Official blog for the book "Just Behind the Door"

Posts tagged ‘divorce’

Turn Your Kaleidoscope!

Tomorrow really is the first day of the rest of your life. It is a day that will be as open to opportunities and as resilient as you are – no more no less. When you think about it there will never be another day just like it. Relish in both the big and small things of tomorrow and they will give you greater strength and confidence as you create memories to last a lifetime. Waste the day thinking about the ‘whys’ and ‘if onlys’ and it will be gone forever. Just another day marked off the calendar of your life.

Many of the issues that affect the way we look at our lives began so early – even before we had the verbal skills to understand them – that we may just think it is natural to look at life from a perspective of fear, dissatisfaction, or lack. As we experience further trials and tribulations our life challenges begin to weigh us down and we may start believing that life is unfair, unjust or simply a burden to get through. Look at the faces of those you come in contact with and you will clearly see their perspective on life. Look in the mirror and you will know what you are telling others about your perspective on life.

If you think of your life as the pieces of glass inside a kaleidoscope, you simply need to turn the cylinder, ever so slightly, to let in more light energy. To see more colors in the spectrum. Positive thought and intentions are the light, the reflectors of your tomorrows.

All of us have lived through times in our lives that have stopped us in our tracks. Death, divorce, separation, basically any kind of loss can cause us to become fearful or anxious about what might – the operative word here is MIGHT- happen tomorrow. In reality, however, we all get our share of challenges and hurts. The test in life is how we allow those things to color our tomorrows. Are you ready to turn the kaleidoscope and put your past hurts behind you and see a more positive tomorrow?

Once you consciously choose to turn the kaleidoscope, slightly, allowing you to see the vibrant colors of possibilities and abundance, the Universe will deliver – of that I am sure. The choice is always up to you. Will you decide to simply get through another day or will you give it all you’ve got for the tomorrow that will only come around once in your life? As we know, the choice is always up to us.

Have a great few days!

Being Authentic in Grief

We often hear about the importance of being positive. Seeing your glass as half full rather than half empty is a mindset involving both a skill and an art. It is something that we work on continuously throughout our lives. We like ourselves better when we are positive. Others want to be around us because we have an energy field that is welcoming and uplifting. An important part of being in a positive state involves being our authentic selves. When we recognize and honor our true feelings about something that happened to us, we are being authentic. We are strong enough to show others that we are the same, emotionally, on the inside as the outside.

Being authentic, especially through personal loss is both the hardest and most important thing we can do for ourselves. Challenging or catastrophic experiences involving loss (death, divorce, separation) or other wounds or scars can easily become deeply buried in your psyche because the pain seems so great that you feel unable to confront your own feelings. You may be afraid that if the floodgate holding back your feelings is opened, you may never be able to get it together again. I understand, I have been there. I can tell you that those buried feelings just fester inside you and the anger and hurt you feel can become toxic in your mind and body. The choice between being authentic and verbalizing your true feelings or burying them cannot be overstated. I truly believe it is the difference between simply existing or a life well lived.

Finding a trusted friend who is willing to take all the time YOU need to work through your loss is critical. A good listener just listens and does not rush to tell you how you should handle something or how you should feel. These people are rare to find but are out there and will be of immense help to you. Grief counselors are trained to listen well and can also be invaluable in your search for peace. Send the intention out to the Universe to deliver someone to help you if you are emotionally stuck in a quagmire of anger, blame or discontent. You know you have found that great listener when you explain your situation and they respond with, “How do YOU feel about that?” And they listen with love and grace…

The importance of taking the time to process through your loss and express your authentic feelings about the situation can help you immensely. It is like putting salve on a wound. Eventually, the wound doesn’t hurt as much. Will it ever heal? Maybe not. But it won’t continue to hurt or bleed so profusely. We will live long enough to see the lessons we have learned from our losses and eventually the bigger picture of why those things happened.

Ultimately, we either choose to process through our emotions and arrive at an eventual peace about the situation or we will be dealing with the residue both here and on the other side. Lisa Williams in her book, The Survival of the Soul, talks about the importance of resolving our emotional issues on the Earth plane before we cross over. We will have to deal with the issues sometime, someplace, and it is better to do it now.

We can ultimately be more positive in our life if we choose to be our authentic self and live our truth, surround ourselves with love – of self – and others and remember that as difficult as our lives may be from time to time, we wrote our life script to learn specific lessons. It is no one’s fault, the world is not out to get us, we just chose a difficult path this time. Quoting from my son in the book, Just Behind The Door, “All is as it should be.”

Have a great few days!

Finding Your Own Truth

This focus of this blog is on loss and how to move on with life. In addition to death, divorce and separation there are many other types of losses. The loss of self-respect, personal security, and confidence in a better tomorrow are additional areas that can paralyze a person, now or in the future. A traumatic event such as rape can be buried in the psyche and resurface with a vengeance years later. In the meantime, the individual may live with insecurities and fears that don’t even seem reasonable to an outsider.

Statistics show that 90 percent of rapes are NEVER reported. Further, according to an article in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology well over 32,000 pregnancies are the result of rape each year. That’s a lot of walking wounded sisters out there – and we remain quiet.

This week when I heard Representative Todd Akin from Missouri say, (pregnancy from rape) ” is really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut the whole thing down.” I thought to myself, surely no one in 2012 could be that ill-informed. Unfortunately, not true. A senator, Chuck Winder from Boise, Idaho added insult to injury recently when he supported adding a mandatory ultrasound procedure prior to an abortion in a piece of proposed legislation. In doing so, he raised the question, ” whether or not women would understand whether they had been raped.” Sounds as ridiculous as the statement by representative Stephen Freind from Pennsylvania who, in 1988 said, ” the odds of a woman who is raped getting pregnant are, “one in millions and millions and millions.” Not accurate.

I understand that the topic of abortion is controversial. Every one should have the right to their own opinion, this is America. However, when misinformation or fear is used in an effort to further a political or religious opinion, it is time to stand up and be counted. I believe that the statement, “the truth shall set us free,” applies to each of us. Our job is to find our OWN truth and be willing to live and speak it.

Have a great few days!

Take Time to Fully Process Through You Grief

I read recently that forgiveness (of yourself and others) happens naturally when we embrace every part of ourselves that has been hurt from a loss. I thought about that for some time. It seems we hear about the necessity of getting on with our lives more frequently that anything else. I understand that the average person expects you to ‘get your life back together and move on’ about 2-4 weeks after a loss. Really? That type of thinking tells me they probably haven’t lived through a life-changing loss yet. ‘Yet’ is the operative word here because none of us escapes loss. It is just a matter of time. Loss of any kind (death, divorce, separation) creates feelings and emotions that cannot simply be brushed away quickly. When you try to move on or ‘keep a stiff upper lip’ the loss becomes buried in your entire being and will take a toll on you. It takes time to process through all of the ‘yucky stuff’ that surfaces in your mind and to make peace with it eventually. I am convinced if you don’t fully process through the hurt to discover the lesson, it will return over and over in your life until you ‘get it.’

Given the pace that we live at today, reflecting and processing the grief of our loss takes time that may think we cannot afford. However, as I have said in my book, Just Behind the Door, each loss seems to be like a rock in the back pack you are invisibly carrying around. As you hurry through the hurt, thinking that you just have to put one foot in front of the other, the back pack gets heavier and heavier. I visualize a person that is hunched over from the weight of the pack they are carrying. Those rocks (or boulders depending on the depth of the loss) do not eventually disappear on their own. Time does not, necessarily, heal a broken heart. It takes work to surface those boulders your are carrying around. By recognizing the hurt you still have down deep, and searching for the lesson(s) you have learned from the experience you will eventually feel whole. This is difficult work that may take a person trained in the field of loss to help you let go of the heavy load you are carrying. Please value yourself enough to seek help if you can’t seem to process the loss fully.

Everyone has their own special mission – lessons to learn – on this earth. No one seems to escape unscathed. Your friends can be a wonderful support system for you. They will listen to you no matter how many times you need to repeat the experience of your loss. Good friends care enough to be there for you no matter how long it takes.

I look forward to the day that we will all become so evolved that the learning through the suffering paradigm will be replaced by learning through love and joy. It may take us time but I believe we will get there.

Have a great few days!

Do You Have Faith in Tomorrow?

Watching bits and pieces of Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee celebration this weekend, I was moved to see the thousands of well-
wishers demonstrating such pride in their queen and country. The queen’s background is fascinating. When she was 14 and England was being bombed, she made a radio broadcast to the children of England stating, “In the end all will be well for God will care for us and give us victory and peace.” At 26 years of age she became Queen. She was no longer free to be a person in her own right but had to become all things to all people. She started weekly meetings with Winston Churchill and has continued the practice with every prime minister since that time. In addition to being the mother of four children she had a 24/7 job. As she witnessed divorces, separations, and deaths in her immediate family she just had to keep going. She adapted to the changes and losses in her life regardless of how difficult they may have been. She has the same human emotions that we all have as a mother, sister, daughter and wife and yet her 24/7 job, for the rest of her life, continues. There is no such thing as retirement for a queen – until death. In a televised address she called the celebration “a humbling experience.” Well done!

Luckily, we have not had to deal with the 24/7 expectancies in our lives that she has shouldered. We have had time to live our own lives, raise our families and even take time out for grief, when needed, without the mantel of expectancies hanging over our heads. I wondered to myself, how many of us can say that, like the queen, we have truly adapted – made changes for the positive – as our lives and our worlds have become more challenging. Do we look at our own lives optimistically, knowing that everything will work out as it is supposed to, or do we become bogged down in our lives wondering when ‘it’ will pass. The ‘it’ is called life. It won’t pass until we do, when our lessons are learned.

To remain optimistic requires that we believe in something bigger than ourselves. It has been said that, “One either has faith in God/Universal Energy or faith in our fears.” Whenever you begin to worry just think about that for a moment. Fear comes in so many forms and can paralyze us. When we lose someone it is natural to go through a period of mourning and fear. After all, life has suddenly changed –
oftentimes – without warning. As I discussed in my book, Just Behind the Door, the future can feel so uncertain after we experience a loss that we may need to seek the help of others to keep ourselves moving forward.

If we all work at fearing less and loving ourselves and others more the world will be a better place. It starts and ends with us. Take time to examine your own life. Don’t you find that 99% of what you worry about (fear) never happens. Yet many of us continue to waste the precious time we have on this earth worrying. We choose fear rather than belief. I don’t think it matters what name you give the power greater than yourself, it only matters that we realize that there is such a power and we are ALL a part of it. Like Queen Elizabeth II, let us give and receive love, have faith in our future and make the world a little better off when we leave it.

All Forms of Loss Take Time to Heal

We have all had challenges or as I prefer to call them, “opportunities” in our lives that can change it forever. We never know from one day to the next when a phone call, email or person will reconnect with us and tell us something that seems to just rock our world. We question, we try to process and yet the answers seem to be out of reach. Recently, I talked with a dear friend that I thought had just a perfect marriage. Common interests, achievement level, values in life – even humor and appreciation for each other had been evident. Or so I thought. If you would have asked me to name a couple that seemed perfectly matched, I would have thought of them. When I heard that their marriage was in trouble, at first, I simply refused to believe it. Not them, not now, not ever. Yet, here I was on the phone listening to a wonderful person who was shocked, bewildered and maybe even a bit angry. Puzzlement flooded her thinking. “It came out of the blue,” she told me. As I thought about this conversation, I thought about how many other people (myself included) have experienced that same scenario in their lives. Naturally, our minds question the circumstances searching for a reason, an answer. Often, we feel we are left with more questions than answers.

I have noticed a pattern, however, that I think is worth mentioning. All of us are subject to life altering situations of one degree or another. No one seems to avoid them. It seems that when we reflect back a year or two after a loss, for example, one of the real lessons for us was how we responded to it. Did we allow it to redefine our life into one of just existing but not living? Or did we think to ourselves after the initial shock wore off, I don’t know how but I will get through this and my life will continue to have purpose. It may take time to heal my broken heart but it WILL HEAL.
Loss of any kind has so many emotions in common. Healing your heart takes time. Knowing you CAN heal it is essential to moving on. Having someone to talk to is important. You need to voice your hurt, anger and disbelief. A dear friend will help you do that without rushing in to offer solutions. Because, sad as it may sound, sometimes solutions cannot be immediate. You must work through the loss over time. It may also be helpful to remember that to let go is not meant to betray the past, but to have greater faith in the future.

Gratitude and Goal Setting

We have all experienced loss in our lives. It may have taken the extreme forms such as losing a child or spouse. Regrouping after any loss, including divorce, can be difficult but it is not impossible. In the last 3 blogs I wrote about the steps in goal setting for an important reason. We must be strong enough to go on with our lives. We will never forget our loss but we must force ourselves to see any and all positives that still exist in our lives in order to heal. When we write a goal in the first person, present tense we place ourselves in a higher level of vibration. The energy of the Universe/God WILL respond. It is important to use positive statements. Phrases such as, “I am not…” or “I am no longer troubled by…” must be reworded in the positive, for example, “I am… or I have all peace and abundance around me.” Remember the energy of the Universe will respond to POSITIVE statements. Like attracts like.

The attitude of gratitude is a critically important step in attaining your goal. I know it may be difficult to feel gratitude if you have just recently experienced a loss that has, temporarily, stopped you in your tracks, but it is necessary. Think of all you still have as a human being. Think of the family and friends that have been there with you throughout your experience. Before letting your feet hit the floor in the morning think about 3 things for which you are grateful. By doing this, you are drawing more positive energy to get though the next day. Slowly but surely, you will begin to see hope for the future. You will have found the renewed energy that seemed to have disappeared. I talk from experience.

My wish for you is that over time you will begin to understand that the loss was part of a bigger plan of the Universe. Regardless of how many times you think, “maybe if I would have been there, done this, kept him on the phone longer,” the loss would not have happened. We all go through these feelings but the truth is, as my son has told me from the other side, “Mom, all is as it should be.”

P.S. My book is VERY CLOSE to publication! I will give you the specific information on how to order as soon as it is available. I hope you will find my story of the many losses in my life to be inspiring and it will give you courage and hope of a better tomorrow.