Tag Archives: sensitive

Choices

13 Sep

depression-1A person with Bipolar Disorder experiences moments of Mania, where they are euphoric, have tremendous energy, and sometimes even feel invincible.  There is also a crash downward into Depression after the Manic episode occurs. Some people experience these shifts a few times a year, others can have symptoms  with shifts as often as several times a day.  It really depends on the person and their chemistry.  Those who experience contrasting moods to the extent that they happen several times a day tend to be very restless and irritable.  Auntie was one of them.  One minute she would be goofing around, having fun playing with the kids, and I’d see a glimpse of the woman I remembered. The next she was annoyed, treating the kids harshly, and stomping off in a snit, leaving my husband and I looking at each other in confusion over what had just happened.  Worse, the kids would be bewildered and ask, “What’d I do?”  The only person in the house who was “safe” from Auntie’s moods; at least directly, was my husband.  Auntie had been through several abusive relationships, and I think she had a fear of men; though she’d never admitted it.  I believe that was probably the only thing that kept my husband out of the line of fire.  She would come to me to complain about him instead.

Over time, I found myself dreading being home with Auntie and would find any excuse to get out by myself for a while. I didn’t recognize this woman, and I grew weary of pointless discussions that went on and on, in circles for hours, with no resolution.  There was a lot of finger-pointing and blaming going on and she took absolutely no responsibility for any part in anything that happened.  In her eyes she was never wrong and to hear her tell it, my husband, kids, and I were mean, horrible people who did things purposely to hurt her!  I couldn’t wrap my mind around the fact that this woman who had known me my entire life was accusing me of acting in ways I just wasn’t capable of.  The things she accused my husband and kids of doing were even worse.  She acted as if she thought everyone had some hidden agenda or ulterior motive.  I was constantly having to defend myself as well as my husband and kids to her and it was getting to be so surreal!  I wondered when she had gotten so bitter and cynical.  After all, Auntie had raised two children.  Surely, she had to have experienced these kinds of things before.  Why was she getting so bent out of shape over “kid stuff”??

I started going to Starbucks every morning after dropping my youngest off at preschool.  I’d get my favorite coffee, pull into the parking lot across the street and sit in the car.  I’d park in front of a small pond at the far end of the parking lot, the furthest away from the all stores and activity, and watch the mama ducks and their ducklings play follow the leader, while enjoying the solitude and my coffee.  It was during these moments that I would try to make sense out of the things that were going on.

After a while of taking time to myself each morning, I decided to have a talk with Auntie.  I couldn’t understand where her behavior was coming from and I wanted to see what we could work out to try to lessen the tension in the house.  The conversation wasn’t going as I’d hoped; we were getting nowhere, and I had decided to drop the subject for the day when Auntie confided in me about her Bipolar Disorder.  In the next breath she told me she didn’t need to be treated for it and she could handle it just fine on her own. She said she had been prescribed medication for her symptoms but was not taking it.  When I asked her why she stopped taking the medication if the doctor felt she needed it, she said she didn’t like how it made her feel.  She said she had only tried the one medication and had never gone for her follow up visit to let the doctor know how it affected her…

…next…choices part 2

 

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New Year…New Life

8 Sep

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During the time I was dealing with losing my job and sorting out the issues with my friend, a family friend came back into my life.  She and my mom had been friends since they were kids, I’d known her since birth, and we considered her family.  I’d grown up calling her my Aunt, her children my cousins, and so on.  She and I had always been close and I was very fond of her.   She had always been a unique individual, free-spirited, or what my mother liked to call “flaky”.  It wasn’t unusual for years to go by without hearing from her.  I’d wonder how she was doing  and would eventually track her down.  I had done just that earlier that year in May, a couple of months before losing my job. We talked every few days from then on.

About a month later, I was talking to her during the hour-long drive home in the early morning hours from my ghost tour job in Saint Augustine.  She confided in me that she was in a horrible living situation and desperate to get out, but had nowhere to go. I called her back the next day after talking it over with my husband and invited her to come stay with us. The plan was for her to stay as long as she needed until she had saved enough money to get her own place.  I was excited to have her come and stay, but there was an uneasiness in my gut when I thought about it. Figuring it was just the idea of someone living with us causing it, I made the call anyway and brushed it off.  Unfortunately, like so many times before when I ignored that inner voice; what I now call my soul voice, I made the wrong decision.   I remembered her as a sweet, nurturing presence in my life when I was a kid,  and as someone I could always talk to, no matter what. I felt my kids would benefit from her being around since I intended to return to work full-time when I found another job and she’d be there with them when I couldn’t be.  They’d have another adult with a positive presence in their lives. She’d benefit by getting out of her current living situation and have a place to stay with people who loved and appreciated her, and she could save up the money to start over.  She offered to help out with the kids, cooking, etc., in return for staying with us.  I figured it was a win-win situation for all concerned.

She arrived December 1, 2012.  She’d changed her name over the few years that passed from the last time I’d seen her until I tracked her down and called her in May.  The day she arrived, she asked that we not call her by her former name.  She reasoned that it bothered her because she’d been through hell and having coming out on the other side, she felt that person was long gone.  In hindsight, I can see where the red flag should have gone up for me.  After all, I’d known her all my life as that person.  Chalking it up to one of her many eccentricities, I didn’t give it much thought at the time.  It felt strange and awkward calling her by this new name, but wanting to respect her wishes, I compromised and just called her “Auntie.”  I would find out her name wasn’t the only thing that had changed since I’d seen her last.

…next…new year…new life…part 2

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My Induction Into Paranormal Life: Taking Stock

1 Aug

Most people get to a certain point in their lives and start to evaluate; especially after something significant happens that causes them to be faced with a major life change or their own mortality.  The death of a relative, getting married, having kids, losing a job, turning 40, or any other life changing event or milestone can prompt you to take stock of your situation.

After I lost my job, I had plenty of free time to take a good, long look at mine.  I did have a lot to be thankful for.  I had my health, a nice home, 3 beautiful kids, and a husband who was everything I could ever hope for. But..I still didn’t have joy in my life. Life seemed daunting, hard, a struggle to get through most days, and I couldn’t figure out why.  The two main causes of stress in my life; my oldest daughter and my job, had now been reduced by half.  As a parent, I knew I needed to figure something out.  I was tired of being miserable! In my opinion, you can’t be a good parent and take care of your kids if you don’t know how to take care of yourself.

I had read that a gratitude journal could help change one’s focus from the negative to the positive things in life, so I decided to give it a try. One of the things the article suggested was to think of the people in your life who support you.  These people are the ones who want to see you succeed, do well, be happy, and are there for you no matter what.  I wrote down the people who came to my mind first; my husband, my parents, my life coach, my therapist, my aunt, and my mother-in-law.  Then I started to think about my friends.  Friends support you, right?  robin williams

I have two really great friends that I met after my husband and I got married in 1994, and we’ve been friends through all the military moves to different states and countries.  No matter the amount of miles separating us, or how often we saw each other or spoke on the phone, we could always pick up right where we left off as if no time had gone by.  I wrote these two friends down.  The friends I had made more recently, I’d made at my job.  After I examined my friendships with them further, I decided that they weren’t really friends.

Had I gotten it wrong somehow? Maybe somewhere along the way, I’d gotten the wrong idea about what a friend is supposed to be.  After all, these days with Facebook and Twitter, a “friend” is just someone you know or that your friends know.  Was it possible that I’d misinterpreted the meaning of that word all this time? I had managed to take a task meant to change my outlook, and turn it into a reality check.

I’ve always had a hard time making friends. Later, after finding out about my gifts, I would learn that it’s always difficult for an empath to trust, due to our ability to read others.  I know when people are being honest and sincere and when they’re not. Maybe because most of my “friends” were at least 5 or 6 years younger than me, didn’t have kids, weren’t married, etc., I expected too much from them. The only basis for comparison I had was how I treated them.   I was there for my friends to confide in and rely on.  I was there for support, to have fun with and commiserate with.  I considered their feelings, was honest with them, and I didn’t judge them if their opinion was different from mine. I was there to give advice if they asked for it.  I valued each one of them as a person, treated them with respect, and they knew I genuinely cared. I realized that they were benefiting much more from being friends with me than I was from being friends with them.  As a matter of fact, when I reached out to them for support, they usually made me feel worse; not better!

…next…letting go…

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My Induction Into Paranormal Life-Part XV

26 Jul

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It was 4 months prior to me getting fired, but I already felt like a failure both in my career and as a mother. I really knew and felt that it was only a matter of time before my entire house of cards came tumbling down around me.  I was depressed, bitter, angry, restless, and felt helpless…not me at all.  The day I typed, “I hate my life” in the Google search was one of my most desperate days ever. I knew I was headed for disaster. I felt like I was on my way toward some kind of a breakdown. I didn’t like how I felt and I was desperately searching for a life line.  I sent out a soul call that day.

A soul call is a cry for help that one sends out into the universe; sometimes knowingly, most of the time unknowingly.  I didn’t know it that day, but when I Googled, “I hate my life,” I sent out a call asking for help.  I couldn’t see the computer screen because of tears that had welled up in my eyes; which only served to make me angry.  I was sick and tired of crying, hurting, and being misunderstood.  I was sick and tired of being sick and tired!  I managed to calm myself enough to read the search results and clicked the link that would later change my life.  I remember thinking, “Like this is going to help.”  It just goes to show how powerful soul calls actually are.  Soul calls are like prayers in that they are very powerful and they are always answered, but often not the way we think they will be.  For instance,  I thought I was asking for help to keep my job. Little did I know that 4 months later it would be a moot point.  I was asking for my life to change, and my desperation caused it to happen the fastest way possible!

Things did change– so quickly and drastically since then — sometimes it feels like a different lifetime.  All of the things that have happened in that one short year still boggle my mind.  Having worked my way through and overcome each obstacle as it came, I know all were for my good.  In retrospect, getting fired from my job was just how things had to happen so the change I wanted so desperately could manifest.  I closed the door on that portion of my life, causing another one to open; then another, and another, until once again I find myself facing yet another door. Do I leave it closed?  Do I open it and walk through? Getting fired wasn’t the hardest thing I would face in that year.

….to be continued…

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My Induction into Paranormal Life-Part XIII

14 Jul

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A few days ago, on July 10th, 2013, it was exactly a year since I left my job. It’s really crazy how life can change so drastically in the blink of an eye; yet seem to come full circle again and leave you right back where you started. I’ve done a lot of self-reflection and soul-searching, and I’ve learned so much in such a short time; about myself and others as well.

It’s important to note that I didn’t know I was an empath until recently and throughout my life, I’ve always been very sensitive to the feelings of others. I have always been extra sensitive to negative energies, especially the ones that were focused toward me. I’d spend countless hours analyzing. I would feel responsible for them and turn them inward; thinking it was my fault. If only I was(n’t) ______, if only I wouldn’t have ______, or it’s because I _______, was common inner dialogue for me. There have been times in my life that this type of self-criticism has damaged my psyche to the point of despair. Once it got to the point of me being suicidal. Thankfully, I recognized the thoughts I was having at that time as being unhealthy and I sought help. I felt those familiar feelings last January, and I started looking for ways to climb out of the pit of despair I found myself in.

One very difficult morning, I couldn’t face going to work that day. It was a chore just to get out of bed most days, which made me habitually late during that time. Not wanting to face the judgement of being late yet again, I called in sick. After my husband left for work and the kids left for school, I found myself crying and unable to stop. I got out my lap top and Googled, “I hate my life.” I found a website that was about self-love and how to get it. It was a life coach’s web site. I didn’t know anything about life coaches, so I don’t know why I had the opinion I did, but I had always thought that life coaching was a bunch of, “Life is wonderful…lah dee dah…” and I really wasn’t in any mood to read about how great life is and all you have to do is think positive, etc. I started reading the information on the web site thinking it was going to be another one of those kinds of deals. I almost closed out the page without reading it, but something inside told me to give it a chance. My soul voice was guiding me to something.

…to be continued…

My Induction Into Paranormal Life

19 May

One the most common questions people ask me is how I got interested in the paranormal.  Like many investigators out there, my interest came out of occurrences that over the course of time I could not explain and did not understand.  As a child, they scared me.  As an adult, they intrigued me.  As my interest grew, I would devour anything I could on the subject.  Imagine my delight as more and more subject matter was produced and made available; first on the internet; then on television!

More times than I can count I’ve been left wondering, “Did that really just happen?” Approaching any kind of supposed paranormal activity, I have always first tried to find a logical explanation.  It started mainly as a way to keep myself from freaking out when strange things would happen.  As luck would have it, until very recently, I was alone when I experienced them…making it much harder to convince my parents, then later on my husband, that they were indeed happening and it wasn’t just the overactive imagination of a worried wife of a deployed husband—-.   Those things that defy any logical explanation that I find the most intriguing.

As a kid, I would tell my parents about things that that I heard or saw and I would be met with glazed over stares or looks like I had just sprouted an additional head in front of their very eyes.  I grew up thinking I just had an overactive imagination; nothing more. “Oh, it was just the..furnace, house settling, the wind…”–you get the idea. It wasn’t until years later, after I was married and had kids of my own, that my Mom admitted to witnessing some strange events when my sister and I were kids. During one of those conversations, she mentioned the year the Christmas tree wouldn’t stay up.  Laughing, I confirmed that I remembered it, and that she finally had to resort to using twine to affix the tree to the banister for the stairs leading up to my bedroom. What I didn’t remember,  my Mom told me, was a similar event that occurred years prior when I was 5 or 6, and my Dad had scolded me and sent me to my room.  Per my Mom and her best friend who was present at the moment in question, I stomped my way up to my room muttering something to myself and slammed my bedroom door shut.  approximately 5 minutes later, the Christmas tree shot from where it was standing in the living room to the opposite wall, where it made contact with a loud thud, then fell to the floor.  I don’t remember the incident, but I do remember the emotional turmoil that was very much a part of my life at that age.  The same kind of emotional uproar and family turmoil was present during the Holiday Season after my Mom and Dad separated. The current school of thought on poltergeist activity is that a sensitive who hasn’t learned to control their abilities can be unwittingly responsible through the manifestation of telekinetic activity caused by emotional trauma (for further information on poltergeists, check out http://idiotsguides.com/static/quickguides/newage/the-five-stages-of-a-poltergeist.html ).

Up until about a year ago, my interest in the paranormal was satisfied by watching paranormal shows on television or reading about it in the occasional magazine article or internet site, like this one: http://www.paranormalpeopleonline.com/ .  My day-to-day life was pretty average–working and spending time with my family in the evenings and on weekends.  After finding myself unemployed for the first time in 10 years, I was looking around on Facebook, and a friend posted a status about her employer hiring.  I messaged her and a couple of weeks later, I had a job working for a tour company in Saint Augustine, FL.  The job was like nothing I would have ever considered doing before, but that was why it appealed to me.  I would be driving a customized hearse and taking groups out on ghost tours.  I knew the public speaking part of it would be a challenge for me as my true nature is that of an introvert.  I wanted something challenging after losing my job to prove to myself that I could do it, and I loved the idea of seeing purportedly haunted locations.  I embraced the opportunity to tell visitors all about the scandalous affairs, unsolved murders, and bloody battles fought within the walls of our Nation’s Oldest City.  It is the mixture of all of these things as well as the city’s age and location that are thought to be the perfect recipe for much of the activity there.  I never expected that the job would forever change my view of the paranormal–and of myself.

…to be continued…