Operation Allergy-Meds

So as you know by now, I have a very loving pit bull who has been my baby her whole life. I found her litter in a newspaper ad (yes, like a real newspaper – olden-days style) and bought her for $100! Best $100 I’ve ever spent. And I would gladly pay ten times more to keep her; well, actually, I pretty much have! She was 7 weeks old when I brought her home and will be turning 9 years old in May. For the past 8+ years it has been an unending guessing game of trying to keep her away from allergens. She is allergic to so many things, and if she isn’t now, you better believe she will be later…. yep, she develops allergies to things, including her food. I am constantly trying to stay ahead of the curve by selecting foods with few by-products and rotating the main ingredients in her food. So far Lamb and Rice is what we end back at quite often and it seems to suit her system.

A few weeks ago we went hiking in Malibu and after returning home I noticed my pup scratching a lot. So I took a closer look, sure enough, fleas! Ew!! I can’t even remember the last time she had fleas. So I immediately gave her a bath and flea treatment. A week later I gave her another bath to make sure they were all gone and to help soothe her skin. It has now been another full week and she is STILL itching! There are no fleas, I cleaned my house completely, and I cannot figure out what the problem is. Who knows, she could be allergic to her shampoo, the flea medication, or maybe her skin is just still inflamed and is taking forever to heal. Either way – it was time to try and get the girl some relief! We walked to the local pharmacy to find some anti-itch/allergy meds. I got home only to realize I got children’s benadryl SYRUP. I’ve tried this one before (the last time I mistakenly bought syrup for her allergic reaction to something ELSE) and she will not eat ANYTHING with that nasty syrup. So we went back to the pharmacy early this morning before work and I correctly purchased the capsules. Now to figure out what to put them in so she’ll eat them. I stared at my bare pantry, and realized I had no bread or processed food that would be safe for her. I am lactose intolerant, so I was hoping my roommate had some cheese I could steal – nope. So I made a batch of scrambled eggs and a pot of quinoa. 2 trips to the store plus a cooked meal later, I stirred the ingredients together and added fake-butter hoping she would take this medication for her own good! She hesitated when seeing the quinoa, and then, in for the rescue came my roommates dog – crowding mine as she ate – so she hurried, scarfing down the food to be sure her dog-roomie doesn’t get any. Mission accomplished! Hopefully this helps my little miserable pup.

Late post…. Love vs. fear

My philosophy put simply is do not fear. I have come to pay attention when making decisions… is this decision being made from a place of fear or a place of empowerment? Transitioning to LA, I have been able to practice this often as I make decisions for my life constantly. Am I accepting this position because I am afraid of not having money, not having another opportunity, afraid of exploring new areas? There are a million reasons one could be afraid and make a decision based in that fear. I choose to not give fear power over my life. I choose to believe in Love, and what is good. I believe that I am His beloved, and upon me his favor rests. I choose to work hard and have faith in the right things coming along for me. Why do I believe this? Good question. I suppose because I believe that I am loved and I have seen lives changed when others believe in love and learn to love themselves.

As I have been getting really good at empowered decision making in many areas of my life, I realized today that I still am operating out of fear when it comes to one major aspect of life.

Love.

Ironic isn’t it? I am this champion of the power of love, preaching high and low about the power of love and loving oneself and yet, I still am afraid to let someone love me. Granted, if you’ve been following my blog, you will know that I went through an intense breach of trust recently, so I do keep that in mind and I believe time is still bringing me healing from that. So overall I am not too hard on myself when it comes to this. Regardless of past experience, I believe in the beauty of true love. And to me that doesn’t fall in a box of “marriage” or a “life long relationship”. I don’t know the timespan or title, or that there is just one. Love can be a few seconds in one’s day to a lifelong commitment from teenagers til death. 

Ultimately, love is a decision. It’s a decision one makes many times per day, everyday, for the entire relationship. It’s a decision to not abandon your partner by a decision that will sabotage the life you are working to build together. Then there is the perspective that you really should not depend on someone else to the point that they would have the ability to sabotage your life. I suppose inside one’s own mind that is valid to an extent. Never let someone convince you of lies that break you down so far that you’ve lost your personal truth. </

Intentionally doing things differently

Now’s the true test.

I have spent time healing, meditating, being self-aware, and mourning the loss of a love I once had. I feel grounded, whole and ready to move forward. I sat the other day petting my dog as I always do, and saw her with a new set of loving eyes. My body filled with warmth and I had an awareness of an abundance of love that I had not felt for a long time. Not that i ever stopped loving the amazing people in my life (and my sweet dog-child), but I did not have an additional abundance of love that I was in a place where it could be felt or experienced. Joy filled my heart as I smiled from ear to ear, realizing I had reached a new level of peace through healing. And this healing came through patience, faith in Love, and self-care.

Now as I see the potential for a beautiful relationship with a man unlike any other I have ever met, I wonder how I will navigate this relationship. I have successfully changed the way I process most thoughts with an abundance-mindset in my individual affairs. As I take the first steps down this road with another person with whom I want to participate in life with, I find myself having to re-think all of the thoughts that come naturally based on the reflex thoughts born of past experiences (good, bad and traumatic). How do we approach a new love without the subconscious fear, trauma, and scar tissue that inevitably exists from past interaction?

A friend of mine just told me “you’re not going to have it all figured out before it happens”… He is right, and I choose to see this as another beautiful piece of life’s adventure.

Regarding the relationship with someone new, I’d like to believe neither of us will do it perfectly, but we will be mutually irresistible and will continue pursuing one another everyday with utmost love, respect and adoration. Love is a choice and must be repeated by both partners each moment for longevity to occur. Love is the piece of it that makes you want to make this choice.

I adore you…

The brilliant turquoise water sleeps calmly under our cabana in the tropics of Tahiti; it’s you, me and the sunset. The peace I feel when I’m with you is the most calming stillness. I’m at home in your loving arms. The connection, communication, and chemistry we share is divine. My heart flitters when I gaze into your eyes, unafraid to let you search mine. I am attracted to all of you; physically, emotionally, spiritually and intellectually. Being with you is just as comfortable as being with just me. Our adoration for each other makes our past relationships seem trivial. The love that we each thought we had shared with another pales in comparison to the deep-rooted commitment we have with each other.

We take walks together and enjoy the small things. We adventure together throughout the world, crossing things off our bucket list. We are allowed to try and to fail because, no matter how many times we fail, we will never fail each other. When a love is so pure, the pricks hurt worse, and resolution brings the most satisfying comfort. You are strong in your convictions, gentle in your love, and protective of your family. You are not one who needs constant attention from others, and you live to do what is right by those whom you love and who love you. We are healthy and we encourage each other to be our best selves.

I wonder how and when we will meet. Time is working as we speak to mold us into the people who will be perfect for one another. I am in no hurry to rush you into my life, for the best things are worth waiting for. I promise you I will continue growing, believing in myself, and becoming the best person I can be for me, for you, and for our future family. I love you already and I will never settle for anything less than the love that we will share. I know you won’t settle either.

I adore you.

 

And sometimes life breaks your heart.

I read the text and time stopped.

My eardrums shattered from the sound of my heart beating desperately out of my chest. This can’t be real. This can’t be real.

My mind flashed back to the blissful moment when our eyes met for the first time, rendering you speechless as you attempted to ask my name. In an instant we began slipping into a love that was real; neither of us prepared. I loved you because you were funny, chivalrous, and you loved to spoil me. I loved you because you smiled affectionately at my flaws and always made me feel as though I was more than enough. In a world that objectifies and belittles women, to my love, I was enough.

You taught me how to snowboard after teaching yourself. We loved to try new things together and spend time; no matter what, if we were together, we were having fun; we were content. I never got sick of being with you, which is unheard of. I get sick of everyone. Being with you was just as good as being alone… and even better because you make me laugh. When we lived in Oregon and the rainy weather would send me into hibernation, I would skip class sleeping all day. You would then come to my apartment, pull my blinds open and organize my room (because you know clutter stresses me out), and then finally you would drag me out of bed (sometimes literally) and tell me we were going on a walk. You loved to surprise me with dates and gifts. Not only did you take pride in the gift but you took pride in the wrapping too – you were so decoratively inclined! You had the homemaker skills I didn’t want to have – like ironing. I would send my clothes home with you and you would bring them back crisp and ready for whatever special occasion was approaching. We were best friends and our relationship never felt like work. It only took 6 weeks after moving in together for me to realize something was not right. Maybe I had been ignoring the red flags, or maybe I was busy with work and school. Either way, 2 years into our relationship it all came crashing down, but the reason was quite unclear. I moved out just as soon as I had moved in, leaving me practically homeless. I figured it was drugs, but I really had no idea. All I knew was that you were mean to me now; you had become someone I didn’t know and I was not going to be that girl who was dumb enough to think she could save you.

A year went by and I moved along on the outside. I finished school, moved away, started a new job, and even had another relationship. I never stopped wondering what really happened to us, to you.

One night I had a dream I was looking out of a living room window (from a house I’ve never been in) and I saw you drive by. Our eyes met and locked until you were out of sight. My heart dropped as I realized you were there and now you are gone. Then from behind the shrubs I see you had turned around and come back for me. You parked your truck and came walking up towards the door. I was so excited to see you! You were smiling from ear to ear, just as thrilled to see me. A long awaited, sweet reunion.

Then I woke up.

I woke up so bummed that it was only a dream. I was so frustrated that I still was even THINKING of you! Why can’t I be over it already? After all you put me through, how can I still miss you?

Then, later that day, at a friends house watching football and boom – your name pops up on my phone – facebook message! My dream was a premonition of sorts and you were reaching out to me to explain what happened a year prior. I gave you my new phone number and hearing your voice, I cried in disbelief; you explained that you had gotten involved in drugs and it took you a while but you chose to get help and you were now clean and sober. So it wasn’t all in my head. The clarity was so refreshing. Finally I could put the pieces together and it made sense.

You came to visit me, I went to visit you, and eventually we moved in together. We picked up where we left off. Snowboarding. Exploring new music. Watching Pixar movies and every episode of Dr. Phil on youtube. We went on bicycle adventures and took walks. We went dancing and played games. We were so happy. I was sure that this was it. I had my best friend back. You were happy too. So happy that I was sure nothing could tear us apart.

Then I read the text message. You handed me the phone and tried to grab it back before I could finish reading: “Come on man, I don’t wanna be sick” was all I needed to see.

What do you mean you don’t wanna be sick?! And who is this person I’ve never heard of before?

My heart sank. I knew in this moment what this meant. I wept. I wept as I mourned the end our journey together as partners. I wept for you. I wept for your family. And selfishly, I wept for myself. The man I loved and would never put in harms way had repeatedly chosen drugs over our relationship. Yes, addiction is an ugly, powerful force, but there were moments in which you were sober, and more than once, you made the choice to participate in some mind-altering activity instead of being sober. For us. For you. For me. I knew that I could never trust you again. I had been suspicious for a month now and you had an answer for every red flag I had seen. I felt like a crazy person – but I wasn’t crazy. I was right! You were using again. We lived together, spent all of our time together, and we were HAPPY. And yet you still went back. Anger. Sorrow. Emptiness. I hyperventilated and you tried to assure me, “I can fix this!” It was too late. I knew that I could not live this life. Constantly wondering if every sign was a sign of you using. I didn’t want to be the paranoid girlfriend. I didn’t want to have to drug test you all the time. I wanted to trust you. I could not build a life with someone who is willing to throw it away for a high. I was studying for the LSAT while you wasted away money, time, energy and your beautiful outgoing spirit on something that was killing you slowly.

My heart was not just broken; but deflated, lifeless. This was the lowest moment and I was shattered.

You tried to quit on your own, but the grip on you was too strong to overcome alone.

I am so proud of you for choosing to get help a second time. As we got in the car to make the 90 minute drive to the airport, we quoted Dr. Phil “Today’s gonna be a changing day in your life!” laughing, to keep from crying. We picked up my mom from her hotel and made the trip to the airport. We both hugged you and she told you she was proud of you. I held it together until getting back in the car where we both broke down watching you walk away, hearts aching.

My mom and I spent the remainder of her vacation together, and she soon returned back home. Our apartment had never felt so empty. I had never cried so much. Sometimes I cried until I was sure my eyes would fall out of my head. Sometimes I couldn’t cry, and I just slept. There were days I didn’t get out of bed, and I would think back to you pulling the blinds and dragging me outside.

This time I had my answers and this time it would be up to me to seek healthy closure and move on.

This was the beginning of a journey that I would not take back, even considering the immense pain that was involved. I never wanted our relationship to end. But sometimes life breaks our hearts and how we respond is what makes us who we are.

I soon began to love myself as if I were enough. The way I knew you loved me. Your battle with drugs had nothing to do with me, and I know this. I know you loved me more than you will ever be able to show me. And I hope you know that I loved you that much, too. I am most grateful for our time spent together, the beautiful memories I will always treasure. Many people who meet me see my positive outlook and sunshine smile and would assume I have never had hard times. I choose to live my life celebrating the good in spite of sadness.

And I will fondly remember our young, out of control love, for the joy it brought to both of us. This journey brought me further along on the path of empowerment, and to an enduring friendship we both still enjoy, even if from a distance. We have our souls in common and I am at peace knowing that we loved each other the best we could for the time we shared. We are now able to close a chapter and begin anew as you champion sobriety and I a new life in LA; we both champion for self-love. We are better able to love ourselves independently because of how we loved each other while we were together, and that is something to be truly grateful for.

Rumi Quote - Balance

Learned helplessness

This post is an attempt to describe an ongoing exploratory experience that I am observing as I live my life. Because it is evolving and still fresh to me, I don’t know how clearly I will be able capture it, reflecting it back to you through words. Yet it is important enough to attempt to process this experience through writing, which often leads to clarification one way or another!

Disclaimer: I am not attempting to sway beliefs, or even make any absolute claims for my own beliefs. I am exploring my observations using the mind God gave me. I believe it blesses Him when I explore this world and the entity of Love. I do not think He would be offended by me desiring to understand and find peace with the Love that endures all things.

Learned helplessness. This phrase was first brought into my life in the context of Domestic Violence. We were studying why women stay in abusive relationships, and the term “learned helplessness” was one reason we explored. Many women who were raised in abusive homes may have never believed they could do better, deserved better, or that “better” even existed. They may have watched their own mother endure beatings, learning that this is how things go – this is normal. I began to delve deeper into how what we learn… what we are taught… consciously or subconsciously (by teacher and/or student) sets the direction of our sails for life.

While I was studying this phrase, ironically enough (or by the Universe’s beautiful synchronization) I was going through a most difficult time. I was not physically abused by my lover, but he made choices that were harmful to our relationship and to our future. I refused to participate in his un-health by staying and began to explore why I allowed this pattern to happen repeatedly (4 year on/off relationship). I began researching, reading, and practicing uplifting spiritual practices as guided by Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dyer, and of course with a foundation of the Christian principles I had grown up with. Wayne Dyer teaches of using “I am” affirmation statements. Rather than saying “I am trying to be better at….” one would rather claim the affirmation and say “I am healthy”. I began practicing this and could not help but remember in the Bible when the God of the Universe would say “I am”. This God of the Universe I refer to as Love (the ultimate positive force that no one can deny the existence of. The One entity that leads people to softness and to goodness). Love is everything and at the same time a peaceful nothing that requires no effort and no striving. LOVE IS. As my “I am” statements began to truly manifest the concepts I was claiming for my life, the romance of my Love whispered in my ear “You are my Beloved, upon you my favor rests”. This has always been one of the most romantic and captivating verses in the Bible for me (Luke 3:22). This is when Jesus is baptized and the holy spirit descends from Heaven upon him. God is blessing him with his spirit, giving him the empowering spirit to conquer death. Fast forward to Jesus’ death and resurrection. Jesus died, conquered sin and death, and then ascended to Heaven, ALIVE in love.

A paraphrase of this event described here: Earlier, Jesus had told the disciples that after he ascended, the Holy Spirit would come down upon them with power. At Pentecost, they received the Holy Spirit like tongues of fire. Today, every born-again believer is indwelt by the Holy Spirit, who gives wisdom and power to live the Christian life.

So here we are, right now, POST-RESURRECTION! Wow! Jesus physically came, lived, died, and resurrected and physically showed us the power of Love. Then he handed it over to us and empowered us to LIVE this love. My experience from growing up in the church was rarely an empowered celebration, adventuring in this love, but rather a muddling in the “we are so helpless without God” mentality. Yes, maybe so, but the Spirit is IN US! So we are NEVER without God! How exciting! Why do we not live our lives this way? I see things my religious friends post about all of the ways they are trying to ask God permission to ‘go’ and ‘BE’. God is in you, and when you embrace that beautiful LOVE, there is no question on how one should live. Love is alive and it is so obvious! Yes, there will be stumbles and even falls, but this is not a battle of you against the other; or you seeking permission from the Other. This experience should be you empowered by Love. Whatever that means to you, be it art, business, healthcare, petting dogs or giving away all of your belongings, as long as it is done with a true spirit of good, positive love, it is Godly, because God is in you once you have acknowledged the mighty power of Love.

Oppression reigns when we live in a  way in which we ask others for permission to live our truth. Oppression reigns when we tear each other down for variations in understanding of doctrine.

I look at the many religions of the world and see an ever-loving, powerful, omnipotent LOVE who is reaching out to the one’s He loves. I believe Love is doing anything possible to communicate this phenomenon to us; through various events in history, recognized personally or by millions of people. Love reaches out to us sometimes every so quietly, with a gentle whisper. And then Love sends the Messiah, Jesus Christ, to reach out on a grand scale. There are other events recorded in history of people dying and rising from the dead. Maybe this happened, maybe it did not. Would the master of the universe understand when history was lost between generations? I’m confident this is so. So when one story was lost through the generations, Love desperately reached out again, eager to interact with creation, to experience the beautiful music only possible when one is there to listen. I celebrate the beauty of the Lover forever pursuing it’s Beloved.

I live in this empowered beauty. The Love of the Universe has reached out to me, given me permission to run in freedom, truth and light. I shall not fear, for Love is with me. Two truths cannot co-exist. My Love reigns and has already conquered death, so I shall live in this truth, embracing everything that the universe has to offer. What a beautiful life.

Do not live in the part of the story in which we are helpless without the Love of the almighty. This love has already been handed to us, the Ultimate Gift. Let us celebrate and dance with victory, and live each day with divine perspective. We have all that we need; we have Love.

Beautiful LA

Well here I am in beautiful West LA! I have been loving the past 2 weeks; it’s hard to believe so much has happened in such a short time. I have already met some amazing people, celebrated New Years Eve downtown in a penthouse apartment, visited Venice Beach, explored Santa Monica, and so much more. I am so grateful for my life here and even landed a great job. I am cruising right along and looking for ways to begin volunteering. I will write again soon with more details of my life’s adventures. Happy New Year!