Feeling Selfish is OKAY!

Selfish

For the longest time I would put other people before myself. I would feel enormous guilt if I wanted to do something for me. After years of counseling I realized that being SELFISH is absolutely OKAY! I’ve heard it before time and time again that I needed to “take care of myself first” but every time I would start, I would feel like I was being selfish. Finally my heart caught up with my brain and now it’s easier to say “no” or opt out of things if they don’t bring me joy or fulfill whatever need it is that I’m longing for.

If you’re in a place where you want to do something that makes you happy, but you are hesitant for whatever reason…go for it! You may feel like you’re being “selfish” but that means you’re doing something right!

The Best Birthday Gift Ever!

This morning I woke up at 4:30am and I couldn’t help but think of the many birthdays I’ve had in the past. I quietly rolled over and thanked God, the universe and all that surrounds me for the gift of yet another day.

It’s funny, when you’re younger you focus on the “cool” gifts such as Barbie, Cabbage Patch Kids etc., but as you get older, the gifts start to come in different forms. I certainly Curadon’t need a birthday gift on this one day when I receive so many gifts throughout the year. The gift of seeing the smiles on the faces of the kids at Cura Orphanage, or seeing Sam and Emely’s progress as they make their wedding plans. The gift of cheering on my friends who are in the process of adopting a foster child, or celebrating the upcoming birth of my sweet friends babies. The gift of celebrating life that is brought into this world and even though it’s difficult, the gift of sharing the heartache when we lose those closest to us.

Over the past 35 years I have grown a lot. I have made many mistakes, which have turned into blessings. I have found love and I have lost love. I have acquired family and I have lost family. I have taken risks and I have failed several times over. Yet, through it all, I have continued to discover who I am and what fuels my soul.

Each and every one of you fuel my soul with love, laughter and  bless me with birthday gifts not just on this one day, but throughout the entire year. You make my life so much better just by being in it.

With all my love today, tomorrow and for the rest of my life.

Heather

If You Don’t Know Jack…

You Should!

I once read a quote that said, “People will come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.” When I first met Jack Sacco it was for a simple reason. That reason quickly grew to a season and now I can say that Jack and his entire family (who have accepted me as one of their own)  are with me for a lifetime.

Jack has written his second book, “Above the Treetops” a true story of the endearing relationship between William Faulkner and a young neighbor named Bobby Little. I have copied the press release below for more information and would suggest that you pick up a copy of this wonderfully written book.

AboveTheTreetops 3

Award-Winning Author Jack Sacco Reveals a William Faulkner the World Has Never Known

GULFPORT, MS (February 22, 2013) – In Above the Treetops, award-winning author Jack Sacco provides readers with a rare glimpse into the personal life of internationally acclaimed novelist William Faulkner. The book tells the true story of the endearing relationship between Faulkner and a young neighbor named Bobby Little.

“As an author and historian who had not only read the works of William Faulkner, but had studied every book, biography, article, interview, and leaflet ever written on the subject of the man’s life, I naturally assumed I knew everything there was to know about the Nobel Laureate,” Sacco said. “Then I met Bobby Little.”

In the young Bobby, Faulkner found not only a kindred spirit longing for adventure, but the son he never had. He taught Bobby how to ride a horse, how to sail a boat, and how to fly a plane…all before the boy was fifteen years old.

Set in Oxford, Mississippi, Above the Treetops reveals never-before-told stories of the Nobel Laureate’s wit, charm, frailties, and humanity. As such, it is sure to appeal not only to fans of William Faulkner the novelist, but to those who, until now, have never known the reality and magic of William Faulkner the man.

Above the Treetops was released on Friday, November 30, 2012.

“The bestselling author of Where the Birds Never Sing has unearthed a treasure of fresh new insight on Faulkner. The real-life characters that people the book are themselves as worthy and as entertaining as any fictional figure who ever found his or her way into one of Mr. Faulkner’s novels. From start to finish, Above the Treetops soars.”

-Michael Harrelson,  HottyToddy.com

Meticulously researched and brilliantly written, Jack Sacco’s Above the Treetops is a rare glimpse into the private life of one of America’s greatest novelists. Sacco effortlessly transports the reader to a bygone era and, in the process, masterfully reveals a William Faulkner the world has never known.”

–Bob Sawyer • Chairman

Mississippi Public Broadcasting

Jack Sacco is the award-winning and bestselling author of Where the Birds Never Sing and Above the Treetops. Born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama, and educated at the University of Notre Dame, Sacco is the winner of the Alabama Library Association’s 2005 Author Award for Where the Birds Never Sing.

Where the Birds Never Sing, published by HarperCollins, launched Jack Sacco’s successful writing career in impressive fashion.  The book is a nonfiction account of his father Joe Sacco’s experiences during the Second World War.  The book has been praised by critics and readers alike, who become emotionally involved with the characters, enjoy the spirited dialogue, and appreciate the fact that this uplifting and superbly-written coming-of-age tale reads more like a novel than a history book.

For more information about Jack Sacco, please visit JackSacco.com. You can also find him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter at @JackSacco

Who Needs Jenny Craig When You Have Al Roker?

AlRokerIt’s been a rough few months… I’ll admit it. Have I been hitting the gym? No.

Have I been eating like “Manny” the Wooly Mammoth from Ice Age? Yes.

Today I met someone for lunch and while we both ordered salads we both got the chocolate brownie to go. I’m sitting at my desk, eating and reading the news. After finishing my salad, I could see my brownie perched on the little shelf in front of my computer monitor. My lips started to twitch and my tongue was salivating at the thought of taking the first delicious calorie infested bite.

As I slowly brought the forkful of brownie to my lips, my eyes caught the news story listed on Huffington Post: Al Roker: ‘I Pooped My Pants’ (VIDEO)

Really? The nutritional Gods were looking down upon me thinking, “HA HA HA Lardy! We got you now!!” Sigh. I slowly chewed the brownie and quickly clicked off the story. Don’t worry my dear friends… I ate every single bite of my brownie and loved it!

Take that Al Roker… TAKE THAT!

From 300lbs to 140lbs: How Arthur Boorman Lost 160lbs with Yoga

by on May 15, 2012

The idea that we really have no limitations is a hard one for many of us to truly grasp. It may sound like a nice and noble saying, but some part of your brain may strain-subconsciously or consciously- against fully accepting this truth. Why is it easier to believe in limits rather than expansion? There are so many external forces from the media, education (both formal and familial), societal belief systems and so on that reinforce aspects of restriction. But all these limitations are illusions. The actual reality is that you truly are unlimited in your inner power and strength. Yes you! We all are, if we can learn to get mental blocks out of the way and tap into the inner, universal and unlimited source within.

Health and beauty are a good starting point for most people to experience this concept. Focusing on these areas of your life can produce tangible improvements in outward appearance, as well as allow for the powerful personal experience of gaining vitality and natural energy without external stimulants.

Once you realize that you have tremendous control over your health and beauty, largely by the diet you keep and the foods you choose, then you realize that you can extend this power outwards for goals not only pertaining to physical form, but also goals centered around your vocation, career, and relationships.

This video really exemplifies the unlimited inner to exceed limitations. Arthur was a disabled Gulf War veteran who sustained injuries to his back and knees, and was told by his various doctors that he would never be able to walk again on his own.

Arthur believed in this limitation…for a time. He gained over 140 pounds, and had to use canes to hobble about. One day, he had the spark of motivation to try yoga. Though it was not easy for him to shape his body into the asanas (poses), and though he fell many times, he kept picking himself back up to try over and over again.

Over the course of 10 months- less than a year- Arthur lost 140 pounds and was not only able to practice asanas, he was able to actually run. Had he listened to the judgment of his doctors, he would have relegated himself to the “truth” of the limitation that he would never be able to walk again and not even tried. Instead, he pushed past the illusions of limitations to utilize his unlimited inner power.

I invite you to make some time for the important task of thinking of the preconceived limitations you might have placed on your power. Write down the limitations, then think about the root of where they came from. For Arthur, doctors placed limitations on him, which shows that people in positions of “authority” can create these limitations that are not necessarily true.

This all takes reflection, and I find writing very helpful to get these thoughts out of you. Block out at least 45 quiet minutes to yourself.

Time For You To Take Action:

1. Limitations you believe are in your life. Exaarthur boormanmples include: “I’ll never be able to be X weight/size.” “Getting off medications and becoming healthy is not realistic.” “I’m not smart enough to get X job”. “I’m not qualified to make X amount a year”. “I’m not flexible enough to ever touch my toes.” “I’m not pretty enough to meet the man of my dreams. etc.”

2. Where these limitations came from. This might be more difficult, but really think deeply on each limitation and where it might have been formed, without judgment. You might discover that it resonates with something you’ve heard from another source. If it came from a loved one or family member, most probably they were saying it with good intention, or inadvertently passing on a limitation they too have. Or maybe you might have heard it from your peers or friends or boss mentioning over and over again that something was too “hard” to achieve so that it is “impossible.”

3. Once you have identified the source of these limitations, make peace with them by affirming they are not actual or true, they are just thought forms that someone else created. If you can really pause and see the limitations as being separate from “truth”, this is the first step in moving past them, and unleashing your unlimited power.

Be Great To Yourself And Good To Others!

Every day I am thankful for all that I have. I am constantly telling my friends and family how much I love and appreciate them. A few days ago someone asked me what is the strangest thing I’m “thankful” for this holiday. I didn’t have to think long about it. I am so thankful for NOT having certain people in my life.

Sure, it sounds a little harsh but life without “Toxic” makes for a walk without eggshells and a lot less stress. The hardest part of taking care of myself was removing the people who are emotional vampires. (This ain’t no Twilight series!) I have been told so many times by people who are much older (not necessarily wiser) than me, to love my family and to keep trying. My lips must be stained from all of the Kool-Aid I drank. I took that advice and kept trying, but every time it was just never enough. Looking back now it’s comical how hard I tried for people who didn’t really want me or deserve me in their life.

After several years I finally learned that I needed to stop trying to be great for everyone else and be great to myself and good to others. It was the easiest, hardest lesson learned.

So this holiday season I will be surrounded by LOVE, LAUGHTER and pure JOY. I will talk freely and joke openly without fear of confrontation.

Yep, a great Thanksgiving indeed. From our house to yours… have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

If My BMI Was A Test Score, I Would Be On Honor Roll

Word to the wise… don’t visit a health fair and have the woman take your blood pressure or BMI if you aren’t prepared for a roundhouse kick to the face. I thought I would try to play nice with others and have the little old lady tell me how effed up I really am. (As if I needed to be reminded in my current state right now.)

I was with a friend who had her BMI taken. Her voice got loud and she said, “Holy crap… if my BMI was a test score, I would be an honor student!” I had to laugh at that. Then the nurse took my blood pressure and wrote something down on her clipboard. She dropped her glasses from her nose and stared at me with a look of panic and sadness. Either she was going to call 911 or she was going to pass gas. I was really hoping for the gas.

She asked if something was wrong and I just sat there. I didn’t even know where to begin. Yes, something is wrong. Lot’s of somethings are wrong. I recently became engaged to the man I love with all of my heart. Hold your squeals of excitement. I am NOT one of those girls who thinks marriage is awesome and had my “marriage notebook” prepared since middle school. I never really thought I would find someone who I could tolerate long enough to have a life with, let alone them tolerate me. Just when I thought I would have lots of time to wrap my head around the idea of an engagement and marriage, my fiancé found out that his ear infection wasn’t really an ear infection, it’s a brain tumor.

Yeah, let that sit with you for a minute. When you reach the “WHAT THE FU*K” status let me know and I will continue. Ready to continue on? Yeah, me either…

So now we have a wedding planned, if you call having a date really a plan. We have no location, time or anything else. Is Chuck E. Cheese considered a venue? I attempted to get fitted for a dress at David’s Bridal in Olympia and that was an anxiety driven, sweat-filled nightmare. The corset they had me wear should have been made with a Sham-wow. The amount of sweat dripping down my legs could have easily been mistaken for me pissing myself as I shuffled my lace and satin covered, pearl-lined sweaty ass out in front of a bunch of women who I had just met minutes before.

I grabbed my phone and sent a distress text to my fiancé who was somewhere out in the parking lot waiting for me. I changed my clothes and prayed that the vomit in my throat would stay down long enough for me to exit the building. I got in the car and we drove home in silence.

The nurse just sat there as I told my story. She reached in her purse and grabbed a bottle of her own blood pressure medicine and tossed it back with a glass of water. I couldn’t help but smile knowing I had just crapped on someones day. You’re welcome old nurse lady, you’re welcome!

Stay tuned for more…