Dream Big! New Years Day 2013. Working for Better Present Moments

8 year old Portuguese girl Look at this face. She's not someone I know, but she shares the look and energy of another eight year old girl, one I dearly love. For the New Year and old the days to come I want her to live her present moments in a loving, clean, safe, supportive, beautiful and inviting world.

New Years Day, 2013, and I'm sorting. Are you? Sorting possessions is like going through an old diary. Memories come with an old red sweater I wore laughing in the snow with a dear friend or old black lace-up shoes that carried me through a rainy Paris. I keep the memories as I send these things to the charity shop. 

As I clear I discover what I keep. These items do not take me to the past. They take me to my wished for future. I'm still discovering what my wishes are. Do you know yours?

My heart has always known mine, but my wishes have only just become abundantly clear to me. I want the children I love to live in the world they believe they live in now. I mean the world the people who love them and the community that cares about them have created for them.

Their lives are full of wonder, delight and love. They have food, clothes, art supplies, classes galore (gymnastics, dance, theater, art, science). They have friends and play dates which also create a vast number of birthday parties throughout the year. They love school and the library and listen to Harry Potter tapes before they go to sleep. Each morning is the beginning of a new adventure. They have a mommy who tends to their physical and emotional needs and plays with them. They have a daddy who plays sports with them, cooks them breakfast and dances with them. They have loving adults who sort out small frictions with them with no shame involved. They love to do art projects and bring them with pride and love to friends and family who accept these gifts with sincere delight. They get kisses and cuddles and wiggle happily in cherishing arms.

My favorite sound in the world is the sound of their laughter.

So I’ve been thinking about why I do what I do. I could retire from my private practice, but I don’t. I love the work. I didn’t need to write a book, but I did. I love to write and share. Instead of an extensive trip to exotic places I spent a good chunk of money preparing for my next book.

It is part of a long term project that will encompass more than a book. It’s about bringing the fundamentals of biology and the natural world to human awareness, touching emotions and lighting up the possibilities of new ideas, goals and perceptions. I see it as a ten year project, and I’m enjoying even these early days.

Why am I doing this? I love the idea. I'm energized by such a big dream. I enjoy the research and writing.  I love to learn. I love to share.

But I believe I see the bigger answer now. I want the children I love to live in better present moments than we do. For that to happen, all the children need to live in better present moments. For that to happen, everyone needs to be as healthy as possible to take on the challenges we face in our immediate surroundings. That’s the way world change happens, one tiny step toward health after another.

And by health I mean more than the body or eating disorder recovery. I mean health in terms of heart and soul. I mean living in a state of delight, joy and love.

By supporting my goal I am participating in creating the world I want for the children. I want it for all of us. Working together in our different ways and in our different environments, supporting each other as we take courageous steps forward, we can make great strides.

The child in the photo is eight years old. Subtract eight from your age now. Look at that number. What can you do to add value or even revolutionize those coming years to give her and us quality present moments?

I invite you to dream big and get on with making your dream come true.          
  • What are your big dreams?
  • What kind of a future do you want for your children?
  • What do you want your children to experience in their present moments throughout their lives?
  • How will you begin to make your dreams come true?                                                                                    

photo by:  Joaquim Alves Gaspar, Lisboa, Portugal


0 # my problem is my allyshh 2013-01-02 17:45

Over the last few days I've been reading and thinking about a process work (process oriented psychology) project related to disordered eating, by Annie Blair, and I'm really finding it helpful.

She introduces in there a shamanistic concept that we are all created with a special gift or pathway in life, and that the first we will get to know of this is when it manifests itself as a problem or difficulty. But we should not be so quick to resent this problem, as it is what connects us to our ally, that is our special gift in life that we can share with the world.

Process work believes that the solution is always contained within the problem itself, and if we follow the processes we will find the solutions.

And encompassing these two concepts, I have been taken on a journey that showed me that my allyis being brought into a world where my mother could not love me or attend to my needs adequately, that has given me a very strong sensitivity to signs and signals given out by others in a similar situation, and a gut feeling for how to respond and be with them (which has after 40 yrs started to become my career and I believe my calling in life).

In this limited caring, love and caring became associated with food, especially sweet & junk treats, my mother showed her care through these treats, but when I was given these treats I had to be instantly grateful, eat the entire amount, full packets of things, even if I was full, even if I'd eaten so much I felt sick, even if I didn't really lke it or wasn't enjoying it. I wasn't allowed to leave any, share it, or save some for later, if I didn't eat every morsel and say how wonderful it was and how I wished there was more - the caring attitude was withdrawn and replaced by anger and fury at how selfish and ungrateful I was. The only time I can recollect her being happy with me, was when I complied with this...and so I guess that is how I formed my association that bingeing beyond full, beyond feeling sick, just keeping going until there's nothing left with feeling worthy and cared for, rather than my usual feelings of inadequacy and worthlessness.

And this is where addiction theory in process work comes into play, to catapult us over the edge from our primary identity into our secondary identity - in this case for me my primary identity is one of being an inadequate worthless being (this is what I believe to be true, because of an set of edges created by the way my mother raised me as a child),my secondary identity is based upon my needs, the need to believe I have some worth and value, and am worth loving/caring about. And so for me, my ED, consuming large quantities of food, is my addiction that enables me to feel the essence of my secondary indentity.

PW also says that when we develop an addiction, that we attribute power to the addictive substance to be the thing that provides for us a route from the primary to secondary identity, when actually we have the power ourselves to create that connection by other means.

It is not as simple as saying i am going to take back that power - gradually over a long period we can claw back that power by starting to find ways to create the essence and feelings of the secondary identity ourselves.

And this is where my work for the New Year begins, or is rekindled with renewed enthusiasm...

I realised that when I want to eat junk or binge that I need to stop and question myself about what it is that I'm feeling inadequate about, that is driving that need to eat. I also need to find way of reinforcing to myself why I am not worthless, why I am worth caring about, why I'm perfectly okay and adequate etc

I have said on here many times that I have always struggled with affirmations - but I am starting to value their importance, so tonight I have been pulling out quotes from my journal, things that T said, especially things that were said during the termination process - that I can use to counter my feelings of inadequacy. 

I know that in conclusion, a lot of what I've written about Process Work and Shamanism, brings me to a similar place that Joanna and HHH advocate, but I think I need to see it through fresh eyes, from a slightly different angle, to renew my enthusiasm and re-energise me, ready to keep pushing on and growing this New Year.

(I'm not sure any of it will make much sense to anyone as it's difficult to summarise, so apologies if it doesn't, but it has re-invigorated my spirit of recovery)



0 # HNYPTC 2013-01-04 08:51
Happy New Year, Joanna.

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