Friday, March 25, 2016

Changing My Thoughts

Thank you to Stacey, Betsy, Dana, Tara, Beth, Anna, Kathleen & Deb for this amazing platform to write and share writing! What a wonderful community you've created! I'm honored to be part of it. Join us at Two Writing Teachers.


Do you have a "soft spot"? Something that is tender inside of you and if it's nudged, it hurts...a lot. We all do. I'm sure we have more than one.

The most tender soft spot I have is my status in life...single, no children. Oh, it hurts to identify myself like that because I never dreamed that I'd be forty-four and here. When that spot is rubbed, I get sad and resentful. I feel shame and blame. I wallow and cry and I don't know how to get out of it. Oh the noise in my head when this spot gets irritated is loud and infinite.

I want to heal this spot inside of myself. It's hard, but I feel like yesterday I made the first step. I spent the afternoon with one of my best friends and her wonderful family. Her husband and two daughters are amazing and I look at the life she's created and feel so much love there.

When I left, I felt a bit down...that's the first clue. I ran some errands and went home. At home, I felt myself sinking into the sadness. I heard the same old questions in my head. I felt the tears brimming. NO! I wasn't going to allow it. 

I got up and walked out of my house. Grocery shopping was a good distraction. The overwhelming sadness tried to weigh me down, but I refused. I started thinking about my blessings. I stopped regurgitating the same old questions of blame, "What did I do to deserve this?" and "Why me?" NO!

After a couple of hours, that heavy sadness was gone. No bawling. No weeping. Hope returned. I spent a few more hours cleaning and organizing in my garage (the clean-up job that never ends). When I decided to stop for the day, I found the book I'd bought and browsed through for this very reason. It's by Michael Singer and it's called The Untethered Soul. I heard about him from an appearance on Oprah's Soul Sunday. Here's the clip that got me to buy the book.



He says, "You have the right to relax and lean away..." from negative thoughts. I think, in my own imperfect and messy way, I was doing that yesterday. Needless to say, I'm diving head first into this book. This experience reminds me of my word of the year, SELAH. Pause & reflect. This is exactly why I wanted that to be my word. These are the moments that I want to change and I believe I can change if I stop, pause, and reflect.

20 comments:

  1. Books have a wonderful way of healing us. You did the right thing by busying yourself and diving head first into the reading. I hope you found comfort and continue to do so.

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  2. Your piece hits home for me today, Michelle, and I have a lot to say about it, but not on the comments section of your blog. My thoughts may show up during the rest of the SOL challenge. What I can say to you is this: it is as it is supposed to be, as hard as that is to swallow.Diversions are good at times,but I tend to embrace the sadness when it hits, rather than pushing it aside, because in my experience, without working through the grief, one never arrives at acceptance and letting go. But that is a road you must travel, one that you must decide for yourself. Have you thought about meditating when this hits? Big hugs to you today, Michelle. Maribeth

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  3. Meditation is a powerful habit as well. You train your mind to be able to let go of thoughts that keep circling in your mind. Let me know if you need some resources. : )

    Jen

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  4. Great post that quote you mention is so powerful "you have the right to relax and lean away". Great job taking charge of your thoughts!

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  5. Brene Brown talks a lot about giving yourself permission. I like that you've given yourself permission to stop, pause and reflect. Virtual hugs and way to declutter that garage-looks amazing (saw the pics on Instagram)!

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  6. "lean away"...I feel our world is telling women today to lean in. But your honest words remind me that instead, we need to choose when to chose away and in. I've got us a booth at Panera! See you soon!

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  7. I am 51, never married, no kids. I get your self-doubt and sadness. This is not the life I thought I'd have, but it is a good life. And I try to ficus on that.

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  8. Our societal expectations hurt many who grow up thinking that there are "shoulds", & when they don't happen, feel as if they've failed somehow. Living a good life with kindness is what I see you doing, always figure out the life you have, and do it to "your" satisfaction. The quote says a lot, doesn't it? Leaning away to me means one is reflecting and seeing truth. Thanks for helping me to 'lean away" for myself, Michelle.

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  9. Dear Michelle,
    You are such a wonderful, bubbly person-I know this from your beautiful slices everyday! I have a daughter who is single and doesn't understand; it isn't the life she would have chosen for herself, either. I understand your thoughts because when my daughter is sobbing on my shoulder, I hear the same hurt and sadness. My mother heart breaks, too, but I know God has a plan-a plan to prosper you and not to harm you. I'm glad you turned away those negative thoughts yesterday. I think you are special.
    Your slicing friend,
    Barbara

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  10. Before I had my son, a pregnancy that seemed so elusive and impossible (requiring specialized Doctor intervention), I was resentful of all the free time I had, eager to trade it for sleepless nights. Every time I heard someone got pregnant, it broke my heart. I know that's not gracious but it was my honest feelings. Now, blessed with 2 kids, I long sometimes for that time to myself. Time to sip coffee at the book store, guilt free. I wonder if it our nature to always long for something. Gratitude always brings me back and just knowing there is no perfect and blessings abound if we keep our eyes and hearts open.

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  11. Awareness is the first step, and you went farther than that. You acknowledged the pain, then decided to "lean away"--I'd say you're heading in a healing direction! Thanks for being brave and sharing your "soft spot" with us.

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  12. I think you writing about your sore spot is an indication of how brave and wonderful you are. You have put your intentions into the universe and you're also working on dealing with the feelings in such a positive way. You're pretty amazing in my book.

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  13. I have to say that writing about this, and being vulnerable about your soft spot, shows that you are ready to take those steps to continue to move forward into a more positive light. You're brave! I have only just met you and I feel like I know so much about you already. You seem to have a positive lookout on life, and you seem like a very upbeat person. Keep moving forward. You've got this! And it's ok to have the feelings of sadness from time to time. We're all human--- :)

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  14. Your feelings and that video are powerful and it seems to me that you've already done so much to help yourself grow. By writing this you're facing the pain inside of you and addressing it. You're not protecting it or hiding from it. But you're also not allowing it to take over and color all of your world. The idea that you "relax and lean away" is empowering. I'll be thinking about your post for a long time, Michelle.

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  15. Michelle, when I read 3.26.16's post, I jumped quickly to this one. Sorrow grabs our beings in such a hold that we absolutely need to break it in order to breathe. With your OLW in place and the leaning away from resurgent, uncomfortable feelings you are giving yourself permission to breathe in peace. May the light of Easter fill you with the peace you deserve.

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  16. I am almost 48 and single after I struggled with a toxic marriage for many years. I never thought I'd be single as long as I was married (13 years). I sometimes wonder if it will ever change. Then I take stock of my amazing life and realize it's okay if it doesn't.

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  17. I was traveling yesterday and missed this post. What a great community we have in this SOL world! You must feel better just reading all the supportive comments. I know this is a soft spot for you, but I admire how you write about it anyway. Writing is therapy, and your honesty will pull you through. Selah, my friend.

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  18. Michelle this is so brave and bare. I feel for you being in a place where you didn't expect but also know that this place is full of so many other things - important, powerful things in your life. Your teaching, your writing, your ability to connect and give. And your wisdom to find a peace and balance through the wisdom of others.

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  19. Michelle, you are so brave to share you story here and especially your soft spot. I ache for you and I long for you to be content. Your effort to not give in to the sadness was nothing short of superwoman! Blessings and hugs for you this Easter weekend!

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  20. Michelle,
    I am afraid I am late to the post and the host of commenters, but I can tell you from the interactions we've had you have a purpose in life and you're making a difference to so many people each and every day! We all struggle with soft spots, I am struggling with one right now myself.
    I have already peaked at todays post and I am happy to hear you're feeling so much happier!

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