Monthly Archives: April 2014

After Letting Go By Molly Hahn

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Yes, I quit my job without having another one lined up. No, I’m not crazy. I have every faith that things will work out. Sometimes, you just know…I had my motivations. Yes, I do sometimes still get depressed over it because I love my kids and staff, but I also know this is not the place for me.

And yes, I sent out job applications and even looked up ashrams I could stay at as well as yoga teacher certification programs I could fly away to when my employment contract ends even months before I am anywhere near ready to move on. I did the first at the urging of a friend who told me it would make me feel good. She was right. Where I have found two places of employment that seem to reject me in the past few years, I was able to feel accepted through each and every interview in the last month. Yes, I am interviewing just because I am good at interviews and it feels good to nail it even though I can’t really leave my place of employment without breaking my contract! Haha! Well, at least I have options for when my contract ends! I guess it is only human nature to want some sense of belonging.

I even interviewed to join an intentional community/ co-op before getting any job in that location. I know many people do not understand why I would apply to live somewhere where I have no job yet, but again, I have every faith that it will work out. I have no regrets.

Do you ever get that feeling? That feeling when you get to a place or meet certain people that this is where your next home is…it’s where you belong? I’m not certain what life will bring me next whether it be new jobs, new skills/ knowledge, new friends or even pain….I just know that whatever it is, I am okay with it.

“Life is like dancing. Dance with the flow! ”

http://www.thetutuproject.com/

A Little Loving

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We are most productive when we love ourselves. Think about it: every time we think to ourselves, “I’m soooo fat (when you’re really average or skinny)” is another outfit change and another day you are late to work. Every time we think to ourselves, “There’s no one to cook for,” is a day you didn’t take the time to enjoy the act of cooking something scrumptious for yourself to enjoy. Next time you torture yourself with a negative thought, think about how much more productive you would be if you just gave yourself a little love!

 

Readers, post below what is one way you loved yourself today?

The Wheelchair Princess and How She Got Her Crown. Michelle’s Story

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The Wheelchair Princess and How She Got Her Crown. Michelle’s Story

Blended Family Chaos

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I’m going to tell you a story that just might make you cry. It’s made me cry many times. In fact I couldn’t stop crying just now as I proof read it.

It will also make you laugh, smile, and cheer.

It will almost certainly make you thankful.

I pray that you will keep reading.

I pray that when the story is finished that you will have been changed.
I pray that you will have knowledge and perspective that you will share with others.
I pray that you will act on that knowledge to prevent this story from happening to anyone else.

I’ve never told her story to an audience in this manner. As a nurse, and child-abuse prevention advocate, I’ve presented her “case” in a clinical way as a teaching tool, but I’ve never really just told her story.

Let’s begin.

Once Upon a Time,
A beautiful baby…

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One rainy night on a date at a Thai restaurant about three years ago, my date asked me, “What do you want to do with your life?” After thinking for a bit, I replied, “That is a very good question since I have everything I want in my life right now. I suppose what I want is to become a better teacher.” He responded that sometimes he felt like a fake at his job and all he really wanted was to become a better person. I think that he had low self esteem to think of himself as “not good enough” but I also think he was on to something. Here we both were, I, in my late 20s and he in his early 30s with nothing in our lives but our careers. There’s a sort of emptiness in knowing I’ve devoted my entire life to a job.

So I’m going to stop teaching for at least two years while I pursue other parts of life simply because I have discovered I am not very good at multitasking and often become easily overwhelmed when I am doing too much at the same time, which is often.

 

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Yesterday, I had a really good time attending a sustainability seminar at a intentional community co-op. I learned about gray water systems,

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electric cars, drip irrigation, gardening, composting, and furoshiki:

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We did yoga, meditation, ate a delicious meal and also split into teams and went on a fun neighborhood scavenger hunt. The hunt for clues took us through attics, cellars, up trees, and just about everywhere!

I also met a Caucasian African-American. Haha!

Anyhow, I’ve decided, I’d like to join this community in their solar-powered Craftsman Bungalows.

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There’s even an old piano in one of the houses! I intend to play it!

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I’ve decided that I am going to find an evening job and use my days to help out in the community, study and play piano. It’s a vacation of sorts, but it’s not, because I am making time and energy to invest in my career as well as in my personal physical and and mental well-being. Like me, the intentional community eats organically and enjoys home-cooked meals. They have home-cooked meals at least five nights per week. Several members talked amongst themselves about a recent backpacking trip. Anyone who enjoys being outdoors, has a hammock in the backyard, and shares in household duties seems pretty to likable to me! 🙂

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I won’t be able to move until summer, but here’s to finding balance! …If there is such a thing! (Another one of my dates told me it was eerie because I seemed too balanced. Haha!).

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I know I will miss the wildflowers blooming in the desert horizons where joshua trees walk and fall, but I also know that I want to explore life outside of my career, meet new people and have new experiences, so after a year of being back in my hometown, I have found that little has changed here other than friends moving away…And as much as I love my home, I yearn for new experiences. I cannot afford to travel right now due to tuition expenses and student loans, but I can live in a new (affordable) place where sustainable living is practiced and put aside money for travels. The place is close enough that I may even visit home often, but I do not know that I will because I know that it seems everyone I know is always away working. I am going to go back to my career because I hope to save up enough to take care of my parents one day when they become too old to work. There are a ton of hiking trails near my future home I will be exploring, which will  satiate my thirst for adventure for a bit. Here’s to new friends, new doors opening, and at least two years of spending the day time at home instead of at work!

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I Want Balance

Winds Here Tonight are 28mph

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Fear-Quotes-44It is Monday night. I love Monday nights because I get them to myself. I get almost every evening to myself, but Mondays are particularly poignant after a day back from the weekend. I don’t go out on Monday nights.

It’s quiet at home and I can hear the winds picking up outside. After my daily work routine today, I rushed home on the freeway trying to keep my sleepy eyes open to come back here to this quiet, and yet, somehow I was bothered by the stillness. Spontaneity and happiness is easy to embrace when I find myself at sunset climbing the tops of trains in the middle of No Where (I love the view of the horizon at such places):

HarveyHouse_Steve_DiffenbacherOr perhaps unexpectedly creating floral arrangements out of alien-looking protea pincushions: protea flowersBut when it’s still and there’s only my Dear Old Friend: Wind speaking to me…I find myself a little scared.

I’ve been so happy, but tonight, I find myself a little sad…and that’s okay.

It’s begun again. The shocked, “What?! You aren’t coming back next year?! You’re the best teacher I know!” from my colleagues. It’s like I rewinded the VHS tape (Yeah, old school-like) and am playing my life all over again the way it was a year ago, but in a different town, at a different school. I know it will be soon time to go: 37 days of school, not counting weekends and holidays, according to my aides. I feel a bit of pang leaving the piano and the desert winds, but I’ll carry these with me inside.

RiskTheUnusualLong before life sprung this transition on me a second time, I already had my safe little backup plan. Trust me, when you hear things like, “The year I taught here, they pink-slipped every teacher that year,” you make back up plans and more backup plans….Perhaps I just over think things. My backup plan: it’s nearly fail proof, but part of me rejects it!

Plenty of my friends have considered me their “adventure buddy” but my small daily adventures don’t seem to be enough to keep me motivated at times. Sometimes I dream of taking bigger risks. Some may think it foolish, but I’m bored with knowing despite the fears of not knowing…. Yes, I know how to always have a job and a home. I’ve had no trouble with this, so I am very fortunate. I know it’s a luxury to think this, but what if I took a financial risk and pursued yoga and writing children’s books instead of this sure little path I am on? I wanted to do something more risky before I ever began this journey when I was 18 and selecting a career in college, but I took a safer route simply because it was expected. What if I did something unexpected? After all, life is short. I may never have time to pursue this adventure if I pursue my “safe plan” first. Shouldn’t I eat dessert first or would that be undisciplined? Following The Safe Plan would nearly guarantee that I would have money to follow the Unexpected Plan. Following The Unexpected Plan first would, on the other hand, nearly guarantees that I would have the time for it, as life, as we all know, is short. I don’t have to decide yet, I’ll have income through June or July. There may be a way to combine both Plans. Only time and exploration will tell.