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Thunderstorms and Reverence

There’s this amazing energy around thunderstorms, isn’t there? Today (Father’s Day in the U.S., so Happy Father’s day all you dads!) I’m out weeding the garden with my husband while he plants our summer flowers. We’re both really enjoying ourselves, enjoying having our hands in the dirt, and enjoying that build-up to the thunderstorm.

It’s electric, it’s poignant, it’s a promise of release. It’s a smell, a feel to the air, a cooling of temperature . . . the spiders in the garden seem to hide, as do the potato bugs (rolley-polleys according to my littles). Then, the thunder claps . . . and again . . . and again. Almost on top of each other, it reminds me of labor contractions, increasing in tempo and intensity, building. . . until . . . the rain starts.

The air perceptibly changes again – the promised release of energy comes and with it, a sort of reminder of the power of nature. There’s the smell of the rain washing the earth (which, if you live in the country you’ll find no sweeter smell) of all her grit. The earth moistens, the rain intensifies and I have to run to hide under our front porch. My husband and I stand there, side-by-side, watching the rain unleashed by the storm. I feel a human-ey connection with him, and revel in it.

It’s beautiful. Humbling. Powerful. Inspiring. A reminder that we are but a portion of the beauty and majesty of nature. A humbling put-you-in-your-placery (but with love), that lets you look around you and be grateful you were lucky enough to incarnate into this beautiful, intricate tapestry that is life and Earth.

I think, today, I’m grateful and humble and awed by the beauty of the energy of All That Is.

A thunderstorm is reverence, in a word.

Britt

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If I died tomorrow . . .

I was sitting here this morning, with my tea (and I have to say, my morning minute alone in the dark with my tea is the best start possible to my day), and the thought occurred to me – if I died tomorrow, I’d be okay with my life. Like – I’m not angling to die tomorrow. There are a lot of things I still want to do. I want to watch my girls grow up, graduate, start their lives, find partners, make families . . . all the things.

I want to watch myself and my husband get old. It’s going to be hilarious. But – if something happened, and I died tomorrow – I’m pretty proud of this little life. I’ve built a family with someone whom I can love, respect, admire, and am in awe of every day – even on the days he makes me crazy. I know he can say the exact same thing about me. I’m showing my girls what a loving, healthy, two-sided relationship looks like and teaching them what they should want and expect out of a relationship.

I’ve taken risks, and tried things. In my life, I’ve been a hairstylist, a college student, a medical transcriptionist, a stay-at-home mama, a psychic advisor, an administrative assistant. I’ve moved across the country and back (quickly, yes, but still). I’ve taken jobs I didn’t know how to do, and left jobs I was really good at for the chance at something new.

I have wonderful family and friendship connections. I’m able to, on a daily basis, connect with people on a spiritual and psychic level to (hopefully) help make their lives make more sense and find their own spiritual connection and path. I’m able to teach, write, educate, and speak my truth on a platform most people will not ever have access too. I can’t tell you how amazing that is.

If I died tomorrow, it would be okay. I would miss my girls – but they would have some really fun, really good memories with me. My oldest and I will always have corny jokes – she’ll never be able to hear a bad joke without thinking of her mama. My middle and I have sweet memories of snuggling and reading together, and her reading her first books to me and me being so proud of her. My little and I snuggle and giggle and tickle and laugh – and she knows – without a doubt – that I love her wholeheartedly.

My husband knows I love him. He knows I admire him, and look up to him, and am proud of him. He knows I view him as a partner, helpmate, support system, and an essential part of what makes my life wonderful.

Can you ask for more? Probably – but I don’t know why you would.

Go into your week this week, dear ones, with the thought in your head – “If I died tomorrow, how would I feel about what I’m leaving behind? Is this a legacy I can be proud of?”. If the answer is no – start today to take steps to change that. You don’t have to be wildly successful, or rich, or famous – you just have to leave the world better than when you left it.

white roses

Love to you all,

Britt

Gratitude

Sometimes the things that hit my brain are kind of amusing. I was sitting this morning, drinking my tea and writing in my gratitude journal (I’m getting back into the habit of my gratitude journal every day), and the thought occurred to me how grateful I am for gratitude.

What a ridiculous, new-agey thing to say. HAH!

It’s true though – I was thinking – it’s so nice to have the ability and the inclination to look around at my life and cherry-pick the things that are wonderful. And lots of things are. But if I didn’t have the desire to look for them – if I allowed myself to just get sucked into how tough life can be . . . I can’t imagine getting through life that way.

And it’s not something that comes naturally – at least it didn’t for me. I had to train myself to start looking for positive things. I can remember when I did it. I was 14 or 15 and we had made plans for my mom to take myself and my best friend to a local haunted forest for Halloween. I remember when we were getting ready to go that I was thinking how we had made plans to go like three times already and they had fallen through, and the thought that crossed my mind was, “Why even get excited? It’s not going to happen anyway”.

So I didn’t. We went – and it wasn’t as fun because I was in that crappy, Debbie-downer place all night. I got home and I remember thinking – “wow, I really kind of ruined that for myself, and probably everyone else too”. Then, “What if maybe being excited over the thing is worth it even if plans change?”.

The next day, I made a concerted effort to change my thought process. There is an old Native American legend (I’ve told this story many times, feel free to ignore this part) of a wise grandpa talking with his grandson. The grandson gets angry about stubbing his toe on a rock or something, and when the grandpa chastises him for becoming so angry, the grandson relates that the grandpa can’t possibly understand what it’s like to be so angry and how can he be expected to not express his anger?

The grandpa tells him, “There are two wolves who live in my head. One who is angry, mean, and hateful, and can only see the negative sides of life, like stubbing your toe. Then there is the other – wise, calm, forgiving, loving, and can see that in stubbing your toe you avoided landing on that snake over there. They are always fighting for supremacy”. The grandson takes this in for a moment, realizing that the “bad” thing that happened to him was actually for the greater good. Then he asks his grandpa, “But who wins the fight?” The grandpa looks at him and says simply, “whomever I feed”.

 

Remember to feed your gratitude this week.

Britt

Are you Rose or Jack?

You know, sometimes I already know the thing that’s going to make me feel better but I’m too damn stubborn to do it. I’m just saying. Kinda bullheaded here.

It’s interesting – this last year has felt like one doctor’s visit after another and I still don’t have an answer. I’d be a big fat liar-liar-pants-on-fire if I told you I haven’t been angry and frustrated. I finally got to the point where I was eating really healthy, was going pretty strong in my spiritual practice, and here my body starts to fall apart. What the actual F&*#.

Then this morning, life kinda smacked me upside the head again. Lol it’s funny how that happens isn’t it? I have had to take a break from radio, which more than breaks my heart – my love is radio, to be honest. I have had to take a break from just about everything I love to be able to cope with my health stuff. Now – just to assuage any fears – nothing terminal is happening. It’s just all-consuming for me right now. In order for me to be able to be a fraction of the wife and mom that I want to be, I have to push everything else off my plate, and I’ve been pretty mad about that.

It felt like as soon as my dreams started coming true, life smacked me down. It’s kinda hard to stay positive after that, not gonna lie.

Then, the other day, I noticed the number 444. It struck me to look it up and see what it means as a repeater. They’re often significant and boy, was it. Then I read Kristi Brower’s article in the power peek this week and she talked all about receiving messages and such, and it just clicked. 444 is all about building foundations, realizing that things are happening for a purpose, knowing you’re on exactly the right path and that nothing is passing you by.

Thanks Universe, I really needed that. It’s also all about remembering your practice. Making time to meditate and ground and get in touch with the Divine. Oops. I’ve been seriously pouting. I could say slacking, but I’d be lying – I’ve been pouting.

So yesterday, I sucked it up and did my shower meditation, and of course it was exactly what I needed. Then today, I made time to do it before I got up and going. I like to sit in my comfy spot and take ten minutes to myself, so this morning I meditated while I did it. And then I pulled a couple cards – all of which reassured me that what is going on is building a foundation for something more.

And I really feel it. This is one of those times I’ll look back on and be amazed at what comes out of it. I was able to release my attachment to the outcome and trust that what’s coming is what’s best. But I’ll tell you this – I had to be mad first. I had to feel the feels. All of them, even the uncomfortable ones. I had to feel frustrated, and powerless, and helpless, and angry, and everything else. Because it’s part of the humanning.

There’s no way around it, only through it. The power of your practice will help you (kinda like a lifeline – or I keep seeing Rose on the door in the ocean in Titanic lol). You can be Rose, or Jack. I think the practice helps you be Rose. 😉

 

Mwuah.

Brittie

You could be a mother lover . . .

There are still times I’m absolutely amazed I’m the grown-up. Seriously. But then I really start to think about it and I realize what an earth-shattering, life-changing, metamorphosing event motherhood is. I’m speaking from motherhood as it traditionally is (pregnancy, childbirth, etc), but please understand that’s only because that’s how I became a mother. I absolutely include in this adopted mamas, stepmamas, and whatever-other-configuration brought you to mommyhood.

What other event in life changes you so radically? I knew, going in, that it was going to change me. But of course, you cannot know just exactly how much it will change you. I’m not even remotely the same person. I’m so much less selfish, so much more loving and willing to be vulnerable . . . I heard once a quote that I’ve forever loved; “Motherhood is learning how it feels to have your heart walking around outside your body”.

A truer statement I’ve never heard. This Mother’s day weekend was an adventure for me. Saturday, Anna (our littlest little – 3 years old), got sick. Not just a little sick, either – puking to the point I lost count of how many times she hurled. Poor kid. She just layed on the couch, trying to drink water and throwing it up immediately.

Sunday she was doing better – no puking thankfully, but still fevered and just a blob on the couch. But it was Mother’s day, and I’m completely content to pass it with a ‘nuggly (snuggly – Anna skips the “s” and it’s adorable) baby in my lap. It was also my husband’s birthday. We went to breakfast, stopped and bought each of us new sunglasses (yay!), and then came home. I sent him fishing, swept and did some laundry, and ‘nuggled up with that baby.

I was feeling sorry for myself a little – cleaning and tending a little sicko, you know. Then I remembered how freaking blessed I am to have all this. There are so many mamas-in-spirit that haven’t been able to have a baby, or who have had one and lost it (how you live through that I hope I’ll never know), and I absolutely cherish these moments. When there are life-changing events like parenthood in your life you have a choice – you either change, or you flop around floundering like a fish.

When there’s little people counting on you, it’s a good bet to change. Get stronger, be better, be more patient, learn things, be silly with them – they’re counting on you. Speaking of which – “Mommy, can I please have a snack, my belly’s so hungry”.

Til next week,

Brittie

Judgement vs. Discernment

So, it occurred to me this morning how much I despise the saying “don’t be judgemental”, and “I don’t judge”. Why the hell not? And why the hell is it considered an asset in our society not to use our inherent judgement to check out a situation and see if it fits for us? Seriously? I don’t understand.

I know what people mean when they say not to judge. They truly mean not to be a turd. Don’t assume someone’s situation from what you see on the outside. Don’t write someone off based on something superficial like skin color, gender, gender identity, sexual preference, etc.

What people have taken it to, however, is not to be discerning in any situation. That’s pretty tragic to me, because we have our intuition, our guts, our ability to feel when a vibration is sympatico with our own – and we’re supposed to use that! We’re supposed to be able to size up a situation and say, “yep, that’s good for me”, or “no thank you, I’ll pass”.

Unfortunately, in this era of super-sensitivity and navel-gazing, we tend to forget that everything is not about us. People are allowed to decide they want to move forward and have a life that doesn’t have us in it. They’re allowed to decide our drama is not their drama, as we are allowed to decide the same.

So – don’t feel shame when you make a judgement about a situation. Don’t wed yourself to your judgement overly either – that’s called cognitive dissonance, and it’s no better an attribute than not being judgemental. We have to be able to have gut instinct and listen to it, and we have to be able to open our minds and hearts to new information when it comes upon us.

This week, it seems, is all about looking with your eyes – both physical and spiritual – and listening with your ears – both physical and spiritual. It’s about feeling and trusting those feelings. So trust it. 😉

 

Brittie

The benefits of clutter

Yep, you heard me right. The benefits of clutter. Well, they’re many of course. The benefits of clutter are:

Clutter hides stuff: for instance, if you don’t like that end table your in-laws got you for your wedding? Easy-peezy lemon-squeezy! Just put 45 decorations on top of it and no one will even see the end table you hate with all your heart! Your mother-in-law will be so pleased you’re using it she won’t even mind you’re dusting while she’s there. Don’t worry, your family won’t mind you ignoring them to take care of stuff. 😉

Clutter saves money: Don’t like the carpet in your kids room? You don’t have to spend money to replace it!!! It’s so easy! All you have to do is this: let your kids keep every. single. toy. given to them. It will definitely cover the carpet in no time. Also don’t require beds to be made. You’d be surprised how much ground can be covered with blankets. They won’t bruise too badly when they trip. And legos don’t really hurt that bad when you step on them. We adults all know this.

Clutter saves time: All that time you’re spending donating things to your local charity? NO MORE! You aren’t going to de-clutter, so there’s no need to spend time driving to the charity and helping people who aren’t as fortunate as you. This is handy, because you’ll use the time (no doubt) “enjoying” all that stuff you now own. And by enjoy, of course, I mean picking up, cleaning, storing, etc.

Clutter gives you new passions: Speaking of storing things – welcome to the whole new world of STORAGE and ORGANIZATION options! There’s nothing more fun than hitting a sale on Rubbermaid tubs and going home and finding things with which to fill them! They have ALL sizes too . . . big ones, small ones, round ones, square ones, it’s a whole new thing . . . you’re gonna need a lable maker too.

Clutter can make you famous: If you reach master-level non-de-clutter-er (nice word, huh?),  you can totally get on TV. There’s this show about people who have a lot of stuff. Some of them are not master-level organizers, but they all appreciate the value of stuff more than other people do. You could totally be on it.

Rubbermaid

Okay – obviously I’m being a bit sarcastic here. And not to make fun of the people on Hoarders, because it’s a true, recognized mental issue people deal with and truly suffer from, I bring them up for a purpose. My little girls, when they’re struggling, hold on to stuff more than at any other time in their lives. So do I.

There is something about having stuff around us that makes us feel secure. And that might be a wakeup  call – if you’re hugging things around you, what are you distracting yourself from? What is it in your life that  you’re using these things to keep your mind off? What is it about yourself that you don’t want to face? Where do you feel inadequate and why does acquiring and keeping things make you feel better?

These are real issues and real things to think about. Everyone’s answer is different, of course, and everyone’s happy medium is different too. Not everyone wants to live in a world where they only have 100 possessions, and not everyone feels safe and protected living in a home that could be on Hoarders. Most of us are somewhere in between, and that’s normal. But it’s a good idea to evaluate where you are and why you’re there.

Much love,

Britt

What would you do if I sang out of tune?

It’s so funny. Thinking about what I wanted to write this morning and this song instantly popped into my head. It’s funny, that happens – a lot. It made me think, though, and I was intrigued where it went.

If you’re 30 or older, you remember The Wonder Years. The opening song was

What would you do if I sang out of tune?

Would you stand up and walk out on me?

I love the tune of this, because it will forever remind me of my childhood. More, though, I love the meaning behind the song – “have a little help from my friends”, being one of the main lines in the chorus. I think a lot of us are struggling right now, powering through things we didn’t think we’d have to (or could) face.

When that happens, you turn to the people in your life, and you learn. You learn who is there unconditionally, you learn who is there mainly in fair times, and you learn who has been through things you couldn’t imagine – and can therefore relate to harder things than you thought.

I feel like this time is all about depth. The depth of our own strength, the depth of our friendships, romantic relationships, etc. The depth of our faith, our courage, and our hope. And I don’t know how long it lasts. I know there is beauty on the other side of it – simply because beauty has bookended every rough patch I’ve ever been through.

So, if you’re in a patch like this – reach out. Reach out even when you don’t feel like it, even when you feel silly for doing it, even when you feel like you’re being “whiney”. Someone cares enough to listen and want to help. If all else fails (and even if it doesn’t and you just like us), reach out to us at the 12 family.

We’re here, and we love you.

Britt

I’m still standing . . . (better than I ever did)

Yep, you know I sang that. 😉 I had a really cool moment happen last night. As many of you know I’ve been struggling with my health lately. As any of you with chronic illnesses know, there is a lot of weird mind-trickery that goes into that.

Depression, anxiety, crab-assery – they all go with the territory. As I was sitting, snurffling my sweet baby, and kind of feeling sorry for myself (even while I was enjoying the crap out of all the snurffling and being nap-trapped) – something occurred to me.

I almost died when I had my hysterectomy. Literally – had we waited another hour I would have died. So – there was something my soul wanted to stay here for, right? Now I knew I didn’t want to go anywhere, I have 3 little girls I love being the mommy to, and a husband I love, and a good life, so that really was no surprise. What struck me, though, was this: my soul knew this health struggle was coming. It knew what I was in for if I stayed, and still chose to stay.

So – that tells me there’s a payoff. I don’t know what it will be – it might “just” be getting to watch my sweet babies grow. That’s enough, for sure. But it helps to know that even knowing what was coming, my soul thought it was worth it to stick around.

Sometimes you just need to know that there’s a bonus at the end. There’s a “worth it” point.

Much love and resilience to you all,

Britt

The benefits of reaching out

Sometimes, when you’re struggling, it’s really easy to hibernate. To shrink in, to protect yourself. That’s understandable, and I think most of us do it from time to time. I think a lot of it has to do with pride – we are always happy to be the one helping. It boosts our egos to help other people.

But when we’re the ones struggling – it’s so hard to admit it. We (at least I) want to seem like we’re handling everything. Like we’re the plate spinner at the circus – I got this!!! The image that comes to mind is closer to a “hold my beer” moment than successfully spinning plates, however. The plates are what we’re going for – “hold my beer” is what happens, haha!

I have been dealing with some super-fun health stuff, and finally, at the insistance of my husband, I reached out to a colleage to ask her to do a Reiki session on me. She did, and of course instantly I’m feeling better. Not all the way – there’s still physical stuff going on that must be dealt with in the physical world. But significantly better.

Part of it was releasing trauma from the blood transfusions, part of it was reminding my body it didn’t have to fight the foreign DNA (from the transfusions), and the other part of it was just reaching out and having someone be there. Having someone help me through what truly is and was a struggle.

Part of it was releasing the thought in my mind that it’s not supposed to be a struggle. It’s okay if this part of life is a little bit hard. It really is. It’s nothing to be ashamed of, and quite frankly we all go through times where we are struggling. It’s okay to be the one on the recieving end of the help. We try so hard not to have to be that person – but at multiple points in all our lives, we all will be.

Also – let me remind you that you bless others with the positivity and ego boost that comes with helping someone when you allow help to be given.

Much love,

Britt