Accepting That You Are Not Alone

Accepting that you are not alone is a difficult and yet immensely rewarding accomplishment during difficult times.  Making decisions and dealing with suffering leave many feeling lost and alone and in need of comfort and support.

This weekend in our community was Relay For Life, a time for coming together after months of fundraising to support the American Cancer Society with research, education, advocacy and service.  Team members take turns walking the track  (the concept behind the word Relay) so that someone is always on the track.  A great deal of symbolism is involved in the planning based on what cancer does to its victims.  It is 24 hours of people walking to demonstrate that cancer never sleeps so neither do the walkers.  Survivors and patients and their caregivers are honored and those who have died are remembered.  It is an uplifting, emotional time for participants probably mostly due to the electricity of the participants so dedicated to the elimination of cancer.

The theme of the morning sunrise service, ‘you are not alone’ initiated more faithful thinking on my part. The youth minister spoke of the presence of God with us at all times.  The songs and poems were of His nearness,  reminding us of the gift of life.

‘Remember when you heard the words and your mind went blank you were in another world’

‘Remember in your darkest hours when all that surrounds you is pain and sorrow’

These words written by an unknown cancer survivor  speak of unlimited situations that humans encounter.  They speak of those times when every thought is of the affects the situation causes personally.  They speak of those times that fear controls the thoughts.  The faithful eventually on their own time, regain what they have known, that God is with them.

Last night as I meditated, I expanded on not being alone.  Within me is my higher self, holy spirit; I am not alone.  Surrounding, opening me to the energies of the universe, healing and loving are my guardian angels; I am not alone.  Around me are my family members waiting for cues as to how they can help and support me,  but I have to open up and share my thoughts, concerns and needs so that, I am not alone, as well as accept they have their fears, too.  The same goes for my friends and neighbors; I am only alone, if I choose to be by suffering in silence.  As I was told yesterday, ‘You call me with anything you need, and if you don’t need anything, call me to come have a cup of tea and a chat.’ I am not alone.

Fear is what can keep us deaf to God, His angels, our higher self and intuition, and separate us from our friends, neighbors and community.  Fear keeps us alone.  Aloneness is only the physical situation if you allow it to be.  Open yourself to accept that you are not alone.  Open your heart and let the light in.  Sit physically alone in the quiet and listen and feel the presence around you that is love.  It is there always; let it in. You are not alone.

yurloved

 

Fearlessly Free to Be You and Me

In the 90s as a middle school teacher, I assisted a bit in the production, free to beas much as my talents allowed, of the play version of Marlo Thomas and friends’, “Free to Be You and Me “. I remember that the kids really enjoyed it as did I. Listening to sound bites of the songs brought up thoughts of changes facing children today.

Still in the same school in 2001, but as a supervisor, we were faced with the terrorism that day that the plane flew into the World Trade Center. Not far from New York City, we had a number of parents working there and for several hours, spent time locating them for terrified children. Where outcomes were devastating all around us, all of our parents were located alive and well by the end of the day. For one reason or another, they had not made it into the city that morning. For our students, a day of miracles. But I think that was the beginning of fear based living that has quietly permeated some of our society. Certainly it has drawn other negative fearful incidences to everyday life and removed that freedom to be, that was gaining strength.

Be wary! Be careful! Isn’t that dangerous? Is that safe? The vocabulary of fear is here. Don’t run, you’ll fall! Be careful! Watch out! I don’t remember this as a child. We rode bikes along the road for miles and miles. We played outside without supervision for hours. I remember one scary episode around age 10 at the Jersey shore. I was playing in the surf by myself with a small blow up inner tube. Don’t remember what I was trying to do, but I got the tube stuck behind my head and back with my arms and shoulders trapped inside the hole just when a wave hit and knocked me down. I was powerless to help myself, face down in the water without arms. I couldn’t roll over because the tube blocked me. As terror began to fill me, I was yanked up to a standing position and the tube ripped off. There was my mother who had been watching me all the time. I learned many lessons that day, many of which I probably am consciously unaware. The lessons were mine to learn, and although it is not a pleasant memory, I believe it made me a better mother, teaching me to let them experience life while watching from a short distance unencumbered by the vocabulary of fear.

That lesson is especially important today as there is so much more negativity and fear than ever before. Remove those words of fear, let them explore within the boundaries that may be necessary. Keeping watch, ever mindful that the greatest parent and His winged staff are ever present awaiting your awareness. Fear or love? That is the choice- love of God, faith in His protection, belief that you and your children are always in His hands, and gratitude- so much gratitude for the safety that surrounds them.  Or you can choose fear.

The world is full of experiences- joyful, exhilarating opportunities to do and to be and so much is missed because of fear. Fear of injury or judgment prevents living life to its fullest. Isn’t it time to remove the vocabulary of fear, and once again teach children we are all “Free To Be You and Me”?

 

About the Author

11115609_10204369689187957_9074883143868021693_oBeth Hoffman has a master’s degree in education, and after more than thirty years as a teacher and administrator in New Jersey public schools, she is now retired, giving her time to pursue interests in angels, energy healing and living from the heart. She has studied Reiki, IET (integrated energy therapy), angel therapy, and Magnified Healing. She and her husband reside in the Lake Wallenpaupack area of the Poconos in Pennsylvania where they are blessed to spend time with their grandchildren, one of the inspirations for this book.

Yes, Virginia There Are Adult Bullies

Yes, Virginia there are adult bullies

Have you ever been targeted by the best person on earth? It is a strange situation because they are so enamored by everyone else that you begin to believe them as well. I have recently been reminded of a time I was the recipient of kind, loving constructivism that didn’t feel comfortable. I questioned myself, my actions, and not until later when discussing my self-doubt with a professional did it become clear to me, that it boiled down to intent, and only one of us could claim good intentions. Although my intentions were not self-serving, I readily believed in the failures being presented to me. They came to me, my mind accepted them as truth, and my self-talk played them over and over like a song played on a loop.

Self-talk is present all the time. We listen to it off and on all day long, sometimes well into the night, preventing down time for sleep. We are not always consciously aware of what our mind is repeating, but we do feel it. It is important to bring those thoughts- that self-talk to the front and give it attention. You may find out you are not as kind as you think you are. Don’t hide it, change it! Perhaps your thoughts make you feel hypocritical. Good! You now can address it before others realize it too. Then again the self-talk can belittle you, criticize you, and diminish your spirit, creating a lack of self-worth. Is that what you want to tell yourself? It doesn’t matter where those thoughts originated. It matters that they became your thoughts and through self-talk, you hear them over and over, believing them every time. By critically listening to your self-talk, you can recognize what is unreal and detrimental. You can stop being your own worst enemy, and create a shield that hurtful intentions can’t penetrate.

I have written about children and bullying, a topic that strikes a direct blow to my heart but now realize that there are vicious egotistical adults as well. Children are not the only ones that are victims. Although when adults are bullied, the attack is on their inner child as well. There are adults out there hiding behind fake kindness, religion and even service that are not heart based in their actions. Childhood bullies grown up have had many years of practice. If you are heart centered, they see an easy target.

It was recommended to me to ask my guardian angels for help. I know, some of you are thinking I did that when I was a kid, but I am grown up now. Well, your angels have been waiting for a long time for a signal from you that you want assistance. I asked for help and the answer seemed to make sense, exactly what I would think. That was because they were my thoughts. I stayed quiet for a while longer and waited. When it no longer sounded like me, I knew it was a message from my angels. I also recognized immediately it was a much better idea than I came up with on my own. It was not based in ego. Archangel Raguel can be called on to mediate conflicts and bring harmony to relationships as well. Free will blocks so many from angelic assistance. God created these spiritual supporters before humanity so we would never be alone. Give gratitude for them in your life and ask for help; whether you know what you need or not, they do.

There are different types of bullies, some “in your face” and some that hide it behind their goodness. I have read about standing up to them as the only way to stop it, but it my case, I know if I had, I would have given what was needed- a platform to show off their perfection and my perceived inability. Of course the other person is believed to be the kindest God fearing person on the planet. How could they be wrong in their actions? I chose to rise above it. I didn’t react.   Throughout the time we had to interact, I had professional support and recommend it highly. Being able to talk was immensely helpful because as I mentioned before no one would have believed me. Also, I was amazed at how easily I had believed the criticism. The professional suggestions were invaluable. In some cases people can walk away from bullies, but workplace bullying and similar other situations limit the options. Seek help.

Hold tightly to your self-esteem. Focus on their needs and their weaknesses as the cause of the conflict. Perhaps you can assist them with their needs without them attacking you. First and foremost, refuse to be diminished in your own eyes. Yes, listen to your self-talk. If your intentions are good, hold fast. If your intentions are from ego, self-serving, in any way diminishing others, then take the advice, even if it was judgmental in the presentation. Accept it as a gift if it returns you to your path. Accept self-talk as your inner barometer to peace.

Is the Boogie Man Still Under Your Bed?

Fear is so debilitating and yet right around the corner for many. The first real genuine pain in my chest fear I remember was of Captain Hook. I remember “watching” Peter Pan from behind the couch in complete fear. I don’t remember being afraid of the dark, but of being alone. At night I did not like being by myself in the bedroom and often wished I had a sister to share the room with me.

I can’t recall how I handled fears with my children as it seems to have escaped my memory. fear6However, I noticed with my grandchildren the many warnings they got from their father who would have been more comfortable wrapping them in bubble wrap to keep them safe. Then I caught myself doing the same, as well as their mother so that, “Be careful” was a common warning. So perhaps it is a good assumption that I was a protective mother.

The question in my mind, watching grandchildren go through fears, has been whether it is natural or do we as adults create it in our protectiveness? According to Consistent-parenting-advice.com, “Over protective parents create continuous situations from which their children struggle to escape, until eventually there is no escape as the fears have become part of the patterned response for their child’s way of thinking.”

fear4Almost everyone has worries and fears that hold them back and perhaps those of adults came from their childhood too. The first step is to recognize them. Since finding my spirituality the thought that reduces the fear is that I am where I am meant to be, experiencing what I am supposed to experience, and that God my creator is in control. Although that is perhaps a bit to convey to children, the next step is much easier. I visualize angels surrounding me and keeping me safe. That part, and talking to their guardian angels, kids accept more easily. Although they tell me they do it all the time, my grandchildren love when I call on the angels on their behalf. Knowing they are not alone, but surrounded by supportive, loving angels, helps many of us, young and old alike leave fears behind.

Fears become so much a part of life that it becomes easy to disregard what has been given up. fear5It limits our experiences socially, emotionally, physically and psychologically without realization. It is easier to not be interested than to admit that it is fear based.   In helping children deal with challenges, adults need to focus on the fact that childhood is cumulative experiences leading to maturity and adulthood. Consistent-parenting-advice.com suggests the best way to do that is to become a “submarine parent” “remain out of sight, yet able to pop up in the case of an emergency.”

fear9“In order to become responsible, confident, assertive, independent adults, children need opportunities to explore their environment both physically and emotionally without continuous interference from their parents.”

Adults that are around children, whether their own or someone else’s can use that time, to consider their own fears and evaluate what they are giving up in “feeding them”.   What opportunities have been let go by unrecognized fear? What opportunities can become available again once that is understood? Experience new things daily by taking on your fears and passing that on to those around you!