Why I Started this Blog

Welcome to Bonnie’s Healing through Writing blog site!

I started this blog to support my fascinating new creative writing adventure. I’ve been writing a bit of fiction, poetry, and non-fiction over the past few months.  Here you will find:

  • some of my poetry, short stories, and a bit about my WIP Dreamwork (novella) and Gone with Innocence a short story currently in its first editing phase 
  • *Quotes of Wisdom – a Friday at 9am (Pacific Time Zone) series offering Wisdom, Feel Good, Inspirational and Thought-provoking Quotes.  Sometimes with links and most likely, with too many thoughts of my own included.

I think my newly liberated creative muse perhaps has a some catching up to do! It’s just like me to work on small projects (completion satisfaction!) while slowly making progress on bigger projects.  Regardless, whatever she’s inspired to work on, well, that’s what “we” work on ;-).

I’m learning to “go with the flow” because when I relax into it something surreal seems to happen.  It’s a “trance-like” feeling I find difficult to describe but completely enjoy.  A sort of, super-concentration that is comfortable and I find myself craving it every day.

Writing has quite recently become a necessary part of my own healing process.  Past traumas, losses, anticipated loss, as well as growth and great joys in my personal life seem to be driving an incessant need to record stories that are flowing…. the stories are demanding to be recorded!  It is a fascinating process that I am, at once, experiencing and observing.  It’s all new territory, this creative writing adventure!  And blogging…

When thinking about starting a blog I wrote a list of “Why I Write” and realized I’ve been writing since very young. I wrote a series of posts describing my thoughts about why I’ve written and why I am writing now.  I suspect many of the reasons I write are familiar to other writers. 

Addendum:  Yes, indeed!  As the months have gone by since starting this blog, I’ve begun educating myself about writing, editing, and publishing options, through blogs and books found through some fantastic blogs here on wordpress, blogger, and other platforms. I’ve confirmed that it’s true! I am a “writer” after all.  The “author” in my url and blog title expresses intention, and when created was not intended to represent myself as having published a book. I learned later that it could be perceived as misleading or bad etiquette but I chose to keep going with my intention to achieve “author status” rather than start over. I hope published authors will understand and not be offended. I am the author of my own story (i.e. life) and that is really what it’s about for me.

  • Writer? Check.
  • Blogger? Check. 
  • Author of my life? Check. 
  • Author of a published book?  Joyfully working on the dream.

Luckily, or divinely, however you may choose to view it, another one of those “perfect people at the perfect time” appeared in my life and encouraged me to explore writing in depth.  Out in the open, not just on my laptop, which is where I’d be hiding my stories if it weren’t for her! Lisa Redfern of Nevada City, California is an amazing author, graphic artist, photographer, and mentor, not to mention friend and mom.  I am most grateful for her friendship and wisdom.

I plan to post some of my stories and various author/writer resources (as I discover helpful advice for newbies like me), share my new writer trials and tribulations, and explore various other avenues for Healing through Creativity.  

I have always been up to some sort of creative project e.g. learning to watercolor and acrylic paint, creating handmade “Steiner dolls” – last count I think was 24 of the lovely little dolls (each custom made for specific children), knitting and crocheting projects, various DIY home and furniture projects, remodeling portions of our home, gardening, envisioning projects for my husband and dad to get busy on, etc, etc. My mom’s creativity and my dad’s ability to manifest my visions for projects that were out of my skill/comfort zone have supported my creative urges for years. I am writing in part for my parents. 

Writing seems just a natural phase at this time in my life. Carving out time for it, well, let’s just say it’s not going to be easy.

Disclaimer: I do not have a degree in writing.  I am an “unpublished” writer and started putting my stories on Wattpad only very recently.  For fun.  But exploring has brought writing into a more serious light. I have a secret (not anymore!) desire to publish a story.  Like on Amazon! 

My professional life as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, with a part-time private practice, is a large part of the meaning and purpose of my life. Obviously, my family and children are most important, but doing what I do at work, it’s what I was born to do.  So, in some fashion, I suspect that that part of my life will show up here.  I do not know how, yet.  But, I am quite aware that it’s such an integral part of who I am that I wouldn’t want to keep it completely separate.  Probably wouldn’t be able to even if I tried…  Time will tell how it all manifests here.

I am now taking snippets of “my truth” and personal experiences, and turning them into fictional stories (“and poetry!”) inspired by my continual search for answers, and occasionally a dream. Actually, this all started with a dream!  More about that later…

If my stories or writing touch your “truth” in some way, well then, I will have accomplished something meaningful through writing.

Thank you for visiting and I hope you feel compelled to come back soon. Oh, and I am the type that craves kudos.  So, if you are entertained or informed please let me know ;-). If not, that’s okay too. It’ll help me grow. 

Until next time!

 

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#Quotes of Wisdom 21 The #Healing Gift of Presence

“What we suffer, what we endure…is done by us, as individuals, in private.” ~Louise Bogan

Yes, ultimately, suffering is truly an intimate and private experience. We endure loss as part of groups we are in, such as with natural (or man-made) disasters and war, but essentially alone within our skin, our bodies and minds. There are commonalities of experience through loss from illness, death, disabilities and injuries, relationships, financial hardship, lack of shelter, brain disorders (mental illness), lack of dignity and respect, aging changes, racism, and more.

Those common experiences can bind us together as friends, families, communities, countries, and ultimately, as the human race.  Or they can divide us.

I think of empathy the ability to understand and share the feelings of another; to see someone’s suffering from their perspective as if walking in their shoes – as the glue that binds us. Without the glue, we are painfully divided, and our suffering as individuals increases.

While we cannot walk in the shoes of another sufferer, we do know the pain of our own suffering. With that intrinsic knowledge, we can offer something our pets instinctively do well. Just being present.

Okay, well, pets are often furry, cute, entertaining, and cuddly (and sometimes a bit slobbery!) but, if you are a pet lover then you probably get the point. If you are not a pet lover, it’s okay. You probably still understand by observation of those who do have pets.  Their unconditional loving presence is comforting and alleviates some of our pain. They can often be highly sensitive to our suffering as well.

For those suffering, our presence and empathy can make all the difference. Along with solving problems that can be solved, i.e., providing food, shelter, clothing, and medical care, our simple, quiet presence can be the greatest gift for someone who is suffering mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and physically

At our core, we have the ability to move through our pain and grief process and grow deeper in our understanding of what it is to be human. We experience the light and the darkness in cycles, just as the seasons of summer and winter circle back around each year.

It is not an easy thing to do, just to be present, to witness suffering while being helpless to change the situation.  Most of us have a strong urge to try to “fix” the situation or solve the problem.  That urge can be a form of denial, an inability to accept that some things are just what they seem – awful and unavoidable.  That urge to do or say something, or offer an idea that might help is powerful and often driven by our own discomfort.  I know that urge. I’ve experienced it gazillions of times. I am as guilty as the next person for allowing my discomfort to get in the way of just being present.

Our empathetic presence can be the key ingredient that helps to alleviate another’s pain.

 Feeling alone while suffering increases our pain.

While we cannot change many situations for others, we can do something else on a very human and intimate level.

Just be there.

The feeling of being alone adds to our suffering. 

The feeling of being heard and understood adds to our healing and feelings of well-being.

This is why “talk therapy” can change a person’s life.  But, I am not talking about therapy.

I am talking about just being humane in our everyday lives; striving to be empathetically present with others.  Our friends, families, communities, and each person we meet or stand next to in line at the grocery store are all enduring their own private suffering.

I am ever-so-grateful when I feel the empathetic presence of others. There is a huge presence in my life. And I thank you!

In many ways, this and all of my posts, are reminders for myself.  Thank you for tagging along.

From Wikipedia: Louise Bogan (August 11, 1897 – February 4, 1970) was an American poet. She was appointed the fourth Poet Laureate to the Library of Congress in 1945.

The Poetry Foundation notes that Bogan has been called by some critics the most accomplished woman poet of the twentieth century. It further notes that, “Some critics have placed her in a category of brilliant minor poets described as the “reactionary generation.”

*featured photo from cocoparisienne-127419/ on Pixabay

*Quotes of Wisdom – a Friday at 9am (Pacific Time Zone) series offering Wisdom, Feel Good, Inspirational and Thought-provoking Quotes. Sometimes with links and most likely, with too many thoughts of my own included.

As always, thank you for visiting! Feel free to like, comment, share, follow my journey or re-blog as your heart and mind desire. Namaste

Book Review: #Healing with Words – A Writer’s #Cancer Journey

Healing with Words A Writer’s Cancer Journey by Diana M. Raab with a Foreward by Melvin J. Silverstein, MD Director, Breast Program, Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian, Newport Beach, California

Diana Raab bares her soul walking the reader through her physically and emotionally painful journey fighting breast cancer. From her initial diagnosis of DCIS (ductal carcinoma in situ) via mammogram (the only way to discover it early) through surgeries and recovery, each step of the way is described using her straightforward style combined with her journal entries and poetry written at the time.

Diana’s powerful poetry reveals the life changing experience she went through in a concise and easy to understand style. In as few as twenty powerful words, she paints a picture describing the very essence of her experiences. Cancer is not subtle and neither is the author.

Each chapter concludes with two or three questions on blank pages to encourage the reader’s own healing with words journaling experience. The hardback version is well suited for recording one’s thoughts and reactions to the prompts. I imagine the paperback version is as well.

I intend to give this book to a friend who is recovering from breast cancer surgery and chemo. I thought of my friend during the entire book and realized there was so much more that she likely went through than I was aware of at the time. I hope this book will help her adjust to the difficult road of “survivor.”

The book is 151 pages of memoir, poetry and writing pages, with an additional 28 pages of valuable Appendices. Writing for wellness and healing is encouraged throughout the book with simple to follow instructions and additional prompts at the end.

This book would make a gentle gift for a special person in your life who may need another woman’s story to relate to. Or a gift for one’s self, if traveling the breast cancer road.

 

As always, thank you for visiting! Feel free to like, comment, share, follow my journey or re-blog as your heart and mind desire. Namaste

 

Quotes of Wisdom 20 Marriage Anniversary #amwriting

“Chains do not hold a marriage together. It is threads, hundreds of tiny threads, which sew people together through the years.” ~Simone Signoret

From Wikipedia: Simone Signoret (French: [simɔn siɲɔʁɛ]; 25 March 1921 – 30 September 1985) was a French cinema actress often hailed as one of France’s greatest film stars. She became the first French person to win an Academy Award, for her role in Room at the Top (1959).

Sadly, she died of pancreatic cancer.

Today is my 16th wedding anniversary! There are no “chains” here!  Indeed, tiny threads were being woven between us before the day we met. It was the Saturday before the Superbowl, 2000.  We felt the tug of a few of those tiny threads on that first day.

My brother Wes introduced me and Jim.  They had worked together surveying, a few years prior to our introduction. Jim the chief, Wes the young chainman learning the trade. 

Three months after I bought my first house, Wes invited me to go with him and his then girlfriend Valerie, to a BBQ party at Jim’s house a mile down the road. At the time, I only knew one other resident in my new gated neighborhood. 

I wasn’t looking for a third husband, but I was dating at the time. My secret thought was that if my toilet plugged up, at least I’d know one guy in the neighborhood I could call for help. My dad and Wes were both too far away if a toilet “situation” came up.

Wes knew Jim well enough to think he was a good guy so I went with him to the party the day before Superbowl. It was a small party, maybe twelve people were there. There was an abundance of laughter, classic rock, poker, and ping-pong in the garage. I can still see my smiling brother sitting in an overstuffed chair with Valerie snuggled up with him.

My introvert-self was nervous meeting new people, so I drank two beers over four hours. Yep, I am a lightweight, but no longer a cheap date.

For the party, Jim had BBQ’d a turkey (a tasty new experience for me!) and made macaroni salad.  That was a new experience too, a guy making macaroni salad!? Who was this guy?  He certainly wasn’t anything like previous guys… dates or husbands.

Jim and I have been inseparable since that day. Even when tensions arise we are tightly bound.

The threads woven through our lives are powerful, and many unseen except in my mind’s eye. I can still see Wes two years later. He and Lela, his future bride at the time, sitting on the edge of the bed in the suite adjoining ours in the mega-hotel/casino where we were married. It was after the wedding as a small group of family and friends toasted us with champagne. He was relaxed and smiling again. None of us had any clue his death sentence would be read to our parents after surgery four months later, nearly to the day.  

“Your son’s lymph nodes are full of malignant melanoma. Get him to an oncologist quickly.”

He was thirty. 

The next day, a sunny Friday in springtime, my gynecologist read my infertility sentence.  It was emotionally distressing to hear that I had endometriosis, fibroids, uterine polyps, and ovarian dysfunction. But, not as devastating as what I had learned the day before. I was already in the throes of grief.  I knew my brother would die too young, and too soon.

Wes died 13 weeks later – August 16th, 2002

The tiniest of tiny threads were woven two years after the infertility sentence, when I became pregnant with twins on Mother’s Day, May 9th, 2004. Yes, I do know the exact date.  The infertility roller coaster ride tends to bring awareness to every nuance of the cycle. It had been a total of four years of trying to get pregnant.  Not even a lifetime for some, but for Jim and me the journey was long and difficult.

Interestingly, it was May 9th 2002 that Wes was given his death sentence.

Somewhere I read that twins are a gift sent by the dead. I imagined Wes helping us out.  He knew how badly we wanted a baby.  

The threads of our marriage are woven tightly together, forever. I see them in my children every day. And in my mind’s eye.

In case you are wondering, it turned out that I am the plumber in the house.

The featured quote is specifically about “marriage,” but in my opinion, replacing “marriage” with “commitment,” “civil union,” or whatever words describe your relationship, would be more appropriate.

*Quotes of Wisdom – a Friday at 9am (Pacific Time Zone) series offering Wisdom, Feel Good, Inspirational and Thought-provoking Quotes. Sometimes with links and most likely, with too many thoughts of my own included.

As always, thank you for visiting! Feel free to like, comment, share, follow my journey or re-blog as your heart and mind desire. Namaste

I was nominated for The Awesome Blogger Award – #bloggingfun !

awesomebloggeraward

What an Awesome way to start the new year! I am filled with immense gratitude for the nomination by Heidi at bravingmentalillnessBe sure to check out her Awesome Blog where you’ll find an epic journey of healing, courage, and inspiration.

Much gratitude to all of you who visit my blog!  Each sign of your presence is hugely encouraging and inspires me to continue my blogging journey.

The Awesome Blogger Award:

“This is an award for the absolutely wonderful writers all across the blogging world. They have beautiful blogs, are kind and lovely, and always find a way to add happiness and laughter to the lives of their readers. That is what truly defines an awesome blogger.”  Created by Miss Maggie @ Dreaming of Guatemala

The rules are:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you
  2. Tag it under #awesomebloggeraward in the Reader
  3. Answer the questions your nominator gave you
  4. Nominate at least 5 awesome bloggers
  5. Give your nominees 10 new questions to answer
  6.  Let your nominees know that they’ve been nominated

I chose the following blogs to Nominate for the Awesome Blogger Award because each represents something I’ve discovered as a new blogger: poetry, poetry with fantastic photography, short stories, art, travel, true stories of healing/recovery written by amazing people living with life’s challenges, and writers helping writers. The Awesome Bloggers I am nominating for the Awesome Blogger Award are (there are many more I love to visit but I am running out of time to finish this post!):

  • Ancient Skies Always fantastic “poetry, fiction, nature, culture, compassion, love!”
  • Andrea Stephenson at Harvesting Hecate poetry, musings, and photography
  • Debby Gies at dgkayewriter.com/ A prolific writer and skilled memoirist encouraging new writers like me. 
  • Caz at Invisibly Me Living life with chronic illness is not easy. Caz demonstrates how to do it with grace and provides support to others along the way.
  • Christy B at When Women Inspire Christy! What an amazingly inspirational woman and blogger she is! Check out her curated posts for an adventure in exploring many amazing blogs by Women Who Inspire.
  • Anne R Allen Writing about Writing, Mostly One of the first blogs I discovered when I started exploring resources for writers. Amazing support for writers and her book, co-authored with Catherine Ryan Hyde, How to be a Writer in the E-Age – A Self-Help Guide gave me oodles of information and encouragement to “just write!”

I realize that not everyone on my nomination list will participate in this fun but I do want to call attention to their blogs for their beautiful content and their consistent support of my new blogging adventure!  Take a few minutes, if you don’t already know these awesome people, and check out their spaces in the blog-o-sphere!  

Questions for my nominees should they chose to play:

  1.  If you could choose an animal to be for a day what would you be?
  2.  What’s your favorite day of the year?
  3.  How much time per day or week do you spend blogging?
  4.  Anything you dislike about blogging?
  5.  Where are you planning to vacation this year?
  6.   How many books do you take on vacation?
  7.   What is your number one advice for new bloggers?
  8.   What was the last museum or major attraction you visited?
  9.   What advice would you give a 13-year-old who wants a Lamborghini?
  10.   What do you see out your kitchen, living room, bathroom, or bedroom window?

Answers to Heidi’s questions to me:

What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?  So Delicious’s Oregon Mixed Berry – gone are the days of dairy, Rocky Road, and Mint-n-chip.  But that’s okay, with each loss (dairy & chocolate) comes something else yummy I didn’t know existed – luv coconut & berries!! 😉
How has your blogging changed your life? Blogging has opened doors to meeting amazing and inspiring people, reading stories and poetry, seeing photos and learning about places I’ve never been.  Blogging has given me a place to voice a few thoughts about life that I wouldn’t otherwise share.  
In a few words, what would you say to someone who is struggling with thoughts of suicide?  I’d like to hear about it. 
Has it been difficult for you to share your story or challenges to the world? Heck yeah!
Do you have any regrets? Of course several, but here’s just one: I sold my ’67 Camaro RS for all the wrong-man reasons.
What is your favorite song and why? Near impossible to answer but maybe “Cat’s in the Cradle” Harry Chapin – Brings tears every time.
If you could vacation anywhere, where would you go? Ireland and Scotland – home of a few ancestors.
What is your favorite color? Deep Purple or dusty sage or sunset red or lavender or wait, I can’t choose just one!
What is your definition of beauty? Love – a 74-year-old woman and 76-year-old man, married since 1963 holding hands.
What is the happiest moment in your life you can remember? Meeting my premie twin babies on their birthday.

Thanks for playing.  Thanks for visiting.  Namaste

Book Review – How Dare We! Write edited by Sherry Quan Lee

Today I finished reading How Dare We! Write edited by Sherry Quan Lee. Here’s my brief review. 

I very much appreciated each essayist’s very personal (and well written) sharing of experiences in childhood and adulthood related to finding their writing voice. Each was a painful journey, with racism and no place for a voice of color to be accepted at the core of the struggle. A theme of hope runs through the book. Each essayist reveals how they made their way through the challenges, still struggle but have been successful in varying degrees. Defining success by their own experiences and accomplishments rather than by the critical judgement of the predominant “white” voice of academia. They provide, in my opinion, encouragement and guidance for others struggling with same or similar issues.

I am an unpublished “new writer” of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry, without an MFA or other related writing degree. I am also a white woman with an advanced degree in social work. This book has given me an “insider’s view” of the painful experiences of a diverse group of writers of color struggling to find their voices and place. Having no experience in a college writing program, I had no prior knowledge of the culture or atmosphere. Learning that they are “highly politicized spaces” and very white dominated is discouraging and disturbing. This book deserves a spot in every MFA, English, or related writing program across the U.S. and beyond.

I highly recommend How Dare We! Write for writers of color, professors, editors, publishers, and writers not “of color.” I am so glad this book found it’s way to my nightstand stack!

Sherry Quan Lee’s blog post with video of 3 of the essayists

As always, thank you for visiting! Feel free to like, comment, share, follow my journey or re-blog as your heart and mind desire. Namaste

Quotes of Wisdom 19 – A #Smile of #Gratitude

“For me, every hour is grace. And I feel gratitude in my heart each time I can meet someone and look at his or her smile.” ~Elie Wiesel

I was searching for a quote about smiles. The search led me to the featured quote, which is really more about gratitude. Gratitude for every hour of life. It’s interesting, the quote doesn’t indicate if Wiesel himself smiled in response. I like to imagine he did.

I am feeling grateful for every moment these days. But, I don’t feel much like smiling.  The smile of others does bring me closer though!

The search for a smile quote also led me to add Wiesel’s book to my reading list. The Night Trilogy: Night, Dawn, Day by Elie Wiesel 

My reading list keeps growing; I can’t read fast enough to keep up!  Here’s a bit about the author:

From Wikipedia: Eliezer “Elie” Wiesel KBE (/ˈɛli viˈzɛl/, Hebrew: אֱלִיעֶזֶר וִיזֶל‎, ’Ēlí‘ézer Vízēl;[2][3] September 30, 1928 – July 2, 2016) was a Romanian-born American Jewish writer, professor, political activist, Nobel Laureate, and Holocaust survivor. He was the author of 57 books, written mostly in French and English, including Night, a work based on his experiences as a prisoner in the Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps.

Reading the author and book descriptions put me in mind of Viktor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Meaning.  Not exactly smile producing subject matter.  But, it does speak to one of the questions that drives my professional life, “why do some people heal (if only in degrees) and find joy after horrendous trauma, but others do not?”  Looking forward to finding out what Wiesel thought.

Book description from Amazon: “Night is one of the masterpieces of Holocaust literature. First published in 1958, it is the autobiographical account of an adolescent boy and his father in Auschwitz. Elie Wiesel writes of their battle for survival and of his battle with God for a way to understand the wanton cruelty he witnesses each day. In the short novel Dawn (1960), a young man who has survived World War II and settled in Palestine joins a Jewish underground movement and is commanded to execute a British officer who has been taken hostage. In Day (previously titled The Accident, 1961), Wiesel questions the limits of conscience: Can Holocaust survivors forge a new life despite their memories? Wiesel’s trilogy offers insights on mankind’s attraction to violence and on the temptation of self-destruction.”

On a lighter note, here’s the smile quote I was looking for!

“Smile in the mirror. Do that every morning and you’ll start to see a big difference in your life.” ~Yoko Ono

It’s funny how I automatically assumed the ‘big difference’ will be a positive change. I already know smiling releases some feel good chemicals. I like it. I’d like more, please 😉

And smiling is contagious! Just like the “galloping grumps” in Winnie the Pooh’s Oh Bother! Somebody’s Grumpy!, “galloping smiles” are just as contagious. Kids prove that every day.

When was the last time you looked into your own eyes in the mirror and smiled? I don’t mean the looking you do when you apply makeup or pluck those pesky whiskers. Or when you are shaving, or trimming your beard or the wild nose hairs.  

I mean, do you ever look into your own eyes and smile? 

I am curious about what kind of feeling it brings up for you. 

I looked this morning.  I had to force the smile. Later, I tried again and it was easier to bring the smile, but I was aware of the weirdness of being self-conscious, with myself! Nobody around, just me alone with the woman looking back in the mirror. 

It can be a vulnerable feeling, looking into our own eyes. There’s truth there.  Sometimes, it’s truth we don’t want to acknowledge.

I put a sticky note on my mirror. “Look at me and smile.”  Freud looks goofy, it’s easy to smile at him!  But I meant smile at myself.  I meant smile at others.

I guess I needed the reminder because my loved ones need my smile, even when I don’t feel like it.

*Quotes of Wisdom – a Friday at 9am (Pacific Time Zone) series offering Wisdom, Feel Good, Inspirational and Thought-provoking Quotes. Sometimes with links and most likely, with too many thoughts of my own included.

As always, thank you for visiting! Feel free to like, comment, share, follow my journey or re-blog as your heart and mind desire. Namaste

 

 

 

Quotes of Wisdom 18 #Success

Success is transient, evanescent. The real passion lies in the poignant acquisition of knowledge about all the shading and subtleties of the creative secrets.
—Constantin Stanislavski (1863–1938) RUSSIAN ACTOR, THEATER PERSONALITY

Wishing you many moments of joyful success in pursuit of your dreams in 2018!

I do not only define success by accomplishment.  Often, it’s about what I’ve learned along the way. I’ve learned a lot this year!  I did accomplish a few things along the way in 2017. The most notable is right here!  Writing right here! 

Thank you to each of you who follows along, reads, likes, comments, and/or shares! You’ve helped make my Healing Through Writing quest a success, right here!

Indeed, success does feel transient when it comes to writing accomplishments. The writer’s high I’ve experienced when accomplishing something meaningful (first rejection! article published in paper, finishing a poem, etc) is a great feeling but, it seems to pass quickly. I wish for MORE 😉

I have always set goals, but not usually correlating with the new year. This year it seems relevant to my life so here goes!

A few of my 2018 goals are related to continued exploration of Healing Through Writing.  Each of these goals includes the learning curve that goes with them as well.

  • more fully discover my writing voice, my strengths and weaknesses
  • finish editing Gone with Innocence
  • write six more poems for 13 Weeks
  • submit two essays for the quarterly journal Recovering the Self – A Journal of Hope and Healing
  • complete a memoir writing course and make some headway on my career memoir
  • attend a writing conference
  • finish first draft of Dreamwork
  • explore possibility of 20 year follow up study (thesis)
  • attend a poetry festival

Other goals are related to my private psychotherapy practice.

  • continue to provide high quality mental health treatment
  • chose CEU’s that are interesting – hypnotherapy?

Other goals are health and family related.

  • continue yoga practice
  • lose a few pounds
  • be the best mom, wife, daughter, and aunt I can be!
  • vacuum before the dust bunnies suffocate us
  • practice mindfulness daily
  • ride the turbulence gracefully

I would love to hear about your successes in 2017 and goals for 2018 in the comments!!  Are they related to creativity, healing, travel, family, or other life stuff?

*Quotes of Wisdom – a Friday at 9am (Pacific Time Zone) series offering Wisdom, Feel Good, Inspirational and Thought-provoking Quotes. Sometimes with links and most likely, with too many thoughts of my own included.  **Photo credit Pixabay

As always, thank you for visiting! Feel free to like, comment, share, follow my journey or re-blog as your heart and mind desire. Namaste

A Yoga Story – Part Three

You may have read in previous posts Healing Through Writing – A Yoga Story Part One   and Healing Through Writing – A Yoga Story Part Two that I fell in love with yoga last spring when I started going to Rising Lotus Yoga Studio.  It loosened up something within me and allowed my creative writing voice to emerge.  I’ve been joyfully writing since then!

A few months into yoga the owner of the studio announced she’d be closing in a short month’s time.  Overwhelmed by grief related to my personal life, I poured out my tears to her in a plea to not give up, yet. It had not yet been a year since she opened the doors to her beautiful space; maybe we could get her to that one year anniversary!

Yoga was therapy, it was personal.  Lisa’s approach and gentle spirit was exactly what I needed.

Yes, there are MANY yoga studios here in the Grass Valley/Nevada City area that I could go to, and I know other teachers who are awesome, but Lisa’s studio was so intimately connected to this beautiful thing happening within me that I didn’t want to let go.  A healing had begun on physical, spiritual, and emotional levels that allowed for this new creativity to develop.  Yoga is a whole-person approach to improved health and I had felt the effects within weeks.

We figured out how to keep her studio open another month.  I wrote an article about yoga and healing; more growth for me but it didn’t change the financial stats. She hung in there and that month turned into another, and a few more weeks. We even celebrated her one year anniversary!

Last week the studio closed. It was not sustainable at the current rate of growth.  There was growth, but too slow for financial success. I understand.

Of course, I am sad, but the time I needed to process the loss was given to me by an amazing spirit who teaches from her core values of kindness, strength, and grace. I know it was a hard thing for her to do, keep going in the face of financial hardship, and I will forever be grateful to Lisa Smart for every moment and ounce of energy she put into that studio. I am grateful for every grain of healing energy she brought to the room and shared with all of us.

Wherever Lisa goes, whatever is next on her journey, I know she will bring love, healing guidance, and her beautiful spirit to it. I have no doubt she will continue to touch lives in deep and meaningful ways, as she touched mine.

Thank you Lisa!  From my heart to yours, Namaste’

As for me? I’ll find my way.  Already connections are being made and the journey continues.

featured photo taken by Bonnie – this piece hung in the studio

 

 

Quotes of Wisdom 17 #Love, #Life & #Death

“Love’s overbrimming mystery joins death and life. It has filled my cup of pain with joy.”
—Rabindranath Tagore (1861–1941) INDIAN HINDU POLYMATH, NOVELIST, POET, ESSAYIST, PHILOSOPHER

Holidays bring to mind loved ones who’ve died; not that they are ever far from consciousness. So many of life’s joyous experiences they’ve missed; how my own days are different without them. It is my heart that is overfull, spilling love and pain today.

This year the holidays are a particularly vicious struggle.  There is a meanness to it, an unfairness heavily weighted with pain. Slogging through a fog of life details, I push on when what I really want is for all of it to stop for a moment, so that I can rest, and just be present, with those present.

Eventually, I will write and talk openly about it.  For now, I am privately holding on tight.

A few lines of my own from a longer poem about transition. 

A path of golden light,
beckoning, a promise
of peace and bliss.
The journey west sacred,
traveled by gazillions before me.
Love sustains me,
until, it is my turn.

In the stillness of SOLSTICE! Though the burden of darkness weighs heavily upon my spirit, shuttering out the cold is perfect timing. Within we are warm and close. I am counting on the promise of Spring when I will sit cross-legged in the garden and water it with tears.

solstice-1436685_1280.jpg
Happy Solstice! photo credit: Pixababy gdizerega

Wishing you love, peace, joy, and all that you need during this holiday season. 

*Quotes of Wisdom – a Friday at 9am (Pacific Time Zone) series offering Wisdom, Feel Good, Inspirational and Thought-provoking Quotes. Sometimes with links and most likely, with too many thoughts of my own included.

*featured photo Pixabay: Rainbow Riverside Park Wikiproject Taiwan Taipei – I chose this photo because it reminds me how love bridges the space between us and our deceased loved ones.

As always, thank you for visiting!  Feel free to like, comment, share, follow my journey or re-blog as your heart and mind desire. Namaste

Quotes of Wisdom 16 #Love & #Parenting

 “Making the decision to have a child — it’s momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking outside your body.” — Elizabeth Stone (Goodreads link)

This week our twins turned 13-years-old.  I read to them Amanda Bradley’s Follow Your Dream poem; it says so beautifully what I want them to understand, and has been true in my life and work stories.

Follow your dream.
Take one step at a time and don’t settle for less,
Just continue to climb.
Follow your dream.
If you stumble, don’t stop and lose sight of your goal
Press to the top.
For only on top can we see the whole view,
Can we see what we’ve done and what we can do;
Can we then have the vision to seek something new,
Press on.
Follow your dream.
-Amanda Bradley

Inspired, I wrote a few lines of my own. 


I Wish for You My Child

I wish for you to know,
though you will stumble and loss will come,
the joys will come as well.
I wish for you to hear,
never give up, get back on the horse,
you are strong even in your pain.
I wish for you to feel,
my infinite joy as I hold you in my heart, 
as your grateful mother.


I Wish So Much

I wish so much for them to dream widely, and never give up.
For their dreams to come true,
in their due,
time.

I wish so much for them to feel deeply, and never give up.
For their hearts to lead them,
to their own,
joy.

I wish so much for them to think clearly, and never give up.
For their fertile minds,
to be open,
always.

I wish so much for them to love fiercely, and never give up.
For their spirits to soar,
upon the wind,
free. 


*Quotes of Wisdom is a Friday at 9am (Pacific Time Zone) series offering Wisdom, Feel Good, Inspirational and Thought-provoking Quotes.  Sometimes with links and most likely, with too many thoughts of my own included. 


As always, thank you for visiting!  Feel free to like, comment, share, follow my journey or reblog as your heart and mind desire. Namaste!