Category: Best Daughter Page 1 of 2

Best Witches

Boundaries blurred

Whispers heard

Be mindful of your spoken word

Let not intention be recanted

From seeds once planted

Requests be granted

Equals only be enticed

Review the guest list once or twice

Then light the candles

And fire up the blender

‘Tis no better night for wishes rendered!

Sit Down, Shut Up

Armed with bullet points on an index card, even a timid mind can express intention clearly.

Well, most of the time.

I’ve had my moments.  Predetermined lines of reason fly out the window if nervous energy makes an untimely entrance.  With a potential to spread like wildfire, unchecked emotions will overpower a well-rehearsed delivery before a witch can even register the words that are coming out of her mouth.  The content of whatever the hell was carefully written on those index cards vaporizes, rendering the original intent of a message to be lost under a heightened state of panic.

I hate when that happens.  The advice to employ any number of various relaxation techniques before you open your mouth should be considered.

For whatever reason we need to speak our mind, using our voice is a one way to get what we want.  I taught my kids to organize their thoughts into clear and concise bullet points before they expressed their desires to another fellow being.  Formulating precise statements that convey emotionally-driven thoughts improves communication.

I may have helped the kids find and use their words throughout the years, but it is my children who taught me the value of personal confidence, inner trust, and pure expectation to empower those bullet points with the positive momentum required if we are to manifest the desired results.

Kids.  We can only teach them what we know through our own experience, while they can usually remind us of the subtle energy differences that exist throughout our relationships between each other, as well as the Universe at large.  There’s a fine line between aggressive and assertive energy.  It took me awhile to get this.  Stubborn or blind, an aging witch can forget that she still has a thing or two to learn from her kids.

A person could earn a degree in communication and still not know how to talk to people, express their wishes clearly, or set their desires in motion.  Appropriate language that relies on carefully chosen words is one thing.  This is when those index cards come in handy to record applicable bullet points for future reference.  Almost like magic, recalling predetermined words minimizes the possibility of any unplanned emotional eruptions that may sabotage original intent.

It is one thing to know exactly what you want and practice expressing these thoughts with carefully chosen words.  It is quite another thing to believe that you can have that which the words describe.  Even the most carefully chosen declarations will lie dead in the water without a genuine belief in their fruition.  A speaker must first ascertain what it is that they are truly capable of achieving.

Only a complacent witch would skip that part.

Trust.  Confidence. Calm assertiveness.  These are the ingredients summoned to empower otherwise latent words with an ability to produce desired results.  I needed my kids to remind me of that.  This did not happen overnight, but only after years of observing the energy these young human hearts would use to surround the words that I had only helped them to discover.  Apparently there was good reason to keep them around all this time:)

Over the past few weeks, the Bean sprouts, as well as their aging parents, have been batting one thousand.  We are getting what we want through the use of effective communication.  Words that are fueled with desire are powerful, but desire that is backed with unconditional belief is life-giving.

Hence forth, may I only open my mouth after consulting the divine source within, remembering that the most effective way to speak one’s mind is to first be silent.  For only in silence can a chattering mind prioritize the heart’s belief in self.

Recalling the words I wrote on the index cards never hurts, either.

Permission Granted

Picky, picky…

That’s it.

This is the only guideline a modern witch will ever need to fulfill her purpose.

And what is her purpose?

That’s easy.  Her only purpose is to be absolutely content with today and completely enthusiastic about tomorrow.

Somewhere, deep within us, we know that this basic element of overall satisfaction is all we need to continue producing more happiness.  And yet we spend so much time being unsatisfied that we guarantee our own failure to receive fulfillment and complete happiness with life as it unfolds before us.

(What?)

It’s simple, really.

It’s always okay to want more.  Wanting more, and creating more of that which would make you happy is why we are here.  The only reason that this doesn’t seem to “work that way” for many of us is because we forget to first be satisfied with what we have created for ourselves right now.

When we are not happy, we want to blame it on someone, or something else.  When and if we realize that our experience originates from within, we may view this as “bad news,” since we seem to have done such a horrible job!

“I created this mess?!”

Eventually we adjust to our creatorship,  connect the dots, and take responsibility for our own experience.  We allow ourselves to take note of a few of the good things that we created, mostly by default, and give ourselves about one minute’s worth of credit.

I can tell you from experience that feigned appreciation and sarcasm do not amount to much in the momentum department, but if you have spent the majority of your time on the planet feeling unsatisfied with your work, then this approach may be a good place to start.

Until we can remember to be completely (and genuinely) happy with EVERYTHING that we have created so far, we will never be able to receive more.

This is where the “picky, picky” guideline comes in handy.

If you have accepted 100{481f60fb7fc08a97087ee8811ab8611a52230fac02757ae663c11ad7fd13d9e5} responsibility for every circumstance in your life, then you have reclaimed ownership of your birthright to create your best life experience.  You know the creative equation.  You remember that your thoughts, focused intentions, and emotional responses are continually creating your current reality.  Once you have grasped the essential elegance of this universal truth, you are going to want to be a little more selective about the crap you are entertaining.

Contrary to outdated (and yet still popular) belief systems, you really are the one in charge.  It becomes impossible to pretend that you have no control over any of the thoughts and subsequent emotions that enter your creative power source.  You do.

Be picky.  Meticulously inspect every thought, opinion, attitude, and perceived notion that you allow to enter your mind and heart.  Does it feel like the energy of love?  Or does it originate from the energy of fear?

Determining potential players on your creative energy team through this method will help to provide yet another practical venue for the conscientious creator that you have remembered yourself to be.  Your decisiveness and attention to content will eventually define your individual art form by which you practice complete satisfaction with everything that you have created so far, everything that you are creating at this moment, and everything you are creating for tomorrow.

Natalie, so timely and true, has inspired me to offer today’s “picky” reminder by providing this quote from Ayn Rand:

“It is a rare gift: to feel reverence for your own life and to want the best, greatest, the highest possible, here, now, for your very own.”

Cave Dweller

Sometimes a human just needs to be alone.

I sure do.

Until recently, I never really understood how to do this.  Although being alone seemed intriguing, it also sounded rather boring.  Now that I have spent fifty-one years on the planet, being content with my own thoughts is finally getting easier.  This is an improvement from the past when it used to seem impossible to hear my own voice.

I could not sit quietly with myself for longer than two seconds before a thought, or idea, entered my mental arena.  Most of these thoughts were usually directly or indirectly influenced by another human being.

My mom likes to say that “no thought is original.”  Meanwhile, I longed for my thoughts to be.

“Where in the hell are my original thoughts?!”

I would close my eyes to peer within, and immediately start to feel like a crazy person.  I could not identify one single thought that did not originate with something I once heard, read, or observed.  Not one goddamn thought could be traced back to me.  Even the technique I was using to ‘quiet my mind and listen to my inner voice’ could be attributed to a suggestion made by someone else.

Mom was right.

Apparently, there is not one single thought on earth that has not been entertained, imagined, or activated by one or more of the six billion people who live here, or any of the billions of people who have.

So what.  We live on the planet of over-stimulation.  Isn’t that the whole idea?

Perhaps the source of our thoughts and ideas are not without influence, but our innovative and individual versions of thought are generated through our access to each other.  We have the ability to look over a limitless menu of preconceived notions.  We pick and choose our personal preferences in order to formulate our own ideas.  In turn, we offer these personalized versions to the Universe for further expansion.  Our thoughts are creating and co-creating our human experience at every moment.

A sense of sovereignty is no longer some vague notion that can only be acquired through social isolation.  Now I understand that I do not have to spend seven years in Tibet to be at peace with my own thoughts.  It is only when I allow myself to become an active participant among the expanding thoughts of human existence that I am fully aware of my true originality.

How do you know when your thoughts are completely your own?  Well, god forbid that someone else has already thought of this, but… “You will just know.” You just know!  You know it so profoundly, so absolutely, that you cannot even explain it.  Or write about it.  Obviously.

Hey look, Mom!  I found my original thought!!

No Worries

I miss my dad.

There has not been one day since he died that I don’t remember him.

The sadness of his loss is slowly being replaced with the simple joy I feel to have known him.  I’ve been experiencing some recent moments of gentle guidance from none other than the legend himself.  He still has me smiling.

My dad loved babies as much as they loved him.  His soothing voice and easy manner drew children to him like a magnet.  Any social gathering assured that there would be a young child on his lap, or a baby in his arms.

Fussy babies became miraculously calm when Dad held them.  At one time or another, all of his infant grandchildren (and many of his great grandchildren) have enjoyed peaceful slumber on their Poppy’s warm chest.  It was customary for babies to respond to Dad’s relaxed energy with an audible confirmation of the flatulent nature.

“Now that’s gas,” Dad would report with a noteworthy smile.

Of course, Dad wasn’t always the stress-free patriarch we have enjoyed over these last few decades.  Durwood is apparently quite perplexed whenever I mention that there were moments during my childhood when Dad was actually pretty “scary.”  Supporting a large family through sole proprietary means can weigh heavily on a man’s sense of responsibility.  Durwood now understands how a father might sometimes be perceived as rather frightening under these conditions.

As Dad’s obligations lightened over the years, so, too, did his demeanor.  Eventually his true nature became a welcome influence over those of us who had the pleasure of his company.

A master gardener by trade, Dad had a knack for nurturing.  It seemed that all forms of young organic matter (human included) flourished under his care.  His relaxed stature sustained our growth as individuals, with trademark ease reflected in all of his famous quips.  No one within Dad’s contact circle was exempt from his observations on life.

Many young parents (myself included) have been reassured by one or more of Dad’s classic commentaries.  Untimely displays of curdled spit-up, and even those particularly embarrassing occasions of a major blow-out (also known as Oh-My-God-There’s-Poop-Everywhere) were given a brief synopsis from Dad.

“It’s always good to know when everything is in healthy working order,” Dad would offer.

Concise and memorable remarks of this nature never failed to restore normalcy to most potentially worrisome scenarios.  Mildly uncomfortable and extremely disturbing circumstances were never a challenge for Dad.  I often find myself wondering how he would describe some of my current human conditions, and that’s when I smile.

“There’s more to life than money,” Dad would remind me.

Easy to say when you have it.

“A little dirt never hurt anybody,” I can hear him say.  “You come from good stock.  Everything falls into place after that.”

Relax.  Enjoy the day.  Keep the faith.

Take care of yourself.  Love and nurture your family.

Easy.

When I remember to follow Dad’s simple plan, I start to notice that all the other things, dirt included, really do fall into their proper place.

“See how that works?”

I hear you, Daddy.  Loud and clear.

Believe It or Not

We are limited by what we believe.  It is inevitable.  Our acquired philosophy will eventually be reflected in the life we lead.  That which we believe to be true becomes our human experience.  Depending on the structural integrity of one’s belief system, self-fulfilling-prophecy can be a blessing or a curse.

So how is it that we come to believe the things that we do?

Some of our truths are woven throughout our ancestral threads.  Many of our fundamental beliefs are absorbed during our childhood.  As adults, we interpret repeated experiences with reasoning.  This accumulated wisdom then continues to define and confirm the truths we live by.

Often our beliefs are nothing more than something we heard once.  Maybe we read it somewhere.  It sounded true to us at the time, and a seed of reasoning was planted.

Perhaps this information simply addressed one of our “why?” questions so fittingly that we automatically filed it among our collection.  Our brain is like a huge reference library.  The ‘philosophy section’ accounts for a large portion of our acquired information.  We rely on its resources daily to explain the stuff we do, and the stuff that does (or doesn’t) happen to us.  If our judgment mode is active, we like to apply our acquired wisdom to the stuff that happens to other humans, too.

Nothing guarantees the longevity of a philosophical tidbit more effectively than proof.  Once evidence is produced to uphold whatever it is you have stored in your reference library, the foundation for your operating system is established.  Confirmation in the form of a personal experience, or one that is merely witnessed, will assure that this particular belief becomes one of the truths you live by.  Belief-activation complete!

Jeez.  The process of establishing functioning elements in our internal operating system is so damn meticulous and fail-safe.  Is it any wonder why it can feel so difficult should we ever want to alter it?

Some of our personal belief structures serve us well.  No altering is required.  Satisfaction does not prompt change.

I really only began writing this essay since pondering a peculiar (yet satisfactory) element within my own system.  While I was running along our street the other day, one of our neighbors slowed down her vehicle on approach.  She rolled down her window to ask me how many miles I run a day.  This isn’t the first time that someone has asked, nor was it the first time I responded with feigned certainty.

I have no idea how many miles I run.  I could.  James bought me a pedometer for Christmas, but the device has not been calibrated properly due to human error (mine).

The truth is that I act upon a dopey notion that has nothing to do with distance.

“During any form of exercise, a consistent level of physical activity must reach at least sixty minutes before you will begin to burn fat.”

I read that somewhere.  I don’t even remember where I read it.  My brain just sucked in the information a long time ago, and I have  been stuck with it ever since.

Now when people ask me how many miles I run, I answer with a number that will generally satisfy inquiring minds.

“About six miles,”  I say.

This is not accurate.  I don’t care.

All I know is that it takes me about an hour to run about five miles.  I think.   It just seems simpler to respond with this number than to explain that “I have no idea and I don’t really care.  I’m only doing it as long as it takes to burn some fat off my butt.”

I like bacon.  I like cheesecake, too.  I also feel as if my life would not be complete without unlimited grazing privileges in the field of chocolate peppermint patties.  Running for at least sixty minutes levels the playground of indulgence where I can eat whatever I want.

Had I read that it is possible to burn fat with mind control, I might be attempting to operate within an alternative belief structure.  Too late.  Not interested.  Running is fun and cheese cake is good.  Satisfaction does not prompt a desire for change, so the sixty-minute philosophy will remain my truth.

“If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.”

Unless you have a workaholic mind, there is no reason to ever explore the intricate dynamics of your belief system.  I only think about this stuff when I have sixty minutes to kill.

Recurring facets of your life that are pleasing do not necessarily pose questions about your programming.  What about the ones that do?

I had one pesky operating manual that was super-glued to a shelf in the philosophy section of my brain for years.  It was titled, “Two Steps Forward and One Step Back.”

Have you heard of it?  Wildly popular among the low self-esteem crowd, it has been topping the best-seller list for centuries in the book store at the School of Hard Knocks.

I tried to pry it off my shelf with a crowbar once, but the thing weighs a ton.  Cunning and deceitful, it postures itself as a sensible and user-friendly book until you question it’s purpose.  Once it suspects that you are attempting removal, it will reciprocate with a cleverly-placed testament within your own life experience.  It has withstood the test of time and will not be trifled with.

Do not ignore it.  I tried that, too.

This book has a rock-solid structure behind its theory and it will continue to prove it.  It feeds on frustration.  Often unseen, it boasts endless woven fibers of repeated verification throughout its lengthy pages.  It has history.

Want to release it from primary control?

Treat it as the legend that it is.  Accept its worth.  Host a retirement party that the rest of the books in your system will talk about for years to come.  Give appreciation for the purpose it has so gallantly served throughout your historical journey.  Honor its worth for the comfort it has provided during times of struggle.  Show respect for the view it had offered during those times when you did not believe that progress toward a goal was even possible.

Everything responds to love and acceptance.  Even big, fat, over-bloated theories on life will rescind their duties when given the proper appreciation for the purpose they have served.

Glorious retirement from active duty allows the addition of fresh material.  Without any resistance, new energy is welcomed with ease.  Testing stages for more appealing theories have a chance for inclusion among life’s recurring experiences.

I started with a simple and concise version titled, “Two Steps Forward Equals Two Steps Forward.”  This one fits on the shelf nicely.

There have since been many more additions to my philosophy section, including the latest edition of “Effortless Steps.”  Riveting.  I can’t seem to put it down.

For what is a belief, really, if not an attractive explanation that you roll over in your mind, think of often, and repeat to yourself over and over again until it becomes your truth.

At least, that’s what I read somewhere:)

With Friends Like These…

One of the first suggestions made to clients who are seeking recovery from any form of addiction is to “find new friends.”

Seeking freedom from an addiction, or simply choosing to adopt a new and often unfamiliar approach to life is slightly smoother when you discontinue frequent interaction with others who engage in behavior that you view as personally destructive.  Eliminating unhealthy relationships might be one of the more obvious methods to improve your chances of a making successful changes in your life, but it is not always an option when these relationships include family.

As my sister-in-law Bethany would say, “We get to choose our friends, but we are always stuck with family.”

Since she married my brother, I suppose that would make us ‘stuck’ with each other…Bethany may be my sister-in-law, but we are also friends who support each other in healthy ways.  Making changes in your life is exciting when you have positive encouragement from loved ones, but what about other family members who continue to promote behavior that you are attempting to change in yourself?

I had a colleague who would remind people that they had two choices:  Sever your family ties completely, or accept that your relationship with family members will be superficial.  This makes perfect logical sense, but the theory is often difficult to carry out.  Emotional ties run deep.

For what seems like too many painful and frustrating years, I ignored the two-choice option.  Determined to change our family dynamics, I held on to the notion that I could somehow convert my loved ones.  All of my training and experience went right out the window as I continued to pursue a starring role in the “Jillian Saves Her Family” Chronicles.

This is what is referred to in psychology circles as “the bargaining stage.”  Like all phases of an emotional process (in this case mourning the loss of a family who will never know who you truly are), you eventually get through it.  In the end, you can only be true to yourself.

The process of knowing when to release your emotional ties with other individuals can only be determined by you.  You are the one who will always have your “best interest” in mind.  Should you find yourself in a circle of friends, or family, who are unable to appreciate, understand, or even acknowledge the choices you make, you can always smile and ask them how the weather has been lately:)

Once you make a conscious decision to ease yourself toward more suitable avenues of companionship, the genuine company you desire will manifest.  As true magic unfolds, you will notice that old friends and new acquaintances will flow into your experience at times that will benefit you both.

Perhaps the heartache of attempting to crack a few tough nuts in your life can be minimized by offering appreciation for their chosen path.  Honoring the choices of others facilitates the energy of your own growth, and releases the judgment that often accumulates within the unseen nooks and crannies of our soul.  It would seem futile to try and convince others to “see the light,”  when your ‘light’ is your own.  Allowing yourself to honor their path can only bring honor to your own journey.

Depending on the eyeglasses through which we are looking, what are we if not someone else’s version of a nut?

Sunday Best

When it comes to ritualistic Catholic aerobics, any length of time spent away from church becomes irrelevant.  After encountering what may be a brief period of uncertainty, a well-trained former Catholic can resume the proper procedure regarding when to sit, stand, kneel, repeat the words in a congregation-wide reply, and recite at least the last word of every sentence in the Act of Contrition during mass.

There were only a few instances when I had to cheat on my Catholic proficiency test by relying on the cues from others seated around me.  It may have been several years since I have attended mass, but it only took a few mysterious interludes before everything that I was supposed to do and say in church came flooding back to me in proper robotic form.

Occupying the pew directly behind me were my nephew, his beautiful wife, and their lovely children.  They were prompted to offer their directional assistance only twice.

“Stand up, we’re supposed to stand up!”  I heard these instructions delivered in a rapid whisper toward the back of my head.

Frankly, I was grateful to have someone rooting for my successful participation in the celebration of this particular mass.  For this had been a memorial mass to honor the life of the greatest man I have ever known.  I wanted my Daddy to be proud that he had instilled his children with a sense of respect for a religion that he had practiced devoutly throughout his entire 83 years of life.

Separating the inherent guilt, shame, and disturbing conduct revealed in the practice of Catholicism has allowed me to focus on the true value of family spiritual practice.  Although it is no great secret that I chose a different path upon which to guide my own children, I am thankful for the message of family tradition that my legendary father had provided his children.

I reserve no judgment toward the religious practice of other beings.  It is my opinion that there are at least as many ‘personal religions’ as there are members in any given mainstream church.

Mankind’s latest arrivals come equipped with Divine Source fully intact.  It is our job as parents to provide our children with a consistent message of their connection to All That Is.  Regardless of our own religious definition, we guide our children toward spiritual remembrance through our example.  Structured time to offer encouragement is elemental.

Brewing a pot of herbal tea, lighting incense, and gathering around a picnic table on the back patio for lively discussions that center on the nature of Higher Consciousness can be just as suitable as sitting, standing, kneeling, and reciting The Lord’s Prayer with hundreds of people gathered in a church sanctuary.  Family time to remind our children of Who They Really Are is all that matters.

Thanks, Daddy.  I miss you.

Natalie Chimes In

Encouraged by her recent commentary on young men (titled “Why Can’t They Get Girlfriends?”) Natalie Ellen Bean has just handed me the following essay to share with you.  It would appear that young Natalie has connected with the original intention that she held upon her arrival to the planet.  Like all of us who have chosen to experience life on this magnificent physical plane of existence, Natalie did not intend to use the opinions of her parents, or anyone else, to measure the appropriateness of her own desires and beliefs.  It is refreshing to know that she will not be waiting until she is over thirty years old to remember Who She Is.  I am letting her type this as is, since any editing from me would only defeat the theme of her latest revelation.

Hi, again!  It’s Natalie.  With more thoughts swirling around in my head, I appreciate that mom has given me a forum to share my ideas with you.

Being influenced by the opinions of other people has been one of my biggest issues.  We have all been in situations where we need some guidance.  As teenagers, we can get so down on ourselves that it is nearly impossible to think on our own.  I have learned that it is perfectly acceptable to depend on others for guidance, but at some point, we need to be able to sort things out for ourselves.

I still receive plenty of life’s lessons from my elders and teachers who offer valuable information on how to handle things.  But I have just realized that I have a mind of my own and I can actually use it.  I don’t mean that every 15 year old, like me, should stop listening to their parents and adopt the idea that we know everything.  We don’t know everything, but we do have the ability to handle ourselves.

Whenever I am having trouble with a friend, a boy, or even my siblings, I usually turn to my mom for guidance.  I have gained a lot of trust in my mom, and I know that she will always offer me the best advice for ME.  When I was in the midst of a bad break-up, I was constantly asking my mom what my next move should be.  While this was going down, one thing that she kept reminding me has stuck in my mind.

After I asked her, “What would everyone think if I did this?” she looked at me and said, “Natalie, you have to stop caring so much about what other people think.  You know who you are.  You know what’s right.”

Despite all of the sympathy that I was getting from my friends and other grown-ups, what my mom said to me that day truly made me feel that whatever decisions I had been making throughout the ordeal were the right ones for me.

It has taken me awhile to understand that I DO know what is best for me.  Don’t get me wrong, there are still a lot of teenagers who have no idea what’s best for them.  Maybe no one has reminded them that it’s okay to trust themselves first.  I feel as if I have really grasped the whole idea that when I am having trouble with myself, or there is something that I am having second thoughts about, I become vulnerable.  I can become so vulnerable to outside ideas that they can actually suppress MY OWN thoughts.  Now I always keep the image of a filter in my mind whenever I have doubts, or questions about the information I am receiving from others.  This image allows me to sift through the opinions of others that may be clouding my ability to think on my own.

For example, when I was going through a rough time with my boyfriend, I automatically allowed outside opinions to bubble in my head long enough to believe them, accept them, and label them as my own.  Then I remembered that no one else has been in the same position that I was in.  Maybe they had gone through something similar, but they could not possibly have experienced the exact things, in the same exact way, that I have.  They weren’t me.

Good friends, family, and teachers can always lead you in the right direction, offer comfort, and confirm your thoughts.  We DO pick up on what people we admire teach us, and we eventually branch out on our own when we are confident in our opinion of ourselves.  I do not believe that we should ever stop taking note of the experience of others, or stop being open to what grown-ups like to refer to as “constructive” criticism.  But we do need to learn how to filter out the outside thoughts that WE know can cloud our own judgment.

If one of my friends asks me for help, I am always willing to provide them with any of my own experiences that may benefit them.  But in these situations, I am beginning to remind myself that all they really need is a little nudge to discover what they already “know” in their heart.  They may feel lost or mindless because emotions are so powerful, but with a little nudge, they will be able to realize what they need to do in order to help themselves.

One big problem that I have noticed in high school is that people are constantly gossiping and doing the whole “You won’t believe what I heard about her” and “I shouldn’t tell you this” thing.  We are constantly getting our information about each other from second-hand sources, which is basically more opinion than fact.  I can admit to being a part of this, but I am now making an effort to stop contributing to the madness.  I am starting to “catch myself” more often.  I have started imagining that filter in my head for these situations, too.

I know that my mom has written about topics concerning the influence of other people’s opinions many times on this site.  She might think that she is writing for herself and other grown-ups who can relate to her experience, but she should know that I am reading this stuff, too.

Thanks, mom, for reminding me that I am my own person.  No one knows me as well as me.

Why Can’t They Get Girlfriends?

Natalie Ellen Bean has a few theories of her own.  On our daily trips home from school, she can offer some pretty interesting perspectives on teenage behavior.  (That is, when she’s in the mood to talk.)  I think it’s been at least one hundred years since I’ve been in high school, so I thought it would be intriguing if she shared a few of her observations with the rest of us.  After all, she is a good little witch:)

Hi!  I’m Natalie.  While mom’s working on her next post, I told her that I would be happy to write an article.  I’m fifteen, I’m home watching Olympic hockey with my dad on a Friday night, and I’m writing an article on my mom’s website….don’t judge me:-)

Boy / cellphone / whiteI just have to talk to the “nice guys” out there who might read mom’s blog.  I have a theory that there are ultimately two types of young men on earth.  Maybe they’re like this when they’re grown-up, too, but at my age, I know that I have come in contact with both types so far.

Young men in the first group are known as the “Nice Guys.” These guys usually fall into a sub-category of “just a friend.”  Most of the time these are the boys we meet in elementary school and grow up with.  They help us through thick and thin, we can turn to them for anything, but we always think of them as “just a friend.”

The “Nice Guy” group also includes the really nice boy that we meet at our new school.  He is someone to laugh with, hang out with, and the one who “has our back” even when we don’t realize that our back needs protection.  But alas, we girls still think of him as “just a friend.”

The second group of young men are widely known as the “Real Jerks.”  These are the guys who play the “Nice Guy” role so well that they end up breaking our heart.  Either they tell us that we mean everything to them, and end up telling the same thing to three other girls behind our back, or they lead us through a long relationship and end it painfully with some ridiculous excuse.

So, girls like me can look at both of these groups and easily decide which group describes the type of young man that we want to date.  It’s obvious that we should choose the Nice Guys, right?  So why do we all get drawn into the gravitational pull of the Real Jerks?!?….I don’t understand it yet.  I’m only fifteen, and yet I admit that I have been acquainted with a lot more jerks than nice guys during my first two years of high school.  Girls my age are constantly finding themselves falling head over heels for these bad boys (who often masquerade as good guys for awhile to suck us in), while the real “Nice Guys” are standing by, patiently awaiting their turn.

WHY?!?  Why are the nice guys forced to wait around and watch us fall in love with all of the jerks?  There may be a reason for this.  It’s because the good guys ARE so nice, that we tend to push them into “the friend zone.”

They aren’t stupid.  They are well aware that we put them there, but they don’t know how to escape our friend zone without harming our friendship.  It’s not like we put them safely in the friend zone on purpose, we just had no idea that they liked us “that way.”  Because they’re so nice, we have no clue that they have romantic motives.  They don’t say anything and they don’t express their romantic interest in us, because being forward (like a bad boy) is beneath them.  So, while we are busy drooling over these jerks, our poor nice guys are in the friend zone, quietly standing by.  After all, they want us to be happy.

I have a message that I would like to share with all of the “Nice Guys.”  You are just going to have to wait it out.  I’m so sorry.  Believe me when I tell you that this cycle that I have just described is not going to end.  (At least not anytime soon, while we are still young.)  The truth is, you “Nice Guys” will always win in the end.  Whether it’s that girl that you have been friends with since preschool, or the girl that you just met at college…you will get your chance.

First, we have to date all of the douche bags before we will finally realize that you are the ones that we have been waiting for.  It’s a sucky cycle, I know.  But we girls will get through it eventually, and learn how to improve ourselves after we make stupid choices.  So that by the time we do “see” you, we will gladly take you right out of the friend zone, and you will mean more to us than any jerk would ever have a chance to.

No matter how much you guys tell us that the guy we are dating is not the right one, or that we should be treated better, this is just something that we have to figure out on our own.  Once we do that, we will be able to realize that you guys told us all of that because you were the ones that really cared.

Thanks for listening.  This has been a guest article from Natalie Bean.  I would just like to tell all of the “Nice Guys” to never surrender, never give up.

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