Child’s Play

17 02 2011

Over the past couple of days I’ve talked about connecting with my ‘inner child’ and today is the day I have promised that I would let her out to play.

When I awoke this morning, I asked my ‘child’ what she would like to do today.

Her answer was that she just wanted to ‘go with the flow’ – to chill – and take things easy for a change.

She said that she wanted my undivided attention and that I was to ignore the ‘chattering gremlin’ who sits on my shoulder all day long, shouting instructions about what I ‘should’ be doing if I want to be…

•          Loved

•          Respected

•          Noticed

•          Fulfilled

•          Accepted

She knows that I am constantly bombarded by his never ending fear based demands – all adding constant pressure to my days and restlessness to my nights. With her encouragement, it feels great to tell him to ‘shut up’ and take the day off – leaving us free to enjoy our day together without his constant interruptions.

Being with my ‘inner child’ is like spending time with a new friend. Step by tiny step – she is taking me by the hand and leading me back to myself. A beautiful friendship is beginning to develop as we begin to get to know and understand each other.

This morning she has taken me to a ‘flow yoga’ class – because she loves the freedom of movement and the sense of well-being it brings. She also likes listening to the inspirational teacher who makes her smile and encourages her to feel good about herself.

Leading me back home she encourages me to put on a long forgotten CD called ‘Charka Dancing’ – buried at the bottom of the music pile. Turning it up to full volume we are dancing together around the house and suddenly housework seems like a fun thing to do!

Food is next on her list and she encourages me to raid the fridge for a ‘ready, steady, cook’ challenge of creating a colourful and healthy meal out of the bits and pieces of food found lurking in farthest recesses of the (almost) empty shelves.

Needing a little rest after helping to prepare our lunch, she sits me down and shows me how to focus on enjoying a TV programme without trying to do half a dozen other tasks at the same time.

Having recharged her batteries, she wants to go back out to play and leads me down to the riverbank to say ‘hello’ to the swans – my beautiful ‘Angels of the River’.

Sitting on the steps of the house – we hold hands to watch the sun go down and together we offer our grateful thanks to the universe for giving us such a beautiful day to spend together.

Day 48 – 365 Days of Celebration

Today I am celebrating the delights of becoming reacquainted with my inner child…my best friend…it is so good to meet you again.

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Reason, Season, or Lifetime

10 02 2011

This poem is dedicated to all my Blogging Buddies.

I look forward to enjoying our friendship…for however long we chose to share our journey together.

It is great to have you on board!

People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
When you figure out which one it is,
you will know what to do for each person.

When someone is in your life for a REASON,
it is usually to meet a need you have expressed.
They have come to assist you through a difficulty;
to provide you with guidance and support;
to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.
They may seem like a godsend, and they are.
They are there for the reason you need them to be.

Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time,
this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end.
Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away.
Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand.
What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done.
The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.

Some people come into your life for a SEASON,
because your turn has come to share, grow or learn.
They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.
They may teach you something you have never done.
They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.
Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.

LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons;
things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation.
Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person,
and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life.
It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.

— Unknown

 

Day 41 – 365 Days of Celebration

Today I celebrate the priceless gift of friendship and give thanks for all the love and joy my friends have brought into my life. Thank you all.





Feed Me!

8 02 2011

The difference between friends and pets is that friends we allow into our company – pets we allow into our solitude.  ~ Robert Brault

Someone recently described taking on the responsibility of a blog as being like caring for a pet…as once you commit…your pet will require constant feeding.

At the time, I didn’t quite understand what they meant. Now I know…

A Blog is for Life – not just for Christmas!’

My Pet Blog has been so well fed and has grown so quickly…she has attracted lots of little friends to come and play with her.

I love my Pet Blog …and I love my fellow bloggers and supporters.

My pet has led me out to play with so many lovely people that I have run out of hours to spend with all my new friends…and this appears to be a recurring theme for many bloggers over the past few weeks.

We are all delighted with our new friends and want to continue to support each other – whilst managing to keep our lives in balance.

Insomnia seems to developing rapidly within our blogging community and we need to find this balance quickly – before we all burn out and have little left to offer each other.

They are days when my hands are shaking so badly and my eyesight becomes so weak (due to the Dystonia symptoms) that I struggle to keep on top of my blogging commitments…let alone find time to develop my new business…or to research latest developments in treatments for my condition.

I want to do my best by everyone…and sometimes I feel as though I’m failing miserably!

I want my Pet Blog to have a long and healthy life. And I want to maintain the quality of my writing…and my support of my fellow bloggers.

Something has to give…or I’ll be walking around like a zombie by the end of the month!

I need to cut down on the volume of WordPress emails (mainly replies to comments) flooding into my inbox at the rate of 200-300 a day…and focus on reading my buddies blogs, replying to comments on my blog and creating my own posts.

Having taken on board some of the suggestions made by my Blogging Buddies…
 Papa Joe, Classy Rose & Quidmont

I’ve decided that I am going to do the following:- 

  1. Post my blog on a daily basis 

  2. Read everyone else’s blogs (daily whenever possible) 

  3. Either leave a comment on other posts – or  just press the ‘like’ button so you will know that I’ve stopped by to say ‘hi’ 

  4. No longer press the ‘follow up comments’ button 

If anyone has any further thoughts/ideas as to how we can make our commitments more manageable thereby giving us more time to focus on the fun elements of writing and supporting each other…I love to hear them!

Hopefully, my new disciplined approach will help to ease things up a little and will create more time for me to take better care of my other projects.

I want to spend more time focusing on raising awareness of Dystonia…with a view to ultimately discovering a natural treatment to help suffers of this debilitating condition.

I will be working with different therapists over the coming year and will share my success stories via my blog.

Otherwise, I promise to be back on track…and back on subject…as of tomorrow’s post!

My new business Naked Dragon will revolve around my favourite subject of Inspiration – and will focus on supporting writers, authors & speakers with an inspiring message to share with the world – to get their message out there to a greater audience.

The new website is currently under construction and I hope this will be ready to launch by late spring.

If you are interested in being kept informed of future developments, please send an email to: julie@nakeddragon.co.uk – with ‘please subscribe’ in the subject line and I will put you on my mailing list.

Day 39 – 365 Days of Celebration

Today I celebrate what has been an amazing blogging journey to date. I am so grateful for having the opportunity to connect with so many wonderful people.

Thank you all…for your loveyour support…and your encouragement.





Blog Baby

31 01 2011

One month into the WordPress PostaDay 2011 challenge…31 Days and approximately 18,000 words later…I’m still going strong!

I had no real idea of what to expect when I signed up for this challenge.

My original intention was to learn how to set up my blog and to post a simple daily celebration message. 

I asked my lovely daughter (who works in web design) to help me set it up and was met with the usual response of; ‘Oh mum…why don’t you just read the instructions on the Word Press site…after all – that is what they are there for!’

Of course she was right – and this is exactly what I did.

I had been hoping that she would have given me a crash course on the subject, lead me through some short cuts and share some trade secrets with me – instead of forcing me to plough through so many complicated instructions (for a technophobe like me anyway!)

With no other choice, I settled down with said instructions and spent a few days learning what I needed to do to set up a basic blog. While everyone else around me was sleeping off the excesses of their New Year’s Eve celebrations; I was writing my first post.

Pressing the ‘publish’ button, I felt like I was pressing the button on a whole new adventure. I was excited…and terrified…in equal measure!

I was now officially a ‘Blogger’ – and part of a whole new world!

Apart from a few loyal friends – bless you all – I had no idea whether anyone would even want to read my posts…let alone feel moved enough to leave me a comment…or subscribe to my blog.

I was amazed to find that within the first few days the blog had an energy and a life of its own. To discover that comments were being left by people from all around the world was such a thrill!

One month on and I’m even more excited to see how this journey is going to unfold over the coming year.

I am determined to succeed in this challenge; even more so now that I realise just how huge an undertaking this is going to be.

The greatest challenge is not the actual writing, as this is a real pleasure and brings me great joy. It is my time management skills – or lack of them – that are proving to be my greatest adversary.

 

While I’m happily sitting at my laptop for hours on end – writing or researching my next post, reading other blogs, clicking through to links for recommended websites, responding to comments, obsessively checking the stats to see if anyone has visited during the previous 10 minutes(!), or exchanging ideas with other bloggers…

…the rest of my life is beginning to fall by the wayside.

Letters and paperwork are growing into large piles; my inbox hasn’t been cleared for weeks; my social life is taking place mainly on line; my ‘to do list’ is growing longer by the day and I’ve not seen my bed before 3am for ages!

I need to get on top of this and put some discipline into this process. I am addicted…and need to do a ‘blog detox’.

Trouble is – my blog has become my ‘blog baby’ and I want to nurture and protect it above all else (or maybe I should just buy a kitten – much lower maintenance!)

What has truly delighted and surprised me has been connecting with so many lovely people from all around the world.

The blogger community is a wonderfully supportive one and whenever one of us has been flagging – or losing momentum – someone always steps up with words of support and encouragement to keep us on track.

I have learnt so much over the past few weeks and my world has opened up overnight. I’ve joined a community of people who really care about each other and it feels so good to be here.

From Classy Rose’s wonderful blogging tips and easy to understand technical know how; Papa Joe’s warmth and gloriously simple words of love and wisdom; Eliz’s daily posts of mirth and motivation; to Piglet’s ‘toilet’ humour and fantastic photos…each of you…and many others who’ve stopped by to say ‘hello’ along the way … have brought so much joy into my life that I don’t know how to thank you.

You have all freely given of yourselves and for whatever you have chosen to share with me, I am truly grateful. Blogging has brought me a wealth of unexpected gifts and I look forward to continuing my journey with you all.

I may well be sitting here in a year’s time with my neglected house falling down around my ears, suffocating under piles of dirty laundry, gazing wistfully at food that has become fossilized and looking in the mirror with waist length hair turned completely white…but if I still have my laptop and my blogging friends to nurture and sustain me…I will know that it will have been a year well spent.

Now that will be a real cause for celebration!

Day 31 – 365 Days of Celebration

Today I am celebrating the gift that is this wonderful blogging community – I am so proud and humbled to have been invited to join you all. Thank you for making me so welcome.





Love & Friendship

24 01 2011

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart, and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.”

Anonymous

 

I’ve just returned from the airport after dropping off a friend for her flight back to LA. Sadly, my friend’s visit to the UK on this occasion was to say goodbye to her mother, who recently passed away.

My friend and I have known each other for nearly forty years and we have shared some amazing experiences along the way.

Having met up two or three times a year for many years; saying our goodbyes this time around was a very bittersweet experience as we have no idea when we will meet again.

Living in LA for the past 20 years, my friend has spent every vacation returning to the UK to visit her aging parents. Now they are gone, this is her time to go travelling and to have the adventures she has always wanted.

Whilst driving home I got to thinking about the value of friendship and the precious time I’d just spent with people I love. The weekend had been a very special time spent with my LA friend, my daughter and another close friend whom I’ve also known for many years.

It was the first time my two friends had met and it was great fun exchanging our stories. Sharing our experiences brought back many lovely memories…the kind you only build with those who have been part of your life for a long time. My daughter enjoyed hearing all these anecdotes of her mother’s miss-spent youth; particularly as the tales were being told by others’ who know me well…too well perhaps!

Knowing that it could be a long time until I meet with my friend again made me value every minute we spent together over the past couple of days.

 

Sitting here now and reflecting on a very special weekend shared with some of the most treasured people in my life, I realise how important it is to value time spent with our loved ones and to make every minute count.

I said ‘au revior’ to my other friend last night and waved my daughter off on the train to London this morning with the normal expectation of seeing them both of them again very soon.

However, we never really know what life has in store for us and every parting could be for the last time. Whether they are boarding a plane to LA, driving home to their partner, or heading off to their place of work…I want them to leave knowing how special they are and how much I love and care for them.

Sometimes we only get to spend a limited amount of time with those we care deeply about and it is so important to really value this time together. I believe that the greatest gift we can give our loved ones is to be really present with them in the given moment and to focus on enjoying every precious second we have together.

Day 24 – 365 Days of Celebration

Today I celebrate the priceless gift of love and friendship.

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