Are You Living or Dying?

How have your past several weeks been?  They’ve been intense for me.

It feels like a time for integrating a new way of living into my day to day life.  

The universe has my attention on health and where I find joy and love.

I’ve had, what seems like, a lot of friends and loved ones have serious health threats or crisis’s this year.  Near death emergencies, serious surgeries, minor surgical interventions, all mixed in with some of the absolute best times of my life.  The contrast is stark. 

It also has me appreciating and savoring the highs in life even more than I ever have.

This has all got me pondering that quote in the photo above. 

Every day is a choice isn’t it?  You’re either busy living or busy dying. 

And we all know that life is unbelievably short sometimes. 

So, let’s agree to find as many bits of joy and love and fun as we can in a day, in a week, in a year. 

In a life.

Promise me, that...

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Parenting Moment!! And Yes, I cried :)

So, a few weekends ago the kids and I went to Montreal to visit with my sister – who is currently living up North – so the kids are hungry for more time with her!  We’ve been doing an annual visit with her in Montreal for quite a few years now, I’m not sure how many off hand, but the kids look forward to it and love the whole experience!  Montreal is awesome isn’t it??  Endless adventures to get yourself into :)  Even for kids!

Anyways, we were having a great time, and found ourselves in the Botanical Gardens in Montreal after a late breakfast on Sunday.  This had been something that was discussed with the kids and everyone seemed good to go! 

However, the minute we had got past the ticket counter and started walking around, one of my daughter’s says ‘when are we having lunch, I’m hungry’ and my son says ‘I’m too tired to walk, let’s go back to the hotel’…

...

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What has Co-Parenting Taught You?

The top TWO things Co-Parenting has taught me:

.1 Good things can come from a difficult situation.  Let's face it, I would have probably never talked to my ex again - if we didn't have kids.  Way simpler and way less work.  But in the dust of our marriage ending, co-parenting has forced a different sort-of relationship to bloom.  It has expanded what I thought I was capable of and what I thought my ex was capable of.  We've grown as individuals and as parents, after years of negotiating and balancing everyones' schedules - as annoying as that is sometimes!

.2 My communication skills could be improved :)  Cause when nearly everything is in writing over email or txt, for reference, it’s easy to see where something could be misinterpreted or just not written clearly enough.  And you want to make sure you express yourself without ruffling any feathers, if that's not actually your intention.  So, communication skills become fine tuned like...

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Stop Searching – You are the One You’ve Been Waiting For

I was on a retreat a month ago that changed my life forever.

It was called ‘Seduction of Spirit’ and is put on by the Chopra Center, which was founded by Deepak Chopra.  

I’ve been a HUGE fan of Deepak Chopra for over 20 years – I still vividly remember the first book I ever read of his, it was called How to Know God, and while it blew my mind at the time, it also rung so deeply true to me.  Like when your soul knows it to be true, it resonates.

And ever since, I’ve kept reading his books when they interest me and I’ve seen him speak a few times when he’s come to Ottawa.

I have a Civil Engineering degree, so I’ve got a naturally scientific mind and I’ve always loved the way he blends science with spirit & mind/body concepts. 

ANYWAYS, this retreat was primarily a meditation retreat – with lots of doses of yoga and talks with different mind/body teachers and researchers.  It was also in Sunny...

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Co-Parenting in Action: The story of the Printer

This photo is of my ex’s printer, in my front entrance.  The story of how it got there is why I am so grateful for my ex and his willingness to co-parent as reasonably and lovingly as possible, for the sake of the kids.

Last week, one of my daughter’s came home from school and announced that she had a project she HAD TO FINISH that night.  To complete the project she needed to print off a few things. 

Doh.  My printer has been out of ink for AGES.  So, printing anything off wasn’t going to be as easy as pie.

So, I tell her this, and she immediately says – we can just go to Daddy’s place and print the pictures off there.

:)  Not wanting to put words into my ex’s mouth (..like presuming he’d say no and that we should just go out to buy new printer cartridges), I figure I’ll txt him and see if this is possible.  Cause I figured it probably was the easiest way to get things printed. 

Since he...

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What's your Divorce End Game?

How do you intend to live the rest of your life after Separation/Divorce'?

Write it down.  In detail.  Let's get real here.

I imagine your response is similar to what mine was, I just want to be happy, I want to be a good parent, and have good relationships with the people I love - especially my kids.  I want my relationship with my ex to have a flow and ease to it.  All great stuff!

Now close your eyes and in your mind's eye - really see it happening, imagine your life the way you want it to be, as if it's happening right now.  Who would be in your life?  How would you act towards others?

How would it feel?

Please, really do the visualization.  It's so powerful. 

It only needs to be for 5 mins or so!  You know you're onto something when you can feel your body physically responding to the visualization - like happy tingling and just an overall positive feeling building in your body.

Continue on with the visualization daily or weekly or...

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How Charlottesville demands we up our Parenting game

We can do better.

The events in Charlottesville, Virginia, USA this past week have really fueled my fire.  It has got me thinking really, really deeply.  And just to be clear, I live in Canada, but I’d be naive to think that hatred and violence could never happen here for similar reasons.

Racism is so evil.  Hating someone based on nothing but their race is impossible for me to understand.  Religious persecution is evil.  Sexism.  Patriarchy.  To see someone as less than you.  Seeing yourself as more entitled.

With that backdrop, how do we even begin to start a discussion?  Where’s the common ground?  How can we get to a point where each side can truly see the other, to understand the other, to see each other with compassion and as fellow human beings?

It feels too big a mountain.  Too hard.

Unsolvable.

And when I think of my children.  It all scares me to the core.

Is this the world we want to give to our...

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Year end Kids' Show: with you, your ex, both new partners & the kids!

What a circus parenting is sometimes – except none of the adults are laughing, when they are all at an event for their child/step child and just trying to make sure it's all cordial.

It can literally feel like a circus I’m sure.  When you’re all together, it can feel like you are competing to get (and keep) your kids’ attention.  Cause somehow, your worth as a parent is gauged by whether or not your child wants to hang out with you more, when they have the option of hanging out with any parent they want!  You know you’ve thought it and felt the pang of hurt when they choose your ex! :)

Now I’m not there yet, I’m dating a great man but haven’t introduced the kids.  My ex is keeping a low dating profile, so I’m not sure where he’s at exactly, but certainly no one new has been introduced to the kids on his side either.

However, last week, I did find myself at my girls’ gymnastics finale –...

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Dear Kids, I hope your dad and I don’t fall short - Intentions for Co-parenting Success!

Dear kids,

Thank-you.  Your unconditional love has been invaluable.  It has softened the way your dad and I relate to each other as co-parents.  We both want to make you proud.

No matter who’s weekend it is, if your activities are double booked, then the parent who’s ‘off’ pitches in to drive you to your activity, or a visit with friends, or an appointment.  We are a team for you kids and don’t want you to miss out on any opportunities because of a completely inflexible child sharing routine.  So please speak up if you want to go or do something, don’t feel like you can’t or shouldn’t, just because you know there’s already something else planned.    Please don’t settle.

We may not always have the exact same rules.  However, we’ve got the same themes when it comes to discipline and expectations for you and how you can contribute to the family unit.  I’m sorry that at...

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Real and Loving Connection: Let it be Your Guide

I remember it very clearly.  I had been a zombie since my separation and felt like everything was unravelling in my life.  I had no idea where anything was headed and I was just trying to keep my day to day basics together (ie. drag myself to work, keep my job :), be as attentive to the kids as possible, eat, fall to bed exhausted, repeat).  I realized later on during a routine physical exam that I was also iron deficient for the first time in my life, which made everything feel more exhausting and my body more like molasses.

My life plan for one long marriage was gone.  What wrench did that throw into all my other plans for life?  Where was my life heading now?  I was coming up with nothing, as far as new life plans go..so I was just putting one foot in front of another until (hopefully sooner than later) purpose and/or passion returned to my life.

So, through all that fogginness, one summer's day, I found myself sitting on the front porch and the kids...

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