Absence is an opening that envelopes me.
The breathe I have is shallow and pained
The tears are warm but filled is gratitude.
The strength of your children feeds my steps.
The stories are ours to keep.
Grab my hand, hold my heart.
The darkness is dulled through the joy you gave us.
4 years ago my parents split. This was a very strange time in my life. It seems as if I had never really seen my parents in the same room on purpose, so I was not really surprised but they had been together for 35+ years. My mom wanted something different and my dad was heart broken.
After the divorce was final, dad quickly was introduced by a co-worker to Debbie. They were inseparable. This was also another new strange sensation because the time that my dad didn’t spend with mom, he had spent with me. I was 28 and my best friend had found a new best friend. Moving forward he always came with a companion.
After 4 years Debbie passed of brain cancer.
Earlier this year, I was frustrated with Debbie and her unwillingness to allow me to see her. I only wanted to love her and help her through this time of pain. Instead of staying in the frustration or the story I told myself about her condition, I called her for the first time and got to talk to her about how much appreciation I had for her. She was the woman that stood by my dad’s side, took him in and put up with all of his quirks. This was the last time I would be able to talk to her and I’m so glad I was able to put everything to the side and just talk to her.
I have pure gratitude for her life and her children. She really loved my dad, just for him. She was his friend and couldn’t wait to spend every moment with him. I can only hope to find this kind of friend/love in my life time. Her children have taken my dad into their lives and taken care of him. I can’t believe their strength and how much they have impacted my lives. I didn’t sign up for extra siblings but I’m sure glad someone put my name on that list. She’s their strength, genuine kindness and pain through this time has made me proud to welcome them in.
To Debbie and Family:
Thank you for always standing by my father’s side and welcoming me in. When my “flame” may have dulled, you and my family/community have stood for me and knew that blowing some air, adding some kindling or dousing me with gasoline would bring me back. Life is so bittersweet and thank you so much for allowing me to share my life with you. Each of you have added to my story and I am so proud to be a part of this “common-unity.”
And so it is.
I picked up my cat, Moo, from my mom’s house in Wisconsin on Monday. (Mom had been cat-sitting while i was traveling and being crazy busy for the past two months). This persistent, 7lbs, 13 year old cat demands that the temperature of the car is 72 degrees and she must sit in the driver’s lap. This makes for a furry and long car ride. Other than these two demands she is not too bad of a travel companion.
I was driving to the middle of IL to pick up some tables that one of my staff purchased. It was about 50 minutes out of my way and it would have been over 3 hours one way for her.
I am about to pull into the house of this woman that had the tables when all of a sudden Moo begins to make “the hairball sound”. Any cat parent knows this sound. I knew I had about 15 seconds to figure something out.
All of a sudden I begin to panic because I have nothing in arms reach for her to puke on besides myself and I was not fond of the idea of being covered in cat puke right before I meet the woman I am buying tables from or for the duration of my trip. I am in the middle of a country road, surrounded by corn fields and a few houses.
I stop my car in the middle of the street, whip open the door, swing my legs out the door and plant my feet on the ground while seated in the car. I place Moo in the middle of the street between my feet and let her puke. With 1 hand on either side of her I start giggling at the fact that now there is cat puke/hairball in the middle of this street. Some random dog is gonna have a weird snack later.
1 hairball later, I placed Moo back into my lap and we continued on our way to get the tables.
In the world of RFFFYM volume is key. I use zucchini as often as possibly simply because it is low macros high volume and can take on all sorts of flavors.
60g Trader Joe’s Red Pepper w/ eggplant and garlic spread
110g cooked ground turkey flavored to taste like Italian sausage
Half the zucchini and with a spoon scrape out the innards of the zucchini, chop the innards and put into a bowl. Place the empty zucchini onto a cookie sheet.
In the bowl, mix all other ingredients with the zucchini innards. Spread the mixture evenly inside the zucchini. Bake at 350 for 20 mins and then 2 mins in the broiler until the top edge is a light brown.
Do not wait to have a conversation, to meet the girl, to talk to the boss. Know rarity and spark when you see it. I challenge everyone to act when your gut tells you to and don’t allow you head or your story to get in the way.
If you wait a year…
That is a year of meeting people. That is a year of YOU meeting people and a year of ME meeting people. If you didn’t take action when you first wanted to then that makes “me” a second thought.
It is not anyone else’s responsibility to take the initiative to have the conversation. If you blame someone else or a situation for not taking the initiative it will show that you actually were too weak or it just was not the right time.
If you know someone through a mutual friend, do not put the responsibility on them. Take action. Ask for that girls number, make that phone call, send that text message.
If you want that job, you have to make yourself different and put tools in your toolbelt to make you stand out. Find a mentor, read a book or watch a webinar. There is so much opportunity for you to set yourself apart and in the time we live in there is so much information and education all around us that you can empower yourself easily.
Be bold. Be different.
I am rare. I am driven. I am beautiful and I am powerful. It has taken me quite some time to know these qualities and not see them as hindrances. But in them, every day I find strength. I can lean on them and I know when I am down that they will lift me up. This stands true for both my work relationships, my family relationships, and my personal relationships.
These qualities now have become standard in my life. Only those who lift me up, make me smile, and push me to continue to rise will be in my life.
Those who wait, I will pass by. Those who wait, still have qualities, confidence and lessons that they’re questioning about themselves. I respect where everyone is in their own life but the people i invest time in are also shift, growing and learning.
I am not someone to sit and wait.
If someone chooses something in their life, respect that and they will respect you too. Do not challenge that decision, only question and support it. You will learn something from yourself in this.
Find and define your own rarity. Find and define your own drive. Be comfortable in both procrastination and excitement. In this moment, I call for you to take action. If it’s making that relationship work, lifting those weights or applying for that job; make a move.
You are worth your dreams. Please don’t wait. I challenge you now to recognize and believe in your own procrastination and drive.
In rest is beauty it is time to dive inside sort some things out and define exactly what you want. In that time you can create a plan can be formed to initiate the drive.
Do not wait.
You are worth that jump, that leap, but you must see the rarity around you. Allow that rarity that you see to echo the rarity within.
And so it is.
The list is a concept that goes with manifestation but also recognition of the things you want in your life.
The list is a literally a list of qualities, actions, features, and dreams you want to find while looking for your significant other. This is a list that evolves and changes over time. It doesn’t matter how long or how short or how many times you change “the list”. The important thing is to continue to add to it while you meet people.
You do not have to add to this list only after dates but after meeting any person and finding and noticing a quality that you’d like to see in your other.
You do not have to add to this list only after dates. You can learn things from all people round you. What about your co-worker, a friend or a stranger do you LOVE and would love to see in your partner. Notice the qualities and add to your list.
This is an opportunity to always grow. I challenge you to find the positive in every person you encounter, not matter how challenging the situation. What is one thing you want to walk always with that you want your next date to mimic.
Someday, when you are ready all the things on your list will show up in one person. Cherish it. It can be scary. It can be terrifying. You will find yourself pushing them away because you will need to determine and find inside yourself that you are worthy of the wonderful person you’ve been working on manifesting for YEARS.
For now, have fun. Learn from every person and add, delete and edit your list. Do not be surprised by the beautiful ways that your list shows up exactly the way you asked.
Always add and repeat to yourself when you review your list, “Or something better.”
And so it is.
Featured Photo: My lifelong friend is an amazing owner, makeup artist and esthetician of Wildflower Beauty in Lake Mill Wisconsin. She has always been self-driven, creative and unique. She married her tall dark and handsome husband in 2017. I adore her, her family and her never ending love for life.
Check out Brittany today!
While helping people I hear this all to often.
“He was amazing and sweet and we had some great dates and then we got intimate and he changed. His communication change, he drifted away. I am anxious that I ruined things.”
Everyone gets nervous.
This is my pep-talk to anyone that may be experiencing this type of anxiety.
Know that everything you have, and everything you have to offer is AMAZING! You are more than sex! If that’s all he was trying to go after then you deserve better. You need to know that you’re worth amazing. You are worth your wildest dreams and then more!
If he wants to walk away form AMAZING, let him walk.
State what happened. ” We were dating and then we got initiate. After getting intimate he no longer talks to me the say way.” This is exactly what happened. The story you are telling yourself is where you are driving yourself crazy. Nothing in what happened did he say that you are not worth his love, or that he is not interested. Your anxiety is rising from the “meaning” you are assigning to what happened.
After those great dates and good conversation you have things to add or delete from “your list“. You can add that you loved the way he talked to you, greeted you and made you smile. You deserve that all the time not just before getting intimate.
Set yourself up as an expectation for dates to rise to.
“How do you do that?”
State exactly what you expect, and don’t always give in. Don’t always be available. Live your life and fit them in when you can.
If you get too annoyed and he is starting to trail off, just cut it off and move on. He is not worth “wondering” if he can’t understand your worth. State exactly what your expectations were and are.
“I love the way you talked to me in the beginning. Because you gave me that, it became a standard and an expectation. You proved to me that you’re capable of it. After we became intimate you decided to back off and I’m on not OK with that. I want more that you currently are giving me. I am going to back off and wish you luck. I hope you find what you’re looking for but I am going to look for someone that can rise to my standards.”
You are not accusing him of anything, you are not assuming anything. You are simply stating the truth and sharing that your current needs and expectations are not being met. What happened and not the story.
And so it is.
Featured photo: I worked with this beautiful, strong, independent woman, Teral when I lived in Milwaukee. She is someone that always creates her own path, her own style and lives the life she wants to live. No matter what gets thrown at her she comes out stronger, more creative and presents herself with an positive outlook. She
Teral is the owner of Salvage Apparel and Neck Ties & High Heels in Milwaukee, WI. She has taken second hand shopping to a whole new level by creating unique, bold and strong sense of personal style for her customers.
Check out Salvage Apparel today!
I met “Olympics” while working a very stressful summer job. This job was full steam ahead 100% of the time and we worked between 40 and 60 hours in a 3 to 4 day period. There were high emotions and dilution after little sleep and long hours. I wasn’t sure if Olympics even noticed me my first weekend but over the summer we quickly got to know each other and spend more and more time together.
He was interesting because not only did we have a love for athletics but he was studying the law of attraction and was a massage therapist. He had this charming smile and light blue eyes. He had a six year old son and was renting from his parents while practicing for the winter Olympics.
Our first interaction, not on a work weekend, he had invited me to get a massage. I thought nothing of it because I have had many male masseuse prior to meeting Olympics. He was professional, kind and actually a decent massage therapist. We got to know eachother the weeks after that and he confessed that he was actually interested in me. We lived about an hour from each other but made it work because we had to spend every weekend together and during the week I had my other job.
I remember the first time I met his parents and I was super nervous. His mom had asked us to go set the table and I literally was so nervous I blanked out and could not remember which side the fork vs. spoon and knife go on.
We sat down and his dad blankly said, “Who on earth set this table?” I blushed and admitted to him I had set the table but at least I was dyslexic.
He found this quite interesting because Olympics was also dyslexic. He had many questions about my success in life and how I managed to adapt. As a child I was given a tutor, skills, and I have a lot of internal determination. I don’t see it as a hindrance and I see it as a creative opportunity to be the best list maker ever. I could see in his father’s face that I was very different than Olympics and I was never looking at dyslexia to be a crutch. Olympics and his family had a different outlook on dyslexia. I was still mortified that I had set the table incorrectly.
I was living alone in this tiny apartment in Milwaukee and was robbed. Olympics rushed to comfort me and I asked him to stay. He was traveling down daily to practice for the Olympics so it made sense for him just to stay and also it was comforting to know that someone would be there after the robbery.
Now I look back and say “oh my, I can’t believe two people lived in that space.” I think the whole apartment was maybe 500 sq ft. I learned in this relationship that I can be territorial.
School started back up and now I was working 20 to 30 hours and going to school full-time and still working some of my other jobs. I was getting up at 4 o’clock every morning, going to the gym before school. After class I would go home for a bit and then off to work from 2 to 8 PM. Basically, I was gone all the time and had very little time to myself or to catch up with other people.
At this point Olympics was living with me and not contributing much. I told him he could stay and look for a job but then it was a month or more of him watching movies and relaxing after practice and little to no job searching. With my driven personality this s⁂⁂t started to get to me.
Can you imagine this, I’m working more than 1 job and going to school full-time and he’s watching movies in my tiny apartment!?!
The moment I knew I needed to talk to him was the moment I got up in the morning to go to the gym at 4 AM and I open the fridge to grab my meal prep food and it was all gone.
Anyone that knows me, knows how territorial I am when it comes to food. On the weekends I spend time cooking and making sure that I have everything ready for the week. Don’t touch my macros.
I wanted to have a conversation with him that day in order to make sure that he understood that I needed him to go get a job and help support us but also needed him to understand the importance of my food being available when I needed it at 4 AM. It wasn’t about the food it was about the lack of communication that there was no food.
He had not contribute anything to this apartment, he only brought his stuff and put it in the drawers and baskets I had given him.
How the relationship ended:
On this particular day, I was in class and sent them a message to see if he was going to be home around 2 o’clock in order to get ready for work. I let him know that I was hoping that I could see him and talk to him before we both left for the afternoon. He was cautious and questioned about what I wanted to talk about and I just said I would like to talk to him when I got home.
I got out of class and went home to find a completely empty apartment.
Not just empty, but like he had taken all of his stuff and moved out. I said I wanted to talk and have a conversation about our relationship and he literally moved out. Not only did he move his stuff out but he made sure to leave the drawers open and tip the baskets over just to make sure I could see that his stuff was gone.
I was kind of distraught, upset and weirded out but at the same time I just needed to get my head straight, get into the shower and get ready for work.
I got into the shower and this is where I uncontrollably could not stop LAUGHING. The only thing he had contributed to the entire apartment was a bar of soap. Which he took!!!
Really, really, who takes the bar of soap?!? The only thing Olympics contributed and he took it with him!! Holy s⁂⁂t, it was so funny.
Later that day he said that he thought we just needed some time and some space apart. I was very vocal and direct, to let him know that he was not welcome back and that our relationship had ended. If he was so afraid to talk to me and he would just leave then this was never going to work long-term.
Things I know now:
Things I appreciated and added to my “list”:
And so it is.
When I met “charming” I thought he was going to be the last first date and I was willing to say it because I was head over heels. He did a fantastic job of charming me from the moment I first saw him. He scooped me up and rescued me from a previous relationship and I can never repay him for what that means to me now.
This was definitely one of my very favorite first dates. When I saw him walk into the restaurant, I immediately knew that I was going to spend some time with this tall, gorgeous, muscular, edgy man. He walked right up to me, hugged me, and grabbed my hand and we didn’t let go. We had chemistry. We had things in common that I never thought I would find in another human. It is hard to find those compatibility markers.
He charmed me. I was so charmed I didn’t see or acknowledge when things had taken a turn.
The story of how it ended:
I had offered many times to help him while he was starting a business to watch his dog or his daughter. He forgot to tell me that he wanted to take his daughter out of town for her birthday and then blamed me for not listening. I am type A, I write everything down so I can plan ahead and know what is going on. It is kind of a joke with my friends because I can tell you what’s going on six weeks from today.
This argument took place early on that Thusday. I was simply trying to help him make a plan to celebrate her birthday. Later in the afternoon he asked me if I would come to his house that evening to stay with him ( he lived about 1.25 hours from me) and then take his dog home with me for the weekend. He needed someone to take care of him so he could drive to another state to pick up a trailer for his new business. I clearly stated that I could do that but I would have to leave at 4:30am the next morning in order to get to work on time. He expressed his concern about me having to do this early morning drive but I let him know that it was important to me that I help especially because he asked.
When I was leaving to head to his house he said that he was going to run to his moms and pick up some things that he left there. I got to his house at about 7:30pm and let him know that I let myself in. There I sat, alone.
Because I was going to have to get up so early the next morning, after 30 minutes of waiting I let him know that I needed to go to bed in about an hour. He was upset, even though I had told him I needed to leave so early the next day and clearly at this point he knew I sleep about 6-8 hours each day.
He finally came home at 8:45pm.
He was physically upset. He was sour faced, raging and tense. I hadn’t seen him in about 5 days but he did not greet me with love after I just driven to see him and waited alone. I didn’t bring up that I was upset about waiting because sometimes you just have to bite your tongue. We got his daughter ready for bed and then all hell broke loose.
He dropped some food and started storming around. Then he realized he forgot some items I needed in his work car and decided it was an appropriate reaction to punch himself in the head repeatedly. He stormed outside to smoke to calm down. When he came inside he got angry with me that I had started to get ready to go to bed. He was upset because I wanted to talk but NEVER stated that’s what he wanted.
We curled up to talk and he disclosed that he hated the distance between us. He talked about how he was concerned that my career may mean that I might never be able to move to the city he lives in. He also started talking about how he felt suicidal because only bad things happen to him. For every up there were 3 downs. He refused to hear me when I talked about all the positives. He also talked about how causing harm to his mother was the only way to end his problems.
I heard him, but I couldn’t believe my ears.
I was physically upset but somehow managed to go to bed and get myself up at 4:30. I pulled myself together, or so I thought. I had his dog with me for the weekend. The whole situation and everything we have discussed, watching him harm himself, and seeing the rage caused me to have my first panic attack. It was a crazy 48 hours of processing. My whole body was saying, “Get yourself out of this!” Then my mind was starting to understand and follow along and then commit.
When he came to get his dog a couple days later, he didn’t understand and refused to understand why I thought he needs professional mental health. He refused to understand that I was his girlfriend and not his therapist and what he was asking me to do was beyond my scope of feeling comfortable. He couldn’t understand when I said, “it’s not normal to talk about suicide or harming someone. It’s not normal to punch yourself in the head”.
Things escalated and I knew that I was unsafe and needed to take care of myself. I had compromised so much of myself through this relationship that no more, my body was shutting down and emotionally I couldn’t take anymore of the heightened craziness.
He walked towards the door and I didn’t stop him. I blocked his number because he would continue to try to guilt me. I want to be very clear that I did not waver in this decision. No communication, no unblocking, no glimmer of hope.
Now I see that I was willing to compromise my standards, myself, and my happiness in order to try to make it work. I am so proud of myself that I ran when I did. I could spend days, weeks and months “shoulding” on myself about how I should have seen the signs. Something within me wasn’t willing to see and that’s OK. Live, grow, and learn.
A big sign I now see and want to share:
When I would display my feelings and tell him what I needed, he would guilt me and show me how that was “actually incorrect” or “selfish”. Any time that I might have left him, he would give in just enough that I would stick around.
This worked over and over but no more.
Things I see/know now:
I do have gratitude for him and will add the following things to my list. These are my gifts that he has given me in the experiences I will treasure.
Featured photo: This is a bit of irony. This is a sketch he did of “blind justice”.
Manifestation is all about trust. It’s about committing fully and the ability to give the goal, the dream, the wish 100% over to the universe or God. (Pick the term that resonates best with you).
Manifestation is having a believe that something can come true. Knowing it so much that you’re able to hand over the entire believe to the universe. Trust comes in when you hand it over. Hand it over and releasing the judgement or being frustrated with the when or the how. You only can go into the believe of already having it. The universe WILL then work within your believe system to start lining up the world around you so that that exact hope and dream will show up.
Once you doubt or judge the when and how you were putting up a block. You are question if you are worth that dream and blocking its ability to show up. It’s not that it won’t happen it’s that there is a wrinkle in time for that believe to show up. If it doesn’t happen the way you thought it would happen then you need to get more specific.
Example: for years I’ve dreamed of moving somewhere warm. I would put myself in the idea of getting to wear shorts every day and no need for huge comforters on my bed. A little while later while living in Milwaukee I still would dream every day. I moved into a delightful apartment waiting for he universal powers to help me manifest my dream. I move into my new apartment and funny to find out that my new place is HOT!!! Like 85 indoors during the middle of winter. I only could laugh. The universe gave me what I was looking for, I was not specific enough with the dream. I lived in a delightful home where I could wear shorts every day.
Trust is small but it it it also big.
When you get in the car in the morning sit there for minute. Close the door, your coffee is still steaming and put your feet on the ground. In this one second l think about the drive to work.
Not about all of the things you have to do when you get to work but just think about the drive to work.
See yourself getting one green light and your favorite parking spot. Notice, that I did not say all green lights. No, just one. In this 5 seconds before you’ve even left your parking spot you have given the universe a signal, a direction and a wish.
Drive to work, if you’re joyful and you have your green light show up and I can imagine you will have a big smile on your face. Know in this moment you manifested that. The universe will show up.
One green light, one smile, one hope will start another positive moment. Will you see a brand new car that’s shiny clean? Will the sun peaked around the sun the corner of a cloud? Will a coworker invite you to coffee?
Pull into that favorite parking spot. And smile as you successfully walking to your office without spilling your coffee have matching shoes on and your name tag it is on right side up.
Every day I start by sitting down at my kitchen table. I sit down with my favorite cup of coffee and a blank page in my journal and usually Pinterest. Pinterest is a happy place why not start there? Even if I only get three pictures and at least have started with something happy.
At the beginning of each week I try to start my week with a list of things I want to accomplish or might be fun to manifest. Not big things, small things. I’m realistic in my expectations and I set the expectations low so that I feel excited when the universe blows my mind. In the same goal setting session, I also recognize three positive things that happen from the week before. For example someone complimented me on an outfit, or someone thanked me for the way responded to an email or how much weight I left it in the gym. Small things but having gratitude for the positivity around me. The more I recognize and have gratitude for the things around me the more I will manifest the things that I know are coming to me.
And find something small to be grateful for. Do you have a great manicure today? Did you find a penny? Did your significant other send you a funny meme?
Manifestation is a choice, manifestation is trust, manifestation is joy and manifestation is handing the impossible over to the universe.
And so it is.
Featured Photo: This photo is the day I could’ve gotten in the car and immediately driven off but instead I took the five seconds to stand there and look at the sunrise. Feet on the ground and some gratitude.