On October 20, 2017, I wrote the following, in italics. The bolded comments that follow each paragraph are written today, in response. Here we go!
Who is this person? Self-help whisper-what? Let me explain.
I have to say that the moniker, “The Self-Help Whisperer®” has totally grown on me over the years. So-much-so, that I’ve paid to register my trademark(ed) name. It doesn’t role off the tongue easily, not with that “er” “er” at the end of Whisper(er) but it does fit. I truly AM The Self-Help Whisperer® and I’m super proud of it.
It began a long time ago… this self-help journey-thingy.
That’s for DARNED sure! When I was in California, I was known for my many, many self-help books. I had scads of them in bookcases, boxes in the garage, and piles all over the house. When I moved to Canada, I left a zillion behind because – let’s face it – books are expensive to ship, what-with weighing a million pounds and-all. Although, amazingly, I did manage to bring around a hundred packed in this body-sized suitcase I’d bought at AAA in the summer of 2000. That suitcase can no longer be used anywhere as it’s over-sized and over-weight for any flight. I had my whole life in there! Several times, as I went back and forth that first year. I still have the suitcase in our shed, holding all the smaller suitcases and God-knows-what-else. Note to self: Check that suitcase!
(I must digress for a moment. I used to love the word “journey”. It reminded me of sojourns along a lazy river or backpacking through an exotic landscape… and yes, it also reminded me of the psychological and spiritual explorations we all take now and again. But lately, you hear the word too much. Not everything is a journey.)
Hey! My digressions began on DAY 1 – do you see that, Ana? LOL! Second, I’ve succumbed to the “journey” word a whole whack o’ times, like my “Health Journey,” so… uh… yeah. Looks like I couldn’t get around it. Being honest, I remember the first time I used the word in my blog space here… and hoping to God that nobody would go back to my first post and call me on it. People either didn’t read the first post or kindly ignored that part of it, which I appreciate.
The first self-help book I read was Wayne Dyer’s Your Erroneous Zones in the late 1970s. The biggest take-away? All these years later, one thing stands out above all others: I have *choices* about my life.
Still remember… still hold the book (and Dyer) close to my heart. I was in (what we called) Jr. College. Funny, because I never got past the first year. I was bored outta my head and didn’t think I needed an education. It didn’t help that I was sexually molested (verbally) by an instructor. He was a pig. Perhaps I should give that experience more credence, as it resulted in his firing after a court appearance with other women who got it worse than me. See? I minimize my abuses. Even still. That man kinda ruined my life, at least for a little while.
Fast forward a few decades and you would have found me with a tenuous hold on that truth. Oh, I remembered what Dr. Dyer said… but I didn’t believe it.
What the heck is WRONG with me? It’s like a broken record, I tell ya! I can choose. I am worthy. I always have been! Dammit! I will say, however, that depression and anxiety played larger roles than I first realized. It sucks that negative voices are so loud, isn’t it? Here’s to meditation and other quieting choices that make room for the quiet, kind voices to get through!
But that’s enough about my past — and I mean that! If you know me, you’ll realize it’s a very big deal (indeed!) that I should say that. Why? Because I have been living in the past for too long. What kept me there? Oh, guilt and shame. It’s a cloak I’ve worn for far too long!
Hahahahahahahahahahaha! Not laughing at the guilt and shame… which was definitely there and played far too big a role in my life from childhood until, uh, now. I’m laughing at saying “that’s enough” as though I’ll never speak of my past again. See a couple of paragraphs above where I did it 5 minutes ago. Lord have mercy!
I will not be talking about all the blogs I loved before… except to say they existed. I have been a creator/ destroyer for a long, long time. I love to write, so I’d write my heart out and then trash it all. That was, of course, my prerogative. Except, I didn’t believe that either. So, I heaped more guilt and shame on my head.
Hahahahahahahahahahaha!x2 Because I LITERALLY called one of my blog posts “To all the blogs I lost before” and shared every word I could find in my archives, except the people posts, which were in a different post, not to be confused with the vestiges of old blogs, which are in another post. All linked in this paragraph, if you want to read them. HAHAHAHAHAHA! HA!
Something happened a few weeks ago that changed the direction I was headed. Last week, I was hit in the face (not literally) with the truth, learned anew: I have power. I can make my own choices. I am not the needy, guilt-ridden, shame-filled person I was yesterday, last year or last century (ha!).
Yes, it was so vitally important that I can no longer remember what it is. How’s THAT for life changing? Also, guilt and shame are sneaky bastards and keep rearing their ugly heads. If only I knew how to stop that. Oh wait, I DO! I have read so many books, haven’t I? And you know what? Many of them are VERY good and VERY helpful. It’s almost as-if I’ve only read them for you and not for myself, when, let’s get real (again!) we are all one. I read for you and for me. You read my posts for you and for me and for everyone your life touches. WE ARE ONE!! I honestly believe that! I have everything I need to heal… RIGHT HERE!
I have read more self-help books than pretty-much anyone I know. I’ve watched a whack of beautiful, insightful videos and YouTube Ted Talks. I’ve seen some clunkers, too. I’ve listened to music to calm my anxiety or uplift my depression. I have a self-care Pinterest board. I LOVE self-help. I would like this space to be a safe corner to discuss all-things self-help… and I’ll be sharing stories and life-moments that will fit right in. I hope you’ll join me!
I give myself credit for keeping my original idea on track all these years. I think I’ve got a pretty neat set-up here, with lots of good books and resources. Stories, too, that help bring home the salient points. And, I can’t forget the community we’ve built together!
Yes, thank you for being here! If not for YOU, my The Self-Help Whisperer® community, none of this would be possible. Oh yeah, I could write, but nobody would be here to hear my voice, nor would I hear yours!
This is our space – yours and mine! I love it! I am so happy that you’re here with me. ♡♡♡♡
Here’s to another 4 years and beyond!
PS: This is one of my fave photos taken on my way to work way back in 2017-18. It just seems to fit here…