Never Apart

The day has come where I’m searching alone…

The perfect glass,

The perfect stone.

As I walk the beach, I reminisce…

Time spent with you here, as friends.

The laughter, fun, and tripping in the sand,

The times we held each other’s hand.

Mom, you were with me today…

Found in the beautiful pink glass, and the butterfly that flew my way.

A blessing to my heart, for I know we’re never apart.

My Book

Home is where I find my most peace. I enjoy my solitude, sometimes more than I enjoy the company of others. Many may find that, for them, being alone is incomprehensible. A stage set for loneliness, and depression. Being alone may allow your thoughts to intrude into the facade of your every day life, making it appear not as grandiose as you may have thought.  So, perhaps, you avoid the quiet time, in fear of facing your failures, and really accepting who you are.

I, however, long for those moments. To hear my heart whisper something as subtle as, “this is not your last chapter, it’s the beginning of the plot you’ve been seeking all along,” reminds me that the best is yet to come. That no matter how unexpected the twist in the story, it’s the exact page turner that was needed to keep me going forward to experience the best life ahead.  To help create my best self.

When I woke up Christmas morning, I was in a place that used to be home. I still live in it, but with someone I’d rather not. It no longer feels like my place of peace. Rather, a storage unit, filled with all of our crap…both physical and emotional. You see, I’m in a season of many changes. Some wanted. Some unexpected.

I’ve awakened alone on Christmas morning, more than once. And that’s ok. However, waking up with another, in the place you used to call home, was almost unbearable for me. I had to wrestle with my emotions all day. I was angry. I was reliving the past, and feeling sorry for myself on this wondrous day.

I chose to spend the afternoon alone, reflecting. I reopened the book, that is my life, and discovered that there are far more chapters of love and joy, than I had realized. I was able to discern that the most awful chapters were written so that my story has a happy ending.

My current chapter begins with me asking Jesus to take the wheel, because I no longer want to drive. He answered with His seatbelt (armor), and told me to enjoy the ride.

The plot will thicken in 2019!

 

Peeling the Layers

IMG_1567Writing, for me, is an outlet similar to painting. I thoroughly enjoy getting the paint out and creating something abstractly.  I’m not one to draw on the canvas to create the picture. I prefer to see what I can create with paint slopped on here, and there, stand back and view, then “see” what I can make out of it. It’s always a surprise when I’m finished!

Writing is the same. I do it because I find such enjoyment in it. But I never have a plan…I go for it with no intentions. I write a little bit here, a little bit there, and the jumbled mess of thoughts, and notes, come together…kind of like a painting.  Perhaps someone will take something away from it.  Art.

This particular blog is written with intention.  A rekindling of my own heart.

My brother-in-law has been a part of my life since I was 12. He is a family man, and the rock which his children run to. He is the Papa his grandsons adore and emulate.  He is the man married to my sister 36 years strong.  Sadly, this past Monday morning, he suffered a massive heart attack, and coded 5 times.  Miraculously, he has no heart damage. Thankfully, he is already home with his family. God is so good!

My nieces decided to carry on with Thanksgiving, and cooked for our family.  It was a wonderful day, filled with laughter, food, and wine.  I hadn’t been to a family Thanksgiving in 3 years.  While I was there enjoying their company, God was nudging me; Look at all these wonderful people you get to call family. Why aren’t you around more?  Why don’t your great nephews really know who you are?!  Seriously, it’s as if God was right next to me throwing his shoulder into mine, saying look girl…look at what you’ve been missing.  He’d nudge, and I’d sip my wine, pretending it wasn’t happening.

I took those feelings home with me. I used the weekend to decipher, and look inward. It is a big burden on the heart when you clearly realize how your own absence affects yourself.

Gratefully, He has not left my side, and continues to remind me of my shortcomings.  It is a friendly reminder.  No guilt or shame involved.  God is not the sower of these.  His intention was not to hurt me when nudging, but to open the eyes of my heart to see how much more love I could give.  After all, that is why we are all here.

I have some work to do within myself, but His nudging has inspired me to peel away a few layers of brittleness.  It’s lifted me to a brighter place, and I can see more clearly where I need to be.

(The painting above was done earlier this year, but I see it in a whole new light now.  Sometimes it takes a lot of scraping away to get to the root.  But love will always shine through.)

Love and Thanksgiving

My brother, his wife, and son have been weighing heavily on my mind lately. (Birthdays) They are no longer with me. My brother passed first (2001), his son committed suicide the following year, and his wife lost her life a few years later to ovarian cancer. Tragic, yes. Even mind numbing, at times, all these years later. BUT the purpose of this post is to remind us how short life is.

When we wake up every morning and have our loved ones here with us still, we are beyond blessed.

When we choose to hold on to the past, and allow bitterness to seep in, and take root, we are only hurting ourselves, and missing out on so much more love and life with them.

I would give anything, yes, anything, to have my brother here with me now. To piss me off. To make me laugh. To make me cry. To tell me he loves me. To lie to me. To pick his nose without a care in the world. To ride in a vehicle with him, and scream and yell because we almost died every time…yes, he was that bad of a driver!! I’d take a playful hand upside the head today. A punch in the arm even. But what I would most want is to hear his voice, and give him a hug. I love that guy more than words can express…and miss him even more.

Life is short.

Let go.

Forgive.

Love.

It’s a choice!

Disclaimer: I struggle with this daily regarding my parents. Perhaps this is more for me, than any of you. The kettle is black. I own it. I can let it remain stagnant. Or I can refill it. It’s my choice!

I choose thankfulness, and love.

ForGIVEness

I’ve been wallowing in some hurt. Deep trenches of negativity, creating chaos in my head. Past parental failures, to current singledom. The more I feed it, the deeper it gets, therefore, the harder it is to climb out.

The view from inside the trench is pure dirt, and mud. Thoughts and fear. Patch after patch of dark, interwoven stitches, that I carefully quilted to cover up what I was feeling.

Some days I completed a bedspread, other days, I barely picked up the needle. The latter being a much better day.

This behavior is “not me”. Why couldn’t I get a handle on it? Why did I continue to quilt day after day, only to cover it up momentarily?

My hands were tired. My head a mess.

But in a quiet moment I heard the word forgiveness. You must forgive.

Wait! What!? Pardon me?

Forgiveness is hard! You want me to do what? For who?

And I heard, for yourself. Forgive The who, what, where…and then you will begin to feel better. Watch your life change. You will learn the why later.

So, I did.

It allowed my mind to reset, and my heart to feel fuller.

Forgiveness allowed me to rest.

I am not anxious to learn the why’s. I am happy and full knowing I’ve let it go. However, I am excited to share about forgiveness. Because as hard as it is, it is the lifeblood to moving forward in a healthy way in all relationships, and situations.

Forgive someone, or something, today. Give it to God and let it go.

Feel the freedom!

Seasons

What makes one season more special than the other?

Spring flowers? Summertime at the beach? Foliage of fall? The blanket of snow on Christmas morning?

What about the season you’re in? Is it smooth sailing right now? Are all the right doors open, including the cash one?

Perhaps the waves are rippling, sometimes rolling in by the feet. Your boat may be sinking and you’re looking for the life raft. One that can weather the weight that you carry emotionally, with the ability to still the churning waters.

God is that life raft!

He can. He will. He does.

A moment of pain can be turned into joy just by asking.

A tear into a smile.

An angry heart into a forgiving heart.

A forgiving heart into a peaceful one.

A new heart to move forward with.

A renewed life.

If He can part the sea, and walk on water, whatever you ask can be done.

Ask. Listen. Obey. Thank Him.

Repeat.

Tick Tock

Time is moving faster as I age.

It can be a friend, or an enemy.

I have many things to be thankful for, however, I discovered a few old journals, and re-read them recently.

Whoa!

Time spoke to me in that moment.

It said:

Tick-tock goes the clock.

The minute hand moves faster than your thoughts. The hour hand faster than your actions.

I am not waiting for you.

Message received Father Time.

The One

It’s hard being a woman. We are such loving creatures by nature. For most of us, our love knows no bounds. We put others before ourselves daily. So much so, we have the tendency to lose sight of what’s important to us in a relationship, because we’re so focused on others.

As this journey begins again for me, I’ve come to realize I keep making the same mistakes over, and over again. Yes, at 48, I keep choosing the same emotionally unattached man. Why? I’m not clear on that just yet. But what I can say, going forward, is we should all have one make it, or break it question to ask up front on that first date.

Perhaps it’s your children as a packaged deal, or a bible verse, that represents how you should be treated. Or maybe, you need to know where he stands with God. If he hems and haws, and can’t answer with conviction, then you need to kindly say, I pass. No, thank you. This will not work for me.

If you don’t, and you choose to move forward with that relationship, you guarantee dissatisfaction in the future.

When seeking a partner, we women have a tendency to allow too many “if I’s” into the equation. If I can show him, or, if I can be this way, perhaps, if I change…

You knew at the beginning when that question wasn’t answered in a way that filled your heart. You knew you would end up where you’re at. Unhappy, and questioning why you allowed it all. You already knew! You knew it wasn’t love. You knew he wasn’t enough. Yet, you thought “if I can just show him” or “if I can just be this way” he will come to love me.

Nope!

Never gonna happen.

Ladies, stop making excuses for someone’s actions or beliefs. If they don’t match yours, he is not the one for you.

Period.

Empathy

Overcoming Obstacles

Empathy: placing our feet in shoes that do not belong to us, so that we might know the needs of their owner.

This is a requirement where I work, providing wheelchairs and other mobility related items to people who need them.

While working, my feet have figuratively been in many shoes – shoes that couldn’t feel the feet inside of them, shoes that were worn from pacing back and forth in a hospital waiting room, tiny shoes that sat on the dresser next to an oxygen machine, and large shoes that have never stepped outside.

It’s an honor to wear these shoes. I’ve experienced such great heartfelt rewards that surpass all of the money that the world could offer.

A hero of mine, Mother Theresa, is the mother of empathy. She has provided “shoes” to countless people by loving them.

She answered the call to love her neighbor as herself…

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