Life After Working in Education

There is life after work.  Actually there is life after teaching for 30 years in our broken down, politically charged education system….and Ms. D proves it.

How I loved this post!

I’m not sure how she survived 30 years in education except it must have been for the kids.  I’m on my 3rd year (out of retirement) and I am stunned by the amount of energy given over to politics and the pettiness with so little time left for the students.

One of Ms. D’s comments just made me laugh out loud.  She is listing things she will NOT miss about her teaching career and this was my favorite – “Endure being told that I am blunt and intimidating because I have decades of experience and am not afraid to say what I think.”

I got that in corporate America with the added insult that my behavior didn’t go down well because, and I quote, “You are a woman.”  A-bloody-mazing.

I read then re-read this post of a woman who has and is reclaiming her life and herself and I was so impressed that I had to share it.  When I finished I sat in front of my laptop with tears in my eyes and a smile on my face knowing that Ms. D probably saved a whole lot of kids from the trash heap of their parents’ and neighborhoods’ lives, that she endured…despite the odds.

I hope you enjoy this.  The Year in Review « FARMHOUSE BY THE FALLS.

About these ads

2 Comments

Filed under arm wresting, Education, Gifts, Inspiring People, Life & Death, Work

Defy Gravity with Caroline Myss

I just finished reading Defy Gravity: Healing Beyond the Bounds of Reason  by Caroline Myss but I don’t think I will ever be finished with this book.

Myss is a long-time practitioner of intuitive healing who is, also, well-respected within the traditional medical community.

Myss is also an amazing writer with an extraordinary talent for taking sometimes difficult and obscure teachings on self-healing and translating them into concepts that are clear and concise.

That doesn’t sound like much lot but it is.  In fact, it’s a huge accomplishment because it makes these otherwise arcane approaches and methods readily available to anyone who has 20 minutes a day to read Defy Gravity!

Teresa of Avila, Muhammad, Buddha, and Saint John of the Cross are all woven into this tapestry of intuitive understanding and healing.  Myss doesn’t espouse one spiritual approach over another; she moves through them, finds common ground within them and expands their sometimes parochial meanings into universal truths

Myss may well have found the path that Joseph Campbell spoke of when he said religions in the 20th century would NOT be able to help anyone until all religions found a way to bring their myths into the modern world — the world in which you and I live, work and try to get along.

There was so much to learn and think about and play with while I was reading this book that it’s hard for me to choose what to share but here are some of my favorites:

Forgiveness is NOT releasing the aggressor nor is it telling them that what they did was okay and all is forgiven.  Forgiveness takes place inside where my disappointed, abused, angry ego confronts my soul and releases its hold.  The goal of forgiveness is shattering the myth that maintains that suffering is deserving of recognition, reward and/or righteous vengeance.  Understanding the essence of forgiveness is one of the most deeply healing and liberating gifts you can give yourself.

Working in harmony with the universe influences all life; dominating just one life destroys you.

See clearly. Recognize illusion. You can visit your wounds now and again (like we all do), but you can no longer, mentally or emotionally reside in that place, continually processing wounds that are decades old.

Keep your soul intact at all times.  Look for God or the Universe in the smallest details of your life.

Stay where you belong, in the present moment.

This one is mine – born in the crucible of my own search for joy and peace:

All of the stories of my life – the ones I tell myself, my friends, my loved ones – are ingrained but….when I drop them I can see the beautiful world all around me – right in front of me – in the present moment.  And I can, literally, breathe in joy and peace.

Buy the book; borrow it, read it and just feel yourself opening up to the universe and all the potential for wonder, love and joy that are already inside you!

2 Comments

Filed under arm wresting, Book Reviews, Gifts, Healthcare, Inspiring People, Life & Death, Medical Writing, Religion, World Changing Ideas

Einstein in the 21st Century

There is a young man living in the Southwest who is too smart for college simply because they cannot teach him anything!

This 19-year-old is in process of changing how we use nuclear fusion. He has a vision of a pure fusion energy but is in process of building small reactors that will not fail and contaminate like the 50’s style currently in use.

Taylor Wilson built his first nuclear reactor at the age of 14 but if his mind finds a way for pure fusion, it may be our path way to the stars and beyond.

He is a prodigy. He’s working with a professor at a school for the exceptionally gifted who said, after working with the student for a while, that he “…has never encountered a smarter person than this kid. yet he is so down to earth.”

In this student, live mathematics and science and the vision to see and understand both.  He may just be our gateway to the unknown.  He may just open up a future where coal, oil, fracking and all the other ecologically destructive practices for grabbing and using energy are no longer needed.

http://www.nbcnews.com/id/21134540/vp/52207962#52207962

Leave a comment

Filed under arm wresting, Education, Gifts, Inspiring People, Life & Death, Religion

Cancer Coming To Your Backyard! Soon!

Please read and if you agree, sign the petition to ban the large scale use of 2-4-D and it’s cousin, Agent Orange in the production of corn and soy beans!  This use is being considered, despite scientific evidence that 2-4-D and cancer and reproductive problems go hand-in-hand.

As a child, my 4 siblings and I were regularly exposed to 2-4-D and 2-4-5-T – two ingredients in Agent Orange.  All of us were charged with killing weeds, every week during the summer – bare feet and bare hands.

Both of my brothers died of brain tumors in their 67th year.  My older sister almost died 2 years ago of complications brought on by a massive ovarian tumor and she is still fighting kidney cancer.  She was 65.  At the age of 65, I have just been diagnosed with Stage 3 melanoma on my hip.

Poisoning weeds means poisoning the soil, the water and, ultimately, the people exposed to the chemicals.  Increasing the sheer volume of poison simply means increasing the numbers of people who will die from the slow, sure and silent intrusion of 2-4-D into their food, into their lives and into their backyards, their families, their children. 

And there is absolutely no way to describe the vast and long-term devastation that the use of this substance will do to the life of all other inhabitants (animals, birds, fish, insects) and the overall ecology of this earth – our home.

Has everyone forgotten Silent Spring ? Rachel Carson?

STOP big business; STOP the use of 2-4-D. START using common sense, common courtesy and some of the inordinate amounts of money currently being poured into chemical and genetic modification of foods to understand how to live and work WITH our fellow inhabitants and WITH the environment, not in spite of them.

Visit the Food Revolution Network blog; click on the link and register your thoughts and feelings with the Federal Government.

Please.

Leave a comment

Filed under Gardening, Healthcare, Life & Death, Politics, Uncategorized, World Changing Ideas

A Tale of 3 Companies – 2 Understand Customer Service

We are in the midst of renovating our kitchen.

My husband and I are celebrating our 30th anniversary by renovating instead of going to Italy or going on the Power Tour.  So this renovation is a big deal to us.  We are doing a lot of the work but we are also relying on three companies for product and installation.

Two of these companies get customer service, completely.  The 3rd company was and is a huge disappointment to us.  This is the story of these 3 companies.

We shopped around for the granite counter tops and found Troy Granite had the deepest inventory and the best price of any of the 4 companies we considered.  We ordered our granite counter tops from Troy and they threw in a new under mount, double bowl sink, free.

We also found our environmentally friendly floor at Troy Granite which is truly a one-stop shop for renovations of all kinds.  But we picked up the new faucet — VIGO VG02006ST PullDown Kitchen Spray Faucet, Steel  at Amazon.

Countertops and floor taken care of, we moved to the piece de resistance for me (I cook and can and bake, a lot)  — a new Jenn-Air, down draft, stainless steel stove.

We bought our new stove at an appliance store called Hawkins and Sons – the second company of the 3 involved in our kitchen reno saga. Granted our stove wasn’t a Wolf or a Viking but it equaled 25% of the cost of our kitchen renovation — a sizable chunk of our budget and a considerable investment from our perspective.

Hawkins was paid to do the conversion for the stove – gas to propane – then we would pick it up, take it home and put it in place for the third company — Kauffman Gas - to connect the stove to the gas line which was already in place.

Everything was going well until the morning of January 22nd.

The team from Kauffman Gas arrived on time, worked quickly and efficiently and had the propane gas line to the stove hooked up in less than 30 minutes.  So far so good but not for long.

Steve called me to the kitchen.  First, he told me that the appliance company had not completed the conversion that we had paid extra for it to do.  Steve told me he took care of that but…when he fired up the stove, he ran into a huge problem.  One of the gas lines inside the stove was fractured.

Turning on the grill on the left side of the stove, he demonstrated. Flames shot 6 inches out from under the surface and rose a foot above the grill.

Steve, who works with gas-fired appliances all day long, took the knobs off the front of the stove and told his assistant to turn off the gas valve in the basement and the one on the outside tank.

I called my husband; he called Hawkins, immediately.  The reaction he got was less than stellar.

No concern was expressed.  No responsibility was acknowledged.  Not only did they not offer to replace the stove, they weren’t really interested in sending a repair person to the house.  In fact, they made it my husband’s problem by forcing him to meet their schedule — forcing him to take a day off work to let their repair person in to see what was wrong with the new stove they sold us.

Clearly, the words “customer” and “service” are not in the Hawkins lexicon but we had no choice.  We owned a very expensive and unusable stove.

Hawkins’ repair man confirmed what Kauffman’s technician had told us – a factory defect.  Two more weeks without a stove or oven. Still no offer to replace the stove – parts would be ordered and the repair would be done here even though the stainless steel on the top of the stove was warped, even though I had no confidence in the safety of this gas-fueled stove top.

With my confidence in the product gone and no help from the store where we bought it, my husband wrote an email to the CEO of Whirlpool - the third company in this story and the company that came to the rescue quickly, efficiently and effectively.  

Within 4 hours of sending the email, we received a reply.  Whirlpool would be happy to replace the stove.   The new stove would be shipped from the factory in the mid-West.  Whirlpool’s technicians would do the conversion and installation on site and on our schedule.  And they would remove the damaged stove.  No questions, no arguments just a swift and wonderful response to our dilemma.

How sad that Hawkins refused to take responsibility for a problem with an appliance they sold to us.  How wonderful that Kauffman Gas went the extra mile to help us and to ensure we were safe.

And how remarkable that a major corporation – Whirlpool – listened to our problem and resolved it in less time than it took for Hawkins to try to argue its way out or responsibility for its failure.

Thank you Whirlpool. Thank you Kauffman Gas.  Shame on you Hawkins & Sons Appliances.

2 Comments

Filed under arm wresting, Budgeting, Home Ec on Acid, Saving Money, World Changing Ideas

The Creative Adult is the Child Who Has Survived | LinkedIn

I have long thought that each and every adult has the opportunity, every day, to help grow a child’s imagination and dreams or at least keep the spark of the dream alive.

Unfortunately many adults don’t even know they have this power.  They blunder through their lives wounding young souls, stepping on dreams, breaking small hearts.

The very first time I thought this, I was walking to work.  I was on 11th Street  when I heard shouting.  A big, burly woman was leaning over a tiny child, screaming at him that he was stupid, that he was worthless.

I walked over to her, got between her and the little boy and told her to find someone else to hurt.  If she wanted someone her own size, she could try me.

Time stopped for a moment.  Her eyes glittered in her angry face which was inches from mine; her fists balled up and rose slowly.  The little boy’s face was upturned, fear struggling with wonder at what was happening right in front of him.  I waited.

Suddenly all the bluster went out of her.  Tears welled in her eyes. Her hands dropped to her sides.  She talked about her lost job, her failed marriage, her fear, her sorrow, her anger.

I put my arms around her and  held her while she cried.  Slowly, we both realized that the boy, her son, had wrapped an arm around her leg and an arm around mine and was holding on, tight.

The mother and I smiled at each other. We smiled at him.  She knelt down, held him and said, “I’m sorry.”  His face turned toward me, his eyes wide and his smile wider.  When she stood, she leaned toward me, smiling, and whispered, “You have God in you.  Thank you.”

I hugged her back, told her that if she ever needed help, I came by this way 5 days a week and would be there, for her.  We turned in opposite directions and walked back into our separate lives.  But there, on the corner of 11th and Filbert, outside the Greyhound Bus Station, the two of us had worked a tiny miracle – we gave love and laughter back to her young son.

I never saw them again, this mother and child, but I know that things between them were different after that day.

I always thought that moments like this one hold the power that each of us carries, within.  I know that one word, one touch, one smile can make a change.  Now, someone has written about the power of one adult to hold one child and help them reach for their dream.

I hope you enjoy this post.  And I hope all the people in homes and schools, on street corners or buses, people everywhere understand that words, which we use so easily and hold so cheaply, can keep a child’s dream alive just as easily as they can kill it.

Think…before you speak, please. Speak when your words can help a child.

The Creative Adult is the Child Who Has Survived | LinkedIn.

Leave a comment

Filed under arm wresting, Gifts, Inspiring People, Work, World Changing Ideas

Preparing for Your Inner Journey | The Chopra Center

Sometimes things happen that we think are random.

But most of the time, it’s the universe, speaking clearly to us.

As you may know, I have been taking Deepak Chopra’s and Orpah’s 21 day meditation. Once I finished, I started receiving emails with gifts – 7 days of them. One was for a new meditation series – Awaken to Happiness, which I started today.

This series is free, too. Each lesson takes a week of learning…growing and starting to see – beginning with exploring happiness and identifying your true source of happiness.

Today, the first day, the universe sent me to an article by Caroline Myss – an article about taking a journey inward to learn more about my self, my ego, my reactions and my life.

Since it is the first day of a new year and since I consider this article to be a gift from the universe, I wanted to share it with anyone who wants to begin a new year with a new journey – one that can quiet the noise of always needing
“…just a bit more” whether it’s stuff, money or ego boosting.

I wish everyone the best in 2014 and hope that you might want to join me as I begin to journey into what really makes me happy – who really makes me happy, as I begin to discover the wonderful spirit that lives inside my skin — my soul.

Namaste

Preparing for Your Inner Journey | The Chopra Center.

2 Comments

Filed under arm wresting, Death & Dying, Education, Gifts, Mysteries, World Changing Ideas