Three years ago I thought I was retired. I said I was retired. And for a while a was retired. I closed my mediation practice, took down my website and set about doing retiring things. Like walking my dog and playing ball with my dog and napping with my dog and writing about my dog. All the time.
But then I got a call from someone who knew someone that I had helped in the past and was I taking on new clients? And I said I was. Because in that moment of that phone call it felt like it was the right thing to do.
And the universe opened up with the strength of my new intention and here I am, no longer retired. And just as happy about the fact that I am active in this part of my life again as I was when I (temporarily) shut this part down to be in the retired part for a while.
Now, don't get me wrong. I loved being retired. And I think I needed that time to just be in the day to day of whatever that day would bring to me. Whether it was my dog activities or something else equally as lovely (could anything possibly be as lovely as my dog??). But then my mind started feeling this need to expand and be challenged and my soul felt pulled to give back and help others in that deep way that mediation always offered me. And I knew, when that first phone call came, and then more shortly followed, that this is right and good and I am meant to be doing this again.
So please, visit my new website and please share my contact information with your friends or family or anyone you know who may be in need of my services. I can work locally and I can work virtually and I am here to help anyone going through one of the most difficult times in a lifetime. I am proud of my work. I believe I make a difference.
Ending Your Marriage While Sustaining Your Family
My daughter, Teagan, is an actress in LA. And over the next few months she is filming two short films. She wrote both of them and will be starring in both of them and is really excited about both projects. And so, being her mom and all, and being so proud of her and thinking (knowing) that she is pretty amazing, I am writing about them here in case you are inspired to help her reach her goal to fund these films.
The first film is called Crystal James: Action Star.
About this film, Teagan writes: This film is about a woman, Crystal, who just really really really wants to be an action movie STAR. With the moves, and the catchphrases, and the slo mo fights and the slo mo running and the slo mo hair toss...a lot of slo mo stuff. But, as the short unfolds, something doesn't seem to play out the way she had hoped...
On the surface, the film is a very innocent, silly, and funny (I hope) comedy about when things go wrong. But as I keep revisiting it, I realize that the film is partly a lens into the subtleties of how women are undermined in the entertainment industry, and ultimately, how quickly the truth comes out when we trust in the boldness of our voice.
Crystal will be played by me, and the film will be shot and directed by Chris Warren.
Chris is a passionate and successful cinematographer who has worked on hundreds of different projects ranging from features to short films, music videos, and national commercials. I am so lucky to have him working on this project with me. For more info check out Chris's website: www.chriswarrendb.com
Her second film is called Try & Fail.
Teagan has this to say about her second film: I would describe this film as an artistic representation of the battle between two conflicting emotions: Try, and Fail. Try is open to new ideas, has no fear of the unknown, is sometimes naive and idealistic, and sometimes tries a bit too hard. Fail is guarded by the walls of past experiences, is terrified of stepping outside of that comfort zone, and ultimately believes that there is too much pain in the pursuit of discovering something different.
I believe that through the representation of these emotions as people, the film will be able to convey the turmoil of the little battles that happen within each of us every day on our neverending journey of discovery. I hope the film will inspire the audience to see their own "tries and fails" as intrinsicly connected, and as a truly beautiful and innocent process that can be just as full of joy as it is full of challenge.
Try and Fail will both be played by me; an exciting acting challenge I can't wait to undertake, and will be shot and directed by Drey Singer.
Drey is one of those artists I have been patiently waiting for the right project to work on with him. He hails all the way from Wichita, and dropped out of college early to take a job at Paramount Studios as a production assistant. He later went on to do freelance work and his own projects before landing a job at Panavision where he is now. Clear minded and creatively driven, I know Drey will take Try & Fail to the next level that I can't even imagine. For more info about Drey check out his website: www.dreysinger.com
Here is a link to the GoFundMe page so you can help fund Teagan's films.
And finally, here is a link to Teagan's website. Just so you can learn more about her, too!
So thank you for your support of my beautiful and smart and extremely talented daughter. And feel free to share this writing or the link to help fund Teagan's films. I know they will be great!!!
I want to write about Gal Gadot and her stand on sexual harassment by refusing to do any more Wonder Woman movies if Brett Ratner is involved. You can read about this here.
Because it is brilliant.
Not just that she is taking a stand but how she is doing it. Because, you see, unfortunately for women - and for men, too - who have been abused, the only way to really get people to notice is to hit them professionally and/or financially. Abusers take responsibility when their livelihood is at stake. Not before. It's when they loose their paycheck or their standing in the community; it's when their bottom line is hit.
Abuse is about power and so the best way to fight abuse is to undermine that power. And in our current culture, power is about status and money. This is what we value. This is how we know we made it. It's about how high up we are and how much we make, because when we make a lot it means we have value - we're being paid our worth. Status and money, these are the pinnacle of success.
And so, the way to make them notice, put the abuser on notice, make them pay attention and make them truly feel it is to topple their status and to take away their money.
Hit them on their bottom line.
Of course then comes conditional apologies, if you can call them that, and the half-baked statements of responsibility - maybe, and the "I'll try to be a better person" and "please support me as I change and grow." And all the other bullshit that is really a dancing around what they should be saying which is "Yeah, I'm an asshole and a predator and I used my power to make you all feel like shit and feel shame and I was never really sorry but I am now because you're hurting my bank account and making me look bad to my friends."
But ya know what, they're feeling it. They've moved from the "these are all lies" and the victim shaming and flippant write-offs to at least pretending to care. Because they know that if they don't they'll lose a lot. They'll lose what they have. Their reputation. And their stuff.
It is naive of us to think that we can make someone who has systematically abused people over and over again to all of a sudden start to care. And so we cannot speak from the part of us that wants to be heard and understood because that part of them is not there. If it was they wouldn't have been pulling out their junk or cornering women in hotel rooms in the first place.
So we have to speak their language.
And this, this brilliant and talented and strong and fierce woman, she is speaking to them, she is hitting them there. Right where the money is. And I love this.
These are my three daughters. Two by birth and one by marriage. And all three powerful in voice and grounded in spirit. They are invincible.
A few weeks ago there was one of those "copy and paste and post a picture of your daughter" posts on Facebook that I really liked a lot. It was a "Rules For My Daughter" post. And though I don't like the word rule much, I do like the ideas. Some more than others. Some were a bit fluffy for me. But others were right there in their message to our daughters, to our friends, to ourselves. And so I thought, at first, that I would do the copy and paste and share with some pics thing but the more I thought about it the more I wanted to write about it here. And share a few of my own of these things we pass down and hope find their way into the arsenal of information and opinions and experiences and wisdom and failings and lessons learned and shared that our daughters will then have available to them as they navigate their world.
I use the word arsenal intentionally.
Here are my few:
1. Do not hesitate to use your voice, say your truth, speak your mind. Stand up for yourself. Yet still know when it is ok to be silent. Make this a choice. Do not lose your voice, know when to use your voice.
2. Be big. Only be invisible when you want to be.
3. Buy less, good things. Be it beautiful clothes or amazing shoes or food or that needed massage or shoes or that class you want to take or trip you want to journey on or shoes. Buy what you love that has value, for you.
4. Know your triggers and take responsibility for how you react to the world around you. In other words, own your shit.
5. Never apologize for being right about something, or great at something. Do not belittle or minimize your talent. You are as great as you know you are.
6. Be loyal and nurture your relationships but not at the expense of your own work and growth. In turn, know when to choose to put aside your own work or growth to nurture someone you love. It's a balance that you intuitively know. Trust your inner knowing.
7. Let me say this again on its own: Trust your inner knowing.
8. Decide what information, words of wisdom, lessons learned and shared by others are the ones that resonate with you. Throw away those that don't.
9. You do not owe anyone anything.
10. Be smaaat and spaaaackly and - as that wise old soul, the Genie is Disney's animated Aladdin once said: Beeeeeeeeeeee yourseeeellllfffffff.
Here is the original "Rules For My Daughter." I've made bold the ones I like best!
Rules For My Daughter:
1. Don’t knock it ’til you try it.
2. Send Thank You cards for every act of hospitality — except another Thank You card.
3. Travel light through life. Keep only what you need.
4. Put cinnamon in your coffee, and twice as much when you miss me.
5. It’s okay to cry when you’re hurt. It’s also okay to smash things; but, wash your face, clean your mess, and get up off the floor when you’re done. You don’t belong down there.
6. If you’re going to curse, be clever. If you’re going to curse in public, know your audience.
7. Seek out the people and places that resonate with your soul.
8. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.
9. 5-second rule. It’s just dirt. There are worse things in a fast food cheeseburger. In our family it was actually a five minute rule, all my kids survived and thrived!
10. Happiness is not a permanent state. Wholeness is. Don’t confuse these.
11. If you’re staying more than one night, unpack your bag.
12. Never walk through an alley.
13. Be less sugar, more spice, and only as nice as you’re able to without compromising yourself.
14. Can’t is a cop-out. Don’t want to is perfectly acceptable.
15. Hold your heroes to a high standard. Be your own hero.
16. If you can’t smile with your eyes, don’t smile. Insincerity is nothing to aspire to.
17. Never lie to yourself.
18. Your body, your rules.
19. If you have an opinion, you better know why.
20. Study your curiosities and practice your passions.
21. Ask for what you want.
22. Wish on stars and dandelions, then get to work.
23. Don’t skimp on good sheets.
24. Fall in love often. Particularly with ideas, art, music, literature, food and far-off places.
25. Fall hard and forever in love with nothing but yourself.
26. Say Please, Thank You, and Pardon Me, whenever the situation warrants it.
27. Reserve I’m sorry for when you truly are.
28. Naps are for grown-ups, too.
29. Question everything except your own intuition.
30. You have enough. You are enough.
31. You are amazing! Don't let anyone ever make you feel you are not. If someone does....walk away. You deserve better.
Mother, Wife, Friend, Sister, Daughter, Dancer, Dog and Cat lover.