The Grass Is Always Greener… or Is It?

I want to change things up a little bit for this blog. This poem was written April 2019 to capture the harsh realities associated with a divorce.

All couples experience challenging times in their relationship. Just because a relationship is going through a rough patch, however, doesn’t necessarily mean that life would be better if the relationship was over. 

Now, I’m not saying that every couple should stay together regardless of the circumstances. Plenty of couples would probably be happier and better off if they weren’t together. But it’s human nature for individuals to think that things would be better (and the grass would be greener) if they found a new partner, got a new job, or moved to a new house. And often that desire to chase something … anything … is more about the person and less about the situation.

So as the poem’s closing states…the grass may appear, but is seldom greener on the other side…and sometimes the grass is pretty darn green where you are.

The Wars We Wage

An impenetrable bond
That once encased two hearts
Is now in a state of disarray
Shattered and torn apart

And when the warring factions
Placed their battlements on the ground
Little was left standing
A familiar world turned upside down

Looking over the battlefield
Where both sides were engaged
Remained relics of the bitterness
From which this uncivil war was waged

And now the spoils from the victory
Seem hardly worth the cost
When considering the sheer magnitude
Of personal and financial loss

So, the lesson that can be taken
And one should keep in mind
The grass may appear, but is not always
Greener on the other side

Written by: Frank Antonicelli
April 2019

 

New Year Goals: Setting Your Sights on 2020

On March 13, 2019, I published my first blog post, aptly titled…”Why blog?” As I said in this first post, I had resisted prior suggestions to “start blogging” but I felt the time was right for me in 2019. (As an FYI, this is the 35th blog posting on this site.) So now’s the time to ask … What are my new year goals for 2020?

What This Blog Is and Was

Going into 2019, I said that I would write about subjects that were universal in nature. I also said that I wanted the messages to be positive, motivational and authentic. I hoped that the topics would be inspirational, while staying far away from controversial subjects such as politics and religion. I believe that we have successfully achieved these objectives.

I wanted to create a conversational writing style so readers felt like they were sitting around the kitchen table with a group of friends discussing topics of the day. I believe that we have created this type of forum, as well.

All in all, I think I have met my new year goals for 2019 as it relates to this blog.

And I want to offer a special thanks to all my “teammates” in creating and maintaining this blog throughout 2019: Karin Bilich, Chris Cockreham, Valerie Morris and Mike Lazear. They are an all-star team.

New Year Goals for 2020

Now, as another year winds down, it’s customary for many, including myself, to reflect on the past and begin to envision where they see themselves in the New Year.

I’m going to leave the year in review up to the readers and focus instead on questions for readers to assess going into 2020.

• Where do you see yourself in the New Year?

• Do you have a clear vision for the upcoming year?

• Do you have clarity of purpose for the New Year?

• Is your path for the future crystal clear?

• Do you envision a bright future?

Your answers to these questions should help to bring 2020 into focus for you…pun intended! ; )

As for myself, I actually plan to start a second blog in 2020. It will be similar in its conversational tone and its hope to uplift and inspire others. But it will focus on my Parkinson’s and what I’ve learned from that journey. If you’re interested in following me there as well, sign up here.

Wishing all a safe, happy, healthy and prosperous 2020! May all your new year goals come to fruition.

The Real Meaning of Christmas: From Commercialization to Humanization

I’m going to go a little tree-hugger with you today on what I believe to be the real meaning of Christmas. Take this with you as you think about getting into the spirit of the holiday season.

How We’ve Strayed from the Real Meaning of Christmas

My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving. Why? Because it allows us to briefly step off of the roller-coaster of life and to gather with — and to appreciate — those special loved ones in our lives. It also allows us to remember those that are no longer with us.

I would also have to say my least favorite holiday is Christmas. Because to me, Christmas has become over commercialized and in an unfortunate way, seems to have lost its human touch. So what can be done to recapture some of the real meaning and spirit of the Christmas holiday season?

An Inspiring Quote from Bruce Lee

As we aim to recapture the real meaning of Christmas, I’m going to cite a quote I recently heard from Bruce Lee, the internationally known Chinese-American actor, director, martial artist, martial arts instructor, and philosopher. Now I know Bruce Lee is not someone you would usually associate with Christmas festivities, but go with me on this one.

Bruce once said in a television interview: ”If every man would help his neighbor, no man would be without help.” I love this quote for the beauty, simplicity and power of Bruce Lee’s message. Let’s break it down…

Part I: If every man would help his neighbor

What the first part of this quote says to me is the importance of lending a helping hand to a fellow man/woman in your sphere. This can be as simple as spending time with someone that lives alone or helping with a specific priority task, to inviting them to be a part of your holiday festivities. The act isn’t about what it is you do (or even about you at all) but rather the awareness of someone else’s plight and then voluntarily reaching out and helping them in their time of need.

Part II: No man would be without help

The second part of this quote says to me that if everyone was to give of themselves to help another in need then no man/woman would be in need … because their need(s) would have been met. The selfless act of one person giving to someone in need would in turn create an exponential ripple effect — like a stone thrown into a pond — of kindness, goodwill and giving throughout the world. It would make the world a better place for all. (This is where I’m going tree-hugger on you, but I really believe it to be true.)

Take a Step to Humanize Christmas This Year

So for this Christmas holiday I would encourage you to try something: make it a point to spend a little less time focusing on the buying of presents (commercialization) and a little more time on the giving of your presence (humanization) to your fellow neighbor.

It truly will make the world a better place. And isn’t that the real meaning of Christmas? Wishing all a safe, happy, healthy 2019 holiday season!

Larry Bird Quotes: The World Through His Eyes

It would be sacrilegious for a long-time Boston Celtics fan to write blog post #33 (and yes, I’m counting) about anything other than “The Hick from French Lick,” also known as Larry Legend, #33 for the 1980’s Boston Celtics … you know … Larry Bird. In his honor, I will be talking a bit about his history (both personal and professional) and sharing some Larry Bird quotes of wisdom.

Bird’s Highlights

According to Nat Berman’s post “The 10 Most Inspirational Quotes by Larry Bird,” Larry Bird is the only person in the history of the National Basketball Association (NBA) to be named Most Valuable Player, Coach of the Year, and Executive of the Year.

After spending 13 years as a player with the Boston Celtics, during which he was an 11-time All Star, and won a trophy case full of awards, three NBA Championships, and an Olympic gold medal, Larry Bird retired from playing in 1992 and moved on to coaching.

 Just as he excelled as an athlete, Larry led the Indiana Pacers to some of the biggest franchise moments, including a 2000 NBA Finals appearance against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Larry Bird Quotes: In His Own Words

What better way to acknowledge the greatness of the man than to share some great Larry Bird quotes:

• “I don’t know if I practiced more than anybody but I sure practiced enough. I still wonder if somebody-somewhere was practicing more than me.”

• “I learned what my weaknesses were and I went out the next day to turn those weaknesses into strengths.”

• “A winner is someone who recognizes his God-given talents, works his tail off to develop them into skills, and uses these skills to accomplish his goals.”

“Push yourself again and again. Don’t give an inch until the final buzzer sounds.”

“I’ve got a theory that if you give 100% all of the time, somehow things will work out in the end.”

• “Don’t let winning make you soft. Don’t let losing make you quit. Don’t let your teammates down in any situation.”

• “You can make all the excuses you want. but if you’re not mentally tough and you’re not prepared to play every night, you’re not going to win.”

And there you have it, the world thought the eyes of a legend, Larry Bird. Take notes. There’s a lot we all can learn from “The Hick from French Lick.”