Monday, February 25, 2013

Monday - Monday

The sun is just peeking over the horizon and from my bedroom the big ball of yellow and orange makes it hard to see my key board. Generally I have little use for Monday mornings but this Monday is sweet. It was an amazing weekend. Spending time with my horses, grandgirlies and my family. I plan to carry this warm feeling with me through the week.  A trip to visit my Champ on the way in to the office, then baby Joey (the yearling rescue) and off to work.  There is something truly unique about spending time with horses and horse people. Mind you there is huge dysfunction and the same life issues with all of us but the animals, in all their mythical presence make the difference.

I rode yesterday on a friends horse (Champ is almost ready to ride after his lameness). Just feeling the warm sun the the sweet rhythm of a walk along the trail made my whole day. A slow trot here and the time flew by. I love being on the trails, the friendly hello to other riders, walkers and runners. The smell of flowers and grass and even dirt. It all feels so right. I am pretty certain I was a cowgirl in a prior life. The saddle is home and the horse is my train. Just love it.

So here is to Monday!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Wednesday - Inventory

So yesterday toward the end of the day I found myself in a tizzy...yes a Tizzy! I am not exactly sure at what moment I turned the switch but it was not pretty. I find it interesting how I absorb so much all day long, listen to conversations, complaints, problems and criticism and manage to move along fine until one simple moment. That was yesterday. In a clinical setting I suppose I could be looking for triggers...what are the things that send me over the edge?

A short list:

  • someone I love is hurting and despite my best efforts I nave no ability to fix
  • being financially insecure most of the time
  • someone who has done bad things continues to influence others negatively
  • injustice at any level 
  • false prophets at any level...those who bolster and pretend (even when they are unaware)
  • gossip
Now in full disclosure I am guilty of all of the above at one time or another. Perhaps my acute reactions to some of these are due to my personal distaste for these in myself. I know that daily I let myself down when am unable-unwilling to complete my own 'to do" list and live by my own standards. But alas yesterday I found the tipping point and let anger and frustration consume me. Far easier to do than to be brave and speak my misgivings, forgive others and ultimately myself. 

Today will start with a longer walk, a longer stretch and semi-yoga session and prayer. I want to find the silver lining in the daily activities. I need to believe I am following my path and it is where I am called to be.  Toberman, Horses, Los Angeles, grand babies (7 and 8), caregiver (Mom), parent to adult children and wife to a man on the opposite coast.  Here is to Wednesday!

Monday, February 11, 2013


So here we are Monday morning. A birthday should never be on a Monday, particularly one that is already depressing. This Monday has a few sad is Monday, I am older, I am blue. I have decided to make a few substantial changes to my small world. Taking better care of my darn expensive teeth, more exercise, more time with my horse, relaxing with tea in the evenings, reading and being grateful more often.

It is so amazing to me how often I feel fear and shame about my life. I am not talking the big stuff but the daily little "notes to self" that make me crazy. Things such as: you did not call the doctor for a follow appointment...Again, follow up with the IRS...Again, I need to call Mom's doctor and her home care agency (been on the list for weeks), how come I cannot keep my car insurance and registration straight?, and create a damn birthday calendar so that you will not forget the special days of your friends! It is a continual loop of self doubt and I know better.

I think this year I will work even harder to recognize the dogs barking and keep them at bay. I figure at this point in life I am not going to pick up the traits of an organized, detailed person perhaps I should embrace the person I am and get over it. I am thinking that should be enough. Yup it makes me smile so let's go with it. Cheers to another blessed and crazy year.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Learning to be me again!

Okay so for all those who feel compelled to live for everyone else I have a news flash (really for myself). It does not work, it is not healthy and it is really not selflessness, it is some kind of weird need based in fear. I realize that I have lived in a certain amount of fear my whole life. I recently found this amazing rental in a beautiful place in sunny southern California and I love it. However more frequently than I would like to admit I worry about having to move. Fear, doubt, glass half full all very familiar to me. So I think I have spent much of my life living in fear and caring for everyone else. Unwilling to hurt others but hurting myself and in the end all of us. But for a period of time this "co-dependent weirdness" allowed me to attach to something real or not. I think anyway.

Here is the last two and a half years in a snap shot. I moved to the west coast to be with my daughter and her two little girls, my adorable grandchildren. I wanted to help her make the transition to a big law firm job and give them support. I love them all dearly and am very close to the grandchildren as they lived close or with me on and off for years. I got lost in the mix of living with them, with my mother and not finding space and time for me. No time to read, to write, to walk with my dog or to be Debbie. I told myself I was making a sacrifice, well no I was feeding my own need to care for and be loved. I was not giving the best of me...the best of me comes out when I am purposefully living my days, letting go of guilt and anger. I lost a few years being lost. Not exactly clear I know but that is how I feel. I love them all so much but felt like I did not give them what I love most about me. I am a free spirit with lots of quirks and a significant lack of discipline. I adore animals, nature, reading, and great live theater. I have some catching up to do.

I have a new amazing home with just my Mom (still need someone right?). This is the view from my window each morning. When the fear that the owner will sell and I will have to leave sneaks in I am saying "hello fear" and move on to enjoy the view. Today it is raining and still it smells sweet and looks great. In putting these words here I am back to a small piece of my own process for life. I am working on gratitude and happiness. This old lady has some new tricks to learn.

Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 What a Year

2012 What a year

So here it is the last day of 2012! While I am certain wonderful things happened in 2012 not too many come to mind. I am actually okay with this year passing. The general glum feeling I have experienced this year leaves a bitter taste. Perhaps I am putting too much emphasis on the holidays,  the height of the lows. I struggle even now to make this post but decided that a whole year could not go by without something in my blog. I suppose the lack of entries speak volumes about my state of mind.

2012 was a new job year, lots learned in a new world. I gained insight into poverty and violence that left me sad. The needs of people left me wondering how we, I, live in this affluent world and others suffer so greatly. And yet I also learned of great resiliency...families that hold together despite great odds and live with multiple generations in small spaces. And....they find happy spaces and maintain traditions and hope. Where does that come from? My new job also has been the greatest challenge to my abilities to date. I took on a turn around that had been created  by years of  mismanagement. The depth of which I underestimated. While I have been a successful leader bringing this one back from disaster has been almost impossible. Of course it also brought to me all the usual self doubt and denigration I am so fond of.

2012 marked another year of living coast to coast with my hubby. Makes me sad and that is all I can say.

2012 marked the year of living in tight quarters with my extended family and allowed me a front row seat into my personal dysfunctions. My vulnerabilities and my fears all blew up into silent and sneaky goblins lurking in the corners of my world. I found myself countless times sad with ostensibly no reason and too often watched the clock for five pm Wine Time! I did not go to the gym yet I continue to pay monthly for the privilege. And I never began Yoga but thought of it often, generally to remind myself that I am not good at follow through when it matters for me.

2012 was a hard, very hard year for some in my family and all my co-dependent cells circled my body and crippled me at times. Watching a person you love fall into despair and helplessness must be one of the circles of hell. Up and down, waiting and watching for the crash. destruction and chaos. Fearful and sad. Nuff said.

2012 was the year I began to ride horses again. For months I took lessons, got yelled at, gained confidence and rented horses to ride in Burbank. I sunk into the familiar smells of the barn like a bigdown blanket. The feel of leather, saddles, bridles and the softness of a horse muzzle all brought me to a place of peaceful retreat. Thank God! I rescued a race horse, he is a love. Not always perfect after all he is a thoroughbred.  A wise man, Javier, at the horse rental place once said " those thoroughbreds are 90% crazy". He was likely correct but my Champ is really only about 10% crazy. He is a love, kind and sweet. He has given me challenges, endless hours of fun on the trails and new friends who also love horses. Mostly a group of middle aged women. A curious thing indeed. It became my life boat for 2012!

2012 is almost over and I am glad. This holiday has been hard I suspect mostly because I am in a change mode. All the things I have allowed to burden me, hold me back, my self pity and loneliness are checking in. They are saying enough of this lady. So I look for a new place to live with Mom, she is a fixture at 85 and a joy (mostly). A place close enough to keep riding with the grand babies and enjoy visits. Close enough to have my children join me for dinners and walks and poolside chats. But on my own enough to build my home, my pictures, my smells, my rugs, my safe place. I will continue to love my hubby so many miles away and accept that he has things to do and I will make every effort to save this nonprofit from failure. ( I know I can) And I will celebrate 2013. Maybe I will go to the gym, take yoga or learn to line dance...definitely return to church and ride my Champ along the 90 miles of Palos Verdes.  Mostly I will forgive myself and the folks I love for  not being perfect.

Happy New Year and so long 2012!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


SO here we go folks! The holiday season is upon us and while the world seems to be in a financial spiral people are shopping in droves. What is that about?

I am guessing it is influence of the media, needing to keep up with the neighbors or maybe just needing to feel you deserve it. We believe that we must have all those things that are flashed in front of us daily on TV, print media and yup now social media.
So we shop even when we cannot afford to and we feed the money is a vicious cycle.

Check out this news...

It is a bit scary that this surge in spending also marked a significant drop in savings. But for some of us who live pay check to pay check savings are barely part of the equation. Still I find myself drawn to the idea that toys must be purchased for the little ones. This year I have convinced my oldest grand daughter that she wants a pasta is after all her favorite food. This to me is a reasonable gift as it will allow for productive use all year long. The little one stills seem hooked on barbie for now that might be necessary.

What I have shared with them is the idea that we should all spend more time helping those less fortunate. They both had a great time shopping with their mom for a family in need in Los Angeles. I was proud of them all.

So while we are pulled to by the fantastic array of available products that we simply must have keep in mind all those who do not have. Maybe drop a dollar or two in the Salvation Army or purchase that ten dollar bag of food that is ready made at your local supermarket. It matters now more than ever. And maybe we can look into what big corporate machine we are feeding? Buying local is a good idea. Currently I am looking for someone who makes furniture for American Doll girls...really the junk they have is unbelievable! I would rather support a home business. But the temptation to simply click and ship is huge.
Working on it...trying to keep Holidays in perspective and remember that I am the 99%.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Where have I been? Following Occupy

My goodness I have been away from this blog for so long. I am thinking a bit of depression, overwhelmed? Not really certain. However I have to share a new interest that has taken some of my free time. I am addicted to following the Occupy groups on Twitter. I am fascinated with the movement and all it represents.

I love the conversation. I like that it does not have form or clarity of direction. I like that it is based on a swelling dissatisfaction. I too feel unhappy with the way of the world. I have been part of that group of folks who have had their mortgage sold a million times and have dealt with some companies of poor reputation. I have seen my savings dwindle and worried about the future. I have watched the disparity between the wealthy and the rest. I sense that it is wrong, I feel morally that with all the wealth in our country children should not go without food and medical care. It baffles me. But like the Occupy folks I do not have answers. I have questions, I know that there are funds being spent in ways that make no sense. I know that it is wrong that some companies make billions while the front line workers are considered greedy for wanting a share. So I am interested and watch with intrigue as this movement grows and its voice gains a presence in the national conversation.

I suspect a piece of this is from my history. I was so young witnessing the demonstrations of the 60's (really young) but I remember them. I recall the anti war demonstrations later in life. What I really was struck by in both cases was that when "the people" finally spoke the government listened. It is my hope that at least some of the folks in power are listening now. We are a better people than the current trends would suggest. We need the middle class, as fickle and unpredictable as we may be.

I encourage folks to keep their hearts and minds open as this young movement speaks.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A Lady I met

I was walking back from a meeting and passed a women sitting on a bench in front of Starbucks. While the weather was very warm she wore several layers of clothing and carried a large suitcase. Her face was wrinkled and her eyes looked watery, a bit red and tired, She was smoking the stub of a cigarette.

As I passed she waved her hand and asked "do you have any money to spare?" I was happy to be at the end of my day and partly thought ...just keep walking. But I turned and sat on the bench next to her. Her eyes lit a bit. I told her that I was broke and was not sure I had any cash on me (I often do not have cash). I pulled out my wallet and I had five one dollar bills...I handed them to her. She smiled, then pulled a couple out and said "Here you keep those you is broke". I felt so warmed by her offer back..I let her know that my broke meant I needed to go to the ATM and surely she could have all five dollars. Of course she blessed me. I walked away and thought yes dear I am blessed.

No matter how that five dollars was spent I knew at that moment I experienced a much greater gift than she did. I was reminded that the human condition, even on the hardest of days, has love and hope at the core. I felt a joy that stayed in my heart. Thank you Ms. Lady!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

BobBob aka Grandpa! TOO FUNNY

What grandfathers do for the little ones Lexie and Skyler! My husband is so funny. For the past year while the children have lived on the west coast and he on he east they have shared hopes for a jet pack to visit. Bob created these videos for them.

They speak for themselves. I just loved it!

First attempt:

Second attempt:

I love this guy.