Avoid the bad and you’ll miss out on the good

I’m in the process of letting go of my home right now. Our beloved old cottage has turned out to be too much work and too expensive to maintain for us to live here comfortably. And – what really sealed the deal – our girls have developed health issues directly related to the mould we recently discovered in the cellar.

So we’re letting it go. We’re taking care of what needs to be taken care of, and come January we’ll start looking for a new place to live.

I’ve been open with the fact that I’m a bit heartbroken about it. That I find it painful to let go of a place I love so dearly, and that this house has been more than a house for me – it has been a dream of HOME, the one I never had and the one I want for me and my family.

And when you own your less than happy feelings publically, you’re bound to get advise. Much of which revolves around letting go and moving on, not looking back, not crying but seeing the blessing in whatever is going on.

And of course, eventually that is the truth that will remain. The gift this mess holds.

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Written by Anna on . Posted in Life, and how to live it

I’m a mother, not a soldier

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I wrote a great article the other day, poking another hole in the myth about us not having time to create and pursue our dreams.

I write about this particular topic over and over again, because I know this is one of your issues too. It’s the number one reason people give for not going for their dreams. I have no time. (Closely followed by I have no money.)

Regardless of our specific circumstances, whether we have no kids or five, whether we have a lot of money or none, whether we work three jobs or are stay at home parents, we all say the same thing. We have no time. If only I had time, I would ….

No, you probably wouldn’t. If you had some time to spare, you’d probably fill it with something else, like you have done this far. Like you’ll continue to do until the end of time, or until you get real with yourself.

Do you truly want what you say you want? Do you want it bad enough? If you do, there is time. You will have to give up on something else, for sure. Great dreams don’t come at bargain prices. It’s going to cost you, but if you’re willing to pay (the currency is commitment) there’s time to be had.

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Written by Anna on . Posted in Creativity & Inspiration, Life, and how to live it

Break the silence, sister. Your story matters

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I was raped as a child. I was raped by my grandfather and later by my stepbrother.

This is the first time I write these words publically. I’ve written about being sexually abused before, but I’ve never written “by him and by him” and it still feels like breaking the rules to do so. I am breaking the rules. I’m spilling the secret these men left me to keep, and in doing so, I feel guilty. For exposing them, for making people uncomfortable, for claiming that my side of the story matters at all.

But it does matter.

And as I tell my story, just as it is, the part of me that has struggled to keep the secret can begin to relax. The more truthful I am, the less she has to guard. When it’s all out there, in the open, she can finally abandon her post and re-join life. No more hiding. No more protecting myself and others from the truth of me.

She’s exhausted. It has required all her strength to keep the shame and the dirt hidden from view. And she’s afraid. The fear that has pulsated through her veins – my veins – all these years doesn’t go away just like that.

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Written by Anna on . Posted in Life, and how to live it, Reading and Writing

The shamelessly happy introvert

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I’m a highly introverted woman. Not in the least bit shy, not afraid to meet new people or speak publically when it’s called for, but my need for time alone is massive. I revel in solitude, in silence, in the slow and the moment to moment appreciation of beauty around me.

I’m a thinker, a dreamer, a watcher, a listener, and inside this quiet, sometimes reserved frame things germinate and grow. Tender things. Wild things. Powerful things. Secret gardens with an unpredictable, ancient beauty to them. Endless fields that I get to roam at will. And I’m unbelievably happy there.

Or, as some would have me believe: Inappropriately happy.

I read a post in the Creative Doer community on Facebook the other day that reminded me how strong the prejudice against introversion still is in our culture. One participant, writer Anne Linn Kaland wrote beautifully about the longing she felt to turn inwards as winter draws near:

“I would slip into the otherworld if I could. Now, for a long time, and emerge in spring. Darkness, silence, quiet. Moving from window to window, to see the fire in the mountains, the white sky, the dark trees leaning in. To hold a cup of hot tea and breathing in its steam, its herby scent. This is what I want. A long falling into quiet, and listening to the voices in-between, coming from a deeper place, a deeper world.”

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Written by Anna on . Posted in Creativity & Inspiration, Life, and how to live it

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