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reSLience… a.k.a. resilience

it's what lies within that really matters

Category Archives: half-full

It is too hot to think too hard! 100 degrees by 10 am and knowing AZ temperatures are hotter than Dubai make me realize most of what is going on may simply be a mirage these days.

One thing is always for certain. You can count on yourself. You alone are responsible for you… good bad or otherwise… Friendship can be based on lots of things. Hopefully you don’t delude yourself into believing some are friends when they are merely a mirage… this time of year… in this kind of heat… it makes people do funny things. Forgiveness and friendship go hand in hand. They are 2 sides to the same coin. Yin and Yang. You can’t go back, but you can move on. You don’t have decide to move in different directions, but time moves on, as do circumstances.

Don’t kid yourself and count on anything other than you – is what I remind myself time and time again. Pray for those who have caused frustration and hurt… they are chasing after other dreams… wish them well and move on. (I use this same philosophy in bad traffic with other drivers around me 🙂 )



I woke up this morning with a Beatles song in my head… the lyrics repeating themselves over and over “Nothing’s gonna change my world… Nothing’s gonna change my world.” and I thought to myself… WAIT! That isn’t the right mantra to have in my head – no matter what world I’m living in.

So I hopped in the shower… still having that Beatles tape loop in my head (which btw, I love the Beatles so don’t get me wrong) and an old camp song from middle school came into my head. Montlure Camp 🙂

Chorus: You and I can climb every mountain, Cross every stream and drink from every fountain, In His name, In His name, In His name…
Verse 1: Truth is gone, the world proclaims, No foundation now remains, Yesterday cannot return, Tomorrow won’t be the same, but…
Verse 2: Men hide their deeds from human eyes, Their hope in self alone, Man’s power fails, the light grows dim, Blind lead blind, I hear their wail, but…
Chorus: You and I can climb every mountain, Cross every stream and drink from every fountain, In His name, In His name, In His name…

And… all of a sudden I started to feel really energized. Yes… I was in the shower. I sound incredible when I belt it out in the shower 🙂 heehee Beyonce has nuthin’ on me in that shower when I’m singing… let me tell you. And… I started thinking about the words. With an idea in your head of facing mountains and knowing you can climb them anything is possible… even 60+ page grants needing to be written in a matter of a few days… even silly drama that people I know seem to be praying on stirring more of… blah blah blah… forget it CLIMB THAT MOUNTAIN .

Then, I went on to give my youngest, Simon, his breathing treatment for his asthma as I continued to get ready for work. And I was reminded of another favorite song of mine. I fell in love with it during those same camp years and it has carried me through some very dark and stressful times. This is the one I sang softly as I rubbed Simon’s head and gave him his treatment. This is the one I’ll carry in my heart today. When chaos and darkness prevails, it is most definitely time to return to center. I added new quotes to my sidebar today. I’m excited that it is May 14 and there are incredible possibilities, including mountains ahead of me. And… I’m ready to climb ’em or move ’em.

Happy Thursday in whatever world you are in 🙂

All I Ever Have To Be
Written by Gary Chapman, Sung by Amy Grant
When the weight of all my dreams
Is resting heavy on my head,
And the thoughtful words
of health and hope
Have all been nicely said.
But I’m still hurting,
Wondering if I’ll ever be
The one I think I am.
I think I am.
Then you gently re-remind me
That you’ve made me from the first,
And the more I try to be the best
The more I get the worst.
And I realize the good in me,
Is only there because of who you are.
Who you are…
And all I ever have to be
Is what you’ve made me.
Any more or less would be a step
Out of your plan.
As you daily recreate me,
Help me always keep in mind
That I only have to do
What I can find.
And all I ever have to be
All I have to be
All I ever have to be
Is what you’ve made me.

I swear… if you sing this song… whether you are a stressed out 5 year old, or a nervous 11 year old… or or or… just make the decision to put on those pants, tie up those laces and head out the door… Monday isn’t going to go away and Spring Break is OVER.

Double Dog Dare YOU to Sing Along!

Double Dog Dare YOU to Sing Along!

Gotta CLICK to Have Them Sing Along With YOU!

Top 10 Things I am Happy About on THIS Particular Monday:

  1. The no parking, standing, stopping, waiting, breathing, or smiling signs were GONE from the kids’ busstop today!
  2. It has cooled off again in Phx with a high today of 78 so maybe we get to return to Spring temps for a bit longer.
  3. My boss is in Hawaii on vacation for most of the week!
  4. I can finish things on MY to do list at work because of #3.
  5. Tonight is Fruit, Vegetable, & Sex Trivia at Bistro Olive…. yes… & Sex… I suggested they add that at the end of all Trivia events because people will come then… yes… Sex sells baby.
  6. Maybe today is a Subway day for lunch.
  7. My email inbox has almost all the junk deleted already because I deleted it from my Blackberry. Woot!
  8. My PLURK karma has remained steady (shameless ploy to get you to Plurk too! Come on… you know you WANT to! 
  9. Carlos and Otis are patroling Marco Island while I am away today in RL.
  10. I have a LOT to be thankful for and I love my family and friends very much!

Ok… ready to make your Monday list?  Things are good!  I keep saying that.  Even the stock market went up some today…. go figure 🙂

Sometimes I get very caught up in the here and now… the never ending list of things to do and the piles of life that need my most urgent attention… and I forget to view the here and now as a stepping stone to what is next.

Lately… when I have had a morning to sleep in… I have forced myself to do so. I am so fortunate to have a husband who lets me and I roll over, cover my head and let the birds sing good morning to someone else. I have felt like the morning came too early and I felt like getting out of bed was just too much to expect. My house, my kids, my job, my RL and SL… it just all felt overwhelming. I felt empty and sad. Depressed from the news day in and day out about life going from bad to worse, depressed from news of my mom finding a new kind of cancer on her body, depressed from updates of my youngest’s teacher about school progress… I could go on…but then I would depress you!

My half full… had a leak I think. I’ve neglected my blog because I wasn’t feeling very resilient. My positivity had done nothing to save a friend’s marriage… to help some stay employed… to keep people cancer free… to help people understand that being a friend means more than just a token place in a profile… I have been reminded over and over that mean people come disguised and on soft tip toes into your life and if you aren’t careful… they will suck things from you – but ONLY as long as you let them have that power. The last few months I have made the mistake of giving some power they didn’t warrant or deserve.

I heard a message this a.m. Very loud. Very clear. I can wander in the desert for days, weeks, months, years. I can choose to ignore the flowers that bloom and the rains that turn the desert a brilliant green. OR I can open my eyes. I can see things for how they are. I can slip on my rose colored glasses that are dusty from storage and return to my view of the world that helps me add one or two more things to my plate and soak up all the good stuff life has to offer.

I choose that. I choose the glasses. I choose the cup that is half full. I choose to pick the flowers and carry them in my hand and smell their sweet smell for the moment. I have faith to know there will be more flowers and more to fill my cup.

Springtime at Cabeza Prieta by Catherine Sickafoose

Springtime at Cabeza Prieta by Catherine Sickafoose

My husband pretends to drink Hate-er-ade but I know that isn’t true and I thank him for sticking with me through this period of gray half-emptiness. Pulling the weeds so we can enjoy the flowers… cleaning the carpet so we can remember how much we appreciate having some to walk on. Enjoying a few days of vacation AFTER a furlough day because I have earned it, not because I was mandated to take it. Soaking up the springtime AZ sun in the most beautiful time of year in Phoenix. Deciding that sometimes when you aren’t sure where to start you just have to start somewhere. I’m starting today. I’m making a promise to return to my half-full self. It feels good to take the first few steps in that direction. Pour yourself a cup. Pick a few flowers. Choose something nice to say and feel free to join me. My life is too short for anything else.

Mary Poppins got it right!

Mary Poppins got it right!

I used to joke about work furlough programs. I thought they were something you got in prison -like a work release – when you have been good and they let you out to work or something. OBVIOUSLY I should have consulted a dictionary and really understood it. I have a big fat FURLOUGH staring me in the face. This, not to be confused with a FURBIE, is much uglier and more disturbing.

I am not going to turn this into a grip post. I am RESILIENT after all and the queen of making lemonade out of lemons. So… I am taking my furlough day (aka a day with no pay so that my salary is reduced by my daily pay rate) – the first of 12 I must take between now and early June 2009 – with a spoonful of sugar. I realize I am horribly mixing metaphors but isn’t that how the medicine goes down when you live with Mary Poppins?

The GOOD NEWS? the SILVER LINING? NO ONE immediately will lose their jobs. They are saving some ungodly amount of money across the whole system ($24 million I think) by asking… no wait REQUIRING… everyone to take 10-12-15 furlough days. I fall in the middle so I’m a 12er. I am completely for this if it really helps. I am completely for this if it means NO ONE loses their jobs unnecessarily AFTER June 30. Will that happen? I just can’t muster enough pollyanna in me to believe that is the case. I think this is the first blow with more to come.

So I talked with my bus stop friends this morning. The guys that take their kids to school and wait at the stop. The guys from other types of employment communities who seemed shocked. They figured… oh … a furlough… just take all your days at once and go get another job for the month. Me being the achieve, achieve girl had of course already thought of that. However, a month of does not work because of loss of benefits, etc. Second jobs? Yes, I have thought of that too and applied everywhere and anywhere to teach part time in the evenings (knowing full well it would severely cut into my SL habit). Nothing. No second jobs. Everyone is too busy finding first jobs.

So… skipping along… singing a happy little working tune I go. I tell you. There is no fat lady singing here. It ain’t over. Dave and I are working with some very cool friends, who are equally strategic, and we are going to launch a LLC. If we can’t find extra work, we’ll make our own. I’m SO EXCITED about it. Its all about getting the right people on the bus and getting headed up the mountain in time to reap all the benefits that come at the top – at the Tipping Point. WE are going to be on that bus. No short bus this time. Lemon from lemonade. Sugar with our medicine.

Cheers to restrictions from looking at work emails. Cheers to new beginnings and all things that are born from tough times. RESILIENT baby!

I’ve been thinking a lot as I drive this week. Newsflash? Maybe! Heehee… After having 2 1/2 weeks off from the commute, I was out of practice having time to myself. The music on my stereo seemed to be turned a little louder and I think I enjoyed the phone conversations a little more with my parents as I commuted without anyone saying “Mommy he is picking on me” while on the phone.

My good friend and colleague made certain to get me out the door each night this week by 5 pm and and even helped plan lunches with me so we could eat at the office and save money. We traded off bringing leftovers and frozen dinner goodies from home. It was nice. It was honestly less rush then the usual figure out where to go.

We had a few minor mishaps – a lunch left on the backseat of my car by a little one needing to be dropped off at school, a refusal to wear a heavy coat on a cold morning, and the ever popular “she was throwing water on him and he kicked her so I punched him” drama after school. But ultimately, all in all, wow… the first week of the new year in high gear and I’m sitting at my desk in one piece. Not bad, really.

Our oldest came home with a report card that said he made the Honor Roll. Our oldest, our son with a learning disability and ADHD, came home with an HONOR ROLL REPORT CARD! I am so proud if I had money I would rent a skywriter for him. Growing 3 inches plus and gaining 18 pounds plus in 6 months time AND pulling off Honor Roll grades… is there ANYTHING NOT POSSIBLE?

Our next oldest had an experience this week with a career day simulation called J-Biz… based on the old Junior Achievement model. He had a stunning role as a television newscaster and LOVED IT! He refused to practice in front of any of us – but he pulled his performance off with flying colors. Need I remind you this is the son with extreme anxiousness? Just thinking about it makes me want to kiss his sweet face and hug him tightly.

Our youngest two? Yes… they deserve a paragraph each as they are their own people. Sweet baby girl came home with an “I can read book” this week – you know, the kind with the cat in the hat on it – and wanted to read it with me. She also took the time to explain to me which direction East, West, North and South was from our kitchen at a random moment in passing. Sometimes I just look at her in wonderment as I wonder what is turning in those little wheels in her mind. Great things I know 🙂

Finally, my sweet Simon. This is the boy who loses his glasses almost 3 or more times a week but is bound and determined to wear them. The boy who screams out real fear if his older brothers spook him in a quiet house. But, ultimately, at the end of the day, this is the little boy that is not happier anywhere else than in your arms snuggled up tight. He puts the top of his head up to your face waiting for a kiss in his hair. He has found his passion in the last few weeks to be buried in a giant box of Lego pieces. His imagination makes spaceships and racecars. He is often asked to be quieter in his stirring of pieces in the big plastic bin as he searches for just the right component for his project. I’d like to think that is a sign of greater things to come as well.

We are all so blessed. No matter what small stresses pepper the landscape… no matter what giant storms or strong winds threaten us…. things will be ok. By Friday of the full week after time off it is hard to put on the work clothes and the poker face and get it all out the door to do it again one last day… but we all did. Its great to be on a team that can pull it off… even when tired and ready for the end… ready for covers over our heads and a few more hours of sleep and a little more time to savor coffee… We’re in the final few minutes of the quarter… thanks guys for making it a good week.

See… I told you 2009 was going to be good!

Some Good Business Strategy

Some Good Business Strategy

Don’t worry about the world coming to an end today. It’s already tomorrow in Australia.
~ Charles M. Schulz US cartoonist (1922 – 2000)

My Little Secret

My Little Secret

It’s all about attitude and how you choose to deal with the hand you’re dealt. As I wrap up my vacation, and enjoy the few last days of a clean house and being a stay-at-home-mom and making dinner and having ALL appliances in working order, and finally NOT being sick (yes – sick since Veteran’s day… UGH)… I choose to again celebrate all the blessings around me and think about how fantastic 2009 will be and all it holds… for me and all those I know.