I am so happy today that I'd like to maybe help some others walk a path to a better life. My words may help some. Others may not resonate. That's ok. I will share my thoughts and whatever resonates with others, if anything, maybe some can think about our own roles in our own lives, all of us. Being so far from it, my life seems as if it never had anyone from my FOO in it, except for my grandma and Dad. Seems like a lifetime ago. Even them. Just want to encourage everyone who is steeped in dysfunction to take your power back, to let go like your burdens were in helium balloons that we can let go of and watch until they disappear in the bright blue skies. We can let them gently float away, no matter how long we have held onto them. We can chose to let these toxins stay or go. I don't mean just people. I also mean our outlooks on everything. Nobody in my FOO was a thief or a murderer or a criminal. They are mostly deceased, people who I believe chose to struggle in this lifetime in challenging inter personal ways. And never learned how to access their higher, wiser minds. We all started out in our lower less evolved minds (our ego) in my family, as most do, starting with my mother. Including me, of course. I was taught many lessons, some hard, but all for the good in the end. If we jump to our wiser mind and let go of our ego, we can see all from a much higher and less judgmental perspective. It is triumphant to overcome challenges. I never dreamed things could be this good for me. As a child and young adult I totally believed I was "bad" and doomed to be miserable. And I was, until I no longer held that belief. I believe we create our own happiness and that requires changing our negative thinking, indeed often the way we see the world. Nobody can control us if we don't let the person do so. Indeed, it took me long to wonder why I bothered to let anyone define me, but I am observing from my higher mind and no longer my easily hurt ego now. Each life is a story that we write and perform. We are the stars of our own show. The outcome is largely in our hands. Even how we handle tragedy is in our hands. All of us will have a go at tragedy. Nobody will never face it. Tragedy also helps us learn. Pain, as hard as it is, helps us learn. The harder the lesson, the more the evolution inside of us as we survive and grow. With joy and gratitude, I encourage you to let go of anything that no longer serves you. Visualize your negative thoughts and your fears being sucked out of your body by a large, gleaming white vacuum cleaner, into the air, dispersing, leaving you.Like so much dust. If you pray, ask your higher power to infuse you in light. I meditate this every night. But you don't have to meditate it to achieve feeling clean and refreshed. To feel renewed each night. I am sitting in the beautiful energy of my new home as I ponder all this and wonder how a sad, depressed, angry twenty five year old like I was turned into a peaceful, content woman. It started my 40s when my mother cut me out of her life, a huge favor in the long run. And it keeps getting better. I didn't realize at the time that this was a blessed lesson in learning to tolerate rejection and to gain much needed independence. These skills really helped me as my story went on. And goes on. As I write, it has been long enough no contact with everyone in FOO that I am not angry, bitter or curious about the past people who were in my life's production (and I in theirs). I am in control of only my own production. Everyone writes his or her happy or unhappy life's production ending. i learned things from my mother and uncle and, yes, my sister taught me divine lessons. No, I won't talk about her again. She is gone and I don't check on her. But she taught me a lot of what my mother did and that was good. And of course I taught everyone lessons as well. Whatever we came here to teach one another, I believe it was supposed to be as it turned out. Remember, there is always hope, but we control it. We decide to be happy or we decide not to be. We choose good in our lives or we don't. We learn to embrace this wonderful Universe or we stay stuck in our potential problems. A real booster to me was turning off things I can't help or control, like the news. I also used to like to read and watch true crime. I stopped that. I try to surround myself with happy thoughts. How we think, what we watch, what we do....this affects our mood, I believe. I hope everyone can learn that hard times can teach us our biggest lessons and that we should be grateful for any lesson learned that pushed us on our way to being a better person, perhaps with more empathy. Struggle leads to love and compassion towards others, often toward those who also struggle....the indigent, the unenlightened, the disadvantaged due to race, the disabled, the homeless......I feel for all of them and feel happy that I can see them as as valuable as the weathy and academic...because everyone is precious and gifted. Love and light to all!