Thursday, April 23, 2009

Happy Opposite Day!

When my kids were little, there were times they couldn't find matching shoes. So, we created Opposite Day. Normally you would wear matching shoes so on Opposite Day, you'd wear shoes that didn't match. (This aided us in actually getting out the door instead of continuing to look for missing shoes. It did generate strange looks for people in stores -- but so what? The kids thought it was great) Eventually we  all got better at keeping track of our shoes, but every so often, Opposite Day sounds pretty good.
I've been thinking of celebrating Opposite Day more and more. This time, however, it won't be about shoes. It's about action.
If my normal activity would be to say -- leave a mess in the kitchen thinking I'll get back to it -- then to celebrate Opposite Day, I'll put everything away.
If I usually would eat something loaded with preservatives and grease and salt and anything else that doesn't bless my body, I'll do the opposite.
It was my friend and guide Bard who gave me this idea. We were talking the other day and he suggested I embrace and feel the chaos my life normally is. Then, do the opposite. I know what the lack of control and dysfunction feels like --so it would seem simple to do the opposite, right?
Well -- it's more difficult than it sounds -- but I've been trying it off and on today and it's pretty powerful.
If I can feel how my life isn't working, I should be able to visualize what my life would feel like if I did the exact opposite. 
So -- I've been taking babysteps. Normally, I would leave my purse and bags in the car, thinking I would know where all my stuff is and not bring it into the house to create another pile in there. But my pick-up eventually becomes this shit pile -- full of all the things I didn't bring into the house. Then those things get stepped on  or blown out the door or I eventually shove everything into a box and then I can't find it. 
So in honor of Opposite Day, I'm cleaning out the truck. 
Here's the other thing I want to do today. I really need to get some work done in my flower beds. Normally, I'd stand out there and look at the amount of work that needs to be done, get overwhelmed and go find something else to do. So in honor of Opposite Day, I'm going to call a friend who recently lost her job. I'll see if she wants to work for pay or barter -- I bet she could use some beef or cheese, of which I have plenty. So we'll work together, making it more fun and more efficient. It doesn't have to take all day -- just a few hours together would get a bed or two done. 
Then we'll probably have to have lunch in honor of Opposite Day!
I figure if I celebrate Opposite Day for one day, it might build into a week, or a month-- even a lifetime! 

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Looking for answers within

Imagine for just one moment that you already had everything you already needed. 
Seriously -- take a minute right now, close your eyes and think about this:
Everything you need is already within you.
Embrace this notion. Make it yours.
This is my challenge for the coming weeks. Has been for a long while -- but am feeling the need to return to this center piece.  Let's hear it again:
Everything you need is already within you.
Pretty freeing, eh?
Here's another one:
There is no fear in what is real.
Think about that -- if something is truly "real" -- and I'll define "real" as something that is "of God" or "Divine". 
If you can get your head... and heart wrapped around this... wow! Think about the freedom it would bring -- especially -- at least in my case: freedom from guilt. Guilt is a fear based emotion so if I know there is no fear in what is real -- when I'm feeling guilty about something (which is 90 percent of my life) I can ask myself: What is truly real here? What's bothering me, really? 
I've had these thoughts rattling around in my head for the last few weeks as I continue my search for balance and good health. I was talking to my spiritual guide, Bard. 
I've always had a problem with puting myself first -- I spend way too much time taking care of anything and everyone but me. And guess what? I tend to do that out of guilt. (see above)
I feel guilty taking care of something only for me when there seems to be so many other people and projects that need my attetnion. I keep thinking I have to earn joy -- but really, joy is a divine right. Being joyful, to me, means living in the light -- in the Love that is "natural law" -- that of God's own making....
The other day, Bard challenged me to to create the "Karma hour" -- the time in which Itake care of me. The past couple of weeks have been a little intense (more on that later) --so tomorrow my plan is to spend an hour starting at 9 a.m. focused on me -- and I've chose to go for a walk or create something or write -- something I love and need and something that blesses my soul.
Maybe it doesn't even need to be a full hour -- but in the big scope of things 60 minutes isn't that much time. It just sounds like a lot. But if you add up all the time I spend taking care of everything but me -- it's not even a drop in the bucket. 
And here's the clencher....I deserve it....and so Do YOU!

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Speaking My Truth

This blog started as a way to find my way through self acceptance, overcoming an eating disorder -- improve my relationship with the scale and food.
I have had moments when I think I've conquered it all and moments when I have felt that I have done nothing but move backward. Today, in many ways, is one of those moments. In the last six months, I've gained 15 pounds. In the last month, maybe two, I've been consistently in the 300s. 
I've deleted that statement three times -- but it is my truth and all of you must know. I must say it, own it. It is real.
I try to down play it. But my heart is pumping like I've run a marathon. I'm filled with emotion. But here's why I'm doing this -- again -- because I deserve to be honest without shame.  My readers, most of whom are my dear, sweet friends deserve to know the my truth as well.
I know this is not supposed to be about the numbers. The numbers on the scale, the numbers on the tag -- but the numbers are imprinted on my head and speaking my truth is the ONLY way to erase those numbers.
I know that my struggle with self acceptance is tied deeply into filling that void--Everyone has a void inside them. How you fill that void is, really, what defines who you are and what you do with yourself -- yourlife.
While other people are addicted to drugs and alcohol -- food. I am addicted to volunteering -- to event planning -- to staying so involved in things outside of my life, I don't have time to look in the mirror and answer that defining question: Who am I? and then, Am I ok? 
In reality, I either don't  know the answers to those questions or I'm afraid I'll have to answer no.
Even now as I write this, I'm fighting the urge to check my e-mail or Facebook -- distraction away from material that I find incredibly painful.
At times in my life I've filled that void with alcohol, food -- perhaps even sex. These days I have filled it with busy-ness. Part of me likes to believe that I'm using my God-given talents to make the world a better place and often I'm lost in that. This serves a higher purpose, I tell myself and others -- I'm doing a good work  -- give me a break. I'm too busy to walk or eat right -- I'm doing good work -- I'm giving back -- I'm make a difference in someone's life.  It doesn't really matter how I feel or what I look like, for Pete's sake -- I'm an activist, a leader in my community. 
The reality is that activism starts at home and home is defined by its first meaning -- home is me -- my soul. 
I have spent the bulk of my adulthood nuturing, feeding and caring for every one and everything but me - anything but my soul -- my heart -- my home.
So lately, I've been thinking about what it is that truly nutures and feeds my soul. I know, from experience that it's certainly not food, or self pity. It's not volunteering for every committee, every role I can play other than the reflection in my mirror -- the star of my own show.
I know that my truth lies in creativity -- in writing -- sharing my truth with others as a way to heal both myself and others. I know I must create to live. I run from this so very often -- thinking that it's not worthy. That I must produce something to be worthy. That I must achieve and accomplish in order to be deserving of love and happiness.
My truth is, that it works in reverse. I am deserving of love and happiness because I exist. I must create art and write as a means of feeding my soul what it craves the most. 
My error in thinking all these years is that I must produce and achieve in order to deserve the time it take it takes to create -- to do the things that bring me joy. 
Of all the obstacles I've had to overcome in the last few years, this is the myth that is hardest to erase from my mind. 
Myth: I don't deserve joy until I've earned it by achieving something measured outside of myself.
Truth: By pursuing joy and filling my senses with the love of creativity and writing -- achievement will follow in it's place -- and also bring me peace and joy.
Imagine the freedom in that thought. 
So today I give myself permission to pursue joy first -- and welcome the rest to follow.