Five Days of Gratitude c/o Facebook

I rarely engage in Facebook chain mail. You know exactly what I’m talking about: Like this or Share that; Post what color your whatever are; Tell your friends about your whosiwhatsit and tag the eighty people in your wedding party to do the same… No thanks. But recently I saw friends posting about the Gratitude Challenge.

A Gratitude Challenge? Gratitude lists? I love making gratitude lists. I love reading gratitude lists. I even do them on this blog… Holy s#%@! This is Faceplace chain-crap I could get into, even read without cynicism, sarcasm possibly even passive eye-rolling? I’m really not this sour, but I do feel like the weight of empowerment messages gets diluted when you see one every five seconds and it’s totally tainted when used or misdirected for unsavory purposes. That happens A LOT on social media.
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Flipping The Switch

Once again this month has been very busy, leaving me little time to myself, making it hard to find a moment to write. That is until this past holiday weekend when I was sans husband or children in our house—a house, I might add, I had NEVER once spent a night alone in six years we lived there. Check the box on that bucket list now…
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If Only: The Life Lessons I Wish My Kids Didn’t Have To Learn

I ran into an old friend on the subway the other day. He and his partner have a two-year-old little girl, and we started talking about the different types of parenting challenges we face at different stages. As we continued to chat from 96th Street to Times Square, we both agreed how much easier life would have been if only someone had clued us in to a few things before high school.
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Creating Holiday Hope: Some Assembly Required

Despair Or Hope Directions  courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Despair Or Hope Directions courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Whatever emotional riptide I am going through, the holiday season always seems to amplify it–if I’m happy and grateful I feel 100x more so and if I’m sad and lonely the same is true.

The most difficult holiday season I ever experienced was also the one that helped me realize how strong I was. It was my first Christmas as a single mom. My ex-husband and I had separated in May and we had done Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve dinner together at my mother’s house (like always) for the kids, but Christmas Eve where wrapping and assembling toys to go under the tree was now my responsibility alone and I had under estimated this task–not so much the wrapping, I loved that, but the assembling. I had a 3.5 year-old-boy and a 6 year-old-girl and when they get a present on Christmas from Santa, it’s not just a box in pretty paper. It’s put together so they can play with it right away. And Santa went to town this year. He got a pirate ship and an easel and some Barbie contraption–all “Assembly Required.” And while this probably isn’t an issue for an elf at the North Pole, as a newly single mom who just got fed another dose of reality at 11pm alone in my living room on Christmas Eve, it felt like my Everest.
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Crossroads Offering

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I’m embarking on a new chapter of my life in an area that has remained largely unchanged for the last decade. I’ve also heard that change attracts change, and this too has proven to be true; as I find myself describing and distilling a number of areas of my world into a single hyphenate: in-flux.

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