Tag: Living Happy

What’s a Soul Mate?

What’s a Soul Mate?

As the American writer Richard Bach said, “A soulmate is someone who has locks that fit our keys, and keys to fit our locks. When we feel safe enough to open the locks, our truest selves step out and we can be completely and honestly who we are.”

Not just anyone can fulfill you the way your soulmate can. There’s a world of a difference between your soulmate, your heart’s other half and a life partner — a person who lacks the elements to mold perfectly to you. Your soulmate makes you feel entirely whole, healed and intact, like no piece is missing from the puzzle. A life partner, on the other hand, can be a great supporter and long-time companion, but is limited in his or her capacity to enrich your spirit.

Today Eric and I drove to the Mayo Clinic, on our way home I had one of my playlists on. Soulmate by Josh Turner came on.  As I listened to the words,  I turned to Eric and said “We’ve been through so much together haven’t we?”  He agreed and we decided through the good and the bad we have made it through. Has it always been easy?  I will have to insert here HELL NO. No relationship is perfect, and even soulmates will experience ups and downs. However, because of those time the bond will be much harder to break. I believe Soulmates seem to have an easier time accepting, even learning to love, each other’s imperfections.  It took me along time to realize we needed to accept and love each other for exactly the way we are, accepting both the great and awful tendencies we all have. This is so hard sometimes especially if we have expectations beyond what our soulmate can deliver.

After 37 years together Eric and I have learned those triggers that can sometimes have us jumping to conclusions. We usually know exactly what the other’s reactions or thoughts are when someone speaks or something happens.  A soulmate is not someone you can walk away from that easily. It is someone you can’t imagine being without, a person you believe is worth sticking with and fighting for.  Over the years we have seen each other through some pretty hard situations-some that last for years.

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I can’t imagine my life without Frenchie-he truly knows my faults, weaknesses and fears yet still loves me through it all. Not a day goes by that he does say “I love you, You are Beautiful”

XOXO Monya

 

The Risks

The Risks

I spent 5 days in Las Vegas, which is probably my least favorite place to be.  I was there for a conference on how to grow my network marketing business through social media.  While I found the event to be highly effective and I learned a crap load of information about marketing, I seriously hated walking through the smoke filled casino just to get a bite to eat.  I will never understand the attraction people have with gambling their money away.  Some of these people stay up all night long, just hoping for that BIG win only to walk away empty handed, shattered and depressed.

As I walked through one morning I wondered “Did these people get any sleep at all? Do they have any money left? Where are their families?” I’m certainly not a ‘debbie downer’ I like to have fun, but not with my money or my future.  There is a lot of money in the world, plenty for everyone but working for it gives a sense of accomplishment and joy. I could not imagine sitting hour after hour putting money into these slot machines, money they probably worked hard for.

This is a danger zone…..with gambling addiction rising, people losing their homes and families this is not a life I would choose.  Boy was I grateful to get home to my safe haven, quiet and calm without the constant ringing and clanking of change dropping into the machine.  I decided I’m all about the sure thing, like a new pair of shoes….yes, I will take my money and buy something tangible and useful.

Las Vegas can be fun, but for me one day is enough and I want to walk away with some value being taken from it.  If I spent on shoes what some lose in those machines I could own a shoe store!!! Bottom line, what I learned?  I love my life and wouldn’t trade any of it, not even for a billion dollars.

Monya Bonbon

My Way

My Way

So there is something to be said about Frank Sinatra’s famous song “My Way” I’ve lived a life that most people might raise an eyebrow to. I have definitely bit off more than I could chew at times.  I’ve had my share of tears and heartache but more than that I handled it my way.  One thing I can say that is much different from Frank’s is I live with no regrets.

I have stood tall at times and felt insignificant at other times. I’m glad life hasn’t been an easy road, because through the twists and turns of life I’ve had opportunity to learn I love my life. I celebrate little things, I see somethings that may seem insignificant to other people and find the beauty in them.

I am true to myself and no longer need acceptance from other people. I am always imagining new ways of making life better through my interactions with other people. It only seems natural if I have lived and learned from my mistakes, aches and pains I would want to teach other people what ‘not’ to do…right? Or be teachable enough to learn from theirs. Boy I wish it was that easy, unfortunately we all have a path or journey in life we should be learning from, we own those experiences. I’ve  been taught so much about behaviors of the ‘human’ race; we all process trial, error and successes differently.

Through life’s inevitable up’s and downs I’ve had the opportunity to meet some amazing people and build a legacy business through network marketing.  In the beginning the purpose for joining was to expand my circle of friends. When we became empty nester’s I needed the interaction with other people. I soon found out not all companies are created equal. After four years with a company I thought I knew, loved and trusted the direction of they chose to take was not in alignment with my personal beliefs….remember I live with no regrets? I could not continue to recruit friends, family or strangers into an institution I no longer believed was going in the direction I wanted for my journey in life.

I have now aligned myself with some wonderful people who have taught me more in a couple of months about business, staying congruent and the best part…..I have seen my blood work change for the good. Bottom line…….I did this all My way, even when it wasn’t a popular thing to do, or friends and family rolled their eyes at me. Staying consistent with who you are, being true to yourself and listening to the inner voice that tells you ‘yes’ or ‘no’ is essential for living a happy and productive life. Do it your way.

Monya Bonbon

 

 

Why Kindness?

Why Kindness?

Why choose kindness?  This seems like a redundant question, but in a world where so many are struggling between choosing right or wrong I’m grateful I learned at a young age how to pray for guidance. I have learned throughout life that my day is always happier when I give people a little bit of my heart rather than a piece of my mind. One of the greatest gifts we have is the ability to be kind to other’s. When someone is in need, lend them a helping hand, pray for them. Don’t wait for a ‘thank you’ True kindness lies within each of us, giving without expecting anything in return strengthens your heart muscles and creates beautiful people.

There is something magical about being kind, it has a beautiful way of reaching down into a weary heart and making it feel sunshine. Every act of kindness I give always has a way of helping my spirit to grow and I’ve never walked away disappointed.  Have you ever met someone who has the natural ability to give away happiness just by them walking into a room? My mother in law Viola Williams was my favorite person in the world, she had a smile and laugh that could always take any heartache or bad experience away.

I realized I was an unhappy person when I was diagnosed with cancer 8 years ago. The seed of kindness that Viola has planted in my soul helped me to start cultivating an attitude of gratitude for life, friends and especially for family. I had a friend Sheldon Cook who was so kind and gentle when he spoke to me. One day I was bald from chemo and he said “You look beautiful” the empathy he showed came from a sincere place in his heart as he too was struggling with cancer and has since passed on. I will never forget his kind words, he taught me even one small word of kindness can change someone else’s day. We need not be selective on who we choose to be kind to, those who are the most unkind people need love too, actually they may need it more than we realize.

There is of course times when we need to draw healthy boundaries, but we should use prayer and wisdom when doing this. Don’t be took quick to judge, and don’t give up on people too quickly. I have learned to forgive but refuse to be a doormat; in other words do not let people take advantage of you or your situation, the spirit will guide you to know when it is time to let go and let be.

The picture above illustrates a bird alone, I would rather be that one bird who chooses the right then the twenty five who follow the crowd.  I want to live in such a way that if someone were to ask my children or grandchildren the definition of kindness, integrity and loyalty, they’d respond with “My Mother, or my Grandmother; Bonbon”

XOXO Monya Bonbon

Happiness at every Age

Happiness at every Age

I believe some of my best days are yet to come. There are researchers who say levels of happiness are different as life changes throughout our lives.

Depending on what was happening in our life at different ages, happiness kind of follows a U-shape curve as we age. Your peak years of happiness seem to be not only when you are young, in great health and having fun but also again in retirement when your mind and body may not be as sharp and fit but you have a new outlook and want to make every moment count.

I love that our Heavenly Father created us all equal but with different spirits and gave us choices. What makes one person happy or content may be different from what makes someone else happy and elated. Throughout life our expectations of happiness change, as my journey from one phase of life to the next I’ve definetly matured and learned from all my experiences.

Most people in their 20’s are motivated by school, involved with causes and comparing themselves to other’s their age. My 20’s were filled with heartache and disappointment. Balancing dating and career choices can be challenging. My advice; focus on what you can control-doing your best. Try getting into the best school for YOU, and start a good job. Ignore what you cannot control–don’t compare your ‘likes’ on Facebook or social media to what everyone else is doing…just be you the beautiful flower you are beginning to bloom into.

In the third decade of life many people have established themselves in careers and began families. If you choose to experience a career or become an entrepreneur or being a wife and mother be the best at it as you can. Pray for patience. In a career, George Vaillant M.D. says there are four C’s to finding joy. “Find something you are competent at, committed to, compensated for and contented with.” As a young mother I made so many mistakes, and compared myself to mother’s who I believed were completely out of my league of knowledge in parenting.
Now looking back my advice would be this; it’s important to be sure you’re being valuable to someone else, maybe your children or husband. Form and cultivate relationships, not just at work but in all aspects of your life, where you have something to offer that someone else wants.

When I turned 40 I felt I was in the best health of my life, eating right, working out everyday and enjoying my teenagers. For some people it’s a balancing act to take care of their children and care for their aging parents. I didn’t have the pleasure of caring for my mother as she aged, so I concentrated on my family life. The mothering ‘guilt’ was gone I felt I had done well at raising intelligent beautiful children. In my 40’s I began to understand a little about happiness, I was more calm and peaceful. My story is not quite typical, as in my late 40’s I was diagnosed with breast cancer, but for the typical person in their 40’s it’s a time of self assurance, finding joy in what they have accomplished in life thus far.

Now I am in my 50’s–I read one time that the younger generation believes when you wake up on your 50th birthday you suddenly want to move to a small village in Costa Rica to open up a dog shelter…..ha ha, if my family is reading this they will laugh because that is that last thing on earth I would do–no matter what age. As funny as that is, it’s simply not my reality. I have always been someone’s mom, or Eric’s wife. I have had to redefine myself seek out new hobbies, try new things. I’ve had to learn to not compare my wealth to the health I had in my 20’s. I now realize I don’t get everything in life, but I’ve managed to accomplish quite a bit. I happy on a different level, everyday I thank my Heavenly Father for allowing me to experience another sunrise, or the opportunity to play with my beautiful grandchildren. I’ve learned I am enough, I am strong, brave and compassionate. I am celebrating the small miracles I see in my life and look forward to exploring more of who I am. I listen to my heart and ask for help through prayer. I love my life right now, I’m true to myself and work hard to serve others.

I am looking forward to doors opening up for me as I move into my 60’s and beyond. Above all my family means more to me than ever before. I have faith and hope for a future full of pure joy.

XOXO Monya Bonbon

It’s Not Your Fault

It’s Not Your Fault

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So many people have made this remark to me since my book was published “You know it wasn’t your fault right?”  The truth is, yes now I know that, but at the time I thought it was all my fault.

It wasn’t my fault I wasn’t protected from getting hurt at the hands of an adult.

It wasn’t my fault I wasn’t told how much I mattered, and what my individual worth was.

It wasn’t my fault I had no voice, or that I was powerless and didn’t know how to say “no.”

It wasn’t my fault I didn’t now where to draw boundaries, or how to protect my heart, mind and body from being crushed.

It wasn’t my fault the people who should have been protecting me, and guiding me were too involved in their own lives to keep me safe.

I grew up without knowing where to draw the line between abuse and love, actually I never felt love and because of this I allowed other’s to hurt me, when really all I ever wanted was to feel unconditional love.

None of that was my fault.  Growing older and becoming a woman I learned how to let myself feel anger, disappointed, and trust by allowing those emotions to be real.

I think it’s important to let yourself be angry.  You should be angry that you were never told how much you were worth. That you never protected yourself because nobody ever protected you.  It’s important for you to know you did not allow people to violate you. Those lines should have been there but never were because you weren’t taught how to draw those lines in the sand.

Because I wasn’t  taught how important I was, and how much it I mattered it took cancer for me to understand how much I love life, and how to find happiness. I do this by bringing joy and  happiness to other’s, I serve everyday someone who needs love or simple remembrance that people do care.

I needed to first let the anger rise within me. Allow myself  to cry tears of rage and grief for all I had lost. So much was taken from me – other people look life, light and fun from my life–those things I can never get back, but I can choose today to move forward and be happy.

My advise to those who have felt the feelings of abandonment  is to use that anger to fight for yourself in the way you should have been fought for. Use it to reclaim all that has been taken, to reclaim your heart. Let the anger become a fire that rages in your soul and burns away the tarnish that others have left upon you. Let the flames consume you, let them purify you, let them cleanse you and refine you until all that is left is the beauty of who you really are.

Your worth is great. You were created by the same hands that created the galaxies and the stars and the oceans and the storms and the wind that rages across the four corners of the earth. You were breathed into existence, not by accident, but with purpose, with promise. The entire universe listens just to hear the beating of your heart and the whisper of your breath. You were meant to be here. You were supposed to be here.

You were wanted here, you have a purpose, find it and run with it.

You are worthy of the kind of love that nurtures your soul and heals your heart. A love that sees your value and worth and believes in you. A love that is strong and kind, loyal and true. A love that brushes the hair from your eyes and kisses your forehead and gives you its jacket when you are cold and holds your hand when you are scared and draws you into its arms and doesn’t let go until it stops hurting. You are worthy of someone whose feet are anchored; who loves you when you radiate with the light of the moon and stars, and loves you even harder when you are cast in the shadow of your own cold sorrow.

You are worthy of a love that will never, ever hurt you, the moment you come to know this truth, is the moment nobody can ever take that away from you again.

XOXO Monya Bonbon

Ellis Duane Bigelow

Ellis Duane Bigelow


There is such a thing as parent guilt….I know because I have it. I worked hard to earn a trip to Puerto Vallarta through Nerium, it was not easy but I soon found out there are things more important–I thought I knew this.

Haleigh and Scott were not due to have the baby until the first week in November so I figured I’d be ok to go on the trip and be ready for the baby to come when I got home. The time got closer for us to leave and Haleigh was already having contractions, but still not close enough to be having her baby yet.

We talked to Haleigh about going or staying, which was not the problem. Later she told me it was something I said that really bothered her. She said she was hurt because I told her if she had the baby we would fly home and then go back if we needed to. Seriously? How dumb is that?

The entire time we were gone we called everyday to see how things were going and what the doctor was saying. We continued to hear Haleigh was still moving slowly. We made it through the week but found out the morning we were leaving to come home she had already had the baby that morning.

Of course my motherly instinct set in and I was feeling very guilty for not being there. Moments after Ellis was born Haleigh started to feel short of breath–she knew right away something was wrong, she couldn’t breathe and felt like her throat was closing up. She began to cough and couldn’t catch her breath. Her lungs felt like they were collapsing and her oxygen levels were dropping really quickly. Her doctor took one look at her and immediately called for back up. She said the room went from three people to 25 within a few minutes. They started her on a heart monitor and rushed her in for a CT scan. She said her heart went from feeling an overwhelming amount of indescribable love and happiness to terror as they wheeled her away. They admitted her into the ICU, and her doctor told her she had blood and fluid in her lungs–somehow that fluid traveled up into her lungs causing pain in her chest. She spent quite a bit of time in the ICU away from Ellis.

Poor Scott was devastated standing holding his brand new baby watching the staff frantically rushing around Haleigh and finally rushing her to the ICU. I’m not going to even try to understand the emotions he must have been going through. I try to live with no regrets, but today I feel regret for not being there for my baby girl.

Boy do I make mistakes, I say things I shouldn’t and I’m continually apologizing to my children.
I would never intentionally hurt any of my children, all I can do is say I’m sorry and do better next time. I hope my children will be more in tune and better at motherhood than I have ever been.

Welcome to our world Ellis Duane Bigelow born October 28th, 2017 at 8:14 am. He weighed in at 6 lbs 14 oz. and 22 inches long.

XoXo Monya Bonbon

Thought Project

Thought Project

I’ve heard that the happiness in your life depends so much on the quality of your thoughts. I believe this is so true. For many years I was fed negative words I felt worthless and unimportant. The damage was incredibly damaging, I’ve taken the past seven years to transform my thinking by listening with my heart and acting on impressions I receive to help other people.

The brain is such a powerful organ, everyone likes to hear they are wanted, needed and important. I feel like I’ve been given a second chance to change my thoughts not only towards myself but to reexamine why people say and do the things they do.

I realize now if we all knew just how powerful they are we’d probably never think a negative thought again. I think the primary cause of un-happiness usually has nothing to do with the situation but more about your thoughts about it.

Recently Eric and I visited a few countries Italy, Croatia, and Greece. The day was absolutely beautiful, as I waited for Eric I watched a young girl (maybe 4 or 5) she played joyfully with a small souvenir her parents had bought for her. The look on the girl’s face was priceless as she counted in her cute English accent’ the times she was able to flip the ball into it’s carriage. Suddenly a grumpy old man walked passed just as she flipped the ball into the air, it happened to hit the man on the arm. He quickly turned to the little girl and said “You brat, how stupid are you?” What came next was amazing to watch. She turned and said “Sorry to have bothered you, I hope the rest of your day is better.”

In my opinion this little girl was taught very well, manners matter and she knew it. What the man said to her didn’t seem to penetrate her brain as it did mine. She continued on with a smile
she wasn’t hurt in the least by this immature, ignorant man. She realized it was his problem, she apologized and went about her business.

Changing thought process’s is very difficult, but it can be done. I’m working on it, everyday I watch and learn by the experiences around me. Is the situation really the problem? Or is there an opportunity to learn and grow? Thoughts lead to purpose–with purposes it helps us go forward with action–we know actions turn to habits–most habits decide our character, and character helps define our destiny. One thing I try to do everyday is for every negative thought I have I put money in a container, then at the end of the year I will give this to a charity of my choice. I am getting really good at releasing those negative thoughts before they enter my head and replacing them with positive ones, soon I will be replacing the negative thoughts with the positive and have a much larger amount of money to give.

Monya Bonbon

In a Nut Shell

In a Nut Shell


I’ll never forget the day I delivered each one of our four children. Each have their own delivery story, each came with a sweet scent of perfection, and a Heavenly presence. Those moments seem to have flown by, but I remember them so vividly like it was yesterday.

Frenchie and I had four children under the age of six, and I was overwhelmed. Just as one baby would go down for a nap another would wake up for play time. More than an hour or two of consecutive sleep was un-heard of. Before I knew it two were in school, then the third followed soon after. Knowing I was not going to have anymore children I tried to enjoy every moment I had with my youngest, Haleigh. We went shopping, out to lunch, played at the park and enjoyed watching movies together. The day I had to put her on the bus for her first day of school, I followed the bus to make sure they arrived safely. When I saw the route the bus took, I decided I could do it much better and have more time with her. From that day forward I took all my children to school and picked them up.

Now fast forward many years, they are all married. The three oldest have children of their own and my baby Haleigh is giving birth to her first child in November. The circle of life is happening, I never thought I’d love life this much–but I do.

In a nut shell, my advice is enjoy every bit of peanut butter and jelly that gets smeared on their faces, chairs and tables, leave the dishes one night and read a book to them, snuggle them tight, say I love you as much as possible and write it all down. Life moves so quickly, we cannot get it back look forward to tomorrow, lower your voice and soften your heart to the things that really won’t matter in a month or a year.

Monya Bonbon

NYC

NYC

Frenchie and I had the privilege of visiting New York City a couple of weeks ago. I was invited by my publisher. Pitching is more like sharing your story-for me it was emotional.

I’m glad I didn’t realize before I went how many authors would be in attendance doing the exact same thing. I really wasn’t concerned until I heard some of their pitches–amazing! Not all are memoirs like mine, some were fantasy, drama, comedy etc. I have said it plenty of times but I am not a traditional writer, I started on a blog, raw and real but with plenty of grammar mistakes. These authors I was surrounded with were professionals–YIKES

There was one particular author that stood out to me, her name is K.M. Langdon the name of her book ‘Unsealed’. Her amazing story was original, true and emotionally charged it left me wanting to know more. I’m looking forward to reading it.

Frenchie and I decided to spend a few extra days in the BIG APPLE, we’ve been so many times but still never tire of the majestic architecture, the diversity in food, and of course people watching. Time Square is perfect for this, I could write an entire book on the things we saw, ate, heard, smelled and felt while being in this historic city.

My favorite travel partner is so fun, Frenchie loves to explore, see new things and eat. This makes a great combination for a world traveler–he loves to see it all.

Although I left the pitch fest feeling like it was a great experience, one I would do again if given the opportunity-I let it leave my mind knowing it was a FAT chance my story would be chosen. This week I received a letter from each movie producer, 8 out of the 8 producers loved my pitch and were amazed by my story–they want to know more. So for now I just sit and be patient, continue with my journey in life and trust the process.

Frenchie and I had so much fun in New York–I’m grateful to have his support and love in all I do.

Monya Bonbon