Filed under: Uncategorized
Last week, my friend was talking about anxiety. She said “You know, the anxiety you get when the “check engine” light comes on?” I thought about how I felt the first time the check engine light came on in my car. Years ago, my mechanic told me that by the time the light comes on, you’re too late and have already messed up the car. The car I’m driving was given to me last November. It’s a 1998 Chevy Malibu with about 100,000 miles more than its life expectancy. Kinda like me – still alive 14 years past the expiration date the doctor gave me. The plates were expired and it needed to pass the emission test to renew them. I knew I didn’t have the money to get the repairs needed to get it to pass, but I also didn’t have the money to pay a potential ticket for driving with expired plates and not transferring the registration. Yes, I was anxious. My other car, a 1995 4-Runner with over 200,000 miles had died on the side of I-5.
I decided to leave the anxiety and try faith. Not just the praying kind, but more. I thanked and talked to the car as I was driving to the emission test. I knew it failed earlier in the year and no repairs had been made. I continued talking until we (me and the car) got there. Without all the details, we passed! Within about a week, the “check engine” light came back on. It’s almost always on.
Back to the question “You know the kind of anxiety you get when the “check engine” light comes on?” I realized that over the last 14 years, my body’s “check engine” light has been almost always on – regarding the cancer. Sure, there’s still some anxiety when a new tumor shows up, or one doesn’t go away with the treatments I do as fast as I want it to, but for the most part, it’s like my car. I know there’s a problem. When will the light be off more than it’s on? I believe it will happen long before the engine dies. I believe I’ll be 100% healthy before my engine dies.
Based on statistics, a lot of people will be told their “check engine” light is on. After the initial anxiety, switch to faith. Ask the “light” what it’s trying to teach you. Ask it what it needs. Listen. And follow through with what it tells you. I like to remember…Zig Ziglar said “Worry is misuse of the imagination.” Let go of worrying! Have fun! Live big, love big, laugh big! Life is good!
Love, gratitude and blessings
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: fantasy, Inspiration, Love, Perspective, reality
I was taught a long time ago to use all of my senses when I build a dream in my head. The more I really “FEEL” what I’m focused on…I was told…the quicker my fantasy will become reality. I’ve built the dream of what my life will look like when I no longer see cancer as a possibility. When I start my meditation, I usually start with a theme and see where it goes. There’s the pimped out dream house, the new suv with the tailgate that comes down for me to stand on while loading the kayaks on top of it, the King Air we take turns piloting – oh yeah, I have my pilot’s license. There have been dreams about speaking on stages, of teaching health and leading by example…yes, that’s already happening. Dreams of making people laugh and smile, dreams of inspiring people to be better…Yes, that’s happening too. Dreams of transforming lives, helping sick people heal, helping kids of all ages see their value…bringing their dreams to the surface. Yes, That too!
It’s funny. I used to dream of being a skydiver even though I was terrified of flying and of heights. Not just the 3,000 – 13,000 feet heights of climbing out of an airplane, but I won’t even stand on a 12 foot ladder. After I broke my back, I still found myself fantasizing about being a skydiver. I now realize how beneficial it’s been in my healing to have my brain and my thinking skills tested thru skydiving. I KNOW that when I’m that focused, I stay that focused for several days after a jump. I’m not jumping near as much as I want to, but for now, seeing the benefits over several days is pretty cool.
My hero has been out of state working for WAY too long. I know what day he’s supposed to be home, but every night I’ve been fantasizing about his return. Not all X rated stuff, but sharing our thoughts in the hot tub…getting hot and sweaty talking in the sauna…working out…hiking thru the woods…making, cutting and stamping soap…eating together…taking care of our responsibilities – separate and together…shower time…pillow talk…and YESSS! The XXX rated stuff! Did you know it’s possible for a woman to have an orgasm…hands free, toy free, penis free? NO, not sitting in a yoga position rocking on your foot either! Remember that increased thought process? Kegels, strong abdominal muscles and a little imagination as to timing and how to flex them…WOW! I should teach THAT class!
Back to the fantasy…
The past few nights, it starts with me sitting here at the computer. I hear the door handle move. I hear a key go in the door. My hero shouldn’t be home yet. I pull my SD40 out and face the door. Oh come on, I’m not the only person who’s home alone packin a gun. (Because the shepherd and bull mastiff might not be enough.) I see the door start opening. I stand up with my gun pointed toward the door. I found out recently that the only other person who has a house key is in jail for a violent crime. Maybe it’s time to change the locks. I see the dogs in the mirror standing, wagging their tails. “Hello?” in that familiar voice. I set the gun down on the desk and run to the door! I help him put his bags down in 2 seconds. We embrace for the best hug I’ve ever felt. His smell…feeling his body, which has changed…he’s more muscular… Oh, wait, is that going to offend him? Whatever! My best friend is home! He gently removes my ponytail while his other arm still holds me. He touches my face. He runs his fingers thru my hair. Holding my head he kisses me. The most sensual, passionate kiss I’ve ever had. He tells me to open my eyes. I leave the fantasy to completely experience him. As I open my eyes, I feel tears slowly roll down my cheeks. I see matching tears rolling down his cheeks.
I just spent the last 6 minutes building that fantasy! You don’t need the details. Imagine it.
My point is…in every fantasy…if we imagine it with enough detail to really feel like you’re leaving the fantasy and experiencing it in reality, if and when it happens really doesn’t matter. Don’t get me wrong, the deja vu when reality takes over is quite spectacular! It makes taking the time to fantasize so worth it!
Love, gratitude and blessings
Filed under: Uncategorized
You have cancer. It sucks to hear it. It sucks more when they tell you there’s nothing that can save your life. As some of you know, that was a LONG time ago for me. 14 years from the first time I heard it, 10 years from the expiration date they gave me. Ever since I was a kid, I’ve heard people say “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” So many times in my life, those in authority made it very clear they didn’t like or approve of my will! Many have called it rebellion. Whatever it’s called, I’m thankful for it! What a blessing it’s been! Without my will as strong as it is, would I be here?
My ex used to get frustrated with me, saying I’m always black or white, nothing in the middle. In some ways, he’s right. Tonight, I’m doing an experiment on the subject. 27 months ago, I ended up on the floor at work with the aid crew coming to scoop me up. I had been taking bloodroot internally to kill the cancer. My doctor thinks it killed more cancer than my body could eliminate and I became so toxic, I couldn’t function. It took 3 days before I could get down the stairs without sitting and scooting like a toddler. I knew I had to do something different. I went 100% into doing a ketogenic diet. I consume under 30grams of carbohydrates each day. Most of my calories come from fats like mct oil, coconut oil, olive oil, hemp oil, hemp seeds, chia seeds and a variety of nuts. Once or twice every day, I fill the blender with kale, dandelions, spearmint, cabbage and whatever other greens I grab out of the backyard, add oil, seeds and water. I have most of my kitchen counter cluttered with glass jars holding fermenting veggies. I eat sauerkraut, pickles and drink my turmeric, ginger, galangal root drink almost daily.
I always make sure I’m eating more fat than carbs so my ketones stay high. I felt like shit today. I have what looks like the tumors of the past on my right breast, but I don’t feel it at all. Just in case that’s what it is, I’ve been doing my mostly apple cider vinegar/coconut oil thing. It keeps my ketones high and helps to get rid of the tumors faster than when I’m eating “normal”. I thought I needed a nap. I drank apple cider vinegar and set my alarm. I was SO tired when I woke up, but I was meeting my training partner at the gym and made myself get up and go. I drank 2 oz of mct oil and a big glass of water. Mct oil is pure fat! It isn’t stored, but used for energy. By the time I got to the gym, I was ready to workout. We started with decline press. Someone had left 180 pounds on it and without paying attention, I just started and got 10 reps. He asked me how it was. I said “Fine.”
It was his turn. He got 10 too, but only because I did. He later said we should’ve taken weight off before we started. I had no idea where my energy was coming from. It had to be the mct oil. My whole workout was strong. On the way home, I started feeling crappy again. Once home, I checked and my ketones were high. (How did I know? I peed on a ketone strip to test it. They can be purchased in the diabetic section at most drug stores.) I couldn’t figure out what else could be wrong. It was too hot to be in the house so I decided to take the dogs for a walk. Just in case it was food related, I drank another 2 oz of mct oil and another big glass of water. I’m guessing mct oil is burned up faster than I used to think…definitely faster than what I’ve been told. We only walked a couple miles in the woods. I was feeling even worse by the time we got home.
Without all the details, the fireman left about an hour ago. It’s rare that I call 911, but I’ll text a friend for help. My blood sugar was at 70. I promised I would eat before I went to bed. I ate the rest of last night’s cinnamon/coconut walnuts and some sauerkraut with a glass of chia kombucha. It wasn’t enough.
Black or White…
This is where my stubbornness might get me in trouble. My blood sugar only went up to 72. I’m not willing to stray from ketosis unless I absolutely have to. I know that when it gets too low, I can’t get it up without carbs, but I don’t know where that point is. Reminds me of that line between having a little too much alcohol vs puking up your guts until your system gets too tired to continue purging. He used to tell me my analogies never make sense. You might agree. That only means I didn’t share the pictures in my head with enough details.
It doesn’t look like I’m going to get my blood sugar back to 80 without carbs, but I’m going to try. After all, who else is going to do it to find out if it works?!
My findings will be in my book.
Love, gratitude and blessings
Filed under: cancer, coaching, Gratitude, Inspiration | Tags: Friends, friends with benefits, Love, relationship, sex
I had a conversation with a Planned Parenthood teen advocate today that I wanted to share and get feedback on. We were talking about relationships and even when things are great, when is it time to move on? He explained that there are 3 main aspects to a relationship.
1 – SEX
2 – Love/Affection
3 – Companion/Friendship – Long term
He explained that a lot of relationships have one or two, but not all three aspects. Sex is easy to get, so if the rest of the relationship is separated, there are always options. Most people aren’t into “open” relationships, so if sex is high on one or both priority lists, separation makes it time to move on. The time frame of separation depends on the individuals. I know a couple that was married for over 20 years, who lived in different countries. They both traveled for their careers and met up 4-6 times a year for a week or two each time. They both claimed to be happy. The relationship ended with she lost her battle with cancer.
He went on to say that when the relationship has sex and companionship and one person has things they want to do, it’s easy to leave their best friend to accomplish their goals. They know they’ll be able to pick up wherever they left off.
The love/affection is the big one! When the love/affection is strong, it’s the hardest to leave a relationship when it’s time for one or both people to move on to achieve their personal goals. If love/affection is missing for whatever reasons, including long distance, it’s harder to keep things together. He thinks a lot of people shy away from the love and affection because they’ve been hurt in the past when they put themselves out there.
Just because something looks different than what our parents have or what our friends have, doesn’t mean whatever type of relationship we’re in isn’t perfect just the way it is.
Ever since my “terminal” diagnosis 10 years ago, I’ve attempted to show love and affection to the people around me as best as I could. Not sex. But love and affection. I’ve been misunderstood because it seems most other people hold back. They are friends. They are friends with sex benefits. They seem to be missing the love and affection. I once gave a friend a foot massage after he sprained his ankle. He panicked, sent me a “dear Jane” email, as if he thought I was trying to get him to marry me. As far as I knew, we weren’t even dating.
I am different. I’ve lived the last 10 years with statistics showing every year would be my last. I read a long time ago that all anyone REALLY wants is to be loved. I guess I figure if I can love the people around me, they will know they were loved by someone when I’m gone.
I’m not planning on going anywhere any time soon. Just thoughts I wanted to share. After all, nobody knows how much sand is left in their hourglass!
I love you!
Love, gratitude and blessings
Something to ponder I guess.
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As an “A” – licensed skydiver, I have to make a jump every 60 days to stay current. My last jump was on my birthday – June 8th. I needed another jump before next Wed to keep my currency. I woke up feeling “off”. Other things have been going on this week that have helped get me back in an irritated, pissed off mood. Oh yeah, the period thing too. That’s how God works. “I’ll throw all the shit at them the same week.” You know it happens to all women and affects the men around them…nearly every month. Where was I? I was afraid if I jumped today, I’d get hurt. For those of you who’ve been following me, remember the day before the jump when I broke my back, I got my nails done, a pedicure and waxed my crotch…just in case something happened. Don’t ever plan shit like that! I got what I expected, but a LOT worse than I ever imagined! And either before surgery or in the recovery room (he wouldn’t tell me when I said it) I told my neurosurgeon how I got my crotch waxed just in case he and all the others were going to see me naked.
Anyway, I haven’t been in a good place to be doing anything potentially life threatening without 100% focus! Last night, my hero Bert, helped me figure some things out, so it was a great start. Still, not enough to jump. This morning, I turned on YouTube to have some background music. Before my first song started, there was an ad. I noticed it was over 17 minutes. The button showed up to “skip ad”, but something told me to keep watching. It was Uma Thurman in a short movie titled “Jump”. I did stay and watch the entire 17 minutes. Without all of the details, it made me realize how important it is to believe in myself and my dreams. The stupid details of the week had gotten in my way of the things I know I want.
Brendon Burchard’s book “The Charge” talks about getting out of our comfort zone. When we do, it puts our brain in “I’ve gotta figure this out” mode. Not only does our brain try to complete the puzzle, it stays in that mode and figures out other things too. Skydiving requires 100% attention. Every second counts! If you move something out of place, it can cause your body to go all kinds of crazy directions. I always flip upside down when I get out and watch the plane fly away. After it’s out of my peripheral vision, I flip back over. It’s not as easy as it sounds at 120mph.
I was a little scared, but absolutely focused on my drive to Skydive Snohomish. I noticed how windy it was. A flag was standing straight out. I had a coach one time tell me the challenge of landing backwards is fun. I’m not ready to find out how fun that is! I thought about my jump. I always remember the impact from the day I crashed. I quickly dismissed it! I thought about details of malfunctions. What altitude would I pull my cord? How many other jumpers would I have to watch out for? What if the wind pushed me too far to land in the right field? So many things, but I was ON! Details flooded my head with ways to correct everything that passed thru it. As I pulled into the parking lot, I heard screams of excitement. I looked up. Several tandems were landing…their screams brought a giant smile to my face! As I got out of the car, I realized if I sneezed, I was likely going to pee my pants. When I first started jumping, I got so nervous, I had to poop. No, that’s not too much information. Someone reading this needs to know the side effects of adrenaline. Now, I just have to pee, sometimes several times before a jump. It’s all good. It helps with the puffiness and bloating of the period. (Yes, I’m always finding the silver lining) I went in and found out I could get on a 28 minute call. That’s 28 minutes to prepare for my flight. One way tickets are always best when the direction is UP! My favorite rental was sitting there waiting for me. First…empty my bladder. Things would probably dry before getting to the ground, but I had to go so bad, I probably wouldn’t have finished during my 45 seconds of freefall. I did my gear check and put everything on…rig, goggles, altimeter, helmet…I found that putting a drop of peppermint oil in my mouth and use peppermint lip balm, my mouth doesn’t get so dry. Another side effect of adrenaline – dry, dry mouth. If ears get plugged, without the peppermint oil, I don’t have any spit to swallow to clear my ears before getting out of the plane.
There are fires currently in Eastern Washington. Someone on the plane yelled, “Look, the fire!” I was on the other side of the plane as it was turning so I didn’t see it. The smoke and smog seemed to hover between 11,000 and 12,000 feet. It was hard to see Mt Rainier at that altitude. I was the first one out the door. Freefall was uneventful, although I was watching for my friend who got out after me, but was sit flying so he should have passed me at some point. I never found him during freefall, but waved off and opened at 4,000 feet like I planned. The deceleration always confuses me. It feels like my brain is flipping thru a giant dictionary, trying to figure out what the hell is going on. As soon as my canopy is open, I relax again, checking to make sure everything looks the way it’s supposed to. Even when I’ve had line twists, I’m still more relaxed under canopy than when I’ve pulled and it’s not open yet. The wind wasn’t nearly as strong as I thought it was, nor as strong as it was on my last jump. I played a little after my brake and turn checks. I’m getting braver at tighter turns, but not ready for spinning yet. As I entered my landing pattern, I started focusing on the things Tyson taught me about my angles and where I needed to be to land where I wanted to. Some things HAVE to be done by certain altitudes. I always follow those rules, probably because I remember the impact of the crash. The wind shifted a little as I was on my final, but I maintained my direction. I landed on my feet! It’s my norm to slide in on my butt. Today, I was determined to land on my feet and did it! Words can’t express how excited I was…and still am!
On my drive home, I realized that landing on my feet represented getting back on my feet! The cancer has been so bad over the last year. There were a few times I didn’t believe I could win. Today, so many things changed. The movie reminded me to believe in myself and my dreams…even when most of the people around me tell me I can’t do it. Like in the movie “Trust me, I know what I’m doing.”
On a side note, Fox Plumbing and Heating gave away a flight in a Patriot Jet today. Their slogan was #findthefox – I entered the contest many times, but didn’t win. They gave me my runner-up gift today. One of the items was a stuffed fox. My stuffed fox jumped with me. He liked it!
Love, gratitude and blessings,
Filed under: Uncategorized
A long, long time ago…if I tell you how long ago, you would think I’m too young to have had the experience I did, so let’s just go with a long, long time ago. Because it was so long ago, some of the words might be slightly different, but the story is the same. I managed a 36 unit apartment complex. One of my tenants had a clogged toilet. I called my maintenance guy, Paul, who showed up at my door about 30 minutes later. He had already tried a plunger, then the snake. There was something SOLID the snake wouldn’t go past. He said it was beyond his scope of expertise and asked me to call the plumber.
I had to get approval from my property manager before calling anyone outside of Paul or myself to fix things. Since I didn’t want the tenants using my bathroom, I was glad she answered and approved. There was only one plumbing company that would do a purchase order for us, allowing the owners in British Columbia to send them money instead of giving me access to their business account. I called the plumber. They were very PROMPT! The plumber showed up in less than 30 minutes. Again, I kept hoping the tenants could hold it.
Less than 10 minutes later, there was a knock on my door. It was the plumber. He was slowly shaking his head back and forth. I asked him what the problem was.
He said “I don’t know. I didn’t get that far. There won’t be any charge. I’m out.” He turned and walked away.
He said “That bathroom ain’t big enough for the both of us. I’m done.”
I had no idea what had just happened. I called the property manager and told her what was going on. Since there were no other plumbing companies, she told me to call Paul back. I had to go talk to the tenants and tell them we were going to remove the toilet to try to remove the obstacle. If whatever it was couldn’t be removed, we would break the toilet to further investigate. If it was biological in nature, the apartment complex would pay for the new toilet. If it was jammed with something that hadn’t come out of their body, they would have to pay for it.
That’s where the wording might have come up in a lawsuit over who was going to pay for the toilet.
For a little background. I had been brought up in a southern Baptist home, sheltered from most of the world. I was barely old enough to drink and hadn’t experienced much of the “real” world.
Paul and I went to the unit. One of the tenants, a six foot four inch tall – 180 pound dude, opened the door. He was wearing a white sheer woman’s nightgown. I hadn’t noticed how beautifully he had done his makeup yet, because he had the biggest hard on I had EVER seen, protruding thru his nightie. No f’n wonder the plumber didn’t stay! I have no idea what, if any conversation had taken place.
He said “Excuse me” in a voice you might expect from a tall skinny dude wearing more makeup than I had ever worn, slouched over as if to appear shorter with his penis standing at attention.
He grabbed a robe. We told him the plan. He wasn’t the tenant on the lease, but agreed to pay for the toilet. He didn’t complain about anything. He acted like he didn’t want his roommate to find out. I was afraid of what we were going to find.
I told Paul I was going back to my apartment and asked him to yell up when I needed to meet him at the dumpster. I sat on my deck, wondering what I had gotten myself into. I know there are always going to be surprises left out of a job description, but this was WAY more than I had expected! It wasn’t long when I heard Paul laughing and yelling “Susan”. I went to the dumpster to meet him. He had broken the base of the toilet to reveal a phallic shaped pink “Tickle” deodorant. Google images if you don’t know what it is.
Even with my sheltered background, it didn’t take me long to figure it out. YUK!!! Too many visuals went thru my head as to HOW it happened and WHY the toilet got flushed.
I drove Paul to the hardware store to pick up a new toilet with the cash the tenant had already given us. He went on to tell me the guy was playing with himself when he was there the first time. When Paul didn’t respond, he started putting on make up. I’m not sure what shocked me more, what the tenant was doing or the fact that Paul failed to mention it.
We laughed about it most of the day. I still laugh every time I think about it.
Love, gratitude and blessings
Filed under: coaching, Inspiration | Tags: Ah-Ha Moment, Choices, Empower, Gratitude, Inspiration, Perspective, True Love, Trust
Do you ever wish you KNEW, without a shred of doubt, what someone was thinking? I mean really know! So many times in my past, people said things to me they didn’t really mean. Who knows, maybe they thought they meant it, but their actions showed otherwise.
Or, that feeling you get in your gut when you think someone is lying to you. Many years ago, I decided to trust that feeling. It’s no longer about me thinking it’s telling me something, but KNOWING it’s telling me something. Something I need to pay attention to. Sometimes I consider it bad, sometimes I consider it good.
Sometimes, that feeling…even though no words were spoken…can be the most amazingly beautiful, love filled, more so – indescribable feeling you’ve ever felt. The “bad” feelings push me to get stronger and overcome, while the “good” ones allow me to blossom, being more of what I came here to be.
Love, gratitude and blessings,