Rip off the mask, tear down the walls. Show the world my beautiful, vulnerable self!

Archive for the ‘solitude’ Category

Weathering the Solitude

The Solitude of Social Distancing’m thinking about the hours, weeks, and days that stretch ahead, alone in my house with my cats. Don’t get me wrong. I love my furballs, and they’ve always been a great source of comfort. But face it. People need people, and much as I might try to deny it, I’m no exception.

Over the last couple of years, I put a lot of time and energy into creating a new normal which included leaving the house three days a week to go to the gym, and running errands afterwards on Wednesdays. The first week of my self-imposed retreat left me wandering the house, unsure what to do with myself. The first couple of days were actually spent resting though. I’d absorbed a lot of energy from people and places that left me utterly drained.

I got up in the morning, later than I was used to, only to wander from couch to couch, and often ending up on the guest room bed for a couple of hours, yet still sleeping in the next day. I realized I had worked myself up about my final Wednesday shopping trip and 2 doctor’s appointments I had scheduled later in the week, and was driving myself crazy. Lavender candles and essential oil plus what would become a nightly tea habit brought me down a few notches.

Finding My New Normal

I didn’t truly start to settle until after the first of what would be regular Thursday night line dances via Zoom. After that, I went into an almost manic state; cleaning, doing laundry, even vacuuming the garage. In my defense, I’d spilled some cat litter while transferring it from the bags it came in into more easily accessible buckets. Once I revved up the shop vac, it kind of pulled me along, sucking up grit and rubble that had accumulated on the garage floor around my car.

Slowly, the days have started taking on a new kind of normal. I rise earlier every day; getting closer to the time my Fitbit goes off. Morning pages are, of course, still the first thing I do after getting up, followed by making the bed, putting in my contacts, feeding the cats, and then myself. At least some things haven’t had to change.

I’m still playing with the rest of the day, though. Sometimes, I’ll go out on the patio and do some freehand writing. Sometimes I’ll pull up one of my writing projects and start working on it. when I do, the day seems to get away from me, and it’s late in the afternoon before I meditate (another non-negotiable), and eat what often becomes both lunch and dinner. But I also feel like I’ve actually done something productive. In my head, cleaning doesn’t count. And heaven knows I’ve been doing more cleaning than usual too!

Idleness is No Longer a Comfortable Place

Created with CanvaMy cats are becoming more spoiled than ever as they’re getting excessive lap time and tummy skritches with me home 24/7. That will slow down as I am compelled to spend more time at the computer or on the patio writing. I do, however, carry on long, deep conversations with them. If only they could contribute to the conversation instead of it being a long monologue. At some point, I might even run out of things to say.

TV got boring within the first few days. It’s all I can do to sit still and refrain from channel surfing. Nothing holds my attention for more than a few minutes, even if I’m playing games on my phone. And even the games aren’t holding my interest for long any more. Since I’ve moved my computer into the dining room to accommodate the Zoom dancing sessions, the TV may soon become occasional background noise, and nothing more.

Somehow, I’m slowly finding my way. Motivation and inspiration are starting to increase. After sitting at the computer for hours, I’m itching to move, so the house is slowly getting cleaned, and lightbulbs that have been out for weeks are now getting replaced. I do miss my friend Jesse who is so tall he doesn’t need a step ladder. I’d call him when I needed bulbs changed, and he’d have it done quickly and easily without having to drag the ladder all over the house. Guess I need to be more careful about saying I want to be self-sufficient, huh?

Dancing for Sanity and Connection

I know the one thing that will save my sanity is the Zoom-based dance nights being set up by our dance instructors and DJ’s. At this point, there are nights when I’ll even have to choose which event to attend! Even line dance lessons are continuing, which, if you ask me, is nothing short of amazing! The Borderline family and the Country dance community as a whole have been through hell and back the last couple of years, yet, like a phoenix, we keep rising to whatever occasion we have. We’ve danced in malls, barns, and parking lots. We’ve found new places where we were welcomed with open arms. Now, we dance in our own living rooms, garages, dens, and kitchens. But we’re still dancing.

Even the technologically challenged are learning how to use Zoom, Facebook Live, and other tools many of us once used only for marketing or productivity. I’m grateful I was ahead of the curve and already knew how to use them.

I’ve had to temporarily ditch habits like going to the gym and meeting my friends at BL Saloon or Oil Can Harry’s for some dancing. At times, I feel completely disconnected and lost. If the last couple of years have taught me nothing else, it’s how to create habits that make me more efficient, more motivated, and healthier. I’m nothing if not creative, so finding temporary replacements is merely a matter of pointing my nose towards what I need and figuring out new ways to get there.

Finding New Ways to Keep Myself Healthy and Fit

Whether it’s the cup of tea I’ve added to my nightly routine, the new regular dance nights, or finding exercise videos that will keep what I’ve achieved through strength training intact until I have access to heavier weights and machines again, I’ve learned my mind and body are used to a certain level of exercise and stimulation. I might need more rest at times because the energies are heavy right now. Ultimately, I need to move more than I realized, and I will find ways to get what I seem to have lost, albeit only until I figure out a workaround.

I’ve specialized in workarounds ever since my career path started requiring computer proficiency decades ago. What I learned about software and making it produce what I wanted works just as well for exercise and work routines. In all honesty, I’m looking forward to tackling the latest challenge the Universe has added to my life. In hindsight, I was falling into a rut, and though I wouldn’t exactly ask for a pandemic to change that, I did need something to boot me in the butt. As usual, the Universe pushes me out of my comfort zone in ways that guarantee I can’t return to where I’ve been.

The Healing Gift of Gratitude

One of the changes I’ve made during what I’m calling my retreat is to post daily gratitudes on Facebook; a practice I began years ago with my blog posts. Sometimes, expanding on an old habit is the only change needed to make something new and effective.

My gratitudes today are:

  1. I’m grateful to be part of a community which ensures we all stay connected.
  2. I’m grateful for friends who call to check up on me.
  3. I’m grateful I’ve learned to be kind to myself while settling into a new normal.
  4. I’m grateful for a strong, healthy body that demands I do more than sit on the couch watching TV for hours.
  5. I’m grateful for a large, essentially private yard where I can sit and write, or just hang out with my outside cats Max and Cinders.
  6. I’m grateful for abundance; love, friendship, health, motivation, inspiration, healthy, precooked meals, solitude, peace, balance, hope, philanthropy, and prosperity.

Love and Light

About the Author

Sheri Conaway is a Holistic Ghostwriter, and an advocate for cats and mental health. Sheri believes in the Laws of Attraction, but only if you are a participant rather than just an observer. Her mission is to Make Vulnerable Beautiful and help entrepreneurs touch the souls of their readers and clients so they can increase their impact and their income. If you’d like to have her write for you, please visit her Hire Me page for more information. You can also find her on Facebook Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author or in her new group, Putting Your Whole Heart Forward

Another Lesson About Friendship

There Comes a Time When the Only Thing to do is Make Use of the Only Truly Effective Form of Therapy.

I’m a solitary person. I’m more likely to withdraw into myself and write my problems out than seek the help or counsel of someone else. Tonight, that meant sitting in the bar where I dance, writing nearly 1000 words in the Notes app of my iPhone.  Ice Cream Therapy

I’m a very direct person. If I don’t like something someone is doing and it’s someone I care about, I’ll usually do my best to communicate my feelings. I limit the proverbial “cold shoulder” to three circumstances: when the other person is so emotionally engaged that anything I say would only escalate the problem, when I’m so angry that I’m likely to just spew venom(in which case I’ll likely address it later when I’ve calmed down enough to at least make an attempt at being reasonable), or if the offending party is someone I don’t care about.

This attitude has come back to bite me on more than one occasion. Sometimes it’s because I expect my friends to be honest with me while they fall back on social niceties and remain silent, but all too often I just misread the relationship and what I thought was a friendship was just an acquaintanceship from their perspective, making me as disposable as the packaging on the Lean Cuisine they had for lunch.

Such seems to be the case yet again. Admittedly, I did behave badly. I’ve apologized and tried to make amends with everyone involved. Things are pretty much back to normal with those I did consider acquaintances but the ones I considered friends are wearing fake smiles and taking pains to keep their distance. I’d like to say it doesn’t hurt and that I don’t care but there’s no point lying to myself. It does serve to remind me why 60 years in this body has taught me to be very sparing about opening my heart, even in friendship. I’m not one who is able to take friendship lightly, nor do I successfully protect my heart on the increasingly rare occasions when I give it.

It just baffles me that people can act like they care until you make a mistake and earn their disapproval.

But the Universe saw me for the overly trusting, heart-breakingly sensitive soul I am and gave me a passion which can be followed without a lot of human interaction. Instead, I can stand on the sidelines watching other people interact, and yes, play those social games I never learned, by my own choice. They become characters in my stories or part of the landscape in the articles I write while I again try not to be fooled into bringing my heart out of the bubble wrap where I’m reminded to keep it every time it gets stomped into a bloody mess.

Hope Springs Eternal

I guess in some ways I’m a romantic. I keep hoping I’ll find friends and maybe even a partner who will care enough to protect and nurture my heart instead of treating it like garbage. But after 6 decades, my hope is waning. Like Tinkerbell, I desperately need a reason to keep believing; keep hoping; keep loving without reservation. But for now, I’ll stuff those hopes down until they smother and focus on living my own, personal, private passion. For that I just need to dream and write. No messy human contact necessary.

And yet as I let the unhappiness fade I remember the choice to be happy is mine alone. I can choose to allow the insensitivity of others affect my mood or I can flip them a mental bird, wish them a nice life and get on with mine. It still means going it alone but I’m in great company. I know for certain that the company I’m keeping would never abuse my heart and wants only a life of joy and fulfillment for me. I guess there are times the Universe dumps sadness into our lives so we can fully appreciate how wonderful, how bountiful our life truly is…and how overrated most people’s idea of friendship is.

The Silver Lining Inside the Latest Cloud

And yet, as I get busier  doing the work I love, it occurs to me that perhaps endings are simply a part of freeing up more of my time. People can be a distraction and I create enough of those without any outside assistance.

And I remember one of the few biblical quotes I really like:

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

My personal brand of therapy has led me to conclude this is simply a time for me to be solitary and tend to things which need to be tended.

There Will Always Be Gratitude

What would a blog post from me be without gratitudes. I can always come up with at least a few, and I won’t disappoint you tonight.
1. I am grateful for life’s lessons even if I repeat the painful ones more often than I’d like.
2. I am grateful I’m comfortable in my own skin…and my own company as there are times when it’s the best place for me to be.
3. I am grateful for the people who teach me what friendship is not.
4. I am grateful for my writing. It’s my friend, my solace, my sanity, my therapist and my passion.
5. I am grateful for abundance: lessons, life, limitations, aspirations, motivation, writing, opportunities, stepping outside my comfort zone, peace, harmony, health, joy, philanthropy and prosperity.

Blessed Be

I invite you to visit my Facebook pages, Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author and HLWT Accounting. Please also drop by my website, and check out my Hire Me Page. I’ve created these pages as a means of positive affirmation and would be very grateful if you’d “like” them or leave a comment! Thank you!

September 3, 2014 Time flies when you’re having fun.

Are you kidding me? It’s September already???

As I sit down to write tonight, I am stunned to find that we’re nearly 3/4 of the way through this year! Where did the time go? What do I even have to show for it? Now, I could go on one of those negative rampages and elaborate on what I have NOT done this year, but what good would that do? It might show me how much I have to do to catch up, but other than that, it would only bring me down. Instead, I really have to do what I always do, and focus on what I have accomplished so far this year. (and yes, my friends, it is list time!)

1. I have created, maintained and followed a To Do list all year.
2. I have completed the first draft of my book.
3. I have completed the first edit of my book.
4. I have cleared an amazing amount of clutter, including old records dating back as far as 1992!
5. I have stepped outside of my comfort zone on many occasions.
6. I have started developing a social life which does not involve my daughter.
7. I have succeeded in conquering the bureaucratic nightmare some would pin on the Affordable Care Act, but which is really perpetuated by the insurance companies who don’t want to get on board (in my case, Blue Shield) and have worked with the Department of Health Insurance to help make the system better.
8. I have ensured that my main man, Dylan, will not succumb to hyperthyroidism related maladies by taking him for treatment. As of the three month blood tests, he is completely cured!
9. I continue to build my virtual tool box by learning new lessons and reinforcing old ones.
10. I have moved my blog to WordPress in preparation for launching my website.
11. I have become much more consistent with my blog postings.
12. I have started a copywriting course.
13. I have maintained my accounting business, albeit on a smaller scale than I’d originally planned, though I trust that this has been for a very good reason.
14. I have adopted two new kittens after losing one cat who we knew was very ill, and one who surprised us.
15. I continue to exercise my right to set boundaries and have them respected.

This is hardly a complete list, but for me, it represents a lot of progress in a few, short months. That is not to say that I don’t have periods where I’m a complete hermit, sit around and read all day, and let some of the good habits I’ve formed slide for a bit. But by the time I reach the place where I need to be a hermit, believe me, I’ve earned it!

Everyone needs time to recharge their batteries now and then.

We all get worn down, and if we’re smart, we recognize it and do something about it. It really doesn’t matter what works for you; whether it’s just being alone to read and veg, like me, or it’s working in the garden, or doing volunteer work…it just has to be what recharges you! Too often, we run ourselves into the ground, at which point, it is a much longer way back to our normal, energetic selves. Learning to recognize when we need to check out for a bit of recharging is, I realize, a tough lesson when you’re trying to hold down a job, raise kids, pay the bills and do all of the things these endeavors require. But even taking an evening when you put the kids to bed and settle down for a bubble bath, a read and a glass of wine instead of your usual laundry, dishes and paperwork is enough to give you the recharge you need. Maybe it won’t fill you all the way back up, but it will sure prevent you from draining yourself completely.

When my girls were young, my recharging system was a night of dancing, and I took a lot of doses of that particular tonic until they got to high school. At that point, I had to drive them to practices and meetings and a multitude of other activities, and allowed myself to be shortchanged. What a huge mistake that was, as I got more cranky and more depressed as the days went on! It took long term administration of Vitamin Dance before I started resembling my former self. But in the process, I made some new friends, learned a lot of new dances, went on a couple of cruises, and even started doing things outside of dancing.

These days, my life is a lot simpler, but that doesn’t mean I don’t get overwhelmed and drained. Instead of running kids to activities, I’ve added 2 1/2 hour drives to see my daughter. Of course, I spend three or four days with her when I go, but it’s still shlepping. (and of course, I love our visits and getting to see all of my grand furries!). But in addition to a couple of nights a week of dancing, I get out for afternoons at the beach, concerts and Shakespeare in the park, and am becoming more open to trying new and different things.

The end result is exactly what I’d hoped for, and that is to be energized by all of the new, while making the old seem less old hat and more just a comfortable resting place before dashing off to something new again.

Life is all about balance.

The more balance we achieve in our lives, the easier it is to recover when we get one of the inevitable curve balls; the easier it is to take the lesson and leave the pain behind. But better still, the easier it is to expect good things, and to get them, more and more!

Every day, I get more proof that Joy and Happiness brings Joy and Happiness, while worry, fear, gloom, sadness…bring more of the same. This, in particular, took awhile for me to figure out because, as my kids will tell you, I’m the original Worry Wart. I had to work hard to train myself to believe that everything would work out perfectly…if only I’d get out of the way and let it!

It’s sort of like the nights like tonight when I sit down to write a post, thinking I have nothing in my head to say, and suddenly, I find myself where I am right now, with a post of over 1,000 words, and realize that I need to find an end point, before I put my readers to sleep!

Let me just urge you to allow yourself time to recharge your batteries, and to say to yourself, whenever you feel fear or worry taking over “Everything is going to work out perfectly. I just need to get out of the way and allow the perfect to happen!

My gratitudes tonight are:
1. I am grateful for how everything in my life works out perfectly.
2. I am grateful for all I have accomplished this year.
3. I am grateful that my daughter got us tickets for Blake Shelton, The Band Perry and Neal McCoy for this weekend!
4. I am grateful for the friendships I have been blessed with this year, and look forward to seeing them grow stronger.
5. I am grateful for the health of my cats, and for learning to recognize things before they become serious issues.
6. I am grateful for abundance: health, happiness, joy, friendship, success, harmony, peace, kindness, love and prosperity.


August 28, 2014 Social media…do you want fries with that?

When it comes to social media, it really is to each her own, these days!

As time has gone on, the different ways people perceive and use social media has created an ever-widening gap between me and those who are on my friends list; but I’m not alone in this. The discussions about de-friending or unfollowing someone because of the content they share on our news feed has been escalating, at least among the people I know. Here is what I’ve observed people sharing of late (in no particular order):

  • Family pictures
  • Health status
  • Relationship status/changes
  • Politics
  • Religion
  • Business promotion
  • Positive affirmations
  • Games, both, ostensibly in promotion of a cause, or just for fun
  • Observations of the world in general
  • Doom and gloom prophecies
  • Music appreciation
  • Selfies

We all have our own ideas of what is “allowed” on our news feed and what’s not, and the reasons for our choices don’t need to be explained. I’ve learned that if I unfollow someone, it doesn’t raise a glaring red flag, nor is it telling someone (erroneously) that I don’t like them as a person. It simply says “I appreciate your opinion, but I prefer that I don’t see it all the time on a place I go for fun and, sometimes, inspiration.” That being said, I’ve unfollowed people when posts become excessive in the following areas:

  • Health status, when there is an excess of posts complaining about conditions, yet failing to actually do something about it.
  • Politics
  • Religion
  • Business promotion (this one only when the posts become really excessive, so it doesn’t happen often)
  • Doom and gloom prophecies. I don’t really care whether these prophecies are based in fact or not. I simply don’t want to see anything which complains or blames without offering feasible solutions.

Again, if someone posts on any of these subjects now and again, I really don’t have a problem with seeing the occasional post on my news feed. It’s like anything else. Everything is fine in moderation (except maybe abusiveness or pure evil).

Most of my friends are pretty open and honest about what they do and do not like to see, and I try to respect that, at least insofar as anything I might post to their wall. I like to think that, with the exception of positive affirmations, I don’t post any topic in excess, but I am sure there are some who might see differently. (OK, so I may post more than my share of adorable cat pictures, but in my defense, I’m not posting a bunch of pictures of adorable grandchildren!).

One man’s junk is another man’s treasure.

The main thing is that we respect each others’ right to post what is important for them to share, knowing that there are polite and impolite ways to shield ourselves from the ones which might annoy or offend us. Heck, if we were all interested in exactly the same things, it wouldn’t be long before we’d just see the same posts over and over and over again, and, like a soap opera, we’d only need to check in every week or two to know everything that was going on! How boring would that be? As it is, some posts already go around for awhile, then, just as we think we’ve seen the last, someone starts re-posting them all over again! I can’t tell you how many times I’ll start reading something, only to realize that I saw it a month or so ago. It just goes to show that things travel more quickly in some circles than others.

For the people out there who are tired of my content, feel free to unfollow me; I completely understand. But if you unfriend me just because we have different viewpoints, we’ll both be the poorer as our world will become less diverse. Whether it’s meant that way or not, removing someone as a friend translates into an act of anger, whether  intended or not, and it’s often difficult to bridge the gap once it’s in place.

So to those who’ve let me know that they don’t appreciate or participate in some of the shenanigans, rest assured that I’ll try to remember to exclude you next time one goes around. But if, for some reason, I forget, please feel free to remind me before you just block me out of your life. I don’t set out to annoy or offend (though I will, on occasion post a rant with clear warnings!), but as a human, I do, on occasion, err, and once I either figure it out for myself or have it brought to my attention, I’ll always take ownership and do my best to make it right. (admittedly, I won’t always agree that I have been offensive or unkind. Like everyone else, I’m a work in progress, and my experiences have colored my perspective.)

Fortunately, I know that a lot of my friends are like me and appreciate the diversity as it allows us to bring each other lessons we might otherwise have missed, or at least, would have taken much longer to learn. But I think, over the last couple of years, we’ve all learned what social media can and cannot do for us, and have, for the most part, used it to connect, but after connecting, we all get out into the world rather than hiding behind our computers as the stereotypical user might do. It makes me wonder what the numbers are as far as users who think talking to people on the computer all day is real connecting vs. those who use the medium to reach out, but save the true connecting for social gatherings which actually require you to shower, dress and leave the comparative comfort of the four walls they call home…something to ponder.

My Gratitudes tonight are:
1. I am grateful for my friends in all of their wonderful, unique, sometimes quirky, but never boring, diversity.
2. I am grateful that I’ve reached the end of my current hermit stage, and that my friends care enough to be concerned when I’m not present, but understand when I explain why.
3. I am grateful that I have the ability to check out from society whenever I want or need to, but can just as easily check back in.
4. I am grateful for the amazing relationship I have with my daughter, and how much we continue to share, despite the distance in miles.
5. I am grateful for all of the abundance in my life; love, friendship, health, happiness, peace, harmony, prosperity and charity.


August 26, 2014 A cha cha kind of day

Two steps forward, one step back

You know those days when everything you do, even the simplest task, requires extra planning and thought? Well, that would be today. From trying unsuccessfully to get my wireless printer to communicate with my computer to fixing a meal or even ordering something online. It all seemed to require extra steps or even workarounds today. I’m almost glad it was a day to get mundane tasks out of the way rather than a day I wanted to be creatively productive. I fear I’d have driven myself batty!

One thing that is going well is my minimalistic presence on social media this week. It even moved a friend to ask if I was ok as I’d been too quiet. Frankly, I’ve enjoyed the quiet, the reading of a couple of books, the time spent talking to the cats and the complete lack of emotional attachment to anything said or done by anyone outside of these four walls. I think I’m just about ready to brave humans, at least in small doses, tomorrow.

As the world around me is hard at work, making lunches, checking homework and keeping to schedules involving work, school, practices, lessons and all of those other parent-y things, I find myself at peace, knowing I did my share of all of those things, putting a lot of my own wants and needs on hold for years while my kids received as well-rounded a life as I could give them. I’m sure, if I stopped and thought about it, there are plenty of things I would have changed if I could, but I can honestly say that I did the best I could, and have no real regrets. Yet, I am also very glad that those years are behind me and I can be as selfish and self-serving as I choose to be, or as selfless and giving as I choose. It’s in my hands now, and nobody suffers if I decide to sit and read all day, or not leave the house for several days in a row. Nobody complains if there’s nothing edible in the house to their liking, or if the laundry piles up for a few extra days.

My routine is pretty consistent, nonetheless. Sure, I may sleep until 8 one day and 11 the next. I may go to bed at 9 one night, and be up until 3 AM a day or two later. Nobody’s schedule is upset and nobody’s dreams go unfulfilled. Honestly? This is a kind of freedom I could only have dreamed of. I never really expected to be living it! Yet, here I am. Laying in bed for an extra hour, just snuggling with the cats who, by the way, don’t really care whether I feed them at 7AM or noon, as long as they get their wet food at some point during the day. They know they won’t starve because the dry food is always out.

Sure, I’m taking longer to fulfill my own dreams, but if I were to be completely honest, this freedom is fulfilling a dream! I hear from my daughter just about every day, despite the fact that her schedule has filled up since school started. If I play hermit for too long, I have friends who will rattle my cage until I come up for air. I’m never alone because at least a couple of my furry kids is always there to keep an eye on me and snag a skritch or two in the process. Best of all, I don’t have to share my space with any other human unless I choose to!

I can dream my dreams of the ranch full of rescued animals (though I know I’d need a few extra hands to really make it work!). I can visualize my book tours and my name on book covers, a website which keeps me writing quick little notes and longer dissertations. I see me getting into shape and staying there, cleaning up my space the rest of the way and making it match the dreams and visions which, for now, keep changing. One day, I’ll even put that tape recorder beside my bed so I can capture all of the wonder of the vivid dreams which fill my sleep, the better to transfer them to computer screen and write more stories.

It’s all there and it’s all mine. No dream is too big, nor too small to be part of a new chapter in a life which is still being written, edited and rewritten, one day at a time.

My gratitudes tonight are:
1. I am grateful that I can dream the dream and live it too.
2. I am grateful for the freedom I have given to myself this year.
3. I am grateful for everyone and everything which makes my life such a joy.
4. I am grateful for the ability to be a hermit for days on end, if that’s what makes me happy.
5. I am grateful for abundance: freedom, joy, dreams, love, happiness, harmony, faith, health, friendship and prosperity.


August 23, 2014 Striking out in a new (old) direction

Yes, Virginia, you are what you eat!

Yesterday, when I finally dragged my lazy, unmotivated self out to do some much-needed grocery shopping, it occurred to me in one of those lightbulb flashing, aha moments, that part of the problem with my lack of energy and motivation was directly related to the way I’d slacked off on healthy eating habits. For the last few weeks, I’ve opted for the quick and easy route of dry cereal and dried fruit with a coffee chaser. As my body had been used to either a cup of yogurt or, better still, a veggie scramble and some fruit, I think I inadvertently threw myself into a version of starvation mode. Worse, still, was my hit or miss habit of taking my daily vitamins and supplements. What’s a poor, abused body to do but shut down and want more and more sleep?

Today begins my return to those good, healthy habits.

My shopping trip to Underwood Farms and Trader Joe’s yesterday garnered a great many fresh fruits and vegetables, NO cereal, a bag of raw almonds for munching, and only mini fruit and cream bars from the ice cream case. I also didn’t stock up on a bunch of between-meal snacks as my protein rich diet will find me less inclined to require such things, as will increased movement in the form of gym visits, housework, and (*gasp*) maybe even yard work! Day 1 of the change is going well, so far. I was actually excited to go into the kitchen to chop veggies and whip up my special scramble. I feel pleasantly full and, with breakfast finished, my teeth are brushed and vitamins and supplements swallowed. I also don’t feel as edgy and twitchy as I have for the last few days. (OK, lot’s of “I’s” in there, and really, though it isn’t readily apparent, efforts are being made to use the word less here!) It seems that the “experts” are right about keeping those vitamin and mineral levels elevated.

Hermit mode continues

As the day went on, reading a book and snuggling with the cats, the feeling of needing to avoid crowds intensifies. It’s not people in general which are off-putting, but many people in one place. Not to mention that my usual haunt is a bit energetically tainted right now, so I have to figure out how to better shield myself until the taint wears off. It’s not as if I can smudge the place, as it isn’t my space to smudge. The extra-attentiveness of the cats tells me that, on an energetic level, I’d be wise to trust my feelings. In the last couple of days, Toby and Munchkin, especially, have gone from laying on my lap or stomach to laying over my heart. Scrappy is planting himself closer to my heart chakra as well. As cats (as well as dogs and other animals) are far more sensitive to energetic shifts than we silly, desensitized humans are, I’ve learned that it is wise to heed their changes in behavior, and to watch for signs of what is causing the change. Those changes are easier to ferret out in a more quiet environment, so I have to believe that my sudden and complete aversion to larger groups of people is directly related.

Meditation brings unusual visions

Today’s meditation began with a request that clarification be given for the last week or so of strange, vivid dreams and weird feelings. Almost immediately, an image of a large man wearing jeans and suspenders, and carrying something large over his shoulder, popped into my head. What followed was words like “support”, “strength”, “lifting of weight”. I took these to mean that some sort of financial transaction was coming my way which would “fill the coffers” so to speak, and allow me more freedom to relax and continue pursuing the dreams which are taking rather longer than anticipated to come into fruition. (isn’t that always the case?) Whatever is coming will shore me up for awhile and allow me to fully focus on the things I need to do to make those dreams a reality.

As the day drew to a close, the unthinkable happened. I chose a quiet evening at home over my usual dance night. But all things considered, it was exactly what was needed, and the cats are quite happy with the decision. Let’s hope the week of Hermit-dom is drawing to a close now, but if not, that there will be some serious productivity coming out of it!

My gratitudes tonight are:
1. I am grateful for a quiet night at home.
2. I am grateful for answers to the questions which puzzle me.
3. I am grateful for nights of quiet, dreamless sleep.
4. I am grateful to my guides and Higher Self who do their darndest to keep me on track.
5. I am grateful for abundance: health, time, harmony, love, prosperity.


August 21, 2014 Feeling like a Hermit

I just vant to be alone!

For the last few days, I have eschewed the company of other humans. As I look back, it began when I returned from a visit to my daughter and son-in-law. Although I really needed to go to the gym, run errands and buy groceries, I found myself holing up in my house and making do with what I had. The feeling really came to a head when I had to argue with myself over going dancing tonight, and even when I was exiting the freeway, I started wondering if I had the right day. As has happened before, I knew that if I gave in to my inner desires, I’d kick myself afterwards for not going (not to mention the slew of texts I’d receive asking where I was). Once there, I was ok for awhile, took care of a little unpleasant business (humbling myself to offer an apology isn’t on my list of top ten most enjoyable activities) which went better than I’d expected. I visited a little, danced a little, even got a few laughs in, but by 9:00, I was more than ready to go home!

Interestingly, the more I want to avoid people, the more my cats feel the need to be close. At the moment, I have one on top of the printer, one on the other chair and one on the desk, while another is sitting in the doorway. Clearly, I’m in need of a lot of supervision when I’m feeling like being alone!

There’s no place like home!

The moment I pulled into my garage and closed the door, I felt an immense sense of relief come over me. It’s as if my energies were feeling very uncomfortable having to share space, and even the space in my car wasn’t empty enough to suit them. After an hour with just the cats as company, I’m a lot calmer, but by no means, feeling settled.

Part of the problem; or maybe a symptom of the problem (which came first?) has been, not only weird dreams, but weird visions during my daily meditations. Yesterday, they were so unsettling that I felt completely out of sorts for the rest of the day, which made me more annoyed, as a meditation is supposed to be relaxing! Yet, standing under running water isn’t helping, stroking a cat is helping, but minimally. I am thinking I may need to brave the heat to stick my hands in the dirt, at this point.

Knowing that I tend to sense energy shifts a day or two ahead of the rest of the world, I’m tempted to ask if I’m alone in this feeling of being unsettled and restless, though it’s likely that if it is going to affect others, it might be a couple of days before it happens. I was able to roust myself to get a few things done, though, today, which I hadn’t been for the last three, so I guess that’s progress. With luck, I’ll even get my errands run tomorrow! I’m getting tired of cobbling together meals!

If nothing else, all this solitude is giving me time to work on finally finishing my book. Although I’m down to about ten pages left to edit, I keep feeling like I’ve left something out, so I’ll be coming through the whole thing as soon as I finish the ten pages. I need to make sure that anything I alluded to was eventually created or explained. I can see why some authors use story boards. At least the details are kept somewhat organized. Sadly, my brain is more creative when I don’t put it into a neat little box.

I downloaded some more e-books over the last week, and I have to say that all of the time I’ve spent editing my own book has ruined me for other authors. I am appalled at the blatant errors which get through the publishing process. One of the books I downloaded, by Nora Roberts, even had sentences which just didn’t make sense! Words were misspelled or left out, or the wrong word was printed. I am going to have to be a veritable fiend about the quality of my own efforts!

At any rate, I didn’t come here tonight to whine and complain, and I sincerely hope this weird and disturbing energy is isolated and not affecting the rest of the world, or there could, by tomorrow, be some serious road rage!

My gratitudes tonight are:
1. I am grateful for a place to vent when my mind is racing and things aren’t making sense.
2. I am grateful for having the sense to go dancing even when my mind was screaming at me to stay home.
3. I am grateful for friends who make me laugh, no matter how sour I might feel.
4. I am grateful for the things I did accomplish today. Something is always better than nothing!
5. I am grateful for abundance: love, happiness, harmony, joy, health and prosperity.


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