Tag Archives: help

Chicken In A Can

Was I paying it forward out of love for my fellow man or out of fear from my past?  Whichever it was, it made me smile.  Made him smile.  And caused another to take notice.  I was grateful that I could help.

I must have made a decision when I was a young girl, to never be without money.  Never to be in a position of NOT affording life.  Life as I had been living in.  Life as a young girl in a safe, warm, loving home had at her fingertips.  Life was good.  Until I was introduced to chicken from a can, powdered milk and big jars of peanut butter. I don’t really remember why and I’m sure my mom explained it to me…. but as a young girl… I did not like that one bit.  And That…. I think is the reason I promised to NOT be without money.

I was in the grocery line the other day and the man in front of me didn’t have enough on his food stamp card to pay for his groceries, so he started to take things out of the bags.  As I stood there….it came from deep down in my belly right out of my mouth…. “oh NO, that is NOT happening”.  “Oh no.  Uh uh.  Put those groceries back in your bag.”  And I paid for them.  No thinking, no contemplating, no wondering, just BOOM ***  “Pay for it.” Is all I heard in my head.  It must have been surmountable to him because he couldn’t say thank you enough.

I was grateful I could help, grateful he got to keep the food he needed to eat, grateful for God’s good and wonderful ways.  And so so so grateful for the cans of chicken, powdered milk and big jars of peanut butter from childhood.

 

Your God Girl,

Tracy

Self Care-SOS!

If you follow this page regularly the topic of self care comes up pretty often. It will probably continue to come up as it seems to be a hard one for people.

In particular -parents

Moms especially. There are whole memes devoted to this very thing.

For whatever reason some of us are hard wired to believe if we take a moment we are being selfish. I’ll even take it one step further some of us, we don’t even know how to ask for help. Or say I’m hurting, I need a break, I need help, I need a hug.

Me. Ok, I’m referring to myself. But I’m pretty confident quite a few of you reading this struggle with it too. For me I never want to be a burden, appear weak, or put anyone out. So I usually just keep powering through until I can’t.

I’m here to tell you that is not the best way to go.

Typically it means I get horribly sick. So I have gotten better about going to bed early. Rather than staying up trying to make everything picture perfect. Baby steps in the process.

I am a bit envious of people who are able to openly say things suck. Some even on social media. I’m hesitant to go that route though. I have an acquaintance who regularly laments her life. Reactions are varied. Which is why I and I think other people sometimes just dig in and keep on keeping on.

I don’t want to appear negative or needy or not capable. I have been on my own so long, even with my own parents it can be hard to ask for their help when I’m sick.

To put it in perspective I get chronic migraines, rather than just tell people I have a migraine I have to cancel. I say I’m not feeling the best. I’m too embarrassed to say I have a headache.

That’s silliness. I know, but somewhere along the way… I was made to feel I shouldn’t ask.

To REALLY put in perspective I have had two really serious health and family things happen recently. Maybe two people know. And that’s because one noticed I seemed not myself and the other I had to ask to be my emergency contact.

As parents, Moms, wives, partners, friends, sisters, daughters we are working so hard at being the sparkly rock of support, care and love for everyone else we sometimes don’t know how or forget it’s ok to ask for help.

It’s ok.

Really

You are not any less you for needing a moment or a hand. In fact you’re tougher for knowing to ask. Rather than letting it explode. Take it from the fire starter writing this.

In the last few years I’ve been incredibly fortunate in that my circle is teaching me it’s ok to ask.

This week was tough and my body retaliated in kind. For the first time in a long time I had someone making sure I was ok. My heart is still full from it.

The love and care you give out- Mommas, it’s beyond ok to get that back. But in case you forget I’ll be here reminding you.

❤️

Caprise

The Bravest Thing I Ever Did-Cont;nuing

A few days ago someone said something to me that has been stirring inside me ever since.  Not a good stir.  And not a good topic.  Not something I would never talk about publicly, and never in a million years finding myself writing a blog about.  But in hopes of shedding some light on a much misunderstood topic, a very relevant one in today’s society, and one that is now a part of my story.  Suicide.  Relax.  Obviously I am here typing this story so it didn’t happen.  But if I were recording a tape from 13 Reasons Why this would be one of them.

Recently my world has literally fallen apart.  My wife, the love of my life, my everything, my best friend…left me.  My family torn apart.  I lost my job.  Had been out of work since February desperately looking for anything without any luck at all.  My daughter and I have been living on next to nothing trying to make ends meet the best we can.  Sounds like a country song right?  If only I could play it backwards and get it all back!  I have been deeply depressed.  And that is putting it lightly.  I stayed in bed for days on end.  Not eating.  Not sleeping.  Just crying.  Throwing up.  I would get up only to make sure my daughter had food or to take her where she needed to be.  I was endlessly applying for jobs.  I would put on my makeup, cry it off on the way there.  Fix myself in the car before going in.  Cry on the way back home.  Crawl back into bed.  And do it all over again the next time.  This went on for weeks.  Months.  The panic attacks are still insane.  I even have them in my sleep.  I wake up gasping for air, thinking I am dying because I cannot breathe.  Clinching at my chest, the tears rolling down my cheeks, trying to calm myself down as my heart is beating so hard I can feel it in my throat.  Wishing the dog could dial 911 so someone could come help me.  The mental and physical pain from a broken heart is real.  And it is unbearable. I write all this not to seek attention.  But to paint the picture of where this blog is going.

The way people deal with pain is different.  And to each their own.  On the night of June 5th, as I sat alone in my home, hysterical crying, I felt I was to the point where I needed the pain to stop.  I couldn’t take the physical pain another minute.  I was not the strong person everyone thought I was.  I was not the mother my daughter needed me to be.  I just wanted the pain I was feeling to go away.  So I took the keys to the truck and I went into the garage, and I started it.  And as I sat there crying the pain was more intense at that moment than it has ever been.  My broken heart…how was it even still beating? I called out for help.  But no one came.  I wanted to die, but only because I wanted to the pain to end.  It seemed like I had been in there forever.  How long did this take?  I was too scared.  So I turned it off and opened the garage door.  I cried myself to sleep sitting right there.  But the next night…I did it all over again.  And again….I was too scared.

So here’s where the stirring comes in…If anyone ever confides in you that they have attempted suicide…don’t tell them that’s the coward’s way out.  You have no idea what they are feeling or what they are going through.  And let me tell you something…everyone is entitled to how they feel.  You have no right to tell them how they should feel.  Anyone that is low enough to attempt to take their own life and is confiding in you with that information is trusting you enough that they think you will support them in some way shape or form, not come back with some type of negative comment such as that.  People who attempt suicide have their reasons and I can guarantee you that none of those reasons is to ever intentionally hurt someone they love. You’re missing the point completely. It’s solely about the pain they are feeling.   And if you can’t find anything to say that isn’t negative, then turn around and walk away without saying a damn thing!  If you cannot be supportive than learn to just be quiet.

I am in a better place now.  No I am in no way shape or form better.  I have a long way to go.  I may not ever be better.  I still hurt.  My heart is still in pieces.  I don’t know that I will ever be whole again.  Who knows.  But what I do know is that I was stopped both those nights for a reason, and am thankful for that reason.  I am not strong like I used to be, but I know I am brave because I was able to cont;nue on when I really, really didn’t want to.  And I know that I now have something else to advocate even stronger for, because it is more personal now more than ever.

Know that if you’ve felt this way, or are feeling this way now that you’re not alone, nor do you have to be a warrior in this battle alone.  There ARE people that care! Reach out…even if it’s to me!

Virtual hugs!

BLag

How to Handle Fear

In all my years of coaching people it has come to my attention that it is difficult for people to make progress stick…they make some forward movement during the class or the consulting appointment and then they return to their ‘real lives’ and all the good insight that they had vanishes…

So I am developing some new pieces of work called MAPS

Making

All

Progress

Stick

These will be short ‘tools’ that people can use to remind themselves about how to effectively handle or change a particular circumstance or behavior, I will be posting them here as I create/write them and then perhaps I will turn them into a downloadable workbook for sale on the site.  Each MAPS will have a simple bullet-pointed list of points to help you remember the best way to navigate through something.

In the first one we will talk about FEAR.

Handling Fear

  • Recognize that most of the ‘fear’  you experience comes from pulling in experiences from your past… as in something that has happened reminds you of something that did happen in the past and that past happening scared you or rendered you unable to respond…so now you see the fresh circumstance, however it really isn’t ‘fresh’ because you have already connected it to the past and now you are reacting to the past, which takes away all your POWER in the present.
  • Be VERY clear that you have the power to CHOOSE how you relate to the past. Every response is a choice, we can make the conscious choice of how we respond in the present to the past.  We can choose to see things that happened as different than they felt when the event actually took place.  As in a formerly challenging childhood could now be viewed as an excellent training for the adults we have become.  It is OUR choice when it comes to deciding what stories we tell about the past; do you choose to be a victim of the past or do you choose to hold the past as a blessing or a learning experience.  How we ‘frame’ something has everything to do with how much power it has over us.
  • CHOOSE to frame the past in a different context, one in which you kept your power. A context in which the past was a contribution to you rather than a detriment.  Everything comes down to the language we use to describe it, words are powerful tools.  The words that we speak about something go forward into the future to create the circumstances and those circumstances will solidify themselves exactly how we spoke them.
  • Understand that by recreating and re-framing your relationship with the past you will actually do away with most of the things that you fear. If you are no longer reacting to the past, then you are free to respond to what is actually happening in the present.  Reactions are devoid of power, when you react you are like a puppet on a string…locked into something from the past and not free to use all the tools available to you as an adult to RESPOND to the situation at hand.  All of your power comes from the ability to remain peaceful and respond.
  • STOP worrying about stuff that has not even happened, stop playing the ‘what if’ game and stop thinking thoughts that scare you. Understand that you have the ability to create your life the way that you want it, fear is a false construct and it’s time for you to leave it behind.

~XO, Noelle

 

 

Depression…The High, The Hurt, The Shine, The Sting

Depression is like the ocean.  A riptide.  Dangerous currents that want to drag you under even when you can still see the shore.  That shore may be within swimming distance but it might as well be in another world.  That’s what depression is.

A couple weeks ago, we saw suicide hit the news again and I thought about blogging then.  It’s a subject that’s always close to me.  It’s my lifelong companion.  My truest friend.  I used to blog about funny things, though.  I used to be funny.  I didn’t want to blog sadness anymore.  I wanted to make you laugh.  So I didn’t blog.

I guess one thing that my children may never know is the hardest thing I have ever done is stay alive for them.  They have seen me work, sometimes more than one job at a time.  They have seen me prepare meals, wash their clothes, run around trying to find what they’ve lost.  They’ve seen me mourn, they’ve seen me struggle, they’ve seen me tired.

They’ve never seen me stare at a bottle of pills.  They’ve never seen me daydream about turning the wheel when I’m driving alone and the perfect drop off appears.  They don’t know that in my mind there is such a thing as the perfect drop off.

I don’t want to be this person.

I want to be happy.

I want to be carefree.

My happiest moments are with my babies.   But they are growing up.

My mom can no longer carry on a conversation with me.  My dad is dying.

I’m just so tired.

My ex and I briefly tried to get back together.  See, things were confusing.  It’s hard when that person is still your best friend, or supposed to be.  He was telling someone else everything he was telling me.  He was scheduling vacations and applying for jobs 1,000 miles away.  He was promising to move if only she would stay.  He was making plans that would effect our children and I was sitting here blindly letting our child think we were becoming a family again.

I don’t think that I can forgive myself for that.  I should have known better.

He will be so mad at me for saying that.  He never wanted me to air the dirty laundry.  I didn’t want to either but our reasons were different.  I wanted to be mature and also, I was embarrassed.  He didn’t want dark actions brought to light.

Depression is a black cloud.  It’s a swarm of bees.  It’s loud.  It gets in your ear and it just. won’t. stop.  It tells you that this is it.  This is all it will ever be.  You, always chasing things that fly away.  You, getting the courage to leave and those little mosquitos coming back for another round of blood.  You being everything.  The ripest peach that they can’t stop taking bites of and the bruised one that is no longer appealing.

Depression tells you that it’s okay if you finally just go to sleep.

What I really wanted to blog when suicide hit the news was different then.  I kept reading comments about how suicide is selfish.  I kept thinking that survivors were reading that and they were reading painful lies.

I’ll say again what I said before.  My children will never know that the hardest thing I have ever done for them is stay alive.

If someone you love lost their battle, that decision was gut wrenching and agonizing and not fully thought out.  That decision was coated in a dust of grief and pain and disillusion.  That decision would not have stood up in a court of law.  That decision was breathless.  That decision might have been a weakness but I can promise you that it was one out of a million moments of inhuman strength.

I added a new medication to my regimen in hopes of getting my fibromyalgia under control.  In doing so, I have noticed the suicidal thoughts creeping back in after months of sitting in the light.  I will be diligent in having my meds adjusted again until I’m back in my sweet spot.  I will do it for my kids.  I only wish that I was doing it for me.

“Depression is living in a body that fights to survive with a mind that tries to die.”  — unknown

Depression is your friendly, funny, 40 something soccer mom who loves Pinterest and Krogering.

Depression is someone just like me.

<3 LA

You can read more from LA at https://sweeterinthesouth.blog/

My Brave Face

I’m going to be honest. I have started and restarted this blog about a million times. Ok maybe not that many. But enough. This is hard thing to put words to, but I’ll try.

In the last few weeks we lost Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain to suicide. As supportive as people have been… it’s always followed up with why?
Why would someone who seemingly had it all take their own life?
If we could that answer we wouldn’t have to ask the question would we?
What I know is I have had two people who I was incredibly close to take their own lives.
Whenever this comes up in the news my brain buzzes. Not just for me but my family who have been trying to gently shut the door on something no one should ever have a door to anyway.

A few years ago a close family member took their own life, even worse it played out a bit on social media. But that is not my story to tell. So that’s all I will say.

However, this is my story…the very first man to ever break my heart took his own life. I carry so much guilt over it. It’s been years and I still carry the weight of what I could of, if anything done differently.He had months previous reached out to me as he had for years around Christmas. He missed me, he loved me, I was his biggest regret. As I always did, I curtly thanked him and said I did not feel the same.

Two months later he was dead. I read it about it on Facebook. Sometimes I really f*&$ing hate Facebook.

When news breaks about a celebrity taking their own life I start to feel sad, mad, wonder could I have done differently?

My answer is nothing. Depression & anxiety have a horrible ability of finding a hairline fracture and turning it into a full on break. The reality is not everyone wears their worries on their sleeve but it doesn’t mean they’re hurting any less.

It’s easy to question why. What I try to remember is what may seem like a grain of sand to me can feel like a whole beach to someone else.

There is a fantastic quote “misery is easy, happiness you have to work at.”
For some people that’s beyond true. Happiness is a lot of work.

I know that first hand. I am the Queen of coulda, woulda, shoulda. It keeps me awake at night. It gives me migraines. Thankfully I’ve learned – thanks to some pretty fantastic therapists- what I need to do when Ms. Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda are paying a visit.

It hasn’t always been that way and there are still days I give the ladies an audience. I had a huge wake up call from a friend, who by the way is no longer a friend. When I experienced my first deep downward spiral. She called me at work and told me she couldn’t be friends with me anymore because I was too depressing. Mind you I had just gotten dumped by a man who cheated on me with a co-worker. My heart was breaking in a million pieces, so yes I was probably a downer. I was SAD.

I got pissed. I was a Happy person. Even happy people can hurt. You are allowed to be sad. You are allowed to be heartbroken and if someone tells you otherwise. F them!  Seriously.

Also, please for all that is holy don’t be this person- “just get over it.” Wow just get over it. My marriage is ending, this was not my plan. I’m up to my eyeballs in debt, I’m now on my own with a 2 1/2 year old. But you betcha I’ll get right over it.

Why is it as a society we assign shame to sadness? Maybe that is the answer to that unfortunate question.

The same people who say reach out, say ask for help- can just as easily forget that is a really hard thing to do when you’re hurting. It’s easier to burrow, run, shut down. It’s hard to keep up. It’s hard to be made to feel like you need to. It’s hard to be on 24/7. It’s hard to be happy all the time. You can be with a million people and still feel hurt and lonely.

Here is the thing you don’t. Really you don’t. I can say that to you, to myself and maybe it will stick. Maybe it won’t and that’s ok too.

So for now I will do what I always do. I will get on a back country road go very fast, blare Rage Against the Machine maybe get pulled over. Instead of a ticket get the world’s most awkward hug from the poor state trooper who pulled me over as I was crying telling him I’m just having a really bad day. I will put on my favorite T-shirt. I will goof around and try to copy a You Tube makeup tutorial. I might spend some money on Amazon I don’t have. I will eat a doughnut, pour myself a glass of wine. Hug my daughter, let my dog on my bed.

I will put on my brave face. I will work hard at being happy.

But what I think we all need to remember, myself included is happiness IS hard work, for some people it’s harder than others.

~Caprise~

No More Tears

No More Tears

Tears….Lots and Lots of them…The other day I was talking to a client who was crying about her situation. I knew this was a desperate situation and I reassured her there would be no more crying when I was done.  She went on to tell me how ‘stuff was everywhere’.’ she has a hard time finding anything’, ‘it has never been this bad’ and ‘it’s going to take more than 4 hours of organizing!’.

We talked about the specifics of her home, what her immediate goals are, what she sees changing as a result of my coming and is she ready to purge.

She is very clear and very ready to have me come clean up the clutter purge the unnecessary and open up a harmonious space in her home for her to paint again.

Our conversation helped her see how her anxious thoughts, her heavy shoulders and her feeling of being burdened were a result of the clutter that was surrounding her.  It was an AHA moment for her.

No more tears here…just a smile and an eager client.

Tracy

Experiences Teach Us So Many Life Lessons

I’ve had a lot of experiences through my life, both good & bad. Time and maturity has taught me to handle things differently than when I was 20 years old. I know that I have mentioned before that when Noelle asked me to start blogging, I was scared to death and very hesitant on if I had anything to offer anyone. I have no degrees in psychology, therapy or anything other than my marketing and the same degree that everyone else receives from living, that degree is Life.

I don’t know if anything I have said throughout the posts has helped anyone or if I expect it to. Writing has helped me, that I can attest to. I like to think I have made a difference to someone, somehow, somewhere. But really all I have to offer is the lessons that I have learned through experiences. And sometimes that’s enough for someone to see that they too can become who they want and know that they aren’t alone.

Life isn’t easy-I use to look at someone and think “if you only knew”..and then I remind myself that what is a walk in the park for me may be the hardest thing they have ever dealt with. That perception came with maturity. We’ve gone down MY”I am a victim” road many times. I have stayed on that road many times, it does no one any favors.  It takes a lot of work to find the balance between life, work, wants, needs, expectations, love, family and the list goes on. I never want anyone to perceive that I have all the answers or the know all to everything because I mostly certainly don’t. My only hope is that I am helping someone in some way.

 

 

Love To All-Kim

Angels In Disguise Living Among Us

“I’ve seen & met Angels wearing the disguise of ordinary people, living ordinary lives.”

-Tracy Chapman

We all have those people in our lives that are our Angels-grandmas, grandpas, parents, siblings, friends, children-and not to sell them or their roll short but there is also at least one person everyone can think of that is just so spectacular in everything giving and helpful. Someone whom maybe you talk very little to or not at all. Someone who you wonder can be so kind and forgiving and with no judgement in reguards of what anyone or what they themselves have been through. Take a moment and think about who that person(s) may be to you? Maybe that person is yourself?

I use to sell my children’s outgrown clothing and toys on eBay many years ago when I still had the time to be able to list, pack and mail. I made fairly decent money at it and met a pretty amazing woman while doing so. She was opening a small shop in her area for the less fortunate and was buying items to stock her store with. Good quality, gently used items for children. Infants on up. She did this for little to no profit and we became friends as I always had a lot of what she needed. We would work out “deals” on the items I had and so she could still keep her store up and running. She was super excited when she was able to move her shop into a little larger more affordable location that her husband had remodeled for her….and then I heard nothing more! I would email her through eBay, I would email her through personal email. Eventually she responded and told me that her husband, who was in his early 50’s, had a massive heart attack and it killed him instantly. That was it-no good-bye or I love you’s-just gone. He was her and her daughter’s primary bread winner and had to close up shop and go back to work. We kept a relationship going through Facebook, nothing too much, likes on posts, Happy Birthdays, how are you’s? I could tell you what was currently going on in her life by her Facebook posts and her in mine but nothing personal beyond what was shared on social media. She struggled with the loss of her husband as anyone would. But she kept going and I watched her youngest daughter grow to be a young woman with a social media page of her own, which we also became “friends” as did her and my daughter as they were basically the same age.  One day she shared on Facebook that she had her daughter, who had not been feeling well, at the hospital…a few days later her 15 year old daughter(yes, 15) was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. It was one of the hardest things as a mother of a teen daughter has ever witnessed. I cannot begin to imagine the pain she was in and still is. Her daughter lived approximately 3 months from diagnosis-they had a private page for friends and family to keep updated and to journal their experience.

This woman is one of many Angels…she has been through so much, that often I draw strength from her strength. Watching what she has gone through and continues to go through. She started a foundation almost immediately and has pushed through some political BS and some difficult situations because she wants NO ONE to have to experience what her family has. She has brought awareness in places and with people who had no idea that ovarian cancer can also affect young girls. She has a buddy program where she send packages to sick children and she is constantly meeting with other parents of sick children or sick themselves. She has spent many days and nights sitting with those who are dying and holding their hands  She is an Angel living an ordinary life, who has had tremendous losses, while doing extraordinary things, wearing ordinary clothes.

<3

Love to All-Kim