I hope something wonderful happens for each one of us today. Expect happiness. Look for kindness. The world is a wonderful place when you focus on the good. Remember, we get more of what we focus on. Choose wisely.
I did a yoga retreat about a year ago and one of the the things we focused on was called bullshit stories. These are the stories we tell ourselves to feed our own narrative or sometimes to make us feel more powerful or even victimized. It’s a question we all need to ask ourselves and I can assure you it’s not an easy question to answer. It takes a ton of courage and a tremendous amount of soul searching to get real enough with yourself to be completely honest. I have never in my 40+ years seen such a twisting and misinterpretation of events and words as I do today. Bullshit stories are all around us. It is the new fad, the in thing, the new craze. I won’t be a part of them. Honesty is so important to me and to see so much dishonesty is disenchanting at best. I don’t want to be sucked into other people’s drama and when I don’t like the game being played, I simply take myself out of it. I won’t play. I will not be a fuse for anger, contempt, superiority or hate of any kind. It’s all one and the same and there’s not a good enough reason in the world to justify it any other way. The problem isn’t so much leadership but rather the followers. It’s the little people, the everyday interactions, the misconceptions being spread at a record pace. It amazes me that people have such difficulty weighing all the facts and discerning the truth from there. I think part of the problem stems from following people, friends and media that are completely like minded. I think we miss the mark and it seriously damages our society as a whole. The hate groups are alive and well in our country but there are many more than we see reported in the news. People are driven by hate, consumed by it. But yet they think it only resides in everyone else. There is no excuse. No justification.The truth is as simple as this, we only see what we want to see and hear what we want to hear. That helps us build the strongest bullshit story we could possibly dream up and we even start to believe it too. What is your BS story? What purpose does it bring into your life?
I read this someplace today and I shook my head at how obvious this should be. I guess this is how I get stuck in places that I really don’t want to be. Put that mountain down and get on with it. Keep moving and you will get through. One foot in front of the other and one step at a time you can move forward and soon enough that mountain will be behind you.
These mountains that you are carrying, you were only supposed to climb.
To say I am distraught and saddened by what is going on in the world is an understatement at best. I got a phone call from my daughter last night. She is going through recruitment to join a sorority and struggling to know which one is right for her. As I read the reviews on Greekrank for each one, I felt immediately sick to my stomach. They label them top tier, middle and bottom tier. I didn’t get it at first but as I read more and more comments I clearly understood. Top tier was known as the girls who had money. Those are the sororities with the biggest, nicest houses and bottom tier usually meant the girls didn’t have a house and I assume aren’t as popular. Why do we feel the need to label everything? Why is everything a competition? Why do we insist on breaking people down into winners or losers? We line them up on a podium and decide who has the most value based on our own warped standards. As if any of us are that important. We are disillusioned. This is why we recognize hate in someone else but are unable to see it in ourselves. This is why we readily crucify people for crimes we are just as guilty of. But there’s a reason right? We justify that it’s okay for us because our thoughts are right and valid. The hypocrisy is sickening and we are blinded to it and consumed with ourselves. We think everyone should think like we do and if they don’t we slap labels on them. We call them names even though we’ve never known them. We call people bigots who disagree with our own beliefs because we don’t even know the definition of the word. We jump in to insult or demean anyone or anything that is inconsistent with what we think should be. I’ve had enough. Yeah, hatred is alive and well and we are all puppets in a dangerous game. We want to compare in a way that places people and beliefs and religions and race and even sororities in these same categories. We lift one up and demean the others according to what we think is impressive or important. Back to the sorority…
I will tell my daughter this…rip the damn label off. Ignore it, stomp on it, bury it in the ground. Don’t read other people’s opinions or give them any relevance. At the end of the day, all you can hope for is that you find yourself in a group of people who make you feel loved and supported. There’s enough people who will line up to tell you what is wrong with you, surround yourself with people who tell you what is right. Choose the people who make you feel you are good enough just the way you are. Those are the ones who should be top tier in your book. The rest is all an illusion. Don’t play the game . Freedom of speech was not intended to entitle everyone to share every single thought and opinion. Be better and kinder and more compassionate than ever before. Define your own categories according to what really matters. Remember we are not meant to be places in groups or boxes. we are all individuals, different and beautiful in our own way. We were never programmed to be the same. Just keep being you. Dont ever adjust!
Move in day is over and done. I learned a very important lesson through the process of dropping my daughter off at college. It’s really simple but something that may not register until you experience it yourself. Don’t tell people how to feel. In a world where we think we have the right to tell people how to act and what to believe, it is even more dangerous to tell them how they should feel. If someone is sad or hurting, be supportive. Even if you don’t get it or you think someone’s reaction is a big time overreaction, just give them a verbal hug. We all react to everything that happens in our own individual way and some of us are tougher than others depending on what it is we are trying to get through. Let people hurt, cry or grieve and just be there to give an encouraging word. We all have the best of intentions but sometimes we think too little before we speak. This is a reminder to encourage, lend a hand, lift someone up. We could use so much more of that in these trying times where we are all just fighting hard to get by and survive. I am having a difficult time right now. I cried in the grocery store today when I almost picked up that fourth piece of corn. I cried at the dinner table last night when I stared across at the empty chair. My daughter is gone from my nest and I am excited for her but I am sad for myself. And you know what? It’s okay to be sad. It is normal to grieve. Time will heal my wounds and I will get used to her being away but for right now I will give myself a break. Just breathe. Today I will just start with that.
Tomorrow is the day I leave my heart four hours away. Only I could understand the emptiness that closet must have felt as we loaded her clothes into the car. My whole world packed into two trunks ready to drive her off to start a new life someplace else. It’s bitter sweet I guess. There is a part of me excited for the change about to come into her life but the mom in me, the part that kept her safe and protected for 18 years is breaking apart at the seams. My life as I have known it is disappearing in front of my eyes and I can almost hear my heart tearing apart.
Love them and let them go.
It sounds easy in theory but when you watch a room that was so full of her empty out, your heart can’t help but feel that emptiness too. Tomorrow I will leave her behind. Tomorrow I quietly wink at God and remind him she is in His hands now. I will pray that I did enough and loved her enough and that she is ready to step behind the wheel. Her life is her own now. Will she make the right choices? Will she be kind and compassionate? Will she be happy? Grateful? I can only hope when I feel sad that I will remember her like I see her today…excited, full of life, her face sprouting a gigantic smile as she holds her new Bluetooth water bottle in her hand and dances around. She is my baby going off to college, that same little girl with light and adventure bursting from her eyes, ready to explore the next thing in her path. This time though I have to have the strength and courage to let her do it alone. She will always know where to find me and I will sit quietly waiting for her to return.
We took a quick trip to Colorado earlier this week. We were there less than 40 hours but we did a weeks worth of hiking and sightseeing. My favorite stop was Roxborough State Park. As soon as we pulled up in the car, I heard an audible sigh of relief. There are just some magical places that fill my body and soul with peace, love, contentment and gratitude and this was definitely one of them. As I sat at the top of the mountain halfway through the hike, part of me wanted to remain there forever looking out at this serene, beautiful, quiet piece of heaven. It was amazing and breathtaking and I am grateful for the experience. I am hoping these pictures share some of that with you. Tell me what you think?