Song of the Day: Pompeii

My husband sat me down and filled our home with this today.

Beautiful.

Tears.

Afterwards in Living Colour!

First of all, I was extremely flattered to be approached by Second Firsts (www.secondfirsts.com) to be part of the 30 Days of Hope project. Christina Rasmussen is a speaker, therapist and coach who, in addition to her own blog, writes for the likes of Huffington Post and was nominated as the Leading Mom in Business by StartupNation. This project is part of the launch of her first book, Second Firsts: Live, Laugh, and Love Again. She asked several “inspirational” men and women to, over the course of 30 days, share a piece of their story with her followers. So, here’s mine! Feels like I’m stepping out of a safe, shady box to have my face and voice and words projected through video – it was a practice in vulnerability! Good thing I feel safe with ya’ll… Thanks for your constant and amazing support blog world!

Lighten Up, Love Mom.

I love to laugh. I love to have a good time. I don’t like dwelling on the negative. Yet, I often still lose myself to the tendency of living with a heavy heart. When my mom was around she would say “stop thinking so much”, which in my mind sounded like “be more ignorant”. I always fought her on it; “Mom, you don’t get it.  There’s so much negative stuff going on out there, and I’ve got to conquer it”.

As I get older and deal with more and more heavy experiences, I’m starting to get it. My mom had experienced every bit of hurt and pain and unhealthiness in the world that I had, and maybe more. She wasn’t telling me to stifle my intelligence; she was telling me to choose the light. The world and all that is in it will exist, no matter how much I think about its heaviness. The only thing to reduce heaviness, and to change the world for that matter, is to figure out how to live in the place where light lives.

Simple, but not. Especially for those of us who have experienced the painfully unpredictable (and are prone to heavy thinking).

As I enter year four, I am at a place of rebuilding the depth of my self. It involves reconstructing passions, interests, physical health, deep relationships, and even requires becoming excited about future plans – yikes. It asks me to consider how my life might become full, even though her’s is over. It is in the middle of this fight that I so quickly shut the blinds on the sunshine that irritates my senses. It is this fight that leaves me reluctant to give in to good. And this is where my mom would chime in and say, “Lighten up.”.

There comes a point at which it is largely up to us to direct our lives, by venturing to figure out what it will take to rewire our outlook. This may take more wisdom than our own to achieve, maybe even professional wisdom.

I dared myself today to intentionally choose a good thought over a dark or hopeless one. The opportunity arose before I was even finished writing this, reminding me how much easier said than done this all is. But, if I can do it just once today I have won a battle in the war.

I’d like to leave you with this video about the power of letting your mind accept the positive in the midst of darkness. This TEDX talk features a very brilliant friend of mine who has a whole lot of wisdom to share.

Here’s to heavy thinkers, trying to make friends with the light.

TEDX The Power of Positive News

In My Hometown

I have been doing a lot of packing boxes, planning, saying goodbye, unpacking boxes, painting and arranging. I have not, however, been doing a lot of blogging.

Here I am, back in my sunny hometown, in my husband’s condo that I haven’t quite learned to call “ours” yet, trying to let it sink in that life has significantly changed yet again!

I have been in a strange space the last month or so – I have been anxious. The anxiety phases come and go in waves, and perhaps always will to some degree, but this was rounding the corner into depression. I blame clouds, rain and a lack of blogging to some degree. I also believe that your body knows more than your mind at times. The anxiety was getting my attention and informing my brain that it was time to go home. Time to soak in the love of those I know best. Time for the comfort of the old and familiar. In other words, the place that once felt overwhelming is the place that is now offering security and freedom. I need those that knew her; those that know me better than I do. I can’t do it alone. The choice to go home was made more certain by the fact that everything allowing it to be possible presented itself to us without our even trying.

This move has been big for us. It meant leaving a beautiful place, amazing people and the ocean. It meant a two-day road trip through the mountains (beautiful). It meant Adam starting a new job again. It meant a huge lifestyle change (did I mention I filled up with gas about once a month on the island?). It meant gaining many friends and family. It meant entering back into the “real world” where the absence of my mom is felt more directly. It meant a salad of amazing, tough, precious things.

My first few days following the move were characterized by the aforementioned anxiety, but weight is slowly being peeled from my shoulders and I am realizing that I am safe – that I really am home even though the city and I are both different than two years ago. Though it was heartache-y to leave the island and our incredible people there, it feels right and good to be here.

Thank you, island friends, for being everything I needed the past couple years and still do. Thank you, home faces, for making this feel like the place we should be. Adam and I have constantly been in conversation about how lucky we are to be surrounded by such people wherever we are. We feel incredibly spoiled by the richness of our friendships.

So, cue Ty Pennington… “MOVE. THAT. BUS!!”

Just kidding.

Hopefully this marks the return to a more frequent blogging habit, thanks for sticking with me!