Don’t Lose Faith

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I was secretly on a mission for the last 11 months and I am sad to report that I have failed.  My goal was to meet a hot and super rich guy to marry and travel with and never work again.

I have put my goal aside (for now😉 ) and found a new job!  I’m pretty excited because it’s something new but nervous AF hoping I do a good job.  I do feel good about it because they have already set up a Welcome Liz Lunch (I love lunching!) whereas my last employer threw me in a cube and my boss didn’t talk to me for six months.

With that said, I came across a blog I never posted when I was down in the dumps.  I had made a list of goals that I have mostly accomplished:

  1. Stop the negativity – work in progress
  2. Do what makes me happy – my favorite one!
  3. Walk everyday – eh, working on that
  4. Love myself – work in progress

I have made a lot of changes since I made this list and feel really good. I probably haven’t felt this good for an extended period of time in years.  I am not perfect and I will stumble but I am conscious of what I need to do to stay on track.

My time “off” has been time well spent.  I have helped others which fills my heart and others have helped me.  In down times we learn who our friends our and I certainly did.  My friends have really stuck by me and when I was a raging bitch or in a dark place; they certainly made it known and balanced me.  THANK YOU!

My parents have been my safety net and I am incredibly lucky to have them.  Despite disagreements I know they have my best interest at heart.  <3

Lastly, like the quote about says, “Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick.  Don’t lose faith.”  It’s easy to be positive when things are going right for me at the moment, but I learned how to have faith in myself.  No one can ever bring you down unless you let them.  This was a hard lesson for me because it meant I had to be mentally strong and block out the bullshit.  I built that faith in myself by knowing I was better than what anyone says or thinks.  I had faith that I am a hard worker and would figure out a way if I didn’t find a job.  There is always a way…

Be A Diamond

diamond

Last summer I was let go from my job.  I was devastated but also in need of a time out.  I was put through the ringer and probably on the verge of a breakdown.  A negative environment to say the least.

For a while I told people it was a blessing in disguise but on the inside I felt like a failure. I thought maybe I wasn’t good at my job and maybe I should change careers or step down from the role I was used to.  I have been terrified to re-join the workforce because I didn’t want to be in that situation ever again.

Yesterday I got a phone call that I didn’t ever think I needed but may have saved me; my supervisor who was let go the same day.  We commiserated for a minute about our experience but then she reminded me how great I was at my job and she would do anything she could to help me.

With that said, why don’t women come together and support each other 100% of the time?  So often women put each other down in a man’s world.  Perhaps it’s to get ahead or make ourselves feel better about flaws we think we have but we need to stop.

I have learned more recently that there are so many ways in which women are discriminated in society.  Breastfeeding is seen as repulsive (which boggles my mind since we were ALL babies at one time), woman make less money than men in the same position, women are judged on their looks everyday especially in business and overall, seen as less than men.  And this is just in the United States.

In many other countries, women are treated like slaves.  They cannot show their face or their hair.  They do not have voting rights and quite possibly the worst is female circumcision.

While I slowly step off my soap box, I implore you to be kind to each other.  To my ladies, please support each other.  We are the only ones who truly understand what our gender struggles with every day.  To the men, never forget that a woman birthed you and although we are behind you, we should stand next to you.

 

“Brooklyn” & Opportunity

brooklyn

I recently saw the movie “Brooklyn”,  based on the book by Colm Toibin, about a young woman who travels from Ireland to America seeking opportunity.  I immediately thought of my great grandma, Mary Healy, who left her home in Riverstown in County Sligo, in 1907 and arrived five days later at Ellis Island.

At the young age of 11, Mary accompanied her aunt Bridget in search a better life but mostly the unknown.  Unknown because there weren’t televisions, iPhones, computers and barely a telephone.  I can’t imagine the hope and fear they must have had similar to Eilis (pronounced Alish) in “Brooklyn”.

Eilis arrived at Ellis Island around 1950 all alone with no family or friends except for a Priest.  He helped her get a job, a home with other Irish immigrants and eventually an education.

I don’t know if my great-grandmother had a plan laid out like Eilis but most importantly, she survived.  Mary found a home in Newark, NJ, eventually met my great-grandfather (O’Hare), started a family and had six children.

Great Grandma Mary & I She lived to be 97 and passed in 1993.

Great Grandma Mary & I
She lived to be 97 and passed in 1993.

My grandmother is now 95 and had a family of her own, one son who died shortly after birth and three daughters; one of which is my mother.  I’m sure you’re wondering why I’m telling this story!

First, let me say that I think the evolution of my family is amazing.  I think I get my fire from my great-grandmother and grandmother; smart, witty, wise cracking and family above all else.  That’s where I come from.

Second, you reading this are a relative of an immigrant.  If you don’t already know your story, find out.  You might be amazed.

Lastly, the world we live in today is a scary place and very different from 1907 and 1950.  ISIS and other terrorist groups are threatening our freedoms.  As an American, we are the land of the free and home of the brave which will never change but I’m very conflicted on the topic of refugees.

We have our own citizens that are sick, dying, homeless and without food.  Syria is a place of terror and poverty beyond our imagination yet I fear for our own safety of terrorist.  I don’t have an answer, but if we didn’t have immigrants then you or I wouldn’t be here.

 

 

In Our Hearts

Today marks 20 years since the death of my brother.  The amount of time that has gone by is shocking.  I am sharing this to provide comfort to those suffering a loss:

In Our Hearts

We thought of you with love today.

But that was nothing new.

We thought about you yesterday.

And days before that too.

We think of you in silence.

We often speak your name.

Now all we have is memories.

And your picture in a frame.

Your memory is our keepsake.

With which we’ll never part.

God has you in his keeping.

We have you in our heart.

liz sean

An Ode to The Feehery’s

Family Quote

When I was about two, my mother met a wonderful man from a large Irish Catholic family.  They married shortly thereafter and I suddenly had about 20 new cousins and 12 aunts and uncles.

Not being blood related is not a factor in this family.  They welcomed my brother and I from the beginning.  I can vividly remember Christmas parties at Aunt Joanne and Uncle Pat’s house with all the cousins, I was in my Aunt Jane’s wedding, summers in Stone Harbor with Uncle Jef and Aunt Kathy, playing at Aunt Marie and Uncle Mike’s house, Aunt Eileen holding my family together when my brother died and New Year’s parties at Aunt Chris and Uncle Joe’s house.  And then there’s the countless weddings…

Last night I attended a wedding for my cousin Alicia.  It was a beautiful day and the family gathered to celebrate the special event. My cousins are mostly in Pennsylvania but some are now in other places like Virginia, California, Colorado and Minnesota so it’s not easy to see them often but they were there (some in spirit).  Seeing my cousins is like that friend you’ve known for years and even though you don’t see each other that often, you pick up right where you left off.

Looking back on the conversations I had last night with many of my cousins, aunts and uncles, I can’t help but feel overwhelmed with love and gratitude.  Each of them are such special and loving people who want the best for me and each other.

Over the years this family has seen a lot of tragedies and lately, thank God, a lot of triumphs.  I just wanted to give a special message to the Feehery family and let them all know how much they mean to me.  It’s not very often you have special relationships with family who truly come together in good times and in bad.  Mom Mom and Pop Pop would be proud.

Never Give Up

babe ruth

In August I started back at Ultimate Fit Zone .  It was going really well three weeks and then I went on a trip to Bermuda.  I packed my gym clothes for the trip and visited the gym the first day to get acclimated but never worked out.

I returned from my trip and took off another week because I just wasn’t motivated to go back yet.  On Monday I finally pushed myself and it was a disaster.  I started out jumping rope with five meter long jump in between then we moved onto weights and pulls ups.  I nearly passed out and stopped the workout.

Embarrassed, I left the gym as quickly as I could.  I was not focused, didn’t want to be there and taking the time off was a big set back for me but I sure as hell wasn’t going to quit.

I’m far from perfect and we all have bad days.  That was mine.  The important lesson though is that I didn’t give up.  I went right back to it another day and kicked ass.  Below is the workout I did and was damn proud.

WOD

The point is, no matter what you’re doing in your life you will have a set back or a bad day but never give up if you want something.

Choose Hope Not Fear

chemo

Every week, my very good friend drives up to North Jersey from Ocean County for her chemo treatments to fight breast cancer.  Last week, I had the honor of going with her.  Admittedly I was nervous because I’m queasy around needles but mostly because I didn’t know what to expect of others.

The hospital in which the chemo treatment took place had a floor dedicated to the treatment.  A whole floor that ran like a well oiled machine from checking in, getting your name called, taking your blood, getting a seat number, picking up warm blankets and a pillow and then your cocktail is delivered.  Each and every one of the staff was friendly and upbeat.  I guess there is no other choice than to be positive in a fearful place.

In true life fashion, my fears were unnecessary.  The needles made me light headed, yes, but fearing the unexpected wasn’t all that scary.  There were a few patients that sat in the chair next to us who had ports.  (Luckily for my friend, a port isn’t necessary.)  The ports remind me of something sci-fi; getting plugged up to tubes delivering your custom cocktail.  The “plug” reminded me of my iPhone plug but instead of going into the wall, it was going near the patient’s heart.

The real scary thing was how many patients were there.  I wonder quite often why so many people have cancer.  This can go into a whole other topic but it’s important to acknowledge that treatment is more available than 10, 20, 30 years ago.

In the end, the experience is very humbling.  Each patient’s diagnoses and experience is different yet there is a special connection between them like their own lingo: WBC numbers or counts, chemo brain, how many treatments are left for them, sharing after-chemo experiences.   My hope is that all those people I saw today are able to walk away and live happy healthy lives.

I am so very proud of my friend for being a strong and beautiful person throughout her journey to health.  She is way more beautiful without her hair because of her strength.