Giving Me Practice

I went shopping yesterday and left my phone at home. It was intentional, just to check myself and make sure it didn’t bother me, and it didn’t.

I spent years addicted to my phone.

The day I deactivated my Facebook accounts was the day they congratulated me for spending six years with them. They sent a notification, and I was mortified. Six years, and what did I have to show for it?

Thank you for all of your kind comments on my Blog posts recently. They absolutely terrify me.

It takes time for me to respond, because I still overthink the response. I don’t have the WordPress app on my phone, so I don’t receive immediate notification. I let notifications run my life for years.

The past couple of weeks, I’ve been sharing things with you that took a long time to admit. It may look like Blogging tips, but for me it was painful lessons.

It’s not even about me, it’s about the lessons, and being used by God to prevent someone else from going through the same heartache. It’s by God’s grace that I’m able to sit here and share. Palms sweaty and hands shaking along the keyboard.

I don’t realize all the activity on my Blog without the app. Two or three times a day, I open my laptop, logon to this site, and see that you have visited.

I read the Blogs in my Reader, and love on others. It’s natural to give love, and leave comments on what you write, but I stare at the screen in awe when that same love and kindness is returned.

Sometimes I don’t know what to say, so I just ‘like’ the comment, and come back later to respond. I don’t know how people do it that have 100’s of comments a day. I would be so overwhelmed.

I enjoy living a calm, quiet life, but to live that way, I turn off all notifications, and my phone is usually in another room of the house. I’m not quite ready to tell you exactly how bad it got with 6 social media accounts giving me a feeling of importance.

Wow. That slipped out.

I don’t run my Blog in the normal way, because if I did, it would begin to run me. Thank you for your love and kindness, and taking time to comment.

It’s becoming less terrifying with every response, and you are giving me practice.

Feel the Music

In the past four years, I’ve had the pleasure of loving two men. I don’t talk about it much, but love has been on my mind this weekend, as you can see from yesterday’s post.

Social media teaches us it’s all about the numbers. Once I realized that, it was a sad day seeing numbers, instead of souls. All of my accounts are now closed except for one.

When I began this Blog it was for a couple of reasons.

One-I wanted my daughter to have a place to go, and read about our life together. Two-I wanted to change somebody’s perspective on life. Not the world, just one.

There is a comment sitting in my comment folder that I will not publish, but this Blog changed her world. There is an email sitting in my Inbox from the son of a dear friend. He found this Blog, and was impacted when I wrote about her.

Hearing this song made me think of those men. It was love that changed their world, and loving them changed mine.

I love to love. That’s what I do. One Blog post at a time.

Plug Into Life

I’m really trying to plug into this little community.

That means leaving the house, and making myself visible.

After moving here, my daughter announced, “Hey Mom. You can always go hang out with the bikers on the weekends!”

Now, it’s one of my favorite things to do. A restaurant called Rolling Thunder Roadhouse is less than a mile from my home, and I go there often to sit and read, or engage in conversation. The owner’s Roger and Donna have pretty much adopted me. Roger is a French Chef, and his wife Donna has done a little bit of everything. We had an instant connection, plus, they make the best cold brew coffee!

roger
Cold brew and Chocolate Biscotti. On my way!

When my daughter and I moved here in January, I was pondering what should come with me. Do I really want to continue doing everything this year, in this new chapter, that I had been doing last year? Was it a fruitful path?

I had a job offer last week. It would still be working from home, but the company would have their calls forwarded for me to answer the calls. The owner knows I have phone skills, and will pay good money for them. A friend of mine busted out laughing when I told her my initial response.

I don’t know. I think I want to harvest seeds from the Hydrangea flower, and grow them to sell to my neighbors.

The company didn’t really have a response to that. Haha

Don’t sweat it lovelies. I’m going to go speak with them in person today. For me it really is about face to face. When I typed the first sentence of this post, is sounded like I was referring to the WordPress community, but I continued on.

I love this community, but over time I find myself letting go of virtual community. My phone still has no social media apps on it, and I’ve closed all my accounts except Facebook. I came across a Blog this morning that explains the technology addiction perfectly. You can read it here.

Do I want to continue Blogging? That has been the big question this year. I’ve posted more this week, than I posted the entire month of April. January through April, I posted one a week, and that used to be daily, so there’s progress.

Maybe I will go see Roger and Donna this morning, and take a book I’ve been reading with me. It’s a gorgeous day outside, and I just want to be out there, instead of in here.

It’s time to unplug from the computer, and plug into life.

“Technology is an option, not a lifeline.” The Robot Rebel

My Kinda Midlife

I was spending way too much time sitting at my desk.

Now, I’m pondering selling my desk. What changed? I did.

begin

Today, I attended a class about Ayurveda. Yesterday, I attended an ‘Adult Children of Alcoholics‘ meeting, and Saturday I’m learning how to make a smudge stick.

How did I get to where I am today? I began months ago.

Since moving out of the country, and into civilization, there are endless opportunities to plug-in. I saw signs that God had me right where He wanted me, but oh, this little prayer!

“”What do I want to do?’ can be, “Dear God, what would you have me do?”

One thing leads to another. One conversation with the right person leads to another conversation with another person.

Stepping away from social media has me stepping out of my house each day.

This is my kinda midlife. Marianne Williamson writes,

“At midlife, you suddenly see an endgame where you used to see an endless stretch. You know now on a visceral level that this lifetime will not go on forever. There’s no more time for five-year detours. No more time for getting it wrong. No more time for relationships that don’t serve, or for staying in situations that aren’t authentically you.”

How do you want to spend the rest of your life?

(Feel free to respond in the comment section below)

Rooted in Real

After I Bled Out, a shift happened, and I wanted real.

I’ve been a part of and seen the effects social media has on well-being. It wasn’t healthy for me, so I stepped away, and have no desire to go back. This Blog hasn’t been connected to any social media for weeks, but people are finding it, and reading it. My stats didn’t bottom out from no connection.

My soul bottomed out while it was connected.

I stopped downloading books on Kindle, and ordered real ones. The kind you can hold in your hands, and mark up a page if needed. I ordered some magazines for the first time in 20 years for the same reason. Not to mention they are pretty laying on the coffee table for everyone to enjoy.

My screen time is minimal, but present moments abound.

I don’t have to check my phone before bed, and when I awake.

I check in with God instead.

When I started this Blog, it was to have a space that held a recap of our lives for my daughter. I’ve done that, and we are on a new chapter. This new chapter will be in book form, that you can hold in your hands, and feel something real. I want every area of my life to be rooted in what’s real.

light

https://www.patreon.com/letitgocoach

These Three Gates

The privacy fence around the backyard has four gates.

One is at the end of the driveway. It has a vine growing along the fence, and up a small arbor, waiting to bloom.

I haven’t discovered yet, where the other three lead.

gate
Gate to driveway.

Whoever built the house, and fence, had a reason, but it’s a mystery to me. I have a neighbor on each side, and one behind me, and a gate opens into each of their backyards. This fence was probably built before social media replaced human interaction. I haven’t had a neighbor in 5 years!

I haven’t written much about the effects social media had on my life, but it wasn’t healthy. God started working on me last year, after ‘I Bled Out‘, and I found myself bucking the trend of social media. There are still no social media apps on my phone, and I rarely take my phone when I leave the house.

This from a woman who spent years promoting a Blog, and encouraging others via social media.

A couple of weeks ago, I disconnected this Blog from all social media outlets. It doesn’t automatically post, once published. It sits right here in the WordPress world.

dwell-as-near-as-possible

I want to dwell as near as possible to where life flows.

I will let you know what is on the other side of these three gates.

It’s Old School

I visit people almost daily. Just to ask how their life is going, and then listen. Sometimes, it’s just for a hug if I sense they need one. Never turn down a heartfelt hug. It’s healing.

It’s old school, and that is where I enjoy being today.

Every now and then, I leave my phone at home on purpose, just to check and see if I miss it. Can’t say that I have. The person I’m with is more important than what my phone is doing. It’s like saying, “I love you more than my phone.”

I wrote this a couple of nights ago:

My daughter and I are sitting here quietly typing on our laptops. She has Classical Piano softly playing in the background. It’s peaceful, and the kind of moment you want to last indefinitely. I appreciate at her young age that she effortlessly creates moments like this. She will pass them along to her family, and they will have moments.

Breaking the ties to my phone, and social media is one of the best things I’ve done all year. To be present, and enjoy what’s happening in the now. My daughter told me in June, “You are always staring at that phone!” Now she tells me when it makes a noise, and I can’t remember where it is. She doesn’t see my hunting for it, over spending time with her.

As Gibbs would say, “It’s old school.” Well Gibbs, I like it.

Mark-Harmon
Gibbs is portrayed by Mark Harmon on the TV show, NCIS.

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