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BLUE is the new BLACK

During my time as an ER crisis worker, I was written up at least once a year for accumulated tardies.

I have also been put on levels for mistakes I made.

I am one of two individuals in the history of my department that was on a “level”. (Level three is termination.) How unfair right!?

Back story: When I first started, I got so mad about a PTO policy that changed; I impulsively went straight to the CEO. 🙈😬 Soon after, I began to receive levels for “minor” mistakes.

Upon receiving this level, I went into full-on JED mode (justify, explain, defend) a.k.a JJM (JOLIET JAKE MODE) to my boss.

I was FURIOUS at her audacity because I had stayed late the night before!

HOW DARE SHE!?

How dare THEY!!!”

I then exclaimed, “It was 7:01! Can’t you let this slide?” (What about the other six late clock-ins? 🤔)

I pissed and moaned about it to my coworkers.

One day, a nurse in another department candidly told me “I’ve been on a level before. You know what? It’s just to help you learn. It’s not like a jail sentence.”

When I stopped blaming, I was able to see clearly what I did wrong and how I need to change. I DESERVED the LEVEL.

This level was about a choice I made.

This level was about a mistake I made.

My justification that it’s “no big deal” or my valid reasons for committing this violation does not matter.

It is a rule, policy, procedure etc. and I broke it. PERIOD.

I needed to THINK.

I needed to THINK, With MY BRAIN, Not the internet.

OWN IT. Learn from it. Accept. Admit. I.was.wrong.

I needed to feel the pain and shame of the consequences in order to change.

I preferred to “get in trouble” individually than have my whole team suffer for my mistake, my ignorance, and my stupidity.

Just as I HATED it when I was a kid and we lost recess because of the one asshole who wouldn’t stop talking. I never wanted to be that kid.

I didn’t want to be that coworker.

Takin one for the team.

This “dumb” rule and it’s “unfair” consequences is to prevent much bigger mistakes from occurring in the future.

I attended a mandatory re-training, with clear concise examples and the consequences if not followed-ahead of time. Also annual trainings to keep this fresh in our mind.

Oh and remember how I went straight to the CEO when I wanted to have a tantrum about what I didn’t like? I learned to follow the chain of command. It is there for a reason. I get it…now. If I didn’t make those mistakes, perhaps I wouldn’t have.

Do I deserve to lose my pension because I made some bad choices?

Should my entire department lose their pension because of my mistake?

Speaking of losing pensions, here is another authoritative tale where I believed I was right…This is in regards to the countless tickets I have received for speeding, failure to come to a complete stop at a red light prior to turning right, and blowing red lights.

After my violation, I would respectfully hand over my insurance card and license to the police officer with a sweet, innocent smile. Sometimes, in a vain attempt to get out of the ticket, I may have flirted a little.

This manipulative behavior on my part would be dismissed with a “nice try” nod or a wink as if to acknowledge the effort. Then the police officer did their job by handing me the ticket.

Later, while attending court to fight this outlandish claim: I smiled, apologized and respectfully presented my case.

After all, I had VALID reasons why!!!

However, deep down I knew the truth.

I wasn’t truly sorry….I was sorry because I got caught. Perhaps this ONE time I may have been right; but what about was 27 other times I made the same mistake and didn’t get caught.

I was only sorry for my behavior because it hit me where it hurt. 💰 💴 ⏰ I could not afford the consequences.

Therefore, I was not GENUINELY sorry, but feeling sorry for myself.

After my presentation at court, you know what the police officer or judge would reply 97% of the time? Something like:

“You weren’t even close.”😂😎

I didn’t get out of it.

I didn’t have a tantrum. I didn’t persuade anyone in powerful positions that “I know” to get me out of it.

I was stuck with the consequences as I should be.

I paid the $200 fine. I went to traffic school. I drove more cautiously to avoid future infractions. I learned to stop the behavior.

Should I have gotten a lower fine because I’m a woman?

Should I have gotten a lower fine because women earn less than men?

Would a man have gotten out of this?

Was I just pulled over because I am a female?

Was I written up because I am a female?

I don’t know all the answers but I’m leaning toward a hard NO. My point is, we are all humans and make mistakes. I can at least own my part. Shouldn’t we all?

Some make worse mistakes than others and those individuals need to receive their appropriate consequences.

We still ALL EQUALLY need consequences to continue to learn and function in society. Yes, of course there are racist and sexist people in this world; but there are many more who are not.

What happened to accountability?

I knew the rules and I still chose to break them.

I am aware if I commit a serious crime, I go to jail. No getting out of it. I respect my freedom so I obey the law. (See below for Chris Rock- obey the law skit)

I DO NOT deserve special treatment because I am a woman.

I SHOULD NOT be let off easy because I’m really, really good looking 😜(Zoolander). (See halo effect)

That is the BOTTOM LINE.

There are NO excuses.

There are no valid reasons.

I should receive consequences and re-training.

It never even OCCURRED to me to argue with police or judges.

Perhaps some would call this an example of “white privilege.”

I call it RESPECT FOR AUTHORITY.

I call it RESPECT for our COUNTRY.

I call it RESPECT for the RULES.

I call it respect for those HUMAN BEINGS who are doing their extremely difficult job to enforce the rules.

I don’t know about you, but I NEED rules.

I need authority.

I’m not sure when all this ENABLING started, but it has to stop.

In a time, not too long ago, we used be like this:

A time when people laughed instead of being offended about everything.

How can we get back to this? Where we laughed and celebrated our differences?

How can we move forward from today and stop being so divided? In the end, we are all equal human beings, aren’t we?

Perhaps making everyone read this book below as a mandatory part of being a United States Citizen would help us remember.

Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don’t Know https://www.amazon.com/dp/0316478520/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glc_fabc_3j2aGb1RGFC5V

Regardless of what any of us think of our previous president, he is human too. One person cannot be held responsible for everything. There is a LONG chain of command that is also accountable. We NEED Many LEADERS! Like thousands!

Addendum: https://markmanson.net/newsletters/mindfck-monday-66?vgo_ee=uZEOWBYMFd2rLfzi%2BJIpDmQOP8ZXmRzMvz3Yw%2BcA7gI%3D

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Sympathy For The Devil

I may not KNOW a lot of things but one thing I do believe for sure is that BOB (Esai Morales) from La Bamba is one BADASS mother fucker. He has to be THEE coolest and most captivating actor on the planet.

He should have won an OSCAR for best supporting actor for his performance; (Esai Morales) truly MADE the movie.

He literally SEDUCES the audience.

That being said, what I find most ironic is that no matter what he did or said, I still liked his character. I thought he was hilarious, I still do. What is even more puzzling, is that he is a complete dick.

(Side note: Esai also appeared on Ozark for a season or two- I was immediately entranced. )

As a woman, I completely identify with Rosie. As a mother and wife, I empathize with how she feels; I hate how she is treated by Bob. What was also puzzling is that she ANNOYED me. 🙈

I can actually feel her pain, grief, & confusion. You can see it written on her face. The “wait…wtf-just-happened?” face. The “how-in-the-hell-did-I-end-up-here” face. She displays this facial expression the majority of the movie. We all know that face.

This puzzled face☝🏻The “Rosie” face.

We all know that feeling: When you realize you’ve been had. You got screwed over. The worst part about it, the majority of it was your own doing. You assumed. ASS-U-ME.

I get how she assumed as well. Any woman in a could easily fall into Bob’s trap; especially the married ones. Bob’s seductive allure could have wise woman entranced in his spell: After Bob flirts with you: Huh? What kids? What husband? You don’t have a job you say? Ballsy. Hot…You drink every day? Wild & crazy. You live in your mom’s trailer? Sounds cozy. Humina Humina 😍🥰😛

I am embarrassed to admit this, but I remember thinking: Awwww just leave him alone Rosie.. it’s your own fault you got yo self knocked up

☝🏻This is the work of the devil.👆🏻

I STILL liked him after that horrible, disrespectful and honest statement by Bob. Like “Dayyyuuumm.” Why?

Currently, I am an adult and an educated & wise woman, yet I still like Bob. Wtf!? How come? 1. Clearly excellent acting by Esai Morales 2. Amazing directing

However, I am not satisfied with this. Inquiring minds want to know!!!

I was concerned with my reaction when I watching this movie recently. When the mother, Connie Valenzuela, minimized Bob’s cartoonist abilities and reminded him that he is about to become a father, I thought: Jeez Connie, buzzkill, what did you have to go and do that for!? Why don’t you get out of Richie’s ass and pay attention to poor Bob. He is trying. POOR BOB

Poor Bob: your womanizing, chauvinistic, selfish, entitled, immature, unemployed, alcoholic, manipulative, man-baby-son who just was released from prison.🤔 (Bob sounds like a real catch on paper doesn’t he?🤥😂)

Idle hands are the devil’s workshop; idle lips are his mouthpiece.Proverbs 16

From a biological & genetic standpoint, Bob does what Bob does best. Bob is a an alpha male who is genetically predisposed to flock his sexy shit to attract females. Bob does whatever possible to get laid; ultimately procreating more human beings to populate the earth. (Biology 101: It is vital for males to compete for reproduction and for females to choose between those competing males.

If a member of the opposite sex finds your tail, your song, or your dance moves sexy, you will have a chance to fulfill your primary biological role as a member of your species: to reproduce.

https://biogeoplanet.com/how-do-animals-find-mates-sex-and-sexual-selection/

This is “Bob’s” “primary biological role” aka his job and he rocks it. He got Rosie pregnant so now he needs to “move on” and to do this again.

It’s not his fault…yet. (Please don’t get angry, hear me out;)

From a biological/genetic standpoint, Bob is doing his job. He behaves how all male animals act. Bob is genetically predisposed to be what humans would consider “an asshole”.

The problem is, he also doesn’t know any better. No one has taught him otherwise. No one has had the chance to teach Bob to step above his biological urges.

Please don’t cause him to feel inadequate by making him have to THINK.

Don’t make him feel like a failure by asking him to have COMPASSION or EMPATHY? That is NO FUN.

What a DRAG it is getting old.

What would cause a human being to behave this way? Or to treat women this way?

Bob’s True Story & my psychological interpretation😜:

Just like Rosie, Connie also hooked up with a bad boy at a young age and got herself impregnated (with Bob.) The hot, sexy biological father took off.

I know you “love him” Rosie, but unless you want to cook dinner on his motorcycle…

Connie then met someone else (Steve) and Connor married Steve when Bob was two years old. Steve loved Bob and treated him as his own. Steve and Connie then had a child, Ritchie. Ritchie was a reflection to Connie what she did right=Ritchie=golden boy. However, Bob was a reminder of her bad decisions.

Connie, Steve, Bob & Ritchie were doing well together for a while. Bob assumed Steve was his biological father and Bob loved him.

In an interview, the real Bob Morales states his life took a bad turn when he was 14 and his parents (Connie & Steve) separated.

“I moved in with my mom while Ritchie went with my dad. One day I told my mom that I wanted to live with my dad and and that’s when my aunt told me ‘Why do you want to go with him if he’s not even your real father.’Bob Morales 

Despite Steve conveying to Bob that he loved him as his own son, the shock devastated Bob. Also, it was horrible timing for Bob to find this out because soon after this discovery, Bob began high school.

Bob was getting into fights frequently so he stopped attending. Instead he gave money to the homeless nearby who would buy him alcohol.

While his now single-mom was working two jobs, Bob was not going to school and had no structure all day, no guidance, no direction=idle time which is the DEVIL’s playground.

Therefore, Bob ended up going to a detention center from age 12-17! Connie, his mother, signed him over as a ward of the state. He did not see his family that entire time he was locked up.

👆🏻AKA Go Fuck yourself Connie. I will never let a woman hurt me again.

The first time Bob saw his mother or Ritchie in years; was the day of Steve’s funeral. Which also means he didn’t get to say goodbye to Steve or to grieve properly.

Bob learned to adapt to his lonely life by becoming the life of the party. He learned how to get what he needed by finding comfort in women and selfishly move on. This probably soothed his resentment toward his mother for while, but then he felt guilty; so he drank the pain away.

Of course he was jealous of Ritchie. Ritchie got his Dad and his Mom. He got nobody.

The point is that all of US are capable of evil depending on what we are exposed to.

I thought of this blog when I was about to bitch at my son for not cleaning up the mess he made after making quesadillas. I realized that I can’t assume he knows how. Instead, I showed him how clean it up. I told him that this is what I expect. I didn’t talk to him like he was stupid. I thanked him for making his own food. I didn’t clean it up for him. This is the only way they learn.

Mothers: We cannot assume that our sons are just going to know how to treat women when they’re older. We cannot assume that their Dad’s are going to teach them either. Most Dads are working their ass off and are never home. (Probably chasing tail 😂 not knowing why. Kidding!🤪)

We have to teach OUR SONS what WE want from them so they can learn how to GIVE this to their future partners. We need to teach them about affection, connection, friendship, compatibility, respect, and the long term.

We have to teach them that this may be a biological urge to continue to chase women and populate the world, HOWEVER, we are not animals.

It costs a lot of time, money, energy to raise a human child properly into a respectable adult.

We need to teach them that human females can be hot and smart. Women can be attractive, fun, brilliant, and confident. We have to teach them, not ASSUME, that a Human FEMALE’S purpose is not to populate the world.

It’s Biology Rosie- kidding! You can have both!

We also have to teach our daughters: What they tolerate will become their future. Being a victim will not get you anywhere.

It’s OUR job to ALSO teach the FUTURE MEN of this world these skills. We need to teach them how to love unconditionally. Parents need to be a TEAM.

There is a chapter in this book on how we “go easy” on our sons because we don’t think they can manage it all and are tougher on our daughters 🙈

https://markmanson.net/love

https://markmanson.net/compatibility-and-chemistry

#markmanson

#ericthomas

#glennondoyle

#freedom

Adult Goldilocks

As a mental health clinician, I have the right to diagnose myself. Lately I believe I have been suffering from MULTIPLE OZARK PERSONALITY DISORDER. (MOPD)

MOPD is located in the DSM-V: Diagnosis code: 69692020. ICD-10 Code: 2337.

Since quarantine, I have noticed that I am taking on more and more characteristics of these Ozark personalities. (You WILL definitely relate to this, whether you watch Ozark or not. Truly… no spoilers here, anything discussed is all pretty obvious.)

What I find ironic and hilarious is that my husband will no longer watch this show with me because he found the show “ridiculous” and “unrelatable.” He stopped after season one…typical. Season one of any show is comparable to a psych 101 class; basically playing just-the-tip with character development.Sheesh.

Anyways, the irony is, that the more outlandish and ridiculous this show becomes, the more I find it relatable.

Let’s be real, everything is ridiculous in the world right now. I mean who would ever think we would not be allowed to attend live sport events and there would be cardboard fans? Who would ever think that kids would not be attending school in person? Who would ever think that in the midst of massive change and uncertainty there would be a presdential election? I digress

These real-life events make some good old-fashioned, illegal activity seem refreshing. What’s the big deal about a dad who wants to make some extra bank on the side for his family?

Since we were encouraged to do nothing but sit at home, scroll on the phone and binge watch tv; we extinguished our coping skills. Now, everything is different at one time. All this change is just too painful for my brain to tolerate; my psyche has now split in order to protect my sanity…

Split Personality #1:The first episode of the third season of Ozark, Ben is introduced. He is a substitute teacher who seems pretty cool; but then he is exposed to the reality of tweens and smart-phones when a student begins to cry in class about a text with a photo received. The lack of eye contact, respect or response from the rest of the students infuriates the him. He then proceeds to take all the kids’ cell phones and throw them in a garbage. (I think this is a completely appropriate reaction.) He goes too far and throws them all into wood chipper. I find myself relating to this entire scene up until the last 17 seconds.

Take it easy Ben, you are just a sub. Substitute teacher: https://youtu.be/Dd7FixvoKBw

Split Personality #2: Ruth Langmore, who can make you blush with her raw cussin and brutal lack of filter. Ruth’s demeanor, even while having sex, gives off that don’t-fuck-with-me vibe that can make you cringe. She has also channeled her white-trashness into some useful business woman tips. What is cool as hell about her is she owns her mistakes; no excuses. Fuck is now a noun, verb, adjective, pronoun, adverb and a language in itself because of Ruth. Anyone else speak fluent fuck nugget?

Straight up…my Spirit Animal.

Personality #3 The matriarch of the show, Wendy Byrde, who manages being a mom and wife with political policies. Wendy Byrde is completely transparent with her kids, does whatever the hell she wants in her marriage and uses her political knowledge to commit illegal crimes legally.

First episode of season one: Wendy is an ordinary, stay-at-home mom who gave up her political career/power to raise her kids. Her life was uneventful and easy, and she was unhappy and bored. She thrives in chaos. She had a rough childhood. 👈🏻(This article is brilliant about her acting out when she doesn’t belong.) She comes alive while juggling negotiations with a mexican drug cartel and her power soars when she comes up with strategies to legalize her husband’s money laundering operation. Wendy spins these webs from the safety of her minivan.

Just like any mom does, “Wendy’s got this.” Mom’s know what to do. Wendy can handle almost anything and plow through the day, unaffected. However, what is so relatable: it’s the little shit that throws her over the edge. Everything is cool until her damn emotions slow her down.

She can blow off a call from a drug lord👇🏻.

She can answer her kids tough questions without missing a beat.

Wendy’s-mentality: Don’t sugarcoat anything. Throw us a bone and let us know where we stand. Mama Byrde: OK, here’s a bone…straight up your ass.

TO HUSBAND: “Quite Frankly, I Don’t Give A Damn If You Like It Or Not, Cause I Feel Pretty Good About It. It’s A Good Idea, And I Did It For Our Family. What Did You Do Today… For Our Family?” Wendy Byrde (boom)

Marty replies flatly: “I bought a strip club.” (He is pretty bad ass but I haven’t gone numb yet;)

Everyone has a weakness and Wendy’s is: she cannot handle her brother and his “irrational” behavior. Why can’t her brother just understand that they are laundering money for a mexican drug cartel and everything is going according to plan? Why won’t he leave things alone and stop trying to make everything moral and just? Why doesn’t her brother “get it” that it is normal to be disintegrated in an acid barrel when you stand up to the cartel’s lawyer or you work with the FBI? Why won’t he stop behaving like a toddler and involving the police? Jeez…

Wendy. loses. her. shit. with her brother. The flooding of emotions causes her to get hammered in a parking lot in her minivan for days. When she does eventually come home, she wants to hide under the covers. She doesn’t want to get out of bed. She doesnt care about any of the stuff she was relentlessly working toward. She lost her tenacity and drive. She fell apart.

Which brings me to my “Wendy Moment”. No I did not get hammered in my minivan. What are you nuts? I do not drive a minivan😜.

Backstory: The last seven months during this global pandemic, I’ve taken pride in that I’m a Gen Xer. I have been thriving in this chaos. Watch movies with my kids every night, psshh, my dream come true. I have loved not having to go anywhere. I accomplished so many projects and got in the best shape of my life. I was kicking ass at work and rolling with the changes. My relationship with my kids and husband has never been better. Even when I struggled with e-learning and juggled my kids being home while I was working; I persevered.

Then the little shit happened that threw me over the edge. School started for 2 days, then was canceled for two more weeks (something died inside me that day😜). I broke my own phone and had wait 6 days for a new one (I am still re-doing every password in my life). My daughter received her scoliosis brace and she was NOT happy. This clusterfuck of events has triggered me to split. These are all NORMAL, regular, solvable problems, yet I cannot deal. Like Wendy, I can deal with the crisis and big stuff. The little, unpredictable, emotional shit…not so much ..

👆🏻Mama Byrde broke into her old house in Chicago, then acted out by pulling an adult Goldilocks. She drank their beer and sat on their beds. She realized she no longer belonged to this life anymore.

MOPD Examples:

Monday: I was picking up some girls for a volleyball camp carpool and my friend was talking briefly about her day to me as a elementary teacher; now teaching her students online. It sounded unbearable, extremely stressful and overwhelming. A flashback of me teaching my daughter in May, triggered a depersonalization episode. It was as if I was hovering above both of us, looking at our life thinking “this cannot be real.” Similar to the Wendy-Goldilocks moment when she realized she did not belong in that life anymore.

The no longer knowing is terrifying.

The not knowing how to do our job, not knowing how to be a parent, not knowing how to behave in public (That awkward-should we hug, I want to hug but, are you hugging?…)

Everything we once “knew for sure” we no longer know.(split) In comes Ruth Langmore: “This is crazy. I don’t know shit about FUCK!”

Tuesday 9/28/2020 – I Drive kids to school, attempted to listen to the news on my way home. The discussion about the presidential debate …Flood of emotions …I walk past my office, get in bed and hide under the covers…(split) Ben Davis “I will not fall into line with the others. What you walked into is normal… this is all normal….No, nope, no it’s not …smh…” (split) In comes Ruth again…

“What are you going to do, kill me? you bitch wolf?

☝🏻Ben the sub: insubordinate and churlish☝🏻
Wednesday: My son was excused from school for a golf tournament. I drive him to golf course at 5:30am. By 8:46am: My son has a golf-injury, I shit you not. He hit a ball, it ricocheted off a tree and knocked him in the chin. He was gushing blood apparently. I had to stop working and bring him to urgent care to get stitches. The day was shot. Anything my family said to me after that, I replied:
Kid: “I’m going to ride my bike to Dunkin.”
.
Me: “The fuck you are.”
.
Kid: “I’m going to the skate park.”
.
Me: “The fuck you are.”
. Everyone just stay here, stay safe, stay uninjured. But…wait…we already did that…and that’s not living. Of course I thrived when we were all in a bubble. Nothing ever happened. We were all zombies. That’s not normal. It was a nice break; a reality check on what’s important. Yet it is all a blur. You don’t remember the nights you got plenty of sleep. You remember the nights you almost died in a field while you were at a “sleepover.” “Ok, ok you can ride to Dunkin after you do the dishes, and get decaf”. Look both ways when you cross the street (dipshit).”

“Ok. Ok you can go to skate park after you take out the garbage. You better wear helmet, knee pads, elbow/wrist guards…and here’s some bubble wrap (dumb ass).”

In the end, the little shit is all that matters and that must be why it’s so hard. -Quillan Kelly-Dunn

#Beyourself, #brenebrown, #freedom, #opportunity, #simonsinek, brene brown, davidkesler, glennondoyle, Grief, unlockingus, vulnerability

Quarantine-ING

DO-Ing

typing, writing, blogging, documenting, lifting, texting, Editing, painting, cleaning, spraying, wiping, exercising, scrubbing, folding, washing, bringing, dropping, returning, buying, framing, ordering, shopping, selecting, carrying, drinking, posting, networking, punching, pushing, pulling, decorating, eating, spending, clicking, entering, hanging, filling, loading, unloading, tapping, cutting, pasting, organizing, sorting, driving, downloading, uploading, swiping, scrolling, teaching, knowing, competing, disciplining, tweeting, taming, fearing, sorting, worrying, numbing, controlling, binging, guessing, confusing, dying, producing, moving, locking, journaling, questioning, debating, arguing, avoiding, fixing, finding, searching, planning, resisting, wishing, looking, filling, running, circling, drowning, refusing, fighting…

BE-ing

Sitting, sleeping, watching, hydrating, laughing, smelling, crying, listening, hearing, seeing, dancing, playing, talking, touching, baking, prepping, praying, snuggling, creating, bathing, planting, soaking, replenishing, strengthening, zooming, holding, learning, riding, napping, enlightening, dreaming, calling, connecting, hugging, stopping, quieting, soothing, reflecting, enjoying, smiling, loving, empowering, grieving, pausing, living, giving, feeling, staying, appreciating, facing, unplugging, growing, resting, helping, healing, shining, hoping, fasting, unlocking, braving, allowing, permitting, surrendering

Which “ING” have you been doing?

Yea, me too…

I recognized this morning that “I’m doing it wrong.”

Weekend Goals

BE-ing

#greatpretender, #landmarkforum, Badassery, empath, Grief, gun control, Health & Wellness, march for our lives, vulnerability

Finding Time For Grace

I decided in the last year that I’m not cooking dinner anymore. I decided this but I still felt guilty like I “should” cook dinner.

I definitely had this unrealistic vision of sitting down together every night, saying grace, eating a balanced meal and connecting about the highs and lows of our day. Reality: we end up fighting•everyone sighs in disgust when I put the food down• kids are never hungry because I have to feed them a “pre-dinner” because they are ravenous after school. Then a “post” dinner -again conveniently before bedtime. I make them breakfast, lunch, & snacks.

Kids have games, practices, homework, and us parents may have unfinished work from both our full time jobs and side jobs, traffic to fight and no energy left to use 15 dishes and load dishwasher for the 2nd or 3rd time that day.

Last year, one of my friends with five kids, 11 and under, said to me “I don’t cook”. I was in awe. She said that sometimes she goes to Mariano’s to get chicken and they grill it for her for free. Sometimes they have sandwiches. She doesn’t cook…ever.

She is my hero.

However, she does have time and energy to do fun things with her kids, coach them and spend time with them. Kids will remember her presence; not the amazing dinner she cooked. I decided to do this too, however I always had this nagging “should” guilt. This is also exacerbated when my daughter exclaims “you don’t feed me.”

I wrote myself a permission slip this week to myself, for myself, that I no longer have to cook dinner and permission to not feel guilt. (Concept by Brene Brown). A permission slip, means “it’s okay”& “I’m off the hook.” Like how you write a permission slip to excuse your kids for stuff; do it for yourself.

I stopped comparing myself to other families and feeling like a loser because other people eat dinner together. It might work for other families and their schedule. For my family, it doesn’t work… ever. It never has and I doubt it ever will.

My kids are old enough now to read directions and make their own dinner. You want chicken nuggets, go for it. Frozen pizza- I don’t care- go ahead. I surrender this battle. If my husband wants dinner, he can cook it, we both work. He also is a way better cook with less mess. I’m done with this standoff every night on who will suck it up and cook. 😂

Since giving myself permission and by letting go of this guilt; I have felt very liberated and free. One day last week we were all home together so I actually cooked dinner because “I felt like it.” There was no fighting, kids were starving because it was like 7:30pm.😂

I discovered that I now have more time for other things than making dinner and saying grace. I now have time to notice grace.

Despite my kids going to Catholic school, I struggle with my faith at times. With all the tragedies and evil that is done, it is difficult to not become jaded.

Which in turn may cause a person to question their faith and remembering how to stay on their own path.

How can you experience joy while people are getting killed by some senseless massacre? How are you supposed to feel content and at peace when there is terrible illnesses in this world? I feel like a real asshole experiencing frustration about my kids game conflicts or having fun with my friends when there is so much pain in the world.

I put this audiobook on hold at the library a long time ago (like 15 weeks). I forgot about it. The book became available at exactly when I needed it.

All chapters are summaries of different super soul Sunday’s that Oprah has done. (Now you may have a pre-judgement about Oprah as I once did and immediately say, “I don’t like Oprah. She bugs me. She’s full of herself.” Oprah will tell you and admit “I am full of myself, I have to be full in order to give.”) I now understand her more and realize I was judging her instead of paying attention to what her true intention is…to serve others.

Every chapter of this book gives you something truly thought provoking.

I obviously cannot write everything out for you to read and highlight it all. That’s why it’s a book, not authored by me. But, I can share how this book impacted me:

I see patients at my job who are disabled. Many have dementia and Alzheimer’s. I have to keep my boundaries up at work to stay unbiased, objective and remain detached. This is healthy and necessary to prevent burn out. These boundaries are to prevent myself from becoming too emotionally attached. The brain is truly fascinating how it can be trained to do certain things. My “fortress“ goes up in work mode as if I push a button in my brain. It just…happens.

I am sure police officers, firemen, nurses, doctors and anyone in service industry all possess a similar capability. It’s essential for survival.

Anyways, I am at home where my boundaries are not up and going through the motions of doing this online training for work…it was on Alzheimer’s.

Alzheimer’s makes me cry.

Alzheimer’s makes my heart hurt.

Alzheimer’s makes me question my faith.

I don’t want to feel this.

I don’t want to think about it.

I don’t want to think of this harsh reality. I don’t want to think of my friends who have had parents go through this. I don’t want to think about my mother-in-law.

This CBT work training was 10 chapters, I was on chapter 6 when I felt this overpowering need to stop.

I was becoming crabby, frustrated and sad.

I wanted to keep bulldozing through it and “get it done”. Then things continued to happen; my kids needed me, I got a phone call, I had to go to the bathroom…etc.

Finally I surrendered and gave up attempting to finish the work training.

I woke up yesterday morning on my own… very early. I took this opportunity to “get this dumb training done.”

I was listening to the book-Chapter 8 on GRACE; Oprah interviews Dr. Caroline Myss.

(All the chapters are extremely well done and the audio is excellent because she has the actual recordings from the show.)

Oprah asks Dr. Caroline Myss, “What is Grace?”

Caroline: “Grace is something that will prevent you from doing something that you cannot take back. Grace comes in and says “you will be OK”. Grace is a power that comes in and transforms a moment into something better.”

Oprah asks Caroline “How does Grace work?” .

@caroline.myss: “When you are in a huge argument and you are so angry and you want to say something so intentionally hurtful and mean…and that inner voice says, “You sure you want to do that?” …That’s Grace. 🤯

Finally, something I can use!😂

She also answers questions raw & real like:

“What is prayer?”

“What is your definition of God?”

“How do you know when to surrender and let go?”

“How do I know I am making the right decision?”

You have to listen to this for yourself to discover your own enlightenment.

I will share though, Dr. Caroline Myss’s concept of “The Sacred Contract”

“The shared contract is the reason you were born. It’s not a literal document. It’s a spiritual document that our soul recognizes. It’s the feeling of “there’s something I know I was meant to do.” It’s a fundamental agreement that you simply feel because it reveals itself to you through ideas, coincidences, synchronicity’s, obligations that you can’t get out of, mad love you can’t stop, serendipity’s. People are in the dark about their reason for being here. People define it by what they want instead of what they have. People suffer when they pursue a life or chase a dream that doesn’t belong to them.”

So I listened and cried…I was vulnerable and my heart was wide open. (I try to avoid feeling this way🙈 Hello white claw, amazon, donuts, gossip, Netflix binges.) This time I sat with it. I felt it. I resisted the urge to run away and “do” something else. I resisted the urge to stop “feeling”.

I got it together eventually and turned on my computer to finish my training for work on Alzheimer’s.

There it was…

Chapter 7 SPIRITUAL & PALLIATIVE CARE FOR ALZHEIMER’S

Right there…was GRACE.

If I read this last night while crabby, frustrated and jaded- I would’ve missed what I really needed to learn. Thankfully grace intervened telling me to take a break, it’s ok. Grace was giving me permission.

I was now able to read this chapter on spirituality and what individuals with Alzheimer’s need with an open heart and open mind; despite my struggling with my faith the day before. Instead of being annoyed and complaining about this training I had to do; I was exceptionally grateful that I was given this opportunity from my employer to learn this. I realized by “hurrying up” and “just trying to get it done”; I would have missed the joy and pain of learning this.

I oddly found clarity by feeling both sadness and gratitude/joy and pain simultaneously. I was able to see the answer to my earlier question about “how am I supposed to feel joy without guilt?” to fully grasp and recognize what I read last week in Brene Brown’s Braving the Wilderness below:

“The more we diminish our own pain or rank it compared to what others have survived…the less empathetic we become. When we surrender our own pain to make others feel less alone… or to make ourselves feel less guilty… we deplete ourselves of what it feels like to be fully alive and fueled by purpose.” -Brene Brown

Below is Caroline Myss Ted talk.

https://youtu.be/-KysuBl2m_w

Caroline Myss

http://www.supersoul.tv/tag/caroline-myss

Brene Brown On Practicing civility

https://brenebrown.com/articles/2017/11/08/gun-reform-speaking-truth-bullshit-practicing-civility-effecting-change-2/

Permission slips

https://youtu.be/NY6hZf6kI4g