• Week 4 of my sabbatical

    Greetings all! So this is the fourth and final week of my month long sabbatical from work.You may or may not have noticed that there was no week 3 post. Week 3 was kind of a blur for me, complete with ups, downs, tears, laughter and a dance with dear old depression….but what I learned in week 3 changed my life.

    When I decided to take the break from work, my goal was to pursue writing a second book, and to get all (each and every one) of the things done that I never seem to have time to do (clean closets, clean house, change my name from my wedding TWO years ago, paper work for my husband’s company, etc, etc.)

    I also took on a huge clothing order for the fire department that I volunteer for. (I had NO idea what a job that was going to turn out to be.)

    Having said that, you can likely already see what may have led to my week 3 meltdown.

    I set the bar so high for myself, I completely set myself up for failure. I couldn’t possibly achieve all of the things I intended to in the time I had off, which left me feeling like a failure. The bigger question though was what on earth motivated me to do that?

    After much contemplation, I realized the following about myself:

    • I have always lived my life from a place of fear and insecurity. Even when things were going well for me, I was waiting for the other shoe to drop. Maybe not consciously, but it was always there in the background, as all limiting beliefs about ourselves are.
    • Due to my insecurity, I became a people pleaser in an effort to fill up what I thought was a fault in my personality. I tried too hard and often gave too much in an effort to prove myself, my worth, my value.
    • I chased after certain jobs thinking that they were the key to my happiness. I thought a “career in a certain field” was the missing piece of the puzzle, that the right job would define me and what I’m capable of, and without it, I would always feel incomplete.
    • I always longed to feel comfortable in my own skin. That was never going to happen when I was always trying so hard to be who I thought other people wanted me to be.

    I then realized the following about life:

    • Nothing external will EVER, ever, ever fill that void within you. You can only fill it from the inside.
    • If you are not completely happy with who you are right now, in this moment, you will never be happy or fulfilled with anything outside of you, be it the right job, the right house, the right spouse. It’s like trying to fill a sieve.
    • Your pain and suffering is an ego thing. Only the ego feels the need to justify itself. You think you need certain things to be happy, but if you interrupt the incessant voice in your head telling you that you’re not enough as you are, and tune into what’s in your heart, you’ll begin to hear the still, quiet voice telling you that you ARE ENOUGH, you ARE WORTHY, you are LOVED exactly as you are.
    • We are all unique and therefore all have something unique to bring to the world that no one else can. There’s no need to compare yourself to, or compete with, anyone. Comparing and competing is your ego talking again.
    • No two paths are alike. Honour your uniqueness, follow YOUR path.
    • The key to happiness is being present in the moment, no matter what you are doing in that moment. You will drive yourself crazy and miss all the important moments right in front of you if you’re always thinking about wanting to be somewhere else.

    I now look to my dogs for guidance. When they sleep, they sleep like they mean it; they snore. When someone says “walk”, they’re at the door and ready to go, when they’re hungry, they eat. They live completely in the moment and they love their humans with all their heart.

    …and they think I’m awesome just the way I am.








  • Woman’s Best Friend?

    What a pair! Here I am working away at my desk and in they come, park themselves beside me and sit…and stare…it’s hard not to wonder what they are thinking. Besides the obvious how awesome I am, of course. Or how much they love me, worship me, and just think I’m simply the best. Either that, or they need out. But usually when Piglet ( the larger one on the right…92lbs in fact!) needs out, she sits and the back door and stares at it. Not at me or anyone else, she actually sits and stares right at the back door. It’s the funniest thing because she often sits there for 10 or 15 minutes just staring at the door. Like maybe she’s waiting for her telepathy to kick in and open the door automatically. However, if she’s been there long enough and no one notices, she’ll let out one bark. And then she sit there for another few minutes. If no one comes and opens the door for her, she’ll bark again, but just once. So, often in our house with kids and tv’s and life going on, we may not notice until the fourth or fifth solitary bark comes from the back of the house. And then I will finally clue in and go to let her out if I happen to be the only one home, or if we are all home, someone (meaning hubby or I) will just call out “can someone let Pig out?”  Thank goodness she’s a patient dog!

    In this case, I think they just wanted to come and see what “mom” was doing, or perhaps they were hoping to distract me from whatever it was that I was doing because to them, it’s always a good time for cuddles, a good ear rubbing, or of course, the “ah-yeah-that’s-the-spot” belly rub that every dog lives for. Piglet likes to rest her head on the arm rest of whatever chair I’m sitting in and stare at me with those huge brown eyes of hers (again, I think she’s trying to use telepathy on me). Pooh Bear likes to put her paw on my leg and look intently at me in a way that makes me think she’s either a long lost family member reincarnated, or just wise beyond her dog years because she seems to be saying something to me with that look of hers, I just don’t know what the heck it is! And they are both all about the licking. They love to lick your face when you’re sleeping (which is great to use on the kids when I’m trying to get them up in the morning), or they’ll lick your hands if they happen to be at their eye level at any given time, or they lick each other. Piglet is always licking Pooh Bear because she’s the bigger of the two and seems to think she’s the momma, although they are sisters.  It’s widely accepted that it’s a sign of afftection when your dog licks you or “gives you kisses” afterall, they are just showing you how much they love you. Right?  Until you remember how often it is that they lick themselves and hope that they didn’t just….eeeewwww!

    Piglet, appropriately named, likes to eat socks (usually my daughter’s), underwear (usually mine…I still say that if  she’d eat hubby’s it would keep her full longer because there’s alot more material there, however…she prefers mine), anything leather (like my other daughter’s cowboy boot, right down to the sole, but just one so we have the other to use as a ? magazine holder??), and bread or buns of any kind left on the counter, and even bananas when she’s in the mood.

    Pooh Bear…Poopy Bear, Pooh Berra, Bear, Pooper, Poopy Pants…it’s amazing how many variations there are for her name. I like to say (when she’s lying on one of our beds), “ewww, there’s Pooh on the bed!”, or if she happens to lay on my feet, “there’s Pooh on my feet!”. Poor dog, talk about giving her a complex with a name like that. Suddenly, I think I know what she’s thinking when she looks at me so intently all the time…sorry Bear! Even Piglet’s nicknames aren’t too bad, Piggly Wiggly, Pigletta, Pig Pen, Piggy Griggy (hubby’s last name is Grigg). Mind you, Pig does seem to think she has to live up to her name by eating anything and everything…

    I could go on forever about the antics of Piglet & Pooh Bear, and I may even do so in future blogs, but for today I’ll wrap it up with this last thought…my dogs really must think I’m awesome because all I have to do is say their name once and they’ll be at my feet as fast as they can possibly get to me, eyes wide open, tail wagging, barely able to sit still and a look on their sweet, lovable faces that says…”Yes Mom?”

    Gotta love ’em!


    Pooh Bear