Monday, December 31, 2012

thrilled, scared and ready...

wouldn't you think a person could just live a couple of days
quietly, steadily and relatively unemotionally???

well, apparently this person doesn't know how to do that.

sometimes i feel like lifetimes of things happen inside of me in the course
of one day.

and it's been several days in a row like that.

which actually has been quite wonderful and difficult and fulfilling
and challenging and perfect timing as i get ready to figure out how
i want to meet the new year, and what it is i want to be holding when
january first dawns.

i've got a new book i've started. it's called 'wisdom bowls' with the incredibly
perfect subtitle of - 'overcoming fear and coming home to your authentic self'
by meredith young-sowers.

her subtitle is really probably the summary of what i want to do in 2013 -
overcome my fear and live from my authentic self.
and i laugh as i type that. i know. i know. i'll be working on this
for the rest of my life. already have been.
but i want to take some good strides towards it this coming year.
i want to really work on the fear.

here's the first thing i underlined in her book -

'Patching, mending, gluing, fixing, re-attaching, and re-balancing are the processes
we go through without realizing we're trying to repair sorrow and disappointment
in our lives.'

i underlined that sentence a few days before the universe smacked me in my gut
with what that really meant and brought me to my knees in front of those sorrows
and disappointments.

as i lay curled in a ball, i saw that if i didn't do some inner work that needed to be done,
i wouldn't truly be able to live the life i wanted.

i want to say it's a drag to be brought to that spot.
but i can't.
cause while i'm scared.....scared that i won't have what it takes in me to do
the work i need to....scared i'll drop the ball and never get it quite right....scared
that maybe i'm really what the self doubts say i am.......i'm also thrilled.

i think 'thrilled' would be just the right word.
thrilled at the gift that has landed on me.

what a gift to be brought to the feet of what's holding you back.
what a gift to know....that this needs to be resolved.
what a gift to want to resolve it.
what a gift to want to prove that self doubt wrong.
what a gift to want to live and live authentically.
and mean it.

i've watched people claim they want authenticity.
i've watched many who haven't a clue who they are claim they have authenticity.
for some reason it's something people choose to fool themselves with.
maybe we fool ourselves with everything and i just notice that one because
i want to learn it so much. i notice when people are foolin' themselves.

i don't want to do that.
i want it for real.
and i fool myself plenty.
plenty of times.

so to be brought to a spot that was so painful to be.
a spot where i put my arms over my head and closed my eyes,
not wanting to see, but knowing i had to.....knowing i wasn't fooling myself.
knowing it was mine to work with. knowing it was what needed tending....
there was a thrill in that.

and the timing........
as i sit with my new year's dreams,
i know none of them can come true without working on this.

and something about that makes me smile.

Friday, December 28, 2012

a quote

in cleaning off my desk, getting ready for the new year,
and a new calender, i lifted the old calender and smiled.

all year i had stashed notes, quotes, and cards that had
meant something to me, that had inspired me, that made
me want to be more. that reminded me of what mattered -
under my calender.

what a stash of gold to sit with.

the letters made me cry all over again.
and the quotes....gave me some much needed inspiration.

this quote stood out for me and i wanted to share it.
i liked the idea of posting it here for the weekend.

'Grace is something that comes to us when we somehow
find ourselves completely available, when we become
open hearted and open minded, and are willing to entertain
the possibility that we may not know what we think we know.
In this gap of not knowing, in the suspension of any conclusion,
a whole other element of life and reality rush in.'

(i've got that listed as a quote from the book 'falling into grace'....
went to get the author and not exactly sure. if anyone knows,
feel free to post it in the comments section. it looks like it is
probably by Adyashanti. but maybe it's andrew greeley?)

-when we're willing to entertain the possibility that we may not know
what we think we know...-
honestly, right now i don't feel like i know very much.....
think i'm ripe for some grace to land.
oh wait.
it said when we become open hearted and open minded....
oh yeah. that was part of the deal.

not just muddledness.

oh yeah.
actually, something completely different than muddledness....

oh yeah.

i may not be so ripe for grace to land.

but i'm gonna work on it ......
i'm gonna work on it.....

Thursday, December 27, 2012


she's how it all started.

i had asked on facebook who was having a hard time with the
holiday season.

people started answering with stories that made you totally
understand how the holidays would be rough. there was such
loss, hardship and sadness.

holidays can be rough under fairly easy circumstances.
no one here was talking fairly easy stuff.
it was all heavy and hard.

she was one of the people who commented.
and one of the things she said was that she didn't have
the energy or desire to do the creative things she used to do.

without thinking, i just asked 'will you make me something for
christmas?' and offered to make her something back.

the idea was to spark her creativity again.
maybe to have someone who outright asked her to make
something.....maybe that would spark something inside her again.

i didn't think about it. i just asked.
then, i realized maybe a holiday swap for everyone would be a good
idea. maybe we all needed it. and maybe those having a hard time
might touch a little light if we did this.

and that's how the idea was born.

i had such fun watching the swap stuff going on.
people were posting when they got something, or asking about it,
or just plain ol' talking about it.

i thought that was the good i was getting out of it.

i had no idea the light i was about to touch.

on christmas morning when i opened the handmade goodies from this
woman who had started it all....
there was this kinda hush that went over my whole being.

i held the ornaments she had made. one by one i opened them.
they were gorgeous. and so beautifully made.

i was sitting next to my guy.
he reached over to see what i had.
'wow. she does nice work.' he commented.

i smiled.
she really does.

but i didn't even care about that.
i cared about how she had held these and made these.
i cared about how she hadn't made stuff cause she wasn't feeling good,
and how she had put that aside and made these for me.
i cared about how she reached out.
i cared about the light i was holding.

it was an incredible moment for me.
and what's so cool is these are christmas ornaments.
i will hang  them every year on my tree.
every year i'll touch them and hold them, and hang them
and think of her.......

and i'll remember the light that we offer each other.

what could be a more beautiful christmas present?

Wednesday, December 26, 2012


i wonder if i say this every year?

it was the best christmas i ever had.

i'm thinking i don't say that every year....but even if i do,
maybe they get better and better.

this one had a lot of potential to not go so good.

it had so much heaviness all around it.
and i had my own personal stuff goin' on that didn't feel good.
i just had no idea how i'd feel by the time i crawled into bed christmas nite.

and i tell ya, i just didn't think it could have been any better.

i could feel the depths of what it was all about so clearly as
i celebrated christmas eve and christmas.

i think because of everything that was going on around me and
in me, i had to go deeper. i was kinda forced to. some top layer
stuff had to be stripped away to get thru it, and while it didn't
feel good to get there, it sure felt good to be there.

thru every bit of it there was love and hope and light.

the presents were fewer. and while the gratitude is always full
and there with my sons, it felt even deeper this year.
i wasn't sure i'd enjoy the present opening part....
and i don't think i ever enjoyed it as much as i did this year.

there were the moments like my guy hanging up some kitchen baskets
for me. seriously, how could that be wonderful? and yet it was.
the joking around, the idea that he wanted to get it right for me,
the extra he had to do to make it right. the interrupting him just to play.
the plain ol' having of him there. working around him and nudging him.

there was the making dinner together, and teasing noah thru it.
tickling myself to no end, and laughing and clapping because i had
done so.

the eating, the talking, the toasting, the remembering, the dreaming, the sharing.
we do it well together.

and there was the game.
oh the game.
it was some dopey silly card game i had gotten for just this occasion.
who knew that it would trip zakk up in a way that had us all doubled
over with laughter. and when i looked over at my guy pounding the
table with both hands and laughing so hard, and then over at zakk
with his head thrown back in laughter, i don't think i could have
been any happier.

no. i don't say it was the best christmas ever every year.
i know i don't.
because a whole lot of them have been way hard.

and what's weird is this one was way hard to get to.
the lead up to it was way hard.
and somehow, i honestly believe because of that,
because of the work i had to do to get thru the way hard,
because of some of the stuff i had to sit with and hold,
somehow, and i really don't know how......
something about the being forced to dig deep and see what
matters for real......and having what matters for real right there
with me...

it made the light shine in such a deep way this year.

Monday, December 24, 2012

christmas eve

i cried.


i laughed.


i looked at my sons and filled with gratitude.

i held his hand and filled with love.

i was so empty and weary i forgot what love felt like.

i was so full and grateful, i forgot what frustration felt like.

my inner child hid.
i went and held her hand.

i listened to the wind blow forever
and finally went and sat in it.
i remembered i was a child of the universe.

i went to look at the fairy houses that stirred my soul last year.
they changed them.
the moss and magic were gone.

i looked at the majesty of the buildings and wondered about
the ego and power inside them.
and found the magic again as i watched the sun setting over the city.

i sat in the darkness.
i lit the candles.

i sang along to the christmas music.
i whispered prayers to the sky.

i put a star gently on a friend.

i sat on my couch soaking up the living room.

and i knew i was ready for christmas.

welcome hope.
welcome light.
welcome christmas.
welcome life.

Friday, December 21, 2012

extra shimmering

i had heard some news from a friend that was heart breaking.
i went up to my living room, lit a whole buncha candles and just
lay down on the couch and looked at them.

my christmas tree was lit, the room was dark except for the
candle lights and the tree.

i just lay there, not thinking much. just looking at the light.

i was holding hard to the image of light in the dark.

after awhile i got up and played with my camera.
took pictures of the candles. then went on to taking pictures
of things sparkling in the darkness.

i wanted to just capture the sparkle.

of course, i couldn't.
and that was kinda cool too.

finishing up, i got in the shower.
just wanted to wash the sadness off.
i forgot it was the best place in the world
for thoughts to come thru.

and sure enough i thought of the stars inside me.

i thought of that visual i like to work with.
and the thought came thru that now, more than ever,
i needed to let those stars shine.
they needed to sparkle in the darkness.

now, more than ever, we needed all the light we could get.

i pictured the stars doin' an extra zappy shimmering kinda thing.

and i wondered how on earth i really do that.
how do i make them extra zappy shimmery?
for real?

we've all got 'em, ya know?
we've all got those stars inside us.
and i truly truly think we so need to let them shine right now.
i'm gonna concentrate on that.

keep thinking of that all thru the rest of the season.
maybe it'll become a habit to be aware of those stars
and letting them shine.

i wanted to share in case anyone else wanted to join me.
want to?
the world needs it right now.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

my christmas dance with life.

it's the holidays.
seems like everyone's schedules are a bit different.
there's more chaos happening around me.
i can't figure out what day it is.
and when i ask those around me, they're not quite sure either!

it's the holidays!

my mood goes from joyful to sorrowful.
many times a day.
up and down and all around.

ahhhh the holidays.

when i feel sad tho, some sort of really nice thing shows up.
a son of mine will walk thru and say something nice,
a really cool note will come thru,
a friend will call and make me laugh real hard.

and each time......EACH time, somewhere in the back of my mind,
i watch it and say 'look. don't miss how lucky you are.'

this has been happening enough where i'm noticing and watching
and smiling. and i'm so grateful for that little voice that keeps whispering
to me 'look! don't miss it!'

i walked thru my living room and realized a good thing to feel grateful
for and gave a 'thumbs up' to the universe.

i sat and did some work at my desk, and put my head in my hands
feeling just so sad about some stuff.

over and over up and down all around.

it's the holidays.
and more so than ever i'm watching the play of light and dark.
sad and happy, joy and sorrow.

and it's such a dance right now, i'm thinking the only thing to really do
is hang on to the shoulder of life and follow its lead........let it whirl
me where it will.

someone i love dearly called to ask me what i thought about something going
on in her life. and we talked about the ability to just sit and watch and just
allow ourselves not to know what the heck is going on. and to just go along
with the dance.

it's the holidays!

and i'm in for this dance this year in a way that feels new to me.
i have no idea what's going on and i'm trying to allow myself to be okay
with that.

i'm going to start picturing life taking me by the waist and twirling
me around, while i hold on and trust and spin and let my hair fly all around.

some of the dips may get to me.
but i do's all part of the dance,
and i'm in.

it's a visual i think i want to hold on to thru these holidays.....

it's my christmas dance with life.
up and down and all around.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

a spirit lifter

a new old friend on facebook shared this link with me,
and it was EXACTLY what i needed.

thought i'd share it here......

need your spirits lifted?
check this out!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

it's that time again...

there really is something about the anniversary of the day someone
you loved died that hits, isn't there?

between the news and just some personal stuff goin' on, i just figured
i was pushed over the edge and feelin' bad.

then i looked at the calender and realized that the anniversary of
my dad's death was the final factor in pushin' me over that edge.
i was a day early, but i don't think my insides cared.

i could feel it.

and i don't know, but somehow realizing that helped me.

i knew i needed quiet and i knew i just needed to watch.

and so i hunkered down with some quiet work.
i asked myself a few questions and watched and reflected and thought.

some cool stuff came up.
and one thing led to another.

probably the most cool thing i was led to was that i wanted to really truly see
who my dad was.

to not have it painted by some of my own baggage and such.
and even not have it painted by some of my kid-adoration which is
still inside of me. both are inside of me.

i wanted to just see him. who he really was.

i know......doin' that on your own with your own memories,
you probably can't ever really.
but i think you can get a lot more objective than you think.
and i think you can see a lot.

it ended up lifting my spirits.
i felt like i was truly honoring him by doing this.

something i really hate is when people just assume things about me.
especially when they're completely wrong.
but they just assume them and act based on those assumptions.

i hate that.

and yes, i do that to other people as well.

i have taken to much more often asking to be clear about what people
are thinking. but it's hard to get that down completely and assumptions
still take place right and left with me towards others.

and i think to truly love someone is to stop doing that and to listen and hear
and watch and learn.....always.

nah, you can't really do that with someone who's not here, can you?
everything you do has to be an assumption.
it's the nature of the game when you're doing it solo.

but i could still step back and look at things as objectively as i could.
and i felt good just even trying to do that.

it felt positive.
it didn't feel all wallowy.
it felt healing.

i didn't want to just post another anniversary of his death post where
i talk about how much i loved him.

he was a good guy who had issues.
what i respected most about him was his honesty and his integrity.

what probably got in his way the most was his fear.

he still teaches me long after he's gone.
he died six years ago today.
i still can't see christmas lights in the night without remembering
the drive back and forth from the hospital. alone in the car trying
to hold onto something......and finding those lights in the darkness
that kept whispering to me.

holding that light in the darkness this year so much so.
and trying hard to add to that light.

Monday, December 17, 2012

it never takes long

so i wrote the blog below and in less than two hours i found myself in
a position to start articulating what was whirling around inside of me.

three of us were meeting for coffee. she arrived last and in tears.
she had just come from a service which was trying to deal with the
shootings. in the process, people were sharing their feelings and it was
all quite emotional.

she sat down and told us she was upset and cried.
and she immediately brought up gun control.

oh man.
i had just made this promise to myself to try to talk real about this stuff
and not just keep quiet with my thoughts. to try to look at all the threads.

i didn't want to upset her any more than she already was.
i didn't want her to misunderstand me.
i certainly wasn't trying to defend guns.

how do i even approach this?

i was so tempted not to.

but my gosh, i JUST told myself i would do this. i mean, how could
i duck out of it right off the bat?!

and so i started in softly.

'i just wrote a blog about this...' i started.

told her i understood her feelings but had been wondering about the many
layers and threads to it all and i've been wondering what our responsibility
in all this was.

i was gentle and we're friends.
she could hear me cause she knew where my heart was.
she heard me and the three of us began talking.

my other friend started out a paragraph with 'this is going to sound really weird, but...'
and she presented a thought she had been having about things going on in the world
around us.

it was a thought that made perfect sense to me, but could sound strange to some people.

i asked her about that. pointed out how she felt she needed to preface her thought with
'this may sound strange, but' with us, and asked her if that was the case, could she talk
to other people about it?

absolutely not, she answered.

and i was struck with what had started.
i think that if i hadn't said anything, we would have continued to talk about just the
one topic of gun control. instead of the many threads that we started laying on the table.

and we only touched the surface.
we only just began.
but i could feel the layers being looked at.
and it felt right.

and i was surprised.
i honestly didn't want to put my thoughts out there.
i didn't want to make things harder than they were.

i didn't want to rock any boat.

and what i found wasn't any rocking of any boats....
i found genuine sharing taking place.
i found a space open.

go figure.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

morning thoughts

i have trouble talking about it.
for so many different reasons.
and so i don't.

i debated with myself on writing this particular post.
and then i asked myself what was the point of this blog?

the answer is what it's been all along -
to share the journey of trying to learn to live in this world and still find my way
to having an open heart.

and so, i decided to go ahead and type this.

the school shooting hasn't left my mind from the moment i heard about it.
i've tried to quietly hold it in my own way and i've been struggling with how
to do that. how to even get close to it in my head and still stand.
i get close, but i can't seem to really do it.
it's just so overwhelming.

when i saw the first NRA post on facebook, i cringed.

i know i'm real sensitive right now and that there's just about nothing anyone
can say that helps. and so i just shook it off as my raw nerves.

and then i saw another. and another. and another. and another. and another.

because of that, i have spent a long time thinking about it.

to be clear - i am no NRA fan.
to be clearer - i have no facts that i can back up those feelings with.

i was raised in a liberal democrat family. i am registered an independent.
i consider myself liberal. i lean towards anti-war/anti-killing and yet never
have figured out how that answers things like what you do when you've
got a hitler to deal with. i'm a vegetarian. i even hate to kill ants.

i have vague ideas that wouldn't work in a real world and i'm so glad i'll
never ever be president.

i don't like the darkness, the mess, the confusion of it all......and so i accept
half ideas that aren't backed by much, and leave it at that.

until now.
i've decided i want to change that.
it doesn't mean i think i'll have any clearer answers.
i think it just means i'll have a deeper understanding of how complicated
everything is and i'll have even less answers.

i've decided i want to learn more and know less.

and i've decided this is what i want to do in response to the shootings.

i think what we do when we're horrified is we look for an answer to explain
the horror. and we look for something to blame and for something to stop
and for something to fix.

of course we do.
we want to fix this.
we need this to stop.

but if we're gonna do that, we feel like it needs to be something we can
automatically point our fingers at. like the NRA.

cause that's the way you fix something.
you find a problem and you change it.

and let's face it, the NRA is a great thing to grab.

i believe every gun control comment comes from a place of
well meaning and sincere grief and caring.
we want the senseless killing to stop.

i believe that. and i'm so behind those feelings.

but i think we have to look deeper.
i sincerely with all my heart do.
and i think WE have to own our part in this.

because, yeah, i think everyone of us has a part in the violence in our society.

and how do we hold that?
how do we really really hold that?

where did this killer come from?
are there any ways for us to know why and how he became like this?
what on earth do we do with those things once we figure them out?
why are there more and more of these happening?
it can't just be because i can get a gun. cause i wouldn't do it even if you
handed me a pile of 'em free of charge.
so what makes someone do this?
what are we doing that feeds this in what ways that we're not even realizing?

are we responsible for the way the media reports these things?
are we responsible for the violence in the media all around us in movies and tv?
are we responsible for the lack of mental health resources?
for our own individual lack of understanding of mental illness?
for the lack of positive resources to teach strength and morality and as dumb
as it sounds - love?


and how do i hold that?
what do i do with that?
i feel completely powerless to do ANYTHING about ANY of those
things i just listed.

i honestly don't want to become an activist and go lobby in DC.
i want to make art and write poetry and be a candlelight in someone's darkness.

i don't know the first thing about any of the stuff i just asked.
and so i want to turn back to the NRA and gun control.

i want that to fix this.
i want this to stop.

but deep down, i don't believe that's the answer.
so i go back over and over again to the questions.

and i decided i needed to start by learning more.
because what i can do, and i feel i need to do now, is be informed,
and when i have a conversation with another, i need to be able to sincerely
articulate these thoughts and the things that i'll learn.

i've watched what ignorance does to people.
ignorance creates darkness.

and right now the only thing i can figure out to do,
is to be less ignorant than i am.
to learn. and to speak of what i learn.

and it's so darn tiny it feels like nothing.
and yet.......for me, it feels like the biggest honoring i can do for those children.
i can learn.
i can become more.
and i can talk about it.
and maybe that's the start of changing things.
i don't know.

but that's what i've got this morning.
and my heart is filled with this feeling.
so i wanted to offer it.

Friday, December 14, 2012


it was the first day in well over a month that i felt really really good.
'back to my ol' self,' i thought.
and it felt marvelous.

and then i read the news.
the school shooting.

and i had all the reactions we all have.

i couldn't believe it.
i felt sick.
i didn't want to hold it.

i put it down.
walked away.
wasn't sure what to do.

i went to fill an order.
quietly wrapping it up, i thought about what had happened.

and to be honest, i just didn't want to hold it.
i finally finally felt good.
holding even a tiny bit of that suffering seemed like it would topple me.

i went to write something down on my calender.
time flies for me.
i'm always surprised how fast.

'wow, just another full week before christmas,' i thought.

and then it hit me.
and i couldn't stop it.

all those families.
who's lives just got changed forever.
all those kids who won't see christmas.

i went back to filling orders and thinking about it.
i wanted to hold it.
how could i not?
i wanted to  hold all those people in my heart.

one of my sons walked in.
we talked briefly and quietly of what had happened.

it's so hard to talk about.

he left and i continued on.
i thought of what it'd be like to be one of those parents today.
i thought of how i would have bought all the presents by now,
and probably had most of them wrapped.
toys wrapped and waiting.

i wondered how on earth they could ever face christmas morning.
and what if there's siblings?
of course there are siblings.
how do you face it all with them?

how do you go on?

i finished up what i was doing, gathered some paperwork and my laptop
and went over to where my sons were working.

zakk looked at me.
i never work where they are.
i work in my studio.

'i just want to be nearby.' i said.
he immediately understood and nodded quietly.
he knew without me telling him.

i sat for a little bit and watched them work.
the were talking together.
noah standing behind zakk, working over his shoulder as they
tried to figure something out.

i looked at how big they were, and yet still so young.
how they're just starting out.
and i thought of those kids today.

the tears welled up.

there are no words for tragedies like this.
there are no words.

every time i see a christmas light, every time i wrap a present,
every time i grab a cookie....i'll be thinking of those families
who have no idea how they're going to go on now.

i have always loved the christmas season.
always loved the light in the darkness.

it seems like such a dim dim light right now.
and i wonder how on earth to make it brighter....


it was her biggest gig yet.
she was the opening act for another act.

and she was excited and nervous and thrilled.

so we gathered to go see her, to support her, and to rejoice with her.

she started off good, but perhaps a little nervous.
my guy leaned over and whispered in my ear 'she's nervous.'
i nodded.
and then maybe ten seconds later, she was fully there.
he leaned back over.
'she's got it now! she hit her spot!'

and we both smiled.
i was glued to her.
and i wasn't the only one.
another whisper from my guy about how she could come in
and own the room. i glanced around at the audience.
she had 'em.

she didn't play too long.
certainly not long enough for me.
when the headliner came on.

i'm not gonna name him, cause i really didn't like him.

he was obviously talented and that wasn't lost on me.
but my gosh, i REALLY didn't like him.

i found him depressing, negative and self absorbed.

three songs in, my guy turned to me yet again and let me know that
whenever i wanted to leave was fine with him.
i grinned. what a difference in him from watching my friend.
let's go.

i ran to the bathroom and met him at the door.
along with another friend of ours.
i was surprised to see her there. i thought for sure she'd stay
for the whole thing.

i asked her about it and she exclaimed that she felt old and depressed
now from the music and had to leave. i laughed.

we talked about it all on the way out and the way home.
all agreeing that our friend was astounding and the other was depressing.

and here's the big thing that i took home with me from watching my
friend's performance and part of the performance after her...

while yes, my friend has the talent to really be on the stage performing,
that's not what she's bringing to us. it's not her talent. (altho, that enables
her to keep our attention)'s who she is. it's what she wants to offer.
it's her heart. it truly truly is her heart and her soul. she's honestly offering
her light. humbly, graciously, authentically offering who she is. and you
can't hide that when you're singing from your depths.

the guy after her was talented. but who he was wasn't anything i wanted
to hold. i wanted to get away from his energy. i didn't want to support it.

so i've been thinking about this.
is it just that some people have beautiful light and they offer it and some
people have icky gray and they offer that? and it's the luck of the draw?

absolutely not.
we may all start out with beautiful light when we're newborn.
i think we must.
but so many things happen to darken that light.
we all have our stories.
it's up to us to uncover it, polish it, make it grow.

so while my friend has to practice her scales or her chords or whatever it
is she's also the inner work that she does, the inner reflections,
the growing her light that makes her work what it is.

she brings who she is to the stage.
and who that is will knock your socks off.

this has made a big impression on me.

what is it you want to offer to the world?
what kind of impact do you want it to have?
positive? negative? light? dark?
are you living it?

cause i think it's the living it that makes the impact when you offer.

all these thoughts swirling created a sentence echoing in my head this morning -
'every choice matters.'

what is it you choose?


she's doing a project.
it's way personal to her.
and she's offering her all with it.
and i'm lucky enough to have had her share it with me.

and it's stunning.

she used multiple forms of art to create it.
and she's really talented in each form.

and i sit and i watch and i can't get over what she's about to offer.

it's the kinda thing where you can just see right into her soul.
into her beauty.

and yeah, that's got to be way scary for her.
and yet she's gonna do it anyway.

i'm so proud of her.
and totally knocked over by the beauty of who she is.
the world could use what she's gonna offer.
i really believe that.

i've gotten to know her in different ways this year,
and each way has shown me another piece of her.

today i sat with my tea and wondered if she'd ever really see it.
if she'd ever really see how amazing she was.


not sure she'd hold that word right now for herself.
maybe one day.
that'd be cool.

and so i thought of some of the other amazing women, and men too,
who have come thru bone sighs. and how more often than not,
they don't see their talents.
they don't know they are rockin' some major cool stuff.

why is that???

never mind.
i know why.
i hear the stories that they come in with.
that'll do it.
and they don't even have to be dramatic stories.
i know the ones i come in with.
certainly not as dramatic.
but we've all got 'em.

and they whisper to us over and over that we're not amazing.
we're not all that cool.

and they ask us over and over again 'who are YOU to do that?'

if i could give out anything in this world, it'd be a 'see yourself as
who you really are' pill.

i'd like to do that for.......gosh...........everyone i know???

including myself.

i am using her as a bit of a mirror, i think.
seeing how she just can't hold her light yet.
makes me want to try harder to hold my own.

i think it matters.
if for no other reason than it's what's there.
and it's good to see what's there.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

one heck of a guy!

a few posts down i mentioned that from a stinky situation came a new friend.

well, thru the new friend, i was introduced to her son.

thru youtube

and i swear, i can't decide which piece of his i want to share with you.
because the truth is, i hope you'll subscribe to him and watch/listen to
all of his pieces.

he's got one heck of a soul, and a whole lot of passion.

i think he's 27. somewhere around there.
my oldest is 27.
and i think of these young men and what they're offering to the world....
and it feels so good. don't need my ramblings.

you need russ's poetry!

here to start, i'll link you to 'proud of it.'
don't stop there....keep on going!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

under the bed, under the table

she called to check in.
and there i was pouring it all out.
and she asked about my inner child.
'she's gone missing' i said.

and without missing a beat, my friend said with great gusto -
'well, go get under the bed and find her!'

i laughed hard.

i am so lucky to have these wacky friends who understand the
power of things like our inner children and have no problem encouraging
me in that direction.

i knew she was right.
how long was i going to just let her 'be missing.'????

and so i stole some time, made some fancy hot chocolate that the
universe seemed to provide (yet another story)
and sat by myself to see if i could find that missing inner child of mine.

and what i found fascinated me.

for the sake of this story, we're just gonna have to go with the idea that
there were two of me. the kid, and the adult.

the kid was hiding. that was for sure and i knew it.

turns out the adult was also hiding.
and i didn't realize that until i sat down to find the kid.

oh great.
now what?

well, i figured it was just a good start to know that. and i'd leave it be
and see what i could do as i went along.

didn't have to wait too long.
as i got in my car that nite, in the dark, and started to drive, other things
also started to happen.

let's call the little one LT and the big one BT.

the first really beautiful thing that happened was they showed up for each other.
i love that.
there was a sense they needed each other, and they were there.

that's enough right there to thrill me.
that's self love and self caring.
and it was really great to see.

and then  LT blurted out - 'nothing's the way it's supposed to be.'
just like that.
she just blurted it out.

and i understood that's why she'd been hiding.

and BT started talking to her about that.
commenting on how it really wasn't. and listing some of the things that weren't
what she had thought they'd be.but then BT started saying 'but look, it's not
anything like we thought....but look at what it is. look at how it sparkles.
we can't miss that because it's different than we figured.'

and there was conversation back and forth inside me about that.
about the sadness for what wasn't. but the incredible glory of what was.

and then BT blurted out her problem - 'i'm not handling anything right.'

and it was at that moment, i understood why she had been hiding.

and LT scooted close and said 'you're showin' up, you're tryin' really hard.
that matters.'

and there was conversation about that.

there was conversation about a lot of things on that 20 minute drive.
and BT and LT came out of hiding and sat together.

and this morning, i can tell the difference.
i don't understand what any of it means.......the different parts and why it so feels
like they're there and they can talk to each other.
i don't understand any of that.

but i know it makes a difference.
and i know my day will be better because of that drive last nite.

and because my friend told me to go get under the bed and find her.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

a pretty cool flow

there's been a struggle lately that took a lot of the stuffing outta me.

it's had to do with people stealing my work.
and my trying to deal with that.

it's hit me really deeply.

there's different approaches on how to handle it, ya know?
i feel like i've tried them all.
and they've each been a struggle in their own way.

i think it's hit so deeply because i've had to try to figure out who i want to be
and how i want to be. and i'm not taking that lightly. in fact, i've been taking
it very deeply into my heart.

and honestly, it's been a lesson in hard knocks here. i haven't aced the test
by any means.

and i haven't been able to fully talk about it.
to anyone.
that's how deep it's been.
the deeper it is, the quieter i get.
this one's been silent inside of me.
wrestling with all i had.

i've been awake at nite thinking about it.
i've spent a lot of time during the days thinking about it.

and i think i finally got somewhere with it and how i want to handle it and who i want
to be thru it all.

(doesn't mean i have this down by any means, and yes, i have a nasty person out there
who will test my limits and teach me more than i ever really wanted to learn. but i'm in
for the game. i want to learn.)

and as i was coming out of the hard part of the struggle,
as i was feeling like i could grasp some of the lessons,
as i began to feel like even tho this has knocked me flat, it's been worth it,
an angel came thru.

she came thru and asked me if she could use my quote.
she actually ASKED.
she told me a friend had shared a link with the quote from a site that was selling it,
and had asked her to make it for them.
this woman who was asked noticed there was no credit to an author,
so she checked around, found my site, read the terms of use,
realized it wasn't something that should be sold elsewhere, and asked me about it.

sometimes moments like this make me wonder how i can doubt the timing and magic
of the universe. honest to pete.

there she was.
kind of like a reward for my starting to grasp the lessons.
she was like my little gold star on my first string of thoughts of what i've learned so far.
she was definitely a breath of fresh air.

and i wrote and told her.
i told her she couldn't sell it.
but i explained what was up.
and she wrote back.

she told me i was a beautiful person.

and i think because of that, i wrote her the whole story.
of what i had been wrestling with.
cause i wasn't a beautiful person.
i wanted to punch this woman who stole my work in the face.
i really did.

and i knew that i wasn't a beautiful person. (not with this anyway)
(sometimes i am)
(but that's the point. that's been my struggle.)
and i wanted to set her straight.
and i wanted her to know my heart.

and somehow i musta needed to pour it out a bit.
cause i did.
it was definitely more than anyone needed to know who just came thru to ask
permission to use a quote.

but it didn't scare her away.
she came back.
and we decided we wanted to be friends.

and she told me about herself.

and i read her note and sat with tears in my eyes.
she deals with more every day than i've ever dealt with in a lifetime.

you know that whole thought of you can't compare struggles?
insert raspberry noise here.
i don't care what anyone says about that........sometimes you just have to.
her's are off the charts. and mine don't rank.

yeah, i know i know.
my struggles are valid.
but i tell ya what........they're so small.

they're so small.
it's true.
and i'm okay with saying that.

and this angel, my new friend, reminded me of that without even knowing it.

and she reminded me of all the good people that there are in this world.
people who struggle so deeply and yet have such beautiful hearts.
people that make the world better by just being in it.

people that energize, not deflate.

the woman who did the stealing, did more than stealing.
she colored my world for a bit here.
tarnished my belief in people.
that kinda thing.

and that's the worst cost of the whole darn thing.
but i guess it's been part of the lesson.

and it makes me smile to think it's because of her that my new friend showed up.

what could be better than that?

and yeah, it makes me love the flow of the universe so much.
i know i'm not done with this. that i need to learn more.
but i think i've got my footing now.
along with a new friend.
who can remind me to put it all in perspective.

sometimes i really like the way this all flows.

(now. please don't take away from this a need to leave a comment about the stealing.
that's not the point here, and yes, i'm working hard on stopping that kinda thing. so
no worries there. that's not the point so don't be confused. if that's what you got,
maybe read it again.......because it's not the stealing that i want to put out here.....
in fact, i hesitate to put it out. but it's part of the story, so i did. but the message
i intended here is that lessons are hard sometimes, but i think worth it. and's
the weirdest thing.....there's magic along the way.......and new friends to be found.
THAT'S what i really want to hold today. if we REALLY know that, what a difference
it will make......for me, anyway. and that's what i need to get here.)

Monday, December 10, 2012

the world that she sees

i woke up from ghosts haunting me.

tried to shake it from my body, knowing they were gonna haunt me until
i let them go.

they were hard to shake this morning.

i did the few work things i had to do, then headed straight for the treadmill.

by now i was feeling that 'on the brink of insanity' feeling i get sometimes.

i had thought about the treadmill and my walks.
thought i'd try to figure out how to get the same inner work goin' on the
treadmill as i did on my walks. wasn't positive i could do it, but sure
thought it was worth a try.

well, now's the time to give it a whirl, i thought.
and i hopped on there, rarin' to go.

i have a little window right over the treadmill. it's small, you can't see much.
but there's a tree out there i look at a lot.
i can see a goddess in the tree.
she's skinny. real skinny. got these skinny little arms she
lifts up to the sky. and i love those arms.

i saw her out there.
i watched her reaching up in the dark, surrounded by fog.

and i thought 'yeah, i know that feeling. boy, do i know that feeling.'

i was walkin' to the most rockin' christmas music i had.
figured that would help the mood.
it got me thinking about christmas.

i had tried the day before to do stuff that felt holidayish to me.
i purposely stayed away from work.
i had some time all to myself and i ended up cooking.
it keeps surprising me that i go to cooking sometimes for just
feeling comfort. i had the holiday music on and i was dancing around
and just embracing it all.

i've been wanting to enjoy the season this year, so have been purposely
focusing on the music and the festive things and trying to enjoy that place.

but as i moved along the treadmill, all the deeper stuff about the holiday
started washin' all over me.

for the first time.
up until then it had been about baking cookies or sitting by the tree.

but now i started thinking about the light in the darkness.
the hope.
even the angels.
can't say i'm much of a believer in angels.....but i sure do like the idea of them.
i sure wouldn't mind if they were out there.

i thought of stars and how they're such a symbol for me.
and as i went along, i started visualizing all the fear inside of me.
and i started grabbing it out of me in handfuls.

i'd grab a handful of fear and toss it down.
it'd fall on the ground in sparks.

i thought of how fear had its own energy.
like stars.
but not at all like stars.
cold burning.
not hot burning.
not life inspiring.
life taking.

over and over i grabbed the fear outta me.
at this point i had some song on that was just goin' to town and i was movin'
right along with it. tossin' that fear down, sparks everywhere.

then i started grabbin' up to the sky and yanking stars in.
i couldn't get enough of them.
and the beauty was, there was more than enough to grab.
i could just grab until i felt full.

i did.

and walked faster and faster.

and still felt the fear.

so i did another round of fear throwing, ground sparking, tossin' that gunk outta me.
and another round of pullin' those stars inside me.

when i finished doing this, i thought of that insanity of mine.
there are times i feel on the brink of it.
and it feels scary.
but i thought of how it always moves me.
it moves me deeper into where i need to go.

and i thought of how i'm learning a whole lot right now.
it's been one heck of a dunk into life lessons.
but i can see i'm getting some of them.
i'm truly learning.

and it's an okay thing.

my head was down.
i was walkin' fast.
i was feelin' like i was starting to see beyond me.
and into what mattered.
and that i was finding the meaning of the season.

when i heard a line the singer sang -
'the world that she sees...'

my head lifted right up and i looked out the window.
the skinny little goddess in my tree had her arms up
to a lit up morning.
there was light.
there was beauty.
there was hope.

Friday, December 7, 2012

i just want to be part of it, darn it.

this story tickled my funny bone.
prolly because i have a pea brain for a funny bone.
(or something like that)

i decided i needed to concentrate on some fun.
i REALLY do.
and so i'm going to.

i put on some of my favorite holiday music today,
have done some random acts of kindness and am just
focusing on the fun.

i posted up on facebook a comment about a dream i had.

it's kinda funky weird.
i dreamed that some lights went out and i didn't have any light bulbs.
i woke up for the morning right after that.
i reached over to turn my lamp on and POOF the light bulb burnt out!


grinnin' here.

it was really really neat and i got a kick out of it.
so looking for the fun that only facebook can provide sometimes,
i posted that on my wall.

and yeah, my goofball friends showed up with silly answers,
real answers, goofin' answers. the whole deal.
just what i was looking for.

but i laughed out loud when the local hardware store commented
and said it meant i needed to stop by for some light bulbs!

i just so laughed with glee!

i had 'liked' them ages ago cause they're an independent store
and i wanted to be supportive. i commented on their wall at that
time that i loved them and that was it.

who knew they'd ever show up with a comment?

it just totally made me laugh.

and then josh walked in with the red star cake his brothers and i had
ordered for him for his gig tonite. he had on his red top hat, and red
holiday sweater (for the ugly sweater contest later that evening)
we had been up at the store yesterday goofin' with the bakery ladies
and talkin' about the red star. apparently josh was a hit with them when
he came in looking like he did.

i clapped my hands in delight as i listened to him.

we had gone up earlier today to get balloons for a friend and we
were talkin' with the balloon lady. i went out of my way to be extra friendly
because i needed it. i needed to be friendly and to remember that life was
friendly and fun. and she was great in return.

why do i post all this stuff?
because i keep going back and forth between the heavy and frustrating
and the joyful and loving......

and today as i was packing up some stuff i thought..........darn it,
i just want to believe in the magic of life.

i just want to be part of it, darn it.

and i feel like i'm gonna just hop in today and this weekend.
cause it's there.
why the heck wouldn't i????

what a mixture!

what a day it was!

there were such incredibly good moments filled with this whole
heap of gratitude and joy and love.

there were mellow, thoughtful moments.

there were some just downright sad moments.

there were tired moments.

and then there were the moments when i quite honestly wanted to
kick several different people in the shin.
i really did.

i mean, i had just had it with some people.
and truly, if i had to deal with them another moment,
i would just spit.

what a day.

and i watched.

and at the harder moments i sat back and thought about it.

who the heck do you want to be?

and it wasn't the spittin' shin kicking agitated gal.
(altho she did provide some nice relief inside me)
it was the one sitting in gratitude and love.
(that felt way better)


i can do that.

and each time i turned away from the things that were creating the agitation.....

and i regrouped.

i didn't just step right back into the happy stuff tho.

i stopped for a moment (or two or three) and took a little space for myself.
soaked that up.
then watched something good come thru somehow.
cause it always did.

it always always always did.

how amazing is that?!

and then i stepped back into being who i wanted to be.
cause i could believe again.
once i took the break and watched, i could believe again.

yeah, i grumbled and mumbled as i first turned away from the agitation.
i even said nasty things under my breath.
but wasn't even so much a 'setting down' of that feeling.
it was a tuning into other feelings.
and somehow a finding of my belief over and over and over again.

it helped that there was so much joy and love mixed into the whole
day. that helped a lot.

those things are on my mind now -
the turning to what you believe over and over again
and the joy and love that's mixed in everywhere..

what is it you believe in, ter?
turn back to it over and over and over again, girl.
because it matters.

hold it.
chant it.
see it.

and turn to it a million times over.

it maters.

look at the joy and love.
over and over again.

it's mixed in everywhere.
all over the darn place.

turn back to these things over and over again.
they matter.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

his birthday!

we've known each other a long time.
in fact, i've known him since before he was born.
i guess he's known me that long as well.

when he was born he was way way way blue.
the cord had been wrapped around his neck.
if i had had any sense, i woulda been darn scared.
his dad was pretty scared.

i just saw him.
i barely noticed the blue.
even tho i can still remember the color perfectly.
and i just kept saying he was so beautiful.
over and over again.
about this weird lookin' blue little guy.

he 'pinked' right up and everyone relaxed.
except me. i was still way way high with happiness
and sure he was perfect. i was flying with joy.

there was a time it was just the two of us who spent our days
together. from morning to evening when his dad got home,
it was just him and i.

we communicated so well, i forgot he hadn't yet learned to talk.

i was never ever bored. we talked about everything and shared

i think that connection has never left us.

i was given a gift when he was born.

a gift so great that it takes my breath away.

he's a man now and doesn't need mothering...
which took some getting used to.

i still have to watch that i hush up and don't mother
when i should just stand and watch. i'm getting better at it.

i was sad this year trying to get myself together for when all my sons
move out. the whole 'end of parenthood' bummed me out.

i'm better about it now.
of course, i plan on crying a bit when the guys do leave.

but this oldest of mine teaches me that it's just a whole new journey
where you get to watch them be men in the world.

i'm so proud of this young man.
just so proud of his heart and his spirit and all that he offers the world.

it's his birthday today.
we're takin' a good hunk of the day off to celebrate!
we all have to work eventually, but we're gonna grab the time that we can.

cause it matters.

celebrating each other matters.
and a gift like this guy?
i gotta celebrate big time!

happy birthday, josh.
you are one heck of a beautiful old soul....

i'm pretty sure we knew each other long before this...

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

pretty awesome

she musta just finished reading my email and picked up the phone.

i was at my desk. i looked over at the caller id.
saw her name and immediately started crying.

what the heck is that???

i wasn't crying at that moment.
but i saw her name and bam.

not being able to hide?

i do this kinda thing......
i'm holdin' it together, then someone shows up - all they have to do
is appear! - and bam.
i lose it.

and i thought 'oh man, i'm just gonna cry all over her.
i can't pick up that phone.'

but i was sitting right there...i HAD to.

and yeah, i'm not even sure she recognized my voice thru the
tears and trying not to have them....i sounded a bit strange.

she was right there.

and we talked a little bit about it.

but you know what happened?
she ended up telling me a funny story about something that happened to her.
altho, when she was going thru it, it wasn't funny to anyone.
and it still really isn't.
only kinda.
and the way she told it.....
and i think i totally needed a laugh.
cause i started laughing.

and i kept laughing. it felt good. it really did.

life has been outta control for her and she's taken to trying to joke about it.
and so we did.

i hung up feeling better.

josh called a little bit later. he knew i was down about some stuff.
and i was tryin' to hold it together once again.

i did much better and didn't even tear up. but you could still hear stuff
in my voice.

he assured me it was good to let things out.
that bottling them up wasn't any good.
and he imitated people who did that.
i smiled.
then he said it's like trees in the wind.
they bend real well in the wind. but they don't break.
that's the same as letting it all out, he told me.
and then as a side note he said 'the wind doesn't care if you bend or not,
it just keeps going.'

i thought that was kinda a cool thought.

and then later i came down to a message on my answering machine.
a friend wrote a haiku and read it to me over the machine.

i stood there and listened and grinned.

turning to my email i found a poem written for me from my adopted
little brother......

man, i just can't get over the people i have in my life.

yeah, there's been some real stinkers lately that i've been trying to deal with......
but they don't even come close to these bright stars in my life.
they just don't even come close.

there's sadness about what life brings sometimes, there's frustration at the lack
of control and power over any of it, there's fear. oh my, there's fear.

and......there's this amazing amazing amazing thing mixed in it all -
the love in my life. it's soooooo present. it's so so so present.

i stepped into it and let it just be there with me.
just be there with me.

root causes of these melty feelings

there must be some psychology term for it -

the stuff that's really heavy and weighing on you,
you walk thru like you're fine.
then other stuff comes and distracts you and you take
your anger and frustration out there.
but that's not really what the anger's about.

and then.......when something finally happens to make you
melt down, you don't even realize all that's behind the melt down.


probably is a term for that.

altho, this time, i see what all's behind it.

it's not the smaller things......
they're just reminders to me that life isn't fair.

and it's that not fairness that's got my goat real good right now.

the complete powerlessness i have and how i watch
devastating stuff happen and that's all i can do - watch.
over and over again.
maybe this is what happens by the time you hit your 50's.

so when i watch the smaller things i have no power over happen,
i focus there and react.

did i say i'm back to my walks?
did i say i was finally getting back to that deep spot where i go
when i walk?

probably not.

i was at the end of my walk, up on the busy road, when a car slowed
down and pulled over just ahead of me. i saw the DC plates (which around
here is just not good news) and i immediately did an about face, pulled
out my cell phone and started dialing a son while i walked quickly away.

the car pulled off.

that was it.

heck, they coulda been asking for directions.
but you know what? i really doubt it.

and that did it for me.
it threatened my walk.

i stopped cause of creepy people.
and they reminded me of why i stopped.

i have no idea what i'm gonna do.
i feel like i can't lose myself in my walks if i gotta watch for creeps
all the time. and how many creeps is it gonna take for me to learn?
do i need a real dangerous interaction with a creep to stop?

and so i came in and cried.
put my head in my hands and cried.

and then took care of some business that's bugging me,
felt the anger and frustration and knew it was about way bigger things.

got on my treadmill and walked and walked.

life isn't fair, ter.
all the way around.
it's not.

it is what it is.

it's how you deal with that that's gonna make the difference for you.

things are taken away. they change.

that's different than saying 'things are taken away from me.'

in the last few days, the theme of things being taken has
repeated over and over and over again.

and i've been struggling.
but you know....i don't think i'm looking at it quite right.
i'm taking it all personally.

instead of looking at it as life changes, i'm looking at it is things
are taken from me.

even in the midst of a melt down, i can see that's not real helpful.

life isn't fair.
and bad things happen.
and the truth is, i'm still reeling over something bad that happened
to someone and it's leaking out everywhere else.
and i'm turning it around and making myself a victim.

i can see it.
maybe that will help me with what i do next.

i have no idea.
but i'm thinking it's gonna involve a lot of treadmill time....

trying to pick

she asked me what my top three favorite bone sighs were.

what a great question to take out on a walk, i thought.

the first one's easy.
it had to be the first bone sigh i ever wrote -

i matter

it was when she first dared to see
her truth, that the winds howled.
after a time, it strengthened her
and she spoke her truth
and the earth shook.
and when finally,
she believed her truth –
the stars rejoiced,
the universe opened,
and even her bones sang her song:
I Matter!”

okay, that was easy.
that's the backbone of my business, it was the start of my finding myself,
it is THE bone sigh that changed my life.

second one was a no-brainer as well.
it's the one i struggle with constantly, think is the most important
thing there is, and feel like i may never quite get -


strength lies in the
opening of the heart…

i love that one. it's so short, but packs the biggest punch ever.
and it reminds me over and over again to work on building those
muscles of opening.

but the third one.
how do i just pick one?
what would the third one be?

and i walked and thought about it.

this one immediately came to mind -

the whole

she could never go back and make some of
the details pretty. all she could do was move
forward and make the whole beautiful.

i remember the day i wrote that.
it means a ton to me.
but that wasn't it.

then this one came to mind.....

my little girl

i went back and got her today.
the little girl that is me.
I coaxed her to stand,
to drop the blanket,
and to pick up her beauty.
she’s walking with me now,
and leading me to wholeness..

and i started thinking about my inner child.
she's gone missing.
i think the walks will help me find my way back.
that will feel good. i've missed her.
i remember writing that one. i remember the powerful
inner child work i had been doing.
man, i gotta make my way back there, i thought.

and i kept thinking of quotes.....

maybe this one....

your truth

it is your truth.
your power.
your soul.
guard it with all you have.
don't let anyone's misconceptions steal it.
including your own.

i wrote that for one of my sons.
i remember what sparked that.
and i know how important it is for all of us.
and how i need to remember it.

bone sigh after bone sigh went thru my head.
it was such good therapy for me.
it brought me back to memories, showed me how far i've traveled,
reminded me of things i needed to pay attention to.

but which one would you pick terri???

i was pretty sure it was going to be this one.
this is one of my favorites. always has been -


perhaps power is letting go of the grip of the past
and standing empty handed facing the future.  

until i thought of this one -

the fist

and the fist became the open hand.
she refused to beat herself any longer.
speaking words of kindness,
she gently touched her hair,
looked into her own eyes and
took the first step towards love.

the tears came to my eyes.
and i knew it was this one.
this one.
it feels like this one gets overlooked a lot.
but i love it.
it seems so important.
and it's such a reminder.

and as i walked and thought about it,
the tears just rolled down my face.
yeah, i think i've been forgetting that lately.
and i think i really really need to remember this bone sigh.

so that was my final pick.

what a cool walk thru the past ten years for me.
what a lot of work it's been.
what a lot of growth.
and what a total honor.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

i'm back!

this is the beginning of week two of daily walks.

i had stopped for what seems like forever.

i could see a difference in myself and knew i had to get back to them.
so last week i started back.

but they've just been 'medicinal' walks.
walks where i had so much stuff in me, i had to go walk it all out
so i wouldn't go insane.

this morning i thought it was the same.
i needed to go walk out some agitation.
so i started out.

but i never really got there.
some real thoughts crept in.
not just walking things out.

and some real feelings crept in.
not just walking feelings out.

and for the first time since i started back,
i could feel myself headin' in deeper inside.
like i used to.

in a way, it felt like sinking into a soft, warm bed.
it felt so good, so right, so where i belonged.

there i was, just headin' back into old territory
when a little white jeep pulled up next to me.

i knew that jeep.

the driver lives in the neighborhood and has stopped
once before asking about some cats. she waves, i wave.
that kinda thing.

but there she was pulling up right next to me,
her hand on her heart, her face animated.
'i'm SO glad to see you!' she exclaimed.

my eyebrows went up.

she explained to me how she wondered where i had gone.
and she actually stopped and asked people in the neighborhood,
'have you seen that lady who walks in the mornings?'

and apparently, according to her, the neighbors have noticed that
i wasn't around and were concerned that something had happened
to me. one neighbor said her husband could find anything out and
he'd look into it.

she said 'i was ready to go ask your sons about you, but i i figured
they'd think i was so strange.'

i smiled so big.
told her she made my day.

who knew?
it felt good to be missed.

it also made me laugh to think about it.
i was JUST getting back to the deeper inside stuff.
when i'm there, tears come, i'm sure my face makes amazing
contortions, my arms have been  known to move...things happen.

great.....i much of THAT is noticed?!

and i smiled.

who cares.

i'm back!

mary's guest blog

i am so proud of this woman!

and to think she had self doubts about writing this and posting it.

it's so great!

it's funny and moving all at once.
and makes us aware of stuff we may not have thought much about.

mary, i'm proud to call you friend!
and you, my friend, are one awesome writer!

check out her guest blog here!

Monday, December 3, 2012

a new tradition...

i'd forgotten how tightening the belt demands creative thinking.
i'd forgotten how good we are at working as a team.

more than one of us needs to budget this year.
which pushed me over the edge to change things this time.
but, the real big budget causer is me.

and i gotta tell ya, i've been struggling pretty big time with this.
anyone who's ever seriously had to face financial restrictions
will tell you that it brings up a lotta beasts. the holidays can do
a number on you.

and the beasts have been rampant.

but this weekend they quieted down.
and i think they're settled down for a bit here.
and i'm feeling pretty relieved.

there were multiple reasons for this.
but a big one was watching what the gift technique we adopted this year
showed me.

we all picked one thing we wanted.
we put a price ceiling on it.....couldn't be above a certain amount.
we picked a time to gather.
we were gonna shop for the items together on the internet and make
a party of it. each gift that was bought would be the present from the
others, the others would split the cost between them.

we all realized it wasn't the gift that would end up being the present,
but the actual picking it out together.
everyone of us knew that.
so everyone was on board for a festive night of shopping.

the time arrived and we gathered.
i walked in to the smell of home baked cookies.

i smiled. it was gonna be a good nite.
we all gathered in the kitchen and made dinner together.

while it was cooking we set up the guys' tv in the living room by the fire
and the tree. christmas music was playing.

we put the tv up close and scrunched in together so we could all
see what was goin' on. there were legs and shoulders everywhere.

and the fun started.
the banter was tremendous. the completely different tastes even surprised
us who already knew we all differed a lot. there was laughter and teasing
and truly trying to pick just the right thing for each other. there was the
'there's no way i'm helping pay for that!' and vetoes and ohhhs over things
that looked just right. there were people trying to tone down their gifts,
and others egging them on to get just the right thing.

it took forever.
we learned we're gonna have to start earlier next time and load up on's a marathon!

we also decided it was the way to shop. and that if one of us needs something
special ever, we all gotta help pick. 'it's better than watching a movie together!'

it was festive, it was fun, and it was something i'll always remember.

it brought me right back to what mattered.
no one cares about the stuff.

everyone knows that.
i know that.

but it's taking me some getting used to that idea as it's hard when you're kinda
forced into that thought.

it's easy enough to say it nobly and nod knowingly, but when you really don't
have a choice, it doesn't feel quite so easy.

i learned a lot this weekend.
and remembered a lot.
and had a ton of fun.

and somehow it blew me right outta that darn victim mode and right back
into believing i can create my life how i want.

and i'm determined to do that all over again......
i'm hoping this is the last christmas i have to budget like this.
but i'm thinking it won't be the last christmas i do the holiday shopping as a group.
i think we just started a new tradition.

i'd forgotten how tightening the belt demands creative thinking.
i'd forgotten how good we are at working as a team.

and i certainly remembered yet again what a gift this family is.