Becoming the best version of yourself

Memorial Day – – –

Today is Memorial Day.  All across this country flags are flying and people are honoring those who gave their lives for the “red, white & blue”.

My father was a military man, served in WWII and Korea.  It was something he never talked about, not many of them do.  They did their “duty”, then those who returned went on with their lives and somehow managed to get past, or at least get through the PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).  They didn’t ask for help, they didn’t ask for drugs or counseling or hospitalization or sympathy.

It wasn’t until the summer of 2007 that I even found out my father had been a part of D-Day and had landed at Utah Beach.  I had known about the Aleutian Islands and Northern Africa, but never Normandy.  This was a man who never questioned his duty, he just did it.  Looking at the shadow box of medals that hang in my Mother’s house, he must have done it well.  I lost my Dad in 1998 and I miss him every day.

I miss his integrity, I miss his quirky sense of humor, I miss his quiet intelligence and his sense of right and wrong.  He led by example, he didn’t need to brag about his accomplishments.  He was a part of Brokaw’s “The Greatest Generation”.  There is a huge difference between the vets of the 40’s and the vets of today.  In the 40’s they came home as heroes and they came home as winners.

So as we honor our fallen heroes today, let us not forget that we still have military men and women giving their lives today for our country, and for our freedom.   Let’s also remember to say thank you and honor those who do make it home and we’ll all be better for doing it.


Taking A Break From Being Everything to Everybody – –

A dear friend, one of my first friends to “follow” my blog, sent me this the other day.  (Thanks CS!)  While it doesn’t speak to divorce “specifically”, I think it definitely covers ground that we all face after we divorce.  When you want to try to be everything to everybody, you wear out.  As a wife and a mother and a friend, I wanted to be there for everyone.  It was exhausting.  Now that I don’t necessarily have the time nor financial resources, it doesn’t mean that I don’t still want to give, give, give or feel guilty when I can’t.  This article below gives us permission to take a break.  Maybe it’s time to give yourself some of that compassion you used to give to everyone else.  Take care of you!
“You are a good person. It’s a long race. You are suffering from compassion fatigue.
Of course you care about people, but has there been a time in history when people have been put under more pressure to be charitable? You go to the store to pick up a quart of milk and pass a homeless man with a sign asking for your help, then you have to pass by someone selling brownies for some charity outside the grocery store, and when you pay for your milk you are asked if you want to make a donation to MS. It’s a veritable attack of the charities.

Not giving today does not mean you want the homeless man to starve, the Girl Scouts to miss their jamboree, or people to suffer from MS. It just means it is someone else’s turn to give today.

You have compassion fatigue because you have been compassionate. Compassion is not measured by how much you gave, or whether you were able to, or whether you fixed their problem, but that you wanted to. That compassion, even devoid of action, is precious and must be preserved. It makes us great.

So recover. Treat yourself to a margarita, a spa day, a drive by the ocean, a ride in the mountains, a day with family, or maybe some time in your church. Recharge because you are an important part of this world, and because you deserve it.

What we must not do, however, is defend ourselves with fiction that the problems are not real, that people are not suffering, or that they somehow deserve it. Suffering happens, it is not good, and we should not feel OK seeing it.

Being human means we have compassion; but being human also means we have limits. So when you feel the fatigue, let yourself off the hook. I am here to tell you it is OK, and there is no need to rationalize not giving. Tell yourself not today, I am taking the day (or week) off. It’s margarita Saturday, etc.

And when you are recharged, watch out world, your love for your fellow man can make a difference that would shame the rest of us. You are, after all, kind of amazing.” —

Eric Pederson

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Happy Mother’s Day

Not all divorced women are Mothers.  To those who are, whether it was by giving birth, adoption, step children or mothering those “four-legged” children, Mother’s Day is a day meant for you.  It celebrates all the sacrifices you’ve made, all the love you’ve given.  It’s one of my most favorite of days because it celebrates one of the things in my life that I think I did “the best”!

I have two sons, they are the highlights of my life.  My marriage may have not turned out the way that I hoped and dreamed it would, but those two boys did and then some.  Yup – I did that right.

So as I was walking the dogs on one of the last pleasant weather days before the HOT summer sets in, I was enjoying my “Motherhood” experience.  Thinking about how cute they were as babies, how active they were as toddlers, how sometimes scattered they were in school, how focused they were in college, and how successful they have become as young adults.  Then it dawned on me . . . without the “spouse”, these boys would not have happened.

So for Mother’s Day 2012, I’ll be grateful for the marriage and the husband, because even though he broke my heart, he also gave me the greatest gift possible – my sons. Wishing you all a Happy Mother’s Day!

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A Playlist!!

I’m a big music lover.  I have an old Nano and I take it with me everywhere so I can listen to my favorite tunes!!  I listen to it when I’m putting on my makeup, when I’m on the elliptical, when I’m vacuuming, when I’m outside walking, on an airplane, when I’m writing, walking on the beach.  It makes me smile, singing along with my fav tunes lifts my spirits.

I have different playlists for different things I do but one thing that gets the most “play time” is my play list about being stronger, being happier, and getting through each day knowing I’m going to make it.  So I would like to share some of these songs with you and maybe you can download them and use them as a “pick me up” too.  Listen to the lyrics.  I hope they speak to you like they speak to me!!  Enjoy!

Firework  by  Katy Perry

A Little Bit Stronger  by  Sara Evans

Stronger  by  Kelly Clarkson

Beautiful  by  Christina Aguilera

Anytime You Need A Friend  by  Mariah Carey

What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted  by  Paul Young

Unwritten  by  Natasha Bedingfield

F**kin’ Perfect  by  Pink

Keep Your Head Up  by  Andy Grammer

King Of Anything  by  Sara Bareilles

Keep on singing those blues away!!!


You’re NOT Alone – –

While researching some thoughts about my blog, it’s become clear how many of us there are out there.  I also have great friends who share things with me when they think it would be useful for the upcoming book or this site.  I will always forward on to you what I think could help you in this survival quest.

Last time I shared another’s blog, I found the way to connect the two.  This time, I don’t seem to be able to make it work.  So here’s what I can try to do to help you find it.  It’s on the blog site of the Huffington Post.  This is what my gal pal sent me:

Lisa Arends: Rewrapping Divorce as a Gift

As my eldest son reminds me on many occasions, Google is your friend.  So if you can google it, I think you would enjoy the read.  As always, thanks for reading mine!!

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