Resistance

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What is it about resisting that is so accommodating that we continue to do it? We know our thoughts are energy and when what we desire appears, we resist it. We push it away in disbelief that it’s there and we continue to long for it.

The art of allowing is in intriguing concept. Change your thoughts you change your life is an understatement.

I began (reluctantly) dating again. I know I didn’t want to continue to be single but I wasn’t sure if I wanted another person in my life to deal with at the same time. I was contacted by a man one day and we started talking. After a couple of weeks, while we were talking on the phone he made a statement I will never forget. He said he could tell I’ve been hurt bad before and that he would wait until I got past it. I couldn’t respond. I stopped breathing. I simply didn’t know what to say.

Needless to say that was a sleepless night. I realized he was right and that I really did want someone in life again but here I was pushing him away. The following day we didn’t speak; he sent me a text that simply read “good night.”

Another day went by and while talking to a coworker I had a slip of the tongue and called him my boyfriend. I felt that it may have been presumptuous considering the couple days before; this wasn’t something we had discussed yet. That evening I sent him a text telling him my slip up and that I was going to stop resisting us if it was ok with him. His response was simply “of course it’s ok with me.”

There has been no doubt in either of our minds since. While this is new, I found being open (as scared as I was) with him lead me to where I wanted to be. Sometimes we have to get out of own way.

 

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Memorial Day

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Today is a solemn day for me. Memorial Day. Today is the day that not only do all of the people I’ve lost over the years come to mind, but how they were lost.

After losing friends, brothers, and sisters ‘in service to our country’, I stopped making friends. The funeral processions, the presenting of the flag, the tears and heartache of the friends and family as that person is laid to rest.

As a soldier, you are told to be strong. You are told not to cry its a sign of weakness.  Do your duty and move on.

Well, those tears catch up at some point. That pain surfaces at some point.

Today, my country remembers those that gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country. Today, I remember them; as well as the pain, the blood spilt, the chaos, the bond.

It also reminds me of why I have to open myself up and my heart again. I know those that I’ve lost would tell me I’m doing a disservice by staying closed off. That I need to be myself. That there is nothing I can’t survive. That someone needs to remember. Someone needs to care. Someone needs to love. The more the better.

Crossing the Line

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‘Judge not lest ye be judged’ ~Matthew 7:2

I’m trying. I’m trying hard to let go. Sometimes I can’t, like last night.

Last night at a survivor meeting, I blew my top. It wasn’t the first time its happened. I find that I’m surrounded by those that don’t want to move forward in life. They seem content to stay where they are and continue with self pity. Part of what got me worked up was a survivor went on tv begging for money to send her kid on a school trip across the country. This irked me bad. Then she sent me a personal message asking for money and wanting me to get my friends and family to give her money.

I guess I’m from a different generation. Never, ever have I done such a thing nor would I. I wasn’t insulted that she asked me, I was mad that she used and abused the shooting to drum up sympathy for her personal financial gain. Lately, it seems a lot of that has been going on.

I arrived to the meeting irritated to begin with. Then, no one except me in the group did the ‘homework’ for the week. Not only was it not done, the lies around why they didn’t do it pushed me over the edge. The people that run and support these groups are volunteers and nonprofit organizations that are trying to help us anyway they can. These people go out of their way for us and are genuinely concerned about our well being and progression and those attending can’t even be bothered.

As much as I like the people that run these meetings, I don’t want to listen to the bs from the other survivors. I’m drained when I leave. I realize that when I do blow up I’m probably saying aloud what others are thinking; I’ve received many personal messages to that effect. I’m thinking a break is in order; I have better things to do with that time to improve my life.

End Goal

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Seeing the different stages of life on the plane the other day got my brain going. I’ve always been able to view each change in my life as a path change or a fork and then to make a decision about which way to go based on that I wanted the outcome to be. I came to realize is that the difficulty now is that there isn’t a path, there isn’t a fork. There is simply a void; one I’m not programmed to understand.

If you have ever seen the movie ‘The Core’ there is a scene where they are in the earth and static appears on Virgil’s screen. Virgil wasn’t programmed to read space nor was Virgil taught how to fly.

I’ve been following the teachings of Abraham, Wayne Dyer, Louise Hay, Deepak Chopra, and many more for several years now. In trying to allow what will be simply be and not resisting has created some apprehension of the unknown.

Everyday I talk to others that are also piecing their lives back together. They seem so certain of where they need to be, what they need to strive for. They sound as I did at every fork in the road that I’ve faced previously.

What makes this change so different from the others? This time wasn’t simply a change in the path, it has been a complete upheaval of life; a broken body, a brain off kilter, and a shattered heart. This time, I simply want to keep moving forward and continue to make progress. The goal isn’t a what or a where but to simply live.

“Living in the moment means letting go of the past and not waiting for the future. It means living your life consciously, aware that each moment you breathe is a gift.”

~ Oprah Winfrey

27,000 ft

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As I look around the plane I noticed the different stages of life this vessel encompasses. I watch a young mother of 2 in diapers trying to coerce the little boy to nap. I see military fresh from school heading to their first assignment. I see an older man talking endlessly to the young girl next to him. The grandmother behind me is talking about her college grand babies. Seeing this made me ask myself, what stage am I at?

My married days are past. My child is grown. My military days are long gone. My college days have ended. My parents have moved on. Each of these lives seem to be so far gone. Each of these lifetimes vanished with the setting sun.

I’m grateful for the plethora of experiences I have had. The question now is what’s next? What other journeys are there for me to navigate? What lifetime is next on my path?

I guess only time will tell after all I don’t have talent in scrying.

Journey

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In the last year, there have been two wildfires where I like to be in touch with nature. I saw the damage right after the last fire occurred but I didn’t have my phone with me. I told myself next time, today was the next time.

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The reason I wanted pictures of the area was because as I stood there I realized that this is where I am. This is where my community is.

Out of the Ashes we are born anew.

Secondary succession as a natural process. One that we are taking when we change something in our lives.

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Sometimes the damage is minor, sometimes it’s severe. Either way we grow from what happened. Sometimes there are visible scars, sometimes there are none.

How we react and move forward determines the outcome. When you have the courage to face the pain, the effects are lessened. When you hold your breath and take that leap, you find the path. When you open your heart, you find love.

No matter your challenges, you are never alone.

 

1 April 2018

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April first is of course April Fool’s Day and this year it was also Easter. That made the day even more interesting.

For Las Vegas, it also marked the six month anniversary of the Route 91 shooting. To honor what we call the 58 Angels (those that died that night) there was a vigil where we walked around the event grounds. Six months seems a long time ago but also it seems like yesterday.

The emotions ran high. Some of us even found a little bit of closure.

What surprised me was the community support. Many of the people that were at the vigil were from the community and had no ties to the concert. It’s been there the whole time, I simply couldn’t see it until now.

I’m glad I saw it, it gave me a renewed sense of home in my community. Sometimes what were looking for is right in front of us.

Release

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After the shooting, someone, a stranger, asked me what happened. Not only did he ask, he persisted but not in a mean way. He wanted to know. I simply told him ‘You really don’t want to know.’ A couple months later, Dr. G discussed avoidance. Although I realize I was avoiding answering this guys question, I felt it was the right thing at the time just as I didn’t want my family and friends to be upset by it. Why share something that is only going to hurt others?

That night that we met, his cousin and I hit it off and started talking on social media. Recently, I told her to have him call me if he really did want the answer to his question. He did, immediately. What I didn’t realize at the time was why he wanted to know. He was from a different state and probably wouldn’t see this place again.

They come from a rather LARGE and I mean HUGE family, members far and wide. They also love outings, concerts, and getting together and making a ruckus. He made the comment that if someone was bold enough to do this here, in this country, state, city, and venue with this particular crowd then it could happen anywhere and he wanted to understand so he could better protect his family. I found his sentiment admirable.

The conversation helped him to understand how quickly the events unfolded and was completely unexpected.

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Last night was my first rock concert since the shooting. The concert its self was as good as always, I’ve seen this band several times already. The problem was that I forgot they use pyrotechnics in their show. :/

Much to my dismay, my nervous system didn’t like that at all. Fortunately my son was on one side of me and a good friend on the other and they helped me get through it.

The first shot took me completely off guard to the point that I almost bolted out of the venue. A long stream of profanity fell from my lips after the second shot and the third I just kept breathing through.

The worst one was the finale; seven shots in five seconds.

My skin is still crawling slightly.

Path Changes

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For the first time since the events of 1 Oct 2017, I don’t feel as though I am not anchored. Even though my son, my home, and my job gave me a stability to help me through the last few months, I couldn’t seem to find the meaning behind not feeling like there was solid ground beneath me.

Somehow, I inadvertently started becoming a life coach of sorts for trauma survivors. In the past week, my creativity has started to return as well as my need to write. Right now I can only seem to write about trauma recovery and steps to getting your life back. I feels as though it is the right direction right now. We’ll see how the guide comes out.

A few months ago, I began working with a graduate class cohort on writing grants and then the shooting happened and I lost my footing. While decoding my way through recovery, I expanded on what I wanted to do. Mitigation as well as organization and paperwork handling are innate abilities I was gifted with so I started going with it. My educational background is in environmental studies and crisis and emergency management. Practical experience turned from legal issues with my mom when she was in the hospital (i.e. living will, will, power of attorney) and from trauma recovery from the shooting as aiding friends with trauma recovery in the past. I possess a unique skill set. One I have begun to put together.

While I will continue with my current job, I will pursue my independent work and hopefully build enough experience to be able to support myself with full time.