This year I turn 50 and that realization hit me like a brick this week. Not necessarily in a bad way, however, because I don’t mind getting older because that means I am closer to retirement and spending the remainder of life with the love of my life and my best friend on this crazy journey. But it caused me to reflect over life and things learned and things maybe not learned yet.
Like not letting the little things become the big things or not making something bigger than what it has to be. Learning to appreciate each day even when it seems like a bad day. My Father taught me not to get worked up about life and to ‘live in your bubble’ and not to let the outside get to you. Growing up I always remember him saying ‘I’ll be in my bubble’. He says it to this day and he’s 75 years old now. This is something I’ve adopted over the years and I have to say I get it now. Don’t get me wrong, I have days that I feel like that bubble is transparent and not shatterproof because things get through. We are only human after all right? But for the most part I stay in my bubble. Outside barriers are not allowed in if its drama or stuff that I have no time for.
I mean in reality if we all lived in our bubble some of the time do t you think the works would be a better place for our souls and for our energy? And for the energy we are putting out to the world? If we all lived in our bubble when the going was getting tough or there was drama around us then maybe there wouldn’t be drama because everyone would be in their bubble. I don’t think for one minute that my Father adopted this little saying or theory out of being the type of person that didn’t care. But, instead, I think the older he became the better person he wanted to be and he wanted to be an example to his own family of what life could really be like if we shut ourselves off from the drama around us that may come at us. For him, this was his protection of his soul. This is what kept him at a place of peace and a place of keeping his soul clean and free of the drama and things of this world that give off negative energies.
So next time drama is all around you maybe you should ask yourself what your ‘bubble’ looks like and when the last time you climbed into it was. Maybe 2019 is the year I spend more time in mine cleaning up my outside barriers because, afterall, life is too short and I want to enjoy getting older.
Here we are at the end of a year once again. And the beginning of more resolutions that will never be honored or completed. We don’t do resolutions in our house but, instead, as I have said before, we do words for the new year. This year was ‘practice the pause’. I chose a phrase because this was the year I learned to keep my mouth shut, no this didn’t always work, LOL, but I did do my best and it kept me in focus and on check to pay attention to what I was saying or wanted to say before I opened my mouth. One day at a time I practiced and I paused and I learned through the year.
I have not chosen my word or phrase for 2019 yet, but there are options that I am contemplating. I put a lot of thought into it because 4 years ago my daughter and I started this journey together of self-improvement. Of cleansing our soul and mind and becoming more centered on things that are good for our mind and soul together. Little did I know she, too, chooses a word for the year. While she was here for Christmas break we discussed the things that we have found that keep our mind and soul calm. The things that help us stay centered even on those difficult days. This does not mean that we don’t have days where we are ‘off center’, but, in fact, it means that we pay attention to it a little more closely to keep ourself on tract when we need it the most.
How do you keep your soul comforted and free from outside barriers of stress and things that don’t really matter?
Pick one day a week and stay offline, totally and completely. Challenge yourself to do this.
Journal every day. It’s interesting to go back and see what you have journaled after the time passes. And it helps to have a place to put all those thoughts instead of yelling about it or saying something you may be sorry for later.
Along with that journal you could do a gratitude journal or gratitude jar. Put one thing you are thankful for each day for the year in that jar or journal and on NYE at the end of that year read through what you were thankful for. Helps you to stop and think doesn’t it?
Whatever you may choose to end your year with, start the year off with a positive note and remember that it’s a new year with new goals and a new year for your soul and your mind. What if this is the year that you makeover you and you don’t even realize you do? Imagine how good you might feel when you focus on the positive and the good and toss out the negative and the bad.
Our oldest came home for Thanksgiving this week and we got to spend a couple days with her. Living in Chicago there are miles between our home and hers and she works and has a life out there now so we don’t have the pleasure of seeing her much. This is what happens when the kids spread their wings and leave the nest. I talk alot and write alot about her living away from home not only because she is our oldest and first, but in the hopes that our experience with this transition over the last couple of years reaches other moms out there that are maybe going through this for the first time.
When she used to come home, it was awful having her leave and I always tried to ‘control’ everything … I would extend her visits and make her stay longer probably in the back of my mind hoping she would stay forever and never go back. That was 5 years ago. Yes, 5 years have passed since she went to college … then, after college, I just assumed she would move back home, like most graduated, broke, college students. But she had met the love of her life and didn’t want to come home, but, instead, wanted to make a life with him there in Chicago.
I did not take well to this, even though I had adjusted to her not living at home any longer. Even though our house of 4 was now a house of 3, I just couldn’t imagine her not being here. But she stood firm, and stood her ground. It was a long and hard road for her but she was determined. How could I expect anything less from her when this is what we had raised her for? When we had taught her growing up that you can do and be anything you want to do and that you put your mind to … she wanted to live on her own and make her own life … who was I to stop her? So, she stayed in Chicago. And she has made a life. She works and she has friends and she has her partner and they have their life together – hundreds of miles away from us. But she has made it. And I am proud … We are proud. She did what we taught her to do – spread her wings and fly. Did she fall? Of course she did … several times. Has she begged at times to come home? Early on, yes. But now, as a young adult living on her own, she pays her own bills and she makes her own way. She comes to visit and we make new memories with a young woman that once was our little girl in a world unknown to her that has grown to see everything this world has to offer her – she is experiencing and living life every day like it is her last. She has no regrets – she will always be my sunshine even on those darkest of days for her and I will always be there to help her back up on that road of life….
THIS is what life should be for all of us. Even when we are fearful of the road ahead or what life may bring we need to take that jump and just do it. We can learn alot from our own children as we watch them grow up. The generations coming up are not as fearful and they see what this big crazy world has to offer and they aren’t afraid to fail and get back up on their feet and keep trying. We shouldn’t stop them and we shouldn’t keep them from being who they want to be …. not who WE want them to be … but who THEY want to be. Imagine the possibilities out there for them! This is a big world with so much to offer – So, no matter how hard it may be for us to gently push them out there in this big world, push them, be there for them, help them through their challenges, but also be their cheerleader and sit by and watch what they become and be proud – after all, they are ours and we do teach them to grow up – so if we are lucky enough we will share their experiences with them and make those memories with them …
Recently we went through our closets to pull out the clothes and shoes and whatever else we may have that we don’t wear any longer. Purging as I like to call it. Throwing out the old, and not always replacing with new. Sometimes to make room and just have the extra space and sometimes because it may not fit any longer. Between the family we had quite a bit that we purged out and I was surprised I have to say. And, I am sure we have more we can get rid of.
While doing this it made me think of how, sometimes, we have to do this with people in our life. Or situations in our life. We become what we attract or what we hang with as my mom used say and it can be good or it can be bad. Some people will be there always for you and you usually know these people because they are there for you when you need a shoulder and you are there for them likewise. Sometimes we may have people surrounding us that are not good for our soul or overall well being. Maybe they always have drama that follows them. Then there are what I call the ‘fake’ friends. They post everything and anygthing on social media showing a great and spectacular life and in real life you know that is not how things are – they want everyone to think things are great on their side of the fence when they are really human and normal like everyone else.
There are times when it’s okay to purge the friendships. This doesn’t always mean you cease the friendship totally but maybe you take a step back and re-evaluate the friendship. Maybe you just need a break and need to rest your own soul from the drama and the chaos of that friendship and your own soul needs the restoration from that drama and chaos. But, there are situations that you have to cut the tie of that friendship to even save yourself. Friendship that is not two-sided is not a friendship. Friends should make us happy and if there is more chaos and drama than friendship, then maybe your soul needs that friendship no more.
Remember that YOU are number one. In all situations that you are involved in. This includes everything in life and if your soul is not feeling rest or happiness then you need to look around you and see what needs to change. This is OK – you are OK to protect your own soul and bring peace to it, contentment, happiness – when there are people or things in our life that make us feel bad it’s kind of like when we are sick. Don’t you take medication or go see the doctor so that you get better? So that you can over the illness? Saving your soul or restoring your soul is the same – if you have toxic people in your life why would you not also do something to make yourself feel better and be in a better place rather than always feeling bad – you don’t want to lose your soul, it is the only soul you have. We get only one in our life so we need to be centered and in line with our soul because it makes us who we are….
If you think your soul needs restoring, start by making 2 lists. You don’t have to use names, I don’t have a large friend base, I can count them on one hand, so for me, I made my 2 lists with the things or qualities I wanted to see in the people around me or in my daily life and the other was a list of items I didn’t want. This isn’t a bad thing to do because it helps you take a look at yourself and what you really want to surround yourself with, who you want to surround yourself with. I was blessed to not do much ‘purging’, but I did find that there were some changes I wanted to make and I needed. That was 5 years ago and I am still here, I survived it, and my soul is better for it. I speak up more about what I don’t want to expose my soul to – maybe even who I don’t want to expose my soul to. It slowed me down and made me think about MY happiness and MY soul and how I wanted to be inside. The best part is that when you follow this process you may be surprised what you find out you can live without or what you figure out about your own self and own soul – so if you are wanting some quiet and less chaos try making your list and take a look inside of yourself – what is your soul saying to you?
I was nominated by Mrs. Pillar of @HousewifeBoozy for The Versatile Blogger Award. I am so excited about this as I have never been nominated for anything like this! I have recently taken back up my blogging so this is so awesome! Thank you so much !!
Seven things about myself that you may not know:
I am the oldest of 3 siblings but I sometimes act like the youngest- teehee
I have lived in Nebraska, Kansas, and Texas
I love vodka!!
I am the sister to @MomLifePart2
I secretly would rather be home on any given night than out with friends because I am a closet homebody
I was married young at 21 and am still married after 28 years
I am a railroader wife – which means yes I am married, yes he exists, but we are rarely seen together because of this …
My 15 nominees are listed below!! Thank you again!!
Michelle A. Homme
Devouring Books – Amanda
Thoughts Parsed Blog
Rachel Batchler – Blogger at OwlBeMe
Life can be so many twists and turns on the journehy that we can get lost. Sometimes the things that are thrown at us make us step back and ask why, or maybe even take our breath away. Other times, I find myself standing there trying to figure out which way I am supposed to go and hoping I don’t go the wrong way and make it worse than it already is or get more lost than I already am.
Sometimes the chaos is too much to handle. It can disrupt my inner self to a point that I can send myself into an anxiety attack at times or start thinking the worse before anything has even happened. But I have to be an example to my kids – especially when my oldest, who lives in Chicago, calls in a panic because of chaos that hits her life. How do I talk to her and guide her without hiding how I deal with my own chaos? I don’t hide it. I have transparency. I share my stories of times when I thought I was surely not going to make it to even the next day without going crazy or breaking down – and then I tell her how I survived it. How we can all survive it. And, yes we can! Do I say that thinking it ? Of course not, LOL. We are all human after all. But if there weren’t chaos and twists and turns how would we become who are ? My daughter has lived almost 6 years now in one of the biggest cities in this country and she has moved and gone through lost friendships, had to make decisions she hasn’t wanted to make … had to choose to leave people behind if they weren’t good for her soul or part of the bigger picture that she had in front of her for her journey. But, in the end, it has made her who she is and who she is yet to be. She handles those twists and turns and asks directions from her Dad and I along the way. She doesn’t just do it without a map .. We are her map some days, still ..
We have to be each others’ map don’t we? When the chaos of life is so much that we can’t breathe or we think we aren’t going to make it, shouldn’t we be able to turn to family and friends who may have been through it before and can lend their ‘map’ for their journey? We then pass that one to the next one that might need it, right? Life is a giant journey and it isn’t always easy, but it doesn’t have to be as hard as we want to make it either. We shouldn’t be afraid to ask for directions. In asking for directions we may find a different way of ‘traveling’ the journey than we thought of previously. And, who knows, maybe together you will travel the road with that person and you both use the map and get through it together. And in the middle of the chaos on that journey, you succeed in keeping your soul and inner self calm and still …. isn’t that what we all want at the end of the day?
I was driving to work the other day and I saw this vehicle that was barely hanging on in outward appearances, but yet still looked okay to be driving. Kind of like my car I have to say … don’t spread that around too much. My car looks like it is okay on the outside aside from a couple of things that are showing like a dent here and there and a ding in the door and a broke tail light that still works so I haven’t replaced it. It made me think of how I hide who I am on the inside by making the outside look okay.
We are all broken on the inside in some way or another but it’s how we put our mask on and cover ourself so the rest of the world doesn’t see it. We don’t want others to see how truly broken we are because that would expose our true self. Our true soul. Who we really are. We are not all okay all of the time. If we were we would not be human. Nobody is perfectly happy all of the time and nobody has a perfect life. That just isn’t possible. We cover up our internal broken souls with makeup and clothing and fitting in with everyone around us so nobody can truly see what we may be going through. Can you imagine if we actually shared with one another and we found out that what everyone is hiding on the inside is just wrapped up in a pretty little package with a nice bow on it. Why do we do that?
What if, instead, we focused on our own broken soul and tried to make it happy again. Tried to see if we can put the broken pieces of our soul back together again and we found out along that journey who we really are. What if under all that brokenness we don’t really even know our own self. I know….deep right? What if we have spent so much time hiding our true self that we are hiding from ourselves and don’t even know it? Have you ever looked in the mirror and forgot who you are? What if you have been putting that mask on for so long to cover up that you don’t even know the real ‘you’ any longer.
Maybe we should take time to find ourselves again and quit covering up making it look all nice and pretty like a new car or pretty package on the outside when on the inside we are really like everyone else and we are broken … cracked … we have a history and story that comes along with those broken pieces and we shouldn’t hide that. It is what made us who we are and we should, instead, be proud of that broken soul and try to restore it. We can’t just cover up the cracks and broken pieces and pretend they don’t exist because eventually we run out of paint and makeup to cover them up. Instead, what if we were proud of those cracks and scars and we shared our story with others that might benefit from that? And what if you repair your soul and you find happiness again and you find yourself again …. What if the broken pieces really aren’t that bad …. Embrace your broken inner self and remember that it made you who you are and it brought you this far…..