December 12th, 2016 by admin Leave a Comment

For the second time I am reading the book Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist and I think it’s even more powerful for me round two. Her words speak right to my heart!


She uses a term called fake resting….and it cracks me up! I totally know it! Fake resting is when you are wearing PJs, your kids are watching movies, your husband is reading a book and it looks like you are resting but you are not. You are ticking down your to do list either in writing or mentally, getting things tidied up, doing laundry, wiping counter tops….just doing it all. We fake rest instead of real rest and we end up real tired.


She says that part of being an adult is taking responsibility for resting your body and your soul. Meeting your own needs. No one else is going to do it for you!


And the bottom line is…constant activity keeps you from truly feeling. We can run circles around our house folding clothes, sweeping, tidying and never allowing ourselves to feel the cavernous ache.


The ache is: Am I loved? Does someone see me? Do I matter? Am I safe?


If I hustle fast enough, the emptiness will never catch up with me.


In my late teens to early 20’s, I outran the ache by drinking and partying. In my 30’s, I outran the ache by working too much and striving for goals I never really wanted. In my 40’s, I have learned a better way, but I have to consciously be aware every single day. Some days I rock it. Some days I am white knuckling it.


We can outrun the emptiness and ache in so many ways. Working out, binge watching shows, drinking, drugs, shopping, too much social media, dieting, being overly busy, cleaning….the list goes on.


Shauna says, “All of these things will make you less and less able to connect to the things that matter, like your own heart and the people you love. And, these things isolate you.”


This got me thinking. How am I avoiding my emptiness? My cavernous ache?


For me, my commitment right now is less social media. I notice when I am feeling empty, I tend to find myself checking my emails, FB page, Instagram…you name it. And often I don’t remember even consciously choosing to do so. Instead, I am going to sit and savor the stillness. Feel my feelings. Own my truths. And in doing so, know that I am loved, I am seen, I matter and I am safe.


I am going to practice real resting. No more fake resting for this girl. The tidying can wait. The social media can wait. My connection to all that matters, to my own heart and the people I love, is and always will be, my priority.


What will you lessen so that you can allow yourself to truly feel?

December 12th, 2016 by admin Leave a Comment


It’s almost December…and that means Christmas! For me, Christmas has always been truly the most wonderful time of the year. Once Remembrance Day is over, I always put up my tree, get the Christmas carols playing and bask in the excitement and fun of the season. I’m like a kid at Christmas.
This year feels different. Our hearts are still heavy with grief and the thought of Christmas without Keith made me want to leave it all in the boxes until next year.
Maybe next year will be easier.
I see the spot on the couch where he’d sit each Christmas. Usually with anywhere from 3-5 grandkids snuggled up next to him. He’d open his gifts and do something goofy like put his toque on crooked. He loved to make the kids laugh. He’d sit and visit with whomever was next to him, and he’d soak it all in. FAMILY. All of us being together was what made him happiest.
This year, we have to do it without him…and it doesn’t feel right. It just feels really sad.
Yesterday, the boys and I decided we would put up the tree. Nolan’s girlfriend came over and she offered to help. It’s the first time since they’ve been born that the kids really seemed happy to help set up the tree. (They get their grinchy side from Lyle) I stepped back and let the three of them take over. They were laughing, Nolan got caught in the lights and almost pulled the whole tree over, they were talking about where different ornaments came from, how they should place them…and I just sat back and watched. I turned on the Christmas music, and they started to sing as they decorated. I just sat back and took it all in. I felt so proud of who my kids are, I felt grateful that Nolan’s girlfriend helped and made it fun, and I felt incredible gratitude for this life I have.
Then I realized, in that moment, I was like Keith. Sitting back, taking it all in, feeling such pride in my family…and my heart felt full!
These days, I keep looking for signs from him. Something to let me know he is watching from above. I think yesterday may have been a sign.
Christmas won’t be the same this year. There will be a huge hole. We will all feel it.
But as long as we are together, laughing, crying, and loving one another…it will be okay. As long as we find gratitude amidst our grief…it will be beautiful.

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