t notice the weight because they saw me.  They loved me for me.  That’s a great feeling!  It was a great learning process.  I remember my doctor’s receptionist Angela saying to me as I struggled with regulating my weight “Tracy it doesn’t matter what size you are, what matters is that you are eating healthy and exercising”.  That stayed with me.  She was right, I was doing everything I could to be healthy and I eventually I regulated my thyroid through my Naturopathic doctor.  In the big picture size definitely doesn’t matter as long as you are living a healthy lifestyle.

Carri & Mike We are all different body shapes and sizes and as long as you are not neglecting your health and not afraid of failure you can do anything!

I have watched my girlfriend Carri work toward a goal for the past two years.  Rain or shine she put her shoes on and did the work required to meet her goal.  She never gave up, she made a decision to not fail.  Carri is happy within herself which can only benefit her gorgeous family, especially Mike ~ lol!  It wasn’t about the weight.  She looked great before.  It was about setting a goal and reaching it by not being afraid to fail.  Way to go, Carri, you look incredible and I admire you for sticking to a goal and not being afraid to fail!  Tracy signiture

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911 Remembered

911 on set of Stargate September 11th 2001, a day that everyone can remember where they were and what they were doing.  I was in my trailer on set of the TV Series Stargate.  I was waiting for my Mom who was going to look after my baby girl while I did my part on the show.  When my Mom arrived she told me that a plane hit the World Trade Center.  I thought she meant a little Cessna plane.  She explained what she heard on the radio and we immediately went into the studio where the entire cast and crew stood silently gawking at the television.  Not one person could speak, we just stood and watched.  And then it happened, the second plane crashed into tower two right before our eyes, live.  The room was full of disbelief.  The only historical moment that even came close to this was the Kennedy assassination.

911 flood lights Whether or not your fears are large or small you can face them by changing how you think when the fear starts to surface.  When you stay in the moment you are able to deal with what is right in front of you.  Just as all the Brave Men and Women of 911 did on that frightening day 8 years ago.  You can never prepare yourself for a ‘Sept 11 th’ but you can celebrate the lives of those who had fear on that day and faced it head on to help complete strangers.

I decided right then I needed to be close to my family and living my life with no regret.  It put life in perspective for many of us.  We walked around after that day never really knowing when or if it would ever happen again.  Fear was in the mind of many.  Fear is hard to overcome, unless you are really willing to face it head on.  How do you even begin to face a fear so large?  You start small.  You move forward in life and celebrate the moments you are proud of.  You celebrate the people you are proud of.  You celebrate each and every moment that your life has to offer.

Heroes of 911

Today I will reflect back on the day that changed the way I live my life and I hope you will too.  I will celebrate and remember the Brave Heroes who were there helping others and while doing that they lost their lives.

honor tattoo for a sister lost in 911

Tracy signiture

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What Are You So Afraid Of?

fear_poster_med

You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.  You must do the thing which you think you cannot do.   Eleanor Roosevelt

Let us not look back in anger or forward in fear, but around in awareness.   James Thurber

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.   Marianne Williamson

Ultimately we know deeply that the other side of every fear is a freedom.    Marilyn Ferguson

What exactly is fear?  It is a negative emotion that stems from the “unknown”.  Fear comes in many forms.  There are the common fears; spiders, snakes, sharks, water, the dark, etc. Then there are the less obvious fears such as the fear of commitment or the fear of failure.  The fears we feel for all of these always sparks our escape and avoidance reflex.  So what are some of your fears and have you been able to work past them and even shed them?

Bonnie Johnson's Post

Bonnie Braves it Out~

I actually used to be afraid of birds at one time.  Birds! Can you believe that?  It started when my little brother used to take his pet budgie and throw it under my covers while I slept.  The poor thing would freak out and bite of course and I would wake up with bird feathers flapping in my face and scratchy beak bites.  I was afraid of flapping bird wings for years after.  I finally just forced myself to get close and observe birds for awhile and before long the fear just melted away.  I love birds now.

My fears today are a little more complex but I will try and conquer them in the same way.  I’ll examine them closely, learn all I can about them.  Just stare them down.  It is a little harder to do with fears like the fear of failure and the fear of being inadequate but not impossible.  I’ll just break them down bit by bit and tackle them by reminding myself that all that really matters is to reach for a good feeling thought.  I did that with the birds.  As I observed birds, I would think about how pretty their feathers were or how amazing their song sounded.

So when the fear of failure grips me again I’ll force myself to focus on a positive thought like “I know I’ll learn something from this experience regardless of it’s outcome.”  Another trick I’ve learned is to bring my thoughts back to the “now”.   For example, I’ll ask myself if all is well in this moment.  It always is.  Here’s to finding freedom by facing, fighting and conquering our fears!

Tracy

Tracy Faces hers ~

Bonnie this is an excellent topic.  I have had fears over the years but as I continue to grow I realize that it is very true that on the other side of fear is freedom.  I think there is no other way to release your fears than by facing them head on.  Fear is being afraid of the unknown.  We are assuming the unknown is scary.  What a waste if it isn’t.

I was afraid as a child to be the last one up in the house out of fear of hearing something my sleeping parents didn’t.  It’s 12:26 am and I am the only one up!

I was afraid to sleep over night at  friends houses for fear that something would happen to my family while I was gone.  I know that’s intense for a little girl and I don’t know where it came from but it was a huge fear.  This fear made me miss out on a ton of fun times like Outdoor School, Brownie Camp and slumber parties so it prevented me from living and making great memories!

Having children can make fear creep into our lives, it certainly did mine.  Making sure they are safe, protected and looked after.  But again as we face these fears they disappear and empower us.  I have learned that there is nothing you should fear except fear itself.  Fear nothing and you will continue to grow and move in the direction you are meant to go.  Fear changes your path and prolongs the inevitable.  Truth however makes everything possible.  What about you Jake, are you a fraidie pants?

jacquie janzen yee

Jacquie dips her toe in the water ~

Generally speaking, I’m a pretty brave person, but I do have an irrational fear of large things in water like bridge supports, icebergs, oil tankers and stuff like that.  And if barnacles are visible on said objects, I’d pass out cold like those fainting goats Cheryl was telling me about last night!  I can cross a bridge or travel by ship no problem, just don’t make me imagine …I can’t even think it without getting the heebie jeebies…. falling in the water near any of these things!

Luckily, my fear doesn’t run my life, and as long as I don’t go canoeing in English Bay or dog paddling in the Arctic I’ll get by just fine.

I’m with you, Bonnie, regarding the fear of failure that most of us have to deal with somehow.  Strangely related is the fear of success.  Both of these fears are about the future and have little to do with the reality of the ‘now’ unless you let them take control.  I have to tell myself to relax and enjoy my time in the present and not to worry about outcomes all the time.  It’s a hard thing to do.  And I don’t mean you have to be glib about life and thoughtless.  Not at all.   Sometimes my fear of being mediocre prevents me from, say, finishing a painting.   That’s when I have to remember the great feeling of seeing a completed concept and it sets me right again.

That Marianne Williamson quote (above) has been stuck on my cork board for years and I look at it often.  In fact, the flip side of my art cards has the rest of it…

As we are liberated from our own fears, our presence automatically liberates others.

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What Can Everyone Learn from Gay Pride?

TracyTracy’s Take~

Pride Parade is today in Vancouver!

I think everyone can learn from those who blaze the trails before us.  Gay Pride has shown me that with your voice however small it may seem, mountains can be moved.

When you live your life proud and authentic you are miles ahead of those who judge.  Being Gay has not been an easy path for many.  Those who are Proud of being Gay make me smile. I have never understood how someones sexual preference is anyone elses business but the two who love one another.  Love is love whether it’s experienced with a man or a women.

gaypride

Think of the world for a moment without those who are willing to stand up for the rights of human beings.  These individuals do this knowing they will be judged by many.  They have chosen a lifestyle that is not understood or accepted STILL by many.  I find it heart breaking that there are young souls in the world who are afraid to confide in their families for fear of being shunned and not loved.  No soul should have to endure such conflict just to live their life how they feel drawn to.

I celebrate along side of all the Gays, lesbians, Bisexuals and Transgenders who are living truthfully and are setting examples for those who are not yet ready for that journey.  I embrace each soul I meet with open arms and an open mind.  I accept and don’t judge how each one chooses to live their life.  After all it is our life to live!  We can all learn from one another.  What have you learned from Gay Pride Ladies?

jacquieJacquie’s 2 cents~

This is a bit more difficult for me to answer because I don’t have a lot of first hand experience dealing with prejudice of this sort.  I don’t remember my gay friends in high school being treated any differently from the rest of us and I certainly didn’t see anything hurtful going on.  Was I naive back then and just thought all was okay?  Probably.  It does make me sad to think of what some might have gone through and that they needed more support than was offered at the time.

To me the parade allows young people of every sexual orientations to  see that they aren’t alone and they do have a community that accepts them as they are.  To be honest, I sometimes think it goes a bit too far and becomes more of an exhibition than necessary, but that can happen at a typical Mardi Gras parade as well. Call me a prude, but I don’t think you need to bare your body in order to show your pride.  I think I learn more about the actual issues from watching American politics than I do from the parade,  but it is an excellent platform for many people who would otherwise feel they aren’t given the chance to be heard.  I totally support that.  If the parade can enlighten even a handful of people then it’s a success.  Cheers to everyone participating and attending this year!

Bonnie Johnson's Post

Bonnie weighs in~

I agree that those trail blazers have indeed moved mountains and should always be remembered for their dedication and perseverance.  I believe that is part of what the LGBT Pride Parades are all about as well as a time to celebrate diversity.  The parades send a message for change to those in our societies that still cannot accept all others.  Social acceptance of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender beings is slowly coming but there are still 80 countries in the world where homosexuality is illegal and in 9 of those countries it is punishable by death!

During the holocaust  gay men were marked with a pink triangle and lesbian women were marked with a black triangle for “antisocial” behavior,  rounded up and sent to concentration camps.  In 1969 when police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York, the patrons fought back against a government-sponsored system that persecuted homosexuals, and the ensuing riot  has become the defining event that marked the start of the gay rights movement in the United States and around the world.

One of my hopes for the near future is that all communities will accept that all sexual orientation and gender identities have sacred worth and will one day be fully included, celebrated, and affirmed with their chosen faith traditions.  To me, this is what the Pride Parades all over the world hope to teach.

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Obligations and Expectations.

TracyObligations and expectations are something everyone accumulates over time.  They can sneak up on you if you’re not careful.  They start to layer themselves on us until we start to feel like our lives are being directed by everyone but us.  Family obligations are one thing, such as celebrations and doing things for other family members because we want to, but it’s another story when acquaintances start to guilt you into doing what they think is something you should do, because they feel obligated to.  People do this when they don’t know how to say no.

With great friendships and true love there are no obligations or expectations.  Fear is full of obligations.  Fear of not fitting in.  Fear of what people will think if you say “no”.  Fear of being a minority.  Fear of not being accepted if you don’t play along with the politics.  Fear of being judged.  Fear is a horrible emotion that leads you further away from who you truly are.  Fear nothing and you will make the right decisions.  Without fear you can live your life truthfully and authentically.  The next time someone puts their obligations onto you ask yourself  ” Is this really something I want to do?” If the answer is no then chances are it is an obligation trying to be put on you.

When I first started to see this happening in my life I was unsure of how to deal with it.  I finally just said “no”.  I stood back and looked at the person who was trying,  I will repeat trying, to put their obligations on to me.  I flat out refused to accept it.  People who over book themselves are really pro at putting their obligations on others.  If their doing it, so should you.  Soon their family and life gets overtaken by what they feel expected to do until they no longer have control over their own lives.  Family dinners get cancelled, the time they used to spend for themselves is gone because of the obligations they have accepted throughout the years.  It’s a Dominos Effect.

People in general these days are busier than ever, and there isn’t enough time in the day for everything they’re obligated to do.  In my opinion we need to get back to the basics and quit accepting more things to do.  We need to have our family be our priority and spend more quality time together.  We need to stop overbooking our kids and ourselves and start living our lives for us.

I am not certain whether it was an age thing with me in being able to say “no” or that I really just have my time and my family as a priority.  I think it’s a combination of both.  If we don’t start making changes, our family time will become a scheduled event marked on our calender along with everything else.  For many this is already the norm, but it’s never too late to reevaluate if your time is well spent or balanced.  Life is too short to have it filled with obligations we didn’t feel good about to begin with.

That’s just my opinion!  Comments are always Welcome !

Tracy

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Do you have a Voice?

Your VoiceSince Bonnie, Jacquie and I started out on this journey of finding lyrical beauty in everyday happenings, something has happened to me.  I have always had a voice that I was proud of, but I think now I have developed a much louder one.

There is a difference between a loud voice and a loud mouth.  Lets get that straight right from the start.  I’m not a fan of anyone who has a loud mouth.  I think there is a time and place for everyone to use their God given voice but there is no time or place for a loud mouth.

I like to think I use my voice for others who perhaps haven’t become aware of theirs yet.  The fear of being  judged or singled out has never prevented me from voicing my opinion.  It is NEVER a good idea to make a decision based on fear!  Our kids need to see that by using our voices (not mouths) we can create positive change.  I shall speak loud and clear for them until they develop a voice of their own.

I’ve noticed lately that I’ve needed my voice more than usual.  A full moon, perhaps.   I’ve never been one to sit and watch others blaze a trail,  preferring to be at the front of the group leading with a huge machete, doing work, representing as best I can.

It is so important for the women and men of this world to start to speak up for themselves.  If you haven’t yet, you need to.  Change is inspired by exercising our voice.  Speak up, be passionate and express yourself with integrity.  By instigating change we can start a movement in a positive direction that will effect the planet as we all know it.  What I have learned in my time spent here is that truly with every action there is a reaction.

I want to know what you’ve done to cause a reaction in your circle and if it’s inspiring we’ll post it on Tara Cronica.  We can make a difference, and when we bond together and use our voices as a group, (in a southern drawl)  well, there’s nothing we can’t do.  It’s time, ladies and gentlemen, for each and everyone of us to use the beautiful, strong, loud, articulate voices that we hear so clearly in our heads.

“A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

~Margaret Mead

Tracy

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