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This Phoenix Speaks

Seven years in the making, my first published book, This Phoenix Speaks , is now a reality. The tireless and tiring work invested to ma...

an epiphany of positivity

The other day I had an epiphany.

After a hectic morning of getting children off to school before getting my own self out the door,  I was finally driving down the road almost numb, lost in thought. Some of you might get this way when everything seems to pile up, too, so that is why I want to share what came into my mind and then settled into my heart.

Feeling completely overwhelmed, my thoughts were not easily collected, but collect them I did. Negative thoughts like, "Why can't you get things done?!" and "Why is the house a mess almost all the time now?" and "I don't think I will ever really accomplish any of my goals" and "No one will ever want what I have to offer" were whirring through my head. Loserly and ridiculous would best sum up my general thoughts about myself.

Some of you might not know this yet, so I'll tell you—I have a strong anti-self-deprecation platform that I preach. All of the aforementioned thoughts then turned my thoughts to thoughts of hypocrisy: "If I won't practice what I preach, then what the heck am I doing calling people out for being so mean to themselves?" Friends will get going on about how they aren't good at this or that, and I tell them to just stop it. Stop comparing yourself to other people. You're awesome. Everyone has gifts and talents and makes valuable contributions to the world. No one can be and do everything. 

I recalled several occasions when I'd get all uppity with friends in the hope that they would take me at my word that they are wonderful people as they are and stop the negative self-talk. In turn, I've had many people try to comfort me in my anxieties over the divorce, school, single-parenting, and being lonely. Everyone cheers me on, telling me that I'm doing so well. There have even been occasions when I've been told that I'm "inspiring." Really. They used that exact word. I don't think my friends are liars, but I will admit I didn't ever really believe all the nice words because I thought they were just comfort words said in the moment to help me cheer up. I didn't accept them as truth. Then, the epiphany happened.

In an instant, all the worry and care and negativity left. I realized that I am doing awesome like everyone has been telling me. They don't have to see the crazy mornings or the messy house to reassess their assessment of me because none of that really matters. They don't even need to hear all the pipe dreams I've got bouncing around in my head all the time but am not accomplishing—yet.

I am getting out of bed every day. My children have clothes to wear, and those clothes are even clean. We have food to eat every day, and that food is always fresh and delicious and usually nutritious. We live in a HOUSE, for crying out loud! I have a home filled with beds, sheets, blankets, a furnace, fridge, pantry (full to the brim), and there's a yard with fruit and nut trees, strawberry and raspberry patches that I planted myself, and a garage that holds a car and exercise equipment I haven't used in over six months because I'm so busy with attending my dream university on SCHOLARSHIP and actually learning how to achieve life-long goals of becoming a poet, author, editor, and teacher. Not to mention another thing but I'm the mother of four wonderful children. They drive me nuts like any child would do—it's their job—but they do it like professionals! How can I blame them for being overachievers? They take after their mother. You know what else? I might have a lumpy bumpy, big-bootied body, but it's mine and I can walk and dance and ski and play and haul said big booty up and down stairs to get to classes on time. That's, like, seriously awesome. Especially when my calves don't cramp up.

I might not be achieving what I'd like to achieve right at this very moment in time, but I am achieving many great and glorious things. I have a family and faith in God. I have literacy and higher education. I can think and speak and write.

Every day this week, I've had to remind myself, but this is what I say, out loud, when the negativity creeps in: What you call halfway doing things is your best, and it is enough; it is more than enough. So just stop it. 

And I do.


  1. Ok, to be on trend, I really find you inspiring! But I'm going to use a word to describe my mental image of you, that folks my age ought not! You got SWAG! You are putting it down with courage and compassion. Not everyone can do what you do!

    1. I'm so thankful for you and all your encouragement. Also, I've never been told I have swag. I feel kind of like a rock star now. That's awesome! Thank you again, my friend.


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