What Do I Want

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What Do I Want
By Bernadette A. Moyer

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What do I want? What do I want out of life? What do I want out of today and tomorrow and next week and next year?

Seems like many times in life we should rethink and ask that question as it is sure to change as we continue to grow and change.

I truly believe the happiest people are the ones that are living their lives in a way that answers that question. What do I want? What makes me happy? How do I want to live my life and take care of myself? What do I need to be happy?

When we are young we are consumed with “what do I want” and answering and doing what we want then comes life and responsibilities, that career job, owning a home or a car and having children or pets all depend on us to produce and to provide. Sometimes it is easy to get lost in what does everyone need rather than in what do I want.

Having children and raising them is one of the most selfless acts and responsibility that we will ever take on, being responsible for another human being is the highest calling and requires giving and giving and giving on a minute to minute hour to hour and daily basis. It is never ending, but it also requires us to put our own personal wants and needs on a back burner. Kids have immediate needs all they know is now and later, adults can and do wait.

Then it happens the kids are raised, and full fledged adults out on their own and once again it is the perfect time for us, just us.

What do I want? It sounds so easy, right? But is it? How do you go about answering that question?

“Be careful what you wish for, you may receive it.”  W.W. Jacobs

For me its starts with a gut check, how am I feeling? Then it goes to making lists, what else do I want to do and accomplish in this lifetime? Then jumping off and staring, diving in, trying, learning, giving it a whirl.

No other person can answer that question for us and sometimes it takes thought, aloneness and quiet for us to come up with it ourselves. All I know for sure is that the only road to true and lasting happiness is finding a way to afford what you want in both time and treasure and then setting out and making it happen!

Here is to your happiness and here is to getting and appreciating all that you ever needed and wanted …

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer

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Happiness Heals You

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Happiness Heals You
By Bernadette A. Moyer

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You have to want to be happy and you have to want to be healed and both come together as a package deal. Happiness heals us! It just does …

The more things that you can do that make yourself happy, the healthier you will feel and become. If one area of life isn’t going well for you then focus on the areas that bring you joy and happiness.

Happiness is infectious and contagious. There is no limit or end to the happiness you can create. Spread it around and see it take on a new life and more growth and power. What you put out into the universe comes right back to you.

We all come with our own issues, things that we were born with or things that happened in our childhood or later in life, hurts and disappointments are a natural part of living life. Most often they are here for us to learn and to grow. We can stay stuck in our disappointments or we can gather up the lessons learned and move forward with grace and love and happiness.

It is possible all we have to do is desire it and we do this by acting in ways that show our love and gratitude for the lives that we lead. Learning to live in the moment knowing that yesterday is over and tomorrow has yet to come.

We do create our own heaven or hell, it all depends on us. Every single situation gives us the opportunity to respond with love. Happiness is a choice. Love is a choice.

Do the things you love, surround yourself with the people that you love and strive to be the best version of yourself. No one can make you happy unless you want to be happy. No one can heal you unless you want to be healed.

“Folks are about as happy as they make their minds up to be.” Abraham Lincoln

Today I pray that you have enough happiness to heal all the things that have hurt you. Seek happiness!

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer

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Forward March

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Forward March
By Bernadette A. Moyer

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What lies ahead is so much more important than what was left behind. Today is a new day, today is the first day of the rest of our lives. What will we do with it?

I’ve often thought that if most of us knew what was ahead, we would just stay stuck? We live in hope, we hope that what comes next will be good for us and make us happy and yet so often that just isn’t the case.

But then again many times it is… what lies ahead can be better than anything we have yet to experience. If we believe it, we can receive it!

“The future belongs to those who believe in their dreams.” Eleanor Roosevelt

“The best way to predict the future is to create it.” Peter Drucker

“Sometimes life doesn’t turn out the way you expected or hoped. That doesn’t mean you can’t be happy. If you don’t limit yourself to your first version of your life there’s always a bright future ahead.” Michael Josephson

Your future will always be bright when you stay focused, optimistic and confident. There is no future in the past … the future starts today … forward march …

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer

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Hurting Hearts

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Hurting Hearts
By Bernadette A. Moyer

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Our hearts are broken after witnessing mass murders in Las Vegas, Nevada. Who does this? What kind of a person kills 58 people and wounds over 500 more and why? We want to know why? While we still demand an answer to what kind of “why” response will it ever be good enough. It won’t!

What causes such hatred and anger in a human being that they would go on a killing mission? Prepare for it, plan on it and then carry it out? Thank God most of us will never understand that mindset and those horrific actions.

This story this event is so hard to process and I knew it would be even more difficult when the faces and the ages and the professions of those murdered would be published. These are people who should have had years and years of living life ahead of them. People that have families and friends who are left to grieve their loss and all the while trying to understand why one human being would do this to any other human being. People that should never have died so young were killed as though they didn’t matter by someone who didn’t even know their name.

Most of us will never understand this and that is a good thing, to identify with this crazed mass murdered isn’t normal for anyone that values human life.

Today I cried, it was tears of anger and shock and grief and loss. As if these murders and gunshots of hatred in Las Vegas wasn’t enough we lost an icon rock and roll star who also died unexpectedly and too young. In a recent interview Tom Petty talked about his desire to travel less and do less shows so he could be there for his grandchildren. It was as if he knew how much he missed out on with his own children and acknowledged that this time things would be different, he wanted to be there.

What can we take away from death? What should the lessons be and what should we do next? We can’t control what other people do, we can’t control many things in life except for what we do and how we handle what comes next.

Grief and loss are tremendous teachers and if nothing else they are supposed to drive home that all we really have is the here and now. The way that we treat people says so much about us. Kindness counts. Every single day we are afforded opportunities to respond with love or with hate. It is a choice.

Whatever was motivating and disturbing the Vegas killer he chose to respond with hatred. There is a lesson here. Hate and anger and killing never ever look good on anyone, not ever. There is no justifiable reason for the killing of innocent people. And the cowardly way in which he chose to murder from a distance and to their backs and then take his own life.

Everything in this event is difficult to process …

What should we come away with? How about what can any one of us do? There are two parts here for me; first and foremost we must live all of life to the fullest. Our days here are numbered and we should live like the Tim McGraw song, “Live like you are dying” do the things that matter to you, spend the time with the people that you love, live life without regrets so when the end does arrive, you know that you did live fully.

And the second thing is to check your anger and hate, let it go, use if for the fuel to do good. Hate and anger although normal emotions in humans can be controlled and redirected into something positive. Always try to lead with kindness and with love. Sometimes it is difficult to do but always, always worth it. Something good can always come from something so horrific … if we seek it, we will find it!

“And I loved deeper and I spoke sweeter and I gave forgiveness I’d been denying” Country Music Artist Tim McGraw and song written by Tim Nichols and Craig Wiseman

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer
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A Different Kind of Beautiful

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A Different Kind of Beautiful
By Bernadette A. Moyer

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“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder” and beautiful is defined differently by different people. As you age you learn that beauty really is more about how something is and feels rather than just how it looks on the surface.

Beauty is as beauty does is a phrase my mother often used when I was coming up. I have thought of that phrase often …

There will always be the obvious beauty as in a beautiful baby or young child, or the beauty in the flowers or the sun rise and sun sets. As we age what we perceive as beautiful often changes, it grows, we appreciate the rains and the storms and all of life’s imperfections more and more. We come to see that beauty really does exist everywhere and in every place and every person if we are open and receptive to seeing it. It’s there.

I have learned to look at my gray hair as “sparkles” and that it is a crown that I have earned from living life all these year. Just the thought of “sparkles” makes me smile!

Rainy days no longer depress me, today I embrace them and see their beauty just as much as a clear and sunny day, each day brings its own unique pleasures.

When I see people behave unattractively or in a poor way or with harsh phrases or judgements I seldom if ever allow it to make me view their targets in that light. But I do  view the person spewing as someone that needs more love. Someone that has their own wounds; and a wounded soul can be viewed in a beautiful light.

We can create more beauty and become more beautiful …

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer
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Living a Lie

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Living a Lie
By Bernadette A. Moyer

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My husband is famous for saying “he/she is just living a lie.” Sadly we have known more than a few people like that, people that create a narrative to help justify their own poor behaviors. There are people that knowingly lie so they don’t have to accept responsibility for their circumstances and life choices.

We live in a world where “political correctness” often takes the place of harsh reality. And many of us actually bless it and go along with it. You can declare what sex you are! I recently filled out an application where I was asked if I was male, female, and other or does not wish to declare. Next thing we will be able to adjust who our parents are if we can fill out forms like a birth certificate and “declare” whatever sex we are then maybe the next step is we can also “declare” and decide whoever we want our parents to be regardless of who they truly were?

The definition of “mental illness” used to be defined as living in an altered reality and yet in our culture today we almost promote it.

I remember so vividly back in the 1980’s telling my mother that her husband was a child abuser and I will never ever forget her response to me, “we will never speak of this again” she said.

What she meant was I will never speak to you again. Think about that response? Not something like he would never do that or why on earth would you say that? But “never speak of this” she knew the truth and she lived more than 30 years with a lie. She was living a lie. It was easier for her to deny the truth than to face the cold harsh reality.

What made it even harder to witness was how she aligned herself with others in the family that would also provide cover for her and go along with the lie because the truth was just so hard to accept. Who on earth wants to be married to a child molester or have one in the family? In order for her to believe the truth she would have had to leave him and she wasn’t going to do that.

I couldn’t live her lie, I couldn’t live with it for me and I wouldn’t put my three children around someone that was known to me as a child abuser. There were no winners but I knew I did what had to be done. And even though I seldom spoke of it, let’s face it; it’s pretty embarrassing having a known child abuser marry into the family. Initially I didn’t want to embarrass my mother and I didn’t want to bring further harm to the child who trusted me enough to confide in me. Then one day you realize that by NOT speaking out and by not speaking the truth you have contributed to making yourself the scapegoat and a target.

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The problem with living a lie though is that seldom is it innocent and seldom does it just include or affect just one person. It has been said “you are only as sick as your secrets.”

They say that many abuse survivors go into an altered state to protect themselves when they are being abused. PTSD or posttraumatic stress disorder is a mental disorder that can develop after a person is exposed to a traumatic event such as sexual assault, warfare, traffic collisions or other threats on a person’s life. Many survivors can’t face the truth. It is just so painful and therefore some will create an alternate reality.

For almost 20 years now I have been a part of several support groups for estranged parents of adult children. I knew that pain from both sides. I knew it from my mother and years later I would know it from my daughter. I have been supported and I have supported many others through their shock and pain and disbelief. It’s messy. Most parents take it on themselves blaming themselves and looking at what they did, didn’t do and could have done differently. After all we were the adults, we were the parents we were the ones that raised them.

What I have uncovered in many circumstances and from speaking to parents as well as the adult children that estrange is that often it starts out simple enough, something was said and done or perceived as a wrong and the child decides to dismiss mom and dad from their lives.

But … and a big but as time goes by it becomes more and more difficult to return. Much has happened and typically the adult child has others in their ear it could be a spouse, a husband or wife a friend, a family member someone that usually has an agenda of their own. The adult child doesn’t want to be the “bad” one because what “good” adult child throws mom and dad away and erases them from their life? So mom and dad have to be the bad guys.

Recently I had an adult child confide in me that they literally sought out others in the family that would side with them. Anyone that already had issues was a new alliance in the estrangement. Sides are drawn and sides are chosen, again making any meaningful reconciliation virtually impossible.

The road coming back becomes littered with more and more lies … they lie to protect themselves, they lie about their families, they lie about mom and dad and in being a “victim” many reap the rewards of victimization. So the lies continue.

One lie typically leads to numerous other lies and sadly and eventually they end up living a lie … it has been said, “The only people who are mad at you for speaking the truth are those people who are living a lie. Keep speaking the truth.”

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer
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Another Year

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Another Year
By Bernadette A. Moyer

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My husband just celebrated his birthday a few days ago and in less than a month I will celebrate mine, God willing. And I truly mean “God willing” since not one of us knows when that actual date of ending life will arrive we just know that it is a foregone conclusion.

There are so many gifts that come with age; the first being wisdom. Wisdom that comes from years of living life and wisdom that comes from learning life lessons.

With each year we become more grateful not just grateful for what we have now but grateful for all that we endured and survived. My parents’ generation was famous for sayings like “youth is wasted on the young.” When you get older you can appreciate a statement like that one more and more.

We celebrated his birthday with a weekend chock full of events and activities and his children remembered him and that was all he needed, he was happy and indeed celebrated a happy birthday.

Another year becomes another chance to do and to see and to learn and to grow. Another year translates to endless possibilities and the magic that is yet to unfold.

Above all else we are just so thankful and so grateful and so truly appreciative, we are here, we are together and we share so much love …

Thank you God for this year and for the chance and the hopes that a new year can and will bring our way.

It just sounds so simple and yet so magnificent … another year … God willing!

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer
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