How have I changed?  Since when?  Since I was born?  Since I became an adult?  Since I became a mother?  Since last year?  Last month?  Yesterday?

In many ways, I think I haven’t changed very much at all.  Fundamental things like the color of my eyes and the fact that I love living in Austin, TX have always been a part of me.  I still love music, cats, good BBQ, and spending holidays with my family.

But in many ways, I have changed over the years.  When I was in high school, I didn’t know anybody (that I knew of at that time) who was gay or bisexual, and it was an unfamiliar, uncomfortable concept for me.  Today, I know and love many people who are gay and bisexual, and I’m a staunch supporter of their right to love and marry whomever they choose, to have all the same rights and responsibilities as the rest of us.  I’m tired of a certain segment of our population being denied the same rights that are granted to the rest of our citizens – no matter WHAT that segment of our population might be.  If it’s wrong to deny rights to people of a certain skin color or to people with certain genitalia, then it’s wrong to deny rights to people who vote differently than we do, or who pray differently than we do, or who love and want to marry someone of their own sex.

When I was in high school, I was taught that I should “save myself” for the man I was going to marry, and that marriage was forever.  Well, I did “save myself,” and it was one of the biggest mistakes of my life.  Neither of us knew what we were doing, and I think he’d gotten many of his ideas about what sex was “supposed” to be like from porn magazines and movies.  Sex was the single biggest problem of our marriage – the fact that I wasn’t in the mood as frequently as I “should” be, or that I didn’t enjoy a particular aspect of foreplay as much as I “should” meant that there was clearly something wrong with me.  For those 3 years I was married to him, and for a few years after I divorced him, I built a large amount of my self worth on whether or not I was attractive to men.  I’m so glad I came to realize and embrace the fact that I have a LOT more to bring to a relationship than my sexuality.

Before I had children of my own, and realized that even at a very young age they have distinct personalities, and means of expressing their preferences without needing words, I was guilty of giving the parents of apparently unruly children “that look.”  You know, the sanctimonious “my child(ren) will NEVER act that way in public!” look.  While dining in the back corner of a restaurant one evening, with my older daughter (then my only child), who was not hungry and who was bored and who wanted to climb all over the seats and the people occupying them at our booth, a young couple with a new baby was seated a few tables away, and I saw them giving ME “the look.”  I remember laughing to myself and thinking “just you wait until your wee one grows up just a little bit more and that personality really starts to emerge!”  While I certainly believed then (and still do!) that certain behavior can be expected and enforced in public, I also believe that one should know and understand the limits of ones own child(ren).  Some kids will be willing and able to behave perfectly well in a fine dining establishment, while others should not be allowed to go out to any restaurant more grown-up than McDonalds because they just WILL NOT be still and quiet.  If my children ever started to act in an inappropriate fashion in public (temper tantrums being the most notorious examples I can think of), I would give them a warning and a chance to calm down, and then I would leave if necessary – getting the rest of the meal to go, or finishing up my shopping errands at a later time when they were not with me.  But yeah, I do remember believing that I could weild ultimate control over my children – before I ever even had them.  HA!

There are other ways in which I’ve changed.  My body is certainly changing as I get older.  My joints get a little more creaky and achy now.  My eyesight is changing (I had 20/10 distance vision for most of my life, so it was a terrible blow when I needed corrective lenses in order to be able to drive).  There are these lovely little things called skin tags popping up here and there, and I’m really, really, REALLY ready to be done with this peri-menopause thing.  I can’t eat everything I want all the time now for fear of gaining too much weight, and drinking coffee every day can tend to irritate my stomach.

Change is inevitable, and ultimately, I belive that change is good.  I am sometimes a little slow to adapt easily to change, as I am generally a creature of habit and comfort, and change is rarely comfortable or easy, but I do embrace change as an opportunity, and I even seek change for growth.  I’ve recently seen a quote making the rounds on Facebook that I like:  “The 3 Cs of life: Choices, Chances, Changes.  You must make a Choice to take a Chance, or your life will never Change!”

So I’m making a Choice to take some Chances and make some Changes in 2012.  I’m not sure yet what all the Chances or Changes will be, but some of them include:

  • More regular meditation / self-hypnosis time
  • More regular movement / exercise time
  • I’ve hired a Coach to kick my butt, find my hidden passion(s) and help me make an action plan!
  • More action in business instead of thinking and planning and dreaming
  • Less sugar, greater focus on healthful and mindful eating for better overall health and energy

I look forward to sharing my Journey with you here.

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