Where are you Needed?

Photo by Alysia Thomas

When we set priorities in our lives on how to spend our time, whether it’s work, personal or emotional, so many distractions can get in the way. But sometimes it’s not only distractions. There may be a project or mission you have been working on, which has built a life of its own. You are good at it, and it’s successful. It’s easy to stay in that comfort zone, rather than venture out into something new. But what happens when you get the nagging feeling that your path has changed? What you are doing has served you in the past, but now your purpose has grown as you have.

Asking where you are needed now might help you soothe those nagging thoughts.

My purpose of bringing hope has been brought to others in many different ways over the years. I have written fiction books that soften the harshness of reality and inspire others to fight for what they believe in. I have written a non-fiction book that honors young adults who never gave up. I teach the art of writing fiction and journaling to open people’s worlds to possibilities.

The creation of Nick’s Fight to be Healed Foundation was a manifestation of two parents’ grief and the need to help others emotionally and financially. That need is still there. 90 children each year are newly diagnosed and over 900 each year come back for treatment and checkups just at The Melodies Center in Albany Medical Center. The need for the foundation is there, but where am I needed within or outside the foundation?

What comes up for me is writing techniques that I share with others on how they can heal and become self-aware through journaling. Person to Person connections. That is where I thrive and as more people struggle with illness, a lost sense of purpose, and pain, that need grows even stronger.

I have taken a windy path to this road, and I couldn’t have gotten to this level of awareness and ability without my previous experiences. Plus, that nagging feeling goes away for me when I accept the truth of where I should be. It doesn’t mean that I am leaving what I am doing. But it does mean that I am shifting my role. The best way I can serve others is by following my purpose. It hasn’t steered me wrong yet.

Where are you needed? Write about it and connect to what you feel when you are writing. Your gut knows you better than anyone. Listen to it and follow your path.


Finding Purpose–Sharing your Gifts

Angel Oak Tree, Johns Island, SC (Photo by Janine Cammarata)

When we take care of ourselves, find out who we are, and grow our purpose, we may want to share it with the world. Trees absorb the energy and nutrients from the earth, take what they need, and then releases all their goodness so that we can live. That is part of their purpose and their branches and leaves reach out to make an impact on others.

  1. What do you want to give to the world?
  2. What is your purpose and how will you share it?
  3. How do you want to make an impact?
  4. What does that impact look like to you?
  5. How does it feel to know what truly feeds your soul?

Trees have known a secret since the beginning of life on earth. They have to shed what doesn’t serve them anymore to make room for what will. Even the evergreens lose their needles and renew again. When leaves fall, it’s a sign that another season has come to an end. Another cycle has come and gone, so that another one can begin.


  1. What can you let go that no longer serves you?
  2. Is there something you are doing that prevents your newly found purpose from evolving?

Creating space to let the new in or to allow room to grow is part of our learning process. As seasons change, so do we.

Monthly Journal Workshop-Giving

Tonight’s monthly journaling workshop at the Clifton Park-Halfmoon Public Library was simply gratifying for all! Half of the participants were brand new and the other half were regulars who have committed to taking time for themselves.

The theme was gratitude, giving back, and being good to ourselves. Sometimes the best way to feel better is to give and remember what is wonderful in our lives. Here are some of the participants’ journal entries!gratitudesarahl

The month of Thanksgiving is the perfect time to start a gratitude journal. Waking up with the intention of striving for happiness changes your attitude and sets up your day for something great. When you take the time to journal on what was positive in your day then you are happier. Your world becomes a better place. You are creating precious and wonderful memories.


Everyone wrote about their volunteer experiences and other foundations they would like to get involved in. Giving back has a way of creating gratitude. Helping others can have a healing effect. Knowing you are having a positive impact on someone else lifts your spirit.

Giving to yourself is probably the hardest way to make a difference, but it can be the most impactful! When we are kind to ourselves, we can give more to others. But who is the first person we forget about when the holidays or life gets too stressful? Ourselves! Write about what the holidays mean to you and about what kind of holiday you want to have.

Then give the gift of doing something for yourself. You are worth it.


It can be as simple as being in the moment. Sometimes a pop, clink and fizz is needed to get through that stressful moment!


Positive and genuine affirmations are huge gifts to ourselves.



Buy that sweater you have been wanting, take the time to read a book, and treat yourself like the special person you are!

What are you grateful for?

How do you give back?

What will you do to be good to yourself?

Especially during this holiday season, take the time to journal and be kind to yourself. It’ll make a difference in your life and the world around you.

Next month’s journal workshop is December 13th! Take the time and register for you!


Conscious Gratitude-Day 28

Today I am grateful for taking the time to be with a special family. There was a Chairity fundraiser in memory of Nick Heald who passed away July 29, 2017.
There were so many amazingly crafted Adirondack style chairs made by those who love and miss this beautiful young man. Nick always made a similar chair for the South Glens Falls Marathon Dance that annually raises an incredible amount of money each year to help families in need and local foundations.

Events like these help the family, and I felt so much love as everyone united over a common cause. I was glad I went and thankful to everyone who treated me like family.

What Does it Mean to Live a Life of Value?

family photo 2008
Most important was teaching my boys to value themselves.

What does it mean to live a life of value, to be valued, to have a valued life? The last two feel external–like others decide if I am of value.

To live a life of value feels personal. But what does it mean to me? What do I deem importance enough to act upon?

–Creating a family and raising strong, compassionate, and kind children.

–Standing up for others.

–Putting myself in someone else’s shoes to empathize with what they are going through or at least appreciate their path, whether or not I agree with it.

–Providing hope through my stories. Sharing lessons of healing.

–Giving back despite or because of my pain.

–Letting those I love know.

–Helping someone/showing kindness–holding a door, picking up an item they dropped when their hands are full, helping a friend in need, smiling at someone I don’t know.

–Giving myself space to create and just be, so I know what my values are.

–Practicing yoga. Taking care of myself.

By writing my values down, I can honestly look at each and see if I am true to them. If not, then I can take appropriate action.

What does living a life of value mean to you? What’s important enough to push you to action?

Simply Snow

Depending on your perspective, where you had to be, and how much you like snow, today was either a good or bad day. I watched the news for a bit, and the reporters covered how nice it is for some to stay at home, but emergency technicians have to be out to help others in need. They don’t get a choice and are to be commended for their dedication.

Then on Facebook I saw a video of the City Mission of Schenectady explaining how their shelters are overflowing and volunteers still show up to feed everyone and lend support. They were grateful that they are able to help others and can only do it because of the support they receive from the community.

I’m sure others were very excited about the snow and braved it to go skiing or snow shoeing, and yet others can’t wait until spring and the warm weather comes.

Being forced to stay home was very productive and calming for me. I was able to get a lot done on a project for my foundation and enjoy watching the snow fall and flit around. My dogs enjoyed the snow, well at least Dakota did.

Zoey barely made it off the steps and then ran back in!
Dakota finally came in after he became a snowdon!

As I sit and think about this day and the simplicity of being home, I am thankful for it. I am thankful that I have a warm home to sleep in, that I have food on my table, and that everyone I know is safe.


I am grateful for the brave men and women who risk their lives in this weather to save those who are hurt or ill. For years, my mom was an EMT, and we accepted that at all hours of the night she would get called out for emergencies. It takes a special person to be able to handle the tragedies and be able to focus in such difficult situations. I don’t know how she did it, but I was always very proud of her.

I am thankful for those who dedicate their lives in the service of others, and venture out in this weather so that those who are at a hard point in their lives have hope.

I am always thankful for my wonderful dogs who take life in stride and enjoy every moment whether it’s a blizzard or blazing sunshine!

To everyone who has to travel in the next couple days, be safe!

What are you thankful for today?