Then What?

Into this box – old paints and thinners and primers and stains and cleaners and brushes.  Take it away. Into that box - broken phones and batteries, cords and cameras no longer blinking.  Take it away. On the porch - books and clothes and more books and more clothes, and stuff and stuff and stuff.  Take it away.  Please take it away. And paintings from the walls, and dishes from the shelves, and papers and papers and papers.  I beg of … [Read more...]

The Energy of Things

gloves small

This piece has been a while coming as I’ve looked about our home deciding what on earth to do with all of Mike’s things. “There is no rush, take your time.  Things have energy and you will know when it is time.”  This was the wisdom of Ziri Rideaux, the fabulous woman from Friends Funeral Home, who helped guide me through the process. As we sat there, Elise and I, trying to absorb this new reality, she reminded me that everything was … [Read more...]

Angels Everywhere

bench

Over and over I’ve expressed my great thanks to family and friends, old and new, for their amazing outpouring of love and support. Though not religious in any formal tradition, I’ve come to call them my angels and feel blessed to be surrounded by so many. But the story I’m about to share taught me that angels are everywhere, in all walks of life, all shapes and sizes, sometimes when we least expect it. It was a week after Mike had passed away … [Read more...]

Cracked Open.

line in sand

What is the jumping point for this writing?  Where do I begin?  You are joining me mid-chapter.  So perhaps I need to bring you up to date.  On May 8, my husband Mike went in for a simple surgery.  Two and a half hours and a thousand sorries later, they told me he was gone.  That day has become my line in the sand, life before he passed away and then the everything after. As any who have experienced loss it is a rollercoaster of emotions.  His … [Read more...]

What matters?

lee

Last night I heard a friend had passed away.  She was my age.  After two months of surgery and great pain, the cancer got the best of her. As we spoke of her and the progression of her illness over cups of tea, the thing that struck me most was a story of how in her last days of delirium she played melodies in the air.  That visual, fingers moving in the shadows, playing a Mozart Concerto was hauntingly beautiful, and terribly painful. For … [Read more...]

Ripples In A Pond

FTCOG.PHOTOS 050 (2)

I think I was struck most by the thought that the glimmer of an idea that came to me literally as I was washing my hands at a First Tuesday meeting, would have manifested itself a year later, living and breathing with unknown pulsing potential. In March of 2011, First Tuesday launched the Mentor Ring, with its vision of connecting First Tuesday members with women and children in need of support. Our first group of mentees were two families … [Read more...]

Do Unto Yourself

family-parenting

Here is my Soul Food for Parents, inspired by a talk with a client yesterday who is a mother of 4. She gives "everything" she says to her children and cannot understand why they are struggling with their self-esteem and "receiving praise." I asked her how she is with the same and she laughed..."not so good." Your children will do as you do, not just take in what you say. If they see you holding your head up high, proud of who you are and … [Read more...]

Road Rage Action Plan

dr-drews-lifechangers

Recently I was invited to share tips for controlling Road Rage, on the Premier Episode of Dr. Drew's LifeChangers on the CW channel. We ran out of time on the show for all the steps, so they videotaped me talking through it so that they could post the action plan on their website. These coping strategies can be used also for Anger Management and Anxiety. Click here, forward to someone you love, and try some of these techniques for … [Read more...]

3 Proven Steps To Overcoming Any Obstacle

praying2woman

One of the greatest honors for me was the opportunity to contribute a chapter in an anthology of stories, focusing on the strength of the human spirit, called "Living Proof, Celebrating the Gifts that Come Wrapped in Sandpaper." My chapter, called "The Heart Whispers Truth," highlights the lessons learned in my first marriage. During speaking engagements this past spring in Florida, Chicago and Los Angeles, I used the opportunity to talk about … [Read more...]

The Power Of Pause

couple-arguing

I believe that 95% of conflict stems simply from miscommunication and misunderstanding. As a result, I don't get my emotional feathers ruffled too often anymore. Rather, I have learned to PAUSE before responding when there is a problem, disappointment or conflict. Let me be clear, thought, that his "aha" in my own life took time. In the name of being "in my truth," I used to think I had to express myself quickly -- and often -- and I did so … [Read more...]