Home away from home

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Home away from home

[Image credit: Simon Howden]

Wherever we spend significant time outside of our own residences becomes our home away from home.  It may be our place of employment and/or a pastime we enjoy, such as cycling on the open road or fishing on a favorite lake.  In addition to the office, the Yoga studio has become my second home where I typically spend up to 10 hours per week.  The other day I realized how comfortable I feel with the yogi/nis I share my time with — talking about our constitutionals, skin issues, relationships and various other topics commonly bantered about between close friends and family.  It’s a rare treat to find others who are not much different than I am — some with a similar sense of humor and others with the same insecurities.  And even more of us who are quirky in our own ways.  Rather than judgment, I feel a sense of acceptance.  I consider myself lucky to call the hot room my home away from home.

Where is your second home?

Sparkling affirmations

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Sparkling affirmations

[Image credit: scottchan]

One afternoon, a yogi friend of mine used the word “vibrant” to describe my recent practice.  I ran into two others who said I “sparkle.”  Who wouldn’t want to hear themselves described with such colorful words?  Especially when life often gets in the way, many times attempting to bring us down — about our circumstances and ourselves.  What we think, we become.  So it stands to reason we should regularly possess an arsenal of these positive affirmations, particularly when the going gets tough and we’re feeling less than vibrant … or sparkly.  It’s okay (and not out of the norm) to have a bad day or a bad moment.  That’s life.  But as a couple sweet teachers remind the class after each practice: don’t let anyone or anything steal your peace.  We all have “stuff.”  It’s about learning how to accept it without allowing it to define us.  And then rising above it in order to sparkle.

What are three words of affirmation others have used to describe you?

Opposites attract


[Image credit: digitalart]

I’ve always figured we gravitate toward people who are similar to us.  I think that unspoken rule generally holds true, but over the past couple of years, I’ve met a few women who, once-upon-a-time, I don’t know that our paths would’ve ever crossed.  Because, at first glance, we may appear to be polar opposites.  However, we’ve each chosen to see the other with eyes and hearts filled with unbiased and unconditional acceptance in order to connect and explore our similarities — while we also embrace and respect our differences.  After all, we would not be the women (and men) we are without both sides of the equation.  And, thankfully, when my weaknesses threaten to bring me down, one of them is always there to lift me up by highlighting my strengths.  I’m ever grateful to these friends who have helped me more clearly see who I am.  Through them, I’ve learned that family is not simply related by blood.

Do you have at least one “least likely” of friends?

When it rains, it pours

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[Image credit: Idea go]

Just when you think it can’t get any worse, it does.  This is where you don’t say, “What more could go wrong?”  I’ve heard that bad things happen in threes.  It doesn’t matter if you’re already in debt or sick or your schedule is packed from the time you rise until you crawl into bed bone tired.  Because there’s no limit on hard luck.  When I finally went back to college, my daughter was a junior in high school and made some poor choices, my mom passed away the first month of classes which required me to travel out of state and the company I freelanced for switched its contractors to a different software.  It was challenging, but somehow I survived our family’s upheaval, maintained my 4.17 GPA and successfully navigated the new computer program.  Maybe it’s easier to simply accept that things are going to happen, whether we’re ready or not.  And to remember to start carrying an umbrella.

How do you prepare for life’s muddy waters?

Home, sweet home

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[Image credit: Sura Nualpradid ]

We are homesick most for the places we have never known.
~ Carson McCullers

I wonder if this quote refers to exotic locales for the homebody, or the comfortable craziness of a loving family for the orphaned, or a whirlwind book-signing tour for the aspiring author or possibly the fairytale union for the romantic inside many of us.  Although personal experience is lacking in areas we’ve never seen or heard, tasted or touched, I believe there may be a part of us longingly wishing for these places McCullers writes about.  Perhaps this is where our pie-in-the-sky dreams are born and why we oftentimes make sacrifices in the name of glamour, unconditional acceptance, success or happily-ever-after.  Or maybe we are the holdouts, persevering until we attain it all — the whole package.  And instead of glitz and fanfare or whatever it is we had hoped for, we’re surrounded by a quiet confidence because we know we’re finally home.

Can you think of a particular place you’re homesick for?

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