Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Do You Really Want To?

Hey there!

Thanks for clicking to read.  

No, really.  Thank you.

I wouldn't make the effort to post each Wednesday (or soon after) if I thought nobody was reading this.  But you are.  So thanks.

With your dedication -- weekly or otherwise -- I want you to ask yourself why.  "Hey, (myself), why do I read this blog?"

Do you know the answer right away?  

Do you personally know and love Braeden and me, and this is how you stay connected?  Do you know and love someone with Down syndrome and enjoy the camaraderie?  Do you love Copper Harbor?  Did you read my last blog, A Little Slice of da Harbor, and habitually switch over because you enjoy my writing?  Did a friend show you this blog?

You don't have to tell me.  Unless you want to.  But I just want you to look inside yourself, and ask why you do this one little thing.  Really, it's best to do that with everything you do, but we will start with this.

For now.

Okay,  thanks for that introspective moment.

I have had a very introspective winter.  For years I was a social butterfly, and I overextended myself for others when it was actually zapping my energy.  I just felt like I should do it all for others.  Even though I physically couldn't.  

Nobody can.

But I have been sober for over a year.  I find comfort in meaningful conversations instead of surface chatter.  I find power in telling people 'no' when their request does not fall in line with my purpose.

Because I need all the energy I can get to help save the world. To help raise the consciousness of humanity to its highest potential.  But before I do that, I have to do it within myself!

So I am working on it.  It is starkly revealing at times.  It can also be difficult to face.  But at the same time, it is empowering and liberating.  My old friends and family might not understand it, but it is a beautiful transition in my life.

It's as though I've been uprooted from my old habits and plunked into fresh soil.  Soil with great potential for growth.  But in order to soak up the energy, I need to focus on the sun.  And the rain.  And the darkness and mystery of what my roots are now pushing into and through.

I just need to believe.

My heart can feel that it's right.

I am grateful.

Okay, so thanks for exploring the inner world of Amanda for a moment.

Do you ever do that with yourself?  Just like I asked you why you read this blog, I would encourage you to ask yourself "Why am I doing this?" about more things.

If your answer is usually "Because I want to, and it helps me fulfill my purpose," then you are on the right track, my friend. 

If your answer is, "Because I have to," or "Someone is making me," or "This is just what I have always done," then please take it a step further and notice how it feels to realize that.

How does it feel to be forced?  To feel like you have no other option?  To follow old habits out of "comfort?"  Just sit with that feeling.

*Please note: some things you have to do, like biological functions and taking care of people and animals you are responsible for.  But you can ponder ways to do these things in ways that they work best for you.

Now think about something you love to do.  "I love to (fill in the blank), and it makes me feel (fill in the blank)."

Now feel it.  Really feel it.

Feel the difference in your body when you focus on those two different frequencies.  I don't even have to tell you which one is better.  You already know.  And only you can feel it fully.  Because it is part of you.

So right now, you are either thinking, "Hmm, this is very interesting.  I will do this more in my daily life."  Or you are thinking, "Where are the pictures of Braeden in all this snow we just got?  This is boring."

And that's okay.

Like I mentioned in a previous post, this blog is full of surprises and variety.  But all of them have the same purpose: to help make a difference in this world.

Thanks for reading.  But only if you want to....

Braeden stomps in puddles because he wants to


  1. I check your post every Wed. Just to know how you are feeling and what you are up to. A single mother with a special little boy brings me lots to think about. Thank you Amanda.

  2. I look forward to you postings every week Amanda, whether they’re playful, serious, thought provoking or sad... always have since your first blog. Please keep them up, but only if you want to.

  3. I love Copper Harbor, read "A Little Slice of da Harbor" every week, now I enjoy your new blog every week. I love your writing and hearing about your busy life.

  4. Amanda, my wife and I live in Midland MI and always loved the Western U.P. and Isle Royale. Then all three of our children graduated from MTU, living at the time in Houghton and Laurium. Somewhere along the way we discovered "A Little Slice of da Harbor". It was always a delight to read and we really looked forward to it because we miss da Harbor so much. We always envied you a bit living there! We feel we have come to know you better as the person you are reading "downsbythebay" and now we admire even more. Thank you Amanda.

  5. Thanks for your thoughts, lovely readers! It is ironic to me that when I post about something I don't think you will enjoy as much as I do, I get the most feedback. Haha! Keep it coming!

  6. Was traveling when you posted this. Your postings always make terrific reading but this one pulled me right in, protesting all the way, "Well, heck, yeah, I read your work!" Your thoughts and experiences are inspiring.

    Your observations about Braeden and his relationship with the world are spot on. I know several adults who have been living with Downs and manage to find their way in the world. Your takes on these matters resonate.

    Of course I love Copper Harbor. It's been an addiction of mine for over 60 years, beginning when my parents brought us there. Going to the dump at dusk to watch/feed the bears was one of the high points of the day! How times have changed; for the better in this instance. Another highlight was visiting the coppersmith, Mr. Koivu in his shop on 4th. Inspired me to make a copper bowl in elementary school shop class. Then there was Jim Rooks - what an immense store of information and wisdom! I miss him yet.

    You're doing so well. Hope you want to keep on for many cycles of the seasons ahead.