Tuesday, December 13, 2011

From One Blog to Another...

It's been a long time.
Too long.

HERE  is a blog I've posted for Christmas on
my other (more personal) blog.
Just click on the link if you'd like to read...

I plan on being back on the blogging path in January.
Needed some space and time this year...
But am looking forward to writing again soon.

Thank you for your support, notes and inspiration in 2011.
Those I've heard from over the past several months have made an impact in my life!

Be Your Best!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

I Meant to do That

Had an interesting conversation with a co-worker the other day.
He asked for my opinion,
Wanted to know what I thought.
Said he figured I'd have an answer for his question.

(I always like when people ask me what I think,
it makes me feel good, like they believe I actually
AM thinking and have thoughts to share.
Who doesn't like that?)

He shared that he's spent a chunk of his life,
in his current station of life,
waking up in the morning
and heading to bed at night
very aware
that there is something
waiting out there for him to do

He's antsy
and excited
and feels expectant
and ready
and on edge

but every day is the same

every day, he feels this way

but nothing


He shared that he'd recently opened up to another friend
and the friend had given his opinion
on One's Purpose.
He had shared his perspective with this thought,
"Maybe...just maybe, you've already accomplished your purpose.
Maybe there is no grand thing out there for you to pursue.
Maybe you've already done it.
And you're sitting around waiting.
And it's already over and done."

This left him in a tizzy
this unsettled him
this was not the kind of answer he expected.

And it was not what he needed to hear...

So now, it was my turn.
My turn to throw an answer in with the other
and see what came out...

Here's the thing,
I am driven by a sense of purpose.
I am defined by my intense belief in purpose
I am challenged, motivated, inspired and
connected in every area of my life


So, to ask me what I think,
to ask for my thoughts
on Purpose...
is giving me an open invitation to share
the heart and soul of who I am.

In that very moment,
while I was pausing
preparing how I wanted to answer
considering what he needed
contemplating his question,
I knew I was walking into a purposeful moment
I knew I was about to fulfill a purpose
I knew that specific conversation was part of why
I had woken up that morning...


I believe there is purpose behind every single day of my life
I believe there is purpose in every human encounter I have throughout my day
I believe there is purpose in every still moment I take to breathe and think
I believe there is purpose in
every touch
every word
every connecting point
every smile
every laugh
every tear
every sigh
every smirk
every moment of my day

I live each of my days with purpose
with intention
with an effort to fulfill my purpose
for that morning
that afternoon
that evening
that night

These are not always grand purposes,
but sometimes, they can be.
Each and every time
I give a piece of me away
in a smile
or a kindness
or an encouragement
or an engaging conversation,
I am aware of purpose,
My purpose
and His purposes.

There is meaning to my life because there is meaning to my day.
Each and every day.

And then, there are other Purposes
(note the capitol 'P').
Purposes I have committed to for the long-haul...

Raising and nurturing my children into:
sincere opportunities to experience faith in action
maturity of character
depth of care
and wisdom

Maintaining a heart that's free
and open
and feeling
and loving
and caring
and forgiving
and accepting

And sharing my faith
and hope
and love...
so others can see
and feel
and know
through me.

And then there is PURPOSE
(the kind my co-worker was questioning).
the ultimate,
point of
His life
My life
Your life.

Here's the thing.
Here's how I really feel...
Here's what I think
about PURPOSE...

I believe each of our lives have

I believe there are ultimate things
I have been designed to live out
pass on
go through
and become

In those things, my PURPOSE will unfold.

But, at this point,
I'm not looking for
searching out
I am not holding out for an Oprah
kind of PURPOSE.

I'm not holding out at all.
I am not waking up
or falling asleep
feeling tension
questioning the meaning of my life.

I am,
as I shared with my friend...

Pursuing the purposes I know
instead of wondering about
waiting for
what is unknown...
what I don't know.

I am pursuing what I know,
I am meant to do.
I am loving where I can love.
Giving where I can give.
Spending myself where I can be poured out.
Sharing what I can share.

Being who I have been designed to be.
Growing little by little
and reaching behind me to anyone who might want to follow along.
I am pursuing purpose in all things.

I believe
I will accomplish what I was intended to accomplish.
I will apprehend that which I have been apprehended for.

I have been given life
and breath
and people to love
and faith to share
and friends to encourage
and children to nurture
and a heart to keep tender
and people to discover
and me....to give.

That is my purpose
and my Purpose
and my PURPOSE.

Pursue the purpose you know
whether it is in your mothering
your sistering
your neighboring
your spousing
your working
your questioning
your changing
your challenging
your becoming
your morning
your afternoon
your night

Pursue it with gusto.
Live with intention.
Find fulfillment in being
and becoming
and making a difference in someone's day
or life...
and giving
and teaching

....and loving.
What's more purposeful than that?

That's all.
Be Your Best,

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Slumber Party

To everything, there is indeed a season.
A time to dance
a time to

I mean really sleep.
There is a time to draw the curtains
shut the door
take a Tylenol PM
(or drink a glass of wine)
Pipe some mellow music into your ears
(or read a book)
slip into your pjs
get under your covers
sink into your pillow
even if it's only 6:30

even if there are dinner dishes in the sink
and your kitchen floor needs to be swept
and there are good things on tv
and you didn't fold the laundry
and there are phone calls you didn't return
and you haven't been to bed before 7pm since you were five....

There is a time
and a place for sleep
and naps
and rest

Your body needs to be fed.
You need to feed yourself.
And sleep is one of those things, you need to be fed.
All of this is coming from
a terrible sleeper.

I am a horrible sleeper.
I cannot shut my brain off at night.
I don't really know how to fall asleep.
(the whole idea of 'falling asleep' has always intrigued me...I mean, how does this happen? what makes my body sleep? how do I naturally go from the state of being awake one second, to asleep the next? See? See...? This is the reason I am a horrible sleeper....I lay awake thinking about sleep all night!)

I am a light sleeper.
I wake at the slightest sound.
I stir if the moon is too bright through my window.
I talk in my sleep.
I even snore...a little (or so I've been told).
I have bad dreams (snakes in my covers)
I have sad dreams (time with my mother and then saying goodbye again)
I have stupid dreams (playing Uno with strangers)

I have a hard time falling asleep
I have a hard time staying asleep

I wake up before my alarm sounds
I wake up early, when I could have slept more...

I would rather stay up all night, than sleep.
I really like being awake.
And night time is my favorite time of the 24hrs I get to live each day.

But, it's sleep I need.
I need to sleep to regain my strength
refill my energy tank
keep my emotions from spilling over
regulate my eating needs
keep my metabolism running smoothly...
sleep gives me the stamina to give my next day all the gusto I've got.

So, I need sleep
and I need rest.

Rest is different than sleep.
is sitting back
and be-ing.

Resting is, I believe
a lost art.

I am very good at resting
I am quite successful just BE.....ing
and I get better at it all the time.
I LOVE to rest.
I LOVE to just BE.
I could rest and BE for hours every day!
Resting is a decision on my part
I determine to rest (and BE) every single day.
I shut my door
I give myself 15 minutes (at least)
to rest (and BE), each day.

I might listen to music
but most of the time,
I am silent.
I am thinking.
I am pondering.
I am NOT dwelling on what I need to do with the remainder of my day.
I am not texting, chatting or talking on the phone.
I am NOT planning ahead
or organizing
or worrying
or thinking about my children or their needs.

I am resting
I am BE-ing
and thinking about me.
I am thinking about who I am
the choices I've made
the growth I see
the happy, fulfilling moments of my day
the goodness of my life
the things I am thankful for
the people I cherish.

When I am resting,
I am focused on goodness
and beauty
and joy
and breathing.
I do a lot of breathing when I am resting...
and BE-ing

And yes,
without fail, one of (maybe even all of)
my children
try to interrupt
But I stop them.
I don't let them into my room.
I send them to their rooms....to rest
to BE
(with no tv, or video games...
with nothing).
I want to teach them to know and understand the value of rest.
I want to teach them,
silence is important
stopping is critical
being alone with one's thoughts is invaluable
Learning to think, ponder, BE, consider and know
is a skill

and a gift

and something never to be sacrificed.

When the dancing is done,
I need to feed myself sleep
and I need to rest
and I need to BE.

It's not even 3 o'clock on this particular Thursday,
but I'm in my pjs
with my hair in a ponytail
glasses sitting on top of my head
while I am at my laptop
and my bed is unmade.
It called to me to earlier to take a nap.
And I answered.
Today I napped
I needed it.

Now, I'll pick up my children from school.
They will have a snack
we will discuss their day
they will do their homework
then they'll go to their rooms
and I will go to mine
and we will have 30 minutes to ourselves
to rest and be
until it's time for me to start making dinner.

My eight-year old twins
My eleven year-old daughter
My teenage son
will all rest.
And so will I.

It's a required activity in my house.

That's all!
Be your best,
Sweet dreams,

Monday, August 8, 2011

Hope Springs...Eternal

I was interviewed for a book a few weeks ago.
Asked some questions about my story,
My past
My present
My future.

Some of the questions were familiar.
I'm asked them each time I share about the 100 pounds...
How did you do it?
How long did it take?

But then,
I was asked another question.
Asked in a way I hadn't been asked before.
I was asked,
What was your lowest point?
I think I answered with my own question...
What do you mean, lowest point?
Same question, re-worded for clarification:
When did you hit rock bottom?

That was a new one.
When did I hit rock bottom?

I don't know if I paused in the conversation.
Not sure if I really even hesitated with my response.
I guess, most people have a "rock bottom moment."
A moment when they've had enough,
"The straw that breaks the camel's back" kind of moment,
or as Oprah says, "an Ah-ha moment."
(Oh my! Am I actually quoting Oprah in my blog???)

I didn't have that kind of moment.

Yes, I remember walking past windows in stores,
catching my reflection and not realizing I was the
big, big woman staring back.
Yes, I remember looking in the mirror at my bathroom sink
and thinking I was starting to look like an entirely different woman
than I remembered being.
Yes, there were times when I cried and groaned
and dreaded taking a shower
because I knew I'd have to stare at myself
to put on my makeup
and do my hair
and that, though I was trying my best to look good,
I didn't feel inside like it even mattered.

I had those moments.
Plenty of them.
(this may sound confusing)
even though
I had plenty of those moments,
I still had hope for myself.

Deep HOPE for myself and my future.

when I was asked about rock bottom,
lowest moments,
I answered,

I didn't really ever hit rock bottom.
I don't think I had a lowest moment.

I always had hope.

In fact, I knew 
I could
and would...


One day.

At some point.

I just knew it.

when I actually picked the date to begin,
August 13, 2008
I picked it from a place of hope.
I picked it months before.
I chose the date my new life,
the new me,
would begin
with great hope
from a place of hope
establishing my hope on that date.

I chose my 39th birthday.
Not because I was terrified of turning 40
Not because I was trying to find the Fountain of Youth
Not because I was depressed about aging.
I chose my 39th birthday,
because I had great hopes for myself.
I knew it was my time to devote to myself.

I chose to dig into the hope I had for myself...
hope for my future
hope in the possibilities
hope about my strengths and purpose and destiny
and the life I still had ahead of me.

You see,
To me,
hope is not wishing
hope is not a shot in the dark
hope is not a casual thing
For me, hope is not a
take-it-or-leave-it option.
I'm not talking about the "Well, I hope so" kind of thinking
or the "Hope I make it" kind
(to me, these are hopeless, doubtful, skeptical statements).

Hope is, to me (and for me)
a confidence
an assuredness
a beacon
a support to everything else
a stamina-producing
stick-with-it determination
immovable confession
declared mission statement.

My hope
for myself
was that,
I was capable of anything.
And that there was still an entire life ahead of me
and I wanted to get back into it
and do so with strength, vitality, love and energy.

I never lost hope for myself.
I never lost hope in my future.
In my belief about me
my belief IN me.
(not in some raging ego-maniac way)
But I just knew I could do this.
I could change
I could alter where I was...
alter where I was stuck
alter my thoughts about myself
alter my mind
my heart
my emotions
my body
my everything.

I just knew I could do it.
And it wasn't because I had great will power
or strength
or a desperate need
or a great personal trainer
or some other thing I wanted to gain....
It was because I had hope.

I never gave up on myself.
My self.
I never gave up my hope
that I was created to live
and to be alive
and to experience my life with joy
and love
and vitality

(this might be the key to it all)
I deeply believed,
I was designed

I was designed to love
and be loved.

And that it started with knowing I was

And that
love what He had made.
And HE had made
To love
my self
as He loves me.

I have hope for myself
because I love my self
I love me
and I make no apologies for that.

I do
love myself...
I love myself enough
to hope for my future
believe in my strengths
trust in my capabilities
make the absolute most of
my year
my day
my relationships
my life
I love myself enough to make the most of Me.

I have hope for you

I KNOW you can do this.
I know you can
alter, re-invent, jump-start, change, become, return, discover, connect, forgive, release, recover, stop, begin, do-over, accept, uncover, tell the truth about, speak out, redeem, branch-out, dream, accomplish, survive, uproot, conquer, determine, hit head-on, tackle and overcome...

Anything at all.

You really can.

That's all.
Be your best,

Friday, July 29, 2011

Mirror, Mirror: Time for Reflection

I began sharing about my little Dance Parties in August, last year.
After I'd lost 100 pounds.
After the 18 months it took to lose those pounds
after keeping off those 100 pounds for almost six months.
Almost an entire year ago.
It has been almost 36 months (three years!) since this ALL started
and almost 12 months since I started talking about it.

I can't tell you just how difficult it was for me to open up
and start talking.
You'd think I would have been
chomping at the bit
fit to be tied
shouting at the top of my lungs
about losing 100 pounds.
But. I. Wasn't.

I mean, I was thrilled and proud.
I was amazed by my accomplishment
Quite in love with my new self
and over the moon about how my body had changed.

there was still something about it
I wanted to keep hidden
just mine.

it was the shame.
I was still burdened by the shame.
The shame of where I had been.
What I had become.
How far I had let myself go before
Leading up to the weight loss.

You see, through the beauty of social media (aka Facebook),
I had reunited, remembered, reconnected with and reminisced
with literally hundreds of high school and college friends
didn't know
hadn't seen
had no idea
who I was now....
how I looked

And it's not that it mattered to them
it's not that it would have made a difference
it's not that they would have commented to me
or thought bad things
or made me feel big, or fat or ugly.
It's just that I didn't want them to remember me any way other than
Who I was before.
When I was regular sized.
When I was light-hearted
and fun.
When I was depression-free
Out there, and open.
Before I hid.
Before I made excuses
Before I had lost ME under the layers of life.

Ironically, it was that same
social media (aka Facebook)
that gave me the nudge, support, strength and
to re-charge, change, re-engage, re-connect and begin living again.

It was remembering
Me Moments
Friend Moments
College Days
High School Classes
and the people who knew me
counted me as a friend
remembered my quirks
watched me grow up
grew up with me
faced life beside me
walked through life, puberty, graduation, boyfriends, break-ups
everything else
Who reminded me
of me

I looked at my friends,
and it was as though
they were holding up a mirror in front of me
This is you.
THIS memory of you, is still you.
These year book images
These faded photos
These tales
These first impressions
These clubs, dorms, activities, organizations, classes we shared...they are where I have memories of you, Becky.
You are WHO I remember.
This is how I see you now.
This is who you are to me.

And when I connected with
and reminisced....
I wanted to go back.
ALL of me,
wanted to go back.

Not to 15
or 18
or 21
or 25
(I really have no interest in going backward in time.
I love where I am in my life.
I love it)
I wanted to go back
to get back
to ME.
I wanted to get ME back.

So, I started from the inside
Then I went to work on the outside.
I went back in my mind and my heart.
Went back to the purest times in my life,
when I was becoming
and I set out to regain those parts again.
I did it.

YOU, old friend, are more a part of this journey than you have realized.
YOU, who are still with me, reading this blog
(or not reading it.....living completely unaware of your power and influence)
YOU are a part of my journey.

Though I was afraid, at first
to show you how I had changed
to reveal how I had in form become someone else,
it was YOU....
It was YOU who helped me change again...back to my former self.
It was YOU who helped me get inside my head and my heart
and grow back into who I really wanted to be.

Thank you.
Thank you for remembering me.
Reminding me.
And showing up, in your own
impacting way,
for this Dance Party for One.

Call an old friend today.
Remember the old days.
Remind yourself of your greatest memories
your funnest times
your most meaningful moments
and remember yourself.
and go back.
Get your SELF back again.
From the inside, out.

That's all.
Be Your Best!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Note to Self (and anyone else who's reading...)

Stock up on cute, flirty sundresses & halter dresses when they go on clearance.
Stop hiding your arms!
Better yet, buy a pair of 8lb dumb-bells and start doing simple sets of 15 "what-evers" with them
before you get dressed in the morning
and after you brush your teeth at night.

Touch up your roots when they start showing!

Stop going out to eat. 
Eat the groceries in your pantry! 
You paid good money for them. 
Stop being lazy...
get up and 
make something in YOUR kitchen.

Buy (& wear) a cheap pair of big hoop earrings for the pool.
Get a pair of flipflops with a little bling when they go on sale for next year at the pool.
Find a picture of the fabulous swimsuit (a two-piece!) you want for next year.
Post it some place to inspire you all summer (fall and winter) long.

Buy some lipgloss....something from the CORAL family.
Keep it in your beach/pool bag and use it liberally while you're out.

Buy a case of Fresca (Peach Citrus).
Tastes like Summer.

Commit to read a great book for each WEEK remaining in your summer.
Turn off the television and read something:
Magazines, non-fiction, even a romance novel (I mean it!)

Rent your favorite movies from the 80s.
(or whenever you were highschool)
Quote as many lines as you can remember.
Share them with your kids (if suitable).

Go out with your girlfriends.
Eat outside.
Get loud. Really loud.
Laugh Out Loud.

Call your best friend and cry.
Really Cry.
Really let it out.
She'll understand.
She might be needing a good cry, too.

Cuddle with your kids (if they'll let you).

Buy a summery scented candle
and shower gel
or bubble bath
Close the door to the bathroom
run yourself a warm bath.
Slice a lemon into sections,
put a spoonful of sugar on a plate
and soak your worries away
as you dredge the lemon through the sugar.
Savor the flavor.

Don't cut your hair!
Let it air dry.
Find some new way to wear it.
Buy a new hair band or clips.
Do something different with it.
Or get a straw cowboy hat and wear it.

Use lots of Aveeno body lotion.
(Put it on after you get out of the shower,
BEFORE you dry off...it'll work even better!)

Play music.
Play music
and sing along.

Have fun
Feel alive
Watch as many sunsets as possible.
Eat ice cream
and watermelon!

Soak in summer for all it has to offer.
Feed yourself on summer.

That's all.
Make this your best summer EVER!
Be your best!

Stop eating
Start feeding yourself, Becky!!!!
(and everyone else!)

Monday, June 13, 2011

Cat's Outta' the Bag




Sink your anchor into any
or better yet all,
of these,
let them guide your
life choices
career choices
school choices
food choices
commitment choices
friend choices,

and you may just find yourself
accomplishing your goals
meeting your objectives
overcoming your obstacles
cherishing your relationships
and being the woman
you really want to be.

I know
because when I am not tapped into them,
little else seems to work
I am unable to connect
find fulfillment
manage my time
my emotions
my day-to-day life.

I need all three working in my life,
intertwined like a rope,
or a braid....

keeping the fly-aways tamed.

My daughters have gorgeous hair
in abundance
beautiful hair
which tangles and knots while they sleep
and especially, when they swim.

Since pool season is upon us,
when I remember to do so,
I braid their hair before they dive in,
and the agony of knots in (and after) showers,
are much easier to deal with.

Likewise, I need the three strands of
motivation, inspiration and calculation
to keep me strong and free and tamed.

What is your motivation today?
What are you working toward....
and why?

Your inspiration?
What is keeping you on the path?
Is your longing
your goal
your finish line
your want
something trivial?
something shallow?
something lacking soul
and heart
and reason?
What is inspiring you to continue
to push on
to stay with it
to pursue with passion?

Have you calculated the cost?
Have you put pen to paper
Penciled in dates
Assessed the true need
Asked yourself the tough questions
Sought to answers to the Whys?
Have you calculated how this will change you?
How you want to change?
What you are willing to do
to become
to grow
to live
to re-shape
to you
and who you want to be?

I am in the process
I know my motivation.......

I have won a trip to Cacun
Won it.
Won a trip to the beautiful beaches of the Gulf of Mexico!
I am turning 42
in Mexico.
I am turning 42 in Mexico,
with a very different life than when I turned 41
in Atlanta
And I am motivated to be my
42-year old
I can possibly be.

I am inspired by the time away from the chaos and duties of life
the freedom to have fun and celebrate
the joy of traveling where I have never been before
I am inspired that I did NOTHING to earn this trip
or deserve this treat
or merit this blessing
or work for it.

I was simply smiled upon by God.
He simply whispered to me,
"This is for you.
I know where you are,
I have not forgotten you.
I see all you have been through
and know there is more to come...
but I want you to know,
I remember you.
I am terribly fond of you.
I have been here all along.
I know you better than you know yourself.
I know what you need.
I know what brings you joy.
I know what will help heal you.
I know how to reach you with My love,
and take your breath away
and give to you what you have never even asked for.
I know how to love you.
And I do.
Here's a prize.
Enjoy it.
Love it.
Plan for it.
Be inspired by it.
Be inspired by MY love for you."

I am re-building my hopes
remembering my faith
breathing deeper
taking it all in
crying over good things
leaning in to His love

Feeding My Self
rather than eating in the shadows.

And I have lost 4 pounds

And I will wear a skimpy bikini in Cancun.

But I will not post pictures.

That's all.
Be YOUR best,