Addiction, coaching, Law of Attraction, Love, Motivation, parenting, women

Is true love actually possible?

I had an interesting conversation today with a woman who I have been getting to know. She is currently married, though not very happily, and she said that she doesn’t think she knows anyone who is truly happily married. She said that she is not even sure that true love exists or that any man is capable of truly loving her. This was not said as a self esteem problem. This was not doubting her worth. It was doubting the capability of the man.

I found this especially interesting because I have been in a few relationships over my life, though I am single now, and I know that 3 of them have loved me completely. I know that there is no doubt in my mind that their love was real. The first 2 were mostly timing and growing. We were in our 20s when we got together and though the love and relationships were nice, as we got older we just grew apart.

The last was my son’s father. We loved each other fiercely and unconditionally. There was no doubt in my mind about that. Now, that did not mean that we had to stay together. In fact we loved each other and our son so much that we eventually realized that being apart was the best option. He was an addict. He had demons that he just couldn’t get away from, and eventually they killed him. But I loved him, and he loved me completely.

We were constantly off and on depending on his sobriety. This was very confusing and disruptive to our son. Eventually I had to just put an end to it. Not because I didn’t love him, and not because he didn’t love me.. but because we both loved our son.

I think that the problem with finding “true love” is that people want the fairytale, but no one lives “happily ever after”. There are always problems, and there are always lulls, and people are always taken for granted as time goes on. None of that has to do with love.. I used to say that love is not a feeling.. it is a verb. Love is an action that we have to do everyday. I am a huge Doctor Who fan, and in an episode he states that “Love is a promise” and I feel that too.

When we were first thinking about and discussing having a family Neil and I talked about a lot of things. We were planning on getting married.. we were just saving up. I wanted a HUGE affair.. I never got it. He relapsed and my father died and after a while a wedding wasn’t all that important. But my FAMILY was. That’s what we had decided when we chose to have our son. We are now family. We will love each other forever. There was no leaving. Again.. that does not mean that we had to stay romantically linked or even live in the same house. When it became dangerous I had to tell him to leave.. but it did mean that I was always his first phone call and he was always mine.

I recently remembered a time, about 6 months after my father had passed and Neil was out of rehab and things were getting good again. I had spent most of that time in yoga pants and a messy bun. On this particular day I put on real people clothes.. just jeans, but it was something. I let my hair down AND BRUSHED IT. I even put on a little makeup. I didn’t think much of it. I was just having a day that I could breath again. I walked into the dining room not thinking about it and I heard him audibly gasp. I actually took his breath away. He was even a little embarrassed by it, but he just said, “you look beautiful”. I remember how that made me feel. After months of grieving my father and over a year of heartache over Neil’s relapse I had been in quite a depression.. and there he was. Telling me how beautiful I look.. telling me that I actually take his breath away.

This man had seen me at my worst. He saw our son being sliced out of me “Aliens” style.. and I was the most beautiful thing he’d ever seen. He loved me.. and I him… and nothing bad that ever happened between us ever changed that.

After he died I had some conversations with his mother and some of his friends. They told me how through all of our ups and downs that he never said a bad thing about me. That he always talked about how amazing I was. How strong I was. What a great mom I am. He loved me.. emotionally.. and in his words and actions everyday. Even on his worst days.. he kept his promise.

Love is not a cure all. Love is not how it ends.. True love.. is family.. it’s forever. It’s calling them on their shit.. and telling them when you’re proud.. it’s taking the call when they overdosed and crashed their car. It’s cleaning up their sick father’s poop… it’s knowing.. that no matter what has happened between you, and no matter where anyone lives.. that person always wants what’s best for you and always has your back.

coaching, Motivation, Politics, women, Women's movement

Women’s Soccer and Fair Wages

I am a working woman. I am a single mother. I am an empowerment coach. I believe in equality of opportunity. I don’t understand what women are calling “fair” anymore. The US Women’s team won the world cup again. That is fabulous. I admit I am not a sports fan, but I can appreciate that they clearly worked really hard and did their job to win. I can give them credit where credit is due.

I believe that everyone should be acknowledged for their good works. I believe that everyone should be admired for stepping up and continuing to excel at whatever it is that they choose to do. I give all of the players on all of the teams recognition for fighting hard whether they win or lose.. they did their best and kept at it. I believe that more people should do that.

But as I said. I am a single working mom. I have a little boy, and of course he is the most amazing little boy to ever walk the Earth. No one could tell me otherwise. My little boy wants many things. My little boy deserves many things.. but, I’m a single working mom. My bills get tight. My expenses pile up. I only have so much, in the matter of money, that I can give to him. No matter how wonderful he is. No matter how much he helps around the house. No matter how good his grades are. No matter how much he tries I can’t buy him everything that he wants. I just can’t afford it.

Now that doesn’t mean that I don’t take his hard work into consideration. I know lots of people who pay their children for grades. I know kids that are making $10 or even $100 or more per A. I can’t afford that. He could get like 20 As in a term. I told my son that if he tries really hard and the effort is shown in his report card he can get $2 per A and $1 per B. Now that’s not a lot of money. That’s not going to get him the new Nintendo Switch that he so desperately NEEDS TO HAVE.. but $40 at this stage is a lot to me.

Now.. you’re probably asking what this has to do with professional sport.. well, everything. According to Mike Oznian, a writer for Forbes, the 2015 Women’s World Cup “brought in almost $73 million, of which the players got 13%. The 2010 men’s World Cup in South Africa made almost $4 billion, of which 9% went to the players.” And last year, the men’s World Cup in Russia generated more than $6 billion in revenue; the participating teams shared about $400 million. That is less than 7 percent of overall revenue. Meanwhile, the 2019 Women’s World Cup made somewhere in the region of $131 million, doling out $30 million, well more than 20 percent of collected revenue, to the participating teams. So here’s the thing.. The women are making more than the men… percentage wise.. and the women can’t possibly be paid $400 million when they only brought in $131 million.. it’s just math.

Now I hope things change. I really do. I hope now that the women are winning that more people will start watching. That more merch will be sold. That advertising sales will skyrocket.. and I hope that winning will help, but sometimes it doesn’t. Daniel Day Lewis has won 3 Oscars… and at last check Ryan Reynolds has won 0.. now.. don’t get me wrong, I love Deadpool as much as the next girl, but he doesn’t get paid the big bucks for winning awards. He makes his money by selling out theaters. The more money one brings in the more they receive.. and until Women’s Soccer generates more than $400 million they’re never going to make that much.  And then .. will they choose to take the lesser percentage?

bullying, coaching, Motivation, Politics, women

The Little Mermaid is Black

That’s it.. it’s a fact. Halle Baily (Not Halle Berry as some angry online opponents have thought) has been cast in the new “The Little Mermaid” movie. Apparently this is sacrilege. I had no idea that the fate of the world was to be determined by the color of a fictional mermaid’s skin.

Now for those of you who are not aware, The Little Mermaid is based on the Hans Christian Anderson tale in which a young mermaid falls in love with a handsome prince. She, as in the Disney tale, gives up her voice to the sea witch.. as well as her tongue, that’s left out, and given legs that can dance as no one has ever danced before. The catch, as there’s always a catch, is that she will feel piercing stabbing in her legs and her feet will bleed pretty much all the time. Not as adorable as the dinglehopper angle, but there it is.

As in the Disney version the mermaid’s only choice for remaining human and not dying is getting her beloved prince to marry her… ahhh.. happily ever after… only he doesn’t, and she dies. Yup.. that’s the story of the little mermaid.. or it was, until it was remade for film. Actually that particular story has been remade by different studios quite a few times.

In the original story the woman that the prince does end up marrying was being educated at “The Temple”. Given that there is no mention of specific area, there’s a probably chance that the Prince in question and the area involved was Hebrew.. and possibly the Middle East toward the Mediterranean Sea. In later adaptations she was blonde, which makes sense given Anderson was Danish and there is a heavy blonde population there.

Then Disney came out with their feisty red head. That was fun. I was a teenager at the time, but I remember being happy that it wasn’t another blonde, and to be quite honest the red was quite striking against the green and blue back drop of the ocean scenes. I read somewhere that’s why they chose to do it. Either way it worked, and people loved it.

Now there’s a new adaptation. This one is played by a young black girl and happens to be by the same studio who made the animated version that did so well.. and people are OUT OF THEIR MINDS! A lot of people are saying that it’s not a race thing but that the Little Mermaid just has to be a ginger.. because she was last time.. in that one other Disney movie. Funny.. I remember watching “Into the Woods”, another Disney adaptation of a collection of fairy tales and Anna Kendrick was cast as Cinderella… now I don’t know about you, but in my childhood Cinderella was ALWAYS blonde, and Miss Anna is definitely not blonde, nor does she play one on TV. There were no protests and bloggers and online rally cries to Made Cinderella Blonde Again. It was fine.. it was a remake, and the directors were free to cast whomever they chose. Even Disney.

What really surprises me is how many people want to blame children for the outrage. I have seen many people expressing that little ones will be confused by the change. That kids couldn’t possibly understand why they character looks so different this time. Well, I asked my 6 year old what he thought about a “brown” girl playing the part.. his response was, “ok”… that’s it. No clarification needed.. just ok.

Catwoman-KittNo one cared when Laurence Fishburne played Perry White in Man of Steel 2013, or when Eartha Kitt played Catwomen in Batman 1966, or Idris Elba played Heimdel in Thor 2011.. I mean maybe comic book geeks are just not that strict on continuity or cannon.. (sarcasm for those who don’t know any comic book geeks).. or maybe they understand that actors are to be judged not by the color of their skin.. but the content of their character. At any rate… it’s a movie people. Get over it.

coaching, Law of Attraction, Motivation, parenting, Wellness, women

Creating your own life

I have spent the last decade plus reading, watching, and learning as much as I can about the nature of reality as explained by everyone from Priests, Physicists, Psychologists and Self Help Gurus. I find all of them have a certain amount of credence, and to be honest most of them sat pretty close to the same thing. Reality is what you make it.

I am Catholic. To me this means that I believe in the idea behind the Bible.. I understand that the Bible was written by humans and that humans have the uncanny ability to put their own spin on everything, but when I speak with the clergy of my church or read the Bible myself I find a pattern repeating throughout. God helps those who help them self, Jesus is said to be quoted, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”.

Physicists have discovered with Quantum Theory that nothing happens in the real world without first being observed by consciousness. That our own observations and thoughts change the way the Quantum world plays out.

Psychologists have long said that we are all to take responsibility for our own actions and that the best way to do that is to understand our own feeling and how our thoughts control those feelings. The “chemical imbalance” often blamed for the plethora of mental illness are actually sparked in part by the words we feed to our consciousness everyday. If we are constantly telling ourselves that we are useless, depressed, and our lives suck.. our brains will produce less and less serotonin and/or dopamine and that’s exactly how we will feel. If we tell ourselves we are strong, and think about all of the wonderful things in our lives that we are grateful for then we will create more and more of those “happy” chemicals and we can change the way we actually feel about life.

Self Help Gurus have said pretty much all of this under the category of living in the “Now”, the Law of Attraction, Mindfulness… or whatever catchy name we all choose to identify with.

The reason why I find this information so incredibly interesting and incredibly infuriating is that it’s true, and most people choose not to believe it. When people come to me for help they want there to be an outside influence that can change their life. They want their problems to be someone or something else’s fault. When I explain to them that their life is an accumulation of their life choices and that to change it they just have to change the way they look at life and start making better choices people actually get mad at me.

It amazes me that people would actually choose to be a victim because that way it’s not their fault than to choose to be the hero in their own story. I know that for me I will always choose to be the driver in my own life. I know that things “happen to me”. I know that my life has not been perfect and I’ve had situations arise that weren’t my fault… but I was 100% responsible for how I handled them. If I messed up.. then I am 100% capable of fixing it. I will take that over victim-hood any day.

 

bullying, coaching, Health, Motivation, Wellness, women

Nike wants to help everyone get healthy

For those who may have missed it. Nike is supporting getting people healthy. I know that seems like something that should be applauded. It also seems like the kind of thing that they’ve always done. “Just Do It” was not about binge watching your favorite show. But now they have expanded their advertising and work out wear to include plus sizes.. and apparently this is just going too far for some people.

I’m not going to discuss the negative comments surrounding this launch. There is enough negativity to go around. What I do want to talk about is the importance that people who are not healthy feel that it is also their right to get healthy. As someone who has jumped up and down the scale over my lifetime I know that it is not easy to get out there and “just exercise”. I know that when I don’t feel comfortable in my own skin it makes it very difficult to let others see it giggle at the gym.

I have seen other posts about people (usually women) who do their best to make a change to their bodies only to be mocked and insulted for actually trying. The world is extremely hypocritical in this respect. Everyone is supposed to be strong and healthy and beautiful, but they aren’t supposed to work for it. I spend a lot of time on social media and there is so much shame out there it’s amazing anyone leaves their houses anymore. I am very thankful to have a support system around me that doesn’t ridicule me at my attempts at gaining health, and also doesn’t ridicule me if I fail, but not everyone is so lucky.

What I find most interesting about the negative feedback from the new Nike wear is that it’s actually active wear. It’s actually designed for people who intend to work out. People who are fit prefer to wear such clothes because it’s more comfortable and therefore easier to keep up with an exercise routine if wearing, and yet, there are people out there who are talking about how obesity should be fought… but in the same breath say that obese people shouldn’t be encouraged to exercise. How exactly is the obesity battle supposed to be won? Diet pills?

If there are people out there who are looking to get healthy, but don’t know where to start, or feel like they’ll be shamed, I hope that they see the mannequins of people who look like them and realize that they are not alone. There’s an entire market of people just like you wanting the same thing.

All I have to add is good on you Nike! And if you’re a person who feels like you may be “too big” to exercise or “too fat” to get healthy.. Just Do It!