Living Learning Loving Losing

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Living Learning Loving Losing
By Bernadette A. Moyer

Flower-Fields-HD

Living, learning, loving and losing, what else is there and what else really matters?

It seems like these four words could sum up life … and/or at least be a pretty good road map for a good and rich life.

We live and do the best we can with what we know, we learn or we die, learning keeps us alive and is the breath of life. Loving, what else really makes life worth living but loving, having the ability and the capacity to both give love and to receive love? And losing where so often it is in losing that we learn our biggest lessons. The lessons that both mold us and stay with us.

Living, learning, loving and losing might also be periods of our life or seasons of life. The periods and seasons that can and may overlap too.

So I guess my questions to you my readers are what are you living for, what is defining your life right now?

And what are you learning? What is adding to your growth and development and bringing the necessary oxygen to your life?

Loving probably the greatest gift of them all, what are you loving? Who are you loving and what and who is loving you?

Losing is probably the one that we try and run from the most but the truth is losing is about living, learning and loving and making room for what is about to come next …

Each experience comes down to, what will we do with it? How will we perceive it? Will we see it for what it is or try and make more or less of it? In the end will we take and appreciate the gifts and leave the rest behind?

Happy living, learning, loving and losing, as each affords us new and different life experience, challenges and riches.

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer
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Post Estrangement: Changing What You Hope For by Renate Dundys-Marello

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Post Estrangement: Changing What You Hope For
by Renate Dundys-Marello

hope-sun

(Every once in a while an author speaks to me in a way that I felt I could have written these words myself. This piece by Renate had that impact on me and with her permission I am reposting here on my site. Thanks Renate for sharing! – Bernadette A. Moyer)

In Renate’s words …

During the early days of estrangement you hope and dream that it had never happened. This is the denial stage when you still have the misguided notion that it is all a bad dream and you will just wake up one day and it will be back to family life as usual. That whatever they were upset about will be dealt with and you just go back to being a normal family; a family that goes through difficult times but manages to stick together and work things out. Blood is thicker than water and all those kinds of messages run through your mind as you struggle with the hardship of being shunned.

Then you get to the stage where the estrangement has been going on for long enough that you accept that it is real. Your child really has done this thing called estrangement. They have also cut ties with those members of the family that do not agree with them. You realize that this is a power struggle and they want above all else to be “right”. They drop anyone who suggests that compromise might be in order.

During this stage you start to ask all the harrowing “why” questions, that unfortunately resolve nothing. But you cling to hope. It is a desperate kind of hope.

Your hopes change to wishing for your estranging adult child to recognize the damage they are causing to the family and that they will somehow come to their senses and do what is necessary for the family to reconcile. You have these hopes that it is a “personal growth phase” they are going through and when they “grow up” they will realize how silly their behavior is. You hope that this Mother’s Day or this Christmas or this Birthday everything will be resolved. You send letters and then hope they will reply or hope they will open the door to communication.

During this stage you place all your hopes on the adult child that has estranged. You hope their hearts will soften, you hope they will care enough to make amends. You hope they will change.

And as you hope for change; and have your hopes demolished day in and day out by the continuing silence you come to realize that this hope is slowly destroying you. This hope causes you pain every morning and every evening when your hopes are once again unfulfilled. This hope keeps you stuck in wistful thinking and magical make believing. This hope takes power out of your hands and places that power into the hands of the very person(s) causing you to suffer.

This stage, I fear, was the longest and also the hardest part of the grieving journey for me. It kept me stuck in the past. It kept me repeating useless questions like:
• What made her turn out to be the kind of person who can do this?
• Why doesn’t she see that this is not the way to communicate and work things out?
• Why won’t she respond to my letters and my apologies?
• What did I do that was so horrible that deserves this kind of punishment?

Until finally I woke up one day and realized I was losing myself in useless hope. I was giving up my own power by placing all the hope for healing into the hands of the very person who caused the wound in the first place.

That was when I realized I had to change the direction of my hopefulness.

Instead of placing my hope outside myself and giving power to the estranger, I had to place hopefulness on my own shoulders and upon the actions I could take to regain peace in my life.

To live means to hope, but the hope needs to be about what I need and what I want to have a better life. That meant I had to become hopeful that I could and would survive this traumatic event. I had to build and then believe in the hope that regardless what my estranging daughter did or did not do I could create a meaningful life.

• I started to hope that I could heal
• I started to hope that I could create a different life than I expected but a good one none the less
• I started to hope that I could find joy and happiness again
• I started to hope that I could live an exciting and enthusiastic life even though…..
• I started to hope for new and rewarding friendships
• I started to hope that a future without what I had expected can still be good.

And as I started to place my hopes in what I could do for myself, I was able to start the long journey toward healing, toward reclaiming the right of every human, a full and rewarding life here and now in the present.

Hope placed in my abilities to change and transform was essential for me to recognize that just because the life that I dreamed of did not turn out, I still had dreams to pursue and challenges to be met and living to do.

And best of all, I started to realize that I deserved this!

Because I am worth it!

Renate Dundys Marrello
2014 – 04 – 19

Google Renate and read many more of her blogs and writings! or http://lifeisajourneyreflections.blogspot.ca/

Photo credits – as marked or unknown

What ever happened to the Golden Rule?

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What ever happened to the Golden Rule?
By Bernadette A. Moyer

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Remember the golden rule? “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” Matthew 7:12 has it gone out of style, treat others as you would want to be treated? And with it went kindness, proper behaviors and respect?

I read everything and I’ve learned to comment on few things. Yesterday I read political posts from people that I know and like and basically they were full-throttle trashing the President. All I could think was/is if your son or daughter or grandchildren said the same things about their class President would you think that was appropriate language? I know they wouldn’t. No school would allow a student to talk to another student with such disrespect.

We model all our behaviors for our children and for our grandchildren, would you take pride in your child or grandchildren if they spoke the same way and used the same words that you use? How about this, how about if someone said that same things to you and about you? Would that be okay?

In a world full of change and filled with different opinions and views, I still do my best to live by the golden rule. Spewing hate about anyone just makes YOU look bad it doesn’t make the person you are attacking and degrading look badly.
Civility and kindness cost nothing and yet so many seem to forget that. IF YOU WANT TO HAVE PEACE AND LOVE, BE FILLED WITH PEACE AND LOVE!

I will never get the mental image of both Madonna and Ashley Judd out of my mind, the way they spoke during the Women’s March and the words they used didn’t make me think badly about their intended targets but it made me look at them in a very different light. I can’t think of any situation where I would ever want to be like them or speak like them.

The attacks all seemed beneath them Ashley Judd saying Trump looks like he rolled around in a bag of Cheetos? Really that is your supporting statement? I love a good debate but on the merits and not on personal attacks. When you have to go so low to try and make a point, you probably don’t have a very good argument to begin with, sad.

anything-nice

My mother was famous for saying, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.” Seems to me this is still good advice. I worry and I wonder about a generation of young people who witness what goes on in this hateful divisive climate and how what they witness today will do to affect their own behaviors tomorrow.

And what about Karma, when you spew hate and unkindness I don’t think you can be surprised when it all comes right back at you? What you sow in the universe becomes your very own garden. I prefer to sow the seeds that grow love, kindness, understanding, tolerance, acceptance and most of all I do believe that the Golden Rule is still relevant and I do my best to treat others in a way that I would want to be treated.

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

Books by Bernadette A. Moyer on Amazon and Barnes and Noble

Three Stories of Three Unattractive People

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Three Stories of Three Unattractive People
By Bernadette A. Moyer

behavior

The ugly side of humanity that I witnessed this past week, it has stayed with me so like any good writer I must write it out to share them and to purge these stories. Here they are …

The first story …

My husband and I were headed out to Walmart to pick up some pool chemicals. We parked by the garden shop and were just a short distance from the entrance when we heard what appeared to be an argument. It seemed like two men were fighting. My husband started ushering me to his left side and then I heard the sounds of crashing merchandise to the ground and security detaining two guys. They wrestled the shirt off one guy and there on the ground went about 10 to 12 video games that he had stuffed into his pants. ”Get off me man, get off me man” he screamed.

Security escorted him into an office and we watched a cashier ring up all the game totals to get the price of the robbed goods. Later the police arrived. By the time we left there were five police cars there. Another lady who showed up after the fact and after seeing all the cop cars said, “This isn’t Dunkin Donuts!” Normally I ignore people like her but I felt compelled to answer, “No this was a robbery.”

I have a vision of that guy who stole video games from Walmart and all I could think was “Was it worth it?” Now you are a criminal” And for what?

The second story …

Last weekend was spent in Williamsburg Virginia and for the most part the people were so nice. Small chatty conversations, holding doors open and just southern charm was our experience. After a nice breakfast on a Saturday with temperatures that rose to over 80 degrees we headed out on Colonial Parkway driving from Williamsburg to Yorktown. We had the convertible car and were driving top down really appreciating the nice weather after days and weeks of rainstorms.

When we arrived in Yorktown they were having a street festival and had blocked off parts of the road. The covered parking area was closed off from the access that we drove in on and normally we would make a left turn but it was closed. We drove a short distance and happened upon another parking lot. It appeared almost full when we noticed a car getting ready to leave and we were next in line and pulled directly forward. I was driving.

As I was getting ready to put the top an orange Mustang came in reverse from about three cars up. When I first saw him I thought he was waiting for a car up ahead. As he reversed to get closer to our car he screamed “asshole” at me? I was stunned!

When you drive past a parking spot, in my view you gave up your rights to it? Clearly after his barrage of words he had an issue. His ilk stayed with me, I thought, you have a woman and a small child in the car with you and you talk like that? Not very attractive behaviors and all this over a parking spot?

The third story …

This one hits us little closer to home and it makes my mother’s blood boil. It started out to be a beautiful and a happy day. It was sunny and cool and a pleasant May Monday. Our son has many achievements but getting his driver’s license has eluded him. He tried and he tried and he just was not successful until yesterday. It was one aspect of the driving he couldn’t seem to get and in his defense the Jeep he has been driving it one of the largest vehicles I personally have ever driven. But he got it! Finally he had success.

A few hours later he interviewed for a new job and was immediately hired. More success and God knows he needed it. He is a really good person with a big heart, an artist with an artist’s sensibilities. He has had his share of struggles.

About a week ago he started dating a girl that he liked. Last night after the gym they went to see a movie together. Here is where the ugly comes in; sometime during the movie she excuses herself. When she doesn’t return he goes for his phone that was placed in the cup holder. It is missing. He goes to the front desk to report that he lost it.

It is not in his nature to think negatively of anyone let alone this girl. Again he liked her. What he doesn’t know is that she has been using his phone and texting from it to both me his mother and his father. Her text messages that appear to be coming from him since they are from his phone are not only disrespectful but antagonistic. They are weird not like him and later become sexual in nature. I am stunned and his father is furious. How could he speak to us like this? How could he treat us like this?

Well he was just as stunned when he returned home and read them himself. I don’t think he likes this girl now and I know he feels sad and badly that he trusted her.

Just another story of the unattractive people that live side-by-side in our society, normally I choose to ignore them but today I had to write it out and to share them. So what do you do when you witness firsthand the ugly behaviors of people in society?

We see a robbery we see rudeness and we witness dishonesty and deceitfulness in people, it can tear our heart apart or we can look and we can learn. We learn what we don’t want in our life we learn to appreciate all that is good in life.

Sadly there will always be ugliness in people, the unattractive ones, we can allow it to affect us or we can move closer to the good people, the ones who are naturally attractive because of their goodness. I am thankful that I know better, I know the difference between what is right and wrong, I know what good looks like just like I know what is most unattractive.

“Don’t let the behaviors of others destroy your inner peace.” Dalai Lama

Hang on to the good people in your life … there is some real ugly in this world … the darker side of humanity all I can think is that is it really worth it?

Stealing video games, cursing at people you don’t know in front of your own family and stealing a phone from a guy while on a date? And how do you live with yourself when you make such poor choices? How do you look into the mirror?

God Bless us all …

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer
Books by Bernadette A Moyer on Amazon and Barnes & Noble

Regret

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Regret
By Bernadette A. Moyer

fear_and_regret_by_deathtopanic

One of my professors was famous for saying that “regret is the hardest pill to swallow.” That phrase has stayed with me for decades now and I do my very best to try and live a life that is free of regrets.

Yet most of us probably look back on a time when we may have made decisions that we later live to regret. Bold decisions made in youth and/or in haste seldom hold up over the test of time.

“Always do your best. Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgement, self-abuse and regret.” Don Miguel Ruiz

We can’t change our past but we can learn from it and when possible we can make amends. To live a life without regrets is to live a life of peace.

No Regrets by Gary Allan (Songwriters: Jon Randall, Jamie Hanna and Gary Allan)
Well time and fate can’t be controlled
You play the hand that you’re dealt
And the dice that you rolled
And who am I to question God anyway

I remember so clearly way back in 1983 when I was leaving the gravesite where my first husband was just buried and I remember thinking; I would rather do and say something I may live to regret rather that regretting that I never did it or said it. I was so fortunate that when Randy died everything that needed to be said and done was so.

There is tremendous peace that comes from knowing we did and we said all that we could during any given life experience.

Simply doing our best is surely the best way to live without regrets!

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

New books! Another Way and Along The Way are a sold on Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble

You Won But Did You Really

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You Won But Did You Really
By Bernadette A. Moyer

if-you-ever-dare-to-fight-hatred

When you have to kill and to destroy to make your point, have you won? Really won? I have been relatively quiet since the recent mass murders in San Bernardino California; however I have read much and processed much about this subject since it happened.

What argument or disagreement or different way of thinking and living merits mass murder? As a woman and as a mother I think the hardest part for me to process is how any young mother could willingly destroy lives and risk their own life and in doing so leave their six-month old baby behind?

Seems so very selfish to have a child and then take actions that will virtually ensure they will have lost their father and their mother due to their choice of terrorism. To kill innocent people just because they don’t think and believe like you do, over an ideology over a belief in a different God?

Then I think about people that don’t take a life but kill other relationships and other people so that they can get their way, selfishly at the expense of other people. People that lie and people that manipulate and people that willingly play the victim because their need to win and to be right is much more important to them than the well-being of others and for peace and love.

When the mission is purely to destroy, there are no winners. Who won in California? The people who killed innocent people are dead and their child is left without parents. That same anger and hatred that this young female terrorist used to destroy lives, that same amount of energy and that same amount of passion could just as easily been used to better her community and her family and her baby’s life.

A choice was made to destroy …

A choice was made to kill innocent people …

People’s lives are destroyed every day by the actions of other people, it happens in families; it happens on the job, it happens in a community. When the individual need to be right, when a group of people believe that their faith and way of thinking is superior to all others, who really is the winner here?

Whatever decisions we face in life, I would be willing to bet if it starts with hatred and with anger and with a willful desire to hurt others, it can’t possibly be good for anyone nor can it render a winner.

“Anger is a curved blade. And the harm we do, we do to ourselves.” Mitch Albom from The Five People You Meet in Heaven

The terrorist actions they don’t make me want to stop going out or to go to public places but it does make me look closely at other people and their behaviors. It makes me less willing to openly embrace people I don’t know and I find myself saying to myself, “there are a lot of crazy, sick and hate-filled people in this world.”

A sad statement I know but then again there were no winners when terrorist attack and it doesn’t matter to me who the terrorist is and where they come from as much as the fact that it comes from another human being, and the harsh reality of how horribly some people, another human being is willing to go to treat other people so hatefully and with such callousness and cruelty …

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

New Books! Along The Way and Another Way on Amazon and Barnes and Noble