Archive for November, 2010

Another one of those days!

November 27, 2010

I certainly didn’t expect to have another one of “those” days quite so soon, but there is no telling what will happen from one day to the next.  I am working on seeing Life as an adventure and that isn’t always easy.  Last night was one of those “end of my rope” times – I am still not sleeping and I was really dragging.  Plus I felt a migraine coming on and it just seemed as if I couldn’t climb out of the hole of not sleeping very well for so long.  I  also was really feeling pain in my legs – I was at that point of starting to cry.  But what surprised me was how I  found myself feeling better – I got to thinking that as long as I focus on not sleeping well and being so tired – isn’t that creating what I don’t want?   It was time to change direction, so I just asked God to change my attitude to positive.  He has done that many times before – one time I remember especially.  It was 1974 and we had just moved to an apartment complex in the South Bay of Los Angeles.  A brand new apartment, bigger than the one we left in San Francisco, but I felt “I don’t like this place”.  So I asked God to change my attitude and by golly, the next time I thought about it, I was fine.

I grew up with a legacy of several generations of negativity – how amazing that given that history, my Mom and Dad definitely changed a lot of that pattern for the three of us girls.  They always made us feel loved and wanted and we did so much together as a family – Dad always said if they couldn’t take us somewhere, they didn’t want to go.  They also brought us up with integrity – some days it felt like a blessing, other days more of a curse.  How could I be a “bad girl” with all that “good girl” programming?I always wondered what it would be like to be a “bad girl”.  Mom and Dad gave us  a good grounding in many things and more and more I realize how blessed I was to grow up in this family.

The negative part was always there as well, not always spoken, more implied.  One of the negative concepts was that the world is a scary place, so be safe and secure before venturing out.  Not conducive to taking risks and stepping out of the comfort zone.  There didn’t seem to be an example of stepping out to help guide us – so I have always been scared to step out in something risky.   Except one that I ended up copying.   Now I know that going down to Australia to marry a man I hardly knew was certainly a risk, except I didn’t really see it that way.  My aunt has introduced us and if she thought there was anything shady about him, I know she would have let me know in no uncertain terms.  Plus I had my Mom’s example – she went to California to marry my Dad right after Pearl Harbor even though her family thought she was crazy.  it took me as long to go to Australia in 1969 as it took her to go from Connecticut to California in December 1941.  I realize there was an objective in that rip, he was at the end of the flight and I couldn’t wait to see him again.  There were a couple of three times when I thought to myself “What am I doing?  I don’t know this man” .  That’s when The Voice arrived, asking “Well, if you don’t go, how will you feel?”.  The answer was, I would regret it.  The Voice said “then shut up and do it!”.

I know my parents loved us, but it seemed there was always second guessing and micro-managing – any time we did something or went somewhere.  It was a constant “Don’t fall down the bank”, “Don’t trip and hurt yourself”, “Don’t cut yourself” “Don’t, Don’t, Don’t”!  That was when we went to the property they owned on Vashon Island and we checked out the fruit trees, the high bank waterfront on the Sound and the old barn with all kinds of things inside.  Ye Gods and Little Fishes!  Did she think I or my sisters were going to do things deliberately to see how much damage we could do with the least amount of effort?  Give me a break!  We did have common sense after all.

Recently I began to be more aware of the patterns of only looking at the negative.  We have a long, steep windy hill in front of us and we can get to West Seattle more easily that way.  So when I was driving my Mom down it one day, she talked about going over the edge and ending up in a heap at the bottom without any trouble.  I suddenly realized I didn’t want to buy into that any more, so I said we could just as easily go down the hill and get to where we were going  with no problem.  I had never done that before and I have started noticing things ever since then.  It does take more practice to be aware of the negative patterns – negative autopilot is easier and more familiar.  It is slowly getting easier as I practice – I am a work in progress.

One thing I have chosen to do is to set an intention of  knowing the truth about myself because I now know it isn’t all negative as I have always feared.  Yes, there are things that are uncomfortable, may make me cringe and aren’t easy to admit and embrace; but there isn’t a godawful bitch on wheels in there after all.  Inside there is an amazing woman coming into her own and she is a Kickass Warrior.

There are days!

November 21, 2010

Last night was one of those low points, I haven’t one that low for quite awhile.  I have two situations going on as well as dealing with RA – amazing how they all combine at times.  Last night I was putting off going to bed because I have not been sleeping very well the past few months because my legs hurt so much at night.  I will admit to feeling worn out and worn down at the moment, not sure what to do or not do to understand what’s happening and what I can do to help my wonderful body – my friend and healer – to create healing for my legs.  It has taken me a long time to see my body as healer, friend and beautiful – not quite there wholeheartedly but a heck of lot closer than I was.  I am uncomfortable admitting that when I am “drag my ass tired”,  I tend to be cranky and not especially objective.

I had a conversation last night that put me over the edge – I was ready to cry and the tears were coming.  But there isn’t anywhere to go to yell my lungs out, beat the pillow and generally howl with pain and frustration.  The odd thing was, I was thinking about one of the other situations that is foreign territory to me and nothing to guide me through it.  Yet I heard myself say, I can do this, whatever it requires I can do this.  I may feel like running away and not dealing with it; I may not want to do something necessary, I may not like doing it – but I can do it.  I don’t remember ever thinking that way before – I usually had that scared little kid feeling of “I can’t do this, I want my Mommy”!  By George, there is a real adult woman inside me these days and that feels amazing.  I still am not happy dealing with this situation, but I am seeing it as a capable adult woman who knows when to seek advice from those with experience.

I can’t honestly say why I was so upset last night, maybe it is just all of it coming together  because I am tired.  I know two of the situations I can leave the house for awhile and not think about it or have to do anything.  But I have to take my legs with me – ain’t that a b—-h sometimes.  I would love to leave one or more body parts at home so I could have some fun – jump, skip, climb and whoop it up.  But so far I haven’t created a way to do that, so the body goes with me on holiday, to parties, to fun things and here I am thinking it is in my way.  In my more rational moments, I realize how grateful I am to my body because she makes it possible to use all my senses to experience the world, my legs have taken me to places in the world and the US. I have always wanted to go – some were interesting but I have no desire to go back again and I am glad I was able to leave.  Without her I couldn’t read, write, quilt, laugh, hear Puccini arias or all of Beethoven, I could see or hear the ocean and waterfalls; I could smell or taste all those wonderful things from my Mom’s kitchen or appreciate her gorgeous hooked rugs.  I am so grateful that most of my body systems – respiratory, digestive, circulation, etc. all work really well, just a few problems with joints, tendons, muscles and ligaments.

Those are my rational moments.  Last  night was one of my “oh-poor-me-osis” moments when I feel very sorry for myself and think I have it worse than anyone else on the planet. (I can be a global thinker at times).  I get into that victim mentality and and wonder why I am lumbered with all this, what did I do that was so bad I deserve this?  Well, I hope I had one hell of a good time because this is the pits. Then there are those who think they are helping by pointing out someone who is worse off than I am – that just makes me cranky and feeling I have been dismissed and devalued.   As if what I deal with is not as major or important or serious as the person they have mentioned.  At this point in my life, I would like to tell them to shove it where the sun don’t shine, Thank You very much.  Unfortunately my Mother and Father brought me up to be polite and it is extremely difficult to go against early childhood training.  However, I have on rare occasions actually been able to do it.  Then I feel badly afterwards because I wasn’t the “good girl” I was brought up to be.  Rats!  Can’t even enjoy that rare moment!

Funny, this time I didn’t feel a lot of that stuff, it was more calm and the tears were just spilling over on to my cheeks; it was almost as if I was too tired to feel, much less examine exactly what was happening.  I went to bed and my husband, bless his heart, just folded me into his arms and let me cry.  Yikes!  As I write this I find my eyes filling again so I know I haven’t cried it out or resolved it yet.  And I didn’t sleep all that well last night either.  I am a work in progress and no doubt will be for the rest of my life.

Something surprising I have noticed in the 40 years of RA, whether I am in pain and really low, on a high or anywhere in between, I have an ability to see some humor in it as I describe it to myself or write it for someone else.  These things pop into my mind just at the right moment and it feels right, that it fits.  I don’t sit and think, “now what does this remind me of or what word or phrase can I use to describe this?”, it just arrives with no effort or thought.  Those can also come out not the way I meant and it means another foot in mouth moment.  So I am grateful for it and appreciate the boost it gives me.

How do I see myself?

November 20, 2010

I have an overwhelming desire to whinge – as if I am the only one who has uncomfortable stuff to deal with.  But by whingeing to you, it relieves some of the pressure for me, but loads it on to you – something no one needs.  I know for most of the past 40 years that was mainly what I did, whinge and find that people would say how brave I was, wondering how I do all that I do with RA.  I suspect I put up a better front than I realized, they saw me in a very different way than I saw myself.  I know I spent many times thinking “If they only knew how scared and unsure I am, how clueless about so much!”.  But I can see now that I was reflecting my own insecurities and my own negative view of myself.

Which brings me to how I see myself – I am beginning to realize I have always had a negative view of me, that what I noticed growing up was what seemed wrong with me rather than being more aware of the positives.  I can say with conviction now that there are a lot of positives about, in and with me, just took longer to recognize them.  I also notice the negative view is on automatic pilot – I have to consciously stop myself and rewrite them.  Thanks to Ike Pono, I have begun to see where an event has happened, there was emotion, there is a memory and there was a decision – a negative one.  then gathering evidence that I was right in that decision.  I didn’t want to go back and visit those decisions, that evidence because it hurt too much – as if there was no other way or conclusion that could be drawn from it except the negative.

My hypnotherapy friend Kathie Brodie – The Baggage Handler – suggested I write out each incident as it happened and how I felt.  But then to rewrite it with a positive ending.  I used red ink for the “as it happened” piece,then regular black ink, because I didn’t have purple, to write a positive ending.  Yikes!  I couldn’t imagine how it could end positively, so it was quite a surprise and pleasure to find it writing itself and I was blown away by the result.  I must have gone into Pono when I wrote second version because I don’t consciously know where it came from.  So I did the next one – wasn’t quite as satisfying but really cool.  The third one also blew me away, this is cool!  These are to help me with self confidence and loving myself self, probably the main thing I need to learn about myself.

I am beginning to understand I have seen myself as not good enough, not measuring up  or lacking something that everyone else seemed to have had from birth.  Because I was and am overweight – Reubenesque or fluffy – I saw myself as unacceptable because I didn’t fit the mold of tall, blonde, slender, lovely, etc.  I felt I was too fat to fit the pigeon hole.  I felt inadequate because I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life, everyone else had goals ad career plans.  They were slender and pretty and had boyfriends and friends, all the things I wanted but didn’t think I had or was somehow missing something the others had.  Oh dear, as I look back at what I have written, it sounds as if I have a bad case of “oh-poor-me-osis” in full blown mode.  What I realize as I look back at growing up and going to school, I saw myself as inadequate, not good enough, maybe even not deserving.  Great foundation to build a life!  Now as I start writing about those upsetting incidents and then turning them into positive, I can see other parts of me and my life in much more positive ways rather than deciding it is just more evidence to prove my decision.  Now I can better see that little girl and be there to protect her and let her know she is loved and very lovable.  I can give her the support she didn’t think she had at the time and embrace her in loving kindness.

I see now that not only have I been seeing myself these days as limited, it has been that way all my life – other people do all these amazing things, have all the wonderful experiences, possessions and wonderful friend – but I don’t.  My view has been so fogged in by negative views of me and my life, I haven’t been able to let in the wonderful, positive ones.  Once in awhile I could see them in the distance when the fog would lift or part, but I didn’t see them as real and I didn’t believe them.  I am burning off the fog myself now, a bit at a time and allowing the sunshine and all the positive loving things, experiences and people in and believing they are true.  It is a new way to be and is taking time to put into motion, but it is happening.  I am becoming my contract  – “I am a healthy, powerful, inspiring woman courageously living my vision now”!

How have I defined healing?

November 14, 2010

When I fell several weeks ago and I asked my friend Kathie Brodie of The Baggage Handler for a healing, my definition of that healing was taking away all the pain from the fall and my knee.  When I didn’t feel anything different, I figured there was no healing.  However, was that the healing I needed at the moment, was that for my highest good?  Or was there something else  that was more important that I wasn’t even aware needed healing?  I realize so much of my focus has been on what hurts and how I can get rid of the pain – but is that how healing looks for me?  I have been expecting it to be a certain way and when it didn’t happen that specific way, I didn’t think anything had changed.  What I have been learning in Ike Pono is that things don’t always look the way I think they should (oh, there’s that word) look or be.  I am learning to simply be open, receptive, willing and unlimited, setting my intention for that and see what happens.  The difficulty with the RA is that I want the pain to go and my joints to be the way they were before; am I putting unrealistic expectations on myself and the Universe?

As a result of thinking about this, I can now see that I see myself as limited – in mobility, flexibility and energy.  Am I as limited as I think I am?  Let’s face it, it is a good reason and excuse not to venture out too much – I have limited energy.  It also frustrates the heck out me that I have a lot of things I want to do but feel I don’t have enough energy to accomplish them all.  I think I need large blocks of time and a lot of energy to accomplish things instead of planning and organizing my time to do small sections at a time in a consistent way to accomplish my goals.  Organizing my time, my office (that’s a whole story in itself!) myself and my mind set or view of myself.  Now it is easy to talk about it, plan it in my head, etc., something else to put into practice.  I notice I tend to see an event in the past, or a situation or a conversation only in the same way each time I think of it or something reminds me of it.  I have done that for so long that looking at it with a different view or perspective seems really difficult.  It is as if I have decided there is only one to see it and that has kept me stuck in many ways.  The muscles for seeing it in a different way are weak because I haven’t really used them much, so the more I do, the stronger they will be.  I suspect it is much easier to see myself as the victim and put upon rather than acknowledge where I have responsibility.  It didn’t happen in a vacuum and as Dr. Phil says “You can’t change what you don’t acknowledge”.  I was going to say where I was wrong or made wrong choices, but recently I found out one things that holds me back from manifestation is my fear of being wrong.  That is another essay for another day.

I have always thought of healing in terms of the RA – my definition of healing is finding the cause and making the changes needed to create health.  A cure is it is magically gone but not getting to the core issue,  it comes back because the core issue isn’t acknowledged or dealt with and resolved.  I can see now that healing has to do with mind, body and spirit as well as the past and the messages perceived as a result of incidents from childhood to adulthood.  A whole lot more to work with than just taking the pain from the body.  I remember thinking of my body as trapped in a rusty suit of armor – something that had no connection or relationship to me.  I said that if you looked in my eyes, you would see the real me in there yelling, screaming and fighting to get out.  I had divorced myself from my body and blamed it for everything – poor love, I see now she was trying to help me.  She is my healer and my waring system – she is trying to tell me something and I can’t hear, so she has to do something to get my attention.  Unfortunately, I still don’t know what she wants to tell me – or is it that I don’t want to know because it is too scary and means I might find out I have a part in it.  If I choose not to understand, then I don’t have to do anything and can “legitimately” complain, whinge and bitch about the situation.  After all, I am getting positive feedback about how brave I am, how amazing I can do as much as I do with RA.  That’s hard to give up for looking at what the truth is.  At that point, it was “You can’t handle the truth!”.  Certainly a scary proposition but now I am much more ready to know the truth about myself because I know that godawful bitch on wheels I thought lived inside of me isn’t real.  The real me is cool and a kickass warrior, I want to know this Lee a whole lot better.

P.S.  I always wonder where a post will go when I start it and if it makes sense at the end.

Update (long overdue)

November 7, 2010

Life has been rather eventful lately, after falling and being laid up for a while, I seem to have lost track of my life.  NOTE TO SELF if you don’t write regularly, it’s not a blog.  I was so caught up in how much it hurt to walk that it was hard to think of anything else.  How could a small part of my body wreak such havoc?  I have finally gotten back into my life again and am able to walk almost as I had before the fall; feels as if I am playing catchup.  I spent 3 weeks of really difficult days barely making it to the bed, the chair and the bathroom – many times I wondered how long I could postpone getting up and trying to walk on the knee.  I was sorry for myself at times, kept wondering why I didn’t stick to my policy of watching where I am stepping rather than watching where I am going.  However, that is just beating myself up and what came out of that was negativity – I sometimes feel there is already an oversupply of that already.

The odd thing was, after a bit I began to wonder “What is the gift in this?  What can I learn from it?”.  Not my usual questions but Ike Pono has given me a different awareness now than I had before.  As my last post showed, I have been thinking in a different way, though so far I haven’t been able to answer the “Who am I” question to a point where I can say “I know that I know”.  One of these days.  But I have been looking at things differently and  have discovered a few other things that certainly bring more questions.  I realize now I choose to know the truth about myself, before I was saying I am willing to know the truth.  A subtle difference but now I am ready, rather than I think I am ready.  I have been thinking of other times in my life where I was in a similar situation and how I thought about it.  The  section in Ike Pono about there is an event, an emotion, a memory and then decision, followed by gathering evidence to prove you are right – as in the example of the kid who decided he was stupid.  I have been looking at the times when things happened and I once again confirmed I was unacceptable – this time as I remember them, I will write it down as it happened and then rewrite it in a positive way.  That may take some real practice because I realize when I think of those times, it is always the same feelings, pictures and words in my mind – it takes some doing because I have thought of it in one way for so long that a different view or interpretation seems a lot harder.  I figure the more I do it, the easier it will become with practice.

I had tea with a good friend the other week and she did an angel card reading for me – Yikes!  She was spot on!  There are two big things for me to work on, loving myself and my fear of being wrong.  Now I know loving myself has been a big challenge all my life, over the years I have done pretty well on that one and there is still a lot left to do.  The fear of being wrong was a hit in the face because I have realize I have been thinking and feeling it but never put it into specific words.  It just hit me that it is part of not feeling acceptable – I have spent a lot of my life looking for approval and validation from other people so I would know I was right or had made the right decision.  I realized a while ago that it was a gift from someone important in my life that I didn’t get the approval and validation I wanted so badly – it made me find it inside myself.   Then I would not be constantly looking for it from other people because if those people are gone, what would I do?  I would be constantly looking for someone to give approval.  I can see the things that gave me joy, the enthusiasm and exuberance I felt and expressed but was squelched, seemed bad or unacceptable and of course that meant I was unacceptable.  So if I made a “wrong” choice according to someone I craved approval from, once again I am not acceptable.  I can see this could go round and round in circles until I drive myself crazy.  Time to let it simmer on the back burner for a bit and see what comes up.  It is amazing how putting it in words on paper can help clear things up or bring out other parts of the same thing.

I find it fascinating how I start at one point and by the end of the entry I am in an entirely different place.  Oh my, I just realized my self-worth and loving myself is also tied up in all of this – like pulling a strand of a wadded up ball of tangled yarn and not knowing how it will all unravel.  The good news is that I now know that whatever I find in the deepest part of my essence, it will be positive and loving – that god awful bitch on wheels was never there, it was just my fear and perception about who I was deep down.  Ain’t that a kick in the head!


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