Commitment&Consistency If you can't fly, then run, if you can't run, then walk, if you  can't walk, then crawl, but whatever you do, you have to keep moving...  Martin Luther King Jr.

If you follow this blog, you already know that I lack in the latter of this post title. Consistency has definitely not been my strong suit. Then again, being a blog of someone who struggles with mental health, I suppose it isn’t a surprise. Consistency is an important element for mental and emotional well being, yet it can be challenging as all hell! To add to the dilemma I never had a firm routine growing up, being a daughter of a single mom. Therefore, it is yet another tool I have to learn or relearn as an adult.

I have been working with a success coach through Vocational Rehab for a little over a year now, her name is Dr. Deborah Osgood and I think I would have given up a long time ago if it weren’t for the support and encouragement from her and my VR caseworker, Lisa Beck, and of course, my therapist and family/friends. The goal is to start my own herbal business; but it is not a simple journey for someone with so many triggers.

The first trouble I had was responding to a “See, Hear, Experience, exercise called Challenging Reality. The worksheet asked you to visit your early life experiences, with questions like, 1) What did you hear about money and rich people early on in your life? 2)What did you see about money and rich people early on in your life? 3)What did you experience with money and rich people early on in your life? I might write a separate post about my answers; but, if you ever read my Being poor post, then you can imagine the feelings these questions brought to the surface. I held a deeply ingrained belief that I would always be poor and unworthy.

FinerMinds - Timeline Photos | Be gentle with yourself, Self talk, Words

It took almost a year to work on rebuilding my lack of abundance&worth mindset. Talk therapy and daily affirmations helped me slowly become more aware of how my thoughts and beliefs affected my reality. Believing you are always going to be poor and unworthy will keep you poor and unworthy. I had to retrain my brain and introduce new thoughts and ideas around money and self worth. Fortunately, the second step of the aforementioned exercise helped challenge those old beliefs and create current views.

I have been working diligently on reforming my routine and trying to ‘do it all’ I am still in herbal school and it is a lot, especially for somebody who has physical limitations and still in mental health recovery. I am learning to juggle, schoolwork, Voc rehab, building a business, health appointments, housework and self management. I have come a long way from my post on My daily battles which were basically just to get up, get moving, get outside and get to sleep!

I get discouraged that I am not further along; but I remind myself that I am doing things every day toward my goals. I often feel I should be doing more, but I know that I am honestly doing my best and mustn’t beat myself up.

Here are some pearls of wisdom and encouragement from Dr. Deb in our email correspondences;

“Congratulations on realizing that you “are and have been” productively working on multiple things all along that are contributing to defining and growing your business.”

“As you shared, homework and intern work definitely counts <smile>. While personal appointments, errands, and housework will also always be part of everyday life, this new perspective and practice simply ensures that your business goals remain a priority as well. 
…and not just a priority, but something to definitely celebrate as you also touched upon – excellent!!!

And I love this last one when I expressed to her that I was worried I wasn’t being consistent enough.

“As for your comment about “having to stay consistent,” I’d like to introduce a different perspective. 
I think I get what you mean in terms of you “have to stay committed to your goal…”, correct?
Even then, I invite you to be true to who you are. You do not enjoy mundane details and routine work. 
You are a loyal and devoted individual to people and causes you believe in. You also thrive on continued growth and are creative and inspirational. (this info is based on the Meyer Briggs personality test that I took on my first appointment with her, I am an INFP) By continuing to create and operate a business model that allows you to leverage these inherent strengths, you will be happy and you will not “have” to force anything.”

This really resonated with me. I realized that while I am still working on improving my ability to be consistent, I can celebrate the fact that I am committed, to my recovery, my health, my family, my goals, my blogs, my business, my education and so on. I can be gentle with myself and allow the flow of life.

Thanks for bearing with me readers, your support means everything! If you have been following long enough then you know that I do always come back. I am committed to this blog and my visions for it. I will be slowly tweaking this blog while building my Beyouthentic blog. Hoping to post at least monthly on both.

If there is anything in particular that you would like to know more about, please let me know.

I hope you are all well during these challenging times!💜

Be gentle with yourself

Summer 2015: Emotional Empowerment


Summer is ending in a few weeks, and I have yet to submerge myself in a body of water! I’m not much of a swimmer, so I’m not too upset about this; plus, I WILL jump in the ocean before the season ends.

It hasn’t been a traditional summer; but, it has been quite memorable. You know how some summers go down in your personal history? Summers that we remember falling in love or growing in a new way? It’s that kind of summer for me.

There are several factors that contributed to this newfound feeling, and I wanted to blog about them individually when they were happening; but blogger’s block stopped me. I guess I had to really pause and absorb each moment to process. Here are some of the events that have made this a summer of emotional empowerment!

My Surgery:

I had my surgery in May. This was to treat extreme ovary pain that I have suffered with for years now. Choosing to love myself enough to take the step towards a pain free life was a huge leap in personal growth.  Though the surgery was difficult for me to recover from for various reasons; I have had two glorious months with no ovary pain! Tears of gratitude and new zest for life are proof that I have overcome.

My daughter’s Sweet 16:

Though I was barely recovered from my surgery, I managed to throw my beautiful daughter a fabulous rainbow themed (her request) Sweet 16 birthday party. I celebrated with tender emotions and a mama’s heart full of love. The last few months of my daughter’s school year, I got to see her really shine. While performing her stand-up comedy routine (a final exam) she finally came out of her shell. I watched her blossom and with a big smile on her face, attended all the end of year activities with her new friends. It melted my heart. After all we have been through it felt so good to see her so happy! Her party was filled with friends old and new. A beautiful memory!

Honored my mom’s ten year memorial:

June 28 marked 10 yrs since my mother’s passing. It’s hard to believe. It was a stormy and rainy day. Fitting as we always loved the storms. The week and a half she laid passing, the weather was so unpredictable, sunny one moment, stormy the next. Still physically challenged from my surgery, I didn’t hold a dinner or anything that I had thought I was going to. I sat on the screened in porch of the old house in Kingston (where my boyfriend still lives), and I watched the weather. I held one of her journals in my hands and read her words. A candle flickered, tears fell and I moved into the dark. Finally, the pain didn’t eat me alive, I could sit with it and view memories of her in my mind without falling to pieces. This was a big breakthrough for me. I plan on spending more time with her journals and my memories. It will be the next stage in healing my grief…

Broke up with my sister:  

My sister and I had a tumultuous relationship growing up. It took us many years to respect one another and build a caring relationship. Unfortunately, we both have unresolved triggers. Last year during a family visit, we drank and had a physical fight! That hadn’t happened since we were kids. We both apologized and wrote it up to alcohol and emotions (lethal combination). This year she had planned a trip to visit me; but, we got into a tiff that compounded in anger the more I ignored her. I was in physical (post surgical) and emotional (from being triggered) pain and was trying to reserve energy to plan my daughter’s birthday. She increasingly reacted and I was tremendously triggered by her actions and words, and had to cut off contact for a few days/weeks to regroup. When I finally calmed myself, I wrote her a message that she refused to read, because “it would hurt her too much”, but yet she still wanted to come visit. She was furious that I declined and told her she could stay with our brother. I wanted my feelings at least acknowledged before opening my home to her. Right in the middle of her spewing out hurtful things in a Facebook message, I blocked her! That was it, I couldn’t hear anymore. My heart pounded loud in my chest, and pushing that little block button temporarily gave me my life back. I was depressed for a few days, and I think my family was too; because she never came to visit and she blamed me. I love my sister deeply; but, I am sooooo tired of being hurt by her words. My depression morphed into a slight feeling of liberation. I FINALLY marked a boundary. It is a bittersweet break-up, I miss talking to her and knowing how my little nephew is doing; but, I know we will reconcile at some point. I plan on working in therapy on the many triggers I have with her. I’m hoping if I work to heal them it will help heal our relationship…

Friend Reunions

After my breakdown, I shut myself off from any friends I had. I didn’t know how people would react to my new awareness&diagnosis of mental illness. As the years went by, the anxiety thickened. The person I was when they knew me was different, changed forever. I didn’t know if or how they would feel about me. I sat in my fear for too many years. Having had kept in contact via Facebook, arranging reunions was the easy part. The actual in person thing was the challenging part. One reunion was with a bunch that I used to work with and the other was a few people I knew through the shop I had with my mom on the beach. The first one was really good anxiety, and the second not so much, I had to fight through. I think this is because, my friends I used to work with I was very close to and the second friends were through my mom. That fact alone made me more emotional. I also always dread those questions about what you’re doing for work, a living, etc., but I was honest without pouring out too much. Both reunions went awesome and I feel so grateful and emotionally rich that I still have friends! There are more friends I need to reunite with. It has been a goal of mine for years to rebuild my friendships. This summer began that journey!

Remained a Non-smoker!

I have been quitting smoking cigarettes for over ten years now and I believe I’ve finally done it! This is a habit I started at 12yrs old, and was my biggest addiction; mentally, physically and emotionally! At 33yrs old I asked my doctor for Wellbutrin, and I quit. Then I started. Then I quit, and on it goes. Even though I have asthma, my grandmother had emphysema and my mom died with lung cancer, I still smoked. Needless to say it made me feel disgusting about myself and made me very sick. The older I got, the more I wanted to quit. I knew I would surely die younger if I continued. I quit in March and even though I have quit for 6mos before, I always took a few puffs here and there, leading to buying a pack. This time I remained nicotine free&I am happy to say that I have finally moved past the addiction!

Renewal of Independence and Self-confidence:

In addition to the above events; just the sheer fact that I’m living day to day, taking care of myself and my daughter has given me a priceless feeling of self worth.

When I moved on my own in April (with my daughter) I felt terrified yet determined to not only survive; but thrive. These past 4 months have been the beginning of a renewal of self esteem that I haven’t felt in years, maybe ever. I have had glimpses of self confidence in my life; but, not quite as profound and enlightened as I feel today. I mostly faked it and toughed it out.

Sometimes, it’s hard to believe but wonderful to realize; that I’m doing it!!!! I’m living life!!! I’m working and providing, I’m cooking and cleaning, I’m crafting and blogging. I’m healing and growing!!! Not long ago, I was bed bound some days, agoraphobia stricken or swallowed by depression and grief. Those days were part of the journey as well; but, I’m glad they are behind me.

I look forward to the rest of the journey! 😉




Thank you Writing 201!!!

Sadly my Writing 201/Poetry class has come to and end. I had a blast with this class and learned more than I expected to. It was such a great experience for me that well….I had to write about it! 😉

Before the class started, I was nervous because, I had no idea if I could write a poem on demand from a prompt. I surprised myself by happily and ‘promptly’ finishing my assignments each day.

I was excited to study the different types of forms and devices. I am looking forward to exploring each one thoroughly. I never knew there were so many! I was equally happy to know that some of the rules with forms could be bent!

I identified with so many kind and talented people. I’ve enjoyed reading works of others, and discovered how every one has their own style. I was touched by the support of my peers, and appreciated their comments. I am elated to now be connected with several poets/blogs/writers.

This class forced me to have the habit to sit and write each day. This was a break through for me; because I have not let myself before. It was a very important lesson. I now know it’s possible to make my writing/blogging a priority.

Probably the most important thing I walked away with, was a tiny flicker of self confidence. I’ve grown as a person, and as a writer. It feels good to allow myself to explore my own abilities as a poet/writer. I am looking forward to the journey.

I am truly grateful for this experience and all that I have learned.

From the bottom of my heart: