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Valuing Our Belonging and Creating Community

Without a sense of belonging and knowing our own value in the world, we see no one there for us. We do not see ourselves within a community simply because we cannot understand how and why they would value us. Further, we’re suspicious of them if they do tout our value. What do they want from us?

Our families may be the only people we interact with and this may be similarly stressful. Yes you have to show up because you’re family but do you really like me for the person I am?

This sense of not belonging in the world, even within one’s own family, is a devastating and debilitating symptom of our dissociated society. Our need to be accepted as ourselves is so primal yet we end up selling ourselves short to find acceptance for the people we are not.

I am summarizing the brilliant work of Brene Brown on vulnerability and courage because I see it as the base for all that ails us. We can not be authentically ourselves so we cannot create. We don’t allow ourselves to create to find our authentic selves. We then must buy our status, our identity in the world causing debting and economic problems. And at the end, all we want is just to be appreciated for who we actually truly are.Valuing Our Belonging and Creating Community on shalavee.com

Our longing to be vulnerable and accepted has us running on a hamster wheel to achieve the Prize of Perfect but when we are appreciated and liked, we find we are alone in this crowd. Our greatest fear of being alone and not belonging to the people we are with has been realized.

Our need to be accepted as ourselves is so primal yet we end up selling ourselves short to find acceptance for the people we are not.

My thought is that if we started with the absolute understanding that everyone was feeling the same way, if we gave grace and acknowledgement to ourselves and others, we’d fast break down our pretend perfection walls. And that in those moments when we were with others being seen for our true selves, we’d never be able to stop the community from happening.Valuing Our Belonging and Creating Community on shalavee.com

As humans, we are hardwired for connection. We are tribal. Trick is to start with the people who truly do get you. And be vulnerable and willing to build from there. I guarantee they’ll show you your value every time you are with them. And you’ll know the meaning of community and its necessity.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Fiona’s Moana Themed 5th Birthday Party

We celebrated Fiona’s Fifth birthday with a Moana party theme. We’re still doing the parties old school with family and cousins to play with. And the Moana theme was truly a great excuse to reuse my fabulous palm trees over again from the Viva Havana fundraiser.

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

I took a good long time to conceive of and create some of the details and touches that made it feel fun and tropical islandy. Had the palm trees but needed the tiki god idol pieces to fill out the corner cabinets. They’re painted on hunks of cardboard.

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

The kokomora coconuts are made from actual coconuts. We’ll be smashing their heads in soon.And having flowers is a mainstay but this year we had a tropical theme that Miss Patti indulged and sent me home to play with all these beauties.

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

And the food included pulled pork (nod to Pua) on Hawaiian rolls, Hei Hei island terriyaki skewers, Tamatoa crabcakes, Te Fiti island slaw, and pineapple boat fruit skewers. Many of these ideas plus the little sails on the cupcakes were gleaned from Pinterest. Remember, I troll for my ideas first from Pinterest before I commit to a main art project or two.

http://shalavee.com/my-event-creative-process-starts-with-pinterest/

My husband owns the lighting company so I still have these party fete lights strung across my living room.

 

http://shalavee.com/my-event-creative-process-starts-with-pinterest/

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com


Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Moana Themed Fifth Birthday Party on Shalavee.com

 

As for the wee Fiona, she had so much fun, she didn’t know which end was up. Almost all the people that adore her were there and she got more presents! And her very own mini cake which she decorated with her own bath toys and paper umbrellas. It truly was a day to remember.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

The Relationship Trust Fund


A picture of the cover of a book called the Speed of Trust came up in my IG feed recently called the Speed of Trust. After reading a synopsis of the book , I was reminded that all affairs of the soul eventually find their way into “better ways to do business” books. And while trust is indeed an essential element in every relationship, personal or professional, the development of a trust fund within us for ourselves is often forgotten.

I spoke of the importance of making trust deposits here and building up trust funds with your family, especially your children. You better have extra trust in there for when things go a little rough and misunderstandings happen. If both parties were aware of the value of this surplus you’re building, it would be even better. We could appreciate the better times and work hard to mend ourselves in the worse ones.The Relationship Trust Fund on Shalavee.com

I am struck by all this gracious goodwill for everyone’s benefit except ourselves. Everything about and for ourselves we take for granted. We can’t hear our self-bullying words. We ignore ourselves and follow paths that aren’t ours, as well as feed, neglect, and dress our bodies according to others’ standards. We then quell our discontent and distrust of ourselves with Tv, booze, and sugar. Our own trust funds with ourselves are non-existent.

I am slowly coming to understand that my inner child has every reason to never trust me again. But that this trust is essential to my happiness and to find more purpose and create more meaningful work. She has to believe that I will keep her safe and not ignore her needs. That is how the trust fund begins to form with anyone as well as yourself. That showing self-compassion instead of employing judgement is the next step to this growing up process. The Relationship Trust Fund on Shalavee.com

And lastly, if I am a person who trusts myself and my own choices, then I’m someone who others will trust. Because “do as I say not as I do” never works for kids and it could be a deal breaker when I work with anyone else. Self-confidence and self-trust need a track record and I’m slowly starting to make one.

Anyone find this familiar? Do you trust you? I urge all thoughts here or anywhere I’m online. Links below.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest  too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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We’re Fighting For Family Unity

Got together with my friend Karen and as we’re talking about our recent endeavors and priorities, she mentions prioritizing her family “being together”. She felt her family needed some sort of activity that all family members could participate together in. And I thought, Wow, both of us are fighting for family time.

 

On the way home from Baltimore on Easter, I told my mother-in-law that there just isn’t a single picture of my nuclear family together. We really didn’t ever exist. We children were conceived and born in California but by the time I was 6 months and we moved to Maryland, there was a new career for my Dad and we we’re no longer a family. Not the kind that is important enough to fight for and hold on to above and beyond all other things. Our family life dissolved slowly and painfully. Like many children, I was a scrap of their misbegotten marriage.

We're Fighting For Family Unity on Shalavee.com

Because of my experience, I am actively and consciously making sure that my children know they belong to something stronger and more stable than they are. I am intentionally making moments and legacy for them that they will weave into their life stories. And I guarantee those won’t suck half as much as mine did.

 

We went to the Salisbury, Maryland Zoological Park on the Tuesday after Easter. We stopped at our favorite diner on the way down where my children were marvelously behaved. We rolled through the Toys R Us to exchange a doubled birthday present and both got a new toy. And we rolled back into town with a big old family memory win. My husband and I even thanked our children for their wonderful behavior.

We're Fighting For Family Unity on Shalavee.com

I am making it up as I go along. But I also believe that if you lead with intention and intuition, you can do a good job of weaving a life that you like and maybe love. And those little beings I birthed from my very own body are so worth the effort.

 

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest  too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

 

 

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Codependency

Codependency is such a dirty word to say these days. I think most people have heard of it and my suspicion is that most people suffer to a degree from it. And like allergies and anxieties, most people also deny that.

I can remember being in a therapy session when I was around 21 and feeling bad about something for my boyfriend. Like I had responsibility for having caused his feeling or I was trying to fix him (no surprise) and the therapist brought this to my attention. This was the first memory I can have of being aware that my tendency to mind-read and try to expect and manipulate other people’s happiness may not be “healthy”. The first time I was busted for being codependent.Codependency on Shalavee.com

I have worked for many many years on figuring out where I stop and other people begin. That place is called a boundary and is perfectly normal to have. In codependent families, people do not take responsibility for their own choices and either pass the blame on to other people or insinuate others have to make up for it. Defensiveness and resentment top the feeling charts in these family situations followed by guilt and shame. To say this is all “unhealthy” would be to understate the effects on the children who grow up here. It’s downright debilitating.

Yet even in the nicest of families, people do what they know and has been done before them. And it has been a real impetus for my emotional growth to not want to repeat the unhealthy behaviors that have been given to me. Children do as they see, not as you say. If I do not take responsibility for my choices and am always blaming others, so will they. Integrity and honesty start in your heart and flow downhill to those you love. So does pain and displacement of that pain. In the end, you are always still responsible for your own happiness.Codependency on Shalavee.com

At the same time, the care-taking of children draws me into areas where I can be dangerously codependent. The need to make sure I’m a “Good “ mother can make me spoil and coddle and mind-read their needs. It can make me ignore my own needs to take care of theirs. And too much of this can make me feel resentful and still I can raise children who take the world and me for granted. If I never allow them to do their work and experience the benefit of it, I am robbing them of identity moments. Opportunities to grow away from needing me.

Thankfully, I’m a Mom who understands that I have a separate life just like my children will. I have to be mindful and cautious not to spoil my whole family to my detriment. But I am certain that I am on the right path to showing them what it looks like to take responsibility for their actions and feelings and to be proud of their accomplishments which are theirs not mine. If you find yourself trying to coerce other people to feel things and are sure you know what everyone is thinking about you, you may want to look into this codependency thing a little more.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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