Posted in Buddhism, Emotions, Experience, Feelings, Human spirit, Inspiration, Life, Life lessons, Motivation,, My story, Purpose driven, Self help

Spiritual awakening – Stage 2

The second stage was described as “A shift in perception”. The beginning of seeing things differently which would ultimately alter the perception of your life. This could include:

  • Questioning the Status Quo
  • Job dissatisfaction
  • Relationship issues
  • Longing for a soulmate
  • Desire to move / change of scenery

The typical emotions felt during this stage were discomfort. A feeling that your life no longer fits you. Once again I was relating to the words somebody else had written and felt as if so, they were written exclusively for me. There was no doubt that I had begun to question the Status Quo of everything. I no longer felt my achievements to be fitting and my questions often involved something like “Is this it” and “Is this what it’s all about”. It couldn’t have been and there had to be more to life was always the outcome of those thoughts. Without a doubt something had awakened and I had questions galore. I refused to settle into something that my heart wasn’t sold on and so the The quest for more  began.

I look back to this stage as the beginning of my observation period. Not only did it ring true for me and my own behaviors, but I also found truth in the ones of which I found the majority of others conforming in. I often wondered if people were experiencing similar issues and I questioned why so many seemed to settle into going with the flow. I’m curios if this presents an easier path, but personally I see it as a path that would require me to stray from who I am. It was something I wasn’t willing to compromise any longer. I was on a journey of finding myself instead of losing myself. I had strayed for too long and a change was upon me. I know that we all have to decide for ourselves and there is no right or wrong whether you go with the flow or swim upstream. I thought of my own choice and knew that I was going against the flow and the values/beliefs that I had grown up with. They were still important, but also resembled the values and beliefs of somebody else and it was time to find my own truths. Time to polish my own individuality as the transformation had begun. I had no clue of this at the time and reiterate again that those “A-Ha” moments all happened in hindsight.

Further my job was no longer a fit. Despite the success I had achieved being a foreigner in my second home country, it also came with a huge price tag. A sacrifice I no longer was willing to pay. I needed a change of scenery. I knew that I had achieved everything I set out to do and once more it was while pursuing the values and beliefs of others which weren’t necessarily my own. The “Stuff” I had worked so hard for, was something I was still grateful for and I felt that I had put blood, sweat and tears into it, but it was also stuff that was burdening me down with responsibilities and obligations. Another first and the beginning of my realization that “Less is more”.

I won’t even talk about the relationship issues which I had questioned for quiet some time and which had spanned over a decade. Everything was contributing to this stage and my shift in perception. I was no longer willing to continue in the same fashion and accept the things I struggled with as a normal part of life. This was not going to be a permanent part, a part that was here to stay and I knew that one day I would look back at it as a phase in the transformation of becoming the best version of myself.

It was said that the typical emotions during this stage were discomfort and the feeling that your life was no longer a fit. Confusion and a lack of understanding was a normal emotion to be experienced during this stage and so it was for me. I knew something was different and I knew something had shifted. I just didn’t know what, when it happened and why it happened. Was I going through midlife crisis? The thought did cross my mind a few times but only led to more analysis and questions which is an entirely different post. I remember this stage holding little discomfort for me. Yes, there was confusion but I wasn’t resisting with what seemed to unfold in front of me. It was as if I had already surrendered to the process. I think it was an important step in my journey instead of fighting it all. Sometimes you just have to step back and let life unfold without interfering. You have to remain a “Warrior instead of becoming a Worrier” and trust that everything will be ok. This was one of those times. Somehow I managed to do this without being aware of doing anything different and special. I can only credit it to not fighting the universe that was guiding me at the time and I guess in that sense I did go with the flow.

I didn’t have all the answers, nor do I have them today. I didn’t know what was happening or how to understand it, but somehow I didn’t need to. Soon I would find the article that explained everything and which would confirm that I wasn’t going crazy just yet.

Most  of all I wasn’t alone and others knew exactly what it was that I was experiencing.

This little video reminds me of this stage…the transformation period of becoming the best version of yourself and most of all the quest in challenging the “Status Quo”. It’s a reminder that everything is possible and that you should be in no competition other than yourself. I hope you enjoy….

Posted in Buddhism, Emotions, Experience, Feelings, Human spirit, Inspiration, Life, Life lessons, Loss, My story, Photography, Purpose driven, Self help, Spirit animals, Spiritual awakening

Spiritual awakening – Stage 1


“The transformation begins”

As I mentioned before it was Pinterest that steered me into the direction of spiritual awakening. You might wonder what exactly it means to be spiritually aware, awake and enlightened. Don’t you walk around with your eyes wide open every day and if so well then you are definitely not asleep, right? What could be missing? I had the same questions and it remains something that is somewhat difficult to answer. I think that the timing has to be right for you to believe and to see the signs the universe is throwing you. I like to say it’s made more of the things that you just feel, a instinct, a gut feeling, maybe a hunch. And even when you do feel it, you won’t know what it is, which stage you are going through, let alone that you realize that you are going through a stage or a phase. None will make any sense as it is new information and you are learning it for the very first time. Perhaps it’s a discontent you have felt, something you want to change in your life, maybe you have questions that have gone unanswered, until now. To say the least my curiosity was sparked as I first embarked on the first message and my hunger grew to learn more about this mysterious subject. I kept most of it to myself and shared very little of what I was exploring. How could I explain it to others if I couldn’t even explain it to myself. Many times I thought people would for sure think that I had gone crazy, not that I really cared all that much about what others thought of me. I had learned a long time ago that people will always have an opinion one way or another, whether you do something or not and even if you do it perfectly. Sometimes you merely get caught in the crossfire and have to accept things how they are. If you can, you will feel less burdened and may even be healthier and happier for sure.

One article exclaimed that there were 7 stages to spiritual awakening and that a person could go through any given step at any given time without any particular order. The process is different for everybody as we all awaken in our own way, so this is really where the tricky part comes in as there is not a one fits all process. From person to person we interpret and feel things in a different way and it was said that some people may even skip a few stages where others yet repeat a few stages to solidify the lesson until it is learned.

I still think that the first stage is vital and sets the course for all the other stages to follow while it remains unclear to me if the first stage could ever be skipped.
Stage 1 The Catalyst
The Catalyst is described as a life change, a paradigm shifting event that shakes and jolts you awake. Some people may need several of these catalysts which are said to be gentler after the first strong jolt. They weren’t in my case but I did require quiet a few to finally wake me up. I think the first big one was my fathers death, but I was only ten years old. And while I knew back then that life would never be the same again, I understand now that I couldn’t have had many plans and experiences at such a tender age that would have wanted me to completely change my life around! I simply was too young to understand, I didn’t know, but I still believe it was a vital event that shaped my life and my future that was to come.

The miscarriages were catalysts further forging my path. And there were a few others of which I am not sure if I could ever sort them into a gentler category. Being torn between two countries, being diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis which almost left me crippled for awhile in excruciating pain and the fear that it would rob me of my life, a failed marriage and the estranged mother / daughter relationship that had brought me much guilt over the years. Maybe I had learned to live with most of those things, maybe I had accepted them over time and they were no longer catalysts at all. I don’t know for sure but I believe that everything that happens in our lives is here to guide us onto the path we were meant to take. So ultimately I have to believe that these things are a part of my journey.

The next jolt came as Sparky did not make it home after a vet visit and the aftershock of having to say goodbye. The final catalyst came 2 1/2 years ago as Nikki crossed the Rainbow bridge. I never recovered from that one and it shook me to my core. There was no way I could sleep through that one and it was then that I found myself in the early stage of waking up. Nobody ever said that it was suppose to be beautiful and it was better be explained as very painful, life altering, a life changing event, a shift, catalyst and jolt that was character building but not to be ignored.
Some example events / jolts can include:
A near death experience,

Loss of any kind,

A life threatening illness,

Depression,

But also meeting your soulmate
Further it was suggested that spirit visitations could also be a part of it. This last one truly made me pause and think. It wasn’t that I had experienced any ghosts, aliens or other spirit visits, but how did I know and how could I make such a statement! How exactly did a spirit look like, would it take on a human form to sit here and chill with me, having a conversation as if it was the most natural of things? I was thinking back to the Spirit Animals that I had encountered, the sightings and the incidents in nature that remained mostly unexplained. Could it have been?
The summary of the emotions experienced during this first stage were:
Fear,

Shock,

Disbelief,

Not understanding what was going on,

Awe,

And the difficulty grasping that it happened to begin with.
I definitely could relate and without a doubt I knew that I had experienced stage 1 in the process of spiritual awakening. I’m still curious and wonder how many others experience similar instances. For myself, many questions were answered and the article even though it was read in hindsight and might have not guided me at the time, it still shed a lot of light. It brought explanations and clarity to me during a time I felt alone and confused with the feelings I couldn’t articulate and share with others. I look back to these painful catalysts and I have learned to embrace them. I don’t hold any bitterness as these painful thresholds are nothing more than a push towards a life that is enriched and lived to the fullest. A life with my eyes wide open and my senses heightened to take in all of what truly matters, in all of it’s glory and all of it’s beauty.

How could I ever be bitter about that?

Posted in Emotions, Experience, Health, Human spirit, Inspiration, Life, Loss, Motivation,, My story, Purpose driven, Self help, Wisdom

Thank you Tooth – Fairy 

Dear Tooth – Fairy (my dentist)
There used to be a time you brought me money when you took my teeth. And just like that everything is different and the times have changed. You still take my teeth but today I pay you to do so 😉. I mean this in the most fun and harmless way possible as no amount of money could buy the kindness you have bestowed upon me. What you have given me is simply priceless and involves the human touch. 

You see it is much more to me then just finding an outstanding dentist such as yourself who is loved by her staff and clients alike. I don’t need a testament from anybody, I just sense it in the atmosphere and the vibes when I’m around you. I have always said that my strong intuition can be a blessing or a curse as it often reveals a look beyond and I see things hidden from many others. It’s not always pretty and it is often filled with ulterior motives that are self centered, even inconsiderate. Coming across you has been a true blessing and without you ever saying a word, I know why you do what you do. Working in the service industry, impacting and affecting people every day, I want you to know what a difference you make. You have for me, in a huge way. And I know that this is what it’s all about, amongst other things, but this has to be one of the most fulfilling and satisfying reasons I bet. The reasons you can go home after a day of work and feel like you made the world a better place by bestowing your grace upon some lucky souls, your team and patients. 

Bad experiences had kept me away from the dentist, but coming to your office three weeks ago, I couldn’t have known that I was well on my way of overcoming all of my fears. From the moment I stepped foot through your door, I felt so much more than just a new patient. Everybody was so warm and kind and Ashley had the biggest smile once I introduced myself and she handed me the new patient documents to fill out. She would also sneak me into a cancelled appointment the following week and was sensitive to my needs, time and desire to get this done. Later I was kicking back in your lounger (which I previously always considered as the torture chair) simply knowing that everything would be ok. I didn’t want a magazine or anything while I was waiting, I simply wanted to soak up the feeling and enjoy the peace I found myself in. There was a comforting calm settling over me, as if somebody had wrapped me in a warm blanket, a feeling I took in the best way possible. And then I met Elvia which was more like meeting a friend instead of being a patient. I trusted her from the first moment and knew that I was in good hands with her. I immediately connected and she is such a wonderful person, a true gem I’m sure you are very lucky and grateful to have. Elvia remains a vital part of my visits but has grown in my heart as a friend and a person I’m lucky to have had the opportunity of meeting. Elvia reminds me of how good it is to give and I would go to great lengths to make her day in any way possible. 

And then I got to meet you and you sat on your little rolling chair right next me. What I first noticed was the kindness in your eyes, your desire to help, to make things better for me, to do the best to your ability and to be a part in making my smile even bigger and brighter. Yep, I got all of that before we even spoke and once you did, it only confirmed what I already knew about you and your kind heart. If was refreshing to see all of the care you had for me and I have to admit that people such as yourself are very rare. Today’s society seldom gives you the time of day and we often lack the compassion and love for our fellow humans. Feelings and emotions are replaced by selfishness, envy, jealousy and greed. Instead of pulling together we become competition and enemies, caught in a constant race against each other. I felt none of that sitting in your chair, but what I did feel was as if an angel was sitting right next to me to restore my faith in humanity once more. YOU. And you did it in such a big way and not so subtle at all. You touched my heart in ways you might not even be aware of and I could never thank you enough. We had touching moments on all of my three visits. During two we were close to tears, but in a good way as they were tears of joy and sincere emotions. It is now that I find myself once again, close to tears as I am writing this. Also in a good way, because it has so much meaning and I know we might cry once more reading this. 

I experienced loss at a very young age as I lost my Dad and I’m sure it is a big reason as to why I feel so strongly about sharing my feelings. I may do so verbally or physically such as baking a cheesecake for you or doing something else I might think could make your day. And you truly made my day today by accepting the cheesecake and being so excited and appreciative about it. I loved doing it and I don’t do it because I have to but because you have made a difference for me. It’s a very small token of gratitude that I can repay you by making you smile and say cheeesssee….eeeee….cake. If you are lucky enough to meet an angel who changes your life and outlook, if you care and love somebody, if you are grateful for something they did for you, then I say that you need to take the time to acknowledge it and let them know. And so it is that I feel a simple “Thank you” will never be enough to express all of my gratitude for you and your wonderful staff, I hope that this intimate post will give you much more insight of what you have done for me. Thanks to you and your team I no longer fear the dentist and actually think that I might have withdrawals if I don’t see all of you on a weekly basis 😉. It was a thought that crossed my mind today leaving your office knowing that my next appointment won’t be until the 21st. Strange….I know, but in a good way. 

Thank you from the bottom of my heart Dr. Owens and team. You are the most amazing Tooth – Fairy ever and I’m truly, truly blessed by you.

Posted in Adventure, Animals, Death, Emotions, Experience, Feelings, Hiking, Human spirit, Inspiration, Life, Life lessons, Loss, Mother nature, Motivation,, My story, Pets, Photography, Purpose driven, Self help, Spiritual awakening, Wisdom

The heart of a lion

Nikki came into my life as she was nearly two years old and I feel extremely blessed that I could rescue her from her abusive owners. I didn’t know at the time that she would equally play a huge part in my life, ultimately rescuing me as much as I rescued her. I was unaware that she was coming from a violent home and all I knew about was the apartment situation that would lead to the separation from her prior owners. Soon enough, the same day, her dramatic past began to unravel and I got a glimpse into some of the struggles this poor little baby had endure. From being chained and staked in the backyard, to a prior broken leg from abuse, her fear of water from almost drowning at the hands of her owners, her food aggression and her fear for humans. I won’t go into too many details to relive this horror, which I mostly found out through her behavior or through the jokes of her previous owners. Needless to say it was also the last time that they ever got to see Nikki. I always felt very lucky to have been the one able to turn her little precious life around and give her a reason to live. Besides having the heart of a lion which I will describe later, she also looked like a lion as I first saw her. A good brushing, which was yielding numerous brushes filled of hair later, (it would have made the softest pillow stuffing ever and I wish I would have kept it), she emerged as a different dog and looked nothing like the Chow Chow mix she was suppose to be. She looked like a Shiba Inu mix, a starved one that was reduced to nothing more than skin and bones after shedding the matted fur mess. She was visibly malnourished.

Her eating could hardly be described as eating. She was scarfing her food down in such a hurry, forgetting to chew, obviously being afraid that somebody would take it away. In return it caused her to choke and gasp for air. It was during that time that I considered learning the Heimlich maneuver, just in case. Reaching down to pet her, I was hoping to talk some comforting sense into her, but it only caused her to duck. She was afraid that the hand that was coming down would hit her, which I’m sure had happened too many times. Over the years I made a game out of it to take away her fear and associate the hand with a new meaning. Fun and playtime…”The claw”. It took years to rehabilitate her and years before she took herself not so seriously, finally allowing herself to play. It was then that the Shiba 500 (playful little outbursts of energy, running around like crazy while smiling from ear to ear….and yes I’m still talking about Nikki, she had the biggest smile I ever saw on a dog ) was born. It was an extraordinary day and I remember how happy I was as she dropped her fear and revealed her true nature. Her beautiful soul emerged and for the first time there was no fear in her eyes.

Nikki and I had a special bond, a bond words simply can’t describe. She literally was my fur baby and meant everything to me. She was my child and she lives on within my heart. I didn’t think that I could have loved her any more as I did, and despite that she couldn’t physically communicate with me, I understood everything she was trying to convey. Her gratefulness for saving her was obvious in all of her actions, all you had to do is look at her little face. I have always considered myself an animal lover, but it was Nikki who taught me to see more, to see the living soul mirrored in her eyes. I despised people referring to her as nothing more than an animal, a pet,  I simply couldn’t relate. She was so much more, she was a beautiful living soul, full of spunk and emotions.

After Sparky’s death her little heart was broken and our relationship became even closer. I was all that she had left and while Sparky was alive, I might have not believed that our bond could get any stronger. But it did. Nikki became a hiker at the age of 12 and I once heard that 1 dog year is equivalent to 7 human years. There is much controversy discussing this topic which includes the consideration of various breeds etc, but if there is truth to it, Nikki would have been 84 years old as she took up hiking. A true testament that it is never too late to start doing what you love. At the age of 84 she found a new passion (she probably always had it and I feel guilty of not introducing her to it earlier while coming up with various excuses of not being able to handle two dogs by myself, working so much back then and still now, to etc. etc.) a passion that would help her cope with the loss of her companion and soulmate, Sparky. 

Preparing for a hike was tricky and I had to be careful as the adrenaline and her sheer excitement of going for a hike would often lead to overexertion. In her senior years Nikki had developed arthritis and her own excitement and willpower often exceeded what her little body could handle. It was crazy how she would pick up on the tiniest of clues before a hike. She definitely knew the backpack and me grabbing it would result in the Shiba 500, running around like crazy, wiping out, hitting a slippery patch on the hardwood floor or leaping through the air almost knocking me over were all results if I wasn’t sneaky enough. All things her old little, aged body couldn’t put away so easily anymore. Her leash was no difference or putting on her harness, even the sound of the car could trigger the excitement, followed by what I can only express as that shit grinning, tongue out smile that appeared on her face in anticipation. She didn’t know her own strength and I often felt that it was sheer adrenaline and her willpower, the passion for what she loved and the heart of a lion full of courage that propelled her forward. Looking back, I realize that Nikki was one of my greatest teachers. I have no doubt that without any spoken words, she has taught me more than I ever learned from some who could speak. I might have rescued her from her abusive owners but in the end I’m not so sure of who ended up rescuing who. Let’s just call it even.

It’s been 2 1/2 years since Nikki has been gone and I’m not sure if I will ever get over her loss. I’m reluctant to say that I felt as if I lost a child. Despite two miscarriages I never experienced losing a child that lived with me for several years and I can’t truly compare it to make such a statement. Still it is the closest form that I can describe her loss and my life remains forever changed. People have encouraged me to get another dog and while I believe that a new dog could ease the pain and help me make new memories, I also know that nobody will ever take her place. It is the uncertainty and the changes that lie ahead that have prevented me from taking on the responsibility of getting a dog right now. Nikki will always have a special place in my heart and I held on to her as long as I could. Her wings were ready but it was my soul that wasn’t prepared to let her go for selfish reasons. In the end I had to do what any animal lover would have done to spare her additional pain and a life that had no future. And still, no day goes by that she isn’t on my mind. I wish she was here and the thought of being reunited with Sparky brings me only little comfort. I have to remind myself that her beautiful soul is with me forever, pain free to roam and play once more until we can meet again. In the meantime there is an empty hole within my heart as I have no choice but to roam without her.

Nikki has taught me that it is never too late. To pursue your passion as it is the rhythm of everything that matters in life. Do it with passion or don’t do it at all. If you have to do something you don’t like and the passion is lacking, change your stars and pursue what matters. Work towards your goals and take that first step no matter how tiny it is. Just do it anyways. Nikki has taught me to look beyond and recognize a soul within every living being. To drop its formal name of calling it an animal, but to see the spirit and the soul that lies within. Nikki showed me perseverance by pushing beyond  the pain as nothing in life is free. To be a warrior and realize that the harder the struggle, the sweeter the victory. It takes life shattering incidents to mold us into the people we are meant to be, otherwise we just don’t learn. I believe that it was Nikki who initiated the first stage of what would lead me to my spiritual awakening. The other element of importance was that the timing was right. I simply became aware and was willing to listen and see the signs that have always been there, unnoticed until then.

Coming soon…stage one of spiritual enlightenment and spiritual awakening. I believe now….

Posted in Buddhism, Emotions, Experience, Feelings, Human spirit, Inspiration, Life, Life lessons, Motivation,, My story, Purpose driven, Self help, Spiritual awakening, Wisdom

The quest for more 


(Focus…)
It was my friend “Pinterest” that peeked my curiosity and was guiding me without being aware of it at the time. I had reached a point where I was questioning everything these days. Old learned principles and my way of life was simply not enough anymore. I was existing but I was not alive. Physically I was breathing, but inside of me my soul was dying a little more with each passing day. The void grew bigger and I couldn’t remember a time where I didn’t feel burdened and bogged down with responsibilities and obligations. Really, it’s been like that for years, who was I kidding. I grew more and more intolerant to it, while growing more and more tolerant to changing my stars. I didn’t know how to do that as I felt trapped in a vicious circle that always had the same outcome. I didn’t understand all the components involved and I didn’t know what was going on, but I was willing to listen in the hopes to attain more insight and understanding. I had noticed physical signs in the form of totem animals and their symbolic meaning. I would soon learn that it was only the beginning and more sightings were heading my way. I also noticed the silent messages and the signs through the quotes I found on Pinterest. I was trying to understand the underlying reasons as to why a particular quote would reach me at a certain time. One could easily dismiss this and think that it is a non brainer to come across quotes if that is what you are looking for. Of course it is on a superficial level but I was on a quest for more, a quest to understand. Understand what?…you might ask, what’s there to understand as it might seem nothing more than a set of mere coincidences. Somehow these weren’t coincidences to me and all the messages I read, I analyzed as to why they crossed my path at any given time. 

In order to summarize my spiritual journey, I now knew that there were physical signs but also silent messages that may enter our life from time to time. I once heard this quote “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” This quote had profound meaning to me. I didn’t know if I was ready. What was required to be ready, to make changes and what needed to be changed in which order. The only thing I knew was that I felt a difference inside and I was ready to listen and understand on a different level, a level that was new to me. Some say that this quote originated from Buddha, others will claim that it is fake. True or fake, I came across a article that steered me into the direction of Buddhism and spiritual awakening as it outlined the individual steps. Like a sponge I was absorbing and taking in all the information. I was hungry and curious to learn. I heard that people will believe what they want to believe and once again I was reminded that I was a optimist, a believer if you will. I engaged in the countless articles laid out in front of me and for the first time things started to make sense. I was relating and I wasn’t alone as I found myself identifying with the signs, physical, written and the not so obvious and silent ones. I believed that me, the student was ready and what transpired was that the teacher was appearing to open my eyes.

One article described the 7 stages to spiritual awakening. I found myself glued to it, nodding as if a lightbulb inside of my head had finally turned on. You could experience any of these steps in no particular order and I was beyond amazed to realize that I could relate to most stages. A transformation deep within, a shift in perception had begun, God knows when but I had a pretty good idea. I was finally waking up, although I never realized that I was asleep. Once again I felt that my life had passed me through mostly existence but not through being fully awake, being fully alive. Weird enough was that my experiences with the 7 stages went pretty much in order with how they were listed in the article and at least they were in the beginning. I believe that the first stage is vital to make the rest happen and I’m not sure if the other stages can occur without stage 1 as it involves life changing occurrences. 

To be continued…stay tuned. 

Xoxoxo ❤️

Posted in Emotions, Experience, Feelings, Health, Human spirit, Inspiration, Life, Life lessons, My story

Round 2

After the “Tooth Fairy” called to squeeze me into a cancelled appointment on Tuesday morning, I started to mentally prepare myself for my second visit. My mind was trying to play tricks on me, scaring me right back into that old fear that had prevented me from going on a regular basis, but I wasn’t going to have it.My first visit, less than a week ago went as smooth as it could have gone, but I knew that today with another extraction to look forward to, it was a procedure that might require surgically cutting my gums. It was a fear inducing thought for sure, but somehow I managed to tuck it away somewhere deep into my mind where it was residing without surfacing until everything was said and done. Well almost done, but not quiet.

I prepared myself a serving of oatmeal on the stove, the proper way which I didn’t always follow before. I recalled somebody I once knew scolding me jokingly for microwaving all the nutrients out of it by not properly cooking it on the stove. Somehow the theory stuck with me and I adhered to my new stove top method. I was no longer going to feel guilty by taking the microwave shortcut. Not that it was all that much quicker anyways and I smiled remembering how many times my oatmeal actually bubbled over the edges of my bowl, leaving behind a mess to clean up. I realized that I never actually saved any time this way, considering all the cleanup that went into it. I cut an apple into my healthy delicious meal while letting it bind together. It felt as if I was preparing my last supper, or breakfast in my case as it would be difficult to eat later after the extraction. Might as well feed myself something healthy, full of nutrition. 

Elvia my dentists assistant casually told me during my first visit about her love for cabbage patch dolls. She stated that she had always wanted one but her parents were poor and she never got her wish. It was just small talk but a few days later a cabbage patch doll crossed my path in the most strangest of ways as if it was miraculously just placed in front of me to test my reaction. And yes it was Elvia that I was thinking of as I saw the doll and I just had to have it for her. 

Once I arrived at the dentist I saw Elvia and handed her a little gift bag that included a little note and her very own cabbage patch rainforest doll which resembled a butterfly. As a spirit animal, butterflies are often associated with transformation and change. A symbol of resurrection, butterflies represent endurance, change, hope and life. I found it to be fitting since Elvia helped transform my fear of going to the dentist and helped me change to live a healthier life. To resurrect myself and evolve into a more beautiful version of myself with a brighter smile. Thank you Elvia. 

What followed was a reaction I could have not predicted as it was merely a token of appreciation that I had handed her and not something so far out of the ordinary for me. I just wanted to do this for her and I didn’t do it for one moment because I felt that I had to. Elvia’s eyes teared up once she saw what it was and she was genuinely touched by my gesture. “Oh my god I will cherish this forever, this is the kindest gift somebody has ever given me” Elvia stumbled under tears as we hugged. Time stood still for a moment as everything else was disappearing and I’m forever grateful that I could present Elvia with something so minor and minute, but something she felt so happy about. Needless to say it moved me beyond words and reminded me of my true calling and what I was aspiring towards. To make a difference and help people in any way that I can. And it was in that very moment when I was blessed to experience Elvia’s Joy that my own craving was born to experience many more moments like this. This was the second time this week that I got to experience this feeling of sheer bliss through the joy of others. Just the day before I extended a job offer to a woman who had just interviewed with me and she was so happy that her entire face lit up as she thanked me, tearfully and asked if she could give me a big hug. Another hug that invoked the same feeling, a gratifying moment, being able to make a difference. I know that my future, in which ever way it might unfold itself, will have something to do with reliving this feeling over and over again. It will know the deepest sense of satisfaction through the happiness of others. 

After signing the consent to extract #3, a tooth that had broken off while biting down hard onto an unopened popcorn kernel, my tooth fairy, my kind, beautiful angelic dentist sat next to me once again as I was stretched out on the lounger. She asked me about my other tooth from last week and if I was ok with just regular ibuprofen. I told her that I forgot to take anything, ate pizza that very night and she laughed and called me tough a few times again. Tough as nails and a high tolerance to pain indeed. “We got big plans for you today, are you mentally prepared for it” she asked me and it was then that the gum cutting thought appeared once more before I dismissed it again. I knew there was a possibility but I didn’t want to think about it. I was finally here to face whatever was to come and I was ready. Warrior mode in full effect. She told me that she likes to prepare people for the worst and that it would be a bonus if things turn out to be much easier. The tooth was in the upper, right back, solidly settled deep inside my gums with three strong roots. Great. I knew it would not be as easy as the wobbly tooth from last week, but let’s just get it on already, I thought as we were about to start. Thanks to novocaine again, there was not the slightest pain throughout the procedure, but there was more pressure and a wrestling match going on to get the tooth out which seemingly decided to come out root by root instead of in one solid piece. In the end everything came out beautifully as my “Tooth Fairy” mentioned and I count myself blessed and lucky for lucky #3 to be mostly cooperative as I know that it could have gone way, way different. 

I took my regular dose of ibuprofen while I was still at the dentist office in preparation for when the novocaine would wear off. In comparison to last week where I felt nothing, I did feel it wear off this time and what remained was a dull constant, I can’t even call it pain, but a rather annoying discomfort reminding me that I just had a tooth pulled. No swelling of any kind (lucky) but later during the night the dull pain even woke me up at some point. The discomfort continued into the next day, probably until mid afternoon until I finally won the battle over the pain banishing it out of sight and feel without any further pain meds.

I am thankful and beyond grateful for the out of this world care that I have received from my tooth fairy and her amazing staff. In just two visits (I was going to say short visits, but they have been actually pretty long visits) her team has managed to ban my year long fear by making me feel comfortable in ways I could have not imagined. I’m no longer afraid of going to the dentist and actually look forward to seeing a few kind friends who have made a difference in my life in such a big way. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. 

Posted in Adventure, Experience, Feelings, Health, Hiking, Human spirit, Inspiration, Life, Life lessons, Mother nature, Motivation,, My story, Photography, Self help, Spiritual awakening, Wisdom

A quick refresh 

Just a short stroll through the snow to refresh my mind and to reconnect with the peace and serenity I always find when I visit Mother Nature. 

It was a quick trip, chilly but beautiful, a quick reward after another dentist visit (I will write about at a later time) and the loss of #3 being the last and final extraction. The rest of my teeth are here to stay, for a long long time I hope. 

There is always something in life that could steal our smile, but I hope you remember to fight through it and never let anything get in between that. And if you can’t help it, because that does happen at times, I wish you that the time will be short and you learn to smile in biggest way once more. Even with two missing teeth, you can still smile big and find something to be grateful for. 

Have a beautiful day. Xoxoxoxo.

Posted in Experience, Feelings, Health, Human spirit, Inspiration, Life, Self help

Good-bye #18

I lost number 18 at the dentist today but I can’t complain. I have been lucky with my teeth for the most part of my life. Maybe I shouldn’t call it luck and I often think it’s because I never really cared about all that sweet stuff as a child. What a child that doesn’t like candy? Unheard of right? True though and to this day I don’t have much of a sweet tooth. There is the occasional craving that rises up every now and then, but which has to be followed up with a piece of sausage to get the sweets out of my mouth and to neutralize the taste as I would call it. Lol, yeah you heard right, a piece of sausage and meat will do too. So just maybe all the abstinence from sugar overkill may have saved my teeth in the long run. It has been years that I have been at the dentist due to a few bad experiences and the sound of that drill is something to behold even if there is no pain. It’s a bit like nails on a chalk board and it sends shivers of discomfort down my spine just thinking of it. There was no drill today buy I will take headphones from now on when there might be one. Going to the dentist today brought back some anxiety but also the soothing effects of feeling relieved that I finally took that first step and went. My blood pressure was elevated from sitting in that chair with all the medieval looking probing and torture tools surrounding me, but I also found myself relaxing as the feeling of relief swept over me. In the 2 1/2 hours that I was there, I surely had enough time to do so. The warrior spirit was alive and well as my dentist referred to me not once but three times that I was tough as nails. Personally I just think I have a high tolerance to pain, but there really wasn’t too much discomfort today. Thank you novocaine. 

#18 called for a root canal which had a 50/50 chance of being successful. I opted against it after the advice from my dentist (wow, she advised me about what would be best for me instead of trying to capitalize on making more money off of me) and I decided to say good-bye to #18 even though he had always served me well in chomping up my nutrition. The odds weren’t good enough and I needed a higher survival percentage in order to pay the high fee #18 demanded. 

I will have to go back a few more times I’m sure, for another extraction and routine cleaning etc. but I started and the experience was as great as it can be considering going to the dentist is great. I’m not sure if it will ever be my favorite thing, but the staff was amazing and made all the difference. And to look on the bright side of things and find my silver lining, I think it’s a hell of a diet plan to have a tooth extracted the day before thanksgiving as I am on soft and liquid food. Was I in the right frame of mind to do that or has this turned into an episode of “What was I thinking” Haha….I must have food withdraws as I only had a cup of chicken broth and a slice of pound cake which leaves me yearning for, yes you got it….sausage that I can’t really chew up now. I think I’m just making fun of myself and truly I have a thanksgiving kind of mind frame every day. Not always the food with turkey and all the fixings, but definitely always thankful for every lesson life has given me, for the people that surround me and make me a better person and for everything I have been blessed with. You see, I have a lot to be thankful for and I’m grateful for each one of you. 

Wishing you a Happy thanksgiving, peace on earth, fond memories with friends and family and many special moments.

Posted in Death, Emotions, Experience, Feelings, Human spirit, Inspiration, Life, Life lessons, Loss, My story

“Just like your Mother”

You said it a few times by now and each time you have said it in anger. “You are just like your mother”. I’m not quiet sure as to why you say it or if it’s a low blow you are trying to deliver. Maybe it’s just a statement, an opinion, something that doesn’t come with good intentions. I wonder if it truly needs to be spoken, as it’s context conveyed is meant to be hurtful. I fail to see your reasoning, nor am I trying to figure it out. All I know is that it’s no compliment towards me or my mother and I feel a change inside of me rising when you bring it up. A switch that turns to protection of my mother as I feel that she has bestowed nothing but kindness upon you. I know there have been many times that you have seen me struggle through some issues with my mother and perhaps it is the reason as to why your perception of her has shifted. Maybe it is different for an outsider, somebody not related through blood, but even that I can’t justify and excuse because you have experienced some of the same with your own family. 

As far as my mother is concerned, I’m not sure if we struggled after the death of my father. She provided me with everything that I needed and while I’m sure that there must have been tough times, I was too young to understand and notice. I might have never seen or recognized the signs that were there and I dismissed them with young, innocent and ignorant bliss. There was nothing to notice for me at that age, she did a great job of keeping it all away from me and nothing was obvious or appeared out of the ordinary. For the most part anyways, besides missing my father every day. She had to be a strong woman, raising me by herself and finishing the construction / remodel on our house that was only half finished through her own power. She never gained the respect a man would have had dealing with the handy workers of various traits, but she learned to become tough which also caused her to lock her feelings away in order to display this strong front. Even towards me she kept her wall up, towards her own flesh and blood. I knew she cared about me and loved me, I always knew, she just never said it to me and I missed the affection I had come to know and love from my father. 

I don’t know if my mother changed or if it was me realizing how important it was to convey feelings. My father taught me in his absence that we can never take anything for granted because we might never get a second chance. And so it was that while my heart and my feelings opened during this Rhapsody (an effusively, enthusiastic or ecstatic expression of feelings), it was the opposite for my mother and her feelings and her heart hardened during that same time. Yes, she choose to be by herself for all the years that followed my fathers death and she never remarried. Sometimes I think that it is only me who can understand her reasonings behind the unspoken words. She doesn’t have to say anything and still I already know that my father was her soulmate, he was the one and only for her. A play of words that couldn’t find a better example as describing the love that lived between my parents. 

I never realized how much it impacted my mother that I left her and my country to come to America. How could I, we never talked about feelings in any way or form. By now you could say, she had become an expert at hiding her emotions, with a poker face that left no clues. Over the years she became bitter that I left her behind and we drifted apart. We almost became estranged and for many years I felt that we knew each other as people, but not as family and definitely not like mother and daughter. She held a stubborn grudge, unable to forgive me and it didn’t matter how successful I had been in my second country of home, all there was, was that I had left her. Going home to visit was not always an easy thing as the first week was wasted and filled with the tension of her despising the decisions I had made. It took me over twenty years of trying to rebuild a relationship between us and thank god for that it finally happened. I nearly gave up a few times and so I understand when you remember that side of me, the frustration through it all, but you forget the internal struggle to continue the fight for her love and acceptance. It took many arguments and heartaches to finally break through to her, to finally give her something she could agree on and be proud of. It was nothing short of a miracle to have her back. 

And finally she allowed me to see a few glimpses of the mother that I knew as a child. I saw her laugh again and have great fun, do spontaneous, silly things and just live a little. An inner child that was locked away for many years because of the extreme difficulty and the seriousness of events that had transpired. I could never hold anything like that against her and my heart was always aching for the tough life she had to endure. Many might not understand her, but it is me who does and who imposes the question to imagine how your life would have turned out if you had lost your soulmate at such an early age? What would you have done, or would have to do to survive? Chances are none of us can answer this and we don’t know how strong we truly are until having to be strong is all there is left. I think she did just fine and even though I know that at some point I let her down in a big way by leaving her behind, I am the work of labor and love that comes from my parents. She sacrificed much for me and I can never thank her enough for helping me turn out alright.

So when you say that I am just like my mother, I know it is in comparison that I hold on to the past, that I hold a grudge or that I can’t forgive. I might even agree with a few things that could fall into a statement like this, for we both had to be strong women and life didn’t always made it easy for us. And yet you won’t hear me complaining because life had a plan for me all along and has made me into the person I was always meant to be. I will always be my mothers daughter and just maybe I was meant to be “Just like my mother” and I take that as a compliment.

Posted in Adventure, Human spirit, Inspiration, Life, Mother nature, music

3 Day Music Video Challenge

Life has become very hectic in my little corner of the world and a few weeks ago I was nominated once more for the 3 Day quote challenge by my dear friend who is unfortunately tied up with life as well at tarnishedsoul.wordpress.com. Regardless of such, please stop by his blog and give him some love. May he know that he is missed and find the time to see us more. I’m a sucker for quotes as they hold infinite wisdom to me. I have lived through quite a few, but then haven’t we all?

I decided to change it up a bit and introduce a music challenge instead of doing the quote challenge again. Music has always been a huge part of my life and it is not just one style or genre that appeals to me. I believe that music begins where words stop to convey, taking on a multitude of meaning to the listener. Music is a little like the motions of my mood, not that it is a roller coaster but there are up’s and down’s and after all it was The day of up’s and down’s that I was born on. Some days you just need a certain beat to celebrate and rock out to, while on other days you may need the soothing and comforting effects that a melody can bring to your life.

There is the European in me that loves the beats of dance music, the rocker that listens to classic rock while driving probably a little too fast. Windows down in the car, or surrounded by freedom on the motorcycle, (Music playing in my mind only) and happy to be alive. There is some country rock in me that soothes my soul and makes me pause to contemplate life, and there is the undeniable unique music from my home country that reminds me of good times spent with friends and family. It’s not about the music style, but more about the experience, the time shared together which I miss more and more. Further there is Reggae which is just plain old “Feel good, happy music” to me and you cant help but put on your happy face and feel a bit feisty while listening to it.

I added a new music genre a few years back which is alternative and it has become my most listened to genre. Something changed within and it was no longer only the beats that dominated the liking of a song, but more the emotional connection to the lyrics. The meaning of the song, whether it was a personal theme song filled with motivation to reach for the stars or something else, there was always a deeper meaning.

I love to explore new music and thought it would be cool to do a 3 Day music video challenge. To learn about new artists and the feelings behind the liking. Please know that if you are nominated, you are under no means obligated to participate but if you are, then I can’t wait to see your post.

The rules are simple:

  • One Music Video for a total of 3 days
  • Link back to the person that nominated you
  • A brief description what this song means to you and why you selected it
  • Nominate a fellow blogger to participate in the challenge

Here is my first Music Video and I hope you enjoy it. It’s about the human spirit, the strength that we find when there is nothing left but being strong. Sometimes life is nothing more than a big challenge and while you have to push yourself, there is always a way and a choice that is yours to behold. I connect to the lyrics, even more so now that a major change is upon me, but they also remind me of my adventures in nature and being wild and free for the time, no matter how long I was given. I’m often nothing more than a big kid and it serves me well in a world that can be frightening and a bit too serious at times. I am the underdog, the outlaw by not always fitting in and who Does not play well with others . The rules and expectations of conventional life are often not a good fit for me and I do become a bit like the renegade who is not afraid to say what’s on my mind. I lead to the beat of my own drum, not because I want to rebel but because it is the only way to stay true to myself. Sadly it’s often frowned upon, not received well or understood and therefore it’s not always accepted. However it is the very reason as to why you just have to run away sometimes, to be wild and free, to be able to be yourself. Let’s be renegades….

My nomination for Day 1 is my close friend David at hippiesartistsandfreaks.wordpress.com who also shares a special connection to music. Not only is he an amazing artist in touch with nature and the human spirit but also one of the nicest people you will ever encounter and I do hope we meet some day 😉

(PS. Hey I did it…embed, embed, embed :)….classic site)

Enjoy xoxoxxoxo