Being His Support System and Advocate

Tonight, I’m getting us (my husband and I) ready for his visit to his doctor.  He doesn’t get many appointments with him and he is still not followed by any therapist for his PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).  So, I’m trying to maximize the time we will have in the doctor’s office.

After listening to Change Your Brain Change Your Life by Daniel G. Amen, M.D., (I often start by the audiobook and then move to the hard copy to highlight), I gained a better understanding of what I’m dealing with.  I’ve been aware now for 6 months that this PTSD condition is not him doing things on purpose to be a pain in the …  and after listening to Dr. Amen I’m even more aware of his inability to become better if he doesn’t receive the right kind of treatment.  I ordered the book and the cards, and tonight we sat down to fill the questionnaires to pinpoint which brain system is not working optimally. Very eye opening. Especially when you recognize that a brain system that is over or under active brings its specific problems and that until the system is identified and treated it is very unlikely that symptoms will get better.

I believe that being proactive and taking things, and especially our health, in our own hands is very important because you become a participant, not a patient patient.  Plus, who knows better than you and your loved ones what you are experiencing?  No one.  I think we have given doctors an Herculean task by expecting them to know exactly what’s wrong in a 15 minutes visit. In my husband’s case it’s important that I be there to relay the concerns and questions since he has a tendency to minimize the problem when facing a doctor or getting fixated only on one aspect when there are many.

Do I get discouraged of being his main support system?  Definitely.  Even though I think that being a LifeSuccess Consultant is a major benefit in this situation since I’m using all the tools I know about to help him change his mind and his brain.

Am I hopeful that the situation will get better? Yes or I wouldn’t be there.  And since I listened to Change Your Brain Change Your Life I know that the coaching tools I have used with my husband are very helpful since Dr. Amen prescribes them to his patient.

Now let’s see what his doctor will think.

My Love for Speed

As we are getting on the tarmac and the engines of the plane start winding up, I feel  excitement. I love when we take off, my body being pushed in the seat because of the pressure created by the high speed.  I have a big smile on my face. I love when the plane turns.  I think it must be fun to be a pilot.

As we are flying over lighted cities, just above some light clouds, I start thinking what else brings me this sense of excitement and where it could be coming from…

The first thing that comes to mind is my experience in one of my friends muscle car.  Oh my!  That was pretty exciting too.  He really enjoyed seeing my grin as he was accelerating.  I also remember as a child being in those cars with adults and feeling their excitement, sense of control and pride. I even remember that a gas pedal was a chromed barefoot.  It must be where I got my urge to drive a manual car. Cuz’ with a standard you can accelerate faster and feel in control of your car.  Yes I love speed.

Where else does it translate in my life?  Well, when I start a project, a journey, I want it all to unfold quickly, in a controlled fashion.  Does it happen that way?  Rarely.  And it used to frustrate me sooo much.  Now I’m realizing that it’s probably better that way. Life has a certain wisdom.  Would I have really been ready to speak in front of 2000 people as I was visualizing it, right after my LifeSuccess Consultant training?  Definitely not.  I would have been really nervous and overwhelmed.  Instead I’ve been preparing myself with smaller speaking engagements to become a world-class speaker.

I also remember that when my kids were babies I thought that they weren’t growing up fast enough.  That I would be stuck in that high demand period forever.  And even though my mom was telling me that before long they would be teenagers, it was hard to grasp that concept. Lately I look at them, now almost 16 and 14, and I can’t get over how quickly it has gone by, in a way. It’s weird to look at them, taller than me.  Where as time flied by?

I’m learning to slow down and appreciate the moment. And it’s sometimes strange.  I feel like I’m looking at someone else, because this “Relax!“ mode was so foreign to me, not so long ago.  A friend of mine even complimented me on my slower pace, saying that it was a nice change from my tight and busy schedule that was my lifestyle not even a year ago.

What brought that change about?  My being tired and realizing that I was trying to keep up with my husband.  He is adrenaline driven and I could only keep up with that speed so long before crashing down, energy less. And lately I heard that unlike men adrenaline depletes women’s energy and leaves us exhausted.  Tada!  That’s why I couldn’t keep up!  I was yet again trying to do things in a manly fashion. Just like when I crave that speed with a car or on a plane. I want to feel that I have power and that I’m in control.  But what do we really control besides our mind?  Nothing.  So speed and control are both illusions.

As we are starting the landing approach I become aware that slowing down requires more control.  Just like in life.

Is it easier to catch all the balls life throws at us or to only catch the important ones and dodge the rest?  It’s sound lest exhausting to me…

I understand now that I need to find a model of success achieved in a womanly fashion, making very good money and being highly respected.  Any suggestions?

Desiderata

My dear friend Jacques sent me this text he had just discovered, and my heart jumped.  I had read those words before.  In fact many times. My mom had decided that it was good meditation material for that special time spent in the bathroom, and had framed it when I was a teenager.

As they say, repetition is the key of learning, and reading this piece of wisdom over and over started a nice change in my awareness, in my way of see and experiencing life. Slowly, I’ve made changes in my consciousness to live according to those words.  I took many years.

May you be touched by these words.

Enjoy!

Desiderata

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be critical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy.

© Max Ehrmann 1927

Listen to your body…

I have been experiencing a bit of discomfort from my hip since I did a TRE session (Trauma Release Exercise) back in October.  And for the second time since then I took “Le grand dictionnaire des malaises et maladies” by  Jacques Martel out and checked for  what my body is trying to tell me.

Hips represent your ability or desire to move forward. Painful hips occur when you start questioning the why and how of things.  You wonder if you have the right to live for yourself or if you have to continue living for everybody like you’ve always been.  There is a link between this pain in moving forward and the sense of autonomy, independence. My body is trying to tell me that I have a certain stiffness, resistance and rigidity toward a situation or person, because I felt betrayed or abandoned.

I just couldn’t grasp it the first time I read it.  I was in disbelief that I, Chantal, would be having an issue with moving forward in my preferred future. After all, that’s what I help people do, for a living. Since then, life has been showing me a few things that bring evidence to what I cited above.  I have finally decided to get information on what is PTSD and its impact on me, my kids, my relationship because I had enough of living for my family, putting their needs up front all the time, and many times putting my dreams on the back burner.  A little bit frustrating for someone like me.  I like to pursue new ventures and feel free.  But now I feel like I have to tiptoe my way to it.  I feel abandoned because this relationship use to be about team work and spirit, and it’s nothing like that anymore.  This weekend I became aware that independance to me is being in a “do-it yourself” mode because when you’re independent you can’t rely on anyone. Is this really true? No.  You can be independent and co-operate with others to bring forth your dreams.

Is my body talking to me louder than I would like?  Well…  I know it could be worse, I could have a broken hip instead of a painful one.  So, now what… what can I do about this?  I started seeing a physiotherapist; have taken a different approach with my personal life coach; have seek advice from my fitness coach on what muscles I can work to get better; have been doing Tong Ren for it, have been in contact with someone that offers support to spouses of military or ex-military that are living in a relationship affected by PTSD; I’m reading more on PTSD and its effects and this new understanding is allowing me to be gentle with me, the kids and my spouse.

I think I’m on the right track…  and I’m positive that the future will confirm it.

Longing For The Past

Last night, the dog was whining so much that I couldn’t sleep. D#*@> dog! He’s not a young dog so he doesn’t have this excuse running for him. He has been sleeping in a cage for a few weeks now because the kids don’t want to sleep with him anymore since he started growling at them when they move in their sleep, and it wakes them up. And when we left him lose during the night he would pee in a few spots.  A highly annoying fact to wake up to…

So last night he was whining because our daughter had some friends over for a sleep-over and he wanted to be with them. I imagine  that in his dog mind he thought of all those human bodies he could cuddle up to and how lovely it would be.  The problem is they didn’t want him there.  So all night he was longing to be in a situation he can’t experience anymore.  And of course he doesn’t understand that.  Just like we don’t understand that most of the time the situation we are longing for is not available anymore for us to experience.  Not matter how much we long for it it won’t be the way it used to be. Period.

I could be spending hours crying or mourning the relationship I used to have with my husband before his PTSD.  Will it bring it back?  Will he be magically touched by a magic wand and brought back to the way he was when we were living “the life”? No. What can I do then?  Live and enjoy the present moment. Enjoy the good moments I spend with him when he is present the way I like him to be.  And the other times, when he is caught in his own whirlwind, when he is stressed out, I back off.  I send him lots of love and continue doing my own thing. I could go back in my mind to the “good old days” and get all nostalgic, and I’ve done it often enough, but I became aware that it wasn’t helpful, that it was bringing me down.  What’s the use then? He’s stressed, I’m down and the kids are upset. It’s a lose-lose situation.  When I acknowledge where he is and continue doing my stuff, I’m happy, I’m in a responsive mode if I need to be, not a reactive one, and my household is more at peace.  Much easier to live that way, in my books.

Accepting what is… a magic key for many life experiences…

Raw food as a cure

I studied naturopathic therapy back in the 90’s and I was convinced by personal experience that you can cure many things you are experiencing with food.  With the following trailer of movie you can hear how they have helped people with diabetes get of their medication after only 30 days of modifying their diets.  How amazing!

What will you do with this knowledge creating a new awareness of possibilities for you and your health?

My Mastermind Group

I’m coming back from a Mastermind Group meeting and I’m energized!  I’ve been with the majority of the members of this group for a year and a half and since the beginning there has been a good synergy.

Why did we choose to get together in the first place?  We started to know one another in a book study Mastermind group I was offering around the classic “Think and Grow Rich”  by Napoleon Hill.  And many of the members of the group had the same reasons for being part of it, namely being surrounded by like-minded people in a positive and supportive environment, learning new ways of thinking, and becoming aware of what sets apart people that grow rich from the rest of us.

Once this book study was done we started another one, then a group coaching on “Goal Achiever” by Bob Proctor, and a few more book studies, until I suggested to stop theorizing and to be in action.  We have decided to work on a web presence for each of us to share with the world our unique gifts.

And tonight as we were sharing our latest advancement on our journey, I noted how we were firing away suggestions and encouragement to one another, building up an idea brought forth by a member to something bigger, exciting and almost tangible .  In “Think and Grow Rich” Napoleon Hill says that there is something magical that happens when 2 or more people are gathered with a common goal in mind in that ideas start flowing in a way that would never have been possible if each individual had decided to work alone.  It’s like if a separate mind was created from the presence of all in attendance. Many people are familiar with that concept in brainstorming sessions.  Now imagine being in a brainstorming session each week with group of people working passionately on a project and sharing their findings, hurdles, resources, successes with the others.  It’s amazing!

To set your own group I suggest that you check out the book “Meet and Grow Rich – How to Easily Create and Operate Your Own Mastermind Group for Health, Wealth, and More” by Joe Vitale and Bill Hibbler.  They give you an overview of what a Mastermind is, how to get it started, how to run a meeting etc…  I used it to set the ground rules for this group’s latest purpose.  It was reassuring to everyone to know that certain rules were layed regarding intellectual property, accountability, behaviours that could lead to exclusion, for example.  Although we are all coming to this group in a mindset of creation and not competition it’s still comforting to know there are boundaries.

If they wouldn’t be on this journey with me, I know for sure that it would be a much slower ride.  It’s great to be empowered and supported by a Mastermind Group!

Steve Siebold and Free Speaking Course.com

Following a link on Facebook I landed on Steve Siebold’s page FreeSpeakingCourse.com, and it has been a treat!  He has decided to share his knowledge and experience of the professional speaking industry over the course of 10 days.  Answering the questions everyday  has allowed me to clarify a few things about where I’ve been, where I am, and where I’m going.

If you didn’t know yet, one of my dreams is to be a world-class professional speaker, to inspire women to reconnect with their inner power through knowledge and understanding of their mind and universal laws.

In 2008 when I went for my LifeSuccess training the Gove-Siebold training to become a professional public speaker was mentioned.  And I promised myself that I would attend it eventually.  Notice, no specific date was set… so it didn’t happen yet!  After taking that 10 days course I have set a date: I will have attended the course by August 2012.  I knew there were incredible knowledge and experience to be gained from it and now I’m convinced of it!

I really liked that Steve Siebold was there to share his experience and to deliver a message of hope each day.

Check it out!  FreeSpeakingCourse.com

Life as a game

I’ve been asked for my opinion about something a friend of mine is going through and I know enough now to not go into this.  So I gently answered that my opinion didn’t really matter because I was an observer of her game and not a player involved.

Just like when you’re watching a hockey game and you’re yelling at the players because they are not doing what you think would be a better play. Really, your opinion doesn’t matter because you’re not involved. You’re not even on the ice!  What can you do about it?  You could be speculating forever and seeing the better options, and it still wouldn’t change a thing because you’re an outsider and you are not in the action.

There are always a minimum of 2 options for any given situation and more often then not, millions of possibilities.  How you think, feel, act or react can change the outcome in so many variations… Just like any game.  So really, what would my opinion change?  Nothing. I wasn’t a player and I wasn’t even present at the game!  What can I do to support the person now is a better question to ask.

I’ve adopted that line of thought for a few years now that life is a game and that I can decide to play it whatever way I choose, knowing that I have to be ready to assume the repercussions of my decisions. And I like it.  I like to play and have fun so this philosophy fits me.  For now at least.

Vision as per Mary Morrissey

Here is a video published on Paul Martinelli’s blog about the power of vision. He is letting his friend Mary Morrissey share her knowledge on this, and it is good!  She puts a new perspective on the quote by Henry David Thoreau that says “If a person will advance confidently in the direction of their dream and endeavor to live the life they have imagined, they will meet with success unexpected in common hours.”

Here is the link to Paul Martinelli’s page to view the video and get the document mentionned in the video.

Enjoy!