It’s early June and life feels so sweet.

It’s Saturday morning, and I have plans soon to get my nails done and have lunch with my friend. It’s my friend who teaches in my same district, and I always enjoy our “shop” talk.. and life talk- so I’m super excited to hang out with her today.

It’s sunny and going to be hot hot hot today.

We opened our pool last weekend, but our son accidentally dumped all the junk on the cover into the pool while opening it, so we’re still working on clean-up. BUT… it’s getting close and should be crystal clear by later today.

We’ll hopefully have a relaxing weekend with a fire tonight and lots of pool, and maybe some bike riding time too.

I’m feeling lots of positivity with work too– which is still kind of unfamiliar and weird.

Last year, at the end, I noticed something that I thought was big. We had a staff meeting and everyone had to tell about a big success that year. There were quite a few teachers who talked about their most difficult student, and how that turned out to be their biggest success of the year. I thought that was profound.

Walking out with the RTI teacher that day, I told him this. “Next year we have to remember that the most horrible situations and most difficult students, might end up being the biggest success stories.”

I wasn’t thinking about me, I was thinking about all the gen ed teachers.

But I realized about a week ago, that this exact thing happened to me this year.

My little twin, M.

I was terrified of her in the beginning. It was so hard to get her to do anything. Even getting her to come down to my classroom was nearly impossible. I had to put on an entire “horse and pony” show to get anything done with her.

Yesterday I asked her if she was excited for summer vacation.

She shook her head no and frowned. She started talking fast, most of which I couldn’t understand but her gestures were clear. She was pointing at me and her and expressing her dismay. She was going to miss me, and since I teach near where we all live now, it’s taken every bit of will power to not email her (crazy) parents and tell them I’d be happy to babysit anytime this summer.

That’s not very professional, would probably be frowned upon by my district, but man I’m going to miss her this summer too. She has made such an incredibly mark on me, personally, professionally and spiritually.

My heart feels warm and full when I’m at home and I think about her. I hadn’t thought of that conversation with that RTI teacher last year, but when it hit me I thought it was funny. Never did I expect her to be my biggest success of the year (she and her twin have grown in leaps and bounds this year).

I’ve realized this past week or so, how many great things happened this year. With all the stress, all the changes, and some crappy colleagues, it wasn’t always easy to see, but there were a lot of successes.

I’ve grown into Parkview, and while I still have a lot of growing to do, I’ve become comfortable there and hope that I’m there next year.

If I get moved next year, I will try my hardest to be excited for the new adventure.

So I’ll be happy either way. It’s out of my hands, which feels happy and free.

I’m happy to work so close to home.

I’m happy to have both friends and family in the district.

I’m so happy it’s almost summer. Hubby has a few weeks off, and we are beginning to plan some awesome (some very simple and rustic) trips that I’m so excited for.

Oh, and also, I just found out about something called Ayurveda. There was an awesome sounding class near me, but I missed the first one so it was too late to sign up. I ordered some free books on audible about it and am going to learn about and start practicing it. I’m betting I already do practice some of it, but I’m really excited to learn more and start applying it to my life.

How awesome to be always learning and seeking new ways to live happily and healthily. This life is so sweet ❤

Ayurvedathe traditional Hindu system of medicine, which is based on the idea of balance in bodily systems and uses diet, herbal treatment, and yogic breathing.

Day #1529 of choosing ME ❤ ❤ ❤

It’s Like a Country Song

Ugh…. life. I shouldn’t say that, comparatively– things are really good.

My stupid hand/wrist. Still painful after gardening many days ago. I’ve woken up during the 3-4:00 hour the past two mornings in pain. Gosh I haven’t missed that! I want it to go away. I want to cry tears for days, because I’m so tired of RA. Things were just getting good again. BLAH. Does this mean I won’t be able to garden this summer? Typing this is kind of hard- guess my writing will be affected– POO! Come to think of it, what CAN you do without your hands? Guess I’ll have to dig deep to find out because really I don’t know except for maybe soccer– but I’d probably put my ankle back into a flare.

Stupid work. That job I applied to… well that was a little crazy. I ended up submitting my resume and letter and application on Monday around 6pm. I was feeling nervous that my boss would see it come through and be angry and vindictive-whether I get it or not.

Hubby and I had talked about that and decided I should apply anyway. Our thoughts were that if people got angry over me personally wanting a change- well then that’s not someone I want to work for anyway.

I wasn’t too worried about quitting. Hubby’s job is going well and they’re restructuring. That might work in his favor. Also, his friend who left the company a few years ago contacted him and is interested in hiring him as a contractor. It would be temporary- only 2-3 years probably, but it would be a decent pay increase. This friend is getting a team together and won’t be ready for another 6 months or so- but having that as a backup made me feel more secure.

So about 30 minutes after submitting that application, we were having dinner. Hubby had a really tough day at work, the restructuring is brining out the evil in his boss and it’s become almost unbearable.

He says to me, “I’m sorry, but I might get myself fired.”


I haven’t felt that kind of insecurity in a long time. In my imagination, he got fired- his friend’s company falls though and I’m left jobless also. Then we lose everything.

I didn’t tell him my worries at all, I just told him it’s fine, we’d be okay.

A day later we had a choir concert for our youngest. Walking out, I spotted my boss. I was wearing a hat, put it down a bit and snuck on by her, feeling guilty the whole time.

The next day I revoked my resume, letter and application- and felt good about it. I didn’t do it out of fear of losing my job. I had been thinking about how incredibly difficult this year has been with learning the new systems, and everything else. If I got this position, next year would probably be even worse. I’d have to learn new systems plus ELA curriculum for 9th 10th and 11th grade. Plus I’d have over 100 students to grade, keep peace with families, etc. No thank you.

I still have no idea if my boss saw my stuff come though the email system.

Work is tough in other ways as well.

I arrived Thursday morning and knew that I would be called into the principals office with my nemesis, who shares my first name. I had told her via email that she has been harsh and disrespectful all year to me, and that I not only was competent, but I wanted what’s best for students also. I did this at the end of the day and then shut down my email for the night.

I came in Thursday morning having no idea what her reaction would be (the other teacher). Would she be nice to my face but passive aggressive afterwards, would she be pissed and combative and challenge my accusations? I really had no idea, but knew that it felt damn good to tell her how I feel.

The meeting was fine. She was overly nice, but still complaining behind my back, so I hear.

I wasn’t pissed to hear that, but kind of glad that I didn’t have to listen to her vent or complain.

That day my mentor called me at the end of the day. “I’m just doing a welfare check on you, are you okay?” she asked. I told her what happened and that I was fine.

She and some others are happy to hear that I told her what I did. She is awful in certain ways.

I have compassion for her. She lost her husband suddenly about 6 years ago. I have no idea how she was before that, but have the feeling that maybe she hasn’t dealt with the trauma of losing a spouse.

I used to be terrified of losing my spouse. Especially after a family friend lost her 32 year old husband in an awful auto accident. She had two small kids and I had just gotten married. After that, I was terrified of my husband commute. My heart would race every time I talked to him while he was driving if I heard a loud horn beep.

This got a little better, but then worse again when I lost my mom about 12 years later and I again became terrified of losing anyone.

It’s kind of ironic, this person I can’t stand has my name and is living my worst fear and making my life miserable. She must be a spiritual assignment and is currently my greatest teacher.

I can’t wait to go back and read the lines above and have the insight to what this growth could be, because right now I have no idea.

That’s my update. My life is like a pathetic country song, without the beer.


May 13, 2023 Day #1508

Serendipity- Good luck in finding valuable things unintentionally.

I don’t know what to say, or how to start- I have so many things on my mind this morning!

Milo… I think that at age 46, Milo is the first soul that I’ve truly truly mourned and grieved, properly. I guess when I say properly- I mean like in a healthy manner- unlike when I grieved with vodka when my mom died.

It’s been almost two weeks since we learned that we will never see him again. About a week after we found out, I played hooky from work (I did have a rheumatology appointment, but could have worked most of the day). I figured I could work on Milo’s grave. I needed to pick up some mulch and needed strong hands so I took my oldest out to lunch and then to Home Depot.

The day prior, his friend sent me pictures of an adorable litter of kittens and a message saying that he has one left to give away, and that my oldest thought we should get it and that it would be a “good distraction from Milo.”

That line bothered me. We needed to mourn Milo, not stuff our grief down and cover it with the distraction of a new little soul in our lives. But I understood what he meant, and that we had always done that before.

I politely declined, but thanked the friend. This topic came up while out to lunch. To my surprise, my son was shocked when I told him I wasn’t planning on getting another cat.

You see, I had been having this conversation in my head for years. I talk a lot about it to my sister and my hubby, but I guess not my kids. I don’t want any more pets when these ones are gone. I don’t even think I’m a great pet owner- and the responsibility is overwhelming. But, I never really voiced this to my kids– my kids who have always lived in a home with one dog and two cats. The last few pets to die were quickly replaced. It was truly the only thing that helped my grieving heart. When Chloe died, I actually found a kitten that looked just like her and was going to get her and name her Chloe. I don’t think that cat ended up being available- and in the end we ended up with Zoe- whom we named after both Chloe and Sunshine as she reminds us of both of them (even though she’s 10, hubby and I still occasionally mistakenly call her Sunshine).

So my 20 year old was surprised, and sad. He told me that he thinks two cats and one dog is a really good balance, and is perfect.

Yes, I replied. For a young family, it’s perfect. But we aren’t a young family anymore. I feel so guilty every time we have to leave them. I want to be free to leave when you guys leave, and don’t want to feel guilty.

We had a great conversation about this and he seems content. At the same time, it’s so bittersweet to acknowledge that our family is much different than it ever was before. He didn’t believe me about the no pets, until I told him how long I’ve been pondering it and have decided that I’ll probably not be able to live with zero pets, and will have a little dog who can travel with hubby and I. No cats, I hate leaving them, but I did tell him that I would probably have a cat when I’m old and mostly at home. It’s funny how life stages are so different- and require different things.

Oddly, it feels good to mourn Milo. That day I took off, I spent hours on his grave. It was very therapeutic, but also kind of sad because my hands have been painful since. I hope I can garden this summer!

I used to run from my grief- now I welcome it. It feels good to cry for Milo- and the grief comes in waves usually when I am reminded of him.

I wasn’t sure if I would be able to keep the promise to myself to not get another cat. I’m relieved that I have zero desire for another one. I’m 100% content loving on Zoe all day and all night. Now when she passes, and we have no cats at all- well that will be the true test I guess.

There has been something else that has been heavy on my mind…. work.

I spent the majority of the year paranoid that I won’t get renewed. When I talk to people around, this seems very silly. Additionally, my department, specifically, has said they are adding more teachers to our program.

I talk about this pretty openly at work. I was talking with the speech teacher the other day, and about next year. She is pretty fed up with our building and requested to move to the preschool if they have an opening. I told her again, my thoughts about not getting renewed- or not being back at least to Parkview the elementary I’m currently at. She thinks I’m crazy, but I told her that my intuition is many times right and feeling pretty strong on this one.

Two days later I saw a job posting for a ELA teacher at the high school- teaching English Language Learners. I would not have even clicked on it, if it hadn’t been for a random conversation during a meeting on the previous Monday. It was our department meeting and my mentor mentioned that one of the special ed teachers at another elementary was leaving.

Who? I wanted to know. I knew Andrea and Marlene are both pretty new and I think they are both spiffy so I was pretty sad to hear this. My mentor said Andrea was moving to the ELL program. I was sot of surprised but not too shocked and happy for her. It turned out to be a seed that would begin to grow.

ELA. High school. ELL’s and lots of scaffolding and differentiated instruction (which I’m proficient at- being in special education). I clicked on the job posting and began to daydream.

I’ve often said I would never want to do high school again. I did a .2 position for one semester my first year in Royal Oak. I hated how students would make out in the hallways. That’s probably what I liked least- along with the attitudes.

My daydreams turned into, what ifs?

I have been so unhappy this entire school year. I mean, on a daily basis, I arrive to work well rested and motivated, I love most of my students (I like them all- but I have some tough ones. Like a 3rd grader who thinks it’s HILARIOUS to put his finger far up his nose and threaten to touch me with it). So in general, I live my school days with joy- but I miss the connections I had with my previous students. I’m tired of my job being 90% behaviors, and meetings and paperwork and managing adults and schedules, etc etc.

I. Love. To. Teach.

This is evident when you walk in my room and I’m in the middle of a lesson- this is my element. But it’s happening less and less as I get more kids added and more time is eaten up.

Although I’ve said I never wanted to do high school, so many things seem to make sense.

I’d enjoy being at the same school as my youngest and at the school where my oldest works (he works at the pool), and where my niece will go next year. It’s even closer than the school I’m at now. I’d have a slightly smaller class due to the ELL’s and would be able to teach reading and writing every single day.

I’ve been not feeling so fulfilled and practically begging the Universe to send me somewhere where I feel that I’m making connections and making a difference. I wanted to influence people in a good way. Could this be the gateway to my ultimate wish?

I’ve made pretty good friends with the ELL teachers at my current school, so I asked them about the posting to get more information.

The gave me the name of the current teacher, who they said is amazing and urged me to reach out to her which I did.

She gave me lots of great info, and after reading her email I’m pretty determined to apply. I have no idea if they’ll choose me, but I don’t care because I leave it all up to the Universe anyways.

She knows what’s best for me ✨👊🏻


It’s been six days since we learned that we’ll never see Milo again. It’s getting a little easier- but the tears still come in waves.

Two days ago I grabbed a package off the porch before coming in.

What’s that? my hubby asked.

“It’s for Milo’s grave.” I replied somberly.

The words came out easily, and sat with me. Hard.

I went out to the back deck and sat, and cried. Milo’s grave I kept hearing. I didn’t want those words to exist. But they did, and I needed to feel sadness, and I did.

After a little bit, I spotted a hawk in a tree at the edge of our yard. I wished it were an eagle. During the pandemic in 2020, I pegged the eagle as my sign from the universe. During my countless walks and times outside, I’ve never seen one around here, and they are spotted fairly regularly. I look, all the time, but still get the feeling that it’s right In front of my face and I’m missing it.

As I was thinking, the hawk flew towards me and made a sharp turn to fly around the side of our house. It came close to the ground, and I thought that was odd and that it must’ve spotted a mouse or something.

About 5-10 minutes later, it came out of nowhere and landed on the top of our wooden swing about 50 feet away. I was in awe, because I’ve never seen a hawk do that here. I had never seen one so close.

It was only there for a matter of seconds, but what it did next made me laugh. It flew off toward the side yard, and was out of sight. Next thing I know, the rude geese who have been loitering were flying away honking angrily. It was funny because we used to sic our dog on those geese. He would chase them, and they’d fly away honking just like that. We realized it wasn’t the smartest thing to encourage our dog to chase wild animals, so we stopped doing that. I silently thanked the hawk for scaring them away.

I saw that hawk, once more that evening. He came down again, and around the side of the house.

It was cool, and while it wasn’t my eagle, I was in awe nevertheless, and so grateful for the gift of the hawk

Old Self/New Self

Old Self comes out every great once in awhile.

I know it when I’m stuffing my face, for no apparent reason- other than coming home from a stressful family party.

I know it when I’m cleaning, and have negative thoughts ruminating in my head.

And I know it, when it seems like every single person is pissing me off, with intention, and when I start thinking mean thoughts about people around me.

Luckily, New Self usually isn’t too far behind.. and will pick up the pieces.

And also, lucky for me, this has become very infrequent these past couple of years.

This is the first time I’ve really had to grieve since welcoming New Self.

It’s been a much different experience than I’ve ever had before.

On Monday after learning about Milo, it felt like I had negative energy. After I got home from work, I channeled that energy and cleaned the house. It was awful, and wonderful all at the same time.

My emotions were raw, and I didn’t hold back. I had music up loud and sang during the happy songs and cried during the sad songs. It was a great way to purge that energy.

It’s been 3 days since I found out, and I’m still very sad. But it’s not taking over my life and my days. I openly cry when I think about it- but then move on.

So what’s so different between losing him and losing Chloe, the last cat I lost back in 2013? After losing her, I could barely think straight. I was very sad, and felt in despair for a few days. Then I found a kitten that looked just like her. I thought to myself, “I’m going to get that kitten, and name her Chloe!”

The only thing that helped make it feel any better was running out and getting a new kitty. The same happened back in 2010 when we lost Sunshine. I was devastated, until we got baby Milo within a week later.

I’ve been saying for awhile now, that I don’t want any more pets. I don’t even think I’m a very good pet owner. They are a ton of responsibility and I’m tired of feeling like I always fail them.

I wondered if I would feel different, when it actually happened. It doesn’t. I have about zero desire to get another cat, or kitten. I’m thankful for that!

I’m so grateful, that I can find comfort within. I don’t need to run and get “something” to make me feel better. Heck, I didn’t even think about taking a drink, not even once, ha!

Don’t get me wrong, I am just as sad as losing the other cats. My flowing tears when I allow my brain to go to certain places are proof of that. I will miss Milo forever. I think he’s with Bossy and is not in pain, and is happy.

I’m doing something slightly new today. I’m going to a sound bath meditation at a greenhouse, where there happens to be a resident cat. Plants, a cat, a koi pond, I am SO looking forward to tonight! I’m hoping to open my energy centers, unblock any barriers and maybe heal a little.

I plan to visit Crystal Cave, and secretly hope it’s a little more vivid.

I’ll update with the experience later ❤❤❤

Update: Sadly, the sound bath meditation wasn’t as great as I had hoped. The greenhouse was crowded and the ground was cold. I liked that my hands were touching dirt when I was laying on my back. I laid down for most of it, but sat up for the last 15 or so minutes.

I was hoping that the energy would help me get into a deep meditation state- but that didn’t happen.

I think mainly because I was uncomfortable physically. I was cold, and midway through had to go to the bathroom. The greenhouse was a nice atmosphere, and I could hear the water dripping into the pond, but I could also hear the traffic nearby.

It started at 7:05 and ended around 8:15. It was too long. Although, maybe if I were more comfortable, it would have been different.

I enjoyed the sounds, but get this. About 1/3 of the way through, I started to doze off. But, each time I would be awakened with irritation by the singing bowl. This happened a few times, then I started having to go potty- so I wasn’t able to relax enough to sleep after that.

Even though it wasn’t super enjoyable, I hope that it helped open me up, align and polish my chakras. I did do a wall sit during my morning meditation today- hoping to purge anything that got shaken up in my root.

So that’s that! I’ll probably try the sound bath meditation again, but this time in the summer when it’s outdoors and warm.

Miserable May Monday

May 1, 2023

Life’s been a little challenging lately. I think I’m handling it okay, much better than I would have in the past. Work is hard, I mean, like hard. Most of the difficulties have nothing to do with teaching itself. I had a good talk with my mentor today though, that made me feel a ton better. There are a lot of super unhappy people right now, I am not alone, not crazy and not an awful teacher.

Today was one of the hardest.

I was in my last IEP meeting of the school year, and got a text from Hubby asking to call him when I had a minute. That’s unusual, and with his sister being in ICU (same old story…) I felt like I couldn’t wait until the meeting was over. I excused myself and called him back.

He told me they found Milo.

He wasn’t alive. Some poor person found him in their yard and called animal control. They wanted to know if we wanted his body back.

WOAH. I wasn’t expecting that. I tried to wrap my head around what he was saying. Yes, I told him. Tell them to bring him home so we can bury him.

I shook as I waited my turn to talk at the meeting. When it was my turn, I forgot about Milo. After the meeting it was almost time to go home. I got caught up on my daily stuff and was able to not think about it. However, when I got into the car, it was impossible to hold in my emotions.

I just got home not long ago, and plan to cry all night. We will bury him tonight, and have a ceremony sometime tomorrow or this week when we can all be together. My oldest gave me the biggest hug when I got home, but then had to leave for work. He’s struggling too. I reassured him that it’s easier to be at work.

I’m comforted knowing that he’s not suffering. Every cold day, every rainy or snowy day, I wouldn’t be able to escape worrisome thoughts about him and where he might be, and if he’s wet, cold, hungry, etc.

I’m happy when I think of him rejoicing at the rainbow bridge, with his old bestie, Boss.

Milo and Boss would cuddle like crazy, all the time. Milo always tried that with Jules, but Jules wasn’t very interested and would often get up and walk away if Milo tried to spoon with him.

Mostly, though, I just feel sadness and guilt. So much of it. It could have been prevented and that thought just won’t escape my conscious. Ugh.

I’m sorry Milo. Sorry that we failed you. Give Bossie a big hug & kiss from us ❤️❤️❤️

Parties, People & Stress

It’s Monday afternoon, and I’m not feeling so good about myself at the moment.

The weekend sucked. My up north friend invited us to her 80’s party. She has one every year and we always miss it. She worked it partially around my schedule- I told her we would go, and we did. But I had two IEPs to write over the weekend, so quite honestly, I took Friday off to make sure I had enough time.

I didn’t even really want to go. The last couple of parties they’ve had I told her no. Reason was that I never get a chance to see her, so when I come up I want just her- not her and her ginormous posse.

We went and it was awful for me. I think my family thought it was okay, but I hated it.

I realize that maybe I have a little PTSD from my drinking. Sometimes parties put me in panic mode and make me want to run, fast!

I barely spent time with my friend and just didn’t even feel like making conversation with anyone. Things would be SO different had I been drinking, that thought never left my mind.

I’ll add that my friend, and all her friends, like all of them, are super nice. It’s not them, it’s me, that’s for sure!

We left around 10 so we could make it home before midnight. I was very glad it was over, and vowed to not go to another wild party for a long time.

The next day we had a birthday party at hubby’s parents to attend. After a few hours, we were all sitting in the living room and people were telling funny stories. They wouldn’t stop- and just talked faster and faster. Someone would end, and someone else would jump in with a new hilarious tale. And this whole time, I was getting more and more anxious- by the time I left I was ready to jump out of my skin, I was so uncomfortable.

It had nothing to do with the people, or conversations. It was me. All me. And I knew that if we hadn’t gone to the 80’s party the night before, my experience would have probably been different. This introvert was spent, and greatly needed some quiet time.

Luckily the in-laws live behind us, so I excused myself after a little while and walked home. I picked up the house, switched laundry and ran the roomba- it felt so good to get things in better order!

I wasn’t feeling good though. I was annoyed that I don’t enjoy parties, or people unless I’m drinking. I was more upset last night than today. Not super upset- just a little bummed- like feeling like I’m missing out on something. Feeling less than, and not worthy– allllll those things.

It was okay though.

I joined this local woman’s online group about a month ago- and they seem wonderful. They post sober friendly stuff and events and hold wellness retreats and things like that. One of their retreats was this weekend. They had rented a house on a lake and went to journal, meditate, do yoga, you know all the things that I’m obsessed with. I knew I couldn’t go because it was the same weekend as my friend’s party.

As I was feeling low last night, I was on facebook and came across pictures of women at this retreat. They had their journals, were relaxed, and looked fabulous.

Then it hit me.

I’m okay. I’m 100% completely okay. It’s okay if I don’t want to hang out with a bunch of people, acting hyper at a loud party.

This is my tribe. These are my people.

So that realization was good.

But now it’s Monday, and my work day is almost over. I haven’t had great connections with anyone all day (not bad connections- just neutral)- and that feels bad. I had two IEPs and they were fine, but I just feel ancy about them and how I’m perceived here. I don’t think my principal likes me. I don’t think the special ed team likes me. I don’t think many people here like me.

I don’t know why I feel so insecure right now. I think I still need to heal my spirit from this past weekend. I will be sure to meditate and journal tonight and/or workout- at least a quick 20 min workout.

I’m going to work overtime on my self-care to feel better each day this week ❤

No Mayto

It’s Saturday today, and thinking back, this week was sort of interesting.

I didn’t feel like working out, so I didn’t.

I didn’t have time, or was in the right headspace, to meditate, so I didn’t.

It was pretty great, I just did whatever I felt like everyday- and those just weren’t it.

Monday was great, work was okay, but my house was a disaster when I got home. I never felt like cleaning last weekend, and everyone follows my lead, so my living room was a junk pit. I spent a couple hours dusting and vacuuming everything after work- it felt good while I was doing it and especially afterwards.

Tuesday was equally as great. Work was okay, and the weather was warm and gorgeous. I sat on the deck after work, soaking it in. I noticed the plants around the pond had a lot of dead leaves on and around them. I decided to weed a little bit around the pond. I ended up working outside for almost two hours and filled a large lawn bag.

On Wednesday, I ran to the store after work to get a couple gifts. I wasn’t very productive after getting home, but I was fine with that.

On Thursday, some people (or person, I can’t even remember now) at work pissed me off big time. I couldn’t help but to feel irritated, even after getting home. Things that I would normally let roll off me, were stuck in me, in the form of ruminating thoughts.

These thoughts were out of control and I realized as I analyzed them, that my mind was actually making up theoretical stories about people not liking me, doing me wrong, etc. It was then I realized that this was a “me” problem, and nothing more.

I’ve gotten smarter though, and I’ve got tools.

I remembered the Ho’oponopono prayer and began to say it whenever I had a negative thought.

By bedtime, I was reciting it constantly.

Friday was a better day, and while I didn’t work out or meditate, I vowed to start working out regularly next week, including walks before work because now it’s finally warm.

I’m going to walk today and actually, I did meditate last night.

I was laying on the couch with hubby and randomly wondered if he would go to Crystal Cave with me, the fictional meditation place to meet.

So I asked him, “Wanna play a mind game with me?”


He knows that I go to the cave and sometimes see and talk to deceased relatives or meet my living sister there (when she does it at the same time). So I told him to meet me there. I told him how I get to the cave- via the river that we both love to kayak on so much. I told him we should pick a special place, and he said that the river would be appropriate.

So we laid together and went to Crystal Cave.

I don’t always have a lot of visualizations, but this time I did. Right when I walked into the river, I was holding his hand and encouraging him to come with me.

“Come on!” I was dancing like while dragging him behind me. We walked our canoe for some of the way in the river because it was very low (which happens sometimes in real life). We got into the canoe and it was deep again. When we reached the portage (this is near the cave entrance), our canoe tipped over and I was swimming in deep water. It was a sunny day and the water wasn’t cold and felt good. It was euphoric, almost. In real life, there are sometimes water snakes on the bottom of the river near this spot, but none in my meditation.

When we got out of the river, I wanted to go left towards the cave. He wanted to go right- to the bridge over the river. We stood on the bridge and watched the water. Salmon, or whatever fish that swim upstream and jump out of the water were there- lots of them. I don’t even think they exist around here in real life- not in the Huron river anyways (at least I don’t think).

We went to the cave next. His grandma was there. Then, I saw him as a little boy- probably 6 or 7. His grandma kissed him on the cheek. I left them alone and went to the meadow. I hung out in the meadow for a few, and by the time my timer went off, hubby and I were sparks dancing in the beautiful meadow.

“Wow!” I said when we opened our eyes. “Did you fall asleep? I had quite the experience! Did you see or hear anything cool?” He said he did not.

I told him everything and asked him if his grandma used to kiss him on the cheek. She did not. Not that he really remembered anyways- and I think that’s something that would stick.

“There’s a hallway with a meadow?” He asked surprisingly when I got to the end. I explained that I wanted to leave some things up to his imagination and that the meadow was something that was later added to my meditations to the cave. I added it because I was going through a dark time, and the cave was just way too dark for me. So there’s a hallway that leads to a door to the beautiful meadow. I didn’t tell him all of that until he was retelling me his experience, he mentioned that the cave was dark and dank. I told him that’s how the meadow was born, lol.

Then he retold his experience. Surprisingly, to me, he also had many thoughts/visualizations. His were all memories. He recounted specific events he remembered as he walked through the park (the river flows through a state park). He saw the trail he rode his bike on as a kid- his family camped at that park frequently. He saw the sign he once repainted- he worked for this park as a teen/young adult- mowing lawns and maintaining the park. He saw the building he slept in when his brother got married and remembered the joyous occasion. His brother and future wife rented part of the park out for all of their guests and held a wedding reception for an entire weekend. There are so many memories from this weekend, this was before I knew this family, but I’ve heard joyful memories recounted for the past 20+ years.

Somehow I think all those memories flooding his mind was good, maybe even somehow therapeutic.

Something clicked while he was retelling me all of this. I realized that the very spot that I chose to find solace, was the very place that my husband, who I’ve long suspected is my soulmate, has spent so much of his life at all different stages and ages.

I never even knew about the portage and the bridge until I met him. You would think that when I chose how to get to Crystal Cave, I would have picked a place that was significant in my childhood, not a place that I discovered as an adult. No wonder why he was so vivid in my meditation. I had planned to meet him at the cave, not lead him there. But right when I started he was right behind me.

I think it’s super cool and significant- but then again, I think everything is significant!

I’m happy my hubby played my mind game, and hope that we can go to Crystal Cave again sometime soon.

I guess it’s time to get on with my Saturday- I hope you enjoyed today’s nonsense 😜✨

Life is a Beautiful Disaster

Even though it’s currently sort of messy, life is pretty wonderful at the moment.

Today is the day of my 1/2 marathon- Carpe Diem- Seize the Day- at my favorite local woodsy park. Sadly, I will not be participating. It’s okay.

I reached out to a plant based coach about 6-7 weeks ago for a consultation. His name is Hench Herbivore, he’s extremely muscular and is sort of like a gentle giant. His wife is super nice, and has spent the last decade or so healing her autoimmune disease.

Hench the Herbivore

During our conversation, way back then, the subject of this half marathon came up. I talked about how important it was for me to start training for it- I just wanted to accomplish it- I didn’t care what my time was.

He didn’t necessarily tell me to forget about it- but as we talked about it, and he admitted that he wouldn’t be able to train for a half in that amount of time, I realized days after our conversation that I best forget about it. If it wasn’t going to happen for me, I wasn’t gonna stress about it.

The emails for it started last week, and that was a little sad. I thought about signing up to volunteer- or to see if I could do the 10k or 5k instead- but didn’t care that much, plus I thought it might be kind of sad to be there and not doing the half- something that’s been on my bucket list for awhile now.

Milo is still MIA. I’ve walked through the neighborhood calling him, but he’s just vanished. We are so confused and don’t know what to think. He was gone for almost a full four months before, so we can’t and won’t give up hope– probably ever. Then again, last time he was a healthy four year old cat. Now he has this horrible breathing/nasal condition, and is 13 and I fear the worst.

I decided to buy a cat statue. I’m going to have a sign made that says “Milo’s Beacon” and decorate it with small solar lights, and possibly a plant or a bush nearby. I’m envisioning a beautiful tribute/memorial, and it’ll always remind us of the hope we had, both the first time he went missing and now. If he makes it home, then it’ll be even more perfect. We’ll laugh and tell him to look for his light if he ever gets lost again.

Zen Kitty

I looked at a ton of cat statues/garden decorations last night. I settled on this one because he looks so incredibly peaceful. Also, he’s 12 inches high which is bigger than some of the other ones I liked. I didn’t want a 7 inch statue.

I haven’t told my family- or asked for input. I didn’t want their input. Maybe it’s selfish, but I wanted to do the whole thing and have it be a surprise. Admittingly, I was worried they’d scoff at it or not like the same ideas as me. I’m totally confident they’ll love it when it’s all done though- that’s how things work around here, I don’t know why!

Work has been interesting. Last week was annoying- they’ve all kind of been lately- but it’s helping me see my growth.

I just got a new student so I’m working with a new teacher, and she has a bad reputation for being hard to work with and hard to schedule time for the kid we share.

I had a lovely conversation with her on Monday and was pleasantly surprised. However, I wasn’t at all surprised later that day when I was talking about the new kid and my schedule to someone else and learned that she had been complaining to them.

Let me tell you that if this was just a year or two ago, I would have been livid! It would have offended me most that she wasn’t upfront with me, didn’t feel comfortable enough to be honest and then shit talked behind my back.

I felt none of that.

First of all, it wasn’t at all surprising to me- I had expected it.

Secondly, it actually made me feel very happy.

One of the first things to pop into my head when I heard that is, Good, save the bitching and moaning for someone else! I didn’t have any desire to hear it.

It’s easy, I guess, for me to not take this situation personally. I recognize that really it has nothing to do with me. Plus, this teacher knows how incredibly messy my schedule is right now and that my hands are tied. I’m sure she was just venting, and probably not directed at me necessarily.

I never would have seen the big picture before! I would have been offended, period. And probably mad at her for the rest of the year. I don’t have any feelings of animosity towards her, and will remain very grateful if she saves her smiles for me and vents to others.

This is such great growth, and such a game changer in life- the feeling of freedom when we’re not consumed with other’s emotions or butt-hurt feelings is incredible, actually.

Also, I’m not sure if I’ve written about this yet, but I’ve been having success setting intentions for each day. I found a formula that I love, especially for work days. Everyday, I strive to #1 Make positive connections (with adults or children) #2 Have fun! #3 Be productive

This isn’t the end all be all.

I was having a particularly rough day this week, so my intentions for that day were just #’s 1 & 2. I wasn’t going to worry about being productive that day- and thought the other things were more important. It feels good because it feels like I have some control- and I guess I do. Not with what happens to me, but what happens within me when that happens. That day ended up being a good day by the way!

One great thing is that we have several days coming up in the high 60’s/low 70’s.

Will this be the week I begin to ride my bike to work?? I just can’t wait!!!

Speaking of good work stuff, we had spring conferences this week. I only met with 3 out of 8 parents, but all three went great. Even my most difficult parent- who was so angry and mean in the fall.

Her fall conference with me was okay, but a little awkward and she was not warm and fuzzy. It was a virtual meeting- which I find more difficult.

This meeting was in person. I had prepared a little extra for her and she was very pleased. It was a good conference and I felt so happy to finally be building positive and trusting relationships with these parents. It was hard in the fall too, because I didn’t truly know her child well- and she knew that. This time that was different too.

Another parent told me something that touched me. Her son is in 2nd grade and is significantly impacted by his autism. He isn’t very verbal and does more repeating than answering questions.

She told me and his other teacher that she has him pray for three things every night. The previous night, he had prayed for School, his Gen ed teacher, and me. And now I’m crying as I write that. We really don’t understand how much of an impact we have on children- regardless of the role we play.

Every day I get my 2nd grade student with CP off the bus and help him to his classroom.

This week we were walking by two kindergarten twin girls. One asked me why I hold his hand and walk him in.

I thought for a minute before responding. It’s really important for my kids to keep their dignity, and I didn’t want to embarrass this child.

I said something about my job being to keep everyone safe, and away from the cars, and that I really like to hold hands. I then extended an invitation to the twins to hold my other hand if they wish.

The twin who asked shook her head, and was like, “Nope, I’m okay!” Her sister, however, darted to my other side to take the opportunity to grab my free hand.

I can’t tell you how utterly cute it was, and it was another reminder that even with all of the BS, I have one of the best jobs in the Universe.

I exclaimed how lucky I was to have two hands to hold that morning 💖

Duality- Hope and Dread

I’m still struggling with our cat, Milo, who has been lost for two weeks now.

In my last post, I referred to a story about a boy, lost in the mountains who was never seen alive again. The night he was lost, it poured and flooded, and I simply can’t imagine what his family was going through.

I bring this up, because I related it to how I felt about my cat, lost while it’s severely storming outside. I realized after the fact, that me comparing my lost cat to a lost child could be very insensitive. That wasn’t my intention, at all. While my pets are most certainly, my “furbabies,” my point was more like, geez if losing a pet feels this desperate and sad, how could you not die of a broken heart after losing a child? I simply could not imagine, for one second, and very grateful that I haven’t lived it.

Yesterday was Monday, and it was back to work after spring break. The whole day was just off. The rain continued, and in the morning, before work, I learned that we don’t have Good Friday off this week- I was banking on a four day week- boo! Work was okay, but I didn’t sleep well- only a couple of hours- so I wasn’t at all peppy like usual. Also I had an online meeting in the morning, and the parent’s smoke detector battery alarm was chirping for the entire hour. I left the meeting with a nagging headache, and it lasted the day.

By the time I got home, I just wanted to surrender, lol. Everytime during the weekend, or yesterday, that I let my mind wander to Milo, I would begin to cry. I knew that I really just needed a good cry session, but didn’t want to get my contacts messed up and my face all swollen. But I desperately needed to get out my angst.

I decided to meditate. I missed my morning session, and wanted to see if I could pick up any signs or messages about Milo. I set my intentions and then my timer.

I went to Crystal Cave, via the river in a kayak to the portage. There were animals in the river with me, and I began to cry.

My mom was at the cave. The messages I received from her weren’t spoken words, more like thoughts.

What the heck? Why?

Her message in a nutshell: This is what you’ve been training for. You knew that something hard is going to come along, and you wondered how you’d handle it with your spiritual growth (my sister and I do often talk about this). You know this is life, it’s full of ups and downs and try to focus on the big picture.

Tears ran down my cheeks the entire time.

I came to a realization during this time. I had been wanting to find Milo alive, or not at all. I couldn’t bear the thought of finding out that he’s gone, forever. I had thought about this many times since he left. I decided that I truly didn’t want to know if he dies or died. I want him home alive, or would rather spend the rest of time wondering what happened to him. I needed to hold onto that hope.

Well, I knew in my heart, that that’s not really healthy. I had a good talk with my mom and the Universe and declared that I need closure, and that I’m ready. Ready to find out the truth, and accept it. It felt good to let the resistance I had go. This felt significant- and I truly expected to find him immediately after- either dead or alive.

“Let’s go to the meadow. Please show me something happy. Something that will make me happy.” I begged my mom.

The cave is dark, but there’s a hallway with a door. And outside the door is the most magnificent meadow filled with colorful flowers.

We went to the meadow and I looked around. I noticed animals, everywhere. It was as if all the flowers turned to animals. I didn’t notice if they were dogs, cats, rabbits, etc. I guess I just saw animal souls, maybe. But it did make me happy, but it also made the tears run down faster.

I finished up and was just thinking when I heard hubby come up from downstairs. I wiped my face and wondered if he’d notice.

“You look tired.” He said, after bending down to kiss me as I sat on the couch (I love that he does this. If he forgets, when he realizes later in the evening- he says, “I didn’t get to kiss you today.”).

“I just meditated and cried the whole time.” I answered.

“I’m sorry.” he responded.

“It’s okay. It was good.” and then, wondering how crazy he thinks I am, followed up with “I talked to your grandma last week..” (she’s been dead since 2002). He didn’t seem to think much of it.

Then I stood up and hugged him and then just cried. It was inevitable. I was, and am so incredibly grateful to have a partner who loves and accepts me with all my quirks- and loves me with open arms (literally).

All of it felt profound, and I went to bed feeling lighter.

I’m still sad about Milo, that will never change. But I’ll try to focus on the good things, and will try to remain hopeful.

Milo come home to us!! We need you home 😿