Thursday, July 31, 2014

Self Neglect

"If you want the rainbow, then you must have the rain." ~Annette Hanshaw

But I shouldn't rain on my own parade.  This week I had a routine medical procedure that ended up being minor surgery.  I rested that day then jumped right into setting up the class room getting ready for school on Monday.  Tonight my friend pointed out maybe I should rest.  I didn't.  Not even 24 hours.  I didn't exercise but I did lift the printer that weighed over 20 lbs (9 kg).  Tonight I am craving pop corn.  So not helpful when my insides have recently been purged and inspected.  Give myself a break.  Rest already.  I find I still struggle with self care.  I am improving as long as my "To Do" list isn't too lethal.  I am experimenting with my sleep using white noise.  It is starting to help.  I am sleeping more of my night.  DH did not like one of the sounds.  So I spent some time playing the different sounds until we found some that we both like.  Not to good in the going to sleep part but seems to be working on the staying to sleep once I finally get there.  If you want to read some more on sleep I wrote a couple of post on my new web page. 
The newest thing I am trying is waking up a half hour earlier but not get out of bed.  Spend some time stretching and thinking about my day and what I want done by the end of the day.  Only tried it two days but I am noticing I am feeling fairly relaxed for the week before school starts.  I wrote on my notebook that this years motto is "Embracing the Challenge."  Reminder to self, self care is a worthy challenge.  I'll have popcorn in a week....I love popcorn one of my favorite comfort foods.

All in a flap about the rain.


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Same message

I am fascinated when I get the same message from multiple sources.  This week both Froglogic and Impossible talked about competition to keep yourself moving.  Froglogic talked about friendly competition between yourself and team member or swim buddy.  {Froglogic is Navy Seal training}  Impossible writer Joel Runyon did a marathon in the Swiss Alpine The highest marathon in Europe.  He talked about getting himself to the end by giving it all he had and making a game out of passing people at the end of a 26 mile run.  I'm not a Navy seal and I have zero intention of ever running a marathon.  But I do have 3 days to get a class room organized for students next Monday.  The whole room was packed up and shuffled around this summer but no where close for being ready on Monday.  Froglogic says embrace the Suck.  Life just sucks sometimes.  But instead of buckling under the pressure or dropping into Fight, Flight, or Freeze mode I'm learning to play to my strengths.  I plan to use my strength of hyper-focus to shuffle around the big stuff and get it ready to go.  Compete against myself.  Set a timer for short bits of time to move main portion of items to make get the room in order.  Start with what I know and keep going until I don't know what to do.  I know two areas that I can setup.  Focus and work like crazy.  But remember to give myself water breaks, lunch, and rest.  Take what I've learned about tackling problems like this and make a game out of getting sections finished....can I do it in X amount of time?  The main thing to remember is "I am the assistant.  It is not my responsibility to get things exactly perfect."  I am hearing a lot about being exceptional and excelling I learned from FlyLady that good enough on routine stuff is good enough.  Getting too hung up on detail slows me down.  I believe this is what thriving is all about.....take a look at a problem, use my strengths in combination with what I learned to find a solution, and move forward toward the solution.  Victim thinking paralyzes me.  I curl up in a ball depressed and defeated.  I keep thinking about the game of cards KavinCoach played with me where he got to look at his cards and I didn't.  When I was a victim, I didn't believe I had any strengths.  I saw myself as a worm, spineless and useless.  This was the image my abusers wanted me to believe.  Getting a backbone, setting boundaries, learning my strengths, believing in myself, all these and more are hallmarks of thriving.  Drawing on what I know about how to put things together will get me through the next few days.  Now, if I can just figure out how to do this with my own sewing room. 
Thriving is acting instead of reacting. I've got a mountain to climb.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Failure the new success?

My friend told me about a young man in his senior year in high school.  His father finally came to watch him dive on his last swim meet.  He did his best, trying not to waste his father's time since he came to this meet.  He dived beautifully until the last dive.  He belly flopped.  Judges didn't even score the dive.  Why hadn't he continued on with his winning streak?  Pressure from preforming for Dad?  When asked, the boy admitted, if he succeeded his friends would have stopped liking him for doing so much better than they did.  Since he failed, they patted him on his back and cheered him on.  Failure the new success?

I have seen this at the Olympics, someone failing garnering more attention then the first one across the finish line.  I still remember one of the long bike races in a summer Olympics years ago.  One bicyclist took off ahead of the rest.  The news people following decided she was just a jack-rabbit and would fall back into the pack.  She never did.  The news people focused on those back in the pack and she finished alone, far ahead of the pack.  No one there to interview her success.  She didn't follow their expected formula, nobody paid attention to her.  

Why am I so intrigued about the situation?  Bloopers on TV get thousands of dollars for being spectacular at failing. A man got $100,000 for falling over a fence and loosing his pants on video. The latest new craze on YouTube are videos of people screwing up.  People view and share these by the thousands.  But to succeed, no one wants to know.  I believe teachers and counselors are actually contributing to this trend.  If I did poorly, I could get more attention then if I did well.  I watched this summer my mother desperately vying for attention because my father got a pacemaker.  He needed extra attention.  My mother behaved more and more erratically to draw attention back to her.  How is this affecting my progress?

Working in computers, I worked in animation lab that was cutting edge technology.  I learned that at that level, you bleed alone.  I knew so much that the general self help web pages were useless to me.  By the time I needed help with a computer problem, I was talking to an engineer.  I was laid off, I wasn't a team player.  The lab workers didn't know how to do what I did.  I didn't fit in.  I wasn't one of the pack.  A desire to not leave anyone behind is creating a Topsy-turvy need to fail to fit in.  I feel sad that the young man felt he had to fail to keep his friends.  I laughed at the news people that missed a world record winner because they didn't believe she could do what she did.  I am turning off the bloopers and videos of spectacular losers.

This situation is thousands of years old.  The prodigal son comes home and his father kills the fatted calf.  The other son, wonders, what was the use of always doing what he was supposed to do if his success was never celebrated. 

Luke 15:25-32
25 Now his elder son was in the field: and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard musick and dancing.
26 And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant.
27 And he said unto him, Thy brother is come; and thy father hath killed the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound.
28 And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out, and entreated him.
29 And he answering said to his father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends:
30 But as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf.
31 And he said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine.
32 It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.

The father reminded the other son that all he had would now go to the son that stayed by him.  No amount of celebrating took away what the son that remained did.  The son that remained had it all but since no one gave him a party he was angry.  I wonder as I get stronger whether my new challenge in moving forward without a counselor is I don't have that weekly feed back of "you're doing great."  I need to remember my celebration of how far I have come and how far I can now go.   I'm no longer in the desolate wasteland of depression.  I am meeting and overcoming struggles.  I am learning to recognize and celebrate my own successes.


Monday, July 28, 2014

Tackle tough problems

One of the anxiety that survivors seem to struggle with is worry.  What if......?  My sister and I often talk about this. On one of our walks I was discussing a meme on Facebook about how most of the things that we worry about never happen.  But our situation was, "What if IT happens again?"  We already been through tough crap.  We recognize the signs of a storm brewing.  We see the early warning signals and jump straight to hyper-alert with good reason.  Not being alert and aware we get slammed.  Knowing when to duck has advantages.  When I was working as a computer tech, I told one of the professors about up coming changes that were going to happen.  He assured me that would never happen.  Well, I read the signals right.  Everything happened exactly as I thought it would and I still got thrown for a major loop.  Kind of like if you lived through a tornado you know what the drop in air pressure means.  People criticize worry warts not realizing they are reading the signs of a situation and already jumped into hyper-alert prepared for an emergency.  My counselor pointed out how tiring this is.  I agreed.  Then he watched me hit storm after storm after storm in my life.  My counselor recommended I go complete no-contact with my family of birth.  I refused.  My sister and I have each other's backs.  We know the signs of a storm brewing.  Believe it or not, when mother is nice to us all hell is about to break loose.  Or we let our guard down and she strikes like a cobra.  Boundaries in place at all times, for a REASON.  I am learning to recognize that life changes.  My daughter posted an article about raising resilient children.  I am hoping to find some ideas for myself.  If I find some good ones, I will pass them on. 

Well tomorrow I start back to school.  My summer went way differently than I planned.  My husband was awesome supporting me through tough times.  My sister shared Froglogic radio shows about embracing fear  I am excited about listening to the next segment.  I tackled several medical test this summer.  All came back with a clean bill of health mostly.  12 years ago I went in for mammogram and three months later had cancer surgery.  I went in feeling perfectly fine and came out feeling perfectly awful.  The things is for survivors bad things have happened so please don't tell me that everything will be fine.  Because sometimes it isn't.  One of the gifts from counseling is learning to judge at what level I need to worry and how to relax when a storm is over or just gives me a short break. 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

New Manager

I miss old email.  I've worked with computers for a long, long time.  My first email came before 2000.  Then I would get jokes, stories, and other inspirational things passed to me by friends.  Now Facebook has every thing reduced to a 2 second meme.  Email is 90% advertisement and if I try to get inspirational stuff they are trying to sell me anything and everything including a new kitchen with a sink thrown in for free.  I am going to go looking through my old saved files.  Here is one that I pulled up today. 

Thanks Nikon Sniper. 

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Are You Hiring A New Manager?
A very short form of this letter was sent to me in a mass e-mailing last week. I have altered it almost completely. I wish I could give credit to the one with the original idea that got me thinking of how to present its words in a modified way that is more in line with my own personal experience.

God’s Cover Letter

To Whom It May Concern:

I have recently heard that you have been considering the hiring of a new manager for your life. I would like to apply for the job. I believe I am the most qualified candidate. I am the only One that has ever done this job successfully. I was the first manager of human beings. In fact, I made them. So, naturally I know how humanity works and exactly how to get people back into their proper working condition. Hiring me as your manager is to have the manufacturer as your personal mechanic.

If this is your first time considering me for this position, I would just like to point out that my salary has already been paid in full by the blood of my Son, Jesus on the cross. What I need from you is the acknowledgement that the price that Jesus paid is sufficient to pay for all of your sin. I need you to believe this in your heart and to tell somebody else about your decision with your mouth. See Romans 10:9-10.

The next thing I ask from you is that you choose to give me the right to change and fix your life so that you can learn how to stay close to Me. I will be making some major changes and revisions for the better. Even though some changes may feel a bit painful along the way, I guarantee you that when you look back, you will agree that the end result is way better than anything you could imagine now. At this moment, you don’t need to worry about these changes. I just need your permission to execute these changes in My way and in My time. I will change your desires and give you the strength to make the changes. Please keep your hands out of the way.

Please don't try to help me and don't resist me. I DO know what I am doing even when you feel like you're flying in the dark. I really do need your full commitment and cooperation. If you can submit to My control the process will go smoothly and will began to happen without delays.

This is your choice! So, here I AM asking you. Will you give me the job?

I have attached a copy of my resume below if you need more convincing. Please let me know soon.

Yours Sincerely,
P.S. I created the heavens and the earth. I AM.


God’s Short Form Resume

Address: I AM everywhere. I AM beside you right now.
Phone: No dialing necessary. I have direct connect to you. Just start talking, I hear you. If you don’t know what to say … I hear your thoughts. I even hear your feelings.

From the beginning of time to forever! In fact, I made time.

I AM All Powerful. I can do anything! Seriously! Anything! I can even use YOU to do incredible things for Me if you will let Me.

I created the universe and the galaxies. I made man and then I formed woman from man. Cool huh?
I also made flower petals, the wings of geese, rugged mountains, and powerful rivers. I made beautiful fish that live at the bottom of the ocean that only I get to see. I made it all. I made the softness of a horse’s nose. I made the uniqueness of YOU! I established the heavens and earth by My spoken Word and I AM currently holding up the world by My power. I gave you that last breath you just took.

I AM and I have all knowledge.

Here is just a few things I can do for you. I have already put these promises in writing. There are way too many to list them all here but you can find them all in the Bible.

I give wisdom! James 1:5 - If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.
I give comfort! 2 Corinthians 1:3 - Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort.
I AM truth! John 8:32 - "and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."
I AM the healer! 1 Peter 2:24 - He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.
I supply strength! Philippians 4:13 - I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
I promise to forgive! 1 John 1:9 - If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
I AM the provider! Philippians 4:19 - And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
I AM merciful! Ephesians 2:4 - But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us.
I AM good! Matthew 19:17 - And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.”
I give peace! Romans 14:17 - For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

I AM willing, ready and able to take over the management of your life. I want to put your life together again. I will bring all of who I AM into your life in order to give you love, hope and real joy … even when it’s tough to feel these things. I can start right now. I will transform your life if you let Me.

The fees associated for continuous work for good in your life and for your eternal security have already been paid for through the blood of My Son, Jesus. Your only responsibility is to accept that payment and then commit one day at a time to trust and obey what Jesus has done and wants to do in your life.

I have millions who testify as to the great things I have done to improve their life today and their eternal futures. None of them are perfect yet … but they are allowing me to manage their lives and I am in the process of accomplishing everything I have intended for them. Even before I am finished with their changes, I AM using them to help others and to tell them about Me.

NikonSniper Steve is just one of them! Steve knew he wasn't ever going to be "good enough" to get to heaven ... but he asked Me to take control of his life a long time ago and even though you have probably witnessed many of his bumpy days … I love him and continue to work on his changes. Steve can tell you how I have changed him even though he still doesn’t understand all the “whys” for the hard things he has endured. I have some surprises for him down the road. After some very tough days, Steve is now back on track and he keeps trying move toward Me even when life is hard.

This is your choice! I urge you to consider this most important choice with your whole heart. Some of you weigh the options of a new car purchase with greater consideration than your own eternal destinies. Don’t you think you should spend more time thinking about eternity and where you are headed?

If you accept me for the position of managing your life now you also receive eternal life with Me.

There are many options for life management and I know that the world is offering these options every day. Most of you are self-managed. How is that working out for you?

Truth is very narrow!

Most people today walk around thinking that they will be good enough in the end to get into heaven.


People that have never read the Bible think that it teaches that good little boys and girls get to go to heaven.


Want to get to heaven? Well, here’s the requirement!

Matthew 5:48 - You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

How are you doing with that? Not good! In fact, you are a sinner by your very nature. But way more importantly than that, you yourself personally ARE a sinner. Your words, thoughts and actions and actions condemn you every day. My standard is perfection and you aren’t making it on your own. You may think that you’re good enough. But that isn’t my standard. That’s yours! And you are wrong if you think you standard will be acceptable at the gate of heaven.

Let’s agree that it is better for you to find out these facts today and not after you can’t do anything about it.

Romans 3:23 - for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

This is a serious problem for you! You are permanently flawed and unable to get to heaven by being good. This isn’t new. I have told you this before!

Romans 3:20 - For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.

Obeying the law was never designed to save you. The purpose of the law was in order to make you aware that you were a sinner and did not meet my standard of perfection. If there was no law, there would be no sin ... so the law had to be written so you fully understood why you could not meet the demands. I had to send you a perfect sacrifice that you have to accept.

Trying to be good has never saved anyone! Not even back in the Old Testament. Guess how they were saved in the Old Testament! Read Hebrews 11. It was by faith not the law!

Hebrews 11 verses:
v4 By faith Abel …, v5 By faith Enoch …, v7 By faith Noah …, v8 By faith Abraham …, v11 By faith Sarah …, v17 By faith Abraham …, v20 By faith Isaac …, v21 By faith Jacob …, v22 By faith Joseph …, v23 By faith Moses …, v29 By faith the people …, v31 By faith Rahab the prostitute …, v32 And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets - v33 who through faith …

Hebrews 11:6 - And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.
Ephesians 2:8-9 - For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.

I hope you got it this time. You are trying to be good enough by your standards in order to earn heaven. This was never the plan. The world is offering you the “DO GOOD” plan. You are trying to self-manage this plan and I AM telling you it will fail. It isn’t a plan at all! You are trying to meet your own standards and I am telling you it doesn’t meet My standard of perfection.

But there is good news!

I knew there was nothing you could DO to earn perfection. You would be bound for hell if I didn’t intervene in this situation. I loved you so much that I sent you a way to be forgiven. Even when you were lost in sin, I sent you My most precious and perfect One, Jesus to sacrifice His life in your place. He paid for your sin if you will accept that payment. I sent Jesus so that you could start living life today!

I have no intention to force you to accept His Lordship in your life. I want your love! I made you so that you could really love Me. I didn’t make you a robot. You have a choice. You can accept My Son and live life to the fullest or you can really reject Him. I want REAL love from you. I want you to really choose Jesus, not just phony words that you say for show. That won’t work! And you can’t fool Me!

Romans 6:23 - For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 5:8 -but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
John 10:10 -The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

I knew sin was too enormous for you to handle. Perfection remains My standard. If you could get to heaven by your “DO GOOD” self-management plan then you are saying that Jesus died for nothing and that you will not accept My perfect offering for you.

Galatians 2:21 - I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.

In love I gave you My very best. I gave you My Son, Jesus as a sacrifice for your sins. I gave Jesus when you could not meet My standard of perfection. I made a way for you to go to heaven through Him. If you reject Him, you are telling Me that My plan doesn’t matter to you. You may wish to investigate what happened to people who rejected Me in the Bible. I AM Holy and Just. I AM going to judge the world for rejecting My Son.

So, the GOOD NEWS is very simple but it costs you control of the management of your life. You have to surrender that control to Me as an act of your will. You have to choose to give it to Me and accept My Son as payment for your sins. You really DO NOT want to test me by rejecting my Son. I gave you My best. I won’t take any fake act of surrender in return for what I AM offering you.

Romans 8:32 - He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?

There are many in the world telling you that My Son is just one of the options to get to heaven. They'll say Jesus works for you ... but ___________ works for me.

Which one of these “fill in the blanks” was perfect? Which one of these died for your sins? My standard is perfection and I have given it to you in My only Son, Jesus! There is only One Way!

Matthew 7:13 - “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many.
John 10:7 - So Jesus again said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep.
John 10:9 - I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture.
John 14:6 - Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Acts 4:12 - And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
1 Timothy 2:5-6 - For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.
1 John 2:23 - No one who denies the Son has the Father. Whoever confesses the Son has the Father also.
Romans 5:21 - so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
1 John 5:11-12 - And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
John 3:16-18 - “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.

Have you spent more time considering what to watch on TV than thinking about where you will spend eternity? I urge you to earnestly pray daily, “Lord Jesus, if you are really there, please help me to find you”. I want to intervene and be the manager of your life. I want to show you the great plans I have for your life.

Matthew 7:7-8 - “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.
Revelation 3:20 - Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.

Maybe you realize these words are talking straight to you and for the first time you understand them. I urge you to invite me to take control. Pray, “Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner. Forgive me. I know you died and rose again. I want to live for you. Please take control of my life and help me to commit daily to live for you. I accept the gift of salvation. Help me to find a church and a Bible that will teach me more about you and how I should live. In Jesus name. Amen.

If you prayed these words, find a Bible and start reading the book of John. Look for a church that meets every week and tell someone about the decision you made to make Me your personal life manager.

Romans 10:9-10 - Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.

Saturday, July 26, 2014


One of the biggest challenges I face is comparing myself with others.  My sister and I were 5 years a part yet my mother would compare us to each other.  She would point out to me how much better my sister did in school.  She pointed out to my sister how much smaller I was.  She grew in elementary school, I didn't finish growing until college...very late bloomer.  Stupid thing was that neither one of us was allowed to just be ourselves.

Today I witnessed an eleven year old get her junior black belt in Karate.  One of the other students teased me about testing for this.  (Note: I started Karate last September.)  I felt that old feeling of being inadequate without taking into account my own unique journey.  The girl started karate when she was 3.  I started when I was 56.  Actually we are not even in a similar decade.  I cheered for her when she succeeded.  I caught myself beating myself up that I would not be able to make her progress.

I am sharing my journey here and with others.  Occasionally, I encounter someone that says something like, "I had troubles in my life but nothing like yours."  Then they proceed to beat themselves up for their own lack of progress in life.  Or I sometimes hear someone beat themselves up for not doing as much as I have done.  But in contrast I haven't done some of the things they have done. 

This past year and a half I have put myself in a position of facing my fears.  Finding ways to help myself grow.  There is no need to beat myself up because I am so far behind an 11 year old black belt.  Her journey is different than my mine.  We share similar challenges but each of our journeys are uniquely our own. 

I am delighted that I was able to watch this young lady succeed.  I enjoy watching the Olympics for the same reason.  Hard work on a long journey leading them to a moment.  But what happens after the moment is over?  Do they diminish their triumph because someone else may beat their success?  Do they belittle themselves for the challenges they over came?  Do they dismiss the work they did to get where they are today?  Do I diminish my progress because I didn't go on the same journey?

I felt honored to watch her success....there is no need to beat myself up because she succeeded.  Comparison means very little most of the time.  The only person I need to compare myself to is me.  Am I in a different place then I was a year ago, five years ago, 10 years ago? There is no need to beat myself up over a set back, or a fear that still lingers, or not recognizing that all those tiny baby steps kept me moving.

Standing out alone

Blending in with the crowd

Same and different

Which home is better?

Friday, July 25, 2014

TW's request

I've had a crazy high low summer...extreme highs visiting family and riding roller coasters and extreme lows my Dad got a pace maker and my mother freaked out.  Survived it all.  I originally planned to spend many hours building my new webpage PTSD - Accepting, Coping, Thriving.  It is my way of taking years of research and making them useful to other people.  I lived with PTSD since I was 4 years old but I didn't have a name for it until I was over 40 years old.  I spent 10 years in counseling and hours and hours of reading my own research.  I wanted to turn the ugliness in my life into something useful.  I started with this blog and I will continue to chart my personal journey here.  Thriving is an on going project with many twists and turns.  I find this space and community of readers a wonderful support for me.  PTSD webpage is consolidating what I learned into a space that hopefully others can explore and comment.  TW asked me to post a link on this blog so that my PTSD page is easier to find.  So, over on the right-hand column under the scripture is permanent link.  I also listed the blog portion of the website in My Inspiration listing of blogs that I follow also on the right-hand side.  Many things I wrote here will show up there.  I will also bring things from that webpage and share them here.  I don't know where this adventure will lead but I do believe that thriving is best when shared.  Thanks to those that are already following my other page.  I look forward to many more adventures here and there. 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Retrain your brain

Daily Dose of Froglogic - July 21, 2014
Fear. The truth is fear is a reality in your life. It's in all of our lives. We are wired for it and have it taught to us from the beginning. It helps us to survive but can also inhibit our dreams. I believe it helps us to thrive. It's time to retrain your brain and change your behavior. If you're afraid to change you won't. If you want will. Trust your team and have faith in your training to embrace your fears so that you too can make a profound impact on the world around you. OOUUUTTTTT ‪#‎EmbraceFear‬ ‪#‎Mission3‬ ‪#‎Retrainyourbrain‬ ‪#‎Froglogic‬

My sister, Judy from the Project, introduced me to Team Froglogic.  She shared his webpage and posts with me as we walked and talked.  At first I didn't explore too much.  I've been in the mode of I am up to my ears in alligators I don't have time for one more thing.  Now, I am thinking I need to listen more carefully and I figured out a way to do it.  I turn on his radio show and then use my elliptical to exercise.  I benefit from the message and keep my mind entertained while doing the most boring of work outs.  Yesterday, I listened to his information on patience.  The part that stood out for me is the idea that patience is your gut check.  That is the momentary pause between action and reaction that you hit the pause button to consider your best course of action.  He also talks frequently about building a team.  Basically, if you want to do the impossible you need a team to do it.  He also talked about having a specific swim buddy that pulls you aside with a "Hey knucklehead, what do you think you are doing?"  Wait....what?  Then I remembered two things, he's a guy and he's a Navy seal therefor understanding exactly what you need to do the impossible.  His radio show has turned to the mission of embracing your fear to use it as a tool to thrive.  Wow.....just WOW.  His approach and personality took some mental adjustments on my part but here is part of mission 2 Accepting your reality  He had 4 major points:
1. It is what it is what you make of it.  
2. Your not alone.
3. Find your purpose.  
4. Recruit your team because you can't do much alone.  We are designed to work together.

Yup, I got off my elliptical to take notes.  The more I listen the better I like him.  He has a positive up beat look at reality.  No sugar coating.  No pandering to the masses. Straight up "it is what it is."  Looking forward to mission 3 Retrain your brain.  

Sun reminding me it is still there. 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Still bugs me

 Warning this post is a rant.....if you are in a place today that reading my rant is not helpful to you, skip this post.  Hug a friend or a pet, watch a favorite movie....storms pass, sun still shines behind the clouds.  I put the rant below the picture. 

I thought I was over feeling bugged by people doubting my version of my childhood.  I'm not.  I started seeing a new counselor, she asked me if someone believes what I was telling her.  At the time I calmly answered, "Yes, my first counselor and my sister."  There are a lot more besides that, like the 12 jurors that put him in prison, but I realized in thinking it over and over that this counselor doesn't believe me.  I was terribly depressed yesterday, and binged on chocolate last night.  Yes, if I get enough chocolate it will do a chemical magic that I actually do feel better.  I also slept on the couch with a light on and had a rough night sleep.  People don't want to believe that people exist that chose evil.  Chose to intentionally harm as many people as possible. People that want to see others surfer and revel in that suffering.  People that purposely pick children to torment because they feel bigger and stronger.  Bullies that are looking for victims not a fight.  People don't want to believe that mothers and fathers exist that set out to destroy their own offspring through their own cruelty.  Best trick of the century is the world trying to say no evil exists.  Harry Potter movie the Sorcerer's Stone portrays this with Voldermorts statement. 

Quirrell's lesson from Voldemort, as told to Harry:
"There is no good and evil, there is only power...and those too weak to seek it."

People make excuses for abusers for example, "They didn't know they were hurting you."  "They had a hard life."  "They don't know any better." Shit, shit and more shit......yea sometimes I have done things that I didn't recognize harmed someone else.  When I realized, I apologized.  Having a hard life does not excuse poor behavior.  Every morning I wake up and can choose today how I will behave.  They don't know better because it is convenient not to learn anything else.  Filled with pride and seething with resentment shuts down the mind to where no learning can occur.  Yea, the crap in my life really happened.  Nobody can make me deny it because it is uncomfortable for them.  

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Mentally Strong People Avoid....

Anytime I see information about mentally strong people I want to know what the do and do not do to be that way.  One way to draw a picture is not drawing what is the object but drawing what isn't.  Here are some examples of using negative space in art:

I found this article on what Mentally Strong People Avoid:

I decided to try and express each of these things to avoid as what are the things mentally strong people do.

Avoid 1.    Waste Time Feeling Sorry for Themselves. There is an important difference between feeling sorry for yourself and evaluating and acknowledging what happened to you.  Feeling sorry for yourself involves an element of blaming and expectations that someone else needs to fix it.  I believe a mentally strong person reviews a situations decides what they have control over and starts there.  No time for a pity party when a plan of action needs to be put in place and implemented.

Avoid 2. Give Away Their Power.  I didn't believe I had any power to give away.  A mentally strong person knows they have power and understands that choosing to act instead of just reacting keeps their power.  As long as I am waiting around for someone else to change their behavior, I am giving away my power to the other person.  I have the power to choose and I choose not to give that away.

Avoid 3.    Shy Away from Change. Embrace change, I don't mean change for the fun of changing or jerking people around. I am talking about choosing a path and moving towards goals. When we have goals and a plan we are embracing the change of our choice.

Avoid 4. Waste Energy on Things They Can’t Control. We can not stop the world from turning. Not possible. Therefor, be willing to go with the orbit.  I can't control rush hour traffic or someone with 100 coupons in the check out line.  However, I can explore different driving routes and time them to see what works best.  I actually cut my driving time in the morning by almost 10 minutes.  I can choose to use my driving time as mental processing time.  I can get in a different line at the check out.  I can reassure the cashier that is apologizing for the slowness to lighten their day.  A mentally strong people know what they can control and what they can't.  A child throwing a screaming temper tantrum is trying to control things they can't, some people don't out grow this.

Avoid 5. Worry About Pleasing Others.   Note to self, there is a difference between choosing to do something that brings someone else pleasure and people pleasing.  Fixing my DH's favorite dinner is pleasing him because I enjoy pleasing him.  Trying to please my nasty boss was impossible simply because his displeasure was not about me.  I believe mentally strong people realize that the reaction of other people is usually about the person reacting.  Mentally strong people are confident that they are acting in a reasonable and fair manor.  They are also willing to make some adjustments but recognize that most people demanding to be pleased can't be.  A mentally strong person has healthy boundaries.

Avoid 6. Fear Taking Calculated Risks. A mentally strong person isn't fearless but they are willing to take risks.  They feel confident in their ability to handle surprise results and make adjustments in their behavior.  A fearful person doesn't do anything for fear the results will not be perfectly as they desire.  Quite off they had experience such out comes.  A mentally strong person recognizes that some things are worth the risk and know that failure is temporary.

Avoid 7. Dwell on the Past. There is a difference between learning from the past and trying to move in. The past is over. Going back there does not change it.  Part of healing is telling your story but I know people that get caught in the loop of telling their story over and over and over without learning anything from it.

Avoid 8. Make the Same Mistakes Over and Over. As noted above, learn from mistakes. Try a new route.   Reassess and make a new plan.  If a mental strong person feels that deja vu of 'been here done that' they try a different solution.  Or try to find a way not to go down the same road, again.

Avoid 9. Resent Other People’s Success. This was not a struggle for me.   I was thrilled when someone esle succeeded.  I experienced several unpleasant interactions before I understood not everyone would be thrilled with my successes.  I also learned about back handed compliments.  Those pesky, "You're great but........"  Mentally strong people rejoice with you.  Besides they are busy creating their own success and don't need to lean on yours.

Avoid 10. Give Up After Failure. As noted earlier, mentally strong people know that failure is temporary.  Too many times people give up just short of when they would succeed.  My sister sent me a post by FrogLogic that encourages a person to work to their fail.  You don't know how far you can go until you push to fail.  I'm still working on this idea. 

Avoid 11. Fear Alone Time. Mentally strong people are one of their own best friends. Being alone means evaluation, planning and pleasure with doing things then enjoy doing alone. There is no need to be afraid of being alone when you love yourself.

Avoid 12. Feel the World Owes Them Anything. Mentally strong people do not feel they are entitled to a life of ease. Their experience taught them that they are not owed anything just because they were born. Since they are not entitled they take responsibility for themselves and their own needs.

Avoid 13. Expect Immediate Results.  Expecting results yesterday only leaves frustration and disappointment in its wake.  Mentally strong people realistically estimate how long things take to do.  A one day diet does not meet a 20 lb weight loss.  Anything worth doing takes time, effort, and a good dose of patience.  I think this last one says mentally strong people are patient with others and themselves. 

Wow  awesome list of qualities.  I wonder if I can come up with one word for each of these?
1. Optimistic
2. Powerful
3. Humble
4. Flexible
5. Confident
6. Adventuresome
7. Forward thinking
8. Teachable
9. Joyful
10. Tenascious
11. Comfortable
12. Self-reliant
13. Patient.

What words would you put with this list?

A new dawn

Monday, July 21, 2014

Struggles and Strength

"I'm thankful for my struggle, because without it I wouldn't have stumbled across my strength!"

Trials, frustrations, challenges, problems, and generally crap happens.  We came to Earth to have life experiences.  Somethings are difficult to learn until you do it yourself.  Have you ever tried to explain to someone what salt tastes like? 

I love the quote, "We are not human beings having spiritual experiences, we are spiritual beings having human experiences." - Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

When KavinCoach first started talking to me about my strengths I was totally confused.  I didn't think I had any.  I saw myself as a weak person that had crap happen to me.  I felt helpless and overwhelmed by my human experiences.  He started pointing out that I did have strengths but he didn't tell me what they were.  He knew that until I saw the strengths it didn't matter if I had them or not.  I needed to see where my strengths were.  As I recognized my strengths I started using them more fully.  I didn't understand how this would work.  KavinCoach challenged me to a game of war with cards.  In the game each person has a stack of cards face down.  Both people turn over the card and the one with the highest card wins.  If the cards match, then there is a war by putting down three cards and turning over the 4th card, which ever card is higher wins.  KavinCoach changed one rule, he got to look at his cards before playing them.  He easily beat me since he used a slightly higher card each time or put the low cards in the war piles and beat me with a higher 4th card.  He knew his strengths and beat me in no time.  He explained that knowing my strengths is more important than knowing my weaknesses.  He encouraged me to use my strengths to build up where I am weak.  Too often I focused on where I was weak, people pleaser, no boundaries, afraid, no self confidence and so many others.  When I started working on my strengths I was stunned that I had any.  I do, determination, never give up, kindness, and other traits I hadn't recognized as strengths.  I even felt kindness was a weakness but KavinCoach pointed out that it takes a strong person to treat others with kindness.  I felt bewildered and confused.  He suggested to me that my foundation of what was good and what wasn't was total crumbled mess and I needed to start over with a new foundation of what to value and what was of little or no worth.  Kind of like remodeling a house from the foundation up and still live in the house.  Doing a complete overhaul on yourself takes work, time, and a willingness to change.  Not everyone is willing to make such major changes.  I still pay attention to the weaknesses in my life but I now recognize that I have strengths to help me compensate for them or to help shore up where my weaknesses are letting me down.  I also recognize that like building body muscle it takes many, many repetitions to build muscle.  Sitting around doing nothing doesn't change how my body responds.  

We all start small and then grow.  Challenges help to strengthen us, sometimes in ways we don't recognize or understand.  


Sunday, July 20, 2014

If you're going through Hell....

Keep going.

Truly this is a title of a book I found on my daughter's book shelf.  First the title then the cover caught my attention.

I almost quit reading it several times.  Main reasons is Doug Giles liked name dropping.  Totally useless to me since I didn't know most of the names he dropped.  Plus it was written in 2009 and many of the names are no longer in the news.  I also felt like he confused brutal with strong.  That is a sore spot for me.  I learned from some amazing people that quiet strength is firm but not brutal.  However, every time I put the book down saying I was going to stop reading I was inspired to pick it up again.  The feeling I got was stop looking for a reason to be offended and read what he has to say.  He has plenty to say. 

The one part that really caught my attention was when he pointed out that in the pearl of great price parable how it is worded. 
Matthew 13:45-46
 45 ¶Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls:
 46 Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.

I thought yea, yea we should seek what is of great price.  Nope that is not what Giles pointed out.  He pointed out the the merchant is the kingdom of heaven.  The kingdom of heaven is often a metaphor for Christ.  Giles pointed out that Christ is looking for goodly pearls and gave all He had for us.  

What a switch up.  Christ is looking for us.  He gave all that he had to purchase us.  Christ wants us in His kingdom.  The difference is outstanding.  

I believe that Christ died for the sins and suffering of the world.  I also believe that Christ saves us one at a time.  I believe that if I were the only person on Earth He would still offer His atonement to me.  Christ gave all that he had to purchase me.  What a concept.  

My daughter is letting me borrow the book.  There is a lot more in there that is really quite surprising in his perspective.  Giles believes in Christ and is not afraid to say it.  

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Roller Coaster Ride


I don't have pictures because I didn't bring my camera.  I planned to be too busy playing.  When I was a kid, I LOVED roller coasters.  The first roller coaster I took my children on was Space Mountain at Disneyland.  Then came counseling.  Then integration.  My world was turned inside out and upside down.  I was terrified of everything.  I hadn't been on a roller coaster since the day I took my kids to Disneyland over 20 years ago.  My son-in-law asked very politely if I would like to go on some of the roller coasters.  King's Island didn't have just one.  I took the roller coaster challenge.  I decided to start with the tallest - Diamondback It was right next to the children's ride that I rode with my grandson.  I knew there was a potential of a complete melt down on this ride.  Part of thriving, to me, is doing the things that I enjoyed before integration.  Roll up my emotional sleeves and lets go to it.  First the wait......lines are long, it is summertime and the ride is popular.  We finally get on and the ride begins with a long climb up and up and up and up and then the crest.  There is a portion of the drop down that my body was in free fall. I was no longer in my seat but I didn't feel the restraints either.  My heart rocketed into over time.  All the physical reactions of terror....or excitement.....I could choose.  What POWER!!!!!!!! I could choose what this meant for me and I had a split second to do it.  After a quick thought that it is bad for business to actually hurt anyone, I chose EXCITEMENT.....up, down, zooming, and swooping around a track.  It seemed to go forever and over in seconds all at the same time.  I felt tears on my face.  Not crying in fear but reaction to the wind pummeling my eyes.  The same wind whipped my hair into a frenzy.  My heart was pounding; WOW what a ride!

What did I want to do next.  S-I-L offered me any ride. 

Next, we tackled Racer, an old fashion wooden roller coaster.  This one didn't have the thrill factor of Diamondback but it tugged at emotional memories of childhood coasters.  Dipping into childhood is risky for me.  However, all I came up with were happy emotions and fragmented fun memories.  It was fun but I just discovered that I am a bit of a thrill seeker. 

On to the Beast....  This one was twice as long as any of the other roller coasters; plus, it included dark tunnels and raging speed of 65 mph (105 km per hour). So cool.  I saw my picture after that one.  I regretted that my daughter was holding my purse and I couldn't buy it....the very essence of pure bliss on my face.  I loved it. 

Next to Beast stood Vortex. I've always been afraid of rides that go upside down.  My S-I-L checked in with me, did I want to try it?  So far, I only rode on coasters that I had done something similar when I was a kid.  Isn't part of thriving going beyond what I did before?  I took the challenge.  Shake - rattle - roll tumbling over and over in my seat I ended up bumping my ear in the ride.  No fun getting hurt but I did it and loved this one too.   My body was shook up but I was still standing and loving what I was feeling - Exhilarated. 

We were supposed to meet up with people at a restaurant at the park when we arrived, the doors were locked.  I looked at my S-I-L...I apologized for making him miss meeting up with his friends.  He smiled and said we had time for one more roller coaster.  I felt like a teenager staying out after curfew.  Oh more....decisions....decisions....all over the park were signs about their latest roller coaster the Banshee.  The sun went down.  It was dark.  We lined up.  My heart was already jumping around with anticipation.  This is an inverted roller coaster. 
I included the link to the video....if images bother you, skip the video....but I was set, ready to go.  All my senses were acutely aware - another wait.

We get strapped in.  We were only held in by the shoulder harness and lap belt.  Our feet swung off the ground.  The workers checked every person to see that all the harnesses are locked properly.  They even had music with screeching to add another component to the ride.  Ready-set-GOOOOOOOOO!!!!! I can still close my eyes and feel the sensation of sweeping into the night by this giant roller coaster seat.  A thrill seekers dance orchestrated by the coaster designers intended to push the thrill factor to screaming pitch.  They succeeded.  What a ride that was.  I loved it.  Clambering off I chortled that was one I would do was 10:00 PM.   Fireworks started and the pilgrimage to the front of the amusement park brought the evening to a close.  We gave up our cell phones so we wouldn't loose them on the rides so we scanned the crowds for my daughter and his friends.  I started to feel nervous then reminded myself I trusted my S-I-L this far I trusted that he would know how to join up with everyone again.  At last, we were all gather together, I chattered and shared my excitement.  I so appreciated the wonderful evening to thrive.  I don't need to ride a roller coaster to thrive.  I choose to do what I want to do and fear had no say in it.  That to me is thriving. 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Put the glass down

This was posted yesterday by my friend Colleen on her page Insight for Living's Special Needs Ministries. This is such a great reminder to give God our burdens...He never grows tired or weary and nothing is too big or heavy for Him to carry...
"Amazing story shared on our blog today...A psychologist walked around a room while teaching stress management to an audience. As she raised a glass of water, everyone expected they'd be asked the "half empty or half full" question. Instead, with a smile on her face, she inquired: "How heavy is this glass of water?"
Answers called out ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz.
She replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute, it's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my arm. If I hold it for a day, my arm will feel numb and paralyzed. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn't change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes."
She continued, "The stresses and worries in life are like that glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them all day long, you will feel paralyzed – incapable of doing anything."...Remember to put the glass down".

I found this on Facebook several times from several different people.  I checked Snopes and this one has reached the level of urban legend.  No one knows if it actually happened.  I appreciated one person that commented that if you hold out your arm holding nothing after an hour your arm will hurt; after several hours anyone would be uncomfortable so in one sense it is not about the water at all.  Phrases, ideas, cliches and other blips catch my attention.  Some I agree completely others I explore their nuances....hold it up to the light of questioning and challenging its validity.  I didn't used to do this.  I would read something and believe it.  Counseling taught me to challenge the obvious.  Rethink my perspective.  Does what I am reading stand up to my belief system?  Does my belief system need to be reevaluated?  I believe the story has value in grabbing my attention because he took a familiar cliche and presented a new question.  My own life was bombing a long in a downward spiral.  KavinCoach started challenging my perceptions about myself, my relationships, my past, my very existence.  To change, I first needed to be aware of what I am doing.  I needed to be aware that I am still holding the water and maybe I need to find a spot to set it down or if I don't want it, throw it away. 

Duck duck

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Home again home again.....

..... jiggity jog.

Other than thunderstorms in Denver shutting down the airport, uneventful flights home. (Amazing to see planes and planes all lined up waiting for take off; we were number 40 in line.) I already miss my daughter and her sweet family.  I had a wonderful time of feeling loved and doing amazing stuff, an opera, roller coasters, sleeping under glow-in-the-dark stars, taking pictures, fireworks, bonfire, playing with two year old grandson, talking with my daughter and son-in-law.  Just exactly what a vacation should be, a total break from everything including TV and internet.  I did have a couple of times at an internet cafe to keep up.  I also learned to use my phone to stay in touch but trying to write a post on the phone is excruciatingly slow for me.  I am terrible at using my phone for communicating.  I am too deaf to talk on the phone for very much and texting typing is right up there with watching paint dry for fun.  Frustration level of trying to get my phone to post and approve comments was close to throwing the phone across the room.  This morning, I woke up on Ohio time instead of Arizona time.  Heavy sigh.....3 hours ahead.  Well, I am back and feeling happy and feeling rested and missing my daughter and her cute family and missing her home made bread and her cool weather.  However, I do not miss her brutal humidity.  At the zoo, I gained a whole new respect of heat with high humidity.  Fortunately, I remembered that the way to cool off is from the inside out.  Best money I spent was on an ice cream cone at the zoo.  Very expensive and smooth and cool and I felt like a new woman after the frozen goodness hit my stomach.  I didn't count calories but I did exercise....keeping up with a two year old can be exhausting, keeping up with my super fit daughter is so not happening.  Fortunately, she went to the gym and took me for walks.  I am not up to her 10,000 steps a day.  I now understand the value of a Fitbit to challenge yourself with a viewable goal.  Too easy to sit down and not do much when on vacation. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Too Busy

In Bad Company inc shared a great link to an article by Tyler Wardis about being 'busy.'  I enjoyed both articles and actually started with In Bad Company first so it influenced how I read Tyler's article.  I realized that I agreed with most of Tyler's ideas.  I sometimes get busy when I am trying to avoid something I should do.  I know my kids loathed busy work at school.  I am not too fond of busy work myself.  I am learning that being involved with my work doesn't mean I am involved in 'busy' work.  I think my own definition of busy work is doing something that keeps me moving my arms and legs but no progress occurs.  Or I've had a project given to me at work that I spend hours on it only to find out that they had no intention of using what I did; it just kept me busy.  I am now engaged in some really interesting projects that I want to spend my time on.  I am coming off of a lovely restful vacation and do not want to get sucked back into useless busy work.  I am also looking at some of the jobs I do and why I do them.  It is 100% acceptable to do something to please my DH, because that is about building our relationship.  There are other things in my life that I am going to consider more carefully if it is worth spending my time.  I have no desire to waste my life on 'busy.'

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Power of Introverts

Susan Cain shares how introverts lost popularity in the last few decades.  We are no longer a society that accepts that some people want to be alone and do not want to share everything about themselves.  I believe the link is well worth following.  It does have a short informal quiz at the end to kind of gauge how introverted you are.  Lets just say that I hit very high on that introvert score.  Interesting thing about blogs is I feel like it is a place that I can share about myself.  But you may notice I rarely have any pictures of myself. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

How to interact with an introvert

One of the shockers for me after integration was to find out that I am more of an introvert.  I prefer a certain amount of alone time everyday.  Parties leave me drained for days.  Loving someone I still need my space.  I didn't know I did this.  When I worked in parts, one part of me was totally extroverted, she loved parties and people, usually in that order.  Another part thought that parties and people a total waste of time.  I didn't know that when I brought all the parts together I would be more of an introvert than anything else.  I started researching what it was to be an introvert.  I wanted to know if I was just being difficult.  I learned that I'm not.  One of the videos I found on-line even explained that introverts function differently from extroverts on how they react to food, social situations, type of work they enjoy doing, and many different areas.  I like the idea that being an introvert is just a different operating system.  I'm content to be alone.  I am thankful for a wonderful DH that accepts that for me not going to a party with him is not him but me.  I learned how to enjoy a party by accepting that I need something different by helping in the kitchen or going for a short walk outside.  Accepting myself went a long way to allowing others to accept me.  

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Give me Strength

I follow some great pages on facebook one of them is  This is a quote they posted:
God didn't give you the strength to get back on your feet so that you can run back to the same thing that knocked you down.  

I love this idea.  I also remember that the scriptures instruct us to put on the whole armor of God and tell us what it is. 
Ephesians 6:10-18
 10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
 11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
 12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
 13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
 14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
 15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
 16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
 18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, Holy Spirit, and the word of God can help us daily.  We begin with prayer, meditation, seeking for these things in our lives.  I figure if we are counseled to put on God's armor He means for us to protect ourselves. 

Saturday, July 12, 2014

What you have left

Oh, my friend, it’s not what they take away from you that counts.  It’s what you do with what you have left. — Hubert Humphrey

I thought about this.  During counseling, I spent a lot of sessions acknowledging the damage in my life.  I remember one quote that I read on FB, "You can't over come everything you face but you can't over come anything that you don't face."  I had to face my past.  I had to remember enough to acknowledge crap happened.  I couldn't let it go until I knew what I was letting go of.  My brain tried to protect me when I was too little to process what happened to me by suppressing my memories.  I spent years remembering and facing my past.  KavinCoach reminded me often, "If you lived through it, you can remember it."  Those sessions were difficult and the pain as fresh as the day those events happened.  But my past does not define me.  My future is mind to mold as I desire. What I do with what I have left is far more important than what was taken from me in the first place.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Children belong to their future

“Children do not constitute anyone’s property: they are neither the property of their parents nor even of society. They belong only to their own future freedom.”
– Mikhail Bakunin

 One of the places I lived was Washington State, USA.  I became involved with a group trying to legalize home schooling.  I found out that the constitution of that state declared children belonging to the state and the parents were guardians.  I was alarmed to learn that the state could come in and take my children at any time.  I found this very disturbing but most people in the area that I talked to knew nothing about this.  So I wasn't sure if it was propaganda used to scare parents into keeping their kids in public schools or other parents trying to frighten parents into supporting their cause.  Either way, it made me pay more attention to how my kids were treated at school and at home.  I wasn't raised as my own person.  My sister and I were treated as if we were interchangeable.  If I liked something, of course, my sister must like the same thing and vice-versa.  I liked ballet so they figured Judy did too.  Nope.  Judy loved horses and I thought there were great but not at the top of my chart.  The responsibility to raise children as individuals with their own future and own dreams and own destination is tricky.  I discovered for myself the challenge of seeing all six of my children as very different people with different needs and different dreams.  I am thankful for being involved with my adult children's lives.  I am so impressed with what each one is doing.  I am so happy for each of them.  When I cuddled them in my arms as little infants, I never dreamed how amazing their journey would be.  I'm enjoying watching my kids raise their children.  I am truly blessed. 

Thursday, July 10, 2014


I started counseling for our marriage over 10 years ago.  It rapidly turned to counseling for me since until I became healthier working on our marriage was almost impossible.  Then it became marriage counseling again and then I realized after all this I still have to cope with PTSD.  So I did like I usually do turned to Mr. Google and started researching.  This is when I started getting really frustrated.  There didn't seem to be a nitch for me.  I wasn't in the military.  Thankful their information is shared by others but they had a known enemy.  My enemy said, "I love you."  Others wrote PTSD blogs about being like you were before what ever brought PTSD into your life in the first place.  I don't have a before PTSD story.  Going back to 4 years old just seems a little ridiculous to me.  It doesn't fit my needs very well.  Others said I had to heal before I could have the good things in life....I didn't want to wait forever.  I was rebelling, I wanted a page that shared ways of coping and thriving as I go along in my journey.  I finally accepted that PTSD is with me for life and I plan to enjoy my life.  Out of frustration I started putting together more and more information.  I realized that if I really want to take the crap that happened in my life and make a difference...share what I learned.  Not everyone will be interested.  Not everyone will agree with my ideas.  But I am not writing to everyone,  I started a new information web page PTSD - Accepting, Coping, Thriving
It is different than this blog that it shares information specifically about PTSD.  Many of the pages will be unchanging there for whoever is looking for information.  I will be using links to other awesome sites that I learn from, book reviews of what I find helps, and general information on how to accept living with PTSD.  I will have blog posts that become part of the static pages like this one:
I will share ideas from myself and others as to what to do to cope daily and nightly with PTSD.  It doesn't allow me a good night sleep.  I don't get vacations from it. I don't even get to go to the store without it.  It is part of who I am but does not need to define who I am.  A bit tricky when PTSD can so rudely interrupt my life.  I am growing stronger every day, I am learning more coping skills every day, I am thriving everyday and PTSD is still there.  I will continue to share my journey here with the day to day joys and frustration of living.  My PTSD based information will be over on my new blog. 
Come on by and visit anytime.