Spirituality

Shedding my skin, answering the call

We have officially entered this last month of 2019 my dear readers. I awoke this morning with lots of words swirling around my head which for this creative soul means a poem is about to come through. I have always relied upon writing to express my feelings and emotions. In this past year I have relied heavily upon creating poems to articulate my own life’s observations and experiences. Today one word kept popping up over and over again, bones.

In the past six months, as you my dear readers know, I have had an accelerated growth period within the spiritual awakening I now find myself in. This process has allowed me to shed so many old coping habits, mindsets and behaviors that no longer serve my highest self. That’s what I’m very focused on in life, what works and what doesn’t.

I’m an empath that has incredibly fast moving energy. I absorb it like a sponge through my pores. I liken my thoughts to a spinning rolodex. When a poem is forming in my mind, I see the words written across a kind of white board as a vision. They come together quickly and don’t take much effort on my part at all. The phrase that kept repeating in my mind this morning was, make no bones about it. As usual, I googled it for the exact definition:

To Make No Bones About Something. Meaning: To say clearly what you think or feel about something, however unpleasant or awkward it. To make no bones about something means to say something in a way that leaves no doubt, or to have no objection to it.

This makes perfect sense to me. First of all, I am honest to a fault. Being both an empath and a Sagittarius, at times my words spill out bluntly with little or no tact to my delivery. I speak my mind and my truth as i always have. I know this is one of the traits my fiance adores the most in me. He knows when he asks me my opinion on something, he always gets the truth! I can further relate to this phrase very much while I make this shift, shedding outdated ways to deal with life like a repitle sheds it’s old skin to make way for a new one. Snakes and lizards do this to allow for growth and to remove parasites that have attached themselves to their old skin. Again, this too I can relate to. I’m always growing and evolving, getting rid of aspects within my life that have become a drain upon me. A parasite sucks the nutrients it needs to live and feeds off of its host.

Before I started this deep inner work, I can admit to allowing others to feed off of my energy. Family, friends even co-workers would become very draining for me to handle and that was detrimental to my own well being. I have always had a very high tolerance and patience for drama therefore in my past I made decisions within my relationships that were in hindsight not the best for my life long term. That was then, this is now.

Like that animal who sheds its skin in order to allow for growth and a cleansing of the blood sucking, leech like organisms, I too am ridding myself of the pests in my life by letting go. Getting down to my bare bones. Building a newer and more solid foundation for my authentic self to blossom within. My spirit deserves to breathe free and fly to where the winds of change my take me. An emotional and mental cleansing that is happening at a rapid pace to keep up with my intentions and manifestations.

Recently I had a video chat with a fellow female empath that was so inspiring and validating to my soul! She was so open and kind by complimenting me on my inner strength and realized powerful spirit. It made me blush at first honestly because I’m new to fully accepting compliments. She told me to shine like the queen’s essence I embody. After we said our goodbyes, her words were still in my mind. I looked at myself in the mirror and I told myself, “Maria, this is your time to shine and if others can’t handle it or find fault in your new found confidence, tell them to put on sunglasses!”

I’m at the stage in my life where I can see the big picture clearly. Speaking of glasses, I feel like I just got a new pair! All the questions and curiosity’s about life that I have had up to this point are all being answered revealing my path’s purpose. I am here to listen, share, heal and inspire others who feel lost, marginalized or forgotten. I know that feeling all too well and I won’t allow anybody I come across to feel that kind of severe hopelessness and worthlessness. I have walked in those ratty, torn up shoes of despair too and I will do whatever I can to lend a hand or a smile to those in need. A disrupter in life that fights against hate and evil to shine a light of empathy and compassion for those that need it. It’s in my bones. It’s my calling and I am answering it wholeheartedly and determined to make a difference.

Spirituality

Marrying my soul

Since my last post I have been flooded with messages from higher consciousness or my higher self. The more I notice the synchronicity within the patterns and messaging from Source, the more aware of my inner spirit I become. Two major ideas have begun sprouting and taking root within me. As painful as this spiritual awakening can be at times, making these important connections is really adding glorious colors to my soul’s spectrum. Hold tight dear readers because this post is about to blow your minds, follow along if you dare….

About a week ago I started thinking about the idea of what elevating to the 5D or 5th Dimension is all about. Sure enough, while going through that same day I was sent information about that very topic in multiple ways. That is how the Universe communicates with me, in the physical world. I ask a question and without fail, I am always sent my answers. I watched an informational video by a YouTube and Instagram star I follow by the name of Ralph Smart, his spirit’s name is Infinite Waters. He calls his followers.like me, deep divers because are seeking answers to that which is below the surface. As you may or may not by know by now my dear readers, that is my favorite place to dwell and where you can most often find me 😉

Anyway, he posted a video about how to know if you have entered the 5D. Let me explain to you my dear readers what the difference is between 3D and 5D and the different levels of awareness within the 5D world.

First off, the 3D world is the physical world we live in and is fear based and focused around material. The fear around losing the materials we acquire is the ruling force. Think, Madonna’s “Material Girl”. Within this idea comes a concentration for obtaining money and power. We don’t trust others because we fear they might take our material, money and power away. Those existing within this dimension define themselves solely by their position within this power plane and what they do for a living. Believing that basically, the more you have the happier and more fulfilled you will be. Their beliefs are centered around separation from God or Source, the existence of a singular life and death is something painful, all finite and to be feared. This life within the 3d is one big competition with only winners and losers. People existing within the 3D believe there are only certain roles for men and women. Men hold positions of power, nurturing that strength to become the fighters. Woman are seen as the weak caretakers only.

In regards to relationships within the 3D, they believe one cannot be whole without another person. They believe one needs someone else in order to be happy and whole. They are so used to ego centered thinking and there is no questioning of it. Only seeing rare moments of beauty in nature or in an orgasm because these moments bring them into the NOW or present. Otherwise, in my humble opinion, living as drones or robots within this Matrix like society. Their minds play games based around would of, should of and could of which can only focus on the past or they are busy creating future scenarios centering around hypotheticals to prepare themselves for the future. All of this thinking is a futile process and waste of precious energy, in my opinion. Humans living in the 3D crave sex because it’s the only time that both masculine and feminine energies can coexist in a perfect balance within each other.

What’s more is that in the 3D, people are seen as separate from God and that duality doesn’t exist. There are only coincidences and no such thing as destiny. We have amnesia really, we have forgotten the spiritual beings we are within the physical form we occupy. We take on the ego mind and with that adoption, we have egocentric thinking. Nobody questions this and those that do are seen as weird or crazy. Ultimately they must be wrong because there is no upsetting this Matrix.

Upon entering the 5D, one feels more and more comfortable about just who they really are, reclaiming their authentic selves as it relates to who they are truly born to be, original spirit is getting reintegrated into our physical body creating a feeling of oneness with everything within the physical world. An absolute understanding that we are all connected, animals, humans, nature….EVERYTHING! Moving past light and darkness and good and bad, our integration into the 5D allows us to see the necessity of it all. Everything is more than it seems suddenly.

I myself began this journey or quest to discover my authentic self with my voice trembling and shaking. When I started questioning everything I have been told to believe, there was a lot of pushback and pain. I felt I was misunderstood, not worthy and not enough. Those of us raising our awareness and consciousness are seen as weird and crazy. We are remembering our soul’s purpose as our heart begins to open. The scarcity mindset is turned on its head in favor of an abundance one. In the 3D we have to be consumers who strive to own more and more. Consumption upon the material is seen as not only better but necessary for happiness.

In contrast, those of us moving into the 5D have started to understand that everything we need to be whole and happy is already within us. I have begun to feel powerful by understanding that only I have the power to create my own reality. I’m no longer accepting what I have always been told because others have believed what they were told before me and on and on. No thank you, no more. I’m beginning to see myself as a multidimensional being having a human experience. Remembering too what the Budda himself has preached for centuries, attachment creates suffering. Letting go is the only way to obtain a real enlightenment state of being.

My energy centers, or chakra system has been open, balanced and allowed to flow seemingly which allows my authentic story to be told. My throat chakra is no longer blocked. Yes, and too my heart chakra is shifting into a more receiving state to allow what Source is providing me on a daily basis. I see that there is nothing but love inside of me and I can accept love more freely from others without judgement or doubt. Just like an artist, I am painting my world more vibrantly and with broader strokes of color.

The next level I am just beginning to experience is that of an energy alchemist. Being able to transform negative energy into positive energy is called transmuting. I practice this through meditation and visualization. The more attuned i can become into my energetic force, the easier this becomes. By no means is this process supposed to sound easy. On the contrary, it is hard and painful at times anrequires an open mind, body and soul along with tons of patience within this practice. I’m never going to be perfect as my spirit walks this Earth because I’m inhabiting a fallible human body.

I am telling you dear readers that I can actually feel this shift taking place within me. More on some days and less on others depending on what energies I have allowed into my field and what I have taken on. If I could exist in a complete Transcendental meditative state I would! Once there I am actively experiencing nothingness, no thoughts, no feelings….pure nothing. For me it’s like being in outer space where nothings ends and nothing starts, everything just is. A truly conscious state of being.

I have many of my meditation guru’s and consciousness guide’s words tumbling around in my mind about becoming a human being vs a human doing. In the 3D the only acceptable state is the latter. How much can I do in a day? How much can I achieve, obtain and win…just how much power will that give me? To me dear readers, this isn’t the sort of leveling up I have ever wanted to achieve.

I do however desire to level up within my own consciousness by vibrating at a higher frequency so that my human mind can accept what my spirit’s destiny truly is. I have to let go of what the 3D has drummed into my head which is don’t question anything and fear it all!! I must undue 41 years of brainwashing.

I have started to see myself as the hero in my story, not the victim of pain and suffering that i have felt for for years! That being stated, I am beginning to embrace that fact that the trauma, pain and suffering I have experienced thus far has molded me into a human who is willing and able to take on my soul’s purpose. My 3rd eye chakra, the energy center that contains our innermost knowing and has always been my guiding force is now the only voice I want to listen to. I have begun to actively block all the false messaging within the 3D so that my mind can make room for more awareness and spiritual information.

This process is arduous and exhausting because I am unlearning what my 3D self has accepted a long time ago. My thoughts, feelings and behaviors must ALL transform so that I can remain calm, fearless really in the face of extreme emotion and stress. I have to develop a supreme awareness so that my spirit can weather whatever storm I may find myself facing. This is 100% my own responsibility and no one else’s.

The next level I hope to obtain in time as Universe sees fit is that of a wizard who can truly be one with the Universe. No longer seeing a separation but instead having an unconditional love and complete acceptance of self. I must have already inhabited all three beings of drone, artist and alchemist, growing into a master. In this state I won’t sell out, my soul that is what I’m referring to, not ever. No matter what my choices are. I will only count my riches by my inner growth, understanding and knowing that is what truly matters, not what my bank account says. I will be completely 100% about my purpose void of distraction. Most especially, I will refuse to compare myself to anyone else. I will only sow seeds of positivity through my interactions with all others always.

This new understanding as lead me to the idea of wanting to marry my soul. Everyday I read a passage from a book entitled “The Book of Awakening ” by Mark Nepo. Mr. Nepo is a poet and spiritual adviser who has taught in the fields of poetry and spirituality for over 30 years. He is best known for his New York Times #1 bestseller, “The Book of Awakening”. He is a very respected philosopher who has endured and overcome cancer. I have been allowing him to guide my days by reading and rereading his book for about 5 years now.

Today being November 13th and also our full moon, I read about marrying one’s soul. He writes here that in order to live without silencing or numbing essential parts of who we are, we must make a vow to uphold a special promise to ourselves. Mine sounds something like this and I am paraphrasing Mr. Nepo’s beautiful prose here:

I, Maria Teresa Pratico, make the following promise to myself. I will do my best on a daily basis to stay committed to my inner path, not separating myself from that path when things get tough or confusing. I will always try to accept and embrace my faults and limitations by interweaving my spiritual life with my psychological life. Living my life by allowing my heart and soul to lead my mind where it may wonder. I vow to lead a life of faith and truth by fulfilling these virtues in the place of anxiety and doubt. By keeping this promise to myself I can build a solid foundation and bond my true spirit within this human vessel I now occupy making myself twice as strong. My goal in keeping this promise is to create a life that is doubly strong in this mad mad world I live in today❤

Here is a poem I wrote the other day keeping in this vein. Everyday, more and more I strive to observe more and speak less.

Mental health, Spirituality

Happy 1 year anniversary to me

Just one year ago, I started this blog called “Emotional Musings”. I have been journaling, writing poems and short stories my entire life but always kept them private. Sometimes, I have written poems as gifts for my loved ones. This blog has started a new adventure for me. I have been able to connect with almost 1,400 readers from 30 different countries around the world.

I really didn’t know how writing these posts would affect me. Basically, I use the poems I write as my muse for what each post is centered around. My poems come to me as visions and take little effort to write. Each of the blog posts on my page discuss in depth, the meaning behind each poem. It’s a very introspective thing on my part to delve into what I was thinking and feeling each time a new poem comes to mind. I believe this process to be very cathartic and quite helpful to my overall healing from Complex PTSD.

In total I have written 62 posts on this blog. Most of them are centered around my experience as an empath in this fast paced and often confusing world that we live in today. Our culture focuses mostly on the analytical mind paying little attention to our emotional health and wellbeing. A few of my posts can be considered social commentary on how I view our culture, humanity as a whole and how spirituality plays a role in our society.

This blog has also been a vehicle for me to even consider myself a writer. Earlier this year I self published my very own book of poetry which is available on Amazon in both paperback and digital form. It means a lot to me to have all of my work titled “Emotional Musings ” because that’s the truth, each word is a reflection of my emotional state. I have been gathering my latest poems for the second book, “Emotional Musings2” which I plan to release before the end of this year. Stay tuned!

A huge thank you to my current 24 followers. I didn’t expect anybody to actually read this and I’m so grateful these posts resonate with others. It’s a real labor of love for me to write these posts as I view each one as an opportunity to not only reveal more about my personal journey but to allow others the space to consider theirs.

My mission here is to provide a space where others can relate to and find connection with their own emotional journey. It has been almost 10 years since I set out to discover just who I really am, what my purpose is and to heal from the traumatic events of my past. November will mark eight years since I first attempted suicide. That act of desperation as led me on a beautiful, painful yet ultimately rewarding expedition that has allowed me to constantly peel back the layers of my life’s onion. Uncovering and understanding my authentic self as a result of writing is absolutely priceless. I highly recommend this process to anyone who is searching for their own truth.

My wish for this next year to is be able to interact more with you readers. Please share my blog with others whom you believe it will resonate with, comment below and tell me more about yourselves. I hope to make this a more interactive space where I can lead open discussions on both whole body health and wellness along with spirituality. Mostly, I want each person who takes the time to read this blog to feel less alone in their emotions.

For so many years, I felt like I couldn’t discuss what was going on inside of me. Why did I know what others were going to say before they said it, why did I feel their feelings without first being told and where were these phantom pains coming from? Aside from my empath experiences, I know many of my experiences aren’t unique either. There are many of us out there who have spent time in psychiatric hospitals, inpatient and outpatient programs and weekly sessions of psychotherapy yet still feel lost even discouraged about their mental health.

This is Mental Health Awareness week in the United States. I hope my blog can serve as a safe space for others to not only recognize their own struggles but to gather information regarding the important role our emotions play and what our body’s are trying to tell us. I feel there needs to be more public education about how important it is to recognize one’s feelings and the sensations in the body. It’s essential for whole body health to be able to do a body scan and recognize where we hold emotion in our bodies. This is especially true for those of us healing from trauma. It’s true, the body holds onto trauma and we will continue to hurt until the root of the pain can be discovered and released. I highly recommend reading, “The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind and Body in the Healing of Trauma” by Van der Kolk M.D., Bessel.

On Monday I woke to a much less humid day here in Dallas, TX. I decided to spend the afternoon running along the path at my favorite park. The path stretches around a huge lake for approximately ten miles. I took in scenic views of sailboats, canoes, fishermen and wildlife. Mostly I rejoiced in feeling the wind on my face. It was a beautiful day that produced the poem below, “Wind”. Autumn is my favorite season. Hopefully, I will get many more days just like this one.

Mental health

Little Ms. Perfect

What is perfect? There are two separate definitions. Using it as an adjective means this, “having all the required or desirable elements, qualities, or characteristics; as good as it is possible to be“. When used as a verb, perfect means “make (something) completely free from faults or defects, or as close to such a condition as possible”. Either way it’s used I have suffered from perfectionism my entire life. In psychology, perfectionism is described as a personality trait characterized by a person’s striving for flawlessness and setting high performance standards, accompanied by critical self-evaluations and concerns regarding others’ evaluations.

My Mom has told me that when I was younger she used to find me obsessively organizing my room. I loved to neatly arrange my books, toys and knick knacks. Cleaning and straightening a room, tidying up things brings me a peacefulness and calm that’s hard to match by other activities. It’s also something that has made me feel strange and weird.

There was a period in my life when I literally couldn’t sit still or overlook a piece of lint on the carpet without having to immediately stop whatever I was doing to pick it up. After the birth of my first son, I found myself in a perpetual state of motion, always wiping a countertop or vacuuming a room that was already spic and span to everybody else’s eyes. I got caught up in routines that kept my in a “loop” for hours. So many routines and rituals had to be achieved compulsively and repetitively. Some days I got so stuck I didn’t even leave my house. Looking back those were dark days.

I’m a shift supervisor at a Starbucks and at 41 this is the first time I accepted a management position. In the past, I had been offered/recommended this role but I always turned it down due to my overwhelming fear of failure. Truth be told my perfectionist ways have plagued me throughout my life. Recently at work my manager challenged me to stop working like a superwoman. She asked me to examine my leadership skills by holding others on my team accountable for certain tasks. At first it felt awkward delegating the things I have been doing alone without help. Lately however I can feel an important shift taking place.

A favorite quote of mine by Maya Angelou is,”Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better. Boy does this sentiment ring true in this regard!

I’ve always been an analytical thinker, wondering why things are the way they are and trying desperately to make sense of the world around me. I had this book as a kid called, “The book of why” and I loved it. I’ve especially been intrigued by my own emotions and the emotions of others. That intense curiosity has sometimes kept me up at night.

A former therapist once told me to disengage myself from the outcome of a certain problem I was having a difficult time finding a reasonable solution for. My perfectionist ways and drive to control a situation can leave me breathlessly spinning my wheels. Despite my efforts I end up feeling exhausted mentally with no end in sight.

When I start to feel my old ways creeping back into my daily choices, I try and recall his words. Letting go of the outcome and maintaining an open mind sounds logical enough but my heart stands stubbornly doubtful.

Establishing a connection within myself has been key to easing off my perfectionist attitude. Grounding myself really quiets my mind and eases my fears. Whether these fears are real or hypercritically blown out of proportion, I can often find myself overwhelmed and grasping for my idea of perfection. I’ve learned I’m only hurting myself when I put this kind of pressure on myself.

For there is no such thing as perfect my dear reader but perfect imperfections throughout life. Try shifting your perspective taking a closer look at yourself. Deepening your own connection within your soul. Becoming your own best friend, saving yourself from yourself. Like Shakespeare said, “to thine own self be true”.

Mental health, Spirituality

Choosing love while I remain true to myself

It’s been an amazing six months of personal growth and accomplishments dear readers. I recently posted a poem of mine on my IG profile under the handle @emotionalmusings (I have reposted it here) that revealed a personal truth. I have purposely held myself back from success for the past 40 years. Why you may be wondering? For fear of failure, for fear of not being good enough and finally because I didn’t believe in myself. It has been a long and winding road for me. One that required lots of twists, turns and quiet self reflection. Ultimately it took losing everything, my sanity, my personal safety and my home for me to discover that in the end love for myself is the only superpower that I needed. Something that was inside me all along, I just wasn’t accessing it!

If someone had told me that being involved in an extremely difficult domestic violence relationship eight years ago would be one of the catalysts for my evolution, I would of never believed them. Getting punched in the face is quite jarring yet it showed me over time that I wasn’t as worthless as I believed myself to be. There are no magic pills, absolute directives or a master plan to figure out one’s purpose here on the journey. I’m among one of the people in life who had to learn these important things the hard way. Perhaps you can relate. Please put your own story in the comments below!

Perhaps it’s my hard headed Calabrese roots, my fierce independent nature or my insatiable curiosity for why things are the way they are that has led me down a more difficult path than most. A dear friend of mine recently stated to me that I always seem to have so much on my plate. That is definitely true. Juggling lots of “life balls” is all that I know and something I have had loads of practice with since I was quite young.

I follow my heart always and air on my emotional side most often over my intellectual understanding of any given situation. One may say I through caution to the wind. I pride myself on leading with my human foot when faced with adversity or confrontation. I love that about myself and the more I choose to follow my heart, the more confident and content I become. It has taken years to gain this inner peace and now that I have discovered it I desire more of it!

The self loathing, self doubt, feelings of inferiority, and uselessness seem light years away now. I have survived some dark years. I firmly believe that without those years I wouldn’t have found my path of enlightenment. I give thanks for that time, I don’t regret it. Important life lessons and poor life choices resulted in some truly brighter days.

I write and post a lot about the need for more of us to show empathy to one another. In my opinion we must become love warriors against hate and evil doers. It’s those people among us that are crying out, in a more negative way, for love and acceptance. Humanity’s fate is under attack. It’s ugly and it evokes fear. I feel it is the root cause for people to in turn act in an ugly way towards each other. Bottom line…..ugliness, fear and hate needs to be challenged. The only recipe for change is love. Love is the only answer my friends.

Love hard, whole heartedly and often. Hate is easy. It takes more courage and faith to choose love over hate. In a real and genuine way, I challenge you to try a little more love in your life. Especially with complete strangers. A bit more empathy will open your heart to more understanding of not only that stranger but for yourself.

Trust me. I am living proof. I have survived, now I am striving. This is what winning looks like😁

current events, Spirituality

Planting seeds of empathy and love

I’m not a “green thumb” by any definition despite the fact that my mother is a wonderful gardner. She and my father loved spending weekends in our lush backyard pruning, planting and cleaning our grounds at the house I grew up in. In this post I want to focus on a different kind of planting and that is in cultivating a more loving society.

In light of the extreme terrorist attack recently at Christchurch in New Zealand, I myself am searching for an answer as to why such violence exists in the world. For centuries we humans have fought over, waged wars even over the concept of beliefs. I recently read an article in The Washington Post, “In the United States, right-wing violence is on the rise” published on November 25, 2018 that discussed the rise of violence from right-wing white supremacists.

Over the past decade, attackers motivated by right-wing political ideologies have committed dozens of shootings, bombings and other acts of violence, far more than any other category of domestic extremist, according to a Washington Post analysis of data on global terrorism.

This violence has been on a steady rise since President Obama but has surged while Trump has been in office. I don’t want this post to become too politically charged however the facts are the facts. People in power do have a lot of influence over our society.

Intellectually I understand that I can only control and manifest change within myself. As an energy reader, healer and communicator, I firmly believe in the laws of attraction. What you put out into this world always comes back to you. Therefore, I choose to love no matter what. Good, bad or indifferent….the one answer is always rooted in love.

I believe our God, however one may choose to define it, intended our purpose here on Earth is to show and practice love with our fellow man. This involves active tolerance and acceptance in the face of adversity and misunderstanding. We don’t have to agree with everybody but we should allow for the differences that exist among each other. I believe if somebody believes in God and then acts in a completely contradictory way, that person has some reckoning to do. God is love. Period.

When my boys were little I used to tell them that they didn’t have to like or be friends with everybody but they must love everybody. It requires courage to love, a vulnerability to allow ourselves to feel for another. Discovering and nurturing our connections is what life is all about. Celebrating what we can relate to and have in common with one another is far more beneficial than what divides us and makes us different. Differences should be celebrated and accepted because uniqueness is what makes each of us an individual. We are a stronger force together than when we are divided into smaller groups.

Today and everyday, I choose to plant the seeds of love, tolerance and acceptance. I choose to stand up and chastise wrongdoings and hate filled violence. Each one of us has to search our souls and decide what we believe is right and what is wrong.

Inclusivity and acceptance must be in the forefront for the future of our society to survive. It is not us vs. them. There is no “invasion ” of any country by immigrants. Rising violence is driving huge numbers of people from their homes to seek asylum in a different place. What if that was your relative or friend? Would you be so quick to chastise that person?

I encourage you dear reader to be a seed planter of love and empathy. Strike up a conversation with a stranger. We must keep the lines of communication open in order to learn from one another. Evolve or die. Learn and grow or wither away. Let’s destroy ignorance by growing more love. The urgency is now and can’t be put off until tomorrow.

Mental health, Spirituality

Keeping love alive

Does anybody have a “love hangover” today, the day after Valentine’s Day? I must admit to feeling some aftershocks from being shown so much love yesterday. From the moment I opened my eyes until the moments before I closed them, love was surrounding me and encompassing me in its warmth and glory. Yesterday was a magical day for giving and receiving love from my friends, family and even my customers at the store. Of course my fiance stepped up his game too by making me feel special, very appreciated and of course loved yesterday as we celebrated Valentine’s Day together. All in all I had awesome day!

I know I have written this before in previous blog posts but I must emphasize it again here. My mission in life is to always spread love and kindness to all I encounter along this journey called life. Especially those who need it the most, the downtrodden, forgotten amongst our society. Those who are homeless are a good example of this. I observe those folks getting treated and judged so poorly on a daily basis, it breaks my heart.

I have a confession to make here. About two years ago, my fiance and I found ourselves without a secure living situation. We were homeless for about three months while we lived in our car. We showered at our local YMCA, ate at food pantries and sometimes slept overnight on the beach. It wasn’t easy and the only positive part of it is that at least we were together. I can’t imagine having to bear that time alone on the streets by myself. Some days were better than others. Some days I was so terribly sad and depressed not knowing where we were going to end up and how we were going to rise out of the terrible spot we felt stuck in. Our cell service was cut off too so we became experts at finding and utilizing free WiFi in order to stay in touch with our loved ones.

I have seen life from different angles and perspectives. My experiences have shaped me into the woman I am today. I take nothing for granted and try to be as grateful for everything I have today as I possibly can be on a daily basis. Anything can happen at anytime that can shift one’s world, turning everything upside down. Believe me dear readers, I am living proof of it!

I like to tell others when describing my life that I have lived a few different lives during my lifetime so far these 41 years. My family owned a car dealership while I was growing up and we enjoyed an upper middle class lifestyle. Then while I was married, my ex-husband was a hardworking blue collar type of guy who usually worked more than one job which afforded me the ability to be a stay at home mother for ten years while my boys were little. Then I went through my divorce and found myself working three jobs to try and survive. As I began having nervous breakdowns that required me to be hospitalized so many times I found myself homeless for the 1st time. I couldn’t afford my rental house because I had lost all of my jobs one by one so I was offered a friend’s couch to sleep on. That experience was extremely humbling, complicated and difficult.

It took me years to rebuild my life after going through so much loss. I have a keen awareness of how much grief and loss can affect a person’s outlook in life. I was basically just trying to survive everyday, I was definitely not thriving. It has taken years of intensive treatment, therapy, healing and rivers of tears to get me to where I am today.

There is not one day that goes by that I don’t pause, allow myself some quiet time to sit and reflect on my past. I whisper Thank you God for keeping me going forward, pushing me even a millimeter more when I wanted to give up. For allowing some wonderful people to come into my life and inspire me to want to do better. For guiding me through the darkness until I could see just a small speck of light. For keeping my faith, hope and belief alive enough so I never quit. There were a few times I did consider ending it all. I thought those who loved me would be better off without the burden of worrying about me, the pain of the disappointment I felt I had become.

Yes dear readers, I have expierienced some very dark days. I have also had the pleasure of feeling some truly amazing moments too. I am grateful for all of it. Without the dark one cannot appreciate the light. Hold on tight to those you love and tell them how you feel. Don’t judge others for there but the grace of God go any of us. Be kind always and act as if God himself is always watching you (because he is) In the end life is short. Love is all that matters. Spread it generously to all everyday and keep love ALIVE💖