Tough Advice: Stop Making Excuses

M challenged me with Tough advice when she told me to Let go of the past and move forward. The more deeply I felt my loss, the tighter my bonds to the past became. Each time M challenged me to let go of the past, I made an excuse not to let go. M finally challenged me to let go of my excuse making. It wasn’t easy, but as M told me, I had a choice. Here is an excerpt from Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again where I wrestled with this decision.

“It’s easier for me to live in the past where I was happy rather than figure out how to live in the present in a way that added meaning to my life and held on to the hope that happiness would one day find me again. I realized I developed excuse-making into a professional skill as excuses rolled off my tongue as easy as grass turns green in the spring.

If I really wanted to dance with suffering and grieving, I would need to let go of what held me to the past with a death grip and not make excuses about moving forward. Easier said than done, but I would give it my best. I wanted to dance with grieving.”

Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again. Available in paperback and ebook formats from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, and Kobo.

Excerpt From

Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again

Raymond Calabrese

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Finding Love ~ Quote by Kojouri

“You have no choice. You must leave your ego on the doorstep before you enter love.” ~ Kamand Kojouri

Courage ~ Quote by William Faulkner

You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore.” ~ William Faulkner

Joy ~ Poem by Buddha

Joy

(An Excerpt) by Buddha

Let us live in joy, not hating those who hate us.
Among those who hate us, we live free of hate.
Let us live in joy,
free from disease among those who are diseased.
Among those who are diseased, let us live free of disease.
Let us live in joy, free from greed among the greedy.
Among those who are greedy, we live free of greed.
Let us live in joy, though we possess nothing.
Let us live feeding on joy, like the bright gods.

Victory breeds hate, for the conquered is unhappy.
Whoever has given up victory and defeat
is content and lives joyfully.

To Live in this World ~ Poem by Mary Oliver

to live in this world
you must be able
to do three things
to love what is mortal;
to hold it

against your bones knowing
your own life depends on it;
and, when the time comes to let it go,
to let it go.

– Mary Oliver

retrieved from Poet Seers

Today’s Quote on Happiness

Happiness is not found in things you possess, but in what you have the courage to release.

Nathaniel Hawthorne

Trouble Seemed To Find Me

I’m in favor or second and third chances. Maybe, because I’ve been the beneficiary of second and third chances more than once. Well, more than twice.

“How many, Ray? Let’s be honest,” said Y.

I roll my eyes. Honestly, I’m not a trouble maker. Somehow, growing up, trouble seemed to find me. I could be down by the river far enough away I couldn’t hear my dad or mom call me to do chores. What is wrong with that? I didn’t know it, but I was finding my peaceful place.

“You want me to tell you what was wrong with that?”

“Why?”

“You finally got it right.”

“Leave, I’m writing a serious blog.”

“Can I have another chance?”

“Oh, you are such a manipulator.”

“And, good at it, Ray.”

“It could have been when I was in the Army and left a day early on weekend pass. The First Sergeant only ripped me a new one, if you know what I mean. He gave me a second chance.”

“I don’t. Can you be explicit?”

“It’s a family blog.”

 

“I’m giving you a second chance, Ray.”

“A second chance for what?”

“Being a bit more sensitive to the characters you create. Once we’re created, we have our own life. I don’t like being threatened, erased, put on a shelf, deposited in a digital file.”

“What did I do to deserve you?”

“Beat me. It’s like winning the Powerball, Ray. Come on, turn up those corners. Unclench the fists, pry open your jaw. That’s better. Now take a deep breath and breath out slowly.”

“You’re not my life coach.”

“You need one. Can I have a second chance?”

We all need second chances.

We all make mistakes, saw the wrong things. Hurt others. Second chances are another word for forgiveness, letting go of hurts, and working to rebuild a stronger relationship. I like second chances and third chances.