December and the Christmas celebrations have begun. I am in shock! For the first time in my life, I look forward to going to parties. In fact, I've gone to 3 of them quite willingly.

Sure, I'd go to parties - ones where I knew who'd be there and where I felt I had some degree of control. Then, there would be the ones where I'd create some sort of criteria that would keep me away.

Shhh! Please don't tell anyone from my past, but in all the years that I taught, I would make up excuses why I couldn't attend the staff Christmas or year-end parties.

To me the reasons were all legitimate. Looking back, I know that my reasons had to do with the F-word - Fear!

"What if no one talks to me?" "What am I going to say?" "I might look stupid." On and on it went. The limiting self-talk that would get in the way of enjoying life and that was a direct result of un-transformed stress.

I can't believe that I even go to them by myself now! Life has certainly become much more interesting.

I have to say it...are you ready for it? "My, I've come a long way, baby!"