Las Lineas

Man…Women rock.

We love hard, we feel bravely, and are so good at creating structure out of chaos.

I was very much reminded of all of this today.

We are beautiful.

I would like to share a piece I wrote recently published by Kim Baker Gomez.

A beautiful friend with a beautiful heart.

I hope that it reminds you, that you are beautiful too.

Las Lineas-the Lines

They tell you I have laughed more often than the average person.

They show you I have cried perhaps just the same.

They reveal the lineage of my brown skin and the resulting adaptability that lineage provides; keeping me looking younger than I actually am.

They do not fully reveal all those unwashed nights on the pillow, the lack of water, and sometimes excessive partying.

With that said, they fully reveal grace.

Las lineas. The lines. They speak for me in ways I can no longer recall for myself.

How can something so special, and unique to each of us, not be embraced?

But I have never viewed them as my enemy, and just as the lines on the palms of my hands have a path to reveal and a story to tell, they do too.

In my mind when I look in the mirror I see las lineas as love specific to the way I express it. Openly, clumsily at times, but never afraid to get up from the fall.

I simply do not see them as outward connectors to the negatives we are bombarded with about aging. I view them as positively beautiful connectors into the windows of my soul.

I look in the mirror and see the lines reaching into the corner of my eyes….so thin, and not quite noticeable at first glance of my face. Yet at the same time, my lines are so very much earned, and so very much filled with the strength of my experiences over the 37 years I have been on this planet.

NMM

 Maggie xo

 

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The Some of Everything

Hey Humans,

Most of the time I don’t know what the hell I am doing.  I plan on certain things happening-eating, sleeping(at some point), work, and bills. Most everything else, I navigate day to day, gut feeling by gut feeling.

I kinda just do as I go, and go as I do.

I love it.

I love it because I used to plan a lot in the past.

I had a plan for every possible negative outcome that could happen when it came to my health, relationships, and any natural talents I possessed.

You see, all the planning I was doing essentially stemmed from fear. Sketched out by my insecurities, outlined by my worries, and essayed by my anxiety.

I didn’t realize how much this way of thinking contributed to my habit of self-sabotage until I saw a therapist.

Which is a whole different blog post I might get to in the future.

Back to the planning thing. Planning is not all negative. Planning can be really great, and imperative for certain situations. The planning I was consistently doing was not healthy. Over the years I learned, and am learning, what kind of planner I am, what kind of planner I want to be, and what kind of planner I don’t want to be.

These are three things I believe we should not hold off on for the perfect plan.

The weather, people, and creative ideas.

Waiting for the perfect sunshine weather to take a walk along that beach you love? First of all, be grateful you live close enough to a beach to do that because I am very jealous right now, and second, put on a hoodie…go for that walk. Waiting for the perfect person to sweep you off your feet? Sweep yourself off your feet, and your vision of this desired person will become less narrow, thus opening your eyes to greater possibilities.

Have an idea that charges up your creative mojo, lights up your mind, and ignites your soul? Don’t wait to talk to someone you think has it all together to help you perfectly lay things out. Don’t wait until you’ve sorted through all your notes, sketches, or recordings. Pluck one thing from the beautiful mess of a potentially amazing idea, and do something with it.

Because if you wait until some perfect sign, person, or plan comes around you are not really doing much more than waiting, are you not?

You gotta do at least one thing with your something in order to figure out if this something, is even…something!

And who knows? This one thing from this something could be the key to discovering if it is even anything.

It could be something.

It could be nothing.

It could be everything.

calla

Maggie xo

 

M.A.S.H.

I have a student at my work who is a little negative Nancy. She never seems entirely happy from moment to moment, nor easily satisfied. For example, one day we were coloring during free time, and she mentioned wanting to have her old teacher back. I asked what did she like about her that made her want be back in her class? She replied “Well she let me draw and color during free time.”

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Gotcha…

A few days ago it ended up being just us two girls and a handful of boys in program. For first period they all wanted to play basketball. Normally I play with them (grandma shots and all), but of course, my negative Nancy was unhappy that we all wanted to do something physically active…during physical activity time. She slumped onto a bench nearby and crossed her arms. I decided to see if I could help shift her mood.

“Have you ever played M.A.S.H.?”

I took out some paper from my work binder and gave her first turn. She chose potential jobs, number of children, pets, and “types” of future husbands. When it was time to count off she declared that picking a type of husband was the hardest part.

I might have to agree with her on that one.

When we finished the first round she was appalled at the job she landed. “Whyyyy did I get THAT job?!” Imitating her signature whiny tone I answered.

“Becaaaause, you CHOSE that job!”

Then, it was my turn.

Now this is where it got kind of cool. My girl initially picked some pretty mediocre shit. She had never played the game, and was understandably unfamiliar with how to fully engage it. So as my turns went on, and I had named a horse as one of my pets, “a wild warrior” as a potential husband, and one of my jobs getting paid to travel it started to sink in for her.
There were no limits.

What were her dreams like at this age?

Amazing!

We played back and forth for the entire period. By the time we got to her last turn she was clapping in delight, as she landed an “artistic guy,” a pet dragon, zero kids, and a job as an artist. When I asked if she thought these things could come true she shrugged, but then mentioned with a slight smile, “But it’s what I WANT.”

 Later that night I thought about our time together and how my turns went. The initial ones were more in the area of magical outcomes, more silly to reflect the lightness of the game to my Nancy, but also with a hint of truth to which I would not share with even the closest of friends. Sometimes children keep the best secrets. One turn midway I realized was what I thought I wanted, and the very last turn ended up being most of things I currently, really wanted.

Well, maybe I can’t have a pet wolf.

But perhaps one day I will have the opportunity to pet one.

Maggie xo

37

37
I find peace in the wind and a smile in the sun. I make conversation with the trees and giggle with the animals. A day of fulfillment does not begin with how the world greets me, but how I greet it. It becomes beautifully mutual that way.

The richest moments in my daily life might entail feeling the light from a chat with a cashier, or a brief moment when I sense my presence on this planet fully understood from someone I admire. They often understand it, more than I do right now.

For it is in the little things that create the knowing there is something out there, bigger than myself.

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And that’s what makes me happy.

Maggie xo

Anything, But

I mostly feed my soul with this blog, but for today, this post is not for me.

This is for the friend. The friend who wrote me that she is hurting because she feels like she does not know who she is anymore. She says the world took that away from her. She does not like herself when she looks in the mirror. She does not love herself.

“What do you think Maggie?” she asked me.

“What do you say about yourself?”

About myself?

Instantaneously I am compelled to answer that

I am grateful.

Bottom line.

Then I add….

I really like myself. Actually, I love myself. I am keenly aware of the things that make up who I am that I would not change, because then I would be changing the make up of who I am.

Sometimes though…this can be rather annoying…and I think it becomes this way when you REALLY start to like yourself. Love yourself. When you don’t really like or love you-these things can simply hurt. Sometimes…

It seems the world wants you to be anything but the realrawfreewildnonconforming Iamsohappyinmyownpersonalitybubblepleasedonotfreakinpopit-YOU.

So I try to be anything but.

What people that do not have their own best interests at heart, expect me to be.

tried
Maggie xo

Who do I Love More?

Do you ever ask yourself this question? Maybe you’ve had to make a decision that would be great for you but might upset or shift a situation that you are either way too comfortable with, or someone else is?

I used to do this too much. It was like I was always second priority when it came to making choices. Even when the only person that would be affected was me-yes, I would put my “eh” self before my best one. And we know what this generally ties into right?

Our self-worth.

So, I try to ask myself these days:

“Who do I love more?”

Then I compare. For example, something I check in with frequently is the people I choose to keep close and support in my life. Boundaries can be a frequent issue for the givers. So, if I am “helping” someone by constantly giving them advice an ear and my time…but it is sucking up my mental energy, I would (and have) asked: “Who do love I more-that person, and their perhaps unrealized need to feed off my energy or me, and my need to preserve it?”

Does that make sense? Think about how effective this question can be if we really sit with it. It can even be for little things. Like, “Who do I love more-Jack and the Box jalapeño poppers or my body which has to deal with uncomfortably digesting it?”

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Why is that question so hard

So next time you are faced with a decision that you KNOW in your gut could have an excellent healthy solid answer if it not for some external factor or possible outcome that is maybe not so hot, again including your own not so hot feelings to stay comfortable or agreeable…ask yourself this question.

Who do I love more?

Because even when we have the best intentions and considerations for the things outside ourselves, that answer should pretty much always somehow,

Be You.

Maggie xo

Say It and Spray It

I was thinking about one of the nicest things someone said to me in 2015.

Her name was Ms. Aishu, and she was working the day I substituted at a local preschool. My shift was over during nap time, and I was slowly getting up from my seated station when I saw her walk by. I mouthed I was leaving and waved. Still walking by me she whispered goodbye, but then, back to me, I saw her pause. She slowly turned around, knelt in front of me and said,

“And by the way, you are very beautiful Ms. Maggie.”

valentine_face_1I think I looked like this when She told Me…

I appreciate Ms. Aishu for the moment. She went out of her way to say something nice to me instead of just thinking it. I had only known her a few hours, and resonated with the fact that it was probably a bit weird for her; paying such a pointed compliment to someone she didn’t know. Isn’t it funny how hard that can be for of us? To simply say something kind? The reason this is one of the nicest things said to me in 2015, doesn’t have to do with her using the word beautiful, but rather everything else wrapped up in the approach and intention of her sharing this with me.

With all the little negative things that happen to us every day, and the bigger tragedies happening around the globe right now it can be so easy to close in on our own personal, protective little bubble. Problem is it usually protects all the wrong things…our ego, fears, insecurities, and genuine spirit. We use it to ignore, or over dramatize so we do not have to take responsibility for something we feel is too big or far away to even address.

Back to Ms. Aishu.

I think we should all do what she did, and say nice things to each other we wouldn’t normally go out of our way to say, to people we know might not normally hear the nice things we might be thinking.

Try it. Say some nice things, to some people this week.

Maggie xo

Thirsty Thursday

I would like to share a video I made whilst on a quick Self-Retreat trip earlier this week.

Clearly my skills as a writer surpass my skills as both speaker and video editor however, my thoughts are

Why not? Life isn’t perfect why should my video presentation be?

Just do It.

I think my biggest take away from this trip was that it is important to love and accept myself fully. At my very core I am deserving of this, and AM this.

Love and Acceptance.

In the video I mention that I am “Thinking about the things I don’t like about myself.” Which is my way of going within, and pin pointing the things I am attached to that do not work for my highest good. If don’t like it I can change it, but I have to recognize it first.

I really do hope if anything…you the wonderful reader find yourself toying with the idea of creating your own self-retreat. You do not need a lot of money, or a super lengthy amount of time. You just need to decide that you want to do it.

Then do it.

Maggie xo

Interested in creating your own Self-Retreat but unsure of how to make it happen?

Contact me and I will work with you on planning something within your means, and around your every day life!

callavida@gmail.com

The Dressing Room

Ladies, you know for most of us we dread the dressing room. It is this dingy horribly-lit private place to look at your body from all angles whilst knowing half the clothes you brought in will probably not fit well, and you foresee at least two more trips back in your shopping future . You held them up at the rack, you chose the sizes you normally wear, yet when you go into that dressing room…

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On this occasion I’m standing in the dressing room at Target about to try on jeans. They’re a brand I already have a few pairs of so I’m feeling hopeful. I had the size I usually wear and one size up. I decided to try on the bigger size first because I thought they’d be bigger, and that would feel good.

It didn’t. They were insanely tight! I did the standard squats to see if they’d loosen up a bitpants-too-tight-cartoon-final-cropped but they stayed sticking to my skin. I checked the tag to see if I misread the size, but the bigger number stared back at me.

And then I felt bad.

I peeled the jeans off and frowned over at the smaller-sized pair. I told myself to try them on anyway. Maybe if I could squeeze into them to feel the discomfort of the tightness it would motivate me to change my ways immediately. I could scold myself mentally as well while I stared in the mirror. A kind of punishing act I guess?

Except,

they fit.

They fit perfectly.

I shook my head and chuckled at my reflection.

I was so amused by what happened that I immediately posted to my Facebook women’s group about my experience and the troubles of shopping for clothes. There were comments upon comments with women sharing similar points of view.

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It is all those thoughts that go on in our mind when we look into the mirror, and feel confused about what we are trying on. It’s that confusion that makes us doubt, and the doubt that can turn into negative thinking.

I decided it was time to get out of there, and with another light laugh I left my negative thoughts in the dressing room.

I waved goodbye to my insecurities, and doubts. Because I understood that it was ridiculous for me to make sense of how I felt about my body based on clothes that didn’t make any sense when on my body. Made by people who may not generally come down to the dressing room, and make sense of the average female’s experience alone in there.

I decided that in the future, any decisions I came to around where to take my physical appearance would not be made in the dressing room.

And then I felt good.

Maggie xo

Begin Within

It’s weird these days.

I have never been so in tune with the world around me, and the people not only in my life, but people I meet on the fly. I strive to make connections every where I go, and to spread a little bit of love. I look at things from a place inside of me that wants to become kinder and more compassionate with each day that goes by.

However, I also experience a world that shuts itself off. People tucking away emotions, experiences, and not really dealing with them.

“It is what it is,” or “I don’t have time for this.” Yet I see those same people giving energy to negative situations, experiences, and issues that clearly stem from not facing the thing we all need to do at some point, and continue to do periodically…

Heal ourselves.

What is self-healing?

It can mean different things to different people, but when I entered it into our favorite information mecca *Google* this is what came up “the process of recovery (generally from psychological disturbances, trauma, etc.), motivated by and directed by the patient, guided often only by instinct. Such a process encounters mixed fortunes due to its amateur nature, although self-motivation is a major asset.”

The great thing about self-healing is it can be addressed on various scales. It does NOT have to be scheduled therapy sessions for a year, or it can.

Once you check in to what would be best for YOU-you take it from there.

In the mean time, I’d like to offer a few simple ways you can begin your path to self-healing. The following suggestions come from my own personal experiences with each one, but I highly recommend if you feel you need to take it to another level to seek professional help, spiritual guidance, or a combo of both.

I have experienced counseling, coaching, and a spiritually-based program for self-healing.

I can promise finding what you need…will get you where you want to be.

3 Ways to Begin…

1. Meditate. Get on YouTube and sit with a guided healing meditation. They can be anywhere from 10 minutes to over an hour! In fact here’s a link to get you started: Positive Magazine

2. Write. Get on your computer or use a good old-fashion pencil and paper. Write whatever comes to mind about how you currently feel and whatever follows. You will be surprised at what gets released within this safe space between your mind and fingers.

3. Walk. Walk? What? Yea. Take a walk. Listen to some relaxing music and think about how you feel. If anything comes up text yourself (you know you’ll have your phone!) when you return from your walk, or pause periodically during your walk to enter in your phone what comes up. Keep documenting your walks and see what changes over time.

It is my sincerest hope that this post helps someone out there. If you connect with this in any way or would like to add to the suggestions please comment!

And please take care.

It starts, and ends, with me.
It starts, and ends…with me. 

Ready to Begin?

Maggie xo