Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Monday, March 12, 2012

Monday Musings - I was lost and now I'm found

Sometimes depression is a good thing. It forces me to stop everything and go inward. I was feeling so lost.  It took such effort to make myself do anything. I began writing in my journal again, to try to get a handle on my thoughts and feelings and make some sense out of them. I realized that moving into one's "third act" as Jane Fonda calls it, is not something to take lightly. It is preparation for our final act. So I began asking myself questions like, is there anything that I'll regret not doing when I get to 90? What I discovered doesn't matter as much as taking the time to ponder the journey. A couple of things I found. I cannot stop writing. This novel is my spiritual work right now. Singing is important to the state of my soul. Having a morning routine that has priorities in the right order helps tremendously. And letting go of having to be "productive." I find if I'm "productive" in the morning, I can relax in the afternoon and watch a movie or read a book or just "zone out" if I feel like it. Yeah, retirement has its perks, doesn't it?



Tonja said...

I struggle with the overwhelming urge to be productive. I'm glad you've found peace and balance (and that you're going to keep writing).

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

So glad you're much better and are able to relax. We don't have to do productive things all day! Or maybe we can just edit what it means to be productive--taking care of ourselves can be productive, too. I need to remember that.

Liz Fichera said...

Journaling helps me to find my way back too. So glad you're finding your way, Karen.

L.G.Smith said...

Writing keeps me sane. Er, at least I think this passes for sane. :)

Siv Maria said...

SO you have started making a Bucket List? Right now I am just taking it one day at a time, menopause is my big monster these days. All I can think about is spring and summer!

Jennifer Shirk said...

I think we have this American guilt to keep moving and keep doing. I think that's why we Americans have such sleep problems.

Talli Roland said...

Karen, I'm glad you're feeling better and back on track. Here's to happy days ahead.

Tracy Jo said...

So glad you are finding that balance as you go through this transition. Sending you positive thoughts! Writing saves me too. :-)

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Pleased you're going to continue to write.


Jessica Bell said...

I can't give myself permission to relax if I haven't been productive either. Glad you're finding a way out of the slump. I know all too well how that feels!

Karen Walker said...

Tonja, it helps to be "older" I think. If I were still forging ahead with a career, this would be a whole different post.
Elizabeth, that's brilliant! I'm going to steal it, if you don't mind. Taking care of ourselves is productive, too!!
Liz, with all you've been through, I'm sure journalling has been an invaluable tool.
L.G., it's sure sane in my book.
Siv, I've had a bucket list for several years, but I always keep asking the question, what will I regret? I've completed a lot of my bucket list, but there seems to always be new things added. Menopause is a tough ride. I hope you find ways to balance the highs and lows.
Jennifer, I think you are right.
Talli, thanks so much
Tracy Jo, we are lucky aren't we?
Yvonne, thanks for that
Jess, nice to see and hear from you - I know you know.

Bish Denham said...

I gave a good portion of my life to being productive and helping others. It was time well spent. Now I revel in not having to be responsible for any of that any more. I have only myself to be accountable to, it's freeing.

Karen Walker said...

Bish, thank you - I'll look forward to that "freeing" feeling.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Karen, it took time to learn to balance my life. One thing I have learned is when to stop and just be me, veg, read, listen to music and relax.

While I've always been ambitious, I'm not driven to succeed at something at the cost of all else, including health and family.

Not to say I have had to make myself slow down. I have.

Spring and summer is on the way with lots of sunshine.


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Wish I had those perks! Wait, not yet - still have a few years. Let's not rush it.
Glad you're feeling better again!

KarenG said...

Depression is only good when it's over.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I get far more done in the morning, too. Seems once the clock hands move past noon, they drop like a stone and I don't get anything done.

Joanne said...

I'm glad you're going to continue to write. You SO have a novel in you that needs to come out!

Debra Lynn Lazar said...

The idea of being "productive" is one I've been contemplating lately. If I'm not achieving something, or working towards achieving something, what is my worth? Giving ourselves permission to just "be" seems far more worthwhile than anything we "produce." Great post.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

It's never too late to "find yourself", is it? I'm glad you've gained new perspective on what matters to you, but I'm sorry you had to go through the darkness to get here.

Carol Kilgore said...

I've learned this year how important mornings are to me, too. I don't yet have the leisure to watch a movie in the afternoon, but I'm much more satisfied by being productive in the morning.

Karen Walker said...

Sia, I am so looking forward to Spring. Today was exquisite here in Albuquerque, but I didn't get outside much.
Alex, thanks, me, too. And don't you dare rush it. Enjoy the work time while you're doing it and while you can.
KarenG, yes yes yes
Diane, is it something in the air?
Joanne, that's what these past few weeks have taught me - I have to write this novel. And it's coming now that I've accepted that.
Debra, when we've been successful in our careers the productivity thing is hard to let go of.
Susan, no, it's never too late to learn anything.
Carol, yes, it just makes me feel better.