Pick Me Up – March 31, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 30, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 29, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 28, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 27, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 26, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 25, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 24, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 23, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 22, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 21, 2019

This is my entry to Flower of the Day Challenge on my photography blog.

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 20, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

We All Live in a Yellow Submarine

The year was 1967. The Beatles had just released “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” and created the movie “Yellow Submarine”. If you haven’t heard the album or seen the movie, you’re missing out on something. I turned Cee on to the album a long time ago, she being a child born in 1960 and a little too young for Beatlemania, and we watched the movie recently on Netflix. At least I think it’s on Netflix. It might have been Amazon Prime.

One of my favorite songs from there is “With a Little Help From my Friends”. I mention that because I’m in need of a little help from you, my friends. Or at least some of you. I’m looking for help with a homework assignment for school. I’m supposed to interview some women over the age of 45 to find out what some of their concerns are at this point in their life. Forty-five is when empty nest starts hitting, when we find ourselves taking care of children and parents (the sandwich generation), come smack-dab up against realizing we’re starting to play the second half of our lives, and starting to look at retirement (for those of us who can afford it). A lot is changing in our lives, and it keeps on changing. I know, because I’m a 66 year old woman.

If you are willing to spend a little time chatting with me, I would be grateful. I’m easy to talk to. Everything you tell me will be completely confidential. I’m just learning how to do research, so any time you are willing to give me would be greatly appreciated. If you are in the Portland, Oregon area, I’ll buy you a cup of coffee.

Please help! Send me a note via the contact form below.
Many thanks, ’cause I get by with a little help from my friends.

Chris

Pick Me Up – March 19, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

My Extraordinary Life

I have an extraordinary life. I have two criteria for determining that:

  • I wake every morning before my alarm, energized and looking forward to the day and the adventures it will bring. I love waking up in the morning.
  • I go to bed at about the same time every night, relaxed, content and satisfied. I sleep like a baby.

Rinse and repeat.

That’s what goes into living an extraordinary life. Having a zest for living, for being alive, and for eagerly anticipating all that life and the Universe is bringing to me.

I didn’t always live life like that. All too often I was in victim mode, being buffeted around and wondering how to get off this wacky carousel we call life. It wasn’t fun.

Then I went through the survivor mode. I wasn’t feeling victimized, feeling like a permanent and professional victim any more. Instead, I felt like a survivor. I was proud of that. I was proud that I made it through the day and came out the other side alive, and ready to fight again.

What a way to live! Being in survivor mode sucks. Big time. You’re proud of what you’ve overcome and just hanging on to that, thinking that if you can keep on surviving that someday things will change and you won’t have to survive quite so much. That things will get easier.

Somewhere along the way I finally noticed that I wasn’t just surviving any more. I was starting to thrive. The trouble was that surviving became a habit. A deeply ingrained, etched-in-stone operating system in my head. I didn’t know how to break out of those grooves, even though they weren’t playing music I enjoyed any more. It had gotten boring, like a first music lesson where you had to play “Mary Had a Little Lamb”  over and over again until you got it right. Or blood began pouring from your ears, whichever came first.

Now I’ve gone beyond thriving and I’m into the exquisite freedom of living. Living for myself and on my own terms. Free from the past heartaches, from “the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune”, to quote Shakespeare.

Every time I’ve made that giant step up the emotional ladder I have wondered how I did it. I spent so long in each place praying for more, for different, envisioning what my life would be like if only fill-in-the-blank changed for the better. The funny thing is that when the shift came, I never knew how I did it. It was frustrating because when I hit the next stopping point I’d try to repeat what was obviously a wining process only to come up empty. I had forgotten how I did it before.

When I was in the Army, I was injured while on a mission. My knee had gotten smashed up and had to be rebuilt. After the tissue had healed sufficiently, I started physical therapy to retrain the muscles to respond to my nerve’s commands. The physical therapists started by wheeling my roommate out of the room. I thought that odd. They explained that this was going to be a painful procedure and there was no need to traumatize someone else. Ominous thought.

They placed electrodes around my knees where the nerves attached to the muscles and the bones, then they started cranking up the juice. At first it was just plain weird to see my leg moving on its own without any conscious direction from my mind. Really weird.

Then they cranked up the juice a little more and the pain hit. I screamed and the reason why they took my roommate out became apparent. Over and over it went. Time after time. Electricity. Pain. Leg moved. I sweated and tried not to scream or cry like a baby. Then they’d have me try it on my own. I focused and concentrated and grunted and tried as hard as I could. The leg didn’t move. More electricity. More pain. More attempting on my own. Finally a ray of hope. I could move a little. A teeny, tiny, little movement but a consciously directed one. That’s what counted. My brain was starting to take over. My muscles were learning to listen.

I practiced that little movement all through dinner, all the while I was watching TV that evening. I was determined to master this so that I wouldn’t have to endure that pain again. Over and over I moved that leg, a tiny wiggle but a definite one, until I finally fell asleep out of exhaustion. I was so proud of myself. And relieved.

The next day the therapists came again with their machine of torture. “There’s no need for that”, I proudly exclaimed. “I practiced all night and I’m really good at this.”

“Show us”, they commanded.

And I did… nothing. My leg had already forgotten how to listen to my brain. A few hours of sleep and all that hard work was washed away. I felt defeated and humiliated for bragging like I had. They tried to reassure me that it was normal, explaining nerve fatigue and other technical mumbo jumbo I wasn’t hearing in my pity party head.

Eventually I did learn how to communicate to my leg and it has taken me on some marvelous hikes over the years.

I don’t know how I retrained my head then, and I don’t know how I retrained it through years of victimhood, survivorship, and thriving to make it to living an extraordinary life, but I’m committed to remembering the process so that I can help others do the same thing.

We all have within us the ability to live extraordinary lives. Really, we do. There are a few things we have to learn about taking control of our brains, and our lives, but we can get there. And it’s so much fun when you do. It’s the ultimate freedom, the ultimate high.

Hugs and high fives!

Chris

Pick Me Up – March 18, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee

Pick Me Up – March 16, 2019

Our daily “Pick Me Up” is our gift to you for when you need inspiration or something to brighten your day.  I’ll be using my photos and quotes that I love.  Sometimes we’ll use graphics that friends send to us.  No matter the source, we hope you enjoy the end product.

Hugs, Cee