Saturday, May 5, 2018

I'm Imperfect and I'm doing my best

I’m imperfect. Terribly flawed. Scuffed up on the edges and I even have been painted over a few times. I am a very expansive canvas still being painted upon by the greatest of masters.
Our inner work is ongoing. The canvas stretched further and painted upon every moment; never to be completed until death takes us and we begin the next great journey.

I’m imperfect. Mostly when people expect me to be perfect. My life has never been about making myself fit into someone else’s idea of who I’m supposed to be. I resist and push back against allowing someone’s own required inner work and projections define me. Not to be aggressive or uncaring but to be centered and grounded in my own work with myself. I know myself. I know my patterns. I know my vices. I know my strengths and I know my weaknesses. I find that when I try to meet someone’s expectations I only injure myself. I’m not meant to live any life other than my own. So I often don’t measure up to others ideas of who a woman in 2018 should be. I’m intense. I’m often stubborn. I’m incredibly sensitive and get my feelings hurt easy. I love all underdogs. I get into trouble because I feel compelled to share my truth. I’m imperfect based on others ideas of fitting in with the larger community. “Don’t be political. Don’t be to loud. Don’t draw attention unless it makes others feel good about themselves and their beliefs. Share only those feelings that meet the expectations of the larger community or be banished.” This is my road. It has been so since grade school.

I’m imperfect. We all are imperfect and so it would be silly to try and measure up to anything another expects or demands. It’s wasteful to pretend to be anything that we are not. Quality over quantity is my measure. My body tells me when I’ve tried to hard and slipped into need. Quality of life vs quantity of external affection. Love over fear.
I’m imperfect;in a constant and continued process of refinement. This is my life. This is the point. 

Saturday, March 24, 2018

March For Lives 2018 - For the True Patriots

I find it incredibly sad that multiple countries around the world are supporting the March For Lives today and that many Americans (mostly Republicans) refuse to support this important issue. My prayers of gratitude flow out to all.

It is pathetic, in my hearts feeling, that my fellow Americans who are mostly Republicans do not see or are completely unwilling to see the truth of this movement and what is going on with gun violence in our country. The rest of the world can see and support these kids and the movement BUT Americans won't? Disgraceful.

And the disgusting spin that Fox (again, not a news channel but an official Trump propaganda channel and machine) vomits out about the kids being manipulated by gun law advocates (which is ironic because that is what these kids are now) or used as pawns.That is SO fucking dismissive.

Making this a 2nd Amendment issue makes me sick. Republican Americans, who do not support addressing/revising gun laws, cling to the parroted (Fox) argument about losing their guns. I CALL B.S.! How convenient this pathetic argument is. An argument meant to STOP healthy, positive and appropriate change. Wake up people. NO ONE WANTS TO TAKE AWAY YOUR PRECIOUS RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS. No one wants your guns. And if you need a firearm that can kill on rapid fire.....well, it makes no sense and, in my hearts feeling, is a big reflection of a lack of confidence and a fear based existence. That is one sad way to live.

So take a breath and open your eyes and heart. This is about living in modern times. I don't see our founding fathers walking around. In this modern time, where our children are being killed at school, there is simply no excuse or manipulation of the fact that gun laws need to step into our modern world. Current and very outdated gun laws must be looked at through modern eyes because we don't live in the past. We live in the NOW. And right now, guns and gun owners who have lost their minds are killing innocent people.

I'm tired of hearing all of the selfish, blinded and supposed "patriotic" B.S. by people that I thought were intelligent and caring. Your rapid fire gun is a non-essential to your safety. Can't you see that? Or do you just want to keep arguing for the sake of ....well....nothing. Keep your rifles and handguns. Be happy that you live in a country where you can have those. Be proud that you live in a country that cares about its children. Be proud that people can rise up and say, "ENOUGH" Thank God most of us see this and are walking in the streets right now declaring it.

The days of the NRA running this country are over. The modern times are here.....WE THE PEOPLE who love this country (not our own personal weapons) can makes choices that are appropriate to being alive in America in 2018. Here is your reality check. These kids will be voting soon and so these guns are bye-bye whether you like it or not. Why? Because its time. These kids, along with many of us, will also be voting out all Republican congressman and senators who were too afraid to step up on this. Count on it. It's coming.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

2018: My Two Unhealthy Patterns To Let Go

For me, 2018 is going to be a year of correcting two unhealthy patterns that I have recently identified. I see that in order to move forward in my beautiful life here in Arizona, I absolutely have to let these go. 

These are behavioral patterns that I have slowly, almost undetectably until the past few weeks of inquiry, developed over the past decade.  Patterns that I believe I chose to take on as some form as self-protection, self-preservation or maybe some form of self-soothing. These two behaviors may seem very silly or even insignificant. However, I can clearly see how over time they have greatly impacted my life, my spirit, my health and my relationships. So here they are:

Behavior #1: Isolating

I used to go out to dinner and lunch with friends all the time.  Social gatherings were my specialty. I was involved in communities and groups. I can no longer say that that is true. 
After my decade long illness, that part of me never came back.  Not really.  During that time I began to slowly isolate. I don’t think I even really noticed it.  I slowly began dropping things off my commitment list.  Most especially over the past four years. This even included friends.   I stopped planning lunches. I ceased attending events. I stopped saying “yes” to dinners and other outings even when I felt physically healthy enough to attend, which in honestly was not that often since until last year I was still quite ill. The longer my physical illness continued the more things I dropped off and the deeper the isolation went. 

Nowadays, I don’t go out.  I don’t make plans.  I don’t talk on the phone and I rarely text.  I hardly even private message on social media, and when I do it can take days for me to respond.
I used to create rituals and facilitate spiritual circles.  I no longer do this either.  I was really good at this too.  I enjoyed it.  It fed me.

My pattern of isolating needs to end.  Isolating is not a normal human behavior and does not promote vitality and health and so I will be working to change this in 2018. I need relationships.  People need people.  This is a simple fact of life.  I am stepping back into the human relationship. 

Pattern #2: Judgment

I have noticed that over the past year I have dropped into a whole lot of negative judgment of myself and of others.  I have spent some time lately feeling into how judging makes me feel and I don’t like it.  My heart constricts. It closes. It aches.  Judging makes me feel separate and alone.  Furthermore, it supports my pattern of isolating.  It needs to end. Heck, I even judge people on television! "That reporters eyebrows are like caterpillars!!"  I mean come on!  That's just mean.  I'm not mean.

My personal goal is to navigate a healthy opinion instead of dropping into judgment in 2018. Loving kindness is where my heart really is.  I'm staying in that.  

Those of you who know me personally know that I tend to cut the crap and get straight to the point.  Clarity is essential.  I’m clear about all of this.  No more judgment about myself or others.  A healthy opinion, sure but judgment - no.  No more isolating either.  So call me!

Bring on 2018. 

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Stress and The Dragon

Navigating stress can be challenging. Stress is like a vicious monster trying to devour your happiness, hope and heart. It raises its dragon-like head and sends searing flames out attempting to burn and destroy all that you are happy about, hopeful for and that your heart holds in tender love. Stress is a killer. A thief of life. Stress is not your friend. 

So how to battle the dragon?  Maybe battling isn't what we need. I tried that for years and it doesn't work. There is no armor strong enough nor sword sturdy enough to "win".  Maybe, just maybe, we need to help the dragon sleep. But how?  

Surrender. Surrender the stress. See it for what it is. A thief in your life. Decide to turn away from the dragons flames and believe that your life is in very good hands. Holy hands. 

I believe in the divine plan. Always have. Even when I've raised a sword against it. That core belief has served me well. Do I fall? Oh yes. I certainly do. In the end, though, when I surrender to the divine plan and let holy hands guide me, I find peace. I surrender. I retain my happiness. I rest in hope. I feel the beating of my heart and I smile. All is well. The dragon sleeps deeply. I think she smiles a bit too. 

Navigating stress is challenging but it doesn't have to impact your health. It doesn't have to steal your happiness, your hope or hurt your heart. Just my feelings after recently navigating a very large dragon who now sleeps like a baby and kind of resembles one. 

Sunday, September 10, 2017

I'm Pretty Sure I'm Not Nuts

I was just thinking. I bet those who have seen all the changes in my life and beliefs, most especially over the past decade must think I'm either nuts or can't commit. I'm laughing. I get it. I really do!!  It's been a pretty intense period of my life. I feel the most important and impactful. 10 years of the most deep exploration I've ever experienced. I've been brave even when I was scared to death. 

I see the evolution. I feel the personal expansion. I have walked a very long and winding path and it has taken me through some intense, scary and magnificently beautiful places- mostly within. Soul to soul. 

I promise I'm not nuts. I am quite sure that committing is not an issue for me either. It's all pretty simple. I'm flexible. I bend and sway like an old tree. I allow myself to remain open to all possibilities. I believe what feels true to me. 

Since birth I've been a catholic. I've been a non-believer. I was a Jew for many years. I practiced Wicca. I was deeply involved in Goddess Spirituality. In 2010 THE CROSS began calling to me.  Everywhere I looked there he was.  Mother Mary was there too.  Gently gesturing me forward. I did not understand what was happening but I allowed. I trusted. Then I studied Gnostic Christianity. Finally, and at long last I can say without question I'm a Christian. How do I know? It was a long journey and no matter the belief system I followed, even if only for a moment in my long life, I know Jesus was with me. I just know it in my heart. He was guiding me along knowing how curious I am. Patiently waiting for me to willingly and loving see him. He knew how to slowly bring me close. The power is undeniable. 

Always know that change is ok. You don't have to BE anything other than what you are in the moment. Don't buy into other people's ideas about who you are or have to be. BE yourself. 

I'm myself. Nuts or not...I believe. It's all perfect.

Monday, August 14, 2017

It's Good To Be Here Now

This is specifically for my H.H.S. family of friends.  I write this with an open heart and sincere appreciation.  My name in high school was Desiree McGill.  

I have experienced and moved through something truly life changing over the past few weeks.  I feel that this has been coming for some time.  It’s been tapping on my shoulder gently and I have just continued to shrug it off.  It started tapping in 2008 when I joined Facebook and began reconnecting to people that I remembered from high school and my youth.  Those online reconnects have been easy, I think, for so many but not for me.  The wounds from that period of my life in many ways continued to block me from heart connections that I had always wanted but was never able to participate in in real life.  High school, for me, was like living two different lives.  But I digress.

In recent weeks, the Past has come into the Present in a way that I can no longer ignore or try to hide from.  Given courage by an online group discussing a high school reunion, it has reached into my heart with a loving hand and asked to be seen, reviewed, understood, expressed and forgiven as required.  I believe that process has now officially begun and I feel called to share it here.  Maybe one of you has felt this too.

For me, high school was a daily struggle to fit in, belong and be accepted.  The problem was that I did not feel like that was possible on a multitude of levels.  From the outside, it probably looked like I was doing just fine.  I participated in water polo, swim team and even made the cheer-leading squad.  I had a boyfriend that I adored.  I was nominated for Christmas Queen.  It all looked really good on the surface but no one knew what was really going on in my life.  My home life.  No one knew what kind of Hell I was living in at home.  No one knew because I was too afraid to tell anyone.  What would they have thought?  Would they have even believed me?  I just could not risk it.  So I remained silent and in doing so blocked the potential for true friendships to blossom and grow.  I also blocked my own journey through young adulthood.  I regret this deeply.

I lived in a different school district than the one where I attended high school and had used my grandmother’s address to be able to go there.  This might sound irrelevant but it was the foundational lie that my entire high school experience was built upon.  You know how it goes.  You lie once and you have to continue lying to cover it up.  It becomes a nightmare.

I lived in a home without love and so until 7 years ago I had no idea what love really was. Love was never modeled for me.  It was like a figment of my imagination that I would never understand.  Love was for other people if it was even real.  I lived with a parent who emotionally abused and neglected her children.  A parent who would wake her children up in the middle of the night and violently beat them for no apparent reason.  A parent who had shelves in the kitchen and refrigerator for her food and nothing on the shelves for her children.  She starved us.  If we were caught eating her food the beating that would ensue would usually keep us from school for days.

I lived with a parent who demanded not to be woken up in the morning.  I remember that I memorized the creaks in the floor in the hallway near her bedroom in order to make it out and be able to attend school.  God help me if I stepped on one of those creaks.  If that happened, there would be no school for that day.  I would be forced to sit in “the chair” for the next 10 hours or so.  No food.  No water.  Just sitting.

I had a parent who did not believe in homework.  She believed in chores.  I had a parent who loathed any success or achievements made by her children. So you can imagine when I made the cheer-leading squad what unfolded.  She made it unbearable.  She made it humiliating.  On a whim, she would keep me from practice.  She would keep me from games.  She would keep me from anything that would have served to create friendship.  In my many absences, I lost all of you.  It must have looked like I was simply a flake or lacked any integrity or commitment.  It must have seemed like I did not appreciate being part of something so beautiful.  It must have been annoying for everyone that had worked so hard.  I’m so very sorry that I did not share what was going on in my life.  Maybe you would have understood.  I bet you would have.   

I lived with a parent that did not believe in God.  There was no religion in our home.  There was no discussion about any higher power or Grace.  This led to a lifetime of searching and being willing to open to any possibility of connection to that higher power and any community that might come with it.  Still, God eluded me or did he?

At home I had no privacy.  I was only allowed one phone call a night from the outside.  While on that call, I had to sit on the floor in the hall so that my parent, my mother could listen to every word.  She would set a timer for 3 minutes and when it went off I had to immediately hang up or face the consequences.  You might see how that could be a complete bummer for potential friends or boyfriends.  I mean really…who wants to deal with that? During the long summers I was not allowed to hang out with friends and so again, no opportunity to develop friendships.  

Finally at the end of my junior year I ran away from home. I dropped out. I left my school.  I left my siblings.  I left.  I ran.  And since no one had ever discussed college with me that was not something that I did not even think about. From that point on I was in survival mode and did whatever I had to survive.  People got hurt.  I got hurt. I had no idea what I was doing.  I was young and stupid.  The next 30 years were full of bad choices.  One after the other.  I'll stop here because I could write several novels about all the insanity that went on from birth to age 46.  Thanks for bearing with me. 

So what do I want to say?  If I ever hurt you I apologize.  If I let you down I apologize.  If I betrayed you I apologize.  If I embarrassed you I apologize.  If I attacked you I apologize.  I’m not that broken girl anymore.  I’m no victim.  I’ve led a challenging life.  No doubt.  That does not define who I am now though I guess in all honesty it was a path to my soul.   I’m so blessed now.  My long and winding journey led me to a life that people only dream of.  I have an amazing husband who is my best friend.  I have grandchildren that I love more than I ever thought I could love anything or anyone.  I have true friends and welcome more. I never knew I was capable of giving and receiving the Love that I now know.  But I am!!!  I am!

Thank you for witnessing me.  Thank you for reading.  This was important for me to do.  God bless.

Monday, June 19, 2017

We Return To Personal Responsibility When We Are Mature Enough To Do So

Taking personal responsibility for the injury one has caused and continues to cause is a huge issue among today's youth. Spoiled and unwilling to see their bad choices and how those choices have broken the hearts of those who love them most is simply something these young adults are unwilling to do...maybe even incapable. Understanding the truth of things and their role in it is not a priority for these young ones. Skewing the truth and playing the victim, which is the manipulation used, will not help one to fully mature. Finding others with the victim mentality (poor me - nobody loves me - nobody understands me - everyone hurts me - "I didn't do anything!") will not help the situation and only nurture more of the same. Victims attract other victims. Liars attract other liars. Thief's attract other thief's. Skewers of facts attract other skewers of fact because like attracts like - always - and so these young ones stay stuck in the same pain, aggression and denial. They play the story over and over in their head and never move on from it. Why? Because that does not feed their need to play the victim in the story they have created.
Grounded, centered, loving, kind-hearted, mature (mature does not equate to age here) and caring people, after trying over and over again to connect and heal, will ultimately be repelled. It just takes too much energy to get through the heart of a self-confessed victim. It hurts too much when selfishness reigns supreme. An unforgiving person will never heal. Resorting to foul language, name calling and other uneducated acts only reveals more of who one is.
Personal responsibility is the key to healing all relationships. Both people have to be willing to do so because when only one is, and only one has repeatedly done so, the relationship will most likely be lost.
My hope for all in situations like this is that love prevails and that clarity of heart comes. That the story is finally laid to rest and that personal responsibility is seen as the great cure. When we are mature enough to see will happen.

I'm Imperfect and I'm doing my best

I’m imperfect. Terribly flawed. Scuffed up on the edges and I even have been painted over a few times. I am a very expansive canvas still...