Friday, October 25, 2013

Deep Thought Friday...

Deep Thought Friday

My posts are usually about My Life Lessons. These are the things I’ve lived through, witnessed and now talk about how they’ve affected me. In some instances, these things still affect me. While some of those things are actual facts/events, some are readings and information that is passed on to me.
I want to change things a little. I want this new “Deep Thought Friday” series to be more than a casual stop on my blog for the latest read.
I want to allow you to come up with your own conclusion to a situation… with your own moral of the story. I want to see if you can connect with a particular story in such a way that it will give you a sense of purpose, a new direction or perspective, and maybe just maybe - think deeper and further than usual.

As you read, discuss the moral in each story with your spouse or partner, or with a close friend. Connect every story with yourself. Challenge yourself. Think about what you’ve learned from the story and what change you can bring to your life.

This week “Deep Thought Friday” is about TO FORGIVE AND FORGET OR TO FORGIVE AND LEARN…

Jim and Jerry were childhood friends but for whatever reasons, the relationship fell apart and they hadn't spoken for 25 years. Jerry was on his deathbed and didn't want to enter eternity with a heavy heart. So he called Jim, apologized and said, "Let's forgive each other and be done for the past." Jim thought it was a good idea and decided to visit Jerry at the hospital. They caught up on 25 years, patched up their differences and spent a couple of hours together. As Jim was leaving, Jerry shouted from behind, "Jim, just in case I don't die; remember, this forgiveness doesn't count."

Take time to understand the story... What meaning do you take away from it? what lesson(s) are you learning from it?...

Monday, October 21, 2013

Even If...

“Letting go doesn't mean that you don't care about someone anymore.
It's just realizing that the only person you really have control over is yourself.”
~Deborah Reber
Sometimes you have to face the fact that certain things will never go back to the way they used to be... even if... Once you understand this basic principle, you can now begin the difficult process of tending to your wounds, and healing.
Although, my first sentence could be one that shows relief, or a benediction of sorts, because it can allow you to free yourself from regret and look towards the future. Unfortunately, for me it’s not that easy... The reason I’m having these thoughts is not because I'm accepting and moving forward but because while I'm doing those things, I'm still missing the way things were... Some people can adapt to change quickly and move on from wherever they were. Then there are others who get so comfortable in a situation or a place, that when they leave (or it’s taken from them) they feel as though they’re having an asthma attack, losing air by the second.
So many things have changed in my life in the past few years. And while I'm doing great (by many people’s standards), trying to manage all these thresholds, and going on planned and unplanned road trips, I'm not doing so well in staying focused on what's ahead...
I came back early from one of my trips the other day; the hubby picked me up and we decided to surprise our baby-girl by picking her up from school. I can't even begin to think of when the last time was, that she had her mom and dad pick her up. We got close to her school and parked where we knew she would usually walk by, on her way to her marraine (godmother) and we waited... After 10 minutes, I see this familiar silhouette getting closer to the car. She is walking, while looking at her phone.  She is wearing black, cropped, skinny pants, a beautiful black "see-through polka dot shirt", and LV loafers. Her hair is pulled back into a low ponytail... I'm looking at myself walk pass the car I'm sitting in... When did this happen? Where is she? I opened the car door and yelled, "JAZZMENINA!"
Yes, it's baby-girl...
A year ago, I would've picked up the phone and called a few friends who also have daughters and shared with them the craziness of life, and compared the "changes," just to get reassured that no, I'm not going crazy by wishing she was still a baby girl; instead of this cloned alien in my home. But along with the kids growing up and life happening, things have changed... Relationships have changed or have been lost. It’s easy when you get rid of that pain in your back you’ve been living with for years; you’re happy to see it leave. What about when what you’ve lost is the thing that made your heart happy? There’s no “going away party.” Sometimes there are just tears.  
Maybe I didn't nurture it the way I should have
Maybe I didn't put in the effort needed to salvage it
Maybe I wasn't as understanding as I should've been
Maybe it just wasn't meant to last a lifetime and
Maybe time was up...
We learn to live with what we’re missing, building up walls that make everything seem alright. This is of course, until the day you want to pick up the phone or that moment you need to text that 1 person you know will understand you and you can't...
It is truly amazing the changes a year’s span can bring into your life. I said it so many times, today is the result of everything I could've taken from yesterday, from the past... Things are the way they are for a reason and while it is hard to let go of certain things, people and memories, we have to come to terms with it. Even if a mistake was made, today is the natural, the organic result. Today is ALL you have. So please feel free to make the most of it.
So yes, sometimes you have to face the fact that certain things will never go back to the way they used to be... even if you miss them dearly... But the good news is, today you have a chance to make new alliances with happiness. We all have to make those steps and take that course of action. Here’s to the future…

Sunday, October 20, 2013

My Sunday Quote of The Week...

“The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are.”
― C.G. Jung

It is easier said than done, and that is why it is a process to really find out who you are - truly. To be authentic means to find the key to happiness and success within one’s self, without being dictated to by society or by trying to conform and fit in. When you are comfortable thinking for yourself and creating your own needs and desires, then (and only then), you are being authentic.
When you live an authentic life, you are living the life that resonates with your soul because you are in line with your true beliefs. You will find yourself spiritually elevated. You will be thinking of human-kind, rather than self. You won't be afraid of truth, and will deal with your fears in a better way. You will be able to feel unapologetic about who you are, your decisions and your circumstances.

Be your authentic, truthful, genuine self! No pretence, no fa├žade…
Understand that all there is, (which matters) is NOW. Forget yesterday, as today is the undeniable and unchangeable result of what you could’ve taken from it…
Tomorrow is not guaranteed, so don’t reserve all the honesty, rightfulness, and truthfulness of who you are, or put it on hold for later. Don’t count on “tomorrow” to make things right…

Create a life for yourself where there will be no need to be apologetic about the person that you are. There is nothing harder in life than living your authenticity, just as there is nothing more rewarding in life than living your authenticity.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Deep Thought Friday...

Deep Thought Friday

My posts are usually about My Life Lessons. These are the things I’ve lived through, witnessed and now talk about how they’ve affected me. In some instances, these things still affect me. While some of those things are actual facts/events, some are readings and information that is passed on to me.
I want to change things a little. I want this new “Deep Thought Friday” series to be more than a casual stop on my blog for the latest read.
I want to allow you to come up with your own conclusion to a situation… with your own moral of the story. I want to see if you can connect with a particular story in such a way that it will give you a sense of purpose, a new direction or perspective, and maybe just maybe - think deeper and further than usual.

As you read, discuss the moral in each story with your spouse or partner, or with a close friend. Connect every story with yourself. Challenge yourself. Think about what you’ve learned from the story and what change you can bring to your life.

This week “Deep Thought Friday” is about  SPOKEN WORDS CAN'T BE RETRIEVED

“A farmer insulted his neighbor  Realizing his mistake, he went to the preacher to ask for forgiveness. The preacher told him to take a bag of feathers and drop them in the center of town. The farmer did as he was told. Then the preacher asked him to go and collect the feathers and put them back in the bag. The farmer tried but couldn't as the feathers had all blown away. When he returned with the empty bag, the preacher said, "The same thing is true about your words. You dropped them rather easily but you cannot retrieve them, so be very careful in choosing your words."

Take time to understand the story... What meaning do you take away from it? what lesson(s) are you learning from it?...

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The Fears... I Can't Conquer...

“There are two kinds of fears: rational and irrational- or in simpler terms, fears that make sense and fears that don't.”
― Lemony Snicket

For the past 20 years of my life, I've been living in fear... The more days, months and years pass by, the stronger my fear grows... If you’ve read some of my earliest blogs, you already know about my less than conventional younger years... And by “less than conventional,” I’m referring specifically to the way I was brought up.
I knew love; knew I had it surrounding me (which gave me the sense of security I needed) but didn't always have it readily accessible to feel. I didn’t always know how to associate the word, the look... I knew about family, because mine was big... Big in numbers, in values and also in expectations... but I didn't always have it surrounding me. There were times where I wish I had my family unit there for the advice, and the relatable connection you only have with your siblings; the safety of being able to let your guard down, like when you set foot “home” every night...
I knew about creating a sense of belonging and anchoring myself in any environment by building strong friendships that would sustain me but simultaneously I knew about independence  and preservation, because most of the time I felt alone...
From my early years, I knew I had to take care of me, be a big girl... and I received a Masters in that field...

A few weeks ago, I was talking with my nephew and his friend, and we started discussing his sister, who had just gone through a breakup (first boyfriend, first real relationship, and first love). I was telling them how dramatic that situation had been and how even though I had been a great source of comfort, I truly didn't understand the misery she had put herself through. My nephew laughed at my remarks and said something like, “Ha! Aunty, knowing you, you probably would've been the one to give him the boot!" We laughed... I laughed, not because he was right but because it amazed me that I had fooled myself for so many years. In hindsight, I can see that from my late teenage years to my early twenties I only got involved in relationships that were challenging, to say the least. And now I can see that it was because (subconsciously) I wasn't looking for commitment... I was scared of commitment... I knew how to care and preserve me...

I’ve fallen in love, I've become attached. Piece by piece, I’ve built the life I wanted to live. I Made commitments and slowly realized over the accumulation of years, that I was developing a fear of change and losing what was mine... And then I had babies... My babies... There's still nothing in this world that I want more than how I wanted to be a mom. It hadn't been easy. There were miscarriages, and many prayers... I prayed, prayed and prayed some more, asking God to allow me to be a mom and I promised that I'd always do good by them if he granted me my wish. Remember what I've said before, it's when difficult, challenging moments surround you that your relationship with God becomes of the highest importance!
My good friend just reminded me not too long ago how miserable people were when they had to babysit my kids because I used to call every 10 minutes to check up on them and what they were doing. It was to the point where we had to create the rule, "If you want me to watch the kids, you can only call 1 time!"

When my baby boy was 4 or 5, I decided to send him home (to Belgium) with my family for the summer, so he could really be emerged in the all-French speaking environment and bond with his cousins; the whole idea sounded perfect in my mind. TheHubby was going to travel with him, have him settle in, and come back while I'd stay here with my baby girl. TheHubby came back without my son and every day that followed I started to lose it, little by little. What was supposed to be a 2 month experience for my son was cut very short as I had TheHubby go and bring him back... I feared him feeling abandoned, not wanted. I feared something would happen to him and we wouldn't be there, I feared he would forget me and be okay without me...
Now I realize that when we sent him away, it was at the same age I was when I started my education in a-year-round boarding school (thousands and thousands of miles away from my parents) and what I feared for him was probably what I felt...

I developed separation anxiety. I either developed it or just became aware of emotions that were inside of me… extreme anxiety and fear when separated from my loved ones. Fears that something bad would happen to them... Going away for TheHubby was becoming an ordeal, I would find a reason to argue or make him feel bad about traveling... if it was me leaving, I would start getting sick and depressed. The first time one of my kids travelled by themselves (from Massachusetts to Michigan on a straight flight), I cried from the time the flight attendant walked down the gateway to the plane with him, to when the plane landed in Detroit... I didn't move from that chair at the gate he had just left... what if?
What if they get taken away at the park? What if they get hit by a car? What if…what if...? WHAT IF??!!!!

WHAT IF has taken over my mind in such a way, that nothing can ever be the way it really is. I'm always looking for anything negative that could happen. With stepping into adulthood and building my life, I enriched my existence with the most precious gifts God could gift me with, and along with that, I developed a fear of losing it all if in a split second. I am not in complete control of my surroundings and don’t acknowledge the potential of possibilities… negative possibilities L

Today, I said bye to my 3 babies and while I settle for my flight away from them, I feel this familiar pain. I feel like I am having a heart attack. The bands of my bra are constricting my chest, make breathing difficult. I do what has become a ritual for me. I look out the small window and I release. I release by surrendering to God (remember it is always at your most challenging, vulnerable moment that you remember The ONE who is really in control… and lately, HE is more than ever in the forefront of my mind). “God I put my life in your hands because only you know what "IS" for me. If anything would happen to me, please make sure my babies grow up knowing the love I gave them is everywhere to be found ... and allow them to find it quickly. Please don't let TheHubby ever feel as though his shoulder will never be strong enough to carry our family on his own. And while I leave it in your loving hands, know that my deepest desire is to be the one to give them the love throughout their life's moments, and to be TheHubby's partner in carrying our family."

With the years, my fears have grown more present but while I have realized that I can't conquer them, I have managed to not let it take over and cripple me. The independence my kids are organically gaining is coming at a price for me... The security TheHubby is feeling in our relationship is also coming at a price for me...

I am learning to see all those things as positive, however; the WHAT IF’s are always floating around. So while I’m unable to conquer my fears, I have learned to control them…


Sunday, October 13, 2013

My Sunday Quote of The Week...

The Echo We Sometimes Refuse To Hear…

“People who say, “It is not my fault,” continuously fail. People who say, “I've done no wrong,” have not done enough right. People who say, “I am done!” are never done repeating the cycle. Even in the privacy of our own thoughts, we can’t sow lies and reap truth.”
~ Katina Ferguson

Don’t blame others for disappointing you and letting you down… Blame yourself for not knowing that you always reap what you have sowed! The behaviour and commitment you expect from others has to reflect what you put out toward them…

A little boy got angry with his mother and shouted at her, "I hate you, I hate you." Because of fear of reprimand, he ran out of the house. He went up to the valley and shouted, "I hate you, I hate you," and back came the echo, "I hate you, I hate you." This was the first time in his life he had heard an echo. He got scared, went to his mother for protection and said there was a bad boy in the valley who shouted "I hate you, I hate you." The mother understood and she asked her son to go back and shout, "I love you, I love you." The little boy went and shouted, "I love you, I love you," and back came the echo.
That taught the little boy a lesson that our life is like an echo: We get back what we give.

“You reap what you sow”, “make your own bed”, “get back what you put out” or “you get what you deserve”…whichever way you look at it, it is all the same. In any kind of relationship you are in, you have to own up to your part of responsibility in its success or failure. You reap what you sow is also in the context of planting and harvesting. To harvest good results you need to make sure you sow good and healthy seeds in life so that what you reap will be rich and good versus ugly and lacking in positivity. Entitlement, righteousness will not bare healthy, lasting relationships.
While I’m not saying that everything bad that comes to us, every failed relationship we go through or every challenging circumstance we stumbled upon are deserved; we need to make sure we take ownership of our own behaviour and attitude before blaming others. 


Thursday, October 10, 2013

October 10th!!! Let It Be Known...

“Nature gives you the face you have at twenty;
it is up to you to merit the face you have at fifty.”
― Coco Chanel

Well… let me first start out by saying Happy Buuuuurfday to all the October 10th babies!!! Today is your day to celebrate and enjoy!

Now, while we in the general population all know that this day was never officially declared Charles B. Sanderson Jr day, (and by Charles, I mean “Sam”, “San”, ”Snook”, ”Snooky”, ”Snookum”, “Snooky Poo” or ”baby”… I had to add 2 in there to spice it up a little, as if it needed it!!! LOL…), I want to go on record saying that it unofficially is. Depending on where the intimacy your relationship with him lies, these are the names “we” address him as… It’s easy to see the progression and where you stand …oops!
However, in the Sanderson’s household there are nooooo doubts that this day was created for him and is all about him. So for the sake of acknowledging that today, I will humble myself enough to share 2 stories… Boiii…I love this man…hahahahaha….

First, I’m going to admit and clear up for everyone how we truly met… We were in a club in Holland (neither one of us had any business being there, as he at the time lived in Germany and me in Belgium). He was on the dance floor dancing his heart out, when I spotted him and became fixated with him; following him around in hopes that he would notice me. At some point, he walked off the dance floor and was walking towards me and my friend with a smile… My mind started to think really quickly, “What if it’s not me that he wants to talk to but her, what if…. what if…” I couldn’t let any of the “What if” scenarios happen, so as he was walking towards us, I pushed my friend so hard (I absolutely wanted her out of the way), that she fell across the floor, requiring a few people to come and help her up. He asked, “Is she okay?” “Oh yes, she’s fine… she had too much to drink… her boyfriend is helping her out” …and the rest is history… She forgave me for busting her knee that day and I still can’t get over what a quick thinker I am! I also can’t get over how devious that was! Wait… Nope, I’m over it! J

Now I’m going to share with you one of the biggest, the most never ending, and reoccurring vexations of my life… So few days ago, I’m sitting in a restaurant with co-workers and staff members and as the proud mother that I am, the conversation turns towards my kids. I pull out the iPhone and start sharing recent pictures of them, highlighting how tall they are… blah blah blah… then one of the staff members (a young kid, 24 years old) asks me, “Who is that in the picture with your kid?”… There you go… I’m bracing myself for what’s about to come… “That’s my husband, their dad,” I said as matter-of-factly as I could; ready to expeditiously move on… “What? No…OMG! He looks like he is my age!!! I thought it was their uncle or something…Wow Rose… Check you out with your bad self!!!” I’m sitting across the table from him and thinking, “Put down the glass of water Rose… this kid is probably thinking that he is complimenting me right now.”
I put my game face on and “hahahaha, I know right” (smile). “He doesn’t age… well I guess it does show that I am 6 months older than him” (more giggles and fake smiles)!
Can we move on now?!

Now the reason I wanted to share these 2 stories with you guys (while I have to admit one of stories is not true… SorryJ) is to highlight 2 things that I (we) cannot deny.
First, The Hubby loves to remind me at times how much of a “sucker” I am for marrying him but now we ALL know who the “sucker” is, as my agenda was fulfilled… Let the truth be told on this 10th Day of October 2013…
Second, THIS IS HIS DAY (let’s now take this away from me!!!!)…THE MAN AGES LIKE ANY OF US!!!!! Even if he looks like a freaking 20 years old!!!! (Not hating here…not hating…)

Happy happy happy birthday to TheHubby… baby (that’s our level of intimacy…the absolute top level!)

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Today... Standing Tall Against The Test of Time...

“... It’s a blessed thing to love
   and feel loved in return.”
~ E.A. Bucchianeri

Last night in our home...

I have to pack. I'm off (again) for 4 days, which means my babies also have to pack for 4 days. This new job forces us to reorganize our everyday schedules in a way that makes it work; I’ve learned that humour is my best ally. The running joke is that now I'm a visitor in my own home... The kids have now 2 primary residences, since they have been now adopted by my brother and SISTER (in-law). This all happened without the hubby or I knowing, seeing as how we are always between plane, work and project... (Smile)

So last night, we were all running around (specifically me running after them), making sure they had packed up all that they’ll need for the next 4 days. That includes cross country gear, golf gear, professional day school clothes, long sleeves, short sleeves, pants, enough socks, etc.... and they were running around, trying to stay out of my path...
Off they go... Daddy is going to drop them to their other home after I give them a never ending amount of kisses and hugs... I stood at the front door, flickering the porch light for more goodbyes... Tears falling down my cheeks... I miss them so... My babies are growing... They are okay... I then pack my own things for my trip... Its midnight… I turn the lights off…

At 4:30am, my alarm goes off. Up and running again with the hubby to see me off...

"Our life is a mess," I said to him.
“I love it," he said. "Mom and Dad making things happen... I love it!" “But you and I are always tired... we don't have time for just me and you," I replied. "I didn't say it was perfect, but I love it because we are building our perfect... I love to see you go because I can't wait to see you come back... I love you," he said, all in a breath.
And I believe him...

“I love you too,” I said. I then gave him a kiss and we parted ways; not before uttering my favorite phrase, "Well, don’t do anything I wouldn't do!”

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, and it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Love never fails.” - I Corinthians 13:4-8a

This here; the “me and him” we are currently living, has been through all that a regular relationship can go through. It absolutely ranges from the highest highs (and thank God for the plenitude of those) to some lows (thank God for the lessons learned while overcoming these). And for me to be sitting here on this flight, taking me away from my loved ones - with a heart filled with serenity, I feel as at this moment of my life I have fulfilled MY definition of love...

I don't know if one can really define love... It is so personal to each of us that even though we hear, speak and read about it, I don't think we relate to the words we read or someone’s description of it, until we feel it or live it based on our needs. Why love can't be defined or be understood? Because, when the person to whom you are explaining it has never experienced it, how will they ever understand it? And maybe because what fulfils you represents a world of difference to what someone else seeks. Anyways, how the heart that experiences love be able to describe it? There is so much that goes into that love that I believe only your partner in that journey can understand you, understand your definition of love. You can only give someone an idea about love, about your love.
So here it is for me what love is...among the many things love can be... Love should strive for forever, love will allow forgiveness, and love will keep you finding the right path for each other. Love doesn't run away when things get “real”. Love keeps you fighting for yours. Love never gives up or loses faith. Love endures through every circumstance. Love can stand the test of time if you are in it together with the goal of wanting the best for and of each other.
It will stand the test of time if there is mutual respect for the individuals we are... Love will create indelible memories in your life, and in your mind... Love will nourish your soul even through (especially through) the hardest times.

Take your time, don't rush things... Love has its own timing and when it is right, with all its imperfections, it will stand tall against the test of time... tall against life pressures...

And you? What is YOUR definition of love?

Sunday, October 6, 2013

My Sunday Quote of The Week...

“Just because the past taps you on the shoulder,
it doesn't mean that you have to look back.”

The past ALWAYS follows us; we are part of continuity. A continuity that is the past, the present and the future… However I’m learning that the past shouldn’t be attached to our ankle like a ball and chain. I am not trying to act as if I am a blank canvas while starting the day…to the contrary; all I strive to do is acknowledging the good and bad from my past, turn them into lessons learned and leave it all behind for today’s new opportunities.

The past can be a powerful force, if we allow it to be... It can be positive and life-affirming...While we hold on to the past with a vengeance, replaying it over and over again we need to know and learn to let it go so we can move forward. Living in the past can actually have a crippling effect. I’ve learned to turn the page, learned to appreciate what I’ve build from it, learn from my past so I can be productive in the present or create a future with no regret… but for that I need to give undo power to the past.... So let the past be in the past.... Live in the present and dream of the opportunities that the future holds with new opportunities, friendships and relationships that are still relevant in my present.

I am realizing how hard it is to let go… I had to let go of relationship and situations lately and not necessarily when I was ready to. I feel as though the decision was made for me and while I would love to hang on to what was part of my life for many years, I realize that sometimes (all the times) what is turning out to be a relationship that is no longer cultivate in your day to day (i.e.: thought about with love, with kindness and in a none competitive way…) we need to take the past as a lesson of what NOT to do and go on with life… Can we easily let go? No, but we can use it ... Learn from it, let it shape who we become... Make the decision to use it and NOT let it use you... Say good bye and thanks for the lesson…DON’T BE DISTRACTED FROM THE NOW

So I’m vouching to let the past be in the past.... Live in the present and dream of the opportunities that the future holds.
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