A Letter To My Daughter On Her 1st Day of High School!

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I wrote this a year ago but wanted to share it again.

Dear Kayleigh,

I cannot imagine how you must be feeling today. Maybe you are old enough and wise enough to see the momentous significance of this day and maybe not. I am here to tell you this. Today is a huge day. It is a day to live in each moment and take it all in. Pause before you walk through the front door of the next 4 years of your life. Take note of what you’re feeling. You will want to remember. What do you see? How do you feel? What are you thinking? Write it all down so you will never forget. Will your heart beat faster because you are scared or excited or will you be questioning whether you picked the right outfit and whether you should have curled or straightened your hair? Take a deep breath and bask in the moment of the beginning of a new and exciting chapter of your life. This chapter is important. It will shape you and define you and serve as a pathway to the next chapter in life.

Look around at all the faces. You will see them every day and some days I am sure you will wish you didn’t have to see them at all. The truth is, one day you will step out of those doors on the last day of your senior year and those people will no longer be part of your everyday life. I promise you will miss them. Your heart will ache for them and the safety and familiarity of school will always leave a little hole in your heart. There is something very special and bonding about having your high school experience in common. Don’t compare yourself to anyone. Remember there is only one person in the world that is you. You are unique and special just the way you are. Don’t ever try to be like anyone else. Always believe in yourself, and listen to the little compass inside of you. It will always let you know when something is wrong or something is right.

You will learn so many things these next few years and most of it will not be taught from any book. You will learn about life, and love, and success, and how to handle disappointments. You will probably find your first love and have your heart broken beyond repair. Learn that each morning brings a new day. Take comfort in that. Every day you have the chance to be a better version of you. You will make mistakes and you will move on and grow. Be the person you want to be. Bring kindness and forgiveness and a smile to everyone you see. Years from now, when someone hears your name, do you want them to remember you with a scowl on your face or with a great big smile? You will be remembered by the people whose lives you will touch. Someday, someone will look back and remember a kind deed or a kind word that you offered them. Be confident and kind and remember, even though you think you know it all, you really don’t. Use this time to pay attention, to learn and grow. Bottle it up and take it all in. Study hard, be a good friend, and just have fun. You will look back someday despite the drama and the lessons and the tests, broken friendships, broken hearts, mistakes, accomplishments and realize that these next four years will be some of the most memorable in your life. Don’t get caught up in the small stuff. Nothing is the end of the world except one very important detail. Do not do anything that will take away your self respect. What other people think about you is not that important, BUT what YOU think about YOURSELF means everything! Respect yourself and others will respect you too. Do not think you are above anyone but know you are certainly not beneath them. Don’t judge. Find the common in everyone. Remember, at the end of the day, we all have the same feelings and similar experiences. Treat yourself and others with respect. It will help you sleep a whole lot better at night.

Work hard at everything you do. Don’t do anything half way. Push yourself and challenge yourself and don’t ever settle for less than what you are capable of. Every choice you make will affect how others will see you and more importantly how you see yourself. Make wise ones and don’t be in a hurry. These years will go fast and life gets harder and harder with each new responsibility. Take time to find something to be grateful for everyday. Gratitude brings more of what you want and love. Don’t waste time being jealous. There will always be someone prettier, smarter, more popular, more liked. Don’t compete. Practice forgiveness and compassion towards everyone. Carrying anger is like a poison that slowly kills you over time. Teach people how to treat you and be the best version of yourself everyday.

I am so excited to watch you grow these next few years. I can’t help but remember that time in my own life and feel a little envious of how lucky you are to be knocking on the door of this wonderful short time of yours. I am proud of you and I love you and I know these next few years will be special ones! It seems like just yesterday that I held you in my arms for the very first time. It is time to let you fly and fly you will.

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Thank You For Your Childhood

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What a chilling phrase if you really give it some thought. When we reach a certain age, society expects us to automatically become an adult. People expect much more from us than they ever had before. So much truth in 5 little words. It’s as if a particular day is the bridge we cross that supposedly changes the way we act and provides a more responsible way to think.

We were out driving with my daughter today. My husband told her to turn left through an intersection but never saw the car coming. She just automatically followed directions. Thankfully he yelled stop forcefully enough so that she was ably to apply the break and prevent a collision. We realized that just because she is of age to hold a permit, she will not always be experienced enough to make the right decision.

I think adulthood is just like that. We start to be treated like one but really nothing has changed but a single day that fast forwards us to a new age. We don’t change, time just decides how old we are. I think we forget that experience is on going. It is life experience that tests us and teaches us how to respond. It doesn’t happen over night and it doesn’t magically occur when we turn 18.

What a sad concept to even insinuate that growing older means giving up our childhood. The older we get, I believe we realize how much better off we were when we were more like a child, when we believed in things with child like faith and loved wholeheartedly with our childish heart. And don’t even get me started on how easily the young heart forgives and moves on.

The Giver was really thought provoking and this line really stuck with me long after I stepped out of the theatre. I thought is was worth sharing with all of you. I’d love to hear your thoughts. How do you feel when you hear the words “thank you for your childhood”? How does it make you feel?

Life Is Like A Rodeo

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I guess there is a real parallel between life and a rodeo. Some of you are probably asking yourselves where I could possibly be going with this one , but be patient, you will see.

The arena is where our interactions take place. It’s life, plain and simple. It could be our jobs, our home, a restaurant. You name it, anywhere life happens gives life to an arena.

The bull could represent anyone who carries anger, attacks others and becomes aggressive in a moments notice. They are the ones quick to anger and speak with a hurtful tongue. If you disagree with them or rub them the wrong way, you can be certain they will attack.

Who is the cowboy? That is the person who attempts to interact with the bull. The one who tries with all his might to have some type of relationship, all the while knowing they may be attacked. The person who tries to get him under control, yet despite holding on for dear life and giving it his best fight, either just gives up and bows out or gets too roughed up by the constant fight.

So, who then is the rodeo clown? According to Wikipedia, the primary job of the bullfighter(aka rodeo clown) is to protect a fallen rider from the bull by distracting the bull and providing an alternative target for the bull to attack, whether the rider has been bucked off or has jumped off of the animal. I guess it would be the person who gets in between the bull and cowboy to try and protect the rider and steer the bull away from his path. And the craziest part, that clown actually does it while alleviating everyone’s horror by making the crowd laugh. Sounds like a dangerous job, don’t you think? Who would knowingly put himself in danger to protect someone from getting hurt or possibly risk getting hurt himself by redirecting the bulls aggression toward himself? It doesn’t sound like a pleasant job but I guess someone has to do. Would you volunteer, especially knowing you could be harmed in the process?

And who would even attempt to be anywhere near a bull with its unpredictability and aggressive nature?

And do I need to even ask who would want to mimic the bull as far as behavior?

Who are the bulls, the cowboys, and the rodeo clowns in your life? Pay attention. They are easy to pick out.

We all play a role in the arena of life. Which role do you play, the cowboy, the bull or the rodeo clown? I’d love to hear about it.

Waiting For The Right Moment

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We have these silly ideas in our head that there is a right moment for this and a right moment for that. You know, like a first kiss or taking a magical vacation to the Greek Islands but how many of those moments that you’ve been waiting for actually end up taking place?

I realized on my anniversary this year that I have never once had the opportunity to use my china. I was waiting for the right meal, the right night, the right company. Who decides exactly when that moment arrives? I had to laugh to myself as I placed the china on my dining room table tonight. Why you ask? Because I decided today is special. I am here with the family that I love. We are happy, we are healthy and we are here together. So yes, today is my special moment. I just hope nobody drops my china.

Shout Out To My Readers

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From the bottom of my heart, I just want to send a warm, fuzzy thank you to everyone who takes the time to read my posts. I have had an increasing number of views lately and I hope you all know how much I look forward to and appreciate each and every comment. I am grateful for the new friendships and those little moments when you take time out of your busy day to just say hi, check on me and make me feel special. I hope you know how much I enjoy reading about your journeys as well. Every like and every comment of kindness is more incentive and inspiration to keep writing. Thank you!

We Have a Choice

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Me - Who am I?

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How did you wake up this morning? Did you wake up frustrated, or happy? Do you believe that you had a choice in what mood you would wake up in? I do.

A few years ago a man asked me, “Are you going to have a good day today?” He didn’t tell me to have a good day as most people do during conversation. He asked me if I was going to. By doing so, he made me realize that I had a choice over the matter. It is my choice whether I will have a good day or a bad one.

Don’t get me wrong, tragedies happen that we have no control over. However, on a typical day most of us (excluding those who struggle with depression, bipolar disorder, etc) have a choice on how we will spend it. If we want to be angry, we can be. On…

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The Secret To Having a Positive Mind

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Do you ever wonder what makes someone so positive? I am about to tell you a secret that might just change your entire life. But first we have to look at the mind. I am about to allow you to peek into my mine. This is the dialogue that went on inside my head from the moment I first opened my eyes this morning.

” I hate Mondays. Just great! Another weekend where I didn’t catch up on any sleep. Sure dog, I will jump right out of bed to let you out because everyone’s needs are always more important than mine. Why isn’t Chase downstairs yet? Oh of course, he is just sitting there on the couch doing nothing. God forbid he gets up to get his own breakfast. Why would he when you always do everything for everyone. Of wonderful. Kayleigh washes clothes every Sunday night. Now on top of everything else I have to fold the load that’s dry and switch over the other. How convenient for everyone to leave their mess and walk out for me to do it. I hate Mondays. Maybe I should make them take the bus. Why should I do things for them when they are always dumping on me. Oh of course they are sitting in the car while the dogs still need to go in the crate and there are the papers that are supposed to be returned to school today. I guess Ill carry them out to the car too.”

Yes, close your mouth, I do have thoughts like that just like everyone else. We all do, that’s just the way it is. So how do we turn those thoughts around to attempt to have a better day? First of all, you have to recognize the pattern and say no, I will not listen to this anymore. I am not a victim and I will not allow my thoughts to make me feel like one.

Sounds easy right? Well, it’s not. Time to call on step two. It’s important to acknowledge your feelings and realize there is always some truth to our thoughts. The point is to not allow the mind to blow them out of proportion. You have to find a way to balance out the negativity. For me it’s writing. I explore the feelings. I let them come and I leave them on a page as words. I also follow inspirational bloggers so that I too can continuously hear a positive message. When you combine the news and the negative people who surround you, you are doomed if you don’t find a way to counteract it. Repeating affirmations, taking a walk, spending time in nature or posting inspirational quotes in your car and around your house are just some ways to turn your attitude around. Oh yes, and of course exercise. I am sure one of the biggest contributors to my negative self talk is the fact that I haven’t been to yoga in weeks. That is an amazing way to quiet the mind and regain peace.

Being positive takes a great deal of discipline and work. You aren’t born with the gift of being positive and NEWSFLASH, there actually are no rose colored glasses. People who are positive work very hard to be positive. It is an uphill battle and your sword has to always be ready to fight a good fight.

Now you know. Being positive, loving the ones who hurt you, forgiving the ones who hate you and maintaining a positive, healthy attitude can be something you too can achieve if you put in the work., but I warn you, it doesn’t magically happen overnight. The question is, will you do it?