Midlife Awakenings

I think midlife is when the universe gently places her hands upon your shoulders, pulls you close, and whispers in your ear:

“I’m not screwing around. It’s time. All of this pretending and performing – these coping mechanisms that you’ve developed to protect yourself from feeling inadequate and getting hurt – has to go.

Your armor is preventing you from growing into your gifts. I understand that you needed these protections when you were small. I understand that you believed your armor could help you secure all of the things you needed to feel worthy of love and belonging, but you’re still searching and you’re more lost than ever.

Time is growing short. There are unexplored adventures ahead of you. You can’t live the rest of your life worried about what other people think. You were born worthy of love and belonging. Courage and daring are coursing through you. You were made to live and love with your whole heart. It’s time to show up and be seen.”

~ Brené Brown, quoted by Peter Freed in “Prime: Reflections on Time and Beauty”

Katharine Krueger ~ Journey Of Young Women

Learn to mentor girls, guide Girls Circles and offer Coming of Age

JourneyOfYoungWomen.org/Mentor-Girls

Art by Sylvia Pavlova

-this is a reblog.

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The Fallow Time

Nothing lasts forever whether it’s my favorite socks or my longed for weekends. I’ve been studying ghost towns recently. Those once booming-with-life places that either suddenly or slowly settled down to rest.

The fire truck was questionable with a flat tire, but one township still had a hundred or so people living there, enough to keep active a post office and a fire station.

I’ve noticed in the ghost towns where no one is left, all you can see is the foundation of buildings. You try to guess if it was a house, a church or a merchant. An almost impossible task. Bring a psychic, maybe?

Nature reclaims the land eventually. Grass grows up from the ground where the model-Ts drove. Where beautiful dancers might have once swayed, their long legs moving to a rhythmic beat, now a tree is growing. We can be sad, or we can say it’s another season. The ground is resting.

Fallow years, similar to crop rotation is a technique which farmers have used for centuries to keep the soil active. Overstressed earth is empty.

We use the word to talk about any unused resource, and it started as a work about land. Fallow comes from the old English word for plowing and refers to the practice of leaving fields unplowed in rotation — when a field lie fallow, the soil regains nutrients that are sucked up by over-planting. Definitions of fallow.

Should we rest?

I think we push ourselves to produce when we are empty when our reserve is low. Is it possible to find time to draw in more nutrients and wait with the bodies we have instead of wanting a perfect body?

“I am the rest between two notes which are somehow always in discord.” R.M. Rilke | Poetry & Random Thoughts 

Primal instincts drive us. In cold weather, we long for comfort and sleep. We enjoy spending more time with our family. Physical tasks seem like drudgery. Our energy is low. We crave more food and alcohol than usual. People tend toward depression. It’s seasonal. Yes, Spring is around the corner.

Winter is the season for rest.

Shit Happens. People Kick Butt

Can you embrace your life? Can you adapt when it’s necessary?

I have a friend who radically changed her life. Yeah, some bad things happened. A lot of bad. Divorce. Robbery. But she didn’t stay with the bad. She recreated her life with the opportunities that came like winning classes to a local martial arts studio.

But any one thing doesn’t change a person. We make choices. Do we handle the crisis? My friend did. She trained instead of staying home and eating ice cream. There’s a wall of trophies and a rainbow of belts displayed in her living room, and she earned every one of them along with some sore muscles and broken toes. She kicked butt.

It should be considered right to live and enjoy living. To be well, happy, and to express freedom, is to be in accord with Divine Law and Wisdom. – Ernest Holmes, The Science of Mind

My security is not my house, my car, or my friends. I’ve seen it all wiped away because of a stupid mistake, a bad judgment call, or even a difference of opinion. Families split. Friends choose sides. Fortunes are lost.

Tomorrow can be a different day with a new job with circumstances you would have never seen coming. You could be laid off your current position. A window of opportunity then opens. Where will you go?

We seem to strive for security in the form of external stability and conformity, yet the very essence of life is change. – Energy and Personal Power, Shirley G Luthman

Safety isn’t a destination. Your ability to adapt with life is your safety net. Can you pay attention to what’s happening around you? Or are you ignoring the clues?

Shit happens. People kick butt

Inside of Me

There’s somewhat of a flea inside of me that moves me. It’s jumpy and impulsive. And yet, I am afraid to give things my all. I know that with spiritual stuff it comes from my early training, my parent’s religion, what if I play with witchcraft and find out “the Devil” has led me here. My family warned me for years not to worship elephants or demons. Tarot cards are forbidden in their religion.

These taboos are in the fiber of a person raised in a belief system. For me to walk against it, and I have, takes a complete turning around and walking backward. For a time nothing feels right. It is like walking without instincts. With no sight or sound to guide you. It is a walk that is stronger than faith because with every step of the way the gods in your head are screaming your doom.

I went through a crossroad back in December 2002. My world ripped open, and my insides spilled out onto the ground. I gathered them up as well as I could. Tried to piece me together. I didn’t know if I was going to survive. Divorce is one of the most challenging times in a person’s life, and during the holidays it gets worse. Pain. Despair. Expectations. Smile and be happy. I hate holidays.

One thing I’ve learned is to do something because otherwise I will sit and analyze over a small decision. (Should I go to the store?) I used to check and recheck, examine everything when I was a Christian. I would second guess everything. Finally, I found relief from within me. My wisdom stopped me, and I realized, do it or don’t. It doesn’t matter. These were small decisions. But what about the more significant choices?

I trusted myself. I had to. There is a mighty force, as I mentioned, a tiny little flea that won’t stop jumping, which propels me. This energy is me. Like in the quote from James Joyce,

You have asked me what I would do and what I would not do. I will tell you what I will do and what I will not do. I will not serve that in which I no longer believe whether it call itself my home, my fatherland or my church: and I will try to express myself in some mode of life or art as freely as I can and as wholly as I can, using for my defence the only arms I allow myself to use — silence, exile, and cunning…

You made me confess the fears that I have. But I will tell you also what I do not fear. I do not fear to be alone or to be spurned for another or to leave whatever I have to go. And I am not afraid to make a mistake, even a great mistake, a lifelong mistake and perhaps as long as eternity too.

I can no longer serve what I don’t believe, whether it call itself my home, my church, my country.
The girl god

Elusive

It’s the word you can almost remember, the rare bird a watcher is longing to see or for some it’s a word of praise.

I have conquered tasks most of my life with my simple method. Break a job down into steps. I’ve used this method over and over, and it works. Mostly. Big projects and small projects can be broken down into steps, and it’s easy to see results, which usually inspires me to keep working.

How do you eat an elephant, is the age-old question–one bite at a time. Then there’s my back up plan, persistence. And doggone determination.

Being a type A person makes me believe if something didn’t happen, I must take action and fix it. And my conflict lies with my elusive projects which I’ve repetitively set aside time to complete.

I’m finding some of them are taking longer to chew. Are my methods broken? Or am I trying too hard? The latter is becoming my belief.

In time management, the belief seems to be that all goals can be achieved, we can make our dreams real if we apply ourselves. The current trend is to get up an hour earlier than usual. For me this would be 4:30 A.M. The realistic version of my life, the body which requires sleep, the person who has a mentally challenging job, and the pain from disabling migraines, these are challenges adding to my obstacle course. Everyone has something.

To have faith is to trust yourself to the water. When you swim you don’t grab hold of the water, because if you do you will sink and drown. Instead you relax, and float. Alan Watts

I did the caffeinated, early morning, get up one-hour earlier challenge. I spent more energy concentrating on getting up an hour before than on doing what I wanted to do.

Next, I worked on my projects during lunch breaks, a time hack I’ve read about over and over again. It’s good. Did I mention that I have a mentally challenging job? And that people come to my coworker and me often with questions?

Lately, I feel my the finish is elusive, like the word I can’t quite remember. My advice to myself, Chill out sister. Let it come.

Everything in life is elusive. Gloria Vanderbilt

Check out Londonlozi.com regarding the elusive half-collared kingfisher sighting in the picture.

Powerful

My writing is quite prolific.

It is profound. Each phase is well thought, precise, and inspiring. It moves like thunder, casting a spell over the crowd and causing awestruck gasps as everyone listens to me.

When I woke from my dream, the words had vanished. I turn off my alarm.

Someday, it will be mine! In the power of my dreams.

I am quite prolific. If only while I sleep.

The above graphic is from Steemit.com It’s a sigil or symbol for love, peace, and prosperity.

Namaste

In A Dream

It’s Saturday evening, and here I sit on my couch finally writing my post. I’d crashed on the couch earlier in a coma-like sleep. It was one of those marathon naps, and I had been out cold.

I dreamed I woke and got up, but I was still asleep. In the dream I fell asleep on the floor, only it wasn’t my place. I startled at finding myself on a floor, sleeping, and not in my house. And then I remembered that I was dreaming, and in my dream, I hugged my couch pillow tighter. Tired.

I didn’t sleep well this last week. The neighbor’s dog was noisy, there was a storm, my cat woke me howling like a banshee, and my mind started working at midnight as if I needed to accomplish all the tasks that hadn’t been checked off my list.

It’s the end of the year. And we have holidays in full uproar. The pressure is on. My nerves get a bit wrecked. But truthfully the topper, the part for me that’s the most difficult is facing my shortfalls. Am I where I want to be? Is this project what I want to do? Sometimes I have to accept the little progress I’ve made. I did as best I could. Other times I can congratulate myself for where I’m at.

Here are a few thoughts to help

  • Take positive steps
  • Is there something you want?
  • Or to do
  • Make a plan
  • Put it into steps
  • What is realistic for you
  • Forget about the feeling, of it. It will feel awkward and artificial at first, like a new pair of shoes.

When I was younger, I had a good position at a church, but I doubted myself a lot. I felt out of place. There wasn’t anyone else to do the job, so I showed up.

Be a boomerang. Come back to the same spot you want. Feel it. Live it. Be it.

Be there and eventually it will feel right.

Motivation

“I keep asking why he did that.” Yeah, I hear this a lot. I say it a lot. We are a little naive about the behavior of others.

From my eyes, I see opportunities for learning. The world in front of me is a vast library with armloads of books to grab. All of that information, every word excites me, makes me want to blab all of it to someone else, but there’s usually too much to unload onto one person. I wouldn’t dream of torturing another in that way. And each day is another chance to learn.

When I had my kids, it seemed obvious how I’d raise them. Parents do this to their kids without thinking. Athletic parents prioritize sports and fitness. Being physical is natural and encouraging this in their children is a given.

As an adult with adult children, I know I got lucky. My children and I have similar enough personalities, and my craze for teaching them didn’t warp their brains. There are some inconsistent families with parents who are baffled by their children. They wonder why their child doesn’t play football or refuses to hike all day in the mountains. As I said, I was lucky.

Don’t think I feel the same as you, even if I’m wearing the same brand of clothing. It’s the common thing, the easy slip, to assume we believe the same way.

Not everyone has the same viewpoint. We’ve had different experiences. Learned lessons the other hasn’t. The most significant differences I notice are in our motives. What excites me, learning and teaching, is nothing to most. Doesn’t register. But we’re familiar with people who work tirelessly at a singing contest or those scientists who cure fatal diseases. They are motivated more than if they were offered money.

We are all human and need a reason to wake up in the morning, but that reason might be so different than mine I can’t understand it. Ah, but there’s the beauty of life.

Stumbling Around

Fear of Failure. Atychiphobia. Anxiety.

It’s sometimes the reason old people sit in their recliner too long. And why the snappiness gets lost from their step. Not on their sixtieth birthday or even in their seventy-fifth year. Just one day it’s easier not to try. Not push. Effort and achievement cause expectations.

The unknown is difficult to face. The young stare it down. Every job interview, each new friend, the new 10-page application they fill out for renting the house, new schools, and moving. But somewhere after the home and the kids and the third new job, life settles. It changes less. By the time the kids grow up, life has rolled on—around and over us.

As we age, we expect to know more. Be smarter. Shouldn’t we be advising our children? We feel we shouldn’t need to improve ourselves anymore. We did that in our twenties.

This is a new time to live. And I refuse to rust, whether it’s by sitting in a recliner or refusing to learn a new language.

We can do this. Don’t turn off your curiosity.

Is it possible, that some of us are afraid of diving, of jumping into the deep end? What’s the worst that could happen if we lived?

How To Conquer The Fear of Failure

Lost Sheep

It’s not the Bible you cherish. Or the goodness of Jesus. Love, joy, peace. Seriously? I was naive. It was never those things. I kept referring back to those traits saying, ‘You’re missing the path.’

And now I genuinely am bewildered. What makes you follow the radicals? How can the redeemed follow a rapist? An adulterer? And what is the siren’s call?

I am not questioning as a judge. Honestly, it baffles me, but human behavior always confuses me. I was taught to be pure, strong, wise, and hard working.

My parents taught me how to learn. If I needed information, I gathered books or knowledge. But what I’m seeing from their actions and the actions of their peers is equivalent to a herd of buffalo stampeding. All learning be damned.

I see Christianity equaling power. Voting power. And powerful men that are growing up in the Republican Party are using the evangelical Christians as their sword. I am saddened by this because there was a day when Christians were known for love and love was a power. They stood proud of their accomplishments. Today is a sad day for Christians, for they have lost their truth.