Tag Archives: Caring

Challenges of Finding Balance

Mere Observations from different settings and perspectives:

Where this blog began in my thought processes was based on two people and their interactions. I could see both sides of the situation, the logic that was being employed by both, but where their dissonance was causing a “butting of heads” so to speak. They were failing to see each other’s perspective to find common ground and work together to a common goal. So I decided to write it out from multiple standpoints which I have seen the same moment play out repeatedly over the years.

Case Study 1: Corporate Structure

Corporations are merely businesses of a particular structure, usually we think of corporations as being larger businesses. This is not always true, but for this case study I am referencing larger businesses.

Each large business entity is still a business with an original intent. Businesses have goals to meet specific needs of their target consumers. They want to solve Problem X for Population A and in turn do so in a way to, sooner than later, make a profit. Their goal is to do a good job solving Problem X, for the lowest cost, to make both the consumer and their board and stock holders happy. Every business, large or small, functions on this very basic oversimplified concept.

With that in mind, businesses usually then want very skilled employees that are very dependable and efficient at fulfilling each particular role in the company. The more efficient and skilled the employees are, the better able they are to complete tasks properly and in a timely manner, saving money on both production labor and customer satisfaction. The more skilled and efficient, the more can be completed, so then companies often either seek better and better employees, or push their employees to continually reach for improving themselves.

Yet, at the same time, nearly all employees have similar goals. Their goals being self-improvement, higher efficiency, better skills sets. This is not only for a current position, but in case they need to seek a new position for any reason. They often are continually thinking about their lives, where they are headed, what they need or want to accomplish. Often family is a factor and a knowing that bigger family requires more resources and thus a step up in income. Always looking up to the next best thing. It is human nature to want improvement and most seek that improvement through incremental action steps.

Does the corporation ever notice when the employees accomplish a step of self-improvement on their own? Does the company ever reward the employees that do continually strive to better themselves? Does the company back off on the pushing of that goal when all of the employees are working together as best as could be expected? Is there ever acknowledgement of stasis- for the technology that currently exists and the employees available to the company, the company has reached the most optimum efficiency possible? Does the company ever step back and examine their fees structure and wage structure to examine if they are paying a living wage? For example, if one company hired a married couple with 2 children, would that family be able to survive on the wages that the company was paying those 2 individuals, or would the family have to create additional income? The same could apply to a singular individual. Does the company ever evaluate their choices in benefits to see if their choice is actually helpful to their employees, wages are even more vital if benefits do not cover what they are supposed to cover? For example, my worthless insurance through the activities position that paid for 2 labs, 1 chiropractic visit, and $4 of my pregnancy/birth; the policy cost me $700, my employer $3,000 and still left me with another $3,500 out of pocket. Big dollars for negligible worth.

At the same time, there is responsibility for the employee as well. Two sides must work together to accomplish a unified goal. Do employees ever contemplate the cost of their accidental lapses in the grander scheme? For instance, I missed the trash can and didn’t pick it up, if every employee did that once a day, how much extra housekeeping costs does that incur? Do employees ever contemplate the amount of overhead that companies incur, insurance and utilities, and do employees ever make strides to help reduce those costs? Accident free workplaces have lower company insurance costs. Turning off back-room and store-closet lights,etc. save on utility overhead. Using washable towels or hand-dryers help reduce waste and overhead. Working together with co-workers instead of arguing can not only solve problems more quickly, but lead to greater efficiency in general.

Every action of every work day has the potential to cost both the employee and the company in different ways, and both sides are equally responsible for coming together and thinking of the other to help improve the greater outcome for both sides. We’re all in this boat together, its up to us all whether we sink and swim, or row to shore.

Case Study 2: Small Business and their Dealings

Small business go through the same problems as large businesses, but the effects are often seen much faster. Where I currently work it can be seen in as simple as paper-towel usage when employees forget to utilize washable towels, costing the company extra cases of paper-towels. Even moments like efficiency being affected by laundry screeching to a halt when one practitioner gets behind or forgets their load has even been run (I’m most guilty of that one). However, there can often be other behind the scenes moments that take their toll.

One such moment I witnessed in another company was about a business deal going sideways. One person was the buyer, and as buyer they wanted to save as much as possible knowing that there would be long-term costs to look forward to. They wanted to make very certain they could handle the end result. Additionally, as any buyer would, they wanted to save money if possible. So they were looking for every possible option to require the seller to cover costs, and thus reduce potential long term concerns. (I might have benefited from a little of this perspective on my home purchase, but still consider myself very fortunate to have found a home in such good shape, so I’ll cross fingers that it pans out to my benefit long-term anyway.)

The seller however, was looking for someone that they trusted and felt was committed to the deal. Someone that would be able to follow through and assume the full responsibility of what the deal would entail long term. They were searching for a capable buyer that could handle all of the aspects of the result of the deal. The repeat requests for seller to pay began to come off as the appearance that the buyer might not be able to handle the results of the sale and everything might collapse anyway- that the buyer might not be responsible enough or financially stable enough (the same concern most mortgage companies deal with and thus require so much in financial documentation). Being that customers would be affected regardless of the longer term results, the seller might have been questioning if the decision to sell was a good idea, as perhaps another buyer might be a better fit.

As conflict ensued it was clear that neither was contemplating the other side’s view and neither was reaching for the common middle ground. The buyer could call it good with what was already requested, and the seller could state that certain things be a good faith equivalent to ernest money in a home buying situation. Some form of common ground like that could set the deal back on it’s original trajectory. (Of course that is where I lost track of things having moved on with my own journey, so I’m not sure if they were actually able to find that common ground or not. I sincerely hope they did, and that everything ultimately went smoothly.)

So even in small bushiness and small business deals, there is still a responsibility for both sides to find common ground and work toward common goals. There is still a responsibility for everyone to contemplate their actions and how they affect others involved. There is still a responsibility for us to attempt to reach for our better functioning, more efficient, more skilled selves as often as possible. Yet, is it just in our working lives?

Case Study 3: Relationships

Relationships also require the same thought processes and reaching for common ground.

Even if a relationship has a strong connection, that bond of love that is felt not seen, it can fall prey to many of the same challenges that businesses and employees see. That is when you start finding yourself in moments where someone feels hurt or disrespected. That is when you find moments of arguments and bickering. We are all human and do have lapses, and it is very important to find forgiveness for lapses, especially when they are unintended. However, if one partner in a close relationship has begun to disregard the importance of self-improvement and consideration of others, and how their daily actions affect the whole, that is then where relationships tend to fall apart. It is one thing to have a lapse and another to completely turn away from all of those considerations.

So I leave you with a final set of considerations that can apply to any relationship.

  • How are my actions affecting those I care about?
  • Am I improperly prioritizing things in my life: am I putting things before people, or am I putting recreation before necessary functions?
  • Am I creating extra work by being careless, forgetful, or disorganized?
  • Am I relying on others to catch my back too often?
  • Can I be more proactive, or another way to put that is am I being too lazy or blase?
  • Do I consider other’s feelings or their needs when I choose to do things, or choose to do them in a certain way or at a certain time?
  • Am I considerate of how my actions might affect overhead (bills, utilities, fuel, etc.) or scheduling concerns?
  • Am I supportive of others in a similar manner, kindly reminding them of things that are affecting my needs and asking politely for adjustments when needed?
  • Can I be doing more, or can I be more helpful?
  • Am I being a good listener and conveying that I do feel concern for their state of being and their needs?
  • Am I offering help with proper timing and with their needs considered?

If you find yourself reading these considerations, and gagging at the thought of putting them into action in a particular relationship, you might not be in a good relationship already. It might be time to move on from that relationship, but only you can answer that. If they seem challenging, but worth it, then you are on track for improving your stance in a solid relationship. Again, this can be any relationship, family, friend, or co-worker.

Again, this post was written merely because I noticed an overlapping trend, triggered by one particular pair of people in my life experience. I only hope for our society, our country, our world to reach more often for common ground and work toward common goals. Politics has definitely triggered that desire in me strongly, but my daily life reinforced it.

May we all find common ground and reach for common goals. May we all work together to solve problems and meet needs. May we find ways to better ourselves, and in that better our lives and the whole world. May we all have successful ventures and find a way to make ‘both’ happy. May we easily consider our actions on others and reach for ways to do better. May we all think of how our actions impact our daily existence in as many ways as possible. Finally, may we all reach for better.

Siva Hir Su

Watering continues.

The last couple of days I’ve been mostly well. There have been moments of confusion and moments of distress, but mostly I’ve stayed focused on what I want and generally buoyant. I really kicked butt yesterday doing 4 appointments consisting of 2.25 hours of continuous deep tissue. I approved the back-to-back stretch to accommodate helping the acupuncturist’s wife, whose neck had locked up- something I’m very familiar with.

Today is a day off, with the exception of one easy make-up home-visit appointment early this morning. Somehow, though the overcast weather and cooler temperatures have me hibernating.

I’m feeling my divine masculine today, fairly intensely. It has brought up lots of thoughts and feelings.

Somehow my thoughts keep cycling back to a man from my past, back when Anya was a baby: Rajesh. I keep remembering a point when I was at my worst, it’s been coming up frequently the last few weeks but today it’s really nagging at me.

Things had been happening involving him, his wife (my then best friend from high school), Nathan, and I. The specific memory is of when I lost control of myself and fell deep into depression and despair. Rajesh had found me crying and rocking myself in the upstairs closet. I was struggling so hard, fighting to regain control of my brain that I couldn’t even speak, and I remember him asking me something. I remember him standing there watching me and I remember wanting him to just hold me. To hug me and comfort me. After a moment, I can’t even define in time measurements, he said something and left. Moments later Nathan came in and held me.

Rajesh never did speak to me about that moment. I assumed he was either afraid to, or didn’t want to upset me. Yet to this day when the memory comes up I get embarrassed for not having been able to speak, and I still think about how much I just wanted him to show he cared by holding me. I really wanted to feel love in that moment and I respected him so much that I wished he had just loved me. Maybe he did and didn’t know how to show it, or simply how to respond in that moment.

I have no idea why this memory keeps resurfacing, and that’s ultimately why I wrote about it. I thought maybe writing it out would bring clarity. Yet I know that the state I was in means that the memory is incomplete. There are details my brain was unable to retain, which acknowledging that brings more confusion. Why now, nearly 13 years later, can I not shake it, and why does it flare my sense of my divine masculine.

I know that I am now in a much different mental space, mostly having defeated depression, and without a trace of medication. Thanks to Dr. Illardi’s “Depression Cure”. For that I’m utterly grateful. I owe that alignment to God, for I begged for help, and the people and resources to connect me with the therapist wielding that book resulted. It was divine grace that took over and helped me find my necessary set of tools to defeat depression in my life. The closet incident was one of my lowest points and now I’m able to maintain a much higher level of functioning even when something breaks my stride.

Maybe the memory is just acknowledging that massive improvement and reminding me of my gratitude for God and my solution. Yet it feels like more than that. My whole upper body is on fire with just that memory. That I don’t understand.

Regardless of my confusion, I do wish to acknowledge my decade of improvement. So that’s where I’ll water my dreams of Atira today.

  • I have supported my family, on my own, for a decade without keeping “a day job”. I’ve been successfully self-employed for nearly a decade.
  • During that same decade, I birthed 2 healthy children at home with minimal allopathic medical services.
  • During that same decade I took myself from nearly losing my life to depression, to being as mentally and emotionally stable as is considered normal.
  • I have started to slowly chip away at correcting financial damage done when Nathan got sick.
  • I’m nearly to a point where I will be able to buy us a home again and escape the decade of renting and being at the mercy of less than desirable landlords.
  • I have taken every opportunity possible to expand my knowledge and increase my skill sets.
  • I have maintained board certification and licensure over 12 years, despite having to move many times over.
  • I’m good at what I do because I care and I allow God to assist me. My hands do God’s work every day.
  • Though it seems I’m still very far from my big dream of Atira, I have made real progress. I have taken action steps and accomplished small goals to keep on my path to that big dream.
  • I give love at every opportunity, despite the fact that I’ve loved and lost, that I’ve loved and been hurt by several of those I gave my heart to. I do my best to find unconditional love, sometimes I accomplish that better than others, but I always aim for that.
  • I’m closer than I’ve ever been to being able to build and maintain Atira, one piece at a time.
  • I am strong and have amazing endurance.

May you all find moments of understanding and clarity. May you all experience growth and make progress towards even your biggest of dreams. May you all find unconditional love in your life.

Be well.

Siva Hir Su.

My Polyamory

I have intentionally not written much on this topic because about a year ago I went and posted a bunch of links and good info from other sites. There are so many aspects to look at and perspectives to consider that it is all just too much for me to even attempt.

However, Nathan suggested that I write at least once on my experiences and opinions on the matter. So, I’m taking his advice.

First and foremost Polyamory is many loves, a plural relationship based in a foundation of love.

From the view of a successful balanced poly family, I’ve not had much luck, at least in maintaining such a plural commitment. However, I have had lots of fine tuning and reevaluating, which Abraham says is always a good thing. I’m going to agree.

Nathan and I used to be, what gets labeled “Unicorn Hunters” by more forceful poly opinions. We were ‘significant-others’ seeking a single bisexual female to balance my bisexuality. After several failed attempts to find our good fit, we relaxed into accepting that our perfect woman might come attached to another person. It might also happen that we find several people to meet both mine and Nathan’s needs and desires.

Our hesitation with accepting the concept of multiples, initially was brought on mainly by fearful thoughts of: how do you get multiple adults on the same page and keep them in agreement and in cooperation. Especially regarding children in the family, rules of behavior, setting expectations, and even logistics of cleaning and cooking. However, at this point in our marriage we have come to the conclusion that those are challenges any relationship faces regardless if there are 2 or 12 people. We also now have lots of experience dealing with each other and multiple attempts at significant-other additions. We’ve also come to conclusions that some things are easier if approached like companies handle staffing: creating schedules and assignments of tasks, which can always be adjusted and changed as needed.

So at this point we’re much more open to alternate options and arrangements for our family structure, and have a better grasp of the interpersonal needs that entails. Our main goal now is that a variety of needs and desires are met, and that all adults act like adults and remain considerate of the family as a whole when making significant decisions. If those decisions are likely to impact the family in a huge way (move, replace belongings, or decisions regarding educational or medical concerns) then the family should be consulted with a proposal before final decisions are made.

Informed consent is a mainstay of poly whether it’s in regards to sex, reproduction, or any familial life event. Furthermore, informed consent requires a certain level of communication skills. You may have a great idea, but if you can’t make your case well to those involved it’s likely to fall flat.

So those elements have become our biggest priorities.

Beyond that, previous relationships ended due to factors involving but not limited to: personality clashes, instability due to processing previous traumas, and a lack of commitment by one or multiple parties. So we have simplified our request to the Divine that: future partners have their own stuff figured out at least well enough to cause only more minor bumps, previous severe traumas have been healed likewise, and that all parties be willing to commit enough to work through remaining glitches. All relationships have bumps, bruises, and fights, but it’s the severity and willingness to work through them that enable the relationship to last. Everyone coming together to learn and grow and heal, leads to happy long lasting family.

Acceptance of our humanness, and unconditional love allows for infinite growth. To me that means that I might get mad or frustrated with someone, but as long as I can refocus and remember we’re all human and that I do love them, then I can work through the upset to find a solution. That is the place of understanding that I aim for everyone in my family to hold.

There are also factors like honesty, openness, truthfulness, cooperative attitudes, and open mindedness which would be very important.

Finally, I wish to add compromise. A mainstay of finding solutions is learning how to compromise. There is almost always an answer that everyone can live with. It may not be perfect in everyone’s opinion, but gets the job done. Finding those compromises is paramount to maintaining family cohesion, and adults wishing to be in my family need to demonstrate an ability to compromise.

In conclusion, my ideal of Polyamory has evolved over the last 15 years to be less about the fine details and more about overarching qualities that I wish for people to exhibit.

Not to be too cliche, but can’t we all just get along, and all you need is love, would be the more concise mentality.

May you all find your family based in love and acceptance, but which committedly works through compromise to ensure everyone just gets along.

With love, be well. Siva Hir Su.

Already on the bus.

So I’ve finished reading “The Energy Bus” and realize now that I’ve already gotten my bus going. It’s been a slow start, bumpy ride, with a few breakdowns already, but my bus is generally pointed the right direction and moving.

Really I’ve been driving my bus for a while, but just need more focus and helpful passengers

I have my committed passengers, in for the full ride- my family by marriage and by giving birth.

I have my semi-committed or part time riders, people in my daily and work life that are generally as helpful as they can be, but can’t necessarily stay for the whole ride. Sometimes they’re on and sometimes they’re busy on their own bus.

I have at least one passenger, maybe 2 or 3 that I’m hoping are like the character Michael. Where they removed themselves, but ultimately come around, and end up finding themselves wanting to make positive changes too, and join my bus again. That would be nice, not just for my bus, but for them- their state of being- and because it will validate messages I got what seems like forever ago. May we all master only feeding the good dog.

So far I’ve already ejected a few of what was termed “Energy Vampires” from my bus, and there’s one big one that needs to go yet. Fortunately, those from my biological family have mostly removed themselves from my life, so that’s one less hurdle.

With all that being said, this book leaves me acknowledging I have steps to go yet.

I have used this blog to write about Atira many times, but it’s scattered through multiple posts and partial posts, and I’m not sure I’ve ever reinforced the entirety of the complexity of that to those on board my bus, even if part time. I think it would help to get more concise with my desires, vision, and focus so that there is one document I can reference. Maybe even to give them copies.

I still have a ways to go to ensure I’m only feeding the good dog, and fueling my bus with positive energy. I have the basic idea, but have some practicing to do to maintain it, because I do let fear and stress get the better of me frequently.

Also, I totally spend too much time worrying about people that don’t get on my bus. I will get better at acknowledging maybe it’s too soon for them or they have other reasons for not joining my route. It’s not personal to me, it’s personal for them and their journey.

Additionally, I still have a ways to go on demonstrating my own enthusiasm and love. I already do both, but often allow myself to be easily deflated, especially when my efforts go unnoticed, unacknowledged, or unresponded to. Then once I’ve been deflated, I definitely still struggle to get back up and give another go.

I also need to find my purpose in everything better. It’s easy for me when what I’m doing is part of my vision for Atira, but much much harder when my task-at-hand is seemingly unrelated. That is evidence of not fully knowing that “everything happens for a reason”. I must trust more and find how everything relates. How does what I’m doing fit with my journey and fuel my bus.

Lastly, a huge must: start having more fun and enjoying the ride more. It’s not that I don’t at all, but I really succumb to stress easily. I’m latching onto the books’ phrase “you can’t feel stressed when you feel blessed”. That is my biggest new goal. To be “too blessed to be stressed”.

With that I wanted to share the list of rules the book went over:

And finally, I wanted to share an Abraham Lincoln quote (below) from the book that really resonated with me. My life journey fine-tuned to that direction after the online stranger woke my dreams up in me. I realized I may fail, I may never actually get there, but giving up all together- ignoring who I’ve become- is far worse than failing. I must remain true to who I am and where I’d like to go, if I’m to ever find consistent happiness and have any chance at all of possibly making it there. I want my light to shine bright from here until my dieing days.

Again, thank you for hanging in with me and joining at least the written part of my ride. I sincerely hope you benefit from my words in one way or another.

Ouch!

Watch “Abraham Hicks ­čĺô Let FUN guide you [NEW]” on YouTube

https://youtu.be/1sYIZMsL01M.

I’m so very guilty of this. Guess I understand at least part of why the last 3 years has gone the way it has. I really need figure out how to stay-permanently- on the positive vortex side.

It’s funny: scaring off people I really like on one hand; & introducing other friends to polyamory & law of attraction on the other hand (I’ve discovered different friends have gravitated to one or the other in the last couple of years, & I was the one that introduced the concepts). I literally told Nathan when he informed me of that: “Why the hell do I keep helping others find things I have yet to fully figure out for myself?!”

———

As for me:

I just keep getting better and better at solving a never ending slew of problems. Nursing is slowly resolving: they went ahead and clipped Katherine’s tongue-tie even though the front was mild, with a disclaimer that since it wasn’t bad it might not solve things, & the rear may be more significant, but also more costly to clip. It’s solved maybe 70% of the pain. The other 30% is very, very slowly backing off as my nipples heal. I really wish I could speed that process up more, but I’ve been told its going quickly compared to others with that much damage- probably because all the goop I’m using repeatedly. I’m also in the midst of figuring out adrenal & thyroid balance post birth to put an end to the emotional nose dives and roller coaster ride I’ve been on for the last 3 weeks. Nursing problems or not, I knew the extreme falls were needing an extra look, & my last 2 tweaks seem to have made significant headway.

Now I just need to get into the doc to renew my desicated thyroid prescription.

I do wish though that Dr. Illardi would revisit his Depression Cure book with postpartum needs and situations in mind, that puzzle could use his perspective. I’ve had a heck of a time trying to apply his findings to “eat when they eat, sleep when they sleep” new baby logic, while still attempting to retain the allergy needs dictated by 3rd trimester, trying to stimulate lactation, having difficulty with severe breast pain, and not being able to leave my room half as much as I’d prefer. It’s a puzzle that has already threatened to get the better of me, but as usual I’m fighting with all I’ve got.

——–

In other news:

The basement is also coming along well. Our “living room”/ multipurpose room is nearly complete, and we’re finally working on unpacking things beyond clothing.

The storage area behind the brown chair will eventually get covered with a curtain. That is once I’m certain the crack in the ceiling no longer leaks when it rains.

My child already made friends with the Lego’s in the new open floor space, but there is still room for 2 pieces of exercise equipment, a large dog kennel (blue sheeted cube) , & stacked tables for organizing short term storage & usables.

The other table currently a mess, is intended for being art space, and most (but not all) of what is on it is art supplies. To that end I fully intend to sort & organize to actually be able to use it for its intended purpose.

Nathan’s goal has been to tackle organizing our portion of kitchen stuff in the garage & to make the garage usable space again. He’s about three quarters of the way through that process, but it looks a ton better and you can actually walk around in the garage now (as opposed to squeezing through & still being afraid of tripping, like it was a couple of weeks ago).

It’s starting to feel like home, and to that end we’re getting closer to having everything moved. Nathan’s down to missed odds and ends, & the large outdoor items. Life is finally starting to seem normal again, and things are beginning to look pretty again. That I have to thank the gods for. I asked Kali almost 3 years ago to help me make things pretty again (when I hit the remodeling-brick-walls with the trailer), and it’s finally beginning to take shape, just not the way I thought it would. SO not the way I envisioned.

Anyway, Hannah is giving the home a glorious garden. She helped me rescue plants I’d started the previous 2 years. & those combined with her plants from before, her amazing touch, a bunch of seeds, and a few new plants, things are looking great.

The view of the Iris’ from our room is wonderful too.

Finally, I’ve made cards for a couple of people that were very generous with me this year, birthday & baby wise. I was going to make a 3rd, but that person is nearly blind, so I’m not sure yet how to honor her generosity. Beyond that, it’s taken me over a month, but I’m almost done with an adult coloring page I’m in love with- an elephant.

I can’t take full credit for the cards, the cats were inspired by a single kitty I saw somewhere, & the cover words were also found. I just put my personal touch on it, crafting it with watercolors on heavy art paper, feeling like that meant more than a store bought card. I hope they feel the same way when they get them.

——–

So up, and down, and all around.

My husband and Hannah both keep telling me that I’m amazing & should be congratulating myself. I still have difficulty seeing it, knowing the thousands of things I would still like to accomplish. I do have my moments where I’m like “Yeah I’m a bad-ass giving birth and all the challenges and I’m still trucking with a healthy beautiful baby to-boot”. I just wish I could figure out how to maintain those moments consistently without seeming like or sounding like a narcissistic bastard… Yes that is a fear of mine. Yet another challenge. …

My last request for the day: one less challenge to overcome, let something be easy for once. Let a something, for everyone, be easy for once.

*Siva Hir Su.*

New love grows, yet old love remains…

I’m not a poet, but sometimes standard prose doesn’t fit my feelings. This is one such occasion….

Every night in my dreams
I see you, I feel you,
That is how I know you, go on

-Celine Dion

Poseidon’s trident pierced my heart, and somehow I-

humanly, perfectly, imperfectly-

emerged as Aphrodite’s visage.

Life moves on, and new phases emerge.

I know not why,

not how,

only that it is as it should be,

everything will indeed be alright.

Family grows,

and new love flows,

Wonderful, radiant, feminine.

Time flies,

and I merely try

to simply keep up.

Not only for new love found,

but the new life growing within.

Family’s needs are great,

and I’m just one.

One to do my best,

Strive and persevere,

help and support,

with all my love,

For all of those that I love.

Even those

that this

time and space

hold out of reach.

Time moves on.

Memories, dreams,

hopes, goals, and desires,

never forgotten.

The brain remembers all-

Where matters

of heart

be concerned,

Fills time

where

life

breathes.

The inner fires

still burn bright

Even when daylight dwindles

And time escapes.

Solace found

In inner voice

In knowing

In that special connection.

If I never find solution

In this

Time and space

I will hold tight

My connection from afar.

I cherish it-

Special,

Unique,

Warm,

Invisible embrace.

I wish that for everyone.

I do feel,

Do see,

Every night,

Desires and longing

Mine and not mine.

And support them.

All is as it should be.

Answers will come.

If we allow.

Regardless, there is love,

Always love.

‘Tis human to err

And our humanity is our greatest asset

Love your flaws,

They are uniquely you.

I am learning

Slowly

Just that.

Even my faults

Make me who I am

Ultimately creating a better self.

So I love me,

and you,

and all of my family.

Chosen and given.

Even those who choose

Silence

Or difference

Or separation.

Love is the only thing I have to give.

And give I will.

As much as possible,

And every moment

that my brain remembers

That my brain fills.

All day,

Everyday,

Until death do I part.

Love with all my heart.

ReBirthing

Normally re-birthing is a process that happens over a few hours in a therapists office. It’s a very specific process that is intended to uncover and work through issues that center around birth and very early childhood, and the resulting body-memory/energy/emotional-set-point ┬áthat a person could potentially carry indefinitely.

For me, I have essentially experienced this as a gradual unwrapping over approximately the last 2 weeks (a bit more perhaps). It as happened in little snippets of those intuitive flashes I reference so often. For me the flashes happen as images, short clips like YouTube videos or memories, and sometimes feelings, sounds, and even muscle memory. Anyway, I’m going to relay my unfolding to the best of my ability, and what it has helped me figure out, so that others might be able to glean similar progress.

——-

The Facts I know of my birth from parental stories:

-I was delivered by Cesarean (c-section). My mom was lightly sedated, so upon delivery my father was the first to hold me. Story goes I immediately peed on him and the nurses has to change his gown.

-My mom had blood sugar issues, but no treatment. It was a time when gestational diabetes was still a new-ish diagnosis and diet suggestions were made but not even strictly enforced, no medications were used because they were not widely accepted as safe during pregnancy.

-The doctor was a short man (my dad thought that was hilarious and has joked about it repeatedly over my life) that needed a step stool for delivery. His name Dr. Gupta, he was from India.

-At birth I was Jaundice and spent a few days in critical care nursery. My level of jaundice was so intense my skin looked orange and my dad nicknamed me pumpkin. I also didn’t want to eat for several days, but was tickled into nursing/bottle feedings to keep me hydrated. It necessitated at least an hour of direct sunlight (4 hours suggested) daily to help bring the jaundice down. It took about 2 weeks for my skin to return to relative normal color.

-At the time my mom was the only significant income in the family, so she only had 2 weeks off  (whatever the minimum was for the incision to heal) and went back to work.

———-

Facts about me in general:

-I require regular sunlight or I get depressed.

-I have been told I’m borderline diabetic and was considered Gestational Diabetic during my son’s pregnancy/birth. I controlled the pregnancy and my current state with Diet, Exercise, and certain Supplements.

-When I am very depressed or in a moment of severe negative emotions, my inclination is always to rock myself. I literally sit in a quiet space and close my eyes and rock my body back and forth like in a rocking chair. It is nearly always the only thing that helps when I’m at my worst.

-I don’t believe that I have actual conscious brain memory of my birth, but there is possibility of subconscious memories or body/muscle memory.

——

The intuitive flashes I’ve “received”, which may or may not be 100% accurate, please know that these all happened in meditative space, I have not consumed any mind altering drugs:

-I had a visual clip of the doctor rocking and rocking my bassinet in the nursery and humming/singing quietly to me.

-I had a similar clip of my dad’s early interactions, lots of bouncing, holding me and touching me with furrowed brows and very stiff movements. Another clip of the moment after I peed on him, being held in mid air (almost like Simba from Lion King) while nurses wiped my dad off and put a new gown or blanket over him.

-I had a moment where I felt the sensations of the rocking in the nursery, the lights seemed too bright so I closed my eyes, I felt very scared and wanted to cry, and then the rocking started and the humming/soft singing started shortly after.

-I had a moment where I felt very scared because I didn’t know where mom went. Dad was there but I really felt like “I want mom”, again making me feel like crying.

-I had a visual of my mom in the rocking chair by the window (at home), rocking me and singing.


My current interpretation based on all of those elements put together:

Mom was all I knew before birth. I perceived her as being my protector. Yet, she was unable to protect me from sugar, and I got far too much sugar while in-vitro. She did her best, and especially after birth, once I was home, she really worked hard to try and make up for it, rocking and rocking me, singing to me, like the doctor had done.

My dad loved me, but being a man from his generation, didn’t really understand how to interact lovingly with a newborn. Men were simply not taught how to do that. He was doing his best, but I as an infant without words could tell he was just different from mom, and I wanted the feeling place of mom, really I wanted the feeling place of what the doctor started.

As an adult I’ve learned a lot about alternatives. I perceive the doctor, even though he functioned through western medicine, probably had beliefs regarding spirit and it’s ability to heal because of his upbringing. I think that immediately he saw a beautiful baby girl, that was very special (I’m certain that my skin tone evoked memories of certain rituals in India) and that he knew I needed a little extra TLC. I think he was so touched by my appearance that he simply wanted to help me heal. He would have gone to his upbringing and did what would have been done in India. Attempting to connect me with my inner self, my spirit, to heal my body. So, he didn’t hold me directly, knowing that babies can get attached to those first few people in their lives. He rocked my cradle and sang to me, helping to calm me and soothe me so that my body could heal.

Now he probably thought that not actually holding me for any length of time exempted him from me getting attached. Unfortunately my new understanding is that I did anyway. For the first few days of my life, he was the only significant interaction outside of my mother at nursing time. Holding me or not, his interactions helped to soothe me and did help to heal me, so I attached anyway. His presence was a God send in an otherwise harsh sterile environment, and I now have no doubt that it was a major influence in decisions that I have come to over time. I simply didn’t know that I was making decisions based upon that interaction.

What do I mean?

I went searching for that feeling place early on in life. I was in 4th grade the first time I tried someone else’s church: a Pentecostal church (prior to that we’d gone solely to dad’s Mormon church). The Pentecostal church was fun, but didn’t give me that feeling. By the end of middle-school I’d been to the Quakers, Lutherans, Methodists, and Catholics. By high-school I’d read the Bible (blaech-boring and so damn convoluted with contradictions), Sidhartha, most of the Tao de Ching, and had looked up tons information on Confucianism and Zen Buddhism. I was a junior in high-school the day that my friend Erin invited me to her home, which doubled as the Buddhist temple, to speak with Lama Renpoche. It was a very expansive experience, being 2 hours of 5 high-schoolers speaking with an esteemed Buddhist leader. It answered some of my questions, but not all of them. It was about that time that I started learning about Paganism and Hinduism. Between the knowledge of the 3 paths, I found mine. I called myself pagan, because no other label really fits, no one box label is truly accurate, because honestly I just blend what works for me. Adding hindsight about the birth, explains why I resonate with mantras, it’s likely that that is what the doctor was singing to me. Regardless the feeling place of being rocked in the cradle with the mantras being sung is evoked when I meditate, and I would not have found meditation if not for learning about Buddhism and Hinduism. So the attachment to that doctor guided me to find the knowing.

Fast forward, and my birth again guided me when I went to have Ian. I knew that I wanted my child to have an amazing birth. A loving birth. Essentially, I wanted my child to have the experience that I was denied, I wanted the opposite of my birth. I went to great lengths to ensure a home water birth while having “Gestational Diabetes”. I stuck to it because I was deciding for someone that had no say. And I did.

Ian’s birth was nearly perfect. 12.5 hours of labor, as gentle as could be. Soothing warm water surrounded me for three quarters of it. Ian was born in occiput posterior (OP) position (really most of labor was that way), but my midwife was unfazed by the positioning and so I was fine too. I knew I was in capable hands and that helped the birth experience go great. Ian was born, and with the exception of a very brief removal of the cord from his neck, I was the first person to hold, to touch my child in those soothing warm waters. Dad (Nathan) reached forward around me and held his tiny hand. It was a very soothing wonderful experience. Even when we finally got out of the birth tub, it was 10 steps to bed and cuddle time for essentially 24 hours straight. Blissful.

I have said and will continue to say that Ian’s birth went as perfectly as any mom could expect, and I know that a major part of that was my willingness to do whatever that took with diet, exercise, and mindfulness.

The only thing that I would have changed was how much time I took off of work afterward. I too was the sole income for our little family (perhaps another remnant of my birth re-manifesting), so I only got 3 weeks off and even during that 3 weeks I did work a little. I sincerely hope that Ian can forgive me for that when he gets older. We minimized my working as much as possible, but when you are the only source of money, it’s unavoidable to return to work sooner than you’d like.

My birth experiences as a baby led to greater effort on my part and decisions that produced entirely the opposite experience for my child. I am ever so grateful for that. I can not fully put into words the relief I felt when I realized that. It was a very healing realization.

That being said, I love myself even more. I appreciate that I was able to undo a well accepted and well established “necessity” to provide my child a loving birth. I appreciate that the energy of the birth experience far outweighed my desire to take the easy route with medicine and a hospital birth. I appreciate that my efforts will likely turn into better manifestations for my son later in his life, and hopefully a better understanding of my love for him.

—–

The only thing that remains from my rebirthing is this cycle of Indian men ‘loving and leaving’. I can see the pattern now. I can see that I keep inviting them into my life when I need help the most, my darkest hours. And like the doctor at my birth they duck out when the worst of the storm is over. It’s really more of a quiet unnoticed exit, as in you can’t see me, so now is my chance. This latest man is the 3rd such repeat of this cycle: one when I was a child in school, and the other -Rajesh- as an adult.

At this point, now that I see the pattern, I find myself reiterating that I would like for one of them to stay. I would like for one of them to love me enough to be a permanent part of my life. As much as I appreciate the healing they provided, I want to wipe the idea of detached from their slate. And perhaps it’s because I can see that even though they tried to remain detached, there is really no such thing. If I have these memories, I have these feelings, I have these associations, then there is an attachment- for better or worse.

You don’t remember things that you don’t care about. Do you remember what color your shoelaces were on a pair of shoes from 3rd grade? Do you remember what you ate for lunch the 3rd Monday of 4th grade? Do you remember all of your clothes from your entire childhood? No they were things that you were not attached to, so your brain didn’t lock them away. You might remember your favorite item or events from each school year, or your most precious toys, but you won’t remember them all. You simply didn’t attach to them all.

To me attachment is an inevitable subtle side-effect of caring. When you care, it affects you, and then you remember those things, those events, those places, those people. I want the things that affect me in that way to leave happy feelings, like childhood vacations and favorite meals.

Yet, my current experience of 3 of the 4 Indian men in my life is regret. Regret that I wasn’t able to convey my appreciation for them being there. Regret that they got away without knowing truly how much they helped me. Wishing that I had said or done something that would have led them to reconsider leaving. Wishing that they could have taught others in my life a better way (though that mostly pertains to the doctor in regards to my dad’s interactions).

So, it all boils down to love (thanks Ms. Hay :/ ). Those are all symptoms of love. Those are all aspects of interactions based on love. I couldn’t tell them that they helped me and that I loved them for it, and yet those that remained in my life were somehow unable to do what those men did. It also boils down to my ability to love myself and find that connection. Those men taught me how, but I don’t seem to be able to maintain it consistently to this day. I can’t spend all day sitting in the sun rocking myself and singing mantras. I can’t convince myself indefinitely that things will really be all right. Oh, I have my moments like that, I can do it for a few minutes here and there, even a few ┬áhours at a time, but all day every day is where I slip. I have yet to find their level of zen. SO then I want them to stay, because maybe I could absorb it vicariously through them.

That’s probably not healthy either. It must be another lesson on learning to love myself. I find it interesting that every layer of the onion produces one round of healing and another yet to solve. I love and forgive myself over birthing experiences, but have yet to figure out a way to love and heal myself in regards to interactions with other adults. Perhaps the point at which my memories of the men no longer carry regret, I will have one decide to stay. But maybe that is just a belief needing revised too. Some days I feel like all of my work is on myself, and that the interactions with life are merely the filler.

 

 

 

Depression: Shared & my experience.

I read THIS BLOG POST back in September when it was written. It struck close to home for me. The quote at the beginning was what resonated the most for me. When you’re really struggling, it does become about what is most frightening: continuing to live with the disease; or escaping through the route of suicide with unknown consequences, but with which comes a certainty of escaping the symptoms of the disease- the ultimate final end.

Being a new-agey type, having alternative beliefs to much of society, I spend a lot of time around people that think you can just think your way out of depression with the power of the law of attraction. Think happy thoughts and you’ll be happy.

As I’m discovering, that is hardly right.

The book I’m Reading, which was provided by my therapist, has been super helpful.

See It Here:

The Deression Cure by Dr. Stephen Ilardi

It really gets to the heart of the matter. There is a distinct difference between the emotion “Depression ” listed at the lowest position #22 on the emotional guidance scale, and the clinical disease with the common umbrella term of the same name.

The emotion Dr. Ilardi points out, is often a short lived disposition, the feeling place of something very difficult having happened in your life experience. It serves a role in the grief process and can help us make sense of elements within our life journey.

The disease, though it shares many characteristics of which the feelings and emotions are definitely present, is a much more sinister and all consuming state of being often with a medical cause.

As I wrote in my previous post, it seems a major factor for me is Inflammation- possibly because of my severe allergies, but also possibly [as Dr. Ilardi posits] simply due to an imbalance of Anti-Inflammatory Omega 3’s-thus diet related. Regardless, the most basic mechanism at play is that the inflammation is happening in the brain, literally causing a build-up of pressure on the brain, and causing it to malfunction.

Since starting therapy, reading the book, and taking action steps to adjust my diet and lifestyle choices. I can honestly say there is definitely a connection. Dr. Ilardi lays out 6 areas of lifestyle choices and swears that making very specific adjustments to those areas will result in reducing inflammation and essentially curing clinical depression.

Now, I’m not fully through the book. Still reading, but I’m working on making positive changes weekly, if not daily. One of the areas, meaningful social interactions, I felt pretty good about. I haven’t gotten to that chapter yet, but I know my friends are large factor as to why I’ve gotten as far as I have. I’ve never quit interacting with them or our home-school group, and I am grateful that they have literally held me and walked me through some of my rough days.

So first, was to go back on my strict version of the Pregnancy Diet (I plan on detailing what that means for me at some point soon). Second, was I started exercising again. I aim for 3 times a week, but some weeks I’ve managed 4 times. 3rd: I started taking fish oil. The book walks through how to determine how much to take depending on the nutrition label of the supplement you choose. For me that’s 6 a day, but occaisonally I feel the need for a 7th one (usually when I know I’ve made bad food choices). I mostly remember to do this, because in my morning routine I put all my supplements and allergy/thyroid meds into a pill box. The trick is remembering my lunch and dinner doses, and I do sometimes forget to take them.

Then I re-introduced light therapy. I had done light therapy in college, and for a while after graduating. It was when I was working in cubicle land and experiencing a severe bout of seasonal depression. At that time I simply had a high wattage bulb in a desk lamp that I aimed at my face the entire time I was working. This time however, my therapist gave me some tips to  ensure optimal results. It apparently needs to be above eye level aimed downward at a minimum of 30degrees. The higher the watts the better. And if you do 30 to 60 min of light in the first hour after waking it works best- gets you a really good kick start. I’ve been successfully remembering all that about 2/3 rd’s of the time for about 2 weeks.

The one element I’m struggling with is sleep hygiene. As of the first of the year I had adjusted my schedule to accomodate a 7 day paper route for extra income. It’s roughly 3 hours of work a night, and equals a little over half of what my current massage work comes out to. So, it’ll end up not quite doubling our family income. The schedule adjustment would have been fine if the papers were reliably on time. As I’m discovering what is actually the case, is that they rarely are. So, where I’d allotted myself 6 to 7 hours a night/morning during a fairly steady window. In actuality, I’m getting more like 4.5 to 6 hours of  sleep. It’s the same time frame each day, which is good, but I’m simply not getting enough. Nathan has offered to remedy this by doing the route by himself at least most of the time. I worry about a black man with dreds  (& heart disease) tooling around rural Missouri in the middle of the night, every night, so I’ll still be helping as often as I can manage. I don’t know what I would do if he died on route by himself, especially if it was at the end of someone’s gun. However, that being said, I think I’m not going to argue, as I desperately need more sleep each night.

As it happens, the sleep manifests fairly quickly for me. I get super cranky super fast, and I nose dive into depression when my minimal energy reserves run out. I also start having disjointed and incomplete thought processes. It makes for very difficult communication. So, the last 13 days have been fairly roller coaster like for me. Last night though, Nathan went out alone, so I’m doing better today.

That being said, even at my most sleep deprived, the last 2 weeks has been better than prior to Thanksgiving. I’m not 100% better, not “cured” yet, but I’m better enough to acknowledge that Dr. Ilardi’s TLC program is working. When I’ve had sleep I feel great. Even if I’ve had most of a nights sleep I still manage. That to me is huge, because before Thanksgiving that wasn’t happening.

And that is where the Law of Attraction has been able to come back in. Now that I can see my bad days for being related to sleep, diet, or exercise; I am now able to tell myself “It’s ok, I am where I am becasue of ___ and it will be short lived, this isn’t permanent, it’s meerly a side effect of certain choices catching up to me.” I am able to dig out with phrases like that, at least enough to function. I am able to keep myself going, and to make better choices to help pull out of the nose dive.

Those same phrases with untreated depression, when I had no idea that things were compounding to create inflammation in my brain, were worthless. Positive thoughts would bounce off of me, or flat off piss me off, I had trouble thinking even remotely positively when I was untreated. My brain was so inflamed it wasn’t able to make those connections, I wasn’t able to think straight. I had trouble communicating every day, loosing important things, and melting down at every turn. I simply had no idea that my emotional hurting, my mental hurting was because of very real physical pain caused by inflammation  in my brain.

So I write this in hopes that everyone dealing with depression can read this book. Put it into practice, and begin to heal their brain and their lives. I know I’m on my way there, even if I can’t see the finish line yet.

I hope one day to see every medical practitioner, from CNA to RN to midwife to MD to PhD, tell people about TLC. I have seen literally dozens, possibly over a hundred medical professionals, in my 22 years of struggling with depression. Those medical professionals half-ass-ed my thyroid, failed to treat it, but often offered psych meds. When in reality the thyroid was literally not even half of a larger issue, and failure to treat the whole package is why I’ve struggled with depression for those 22 years, and nearly lost my life to it several times over. IT could have been avoided all-together- if the first doctor being told I’d gained weight and was struggling with depression had genuinely dealt with my thyroid on a unique basis and utilized TLC to treat the rest of my life.

Although that makes me angry to contemplate the hazardous effects it had on my life, I’m more angry that it isn’t being corrected. We continue to crank out doctors, nurses, and all manner of medical professionals, that turn around and create assembly line medication stations instead of actually listening to patients and putting available knowledge to good use to figure out a puzzle and actually provide a real solution. Living on meds that merely mask chronic disease symptoms somewhat while additionally causing side-effects,  then planning to do that for the rest of your life, is not a solution.

That being said, neither option is cheap. I spend approximately $270/month on my Allopathic medications: Fast-acting Inhaler, nebulizer solution, Oral-Steriod (cumulative effect) Inhaler, Zyrtec, Singulair, and Desiccated Thyroid. I spend that much or more on quality supplements that I have seen the benefits from. I continue to take the ones that I’ve watched drop blood sugars. I continue to take magnesium because I have watched leg cramps disappear, and my stress levels drop. I take a good quality multivitamin to avoid all my allergens. I take a good methylated B-complex, with extra p-5-p and 5HTP, because I noticed significant mood improvements before TLC was even a possibility for me. And yes, it’s all very expensive, but I would have lost the battle long ago without them. I am utterly grateful they got me through when none of the doctors did. Perhaps one day, when I’ve mastered TLC, I can eliminate the need for all of it. It’s a process though, my sugars are still high, and I’m still having allergies and asthma symptoms, so for now I keep doing what I’m doing. One step at a time, one little improvement at a time.

On a final note. If you have ever lost someone you cared about to suicide, please stop for a moment and realize how much pain they were in. Think just for a second, did you ever try to genuinely help them, did you offer a ride to a clinic, did you do any research, did you make suggestions in a real hands on “lets try to beat this” approach? IF you had really cared you would have acknowledged their pain. I don’t care if it’s invisible or not, it’s still pain. When someone is in pain, our natural inclination should be to do our best to help, not offer “think positive, it’ll get better” or “think of your family”, those are neither helpful attempts at a possible solution, nor acknowledgement of very real pain. You wouldn’t offer “think positive” to someone with a broken leg, and you wouldn’t tell someone with cancer to “think of their family”. Yet when you do that to someone with clinical depression you are accomplishing both situations. Heaven forbid, you actually did loose someone to suicide, and still choose to blame them. If they were hurting enough to choose suicide, then their pain was unimaginably unbearable, and my heart goes out to them for their suffering, not to you for your loss. What could you have done to acknowledge their pain, and attempt to help find a real solution, and would they still be alive if you had? My own family has no clue that they were almost the ones that missed this message. I no longer talk to or associate with most of my biological family for that very reason. I’ve also lost potential friends in realizing they had no clue, blaming me for being depressed. A depressed person never wants to continually  live with the horrendous pain they bear, yet as a society that is what we have come to expect.

Be different, be the one that actively attempts to help someone out of their pain. Help them find Dr. Ilardi’s book, help find a therapist, if they are having finaincial difficulties help them fill out assistance forms,  if they need transportation see if you or someone you know can give them a ride, help them make TLC changes by being their “buddy system”. You will make at least that person’s life better, and may actually save them from  having to choose between a lifetime of horrible pain or death. They will know you care, because you will have shown it in real-time practical help.