Labor Day 2022

As a society, America tends to look at holidays as simply a day off of work to celebrate. Cookouts are a common way to spend Labor Day. Tuesday it’s back to the grind and nothing was gained by the day before. But can there be more to it than that?

Your Value

There can be, if we use it for reflection of our labors. To acknowledge your value in the workforce – no matter what your station is. The view of essential workers was spotlighted during the pandemic and included those that many take for granted.

But you matter

And Labor Day is a day for reflection of that. Know that you are valuable and take the time to recognize that you are. With the struggles of today, you need that for yourself or work is just another stressor of your life. Let the truth of your value energize you, and find a way to love what you do so it doesn’t drain you instead.

Whether it be raising children, corporate or Foundation work, or the minimum wage service industry, you have value. Know it, feel it, and let that empower your soul. We are all in this together and you are an important part of community, even when others overlook that fact. So when you go in to work tomorrow, keep that in mind if you start doubting yourself. We need you, so thank you for being there to do the job you do.

Melody Belliveau

Just Once More…

Drug addiction can come from 2 different places

The medical profession

It can come from the trust in a prescription that leads to a physical addiction. Someone who “would never!” finds themselves facing a fight from their own body when the usage stops. It is not limited to pain medications. That’s just the ones we watch for, and when they happen, we look down on the patient. Sometimes with pity, other times with disgust.

You doubt their word if they insist “this is not who I am! I didn’t think it could happen to me.” The damage has been done and carries on. They don’t want help because they fight it in their mind without acceptance of the truth. To be given help requires vulnerability and the acceptance that they are powerless to stop it on their own. That requires trust in others and it’s hard to have a rational mind in the middle of it. The further into it, the harder it is to see from the inside. Sometimes the very doctor that got you there won’t admit it, never mind be able to help you. It is beyond their ability to give you a corrective course of action.

Escape from the wounds

The second side of it is experimentation for escape. What they often don’t realize is who they are trying to escape from – it is themselves. The voices inside one’s head can be relentlessly cruel. If they were a person in the room, they would need to leave it. But no matter where they go, this one follows. Sometimes it’s started as echoes from others. It replayed in their head until their own inner voice started repeating it. It becomes their agreement with themselves and their actions become proof of it’s truth to them.

They search for self medication that will dull the senses and quiet the voice. If they use it enough, get inebriated enough, they don’t have to care what it says anymore. By the time they realize they’ve made the words come true, they have no idea how to climb back up out of the darkness. And their body fights against even trying.

Thoughts become things

To deny an addiction is to deny the wound – whether physical or emotional. Just once more is to delay an action your soul is asking you to take. Healing starts with the thoughts of wanting better than this life. Healing starts with the courage to decide to walk the tough road of recovery for what could be waiting on the other side. Knowing they don’t want anymore of this life. It’s a fight that requires everything from you. It requires mind, body and spirit.

The mind because mindset is everything. Without a belief that you have what it takes, you are heavily disadvantaged. Thoughts become things. Feed your mind with what it needs to succeed. “You can do this!” is one of them. Be painfully honest about everything you need to heal.

The body will fight you tooth and nail. It doesn’t know how to cope on it’s own anymore. It will take all it has to readjust and become fully functional once more. Be kind, treat it gentle and believe it can do it with your help. Withdrawal is a journey through hell, often at a level of pain that is inhumane. If you don’t give up, time is on your side. Do what you can for your immune system to show your support for your body.

The spirit will be the hardest work. You will need to really look up and within. The scars on your soul and the raw open wounds that have never healed will need to be examined and understood. You’ll never fully heal the body if you can’t heal your soul. But it is work you can and must do. It becomes part of your strength and your character. Faith can take you through the impossible. Courage grows each day you do. You can win the fight – but it’s all up to you and no one can do it for you, no matter how much they want to.

To understand

Understanding doesn’t come from pity or coddling. Understanding comes from the human side. Compassion comes from seeing it and looking for an answer. We’ve got to change our minds about about demonizing them, because right now, with what people are going through, more and more people are trying to escape. There are those, including some of the most incredible people, that are choosing to give up and leave this world. Our homeless and suffering population is growing.

Can you honestly say, if you were forced to live on the street, you would never try to dull the pain? If you can jump to say you would not, then you truly don’t understand the pain of living on the streets. It hits all three parts of you – body, mind and soul, and you feel alone in it. Asking for help doesn’t always mean it’s there to receive.

Judgement of them

But these are the people we look down on. We don’t want to see or hear from them. We don’t trust them or want them in our neighborhoods. We decide that before we even know their story. If we are to judge them (and we do), how do we do that without knowing their story? And when you hear it, could you be sure you wouldn’t have landed there too? Remember, we can’t cast the stone if we can relate.

Asking the question “what did they go through?” is important and necessary. Not to excuse, but to understand and stop it from continuing on for them and others that otherwise will come next. The why of everything is key. You cannot solve a problem without understanding the why of it first. Compassion not contempt.

The Terminal Diagnosis

Mindset matters

The medical field can be magnificent, but sometimes, it has limitations. How we see those limitations matters greatly. Being told you are terminal translates to there is no hope, and the advice is to get your affairs in order because you are going to die. Then they give you your estimated life expectancy. That diagnosis is only one small part of the picture that sometimes consumes the whole view. But it only comes from the medical community’s lack of ability to help you. It does not mean there is no help that can be found. Your survival depends on you seeing the full options BEFORE you accept their death sentence on your life. Because once you accept it in your mind, it doesn’t matter what you do, you probably won’t survive.

Every struggle has miracle stories, and the physicians cannot predict who they will be. But it starts with the will to overcome. It’s the time to see it as a fork in the road and a new direction. It can be a road to healing mind, body and soul. Embrace the work of all three because now, they are telling you that you have nothing to lose in trying. Countless “you won’t make it” stories turn into inspiration of living for others, and they love life to a depth they never knew was possible.

It’s a challenge to hold a badge of honor as the Warrior to show what’s possible. You can choose whether your story will be a powerful one, or just another heartbreaking part of statistics your belief led you to. It’s a choice based on your value of your life. No one can decide it’s worth fighting for but you. Your mindset can either work for the diagnosis – or for you. It’s your job to stack the deck in your favor.

The awakening

Consider this your awakening. Now is the time to explore what makes you feel alive. It’s the time to reflect on what’s really important to you. The body and mind are energy attached to the spirit. Nourish the body – it needs your love now more than ever. Feed the mind and read those books and learn something new. There is an abundance of natural alternative healing methods out there. From frequency healing music, to God’s herbs and foods. Qi Gong can help with meridian energy blockages and grounding in nature holds healing energy. Nourish your soul with spirituality. You need that important connection of gratitude and Faith. It’s how one is able to believe anything is possible.

The point is, don’t let anyone tell you there is no hope just because they are not the ones who hold it for you. They are not your maker and they cannot predict your purpose. Are you willing to step up to the plate and fulfill yours? Your life may depend on it. Do all you can do, be all that you can be, learn all you can learn, and you may just shine yourself to healing. There are those who have shown us that.

Free yourself for living

Make a bucket list – not for dying, but for living instead. Do the things you’ve always wanted to do. Have those conversations you’ve always wanted to have. Now is the time to get to know yourself deep down inside and heal the wounds you’ve held. Pour your heart and soul into being you. Hope is that light inside you. Feed it, and feed it with all you’ve got. You have within you a Warrior, a Teacher, a Healer and a Visionary. Help those parts of you thrive and it may heal you physically. Anything is possible.

No one can predict your road ahead, and it will probably be a difficult one. But you get to decide whether or not you want to give up, not the doctors, and not the diagnosis. Find your purpose and live a legacy life and it may become longer than you’re told. You still matter, and anything is possible.

Written by Melody Belliveau

Fourth of July Reflections 2022

As the United States celebrates the 4th of July today, many will share their perspective of a freedom lost or won. It only depends on which side of the divide they agree with.

Roe vs Wade

There will be those who celebrate the overturning of Roe vs Wade as a freedom for the unborn. They hold this truth emotionally and intellectually. They have no doubt in their mind that they are on the right side of the divide.

Others, who view it as a freedom lost, will reflect with a sense of despair on what they see as a step backwards in time and an intrusion of their rights regarding a very private and personal medical decision for their own body. They are judged as being on the wrong moral side.

Seems impossible to be pro-life and pro-choice at the same time. But…… the reality of it is very few are pro-abortion. There are those who value life and the unborn that had thought NEVER but find themselves feeling no other option.

Where do we go from here?

A seat in the middle is the only place true change can be made. It’s how you sit down at the table and get things done – together. Surely each state has the courage to sit down with those from both sides who already use their voices to protest, either for or against abortion rights.

Call in those who are brave enough to talk about the impact of the whys, and then come up with ways to help change the outcome. Alleviate some of the whys such as homelessness, drug addiction, poverty and domestic violence. Make it one less thing that makes them feel squeezed into a corner they feel no way out of. Forcing those pregnancies will only add more suffering.

Doctors and those who assist on the front lines, need to be able to share their views and, those circumstances that still haunt them. They can give valuable guidance from their experiences.

Voice or judgement

Someone simply voicing that they would NEVER – that’s murder, are not the ones that have been in the ring of this fight. You cannot see your side and judge, and then think you’ve seen the full picture. That view makes you blind and no help can be given when you come at it from judgment.

Instead of simply winning a side with a court judgment, what if we could try setting out with a purpose to #SaveOne? For those you can help choose to bring forth the life, you will have saved one. For those feeling it is the only option, is there a way to help others because of it? Is cord blood collection something that could be used to save those who otherwise wouldn’t make it?

Could the reason it was the only option be something that needs more awareness, like a devastating medical condition? Could that baby’s life matter in that way?

Can they still matter?

They are not just a “procedure”, and for most, they will have an impact – but we can choose what the impact is. Don’t they deserve that respect rather than violence, rage and shame after the fact? Be humane in the the act of their death and make them matter.

Regardless of what state you live in – and regardless of the stance taken on the issue – there’s work to be done. It must be done with compassion without judgment. Then maybe, just maybe, we could save those that might not have been saved before. Isn’t that the real bottom line? Compassion not contempt.

Written by Melody Belliveau

Memorial Day – A day of Reflection

This year Memorial day falls on the day many prefer to use as the somber original purpose of Memorial Day. There has even been push to make May 30th the remembrance day rather than our current last Monday of the month holiday. It took on a whole new meaning when it became a holiday weekend of celebration.

It became the official start of the Summer season for the beaches and businesses. Even the prices of shoreline businesses are dictated by it. Everyone celebrates the beginning of the warm weather season with Memorial Day – with cook-outs and backyard and beach fun.

But the true meaning is not forgotten by those who have lost loved ones in Service to give you those freedoms. You are even free to forget them and take what you have for granted.

For those in somber reflection today – I see you. You matter and so do those you’ve lost. I am grateful that they have given me the freedoms that I have. The freedom to express my Faith in God. The freedom to express myself, to develop my own style of who I am. And yes, even the freedom to take for granted things that are not optional in other places around the globe. I am grateful to be allowed to be me.

If you know someone who has lost a friend or family member in Service – reach out with compassion for the pain that is amplified today. Perhaps they can share a bit of light that loved one held, the precious memories of them that hold an energy that lives on as they speak of them.

A soldier dies twice – the day their body dies, and the day they are no longer remembered. So if we’re going to celebrate, let’s celebrate them for taking the path of the Heroes Journey and making the ultimate sacrifice. Thank you for your service for us all.

Written by Melody Belliveau

Uvalde’s Wounds Are Our Own

My mind doesn’t seem to want to rest, with the feelings swirling between the magic of the spiritual world and the wounds of the 3D world. Another school shooting. You can use the word ‘horrified’ but shocked no longer holds true.

Where were his thoughts?

With it brings a fierce fight for weapons control. He was barely eighteen, but they were easy to get. He posted on social media a half-hour before he did it – but it still happened. What was he thinking? Was calling it out publicly his own cries for help in stopping it? Was he hoping he would be stopped? We may never know the whys of this devastating tragedy, but the impact will be felt for generations – long after it leaves the news and laws are fought over to change it. So many are left dealing with the scars. We need to hear and understand what their cries are about in order to create that change we so desperately seek.

Not a child, but not truly an adult, he did not need to look hard to find adult examples of the same anguish and rage. That is what we need to address. He died not knowing that living in the wounds is not the only way to live. The sadness for all stays with me.

We must look deeper

The key to this is not solely with the guns – it is also understanding the anguish of the perpetrator to solve the issue. This flamingo wants to be an ostrich, but we can’t – I can’t. We have to understand to change it, and the act is so horrifying we don’t want to look. It feels too close to compassion. We are not comfortable with that. Hearts and souls are being wounded – lives are being torn apart and taken. We are not powerless to stop it. We have generations screaming in anguish and we see nothing but pain and punishment. We have to look deeper.

When we live in our anguish and rage, we allow evil to take over and a path of destruction is what it brings. It happened here, it is what’s happening in Ukraine and countless places around the globe. If we don’t live near it, we don’t want to continually hear about it and we even label it as political so we can detach ourselves from the suffering. Out of sight, out of mind – until it comes too close for comfort. That is not how we heal from it or how we reduce it from happening.

We need to see the pain and understand it. Those bullied explode and become the ultimate bully. But what causes the bullying to begin with? The one being bullied is not the cause. It is the careless words of those reflecting their own wounds who inflict the damage. What is it inside us that causes us to judge another simply to hurt them? Why do we feel compelled to inflict the wounds on another? “If you don’t heal what hurt you, you’ll bleed on those who didn’t cut you.” There’s an awful lot of bleeding going on.

Who becomes the bully?

We create anti-bullying policies but have no idea how to correct the behavior, so we merely punish it, or turn a blind eye to it. Make no mistake – it’s still happening today and adults can be the loudest voices of it. If you doubt that, just look through a bit of social media comments. We can do better.

Our Impact

“Be Impeccable With Your Words” is the first of The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. So much bloodshed could be prevented if we put intentional effort into that. Our words can be a sword that eventually spills blood without us even realizing they held that power.

It is not a fault or a judgement, but rather a responsibility of us all. Instead of letting our emotions of it lead to more division, let’s learn to use our words wisely for each other. It is the only way to stop creating wounds with them. In the words of Peter Clarke, “Be kind out there”.

Written by Melody Belliveau

“Fake It Til You Make It”

I heard that phrase a few times in the past 24 hours and since I watch for cues from the Universe on what topics to explore, I took the hint.

Stepping outside of the comfort zone

When we do something outside of our comfort zone, we do often lack confidence. Whether it is a presentation or a job interview, “fake it til you make it” is a common piece of advice. But before you take that advice, there are a few perspectives about it that you might want to consider.

“Fake it til you make it” is a just for now, temporary thing, to help you get through what you need to do. But even when it’s successful, there are always more challenges ahead. Getting through them with that temporary mindset can lead to a long road of “imposter syndrome” that lingers even with success. The line becomes blurred of where you no longer need to “fake it” because you have achieved success. Imposter Syndrome will rob you of the joy in your accomplishments. Faking who you are, doesn’t honor your soul.

So what’s the answer?

Life is a journey of learning. Seeking your success requires an unending amount of new experiences. A beginner’s mindset keeps you wanting to learn more, and no matter what field you are in, there is always more to learn. The energy you will give off of curiosity and eagerness for growth will take you farther in the long run than constantly focusing on tips and tricks for faking it. It will also give you the insights you might have missed while being anxious about “pulling it off”. It centers you on what you want, rather than your “performance” in doing it. As you grow and expand out of your comfort zone, your comfort zone itself expands.

Focusing on your why

Focusing on what it is you want to accomplish and the why of it will increase your confidence all on its own. Be excited for where you are going instead of how you look while doing it.

Be authentically you with your heart in all you do, and what’s meant to be will happen through you, and with you. Prayers are also a great way to be open to guidance. You have no idea of what amazing places your life is going to take you when you approach it with your heart and soul.

Thank you Rachael Jayne Groover for all you teach in empowering us to go after our dreams.

Written by Melody ✍️ Belliveau

The Emotional Side of Life

The Oscar Awards Moment

The buzz today around the world circles around opinions of what took place at the Oscar Awards when Will Smith slapped Chris Rock on stage after an insensitive joke touched a deep nerve.

Violence is not the answer. But it can always serve a purpose when you cannot change what happened. It may not be the “Bucket Challenge” but hey, it’s an incredible opportunity to bring awareness into something most know nothing about. So can we stop focusing on the judgement of the slap and get into the good that can come out of it?

The Light Inside the dark

Most people have no idea just what Alopecia is. They have no inside view of how devastating it can be to a woman who has been given that diagnosis, especially when she sees her hair as an important part of her identity.

It seldom holds rhyme or reason when it develops and it can hit young or old, male or female. It can come and go at any point in life and can take as long as a few months to less than a week for all your hair to fall out.

The emotions of it

It often creates a tremendous amount of intense emotions, and a common one is feeling less than whole, fractured in who you are. That can be followed by feelings of guilt and shame, after all, you’re not fighting cancer – the most associated cause of hair loss. You’re not going to die – as though you have no justification for feeling devastated. You are not fighting for your life – but now hair loss is your fight.

The process

Chunks of hair fall out. Sometimes handfuls at a time. You wonder and worry at first if it’s all just your imagination. (Whatever you do, don’t go riding on the highway in a convertible with the top down without a scarf on, or you will not look the same when you arrive at your destination. A brush and mirror won’t help.)

Some that are close will notice, others will not at first. To wear a wig or not – for most it’s not really a choice if you need to be seen in public. And no, not everyone can rock the G.I. Jane look, definitely no pun intended. Being subconscious about your looks subtracts from your self confidence. That’s a stress that cannot be expressed in adequate words. And jokes, they cut deep when made in public.

Purchasing issues

Sometimes insurance covers wigs, but sometimes they don’t. The pandemic was hard on professional stores that fitted them and some had to close their doors. Purchasing online is often hit or miss and frequently look nothing like what is pictured. Finding the look that doesn’t make you feel stupid or fake is a difficult task of it’s own and takes serious perseverance. When you do, “make it last” is something that takes effort.

Wearing it

Winter is cold on the scalp and the wind cuts through it like it’s nothing – and the wind – ugh! Try focusing on what you’re doing when your biggest fear is having it blow away on you! But you feel even less whole wearing a hat and no hair. (A hat can slide the hair off – they don’t work well together.) It takes all you have to present yourself.

In the summer heat – you sweat under it, and it itches and boy can it hold heat when you don’t want it to! At home you wear a scarf instead and family warns you (when they remember) that someone is coming with them for a visit. It’s your cue to put your hair on.

Hair adhesives – ha! They are their own challenge, and when your head is hot and sweaty, add a prayer, it’s a necessity!

Sometimes a loved one will put their arm around you to introduce you to someone they know. You quickly pull back – and give the wrong impression. You felt it slide – oh no! Now it looks like a reflection on how you feel about your loved one – ugh! Do you explain to the person they just introduced you to? Nah, that’s way too much embarrassment for all concerned. Then you worry they think your love is fake.

Zoom calls are not a spur of the moment possibility and you have to decide if the uncomfort in the heat or cold is something you are willing to endure.

Only those closest to you see the battle you struggle with, and the subject will run with a reflection of pain. Jokes made from the lack of understanding are made at the expense of others and can bring emotional reactions. Would you come to the defense of a loved one in that circumstance? How would you handle it?

The Moral of the story

People say “Be kind out there. You never know what others are struggling with.” This is a perfect example as to why.

Let’s make something good come out of this momentous incident. It got global attention. It was the Oscars – seen around the world. What better platform to raise awareness?!

Like I said before, it’s not the “Ice Bucket” challenge, but sometimes we still become messengers of the Universe. This one’s a powerful message.

Written by Melody Belliveau

To Vladimir Putin

How will this end?

This war has multiple potential endings that could take place. Many see it as their worst fears. Others see the solution as ridding the world of your power.

I have a different ending in mind. You, finding the courage to turn this completely around. The equality of the darkness from you is the light of what you could become.

The ones that admire you and the ones that fear you would stand in disbelief and then question themselves with your example. The rest of the world would be in awe.

Will you be a great overcomer?

The inspiration of the world is in people who share their powerful stories of overcoming. Just think of the powerful story yours would be. Right now you are a spokesman of what anguish and anger can make you feel and do – and then how you can overcome even that.

The process

If you could feel, what you’ve been longing to feel, what would it be? Are you willing to do the work and take the steps it takes to get there? Not going to lie – it will hurt – but it will be well worth it if you keep going through the pain.

Yours will be different, for it will be displayed for the world. You chose to put yourself in that position with your actions. That takes guts but only from under the barrel. No one boasts of being cunning. It is not an admirable quality. But turning it around for good – that’s powerful and it would be true courage. True courage builds integrity.

The Actions

Pardon those who spoke out against you and were punished. They showed true courage to stand up for their beliefs, because it takes more to speak up against injustice than to go along with it. Eliminate the laws you created to silence those who speak their truth.

Cease fire and change your orders given to fight into ones that not only stop the attack but start helping to restore what’s been damaged. That act will take the most courage of all.

Choose

Each and every day and each and every minute of it, is your moment to choose courage instead of anguish and rage. They are simply the path to evil.

I believe you have it in you or you would not be in your position. I am speaking to the man – not the power behind him – because even though you have become a force that seems greater than life – you are still a man. You have vulnerabilities, guarding them as you do may be at your own demise.

Turn them around. Think about it – if someone like you could show that example – you would inspire others to turn their lives around.

The Challenge

I challenge you to step into a role no other dictator has accomplished. You have the ability to create a jaw-dropping ending that doesn’t have the world relieved with your demise. Do you have what it takes?

Do you? Only you can decide.

5 Minutes for Peace

If my spirit could fly, it would stand beside you. Then it would stand between you and your opposition. This is what I would say:

You don’t hate each other

“You do not hate each other. You are neighbors on the earth. At Christmas you may have both tucked your children into bed and felt the joy and love in their soul. You may have both cheered for your favorite sports team last month enjoying your weekend with snacks on the couch.

Did your children do their homework while you felt pride and love for your family? You are both human with hopes and dreams. Chances are, you have not seen each other before today. Would you have become friends if you had met on a train?”

The orders are your choice

Orders can be given. Hitler gave many. But peace is still a choice, you have the ability to choose. No wars can happen or continue without soldiers willing to fight. It takes a stronger soldier to make a friend in times like these.

5 minutes for love

Can you both stop and call loved ones? 5 minutes that you will always remember. Now what if you all did and showed each other the pictures you carry in your wallet as well as your heart? You could decide.

If you took these moments to talk, I have no doubt you would find you have more in common than you have differences. War solves nothing and as the quote goes “The best way to get rid of your enemy is to make them your friend.” Abraham Lincoln

The Reality

If this sounds too fairytale, then let me point out something – this is not a whole country hating another country – this is one man inflicting his past’s pains on others for destruction and power. You both have merely been caught in the consequences of his anger and hurts. “If you don’t heal your wounds, you will bleed on those who didn’t cut you” Putin is bleeding on you all. Don’t hate each other for it.

5 minutes

5 minutes to live. 5 minutes to love. 5 minutes to tell those you love how important they’ve been to you. 5 minutes to say the things you’ve always meant to say. 5 minutes to feel more than just the fear and the pain of this war. Those at home will always remember it, no matter what happens to you.

And then who knows, maybe together you can decide to expand the 5 minutes – in time and with others. This isn’t two countries hating each other. This is one man of Russia wanting it all.

“I don’t want this! My daughter just learned how to walk and I want to be with her.” This is in the heart of a soldier somewhere. You can be certain of that.

Prayers are with you

The world is praying for your peace. We hope you feel it in your hearts.