Holding fast to dreams…

Hold fast to dreams,

for if dreams die

life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.

– Langston Hughes

A little over two years ago, I began this blog when I was nose-deep in a post-PCS funk.  I felt placeless, lost, and downright blue.  It was a move that hit me hardest emotionally.  There are a number of reasons why that might have been the case, but somewhere in the midst of it, I felt a good, hard kick in the pants, and I did something I’d wanted to do for so long.

I began writing.  Regularly.

And with that, I woke up.

I wrote about something I cared about, something that prompted much self-reflection almost all the time.  This blog came to life, and I have been so grateful to you, my faithful readers, for reading, commenting, and encouraging me.  A writer doesn’t get very far without her readers.  So thank you.

Not long ago, I decided to go for it and submit some pieces to Military Spouse Magazine, a publication that shares important resources, entertaining stories, and a wealth of advice, support, and compassion.  Today was a wonderful part of my writing journey, as MSM published my article, “Dear PCS,” on their web site.  I am over the moon, overjoyed, and overwhelmed with happiness.  Thank you, Military Spouse Magazine, for sharing my story!

Almost exactly two years ago, I wrote “Plan for NOW” and “This is Me,” both of which reflected on building on one’s skills and assets, and realizing one’s dreams in the process, in this whirlwind of a military life.  At the time, I felt a shift, as if putting those thoughts down, sharing them with you – and many whom I don’t know – was pushing me in a way I hadn’t anticipated.  Suddenly, there was a rhythm, a rumble, and oh, what a ride it has been.  And the view ahead, while partly shrouded in mystery, as life tends to be, is nevertheless open and welcoming.

There is much about this lifestyle and this process that I still have yet to know.  But what I do know is that writing has fulfilled me in ways I hadn’t planned.  Thank you for being a part of it all.

 

This Is Me: Awakening, Enlivening, and Releasing the Self

“[The world] believes exactly what you tell it—through the words you use to describe yourself, the actions you take to care for yourself, and the choices you make to express yourself. Tell the world you are one-of-a-kind creation who came here to experience wonder and spread joy. Expect to be accommodated.” – Victoria Moran

Her question was so simple, so ordinary, and yet it surprised me.  Why?

After pushing an unwieldy stroller through a muddy playground, I’d settled my kids and myself onto a picnic bench with a friend and a handful of new faces.  My friend introduced me around the table, and as I spooned pureed chili into my daughter’s eager mouth, one new face yanked me from my focus and set the tone for the rest of my day.

“So, Natalie, what are Continue reading

Plan for NOW

Whatever you’re meant to do, do it now.  The conditions are always impossible.  – Doris Lessing

How many times have you felt a kick in your gut to take an opportunity, fulfill a dream, or exercise a passion, but your response to yourself was, “I don’t have time,” or “I’ll do it later,” or even worse, “The chances of success are slim.”?  Explaining my own answers to that question would take entirely too long, so let’s just agree you’ve got company here if your answer was anything greater than zero (and if it WAS zero, will you sprinkle some fairy dust on me, please?  Thanks.).

That quote above came as an inspirational nudge from a blog I recently started following, Studio Mothers, and it got me thinking about planning amidst unpredictability.  I suppose everyone experiences this to a certain extent, but I know for sure that military spouses experience a highly concentrated version of it.  It’s hard to plan even a couple months ahead sometimes, not knowing if you’ll be solo parenting, preparing for some sort of transition, or even if you’ll still be living where you are.  I don’t just mean Continue reading