Tuesday, May 31, 2011

How I Write Blog Posts

Sometimes, I am sure that people wonder where my blog posts come from and I'm sure that it seems at times, the topics I write about are all over the place. While this blog is a collection of thoughts about the mind body connection, it is also my personal journey into the awareness of the mind and body.

My personal journey is where I draw inspiration and by writing and sharing my personal life with the world, I hope that others will benefit and grow in their own awareness as humans. There are too many in this world that preach the word of truth to others not based upon personal experience, but founded upon what others have told them to be the truth.

I don't claim to have the complete truth either but I share my experiences, my learning and what I gather as I become more aware as a human. Throughout my life, I have never shied away from pushing myself to my limits and beyond. In fact, most people would struggle to keep up with the pace that I have taken on in my life.

Many years ago, a boss once told me that I was harder on myself than they ever would be or could be on me. I have had to learn how to temper those expectations over the year and go a little easier on myself. However, the point I am trying to make is, I don't back down much in my life when it comes to pushing myself into awareness, learning and all that there can be.

As I take these things that I experience and apply them to life, others that read the words that I write, are then getting a glimpse into those experiences. In doing this, my hope is that many will identify with my words, understand the process and be inspired as a result. It is my hope that others will be inspired and will push themselves to greater places than they are currently.

It is never easy to push ourselves and step out of the comfort zones. In fact, our society and culture really does not push us to do that for the most part and there is plenty of evidence to prove this point. Yet, if we want to be all we can be and evolve into a better human, we must constantly question ourselves and not accept where we are as the absolute truth.

Further Reading:
1) Hope And Possibility Through Trauma
2) Your Choice To Awareness

Blog Post & Images (c) 4/24/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Monday, May 30, 2011

Peace On Memorial Day

On this Memorial Day, let peace spread from our life to others in the world. Let us find a way today, to spread that peace and make this world a better place.  (Quote taken from the Hope, Inspiration, And Encouragement Blog)

It is easy for many people to want and desire peace.  While this is a noble idea, sometimes we look to the wrong places for peace.  We feel that it is our government leaders, or  military personnel that must bring about peace in the world.   Sometimes we look to our churches, religions and ministers or priests to bring about the peace we so desire.  Wherever it is that we find our peace, may I suggest that we are looking in the wrong place.

Peace starts within each one of us.  When we are at war with ourselves, we will find the world at war with one another.  When we are struggling within ourselves, the world we know is struggling.  When we are at peace with ourselves, we will find peace reigns throughout the world.

That which we want and desire is located within our mind, body and spirit.  It is where we will find peace for our lives and our day.  We need not see the world only through the eyes of turmoil, hatred and bad news.  We can see the world through our eyes as we allow ourselves to find the way to be at peace within.

I write these words to myself and share them with you, the reader.  If these words have touched your heart, please allow them to touch the hearts of those that you know as we honor all on this day, Memorial Day.

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/29/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Stress Relief and Crying

Crying is considered to be an important means of releasing physiological tension and stress according to the website, emotionalprocessing.org.uk. 

A biochemist at the University of Minnesota, proposed that people feel better after crying due to the elimination of adrenocorticotropic hormones associated with stress. 

In medieval times, tears were associated with bodily humors and so crying was seen as a way of releasing excess humors from the brain.  At one time, it was thought that emotions were only reflexes to rational thought.

In a Wikipedia.org article, according to the German Society of Ophthalmology, women cry about 30 to 64 times a year and men cry on average of 6 to 17 times per year.  Men tend to cry between two and four minutes while women cry for about six minutes.

Tears do have a biological benefit because tension is released when we cry.  It does provide a cleansing that allows the body to discharge toxins.  Crying bathes and cleanses your inner self  as you gets you emotionally clean.  It can also refresh your heart.

So the next time you feel the need to listen to your upbringing and suppress those emotions by holding back the tears, think twice!  Holding back may be necessary in a single moment but at some point, allow your body to release the stress of the moment and have a good cry.  It may just be what the body needs and you may find that you’ll be refreshed, renewed and invigorated!

Further Reading:
1)  Men And Women Cry Differently
2)  When Is Crying Okay?
3)  Newborns And Crying Babies
4)  Biology Of Crying

Sources Of Information:
1)  Read It And Weep, Crybabies - Wall Street Journal, May 4, 2011
2)  Is Crying Good For You - EmotionalProcessing.org.uk
3)  Crying - Wikipedia.com
4)  Don't Apologize For Crying - AssociatedContent.com

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/24/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Biology of Crying

In the WSJ article, Dr. Louann Brizendine, a neuropsychiatrist from the University of California, San Francisco  says that the brain’s amygdale or the emotional brain fires up the signals when we experience physical pain or emotional sadness.  If the stimulus is great enough, the energy can travel from the emotional area into the front motor strip.  That is the point where response of breathing can devolve into sobbing.  Dr. Louann Brizendine is the author of the book, The Female Brain, available on Amazon.

Tears contain protein, salt and hormones.  Emotional tears have more proteins.  One hormone found in tears is prolactin which not only helps produce tears but it is responsible for producing milk.  Women, of course, have more prolactin than men.

Tears or lacrimal fluid are continually produced in small quantities in the tear glands also known as the lacrimal glands.  Tear glands are located on the outer side of each eye, slightly above the eye and underneath the eye lid according to sicenceiq.com.  Lysozyme is an important component of tears because it inhibits bacterial growth on the eye.  Some of the tears evaporate, but the rest drain into the nose through the tear duct. 

After the tears are produced, they are stored in the tear duct.  When the brain senses a need for tears, the lacrimal glands excrete the tears into the upper eyelid area.  Gravity or capillary action draw the tears onto the surface of the eye where it lubricates the eye, washes away irritants or pools at the base of the lower eyelid.

There are three kinds of tears.  These include basal tears which continuously lubricate our eyes, reflex or infant tears which occur in situations such as chopping onions.  The final type of tear is emotional tears.

Further Reading:
1)  Men And Women Cry Differently
2)  When Is Crying Okay?
3)  Newborns And Crying Babies
4)  Stress Relief and Crying

Sources Of Information:
1)  Read It And Weep, Crybabies - Wall Street Journal, May 4, 2011
2)  The Science Of Tears - ScienceIQ.com

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/24/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Newborns And Crying Babies

Although newborns are biologically able to produce tears, they usually cry without tears.  Most do not know why this is but it is suggested that the wiring of the emotional brain is simply not complete.  Newborns do not have the emotional maturity needed to cry with tears.  Babies are born with tear ducts that produce enough tears to keep their eyes moist.

Between 2 and 4 months of age, the baby’s emotions begin to kick in.  Triggers such as loneliness, frustration or other emotional situations, cause the nervous system of the baby to stimulate the trigeminal cranial nerve in the brain.  This nerve sends a signal to the tear glands to produce tears.

In birth-traumatized infants, babies need to cry in order to release the trauma.  Crying removes excess stress-related chemicals from the body and help to restore the body’s balance.

Unfortunately in our society, a crying baby can put the baby at risk for child abuse.  In a survey of battered infants, eighty percent of parents reported that excessive crying by their child triggered the abuse according to primalspirit.com website.

Most parents desperately want their babies to be happy but those that do not understand the beneficial aspects of crying may feel anxious or incompetent when their baby cries.  It does not help when the parents themselves, were not allowed to express their own tears.

I was alarmed to find that a study done in 1989, that found that 25 percent of babies had been given sedatives such as alcohol or opium by the time they were 18 months old to stop the baby from crying.

As stated in the primalspirit.com article, these drugs interfere with the vital healing mechanism of crying.  Furthermore, when the expression of emotions such as crying is repressed by powerful drugs, it most likely would lead to problems later on in life.

Further Reading:
1)  Men And Women Cry Differently
2)  When Is Crying Okay?
3)  Biology Of Crying
4)  Stress Relief and Crying

Sources Of Information:
1)  Read It And Weep, Crybabies - Wall Street Journal, May 4, 2011
2)  Why Do Newborns Cry Without Tears - WondertimeGo.com
3)  Birth Trauma, Crying And Child Abuse - PrimalSpirit.com

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/24/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

When Is Crying Okay?

In research studies, it has been shown that women cry more than men in western societies but in societies where women have fewer rights, they cry less than women of western societies.  Cultural influences often play a major role in determining who cries and the frequency of which they cry.  Many people are often ashamed of crying and won’t admit to it, especially men.

In a 2004 research study in the UK by the Social Issues Research Centre sponsored by Kleenex, suggests that attitudes toward men crying may be changing.  90 percent of women and 77 percent of men felt that over the past 20 years, it is more acceptable for men to cry and that it is unhealthy not to cry.

It was considered appropriate for men to cry because of a birth, death or if you were physically hurt (41%).  Some felt it was okay to cry during moving moments (26%).  It is important to note that these are the moments that are the most common triggers for men to cry.

However, while women would full on bawl, men were more prone to choke back the tears.  Just as men were taught when they were boys, that big boys don’t cry.  Strong boys don’t cry!  It is amazing to me, just how conditioned we are beginning very early in our life.  It is important to note that both men and women said they were likely to respond more positively to men who cried softly than they were to a man crying uncontrollably.

Further Reading:
1)  Men And Women Cry Differently
2)  Newborns And Crying Babies
3)  Biology Of Crying
4)  Stress Relief and Crying

Sources Of Information:

1)  Read It And Weep, Crybabies - Wall Street Journal, May 4, 2011
2)  The Science Behind Your Tears - HealthyLifeCt.com

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/24/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Men And Women Cry Differently

According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal (May 4, 2011, Read It And Weep, Crybabies), women are biologically wired to shed tears more than men.  While I’m sure that some men would love to take this information and use it to prove a point, I find it interesting that there is a physical and biological difference between men and women.
The actual cells of the tear glands look differently in women and men.  The tear duct is larger in a man which allows the men to hold more tear production than women.   Since a woman is not able to store as much tears, she is much more biologically inclined to shed tears than a man is.
According to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) article, there is research to suggest that testosterone helps raise the threshold between emotions and act of crying.  Since men have a greater amount of testosterone, it helps put the brakes on to keep a man from crying.

In an article in the NY Daily News, the tears of a women sends a chemical signal as the man gets close enough to sniff them  and the tears of sadness may temporarily lower his testosterone level.  The glands that secrete tears have receptors for sex hormones.  It has been hypothesized that the reason for this chemical signal is a biological way of lowering aggression in men.

In addition, we are taught in society that it is more okay for little girls to cry while we tell boys that big boys don’t cry.  In many societies, it is considered a sign of weakness to cry and people, who cry, especially boys, are picked on as a result.

Further Reading:
1)  When Is Crying Okay?
2)  Newborns And Crying Babies
3)  Biology Of Crying
4)  Stress Relief and Crying

Sources Of Information:
1)  Read It And Weep, Crybabies - Wall Street Journal, May 4, 2011
2)  The Science Behind Your Tears -  HealthyLifect.com, July 19, 2010
3)  Tears Are A Turnoff To Men - NY Daily News.com, Jan 7, 2011

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/24/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Suppress Feelings And Emotions

We all learn to do it! In fact, we’re taught from a baby on, how to suppress our feelings. Whether it is in the parent that tells the baby, oh please don’t cry or worse yet, the child abuser who beats the baby for crying! Of course, there are also the people who give the infants opium or alcohol to get the baby to be quiet.

As we get older, little boys are told phrases such as “big boys don’t cry” and “grow up”. Mommy generally gives the little child attention and affection if they get an ouchy while the father presents the more manly approach to the little boy and acts as if it is no big deal.

Take it one step further and in some cases when a child is spanked, but then told not to cry or they will be given something to cry about. There are numerous ways in which we teach our young how to suppress feelings and emotions.

As get older, we learn that we just have to suck it up in life and move on. There’s no time to feel any emotions. Sometimes in our jobs, we watch as our coworker friends are fired or laid off, only to be told to go on with business as usual. Some vocations require us to turn off the emotions because objectivity is needed.

Throughout our life, we usually run into medical conditions, pains that make it difficult for us to know how to feel. Since we are accustomed to not feeling emotions of pain, we look substances to numb ourselves

Biologically, we are wired to have feelings and emotions as part of our daily life. We are taught to ignore or suppress them but with time, they do catch up with us. You may feel like you can escape them and out run them, but at some point, they will quit knocking on the door and bust it down!

Further Reading:
1) Why Is My Pulse High? (Blog Post 4/1/10)
2) The Emotion Of Triggers (Blog Post 4/25/09

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/13/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Pain Management

I always get amazed when I see people who do pain management. If you’re in a lot of pain and reading this, I’m sure you are well acquainted with pain. In fact, you might even be saying, well my pain is so bad; I’ll do anything to get relief from it. That

In my life, I’ve grown up with people who suffered from intense pain and I’ve been through moments myself that I prayed for God to send anything to just take the pain away. Yet, I’ve seen people go through all kinds of surgeries, procedures, tests and take numerous medications in the hope that the pain will go away. In the end, I’ve witnessed myself and the same people being told that it was “all in their head”.

Pain is a messenger from the body to our brain telling us that something is wrong. From what I have experienced and seen in my life, pain is the result of something emotionally, mentally, spiritually or physically that is out of balance. There are some exceptions like disease and other medical conditions. Let’s be crystal clear in all the possibilities that can cause pain, not just a few that western medicine and society focus on.

Of course, we can choose to take the route of pain medications, medical procedures or surgeries all day long. In the long run, I’ll propose that the pain may disappear but it will find a new avenue to show up. The reason being, we did not deal with the source of the pain and I’m not talking about just a physical source of pain.

When we experience pain, we have to go inside and connect with that which we don’t want to see, so we can find the true source of pain. If we do anything but that, we are only putting a Band-Aid on a gushing wound. If we go inside and get more acquainted with the mind body connection, it is then that we will experience true healing for our life, not just a momentary escape from the pain that bothers us.

Further Reading:
1) Emotional Pain Is Physical Pain (Blog Post 4/18/11)
2) Freedom From Pain (Blog Post 9/10/10)

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/13/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Pain Hurts Because I Slept Wrong

How often do you say, “I slept wrong or moved wrong,” as a way to explain pain you wake up with or experience during your day? If you do, then you are much like me and many others who misplace the source of pain. You can go on blaming unrelated things for the pain that hurts but it won’t get you very far.

Last night, I had a dream where I was violently attacking someone that caused me great harm in my life. It is actually a person that I don’t think much about these days. In this dream, I was victorious and felt a sense that I conquered this person.

When I got ready to wake up, I noticed that my shoulders and upper back were in some intense pain. It was pain that was “fearful” and so intense that I was tempted to take a pain killing medication.

While I could make excuses for my pain and reasons I hurt, I can clearly see the connection between the dream and the painful state I woke up in. I could freak out and head for pain med city or I could allow the connection in my mind. If I stay with the thoughts, feelings or emotions, then I will move through it, much like I am doing already. If I add slight mind – body connected movement to it, the pain and hurt will dissipate much quicker.

We often fool ourselves about the source of pain in our body. We fail to stop and check what is going on at that moment or right before it started. Usually what is going on in our life shows up in our body. If we stop and notice it, we can do so much healing in our life and learn the lessons that our body is trying to teach us. If we choose to head to the medicine cabinet, for pain pills we’ll only delay the opportunity for greater awareness and learning in our life.

Further Reading:
1) The Power Of Your Mind (Blog Post 2/11/10)
2) Embrace The Pain (Blog Post 1/28/11)

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/14/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Horses In Dreams

In the blog post of May 19, 2011, "Dream Of Bears And Horses", I decided to investigate and see what it means to dream about bears and horses. Yesterday (May 20, 2011), I talked about what a bear means in a dream and today I will discuss what a horse means.

According to Dream Moods.com, a horse symbolizes strength, power, and endurance. It may also represent a strong physical energy. In addition to these things, it could indicate that your are horsing around or you need to get off your high horse.

In the Dream Dictionary website, riding a fine bay horse, denotes a rise in fortune and gratification of passion.

On the website, Dream Forth.com, horses symbolize strength, speed and endurance. They also indicate having control over things and directing them towards your aim.

According to the website, Dream Lovers Inc.com, horses are a noble and powerful animal in dreams. Horses can symbolize freedom and power. They may be considered to be messengers relaying information from the unconscious to the conscious or from the spiritual to the physical. Brown horses are associated with mental pursuits.

I'm sure that I could go on and on, finding various things about what a horse means in a dream but what I've included here seems to match up in my mind to the dream I had and posted about on May 19. 2011.

Further Reading:
1) Dreams Of Bears And Horses (May 19, 2011 Blog Post)
2) Bears In Dreams (May 20, 2011 Blog Post)
3) Horses In Dreams (This blog post May 21, 2011)

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/11/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Bears In Dreams

In yesterday's blog post (May 19, 2011), "Dream Of Bears And Horses", I decided to investigate and see what it means to dream about bears and horses. Today, I'll discuss what I found regarding bears and tomorrow, I will talk about horses.

According to Dream Moods.com, a bear can symbolize independence, the cycle of life, death and renewal. It is stated that you are undergoing a time of introspection and thinking. If you are being pursued or attacked by a bear, this denotes aggression or overwhelming obstacles in your life. It could also mean that you may find yourself in a threatening situation.

In the Dream Dictionary website, a bear has much to do with overwhelming competition in pursuits of every type.

On the website, Dream Forth.com, when being attacked by a bear suggests that there are mounting barriers in your way. You might be in a dangerous situation. Bears represent the cycle of life and this could be a moment that requires self-analysis and deep thought.

According to the website, Dream Lovers Inc.com, bears are more solitary animals that generally are not predatory which matches up to what I was telling the people in my dream. They may represent introspection and depression. In the case of dreams with bears, it may indicate that the introspection and depression is the part of the healing cycle where the dreamer has retreated into himself to find himself. Bears are usually associated with danger and aggression, but this is a very narrow view of this powerful dream symbol.

In the dream I posted about on May 19, 2011, the bear seemed to startle me but yet I felt as if i expected it to happen. It was like, I was speaking about it and lo and behold, it came to pass. The screaming out in my sleep was more of a startle I think, than feeling like I was in danger.

Further Reading:
1) Dreams Of Bears And Horses (May 19, 2011 Blog Post)
2) Bears In Dreams (This blog post May 20, 2011)
3) Horses In Dreams (Blog post on May 21, 2011)

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/11/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dream of Bears and Horses

In a dream I had recently, I have recorded it on the blog and did some research into what some of these things mean. Here is the dream along with links at the bottom of the page for the following blog posts that detail some of what these dream symbols mean.

In the dream, for some reason, I was taking a group of people out into the woods for a nature excursion. We went to this log cabin that had brightly colored tan logs and a high pitched roof. It had a beautiful porch in the front and I believe there was a lake nearby out in the front yard maybe a 100 yards away.

The trees were tall thin pine trees with most of their branches toward the sky and it was a bright sunny day. I could see the clear blue sky above the trees with an occasional small think white cloud floating by. The wind was gently blowing through the breeze.

There was a small group of people on this excursion and each of us had come to the cabin by horse. The horses were a medium shade of brown. Our horses were loaded down with everything we needed including food. As we were gathering that morning, I was telling everyone that there were bears in the woods.

I remember telling everyone that the bears would leave us alone most of the time but if they were hungry and smelled our food, they might come after us. I told them that if the bears came after us, the best thing to do was to climb up a tree and let the bears have the food because our safety came first.

No sooner had I told them this, there were at least two bears, maybe three that came around and went after the food we had saddled up on the horses. I saw one bear with his hooves upon the horse tearing the food pouch to shreds to get to the food.

The horse was scared but with the two other bears around it, there wasn’t much it could do. All I could hear was the sounds the horses were making as everyone hurried into the cabin. We all watched in horror through the window and at that moment, I screamed out with a one syllable word, waking myself up from sleep.

I had to readjust myself to the room and convince myself that the bear was not roaming through the bedroom so I could go back to sleep.

Further Reading:
1) Dreams Of Bears And Horses (This blog post May 19, 2011)
2) Bears In Dreams (Blog post May 20, 2011)
3) Horses In Dreams (Blog post on May 21, 2011)

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/11/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Reason For Challenges

The reason for challenges is to help us grow and evolve.

Sometimes the statement above is a very difficult thing to hear especially when you're in the midst of challenges. After you've been beaten and bruised to the bone, it is almost difficult to think of something good coming out of the challenges. Yet, we all know that this is true.

If you're not following me, then think back to the times you've gone through some of the most difficult times of your life. Picture all that it was about and focus on how at the time you thought there was no end in sight. You didn't think you were going to make it.

Now contrast that to this day (hopefully there is a difference to where you are now). Take note of how things appear now as you look back at the situation compared to how they were when you were going through it. You made it through that time, didn't you?

Our human nature and courage is very strong and no matter what, we find a way through things. Yes, there are stories of people giving up but humans have a way of finding the path forward for the most part.

So, if you're in one of those moments where things look dark, just compare and contrast. Know that this too shall pass if you just keep trying to put one foot in front of the other. Don't give up on your courage or your hope that things will improve.

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/10/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Ocean Waves

Ocean Waves
(c) Don Shetterly, 2011

Sitting there on the sand,
Watching the waves.
As they go out.
They come back in.

Feeling their power,
Seeing their strength.
Knowing for a moment,
That all is well.

The roar of the crash,
Soft do they leave.
As my eyes gaze,
For all to see.

Rhythm of the flow,
Power of infinity.
Releasing and relaxing
For all to know.

The ocean wave,
sitting there on the sand.
Just what is needed,
For all so well.

Blog Post & Images (c) 4/26/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

If any part of this post is used or shared, a link back to this site is required.

Monday, May 16, 2011

I Write To Make Sense Of Life

One of the things that I do to help make sense of life is I write. When I hurt, I usually try to write what is going on and put it into words. Often this helps me put things in more perspective and allows me to learn from what is going on.

I remember in an early episode of the Waltons when John Boy told his father that if he didn't get the words down on paper, his head was going to explode. I feel the same way at times.

Out of my hurts, pains, and realizations is where my words come from. They are often filled with the emotions and questions as I write them. To those that aren't familiar with how I write, I'm sure it looks like I am just questioning and dealing with these things. However, when I share these words, it is usually my way of sharing my process, not necessarily the end point.

I really don't know why I write everything down and why I share it in this blog for the most part. Some things do not make it to these pages but many do. I am drawn to sharing what I learn and until the day I run out of words, I will continue.

When I was in the hospital in 1991 because of paralysis, the words were difficult to find, let alone speak or write. It took me some time before I could speak normally again. At times, I still struggle to hand write things but fortunately the computer has made that much easier. So now that I can share words with others, I enjoy doing it and it is one of my purest forms of love and enjoyment in the world.

My only hope is that someone will benefit from what I share on this blog or in my book. I hope that someone will be further enlightened or at least stop to pause and think differently about a situation in their own life. While I don't profess to have all the answers, I just share those moments along my own journey, full of emotion, pain and realizations. These are the things that I have to offer to the world.

Further Reading
Hope And Possibility Through Trauma (by Don Shetterly)

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/2/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Forgiveness Is Difficult

Through very personal moments, I find that forgiveness can be extremely difficult. When you are hurt by people you care about, it is easy to feel confused, upset, and angered. However, forgiveness is the most difficult step after the point of being hurt.

Yes, I realize now, forgiveness is all about letting go and while that sounds like a simple and dignified definition, it isn't always that easy. Everyone has their own opinion as to what forgiveness means from the strict religious view and interpretations there of, to the new age philosophies that are abundant.

For me, I've traveled through some difficult waters many times over in my life. Once again, I'm reminded of the turbulent oceans beneath my feet. When you get used and abused regardless of what form it takes, the hurts and pains attack as an army attacks its enemy. It is relentless and full of power, or so it seems to be that way.

As you add some codependent guilt and shame on top of the hurt, it makes the process of letting go that much more difficult. It becomes something that is not only the energy of your own process but has attached to it, the energy of others. Cutting the cords of attachment between the two is sometimes only accomplished through a highly skillful surgical approach.

All too often, there are moments of forgiveness that are met with lonesomeness since the people that hurt us often shun us or close their ears to what we try to express. In those moments, we must tread on through our journey and continue to learn to let go of those pains and hurts.

It is not easy no matter how you look at it or slice it in pieces. The hurts are still there but in order for us to move forward and reclaim our life, we have to let go. If we don't forgive at some point, we are harboring all that was done to us and giving it much more power than it deserves.

For a long time, I struggled with this concept and slowly I am beginning to understand it. Once again, through an event I was involved with, the lesson has reared its ugly head. I do realize that forgiveness has nothing to do with the other person but has everything to do with how I see myself and love myself. Yet, my mind struggles to comprehend these things.

The final note I want to share is that forgiveness is a process. It is about learning to let go and allowing the hurts and pains to be felt, experienced and realized. Forgiveness is not something you do in some special ceremony where poof, the magic dragon is slayed. It is not someone standing up and proclaiming, I forgive you (although that can definitely help). I would suggest that forgiveness is something that is ongoing and one day you wake up realizing that the hurts and pains of the past hold no further power over you. Then, at that moment, you have forgiven what was done to you.

Further Reading
1) Finding Self Forgiveness and Self Love
2) Forgiveness For Survivors Of Sexual Abuse
3) Release It, Let It Go (Pg 97 - Hope And Possibility Through Trauma)

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/2/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Loved By Your Enemy

I love the works of Joy Harjo, whether it is just poems or the poems put to music. She has written some very powerful works that if you listen to them, they make you go inside and really think. Every time I listen to her stuff, I always get something different from it.

Joy Harjo is famous to many for her poem titled, "Fear Poem". She also has a CD called "Letter From The End Of The Twentieth Century" that I love to listen to. My other favorite poem is "She Had Some Horses".

On the CD, there is a song "Letter From The End Of The Twentieth Century" that is also the same title as the CD. It is a song that I think is appropriate for today in my mind because of the events that have just unfolded.

In the song she talks about riding in a taxi in Chicago, with the driver Rammi. The story continues to unfold about Rammi's friend, that one morning someone asked him for money as he was filling up his car with gas. He told the person, that he was sorry but he did not have anything he could give him. As the friend turned his back to finish filling his gas tank up, a gunshot wound killed his friend.

A family member of his murdered friend decided to track the killer down. He wanted to get revenge and take the life of the killer but his mother's grief moves his heart. In the words of his mother, "there is always a choice, even after death."

As his heart was warmed by his mother's words, the story says that he gives the killer his favorite name and calls him his brother. The killer is no longer shamed but filled with remorse and cries the cries of a thousand years. The killer learns to love himself as he never could because his enemies love him.

It is a powerful story and poem that Joy Harjo puts to music but it really reminds me that no matter what choices we make, we can impact others in a positive way or we can continue to carry with us, what happened in a distant time. Our anger is often justified, but what we do with that anger is what makes us human.

You really need to check out the song because it is much more powerful to hear than what I can share in these words. It truly brings this entire story and thought alive if you listen to it.

Further Information
1) Fear Of The Dentist, Part 3
2) Letter From The End Of The Twentieth Century on iTunes

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/2/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Quiet Please, Just Listen

I feel like there are times when I live in a world full of talkers. You know, the ones that just sometimes won't be quiet for two seconds. Whether it is on the phone, in person, or even through online methods, it just seems like there is no end in sight.

Have you ever been in a restaurant and you get seated close to some talkative people where they are not only nonstop but somewhat loud. Or what about the person that gets you on the phone and you can't get a word in regardless of how many attempts you make. They just go on and on until you begin to wonder what they said to you.

My Dad loved to hear himself talk, regardless if you wanted to sit there and listen or not, you had no say or choice in that matter. Some of what he said was good and a lot of it was dribble.

When we constantly talk and dominate conversations, there is something that is out of balance. Yes, there might be something good in what you say, but if you are not engaging the listener, than are you truly being heard? If a talker is not listening to the other person, are they really respecting the listener?

It always frustrates me when I encounter these people because to me, if they think they have to run the mouth off, who am I to force them to stop. They don't listen for a moment any way. However, I get to the point where I avoid them because it is no longer fun trying to have a conversation with them and I feel invalidated and disrespected.

We were given two ears on our body and one mouth. Our minds are meant to control the flow in and the flow out. Giving the mouth more time and energy is not finding a healthy balance with the ears. Remember, if you have two ears, there should be more time given to listening rather than talking.

Try listening a little more and you may find just how much you learn as those around you may feel a little more valued. Not everything we speak is important for the world to hear but when you listen to someone, you've given them a valued place in life that could be life altering.

Blog Post & Images (c) 4/28/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Letting Go Of Painful Moments

It seems like there are so many times in our life where we suffer through loss, disappointment, neglect and hurt at the hands of other people. If you are highly sensitive like I am, these moments can almost be devastating to deal with. I wish I was like others at times that seem to just let these moments wash off their back. Unfortunately, my highly sensitive nature makes it much more difficult.

Recently, I've felt the neglect and hurt in my life as some either seemed to have abused and used me or they just felt that I wasn't worth their time anymore. Talk about a knife being stabbed into the heart, that is what it felt like. It hurts more than I want to let on at times and there are moments where I just want to cry forever.

Through all of this, I've dealt with anxiety, nervousness, tension and depression. I don't let go easily and when the pain comes along, I hurt all the way through every muscle fiber of my body. Yet, somehow, I keep going. I don't know how, but I do. That is most likely a good thing because if I acted upon the despair, it would not be pretty.

The one thing I have learned though, is to just let myself feel the pain, the hurt, and all the other emotions that are coming up. If I try to stop them or alter them in any way, they just find another way to show up. The more I just allow myself to be in the moment, feeling all that is going on in my heart, the more I know I'll come through this. Yes, it gets dicey at times to feel this, but somehow, I seem to find the strength to go on.

While forgiveness is not an easy concept for me, I do find that the more I focus on forgiving the person(s) for what they did to me, the more I can let go. Yet, to let go, I have to feel all the emotions and that is the difficult part. I wish it was easier but then if I felt nothing in all of this, would I be human?

I can't help but think of Oriah Mountain Dreamer's poem, "The Invitation" which means so much to me. The following part of her poem is the one that speaks the loudest right now during this time. I'll leave you with this quote from her book.

From Page 2, The Invitation (by Oriah Mountain Dreamer)
It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up, after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done to feed the children.

Further Reading:
1) Holding On And Not Letting Go
2) Get Over It

Blog Post & Images (c) 4/24/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Bag Of Potatoes

This is something that was going around the internet and while I usually don't give these things much credibility, I thought this had a nice moral to the story that fit on this blog. If the person who wrote this is reading my blog, please let me know and I'll be glad to give you credit for this work as I do not know who wrote this.

Bag of Potatoes
By: Author Unknown

One of my teachers had each one of us bring a clear plastic bag and a sack of potatoes to class. For every person we'd refuse to forgive in our life, we were told to choose a potato, write on it the name and date, and put it in the plastic bag. Some of our bags, as you can imagine, were
quite heavy.

We were then told to carry this bag with us everywhere for one week, putting it beside our bed at night, on the car seat when driving, next to our desk at work.

The hassle of lugging this around with us made it clear what a weight we were carrying spiritually, and how we had to pay attention to it all the time to not forget, and keep leaving it in embarrassing places.

Naturally, the condition of the potatoes deteriorated to a nasty slime. This was a great metaphor for the price we pay for keeping our pain and heavy negativity!

Too often we think of forgiveness as a gift to the other person, and while that's true, it clearly is also a gift for ourselves!

Blog Post & Images (c) 4/1/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Monday, May 9, 2011

Mindfulness With Jon Kabat-Zinn

I was made aware of this video on YouTube at a Google meeting on Mindfulness. I didn't realize that companies out there really thought about things like this and am very thrilled that they have events like this one. The video is about 1 hour and 12 minutes long but to be honest, it went by very quickly. The presenter, Jon Kabat-Zinn actually takes you through a very deep meditation on mindfulness. It is well worth the time to watch this video.

The link to the video on YouTube is below.

Mindfulness is something we all need to learn about and practice. The more we are mindful, the more creative we are, the more centered and powerful we are as we come from a deep place within ourselves. Mindfulness is a force like no other.

Jon Kabat Zinn is an author of several books and speaker on Mindfulness. You can find more about his books available on Amazon.

Further Reading:
1) Mindless Or Mindful (Blog Post 1/9/2011)
2) Healthy Benefits Of Mindfulness (Blog Post 9/18/2010)
3) Mindless Humans (12/1/2009)
4) Mindfulness (9/21/2009)
5) Are You Mindful And Creative? (9/19/2009)

Blog Post & Images (c) 4/15/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Joy Of A Mom On Mother's Day

I think back to the days when my mom was around and I was able to talk to her. I always found her so insightful, so knowledgeable and very creative. I realize that she put up with so much in life and went through so many things but she never gave up. She always tried to do what was right and keep going.

If your mom is still alive, make sure you take a moment out of this day and let her know how much you love her. Let her know how much she means to you and tell her these things from the heart. There is no need to memorize a list or ask others what you should say. Just tell your mom, straight from your heart, how she has impacted your life.

To my mom, I still love you even though you are no longer on this earth and I always will.

Further Reading:
1) Mother's Day Music.net
2) In Memory Of My Mom

Blog Post & Images (c) 4/25/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Oprah 200 Men Emmy Award

It is with a great, humbled spirit that I am sharing this video. The Oprah Show, 200 Adult Men Who Were Molested Come Forward, received an Emmy Award for this show. I was one of those 200 men and you may be aware of this if you have followed my blog.

When the producer of the show, Candi Carter, shared how emotional it was for them, it was just as emotional for us. I felt like I was on an emotional roller coaster from the time I was interviewed about the show until it aired and then some time after that. It was gut wrenching at times, frightening at other times and liberating in the same moments. To open up your life and share these things to the world is nothing short of courageous. Each of the 200 men plus the Oprah show staff displayed courage with the 200 men show!

I'm thankful for Oprah and her team along with Tyler Perry for what they did, for not only the 200 of us that were in the show but to all the other survivors out in the world that needed a voice, or just needed to know they weren't alone. When you've been sexually abused as a child, it is difficult to recognize that there are others and that you aren't alone. It takes great guts and determination to heal and move forward from the horrible atrocities that survivors have gone through.

Check this video out of Candi Carter, Senior Producer, talking about the show as they accept the Emmy. Click here for the link to the video

For more information about my experiences on the Oprah 200 Men Show,
1) Oprah, Tyler Perry and200 Male Survivors Stand Together
2) Oprah, 200 Men, Part 1 and 2
3) Read About My Experiences On The Oprah Show
4) Male Survivor, Ray Dotch, on the Gayle King Show

For resources and additional help, please check out the following website
- - Sexual Abuse Resource Center on Oprah.com

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/6/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Friday, May 6, 2011

Is Time Speeding Up?

I see a lot written these days including guests like Shirley McClaine on Oprah talking about time speeding up. Everyone seems to notice time speeding up or at least that is what was indicated on the Oprah show (April 11, 2011). While time may be speeding up, I have no way to prove that it is or that it is not. I'm sure there are many out there that can give justification to this.

The only thing that I do know is that I cannot control time. Each one of us only has so many seconds, minutes, and hours in any given day. Whether those change at any given point, is of course the question. There is always the possibility that they do. I learned a long time ago when i was doing research, that what we think is correct is not always as it seems.

Again, I go back to my biggest concern. Can I influence how fast time goes in a day? I doubt I can. If I can, I have absolutely no idea of how to begin doing that. For what is time, but a measurement we all use in life to organize our day. Of course, time could be more than that and I'm sure it most likely is.

What I do know is that if I spend my all my time in front of the computer, on Facebook, running from this meeting to that meeting, going to this event or filling my every waking hour with something to do, I feel like time really speeds up. We, the collective we, of course spend more of our waking moments keeping ourselves busy than stopping to feel, sense, observe and notice all that is around us. Meditation practices are for those really dedicated, spiritual, new age people, not for the rest of us. Mindfulness is something that is thrown around in our day but not truly understood or observed.

So, here's my plan that seems to work for me when I feel like time is out of control. I do this very simple and profound thing, I STOP! Yes, you heard me correct. I STOP! That may mean I take a walk in the park or along the ocean. It may mean that I spend some time reading a book, taking a nap, sitting by the pool or enjoying time with my plants. It may mean that instead of seeing how many events I can participate in for any given week, that I begin to pick and choose what really matters. Of course, it means that I spend less time on Facebook and reading all the news that society deems is important so maybe I can have more time to just relax, rest and rejuvenate my body, mind and spirit.

Many years ago, we did not have all these electronic devices that crowded our days and our minutes for attention. We spent more time out doors, playing, running, walking and getting to know our neighbors. It was a simpler life that we have left behind.

Maybe the important question should not be so focused on is time speeding up, but what are we doing with the time we have? How are we effectively managing our lives so that we get to stop, rest and energize? Are we just doing everything that we can because it is easier to keep our minds busy that way rather than allowing our minds to unwind and catch up?

You, the individual, are the only one that can answer that question. You are the only one that can make changes and discover what is truly important to your life. We need not worry so much about what it is that we cannot control but more on what we can control.

Further Reading:
1) When Life Is Too Busy
2) Mindful Words

Blog Post & Images (c) 4/1/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Top Book Reviews May 2011, Hope And Possibility Through Trauma

To learn more about what books I review, please go to the following post on Top Book Reviews (May 4, 2011). On the 5th of every month, my goal is to post a review of 1 or more books that have had a strong impact on my life.

Hope And Possibility Through Trauma by Don Shetterly

While this may be tooting my own horn, I thought it was only appropriate to start out the top book reviews by discussing the book that I wrote. In many ways, this book and what has been written in it, has impacted my life in ways I cannot begin to describe.

For the writings in this book did not come without much anguish, frustration and pain. It was a life lived that I would never wish upon anyone. However, I do not want anyone to think this book is about the pain, for it is not. The book is more about the hope and the possibility in the midst of horrible experiences.

Truly, what should matter in our life, is not the pain and despair, but how we rose above that which we lived through and how it impacted our life in a positive way. While it is important to go back and reclaim the past, what we do with the future is by the healing we give ourselves.

This book that I wrote, is a collection of writings that came out of these moments of my own healing. Many that have read this have shared with me that the book really impacted their own life and it was a blessing to them. My only hope is that it will continue to touch the lives of others and for those who have experienced some of the horrors of life, may it give each one a renewed possibility that hope does exist!

If you have been abused, or suffered from depression or had suicidal thoughts, than this book is for you!

To order the book on Amazon, click here ($14.99)

For more information on the book, click here (to go to my website)

Blog Post & Images (c) 4/25/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Top Book Reviews

It takes a lot for a book to make it into my book reviews. While I find some books compelling and interesting, the books that make it in my book review list are ones I really cherish. They are special books that really impacted my life and gave me that ah ha moment as Oprah would say.

While I will always check out books on Amazon, I'm not easily persuaded to buy books and review them. The book has to hit me and be one that grabs my attention. Otherwise, it is like an exercise in second grade where I feel as if the assignment is completing a book report, which I dreaded.

Please don't think that leaving a comment for me to check out your book because it is what my readers want to see, if going to cut the mustard with me. It has to be much more than that and done in a way where you really are trying to engage me, not just sell me. If your book becomes something that grabs my attention, I'll be more than happy to read it and see how it hits me. Of course, that doesn't mean that it will make it into my book review list.

On the 5th of every month, my goal is to post a review of 1 or more books that have had a strong impact on my life. My reviews will either be a short synopsis of how the book impacted my life or a longer discussion of passages within the book that touched me deeply.

Book Review List
1) Jun 2011 - Father's Touch by Donald D'Haene
2) Jul 2011 - Victims No Longer by Mike Lew

3) Aug 2011 - Compassionate Touch by Dr. Clyde W Ford
4) Sep 2011 - Waking The Tiger by Peter Levine
5) Oct 2011 - The Lightworkers Way by Doreen Virtue
6) Nov 2011 - Into The Light by Dr John Lerma 
7) Dec 2011 - You Are The Answer by Michael J Tamura 
8) Jan 2012 -  Meditations To Heal Your Life by Louise Hay

Blog Post &
Images (c) 4/25/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Inflicted By Pain And Hurt In Life

This is more of a personal blog post and of course by the time anyone reads it, considerable time will have passed. However, I just feel the need to write because when I write, I think and when I think, more becomes clear. I'm in one of those times where I just need to write. It reminds me of John Boy Walton on the Walton's TV show when he said "daddy, if I don't write the words down on paper, they get all jumbled up inside of my head." Of course, he kept most of what he wrote to himself unlike myself.

Lately, I've gone through some intense hurt and pain inflicted by others. Yes, I probably didn't set good boundaries in place so I allowed some people to hurt me deeply. They don't see it that way I'm sure and I'm actually tired of trying to reveal what it is that they did to ears that seem to go deaf. Regardless, I know what it feels like to live inside of my body right now and it hurts. So why am I sharing this on my blog when I try to keep things upbeat, well like I said above, sometimes it helps me to think more clearly. I'm also hoping that this helps someone out there that may be experiencing the same thing or has experienced a similar hurt and pain.

It is never easy in life to navigate these waters nor is it easy at times to stand alone on the island, steadfast in your morals, convictions and what you know to be true. There are things that I know without a shadow of a doubt as to the truth behind them. I cannot explain how I know these things, but I do.

I see things in a different way than most human inhabitants but I'm often met with confusion as I try to explain these things. Of course, it doesn't stop others from trying to convince me that their set of healing beliefs is the thing I need to learn when I can clearly see, that what others want to teach me is a belief system, rather than something that is truth based. Yes, I do understand that to each person with these healing modalities, they feel it is a truth based system but of course, that is only with their eyes partially open.

So back to the difficult time I am struggling through. With the pain that was inflicted upon me, I have run for the hills trying to find safe cover in the nearest cave of the hills. I knew my answer did not lie in that cave but I needed safety and time that I could just recover, center myself and rid myself of the energy of the beliefs that was thrust upon me. It isn't an easy time that I speak of as I feel the loneliness of the path I was called to walk. I realize that the time has not fully come yet, but is close and this is all preparation work for what lies ahead in my life. It does not make any of it easier.

Some days, I wonder if I have the strength to carry through into the journey I am on. Will I be strong enough to do what it is that I need to do? Will I be strong enough to counter balance the effects of all the belief based systems that people cling to? Will I have the courage to walk the path through the obstacles, the fire, and the treacherous, frightening moments?

All I know is that when I was paralyzed in 1991, no one could tell me the first thing that I needed to do in order to heal myself. Everyone sat there in silence offering snippets of wisdom but I honestly think no one really knew the best course of treatment. I can remember lying there in the hospital bed wondering if this was all I could expect to be a part of for the rest of my life, paralyzed, barely able to speak, move, feel, sense and think. I was nothing more than an existence at that point. Yet, life would not let me slip away for good. I knew at that moment that there was a reason why my life would not end and I knew it would not be easy.

Where life is going at this moment, I have not got a clue. All I know is that I'm trying to focus on this current moment I have and not succumb to the fears that are bashing me from every angle. I'm learning to get in touch with the past so as to allow it to teach me about all that I am and all that I have the potential to be in my life. I'm trying to be patient and understanding of those that are clinging to beliefs instead of discovering the evolution and awareness within themselves.

Many years ago, I knew this would not be an easy path and it has not been for one moment. These difficulties are the things that keep me centered and grounded and down to earth, not some off the wall new age concept person. You might think I am being too harsh on new age people but I just desire and hope that they will begin to open up to what truly matters in this world. There are so many that are chasing the false illusions of reality and missing the gift within themselves.

Tomorrow is a day away and as I continue to step out in faith, I am reminded of the sounds of the ocean waves that lull me into the present moment. The ocean does not worry about which wave it will send to the shore, nor which one will come back. It just allows itself to be there, connecting and being part of a greater and larger part of a body of water. It has no agenda, nor a perceived time of when waves are to come to the shore. It just functions in the moment absorbing all that there is and giving all it has to give. Even when pains and hurts are inflicted upon it, the waves still function and they never give up.

Blog Post & Images (c) 4/15/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Monday, May 2, 2011

Two Frogs and Perception

A number of frogs were traveling through the woods. Two of them fell into a deep pit. All the other frogs gathered around the pit. When they saw how deep the pit was, they told the two frogs that they were as good as dead.

The two frogs ignored the comments and tried to jump up out of the pit with all of their might. The other frogs kept telling them to stop, that they were as good as dead.

Finally, one of the frogs took heed to what the other frogs were saying and gave up. He fell down and died.

The other frog continued to jump as hard as he could. Once again, the crowd of frogs yelled at him to stop the pain and just die. He jumped even harder and finally made it out.

When he got out, the other frogs said, "Did you not hear us?" The frog explained to them that he was deaf. He thought they were encouraging him the entire time.

Sometimes it is all in our perception of how we see the world and those people around us. What one sees and hears is often different than what others see and hear. Let us be mindful of our perception and evolve our awareness to perceive more than we already do in life.

By: Author Unknown

Blog Post & Images (c) 3/31/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Mother's Day Facts, Trivia and Things To Do

This post is a tribute to Mom's across the world as we get ready to celebrate Mother's Day on May 8, 2011 (at least here in the United States). I know some parts of the world celebrate it at different times and most likely differently than we do here in the US. I would love to hear how you celebrate it where ever you live and please leave a comment describing that.

This post is of course, dedicated to my own mom who left this world on Jan 4, 2002. www.mothersdaymusic.net

Here are a few facts and trivia about Mother's Day.

- Celebration of Mother's Day officially began in 1914.
- Mothering Sunday in Great Britain took place on the 4th Sunday of Lent.
- In 1872, Julia Ward organized a day of peace for mothers on June 2.
- Ana Jarvis managed to persuade her church to celebrate a day for mothers.
- Ana Jarvis was trying to begin a national campaign until she died in 1905.
- Ana Jarvis's daughter continued the campaign after she passed away.
- Ana Jarvis wanted a quiet day of reflection, prayer and peace with family.
- President Woodrow Wilson signed legislation establishing this day in 1914.
- There are over 82 million mothers in the US.
- Approximately 81% of women between 40 and 44 years old are mothers.
- There are 4 million new mothers each year.
- The average for a new mother is 25 years.
- July is the most popular month to have a baby.
- Tuesday is the most popular day of the week when babies are born.
- In 2010, there were 5 million stay at home moms.
- Mother's Day is the third most popular holiday after Christmas.
- Eve is considered the mother of all living in the bible.
- Over 120 million calls are made on Mother's Day.
- Nearly 80% of Americans by a card for their mom on Mother's Day.
- Approximately 139 million Mother’s Day cards are given each year
- 83% of the cards purchased on Mother's Day are by daughters.
- Mother's Day is the busiest day of the year for restaurants
- The special flower for Mother's Day is a carnation.
- In 2008 in the US, 42,746 births did not occur in hospitals.
- Cards and Flowers are the most popular gifts on Mother's Day.
- In 2008, there were 777,817 child care centers in the US.
- There are 9.9 million single mothers in the US in 2010.
- In The US, Mother's Day is always the second Sunday of May.
- Mother's Day is the second most popular gift giving day.
- Hallmark has been producing cards for this day since 1920.
- The average person will spend about $127 on Mother’s Day gifts.
- About $1.9 billion are spent on flowers for Mother's Day.
- Almost $2.9 billion is spent on taking mom to lunch on this day.
- About $1.5 billion is spent on Mother's Day gift certificates.
- Men spend much more than women on Mother’s Day
- Having children later in life may help moms to live longer.
- Over 30,000 single mothers have served in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Most moms like to just spend time with their families and children on Mother's Day. Sure, going out to eat or buying her something makes the day special. I'll bet though if you asked any mom what she enjoyed most, and it would be spending a leisurely day, relaxing, talking or doing something together. So here's a few ideas to get you started but be creative! This is only a start! And Mom's, feel free to print this out and leave it laying around the house. Maybe you could wall paper the bedroom doors of your kids room with it. Just kidding of course (or am I?)

Things To Do With Your Mom On Mother's Day

- Spend time and hang out with your mom.
- Visit the park with your mom.
- Take mom to the movies.
- Go ice skating or roller skating.
- Clean the house for your mom.
- Wash and wax your mom's car.
- Go on a picnic.
- Buy or build her a front porch swing or hammock.
- Create a hand made card for her.
- Make a scrapbook together with your mom.
- Play a board game together as a family.
- Create an inspirational book of her favorite quotes.
- Create a coupon book of things you'll do for her during the year.
- Go for an ice cream cone.
- Treat her to a nice relaxing afternoon at the spa.
- Just talk to your mom and share your life with her.
- Make a simple breakfast in bed for her.
- Have her go on a scavenger hunt for thank-you's around the house.
- Plant flowers with her.
- Put a CD of her favorite music together.
- Bake something together and you clean up the kitchen.
- Go shopping together.
- Take her to a concert, a zoo or area attractions.
- Take a day trip.
- Go to a coffee shop.
- Take your mom out to eat or cook her a meal.
- Take a walk together.
- Give your mom a day away from everyone to relax.
- Tell her you love her.
- Give her a list of things of how much she means to you.
- Play her a song on whatever instrument you play.
- Compose a song and sing it to her.
- Give your mom a day to just read a good book by herself.
- A day of rest or a do absolutely nothing day.
- Those truly touching we appreciate you moments and gifts.
- Anything you can do that makes her feel special and wanted.
- Weed and clean her flower bed out.
- Create a photo album of old memories.
- Make a tribute video to your mom and be creative.
- Take her to the beach for the day.
- Download for your mom a relaxing music CD.
- Have a family portrait taken or painted.
- If you're a kid living at home, clean your room without being told.
- Write a poem together for your mom.
- Create an ecard for your mom.
- Check out local resources for activities on mother's day.
- Create a family history with your mother.
- Enjoy and celebrate the holiday of Mother's Day.

Whatever you decide to do on Mother's Day, keep it simple and make it something that you will cherish with your mom for years to come. It isn't about seeing how much money you can buy or how much you can impress your mom. Mother's Day is about showing your mom how much you care about her and how much she means to you. Hopefully you have had a mom that truly cared for you and if you did not, my heart does go out to you.

I created a CD called, Relaxing Spa Music: Mother's Day, and the music came out of my love and dedication to my mom. I lost my mom in 2002 and she is forever in my heart and in my music. This CD is one that is just as the name implies, it is a relaxing spa CD. I hope you will take a moment and check it out. It is available on Amazon or iTunes. You can listen to sound clips and learn more about it on my website.

Relaxing Spa Music: Mother's Day by Don Shetterly

Buy On Itunes

Buy On Amazon

Buy On CDBaby.com

Some Sources Of Information:
1) Mother's Day Music.net
2) US Census Bureau
3) Hallmark - Mothers Day
4) National Retail Federation

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/1/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only


Blog Post And Images (c) 1/01/07 by Don Shetterly
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