Yippee Moment 4-22-18

I’VE BEEN THINKING

By Maria Shriver

A profoundly simple idea came to me last weekend.

It came way before I watched the Comey interview. Way before the Time 100 list came out. Way before Jeff Bezos told us how many Amazon Prime customers there actually are. (OMG.)

The idea came to me as I was sitting in conversation with three old friends and a dog. I don’t know exactly whose idea it was, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t the dog’s. 😉

The idea came out of one of those conversations that traversed the news of the day, the bumps of life, and the challenges at hand. As we were talking, we collectively decided that we all needed more joy in our lives. “Yippee moments,” to be exact.

What is a yippee moment, you ask? Well, it’s a moment you consciously celebrate. It’s a moment where you decide that you get to feel joy-filled at least once per day, since most of us don’t focus on finding joyful moments on a daily basis.

Most of us are so bogged down getting through life and attending to life’s never-ending stream of responsibilities that before we know it, we aren’t playing anymore. We aren’t celebrating anymore. We aren’t thinking “yippee!”

Instead, we have our heads down in our computers or phones. We’re dealing with evolving relationships, changing kids, sick friends, our own health, aging parents, and bills. Lots and lots of bills.

Sure, you can stay on this path and say, “well, that’s just life.” Or, you can consciously decide, like I have done, to find a daily “yippee!”

Even though this new practice is only a week old, it’s actually lightened and lifted my spirits and changed my thinking.

Yippee! My kids asked to come over!

Yippee! I got to meet Bob Goff this week, whose playful spirit and view of love made my day and got me thinking more expansively about love and life.

Yippee! I got invited to my daughter’s place for dinner, which made me swell with pride.

Yippee! a friend called to check in on me. Another sent a text out of the blue simply to say they were proud of me!

Yipee! A friend jumped in to help me with Move for Minds and donated money without me even asking her. Wow!

Yippee! My brother called to say he would come to town to celebrate his birthday with me.

Yippee! My son called from college and he didn’t ask for money. He just wanted to check in!

Yippee! I got to do a loving-kindness meditation with the legendary Jack Kornfield and his wife, Trudy, Thursday night. Lucky, lucky me!

Now, to be honest, there were moments this past week that were also challenging and emotional. (On Friday, I gave the eulogy at my friend Nancy’s memorial service and there were lots of tears.)

But, focusing my mind on joy this week — focusing on celebrating, on clapping my hands, on hugging a friend, on twirling in a skirt, on counting my blessings — well, it just changed my week. It changed my outlook and my spirit.

I’m hoping that this “yippee!” thinking might do the same for you. I know it might sound young and childlike, perhaps even silly. But that’s the point. That’s the gift.

Look, life is a gift. And for God’s sake, it’s short. There is no doubt in my mind that we could all use more yippee moments in our lives. We could all use more laughter and more joy. If you don’t believe me, just turn on the news.

P.S. “I’ve Been Thinking… Reflections, Prayers and Meditations for a Meaningful Life” is still on The NY Times Bestsellers list! OMG, thank you and yippee! Oh, and it’s almost Mother’s Day! Yippee, yippee!

I subscribe to Maria Shrivers Sunday Paper. I receive her paper every Sunday by email. I’d like to encourage you to sign up. Maria is so inspiring.

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Dear Velma 4-10-18

My Darling Velma,

What did you do for yourself today that was purely and solely just for you?

Did you sit with a cup of your favorite tea and a good book for at least a few minutes with no distractions?

Did you spend quiet time in nature to soothe your spirit and soul?

Did you lavish yourself with a bubble bath and lavender candles?

Everyday, you have to find time and space that is for no one other than you. You have to take care of you so that you can continue to do all the caring for others that you do, in a healthy way. 

Don’t neglect yourself, my dearest.

Humming a relaxing tune,

Your Inner Pilot Light

 

Just Me And My Mom 3-31-18

I was on Facebook this morning reviewing all of my Facebook memories from my timeline. This memory popped up. I posted this on March 31, 2014 right before I was diagnosed with cancer. I was really sick at the time. My diagnosis came ten days later. As I read my post I thought to myself how grateful I am that I’m now home with my mother. After all, it’s been the support of my mother that has carried me through the past few years.

Some times I want to “throw momma from the train”. At times I even wonder what my life would be like if I could just run as far away from here and live my life to the fullest without my mother. My dad used to say “you only have one mother and one father. When their gone you have nothing”. My dad is no longer with me but thank god I have my mother.

As I pondered the following post it occurred to me that maybe the dream I had so many years ago was a message from my guardian angel warning me to go home to my mother. Looking back, I wish I had. Maybe fighting cancer with my mother by my side opposed to enduring cancer treatment with my abusive ex boyfriend, might certainly have brought a much better outcome than I have lived through these past four years. I finally realized that being home with my mother is where I’m supposed to be.

If your mother is still alive I’d like to encourage anyone reading this today to reach out to her. Tell her you love her. Spend time with her. In the end it’s your mother who will Be by your side in the good times and the bad times. It’s your mother who will love you unconditionally forever and always. It’s your mother you will call out to if only in your dreams.

March 31, 2014. “The other night I had a crazy dream. I am still bewildered by it. I can’t remember all of it, more importantly I can’t remember the woman in my dream. In my dream I was afraid of the woman and I knew I needed my mother. I woke up screaming for my mother. I kept yelling for my mother to help me. I didn’t remember any of this until Ron told me. It bothered me so much. I called my mom just now & can you believe she’s been dreaming about me too. She’s dreamt we were together & I was making her laugh so hard she was crying. It’s funny. As teenagers the first person we turn against is our mother. I know I’m guilty of that & I know my own kids have done the same to me as have the kids of many of my friends. Mothers are regarded as nerds. We are a pain. We drive our kids crazy. But when we are in a state of desperation or in need of comfort, love, encouragement or even a hug the first person we run to is our mother. I guess at this time in my life I need my mother. It’s weird since I always ran to my dad. Not this time. This time I cried for my mother. Be good to your moms today. It may come as a surprise but while we all need our mothers, they need us too. In my case my mother must need her goofy daughter to bring back the laughter we’ve shared for so many years. Here’s to my mother. I love you mom. Thanks for being the best mom ever. Thanks for loving me and always being the one I can run too. I miss you mom. Soon…very soon. I’ll be with you telling you stories and bringing you joy and making you laugh.”

A Woman Should Have 3-14-18

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ….

Enough money within her control to move out…

And rent a place of her own

even if she never wants to

or needs to…

Something perfect to wear if the employer

or date of her dreams wants to See Her in an hour…

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE …

A youth she’s content to leave behind….

A past juicy enough that she’s looking forward to

retelling it in her Old Age….

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .

A set of screwdrivers,

a cordless drill, and a black lace bra…

One friend who always makes her laugh…

And one Who lets her cry…

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ….

A good piece of furniture not previously owned

by anyone else in her Family…

Eight matching plates,

wine glasses with stems,

And a recipe for a meal that will make

her guests feel Honored…

A feeling of control over her destiny…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW…

How to fall in love without losing herself..

HOW TO QUIT A JOB,

BREAK UP WITH A LOVER,

AND CONFRONT A FRIEND WITHOUT

RUINING THE FRIENDSHIP…

When to try harder…

And WHEN TO WALK AWAY…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW…

That she can’t change the length of her calves,

The width of her hips,

or the nature of her parents..

That her childhood may not have been perfect…

But it’s over…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW…

What she would and wouldn’t do for love or more…

How to live alone…

Even if she doesn’t like it…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW…

Whom she can trust,

Whom she can’t,

And why she shouldn’t take it personally…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW…

Where to go…

Be it to her best friend’s kitchen table…

Or a charming inn in the woods…

When her soul needs soothing…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW…

What she can and can’t accomplish in a day…

A month…

And a year…

Written by Pamela Redmond Satran

Photo unknown

Being Alone 3-6-18

Being Alone

BY MADISYN TAYLOR

The most important relationship we will ever have in our life, is with our own self.

The most important relationship we have in our lives is with ourselves. And even though we are the only ones who are present at every moment of our lives–from birth onward–this relationship can be the most difficult one to cultivate. This may be because society places such emphasis on the importance of being in a romantic partnership, even teaching us to set aside our own needs for the needs of another. Until we know ourselves, however, we cannot possibly choose the right relationship to support our mutual growth toward our highest potential. By allowing ourselves to be comfortable with being alone, we can become the people with whom we want to have a relationship.

Perhaps at no other time in history has it been possible for people to survive, and even thrive, while living alone. We can now support ourselves financially, socially, and emotionally without needing a spouse for survival in any of these realms. With this freedom, we can pursue our own interests and create fulfilling partnerships with friends, business partners, creative cohorts, and neighbors. Once we’ve satisfied our needs and created our support system, a mate then becomes someone with whom we can share the bounty of all we’ve created and the beauty we’ve discovered within ourselves.

As we move away from tradition and fall into more natural cycles of being in the world today, we may find that there are times where being alone nourishes us and other periods in which a partnership is best for our growth. We may need to learn to create spaces to be alone within relationships. When we can shift our expectations of our relationships with ourselves and others to opportunities for discovery, we open ourselves to forge new paths and encounter uncharted territory. Being willing to know and love ourselves, and to find what truly makes us feel deeply and strongly, gives us the advantage of being able to attract and choose the right people with whom to share ourselves, whether those relationships fall into recognizable roles or not. Choosing to enjoy being alone allows us to fully explore our most important relationship–the one with our true selves.

My Terms 12-20-17

Wow three years ago I lost all of my hair. I was completely bald!! I’ve spent the last couple of years trying to grow back my hair. However as of late I have found myself realizing what a blessing the last three years have been. I’ve grown so much. All the things I thought were important are no longer important. Including hair. At the end of the day the only thing that counts is family. The rest of it doesn’t matter. My dad used to say “I’ve never seen a u-haul behind a Hearst. You can’t take it with you”

Today I bit the bullet and cut my hair short. I love it. In my opinion I’d rather spend time with family, friends, grandkids then spending time doing my hair!! The good news is three years later I cut my hair on my terms and not because some crazy drug called Chemo decided I had to. Life is short. Live life to the fullest. Enjoy every day like it’s your last day. Don’t get caught up in any drama.

It’s funny, the past few years all I’ve done is complain. I’ve complained about my hair, my nails, finances, health and I’ve complained because I’m no longer in San Francisco. However what I’ve come to realize is. that I’ve failed to recognize the blessings I’ve had all along. I only wish I had recognized this a long time ago. Life is good. Sometimes life throws us a curveball. I for one have been thrown several these past few years however while everything seemed so bad I suppose God was molding me to become a much better person. I’m really grateful for that.

Today I just want peace in my life. I’m looking forward to what good things God has in store for me. I hope it’s much peace, love and harmony. As for the hair….well it’s sure going to be nice to not have to focus on something silly as doing my hair.

Friends, money, material things and even hair will come and go but it’s family that will always be there. That’s what’s really important. Once upon a time I was on top of the world. I had it all. Looks, a good job, material things and even money. Today things are much different. Today I’ll take peace, love, family and good health over any of those things I once thought were more important. I’m living life on my terms. That includes doing crazy things like cutting my hair!! Short hair…..you rock!!!

I’m Coming Out 12-5-17

Today is a “coming out” kind of day for me. My birthday is Saturday so to celebrate, I’m flying to San Francisco to spend it with my cousin, who also happens to be my best friend. I haven’t been back for a year and a half.

I left San Francisco in May of 2015 after a long battle with Cancer. I also left a tumultuous relationship that brought so much strife in to my life. I’ve spent the last two years hiding out in my room at my mothers house. It’s no secret I’ve not only battled anxiety as well as PTSD but I’ve also struggled to heal from the side effects left behind from treatment. I’ll admit returning to San Francisco is really scary. After all, my departure was not on good terms.

I was blessed to cash in some airline miles and bought myself a round trip ticket for $11.20. What a steal!! As the time draws closer to driving to the airport I find myself nervous and very fearful. I suppose because my return to my beloved city by the bay opens the door to having to face the reality of what I left behind and why. It also means going out of my comfort zone (my bedroom) and learning to live life again.

Life happens sometimes. Occasionally we run away from reality and sweep the wreckage of our past under the carpet. We become complacent in our “safe” place. That’s what’s happened to me. I’ve become very complacent in the comfort of my room at my mothers which has become my safe place. I’m excited to go to San Francisco. I’m excited to spend time with my cousin but at the same time I’m scared. I’m not sure what the days ahead have in store for me however, what I do know is I’m ready to take on the challenge.

Diana Ross sang a song called “I’m Coming Out”. This song holds a special meaning for me today. In so many ways I’m Coming Out. As I board my flight to San Francisco I recognize I’m no longer the same woman I was when I left San Francisco two years ago. However, I really like this new me. Saturday is my birthday. The beginning of a new year and a new me. What better city to launch my “Coming Out” as the new me than my favorite city…..my beloved city by the bay. Look out San Francisco!!! I’m coming back!!