Peace in Therapy

Every now and again I feel like I need what I now call “a tune up.” It feels just like getting my oil changed in the car. Things aren’t running quite as they should, and I know I can feel better. There is a weight lingering on my shoulders I can’t quite shake.

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I always pull out my mental checklist and start asking myself what I need. Could it be:

  • yoga?
  • quiet reading time?
  • a healthier diet plan?
  • a break brought on by the babysitter?
  • a run?
  • a necessary disruption in what’s become a monotonous schedule?
  • a brunch out with the ladies?

I almost always attribute any shift in my thinking to “the winter blues.” It’s most often the case that NOTHING is wrong. NOTHING has changed and NOTHING needs fixing.

But sometimes, I need a tune up, nonetheless. I need a reminder of who I am and what I have to be grateful for. And sometimes, getting back to my normal self comes from a little help from a licensed professional.

I have a handful of helpful people I can turn to when I need to talk. And I find so much peace and comfort in it. I learn new resources. I learn new ways to examine problems both trivial and large. I gain some insight, and I’m so grateful for it.

I think there is a lot of misconception in our country about mental health and therapy and what all of this exists for. Does it really work? Does it make a difference? Is it still taboo?

I don’t have answers for any of those questions, but I do know this:

Sometimes Mommy needs a tune up, and I know where to schedule my time and with whom to speak. For me, it works. It brings peace.

What brought you peace this week? Share the peace.

Peace in Disagreements

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This holiday season turned out to be a lot more stressful than I remember other years having been. This year involved a lot of discussion. And such discussions led to disagreements. Getting together during the rise of omicron led those in our family to ask a lot of questions:

  • What’s safe?
  • What isn’t safe?
  • Should we still be worrying about all this?
  • Should we test people before gathering?
  • When should we test?
  • Whom should we test?
  • Where can we get tests?
  • Are rapid tests reliable for the omicron variant?
  • Has anyone been exposed?
  • What day did you get exposed?
  • Who’s vaccinated?
  • Who’s been boosted?
  • What is the best venue for our gathering?
  • What are we serving, from a food perspective? (just kidding…..I didn’t ask that, but I was certainly wondering!)

Here’s the thing: questions are great. Questions can lead to answers. Answers can bring knowledge. Sometimes answers bring comfort. But when family is involved, things can get dicey. Because we love our family members. And while we want what’s best for everyone, we can disagree about what’s best.

Because we’re different. We have different opinions. We have different beliefs. And some of us, like, ahem, little old me, don’t always have an answer.

I’m not a scientist, a medical professional, an epidemiologist, a politician, a religious leader, or much of an authority on anything except soup (Truly, people, I make a mean soup. Come over any time!)

To say I cried a little this Christmas season would be an understatement. I cried, I yelled, I lost sleep. I let my confusion, fear, and disappointment in disappointing others RULE. I don’t like when people disagree. Former ultimate people-pleaser speak: I just want us all to get along!!!

Finding peace in this headspace was a challenge.

So, what did I do?

I let it go.

I said, ok, we disagree, and that’s ok. It has to be ok. This is what we need right now. The path is disagreement. If God wanted us to agree all the time, we would have been all the same. Which, if I were choosing, I would have made all of us Oprah. (I know, I know: agree to disagree….but I love Oprah. I also love Sonia Sotomayor. I could have gone with that choice, too, since she has the work ethic of a god.)

I breathed. I baked. I cooked. I tried to do the things I love to do and kept going.

And you know what? I found my way back to peace. I always find my way after a little time and effort.

What brought you peace this week? Share the peace?

Peace in Quieting The Voices In My Head

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I have read plenty of books that discuss the concept of “the voice in your head.” It speaks to the idea that we narrate our lives….and then subsequently torture ourselves, convinced that the voice is truthful.

“Oh, look at that vase!”

“Oh, I hate that song!”

“Oh, this sweater is just lovely!”

“Why is she wearing that?”

We notice things and say them quietly to ourselves. This is human nature. But, there is another, less kind, judgemental, sometimes self-deprecating voice I hear from time to time. That voice used to BOOM in my head, day in and day out, without fail. It wasn’t a great way to live.

Every now and again, the voice returns. I hear myself saying things like, “You’re not a good enough mom,” or “You could really stand to be a better wife,” or “Get off your butt! Go do that puzzle with the kids for the 3rd time!”

Then I seek peace.

I find peace in the daily recognition that “the voice” is not real. It’s a pile of thoughts. Some of them are true, others are not.

I think Michael Singer put it best in his book, The Untethered Soul. He writes,

“In fact, your thoughts have far less impact on this world than you would like to think. If you’re willing to be objective and watch all your thoughts, you will see that the vast majority of them have no relevance. They have no effect on anything or anybody, except you. They are simply making you feel better or worse about what it going on now, what has gone on in the past, or what might go on in the future. If you spend your time hoping that it doesn’t rain tomorrow, you are wasting your time. Your thoughts don’t change the rain. You will some day come to see that there is no use for that incessant internal chatter, and there is no reason to constantly attempt to figure everything out. Eventually you will see that the real cause of problems is not life itself. It’s the commotion the mind makes about life that really causes problems (p 10).”

There is so much WOW in this passage.

This time of year, I need to work a little harder to quiet the chatter in my mind. That voice shouting at me to “DO MORE” and “GET IT RIGHT” needs a major chill pill.

We all want an awesome holiday. But you know what, it’s going to be awesome, no matter what. That is what Christmas is all about. It’s not about creating something perfect. It’s about marveling at all that we already are.

This week, I found peace in quieting my mind.

What brought you peace? Share the peace!

Peace in Stardust

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I was reading Martha Beck’s Finding Your Way In A Wild New World recently and came across a line that made me stop in my tracks.

Beck writes, “We are made of just two things: stardust and sunshine. Unbearably chirpy as that sounds, it’s factually true. Every molecule in your body was made in the belly of a massive star that exploded, hurling all the elements we know into space.”

If you know me, you know I don’t like to stop at reading just one piece of information. I pulled up several articles, including a super comprehensive one from The National History Museum, which confirmed Beck’s statement.


Thinking in this way fills my heart with calm. I picture scenes from one of my favorite movies, Contact and dream of the possibilities that exist right inside of me.

Does that sound self-aggrandizing? I hope not. I don’t mean for it to.

I always say that wintertime brings a bit of the blues out in me. So, it’s times like these when imagery helps.

Dreaming of myself as bits of stardust and sunshine allow me to meditate on holding sunshine within myself. I find that meditation is REALLY HARD, but it helps when I concentrate on specific images, I can make it through 5 minutes (I know, I know, this impresses you, too!).

But if we are what we believe, channeling a little stardust makes me part of a beautiful, elegant universe. That makes me peaceful. And meditation makes me peaceful.

What thoughts brought you peace today? Share the peace!

Share the peace! This one is easy enough!