Photo - Thanks Aunt Anita for this photo of me and Peter Desroches in the 1970's - Niagara Falls, Canada
**Our young people could never have imagined the adventures of life that awaited us.**
Every day I hear people, mostly women, telling me that I am brave because I have moved away from the traditional life. Every day these women tell me that they would like to live on the streets, but they are too afraid to live like me and to move away from what they have always known. And my comment is always the same: "You can live in fear of failure for not taking risks in the short life you have, or you can live in regret that you didn't even have the opportunity to do something by doing something that could possibly bring you something. of true happiness". "I honestly believe most people are not happy and are too afraid to change their circumstances and I know many are financially incapable as soon as I was retiring BUT you can always set goals to change what you can change and adjust your attitude to what you can't. This mindset adjustment is life changing and paves the way to a better life, I'm living proof of that.
A memory recently surfaced on Facebook and it brought back the memory of what started this whole journey. So I started thinking about it and decided to sit down at my laptop and start writing. The memory was a video I saw over a year ago. It was a speech by Miss USA, Deshauna Barber, and she said in her speech"Don't be afraid of failure, BUT fear regret". That statement in his speech changed the course of my life. I wrote this statement on a piece of paper and put it on my computer screen for me to see every day. It followed me every day and started to change my thought processes in every aspect of my life. That statement gave me the courage to take the leap of faith and I ended up living on the streets. I emailed him to say thank you but never got a response. I may never see the email, but I thanked you from the bottom of my heart because if I hadn't heard that speech, I might still be living my monotonous daily life of anxiety and depression.
I used to let fear rule my life. Fear of failure, fear of change, fear of the unknown. I sat down and dreamed about what I wanted in life or what I wanted to change, but I was too scared to take drastic steps to make those dreams come true. I remember when my youngest daughter, Claire, called me and said that she wanted to quit her job but was afraid to tell her. I gave your mother's speech about being brave and strong and not afraid. The funny thing is, I remember feeling that fear on many occasions. In fact, I was also very scared when I quit my last job before hitting the streets. I wrote my resignation letter and placed it on my computer screen while my finger sucked on the "send" button several times over the course of a week. I just held my finger over the send button and didn't dare press it. Then one day Deshaunsa's words were in my ear and the next thing I knew he had sent his resignation letter. I froze in my chair, relieved and scared at the same time. What did he do? what i was thinking could i really quit my job and live on the streets? Well, I got the ball rolling and there was no turning back.
Why are we so afraid of change? Why do we fear our superiors, our bosses, our co-workers or even our relatives? When thinking about many jobs, I was often afraid to ask for a day off, call in sick, or ask for a new position or raise. Why are we afraid to do what's best for us or ask for things that will make our lives better? I don't know, but I remember Pastor Jerry saying in a sermon that F.E.A.R. is nothing more than fake evidence that looks real. Fear is a feeling and true fear shouldn't be ignored, but the fear of demanding or being afraid of change is stupid when you think about it. I remember Claire asking what if. What if I get fired? My answer was: "Find another job". What if they don't think I deserve another position or a raise? Then they will say no. Think about it. What are we afraid of? We have one shot at this life, why not do whatever it takes to make it happy and enjoyable?
When I decided to embark on this adventure, my oldest daughter Nikki and Devin (her now husband) sat me down and asked me a lot of questions. One was "What if after a while you don't like living on the street anymore?" I said I would find an apartment and start over. "What kind of grandmother are you going to be when we start having kids?" I replied, "The happy kind," reminding her that I could visit whenever I wanted. For every question they had, I had an answer. Remember, I planned this venture for nearly three years. I really thought of every possible angle and scenario and even had to prepare for Covid-19 situations. He had a plan and, above all, a vision.
I've been thinking a lot about what I really want out of my life. It wasn't easy and it took time, but I finally reached a point where I fully focused on my thoughts and even started this blog. Skepticism and doubt are healthy in moderation, but when they're holding you back from achieving goals or being happy, it's time to master and own them. I made it. I had to change my thinking about everything and I even resorted to meditation and prayer. Most people work hard at work or when a project is done, but they don't give the same energy to their goals or dreams. Take time each day to make your goals clearer, simpler and easier to achieve. I had to figure out how to live without my salary, without health insurance and without my children. It took a while, but it was possible, and I started to focus on the goal instead of fear trying to block my plans. Don't drift through the day, grab hold and take control. Make plans/goals and move towards them. Put your doubts aside, stop telling yourself that you can't do what others do. Instead, take their examples for what they are, a source of inspiration and hope. Getting closer to your dreams means simply doing instead of just thinking. If you fail, you can at least delete that path and switch to another path.
Don't be afraid of change, accept it. Change gives me energy and enthusiasm. If you're just doing what you can or going where you're comfortable, then you don't do or see much, and life is full of things to see and do.
I don't think I'm afraid of anything anymore. The only thing on my mind, and it's less fear than concern, is getting into a medical situation without medical attention, but I long ago decided to cross that road if that happened and not dwell on it. Something that did not happen. I will not let "maybe" and "what if" control my happiness. I do not and will not live in fear, and based on the words of Deshauna Barber, I do not live in regret either.
"The question should be, is it worth doing, can't it be done?" - a foreigner.'
“The secret of progress is the beginning. The secret to getting started is to break down complex, overwhelming tasks into small, manageable tasks and start with the first one” – Mark Twain
"The outer conditions of a man's life always reflect his inner beliefs" - James Allen