Ready, set, go…

I am going on the biggest adventure of my life. I am so excited and I must say a little afraid. After much deliberation( maybe a few hours) I have decided to go back to France and immerse myself in the language. I have always loved the language and have had a monster desire to speak it fluently. At this stage in my life there is really no reason not to and as I have no clue what I am doing next or where I am going to land its quite possible it may be France. I mean why not!

I consider this a change of focus and the opportunity for a large break from the uncertainity I have been living in. I realize many people are finding themselves in similar places. After so many years of living life in a particular manner a single act or a cascading mountain of events happen and your life is radically different. Right now I am looking at radically different, the volcano in my life already erupted. I was getting stuck in the muck.

In the spiritual traditions when a person finds themselves stuck in a repeating of patterns it is time to take stock of that which is being missed. I like the analogy of life as a highway. Our life is like a journey on a highway with many stops and off and on ramps aplenty, you can go for long distances or turn off the highway and visit different locations and situations or you can get off and stay off the highway. I see my being stuck as having made a turn on my highway that has become an endless off and on ramp, I’m going in circles getting no where. Now this analogy means I am like a car and in this case a car on cruise control driving off and on the highway ramp over and over.

Praise God for all of the unseen forces that help us find our way. They may gently urge us back on our highway or they may recommend a full stop to find or create a new one. Help is all around but with a car driving in circles who is looking up. Well I am now. I was getting dizzy with those circles and frankly bored out of my mind with the scenery. Happily new roads signs were lighted and I finally made the turn and as I look up I am on a completely new highway. Awesome, way to go, that’s what I’m talking about!

It is so bright up ahead I can not make out what’s going on up there or even where I am going still a mystery and now an exciting possibilty. It takes courage and great strength to completely change the course of your life and the loss can be substantial. I see the loss now as a reduction of baggage so I may go to my new destination with an empty suitcase to collect new memories and new friends and maybe even a new lover. (oh la la) Lost is the new found. I was never lost I just didn’t know where I was and when I finally decided to take charge and frankly allow the guidance from the unseen forces my new life highway became visible to me.

So look up people there maybe a new sign on your highway, news of a new and exciting destination, keep your eyes and heart open, your mind receptive and your life will never be the same.

Ah hope! Ready, set, go….. for it!

Holiday Cheer

Sunrise on Christmas eve.

Born into lower middle class I spent most of childhood poor and my adult life in poverty. As a child we had presents under the tree as my parents did a pretty good job of making us feel like Santa was around and taking care of business. Life was simpler then, fewer needs.

Once I was a Mom Christmas became a stress and a worry. It certainly became less of an anticipation of what twas to come and turned into an Oh my God Christmas again, already? When the kids were young it wasn’t such a huge issue. Babies as a rule do not care about presents but 4-year-old’s do. By the time my oldest was a 4-year-old there were 2 more behind him. Money was so tight that we made the children’s presents for a few years.

Later on buying presents became possible because every year at Christmas my grandma began sending me 150.00 dollars as her gift for the family. It was meant to be divided so we each could receive a present from her. But that money had to be used for food as well as presents for the kids. We did the best we could. Wise little ones my kids were as they never complained of any lack. But for me the guilt of not being able to do for my kids the way I wanted was a thorn in my side.

Fast forward many many years and I am married to a wealthy man and boy did that change Christmas. I bought presents for my kids en mass as they say, it was frankly ridiculous and awesome. I was finally able to buy them the Ipod the year it came out not three years later or the knock off cheaper version. I bought them new clothes, designer bags, I bought myself new clothes and jewelry I got to own jewelry like a real girl. We were living large.

Fast forward a few short years and I am going through terrible loss; I lost my mother to cancer, my husband to another woman, my business to the same woman, my spiritual community, countless friends, not awesome. Loneliness set in, a cloud moved over me and I could no longer stomach the idea of Christmas. I wouldn’t decorate I bought last-minute gifts, I couldn’t stand it. Christmas had become nothing more than a representation of the betrayal I felt in my life. There was no joy in Christmas, Bah the f*&king humbug!

The worse part of all of it was that my children have had to watch me suffer through these losses. That’s a hard sentence to stomach much less write. I spent so much of their childhood keeping from them the horror of poverty, drugs and divorce constantly building fake pretty walls of lies. All of those walls fell during this horrible time of loss and my children watched in horror as my world came down around me and my faith with it. I didn’t care about anything!

Fast forward to this year and the circle becomes complete. I have awoken from the fog and cloud I believe by the grace of God has finally lifted. The sun has burst forth and the darkness of that time fades as the inevitable memory loss happens. My strength returned and the faith that I thought I had lost had simply faded as I had allowed guilt and fear to cover my eyes.

My heart eases as I forgive myself and my children’s father and I stand together as a united front for our children for the first time in nearly 20 years, victors no longer victims of our circumstances. In celebration I decorated my house this year and put up a tree. My tree! Then I got my courage up and invited some people over.We had a great time and the energy of young children was filling every corner of my house and I saw my true friends and family.

The sun is shining as I write this the new beginning of a new chapter. I love the sun. And it snowed last night so my California son could have a white Christmas. My daughter is getting married in June, my oldest son and his wife have a successful marriage and a beautiful son. My life overflows with blessings. The loss I feel still a hole but filled now with the new and emerging light of a brand new future. I see the sun and the warmth of the holidays time spent with my kids and friends really the only present I will ever need again. Now that’s a tough present to wrap but worth the effort.

I am finally ok with that holiday cheer thing. So cheers to you and yours and may the light of the sun fill your heart with joy!

I’m talking to myself!

Following myself from place to place I am unsettled and searching for who knows what. On a lark I am in Paris because if something didn’t happen to change the stagnation I was feeling I was going to explode, and what a mess that would be. Today I read that Marcel Proust wrote that we should not seek different landscapes but look through different eyes. Well I say hey Marcel did you ever live in Duluth, MN? Yeah, no you did not.

While living in some parts of the world can hold ones attention for years, depending on your own growth you may find you have out lived what your home town has to offer and find your self swimming in boredom.

Me, with my hand up!

So off to foreign lands.

Surrounded by people who don’t speak my language is just about as bad as being alone all of the time, you start talking to yourself. Hours can go by when I don’t speak to another human, sometimes days. Well that is way to much quiet so I talk to myself. To my cat at home, seems less weird! But away from home and when the cats aren’t around I have some great conversations. Usually going over things I am studying or reading. Today outside of the restaurant, excuse me, bistro, I was reading the map, out loud, So!

Now mind you I am in a foreign country so maybe no one really noticed, they did. Then I figured if I have to wait for someone to be in my life before I can have a decent conversation it could be a while and I have a mouth that loves to talk and work things out, verbally! So I needed my mouth to explain to my directional center which way to go. I learn best when I can hear the words out loud, even my own. Call me crazy I say but they have to do it in French and I can’t hear them I am way to busy talking to myself.Hotel Lutetia