Posts

And Still I Celebrate – Wishes Fulfilled

And Still I Celebrate – Wishes Fulfilled

And so we celebrate the ups and downs, and twists and turns. The wishes fulfilled and the ones on the way. We celebrate the bad times because they prepare us for the good.  And through it all, I hope you dance in the sunlight.

I look back on the this year and I celebrate my losses and gains. The beginning of April, I lost my job and thought it was the worst thing that could happen at the moment. I had been working temp for three years and was finally getting hired permanent. I was getting the raise and benefits, I needed, and would be able to work flexible hours. I had filled out all the paperwork and took the drug test and was confident everything would work out. Then, I got an email saying I failed the drug test. How could this be? I had never taken an illegal drug in my life and the only meds I was on was allergy medicine; I did disclose this on the form. So, instead of celebrating my new “security” of having a permanent job, benefits, and amazing pay, I was packing up my desk and turning in my badge. For weeks, I wondered what happened and how could it all go wrong.  How could something I worked and planned so hard for just fall apart? How could I fix it?

I took my daughter out of daycare and became a full-time stay-at-home mom. I began to enjoy not getting up early, being stuck in traffic for up to three hours a day, and being stuck sitting in a cubicle for eight hours. Instead, I spent hours outside playing in the grass with my daughter.  We blew bubbles, went on great adventures, in the backyard, and had picnics under the trees. We went to museums, parks, and took multiple trips.  She was able to experience her first international trip and visit family she had never met. 

Yes, I did worry about money and how I would survive being and stay-at-home mom. I was so used to working and providing for her, and the thought of not having a steady paycheck scared me. But, I decided to put myself and her first. To go against everything I was thought was security and live in the moment. I decided to take a leap into the unknown, and you know what, it all worked out. 

As the days went by, I started realizing my dreams, the ones I really desired, were coming true. I wanted to take my daughter out of daycare and spend more time with her. I want to watch her grow up and enjoy her childhood. I wanted to not be stuck in traffic, three hours a day, and now, I was home waking up when I wanted.  I wished to travel more, and we were blessed to go on four vacations and my daughter got her first stamp on her passport.

For so long, I was concentrating on the things I thought I would be missing by not having a job,  I couldn’t see all the beautiful things I gained – time, love, peace, family, and life. I couldn’t see my wishes being granted. No, it hasn’t been perfect.  I’ve had breakdowns, doubts, and wished for things to be different, because of fear.  But, through it all, I learned to dance and celebrate the things I have, the bad times, and the good. I’ve learned to not be so caught up on how we want our wishes to manifest, because it may not be the pretty picture we’ve envisioned. It may involve losing everything you thought mattered to realize you’ve gained what’s really important. You may cry, scream, ask why, and doubt everything you’ve done, but in the stillness and loneliness, you will realize, it’s all a part of gaining everything you wished for. And while you wait for your wishes to manifest, I hope you dance, because it is when we dance and celebrate, we celebrate all we have now, and welcome all that is to come.

The Only Forever We have is Now

The only forever we have is now, so, let go of the things that do not better your now. The beautiful and not so beautiful thing about life is the ability to let go.  Letting go of old beliefs, patterns, thoughts, people, and, sometimes, dreams.   Some people can let go with ease.  They do not form an attachment to things or people that binds them.  They see the beauty in being in the moment and letting go when the moment is over.  They understand things and people are not meant to stay forever and there comes a time when it’s time to part ways.  Other people, not so much.  Some people cling to things, people, or memories in hope that things will never change.  They hate the idea of change, having to learn new ways, or starting over.

 I am here to say, I am/was one of those people.  I hate starting over, probably because I’ve been forced to start over so many times in the last 10 years.  I wasn’t always like this.  I use to embrace the idea of change with open arms.  I looked forward to new and exciting things.  I didn’t hold on to people but instead let them flow in and out my life easily.   I always looked forward to new possibilities.  As time went by, life happened and I fell into a depression and it was then that I began to hate change.  I hit a point in my life where I would finally get stability then it would be taken away, leaving me with nothing. It was a constant cycle, every two years.  During this time, I held on to people, beliefs, and patterns that were not serving my highest good.  They were not helping me develop as a person or contributing to my mental and emotional well-being.  I held on to these things because I wanted to feel I had some control on my life, even in the mist of all the chaos going on around.  I want to feel I had some stability even though life is completely unstable.  

In reality, there is no guarantee of stability in life.  Life does not promise smooth sailing with no storms or waves.  Life does not give us forever, only now, because now is the only forever we have.  This was a hard lesson for me to learn and it’s an even harder lesson for me to constantly and actively live.  Each day, I am learning to let go of thing that are not meant to be in my future, or my now. Whether it’s people, things, thoughts, or patterns.  I’m learning to part with the things I don’t won’t but hold on to for security.  I’m learning to detach from having the person and live in the feeling and moment.  I’m allowing people, things, and beliefs to flow easily through my life and only keeping what I need at the moment.  I learning to embrace change and the unknown while releasing fear and judgement.  The most important thing, I’m learning, is to allow life to give me what I need and take from me what I don’t and not try to control it.  I’m embracing the forever of now.

 

Happy New Day!!

While many people are celebrating the new year, I am celebrating a new day.   A new day to work on making all my dreams, wishes, and desires come true.

Why spend months or days waiting for a new year to come to start working on your dreams?

Every day, you wake up, is an opportunity to start new and  make changes that will impact your life, for the better.  So in reality, every day is your “new year”.

Take this opportunity to treat yourself kinder, love yourself more, and get to know who you really are.  Remember the things you love to do and do them.  Each day, do something that makes you happy.  This could be listening to your favorite song, watching your favorite show, talking a picture, a long walk, or treating yourself to a wonderful dessert.

Also, learn to say “NO” more.  No to spending time with people who drain your energy.  No to lending money to irresponsible people.  No to putting other’s needs before your own.  In return, you will be saying “YES” to you.  Yes to the things you like, the life you want, and the people you love.  Yes to building the relationships you value.  Yes to creating the life that makes you feel safe, secure, and comfortable.  Yes to YOU!

So, HAPPY NEW DAY!  I look forward to spending more new days with you.

 

 

The Dominican Republic No One Wants To Talk About

 

“How was your trip to the DR,” is the question I keep getting from family and friends.  Do I tell them what they want to hear or do I tell them what I really experienced?

A couple of weeks ago, I had the opportunity to visit the Dominican Republic, for a retreat.  The host home, where I stayed, was beautiful.  The architecture and landscaping were amazing.  The view was breathtaking. After a couple of days of being housebound, our group decided to go to the beach, which was over an hour away.  Riding through the streets and outskirts of the city was a real eye opener and reality check.

Back story – Before I left, my co-worker and I were discussing my trip.  He is Haitian and warned me about the treatment of Haitians and darker skinned people in the DR. He also told me of how unsafe it was for women to be there.  I knew of the conflict between the Haitians and Dominicans, but I did not know it exactly how serious it really is. 

While in the city, you can’t help but notice the lack of people with darker skin.  When you did see them, they were poorly looking, standing on the corner trying to sell fruits, vegetables, or anything to make money.  As we traveled through the countryside, that’s where you saw the darker skin people.  The villages were so remote and the houses were shacks, dilapidated buildings, and huts.  I saw children walking barefoot through garbage filled yards, playing in unsafe places.  Hiding in the corner of the doorway, you saw the elderly with the look of despair on their faces.  But, it was not just the elderly who had this look, it was the young also.  My heart broke for them them.

I cannot lie, the beaches are beautiful, the tropical drinks are damn good, and the weather was amazing. Even when it rained it was relaxing and calming.  That is one expect from one of the Caribbean’s perfect vacation spots.  The brochures and movies would have you believe that it is the most welcoming and safest place on earth.  If you are on a resort, that may be true, but outside the resort is another world.

One of the ladies, in the group, was Haitian and while on the beach, men kept approaching her and asking where she was from, and not in a friendly tone.  It got to the point where she was actually scared to go to the bathroom.  At one point she almost said Haiti, but she caught herself. I and a couple of the ladies, in our group, were actually scared for her safety.

If you’ve been keeping up with world news, you know that Dominicans do not want Haitians in their country. Thousands of Haitians, born in Dominican Republic have been sent back to Haiti, killed, or denied basic rights, such as schooling, work, and healthcare.  Many Haitians have also been killed or disappeared.  It’s not just the treatment of Haitians, but the treatment and separation of darker skin Dominicans is also apparent.  My family and friends were shocked to hear about the struggles of darker skin people and the treatment of visitors, Haitians, and women, in the DR.

My trip and experience in the DR was mine and mine alone.  I can’t speak for anyone but myself.  I did enjoy my time in the DR but I also have a very different view of the country from what I’ve been feed from the media and brochures.

 

Late Night Thoughts…

Why are people so quick to define others by their imperfections, addictions, or flaws?  Are people less worthy because they are not perfect?  Is someone less of a person because they don’t excel in all areas of life?

A person can be a great teacher, musician, writer, or friend and still have internal battles to fight. You could have known this person all of your life and never known the struggles he faced, every day. This person could have helped you when no one else would but never once had the courage to ask for help herself.  As long as they never revealed their struggles, they were considered great, worthy, or a hero.

The thing with some people,  it’s easier to help others than to help themselves.   It’s easier to help others face their fears than to fight the monster under their own bed. Sometimes, being there for someone else is what keeping them from breaking.

People spend way too much time focusing on what is wrong instead of celebrating the good.  Having an addiction, imperfection, or flaw does not make anyone any less of a person.  It doesn’t make them less real. It does not negate all the good they have done.   They are still worthy of friendship, love, and life.  And to someone who needs it, they are still a hero.

 

This is so me

image