Category: Perspective


Rocking chair on the deck - Antigua, Mar 2010

What do I want to be when I grow up?

Reinvention is now the new word for “Retirement”, or it should be.

One definition of retirement means leaving one’s job and ceasing to work and another definition is seclusion. Who does that when they change jobs or change their life journey?  The connotations of retirement are typically negative and negative thoughts lead to negative remarks and negative behavior toward yourself and toward others. You see the pattern here.
I am 49 (which is the new 39 or so I am hoping for the energy level and with Botox and Retina A), and I am reinventing myself after 28 years as an educator. I will work in some form or fashion, and I will be as far to the other side of the spectrum of seclusion as you can possible be, so no, I am not retiring.

I am in the land of new chapters and new beginnings.

Reinvention is when you decide you want to do something different and that could be any change in your life. You could change jobs, change your habits, change your underwear style, etc.. I know prefer low boy cuts to thongs. Would that be considered reinvention? Well, it could. I do not know all that I want to do, but I plan for parts of it to be a “wild ride” and parts of it to be just peace and contentment.

Dragoncon 2010 Anna Fischer via Compfight

West is my destination for the summer hence the title of my blog. My first trip west, not including Vegas, was last July to Cheyenne, WY, for Frontier Week (more about that later); this trip sparked my interest in several different ways, so to validate my title, as my budget will allow, I must spend some time  soaking up the sites and people of the west. I did realize that if you turned a certain way that anywhere can be west. (I am directionally challenged.) This convinced me to start researching different cities.  I thought about house sitting which I may revisit at a later date. Of course, there were many of us who wanted the house sitting job in Hawaii!  This convinced me to start researching different cities and thinking about where and what I wanted from a location.

What do you take in to consideration when you are looking for some where to live?

Walk or drive

Do you want to be in a large city with public transportation and with restaurant, bars, and coffee shops close to you?

Do you want to drive everywhere as we do in small Southern towns?

I want to be able to do both. I enjoy walking and leaving the car parked. I like that about New York City – no car, no gas.  I also would like to drive around wherever I am to see the state. Having social interaction locations close by is a definite plus to me. I like to eat, have a cold beer or a wonderful strong coffee, and I like to talk a lot!

House or apartment

Due to my budget, this was a no-brainer for me. Apartment with roommates was my only option. It is challenging to explain to a prospective roommate that you are 49 and running away from home for the summer and maybe longer.

What do I hope to gain from this experience?  I want to meet new people, and I want to examine “me”. Our time on this great earth is limited and I want to try and find my passion and my purpose which as most of us know is a lifelong mission. Living complacently is not the way I ever want to live. There are times in your life when your choices are physical limited, but you are never mentally limited. I want to be better tomorrow than I was today. I backslide every other day in to that unaware state, but I keep trying to climb the mountain.

I have not finalized my plans for where this exotic Reinventionist will reside at this point in my journey, but I do hope to share that with you soon.   The south will meet the west!

If you could reinvent yourself in any way what would you do? What are you waiting for?

Read these two links and let me know what you think.

Courage: A Small Dose Will Help With Your Reinvention. Do You Have It?

The Ultimate Cheat Sheet For Reinventing Yourself

Band-Aids to your Heart

photo credit: BWJones via photopin cc

After having a life altering event happen, my friends and my daughter came to the rescue. My gratitude for these people makes my heart swell. My friends invest in me with their heartfelt hugs, kind words, and memories of good times.

My dear Alabama Crimson Tide friend:  She comforts me at work, and she takes me to lunch. She tells me to remember that you are a strong, independent, beautiful, intelligent woman. One person’s dumbass actions has no bearing on who you are as a person.
AL glass
Remember those words:

One person’s dumbass actions has no bearing on who you are as a person.

Then on Saturday night, she hires a town car to pick me up with her in the back waiting on me with a tall glass with a big A and Crimson Tide on the side.  It was filled to the brim with Grey Goose and cran-apple juice – my favorite drink! She made sure my drink was never empty for the entire night, and this Ole Miss girl sucked it down. We then go to her house and her husband cooks the best grilled chicken that I have ever eaten in my life. He will not tell me the rub he concocted, but I will keep asking him and hopefully share it with you later. The hugs and conversation helped me relax and enjoy the night.  Note to my life roommates:  Give someone your phone to keep until the next morning. Even though I did receive a wonderful picture with the cutest jewelry in the center.

bandaid_1My oldest friend shared with me her present that she had received the previous week.

I had this little bird in my possession to point at evil. I even rubbed it like a Genie Lamp a few times, and it would calm me down.

I was filled with her love every time I looked at the little bird.

My daughter hugged me and had my back. Both of my daughters are strong supporters of whatever I do. The great part is that it does not matter what I do.

Their unconditionally love is always a constant in my life.

bandaid_2My dear friend who loves life and is always positive offered support and help when I needed a lifeline, and he offered to help me with a fun filled plan of action.

He is a handsome, strong, protective warrior, and he is kind. (He loves to throw Frisbees at the beach.)

Without all of these strong and loving people, it would have been a tough weekend. I would have survived this situation, but it was so much easier with the love and support of my friends.  Be there for your friends and love them through whatever they may be facing.

What does your friend do for you when he/she knows you are hurting?

Friends Through Thick and Thin

photo credit: honey-bee via photopin cc

Good day to all!

My friends are my lifeline to love, compassion, support and laughter.

I do not know how your friends fit in to your life or what they bring to your table of life, but my friends help me to navigate and enjoy my life.  Our friends meet needs in our life that cannot be met by our lovers or by our families.

Why do I love my friends? I love them because I can call them at any hour of the day, and they will listen to me.  Even the trivial stuff, even the gross stuff… I can discuss the shoe sale at Belk or the jean sale at the GAP, but I can also talk about my sex life or my fears or the gravity force that is pulling on my body. It does not matter what the subject is my good friends listen. Some friends are so close to you that they feel your pain, and they feel your joy.  While they may be thinking, “You are a dumbass.” They still love you and care about your happiness.

My friend who has been by my side since junior high is all about perspective. Our backgrounds and trials in life have been very similar.   She helps me to see my world in a different way.  “Take a step back, Wanda, and rise above the situation; look at this from all perspectives. It will help you to understand their behavior, and it will keep you from reacting in the wrong manner.”  — which I sometimes do especially when my chimp, Bertha the bitch, takes over.

It is also great that when life takes you down different paths, and you do not get to talk to a dear friend for a little while, but you see each other and pick up right where you left off.

Laughter is another wonderful thing that my friends share with me. I have so many wonderful memories of trips and laughter and love shared between my friends. The stress release of laughter and the great feeling of being in a safe place where you can say what you feel allows you to enjoy life and handle the ups and downs of your life.

What is the funniest memory you have with your bff?

A Crack in My World: Retire?

photo credit: fiddleoak via photopin cc

I realized one winter day that I could live with disappointment but not regret. It was a life changing decision, and it put a little crack in my world.

Should I walk away from a job  that I enjoyed to retire from this occupation and  venture out of my comfort zone and try something different?

We are creatures of habit, and we feel safe in repetition which give us a false sense of control. Why do you continue this job, relationship, habit, etc.? The typical answer from someone as he/she gets this strange look in his/her eyes is “Because that is what I have always done.” This behavior is considered the norm, and even though it may not be the only pathway, it is the one chosen day after day.     When ask “Why”, there is at times a silence because the person does not know why, but because that is what he/she has always done, and it is accepted by society as the correct way or the only way, the behavior continues.

Would I survive if I did not work twelve hours a days and answer e-mails 24/7?   Being a type A personality and a “If I am not producing results then I am wasting my time”  kind of girl, that question was daunting then I thought about the times when I come home from work and I begin working again and when I get up on Saturday morning and Sunday morning and begin working. There are times when I do not want to work, but what do I wish I was doing?  Well, that was another hard question, my life roommates, because I do not remember what I did do when I did not work two or three jobs and attend softball games with my girls.

Through soul searching, I found the answers to the questions listed below:

Will I retire from my job? Yes.

Will I work full time again? Maybe.

What will I do with my time? No definite answer which is what makes this SO much fun.

Will I start a blog because it is something I have always wanted to do? Yes.

Will I work part time? Yes.

Will I starve? No, my family, friends, and my man will not let me starve.

While I am not advocating for all of my life roommates to quit your job, leave your partner, or make major life altering decisions, I want to share my journey with you and hope it makes you think about what you want your journey to be.



You are not a tree.

Why would you stay somewhere when you are not happy?

This somewhere could be a job that is not challenging or fulfilling, a relationship where there is no love or passion and many other “somewheres” that only you know in your heart. Fear, loyalty, passive aggressive tendencies, and laziness – four reasons people choose to be stay somewhere they do not want to be.

Fear is something that we all feel on a daily basis. Some are good at pushing it under the carpet and trying not to focus on what they fear while others confront fear head on and try to figure out why they are fearful of change. Is it because life as they know it will never be the same?  If “same” is so great then why do you feel that pull toward change. We say to ourselves, “Something has got to change, but then we do nothing to make it happen.” If the thought of changing something in your life keeps reoccurring then this thought is not entering your mind by accident.

Loyalty or guilt ridden loyalty is another prominent feeling that we all feel at some time especially when we are contemplating change whether it be a personal decision or a professional decision. It is at times hard for us to remember that we must be loyal to our vow to be the best that we can be and be happy with who we are before we can honor any commitment or obligation to others. A partner who does not want you to be happy and wants you to stay with them out of guilt is like a ship with a hole in the bow; it will never float. If a boss cares about you as a person then he/she will encourage you to be the best that you can be and to embrace any opportunity to follow the yellow brick road to happiness.

Passive aggressive tendencies also rear their heads in a big way when you are thinking of moving the roots in your life.  We tend to hide what we want or what we need to please others and to avoid conflict while we are slowly sinking into the pool of unhappiness. The people pleasing path does not cause any conflict in your life, but it does cause conflict in your emotional well being because resentment comes to the surface. This path is easy as it requires no physical action from you, but your life stays the same.

Are you a lazy person? Had you rather whine about what needs changing in your life than actual do something about it?  Who is not guilty of this? At times we will try to justify our lack of action and tell ourselves that our happiness does not matter, so why should we put forth effort to make a change. Change takes work. If you feel emotionally drained and the strength to fight for change is not there, relax and rebuild your body, soul, and mind. The first step is to surround yourself with positive people. Do not allow the negative energy of your surroundings to drain you.

The little voice (your Chimp- I will explain this later in a book review) that causes conflict in your head always wants to focus on the negatives of change.  If you do make a change, what is the worst that could happen? If you can handle the worst then what are you waiting for?

We only get one shot at this life. There are no dress rehearsals or second acts and the minutes continue to tick away……..

Love to all.

Thank you, Lori!

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