For most of life I have been arm-wrestling with the propriety police. You know the rule keepers that make up the rules and make sure everyone adheres to them. The policers that tell folks not to wear white past Labor Day, stay small and invisible, don’t make a scene, always adhere to respectable “good girl” behavior, whether it's your own hoop jumping tendencies or what others try to define for you.
For some years I worked my darnedest to appease these "policers", as if I might earn a bag of gold (middle child syndrome.) In the old days parroting was easy for me. I was an actress for heaven sake; I can bullshit with the best of them.
Then I recognized the ridiculousness of adhering to values that weren't mine. In fact, the least (doesn’t even make the list) would be the attributes of the demure and lady-like. When I'm all about getting untamed and free, why would I bow and scrape to earn approval I already possess by the mere fact that I exist? Read More
If you’re like me you find yourself “over adulating” more frequently than you’d like to admit and then suddenly you feel rusty like the Tin Man needing a good fix of oil.
I was recently talking about this with a friend of mine. You see we both recognize that we’re rather serious, task oriented girls. While this has its perks (being quite good at getting things done) it can also lead to detours of the heart, betraying what really matters with a sudden “I can handle it resolve.” Remember how Dorothy led her crew on a mission, got detained in a field of poppies, washed and buffed in Emerald city all before returning home to find what she had been missing all along, herself. Been there done that!
Although I am task oriented, I am probably the biggest initiator of socializing of anyone I know (with the exception of my sister, the party girl.) I am always ready for adventure and regularly dreaming up socialization and fun, because I know the heavy toil of living without it! Read More
Recently I was asked to sit on a panel of mom’s with adult kids, to share our pearls with younger moms. As I looked around the round I noticed the variety of women in all sizes, shapes, backgrounds, temperaments, experiences and abilities. It was there that the falsehood of one-size-fits-all parenting, or life-ing seemed more magnified than usual.
What I heard were not techniques on mama-ing, but more ways of being and seeing. I’ve heard it said about parenting that things are caught more than taught. That’s why it does little good to parrot one thing, while doing something else. Like it or not, what our kids have caught is actually what we’ve done. This means they’ve not only caught our incongruences, but have caught wonderful unique gifts that we don’t even recognize we’re gifting to them. Read More
It is so easy to let the celebration of a long held dream fly under the radar. To let others lack of nurture of a vision wash over you like a wet blanket until your light is extinguished. I have felt my heart go limp with vulnerability and insecurity countless of times from a disdaining, disapproving glance, but I hope I never let such a thing buckle my vision again. And while some pretend they might be above insecurity, baby, we all have it!
When I published my first book, a book of poetry, Blood, Wine and Roses, there was no fanfare and I underplayed any whispers of congratulations that did come my way with the tones of “Don’t draw attention to yourself and don’t stand out”, because we don’t have permission for ourselves either!” All the while failing to let the joy of my personal accomplishment and the wink to self sink deep into my bones.
When I recorded Tidal Wave an album of all original songs, again there was no celebratory gathering, no “Way to go, girl” and no “You did this and you should feel good!” Instead, the culture of false humility and strong withholding prevailed. Read More
Today, my Sis and I head out for the final preparations for our first, long awaited Delta Sisters Retreat that begins on Thursday at our family farm. As challenging as this launch has been, I am determined to saver every minute of it.
In the past, I haven't always celebrated my accomplishments, perhaps because those surrounding me weren't always cheering. Nevertheless, I am learning to be my own cheerleader and twirl around in the light of my Maker's giddy acceptance, approval and down right delight in my accomplishments. I am learning to nurture my childlike heart again.
In fact, a few nights ago, before I fell a sleep, I heard the phrase, "What if you couldn't mess up?" I instantly thought about the way a good daddy's loves his little girl, beaming with acceptance no matter how many times she falls down learning to walk, or how many flat notes she sings in her spontaneous and exuberant sing-song-play. Read More
Lately, I have felt a bit overwhelmed. Not necessarily because I am doing too much, but because of the thoughts and feeling that lay beyond the action. This is what determines if I will in fact, surf the waves of overwhelm, or sink beneath them with a mouth full of water.
Every bit of new ground I navigate insights the same feelings of vulnerability exposure that you probably feel in your own life when navigating new territory. That uncomfortable feeling of being splayed wide-open accompanies risk. Risk means there is an opportunity to learn to surf new waters despite the feelings of overwhelming. Read More
What woman doesn’t know the importance of her girl friends and the wealth they add to life? Two are better than one, because a friend is there to help carry the load, lift you up when you fall and be the one to make you laugh when you take yourself too seriously.
I have always loved doing life with women friends, but I’m also passionate about women awakening to the goods they carry, getting out from under duty and obligation, half-hearted living, and coming home to true identity.
There’s nothing I’d rather do than invest in and encourage a woman’s journey of discovering her dreams, a grand awakening of self-realization, learning to choose and navigate relationships with those who have her back, appreciate her intrinsic value and beauty and never fail to cheer her on. That’s the great stuff about sisterhood or what some have coined "sistering". Read More
We don’t find out who we are through the eyes of others. We recognize the life of the Maker, whose signature and identity is stamped and residing within our being. It’s this beautiful recognition that will transcend the doubts in our head and the stories we’ve believed about ourselves, so we can connect with the truth about who we are.
“Discovery and recognition of the permanent identity causes it to rise to the surface like a cork which has been held under water and suddenly released.” Walter Lanyon, The Eyes of the Blind
Measuring our ability to love or be loved by those standing with us is a misconception that keeps us looking outwardly for validation instead of at the already magnificent acceptance and delight of the One who created us. Read More
When I’ve played to the crowd (you know, those times when we poll everyone else and avoid listening for our own answers) suddenly I feel anxious and overwhelmed. My peace dissipates, my body tenses and I wonder what happened.
Often the women I work with struggle with owning their own voice, desires and strength. They have spent a lifetime abdicating them, so taking the reins of their own life is foreign. Often they’ve grown up in or subjected themselves to cultural mindsets that have instilled abdicating their will.
No one wants to think of himself or herself as a victim, but honestly when we don’t take responsibility for our own choices and instead blame others; we are living from a victim stance. I’d like to say that I never do this, but I do. And so do you! Read More
Opening Amy Poehler’s book, Yes Please I see an image of her rather glowing Kindergarten progress report. I am reminded that most of us need encouragement and so we look outwardly for other’s acknowledgment to bolster ourselves up, until we learn to give ourselves the gold star of affirmation that we need.
In truth I think we’d all like to stockpile and shellac all the beautiful words, comments and gold stars others have given us on the wall of our home as trophies on display. We look outwardly for validation instead of resting inwardly in our already validated worth. Read More