Who Am I? Why Do You Care?

I am a woman on a journey. Where I'll end up is yet to be discovered.


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Embrace Kindness

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What are your hopes and dreams for 2017? What do you want to accomplish this year? Are you prepared for what needs to be done in order to see those goals realized?

On New Year’s Eve my daughter and I set fire to the things we didn’t want to carry into the coming year. Emotional burdens and hurdles like anger, negativity and past hurts. Some things did seem to evaporate in the smoke from that little garbage pail fire on the back porch, while others are going to take a bit more work – but still – the thought is the same. We no longer need to carry the things from the past that hold us back. We need to shed those things in order to see a brighter future.

At the same time, we wrote down the things we wanted to do more of in the coming year. Some may call them resolutions, I just like to think of them as the things that will help me to become the person I really want to be. My daughter had several wishes for herself in the coming year, but to me, one of the most powerful was the little statement she wrote above.

Embrace people’s kindness.

It sounds simple, doesn’t it? How hard can that be? Truth be told, how many of us are free to embrace the kindness of others in our daily lives? I’ll bet it isn’t as often as you think.

Too many times we refuse the kindness someone tries to show by the gift of their help. We tell them, “Oh, you can’t do that, it’s too much!” Or we see simpler things as something we should be able to do for ourselves. “Oh, no, I can do it, but thanks for asking!”

Sound familiar? It’s hard to accept help, isn’t it? But by offering help, those people are extending kindness.

My daughter knows she has a difficult time accepting acts of kindness. She doesn’t like to be complimented, she doesn’t like to accept help, she doesn’t like for anyone to do anything for her because she then sees herself as a burden.

Accepting kindness is a way to be vulnerable and open yourself up to others. This can be terrifying. Vulnerability is scary. I know. But as humans, without that vulnerability, without opening ourselves up to others, we lose the very connection that makes us human. I’m not so sure I’m ready to give up on that. Are you?

I believe that this very simple thing has the power to transform lives. It can be easy to show kindness to others, but accepting it in return is the the difficult part. Choose to allow kindness in, and I imagine you will start to see the world, and yourself, differently.

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I think NaNoWriMo Claimed Another Victim

Here it is, almost to the end of Nov. 13th.  I joined the ranks of those trying NaNoWriMo, a bit wary, a bit excited and a bit awed by the whole thing.  Furiously did I start to write on the first, hoping to even come somewhere close to goal by the end of the month.  I wanted the discipline, I wanted to show myself that I COULD learn to put my writing first, and in these past 13 days I have done just that.  I have learned that I can in fact, make time to write.  I have learned that even when the words don’t want to come, or they aren’t coming out the way I want them to, that I still need to sit myself down and write.  Or stare at a blank screen or paper, whatever.  What I am not allowed to do is to let an entire day go by without writing something.  Anything.  (and no, grocery lists don’t count)

I am focused on my project with a focus that may not be entirely healthy.  With ADHD, hyperfocus can be a problem for me.  (Nice blog on hyperfocus and the ADHD mind by The Adult ADHD Blog by the way) I  can zone in on something that I want to do and single it out to the exclusion of anything else around, even things that are important.  Luckily, I live with an eleven year old who will not let me forget to feed her, even if I forget to do any laundry or pay the electric bill.  Still, in the past thirteen days I became obsessed with word count.  I’ve been enjoying watching the number steadily climb, and when it reached the 30,000 mark I was ecstatic!  In a few short days I have become a firm believer in NaNoWriMo and what it stands for.  I have enjoyed the exuberance of the participants, the good will shared, and the encouragement offered by everyone has been refreshing to see. I thought today that even though I know I will continue to write with enthusiasm, I will be sad to see November and NaNo come to an end.

I know my project will need much work when November is over.  For now, getting the words on the page is enough.  As I struggled today wondering if I could in fact make it, if I could possibly make something out of this mess I’m writing, and if in fact my voice is still in me somewhere waiting to be discovered, I was reminded that as long as I believe in my work, and believe in my characters, then just write.  Just throw the fear and the worry and the doubt to the side and just write.

So, at the end of day thirteen, I thank NaNoWriMo for pushing me to succeed.  I thank you for showing me that I have it in me to find the time to write every day.  I thank you for reminding me of what is important, and I even thank the part of me that can hyperfocus.  I needed that part of myself to remind me that there ARE things in this life I am passionate about, I just need to find balance.


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This is What Disgusts Me

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Okay, I’m ranting right now, so if you want to read no further, I don’t blame you.
I’ve seen this picture before and it’s always irritated me, but tonight as I was scrolling through my Facebook feed someone I was “friends” with had it posted on their wall. I stopped, and I just stared at this oh so clever little picture and I became more angry than I have when I witnessed it before. Why? Maybe I shouldn’t be, but I just cannot help it. There is too much ignorance in this world now, and too much blame placed by people who have no idea what they are talking about. I read a blog the other day that was quite insightful, talking about how no one had the right to tell anyone else how to raise their children because there was no one “right” way of doing it, and I agree with that. (by the way, it was the Matt Walsh blog) I also think that until you have walked in the shoes of someone with a mental disorder or other illness, you have no right to tell anyone that all their child needs is some discipline. Really people?
ADHD is NOT I repeat NOT a discipline problem. My child has ADHD. She has never been in trouble a day in her life at school. She respects authority, doesn’t talk back, doesn’t cause problems,
is kind to the other children and speaks respectfully to her elders. She does her chores and respects her mother. Can she try my patience sometimes? Sure she can, as all children do. When you use a belt on your child does it magically make them never disobey you again? If it worked so great you wouldn’t have to use it more than once, now would you?
I guess what gets to me is the idea that if I beat my child then she would not have ADHD. Really? If I took out the belt I could magically transform her into someone that never lost her focus, never daydreamed, never forgot anything and always remembered her homework? Wow! Ooh, would she be on the straight “A” honor roll and never have cavities too? This belt thing just might be the magical answer to all the problems of the universe, huh?
Oh — and what about other illnesses? What about other brain disorders? Could using a belt on your children prevent them from having schizophrenia? Bipolar Disorder? Depression? What about Anorexia and Bulimia? If a belt “fixes” these mental disorders, what about physical ones? Can it cure cancer and heart disease? Just curious..I mean, you people who say the problem with my child is that I don’t whip her, you seem to have all the answers so I was wondering if you could enlighten me just a bit. I’m a complete moron obviously who knows nothing about how to take care of my child or manage her mental disorder. I mean, never once have I walked into the pediatrician’s office, or the counselor’s office, or the ADHD specialist’s office, or been to a teacher meeting where ANY of these fine, educated people said to me, “Now, Ms. Lazzari, can you tell me how many times a day you take out a belt and whip your child as part of her ADHD therapy? Do we need to up the beatings or do you think they are sufficient where they are now?” Sorry, no one ever asked me, so I suppose it’s up to all you other fine folks out there to tell me what I need to do.
Yes, I’m ranting. I warned you. I know some bad children. I know some children that I wished with all my being that someone would smack. Did they have ADHD? I don’t know. I DO know that as a parent of a child with ADHD, it has NOTHING and I mean NOTHING to do with how I discipline my child. I know I’ve said this before right here on this blog. I have standards, I have rules and I expect my daughter to obey them and do her share. Yes, some people need to step up and get a clue and discipline their children, but do NOT and I repeat DO NOT equate having ADHD with being a discipline problem. And do you know what else? There are children with ADHD who have huge problems with controlling their impulses. This is what makes the children “bad” they seem to do whatever they think in the moment regardless of consequences. Yes, these ADHD children can get into a lot of trouble. But do you know what? Let us not be so ignorant as to ASSUME that these children behave this way because their parents do not discipline them. Sure, that is true in some cases, but let me tell you, in most cases, those children are loved by parents who are at the end of their ropes. Parents who have tried everything they can think of — medication, counseling, behavior modification, lecturing, grounding, time outs and yes, even whipping, to get through to these children. These parents are tired, overwhelmed, stressed and concerned. These parents care very deeply about helping their child overcome their symptoms to become productive citizens, so how DARE people with no clue say “ALL” the child needs is a good sound whipping to put the kid in his place?
Shame on you. Shame on you for being that small minded. I’m okay with people who think a kid needs a sound spanking every now and again. I’m not going to jump on that debate. Whether or not you spank your children is your business. What I am saying is when a child has a heart condition or a liver problem we say, “What can we do to help you? I’m so sorry!” to the parents and when a child has a mental disorder we snicker to ourselves and say behind the parent’s backs, “If you ask me, she just ought to give them a good sound beating and that’ll knock some sense into them. That’s all it took in OUR day, you know.”
People, it’s time we stop this bullshit. It’s time you came into this century. It’s time you do some research before you start condemning others.
Let’s get rid of the stigma, people. This is ridiculous.