“Stay Home Alone Together”

The greatest gift we can give each other right now is to stay home and live by the rules of social distancing. It’s almost ironic that something like “staying at home” can save our lives and the lives of others, yet it’s our reality right now.

I don’t want it to be a reality forever and I’m sure you don’t either. We’re living a “new normal” and now, more than ever, we need to support one another and flatten this curve TOGETHER!

I’m staying home for my family and yours.

Are you staying home for mine?

It’s time to make a difference in this world and we can make that difference TOGETHER!

Please stay home for the world and everyone in it.

I am and I hope you are, too.

It’s a good thing.

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

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“Sometimes Life Has A Different Plan”

I heard this quote the other day and have been in love with it ever since…because it’s so true. We keep holding on to the life we planned, even if it doesn’t work out the way we wanted it to. We hold onto wanting what or who we can’t have, hold onto the life we want for our children that had other plans, and even hold on to the career we wanted so badly that we couldn’t accept wasn’t meant to be.

We hold onto the dream of what we wanted, when in fact, there is most often, a better and bigger dream just waiting for us…and this is why I love this quote.

I thought I would be married to the same person forever…life had other plans.

I thought that all of my children would live close by…they had other plans.

I thought I would be living a much different life than I am now…life is teaching me patience. 

So, you see, we all need to let go of the life that we planned that isn’t happening the way we had thought or wanted and open our hearts and mind to the life that is waiting for us.

It’s just waiting for you…

It’s just waiting for me…

Let’s sit back, have faith and let it happen.

I know I am.

I hope you do, too.

It’s a good thing.

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

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Photo by Anne Dennish @2020

 

 

Choose “Love!”

Sometimes I have a day where I look out into the world and am saddened by what I see and hear. I know there’s so much good out there in this big world of ours, yet there are days that it seems to be overshadowed by the negative stuff. Today, as I count my blessings and am grateful for them all, I’m feeling a hurt in my heart at some of the things I’m seeing and of how it’s all making me feel.

I’m saddened by fathers or mothers that don’t pay their child support to help these babies that they brought into this world. Our children deserve the best that we can give them.

I’m saddened by a world divided by politics.

I’m saddened by children who don’t talk to their parents, who forget that their parents did the best that they could do for them, yet choose to focus only on what didn’t work out their way.

I’m saddened by people that abuse the ones they say that they love, whether it’s their children, friends, parents or significant others. Abuse of any kind breaks a heart and has a profound effect on the life of the one abused.

I’m saddened by a world that has forgotten the simplest of things: kindness, compassion, love and understanding.

I’m saddened by a world that is selfish and has forgotten the beauty of helping someone in need.

So many sad things surround us and I’ll admit that today is a day I’m feeling the effects of all those negative things, yet…

Love is simple.

Love is just love. It’s unconditional, non-judgemental and forgiving.

Love can change the life of another.

Love can change your perspective.

Love, my friends, can change the world.

Choose love.

And hopefully, one day, if we all choose love there will be no more sadness in the world.

And wouldn’t that be wonderful?

Think about it.

It’s a good thing. 

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

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“Insight Into Cruel People”

There are some cruel people in this world. They are the ones that judge you, point the finger at you, tell you what’s wrong with you and are verbally abusive. It doesn’t matter if it’s someone you know or a stranger: it’s wrong.

Yet all too often it happens without warning and without reason, although there is a reason people are cruel: it’s them projecting their own fears and insecurities onto you. And it’s wrong, it’s hurtful, and it’s abusive.

My son was the target of a stranger in a convenience store yelling obscenities at him and saying some downright disgusting comments to him. As a mother, it infuriated me and I wish I had been there when it happened. On the other hand, had it not been my child I still would have been infuriated because no one has the right to speak to another human being that way.

I’ve been on the other end of verbal abuse more times than I can count, yet there’s one thing I’ve learned and I want to share with you: those people are projecting their fears and insecurities onto me.

They see in someone else what they can’t see in themselves and want desperately to see or be.

They see strength in someone else that they wish they had, but they don’t because they don’t know how to be strong.

They see an open minded person living a happy life, being who they are, and wish they could be that person, but they can’t because they’re afraid to.

They’re afraid to be who they want to be and have the life they want to have because they fear people just like them judging them and verbally abusing and harassing them.

Those cruel people have low self-esteem, fear, and insecurities beyond belief.

They don’t know how to be any other way than cruel, and they don’t want to try and be any different. They make the choice to be judgmental and mean, and the rest of us suffer because of their ignorance.

I know all of this to be true but I will admit my heart always breaks a bit when someone is nasty and cruel to me or my loved ones.

But I also have to remember that it’s not me they’re actually judging…they are judging themselves and taking it out on me.

Be kind, my friends, for you never know the what the journey of another human being is like.

Ignore those cruel people and know they are the ones with the problems, not you.

Fear, insecurity, jealousy and low self-esteem: negative emotions that breed negative people.

Don’t be one of them.

Be you.

It’s a good thing.

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

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“That’s What Love Does”

We don’t always understand why someone we love and care about is upset or sad, but we can try.

That’s what love does.

Love listens, it tries to understand, it wraps its’ arms around you to make you feel safe, and it allows you to be who you are.

Love doesn’t criticize you but complement’s you.

Love doesn’t judge you but embraces your flaws.

Love helps to heal you but doesn’t try to hurt you.

True, honest, unconditional love can do some amazing things.

And it’s time that we all share that love with the people we love…

“Shower the people you love with love, show them the way that you feel.”

Because that’s what love does.

And it’s a good thing.

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

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“My Family…Together Again”

Two of my five children live at home, so there are moments I feel the pang of the “empty nest” syndrome. I’ve gotten used to my three oldest living across the country, only seeing them every year or two, so I don’t feel that pain of missing them all living home very often. They’ve been living out of my home for years now and I’m used to my two youngest being the only ones living with me.

Yet yesterday things felt like the old days and I was reminded of just how much I miss having a house filled with five children.

My oldest flew in yesterday morning from the West Coast and it must have been close to family2two years since I’ve seen him. He brought home his beautiful girl for all of us to meet and she was amazing! We all fell in love with her instantly and I’d like to believe that she felt the same about us.

I raced to the airport early in the morning to pick them both up and the tears fell as I saw him. They both walked towards me with open arms, hugs, kisses and some amazing West Coast energy! Just what this mom needed!

Yet seeing him was so much more than a hug…it brought back floods of emotions and memories of having them all live at home together. I remembered family dinners at the table every night and weekends filled with a stream of teenagers in and out and hanging around. It was heaven.

And yesterday felt like old times for me. Seeing him with his two youngest brothers, introducing them to his girl, teasing them and laughing I couldn’t help but feel a sense of peace, of happiness…of true joy.

I had forgotten what it was like to have my family together like that. These days even myfamily3 two youngest are working or going to school and I feel as though they’ve already left the nest.

Last night felt like old times, even though two of my kids were missing. It felt like the family I remembered; the family that grew up and moved on to their own adult lives. Yet as I remembered the memories I was also watching them all together and making new ones. Suddenly the babies and teenagers I remembered were sitting at a restaurant out to dinner with me…yet they were grown up! They had become men in what feels like an instant.

And my four boys have grown up into amazing men, and I don’t say that just because I’m their mom.

They are respectful, kind, compassionate and non-judgmental. They are truly the type of people I had hoped and wished that they would grow up to be.

And they are.

I sat in amazement last night, savoring every moment, taking in all that surrounded me. It was a night I’ll remember forever, until the next time we can all be together to make new memories.

I felt so much pride for these boys last night, especially my oldest. I watched how he spoke to and treated his girl…he loves her, she loves him, and the respect they have for one another is the type a mother hopes her child will find in a partner.

familyAnd he found that.

And I couldn’t be happier for him.

It was incredible night of being a family together again.

It was a night of my heart being so filled with love that it could have exploded.

These boys of mine…they are a gift to the world.

And they have been and always will be a gift to me.

And it’s a good thing.

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

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All photos by Anne Dennish

 

 

“A Flood Of Emotions”

Isn’t it funny how one random moment in your day can bring back a flood of emotions from a moment in your past? I had such a moment yesterday…and for just an hour or so it allowed a literal flood of pain and heartache from my past.

And I want to share it with you because if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s this: when I write from the heart and share my most intimate emotions with you, it’s therapeutic for me. It takes those emotions out of my soul and puts them onto paper…and it’s truly a good thing for me. And I hope it’s a good for those of you going through a similar situation.

Yesterday the Jersey Shore suffered from a tremendous amount of rain, causing massive floods in our surrounding areas. There were those that needed to be taken from their homes and cars by boat. I didn’t go through anything that extreme but what I did go through was painful in its’ own right.

The rains hit hard in the morning and around 11 am my son, Noah, went down into our basement. I heard him say “Mom, you better get down here.”

My heart sank because I knew it wasn’t going to be good and it wasn’t: my basement was flooded. I went down the stairs and looked around. There was water everywhere and all I could focus on was the cardboard boxes filled with their favorite childhood books and memories soaked in water. I knew right then and there that we had lost all of those things we felt “important.” Water was everywhere and I was overwhelmed with where to even start.

Yet I knew in my heart where to start and it was to start throwing things out.

And through the hours that my youngest, Sam, and I filled one garbage bag after another with their childhood memories I began to think of a time in my life over 7 years ago when I was going through another time of throwing my “memories” in the trash.

It was over 7 years ago that I was getting out of a second marriage that never should have happened. At that time I had lost the house I designed, built and lived in for over 20 years. I lost my home, my car, and all the money the kids and I had saved up over the years. That second marriage cost me more than I could say. I remember two dumpsters in my driveway for two weeks as the kids and I threw out as much as we could, knowing that we were moving to a much smaller house.

I can remember the heartache of throwing out things that had meant so much to me and to them but we didn’t have much choice. The home we lived in was so much larger than the home we were moving to and still live in. I had to keep telling myself that it was just “stuff” and that I could take the memories with me.

It was a painful time to lose literally everything I had…that we had…yet we did it. And we moved into our “Cozy Cottage.”

And we were fine. We were happy.

I moved in here with nothing. No car, no money and no job, yet we had each other and within a few weeks I had a job and another car. And we survived.

And I’ve been rebuilding my life ever since.

Yet today brought all those emotions back again and I’ll admit that I shed a few tears as I filled garbage bag after garbage bag with yet more memories. It was tough and I felt overwhelmed. I kept filling bags of their favorite children’s books to stuffed animals, one right after another, and Sam just kept bringing them up the stairs and out the door to the trash. It wasn’t the exact “Mother/Son” day I would have planned.

But we did it and there’s still another couple of days to finish up the task.

Yet after my tears spilled of another time of throwing out things that meant something to me, I began to pull myself together and remind myself that they are just the possessions, just the “stuff” that we had compiled for many years. Throwing the stuff out didn’t erase the memories…it just got rid of the physical stuff, but it will never erase the emotional stuff we gained from the years we had it.

Life is a funny thing sometimes. There comes a moment in all our lives that brings back a moment from the past, and oftentimes it’s a painful memory. Yet we seemed to have learned from the past that when those sad memories come back we know better…we feel the pain, the sadness, and the heartache and let it go much sooner than we had in the past. Sometimes we need to be reminded of the things that we had tried to forget because we shouldn’t forget anything…we should learn from it, accept it and move forward.

Because, after all, we don’t ever lose the precious moments we have of our children or loved ones; they are embedded in our minds and hearts forever. The physical possession is a wonderful thing to have but losing it doesn’t erase what our heart holds deep inside.

Our hearts take pictures of those moments in life that mean the most and no flood, no fire, and no one person can ever take that away.

And it’s a good thing.

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

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“You Are Beautiful…No Matter What They Say”

I’m always honest with all of you that follow me and I’m going to be honest now. You’ve all become “friends” to me with all your support and comments which I appreciate more than I can say.

I share my personal experiences with all of you in the hopes to make a difference to someone, yet there are moments in my life that it isn’t all sunshine and roses, as I’m sure yours isn’t at times.

So I’m going to get personal and honest with all of you: I’ve had a bad week. A really bad week.

I’ve gone through a few situations this week that hurt my heart so deeply that I’m having a difficult time getting past it…yet I know I will in time.

I have to process what’s happened, try to understand why, and figure out the lesson in it for me. Heartache happens to teach us something…and now it’s trying to teach me something.

I know what to do because I’m always telling all of you how to get through rough times…I’ve been down this road before and I know it’s a difficult journey, yet I know the process I have to go through to get to a better place.

I need to remind myself that anyone who hurts my heart did so because of their own issues. Some people hurt others because they’re feeling hurt themselves, or because they need to have that control, or because they’re simply abusive. Whatever the reason, it doesn’t make it right.

And I let them do it.

And sometimes we just don’t know how to stop them from doing it, which is why I believe to my toes that if someone treats you that way you have to wish them love and light and let them go.

And it’s not easy.

So, yes, I’m feeling hurt this week and trying to figure out why it all happened and how to handle it.

 

And I have to remind myself that it’s not my fault, it’s theirs.

And you need to remember that as well and repeat this to yourself as often as you have to: “It’s not my fault.”

We don’t ask people to hurt us or be mean. We don’t ask people to abuse us verbally or physically. We don’t ask someone to treat us badly.

That’s their choice to do it and our choice to allow it or not.

What we can do is know our worth, know our value and not allow anyone to treat us badly.

We need to remind ourselves that we’re beautiful, lovable and important.

And they need to be reminded that “their words can bring us down.”

And they need to understand that hurtful words can be forgiven, but they will never be forgotten.

I’m as human as anyone else and wanted to share this piece of my life with you.

In the end, I’ll be fine.

It’s a process.

I guess you could say that “Anne Dennish” has another life lesson to learn!

And it’s a good thing.

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

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“Your Imperfections Make You Beautiful”

I believe in positive affirmations; trying to always see the positive rather than focusing on the negative. I know the power of words and the wrong words, or negative words, can have a strong impact on you and the person you say them to.

Listen, no one is perfect, least of all me, but I would rather lift someone up with positive words than bring them down by telling them their faults. In fact, if you want to see someone change into the awesome person they truly are, speak kindly to them, tell them their strengths, share how you feel about them with them, and focus on the good things about them, not the negative.

Our imperfections make us beautiful. Our flaws make us flavorful. Our quirks make us memorable.

I’ve raised five children and if you think there haven’t been things they’ve done that bother me, well, you’re kidding yourself. I love them with all my heart and for who they are, yet I would rather tell them what I love about them and what their strengths are rather than tell them their faults, such as “you left the wet towel on the floor again, why don’t you put the cap on the toothpaste and…” and so on.

And as the children have grown as well as myself, I pick my battles. I try and lift everyone in my life up; I try never to pick at the small things because there are so many more big and wonderful things about them. Sometimes it’s those silly things that bother us that we’ll miss one day.

If you continually point out someone’s faults to them, I can promise you they’re going to shut down because what you’re telling them is that you don’t accept them for who they are; that all you see is their faults; that you say you love them but they won’t feel it because all you do is pick at what you don’t like about them rather than telling them what you do.

If you’re consistently looking for perfection from the people in your tribe then you’ll be disappointed. If you can’t see more good than bad in the people you surround yourself with then leave them.

Ask yourself this: how would you feel if the people you love were constantly picking at you and expressing the negative things about you? Would you begin to shut down? Would you stop caring? Would you feel as badly as they were making you feel?

It’s simple: treat the people in your life the way you want to be treated.

Pick your battles; accept the people you love for who they are, not who you want them to be; and lift them up with positive words because the negative words you speak to them will bring them down and will only hurt you as well in the end.

See the good and stop seeing the bad.

Pick your battles, my friends, please pick your battles.

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

“Making A Living Or Making A Life”

Let’s face it, we need money to survive: to pay the bills, the rent or the mortgage, put food on the table and to keep clothes on our backs. We need money to do this and most of us will do what it takes to do that for our families. We work full-time or part-time, and take the overtime that’s offered to us. We work and we work to do all those things…those “responsible” things.

On the other hand, how much do we need? Do we need all those things that we work so hard to get? Or is there a balance between what we have to do to make a living to afford those things or do we do what we have to do to make a life to appreciate and spend time with the people we’re busy making a living for?

There’s a quote that reads like this: “Don’t get so busy making a living that you forget to have a life.”

And that’s an important thought to think about.

I know it’s important to be able to make a living, but more often than not, I see people so busy and exhausted making that living that there’s nothing left of them to enjoy the life it affords…or the people that they love who support them to make that living.

Do we work until exhaustion because of our ego and self-esteem? Do you feel like “more of a man” when you work more than 40 hours a week? Does it make you feel like more of an “empowered woman” when you work all week and on weekends? Is all that work outside of what is really necessary about our self-esteem?

We seem to live in a society that is built upon making money and “having it all,” yet I’ve seen a shift in society as well. Everyone is working more than normal but looking for answers as to what their life is missing; they feel a void, fatigue, and moments of “is this is as good as it gets.?”

But think about it: you put that pressure on yourself. No one is asking you to spend 50 or 60 hours a week working your ass off to pay for the unnecessary things in life; you put that pressure on yourself. No one is asking you to work until the point of exhaustion that you can’t enjoy your life filled with family or friends; you made that choice. No one is asking you to get so busy making a living that you don’t have the time or energy to have a life; you made that decision.

Life doesn’t go on forever; neither does a job or career. In fact, the job and career most often times will end long before the life.

And life is short, life is precarious, and life is unsure.

We’re not promised another day; we’re not promised a job.

We’re not promised time; we’re not promised job security.

We’re not promised that our loved ones will always be there; we’re not promised that the job will either.

The people who love us want to spend time with us; the job wants us to spend time working.

The people who care about us want us to be well and happy and enjoy life; the job wants us to be well and happy so that we can do their work.

The people we are making a life with want that life to be filled with memories; the job wants that life to be filled with hours that don’t make a memory, but fill a quota.

The people you love are the life; the job is just a living.

The people who love you don’t lay you off or replace you for someone better; the job does.

The people who love you want to spend time with you; the job wants you to spend time working overtime.

The people who love you don’t need anything from you, they simply want “you”; the job doesn’t want you, they need what they can get from you.

And the people who love you, RESPECT you, and care about your well-being will understand when you say “no” to them because you’re exhausted or need to simply “be;” the job doesn’t take “no” for an answer because they don’t respect you or care about your well-being, they care about you doing what they want.

Life is so short, so unpredictable, and so precarious; days aren’t promised and neither is the job. So while you need to make a living to pay the bills, don’t forget to make a “life.” And make that life with the people that appreciate you, love you, and are part of that “life” you are living.

In the end, the job won’t be there to take care of you if you’re hurt; the job won’t understand when you’re too exhausted to work overtime; the job won’t care if something happens to you because they’ll find someone else to replace you.

The ones who love you will always care because they know that you can’t be replaced.

And “making a life” is all about surrounding yourself with the people who love you; it’s about enjoying every day and every moment; it’s about making memories and of hearts taking pictures.

Don’t get so busy making a living that you forget to have a life.

Learn to say “no” when you need to…

It’s a good thing.

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~