Trovare la strada
Finding the way. It means so many different things when you are starting life in a new country. Think about it. When you move to a new house, even in the same city- if you are in the same country, there is so much you already know. But in a new country, with a new language, you can pretty much throw what you think you know out la finestra. ( you know - the window)
I keep thinking back to when I moved to London in 2014. How timid I was in my exploration of - well- pretty much everything. ( And they speak English. Well, sort of) It took weeks for me to figure out the money thing, and then there was the epic search for a simple broom. Yes, you heard me- a broom. I was living in Kensington- in a lovely little studio apartment in what I would come to find out was the rather posh part of the city. I had a small patio outside my front door, which was actually below the sidewalk above. And because of that location, it got all kinds of leaves and debris blown in on a regular basis. I wanted a broom, and the flat didn't have one. I could have asked the landlord, but they were testy and I figured I could just buy one. But it would turn out not to be so easy.
Looking back, I'm grateful for the broom dilemma, as it pushed me out of my comfort zone in that first month. I began talking to shop keepers after a search of the local grocery and other likely shops failed to produce even the simplest broom. And eventually, I became more comfortable being on my own in a new country, using humour as often as possible to make even the silliest questions not so hard to ask. Eventually, I found it. A red broom that stood in the window of the fanciest little hardware store in town. For only 20 pounds. LOL.
I bought it anyway.
I tell you this story because I've now been in Bellano three days and I've sorted out a realtor, a doctor, a few candidates for banking and nearly - a new phone. I've walked the village from end to end a few different routes, found the grocery store and two different ways ( one death defying due to lack of sidewalks) and one lovely and along the lake.- to get there and back. I've introduced myself to the local merchants when I meet them. I took the fast boat to Como city yesterday (1.5 hours) after a conversation that I've come to see as 'normale' with the almost always grumpy ticket person at the ferry. If you've been here, you'll know what I mean.
I'm getting the ticket app, which means I can avoid the grumps.
In Como I had a wander to find the two stores that sell both phones->if you need that- and sim cards for Italian phone service> which I have discovered is essential. I managed to get my UK phone unlocked on Monday and did some research on networks and plans. After the first stop, where they didn't have any sim cards in stock ???, I asked about Vodafone and the young man outright lied and said yes, but it was very far away- too far to walk. I had a feeling he wasn't being honest, but I thanked him anyway.
I'll give him this - he wanted my business any way he could get it.
I found a place in the piazza for lunch that was empty. The menu was nice and reasonable and I had my pick of tables. I chose the house made gnocchi with ragu of beef, and a glass of Prosecco.
Then I settled in for a good old people watch. Italy never disappoints in this area. Beautiful women in summer dresses that show off their tans and their curves unabashedly. Tourists stopping every few seconds to snap another picture which is totally understandable. Families with unhappy children who make their presence known from a distance. Nothing makes me happier than Italian children btw... they are quite verbal and use their hands when they speak. And they have a sense of themselves that I don't think I found till I was 40!
Somedays that is still elusive. (picture the emoji with hands raised as if to say 'what can I do?')
Lunch, by the way, was delicioso. The waiter was friendly, we had a chat. He wants to open his own place so he is working here 'to learn all the things'. He'll do well if he stays this warm and lovely to strangers. Even the lunch portion of the gnocchi was too much, but he was happy to pack it up and I had the rest for dinner. I found the Vodafone store just around the corner, and had a lovely conversation totally in Italian with the young man and was ready to make a purchase when he realised I wasn't actually Italian. (SCORE for my accent ha ha) So he asked for my passport, which is common and that's when I remembered I'd left it in the safe in my flat. .
You win some, you lose some.
I walked back to check the schedule for the ferry, but found I'd have to wait another three hours for the next fast boat back to Bellano. By then I'd been walking for about 4 hours in increasing heat, and had reached my limit. So I decided to take the slow boat, because the views are like the best travel channel ever, and I'd spend those three hours making my way home. It gave me a chance to look at a lot of the smaller villages on the lake to determine if they were worth investigating before I choose my rental for the year. And I got to see a lot of really interesting architecture and even a small island - Isola Comacina- where the ferry stopped. There is a huge ristorante where I will definitely visit when it reopens mid September.
Every day here feels full of possibility and beauty.
And I am full of gratitude for that, and for anyone reading this.
PS (The grocery store here sells brooms for 4 Euro. I may buy one just because).
Yesterday, at the end of another round of packing 'Jenga'- so much easier when airplane rules are not involved- and an hour or so drive from Milan, I was happy and tired. Luckily, a sweet local friend offered to come with me and help me settle in. Since I never dreamed the third floor airbnb would entail 6 flights of steps, I was even more grateful to have someone to help and share the laugh- crying. After seeing her off at the train, I had a walk and a wander till I found a shady table at one of the many tiny outdoor spots on the wide cobbled walk by the lake.
After a couple of Aperol Spritz and a panini by the lake, I climbed the six flights and made a mental note. One spritz might be safer when there are so many steps and so few railings lol. I unpacked the four bags, sorted electric cords, chargers and plugs and got things situated. Watched an episode of Ted Lasso which rarely fails to make me stupid happy. Then, despite the party going on 4 floors down, sleep, long and deep, found me. (The price you pay for being this close to the lake on a weekend is the noise of tourists, motorcycles and endless wine bottles crashing into the trash.
It's worth it.
This morning I woke up in this ancient village of Bellano, on Lake Como, in the Lombardia region of northern Italy. To be honest I have been floating around all day. After the past eighteen months of nomad life in the US, waiting for this to happen, it's not surprising that one questions the actual possibility of all the plans that were made.
I never stopped believing.
After two long stays with the kindest of friends, one in the beginning (March 2020) and one at the end (May 2021), and a couple of rentals in between, I boarded a 'covid safe' flight from JFK on the 18th of August. In Milan the next day, I checked into an amazing Airbnb for ten days, to find my feet, visit some friends and just let my body relax into all the emotions that sometimes threaten to overtake me. It was the perfect segue and a gift to myself.
Don't be afraid to do that - to give yourself what you know you need.
I'll be honest, in the last 18 months I've formed a bit of a routine to my days to keep sane. Some reading in the early morning with coffee- a luxury I deny myself when I'm in serious writing mode, a little online scrabble to connect with friends who play too, and a good stretch on the mat when I can't get outside. But unlike Florida, (my last stop) it's not the rainy season in Italy and the weather is yelling at you to come out and walk! Adesso! (NOW).
While I sipped my tea on this first morning -as there was the not so happy surprise of no coffee or coffeemaker in this place, I watched the early morning walkers from my bedroom window, and saw a little movie scene play out. At least, that's what it looked like. A woman, tall and blonde, wearing a dazzling yellow top, black cigarette pants and red heels, was having an animated conversation with a tanned, long haired, blue jeaned man. She was gesticulating wildly, he was feigning pulling his hair out and praying. I couldn't tell if they were laughing or angry. But I couldn't look away. At one point, he jumped up on the sea wall and threatened to jump. This, somehow, won her over. He took his shirt off at that point and threw it down into a yellow speedboat tied in the tiny marina. He climbed down and she handed him her bags, then took off her heels and climbed down to join him, and they slowly made their way out of the slip. The end. But hey, the show was great, the actors did their part, and it was free. Sometimes life just gives you a story you can't resist.
Later, on my walk home after a visit to the local market, about 10 minutes from here, mostly to buy the coffee lol, I had the idea to begin to document this adventure via this blog. The music of the scenery here lit the spark, and the words started dancing in my head. So I'll try . Today I am writing during the day, making appointments with realtors and finding my way around the town. There is an ease in knowing this stay will hopefully be my last 'temporary' place before I move to a long term rental. And a new chapter of life.
That search begins tomorrow.
Finnegan, begin again
Hello world. Welcome back to the new old life that we packed away (for the most part) last March. Right around this time. For some of us, that meant losing a lot of our 'normal'. Jobs. Freedoms. Hugs. And for so many, dear ones. We mourn together.
Some of us found ourselves in the middle of things, if we do work that is 'essential' to basic human need.
So for all of us, I say - thank you for your compassion, your caring, your hard and sometimes unimaginably difficult efforts. And your sacrifice. We are here today, because you were there.
For me personally, 2020 brought an unusually strange dilemma. After moving all of my personal belongings from my flat in London to what I thought would be 'temporary' storage in Milan, Italy while I found my next home, I hopped over to the US to visit my friends and family. I had a ticket back to my new home dated April 30th, 2020.
The funny thing is that I left Milan on January 13. A week later Covid was in the country. So either way I would have been sort of stuck. I'm a person who has learned that surrendering to what is works better than fighting what won't change. So I stayed with friends for a short while, then moved to a rental house with my two and a half suitcases and a whole lot of gratitude that I was healthy and safe.
The work I had planned for my first year of retirement was no longer feasible. But I was back in my home country and an election was looming, so I poured my energy into making calls and texts to help the cause. That felt like something important.
The rise of the Black Lives Matter movement also moved me to become more involved. I supported groups large and small any way I could. Black Votes Matter depends on support from all of us to help voters who are often afraid or unable to figure out their local process. This organisation does so much to help them and will continue, with our help.
And finally, for the first time in my life, I didn't have a full time job. (Terrifying and Exhiliarating all at once. Yes, with capital letters). So I signed up for NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) - an annual challenge for authors to write fifty thousand words of fiction in a month. I had an idea for a story, so I sat down on November 1 and by November 30th I had more than beaten that goal.
That piece of work became the first half of my new book "My Grandmother's Ghosts". This time, I'm taking a more traditional publishing route. Translation : I'm in the process of researching agents, writing a query letter, and working with a technical editor, along with reading and doing some rewriting to polish the manuscript. This book stands alone, but will have two sister books as there is so much more story to be told! Yes! I'm writing a trilogy!
Since my surname is Finn, I often think of the movie with the same title as this blog. It's the story of an older man who decides to take some new chances. I can relate. And I'll admit when I find myself starting over (again) I often use these words to encourage myself.
So here I am, taking a leap, and believing that if we do, we can begin again any time we like. Here's to your new beginnings , whatever they may be!
Into the new...
Imagine my emotions when I realised it's been 12 months since I wrote to you here. Shocking really- how fast a year can pass. I'm sorry for that, but as I know you all realize by looking at your own lives, we always wish we could do more than our brains and bodies can actually manage. ( I'll deny I ever admitted this) So, that said, I know it's been a while, but you know how that goes, Life HAPPENS! So here's the news, in a nutshell - Forgetting Andrew is slowly ( and I do mean SLOWLY) becoming a SCREENPLAY!! If anyone out there has ever attempted this kind of effort, god bless you! But the best part is that it's inspired me in new ways, made me fall in love with my characters and learn even more about them - yes, I know that sounds silly since i kind of created them. Sort of. You know what I mean. Hence the long absence from this page.
Newsflash number two, my poetry collection 'Things to Save', is in process of editing with plans for release Spring/Summer of 2019. Woot! This is a project that contains work from the last 15 years and recent work in a poetry group that gave me the courage to expose it. I hope you'll check it out when it arrives and let me know what you think. And thanks to those of you sweet people who have been readers and encouraged me to let this loose.
As many of you are likely to be feeling, the last year was full of unhappy distractions in the world, but I began 2019 with a new feeling of hope. Of energy to do my small part in spreading kindness, compassion and joy in any way I'm able. And I hope that you can find this inside your soul as well. Because it's there. I promise. Just get very quiet and listen. And be present for the moments that offer you opportunity to be there for your fellow humans. Because that is how we find our way to grace.
A friend posed an interesting question near the turning of the year. She asked, "As the year changes, what will you let go of, and what will you hold on to?"
I thought about this, and my answer came easily. I will let go of fear over the things I cannot control, and I will hold on to possibilities I cannot yet imagine.
As you consider this question for yourselves, I hope that what your heart says in response speaks of possibilities. Because they are infinite and endless, when we only allow ourselves to dream. And hope.
See you next month, but for now - Happy Year of Possibility! Namaste, my lovelies.
Back to the future....
Welcome to 2018. A new start, a fresh start maybe, a whole new year ahead. That's what the greeting cards say anyway. For me, midway through a ten hour flight back to London after 6 weeks away, the prospect of a new year felt somehow different than it had in the past. If you know me, or have read my work, you might know I tend to be one of those annoying pollyanna positive types. So in years past, I've been that person who couldn't wait for the ball to drop, for the slate to be theoretically wiped clean. For the fresh ideas and opportunities and well, LIFE - to begin.
Then 2017 happened. A world gone seemingly mad. A year filled with unlikely demagogues suddenly wielding too much power, like Lex Luther had somehow been given the keys to the kingdom. Months of terror for immigrants worldwide, for those living in the endless war that is the middle east, parts of Asia and other countries that we cannot remember having stable governments, much less peace.
A year of violence against humanity, made on paper in the halls of government, and on the streets at the hands of terrorists. In nearly every country we paid the cost in the lives of men, women and children cut down in their prime. Before we knew what they could bring to the world. And we all learned to live with a new kind of fear.
It was a year that saw the brutality of nature and climate at its worst - from hurricanes, to earthquakes, fires and mudslides. Famine. Draught. Disease. I found myself waiting for the next headline to read ' Locusts invade a continent'. And with each headline from politics to poverty, our anxiety grew. Our pain grew as well, for those suffering the worst consequences of each new blow.
And a year that ended in exposure of the sins of many we had held in high regard, that showed them to have helped to build a web of sexual exploitation both illegal and immoral. The truth of harassment, abuse and attack, of men and women who suddenly had a platform to tell their stories, and to ask for justice. A complicated truth that has caused us to examine the cultural norms we have allowed to exist that has jeopardized so much for so many.
And so, as that year drew to a close, like many I sought refuge in the hustle of holidays, the comfort of friends and family, and that last elusive bit of hopefulness I'd buried somewhere deep inside.
And then I stayed there, in that place in my mind, and I hid.
The ball dropped. I went back to work, and into the routine of my daily commute. Groceries, new projects at work, unpacking, going through the motions of some remembered past. Settling into something I couldn't really name. But what it felt like was a really bad hangover. An emotional hangover.
And I didn't like the way it felt- like some kind of weird surrender. I stopped writing. I stopped painting. I buried myself in television and books to take my mind somewhere else. I wrapped myself up in that fog like a drunk watching the world happen through blurred and bloodshot eyes. I couldn't see the point of anything. I could no longer imagine the future.
It lasted for weeks. Then one afternoon, on a bright and icy cold walk by the Thames, I looked at the mix of history and the modern world that is everywhere in this ancient country. I took a deep breath of the crisp winter air, and watched my breath turn to ice crystals as I leaned on the bridge rail. I felt my heart expand and I felt like I had somehow woken up from a long sleep. And the smile that had eluded me for so long came back.
I realized at that moment it had been a while since I'd thought about how hope grows from its own roots. Because, you know, it's true.
Resilience, after all is using memory and experience to face challenges and overcome the odds- because we've all had to face challenges, and overcome odds and we know how to do that. Remembering that made me begin to hope again. Remembering that the world itself has been here before, in times far darker. When we didn't know as much. When there were not as many of us fully awake. When women didn't know their own strength. When opportunity to embrace each other on a global level was just something that happened when we traveled to new and exotic places.
I began to find something hopeful in every headline. In the reaction of people, in the outreach to help, to comfort, to rebuild, to serve. There it was. Small sometimes, just a glimmer. But real. And growing.
There is nothing so resilient as the human spirit. Nothing. So this year, I celebrated a new
way of living in this glorious, radiant, broken world on January 15. Thats the day I found a magic recipe for that hangover cure. Its free, and it's always right there for you. Faith. Hope. Love. A good dose every day and you'll start to find your way back to the promise of the future. Happy New Year. I mean it.
The writer's dilemma
It's early on a Thursday morning, the chill of winter has arrived in London and I've dug out the wooly socks. I've had my first cup of coffee and so, technically, the mental wheels have been greased. I should have unlocked the door to the words. But instead, I'm stuck in that place between worlds where writers go when too many ideas show up and host your basic medieval duel inside your brain. GAH. Trust me friends, it can be bloody and ugly and go on for...well... weeks. All this to say, I'm sorry I've been away for too long, and not even sent a postcard. All of you who send little comments on Facebook, or here, you feed me during those battles. And I dearly love you for it.
So, here I am, hiding from those infernal ideas battling through my head for a moment just to say hello, how are you? and are you reading, or perhaps writing, or (gosh I hope not) watching your own little duels commence. But on the off chance you may be, let me share some tips I've found helpful to banish the buggers.
1. Pick one of those ideas as your hero. Even if it's just for a day. I usually pick the underdog, but hey you probably knew that about me already. Then let the others keep fighting but ignore them. Focus your attention on the little guy you've been thinking about and wanting to get to know.
2. Start by writing ( yes, I know, but I don't mean THAT kind of writing) down everything you know about that idea. Treat it like a character, heck, maybe it IS a character. Get to know it. Decide what you like about it, what bothers you, what you would change if you could. Because, you know - you can. Ha. You're the writer after all. You're in charge. Sometimes you might even decide that what you don't like about this idea is really the genius thing after all. I love it when that happens.
3. Commit to hanging out with ONLY that idea ( yes, it's like dating in this metaphor) for a week. Spend some quality time with it every day. Keep your notes where you can look at them, ( I use my iphone notes) so that you can use time on the bus, or the train, or in waiting rooms or when you have coffee or when you're cooking dinner or just instead of re-watching the latest episode of 'This is Us' because the writing is so good. And write down all the things you think about while you are hanging out. And then afterwards make a few notes about the time you spent together.
I've found that just spending time with my ideas- one at at time- helps me to understand just how much I want to explore them. And suddenly, the words come. Try it. You'll like it. And now, because there are so many words in my head right now, I'll say so long for now. I've got a new book to write.
Buy the Ticket...
I'm sitting here in my airbnb flat on a cool but sunshine filled Thursday morning, breathing in a view of mountains and sky. And if I stand in the far corner of my small terrace, the sparkling waters of a lake. I'm not in London, stealing a day off to write. I'm away, and writing seven days in a row. But better than that, I'm doing it in Lago di Como, Italy.
I fell in love with this part of the country of my ancestors years ago when I visited briefly as part of a longer, larger tour of this beautiful country. I loved the variety of landscape and attitude of the many villages that line the shore of this wide and shining lake. The abundance of ferries, buses and trains make it almost effortless to explore the food, texture, and ancient walls, experiencing something unique and beautiful at each stop.
This trip was mainly for my soul sister Bella and I to have some much needed time together, far away from our homes. Since I moved to live in London 3 years ago, we've missed the ease of dropping in on each other, or grabbing dinner on a whim. All the things that distance steals. So we schemed and dreamed and planned a week together, starting in London and ending here in Italy.
But as we planned, an idea started to germinate inside me. My sister had a limited time away. Originally I thought I'd fly home with her and we'd part at Heathrow. But as that little seed of thought grew, I started wondering 'what if'. What if I stayed on another week? I had the vacation time, after all - one of the nicest benefits of living in Europe. But alone? On my own in a foreign country with no one to walk with? Talk with? But oh, the idea of taking time set aside solely for the purpose of writing- for bringing my new book to life? That sealed the deal.
I booked the flat for an extra seven days. The cost was reasonable since I was booking for two weeks total. I made myself a promise to write the larger portion of each day, but to make sure to get out and walk this little village every day. And to do more, to get on a bus and explore at least one new place before I leave. To shrug off my introvert cape and walk down to the local market and practice my Italian with the 80 year old proprietor, Liliana. To breath in the earth and sky and water and let it renew me and fill my head and heart with all the things that my creative soul craves.
I made myself a promise. I gave myself a gift. I realized that all dreams need nurturing, and all souls need stretching. And whether it's going to the park by my house in London, or sitting in my own overgrown garden- walking to the pub and sitting outside watching the people- we have to make those choices to give ourselves these gifts. To PROMISE ourselves to make time and space and spend the money, to risk new adventures and to feed our souls.
Did you ever hear the joke about the man who prays to god every day to win the lottery? One day he weeps and shakes his fist and asks ' My god, why do you forsake me? What do I need to do to win the lottery?' And god replies, ' My son, buy a ticket'.
So my loves, what is the dream you have that you wish for, that you wait for, that you long for? I promise you it will not happen for you if you don't make yourself a promise, if you don't give yourself the gift, however small, and take the first step. And you know what that is, for you. You have to buy the ticket.
The winning is in the WoRk...
Over the last 12 months, I've tried to find creative ways to juggle a full time job, trans-continental parenting of grown humans, coaxing my introverted soul into a more social way of life, and oh, by the way promoting my first novel and building back a life coaching business that's fallen by the wayside. All the good intentions in the world, I've discovered, don't get anything done.
If you have a creative streak - whether it comes in spurts, or hums along inside your brain on a daily basis, then you know how challenging life can be when you get that magical inspiration for a painting, a poem or even that throw pillow you have suddenly designed in your head, and oh, wait, you have to go to work and earn your daily bread. Damn. The whole thing, I'll admit- was getting in the way. I had goals dammit! I'd made them public! I was taking a course to make me better at this and now I was failing wildly in front of people I'd come to admire, respect and yes, I'll admit it, ENVY for their seeming ability to always 'get er done'. Crap.
But slowly, I've realised through that group, and some wise words from a wise coach, that sometimes the end game isn't where we need to focus. That imaginary 'finish line' we set for ourselves, is often the biggest distraction we face. We focus on it like it's the only way we can succeed. But it's an illusion.
What We NEED to focus on, is the WORK. The work of creation, of ideation, of thinking through. And sometimes, to get it right, we need to do it over, and over, and even over again. The winning - the achieving of the elusive and much sought after goal - doesn't always arrive in one dazzling moment of 'Ta-Daaaaa'. More often, it comes in moments. Moments carved out of the madness that reveal a design solution, a phrase that sparkles, or an idea that sings out what you'd been searching for all along.
And what we learn along the way is so much more than what we get out of a quick sprint and a flashy finish. As we work, as we struggle, even as we FAIL- we go deep, and wide and our experience grows, our confidence builds, and we suddenly understand that there is no ' THERE'. There is just the work that we love, and the winning is in those we touch with it. So keep on ' keeping on' my loves, keep working, keep loving and you will always, always, be WINNING. <3
Just as we are...
Publishing your first book is a pretty big milestone. Or at least it was for me. After more than 6 years of snatching moments here, there, and everywhere, and more than a year of editing the final manuscript, it suddenly happened. In fact, it happened at 7 am on a very cold but bright Saturday morning in February. Despite the fact that the publisher had said a few days before I would see it live online, perhaps even a week, I turned on the computer to check my diary and there it was. I was in my usual Saturday morning attire- yoga pants and a ginormous long sleeved t-shirt with a drawing of elephants and the words 'Tribe' on it. It's a favorite, super soft and worn, big enough to cuddle up in and not so precious I can't risk a drip of morning coffee. I hadn't even made the coffee, to be fair. I was barely awake. And for a moment, I thought I might be dreaming.
I cannot tell you how unprepared I was for the moment. I stood up from my chair at the desk and looked around. No one. I knew that, but still I looked. Isn't that what we do when the big moments come? We immediately want someone to share it with. But I live alone these days. No pup, not even a cat. There are of course, the three houseplants with whom I will admit to sharing several confessions and a few conversations a week. They don't answer of course, but they don't die and they bloom a lot which tells you something. At least I think so.
Anyway, back to my moment. My achievement. I thought after pacing kind of excitedly through the flat a few times, "Why, I'll call someone!" But most, if not nearly all of my someone's who would want to hear this news were asleep in the middle of the night in America. I considered the bottle of Prosecco waiting patiently in my tiny fridge. I did. I promise. But then I thought, wouldn't it be worse to get a little fizzy and then be alone with my big news? So I nixed that plan.
Instead I sat, snug in my tribe shirt, warm socks and huge smile that would turn out to stick to my face for days. Weeks. And I realized that when the big moments come, the dream come true moments, it doesn't matter one whit where you are. Or who you are with, or who you can call. It's all the same if you just settle in and let yourself feel the whole beautiful thing of doing something that is rather quite amazing. Even if the book is not everyone's everything, or anyone's anything. It's somewhere near 85 thousand words put together in chapters of laughter, tears, ache and survival. And it's a mountain you climbed all alone. And so when the moment comes and you have reached the top, wearing yoga pants and an elephant t-shirt, it's enough to just be there. Just as you are. Worthy. Enough. And happier than you knew you could be.
. My joints were aching from a combination of age and wear and tear and oh yeah, that time I fell off a mountain. In a car. That. Anyway, that's old news. But I decided that it would be nice if I could put on a jacket without the kind of pain that makes it hard not to scream, so I went to the doc. He diagnosed nerve pain, and prescribed the latest and greatest pill.."just for this kind of pain". So, why not, I gave it a try. And waited. And waited. After a few days I sort of noticed the pain was still there, but duller. But I also noticed my brain was a little foggy. And there were also a few new pounds on my scale. Now, I almost never get on a scale, it's just not where I put my attention. Until my jeans get a little snug.
The battery on the scale was low. It said that, right on the screen. 'LO'. So a week later, with dull pain, and a dull brain, I finally remembered to pick up a new battery. And just to test it out I jumped on the scale to find.... TEN POUNDS????!!!! WHAT? Google quickly confirmed my suspicions that this not so wonderful medicine was the culprit. So of course, I called the doc, he agreed with Google and said the meds were totally optional.And I tossed those pills down the sink. And while Dr. Google assured me that the weight would come off just as quickly as it came on, I was still in a funk.
The thing about that ten pounds was that it came along during a week of lots of other things that just weren't going to plan. It felt like along with trying to make things work at work, and figure out how to juggle fifteen things at once, now I was fat? Awesome.
Luckily for me, I had a coaching session scheduled with my fabulous Mastermind goddess coach, and of course my response to ' how are you' was a very stressed out, and kind of loud - I GAINED TEN POUNDS. Of course that was followed by the explanation that it was caused by these awful meds and I'd already started to see it come off but still, it had me feeling all kinds of weird and rattled. She was quiet. I waited, embarrassed at my outburst but relieved because I'd gotten THAT off my chest. More quiet. I started to settle into that silence with her. We talked about everything that was going well, how some of the obstacles I was seeing were natural components of finding success in the things I was taking big risks to do. We dreamed and schemed a bit and were almost out of time when she said..."oh, and Tia? those ten pounds? ... with some people I'd ask about the Doritos... but I'm getting the feeling that you have something creative that is really big, that you still need to let out into the world. I mean huge. Like TEN POUNDS of creativity you are just holding on to. I'm just sayin. What do you think?".
I felt the rush start at the back of my neck. "The screenplay" I said quietly. I need to write the screenplay for my book. I need to do that." She said..."Well, there you go.You should do that". We talked a little more and that night I grabbed a new notebook I'd bought 'just because' and guess what happened. That ten pounds turned into the first ten pages of a movie. And you know what else? I think she was on to something because before I knew it my jeans were fitting just fine.
So my loves... if you're feeling a little bit like life is out of control, or your jeans are feeling a little snug, or you can't find your mojo? Take a minute, settle down, and think - what are you holding on to that is making your life heavier than it needs to be? And then let it go, or let it out. I promise you'll feel lighter quicker than you can say '10 pounds' xo