I know in my world I do better than most. I am comfortable in a small apartment with my spouse with a room for him and one for me and a community space for all. When we moved to this new place I was so excited to have more “space.” While space for each other to have our area of the home was important, I ever knew how much until COVID.
The irony is we moved in here in January of 2020 and COVID hit hard in February. Divine timing I would say. Within one month he was working from home. Luckily, now we each had our rooms to be able to do that. In the next few months, our home kept changing.
First, his room was created more for living life in a bedroom, as needed from time to tie with his desk in there so he could play video games. Then after a few rearrangements, it became his office, his bedroom, and his sacred space.
My room started out as where I would sleep, watch tv with what many men call “My dumb shows” as not to disturb him. AS we were both confined to our home we both found ways to make our rooms more like we desired for the unknown future as we would be confined to these spaces a lot longer than we planned.
A huge part of that for me became my closet.
I used to follow Project 333 and did pretty good for awhile keeping minimal clothes in there. With the new space, I bought up all my clothes so they were accessible and not in bins or boxes. This forced me to see, I had many clothes that I never wore and many of those clothes because masks for others as I cut up dresses, leggings, shorts, and shirts to make masks for others to help fight COVID bringing my fashion business and sewing skills back to life after Cancer.
Like many, we got into the buying bug and brought things around our home to make us feel more comfortable if we were going to be staying in. For me, part of that meant clothes. My formal clothes were of no use to me, as I was not going anywhere. MY fashion clothes seemed pointless since no one was really going to see me, with the exception of Zoom, waist up.
In No Sidebar, she states ”
Because owning something? It’s about commitment.
It’s not only about spending the money to buy it. After that, it has to be maintained so you can keep using it. That means storing, dusting, washing, folding, and so on. And when it’s worn, it has to be fixed too.”
Little by little my closet started getting rearranged and I found myself putting more and more clothes in bins. I because used to and enjoyed the idea of only have a few choices to select from. It made it easier and streamlined getting dressed in the morning and for the day. Now, with the world starting to open back up, we have ventured out a tad bit more. I am immunocompromised so I am very cautious about where I go and who with if anyone other than my spouse.
One collection I do have now is a whole new set of masks. Masks of all kinds and types with many different patterns and colors. A joke I have seen often on the internet is “the last thing we need as women is another thing we have to match with our outfit.”
Since having cancer two times, I was a constant mask wearer BEFORE all this happened and already decided that mismatched prints to my clothes can be fun. Matching is cute, but masks can do more than just protect. Add iron-on, sequins, lace to your masks, have fun with them. How many masks are too many, is now my question. My answer…you can never have too many because some will break down, some will tear, some will lose their firmness and you want a rotation anyway. Don’t go getting an armoire to put them in or anything, but do make sure you have some you like to interchange and some neutrals for any day.
I haven’t finished purging my closet just yet, as it is a work in progress. I still ask myself, will I need this AFTER COVID? The answer is most often, “unsure.” I am creating an “I haven’t worn that in years bag to donate to those in need as well as creating an “After COVID” bin of any clothes I might want to resurrect later.
I also have created a bin of things around my house I don’t need or use anymore.
My ideal world and happy place for me, would live on a plot of land, in my yurt or renovated bus, homestead and be self-sustainable, live off the land, and only buy what is extremely necessary from stores if that. That would mean much of what I have in my home would not be needed, so I might as well start downsizing now. I don’t think that kind of future is that far away.
You start thinking about what is REALLY important to you.
Our importance list, is each other, our cats, and peace in our lives.
You think about what do I really need?
How can we make the life we desire happen?
My spouse is excited about Starlink, as am I, where we could get internet anywhere in the world and he could still work until we are ready to fully retire. I am 50 and he is turning 40 this year. I see this in the near future and thus I feel I need to really look around my house and rethink what do I really NEED to survive.
While I understand for some, you might think you need something bigger, more things, etc. For me, it has done the opposite and made me think how many have told me, they were maybe 10 clothes out of their closet. They don’t drive anywhere, they bike or walk (we do also) They cook at home more, less fast food or restaurants, and less socializing if any at all.
COVID has woken me back up to the idea of minimalism and I am excited to see the outcome of how my continual decluttering, downsizing, and removing unnecessary things from my home, has and will bring peace to my home and my heart. ❤
No Sidebar also said on her importance list is:
A life where my stuff enriched my every day instead of crowding me out of my own home.
A life that was intentional.
A life that is intentional.
Thank you Covid for helping see a blessing in disguise to start living a life in full view! ❤
No man is free until all lives are free.
There’s been a lot of talk about black lives matter and as a community, we are starting to do solidarity walks and protesting, posting signs, and doing what we can as a community to join the cause.
Yesterday, I saw quite a debate between neighbors on Nextdoor and I wanted to share this resource I received from DragonTree, a local Colorado business in Boulder. This is from Peter Borten, one of the owners, and I felt it was very helpful for other non-black lives to understand and utilize.
“I’m not an expert on racism, so I’m sharing this amazing list of resources (mostly for White people) – books, podcasts, videos, and articles by people who have made this their life’s work. Learn what they have to teach and amplify their voices. (see the full article on The Dragontree Blog for link)
What I do know is a holistic healing and by applying these principles to our disease, I believe we truly shall overcome.
1. Be humble. Resist the impulse to believe you already know, and listen to others’ experiences.
2. Dedicate yourself to learning the truth. Go to multiple sources – not just the first one that confirms what you already believed.
3. Broaden your perspective. Let your vision include as many factors as you can hold space for. This means also acknowledging what’s been kept hidden in the shadows, and the parts of yourself that you’ve denied.
4. Forgive. Forgiveness is healing. I’m not saying your feelings are wrong. I’m not saying you aren’t entitled to feel angry, sad, victimized, or anything else. I’m not putting a timeline on it. I’m only saying that at some point, a complete healing process – and true freedom – entails releasing our grievances.
Please share your experience. We all learn from this conversation.”
No man is free until all lives are free. There’s been a lot of talk about black lives matter and as a community we are starting to do solidarity walks and protesting, posting signs, and doing what we can as a community to join the cause.
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What You REALLY Need To Hear
What you REALLY need to hear is that it will be okay.
What you REALLY need to hear is to be positive.
What you REALLY need to hear is that it is NOT the end of the world.
What you REALLY need to hear is that we will get through this, TOGETHER!
What you DON’T need to hear.
What you DON’T need to hear right now is more news.
What you DON’T need to hear is that more shelves are empty
What you DON’T need to hear is that more people are infected or that more people have died.
Do yourself a favor…
Turn off the news.
Log off social media.
Turn on some music.
Go outside and get some fresh air.
Do something different.
Learn something different
Right now the world is creating a whole new world.
Maybe now is the perfect time for you to create a whole new you?
What have you always wanted to do but never had to time? Read a book cover to cover? Camp in your home? Make a fort? Learn a new skill? What else? Do that. Unless it is traveling, not much is stopping you but yourself. So much is free out there, you can teach yourself so many new and great wonderful things. You can go to a museum, online. You can listen to a concert, online. You can meditate or do yoga, online.
The universe is telling us itis time to slow down.
The world is changing.
AS a cancer patient, let me explain something to you… There is no such thing as “going back to normal.” there is no normal. There is what you will hear is called a “New Normal” but it still is not normal. Normal is a setting on a washing machine.
We are evolving.
It is time for you to evolve to.
That may not be what you wanted to hear, but I know in my hear it is what you NEEDED to hear.
Crusader for Humanity
Love will keep us together if we remember to exercise it. Choose Love.
In the next few days, weeks and maybe longer we will all be faced with decisions in our lives that will affect others. Some immediately and some long term. I ask you when you are making those decisions before you act on them, think about those choices. I ask you, no I implore you, to choose love.
Before you stockpile for your family only, ask yourself, “Am I choosing Love at this moment?”
Before you go out instead of social distancing, ask yourself, “Am I choosing Love at this moment?”
Before you go to work instead of working from home ask yourself, “Am I choosing Love at this moment?”
You may think I am being overly dramatic in my words and maybe to you, a healthy, uncompromised person, maybe I am.
But I am a two-time cancer fighter and barely out of my second bout with it. I now have Hashimoto’s autoimmune disease. If I got sick, it would be dire. There are others like me or who are older, have illnesses like mine or worse. We are not as healthy as you, and you may be putting us at risk.
I am writing this hoping it is a matter of “I didn’t think about it that way.” Instead of a matter of “I could care less.”
All I am asking is that you stop and think about your actions, your words, your behavior.
We have the capability to get through this on one condition…if we do it together.
Not just the United States, I mean the World!
We the WORLD can get through this together!
I truly believe we can accomplish that through love.
Love for ourselves AND love for our fellow man.
Be a good human.
~XoXo Trisha Trixie
Crusader for Humanity
If my title intrigued you I hope you will stay to read the rest because this subject has been weighing on me for quite some time. I wasn’t even sure which blog to write it on since I have this blog that reaches a larger audience and my personal blog that is more of my close-knit friends, though it is open to the public.
Let backtrack a bit for those who don’t know my recent journey.
In recent years I have had cancer, not once, but twice. When I first found out I had cancer, most of my friends and some of my family rallied around me to be supportive. I went into remission for a year and then sadly my cancer came back with a vengeance. The second time it came around, I was more involved in Toastmasters and more friends rallied around, more family rallied and more letters and support showed. This time we figured out how to video chat, how to be a better support to me and help me with my needs.
Both times, once I was well, friends went dark, the family fell off the face of the earth and I was left in the dark cold turkey.
I am a strong, resilient person and I know I should take it as a compliment that people feel like once I am well that I can handle things on my own.
The thing is, what they don’t realize is how hard it is to move forward after you have had all that support to be left with no support.
- No more video chats
- No more calls
- The letters slow down or come to halt
- The care packages stop
- The check-ins to see how you are don’t happen
- The soft way people talk to you stops
- The compassion seems to have left the building
Even the strongest person has a hard time recovering after a trauma like cancer and when all the compassionate caring stops, it is like going through withdrawals.
If you have followed my blog for a while or you know me, you know I am going to be upfront and honest about how I feel.
Vulnerable and all.
I feel like I am having to quit “attention” from others’ care and love, cold turkey.
Since last fall when I was told I was cancer-free and the tests were good, I have been severely depressed and struggling.
Imagine a person suffering from an addiction to a drug and then they are removed from it cold turkey with nothing.
My drug, however, was compassion from others. That compassion was a swarming form of attention and to be honest, not having it, is hard. I miss it.
Deep down in my heart, I know my friends care and love me. The “addict” per se in me, however, is saying, I don’t matter anymore and I only mattered when it was life-threatening. I know in reality that it is just negative self-talk and untrue.
I am talking to my therapist to refill that void with other things again.
- Doing service for others
- Doing good for others
- Remembering my purpose and meaning in this life and fulfilling that purpose
- Getting back involved in Toastmasters
- Developing a workout routine
- Going for walks on a regular basis
- Meeting with friends or calling friends
- Reaching out to family
- Scheduling more travel and road trips
- Finding retreats or getaways I might be interested in
While I know it’s on me to lift myself out of this depression and being who I am, I will.
I wanted to write this for those of you who might be currently supporting or befriending someone who is going through Cancer or any other severe illness right now or who might have a friend who just went into remission.
If things are still looking grim you are probably still there for them, helping them out, being support and I am sure they are thankful for that and I am thankful to you for being there for me and thankful to my friends who were there for me.
If you want to know how to best support your friends while they are going from “I had cancer or this life-threatening illness” to “I survived and I am going to make it”…
Here are some key ways to support them AFTER they are well so you don’t put them into a state of Cold Turkey shock like I am going through:
- Text them every now and then to let them know you still care and are happy they are well
- Send them a card that shows that little bit of extra effort that you cared enough to write something and put a stamp on it.
- Call them if you can. If you were able to make the time before, try to make the time again, even if it’s not as much.
- Schedule a visit with them or an outing together. They are finally well and able to get out of the house. Go have fun with them
Remember that even though they are well, they might still be scared about their illness returning and still need your friendship. Also, the people you may think are the strongest are probably the ones who are not ones to burden others with their problems, so they won’t tell you when they need you, or are sad or are depressed.
Robin Williams surprised the nation by taking his life.
Kate Spade’s father said he spoke to her earlier in the day and she was planning a trip.
You just never know.
Don’t stop showing your friends you care, especially those who have gone through some pretty major things in their life, like trauma or illness.
Those are the ones who really need you the most.
When you go cold-turkey on them, it is like quitting the hardest drug they ever had to quit because whether you realize or not, your friendship means more to them than you could possibly imagine.
You don’t have to be there 100%, just don’t go from 100% to 0% in a day.
~XoXo Trisha Trixie
Crusader for Humanity
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it. I want to know if you can stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back.~Oriah Mountain Dreamer
I have been through many fires. Metaphorical fires, not literal but they were hot still the same. Many men in my life were unable to withstand the flames. Many friends in my life are no longer my friends because my flames were too hot for them and they felt singed by the heat. I find that many times in my life, other humans are not able to withstand the heat and fires of my life.
I used to be told it was me. I was the common denominator so it was my fault. I have learned through the years that some people endure more trauma than others. That is just life. It is not one’s fault. It just is.
As I have dealt with hotter fires in my life, so to speak, fires, like Cancer, twice, side effects of all the chemotherapy I did and now Hashimoto’s, I am finding more and more people who are able to stand near the fire at least.
Some people never have fires they have to put out. I used to be envious of them. Until I realized they were unable to grow. They did not know how to handle struggle when it came along. They had not built a stronger character.
While these things in my life have been excruciatingly hard, they have shaped me, molded me and made me the person I am today.
On my personal blog, I share some frustrations I had with my spouse. We all have them. No marriage is perfect. In meditating and looking over things though I realized something today…
He has stood in the fire and not shrank.
He has sat with me in pain and not tried to fix it.
He has dealt with nothing but putting out fires since we got married.
And he is still here.
It is rare to find a person who can do that.
I am ever thankful for that. Publicly and eternally I wanted to say that.
Even more than that, I want to share with those of you who also have had fires in your life. Maybe you have had your fair share of them. Maybe you have only had a few. Maybe you could write a book about it and no one will believe you. Maybe you have only had one.
Whether your fires have been one or many, I want to assure you something no one told me…
It is NOT your fault.
Just because you are the common denominator does not always mean you are the cause. It does not mean that you are always the reason the fires start. You may be the one always having to put them out and that’s all that others see. You may be the one always in the middle of the fire, but that doesn’t mean you started it.
I want you to know that and I want you to understand I know where you are coming from. I am tired of getting blamed for my fires. I’m sure you are too!
I am not saying there are not people who need to take ownership and if that is you, take ownership already! Fix your life and get your shit together!
However, you could just be the one in the middle and that sucks and I am sorry. I feel for you. I didn’t ask for the trauma in my life at age 8. I didn’t ask for it at age 10. I didn’t ask for it in my teens or in my twenties. I didn’t ask for Cancer either, but I got it. Those fires happened and I had to be strong enough to put them out. Sometimes all on my own with no one there to help me. You might be on your own feeling like you have no one either. It’s okay. It sucks, but you will be okay. You will be stronger for it.
If you are lucky, you will find people who stand next to you while your fire is blazing and rub their hands together and say “Let’s get some marshmallows!”
You might find people who are willing to help you put your fires out.
You might find people who aren’t afraid to get a little singed with you because they know they will be okay too. They won’t shrink back.
The people who can sit in pain with you and not try to FIX YOU and just love you for who you are, fires and all are the best and they are out there!
If you can’t find them, maybe it is time to become one!
~XoXo Trisha Trixie
For the full quote from The Invitation:
“It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shriveled and closed from fear of further pain! I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it.
I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, to be realistic, to remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself; if you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul; if you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see beauty even when it’s not pretty, every day, and if you can source your own life from its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand on the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, “Yes!”
It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up, after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done to feed the children.
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you, from the inside, when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.”
Somedays, you just CAN’T!
Yesterday, which would have been my Trixie Tuesday, I just couldn’t. Anything.
I canceled my Ukelele lesson, I canceled my appointments, I pulled the blackout curtains back to where they were, I turned the heating blanket back on and I literally crawled back into the covers and stayed there pretty much all day.
I watch the Bachelor Episode I missed.
I watched some other TV on Hulu.
I fed the kitten I am pet-sitting and my cats. I tried to play with the kitten and the cats to get some joy in that. Nope. Back to bed, I went.
I don’t talk about my other issues often because I have been facing and dealing with my Cancer so much in the past few years that the other issues kind of got jumbled in all of it.
The issues I am referring to are:
and now my Thyroid,
which does not play well with those other ones, by the way.
The Bipolar diagnosis has been up and down. One time they will say I have it and then they say I don’t. Another time they will say I have Cyclothymia, which is similar, but because I am able to get myself out of my depression, this is why they say I don’t have Bipolar.
The Aspergers and Bipolar are not a good combo because being an Aspie is hard enough. I have no filter. I have a lack of boundary understanding. (this is also a bipolar issue) Now add the Thyroid. As of late, they said I have Hypothyroidism/Hashimotos Auto-Immune Disease. That adds a layer of depression.
Then add my pain issues:
I have Degenerative Disk Disease in my neck and lower back.
I am always in pain. Always. I just don’t go around griping about it to everyone. I live at a level 6-8 pain level nearly all the time. I do what I can.
I am human.
I have hard days and I have good days.
I have days that I crash and just can’t. For years I did not speak about these days. Since having cancer twice I feel it is my duty to help others. I have been given the gift of empathy. I know what others are going through because I have been there myself. A LOT in life. I mean…A LOT.
A huge part of helping others is being open and vulnerable.
How many other people are dealing with things like I am and feel like they are alone?
How many others feel like no one understands?
How many others are happy most of the time, but when they are struggling or not happy their friends say “cheer up.”
We need to be able to have our down days too!
Life cannot be all sunshine and lollipops all the time.
We must know the bitterness to enjoy the sweet.
I am here to tell you…it’s okay!
Some days…you just CAN’T.
Take the day.
Just don’t take too many days. Make sure you pick yourself back up. Dust yourself back off. Pull up your bootstraps. Ride into the sunset. Tomorrow is a new day.
XoXo ~Trisha Trixie