Human Interest, Inspiration, Journal Entry, Opinion, Reflection

Love Begets Love…

I will never understand the woman who gets offended and instead of discussing whatever it was that offended her, she screams, blocks you, and then doesn’t listen to the other side. To me, it’s like a child. If a woman is shown love, then she must resolve the conflict with love & understanding. If not, the relationship is selfish, one-sided, and doomed. There are some temper tantrums you just cannot come back from. Sad 🥺 but true.

Recently, someone acted this way to me. She said quite simply, “I spoke my mind.” She felt that’s all she had to do, and it didn’t matter how it was delivered. She felt she had a right to speak her mind and not be accountable for her emotions or the things she said poorly or violent in anger. The person to whom the anger was directed, was supposed to acquiesce to whatever she believed, and that was that. Everything would be fine if nobody contradicted her. When I tried to explain she was taking things in my life personally, I was promptly blocked, mocked, publicly chastised, and then called passive-aggressive for trying to be graceful through it. I needed to work on how I would handle it. The more of the conversation continued the more insults came my way, and none were returned. Didn’t matter. She got two other people involved and they began acting the same way. Eventually, it became a witch hunt. And by that I mean the women whom I showed love to desperately tried to “find something” to be offended about. It’s the old adage… “When you look hard to find the offense, you won’t have to look long.” No person is perfect, so make sure that you’re above reproach before you condemn.

What I find is confusing is that the people can pretend to be professional or even loving or even fairly put together well, but in essence, for those of us that do not bear the gift of desertion, they can often be a brooding storm just waiting to burst. It’s OK to remind yourself, that your friendship has value when you find people like this in your life. It’s OK to affirm yourself, and not listen to hateful words. It’s OK to stay on your path and always do the right thing despite how somebody else acts. That’s what being a woman of character is and then it’s OK to light the match and set the bridge on fire if it continues.

“SUN IS RISING” tomorrow is a new day.

Inspiration

Worthy of Love, by Jacob Nightingale

“We instinctually measure our self-worth based on our perceived value to the tribe that surrounds us, and unfortunately, I am a rocket scientist on a football team.” 

Find your Tribe, and there you will discover your value. Find your willingness, and there you will decide your worth. 

We were all innocent once. A child; vulnerable and uncertain. We struggled to make sense of the world. Nothing was certain except for our undying love and devotion to those we valued. We gave our trust freely to those we loved, without reservation. We would do anything to please them, and give anything to see them happy. There is no greater devotion than the love of a child and every child wants to believe they are loved equally in return. A child is always seeking feedback and reassurance, because they want to know one thing—if they too, are worthy of love. Our body may have grown and our spirit has matured, but that child still wants to know, “am I worthy to be loved?”

Worthiness is measured, not by how much you are loved, or by how much love you have been given. Worthiness is measured by how much love and devotion you are willing to give.

A child is born willing to give ALL their love and devotion; no one is more worthy of love than a child.

Like all children, we’re all pure potential. Our Will is the very essence of our potential and we are free to create ourselves however we choose. Is there a such thing as worthless potential? 

No one is worthless; we are all a work in progress, and our progress, our worth, is based solely on our willingness to learn, grow, and improve.  

While we can measure our “value” based on our past contributions and accomplishments, it’s solely based on another’s appreciation and value for what we gave. However, our worthiness, is only effectively measured by our willingness to give, and whether we did the best we could with what we had.

Are you worthy of being a friend, parent, leader, partner, spouse, doctor, student, artist, author…?

Love is the devotion to creating value, contributing, supporting, actualizing dreams, and nurturing growth, improvement, creation, and connection. If your worthiness is based on your willingness to give love and devotion, you need only to ask, “How much love and devotion am I willing to give?” This is your worthiness.    

Are you worthy of Leading? 

How much are you willing to give those that choose to follow you; to nurture, inspire, guide and support their growth and improvement?

Are you worthy of being a parent?

How much are you willing to give your child love and devotion; to support their development, to offer comfort and safety, and to nurture their growth?

Are you worthy of being a friend or romantic partner?

How much are you willing to give love and devotion to the relationship, to nurture each other’s growth and aspirations? 

Are you worthy of creating success?

How much are you willing to give to reach your objectives?

Are you worthy of love and devotion from another?

How much love and devotion are you willing to give?

While we cannot state another’s worth, we can decide if it’s “worth it” to give. When you give to someone, you are investing a part of yourself to them, and for someone to be worth it, they must be willing to accept and willing to invest. If someone is unwilling to give, how can they be worthy of what we are giving? If they are unwilling to grow and improve or to contribute and nurture growth, how can they be worthy of our support and contribution? If someone is unwilling to give love and devotion, is it worth it to give them ours? We cannot allow ourselves to give to those that are unwilling, and if we are unwilling, we are not worthy of what others are willing to give. 

It’s amazing how this simple shift in perception can change everything; it can break down the chains of self-doubt, worry, and insecurity. You don’t need to ask whether someone else finds you worthy. You can measure your own worthiness and the worthiness of those you keep in your life. If you are willing to give love, you’re worthy to be loved, and you are worth every ounce of love you have in your heart. That small child can find peace and comfort, knowing that no matter how much they were cast aside, forgotten, or unfairly challenged, they always have been and always will be “worthy of love.”

Inspiration

Why don’t more women look sexy as they age?—by Nancy LiPetri

While what’s sexy may be in the eyes of the beholder, we have to admit the 50-and-better years make it harder to feel like we’re as attractive as we ever were. Yes, I’m of that age, qualified to add my two cents worth, and I love to write about the subject.

First of all, I’m not talking about celebrity sexiness. I’m looking at sexiness in the real world: my neighbor who still hops on a motorcycle to feel the wind in her hair with her hubby who has none…the friend in yoga class whose skin glows and natural silver hair looks effortlessly chic, who astounds us at 70…the pickleball partner who rocks spandex at age 64, pumps iron and still works with the police…the artist who paints nudes and won’t hesitate to pose for same.

Do each of those, real women I know, share a common body shape, look or lifestyle? No. Some are married, one widowed, one without a current partner. While they define sexy to me, each of you might have a different type in mind. Yet high on the list of what most people say constitutes sexy is confidence. 

Age usually breeds confidence. Hey, what an advantage! My own hubby says I’m sexier now than I was at any younger age. I think I see proof otherwise in old photos, yet he insists it’s true. And I have to admit, his smile lines and savvy make him sexier than ever—but let’s leave men’s aging to another post. 

As my characters remark, we women have so much going on in our heads that can squelch or stoke sexiness. Many of us were brought up to suppress it at every age. Did your mom seem sexy? Our different cultures/upbringings surely influence what we perceive. One woman’s sexy is another’s dull…one’s daring or even promiscuous is another’s normal or playful. Some applauded this year’s Super Bowl halftime while others thought it went too far beyond what cheerleaders show us all year round. But back to non-celebrity mojo, here.

All that said, by this age we may have had children, empty nest, career, grief, illness, being a caregiver, whatever’s in your mix. It’s too easy for women to put ‘sexy’ on a back burner, thinking you’ll get back to it, then realize you’ve forgotten how to connect to it. Some crash into a midlife reawakening (I’ve heard much on that from readers of my first book). Some give up on being sexy along with giving up dating/marriage, saying it’s more trouble than it’s worth and that they’re content. 

My conclusion is sexiness fits into each journey differently. And some women are so unconventional (meet the MC in my second book) that they may not immediately strike us as sexy. But just because one of us doesn’t see the sexy in another doesn’t mean someone isn’t telling her she’s sexier than ever. In the end, who are we to judge? 

Find Nancy and her novels at:

https://www.facebook.com/nancy.lipetri

http://nancylonlakenorman.blogspot.com/

Inspiration

Please Don’t be Cruel

It’s absolutely true. “The most important lesson I learned this past year is, do not let anybody make you cruel. No matter how badly you want to give the world a taste of its own medicine, it is never worth losing yourself.” That’s my mantra. My platform. 

This past year I have felt powerful joy, in the midst of great loss and conflict. A decided choice to free yourself from the burden of owning someone else’s strife is epically life-affirming. When I get on stage and tell my story and the unbelievable relief I felt when the shackles of my forgiveness cracked, it is my hope that through the words of affirmation, others can choose their perspectives as well. 

Do not own the falsehood of another. Just because someone approaches you and shows that they are upset, does not mean that their pain is your guilt. Most of us want to smooth things over, fix the problem, engage. Sometimes, however, people cause strife and it is not your responsibility to own that petty behavior. It’s not your job to make them feel better. What it is doing is robbing you of your joy by allowing their inability to navigate their own emotions to imprint on your soul. 

Here’s what physiologically happens. The body begins to produce hormones and then cortisol and the adrenal glands pump furiously. Your body begins to store that negative chemical imbalance in your organs, your brain, and muscles. It takes ownership of your soul. Once you engage in the listening, allowance, and tolerance of these emotional outbursts, you have decided to allow this fundamental occurrence within your body. There is no turning back from that. Your joy is robbed. Your mood changed, and nothing except a full course of sleep can change it. No wonder people come home stressed, overworked, exhausted and worried. The chain reaction has begun. 

As a relationship strategist, I have learned that a graceful approach to this type of energy is warranted. Simple request, “While I appreciate you wanting to include me in your difficulties, you are simply robbing me of my joy today. Can we put a pin in this and discuss this topic at a later date?” There are times when you are in the mindset to be supportive, but it is not okay for someone to surprise you without the benefit of boundaries. Also, please note the other person will then have time to exit the limbic brain and could potentially resolve the issue on their own once their brain is back into critical problem-solving. 

Keeping your mind focused on kindness, grace, and ultimately joy will prove positive results that you have never dreamt of. When you have perfected the art of living your best self, pay it forward to others so that they too can find joy in their day. Paying kindness forward helps to curve the angst and worry we all feel. Surrounding yourself with like-minded people also gives depth and new meaning to your new life. 

Thanks for listening. 

Reba

amwriting, Inspiration

Lay Down Your Worry…Again

In all the busyness that has become my life, sometimes I forget to blog. Life takes a turn, emotions become raw and you drudge through without thinking about how you feel in the moments that unfold without your permission and way beyond your control. In short, it takes a minute to reserve the moment to reflect on what’s happening in this season.

For me, my son went off to the army two months ago. My daughter began a new job. my husband and I bought a new house. My gifted child was failing two grades, the middle child was not turning in homework and the youngest child has decidedly abdicated her life. The fallout from such things create enough stressors that can’t be described in great detail in a simple blog.

Suffice it to say that my emotions have run deep, high, out of control and sometimes triggered without my permission. I have from time to time wanted to cry. If you know anything about me or have read any prior blogs you will know that it is almost an impossibility to allow myself the luxury of tears. After all the guilt-ridden condemnation from others lies deep within my psyche stating that my feelings are not as important as others are solidly ingrained that I am quite literally often sick to my stomach.

I find myself angry and sad because it’s ever so unresolved and out of control. I think of myself as somebody who forgives and moves on quickly, but I think that’s true only when I’m able to process through the emotions I have in such a way that allows me to grow into the stability of who I have become. You can imagine the discourse I am having while struggling with these interpersonal issues.

Here is what I know, everything is going to be alright. It always is. This glimpse in this hurried season is merely a blimp in the span of 80+ years that will hopefully become my life. Big picture? This too shall pass! How to handle it? Focused, driven to be kind, tolerant, excepting and ultimately find unconditional love.  Now, if I could just get there…

Life is about choices. Period. We can choose to dwell in the muck, We can choose to be selfish, we can choose to be narcissistic, we can choose to be angry, we can choose to be sad, we can choose to allow all of this to create who we are or we can choose to lay the angst down, give it to God and hope for the best. I made a decision today to do the latter.

I hope you join me. And I hope somewhere in the midst of all that you removed from your life, somehow we can break bread, drink wine and give it closure.

To learn more about a visit:

http://www.rebanietert.com

amwriting, books, Human Interest, Inspiration, Opinion, politics, Reflection, Revelations

An Army Family Now – Momma’s Tears

The other day I watched my 24-year-old independent son join the Army. I watched him realize he had a fully successful independent life that he was giving up, to be owned by our U.S. Government for our freedoms. I watched the pride in his eyes. I felt pride in return, and then I cried… for days.

 Today I am better. Filled with some purpose for my own life. 

I keep thinking about him and the last moments that we talked about. I replay every conversation, everything he said to me, and why he chose to go into the Army. 

I suppose to some, I seem ungrateful, maybe not appreciative of his own choice. You need to know that I am very proud that my son would give up his freedom for mine. That in and of its self is honorable. 

I cannot completely identify the pensively, the apprehension, the fear, the understanding that not all boys go in and come home; and I suppose it’s because of the things I have seen and the things that happened to me, that has not happened to the majority of people. I, more than anyone understands how quickly a life can be over and how quickly life can leave you devastated in despair! 

I’m not clear on why the tears continue to fall… I just know that I can’t stop them on my own, but what I don’t need to be told is to shove my feelings aside or be told my feelings shouldn’t matter or be told that I have no right to feel the way I do. I keep thinking of the Bible passage about God forcing Abraham to sacrifice his son on the alter because to me, that’s what this feels like. My faith needs to be as strong as His! 

We are an Army family now and as such, there’s a reality we can’t lie about. My good friend, Dennis, said to me, “He is defending an idea. An idea that is enshrined in the Declaration of independence and the Constitution. The idea that we all have the same inalienable rights. He is there to defend our way of life. Only two people in history to offer their life for yours are Jesus Christ and the American Servicemen.”

I used to believe in idealism too. Sadly I believe and this is just my belief that Americans have moved so past “inalienable rights“ and become so incredibly selfish that I have no faith the president who is our commander-in-chief above all others, will have any less regard for the American population. I digress because this is not about my pride for him, his pride for his country, the idealism of America nor even the pompous jackass who runs it. This is about my love for my boy, plain and simple.

amwriting, Inspiration

Mom is No Martyr!

This morning I was awakened by two adorable children of mine. The first said for the second time in two weeks, “I am sick.” Sure enough, a temperature quest proved her declaration. The second screamed, “Zeus (our predatory cat) has ANOTHER bunny!” of course I picked it up and saved it’s life with a lecture along the way of how I warned it earlier that week to stay hidden during the day. Regrettably, bunnies don’t listen well. Same little angel then proclaimed, “My phone is BROKEN AGAIN!” In the most annoying 13-year-old attitude she could muster she then responded to me saying, “Phones just don’t break!” with, “Mine did!” I sighed heavily. I plugged the phone into my charger, commanded she consider the phone worthless and figure out another way to contact friends and sat down for my first cup of coffee.

The phone rang. It was my husband. He was frustrated with the insurance company again and needed my help to find a document. He is the greatest man I will ever know, I should proceed with that. Sometimes his situation drives me nuts! When someone has an issue with health or choice or whatever, don’t you believe it is their responsibility to forge a path of correction? If so, how would one go about this? I find the most intricate arguments are when one or both partners believe that the other is overextending, taking for granted or just flat out not paying attention. Ah, such is the case with all relationships. Mine although nearly as perfect as one could be, is simply not perfect.

I find myself taking a back seat to the needs of those around me, and even though it’s a mother’s necessity (it’s written somewhere I am sure) it is not always an easy pill to swallow. In the words of my 12-year-old (the youngest sick one,) “It’s damn hard!”

Listen, I count my blessings, desperately try to find favor in God, and all the maternal commandments of a wife and mom, but every now and then, I would like to not have to worry about getting my hair done because a kid needs this, or cannot get my nails done because he needs that. When someone is learned enough to visualize the needs are being met for everyone and yet when the well has run dry, well, I wonder why they don’t see it’s a struggle and mom needs a break?

These are the times that are necessary to build love, trust, and companionship in others but it is also the necessary tool to be YOUR VOICE and USE YOUR WORDS to command the time and respect you deserve. You matter. Your feelings matter. It’s not selfish to make them matter to someone. After all, the people in your life are making their needs matter to you. I encourage you to tell your story.

My name is Rebecca and I do just that. I help people navigate through tough emotions and put words to those feelings. I can help you write your story one tiny black mark at a time.

For now take care of you. Then give me a ring….

Rebecca Nietert

Inspiration

Resonating Example of Anger

This past weekend I witnessed two angry people hashing out their differences in public. Normally I just let what other people say to wash off me, but their anger resonated with me. I wonder often, why people are so angry, and then I realized, “why do I care?” I noticed I’m way too invested in what someone else is doing, rather than focusing on the moments around me that could offer joy. Here’s what she said to him: (I’m paraphrasing because as she and he slaughtered each other I took short notes. Yes, without permission so please don’t judge me. She’s younger. He’s older than her but not by much.)

In a tempered but serious tone, she said, “You’re absolutely miserable! You sit on your throne of a recliner quarterbacking everyone else’s life except for your own. You wake up every single day and cannot wait to get to your *insert explicative* iPad. You’re so focused on politics and what you fear an entire generation is going to do without your ranting and raving. You spend every waking minute disparaging another person, determining the faults and the mistakes they make; pointing them out, and stepping on them to elevate yourself! Then you tell them they don’t have a right to live their own life because they don’t agree with you. You are a miserable son of a bitch who is so lost and so alone and so afraid that you can’t even see your prejudices! You’re so worried about what somebody else is doing! You don’t even know who they are. You don’t know what they’ve been through. You don’t know their backstory. You don’t know what brought them to their beliefs! But you’re so damn quick to judge them and that judgment is making you an absolutely miserable person.”

He looked pissed off! Without responsibility, he said, “I have a right to my opinion. People have to know! It is my job to tell them why they’re wrong. Without people like me, this country is in serious trouble because the Liberals are going to bring it down because they don’t understand what they’re doing. If I don’t say something that I’m just as guilty as everybody else who is apathetic.”

She gasped and then she slapped her forehead. “Do you even hear yourself. What are you doing? Are you running for office? Are you paying for ad campaigns? Are you backing up a particular candidate? No! The only thing you do is post hate and discontent on social media. As though it is everybody else’s job to understand what you have been through, lift you up and agree with you; and make you feel like what you believe is 100% more valuable than what they believe. The only thing you’re doing is spreading more hate and more judgment and creating more division. You’re an argument begging to happen! You live to tell someone how wrong they are and how superior you are, as though your dictatorship of thoughts should be the only opinion considered!? Is that American? Is that equal? Compassionate? No!”

I cocked my head and nodded because people have said this about me. I had to take a step back and admit at times I’ve had nothing but FB in my life and in those times focused on the latter of what it offered and not the positive. As I writer I observe all the time. I continued to write as he rebutted.

Wounded now he stated, “You talk about me being hateful. What about you right now. You have hate in your heart for me.”

She sighed heavily and replied, “You just don’t get it. Please tell me the difference between your ideals and terrorist ideals? Aren’t they both born in anger? You judge me because I hold you to the same accountability you hold others. You judge me because even though I’ve lived a life of tragedy with lots of pain and loss I clearly don’t feel the sorrow as deeply as you and therefore my pain is dismissed. You judge me because you say that I shouldn’t have an opinion, because I don’t understand the things that you do, yet you show me no compassion! Damn if you don’t expect me to respect you in return. You judge me because I am young, and I am trying to forge my way in the world I don’t understand, yet you begrudge those who told you that you did not have the right to forge your path. You are a walking contradiction afraid to look at yourself. So lonely. It is always somebody else’s fault for the way you feel and never your own.”

Then even angrier she shouted, “No one is going to rescue you from the choices you make! No one is going to come to your house and force you to get out of that recliner. No one is going to force you to live your best life. No one is going to come up to you and apologize to you for what you’ve been through, because everybody else goes through their own shit. It is not our responsibility to make you feel worthy or smart or force you to focus on your own happiness, that’s your job! All the spouting off, all the anger, all the judgment, all the bias and the contempt for others is just murdering your soul. You can’t even see how unattractive it makes you.”

She walked away and I gathered my tablet and things and I do too. Kind of wanted to cry!

Take care,

Rebecca Nietert

amwriting, books, Human Interest, Inspiration

Sex at Every Age!?

Yes. That’s the topic. When relationships mature into wise mindful working relationships that constructively work, what happens to the intimacy between two people? In the movie, “Yours Mine and Ours” with Lucille Ball and Henry Ford; his character, Frank Beardsley, explains to this daughter the realities of life. I am going to mess this up, so I will try and say the quote as best as I recall. He said, “Love is easy. It’s the mundane that counts. You show me a man who loves when there’s laundry to do or the dishes need to be done. Anyone who can get through the bad stuff to get to the good stuff, now that’s true love.”

He was correct. Life is truly about the art of either being content or not being content but still being present in the moment enough to enjoy it and not allow whatever chaos seems to be unfolding pisses you off one more time. Yet this fundamental key to genuine authentic behavior seems to elude even the most mature of people.

What happens in the most general of terms is that one or both partners in a relationship begin to take each other for granted. The niceties present in the beginning seems to subside when the duties and stressors of the day become more important to “get done” than the undeniable necessity of feeding the other’s soul. Before long everyone is walking through their life passionateness about love and over-impassioned about things that just don’t matter. Their focus on what should be is directed to what they believe is societal “must be’s.” In the end, they create more anger, angst, jealousy also division because they have sold out to the better job, the better home, the best this or that. The worst thing is that they don’t even know it’s happened to them. No wonder hey cannot focus on how to offer their partner any possibility of intimacy. They’ve all but completely robbed themselves of it.

When the mini-explosions, the constructive criticisms and the monumental disappointments of life resonate as the prominent feeling of the day, how can one stop, and take care of themselves or their partner? By electing to be a little romantic. Romance as a general descriptor is not dead, it’s an action or word with supporting action of professing or doing something for someone else that they need. Whatever you choose to do must be something they would ask for, they would require, and that they would tell you but are electing not to.

So the next time you feel like spouting off that which has offended your great senses, remember that person who you want an intimate relationship with, is watching. Even though you’re not pointing the rage at him or her, they feel the anguish you do which is the antithesis of what you’re trying to achieve. Stop yourself from a constant barrage of what you feel, and give weight to the fact that your partner may need to see your kindness, your loving side, your Justice and especially the side of you they fell in love with.

No matter what happens at any age, things are always better after a mature and loving conversation. Everyone feels better when they feel heard when they feel loved and cared for. Everyone wants to feel like they’re your priority. Once you make that person feel the way you intend, they will return the favor and that intimacy that has been missing will eventually be alive and kicking in your relationship. It just takes motivation and action.

Good luck. Happy Valentines Day!

Rebecca Nietert

Inspiration

Resolution or Goal!?

I always begin the new year with a reflection of what I learned a year prior. With that being said this has been a complete blast yet very emotionally draining year. My beloved “state of mind” home was sold this year, my son moved to Colorado, and I learned that Dallas would be my home for the next several years. Every year I make a picture book for all my children, like a sort of yearbook for them to look back on the good things we did over the past year. So, when they look back on their childhood and the mundane tasks they had to overcome, they realize there were a lot of blessings along the way.

The night before 2019 has pushed 2018 aside, I sit wondering if I should spend the next year focused on creating more happy moments for the children or if I should focus on building my independent small press company? Do I have a right to dream at this point, or should I postpone the season of my personal success so that I can give them more opportunities for their success? I’ve been a stay-at-home mom for 26+ years and I think I’ve paid my dues? So should I set goals and resolutions?

Here’s my mommy/businesswoman advice: we all have these questions. We all have that dialog that tells us we’re not doing enough for our kids, they won’t have a relationship with us if their childhood is not constantly happy, or we’re just not good parents. Give yourself a break! Kids will find our errors if we do everything right! You’re not perfect! Neither am I but after witnessing my grown kids tackle life I’m glad I’m not! In an effort to try to give my children everything I did not have I thought I had forgotten to give them what I did. I was wrong! My kids are happy independent adults making their way. They’re decent and honest. They don’t disparage other humans. They fight for the underdog. They both are faithful believers. How much more success is there?

Relax! Make your goals! Don’t be afraid to put yourself first sometimes because then when you do, that happiness will trickle down to those you love! You will teach your kids how to be a healthy happy adult! Find the right fit and balance for your own life!

Happy New Year! 🎊🎆🎈 May this year be all that you desire and bring reverence and respect from those you cherish!