Going on week eight of no alcohol and week seven of no shopping has created this room in my life for new ideas and a profound energy unrealized prior to these self imposed personal quests. I have written about the need to reorganize, de-clutter and de-nest in this past year of the removal of my body parts, a stripping of the cape so to speak. As a result there has been an intense desire to bare all as it relates to peripheral accumulation that no longer serves. I didn’t know how much stuff I had that no longer served until I literally removed a piece of my body and for some reason, this opened the floodgates. I still refuse to admit or acknowledge the cliché of cancer being a gift. Fuck that. Cancer is not a blessing or a gift; that is like telling a bride that it is good luck when it rains on her wedding day. We all know this is bullshit, but as the words leak from our mouths, our intent is that it will help her or him feel better. For that kindness, I appreciate the gesture.

We caught it early breast cancer is an awakening. This I will accept. It is a release of all that is no longer necessary and for a moment in time, there is a permission to do something about it. Why I needed permission to take this charge BC (before cancer in case this is a first time read) is a curious question. I am guessing that when anyone has LIFE COMING AT THEM the motivation to get shit done just takes over and I have been riding the wave ever since.

I have always said that owning my own company for the past 16 years has been like getting a PHD at Harvard Business School. The good fortune of getting an early diagnosis of breast cancer is the PHD in Life and it happened at breakneck speed. I have cleaned out closets, basements, drawers, cupboards, office space. I have gone through all of my collections of kitchen ware, clothing, jewelry, scarves, makeup, skin care, bathroom toiletries removing every single item that weighs me down. So now I am in the midst of de-cluttering technology. Not a digital detox in the sense that I am getting rid of my phone, though that is coming sooner than later, but opening up every computer between my home, personal and office and my business and dumping files after files into the swish sound of the trash bucket that sits on my desktop.

I cannot believe how much virtual paperwork sits in my computers with no apparent need for use. Why I feel the need to purge even this is beyond me except for the fact that when I do, the immediate lightness that avails itself is such a positive feeling, it makes me march forth. This is why I continue. Consolidating files and creating new ones to house the files in some type of order in my computers takes not only time, but an energy that is different. There is no physical aspect to this like a good closet clean where I am moving boxes up and down stairs using muscles I didn’t know existed despite my regular visits to Kathy Martin. It is a total mind game. I sit on the couch or I stand in front of my business computer and mindlessly hit the delete or move button over and over and over again. There is a rhythm to this. I dare say almost meditative, but it is still staring at a blue screen instead of getting glorious fresh air and trying to find a cardinal against a snowy backdrop. The time doing this takes me from otherwise going outside and feeling a blast of New England frost clean my lungs like nothing else. As I plunge into the documents quickly scanning each one and looking at their dates to determine if they should stay or go, I know that when this major task is complete, I will feel better and have more space for all of the ideas and energy coming at me and through me in the most unexpected ways.

In my business, I hear all day long how no one has any time. Time is so interesting now that more of it has become available to me. This in itself has opened my eyes to the importance of de cluttering. Not only material possessions, but mental baggage. We literally are weighing ourselves down with outer impediments that frankly are in our control as to whether we choose to release or keep. As much as everyone talks about the no time element, in the honest reality it is all choice. Go to the soccer game or don’t, spend four hours on Facebook or go for a walk, clean a closet or watch reality TV. Like money, we all spend time the way we choose to and no one can tell me otherwise. It is that hole that we have filled with distractions to keep us from our glorious selves and I really don’t know why.

I have been part of this hole filling extravaganza. Shopping, eating, drinking, not exercising, stifling my own creativity- all of these outside busy distractions have kept me from facing head on my own personal power. This makes no sense as I write this but what else could it have been all these years. What have I been afraid of? Success, growth? I am speaking of inner not outer, outer is ego, outer is the awards and the acknowledgement of being told what a terrific job you have done. It is the inner that is important. Do I believe the outer and if the two don’t jive, voila- a hole. That is it; that is how the hole starts and how the hole widens. And the wider the hole the more dirt it needs to fill. How interesting. What I have filled my hole with has been what I have given up cold turkey, the trifecta I have so often written about, alcohol, shopping and sugar. Without these distractions, I am an open source hungry for knowledge and ideas and the clarity I am experiencing is indeed an awakening I am ready for. Shedding material belongings by choice not by force like a fire or a flood is a privilege and one that I deeply appreciate. Shedding relationships that don’t feel good, habits that are not healthy and create fogginess are all personal choices and we are all in different places in our lives for these choices.

With the wisdom of hindsight this all started when my brother died. This is when the seed was planted but I didn’t realize this at the tender age of thirty with the world ahead of me. Thirty to forty was about babies and houses, careers and balance. These are important distractions and they helped feed my soul to get me to here and now. I would never change one thing. Self discovery is part of my personal fabric, I cherish the lessons and there have been and continue to be many. I had no idea that the outer layers of unreal protection I had unknowingly built were all a part of the fill of a hole I had put so much in, I actually forgot there was one to begin with. Digging it all out has revealed a richness inside of me ready for the seeds of a new season. And it all started with new boobs, who knew?

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
Marianne Williamson

speaking of time- these are all photos taken by the one and only Lou Sousa who makes time for his love of photography and I am a happy recipient. these are from my yard. hobbies are choices and I am grateful for this hobby of a generous friend and neighbor.



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alayne white

alayne white

Author, Typewriter Collector, Life Enthusiast, Beauty Realist, Daily Writer, and mostly a happy aging chick.