Peace in Courage

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A couple of weeks ago, I got the idea into my head that I wanted to learn how to install chair rail. I wanted to use a power saw and make something in my house look different. A good starting place felt like our powder bathroom. It’s a small room with small, simple angles and dimensions.

I usually find peace in creative endeavors. But this was something totally new: something I never did before and knew absolutely nothing about.

Instead of feeling at ease or energized over tackling something new, the opposite happened. I bought the necessary supplies for my project and let the items sit in our garage for weeks.

I asked myself every day why I didn’t want to start the project. Here’s what I came up with:

I was afraid to make mistakes. I didn’t want to drive back to Lowes to purchase more supplies. And I didn’t want to do the job alone. I needed to give myself a talkin’ to.

All of my stopping points were fairly simple issues to think my way out of. Mistakes are really opportunities to learn. Driving for more supplies doesn’t take much effort. Just put the key in the ignition, get there, and buy what I need. But working alone took a little something extra.

I needed to ask for help. But I was embarrassed to do it. But I could not learn everything I needed to by watching YouTube and reading a couple of blogs (I love and trust you, Bob Vila, but you can’t do everything without at least a little bit of facetime).

When I finally built up the courage to ask for help, the project was done in an afternoon. And while I thought the best, most peaceful part of this experience would come in the finishing of something new and interesting, it was something far greater. I found peace in the time I spent with my mentor. I learned new things from a special person, and that made all the difference. At the end of the day, my heart settled on that and grew a few inches extra.

What brought you peace this week? 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.

Wowzer.

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!

No Difference

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In youth lies wonder
And stamina, too
Early mornings and ceaseless awe,
Afternoons filled with all things new. 

Then shrieking, screaming, 
Senseless rage
Injustice done unto others or themselves,
Feeling the limits and confines of this stage.

They need you, and me, and our parents as well
Life is yet theirs to behold. 
I can't reach, he yells, That's not fair, she screams
And we need only say, "You can when you're old."

But such paradox is shared.
Life is both great and troublesome. 
What they do not know 
Is the autonomy yet to come. 

When I do what I say and dream what I please
And quest for the meaning of life. 
Life becomes choices, and many at that,
Some full of peace while others bring strife. 

Life is a mystery, repeating itself
With wonder, awe, strife and pain 
We're hardly different, them and us
Thank god we're all the same. 

Peace in Progress

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I set parenting goals for myself. Not often, but every now and again, I realize something I don’t like and work change. This year, I wanted to stop yelling at the kids. It doesn’t happen often, but it happens sometimes and I wanted to make a change.

I read a lot of articles and watched videos from The Mom Psychologist, Dr. Paul Jenkins, and Supernanny to find my bearings. It seems like yelling is something everyone does, but I wanted to make a change. I don’t want to lean on it. I don’t want to hear myself doing it, nor do I want to feel “worked up” over trivial day-to-day stuff.

Today, I sat quietly to write and realized it has been a long time since I’ve yelled. So long that I can’t remember when it happened last.

So what’s changed?

I breathe more. I find quiet more. I take breaks. I swim in a new reality, where being a mom is not so much weighted by its long list of responsibilities as it floats in love and support. I think of Rabindranath Tagore when he wrote,

“When we take a pitcherful of water from the sea, it has its weight, but when we take a dip in the sea itself, a thousand pitcherfuls of water flow above our head, and we do not feel their weight.”

Today, I’ve found peace in noticing progress has happened in our little home. And I’m grateful.

What has brought you peace today? Share the peace!

Learn more about Dr. Jasmin here! I think she is totally fabulous and she has a TON of videos to help support your parenting efforts! Knowledge is power, people, seriously!