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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Digging Deep


“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.”
― Anaïs Nin


     Seeing life through our own eyes is invigorating but it can also be misleading.  Our perceptions of other people are based on what we have going on in our lives at any given moment.  If we are in a bad mood we will project our feelings on others and the annoyance sets in.  If we are in a great mood, we might walk around complimenting everyone.

     Projecting our feelings on others is easy to do.  But we must be careful in our exchanges for fear (and it is likely) that we find ourselves in transference.  Have you ever been in an argument with someone and then all of a sudden stopped to really listen and thought "what in the world are we talking about?  This has nothing to do with what started this conversation.  How off track can we get?!"  This is called being in transference.  Something triggers us.  We are reminded of a past event or different circumstance and we are having that same fight again but with a different person.

     If we are truly honest with ourselves chances are we have said these same words over and over to just about everyone who means anything to us in our lives.  A parent, a sibling, a lover, or a best friend.  My mother, may she rest in peace, used to tell me to never lash out at anyone because you might as well be looking in the mirror.  Something happens in our psyche, something is triggered and it no longer becomes about the person you are talking to.  It becomes all about you.

     This is a scary theory and if you are brave and want to get to the crux of your behavioral patterns, you should try this.  It is time to take stock of the things we say in an argument or misunderstanding with our loved ones.  This is going to take a very open mind.  Open like two double doors onto the botanical gardens kind of open.  

      Most phones now have voice recorder so you just discreetly press record on your phone.  And remember this isn't about the person you are having the disagreement with.  This is about us.  This is personal and is about our growth and our desires to rise above our patterns.  This is about being honest with ourselves and listening for the recurring themes in our lives.  This digging really deep into the subconscious of our past.  We don't want to be a broken record.  That means we are not growing.  It means we are still trapped on a vibrational level that threatens to keep us on the hamster wheel.  Argh.  Exhausting.

     One of the things of I am learning in all this is the power of awareness.  It really can set us free.  It sets on a new yellow brick road of possibilities and opens us up to the wonders that come with growth.  Spiritual growth brings epiphanies, coincidences, and many aha! moments.  And those moments mean we are on our right path.  And when we are on our right path there is no room to go in circles anymore.  We must walk ahead.  One foot in front of the other.  Walk away from the past and the habits that threaten to keep us stuck and walk into the future where we are free to start fresh with every word we breathe and every smile we achieve.

Are you ready to break the pattern chain?

     

Monday, March 28, 2011

Check in Number 8. One Down Two to Go.


Have you heard the saying "Everything happens in 3's"?  Well it just so happens that my pursuits find me embracing the birth of 3 projects.  My yes vs. no experiment is well underway.  

There have been a lot of no's in my life but determination breeds action and action breeds success. Our fundraising is officially underway for our documentary series, Coloring Outside the Lines: Bringing Hope to the Forgotten Child.  

We are seeking sponsors, crew, equipment usage, and more to make our documentary series possible.  Our sponsors will have their company name and logo displayed in a scrolling banner on our home page.

Your paypal contributions will help our project come to life.  A $1.00 donation can go a long way.  Help us bring art, music and laughter to abused and neglected children.  

Please help us spread the word by sharing this with everyone you know... click below to see our trailer and meet our team.


Coloring Outside the Lines: Bringing Hope to the Forgotten Child


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The W Chaser & Check in Number 7


        In the beginning I mentioned that sometimes I would share something new or something old.  When my world gets this busy I must give in to the need to stay in the moment and focus on the tasks at hand.  Deadlines approach but my wistful nature threatens to distract me.  So here is something old but not outdated and my check in number seven.

        Faith, spirituality, the Id, self vs. true self, religious, existentialist, soul-searcher, lost.

        Have we all fallen prey to a society that puts such enormous pressure on the importance of being branded, labeled, and trademarked that we feel we must do this to ourselves too?

        If so, do I have an epithet? Who am I really? I know I am not what I do or what I drive or what I wear and I am not just the name that I use to introduce myself. I know I am not a size 0 or a super model. I know I am not hungry right now because I just ate and I know that there are a lot of things about life and living that I just don’t know yet.

        I know that bad things happen to us and that children die of illnesses that we can’t cure. I know that are children in Africa walking around with rifles and that a staggering number of our nations youth don’t know how to read. I know that some things are unexplainable and painful. I know that some things make us laugh but someone else won’t think it’s funny. I know that some days will be better than others. I know that some people go through there whole lives never wondering about anything and that’s okay too.

        I’m not one of those people. I want to know things. I am what you might call the W Chaser. I want to know who, what, why, when and where of every little thing.

        If I had to give an appellation to myself, I don’t think I could give myself just one. Can’t we be more than one thing? Isn’t it relative anyway?

        Is what we are, based on a belief system that we learned from our parents, read in a textbook, or in an ad while riding the A train? Is there a chart for the system or a graph or something along the lines of the periodic table? Or are we left to devise the meaning as it pertains to us now, today, in this moment?

        Wikipedia says that a belief system can refer to a life stance, a religion, a world-view, a philosophy and an ideology. So, do we study the individual beliefs and choose one? Or can we subscribe to all of it, you know, kind of like the One World Alliance and we would get travel points.

        I’ve decided. I’m a “believer”. I am a believer in all things tangible or intangible.  A believer in a higher power, in Judaism, in God, in Kabbalah, in philosophy, in science, in Buddhism, in the Universe, in the Archangel Gabriel, in love, and in myself.

        If we believe, then we will experience the wonderment of a child, faith in change and embrace the unknown. We will have an uplifted spirit so that we might try to lift someone else's and our Id will know true balance. We will be our own-selves and we will be devoted to the greater good of purpose. We will continue our development as individuals and we will embrace our couragous manners to better ourselves as human beings. We cannot lose sight of our intentions to help make this world a better place.

        We just need to believe in our family, in our friends, in our neighbors, and in strangers.  Good-will toward others.  We need to believe that our plants will grow and the sun will shine and the fish will swim and that a smile will always brighten someone's day.  Because one person really can make a difference, if we believe in each other and in ourselves.  The potential for greatness is limitless if we just chase after our beliefs with all our might and embrace them with the love and warmth that we would use to hold a child.

        What are you chasing after?


My check in number 7:

Hard work really does breed success!  The YES's are everywhere.  Well almost. The commercial I was holding for pushed, but not a bad thing.  It opened me up to giving attention to the yes's that are happening and give them the focus and nurturing they deserve.

~ Last night I saw a working version of the website and we are really happy with it.  Today I will go through and make final tweaks before we go live this week.

~ Finished my 3rd draft of my book (Yay!) and am moving forward with my new plan.

~  Going over the final draft of the business plan today in hopes that it is ready to be released.

Fingers crossed on all fronts.






Monday, March 21, 2011

Flight Plan


So many people come from broken homes or face tragedy at an early age.  Some of us, both.  How is it that some people are crippled by it while others rise above it?  How is it that I am one of the latter?  I am now more than ever convinced that I have lived this life because it was this life that brought me here. 

I received news last year that my life as I thought I knew it was a lie.  That the woman I called mother did not actually give birth to me.  About a month ago a friend of the family tried to explain more about this story but I dismissed it like a case without evidence. What else could I possibly hear, see or find out that might threaten to ruin me?  What's done is done.  Whatever gets thrown my way now is just going to have to take a number and wait for a turn to affect me that may never come.  I have had so many outrageous things happen to me, that as a teenager I used to think I must have been a mass murderer in a past life.  I mean how else could I justify the horrifying events that happen to me throughout my life?

Well it is only natural that my thoughts try to get the best of me sometimes.  To remind me of the unanswered uncertainties of my life.  They threaten my intention with disenchantments of sadness, and isolation.  But I have the power to chose another path.  We all do.  And of course I have something to say about it.

Some people seem to be born like the birds that take flight for the winter.   They know instinctually where they're going and which direction they are headed.   They even know how they're going to get there and what they will do when they reach that destination.

We weren't all born with the wings of a beautiful bird.   And I know that first hand.   If you're like me and have felt at times that you were born with your wings clipped, you are not alone. It is never to late to believe in the impossible.

Have faith.   Have faith in your own dream, in your direction, your purpose.    In order to find our way we must first know ourselves.   And knowing ourselves is no easy task.   It may very well be the hardest journey that we ever embark upon.    But don't fear.   It's through knowing ourselves that we will find our way.  

The flight will be long and sometimes even tumultuous but the farther we spread our wings, the higher we will soar.   Don't second guess your direction.    Just keep your head high and believe in your dream.   It's our dreams that keep us alive and our instincts that will take us there.   Listen to your life.   It has a lot to say.  

When we find our passion and we follow it with all our might, we become unstoppable.   It's when everything in life becomes synchronistic.   When everything falls into place you are on your right path. You are a bird who can fly and your wings (broken or not) can take you on the journey of your choice.

A friend recently referenced "the committee".   The voices that try so hard to make themselves heard and try to keep us from our goals, our dreams, our destiny.   It's at these times that we must have the most faith in ourselves.   To make our own Voice the one we listen too.   We have to use and trust our inner voice.   Our intuition.   Our gut.   Our instincts.

Move toward all that uplifts and energizes you, move away from that which drains you.   Follow your dream no matter what anyone says. Don't give them the power to change your course of action or to second-guess your flight plan.

If you are distracted, and you will be, take a breath.   Check where you are.   Think of what you can learn from it and move on with that new knowledge.   It's a learning process and we have to trust in it. This is how we will grow. By seizing each moment (good or bad) as the ever-present gift.

So, like a bird taking flight for the winter, allow the wings of your angels to guide you to your inner passion.   Challenge your "self" to live with purpose.   To spread your wings...and soar!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Value


"What the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve".  Napoleon Hill.

Hill was one of Americas earliest writers of personal-achievement compositions.  His research into the philosophy of success and personal achievement found him interviewing some of the greatest success stories of his time.  From Alexander Graham Bell to John Rockefeller, from Tomas Edison to President Theodore Roosevelt.

They say that when the pupil is ready the teacher will appear.  Well for me, at eighteen years old walking the aisles of Barnes n Noble, my first professor would fall at my feet, literally.

Think and Go Rich by Napoleon Hill.  Half of what I read I didn't understand but what I did grasp, I absorbed like soil drinks water.  I trusted him.  My teacher was an advocate for Rags to Riches and I was certainly feeling pretty ragged.

I quickly realized that it wasn't the kind of book that you read.  It's the kind of book that you do.  So I did.  And when I was done doing that book I wanted more.  His first book, The Law of Success, broke down a persons potential in steps. Some of them made sense but some were totally greek.  But I check back in with my teacher every once in a while to see if any of these laws jump out at me.  I have spent lots of time with some of these laws over the years, while others have yet to introduce themselves.

Of course once I had one teacher I thirsted for so much more.   Benjamin Franklin, Andrew Carnegie, Og Mandino, Deepak Chopra.  The list is long.  But so is life, and you've got to fill it.

Creation, manifestation and undeniable faith define the pivotal moments in our lives.  Our own possibilities for greatness are endless and what we focus on becomes our reality.  I have been spending a lot of time with my friends lately having "pow wow" creative meetings.  We have pooled our resources and are launching a company together that I will share with you soon.

Yesterday we even came up with an idea for a new show and so we are moving forward with a plan of action to bring our idea to life.  The Universe sends down millions of ideas every second and many people receive these ideas in all different forms.  Some spring into action while others sit negatively griping, harping and beside themselves with jealousy.  Yuck.  Where's the value in that?

We are all here to add value to life not to spread negativity.  On a hike with one my best friends and business partners, I had another epiphany and this is a visual I will never forget.

Being positive is really light.  It's like a weight lifted off your shoulders.  You have a spring in your step, a hum in your voice and anything is possible.  But then there is also negativity.  Negativity is heavy.  Really heavy.  And there will always be these two types of people.  Negative and Positive.  And sometimes we will be one or the other in our lives.  And when someone is negative, whether they know they are doing it or not the positive wants to save them, help them, uplift them.  As much as we want to uplift them out of the dreary shackles of gloom chances are they will bring us down to where they are instead and here's why.  Think about this for a moment.  Picture it.

You are standing on a ledge and in your hands you hold a rope and at the end of that rope is something really really heavy (negative).  You start to pull.  You pull with all your might.  But it doesn't budge.  You can't lift the heavy at all.   But now picture that you're the heavy.  You too hold a rope in your hand and when you look up to see what is on the other end of the rope you see something light (positive) above you.  Without a second glance you give a small tug and guess what?  That light (positive) at the end of your rope is now lying in a puddle at your feet covered in negativity.

Sometimes we have to let people work through there own values.  They have to make their own choices.  We can be there for them but we shouldn't try to lift them or pull them or engage in the negativity because chances are you will find yourself knee deep in unsurmountable turmoil that isn't even yours.  We all need to go through our own processes.  We need to live and let live.  We can still share with the people we care about and let them know the importance of the value they bring to the world but that's all you can do.  Suggest.

The way we speak and act toward others and the earth declares the value we bring to the world.  Are we setting good examples for those around us?  What are we saying about our friends and family?  Do we share our own stories or do we gossip about others?  Do we look to see what we can do to better ourselves and the world or do we seek ways to bring other people down to our level?

value |ˈvalyoō|nounthe regard that something is held to deserve; the importance or preciousness of something 
Let's find something about ourselves that we value and let's embrace it for theentire day.  I bet that if we value something in ourselves we will be moresusceptible to seeing the value in others.

Care to wager?

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Check in number 6 and excerpt from my book.

Sometimes it takes venting, moving the furniture, and some good old fashion high school break up music to help you find some clarity.  Oh and some tears, but that was a given.

The truth of the matter is when we have something that scares the sh*t out of us the best thing to do is face it head on.  And usually the thing that scares us the most is the truth, so how do we face that head on?

Sometimes the hardest thing in the world is to face the truth.  Maybe that's why sometimes, the truth hurts so bad.  But the alternative, lying to yourself all the time, what good does that do you?  Or worse, lying to others.  Let's not kid ourselves our lies are obvious.  And our denials may as well be a scarf around our neck because the truth is, they are more obvious than the lies we tell ourselves.  We're not fooling anyone, well maybe except ourselves.  Ouch.

So the truth can be super scary.  It can be embarrassing or uncomfortable.  But it can also set you free.  The verity of the situation is quite simple really.

Honesty.  It has integrity.  It is incorruptible and it is trustworthy.

Honesty is unassuming.   It knows no moral high ground and it's not judgmental.  It's never jealous and certainly not accusatory.  Honesty just is.

Being honest with yourself is reliable and this path of least resistance is far from ephemeral.  Once you befriend it, honesty will stay with you forever.  It will help you find courage you didn't know you had.  It will assist you in your decision making when you hit a crossroad, it will wipe the tears from your eyes when you have worked through your fears.

These days, I am digging really deep.  I am pulling out all my fears one by one and I am getting to the bottom of it all once and for all!

I did a meditation exercise yesterday morning that might very well have changed my life as I know it.  I pictured myself as a little girl sitting alone and scared and unloved.  I sat down next to her and I comforted her.  I told her how beautiful she was and how talented and smart.  I told her she had so much to look forward to in life and that I would be there for her.  That I would love her and cherish her and make sure she was always safe.  I told her to walk with me on the beach.  So hand in hand we walked and we laughed and we talked about how amazing she was.  I stopped us as we hit the waters edge and I looked down into her sad little eyes and I said, "I love you.  You are special and you are so very loved!" and then I hugged her.  When I opened my eyes my cheeks were tear stained but my heart felt full and my burdens seemed lighter and I even mentioned to a friend yesterday that I feel like I have come out some other side again.  I feel whole.  Like I can face anything that comes my way.  I'm ready.

Let's check in.

~  I have now had 4 query rejections and 1 positive pursuit that turned out to be a scam.  But I am not bothered and it gave me a new idea of how I am going to approach this.  Today I am half way through my 3rd draft.

~  The new website is gorgeous and we should be up and running this week.  We are all really excited about it.

~  I am on hold to start a prepping a commercial this week so I am going to be crazy busy.  I love it!

~  I've gone through the business plan from my financial planner and we are now on our 2nd draft.  The BP will go out this week to investors/loaners.

~  Working on my 3rd draft has me excited so I thought I would share an excerpt.  My first 2 chapters.... Let me know what you think.


Not Just An Observer
            My life as I knew it was not doing me any great benefit nor was I doing any great benefit to it.  The salty air was clogging my brain and I couldn’t live in this cocoon any longer.  I had to move inland.  Move inland to the trees and be a Thoreau or stay at the beach and be a Dennis Hopper.  I chose Thoreau.
            Time to look within and learn something.  I’m not talking about just sitting and pondering or hiding behind the dense brush of trees and foliage while I count my breathing.  I am proposing a journey.   A first hand written account of the significant occurrences that would shape me, test me, and finally change me.
            Instinctually I knew that somehow the answers were hidden in my past.  If I could recapture the memories I would have a reference point for the patterns I repeated and I could break the lineage.  Somewhere along the way I learned that life is made up of moments.  For me, the beginning was made up of moments that would break me, test me, and threaten to ruin me.  As I got older the moments hurt me, reminded me, and kept me trapped in someone else’s fear. But I learned that it is these moments that can change us, strengthen us, and define us.
            It is time to stop fearing the change and to change the fears that stop me. So here I am and this is what brought me here.
            I got involved in a relationship that would teach me lessons of my past, awaken me to my present and give me new needs for my future.  This would be the relationship that would save me from my own worst fate.  Repeating my parent’s relationship. 
            Upon second glance I found that throughout my life I have come to find a place for myself in quantitative social statistics.  My life’s fight against nurture vs. nature has resulted in my empirical data being outlined here in these stories. These stories are narrated by my poetry.  Poetry that scribbled it’s way out of me at the ripe young age of eleven.
            Throughout the years my poetry spoke of the possibilities of rising above it all but I didn’t know enough.  I was young and naïve and lost in the self-pity of the process not the lessons my own words were trying to teach me.  I have intertwined them into my story.  The words of a teenager fighting for the freedom from herself and I think I am starting to get it now.
            “What does one do when they wake from a dream and they’re crying? The tears of a life unattended.  A missed encore.  A curtain bow. The orchestra. Sight for sore eyes and a mystery wink.  An orange jubilees and won’t take your abuse anymore.  I shall not look back in sorrow or in pain I shall look into my future and how bright it is. I shall not settle. I will not compromise my dignity, my self-respect, and my-self any longer. I am beautiful and worthy and I shall take one step at a time. I will spend my time in love and prosper. I will share and I will enlighten. I will hold myself dear to my heart and I will live in the glory that God intended for me. To shine in the light and be accountable. To get up every day and seize the moment. To make my choices and follow through with them. To be wise in my decisions and to count my blessings. Thank you to my guardian angels that have picked me up once again and have shown me how to walk. I shall be peaceful and without drama. I shall divert any such behavior away from my soul for there is no integrity in it. I will greet everyday with love in my heart and I shall be impeccable with my word. I shall listen to my life and heed its suggestions, prompts, and warnings. I shall listen well to my heart, my body and my soul. I will take time for me and I will smell the flowers. I will trust the flow of life and I will welcome change. I shall dream of beauty and love and passion... I shall set out to break the lineage of my past”.   not dated

 To Be Or Not To Be

            I was what you would call really bad timing.  I was to be the almost wasn’t, and believe you me, sometimes I wish that I wasn’t.... But so it was to be.
            I was the second born to a very young girl who was born to a Puerto Rican navel officer and a debutant southern belle from North Carolina.  She was a cute chubby girl who was daddy’s favorite little girl.  A child genius, she skipped grades in school, tested off the charts, and was misunderstood by her parents who had no schooling.  Her mother would ridicule her for being overweight and her father would beat her with a belt.  She was rebellious, bored and wise beyond her years.
            At thirteen she met a boy.  A sixteen-year-old street kid from an affluent Cuban family who had nothing better to do.  On Sundays, instead of going to church, she went to the corner of 185th and Amsterdam to fall in love.  It gave her hope.  It gave her the drive to start working at the local hospital the day she turned sixteen.  What she hid under her pillow from cleaning dirty bed sheets gave her enough money to move into her first apartment the day she turned eighteen.  A year later the street kid moved in and they had their first girl at twenty and me at twenty-one.
            There was a lot of confusion surrounding the knowledge of my attendance. By the time I was making my presence known their future together had grown very bleak.  The girl, young, scared and with one child already, had no intention of bringing another one into the world.  Not when her world was crumbling down around her.  When the abortion attempts were unsuccessful and she resigned herself to her new fate, the hatred for what grew inside her grew faster and larger than her belly.  She was consumed by resentment, fear and horror.   She wouldn’t turn to the parents who would help her when she couldn’t wait to get away from them in the first place.  She wouldn’t turn to the sister that was out singing and traveling the world.  She would turn inward to herself and her fears. And what she dwelled on would become her life… and mine...
            The street kid, now twenty-four had more on his mind than a wife, a kid and one on the way.  He found solace in some street punks and at the end of many whiskey bottles.  Drunk and slurring they discovered cocaine and a need for the money to pay for more.  This they could find in people’s homes they did not have the key to.  Things could only get worse.
            By the time I was two I had taken up permanent residence in my playpen and the street kid had taken up temporary residence in county jail.  As the story goes, I slept a lot.  I slept through the nights that the young girl cried herself to sleep.  I slept through the visits to see the street kid.  I slept through the day he returned to the apartment on the third floor.  I slept through the yelling.  The screaming.  The crying.
            Yet through closed eyes I remember.  I remember what I heard, what I saw, and where I was.  I remember who I was.  But I remember more who I wasn’t. There was so much yelling and the relentless accusations from the street kid.  He believed that I wasn’t his daughter.            His best friend was told to look in on us.
            Supposedly I was conceived during one of these visits.
            I find it very hard to believe that the young girl would have fallen into the arms of another man. The love for the street kid was all she knew and she was blinded by it.  The street kid was blinded by the paranoia of the drugs and couldn’t see through glassy eyes how much her heart beat only for him.
            The hatred in their voices was like breaking every bone in your body.            I could not dispel the sounds of sorrow and despair that had become the young girls voice.  She had become a wilted flower with weeds growing around her like a veil.  She could no longer defend herself.  She stopped fighting back.  The venomous stare was all she could give and this seemed to infuriate the street kid more than her words ever could.
            I remember wincing at the sound of the first slap.  And the scream that followed.  I can hear the furniture breaking and the sounds of fresh wounds.  I hear the hair pulled from her head and the blood come gushing out of her eye.           
            I can hear his fist come down on her with that one last blow right before I hear her limp body fall to the floor.
            I lay there shivering with fear as the door slammed behind the boy’s exit. The first silence I had ever known woke me from my sleep and into a nightmare.  Lying next to me was the young girl, motionless, still, and barely breathing.  She lay in her own pool of blood like a blanket.
            While I waited in my crib for what had become watered down milk, this nightmare became my recurring dream.  Sometimes the beatings were worse then others.  Sometimes I thought she would never get up.  Sometimes I was happy to have her lying next to me because it was the closest we ever got.
            Time passed and the boy had been kicked out and new locks put on the door of the apartment on the third floor.  But the street kid knew how to get into apartments that he didn’t have the key too.  So he would climb up the fire escape and in through the window to rob her of whatever she had left.
            He would push her to the ground, empty her wallet and give her a swift kick in the ribs before departing.  Desperation made the boy more violent.  These visits left the young girl broken like the shattered glass that surrounded her.
            By the time I was four I knew nothing of being held or coddled.  I knew a lot about yelling, fights, crying and silence.  The street kid and the young girl were getting older and the boy had spent many more nights in jail.  It was time for the street kid to get his shit together or he would find himself taking his last breath from behind bars.  Supposedly his family made arrangements with the D.A.  He was to join the Military or spend the rest of his years behind bars.
            There were some civil exchanges between the street kid and the young girl in the short time to follow.  A lot of apologies were given and a lot of promises were made.  And somewhere in the interim the street kid met someone else.  I remember standing in my Sunday best waiting for the street kid to open his new apartment door.  A pregnant girl answered the door and invited us in. They talked and talked and she gave us cookies.
            Shortly after the visit the street kid took the first-born and I to the circus. I was four.  When we got back from the circus the young girl was waiting for us across the street in front of our building.  We went running to her to tell her of what we had seen.  The First Born and I were both talking at the same time.  Both of us trying to show her the souvenirs our dad had bought us.  I saw her look above us and into the distance with the smallest nod of her head.
            All of a sudden I had the strangest feeling inside and my heart sink.  A feeling in my gut like when I had left my favorite teddy bear on the A train.   An impending feeling of doom.
            I turned slowly on the heels of my navy blue Mary-Janes and looked up into the street light where my dad should have been standing.  He was gone.  They had arranged it all.  Been planning it for weeks.  It was over. The street kid had gone and the young girl was left to her wounds and to raise the two girls on her own.  
            All I could think was, “He left me.  He left me behind to this woman who resented the very air I breathe”.  Uh oh.
            “Farewell to arms for forever and a day.  A pairing of the heart and things are cold.            A mistaken identity and a demolition. The blood runs hot and the tingling is unbearable. Time to leave. To turn our heads on what will never be. A memory under lock and key. You lose people along the way. You lose yourself if only for a day. The hills of distant lands are longing and my heart beats fast. Times change momentarily and you never get it back. Words ringing in your ears and never sorry for it. Time heals all wounds and is unlikely. Sobriety of the eyes and you fight for your composure for where you were before this started. Where you went you stayed but you forgot to lock the door. So naïve. Learn to walk again. To say goodbye could be a hello later but for now it is only this. There are no hellos in sight. Only shadows from the trees. You’re at a loss for words. It’s all very clear. Our eyes see what they want to see and our hearts play their own music. A quiet tempo in D. So deep rooted and raspy so guttural and withdrawn. So lonely and so far away. So there can be no violins. Enjoy your dark blue trident and try to forget. Things are finally so clear. You’re taking leave. Farewell now. Farewell to arms for forever and a day. Farewell for now.”   Age 12

Friday, March 18, 2011

Life With One Eye Open: Reflections

Life With One Eye Open: Reflections: "My last entry ended with me saying that I was in a mood. And it's true. I have been in a mood alright. My moods have been..."

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Reflections


My last entry ended with me saying that I was in a mood.  And it's true.  I have been in a mood alright.  My moods have been on the pendulum swing but this time I rode it.  I didn't want to get off.  I needed to ride it.  Ride it out and figure out what messages I could deduce in the music.  

The orchestration of my life has missing notes, broken melodies and chords off key.  It's loud at times and barely audible at others.  I realize that while a symphonist can have the intent to make the most beautiful of music, with no composer that orchestra will produce nothing but noise.  Orchestration needs to be cared for and guided and protected or it ends up being a red hot mess of sound.  Broken composition, misguided adaptation and notes played off key are musical suicide.

That's me.  A struggling red hot mess that was born to a life with no composer.  But in that pain I find comfort.  I find the beauty in what's around me and I have a romance novel level of hope.  

I was born into a certain circumstance.  I didn't choose it.  I didn't buy it.  I can't let it hold me back.  And I sure as hell can't let it define me.  It's what I am doing with this information that determines who I am now.  And who I am now, is a girl who wakes up everyday and looks herself in the mirror and says, "Okay! Today is the day!  Let's fix something that is broken and move on!"

I've been doing a lot of research for my documentary.  I have been studying the consequences of child neglect and verbal abuse.  It has been inevitable that I be reminded and with that affected.  I see some of these consequences in myself for sure.  The ones that I try to rise above everyday.  It's not easy.  No one ever said it would be easy.  But I am doing it.  I get up everyday and face something else about myself that I don't like but that I am thankful to be aware of.  

What I am also realizing is the importance of not dwelling and replaying the incidents of my past that I am not proud of.  All I can do is know that it takes two people to have a conversation, a misunderstanding, or a disagreement.  Just like it  takes two people to say I am sorry, I love you and I am here for you always.  

I push people away, nothing is ever good enough and sometimes I can be really hard to reason with.  But I also have a history of doing what I can to help people find a better path for themselves.  I also have a history of moving on or they move on.  Sometimes it ends in a fight and sometimes it ends in a hug and a couple of elephant tears.  Sometimes it hurts and sometimes I am thankful to see them go.  

In all of this I have also mastered the art of being accountable.  I know exactly what I am doing.  And I apologize when I am wrong.   Sometimes I think I apologize even when I think the other person should be doing the apologizing just to keep the peace.  Sometimes I really don't give a sh*t one way or the other.   Like now.

Right now I care the most about my recovery, my happiness and all the people I want to try and help with my documentary.  I spent the first quarter of my life partying, arguing and running.  I don't want to run anymore.  I want to face life head on and put the denial behind me.  It's time to be brutally honest with myself and everyone around me.  

I am lucky to have people that believe in me and love me in spite of my misgivings and apprehension.  People who don't insist on picking away at what's left of me when I can do that all on my own.  People who share in the beauty and the struggle but are still verbally complimentary.  People who don't insult me or try to engage me in negative exchanges.  It's like I have said before negativity breeds like a cancer.  And cancer will kill you.  I'm not ready to die.

In all of my self discovery, somehow I have found laughter in my tears, joy in my struggles, and a willingness to persevere.  I've been doing a lot of laughing lately.  And all things considered the fact that I can find stuff to laugh about is very encouraging.  My endeavors find me hopeful and surrounded by an amazing group of friends.  Friends that I consider to be my family.  And together we make beautiful music.

The perfect epiphany.  I am now my own composer.  The life I am orchestrating is filled with positivity, love and laughter.

I am loved.  And maybe my friends love me for the same reasons I am starting to love me.  Because I am still here and I am still smiling.  Even when I am crying.

Thanks mom.  Where ever you are.  If it wasn't for you I wouldn't be where I am.


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Outside

No one wants to feel unstable, or experience hopelessness, or lose their sense of spirit.  And with everything going on in Japan my nonsense makes even less sense.

There are too many bodies for the crematory to handle.  There are people searching for water, food, and their loved ones.   What is happening over there is devastating and catastrophic.  It really puts everything in perspective.  Relative or not, sometimes you have to step outside yourself.  You have to put yourself in someone else's shoes.  It's not always about us.  The world doesn't revolve around us.  And the best way to stop being about us is to be about someone or something else.

Whenever something bad happens, no one ever wants to think, "Oh that can happen to me, us, anyone, anywhere, any time."  Well guess what!?  Yes it can!

What would we do if this happened right here in our own backyard?  What would we do if we lost everything?  If there was no food, no shelter, no heat in below freezing weather?  

What would we grab?  Where would we go? Who would we try to call?  Since we are all connected, we are all affected.  It effects us on a global level.  We are fragile and we are taking advantage of the very earth we inhabit and the earth has obviously had enough.  Will it reach us here?  It already has.

The markets are falling, the global momentum supporting nuclear energy is threatened and worse, our neighbor just lost their mother, father, brother, sister.  How painful it all is.  How humbling.

In a world based in control, there is absolutely nothing we can do about the onslaught of natural disasters.  But what we can do is find a way to play a part in the relief efforts.  It's in this collaboration of energy that we will help uplift the energy of our planet and hopefully ourselves.

I'm going through life trying to make sense of all the nonsense.  But sometimes I find myself thinking f**k it, can one person really make a difference?

The answer is simple.  Yes we can.  We can make a huge difference.   And there are so many ways to help.  So I am going to just help for now.  It's all I can do.  Here are just a few ways we can be one person making a difference.


www.redcross.org/   text 50555 to donate $10.00
www.unicefusa.org
ladygagabracelet    (click link to be brought to hottopic.com)


Side note:  I am pushing the release date of the trailer.  Tomorrow I will try to post my check in number 6 but I can't promise. I can't promise much this week.  I'm in a mood.  It happens.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Big 5


So much going on!  How is everyone doing?  There's a lot on the horizon.  March is quite eventful.

We are soon to pay homage to the death of Julius Ceasar, the Ides of March on the 15th of the month.  We will celebrate St. Patrick, a patron saint of Ireland, on the 17th, and my personal favorite, daylight savings on Sunday, March 13th.  I love when the days get longer and the sun shines brighter.  Even though the sun is closest to the earth in January, there is something to be said for Spring.  The equinox will occur on March 20th and catapult us into cleaning, socializing and showing off the time spent in the gym during the long winter months.  Or... well...  the muffin top acquired by sitting by the fire place eating oven roasted brie on baguette.

Either way, in all of the observing, the reverence, and the accolades, do not over look the most important thing to be celebrated.  YOU.  I hope March finds you happy, blissful and commemorating YOU.  Loving, adoring and uplifting YOU.  What did it take for you to get to where you are?  What are your very many accomplishments?  How many people helped you get here?  What are you going to do about it?

I'm going to keep honoring my heart and my passions and my reveries.  And by reveries I mean the daydreams.  The daydreams that I was capable of believing in so they must account for something.  For is it not true that if you can believe you can achieve?  Being one of the most quoted American inspirational writers, William Arthur Ward was on to something!  My daydreams find me helping, uplifting and encouraging as much as I can.

Mike Dooley of the TUT's Adventure Club says, "Thoughts become things! So choose the good ones".  I'm going to think my dreams right into reality.  What an adventure!

These seem like the most simplest of things but to adhere to the advise isn't always that straightforward.  But you know what?  It's kind of funny actually.  When you find you're true hearts desire and you follow it with all your might, what might have seemed impossible finds its way within your grasp!

March finds me embracing my check in number 5.

     ~  Website is under way
     ~  Doc trailer is almost ready
     ~  Financial advisor is reviewing my business plan
     ~  Final sample will arrive next week
     ~  My focus, tenacity and humility are all in tact

Are you following your dreams?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

My First Query


         Determination, patience and lots and lots of research are a sounding board for accomplishment. My agile nature finds me resourceful, engaging and playful.  A huge advocate for nurturing the nature of an active mind, I love to push the envelope.  The simple act of self-motivation can summon audacious acts of feat.  Courage blankets fear.  Hope drowns sorrow.  Expectation can shield you from mediocrity.  
          What is there to be afraid of anyway?  Failure?  Foolishness?  Loss? 
          Wouldn't you be more afraid not to Succeed? Not to Flourish? Not to shine?
          Well, all I have to say to this is.  These are a few of my favorite things...

 "And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud,
 was more painful than the risk it took to blossom" ~ Anais Nin

"Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway" ~ Dr. Susan Jeffers

"Life is an Extravaganza so Rise to the Occasion" ~ Mr. Magorium 

          I am heeding the advise.  I am throwing caution to the wind.  I know what is in my heart now and I am going to follow my heart as far it will take me.
          I share with you here, one of my intrepid pursuits.  The base of my query letter for my first full length book.     

March, 2011




The indelible footprints of my past have left me intent on finding answers.  Is it really possible to change our life, as we know it?  To undo what has been instilled in us by verbal abuse and neglect?  To become a whole person with a second chance?
Life With One Eye Open is a completed 27,000-word self-help memoir.  A book in two parts and narrated in the first person we join a girl who is born to a life of neglect and verbal abuse.  She is taken away from her mother at age thirteen and then taken by a serial rapist later that same year.  We follow a childhood spent jumping from one bizarre situation to another and countless statistic lists.  Will she end up cloaked on the corner rustling a cup or will she find a way to make herself visible for the first time in her life?
I have spent the past 6 years making music videos and commercials.  I’ve worked with some very high-profile amazing talent but I realized I wasn’t growing and I wasn't really helping anyone or myself.  How could I make a mark on society while helping the troubled youth of America and the adult survivors of child abuse to rise above their circumstances?  I am a late bloomer and sometimes I still struggle with the past but when it rains it pours. 

An active participant in the use of social media, my blog, of the same name, Life With One Eye Open is gaining repeat viewers and a following.  I have the outline for another book also based on a true story and I have an outline and 40 pages written of a psychological thriller. 

I am in the process of fund raising for a Documentary I wrote, “Coloring Outside the Lines:  Bringing Hope to the Forgotten Child” that will bring art, music and laughter to children in the foster care system.  Our trailer is scheduled to debut March 16, 2011.  All of my endeavors are intertwined and I am in discussions with Natasha Biasell of Ivy Public Relations to launch a PR campaign for these exciting ventures.

My completed book proposal and manuscript are available upon request. 

Thank you in advance for your consideration.

Peace, Love & Light,



Pepper Carlson


    What are a few of your favorite things?  Are you going after them with all your heart?

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Words on Screen & Words on Paper

  • Blink, Malcolm Gladwell
  • Casablanca (1942)
  • Chocolat (2000)
  • Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, Susan Jeffer, Ph.D.
  • Harold and Maude (1971)
  • Invictus (2009)
  • On The Waterfront (1954)
  • Singin in the Rain (1952)
  • The Celestine Prophecy, James Redfield
  • The Four Agreements, Miguel Ruiz
  • The Greatest Salesman in the World, Og Mandino
  • The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle
  • The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, Deepak Chopra
  • The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
  • The Tao of Pooh, Benjamin Hoff
  • The Wizard of Oz (1939)
  • West Side Story (1961)
  • What Happy People Know, Dan Baker

Listening

  • Use Somebody, Kings of Leon
  • You're Beautiful, James Blunt
  • Love, Love, Love, Tristan Prettyman
  • Just Fine, Mary J. Blige
  • Banana Pancakes, Jack Johnson
  • You and Me, Dave Matthews
  • Just Breathe, Pearl Jam
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