Wednesday, December 7, 2011

38 Years Ago Today

"A mother’s womb is technicolor; it gives birth to any kind and character of children." Ethiopian proverb

On this day, 38 years ago, a beautiful queen gave birth to baby girl she named Valerie Anne. Knowing her time in the physical world would soon be coming to an end, she nurtured, molded, and instilled the morals and values that would carry her through a life she knew she would not be a part of.

Today, my birthday, 38 years later, while I was out buying myself a celebratory birthday cupcake, I'm wondering if I have made the memory of my mother proud. Have I lived the life she had planned for me.
Furthermore, have I have made myself proud. Have I spent 38 years living on this earth, or wasted 38 years simply occupying this earth.

To say I know the answer to that question wouldn't be true. Honestly, there were times in my life where I believe I have lived, but I also many times spent being nothing more than an occupant. Just 'going through the motions'. Existing.

For the first time, I don't have a plan for the rest of my life. I don't have a goal for my future. My oldest daughter is almost 19, in college, and trying to figure out her place in life, my 2 youngest will be reach adulthood, God willing, in a few years. So, what is next for me?

Much of my life has been spent trying my hardest to prepare my children for life. Doing everything I can to offer in my children the knowledge that will allow them to spread their wings and providing the tools that will enable them to fly.

But, when my work is done, what is next for my life? It seems finding the answer to that question is path my journey has led me to. The choices I make and the answers I receive will determine my adventures for the rest of my life.

"Life is a message – listen to it. Life is a belief – trust it. Life is a gift – accept it. Life is love – think about it. Life is an adventure – dare it." Northern Sotho proverb from South Africa

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

A Day In The Life Of Crazy

'The worst thing to call somebody is "crazy". It's dismissive. I don't understand this person, so they're crazy. That's bullshit! People are not crazy. They are strong people...Maybe the environment is a little sick.' - Dave Chappelle

From the moment I heard the above words being said (in 2006), it soon became my all time favorite quote. To me its raw, its to the point, and its real!

We are all so quick to label someone as crazy when a lot of us aren't to sane ourselves! We are ignorant in our thinking, ignorant to life in another persons shoes, ignorant to life in another persons mind.

When the number of people walking around with some kind of anti-(something) drug, legal or illegal, flowing through their veins have tripled in the past 40 years, it's time for us to admit that there is a problem somewhere.

Turn on the television at any given time, on any number of channels and what do you see. Some [scripted] 'reality' show with a group of dysfunctional people, (most of them old enough to know better) acting like asses and not only are they getting applauded for it, they are getting PAID for it! The world thrives on craziness.

We live in a society that is addicted to gossip, relishes on degrading who ever they can in life then talk about their 'greatness' in death, then throws in a 'Dr. Drew' to explain to us why we are all so crazy!

With most of us trying to scrape the bottom of the same barrel, we are expected to have sympathy for athletes throwing temper tantrums, which seem to occur every couple of years, over salaries that could feed most small countries.

The irony that to improve the economy people need to spend more money that people really don't have in the first place seems outrageous to me.

The idea that building prisons in towns on the verge of bankruptcy anticipating that revenue from housing what they hope to be the 'future criminals of america' (whose imprisonment will often times be the result of laws created solely with the intent of ensuring that every cell remains full of these 'expected' criminals) is asinine.

The world is a crazy, hypocritical, glass house of horrors.

I, too, am believing more and more each day that its not bi-polar people trying to live their lives inside a world , but sane people just trying to function in a bi-polar world!

Friday, November 4, 2011

...And The Light Bulb Came On!

I am a thinker, an analyzer by nature. Or maybe its a habit. Whatever the reason, Its how I am. In fact its also what I do. I analyze for a living. I don't often get the opportunity to toot my own horn but, I'm good at it. I'm good at my job. I uncover potential problems, analyze the data, identify to root causes, and implement remediation's.

However, my biggest strength is also my biggest weakness. I have a tendency to analyze beyond the scope of the issue. Over analyze. Hell, I just plain think too much. Not just in my professional life but my personal life as well.

The truth of the matter is if my mind is not occupied, I get bored. If I get bored, I get depressed.

But, this morning, while I was enjoying my morning cup of Soy Vanilla Chai Tea Latte, this question popped into my head: 'Why am I doing this?'. Not 'Why am I doing this?', but 'Why am I doing this?'.

This obvious and pretty elementary question actually made a huge impact on me today. It is a question that I should be able to ask myself in every aspect of my life. It is a very 'grounded' question. It provides me with a way of assessing my boundaries. A way for me to stick to the issue at hand. If I ask myself 'Why am I doing this?' in relation to any task in any situation of my life, I can easier identify if I am analyzing or addressing something outside the scope of the problem or issue. I can focus on the immediate issue rather than issues that haven't even arisen yet, or may never arise. I can focus on issues within my control.

THIS IS HUGE FOR ME! For someone who often doesn't know how to 'pull back' and tends to analyze things outside of the problem area, this question will allow me a way to better focus my energy so that I can drive the results that I need in order to obtain the outcome I want more effectively and often times faster.

Thank God for 'Ah Ha!' moments like these! The littlest of things can often times create the biggest impacts...epiphany's that are life changing!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Dark Clouds Keep Hiding My Silver Linings

I try to wake up every morning hoping today will be different than yesterday. Just as I woke up yesterday hoping it would be different than the day before that. However it seems like there day clouds keep hiding the silver linings. Today seems to be the same as the days that preceded and the days to come will be the same as today.

The same conversations, the same horrible issues, the same empty promises, the same attitudes, trying to read between the same lines. Nothing ever changes.

So, I realize that if i want my silver lining, I have to go to find it. Its definitely not going to come to me.

I can not concern myself with the needs of others when the needs of others always seem to supersede the needs of myself. I will not concern myself to the happiness of others when others are not concerned with the happiness I am in search of.

I will never disregard the needs of those around me, but I am going to stop putting myself on the back burner. If my good intentions are never enough, if my efforts are never enough, If my actions never enough, If I am never enough for those around be it! They were never going be enough anyway.

I have always had to live my life with the expectation that I had to do for somebody else, be there for somebody else, always make sure somebody else is happy. Always trying to fulfill the expectations of the very people who claim to have none. I'm always trying to give somebody else their silver lining and never being provided the opportunity to have mine.

I need to make sure I am okay. I need to figure out how I feel about myself rather that believe in the opinions of others.

Everyone has opinions and judgements of everyone else. Often times those opinions and judgements are built around how much you are willing to benefit them. If you give them what they want, your the angel they can not live without and the moment you don't, you then become the vein of their existence.

I spend much of my days trying not to become the vein of someones existing. The result is me walking on somebody else's eggshells.

My silver lining is stuck somewhere deep inside of me. I just need to find it. I need to find my own happiness. For once!
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