Don’t Look Back

Today, while I was completing a menial task, my mind wandered off to remembering how time felt like it dragged on so slowly as a kid and how time seems to fly by now.

Becoming truly caught in my past through thought, I remembered how much I wished to get out of the home, the abuse, the negative energy and feeling like each of us kids couldn’t do anything right. Walking on eggshells flooded back in. Wondering what the mood would be like once we woke up and started the day.

While thinking about all those moments again and bringing myself back to today and how time has gotten away, I felt let down, scared, short-changed and anxious. Anxious that I am going to miss out on more happiness in life, anxious that half of my life is over. The first half of my life seemed to drag on, how can this second half be so fleeting?

I was suddenly brought back to reality in an instant; the instant a song came on the radio at exactly the right time! Here I was sunken deep in the past and worried about the future when the group Boston shouted to me, “Don’t Look Back”! Wow, the power of the Lord in this universe and in our lives!

I’m humbled. I’m thankful. And, I have a new favorite song for the moment. Message received loud and clear!

Every New Dawn is another chance to start over. That is something wonderful!

Stand Tall!

Dawn

Self-Awareness is part of Self-Healing and Growth – It is not Selfish!

Every New Dawn is a Time to Renew

I am free.
I am whole.
I am good.
I am kind.
I am not the negative energy that others tried to fill me with.
I am not made of the stones that others threw at me.
I am not weak like the sticks that were hurled my way.
I am sometimes fragile but never frail.
I can be counted on by others and for myself.
I am a bright light in the middle of someone’s dark day.
I am enough.
I love enough.
I do enough.
I can do more.
I am open to fantastic adventures.
I am content when I need to be.
I am God’s child.
I am loved.
I am not broken.
I am vital.

I’m Learning to “Let Go” by Practicing Small Acts of Letting Go

As anyone who has had to deal with trauma at some point in their life knows, it’s hard to let it go. It’s not that we want to hold onto it, it’s just that things in daily life sometimes stop us in our tracks and hit us like a tidal wave – a tidal wave of emotions and sometimes reliving an experience. With professional help and hope, those moments lessen, don’t last as long and eventually get pushed to the back of the line.

I had my share plus some of trauma from childhood and into adulthood. I’ve worked on releasing my past for many years; and for those who haven’t had devastating physical and/or emotional trauma, it’s not easy to release. My hope would be that more people had good experiences without trauma in their lives but I have learned that there are more people who have had traumatic experiences, similar to mine.

PTSD – is very real and not limited to military personnel and veterans. PTSD is serious. It causes anxiety, depression, discomfort among many other feelings and it’s different for everyone. My feeling is once I can get past being shaken by a memory, accept the memory and move forward in my activity, I can heal from PTSD. I speak for myself because I’m not trained in psychotherapy – I’ll leave the professionals to do their job.

Moving on to practicing small acts of letting go.

I recently had a situation that has no need for details to tell you what it did for me. In the past, I’d have been angry still and thinking about what that person did to me versus what the situation did for me. I’ve always been a glass half-full kind of gal. I usually give people the benefit of the doubt, see the good in people, ignore red flags and such. Over time more recent, I have been allowing myself to see people for whom they truly are rather than who I want them to be. This has become a huge release of negativity inside of me. I can honestly say that it has lifted my mind as well as my heart, stomach and lungs. Each time I release them from my emotional heart, it’s like a fresh air breeze hit me and twirled me around into a new space.

How can you do this? Take a small situation that upsets you and try to view it differently than your typical go-to reaction. Sure, allow yourself to be upset, but don’t let it fester. Instead of being stuck on the details of the situation, take a mental look at the person involved. Ask yourself if he/she is a taker, energy suck, if they seem to always act/react this way or if it was a once in a lifetime random flaw. When you see the person for who they truly are, you may be able to dislocate from them.

In doing this practice, it has been allowing my traumatic experiences in my past, be recognized and filed into files of the past. For so long I have thought that what happened to me, defined who I am today. By letting people in my current life go, it is helping me to move away from my past. I can’t honestly say that I have forgiven those people who hurt me, but I can see them for who they were instead of who I wanted them to be, who they should have been but weren’t. A few of them have died and I didn’t mourn their death, I mourned the fact that they would never be who I thought they should be; protective, loving and caring, because they are gone. I also came to realize that I am that person to my kids; I am the parent that I wish I had. I love my kids, will never hurt them and will never despise nor insult them. Even though they are adults now!

Start today. Try one small act of letting go. See a situation for exactly what it is or a person for exactly who they are to you. How someone treats you, says more about them than it does about you. Learn to free yourself from those who take advantage, who see you as weak or who think of only themselves.

Share your thoughts or ask me anything.

Each day starts new, you can too.

Learning How to Un-see Ourselves as Others Have Seen Us

I was recently asked “What’s the worst impact a little joke has had on you?”. It didn’t take long to give an answer. While many jokes have been pulled on me, this one specific so-called joke shaped how I felt about myself at a young age.

I was about five years old when my parents forced me to do something that I immediately was horrified at; I was so young yet I felt how degrading it was. One day before going out, to run errands I suppose, my parents tied one of my father’s brown socks around my neck. I tried to take it off as they and my older brother was laughing at me. My parents said that every kid had to wear a brown sock for the day. I asked why my brother didn’t have to wear one, he is just 18 months older than me after all. They replied that only kids with brown eyes had to wear it. I cried and pleaded to take it off but they wouldn’t allow it.

We all got into the car and while riding to our destination I pulled at the sock sobbing while they laughed and ridiculed me. They kept reminding me that if I took it off, I would be in trouble. I felt unloved, degraded, no good and ugly.

As I look back on that “joke”, my heart still feels the pain and ridicule. I was also told too often that I was full of (expletive) and that’s why my eyes are brown. I have hated my brown eyes since those younger days of my life. I’m not sure where that idea came from nor do I know why or how a parent could treat a child with such hatred and insult. I never held my brother’s laughter about the situation against him as he was also young and just following my parent’s lead. It simply baffles me that they would come up with such a sick, cruel-hearted stunt.

That joke played a large part in how I viewed myself for many, many years; maybe it still plays a part in how I see myself today. I try not to believe the cruel words said to me and all the cruel things that were done to me. I try not to think of them, I want to leave it all in the past but things happen on a daily basis, to all of us, that bring up the memories of dark times in our lives. I suppose writing about it, talking about it and trying to make sense of it is a way to overcome it.

Things from our past can shape our behaviors and likes and dislikes today. Perhaps that’s why I cannot tolerate turtleneck shirts or anything even slightly snug around my neck. Maybe I rarely look at myself in the mirror, I mean really see who I am, because of these brown eyes. Who knows and honestly, who cares — it’s not who I am. I’m not an ugly brown-eyed little girl anymore. I’m still very self-conscious and with low self-esteem but I can guarantee that I raised my boys to be self-confident and with support and encouragement to do and be anything they feel deep in their beings. I also regularly let them know that they were (still are in my opinion) adorable, cute and handsome, etc.

My current self-therapy is to undo how I have always seen myself and create a new vision of who I am. I strive to erase the negative self-description that I was taught and replace it with the reality of who I am and what I look like; not an easy feat. I’m not working to over-value myself, just to find a healthy and confident base.

So let me ask you the same question that was posed to me, “What’s the worst impact a little joke has had on you?” How has that shaped who you are today?

In light and love,

Dawn

There Will Always Be Endings and New Beginnings

Lily – her favorite place to be was laying in the backyard soaking up the sun and watching the wildlife.

Change is always going to happen whether we like it or not. Almost three weeks ago I had to help my dog cross that rainbow bridge. My heart is aching. Still. Despite knowing that she was almost 13 years old and that there was nothing anyone could do to make her better, it was traumatic for me. Making that call is traumatic for most people who have to undertake that role whether it’s to help a pet or a family member. It doesn’t get easier with each passing day, it just gets familiar.

Lily was my girl that had to leave me and her sister Addie and our newly acquired pup, that was my mother’s Boston terrier, Lacy. Lacy seems indifferent about Lily’s absence but Addie seems to miss her. I tried to thin out the dog bed situation but Addie would have none of it as she climbed atop the pile of memory foam and round dog beds that were Lily’s. When I feed the two remaining, Addie looks for Lily’s dish then looks to me as if questioning where is she?

Lily was my first pup after having to put down my greyhound Snowy…he took a big part of my heart when he passed. Lily brought comfort and so much love after two years of being dog-less. Lily was sensitive and very intuitive. She would lean on anyone who cried, run to my mother if she sneezed, and she laid her head on my chest when I had asthma attacks. She was such a sweet, sensitive, mushy girl.

Lily was also very well behaved and a silent tattle-tale. If Addie was getting into something that she shouldn’t have, Lily would come to me and sit pressingly close while looking away from the area that Addie was in. Each time she did this, I would ask, “what’s Addie up to”? and sure enough she was tearing tissues from the trash or papers from my office.

After a long and wrenching day with my mother I would come home to be greeted by happy dogs. Lily was a leaner and being sensitive to other’s anxieties she quickly drew out the stress and negativity from me. Each night while unwinding, watching TV, she would lay beside me, often between Dale and me, with her paw, her head or her back touching me – connection. I miss those puppy hugs that she gave so well.

This part of being a pet parent completely stinks. We all miss you sweet girl. I believe you are with your adopted siblings from years past and making new friends. I know that we will see each other again. Thank you for being my girl, for helping me through some tough times and for always being happy to see me no matter what.

Change will always happen and it won’t always feel good but with each passing day it get’s more familiar and we learn to accept what is. We need to embrace the good things in our lives because there will always be endings and new beginnings.

I’m Still Learning…

When we were young, we absorbed more information than we thought possible for a child. We learned how to cope and cooperate in our family in order to please and “be liked”. No child should have to work to be loved but it happens every day for many children.

The words our parents and grandparents speak to us as children become the foundation of our molded lives. We learn what is acceptable and what isn’t. We learn what behaviors please them and we use those words and actions to make them happy with us – (as if we have that power). We are taught that we do have that power by their reactions to our actions. When we learn what pleases them, we file it into our young minds for future use.

Eventually, through all that learning, a child becomes an adult and applies all the information that has been learned and stored away in their everyday lives. With a healthy, loving upbringing, we have a sturdy foundation and we move through life confidently. With a healthy foundation, as serious issues pop up in life, we hopefully can navigate them with ease and grace. If as a child we learned how to navigate daily life by metaphorically walking on eggshells, we might have a less sturdy/healthy foundation.

As children my brothers and I walked on eggshells. We were careful to speak, careful to take action, and careful not to “rock the boat”. So not to speak for others I will speak for myself in saying that those learned behaviors followed me into my adult life right up to this very day. I’m now learning to embrace healthy behaviors and drown out the survival-modes of my past. It’s not a simple task when the words of bitter and angry parents are still in your head with every decision or action you make.

I haven’t been very good at releasing negative words that were fired at me. I find myself hearing them while doing menial tasks as if they are current ramblings of the day. I also find myself believing some of the lies and hurtful words before I snap back to the present moment and try to force them out. I’m learning how to build a new foundation – a healthy, positive foundation.

Has there been a time when you felt worthless if you couldn’t make someone close to you happy? Have you ever felt unloved by a parent, grandparent or other prominent relative?

Just because someone speaks their opinion about you, it doesn’t make it true. If anyone told you that you were ugly, simple, stupid, useless, worthless, or any negative attack words, you don’t have to believe them. When you were a child, you had to comply with the expectations of a parent but you don’t/didn’t have to carry it into your adult life.

I became the kind of parent to my kids that I hoped to have growing up. I was strict but I was fair and respectful toward my little humans. I allowed them to have and express opinions on things. I allowed them to find their place in the world. I firmly and lovingly guided them while helping to build their foundation for life.

Life isn’t easy all the time. There are moments when you think, “boy, it doesn’t get better than this”, but those moments don’t stay forever. Everything changes. Even bad moments don’t last and for that we are all thankful I am quite sure of that. Change is inevitable but change is also a choice for many situations. It starts with wanting something to be different and personally making that happen. For me that means erasing the angry actions and words that were slung at me from today so I can replace them with healthy inner thoughts. The past will always pop up especially when triggered but it should never be welcomed to stay.

Be confident in yourself today. Give yourself the support you didn’t have back then when learning how to navigate obstacles in the world. Let those negative experiences come but also let them leave. Use positive self-talk to force the hurt out and embrace who you are today and who you can be tomorrow.

Stand Tall ~ Stay Mighty

Breaking Point

Everyone has a breaking point and that point is different for each situation and different for each person.

I have an extended breaking point. I give people the benefit of the doubt, I have a lot of patience and I care about other’s happiness a lot, maybe to a fault. I give to the point of neglecting my own needs. I’ve been making great improvements in that area; I’m beginning to take care of myself better.

Sometimes, maybe often, when you make changes that support your best health those around you find it inconvenient – they find you selfish if you’re unavailable for their needs. Don’t let that halt your self-care. Self-care is not selfish.

Think of times when someone said or did something to you that felt uneasy, rude, aggressive and even offensive. Remember how that made you feel deep inside your belly? Your head? What kind of response did you have? Did you defend yourself or did keep it inside to fester and mess with your peace? Maybe someone sat in your home and arrogantly snickered at your accomplishments or your certificates on display that made them roll their eyes and poke fun as if your accomplishments were no great feat. Maybe it was your family member who never asked how you were doing or if you dared to mention that you felt off that day, they disregarded you and turned the subject to be all about them. Is your time taken advantage of or disrespected? Are your professional services treated with disregard? Are you often talked down to? Does someone too often disagree with your opinions, statements or feelings? Do they deny saying or doing something that you know for a fact they said or did? The people that behave that way are not your people.

You aren’t responsible for anyone’s gratification, happiness, sense of superiority, nor do you need to play along. It’s not your job to be uplifting to anyone’s insecurities. Your job is to uplift your consciousness. Fulfill your desires, dreams, goals and accomplishments – no one can do that for you, just as you can’t for anyone.

I’ve beat myself up over the years by first being available for everyone at any given moment and then by allowing them to insult, discourage and use me and my time. I followed that with being angry at myself for not standing up for my best health, both mentally and physically. Somewhere along the way, more recently, I have had enough, I broke. I broke those behaviors that hurt me and decided that it’s time to finally take care of myself first so that I may be more in touch with those I choose to help in the future. I have found who is for me and who is not for me.

I can be angry that it took so many years and so many abuses but that doesn’t help me; it doesn’t erase history nor experiences. I choose to start today with the knowledge and sophistication that I have brought to existence personally.

Don’t be a punching bag. Don’t disregard and underplay your accomplishments and needs to suit anyone else no matter what. Be your true and beautiful, best self.

Every new day is a chance to start over. Every New Dawn begins again.

I Took time to Re-energize, Have you lately?

This year has been challenging for everyone. Covid-19 has reconstructed how we go about our daily lives; no one in the world is exempt. It has caused exhaustion, anxiety, doubt, sadness, depression, fear and so much more. Many of us, myself included, have forgotten that it is necessary to take a step back or a time out to just be.

I was pleasantly reminded of how important a “time out” is this past weekend. My sister-in-law spent the summer working on Martha’s Vineyard at the campground she stays at. She is making steps toward her dream of living on the vineyard and she is inspiring.

I am so blessed to have been able to spend the weekend on the vineyard with her and my brother. We walked miles of beach, collected shells, inhaled the fresh, clean ocean air, we got our feet wet, we gazed at the tide rolling out and back in, we learned that where we have walked in life isn’t the path we are stuck with. The waves kissed our feet and renewed our footprints teaching us to glance back but make sure your move forward. As I stood on the shore I let the waves wash over my feet and drag the negative emotions and the toxic people I have dealt with away. I exhaled slowly with every departing wave.

I was away for three days but it felt like three weeks. We didn’t have a schedule. We didn’t watch the clock. We didn’t plan every minute of the days. We flowed with the tide, the sun and our innermost spirit-guide.

Upon returning home, I feel renewed. I feel a sense of calm. I have been re-enlightened in the direction I want to guide myself and my life -wellness clients.

Have you taken a much needed time out recently? Do you need one? What simple things might you be able to do to allow yourself to be re-energized? If you’re not quite sure, email me, I can help guide you.

Until next time, stay salty, stand tall and be mighty!

Get Over It vs. Move Forward & The Crumbs You Leave Behind

Throughout my life I have heard the words “get over it” both directed at me and to others from many people everywhere; I bet you have too. The words seem to be a catch-all phrase for those who say it. I can guess that when it’s their time to hear it from another, it doesn’t sound very comforting. It’s not.

Getting over something generally means that it is gone and forgotten, like a common cold or a case of poison ivy. We can’t get over a bad break-up, the loss of a pet or loved one but we can move forward. Moving forward and getting over something are two completely different things. Perhaps both are a way of coping but moving forward might just serve us better.

We all heal both emotionally and physically at our own pace. We each move forward at our own pace as well. In my experience, moving forward is easier and more liberating than simply “getting over it.” Perfectly sensitive people are emotional from the heart so working through situations at our/your own pace is what brings each of us peace. I don’t believe that there is a such thing as too sensitive; we work things out very differently from one another because we are all unique, every single one of us.

There are crumbs that we leave behind when we move forward. Those crumbs are bits and pieces of the past. They aren’t left on purpose so that we may find our way back, they are left so that when we do look back, we can see how far we’ve come. It’s okay to remember things that have happened but whether they were good things or bad things, we can never got back there and we wouldn’t want to go back because we miss out on what is happening right now.

Every memory can be a lesson. We can choose whether to do things the same way and get a different or similar result than we hope for or we can change the way we do it again based on past experience. Every memory can bring joy to our hearts or anxiety to our minds. How you decide to deal with it is a choice, a decision you make for you. I urge you not to make the mistakes I’ve made by basing my choices on the pressure and happiness of someone else even when I knew better; it never works out for your best and often not for theirs either. The result is an unhappy recipient and a hurt, sad self. Many people are not happy nor satisfied no matter how hard you try so it’s necessary to put your energy toward your emotional wellness rather than theirs.

Every decision is up to you. Whether you choose to get over it or to move forward, do what is right for you. You are the only one who knows what that is and you need to own it. Often, my gut and my head spoke opposing views to me and I too often went with my head to avoid conflict, physical and emotional pain, and I lived in fear. I slowly changed my ‘go-to’ choice and stuck with my gut feeling. That brought fear but it also brought self-care and emotional peace.

I’ve moved through some pretty horrific times in my life, times that I will never wish to return to, times I wish to get over but have instead moved forward past them where I can look back and feel blessed that I made it through to these better moments in life.

In many ways it is easier for me to stop being a people pleaser today than it was fifty, forty-three, thirty years ago, ten years ago, even just one year ago. Taking good care of myself helps me take care of others those of which are of my choosing. I see those crumbs of times gone by but the better picture for me is what today brings and what lies ahead.

Even with these tough times of Covid-19, I can keep my chin up and my foot forward knowing that everything changes. I can be the change I wish to see in my world and it will surely extend into our world at its own pace.

Be free. Stand tall.

~Dawn

Talked Down To? Stand Tall.

I’m a pretty easy-going person, I always have been. I’m very agreeable and often to a fault. I’m kind, giving, caring, and forgiving. I give people the benefit of the doubt; too many times in some cases. I’m typically a happy, fun-loving person who avoids conflict and confrontation. I try my hardest to help people be happy as anger in others makes me nervous. I’m a people pleasing, shirt of my back kind of gal. I choose happiness and peace over angst and strife. I’m a faithful friend, mother, worker, health & life coach, hairstylist, and customer of local commerce. That’s pretty much who I am in a nutshell.

I’ve had my share of tough times; haven’t we all? I’ve been so flexible through the difficult times that I often thought I would break, but I didn’t. I only got stronger and tougher — on the outside. Inside I was slowly crumbling but I pushed that down deep inside. I’m such an easy person to get along with that others often mistake that for weakness and take advantage of my giving nature, my kindness, my goodness. But, I’m not weak; I’m strong beyond measure. I have a can-do attitude and a will-do nature that cannot be mistaken for weakness but esteemed as strength; both emotional and physical.

Each time someone mistreats me, that crumbling becomes a part of me. It slowly builds a wall of protection. That wall is sometimes a burden. It has become the collection of negative, demeaning, insulting, patronizing and greedy acts of those I have been kind to. Those whom think of me as weak and easy to manipulate. That wall is thick enough and high enough to block out those who continue to challenge my generosity. I’m not blocking anyone out, I’m simply putting a stop to being a subservient work-horse to those who take advantage of other people’s kindness.

I would likely have never been described as an angry person in my past but I feel anger in my being for the past several years. I’m not comfortable with that feeling. While I remain quiet, I’m not blind nor deaf to how someone who feels superior to me is behaving/talking to me. I’ve often read that when someone puts another down it’s because they do it to feel better about themselves; all the power to them. I don’t have to accept not receive their belittling.

I’m not comfortable letting go of my kind-nature in order to protect myself. I choose love over hate. I choose useful over used. I choose self-respect over their arrogance. I choose peace over anger. I choose happiness over emotional pain. I choose to persevere – to stand tall – to be kind. I am releasing the self-indulgent, egotistical, selfish folk from my peace.

You don’t ever have to accept irrational behavior from anyone. Your most important job in this world is to be kind, first to yourself, then to others; but that doesn’t mean you must accept rudeness, abuse, negativity or deceit. Not everyone belongs in your circle just as you don’t belong in everyone’s circle and that’s okay. It’s healthy for you to select who you need in your life; selection is not rejection. We are all unique and we try to find the people we vibe with. Everyone vibes in their own way, find those who compliment your vibe just as you might compliment theirs. Unfold your wings and release your energetic vibes into the world for the like-minded kinfolk to find you.

With time comes growth and with growth comes wisdom.

Stand tall.

Dawn

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