I must say that with age comes wisdom. The older I get, the less I feel I need. I have no longings like I did when I was young. I really feel like I have been blessed abundantly. I am not saying I have a lot according to the worlds' standards, but I have all that I need.
My two wonderful children
My experiences in life (Good or bad)
My two doggies
Peace of mind
Masters in Counseling Psychology
Lots of friends
A fire pit
Food on the table
Gift of gab (Speaker/Trainer)
Life is wondrous I treasure it so;
Those around me help me to grow;
I have no longing I yearn for now
I've received so much, not sure how;
I really have everything I need
Trust, love and pay God heed
Life is what you make it to be
Love is at the center,
No more longing and you'll be free
"People of this world are deluded. They're always longing for something - always, in a word, seeking. Bodhidharma
Thursday, August 25, 2011
Monday, August 15, 2011
Trust is a big word since trust needs to be earned. I wish I would have learned that gem a bit earlier, but hey, old dogs do learn new tricks. Trust begins in the nursery. How safe and nurtured we feel as babies does impact our future in trust. My childhood had some great memories, but trust was not something I could count on by my parents.
I learned that because of my childhood, I am usually the one who can't commit because I didn't have a strong trust base. I really never thought I would marry because commitment was so hard for me. Well, who would of thunk it. I had a part of me because of my painful childhood that had my perception of all human kind as being too good. I know that sounds weird, but if you think about it, perhaps I really subconsciously did want love so bad, that I missed all the signs of the wrong person. In fact, maybe I wore Rose colored glasses. I ended up getting married and missed the red flags that were there from day one.
Here is the good part. I never lost sight of the fact that most of us are just plain awesome. I'm also not the naive girl I was back in the day when I met my ex husband. I have really come far. I think my past has really helped me see more realistically. I know that my childhood made me the loving, gifted person I am now. I definitely know it's why I am so grateful for everything I have.It is also why I am such a deep or depthy human being as my friends say. I thank God for all the wrong people in my life. I am glad life set me up to second guess trust. Now trust is easier for me. Show me love in action and I will take it. Burn me once, OK maybe twice and I will not put my energy into you.
I don't want to sound cheesy, but another part of my trust came in all of you here on these writing sites. I know we don't know each other personally, but in a way we know each other in some pretty important and sacred ways. I feel honored every day on line that I receive tips, support, that community feeling, and having you all share a part of you with me. Thanks to all of you. I think we all know how healing writing is. I have come so far now that I am writing, venting, using my creative abilities and finding such amazing, talented people here.
Sincerely, thanks for letting me be a part of your life.
Thursday, August 11, 2011
Life has so much wonder, but I will try to talk of my faves in no particular order.
1. My God
3. My two children
4. My Twin sister who is my bestie.
5. My relationship with my dad when he was living.
6. My life.
7. My beautiful home in Minnesota.
I have always been a dreamer and a total romantic. My dreams of a happy marriage did not last. I think as a young girl, my picture of happiness included a perfect world which was not realistic. As a psychologist, I know that young girls and women are bombarded by images of perfection, getting swept off their feet, and that we need to have a man to make us whole. I have changed so much in my perception of the world.
It was a shocking reality to me that my ex now, could have it in him to hurt me. This was the man I ended up having two wonderful children with. The physical abuse did not last long because I told him, if this is something you think you can get away with, your wrong and I will leave. The verbal and psychological abuse was worse and that escalated after he knew he could not strike me. I know now that I should have seen the red flags, but I was too invested by then to want to believe it. I stayed for thirteen years. I guess that is how long Tina Turner stayed with Ike Turner too. How wierd is that? I now train on the cycle of abuse and teach women and men what the abuse cycle looks like. I teach that as grim as it can feel and look, there is HOPE.
Don't feel sad for me because life is different now. Life without a man is sad, but it is great in a way I never could have imagined before. In my younger days I used to be "boy crazy." I've now learned to be handy at my house and my self-confidence has grown leaps and bounds. I know God loves me so much and having a man that didn't treat me how I should be treated, stunted the blossoming of the Real Laura. How could I grow when I was just surviving and not living fully?
I am now the Laura that my friends knew before marrying my ex. First and foremost, I am a mom. My two kids mean the world to me. I have a thirteen and fifteen year old. I have turned down relationships in the nine years as a single mom because I know what kind of man I want. For the first time in my life, I know I am doing it on my own and it feels quite empowering. I may meet someone in the future, but my primary goal is my children.
I feel so happy for those of you who have that partner you can rely on, be your self with, laugh and cry with. I just know that I have not met that person yet.
Monday, August 8, 2011
As a foodie, I work with so many different talented chefs and restaurants. I feel blessed to have made so many great friends as a director working at a human service agency. I work with homeless families and children. To that end, I bring on many guest chefs into our charming Kids Cafe' at Perspectives. Can you believe these generous souls come here, donate the food for 60 or more children and parents, teach foodie skills and share their time and talent? It is a great thing we do here and I am so proud of our Kids Connection program, but I am also so very fond and proud of the great work the chefs do in this community. It does make a huge impact. Giving back to the community is the best role modeling we can show our youth.
One of the many chefs and friends I have made as a director here at Perspectives is Heather Jansz. She is a delightful human being with gifts bestowed on her galore. She is a Chef and more precisely, "The Curry Diva". She has delighted my palate many times with her wonderful curry dishes and has even gotten our kids to eat them with pleasure. Our kids are at risk youth that would otherwise not be exposed to this special food.
Tonight is the last night my friend Heather is cooking her special curry for "Curry Night" at the Edina Grill. She will move on to another restaurant in Maple Grove after tonight. She will be at the 3 restaurant from August 15-September 26th. You must check it out and fill your taste buds with flavour. Tell them Laura sent you from Kids Cafe.
I took my daughter with me to eat this fantastic beef curry dish last night. My daughter ate a cheese burger basket, but I forgave her. I delved into the amazing beef curry dish. I was so happy. It was a lovely night out on the Edina Grill Cafe patio. How could I lose? A perfect August night, a perfect breeze, my beautiful thirteen year old daughter and great food.
The "Curry Diva" creates unforgettable Sri Lankan, Indonesian, and Ayurvedic foods to nourish your body and feed the soul. She is also available for cooking lessons and demonstrations, as well as catering.
Thanks again Heather. What a great experience you gave my daughter and I at the patio.
Friday, August 5, 2011
In the 1980's, I was attending the University of Wisconsin- Stout studying psychology. I was surrounded by so many good friends, getting good grades and living with my best friend and twin sister, Linda. One particular Friday night, I was going out with a group of gals to hear one of my favorite bands. Linda couldn't join us since she had plans to see a movie with her boy friend Joel. My good friend Patty had some friends I hadn't met, but I was going to hang out with them at a tavern called the Marion. We were excited to hear one of the most popular musical bands of the time.
I'll never forget how much I enjoyed listening to the live music of Night Ranger. Patty and I were in heaven as we swayed back and forth to the great tunes. Could it get any better? " Sister Christian", our favorite song was sung and the crowd went wild. This was such a great night. I had been introduced to all of Patty's buddies and they seemed really nice.
The band had ended and I was ready to go home. It was a busy week of tests and I had to rise early the next morning to meet up with a study group. Patty and I had made plans that she would drive me home after the last song played. She leaned over to me and whispered " Sorry Laura, I want to stay till bar time and head home with my boyfriend." I asked her if she could just drop me off first like we had planned and unfortunately she answered "NO."
Patty must have felt guilty for leaving me in the lurch and found someone to take me home. Her friend's buddy Leo, said he was ready to get going too and had no problem dropping me off. He seemed nice enough, but I had only just met him. Instinct told me I really shouldn't go with him, but I shrugged it off.
Leo and I walked out into the dark Wisconsin night and jumped into his black Chevy truck. It was a beautiful September night and the stars were shining bright as if they were there to watch me. I gave Leo directions to my off campus apartment. Confused, I asked him why he was going in the opposite direction. "Oh, I just want to take you back to my apartment for a night cap." "As great as that sounds, I really do have to get home. " Like I said, I meet with a study group early in the morning and I am really tired."
I was starting to feel panic creep in as he ignored my requests to bring me home. He continued to drive in the direction of his house. His entire demeanor changed as did his voice. In a stern tone he said, "Quit being such a party pooper and come in for a few minutes." I felt angry and scared and couldn't believe he was trying to make me feel guilty. This felt surreal, this predicament I was in. I just wanted to be home safely tucked under my covers.
My mind was reeling in fear as we walked into his house. I knew what I had to do to get me out of this situation somewhat unscathed. Leo asked me if I wanted a drink. "No thanks, I'm tired and just want to go home to bed. He began spewing demeaning, offensive and disgusting words, I was terrified. He pushed me down on his brown haggard sofa. Leo was a college football player and built like a brick shit house. I knew I couldn't compete with him physically, but maybe I could on a psychological level. He threw his large body on top of me and forced his tongue into my mouth. I remember him putting his hands all over my breasts. I knew I was in trouble. "I don't even know you, what are you doing?" I could feel his anger rise by the way he was talking and holding me down. His eyes seemed to disappear under the angry scowl on his face. I knew I had to use every piece of Psychology I had learned. I just wanted to be home in my cozy apartment with my twin. How I wish I could just fly away and be there.
I was feeling hopeful and more confident as instinct just took over. I felt a rush of energy course through my body and was ready to put on the best acting performance of my life. This moment seemed to last a lifetime. Before I could do anything he thrust his large penis into my mouth and told me if I didn't perform fellatio, I would be sorry. I felt so afraid, so disgusted, so angry. After finishing this repulsive chore, I went into "acting mode." Calmly, I gave Leo one of my best smiles and said, "I'll take that drink now." I cheerfully asked him to mix me a Bacardi diet. "Laura, I am so glad you want to stay longer." My body was shivering uncontrollably as he left to the kitchen to pour me that drink.
As he was mixing my cocktail in the kitchen, I made a run for it. I was running so fast, I tripped over my own feet in a panic. " I have to make it to the pay phone outside of the Student Union to call Linda". I made it to the phone and called Linda in hysterics. In between my sobbing and screaming, I was able to ask Linda for help. My twin sister Linda has always been my rock and she told me to try to stay calm. "Laura, stay put and hide till I get there. I'll honk three times so you know It's me and safe to run to the car." Trying to talk in between my shrills, I promised her I would. "Please hurry Linda, I see head lights coming toward me." It felt like an eternity. I felt so vulnerable and drained emotionally. My body was shaking uncontrollably and I could hardly breathe.
I hid behind a large thick bush and prayed to God this monster wouldn't find me. I finally heard three honks. I ran out to the car and just fell weeping into my sisters' loving arms.
That Night I learned a great lesson. Always trust your instincts.