Living, Playing and Moving Forward
Date Published: December 8, 2020
Publisher: Balboa Press
C’mon, Let’s Play!” shares methods for the readers to
play with that can help them change their lives. Here, Suberla reflects on
her life journey, and uses her own examples of good and bad choices to give
practical advice on how to achieve your goals. With humor, she shares her
approach to making some life changing choices including how she became a
hippie in the late 60s and early 70s, to her decision to retire early from
her corporate job. Dee also shares her process for how she moved through
breast cancer. By sharing her personals story, the author demonstrates the
importance of how one’s thoughts and beliefs determine the life that
he or she leads and how anyone can get more living in life by playing with
the concepts in this book.
Me and My Numb Spots
One pill makes you larger, and one pill makes you small;
and the ones that mother gives you don’t do anything at all.
I have numb spots in my brain. I’m always surprised when they take
an active role in my life, being numb spots and all. Sometimes when
something very dramatic happens, I don’t feel things—mentally,
physically, or emotionally. Of course, at other times you might find me
weeping while watching puppies or a brilliant sunset.
Over the years, I’ve done a lot of research, learning and observing,
and have integrated the best of it into this book to serve as an entry
point for those looking for a way to move forward. I love knowing that
my résumé, the work I do, my education, my financial circumstances,
and my previous experiences do not define me. Nor do the roles I play
in this world or any of those questionable choices I’ve made over the
years (although many of those choices, as it turns out, make darn good
Dee G. Suberla
My questionable choices serve as great examples of how a person
can transcend his or her circumstances and ignite his or her own power
to live a life filled with wonder, beauty, and passion. For me, it’s all
about learning and moving forward—just moving forward in love and
joy. When I discovered my purpose, I was so grateful that I could live
the life that I wanted to live but felt disconnected from the possibility
of it happening. And then I discovered my power, and quite honestly,
it turns out we do have superpowers!
Hello, I’m Dee Suberla. I help people figure out what they really
want in their lives, and then I help them get out of their own way so
it can happen!
I believe we are all aspects of the same thing, lovely facets of a
single jewel, separate waves on the ocean, clusters of particles in the
same universal soup. I believe that because inside the real me and the
real you—at our very cores—are those tiny specks that God blessed
us with; some call them souls or spirits. Everything in the universe is
connected—yes, including my numb spots.
This took me a while to learn or, more truthfully, to believe. Now
I know that I’m here to engage life through the passions that drive me.
Part of all this, in my case, is that I have numb spots due to the fact that I
need them; they help me in my work, and I believe I access them during
times when objectivity is required. Turns out they’re quite useful.
So how does one go about developing numb spots? I think there
must be a million ways. I believe that my original numb spots were
there when I was born. I can remember occasionally spacing out at a
very young age. The earliest memory of this was the time I forgot to
put my hand down after a vote was over. Some of the parents in our
neighborhood were creating a new club for girls my age. They asked
C’mon, Let’s Play!
for suggestions, and I suggested the name Us Guys. The lady in charge
suggested we change it to Us Gals. By a show of hands, we voted and
agreed. The name Us Gals won hands down—well, one hand was still
up. I was talking to my girlfriend well after the vote was over, with
that darn hand stuck up in the air like some sort of spaced-out flagpole.
“Put your hand down,” my friend Toni whispered. For a second
there, I looked up at it completely confused. What the heck? As I slid my
hand down to my lap, I wondered how someone could forget something
like that and became extremely concerned. I immediately imagined
that all those nightmares about forgetting to get dressed before school
could really come true.
The numb spots, which are actually ischemic scar tissue, are located
around the base of my brain and my amygdala. The doctor suggested
that as a cave woman, I would have had a short life because the scar tissue
would have messed with my “fight, flight, or freeze” responses—key
instincts that would have signaled the presence of a gigantic dinosaur
and triggered flight.
I started smoking cigarettes in eighth grade, about a pack a week.
As time went on, I discovered the joy of altered states. By sophomore
year in high school, I discovered the magical properties of marijuana,
white cross, and psilocybin. After graduation, I fell in love with
prescription barbiturates and diet pills, and for a while, I continued my
experimentation. I occasionally became one gigantic numb spot. I think
I may have seen a dinosaur or two and tried to carry on a conversation—
literally incapable of running at some points.
My guess is that the numb spots I was born with must have been
filled with lost memories of the sense my parents knocked into me. And
realistically, I probably created a few more with “experimentation.” I
Dee G. Suberla
am grateful to be here to tell this story. Many of my classmates didn’t
make it. Ah, the seventies. I am truly a survivor!
I was the baby of the family. Mom and Dad had five children.
They had the first three, and when the youngest was around twelve,
my mother prepared to go to work as a Welcome Wagon lady. She
had lovely black-and-white photos taken that I found decades later.
She never got to experience the Welcome Wagon lady job because she
got pregnant. My sister Suzie was born, and my parents immediately
decided to have another baby so Suzie had a playmate. Yep, that’s right.
That was me; I was born to play. In retrospect, I might have pushed the
envelope a bit on that one.
My amazing parents never had a chance with me, partially because
they were the same age as my friends’ grandparents. There was a brief
period of time when they thought that I might be losing my mind and
considered sending me away, but instead we went to a craft store, and they
bought me a tiger-striped rug craft project. They even let me pick out
different colors—my favorites, red and black. But what was really going
on was that I had discovered a few things about becoming a hippie at
thirteen, and my parents never imagined that I was turning into an addict.
They thought that my ability to sit and stare at a wall for so long was an
indication of extreme boredom hovering on madness. I was just stoned.
I usually refused to take aspirin or any over-the-counter pill that
Mom offered when I wasn’t feeling well, primarily because it seemed
pointless; there was absolutely no recreational value. Mom was certain
that I just didn’t like to take pills of any kind, unlike so many of those
wild kids she heard about on the nightly news.
My parents let us taste the liquor they kept in the liquor cabinet and
told us if we ever wanted to drink that we should do it at home. It all
C’mon, Let’s Play!
tasted terrible to me, and as a result, Mom called me her little teetotaler.
I was quite confident they would never figure out that I was a drugcrazed teen with a fake ID going to bars in a neighboring state—where
I discovered the amazing elixir Lambrusco!
My sister and I were blessed with curly hair, but we thought it was
some sort of cruel and unusual punishment. So we did the sensible
thing and used Mom’s iron and ironing board to straighten out each
other’s unruly locks. Then one day Mom showed me a picture of a girl
in a magazine who had the same kind of hair as mine. But this girl had
just split her hair down the middle and let it go wild. The magazine
called it a hairstyle! It was wild, I loved it, and the text below the picture
suggested that all the hippies were doing it! Then my amazing mother
said these inspiring words to her very naughty thirteen-year-old baby
girl: “Don’t ever let me catch you doing this with your hair!”
I remember the first time I set my hair free and went out in public. I
carefully selected an outfit to wear to the carnival. I chose my torn red,
white, and blue–striped jeans, a navy-blue tank top, and my stars-andstripes gym shoes. I finished the outfit off with a beautiful white fringed
shawl that Mom had made for me. It was supposed to be dressy. It was
shimmery, but I claimed it for this outfit. It had fringe, for crying out loud,
and that made it perfect for this budding hippie! My friend and I wandered
around the carnival doing our best to look cool, and then she gave me
the most amazing compliment. “Dee, you really do look like a hippie.”
I’d made it! I may have worn that exact outfit for a month, and yes,
it was washed regularly. Mom did have some very firm boundaries.
So now I was a hippie, and I guess I took it to the extreme, but
come on—I had the hair! And yes, this is the part of the journey that
may have contributed to the expansion of my numb spots.
About the Author
Dee G Suberla is best known for her expertise in project management. Of
course, she didn’t start out that way, no she started writing poetry
at an early age, then became a resource for people she worked with in the
pharmaceutical industry when there was a need to write something
particularly tricky. When she reflected on the favorite parts of her job it
came down to coaching; she loved helping people to set and achieve their
goals. Coaching wasn’t in her job description but it was a passion
that she pursued after she became a consultant and wrote her first book to
help new project managers called Poof You’re a Project Manager and
Other Delusions of Grandeur. Recently, she was compelled to write
C’mon Let’s play to share what she had learned with people who
felt stuck, helpless or were looking for something new. Whether Dee is
career coaching, life coaching or coaching somewhere in between, she shares
much of this information with her clients and wrote this book to reach a