Posts tagged inner peace
Claiming Her Power

When she finally accepted she could not collect her self-esteem by being perfect in the eyes of the world around her...

she fell.


The quest to find her missing worth had led her on a fast paced journey far far away from herself.

Her solution had always been to find someone outside of herself to give her the accolades she so desired, to find her worthy, valuable, lovable, and to fill up her bucket of self esteem with their praises. She searched for value from everywhere, because she was certain it would be enough to fill the hole within her.

Only after years of trying she came to see it didn't work that way. Finding meaning from outside of herself by doing things "right" was like trying to hit a moving target. She was never quite able to grasp it. What she heard from others was never enough to fill the great void within. She grew weary from the constant trying, and super sensitive to even the slightest of criticisms.

Certain that someone, somewhere would see her value if she just did things a little better, faster, smarter, she kept up the facade. For way too many years. She wanted the world to think she had it all together. But that was a lie, and deep down she knew it, and the weight of that knowledge was eating away at her happiness from the inside.

As she slowly realized she was coming undone, she fought even harder to hang on, as giving up was not an option for someone like her.

So she continued to search outside of herself for the answers, not knowing then that she was wandering even further from the person she had once been.

She stopped believing she was lovable. She stopped believing in herself. She stopped trusting that she had the answers. And that made her weak from the inside out. It gave rise to a voice so mean it drowned out the whispers of her spirit.

She looked for love in all the wrong places.

If only she had known there was one only place to start. Her own heart.

She needed to begin to love herself, embrace both the dark and the light parts of her, to begin healing.

It took the hard fall to the bottom of the well of self-loathing, and a large letting go/cracking open, to let the light of worth back in.

In the quiet darkness at the bottom of that deep well she was forced to turn inward. There was no one else to seek praise from in that darkness. She had to face herself. She had to look into her own heart. Did she even like herself anymore?

A quiet voice arose from the darkness.

You are worthy. You are loved. Everything is going to be okay.

The soft words of comfort began to warm her soul from the inside.

She understood then that failure was an option. It was how we learned. It was how we grew. It didn't mean the end, it was instead a new beginning.

She let go of the heaviest of baggage she had been carrying with her, the need to be perfect, the need to please, the need to constantly pick up her pace.

It didn't happen overnight, but she slowed things down, she turned inward, and she began to find herself, a few small pieces at a time. This time around she vowed to stop looking outside of herself for the answers, instead to trust her inner knowing for the next right step.

It was there she found her power. It had been right there all along. At the heart of herself.



It is a sparkly new day. The last day of my mini-break. Maybe the first day I haven't felt sick since my two week hiatus started, thanks to the antibiotics I finally called in for.

In my head I had a list of things I wanted to accomplish as I embraced two weeks of "rest" from teaching classes. In the reality of Christmas and New Year's, the list stayed in my head as necessary sleep and rest, and holiday commitments slowly ate up the time. The good news is I now have a whole new year ahead to "accomplish" that internal list.

I used to get mad at myself for allowing time to get away from me, now I keep my plans loose in hopes that something spontaneous, or nothing at all with come forth. Vowing to live in the present means not following the predetermined path (or to do list) inside my head and it often leads me to places I wasn't intending to go. Sometimes those prove to be the most enjoyable learning experiences and at the end of the day allow me to sigh in appreciation and content.

I have always been a serious homebody--especially in the winter. I could stay snowed in all winter as long as I had family and wine. Playing cards, watching cheesy hallmark movies, crafting, taking naps with my grand baby, making dinner, never leaving the house for an entire weekend = heaven to me.

Sometimes I wonder if I have gone too far in the opposite direction and am too loosely planned, but then I think about the "old" me, the busy me, and I realize I never want to be her again. I don't know if it is a natural progression as I age, or just my new go with the flow philosophy, but I've noticed that too many things on the calendar overwhelm me really fast. It used to be the framework that kept me afloat and many people still expect I am going to return from my hiatus to become that person again.

In my heart, I know I am not.

I sometimes wonder, have I become lazy? Selfish? A bad friend?

Then I realize that just maybe I have finally dialed into the balance that works for me, the one that keeps me at calm and peace and allows me to respond to the unexpected situations in life rather than react like I used to. I am cautious about over committing myself and then not being able to live in the present moment as it unfolds with all its unplanned glory. I really don't like rushing or scrambling anymore. Slow and steady wins the race for me.

Balance. I once read a book that said creative and passionate people don't need balance; balance is bad. Boring. Uninspiring. That passion/talent/creativity exist in the highs and lows, and we should never simply strive for balance.

I thought about that for a long while, I even tested their theory and discovered that balance is where I thrive.

I understand achieving the perfect balance is an individual thing. No one can tell me what my prescription for wellness is, even I find myself reevaluating daily to make sure I walk that delicate line. And on the flip side, I cannot tell anyone else what their recipe for wellness is.

I can tell you without hesitation that you have all the answers you need, deep inside. And the challenge will always be in learning to listen.

Don't Wanna Be Just Like You

There are life changing moments and there are life defining moments.

My life defining moment came at the lowest point of my life. From the person I was most worried about. Not sure what set me off on this particular day, but I hit my rock bottom.

Sad, lonely, depressed, stuck, anxious, scared.....I was sitting in our basement miserable in my puddle of tears. No one else was home. I think I chose this day to crack as I knew it was too scary to share this breakdown with anyone anyway. I just needed to let it all out, face my darkness and start crawling out of the hole I had dug for myself. I was tired of trying so hard to be perfect and seeing the reminders every day of how much I had failed at exactly that.

In the throes of my sobbing from that deep deep part of me, I heard a noise behind me. It was Mitch. He was suddenly there. Oh boy. It was too late to stop the flow, the release-- there was no way I would be able to collect myself and pretend that everything was okay.

He asked: What's wrong mom? Are you okay? He gave me a hug which just made me cry more.

"No"-- was all I could manage. No I thought, how can I be okay when the world feels like it is crashing around me. Everything I worked so hard to control is crashing and burning right in front of me. Even you. Especially you. I am scared for you, worried for you, lost in how to reach out to you.  Tired of trying and failing and trying and failing. At being a mother. At being a career woman. At being happy. At being me.

I have no idea what I am doing. Fresh tears tore through my gut. My heart. My whole self.

I think I said something to the effect of: "I will be okay."

But I didn't feel okay. It was a lie at that moment. I didn't feel like it would be okay at that moment. Or ever. I was sorry. I was sorry for being sorry. I was lost. I was unhappy. My stomach hurt 24/7 and I wasn't sleeping well either. I was just plain miserable. And ready for a change.

But what came out of my mouth was a mom thing:  "I will be okay I just need to let this all out."

"Sorry for what?" he queried.

"Everything. Everything I ever did wrong." I said.

Everything I have screwed up with you. With Alec. With Sadie. I am so sorry I thought.

"Mom, I am fine. I will be fine. You and dad are the best people I know. I want to be just like you when I grow up." And there were nicer words that followed but I cannot remember them. I could not hear them.

His first words struck a chord deep down in my misery.

What? Did he really just say what I think he said?

I stopped crying. And I began to breathe again.

From this seemingly unlikely source, the person I felt most disconnected from, and was most worried about--came the exact words I needed to hear to begin my journey forward. Back to me.

What I wasn't quite yet ready to admit to my son at that moment was this:

I am a joke. I am 50 years old and I have no idea what I am doing or how to really be me. One thing I know for sure is you do not want to be just like me.

You want to be just like YOU.

You are more than enough just the way are. No changes needed --just find and keep your center. It is the heart of you and all that is good. It is all you ever need.

Stay true to you. Don't let the world dumb you down, keep you safe, or stop your dreams. Live as YOU and the rest of your life will fall into place. Don't do things to please others, which is not to say don't be nice to others or show compassion and thoughtfulness, that is important too.

Just do what you know to be right for you --do not lose touch with your center and what feels right, though this is the secret no one tells us as kids. You are born knowing what is right for you.

We learn it someone else's way, through someone else's filter when we are young. And that is where the trouble starts, the losing our own center part.

My way is just that --my way.

And that means that your way is just that also ---your way.

Both are right. And both are occasionally wrong.

Both are enough. Both are important. Both are necessary.

Son of mine, you are: right, enough, important, necessary and LOVED.