Tag Archive | truth

Thou shalt not steal

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Recently I heard Christian people on the radio talking about the Ten Commandments in Biblical Scripture. I’m not a Christian woman but find their conversation deeply inspiring. The men were saying the language (I forget which one but for this post it’s not very important anyway. I think it may be Hebrew?) directly translates into English as “Do not steal”  but often we hear\read “thou shalt not steal.” The men said this second phrase “thou shalt not steal” is much more powerful than “do not steal” and before they started explaining I was a bit confused. At first glance, at least to me, a command such as “Do not steal” seems more direct and assertive, even threatening, than “you should not steal.” Telling me not to do something can be an implicit threat or warning “Do not…or else..” where telling me I shouldn’t do something seems a bit more passive or laid back. It doesn’t seem like a command or demand. It’s more like just someone’s little opinion.

I’m not a big fan of telling others or myself what we should or should not do. I think “should” can be too limiting and contribute to feelings of failing or too much pressure. But soon I realized what these Christian men were talking about and it’s very powerful and can apply to us all, not just Christian and other religious people.

“Should” or “should not” is more like an internal thing while someone else’s commands, laws, rules, threats, abuse, opinion…..are external and cannot affect us if we do not let them. “Do not….because I said so” is authoritarian and someone else’s rule slapped onto us. It may or may not be a good rule but it’s external and we can rise above whereas “should” is something moral, internal. Of course someone else’s opinion of “should” is external and “should” is subjective but it’s more of an internal truth.

There are some things, in my opinion, we really should not do, like kill innocent beings, steal, spread vicious gossip, sexually assault….to name a few. That’s my truth and it’s more powerful than someone else telling me not to. It’s illegal for me to kill an innocent human but it runs deeper than the law telling me not to; I truly believe I should not kill an innocent person (or any innocent sentient being) and if I ever did I would have a bigger problem than being in legal trouble. I would have an internal struggle knowing I did something very wrong that resulted in the pain or ending of someone else. It’s not illegal to kill most insects at least where I live, and I don’t negatively judge those who do, but I do not kill them on purpose and when I do accidentally, I have a struggle within. And there are occasions people said things to me meant to have an effect I did not allow it to have. There are occasions I experienced domestic violence and was physically forced to do or not do something that wasn’t my choice but I did not let it destroy me and know it’s not a reflection of who I am and that this life is still beautiful with so many beautiful things and I kept my mind calm even though externally it was chaos. When I am abused the abuser is degrading itself, not me. Murderers, sexual predators, bullies, those engaging in vicious gossip only degrade themselves not those they hurt or try to hurt. We may be hurt, broken, devastated, traumatized, petrified, bleeding, bruised…..but we are not as destroyed as those who tried to destroy us. And we can stand up & rise again.

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(not my photo)

Abuse of any kind, vicious lies being told about us, others trying to control us, societal expectations…..these are all external and can affect us greatly if we allow it. But with work, practice, meditation, self exploration, self love, other positive things….we can rise above and others cannot touch us. Even if they do physically, it will not drag and keep us down or touch our essence. What matters is what we know, our own truth, knowing, attitude.

It’s what’s inside that is more powerful than the outside.

Much love & light to you always! Thank you to everyone who reads my content & those who comment! When I see a comment I always or almost always respond usually with a comment back or a “like” and if I seem to ignore it it’s very likely I did not see it. I appreciate every comment & everyone who reads! I have a whole lot of catching up to do! I got a new job recently and worked nineteen days in a row! But I love it! ❤😍😀

~Hugs~

xoxo Kim 

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Life is beautiful <3

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“Wherever you may go; Life is a beautiful thing. Life is like a passing season. It comes and goes. Whatever may come, it’s better to enjoy the changing seasons.” ~Diana Rose Morcilla

Here is a beautiful song full of wisdom & truth & beauty. ❤

"life goes on
no one gets rehearsal
life goes on
through everyday reversal
with every dawn everyday is full of chances
to find some good before it's gone
you'll never know which way a day is gonna take you
there's always some surprise that comes along to shake you
a simple rule of thumb that's often been neglected
is take life as it comes expect the unexpected" ❤

You’ll Never Know – Ringo Starr – mobile

You’ll Never Know – Ringo Starr – desktop

Life is beautiful and full of good and bad, joy, happiness, sadness, pain, mystery, uncertainty, changes…and it’s all a gift.

Let’s cherish every moment we have been given.

😀

Much love,

xoxo Kim

Love is not blind <3

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I recently read an absolutely AMAZING fiction book. And I don’t use the word “amazing” loosely. I am not someone who uses “amazing” and “awesome” very casually in place of the word “cool” or something. 

To me, the word “awesome” especially, and the word “amazing” are words to generally be reserved for something or someone who inspires literal awe or wonder.  But I’m not a “political correctness” control freak either, whatever floats your boat! 

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Anyway, the book is incredible and has fantastic reviews. I got it at no cost on Amazon Kindle app for BlackBerryz10. It’s called “After the Cure” by Deirdre (I love the name!) Gould and takes place 8-10 years after an outbreak of a vicious and infectious disease that sweeps across the world taking out most people. It’s extremely contagious and there’s no escaping it. A few people in the world are Immune because of their genetic makeup which happens to be able to resist the Plague.  And so they don’t contract the Illness. But they still suffer greatly.  

This disease turns people into cannibals. They become violent and vicious and eat anyone they can get their hands on. They uncontrollably devour their friends, family, strangers, animals….but it’s not their fault as their brains are ravaged by disease. 

But the novel isn’t really about the Infection itself; it’s about the psychological damage almost every person who survives, which isn’t many, is faced with after the disease is cured. Somehow a Cure is found and the “zombie-like” people get better but they remember everything they did. They remember viciously attacking, killing, and eating everyone they came in contact with.
They remember what they felt, what they heard, smelled, and tasted as they uncontrollably attacked innocent people and animals.
And now many of them feel like monsters and are accused by many of the Immune as being monsters.

They are overwhelmed in guilt. They are good people who just got sick. Many of them die by suicide. And many of the Immune people die by suicide because they also are guilt-ridden and lost almost everyone they know to the Infected killing them. They had to kill many of the Infected people who tried eating them. Then after the Cure was found, they felt guilty that they killed innocent, sick people who could have healed, even though it was to save their own lives and the lives of others. 

It’s also a story about segregation (segregation based on health status) and how many Immune people are prejudiced against the Cured who were once Infected. They think of them as “zombies” and monsters and repulsive because they once ate humans. They aren’t zombies though. They never died and just like anyone, can be easily killed in any way. And once they are dead, they can’t come back. It’s kind of like a zombie thriller but more realistic. Realistic because, they are just people with an Infection which causes their brains to change, not people who died and came back and can only be killed a certain way.

 They even have separate neighborhoods for the Immune and the Cured.

Immune people are supposed to register with the government as Immune and only marry another Immune person and Cured are only supposed to marry other Cured and eventually die out. The government doesn’t want their dna to keep going since it’s not resistant to the Infection.  

They aren’t supposed to mix.

The book takes place after most people are Cured, not during the Outbreak. There aren’t many people left in the world, even ten years later and the government is trying to force everyone to have kids. 

As I said, it’s not really a thriller in a zombie attack way, it’s more about the psychological effects on the people. But there is a big mystery throughout the book that Mr. Frank Courtlen, a lawyer, and Dr. Nella Rider, a psychiatrist, are determined to solve because many lives depend on it. 

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There won’t be any really big spoilers here, most of this info you will know by reading the description of the book or find out in the beginning of the book. But if you would prefer to not know without reading, click it off now! 

;-D

It’s entertaining and thrilling, a kind of mystery, but it also has a deeper message about compassion, understanding, and true, unconditional love and acceptance as well as hope. I believe the underlying message can apply to our real life situations.  

Some people are afraid to confess to others what they did while they were Sick or what they did to survive if they were Immune. They are afraid people will no longer like them and will reject or think less of them. 

The two main characters are Mr. Courtlen, the defense attorney for a doctor in trouble for something involving the Disease and Dr. Rider, the psychiatrist who is to evaluate and check the defendants in a Trial over the Infection outbreak. She was also involved in helping Cure and care for the Sick during the initial Outbreak. 

They are both very loving and compassionate people who want nothing but the best for anyone and everyone and they risk their lives to do what they believe is right and to save the lives of others. They both have deep empathy and compassion even for those who many people would think do not deserve it.

 Dr. Rider is Immune but she’s completely compassionate and accepting of the Infected and Cured. She doesn’t see them as any different than herself. She never viewed them as zombies or monsters or repulsive, even when they tried to attack her. And she doesn’t support the discrimination and segregation. She accepts all people just as they are, no matter what whether it’s in relation to health or anything else. She believes that everyone belongs together. She’s my favorite character. 

She and the lawyer become very close and they both have dark, painful secrets or things they are hesitant to reveal to each other out of fear of losing the other’s respect and love. 

I wrote about this concept before, here on the blog. My opinion is that it’s best not to cover up parts of our true self just so people will like us or not dislike us. No matter how much we love those people or how afraid we are of losing them. 

Maybe some things people just want to keep to themselves and that’s ok. But it’s something else to conceal something just so we are liked or not negatively judged by others.  

I don’t want someone to like/love me just because there’s something that person doesn’t know about me where if s/he found out, s/he would no longer care for me. I would prefer people to know and reject me right then if it’s going to happen. 

This can be anything: religious or political views, certain choices we have made, opinions on anything, scars, flaws, mistakes, health issues….if someone doesn’t accept you for all that you are, all that you have been, and all that you will be, in my opinion it’s not real love and not worth it then. There’s always someone who will embrace all of the person even if that person doesn’t like or agree with some things. We can accept the good with the bad, the flaws with the perfections, maybe even see the beauty in those flaws. 

 If we take the chance and open up about various things we can and sometimes probably will be criticized or rejected in some way. I believe that it’s worth it. And for all the people who dislike us, there are so many who will love/like us. They can’t replace the ones who reject us but at least you know that someone out there in the world somewhere desires just what you have to give and all that you are. I’m not just referring to romantic love but also platonic. 

In my opinion it’s ok to care what people think of us, to be concerned and even afraid sometimes but without going overboard to the point we obsess over it frequently or change or pretend to be something we’re not. It’s not good to be like a zombie, completely unaffected by those around us but not good to be obsessed and anxious often, either. We can find a good balance of generally caring but not too much. 

And I think there are at least two ways to not want to offend people. One is because we feel awkward about confrontation or what they think of us, that they are judging us, the other is because we genuinely care about the person’s wellbeing and do not want to inflict/contribute to unpleasant emotions. I think the second one is better. It’s rooted in selfless compassion where the first is rooted in selfish fear or awkwardness.

I think sometimes for many people, when we get to know someone then find out things we don’t like, we will still want to be friends with that person where if we first saw the things we do not like, before getting to know the rest, we may not be as thrilled to be friends with the person. (Imagine someone rudely spewing obnoxious views the second you meet, you may not care to know more. But imagine meeting a funny, loving, passionate person you instantly love then later hearing those obnoxious views, you may be more likely to accept it even if you don’t like it. I think most of us have love and offense, beauty and ugliness, can be rude and also respectful…and it’s good to give people a chance.)
I know many people refuse to discuss controversial views or refuse to tell details about themselves that may not be accepted by others, because of fear of rejection, fear of no longer being liked by those who once or would have liked them if they did not know this about them.

But if people only like you because they do not know a certain thing about you, is it really a genuine relationship? Is it really authentic love or an authentic sense of liking? Is it really worth it? I really don’t think so. Or at least, in my opinion, it’s not a relationship worth keeping around by pretending to be something else or covering things up. Just because you don’t express your views or certain things about yourself doesn’t mean they aren’t here. 
Even if no one ever finds out, those things still exist about us. So why not just embrace it? It’s part of us whether we like it or not. It’s not going anywhere no matter how much we want it to. So who cares what “they” think or say about it or us?! 

Someone can be very likable to many people because they aren’t very open and people only see the surface but there’s more than that surface for all of us, and repressing, concealing, or lying doesn’t make it go away.  Those people who never ever discuss politics, for example, or reveal much about their life still have those views (unless they are truly politically apathetic but even then, they likely have some sort of views) and still have that life. They still have those “flaws.” 

I understand not discussing controversial views or details just to avoid trouble/arguments on some occasions or because it’s embarrassing to have people know certain things about us or because we genuinely do not want to offend a person right then because we care about the person’s happiness and not just because we feel afraid of confrontation or what they will say to us, that’s one thing. Or because something is painful or something we just don’t care to discuss. 

But intentionally covering up things about us or trying to change certain things just because people may no longer be our friends either in person or on social media accounts or because people may not like or respect us as much, is, in my opinion, not good. I prefer people to reject me if they are going to because at least it’s genuine. I have lost Facebook friends and the love of some people in person merely because of my views on some things. Not always even because of my attitude about it, I did not always have an unpleasant attitude. I was just firm and assertive in my views. Which I will continue to be. 

I have also lost acquaintances online and off because I revealed my struggle with depression and suicidal thinking. I have had people look at me weird, look at me like I’m a freak. And men who were interested in me back off after they found out. This does not happen often. Most people seem understanding and accepting. But it’s not pleasant when it does happen. 

But I will continue to be open and honest.  

I used to see this as being true to myself but now even more importantly, I see it as being true to others. I genuinely don’t 
want people wasting their energy or time on me just because they think I’m something I’m not or don’t know something about me where if they found out, they would move on. 
Whether it’s on social media or in person.

I don’t want people to be rude and discriminatory and I think it’s great for us to be accepting but that doesn’t mean we have to surround ourselves with people we would rather not. I want people to mostly be surrounded by those they feel nourish, love, fuel, inspire them, people who are open and honest with them, not people who intentionally go out of their way to cover up stuff just not to lose “friends” which in my opinion isn’t true friendship.  We don’t all have to want to be friends with everyone. It’s ok to choose not to be friends with certain people. We can still be loving or positive about it and go our separate ways, wishing everyone the best. 

I’m not saying to just spill everything constantly in every situation and every occasion, ignoring boundaries, of course not, I’m talking about when it comes up in appropriate contexts or if we truly feel the urge to reveal something about ourselves.  Then I think it’s good to be open and honest and lose whoever I will. I will continue to love those people and wish them the best (if only in my head, I’m not going to keep contacting people who want nothing to do with me but I won’t have animosity for them either.).

Also if we change something about us or pretend to be someone else just so people will like us, there’s still going to be people who don’t like us. You can change or lie about your views, your body, your hair color, your job…then there will be people who don’t like the “new” you. For all of us, there’s many who like and will like us and some who won’t. And that’s ok. 

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I think this novel is beautiful and challenges our views of beauty and provokes thoughts on unconditional love and acceptance.  It conveys the message that every person makes mistakes or does something that someone else will not like, does things we aren’t proud of, and can be judged by someone somewhere and how it’s good to not overly judge people in negative ways. We usually do the best we can the best we know how in each moment and even if we don’t, there’s a chance later to be better. We aren’t the person we previously were. All that matters is who we are now. We don’t have to be imprisoned by our past. We can start now and be as loving as possible to everyone we encounter. We can take all that we were and all that we are and use it for the best, to build our- self into more greatness. The seemingly unpleasant facts about ourselves can be used as a catalyst for positive change. 
What matters most is that the heart is in the right place and that we see each other’s true inner beauty, not get lost judging mistakes and flaws. 

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The book has about 399 pages, I think, and is very much the page turner! I seriously couldn’t sleep night after night because I stayed up reading and thinking about the book. I felt so involved in it and so empty and so full when it ended. I miss the characters and the world in the book. I want it all back! Lol I even plan on reading the book again! I feel that way with lots of books but not usually to this depth. The author is so skilled and a gift to the world. She really brings her characters alive and the two main ones are very well developed.  The book is fairly long, nearly 400 pages, but for this one, that’s not long enough! 

The story is grounded in so much hope.

It conveys the message that no matter what happens, no matter how dark, ugly, agonizing something can be, the next morning the sun will rise, the stars will shine in the night sky, the Earth will spin and flowers will grow. And that people are basically good. While there are those with cruel intentions who want to hurt(probably because they themselves are suffering in some way), there are many, many more and always will be more, who want to love and help and show compassion. 

Yes, I seriously recommend it! I read some of the reviews and even some people who aren’t into zombie thrillers love it. As I said, it’s not really about zombies because first, they aren’t zombies anyway, just sick people. And also it takes place years after the Outbreak and is mostly about the aftermath. There are still some Infected people who have yet to be Cured where the Cure hasn’t yet reached and there is some adventure. There’s two other books about different aspects of this Infection, by the same author but can all be read separately, I think. I haven’t read those yet. 

“Love isn’t blind; it sees but it doesn’t mind.”

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To love, we don’t have to be “blind” to each other’s flaws. We can open our eyes, open our hearts and see. But love anyway.

I’m wishing you much love & happiness today and always.

Xoxo Kim

My (somewhat recent) Dream {you can be greater than anything that can happen to you}

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As I posted here previously, I have vivid dreams that I frequently remember. Sometimes they’re inspirational.
My dreams aren’t usually bad, negative, or scary. They’re often strange. Bizarre beyond comprehension. And when not bizarre beyond belief, usually just quite ordinary like an extension of a normal day.  But I can often gather little parts of them, bizzare or not, that can be analyzed or interpreted. I like my dreams. They seem so real. And I love that I remember them so easily, I even remember dreams I had years ago.
My dreams are so profound and so intense, like I can experience my emotions in my dreams just as strongly as during my waking hours. 

I believe that dreams are usually just stuff we have been thinking about consciously or unconsciously whether it’s important or not so much. I think it’s often just our brains releasing everyday stuff in symbols or images as we sleep. Like a kind of replenishment. I think sometimes we have certain dreams for a certain reason that we aren’t consciously aware of. Some deep, seemingly unreachable, part of the Self is attempting to reveal something.  I love the mystery of dreams and I think they often try to take unconscious thoughts and put them into the conscious mind.

Sometimes I know things unconsciously that I don’t realize in my waking hours. These messages come to me during my slumber and I’m often blessed enough to carry the message out of the dream and into my wakening. 

In another post I mentioned that I have a recurring dream while I sleep sometimes, when I’m depressed and suicidal or having suicidal thoughts. The dream is someone chasing me and trying to kill me and in my dream I want so desperately to live and will do almost anything to survive. I’m passionate about living. My desire to live in this dream is overwhelming and I would do almost anything to save myself. This is a dream I usually only have when I’m depressed and having some degree of suicidal thoughts.

I believe it’s my unconscious mind letting me know I really do want to live, deep inside I want to live, not to listen to and give into the deadly thoughts and urges, that the depression is deceiving me into thinking I should die. The depression is clouding my Truth. My Truth is pure like sparkling white snow glistening on a cold Winter day. But depression comes along like a speeding truck headed straight for me, leaving tracks of mud upon my pure Truth. But no matter how much mud and soil and sludge it leaves upon my Truth, my inner self, my Truth and my authentic Self is still pure and sparkling, still fierce, still strong. No pain can take that. My Truth is that life is always a blessing even when it doesn’t feel so, that there’s always beauty and hope and something to carry on for, something to smile about and be thankful for even when pain or circumstances are overwhelming. No matter how much it hurts. Even when it feels like it will never get better, like all hope is lost. My truth is that I have a purpose and always will. My truth is that I want to live to inspire anyone I can, to share my own story, my happiness and sadness, my joy and pain, my beauty and my uglines, my strength and my weakness,and bring hope and healing to anyone in need.

A few months ago, I have been depressed again and had another dream. I dreamed that someone died. A woman named Angie. She’s not someone I know for real, I don’t know where my mind got her. I don’t think she’s based on a real person that I know of. But I read a fact about dreams that says when we see faces in our dreams they are people we once saw in our reality whether we remember seeing them or not, even if those people were never significant in our lives, even if we saw the face only once, and even if we haven’t seen them in decades. Our brain can’t make up faces. 

The faces/people we dream may not, in the dream, be based on who they really are in reality. It’s just the same physical face/appearance, nothing more necessarily. The example I read is that as a child we may have watched a man pumping gas into our dad’s car then years later dream of a serial killer and it’s the man pumping the gas! His face! Lol So while the face is real he wasn’t necessarily really a serial killer, he was just a man pumping gas whose face made it into a dream years later and the brain made him a serial killer. In the dream the serial killer isn’t that man we remember pumping gas at one point. It’s that our brain just took his face to incorporate into a dream.
Now, I have absolutely no clue how true this is. And if it’s true I have no idea how someone found this out. How does someone know our brains can’t make up faces that never existed? Maybe it’s common sense how someone knows but I’m lacking that common sense or maybe some research reveals it somehow. Some kind of neuroscience? It’s fascinating but I don’t know much about it. I did go to college for psychology and took many brain classes, even held an actual human brain in my hands, along with a spinal cord. My professor had/has a human brain collection in her basement. They float around in jars of fluid. Lol please don’t ask because I don’t know! 

She’s some kind of brain researcher in a lab and keeps the brains for her own entertainment. I would too! Lmao
This sounds like something out of some kind of science fiction or horror movie but it’s reality. So yeah.
I don’t remember over half the shit I learned back then. But it’s ok at least I’m humble enough to admit it! ;-D
It’s funny because sometimes I dream about this fact about dreams and faces that I’m not sure is really a fact. Lol
As a matter of fact, it’s only in a dream that I remember first learning it! 
I don’t remember learning this “fact”/fact while awake. I dreamed about learning this then one day I woke up and thought it was just some weird thing I dreamed out of nowhere. Then I looked it up and saw it’s actually said to be a fact! So I must have learned it and forgot but my unconscious self remembered and had it tucked away until I fell asleep one night.
I haven’t found any reliable sources to support it.
So anyway, if this is true, Angie in my dream who died, must be real since I saw her clearly in my dream. Maybe her name isn’t really Angie. 
Maybe in reality she’s not who she was in my dream. And hopefully she never really died.

Maybe I saw her on a bus one day years ago or in a class in college or in a picture on Facebook….who knows?
But in my dream she died. In my dream I did not know her well at all but the news of her death devastated me. This isn’t quite a stretch or unrealistic as in my reality I find the death of someone to be devastating, even the death of people/animals I hardly know or don’t know at all. Of course, it’s not as deep as for people who actually knew the person/animal but I am just filled with sorrow over the losses I hear of. I can see on the news that someone died or I read a Facebook status and am somewhat somber the rest of the day off and on or even the next few days. It’s not always equal for every one that I see. Some things hit harder for whatever reason.
But in my dream I was in a room full of people who all knew the woman who died. I don’t know where I was in the dream but in the dream it made sense. I think it may have been inspired my the building of the mental health clinic I go to for medication. There were big wooden tables and chairs, like lunchroom tables,  and a lady in charge….in charge of what I don’t know…., she was going around to different people with a clipboard and paper and pen and when she got to me we sat on the chairs, facing each other. I was grieving and felt a kind of fear and I sensed this woman before me was trying to push the problem under the rug, not wanting to talk about the issue directly or in depth because it was painful and uncomfortable.
She asked me questions I can’t remember. She wrote down my answers. I even remember the paper in the dream, clearly. It was white with black text and black boxes to write the answers in. 

Then the last question she asked me I do remember. She said something like: “What is the one quote you want to live by, choose a quote you truly believe in, one that is important, a quote you want to be the foundation for your life?” I thought about it for a few seconds and almost instantly a quote popped into my head. For real I was depressed and in my dream I was depressed and grieving. When I’m depressed I often have certain insecurities thinking I’m not good enough for anything or anyone and in my dream that’s how I felt.
I was afraid to answer. Feeling as if my answer wouldn’t be good enough. Just because it’s my answer, because nothing about me is ever good enough, it seems. I don’t always feel this way, only sometimes, especially when I’m depressed. And in the dream I felt this.
In reality I was feeling a bit hopeless. 
It carried over into my dream.
And the quote that came to me in my dream:
“You can be greater than anything that can happen to you.” ~ Norman Vincent Peale

I told the dream lady(who I must have also seen in my waking hours if that fun fact is in fact true, but I don’t remember her either, in my reality) and she happily wrote it down. She seemed impressed and she said to me “Now, you always remember that, don’t you ever forget it.”
And then I woke up.
I was and still am in awe of the beauty my brain creates when I sleep.
Of course my brain did not make up this quote. If only…lol if only my slumbering brain were THAT brilliant!
This is one of my favorite quotes that helps remind me whenever something bad happens, whenever I’m in pain of any kind, depressed, struggling with insecurities or painful memories of any past event or day, grief, struggling with tmjd “cluster headaches”….that no matter what it is, I can be greater if I let myself. I can be greater than anything that can happen to me. No matter how painful or devastating or tragic or sad. I have the power within to rise above it. And that goes for you as well. We can all be greater than anything that can happen to us. We don’t have to give our power to other people, situations, events, pain, things, or anything. Generally and ultimately, no circumstance, no person, no thing has power over you unless you allow it.
We have the power over ourselves. 

In some special cases, people do have the power to control us, situations get the best of us but in the long run, overall, we have the power over ourselves. We can choose to take it back when it seems to be taken away and pro-act.

Sometimes I let my pain, both physical and emotional, repress my Truth. I let it conquer me and my life’s philosophy. I let everything else, everything I know to be true to me, take the back burner and my pain prevail. But then it comes to me in my sleep because it never really left me. It’s still my Truth. It was there all along. And my dreams remind me… 

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I encourage you to listen to your dreams and your truth. Not everyone can remember their dreams at all or enough to interpret them or glean any inspirational or useful insights but if you do remember them, it’s possible a part of you deep inside is trying to tell you something. Listen. Listen to your inner Self. Not just your dreams while you sleep but your waking Truth. 
You may have values, opinions, philosophies, virtues that you generally firmly believe in or live by or want to honor and live up to eventually if you don’t already. But pain, either physical or emotional, situations, unpleasant experiences can cloud those truths and they become muddled and repressed and the pain becomes your truth instead. 
Maybe the pain tells you you can’t go on or that there’s no reason to. Maybe it tells you you’re worthless or that there’s no hope, no point, no purpose, no beauty, nothing but pain. Maybe it tells you that you aren’t good enough, beautiful enough, not equal to everyone else. Maybe it’s just so painful it feels like you have to die to end the pain, whether physical or emotional, or just curl up in solitude and give up on everything.

You can find and develop your Truth and authentic Self through reflecting, thinking, tuning in, meditating, writing, looking for evidence throughout your every day and your whole life to see what you really believe deep within, think about how you handle or have handled various situations and how you felt about the situations and how you handled them(were you sorry you reacted a certain way? Proud of your actions? Was there some sense of dissonance with how you reacted and how you felt? Did the two match up?), think about how you really feel deep inside around certain people, in certain circumstances, reaching out to others, photography if it’s your interest, searching through books, magazines, images and words and seeing what jumps out at you. What captures your heart and resonates with you? It doesn’t matter if you know why something captures you or not or if you never knew something appeals to you til now. Your deeper self knows. I got this idea off of author, Sarah Ban Breathnach, searching through magazines, stores, catalogs without the intention to buy anything, just listen closely and see what calls to you, what clothes, objects, jewelry, vacations, people… call to you? Which ones tug at your deepest parts? Which ones make your pulse speed a bit faster? Which ones make you tingle all over?….glue pictures to paper or a journal and it’s your self discovery journal/journey….keep up with it often to keep in touch with your deep inner Self who may be buried beneath layers of expectations of others or society as a whole or yourself that you think you should be, buried beneath fear, anxiety, pain, and anything else. 

Your pain is very real. But pain clouds our judgment making it not sound so we forget our authentic Self and our deeper Truth. Don’t listen to that pain when it deceives you. Definitely listen to your pain, tend to it, embrace it if you can, accept it, let it teach you and strengthen you and deepen your wisdom, but not conquer you and delude you. That’s not you. It’s part of you for sure, maybe even a significant loud part that screams in your eardrums, screams in your face. But screaming and throbbing and being loud doesn’t make it true. The true you is what deserves to be honored even when your Truth isn’t screaming and loud. It’s quiet and gentle and calm and warm and deep, whispering  inside but it’s evermore worthy of being honored than that loud, screaming pain that demands you to give up and lose all hope and joy. It’s more powerful than pain and delusions, quiet and gentle as it is.

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Sarah Ban Breathnach is amazing! I love her and she’s one of my greatest heroes, though I never met her in person. I would love to though! The book I referred to above with the self-discovery activity is “Something More – Excavating Your Authentic Self.” She also mentions self exploration and authentic Self activities in her book “Simple Abundance.”

Her books are mostly directed at women but they really can help anyone.

I wish you much love, hope, healing, happiness, and joy. And I hope you will always make the choice to honor your deeper self, your authentic Self, your Truth. Even when other people don’t like the true you, even when it’s hard to honor yourself. Always choose life, always choose you.

Xoxo Kim

Be Average. Be Unique. Be YOU!

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“Find out who you are and do it on purpose.” ~ Dolly Parton

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“Live to express, not impress”

There’s this fear of being “average” or having an average life. A life that looks just like everyone else’s life. 
One that doesn’t stand out. One that isn’t radically “different” in some significant way. A need to find, list, and ponder ways in which we are very unlike everyone else.
And there’s this fear of being “too different,” of not “fitting in.” An urge to repress parts of the self that may come off as “weird” or “not cool.” An urge to mold parts of ourselves into things that look like everyone else’s things.
There are people who force themselves to do things, wear things, be things…they don’t really like just because it’s the style, trend, the in-thing.
Then there are those who are just the opposite.
They make it a point to resist what is currently popular just to be different and stand out, perhaps for shock value. So when they’re with a group of “clones,” they can say “I don’t have a smartphone” or “I don’t have a social media account ” or “I don’t watch tv” or…..and watch the looks on people’s faces, the “really?!,” “Are you kidding me?!!?” looks. 
They get to be different. Unique. Because they rebel against the masses.
This is great if it’s something they really don’t want because they naturally aren’t attracted to it or they feel it’s somehow detrimental to them but if we avoid things just to be different, we deny our true selves. Which is the same as conforming. Denying what we really want and who we truly are, merely to “fit in.”
Anti-conformity is denying who we really are or what we really want, merely to be or appear to be different.
But underneath you will always just be you.
And that’s ok.
No matter how much you resist conformity, there are ways you are still average, just like the next person.
No matter how much you conform, you are different somehow.
It’s a struggle to find the perfect balance of being “different enough” but “similar enough.”
Conforming but bringing our very own uniqueness to it.
A struggle that is unnecessary. Uncalled for.
We don’t have to be different in significant ways than the average person. We don’t have to be exactly the same, carbon copies of everyone else.
We’re all just average and we’re all very different.
I’m very much the same as everyone else but I also have my own uniqueness.
If I provide you with a description of myself, my personality, it will fit some other girl somewhere, very well. I love old music, stilettos, makeup, photography, chocolate, cake, dark poetry, happy songs, comedy movies, romantic comedies, love songs, vanilla frosting, personal development…
Someone else somewhere can say all this too.
 But we will still be very different than each other.
Just like if I provide you with a physical description of myself, my physical appearance.
It will fit someone else perfectly. Long brown hair, blue eyes, 5 feet, 5 inches, kind of thin….
But we will still look very different.
Because we are different. No matter how similar we will ever be to another, we have something that makes us different. Maybe that something can’t be identified or named. Maybe we can’t put our finger on it but it’s there.
We have our own perspectives, ways of looking at things, ideas, opinions, views, experiences, wisdom, knowledge, a combination of things that are unique and no one else will ever be. Even if we have an identical twin or triplets or anything.
But we are also average. Just like the next person.
We have desires, needs, goals, lives…hearts that pulsate, smiles that convey happiness and warmth, a longing to connect with others, blood that flows….just like everyone else.
The struggle of finding the perfect way to appear next to others and compare with others is not a necessary one. What is important is being our best selves. Living your passions. Basking in the beauty of life. 
Answering your calling. Whether it’s work, hobbies that are just for fun, travel, writing, watching TV, playing with your kids, adopting a child or pet, volunteering, helping people in some way…
Looking within to our authentic selves, honoring that Self, our Truth. Your Truth.
Forget conformity.
Forget anti-conformity.
Remember YOU. 

“So you think you know the answers, oh no
Well the whole world’s got you dancing
That’s right, I’m telling you
It’s time to start believing, oh yes
Believe in who you are, you are a shining star” ~Lionel Richie ❤

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken. ~Oscar Wilde

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Xoxo Kim

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A Hope in Hell

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Last month, in May, for about the entire month into June, I was struggling with a severe depressive episode, worse than I have felt in a while. I have recurrent episodes but they aren’t as frequent as they used to be and they often don’t last as long as they used to.

When I feel an impending episode about to hit, I can often prevent it now using self-help techniques I have learned through the years. But this episode that hit me recently hit so hard, I slipped into it without the ability to go back. So all I was able to do was cope with it as best as I could. 

But it takes great strength and energy to cope with a severe episode of depression and suicidal thoughts and urges. Strength and energy I don’t always feel as if I have or even want to have. Depression saps it all. It weakens my will and desire to live. Weakens my motivation to get out of it. Some moments I let my self slip and choose not to battle it but let it have me, I struggled against violent suicidal urges, almost physical. I wanted to give up and give in, let it take me.

But unlike a few years ago when I would be hit with severe depressive episodes, I am now equipped with certain skills, attitudes, life philosophies, knowledge, and wisdom. All of these I lacked back then.

They are ingrained into me now because of all of my practice through the years to get myself better. While they cannot always help me prevent an episode or get out of one and they cannot cure me, they can help me cope and hold on.

Some moments I give into the weakness but then I soon find my way back. Sometimes I need reminders like quotes, songs, books, tips….to help bring me back.

For just over one month I struggled with inner darkness, a general sense of hopelessness, not about any specific situation, just in general, although it was triggered by something in my environment. I haven’t been struggling with any specific problem in life other than a sense of inherent worthlessness and darkness but an incident set off the episode. No matter where I go, there I’ll be. That’s how I felt. Like it doesn’t matter what I do, what I accomplish, how beautiful I am, how many people I know…It’s not environmental. My whole disorder, it’s like chemical and may or may not be triggered by environmental issues. Although environmental things can occasionally help somewhat or contribute more to the darkness, it’s not about my environment. I have been in different environments through the years, different stages of life….but the overall disorder remains. And I’m sure it always will. It will come and it will go. Come and go.  And I have come to accept that for the most part.

My entire body felt heavy and fatigued. I wanted to crawl up in solitude. I wanted to die. My interest in things almost completely evaporated and the few things I still managed to have a shred of interest in weren’t bringing me anywhere near as much joy or pleasure as they usually do.

Food had no flavor, music had no rhythm, there was almost no feeling to anything. Occasionally I felt beauty in things, like a walk in the warm gentle air, birds flying and chirping, reading books, helping people at work, looking up at the sky, sweet, warm and cool breezes, and a few other things. 
I also saw my good friend on different days, which was very helpful.

Reading is one of the few interests that managed to still get my attention, although it was difficult to concentrate completely on the content.

A while ago I began reading a novel called A Hope in Hell about a young woman who struggles with suicidal thoughts and contemplation and severe depression which she calls “Black Moods.”  This reminds me of when I was a young girl and young woman, before I knew what I have, before I was diagnosed, I called it the “Black days” or “black things” and the “gray days.”

It’s not a long book. I stopped reading after a couple pages, not for any specific reason, I just read multiple books at once and sometimes stop reading one until a while later, even when I like the book a lot.

Recently I felt drawn to it again. I have it on BlackBerry Kindle. So I started reading it and completed it.

It’s not a realistic story as it is about demons. Not just the demons that come along with suffering with depression but actual demons in Hell. In the book they can interact with humans on Earth.  The demons don’t know what happens to humans after they die; one demon, Lil, said no humans ever end up in Hell.

There will be some spoilers here in case you want to avoid them.

The young woman, Tasha, a very beautiful and extremely intelligent girl, suffered with depression since she was a teenager, over fifteen years. She tried some treatments but not many and none helped her so she stopped it. She has no friends and her family refused to help her financially and cut her off so they are estranged. She has had many lovers but it never worked out with any of them. She becomes homeless and decides to end her life at 3:00 in the morning by jumping off a bridge.

She jumps but there happened to be a man there who witnessed and he saves her life.

After she is released out of the hospital she was taken to, the man, John, who saved her life, let’s her live with him until she gets a job and a place of her own. He experienced his own tragedy and like Tasha, he knows true pain.

Tasha quickly falls in love with him but he rejects her sexual invitations over and over.

This book is very sexually explicit with vulgar language. I don’t mind but if that’s not your cup of tea you probably won’t like it much. It’s definitely an adult book. It does have a deeper message to it though.

Tasha constantly feels like a failure and feels rejected always just by life itself.

For much of her life she turned to sexual/romantic relationships and encounters to help her ease her lifelong despair but they only helped temporarily and eventually the men would leave her, usually because her illness always got the best of her.

One day she walks in and finds a stunningly gorgeous, female, demon participating in sexual activity with John, the love of Tasha’s life, her savior, the closest thing she has to a friend. Tasha felt broken and despair finding this. In the book it’s not shocking to find a demon walking the Earth so while Tasha was broken, she wasn’t freaked out. 

The demons aren’t “its,” they are very human-like, they have real genders and sexual identities and this demon is a beautiful woman, thousands of years old but sill looks like a young woman.

Tasha is jealous of her because of her physical appearance and because of her ability to put John under a spell and make him lust after her. During the sexual encounter with the demon, John isn’t all there. He’s kind of unaware of what is happening but his body responds in ways that make Tasha envious and more depressed. 

The demon was summoned to Earth for another reason and while she is there she senses John’s strong sexual desire for Tasha.

He has a certain reason why he won’t act on his sexual desire for Tasha and it frustrates him and the beautiful, sexy demon senses it and pays him a visit just for fun and decides to kill him while she’s there. The demon can sense that Tasha is suicidal and offers to kill her as well if she wants. Tasha desperately wants to die to end her depression but she doesn’t want John to die. So she tells the demon that she can kill her but to spare John’s life. The demon refuses. She will either kill just John or kill both John and Tasha. The demon, Lilith, explains that in Hell a person can’t give her life to save another. Tasha used to hang with Wiccans so she has some background knowledge of demons.

She knows they accept contests so Tasha initiates a contest with the demon. If Tasha loses, John and Tasha both die but if Tasha wins John lives and just Tasha dies. Tasha wants nothing more than to save John’s life and if she can die saving his, it’s even better! Lol it’s kind of amusing even though it has a depressing nature. 

The demon explains that no human stands a chance with a demon. A human will always lose a contest with a demon.

Tasha already feels like a failure so she’s almost certain she’ll lose to Lilith.

Tasha has no energy or life in her because of her depression but she will do anything for the man she loves so she gives it her all. The demon explains that the contest has to be sexual in nature. Tasha is no stranger to sexual experience as she spent years being seductive and doing whatever men wanted her to do so she has some confidence that she’ll do ok but she’s fairly certain she’ll lose.

The demon has John under a spell where he is completely lusting after her. He can’t take his eyes off of Lil. Lil is arrogant and not sympathetic to Tasha. Lil explains that if Tasha somehow manages to get John to take his eyes of her and look into Tasha’s eyes, she’ll spare John’s life but it’s agreed to that Tasha will die no matter what.

Tasha at first takes this to mean that she has to engage in physical sexual acts with John. The demon leads her to believe this is true. So Tasha does just about every physical sexual thing she can think of to John. He’s somewhat conscious but doesn’t realize what’s happening. Tasha knows he doesn’t want to have any sexual encounter with her but she apologizes and does anyway to save his life.

Nothing works. He won’t take his eyes off Lil.

-spoiler-

As I have mentioned, Tasha is extremely intelligent and has knowledge of how demons operate. She is able to realize that to get John to truly look into her eyes, sexual contact won’t work. So she takes him into her arms and touches him with her words, in a deep place, tugging at his heartstrings. She tells him he deserves true love and happiness and he deserves a beautiful relationship and that she would be happy to give him all that he wants, needs, and deserves. He’s under a spell so he can’t completely, consciously understand but some part of him does. So for once, he takes his eyes off of the beautiful demon and looks directly into Tasha’s eyes. He chooses true love over lust.

Tasha won. She outsmarted the demon, much to Lil’s dismay. But now Tasha has one little hangup, she now wants to live. But there’s no negotiating with the demon. She already “signed” a contract written in stone, written in blood, that the demon can take her life.

Tasha began to feel more alive, more confident, and her will to live strengthened.

I’m going to tell part of the end of the story now because of the lessons it teaches. If you would prefer to read the story and not read the end first, you can just click this off. I love the life lessons this story conveys.

“The Black Mood was still there, tugging at the new-found buoyancy of her soul, but she felt stronger now, made more powerful by defeating the certainty of her own failure. Her only disappointment was that she had gained the strength she had always lacked just when she had sold her soul.
Tasha wanted to live, she knew. She wanted to hold John’s hand in the doctor’s office while the doctor explained medical side effects that she already knew by heart. She wanted to hear pride in her father’s voice, and see respect in her mother’s eyes. She wanted to walk across the Michigan Avenue Bridge, spit in the ice water below, and smile at the people on the other side.
It was unfair. The only thing she had known for sure an hour ago was that she wanted to die, so she had promised the demon her life even if she won. Now it was forfeit. She could ask the demon for mercy, but one did not anger demons and expect to be given quarter, particularly if Tasha’s survival increased the risk that Hell would discover Lilith’s failure. Lilith would want her dead for her silence, if nothing else. It was impossible – just as defeating Lilith had been impossible.
Which meant Tasha could do it.
Think.”

Tasha chose life. But it was too late. She realized life isn’t so hopeless. She came alive.

But she found a way to live and the demon spared her life at the end.

Ten beautiful lessons:

1.) love is not mere physical/sexual acts- the story shows that true love is more than just lust and sexual acts. Tasha’s loving words are what convinced John to look into her eyes, saving them both.
2.) accomplishments can help – once she accomplished something great she realized she can accomplish more and more. It showed her that her life is not just one big failure. One accomplishment, big or small, is evidence that we CAN accomplish more and more.
3.) deeply rooted beliefs can be wrong – Tasha was convinced that she was a complete failure and that her life could never serve a purpose but she discovered she was wrong. As deep and ingrained as these feelings were, she was able to eventually see past them. Deep convictions take a while and much work to vanquish but it can be done.
4.) hope in extreme darkness – in the midst of so much, overwhelming darkness and pain, there can still be one slither of hope and that one slither can be just enough. 
5.) love can be strong and powerful enough to keep someone alive – 
The night before I read the end of this book I was contemplating. Wondering if I should choose life or choose death. I felt two strong emotions. Pain. Deep emotional pain. And LOVE. Metta. Universal love. My love was not masked by the pain. I felt it through it all. Love for the world, for people I know, for strangers, for people I have yet to meet who may need me in some way, some day. I may never accomplish much. But one day someone may need a smile, a hug, a helping hand, encouragement, inspiration, comfort, and how can I provide that if I’m dead? I contemplated hard. Should I end it all? Or choose love? I chose love. I choose life.
Just like Tasha in the book. She chose to live for love. Her love for one man inspired her to live. That’s not to say we should only live for romantic love or someone else. But her love inspired life and made her realize how her life can impact another for the better. How someone can come out of nowhere and need her in some deep way.  Just her presence helped heal John in his own pain. He shared some of his pain with her and how her life touched his. Even if she couldn’t have John as a lover right then, her experience showed her that her life does matter and can touch someone else’s. Even if John wouldn’t accept her as a lover or accept her sexual/romantic invitations, she chose to live, to love him in any way she can whether or not he will have her.
I chose love that night too. Not romantic love but universal love. Love for all sentient beings and all the beauty in the world.
Love of any kind can inspire life. 
6.) the “mind” can be changed after it’s too late – it’s possible to change your mind in the middle of or after a suicide attempt and it may be too late. In this story, the suicide attempt – asking a demon to end her life – is not realistic but it mirrors real life suicide attempts. There are people who attempt suicide in various ways then change their mind, realizing that life really isn’t so bad, it’s not so hopeless, life deserves another chance, they deserve another chance, and are sorry.  Some people are saved but for some it’s too late, there’s no going back. The damage is done. As long as we’re alive we can always choose to die but after we choose death and die or cause serious damage to the body to a certain extent, it’s done, there’s no going back. Sometimes this may be what we truly want because the pain is too much but pain can end without ending our lives and we can learn to cope while currently in pain. And often, it’s not an end to life we really want, just an end to the pain.
7.) think – there are other ways out
THINK. There are endless possibilities. Death is only one option. There are many more choices, things to try. We can use our creativity, our knowledge, tap into the love deep within and come up with better ways to end and cope with the pain.
8.) the depression part is realistic – the girl’s depression doesn’t magically lift but even amidst the darkness, she finds the strength to choose life. And has hope that she can get better. No matter how much it hurts you can find strength and hope. Tasha knows she still needs help and plans to ask for professional help and get herself better. 
9.) Something may seem impossible but not be. 
She thought it was impossible to win the contest with the demon. She also thought it was impossible to survive after she won the contest but she was wrong. She won and she lived. At the end of the book, Tasha’s life is spared. Her and John remain close. In real life outside of books, we may come across things that seem so impossible but we may just be wrong. There’s so much potential we all have that can be tapped into and realized.
10.) suicidal urges/desire for death is only temporary(even though it may always come and go) – it can end as fast as it can begin. Tasha made a choice to end her own life but just an hour later she wanted desperately to live. This is realistic. Someone can want so desperately, more than anything, to die. And that very same day, in a matter of minutes or hours, choose to live and want so desperately, more than anything else, to live. I know, I have felt this way myself. It always comes back but it always goes again and it’s worth it to hold on and live. It’s startling how fast a suicidal mind, once convinced it wants to die, can change dramatically and then choose to live. If you’re on the brink now, about to end it all, just think, in one hour you may want nothing more than life itself. This isn’t just reality for a fictional girl in a novel about demons, it’s my own reality in this real world.

This book is all about hope.

The most beautiful message: hold on, live, hope, keep pushing through it all, choose love.

Xoxo Kim 

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Celebrate & Love the Authentic YOU <3

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“Ask a flower in the field: ‘Do you feel useful? After all, you do nothing but produce the same flowers over and over?’ And the flower will answer: ‘I am beautiful, and beauty is my reason for living.’ Ask the river: ‘Do you feel useful, given that all you do is to keep flowing in the same direction?’ And the river will answer: ‘I’m not trying to be useful, I’m trying to be a river.’

Don’t try to be useful. Try to be yourself: that is enough, and that makes all the difference.

Walk neither faster nor slower than your own soul. Because it is your soul that will teach you the usefulness of each step you take. Sometimes taking part in a great battle But sometimes you can do that simply by smiling, for no reason, at someone you happen to pass in the street. Without intending to, you might have saved the life of a complete stranger, who also thought he was useless and might have been ready to kill himself, until a smile gave him new hope and confidence.”

Except of “Manuscript found in Accra”

Isn’t it beautiful?!

I woke up one morning, maybe two days ago, to a Positively Positive post in my e-mail box that I just find to be lovely. 

Why “I Am Beautiful” Is A Problematic Statement For My 3-Year-Old

http://www.positivelypositive.com/2014/06/12/why-i-am-beautiful-is-a-problematic-statement-for-my-3-year-old/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+positivelypositive%2Fpositive+(Positively+Positive)

I had much difficulty sleeping for a couple nights because of my chronic pain disorder. I wasn’t viewing this painful experience in a positive or negative way, I was just taking it as it is. Just excruciatingly painful. It was making me sickly, fatigued, exhausted, yet, I couldn’t sleep well. I woke up after an extremely restless two and a half hours of sleep feeling drained, uninspired, dull, ragged, and wrung. At least I wasn’t hopeless or depressed though so that’s good.

😀

But when I read this post, I was inspired. It’s about how we don’t have to accept other people’s (or society as a whole) definition of us or labels we are branded with. Even positive labels such as “beautiful” or “perfect” “amazing.” You can just be YOU and that’s good enough. 

Even positive labels and words we believe describe us well, can be detrimental if we feel we must live up to them so that people will continue to like us or so that we don’t have an identity crisis if that (positive) label begins to no longer apply to us.

We shouldn’t have to feel that we must live up to someone else’s definition of us. Or even our own definition of us if that definition is no longer or never was appropriate or for the best. We don’t have to accept or adhere to certain labels or descriptions people slap onto us, good or bad.

In this Positively Positive post, this mother’s three year old little girl rejects being called “beautiful” by her mother. Not necessarily because she doesn’t believe she, herself, is beautiful, but because she doesn’t care about being anything but herself. So many words, with positive and negative connotations alike, can apply to all of us. But we are still just us.  She reminds her mom that she’s not “beautiful,” she’s Summer, Summer which is the child’s name.

And that’s good enough.

And always will be good enough.

We don’t have to live up to any label that doesn’t serve us well. Not even labels we gave ourselves, ones which were at one point, good for us.

In high school and middle school, for a couple years I was considered “smart.” I got all A’s and B’s and never needed much help with my school work to maintain slightly above average grades. Other kids knew me for being “smart” and I took on the label for myself. I felt much pressure to maintain a “smart” image and receive the same grades or better on each report card. Sometimes I really did need help, especially with math. It was difficult for me but I feared that if I asked for help, I wouldn’t be the “smart” girl any longer. Then one day I got my report card and received a “C” in Algebra in 10th grade.

I only valued myself for being “smart.” My sense of identify and self worth shattered. I thought so low of myself and wondered what others would think of me once I told them. I was no longer the “smart” girl. Then what was I? Who was I? I was still me. The same me I always was, am now, and always will be. I just never realized it then.

Sometimes even now I have certain words I love to label myself with. “Happy” “Cheerful” “Positive” “Optimistic” “Someone who is so happy to be alive.”

And the list goes on. And while generally these labels very much apply to me, they don’t always. I’m not always happy or cheerful or positive. And when I am not experiencing those feelings or traits, am I still me? Of course I am!

I may experience a mini identity crisis when I feel as if I’m not living up to the me I try to create myself to be, the me most people know me as. But I’m still that me. Traits, emotions, thoughts, qualities, labels, feelings…fluctuate and change but deep inside we are still us.

Deep inside, there is some immutable essence that will always be me. Always be you. Even when your thoughts, feelings, and qualities change for better and for worse.

You’re beautiful because you’re you. Not because you’re thin. Or curvy, have long hair or short hair, not because of your intelligence or your ability to solve problems, not because you’re some definition of perfect or always happy or always helpful or always inspired or inspiring…your beauty is everything you are, all rolled into one, good and bad, together, flaws, perfections, mutable traits and all.

You can label yourself but let those labels change when they no longer serve you and know that’s ok.

Give your name its own definition. One that fits you well. One that you create for yourself.

It’s beautiful what a three year old little girl and her mom can teach & remind us, even a three year old little girl and her mama we never laid eyes on in person.

Xoxo Kim

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