Today……

I have an outline of my focuses for this  sumMEr  with the main point of all this being:  How to change my relationship with me so that I will be better equipped to help others and connect with my soul’s work and the Goddess that I am? I know it all starts with me – no one else can do this work. We all have magic to share and we must take care of ourselves and believe in ourselves in order to be able to share that magic.

I am becoming more aware of how I speak to and about myself, aiming to be gentle. I am putting in place rituals that feel right for me and organizing so I have a calm reprieve to physically land when I let my mind get out of hand. I will make better food choices and start taking better care of myself. I will listen to what I need most and stand firm, not apologizing, remembering that when I say ‘yes’ to something that does not serve me, I am saying ‘no’ to something that might. I will not give into guilt. I will remember that ALLOW is my word of the year and I will make sure to have quiet time at least weekly, where I can reflect and offer gratitude. I aim to lighten up and not take everything so seriously, acknowledging that I only get this one life. I will enjoy the things and people that I love most. Everyday I will honor myself and in doing so, create a safe place for others.

There are many books and ecourses  and retreats that I want to delve into. I started this sumMEr off with an online class hosted by Liz Lamoreux and an art workshop at the studio of Jenni Horne. I am now joining Liz in her Inner Excavate-Along and Catherine Just in her Soul*Full Summit .  My lovely friend, Jenn Borek, has invited me to participate in her ecourse which involves one of my favorite things in the world: sticky notes! 😉 Rounding off my sumMEr will be the Artist’s Way Bookclub that the fabulous Jessica Brogan.

I invite you to poke around and see if any of these things call to you.  You might want to take this sumMEr to go inside yourself and reflect. There is no wrong way to do this – the ‘being aware’ is the most important part; it’s all in the becoming. Go at your own pace. Notice how you talk to yourself . Reflect on what you really want from your one precious life. Lean in. Live your Poem. xo

 

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You……

What have you done today to honor ‘you’? You might not know what that would  even look like. What would you like to do?

It can be simple. Sit outside in the sun for 10 minutes. File your nails. Read a chapter of a mindless book (aka not self-help/textbook/required reading). Take a bubble bath. Just be in your skin.

Take a few moments to reflect back on your day –  I would love to hear what you did to honor yourself. If you can not think of anything that you did to honor yourself, take a second and be more aware. You still have time. I invite you to think of what you can do tomorrow, too. You deserve to be honored. It all starts with you. xo

 

**Rachel Payne was kind enough to share some of her thoughts on the sumMEr of ME project. I would be thrilled if you dropped in and got to know her!

 

 

sumMEr

Hi!!

happy sumMEr !!! Today marks the first day of the sumMEr of ME – a calling forth of self care.  Almost 40 artists are joining me this sumMEr to talk about self care and self communication. I am over the moon and hope that you will connect to yourself through some of these wonderful artists. If you are tired of the hustle and bustle and feel called to something more…..if you want to change the world one smile at a time…..if you want to find your happy…..if you want to live your poem……. I invite you to join us this sumMEr. We are thrilled that you are here. You are Wise. You are Wonderful. You are Worth it.

and here it is: my maiden vlog – not letting anything stop me…..was actually going to re-record this today and realized it was the first day of sumMEr (not tomorrow, thank you, leap year!) 🙂 xoxo

Click here to view my maiden vlog! 😉

MCTD………

I have not really mentioned health issues in this space because I feel like I am so much more than the ‘yuck’ that I deal with but after talking with a special person today that just received the same diagnosis, I wanted to share a little about my journey. Forgive the fuzzy memory, just one of the many pleasures of dealing with Mixed Connective Tissue Disease.

I was 18 and could not get out of bed unassisted.  I just felt sick and knew this was not normal. I was scared. After two visits with a Rheumatologist in Alexander City, AL, I was told I had lupus-like tendencies, given Plaquenil and told to have my eyes checked every six months as permanent damage to the retina was a possible side effect. In less than a year I felt pretty much normal and decided to stop my medications; I’m stubborn like that.

Andy and I got married (after dealing with the false positive for syphilis) and life carried on with aches and pains here and there but no true issues aside from us not getting pregnant which I always felt was due to what I now know as MCTD. We bought our first house almost 8 years ago and I was thrilled with the above-ground pool. Couldn’t swim a lick and hate bugs but I was out there as much as humanly possible enjoying the perks of my new home. Life was good. Then I got sick again.

Looking back, I realize that the sun exposure was the trigger. I was extremely fatigued, a fatigue that even excessive amounts of sleep could not remedy. My joints ached.  It was a chore to get out of bed each morning, my muscles and bones hurt and my range of motion was nonexistent; I even got to the point that Andy had to literally dress me. Deciding I could no longer function in this manner we sought out medical help.

And here memory gets patchy: after several doctors and Plaquenil, chemo treatments, evil Prednisone, and other various drugs I was told I had lupus. I never fully went into remission but life resumed.

Andy got a new job and had to work a third shift on the weekend. I would stay with him at night, trying to sleep in a camping chair. This routine went on for a while and brought on another flare. More meds, another rheumy and more tests later, I had a new diagnosis of Mixed Connective Tissue Disease. I was happy to trade in the lupus for this lesser sounding issue. Then I went online to read that now I was the proud new owner of not just one but multiple auto-immune diseases…… I am an overachiever like that. I remissioned but held my breath. Physically, I was recuperating but mentally, I was paused. Chronic pain is a personal path that can not be seen by the casual glance. Thankfully, Andy never thought I was crazy or doubted that my pain was real.

I now live with a few limitations (I am highly sun sensitive and still battle pain and MCTD claimed my uterus, to name a few) but I have a new reality and I have made peace with that. Maybe I am at the point where my story will help others feel a bit of comfort when they hear a diagnosis that turns their world upside down and is compounded by lack of information, knowledge and understanding. It is scary but it will be fine. You will be fine. xo

Today……..

All is well with my lil’ world. My honey is working on his creative endeavors and I am piddling around with my own.

Wanted to pop in and say ‘hello’…..I have not forgotten about you….just trying to organize some things and determine the best way to chart my course.

I am slowly realizing that a huge part of wanting to honor.empower.motivate.inspire others is to start with me…..Self-Care and Self-Communication are key.Those little untruths we tell ourselves, those things we let stop us from living a full life, I am interested in re-thinking all that.

If we supported ourselves like we do our spouses, children, best friends (even people that we have never met face to face) just think of how limitless we would ALLOW ourselves to be? xo

Sissy…….

I am so excited! I am taking the newest e-course by Kelly Rae Roberts and Beth Nicholls :  Hello Soul. Hello Business – big Puffy Heart!

Our first lesson was packed full of helpful hints and journal prompts to get us thinking about our true purpose and how we want to use our business as a vehicle for that purpose. One helpful exercise, based on nurturing and thinking of your business as a friend, inspired the little doodle above and I will now be lovingly referring to my business as “Sissy”. My grandmother called me Sissy and always nurtured my creativity. She was one of the best people you would ever hope to meet; you always felt sheltered and loved and valued when she was near. She was my heart. Everyone should be so blessed to have such a wonderful person in their lives and I carry this with me, hoping to warm everyone in my life with that same sweet spirit.

This also led me to think that we are all just family and want to be valued and loved. I hope to add that to the world in all that I do. My goal is to add a little Happily to your Ever After and honor, empower, motivate and inspire others as I embark on the journey to find my soul. xo

Overcome……

I am overcome. In the best of ways.

Andy is making his dreams come true and that makes my heart sing.

I am ALLOWing and that feels wonderful and freeing.

I have so many supportive people in my life and I am leaning into all this goodness.

I want to live as authentically and in the most genuine spirit as possible and I know this is the year for grand things.

This fills my soul: “The gifting of oneself and one’s talents is a most honest way of sharing with those around us, because it forbids pretense, and demands that we give others something real, something tangibly experienced. Far too rarely do we truly enact this kind of gift-giving—this sacrifice, even—but when we do, something holy and unexpected happens.”~Kinfolk Magazine

xo

LOVE……

I am sure I am like everyone else and am just trying to find my way in this craziness we call life.  As I make my way, I am opening myself  to my creative process and all that entails.  I hope to honor, empower, motivate and inspire along my way: honor my path and the paths of those that I have the pleasure of experiencing while on my journey~ empower others and help them to feel uplifted~ motivate everyone to realize their potential and the fact that we can change the world, one heart at a time ~ inspire others to live their best, most honest life.

There are no instructions and oft times I fail miserably but I continue and I think that is enough sometimes!

Erica Herbert http://www.becomingfrida.blogspot.com/ has compiled pictures into a video that spoke to my soul. I have to let it go and open myself to all that can be. She has another project in the works all about love and what is in our hearts and I was inspired to create a bit. I love when that happens  – inspiration when I least expect it……but that is what life is about, right? Living in the moment and creating your reality. xoxo

*my fabulous earrings are from Violet of Kelly Mae Kreations http://kellymaekreations.blogspot.com/