Thursday, October 1, 2015

today and every day

Some days are just like that.... a song, a memory, a feeling...  

.... brings everything flooding back like a tidal wave if it were yesterday... and not years.... it's part of living... and having loved and been loved ... deeply ....

Today is a day like that.

I sing again.

I dance again (sometimes).

I laugh.

I have joy... peace....

I remember happy things.... and smile... and savor the memories.

But today. Today I give myself permission to cry.... and grieve all the things I am missing. Mostly your strong arms.... 

I miss you so.

Every day.

So I'll just let those waters flow over me... and wait until the calm returns.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

those without challenges need not read any further

Love is patient
love is kind
does not envy
or boast
it is not arrogant or rude
it does not insist on its own way
it is not irritable or resentful
it does not rejoice at wrongdoing
it rejoices with the truth
love bears all things
believes all things
hopes all things
endures all things
Love never ends.

I so love these beautiful words reminding us what love is... and what it is not.

But sadly sometimes it's not enough to change things.

I'm reminded that each one of us has something, some challenge, that has the potential to blow out our candle if we allow it to. That candle representing our joy and hope and the love of life.... love of learning and becoming ....  and savoring each day. Although it may flicker for a while, we can't let that flame burn out.

My sadness, my challenge, is my eldest daughter who will not get the help she needs. She has been offered it. Several times. Just recently she accepted it for a short time and then turned away from it ... again. I thought maybe, just maybe this time it would stick. It didn't. She has a drug addiction that has taken away the girl I once knew. The one with such potential and intelligence and sweetness. I don't know this new girl at all.

All I can do is pray for her. Pray she will want to get help (for more than just a few days). Because until she gets help and is stable and accepts accountability in her life I can't do anything.  No one can. We can't force anyone to do what they need to do.

I'm not alone. There are many who hurt over the choices of those they love. Or other challenges. Some physical.. some emotional.... some financial. Disappointing and painful relationships. The list is endless. Most of us have a struggle we face that I believe is designed to bring out our best and truest self. Oh, maybe not right away while we are in the storm, but I don't want to forget that truth... or let my flame get blown out....because our deepest hurts have the potential to deepen us and bring out something good... make us better. In time...

So keep shining.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

a few thoughts

There is so much to learn. So much to think about. So much to talk about. So much to do. How can anyone ever be bored? I never understood that.

People I care about are going through some deep challenges. Some marriages are breaking down. Relationships ending. Friendships struggling. Grieving people are experiencing loss. A child stuck in an addictive lifestyle. I don't need to name all the ways people are hurting.

Time doesn't diminish the missing of our loved ones. When I stop and think of Edd or my mom, I can easily be reduced to tears within a few seconds. I miss them every day. I think of them every day... but life softens the rough edges of grief a little bit so we can at least function and have other experiences in life and even have joy again. The emotional feelings are softened that once struck us like physical blows. Truly there were days I didn't know if my body could hold up to the pain I felt.

There are a lot of people we meet each day who are the "walking wounded". If we could see inside deep into the hearts of some of those we come into contact with we might have more empathy.

If loss and grief, struggle and pain doesn't make you a more compassionate human being then I think the experience was mostly wasted. Sometimes that is the only good thing that can come out of our pain.

Friday, August 14, 2015

birthday gifts

A few days ago on the morning of my birthday I brought my little friends... my dog Norman and the sweet little doxie girl I am fostering now.... outside for their romp in the yard. It's warm here in Texas in the morning. We had just finished our walk and I sat down on the step to rest and watch the dogs sniff and roam around in the yard.

Funny how I feel extra special on my birthday even if I don't immediately get greeted with gifts and affirmation! I just feel loved... because my core memories reflect the years and years of love I received... anyway.... I was sitting on my back step and immediately a ladybug flew my way and attached itself to my sock... just like that... then I heard cardinals loudly proclaiming their presence in my yard.

Hmm.... whether I believe these are signs of our loved ones' presence or not, I felt it non the less. I felt love and I felt like I was remembered and I felt like I was visited and I felt like I was not alone....

I rarely feel alone. So grateful for life's precious gifts.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

as summer moves along

Sitting outside after a morning walk now and the scene in front of me changes.... at first in subtle ways and then a little more noticeably. It was still and quiet and then the slightest breeze changed everything as breezes can do. Especially here in hot Texas. Breezes make all the difference when it comes to comfort.  Then a rushing sound came and the treetops began to sway. It didn't last long and soon the air went back to still and quiet. Then, in rushes the wind once again. The birds are a bit active and vocal now, but soon the heat of the day will slow down much of the wildlife. The hummingbirds will continue to make their rounds and the piercing sound of cicadas will fill the air. The less-hardy flowers in the garden seem to beg the sun for mercy while the Texas native plants just grin and bear it... some even seeming to declare, "Bring it on!"

Such is Texas in late summer. As part of the country begins to think of pumpkins, fall leaves, and cooler days, much of the south is ramping up for the hottest time of the year. We even begin to inwardly curse those who celebrate the glorious changing of the seasons. Our time will come though.... and the pleasure will last for months just as our heat has. Then, when others are fighting snowstorm after snowstorm, we are basking in cool air and fresh sunshine...

It's a trade-off we all make. Missing something while enjoying something else.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015


Often the smallest seemingly insignificant thing can bring joy. The joy that comes from the memory of a thing... not the thing itself. This little mug brought me back to a happy place today. I don't normally look at it since it is kept in a lower cabinet.... but it seemed just right for me today.

Edd brought this mug and three others like it back from Malaysia on one of his trips as a little gift to me that said he was thinking of me. They came in four different colors. He often chose to use it for his afternoon coffee, I think because of the smaller size. I doubt it was because of the hearts since he wasn't really a hearts kind of guy! I'm the one who usually wants a larger mug.

So when choosing a cup for some comforting green tea today, I also took comfort in a memory. A love that still exists. It never really went away. I know that because I still feel it and I'm thankful for the reminder.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

perfectionist I'm not

I got out in my yard yesterday and found one thing after another that needed tending. Flower beds that were not surviving the heat needed to be dug up and soil turned. Weeds which don't seem to mind the heat needed to be pulled! I fluffed up the mulch in areas with a rake so it would look a bit better until more is installed next week.

As I worked it came to my mind that I was definitely not a perfectionist. My yard looks nice and whatever I do I try to do well, but I am far from having a perfectly kept home and yard. Better than most but worse than others!

Some perfectionists aren't usually too fun to be around so I think it can be a good thing. Ever around someone who has to eat strictly planned meals, exercise perfectly, have a perfectly neat home and manicured lawn, every hair in place? Perfectly behaved children? Everything under control and seldom able to relax? Often we can feel the energy of those on edge.

I guess some occupations call for more of a perfectionist's skill, like airplane pilots. I don't mind a perfectionist at the controls then! And what about skydiving? You need to be a perfectionist in your thinking before jumping out of an airplane... Maybe that's why I've never had the a desire to skydive!

I can appreciate those who have seemed to perfect their talents. An amazing ballet or symphony performance where each step and note is spot on. It seems human potential and accomplishment has no limits.

But, yes, back to gardening. If I was a perfectionist it wouldn't give me half as much joy as it does. I wouldn't want to be upset and anxious each time a new weed sprung up or a leaf or twig fell on my lawn.... but I can do something. Just care a little bit. Or a lot. But just not insist on perfection.

What I do believe in is making things better than they were. Improving a situation. Wherever we go we can leave a trail of good. Maybe if that were our goal every day it would make a huge difference in the world. I think it would.

When I recently visited my dad I spent time doing what I could.... vacuumed, dusted, changed batteries in outdoor lighting, made some meals and desserts, had his internet back up and running, got him a better computer, changed sheets, did some laundry, changed tablecloths... and more. I told him I sure wasn't a perfectionist, but I can at least make things a little BETTER.

We can burn out if we try to do everything, but we can usually do SOMETHING.

I think that leads to peace more than requiring all to be perfect.