Category Archives: Balance

The Peace of Wall Street

My brief time working on Wall Street again is coming to an end … bittersweet end.  It has been an awakening time for me … accepting and new found peace time for me.  I still have a strong connection to this place.  I have turned down a few jobs through the years to work in this financial downtown area because I just couldn’t bear to go through the World Trade Center and pass the site where my forever heart perished so many years ago.  This past year, I have grown to accept my life in ways that no one can understand – ways that I can barely articulate..  I still ache each time I pass through the WTC, but pain and nostalgia no longer paralyze me.  Sure it overwhelms me at times, but I keep moving forward.  I try to focus on all the good memories and new memories of being downtown, the familiar and the unknown.

I met someone briefly that allowed me to open my eyes to so many possibilities.   There are so many beautiful things in the world to explore, experience, relish and I plan to do just that.

I am going to miss being able to walk down to the South Street Seaport and just look out into the calm waters and let my thoughts drift.  I am going to miss the soft jazz music that can be heard every morning outside my work building.  I may even miss all the tourists and school groups that come this way….ah maybe not.   I will miss Brookfield Place and all the fun things that take place in the area, especially the Lowdown Hudson Music Fest!

I won’t miss the 9/11 Memorial.

I will miss the hand that held mine recently on a few walks around this area.  I wonder if he will ever know the profound effect he had on my life in such a short time …  and although he may never know, I will forever know.  The way he would apply a little pressure when holding my hand, calmed me and made some of anxiety melt away, especially when he squeezed the area between my thumb and my forefinger.

The way he evoked so many memories for me … maybe wasn’t fair to him; but priceless to me.  I knew Michael, my forever heart, was trying to still tell me something even if I wasn’t ready to fully understand all at the time.  Comforting.

I am moving forward … with grace in my step and hope in my heart …

 

 

 

 

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Playing Dress Up

With Halloween fast approaching, I have been thinking a lot about what to wear this year for a costume … now if you truly knew me, you would know how odd this is. I used to dread this time of year. I was always the one turning down invitations to a Halloween costume party. I would avoid them like the plague. I used to wonder why some people wanted to dress up in silly, offensive, scary and/or skimpy get ups. I used to shiver at the thought.

But the last few years, I have been trying to make a conscious attempt at being more social. So the invitations have increased. And I have come to believe that many who dress up may be less inhibited, more carefree, more creative. Maybe these enthusiastic people who participate and look forward to this favorite holiday tradition have better sewing skills or a more versatile wardrobe than me.

Lately, I am leaning more to the mindset of wow who doesn’t want to dress up and pretend to be something / someone else for a day?! What kind of person doesn’t like dressing up for Halloween? I have slowly adopted the idea. It’s just fun trying to be creative, think out of the box, come up with ideas for a costume that many will not conceive. How many times, do we as adults, get to put our hair down = or up, just stop being our normal, every day self, shed our uptight personalities? Heck, I don’t care how old you are, it’s just a fun time waiting to happen.

I am slowly accepting that I am just a theme party kind of gal. I like parties with themes where I get to re-invent myself for a few hours.

Hmmmm …. glamorous movie star, princess, sexy nurse…ooohhh firefighter, oh no warrior. Black & white, Great Gatsby, all white party, pajama party, travel theme, Breakfast Club party, Work of Art Party – they all await me. So many choices. So much fun just waiting to happen.

With grace in my step, hope in my heart…creativity in my mind.


Just venting…

Life. Life sometimes really sucks. Period.

Being a divorced, single, childless woman in my 40s battling cancer yet again is just a sad state to find myself in…again.

Divorced Female, Going Bald, Undergoing Chemo and Radiation, Going Through Menopause, Weight Fluctuations, Mood swings…

Oh yeah, isn’t that the first profile you would click on if you were searching for the love of your life or even just a new ‘friend’ online? Dating in itself – or, I should say, finding someone to date – is never easy. Finding someone when you happen to be bald, going through chemo and/or making daily trips to the hospital for chemotherapy and radiation makes it a zillion times more complicated. Trust me, I know. I have tried it. I am not sure why I have tried it but I did. Logically, I knew it was not the best idea. But heck, I guess I am bored, optimistic, stupid?!

Going through cancer treatment can be really tough for a single woman. You may not have a friend or family member who can be there for you like a partner. You may also worry about how a current or future partner will react when they find out you’ve had cancer.

Perhaps the most private scar left by cancer is the damage done to your view of yourself. My self-image is completely distorted at times. I constantly find myself worried if I can ever catch up, keep up or even get going on most days. I wonder how active I can be and even how long I will live. If I ever even allow myself to think about remarrying one day, I obsess about if I should ever involve a partner in such an uncertain future.

In the past, concerns about having children also affected my relationships. I became infertile many years ago with my first bout of cancer. So alone I am.

I have been single most of my life. And I live by this quote by prixie: “Single is not a status. It is a word that describes a person who is strong enough to live and enjoy life without depending on others.”

Yes I am scared. Tired of not having someone special around. But the reality is I am my own person, and if I can’t enjoy being single, how can I enjoy being with someone else?

The most difficult thing for me about going through cancer yet again is doing it single, alone. In the past, I had a much larger, strong support network so I was hardly ever alone. But now I find myself more alone. At a time when closeness is so much more important, I feel so utterly singularly alone. During this time, my treatment, I am trying so hard to be brave and not complain too much. But staying quiet and calm, doesn’t prevent me from being lonely sometimes and longing for someone to hold me at night and whisper that everything is going to be alright. Or even just to take me to dinner, make me laugh, smile and forget about cancer for a little while, make me feel desirable. I have friends who take pity on me and take me out for dinner, and make me laugh but its just sadly not quite the same thing. Sometimes I just so desperately want to ignore the cancer.

Nearly everyone I encounter who has or has had cancer – friends, people at the hospital, family, people in books and on TV – were either married or in a serious relationship when they were diagnosed; or children with caring parents. Not me. I am in the very vulnerable single state and not having someone to hold my hand every step of the way, makes me wistful, if not angry sometimes. But instead of just being jealous of others in relationships with supportive loving partners, feeling sorry for myself, I keep trying online dating. It makes me feel somewhat normal.

Within minutes of posting a new photo online, I had e-mails from men ready to shower me with attention. Of course, most weren’t exactly my type, but you need to kiss a lot of frogs to find your prince, right?! lol

I guess I am lucky somewhat … I have had some really interesting email exchanges, but alas have not found the man of my dreams during treatment. Still, dating during treatment restores my self-confidence, reassures me that I am still attractive, and distracts me enough moments at a time. The way I see it, is that everyone is unique and carries baggage of some kind and this is only one part of me, I guess. Just tired today of carrying all this baggage. Tired of my hand dangling alone.

So yes … Life. Life sometimes really sucks. Period.


Frenemies…

The worst kinds of enemies are those who pretend to be your friends…yes, sadly true…and all around me.

I have no real need nor time for people who come to me when they need me, then throw me aside when they are fine.

Learned the hard way that fake friends are like your shadow, they follow you in the sun, but leave your side when it gets dark.

My accident this past January has really opened my eyes as to who my real friends are in my personal as well as my work life.

It’s really hard to trust people these days. I find myself always looking over my shoulder these days, waiting for the back stabbing knife in my back. We must be so careful who we share our weaknesses with. Learning that some people can’t wait for the opportunity to use them against us.

False friends, frenemies, are people who pretend to be a friend and then turn out to be just the opposite. Yup!! There are some people who get close to you for the specific reason to make fun of you behind your back, delight in the misery you endure, use you for whatever you can give them, and find out about your life so they can gossip about it later. Sad…especially when we are no longer in high school.

Because we generally want to see the best in people, we may give false friends several chances to prove that they are more than an enemy in disguise. However, when you discover a false friend in your life, you should distance yourself from them. Life is too short to be surrounded with people who don’t really care about you. So negativity be gone. I have cut people out of my life…who have proven they are no longer a true friend.

There are different types of friends – so called friends:

– The Opportunist: Use and abuse, and never return a favor.
– Egocentric, self centered: Always talking about themselves, brags a lot.
– The woe is me friend: only seek you out for therapy, and tend to hold grudges.
– The true fake friend: Smiles in your face, talks behind your back.
– Snobby friends – lack mutual respect.
– Spy friend or interloper: uses, interferes, intervenes, climbing on you – these are the jealous ones, they take ownership of your ideas, efforts, etc. Watch out for the blackmail. sigh
– Ignores: They meet someone, start a new romance and all of a sudden, they don’t return calls, break plans, etc.

All of these “friends” are missing out on a very important part of their emotional life. In the long run, they are ones that will lack the balance and support that friendship can give. And us poor gentle souls are better off without them. These fair weather friends only want to come around when they need your sun to shine on their dark and gloomy days. I know I have enough sunshine but I no longer need the shadows.

And because I have a big heart, have been accused of being naive and gullible…I tend to give people many chances. But knowing when to leave a friendship is more crucial to me these days. Choosing to let friends go is never an easy thing. If your friend has consistently shown you that they will leave you high and dry, it may be time to walk away. Sometimes we give people the benefit of the doubt and immediately think of them as our friend, when they perhaps don’t feel the same way. Maybe they are using you, or maybe they just don’t know how to be a friend. Either way, wish them the best and mean it, and then return to the people in your life who do treat you well….I am….♥

‪#‎ThingsThatAnnoyMe‬: Why try and be fake when being real takes less effort? ‪#‎HateFake‬


Narcissism in the mirror…

I find it incredibly sad that adults feel the need to continually insult, belittle, blame others for their misfortune or unhappiness.  When do people grow up, mature and take responsibility for their own actions and reactions?  These insecure people find it easier to say that other people are the ones with the problem because they can’t look into the mirror and admit the truth….they have issues, they need to admit and work on resolving.

I see myself too clearly at times…and that is why I am alone, happy….narcissism does exist…in the mirror.

I find it sad that these so called adults feel the need to insult to feel empowered.  Their lives are in a rapid spiral downward and they need to hold onto the shred of their dignity.  Yes, these marginalized people insult in order to be empowered…to manipulate.  How do I accept, deal with at times inane insults?  I clean house….I throw out the trash, I don’t allow these people in my life anymore.   I only let sunshine touch my heart and mind.  I block out the negativity.  Now as many of you know I deal with an abusive mother, but unfortunately, I can’t erase her out of my life.  But I limit my contact with her; and only allow positive, caring people in my life.  One negative person in my life is enough.  My reply to most inane people:  “You are so insignificant that I don’t even care to register your words, your inability to apologize let alone to take offense at your insult.”  Yes, loving my life with quality people who know the difference between truth and lies, between acceptance and denial…between growth and immaturity.

Its taken me a long time to understand my mom and her small ways.  She is not happy unless everyone is as miserable as her.  It’s a psychological defense mechanism. They try to make themselves feel superior by making others sad. Doesn’t work, does it? Its always some else’s problem, huh?  The old me, would have tried to help, “fix” these damaged people.  But I have spent half of my life trying to no avail.  I am not responsible for someone else’s happiness.  Only mine.  The old me would have stuck around, been a doormat – thank goodness, no more.

I choose to live my life responsibly, deliciously, deliriously happy…

My way of dealing with negative people:  “Out of my sight! Thou dost infect mine eyes.” – Shakespeare, Richard III

And in the words of Shaw, “The trouble with many is that they lack the power of conversation but not the power of speech.” …so ignore the lies in their empty words.

“Don’t compare yourself with anyone in this world…if you do so, you are insulting yourself.” – Gates

♥ LML ♥  Breathing, moving forward, transforming my life….


On my journey…♥

I want to be…a survivor, not a victim. I want to be growing, not ignoring; authentic, not flawless…

I had my own idea of grief. I thought it was the sad time that followed the death of someone you love and you had to somehow push through it to get over it, to get to the other side. I am learning with each death, that there is no other side. There is no pushing through anything, but rather, an absorption. Adjustment and acceptance. Grief is not something you complete, but rather learn to endure over time. Grief is not a task to finish and move on from, but an element of yourself.

Grieving is a long and difficult journey. Just when things begin to look better, the calendar slaps you with another reminder of your loss….an anniversary, a birthday, holidays…Sometimes the pain will be deeper ten years after the loss.

There is a Chinese proverb: “We can’t stop the birds from flying over our heads, but we can stop them from nesting in our hair.”

We shouldn’t try to numb our pain, or shut ourselves down from the pain. The feelings we try to conceal will not go away. They will hide below the surface for years to come; sooner or later, they will erupt without warning in ways that can affect your emotional, physical and mental health.

Grief itself is not a feeling. It is a process that can take a lifetime. It is a slow journey towards acceptance, peace and hope.

On my journey…♥


I would die for you. But I won’t live for you….

“So, this is my life. And I want you to know that I am both happy and sad and I’m still trying to figure out how that could be.”

“I don’t know if you’ve ever felt like that. That you wanted to sleep for a thousand years. Or just not exist. Or just not be aware that you do exist. Or something like that. I think wanting that is very morbid, but I want it when I get like this. That’s why I’m trying not to think. I just want it all to stop spinning.”

“It’s much easier to not know things sometimes. Things change and friends leave. And life doesn’t stop for anybody. I wanted to laugh. Or maybe get mad. Or maybe shrug at how strange everybody was, especially me. I think the idea is that every person has to live for his or her own life and than make the choice to share it with other people. You can’t just sit there and put everybody’s lives ahead of yours and think that counts as love. You just can’t. You have to do things. I’m going to do what I want to do. I’m going to be who I really am. And I’m going to figure out what that is. And we could all sit around and wonder and feel bad about each other and blame a lot of people for what they did or didn’t do or what they didn’t know. I don’t know. I guess there could always be someone to blame. It’s just different. Maybe it’s good to put things in perspective, but sometimes, I think that the only perspective is to really be there. Because it’s okay to feel things. I was really there. And that was enough to make me feel infinite. I feel infinite.”
― Stephen ChboskyThe Perks of Being a Wallflower


Each day…bring meaning to your life…♥

I have been working for a little over a year now, have tried dating again, meeting new people – what I am learning each and every day is that I am really looking for more.  I meet so many people that just go through the motions of their lives, they seem content with the routine.  I am so different – I have been so impulsive in the past mainly due to the death sentence that hung over my head with the cancer diagnosis.  But with gift of a day, I am trying to be more grounded, stable but I still have this sense of joie de vivre.  I am still impatient, impulsive but am working on it.

I see many people at work who just do the bare minimum.  I can’t – I want to learn, grow, be challenged.  Even when the day’s tasks are boring, I try to teach myself one thing a day – even if it’s just a new word, a new shortcut in Microsoft software.

I continually learn that you don’t go out to find meaning in life, you bring meaning to your life!  Meaning isn’t something out there waiting for you to discover. The meaning of your life is what you infuse it with – beauty or ugliness, happiness or sadness. It is totally your choice, and God wants it to be your choice because God gave you free will.

So many people keep telling me I look better these days, my smile is ever present.  But other people tell me how much weight I have gained; my Mom and her friend have called me ‘fat’.  I understand that in either case, it is just words – but words still hurt – at any age.  I have been totally inactive for years.  And even with my being back to work the past year, after the car accident this past January – I have been totally inactive again.  I am trying to get up, out and about more.  I am hoping with the warmer weather, I will be able to walk more and gradually lose some weight.  Need to get back to eating better, caring more about myself.

I have been a little happier.  I have finally rid myself of those people who were just selfish and using me.  I keep the negative people at a distance.  And just keep moving forward.  Sometimes you need to distance yourself from people. If they care, they will notice. If they don’t, you know where you stand. And you can save yourself some heartbreak and sadness.

And I am going to take the advice a friend offered recently – “Eat like a queen in the morning, a princess at noon, and a peasant at dinner”.

And I will continue on my path to learning, experiencing new things.  Key in life is to live the questions…If you ask questions, then you are never lost…If you ask questions, you will find deeper meaning in the world…and hopefully with most of my health woes behind me, I need to accept that scars remind us where we have been – they do not have to dictate where we are going…

I plan to keep working on having the life I want, the one I deserve.  I need to work on following my own dreams.  Read an e-book recently by Jonathan Mead and love this quote, “This is a declaration of authenticity, an act of spontaneity, and a call to live deliberately.”  ♥

Living deliberately how I choose to live my life and will focus most of my energies on my journey.  I absolutely cringe at the thought of having life happen TO me as opposed to actively creating the life I want, the life that will make ME happy….each and every day, strive to do something spontaneous and just  for myself.  Try it….♥


Embraced by the light…joie de vivre…♥

So…another Wednesday, another morning at occupational therapy….no pain, no gain – HA!

I ran into someone I knew from HS – well, my therapy building is near my old stomping grounds – not far from our High School.  We stopped for coffee afterwards, chatting, catching up – and she made me cry…not maliciously – but nonetheless…felt more like support therapy rather than occupational, physical therapy – maybe both are needed in tandem.

I walked away replaying parts of the conversation and feeling grateful.  She said to me that there is a light about me, that draws people to me….that its probably because I have been through so much and am very grateful, appreciative and that people pick up on this and just want to be near me.  She said I was full of joy and my smile radiates.  I was like wow, really??!!   Hmmm….

All I know is that I am trying really hard to de-clutter my life.  Stay away from drama and negative people.  Life is definitely way too short to be dragged down by someone else’s nonsense.

When you have lost your faith and freedom for years, you get this incredible urge to cut away all the fears and expectations – and just experience life for all its worth. I want to believe that I am open…open to whether you want to hurt me, or love me…I don’t care. I just don’t want to hear that I have to wait, that I can’t, or shouldn’t…I just want to LIVE – live without boundaries.

I don’t expect many to ever fully understand what I am going through, what I am feeling, why I do some of the impulsive things I do. You know what losing someone that I loved deeply has taught me? That it takes a brush with death to get your priorities in order. And then one day if you are lucky, you wake up and realize it was worth every minute of pain that you had to endure…just to learn how to live again. That is where I am at – learning how to live again….each and every day I have to remind myself of this.

I vowed to never again allow anyone or anything get me so down, so lost that I had to second guess everything.  Life is way too short.  When we’re after more out of life, when we’re looking for the depth and satisfaction few even know exist, sometimes the disappointment is as deep, as the joy. I can’t just lie down and give up. I know the real satisfaction comes from trying, from living to the fullest. My ramblings, my beliefs, my hope…

On my forever quest to somehow smooth out the edges of  my soul…faith – hope – love – promise…♥  Embracing my own light….embracing me…joie de vivre!

“Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love.” – Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet


Waiting for MY forever…♥

It’s been the longest short week already…today, working from home, watching movies.

Anyone see the movie, “Waiting for Forever”?  Love the character, Will Donner, played by Tom Sturridge.  So young, so soulfully beautiful!!

“I am imagining a day…where I get up…and I know that I will not see you…because you’re far away. Okay? I will not see you. No chance. Will not. And now I’m imagining a day, when I get up, and I know that I might see you. Okay? Might. Could. Maybe.  Of those two days, that’s the day I want, that’s the day I choose. And how can one step away from you…ever be anything for me but a step in the wrong direction? How?”

What happens when one person is more committed to a friendship, relationship than the other?  When one is invested more than the other?  What happens when one person never stops thinking that another person is the most important person in their life; yet the other person is unaware?  What happens when one person believes them both to be forever linked?

I strongly believe love doesn’t hurt.  Love is never really the problem.  Don’t blame love if a failed relationship interfered with your other important relationships, or robbed you of your self-esteem and personal freedoms.  No, don’t blame love.  For it wasn’t love that stole from you.  It was possession.  It was obsession.  It was manipulation.  It was confusion.  It was dishonesty.  It was immaturity.  Love had nothing to do with your situation.  For love doesn’t close the door against all that is good.  It opens it wide to let more goodness in.  Love creates freedom and abundance.

 

I strongly believe forgiveness is always the right choice. Anyone can hold a grudge, but it takes a special person with strong character to forgive.  When you forgive, you release yourself from a painful burden.  And no, forgiveness doesn’t mean what happened was OK; and it doesn’t mean that person should still be welcome in your life.  It simply means you have made peace with the pain, and are ready to let it go and move on with your life.

Love requires three things: acceptance, honesty, and commitment.  Love comes when you care more about who the other person really is, rather than about who you think they should become.  It’s about daring to reveal yourself honestly, and daring to be open and vulnerable over the long-term.  It’s about sticking by each other’s side through thick and thin, and truly being there in the flesh and spirit when you’re needed most.  Remember, the most romantic love story is not Romeo and Juliet who died young together; it’s the story of grandma and grandpa who helped each other through life, and grew old together.  I am still waiting on my 50 year forever.

I strongly believe a big part of who we are is connected to who we choose to surround ourselves with. Fate controls who walks into your life, but you decide who you let walk out, who you let stay, and who you refuse to let go.  Surround yourself with people who make you a better person, and let go of those who don’t.

A soul mate is a person who brings out the best in you.  They are far from perfect, but they are a perfect fit for you.  Remember, every relationship has its problems, but what makes it perfect is when you wouldn’t want to be anywhere else, even when times are tough.  I met my soul mate many eons ago, but he was taken way too early from me.  I ask myself all of the time, Am I lucky enough to find another soul mate??  Waiting for my forever…♥


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