Strength…what it is and a bit of what it isn’t…

Someone very dear to me is going through an incredibly difficult time because of the untimely and unexpected death of a very dear and long time friend of hers…Today on facebook I wrote this statement in response to the “what’s on your mind” prompt that tends to be at the top of a person’s facebook page:

“What’s on my mind…some thoughts about strength….Just because a person is strong DOES NOT mean that they do not hurt and struggle and falter, have doubts and fears on their journey…Their strength is in their persevering, getting back up, putting themselves back together…even taking a break before doing so…not in their imperviousness or lack of vulnerability…Those qualities are not ones of strength, IMO…they are something else…”

This subject of what strength is is something that this friend and I have discussed numerous times…mainly in the context of me telling her that I believe she is quite strong and she disagreeing with me…But I stand by what I’ve said to her in these discussions and what I said in my status today….I posted that status with her foremost in my mind…because she epitomizes strength, to me!   So this post tonite is dedicated to this very dear and precious woman and to the memory of her very dear and precious friend…..two strong women…one who lost the battle and the other who continues to fight on day by day, hour by hour, sometimes just moment by moment….May she hold on through this time of tremendous grief to not just survive but to one day truly thrive again!  She has much yet to give to the world and I’ve a feeling that were her friend here, she would feel the same way.


A few words to ponder….Was a quote posted on a friend’s facebook page…

“some people have heartbeats that are knocking on doors that will never ever open..” andrea gibson
Ever feel like you’ve got one of those heartbeats?

What’s on my mind? Mindfulness, that’s what!

So lots is going on in my life and lots has happened since my last post…Had “the talk” with my daughter about what my plans for our future are…think I mentioned in an earlier post that her dad and I have had “the talk” too.  Looks as if we will all be moving to another state, where I have family, but daughter’s dad will not be living with us…just be close so he can be around to be a father to his daughter.  She and I went to our future home state last week during her spring break…spent some time with family, did some wandering, visited the school she’ll be attending, located the school I’ll be attending, enjoyed the spring snow early in the week and spring sunshine a bit later in the week  She took “the talk” well, but after our first full day visiting our future home had a meltdown, that I probably wasn’t supposed to know about, because it happened after i told her good nite.  I heard something, thought she was calling me, went to check on her and found her crying.  As it turns out I think it was good that I discovered her crying.  She shared honestly….I listened…did my best to comfort….and did some crying of my own. The next day she felt better and the whole trip turned out to be a good one.

Still this was not my original reason for posting…Just thought a wee update wouldn’t hurt.  So my reason for posting is because I’ve got “mindfulness” on my mind….mindfulness, neuropsychology, neuroscience and neuroplasticity…..These are all wonderful things that seem to complement each other in ways that are most hopeful and encouraging for those of us who struggle with ingrained habits of behavior, thought and feeling.  I started with reading “Just one thing” by Rick Hansen….Discovered along the way the book, “Self-Compassion” by Kristin Neff…found a great website created by a woman and her husband, whose daughter committed suicide in her late 20s after years of struggling with depression.  She is a veteran psychotherapist and he is/was…hmmm don’t recall, it’s primarily her gig, this website called: .  They designed it to provide, free of charge, a variety of tools to help people improve their level of emotional wellness.  I also discovered another practicing psychotherapist, who also uses mindfulness in her work as a psychotherapist named Linda Graham who’s written a book just out called “Bouncing Back;rewiring your brain for maximum resilience and well being”….And there’s the book I’m listening to on CD by another psychotherapist and practioner of Vispassana, insight meditation, written by Tara Brach and last but not least, while on spring break at a lovely bookstore I purchased the book “the Now Moment” by Elisha Goldstein…. Yes there is totally a theme here….The theme is cultivating mindfulness as a means of helping oneself work with the neuroplasticity of one’s brain to achieve more well being in one’s life.  It’s exciting stuff for me personally and I’m hoping professionally in my quest to become a counselor working with people struggling to overcome addictions.

So there you have it a bit of an update….Oh yes and there’s the whole “getting the house ready to put on the market” thing too, but that’s another blogpost I spose.

Cheers and Happy (whatever form it is currently taking in your neck of the woods) Spring!!