Posts by Iva Ursano

Iva is a self-help blogger from Ontario Canada who now resides in Guatemala. Her two goals in life are to inspire people around the world with her blogs and to feed hungry little bellies in the poor town she calls home. Sign up for weekly inspiration here or check out her self-help eBooks You Are Amazing. Her new course “The 21 Day Challenge” is now available. Use coupon code TINYBUDDHA for $60 off!!

Iva Ursano's Website

Why I Blamed Myself for My Ex’s Suicide (and Why It’s Not My Fault)

“No amount of guilt can change the past and no amount of worrying can change the future.” ~Umar Ibn Al Khattab

I don’t remember the exact day the message came through. It was from my son, Julian, and he needed to talk to me. It sounded pretty serious. He never really needs to talk to me.

His father was found dead earlier that week. He’d hung himself.

While this news hardly affected Julian at all, it hit me like a ton of bricks, and I cried.

Our Marriage

We met in a taxi thirty-three years ago. He was the driver, …

What I Really Mean When I Say I’m Fine (Spoiler: I’m Not)

“Tears are words that need to be written.” ~Paulo Coelho

It was lovely to see you today. I haven’t seen you in such a long time. So much has happened since the last time we saw each other.

You asked me how I was. I politely replied, “I’m fine” and forced a smile that I hoped would be believable. It must have worked. You smiled back and said, “I’m so glad to hear that. You look great.”

But I’m not really fine. I haven’t been fine for a very long time, and I wonder if I will ever know what …

Why “Find Your Purpose” is Bad Advice and What to Do Instead

“The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away.” ~Pablo Picasso

I was fifty-two when I found my purpose. I wasn’t even looking. It literally just smacked me upside the head. That’s a funny thing about life. It throws things your way, and you either grab them and run with them or you turn a blind eye and walk on by.

I used to turn a blind eye. I don’t anymore. These days I’m taking in all that life tosses my way. The good, the bad, and the ugly.


10 Things to Do When You Feel Sad, Hopeless, and Defeated

“Rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life.” ~J.K. Rowling

I’m no stranger to feeling hopeless and defeated. After many failed relationships, physical, sexual and emotional abuse my entire life, two bankruptcies, and the recent loss of my online business (October 2020), you could say I’ve been through enough to last two lifetimes.

I’ll admit, there were many times I wanted it all to end. There were many days I just didn’t know how much more I could handle. My recent loss has devastated me beyond words. Everything I’ve worked so hard for in the last …

How I Found the Courage to Leave an Abusive Relationship

“Do something today that your future self will thank you for.” ~Unknown

My whole life has been filled with toxic and abusive relationships, starting with extreme physical and emotional abuse from my parents, right up to the last relationship that I left in 2013. Abuse—physical, sexual, emotional, and verbal—is all I’ve ever known.

My entire life. I knew it wasn’t normal.

I desperately wanted to be loved, appreciated, and respected. I desperately wanted ‘normal,’ whatever that was. I longed for a fairy tale romance. I longed for happiness and peace. I just wasn’t convinced I would ever have that.

And …

How to Release Your Attachment When You Can’t Let Someone Go

I’m gonna be honest here, I can honestly say that I’ve never had any cords of attachment to a person, place, or thing—that is, until recently. This cord crippled me and broke me down to a point where I questioned who I was and my own personal strength.

I think before I tell my story it’s important to know what exactly a cord of attachment is and how it can hurt you. A lot.

Afterward, I’ll tell you why cutting cords is not very effective and what you need to do instead.

What is a Cord of Attachment?

People come …

How I Found Healing and Happiness in a Developing Country

“Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change.” ~Jim Rohn

For years I dreamed of leaving the winters of Northern Ontario, Canada and basking in the warm golden sun somewhere in Central America from October to May. I would joke with my co-workers every winter “This is my last winter here, I swear!”

I did that for years until finally, one year, it was my last winter there. But it wasn’t because it was the most brutal winter we had experienced so far. Oh no. It was much more than that.

Rewind Back to 2012

Why My Abuse Is No Longer a Secret

“You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better.” ~Anne Lamott

To say I had a tough life would be a gross understatement. Growing up in a strict Catholic Italian family I endured my fair share of emotional and physical abuse. I was unloved and suffered great violence at the hands of both my parents, mostly my father.

No one ever talked about this. On the outside, we were the ‘perfect’ family. Both my parents had decent full time jobs; Mom was heavily involved …

Forgiving Abusive Parents and Setting Ourselves Free

TRIGGER WARNING: This post deals with an account of physical abuse and may be triggering to some people. 

“Forgiveness is not always easy. At times, it feels more painful than the wound we suffered, to forgive the one that inflicted it. And yet, there is no peace without forgiveness.” ~Marianne Williamson

Growing up in the seventies and eighties with Italian immigrant parents definitely had its challenges. In a family of four girls, I was number three. That in itself was tough enough. Never as good as the first-born and not as loved and protected as the baby. Yes, it …

5 Life-Changing Lessons You’re Never Too Old to Learn

“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” ~Confucius

My son was only a year and a half old when I left his father and began my journey as a single parent. I never in a million years thought I would be raising my child alone. But away I went, with no clue as to what I was doing. I figured I’d learn as I went.

I knew I wasn’t going to be one of those moms that are too strict, too overbearing, and too controlling. I wanted my child to grow up with some freedom, some …

Finding Joy in Your Car and Kicking Road Rage to the Curb

“Sometimes it’s the smallest decisions that can change your life forever.” ~Keri Russell

I’m a positive, happy kind of girl. I smile a lot and try to make people smile wherever I go.

But I have a confession I have to make: I used to have crazy road rage. I turned into the spawn of Satan as soon as I got behind the wheel of my car. I can’t explain it. I don’t know why it happened. It just did.

I didn’t go crazy and tailgate or rest on my horn or even flip the bird to other drivers. Nope, …