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Go back to my shop: http://etsy.com/shop/tinahdee - see my other shop at http://etsy.com/shop/tinahdeeToo

When I was 16, I became completely invisible. Oh, school had been bad enough, but when I was 16, I became invisible to the people I thought would always see me. I became invisible to my parents. Let me explain.

I don’t know how my mother and father met, but I know that according to my mother’s parents, they never should have. Mom came from a well-to-do, educated New England family. Dad came from Jersey. Blue collar, a bit rough around the edges. When it was time for Mom to go to college and Dad to go into the Army, my future grandparents thought that was that and it was over. But Skeet and Gerri, my future parents, stuck it out. For my mom, Gerri, getting married to blue collar Skeeter was the ultimate act of rebellion against her pare…

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  • Female
  • Born on December 21
  • Joined May 8, 2008

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gold, copper, silver, bronze, brass, labradorite, stones, wood, gemstones, crystal, leather

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  • tinahdee
    Unique Wedding Rings and Rustic Mens Rings...

About

Go back to my shop: http://etsy.com/shop/tinahdee - see my other shop at http://etsy.com/shop/tinahdeeToo

When I was 16, I became completely invisible. Oh, school had been bad enough, but when I was 16, I became invisible to the people I thought would always see me. I became invisible to my parents. Let me explain.

I don’t know how my mother and father met, but I know that according to my mother’s parents, they never should have. Mom came from a well-to-do, educated New England family. Dad came from Jersey. Blue collar, a bit rough around the edges. When it was time for Mom to go to college and Dad to go into the Army, my future grandparents thought that was that and it was over. But Skeet and Gerri, my future parents, stuck it out. For my mom, Gerri, getting married to blue collar Skeeter was the ultimate act of rebellion against her parents.

Skeet and Gerri had two babies: me, and my little sister. They had a rocky relationship. He had an eye for other women and traveled a lot. She resented the lack of attention and turned to vodka. By the time I was a teenager, things were not good in my house and I had turned against my parents out of frustration. When I was 16 and my father Skeet was 40, he left us for another woman. My mom had a nervous breakdown. She decided to keep my little sister, but I, being the rebellious one, was too much. she drove me down the street, dropped me off at the corner, and told me never to come back home. Recently, I dug up my parents’ divorce papers. My name is missing from that paperwork. In 1979, before computers, it would have been easy enough to simply not tell the judge I existed. My estranged parents agreed together to leave me out – Dad would not have to pay the extra child support, and Mom would not have to be responsible for caring for me. I was invisible.

Why am I telling you this? I want you to know that being dropped off on the corner 35 years ago has turned out to be one of the best things that has ever happened to me. It wasn’t meant to be, but that is how it has turned out. Author Paolo Cuehlo said, “Many times, the wrong train took me to the right place.”

That’s me. I got put on the wrong train early in my life. But I ended up in the right place. My experience of having to survive out on the street forced me to trust my instincts, to be determined, and turned me into a unconventional person. I never learned to conform to society’s demands. I don’t have too much trouble following my heart. I believe when we can follow the deepest call of our heart, we will always end up in the right place.

We all find ourselves on a train in life from the day we are born. I trust that your parents put you on the Right Train, but maybe your parents were like mine and you feel like you got on the Wrong Track. Either way, it seems like we got put on our train, we ride it, and that’s that.

It reminds me of It’s a Small World, have you ever been on that ride at Disney? You get in the boat with the other people and it takes you where you’re supposed to go and once you’re on it, you’re on it and you’re gonna have that song stuck in your head for days. And there are some pretty cool things in there, in that big building where they have created that ride to entertain you and your family. But it is a set course – you don’t get to choose what you see and do. Just get in, sit down, and ride. And don’t rock the boat.

Or maybe your life ride is more like space mountain – you get to the end by white knuckling it the whole way. Or the haunted mansion – you think you made it out but a little demon is going home with you at the end….

There are a lot of people who get to the end of life and say things like, I wish I’d spent less time working. Middle aged people’s kids are moving out and they reflect back and wonder how did eighteen years go by so fast and what was I doing? And we shrug and accept it because we think that’s just the way it is. You go to school, you go to college, you get something called a career, you work for forty years, you retire. Sometimes it takes a crisis like kids leaving, or a close friend passing away, or a health diagnosis to wake us up and then we start looking outside the prescribed path for something more. We stand up and rock the boat of our own life because we finally realize: why exactly does society get to tell me how to live?

And when that question gets asked, magic starts to happen. When you push back against the status quo and start to follow your heart, when you refuse to conform any longer, you unlock all the hidden treasures surrounding you that are just waiting to be found, that so many walk right past and never see.

Have you asked that question before but you were afraid to push back or stop conforming because you want to fit in or be liked? Because of my unconventional past I’ve never been afraid of telling someone, I’m sorry but I don’t want to do things your way. I never had anything to lose by following my heart. I was already an outcast. Not being afraid of that set me free to really be who I wanted to be. But I have a secret for you. Listen carefully because you’re not supposed to know this. If you buck the system and follow your dreams in life, you will not be an outcast. You might lose some so-called friends, but the right people will be drawn to you because you are more alive, more connected with that spark inside, more joyful and less fearful. And you can become a success in some pretty unusual ways.

10 years after my time as a homeless teen, when my husband Darin and I got together, I told him I wanted to start doing some freelance writing. Which was odd because I didn’t have any training or education. After all, when most people were getting high school diplomas and applying to college, I’d been out on the street and didn’t really have time to study. But since I didn’t know any better, I followed my heart, started sending out proposals to editors, and before long I was assigned my first article for a magazine owned by Entrepreneur Media. Before long I was freelancing full time, working from our home, and eventually, in 1997 I was hired as a staff reporter and editor for one of the biggest technology news web sites. I worked from home, bouncing babies on my knee while I typed away.

When my writing career started to slow down after the mortgage crisis, I had no idea what I was going to do for work. I had all these kids at home and we were homeschooling them, so going out and finding an office job was not an option. Almost by accident, I started a new career as a jewelry maker. I didn’t know that you couldn’t just start making gold wedding rings without training as a jeweler. I didn’t know that you couldn’t run a successful business without an MBA or at least a bachelor’s degree. Once again, I was just following my heart. Once again my heart didn’t let me down – in spite of my inexperience and mistakes, my jewelry business became very successful and I was able to support my entire family while my husband worked on starting his own business.

It hasn’t always been easy or fun, but it has always been satisfying, because the things I have done were things that my heart was asking me to do. Is there something that your heart has been calling to you to do and you really want to do it but part of you thinks, that is ridiculous? What would people think? Maybe you say, I don’t deserve to do that? Maybe you say, I’m not qualified or I just can’t? When you have thoughts like that, here’s what you do, come on and do it with me, you extend your right hand, palm facing out, and you say STOP. Talk to the hand. That’s all. You silence those voices and those people who, with good or bad intentions, try to stop you from getting on the wrong train.

I believe each and every one of us comes to the table with beauty and gifts that no one else has. Conformity and fear can dull beauty. Everyone puts on the same gray coat and covers up their beautiful colors in order to fit in. This is what society wants. Is this what you want for yourself? You can’t rock the boat at It’s a Small World. They’ll throw you out. But in your own life, you can grab the wheel and turn the boat wherever you like. It’s your boat. Listen to your heart and set sail. You may be delighted by where you end up.

I have another account under the etsy username "purityrings". I have a buyer account called "theotheryou".

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