#whogivesatic

One of the greatest joys in my professional life is when I am able to help facilitate change and see progress with clients. Watching them feel happy again or inspired is the best validation for me. Even when the progress is slow they still feel better.

But my first job will always be a mom. Like they say it is the hardest job you will ever love.  I am so proud of all 4 of my children. My oldest is a mom herself with 2 beautiful kids and a successful medical assistant.  Then I have 2 other girls, 14 and 12 years old and the youngest is my son at 10. Hunter was a very bright boy scoring 1 to 2 grades ahead. At around 4 years old he would clear his throat all the time. I really did not think much of it and then as fast as it started it would stop.  A while later it was bobbing his head up and down. Then again it would stop after a few weeks. Back to clearing his throat or weird noises.  We would tell him to stop but he wouldn’t and it would make it worse.  In kindergarten, they told me they thought he had Tourettes. I had heard of it but was not very informed on it. He, unfortunately, has the swearing type of Tourettes. It only affects about 10% of people with it. He would say shit 100 times an hour. So imagine taking a 6-year-old out shopping while saying that.  The looks we would get would make me upset. If we were at the doctor’s office I would ask to be roomed so he did not do it around the other kids.We had to make light of it because it was a constant for about 2 to 3 weeks at a time. When a 6-year-old looks at you and said “Shit Mom I love you”  You had to just smile at him.When he got the diagnosis we were also told he had ADHD.  That is common for a person to have both or OCD.

He has struggled with angry outbursts and anxiety from this. They say trying to tell someone with Tourettes to stop the behavior is like telling someone with Parkinson’s to stop shaking.  The more stressed they are the worst it gets. He has said he wished he was dead when the tics were in full force. Tics can be painful to the body. His constant head bobbing usually creates a bad headache. Physical pain is one thing but the emotional pain is another. Children and adults have been rude with staring or the words they use.  He is just a regular little boy with a huge heart that happens to do things once in a while that makes him stand out.  As a parent watching your child suffer and then hearing about how kids ignore him or make fun of him is incredibly frustrating and painful. He is 10 now and has a fantastic teacher who works with him during his rough moments. But he still hears kids taunting and not playing with him.

It is really hard to see people think it is funny to swear or make bodily movements and blame it on Tourettes. I would love to invite them to spend a day with my son or another person with it and discover WHO they are and then how they are treated. I will forgive a child for teasing before I will an adult. It is wrong and frankly pathetic to tear someone down because of something they cannot control.  They are not the syndrome. They are just as intelligent or more than the regular person, they usually have more compassion because of years of teasing and honestly they just want to be accepted.  As he grows older the tic episodes are becoming further apart which helps and I pray that he outgrows it. I am concerned that he is going into middle school next year and how he handles it. If I have to we will do online or homeschooling. I do not want to see him struggle with bullying. He already knows he is different and does not need to be reminded in an unkind way every day. My goal is to change the face of Tourettes.

#challenges, #compassion, #inspiration, #life, #tourettes

Christmas memories…

I have been taking a break during the chaotic times between the election and holidays but now I am back to talk about changes I am making this year to simplify the season.

Each year around this time I have moments of sadness and melancholy.  I had a difficult childhood and my only sanity in those times was my Dad. He was always there when I needed him and I can safely say was one of my best friends.  He died 4 days after my son was born almost 11 years ago.  At that time in my life, I was raising a 3 1/2-year-old, a 16-month-old and a newborn. There was no time for grieving, only taking care of my family.  I could not say he died until about 7 years later. I liked to pretend he was on an extended vacation because to say he died was to really accept he was gone and never coming back.

It occurred to me a few years ago that during the holidays I witnessed my friends spending time with their families, reminiscing of childhood memories that brought laughter and a sense of connection.  I do not have that. My childhood was horrible and all my family has passed on. My Dad was the only one I was connected with and now he is not there.  I have no one to talk about my past, my history with. It really is lonely to be in that situation. I sit with my husbands family and feel like an outsider. No, I do not know what Uncle so and so was like and how funny it was when brother so and so was 13. There is no one to tell my husband or his family was I was like growing up or the funny things I did. So I try and blend in with the wallpaper during these times.

Then it occurred to me this year when thinking about presents for my children.  Why am I buying “stuff”?  Things they will like until they get bored with it and move on to something else. I am extremely grateful my kids and grandkids are very appreciative of what they receive but again it is just material items.

But here I am missing my “time” with my Dad. All I have is my memories of him and you know what? I treasure those more than gold. I could go buy the kids all these material pieces and in 20 years they will not remember what I bought them for Christmas. But they will remember the memories that we created.We are telling everyone we know, please do not buy us anything, we would rather have time with you to create timeless memories to reflect upon when they are not near.

So this year we chose to buy a family vacation as our present. We found airfare to Europe for $450 roundtrip.  We are taking the kids for 2 weeks to Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. To help with costs we are staying in apartments. One has a view of Neuschwanstein Castle. We are doing the Sound of Music tour and buying schneeballen in Rothenburg.  Yes, it is a bit more than the usual gifts we buy but really how can you put a price on that.  Someday when we are gone my children will tell their children how they toured Cinderellas castle and sang Do-Re-Mi in Salzburg.

Be the Purple Leaf…

When I was younger I was a cake decorator at a high-end cake shop that catered to a wide range of clients. Some local celebrities and some well-known celebrities, along with your usual everyday clients.  So when you are working on a $1,000 wedding cake you have to be perfect. I mean perfect. That was in early 90’s so you can imagine what the cost would be now. Well from that I became a perfectionist.

I noticed my daughter was becoming like me, that was a wake-up call.  If things are cluttered or messy we are going around fixing it all the time. My other daughter is definitely not. They used to share a room and were like the Odd Couple Felix and Oscar.  It was amusing to see when my non-perfectionist daughters stuff “crossed” the line in the room like a tidal wave.  You can imagine how that went.

Why am I talking about this? Do you want to see something painful? Ask a perfectionist to relax by coloring in an adult coloring book.  What if you go out of the lines or use the wrong color? I would sit and want to color but the thought of it not being perfect made me put it away. How was that going to relax me? That is when I decided to be the purple leaf.  I colored a tree with fall colors and made 1 purple.  That purple leaf is me.  Standing out in a world I perceive as perfect but without character.  If you really feel bold, how about coloring outside the lines and really be a rebel.  In society we see the botox, plastic surgery, contouring women walking around looking like the models from Robert Palmer videos of the 80’s. A perfect clone of each other.  Life is meant to lived boldly, proudly and without abandon.  Who says we have to fit in or be “normal’? Someone tell me what is “normal” anyways.  Take a giant leap or a baby step but for goodness sakes be the Purple Leaf, or whatever your color is.  Do not let life dim the beautiful unique soul you are.  Seize it and run leaving a colorful path inspiring those finding their true colors.

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#inspire, #perfection, #true-colors

Watch out for Versed…

In pre-op a few weeks ago I was sitting alone waiting to be wheeled back for surgery. Trying to not be nervous I listened to some meditative music and was relaxing. A nurse came in and told me her name and said this is Versed, it will help calm you. I did not think I needed it but she injected it into my IV.  Next thing I remember was hearing a voice in the recovery room telling me to breath deeper over and over. Then I remember being in my room with my husband there.  OK, what happened after she gave me the drugs???  I do not remember laying down and falling asleep. Did I talk? And if I did what was I saying?? Little did I know it was an amnesia medication.

Well, most people would probably say how much they love their spouses, kids, and families.  Or that they would love to see world peace and blessings for all.  And then you have me. As much as I hope that I would say those beautiful words, it is more likely I was asking where the firemen strippers are and I need some chocolate cake (I had not had a bite of food or a drop of water for 24 hours at this point) Yeah, that is me. Does this make me worried? Not at all. Does this mean I am a bad person? Of course not. Anyone who knows me can tell you my family is the most important part of my life.  Do I want world peace? I strive to make every day better for many people which in turn creates peace in their lives which has the ripple effect.   What I am talking about is being real and honest.

How do you live real and authentic? Well, do you feel like you are able to speak from the heart without hurting anyone? Do you live with passion and purpose?  Can you remember a time when you felt like everything was in alignment with who you are?  If not then you are probably off your soul’s purpose and path.  Life is not perfect and has challenges but instead of looking at them like challenges look at them as stepping stones. Your reaction and ability to take the lesson from it are how you grow. That is why I love my job. I work with those are off the path and need to get back into living authentically.  By finding out how and when you strayed we can come up with a purposed plan.  What beliefs and blocks are you carrying around like dead weight?  If I don’t see tears then I am not seeing healing. Healing is not always pretty, you need to “feel” it to get through it. There is a light at the end of the tunnel and if not then there is always some amnesia meds or firemen.

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#challenges, #everyday-life, #inspiration, #purpose, #soul

Giving Back Without Expectation..

Weekly Coach’s Challenge

This weekly challenge is to give back.  Last week was about making time for ourselves, well this week is about helping those in need.  It does not have to be monetary either. Some of the best things in life are free. A smile, a kind word or a hug. Those are simple pleasures that some people do not receive and we often take for granted.  There are many, many people who are living alone and are just waking up to go to work, then come home to an empty house.  Maybe it is an elderly neighbor, how can you offer some assistance.  Perhaps they need their lawn mowed or you see them carrying groceries.  Help. Do not stand there and watch. We are always looking down at our phones and forgetting there is life out there.

Some ways to give back this week-

Stop and have a short conversation with a co-worker, neighbor or someone in the grocery line. Sometimes just being validated or acknowledged will change a person’s day.

Picking some flowers from your garden and put them on a doorstep of someone who is alone or suffering from depression. Those are the ones who will not ask for help and we need to uplift them.

There are people who are recovering from illness or misfortune and a home cooked meal or a card with some kind words can offer comfort.

Do this without expectation and with gratitude in your heart. There will be a day that you are the one who needs a hug, helping with groceries or just a smile.

Bonus points include your children or children in your family.  This is how we will change the world to a more compassionate and loving society.

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Delete…With Love…

We all know those people, you know the ones who after a conversation you feel drained. They may not even realize they do this but they do. We have a name for them. Energy Vampires.I am not talking about sparkly Edward Cullen either, although that would not be so bad right?  Google it and you will start to name off people that fit that description.  In my past I had many. I felt great before being with them and then I needed a nap and my security blanket after.  I would like to believe that people do not walk around thinking of ways to hurt others but unfortunately there are and you may have some in your life.  If they are business associates or casual friends then you can walk away from the relationship. It really is ok, trust me. Life is not a competition with others. We all have our own path and should respect those on theirs. You don’t even need to give an explanation, you are an adult and can choose who is in your circle.  But if it is family or a close friend and you do not feel comfortable about severing the relationship then this is what you do.

My dear friend Robin said delete, with love. It was like I had a lightbulb go off above my head. Oh yes, delete with love.  What a brilliant way to not take on THEIR opinions.  Next time you are with one of these vamps and you feel yourself losing ground, smile and nod your head. Imagine the words floating from their mouth and into the sky like a trail of balloons.  Try and remove yourself from the situation as quickly as you can. Then as you walk away say to yourself, Delete, With Love.  Let all the feelings and words that they pushed off on to you be deleted. You do not have to hate or be angry, you just need to feel just as great as you were feeling before.  In fact, you should feel even better because you learned to take control of the situation and they did not even have a clue.  Now that is brilliant if you ask me.

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Creating an Energy Garden

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Every emotion and feeling we have are energy. Pure and simple. You feel happy, that’s energy. You feel anger, sadness or scared, yep, that’s energy too. Each one has its own unique makeup and place. Place you ask?  We store these emotions in our bodies.

Close your eyes for a moment and pull up a feeling. Try joy. For me, it would be either the day I got married or had one of my children (before they grew into teenagers…now it is angst!) Feel that joy in your body. Make it big enough to make you smile, just like you felt when you experienced it. Now sense where you feel it in your body. Usually, happiness and joy are felt in your heart or chest area. Pride is another emotion felt there. You may be surprised to know sadness or grief is felt there also but in the lung area. Grief manifests in the lungs. Now that you can understand how this works, I want to share a wonderful healing you can do to yourself or others so we can get these trapped emotions out.

I was working with a client. A beautiful single lady who needed to get an emotion out concerning her ex-husband. She had resentment and did not forgive him for things he did in the relationship. This was for her benefit, not his. Trapped emotions were causing physical issues so we needed to release them. I will write all about this in a few days – that is a whole other conversation. But, back to my client. The goal was to recognize, release and transform. Recognize the emotion, release it and transform the energy into something positive.

First, she needed to find the emotion or emotions she was feeling. It was a lack of trust, anger and betrayal. I wanted to shift the emotions into something that would be released and into positive energy for her.

“Tell me about something you are grateful for because of him.” We finally decided she was grateful for her daughter that she had with him. “Now, I want you to go into a room in your mind and say everything you have every wanted to say to him. He cannot reply back but sit there and listen to you.” After many tears, she felt she was done and ready to move on to the healing.

“I want you to pull up that feeling of gratitude and love for your daughter. Create an energy ball in front of you. It can be any color or colors. Now make it big, see it getting bigger with more love and gratitude. Watch as the ball goes up over your head.”

Most people know what a French coffee press is. We are taking that positive energy ball and it is the “press” part. Pushing down the toxic coffee grounds/feelings. You can imagine walking a path as you do this. I told her to visualize the grounds are like fertilizer and as you are walking the path is being fertilized with this sludge which will cultivate a healing garden planted with whatever you want to plant. Emotions of self-pride for the amazing job she is doing raising her daughter or maybe hope for a new relationship and what she wants from that. She said she saw plants and flowers growing behind her as she walked along the path. When I asked her to say his name and tell me how she felt, she said it was neutral and the anger and resentment was not there anymore. Now that she knows about this exercise, she can use it when she is stressed or having difficulties.

If you want to have this as a safe or happy garden, you can do that too. Fill it with colorful flowers or trees. Maybe some butterflies and bunnies. It is yours and only yours to create.

Happy Gardening until next time.