02 Mar 2015
in Blog friends, Blogging, Writing
Tags: acceptance, How do you write?, Our writing community, Our writing family, Our Writing Routines, Where do you write?, Wordpress Friends
When my daughter was in High School, she was one of the Drama Kids. They are a special group all of their own. Some mom’s pick their kids up after soccer practice, I picked mine up after rehearsals. It felt like she belonged to a little family that understood each other and it was comforting knowing she had them. I kind of feel like that about the friends I have made here. It is as if we are a family. It is funny, I’ve noticed that the same people who I follow seem to follow one another. All in a little circle of our own. We have found each other and it is comforting. It is as if we all go to the same church, love the same things, like artists or dancers or actors or musicians who hang out with one another because they have that connection with each other that no one else really “GETS”.
Sometimes I read a line somewhere or wake up in the middle of the night inspired and have to run to my laptop so I won’t lose it.
I like clicking on my blog and knowing that I am entering a little neighborhood, where my friends, my family of writers exist. The ones that inspire and nudge, the ones that are my soft place to fall. Many who I have learned to call friend and and have genuinely grown to love. The ones who I pray for and who pray for me. The ones who advise and mentor the ones who critique and suggest. We are like a writer’s club all having coffee at a cozy little shop that allows us all to gather and read our ramblings. I love to hear about your writing and what inspires you, imagine where you write and what time.
The writer’s studio in my head is a lot like the one I tucked into my last book. It is on the third floor of my imaginary three-story house. The study is warm and cozy with an A framed shaped ceiling, with wall to ceiling built-in bookcases lining both sides. A little gas fireplace sits in the corner of the opposite side of the room next to a window seat my desk is a heavy wooden, well oiled, antique with a banker’s lamp and a lap top and plenty of drawers. It over looks the tree tops and a little brook below. I usually have a mug of coffee with a splash of cream sitting nearby. And you can find me there every morning before sunrise and sometimes in the middle of the night when my mind forces me up to write.
In reality, I live in a one story house in a small lakeside community. My house is a little less than 3 miles away. When I am motivated I walk there occasionally and write. My window overlooks the road by the gate where all of the cars come and go, since we live on the corner of the first street inside of the entrance. It gets a little noisey, especially during the summer. I don’t mind though, I find the traffic comforting. One day I sat there writing for so long that I saw an empty moving van drive in and then drive out full. When I get inspired, I “have” to write.
I’d love to hear about your routines. Do you wake up in the middle of the night with an idea so strong that it gets you out of bed? Do you write in a special place? At a special time? What does your “place” look like? I want to go there. Bring me there now with your words. If you please.
23 Feb 2015
Just wanted to share with all of you who have follwed this project that I am finally letting you know that I think that I have finished my book!
Originally posted on keris journal:
Keri felt as if the air was being siphened from her lungs as she swallowed, trying to breathe. Her head pounded as she tried to filter out the background noise. The pain was the kind you feel that stings when something smacks you in the face. It was a surprise, so unexpected. She closed her eyes as she tuned out the voice booming somewhere in her head. There were no blows. Nothing physical about it, except for maybe when he yanked her arm. But that was not the pain she was feeling now. It was the humiliation and the shame. It happened more often now, and lasted longer and it exhausted her.
They’d been driving. It was a beautiful morning. Their day began with passionate love making and Keri believed that today would be a good day. They’d just been laughing minutes before. And then like a ball in her face, things turned, Jack’s…
View original 253 more words
22 Feb 2015
in Broken spirit, Confidence
Tags: Affirmation, attitude adjustmement, Beleiving in yourself, believing in your dreams, Depression
There are rules in life. There are loyalties that we choose and disregard. There are boundaries that we must set and discipline we must follow. As parents we teach our kids right from wrong. In life we have to give up things to gain others. Professionally, we hire and sometimes have to fire, we have guidelines that make life much easier if we insist on consistency.
Standing by our scruples, may not always earn us popularity but in the end, doing the right thing makes us win. In my life, I’ve wanted everyone to like me. I wanted to be everyone’s best friend. Favorite Aunt, Cousin, Granddaughter, Grandma, whatever the title, I needed to be the favorite. My mom used to tell me, “Not everyone liked Jesus.” Her point was, why should I expect more than He had?
I realized a while ago that I was not being true to who I was if I didn’t stand up for what I believed in. If something was being handled in a way that I didn’t agree with, I’d sit on it and wait it out. Nothing is worse than feeling a lack of validation and manipulated in feeling wrong about being pretty darn right about something.
I learned a powerful lesson in my recent transition, and it has empowered me! I was right. I won’t go into the details but I will never again allow someone to take the power away from me. What did I gain from this experience? Perhaps to be a voice to those still stuck. Where ever you are, in a job, in a relationship, in a goal… Only you can find your own yellow brick road. As Glenda said to Dorothy…”You had the power all along my dear.”
My dream job would be to just write someday. So I know I am not there yet and may never get to do exactly what I invision as the perfect job. But I do know that I am happy now. I am working hard and really do enjoy what I am doing. I work with amazing people and look forward to everyday. A few years ago, I was diagnosed as being clinically depressed. I just needed to get my butt out of the hole I’d dug for myself. Was I depressed? Heck yeah! I was depressed with the situation. Nothing Organic about being in a situation with dumb people running the show! There are amazing people and there are toxic people. Who do you surround yourself with? People who value you or people who cause you to be in a state of constant depression? Think about it. Only you can change things!
And you my dear have the power to do it! There is no yellow brick road, nor an Oz that is a wizard that can give you courage. But there is something much more powerful… YOU! And God! And me and God “GOT” this one now!
Who have you given the power to?
Oh little man behind the curtain I have discovered you
You no longer have the control of what I say and do
I am not sure why it took so long to see I had a choice
Perhaps I couldn’t see behind your magnifed little voice
But slowly I began to see it was nothing but an act
As I began to gather some pretty clarifying facts
I took the power back now and I can clearly see
the power that I believe in now is through God in me!
Diane Reed 2015
20 Feb 2015
in communication, listening, Wisdom
Tags: learning to listen, listening, taking time to pause, telling our stories, the art of listening, The one thing I know for sure
Several years ago, I titled this blog; The One Thing I Know For Sure. Being in my early fifties, and having lived a half a century, I set out to share what it was that I thought was worthy of the time it would take you to read what I wrote. I know how busy all of our lives are and when anyone takes the time to read anything I write, it is like a gift to me. I know your time is valuable and I appreciate every second that you take here, inside my little world! I guess I wanted to share something, perhaps a little wisdom gleamed from my years, and experiences with those younger than me or those evolving, to save them from the same mistakes I’d made.
If you actually go backward and read some of my first posts, I feel like I was still a bit trapped in my cocoon. I am not sure when or why people started reading my ramblings. But as I look back, it took a while for anyone to even find me. I think in the beginning, I was just writing for me. Trying to find myself. A good friend likened my recent ephifanies to a butterfly. I find it sad that it has taken me so long to try out my wings. And now soaring over my life, I wonder, why did it take so long?
I am in a space in my life right now, where I am truly evolving. Where I listen more and pause before speaking. I truly feel that there is an art in the act of pausing, to have someone look at me and feel free to talk because they KNOW that I am reeeally listening. I want to write a story that has this sentence in it: He looked at her and continued telling his story because of the way she listened to him. And I want that character, the one listening, to be me!
I don’t think listening was ever that important to me. I think because I was so unsure of who I was that I never took the time to pause and hear. I was so busy talking, trying to prove who I was or wasn’t. What a waste. What did I miss by not pausing? What did I have to say that was so important?
And as she paused, she learned more than she ever knew! Listening is an art! And that my friends is… The one thing I know for sure!
Most people do not listen with the intent to understand
Most people listen with the intent to reply!!
Join me, next time someone is talking to you, really look them in the eye and make them feel that they are really being heard! It is kind of enlightening to see someone’s excitement when they look you in the eye and know you are listening. It’s empowering to listen, to give someone the gift of knowing they are being heard.
18 Feb 2015
Tags: acceptance, Affirmation, Beleiving in yourself, confidence
“Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, (I am large, I contain multitudes.)” Those were words written by Walt Whitman. I read them in one of my literary magazines that I recieve monthly, and it really spoke to me. Recently, I have become more comfortable in my own skin. I may not have understood that sentence a decade ago, but now it sings to me. I am who I am and I am okay.
I think that I have always liked writing because I have a chance to backspace and delete. When I am out there on my own answering questions and making comments, I am not always as funny and as insightful. My words don’t run as smoothly as the ones I write and get to read and then decide if I want to keep them on paper or suck them back with the click of a key. You can’t do that once you “speak” the words that you say, they are just plain out there, no sucking back allowed.
In a weird way, I feel the writer part of me is the real me, like washing your face at the end of the day, the core me is beneath the layers that I rinse away, the words I speak are not always from my soul like the ones that rise up in me that cause me to stop and sit and share even after I’ve worked a 10 hour day and have to turn around and do it all again. It is that part of me that finds that being rich is in the million words still inside of my soul that are there for the taking or the giving.
“Do I contradict myself? Very well then, I contradict myself.” It is all so simple and yet wildly powerful in the accepting of ourselves. In a way it is like being born again when you finally reach that place where you are comfortable in your own skin.
15 Feb 2015
in Memories, remembering
Tags: Childhood memories, feeling melancholy, how far back does your memory go?, nostalgic
When I started my blog I presented a question in my ABOUT section asking; “How old do you feel right now?” I suppose that I still don’t feel as if I am in my fifties, but slowly I have finally felt like a grown up. It took quite a while, but I’m not a kid in my head any longer. I do feel that I have experienced enough of life to contribute wisdom and a resource of memories to draw from to offer some kind of worthy advice and to have valid opinions about things that come up in life.
I think that because I’ve had such a clear memory from so far back, it has always been hard to feel a certain age. When I was a very small baby, I remember lying in my grandma’s bedroom by the window in a crib that had a raised mattress, the kind that you put a baby that can’t stand up yet in. It still blows me away that the memory is so clear. And then I remember standing up in what they called a bunting in a crib in my own bedroom. I remember getting potty trained, and I remember when my Aunt had to change my diapers and how mortified I was, or as mortified as a two-year old might feel!
I remember sitting on the counter baking with my mom, I remember going to Sunday school when I was in pre-school. I remember getting very sick and having to go to the hospital for a long time because of some infection called nephritis that attacked my kidneys and by the time I got out, all my friends had their training wheels off of their bikes! And my grandpa teaching me how to ride a two-wheeler!
I remember favorite teachers and mean teachers, I remember conversations with friends, I remember Christmases and birthdays, I remember getting up on Saturdays and watching cartoons and then going out and playing all day until the street lights came on. I remember sledding in the winter and coming home and watching The Wizard Of Oz. I remember digging a hole with some boys in the neighborhood one summer and making a fort we could actually stand up in! I remember planning neighborhood clubs and carnivals. I remember slumber parties and spending the night at friends and falling in love with boys.
I can stand in the shower now and a million memories can run through my head, weaving me into who I am today. I guess my biggest point is that now that we are adults, with kids in our lives, what kind of memories are we making for them? I tried to make memories for my kids and now my grandkids. I hope more good than bad. Some children may remember like me. Some of them may not remember a lot but it makes you realize how important making memories are. Whether it is just the experience you are sharing at the time, or the ones that they will carry with them for a lifetime.
How far back can you remember? I’d love to hear about your memories!
I remember the smell of fresh cut grass, and watching cartoons at the crack of dawn
I remember our dad’s hanging out in the garage, after they’d cut their lawns
I remember hopscotch and roller skates, and running home when the street lights flickered
I remember slumber parties, favorite teachers, and the mean one that used to snicker
I recall getting sick and a summer lost, and I also remember getting well
I remember talks with my dad, and the things he’d give me, to share for show and tell
It seems like a lifetime ago, though my memories are still very clear
Some I wish I could forget, and some will always be quite dear
Sometimes I long for those remembered days, when it all just seemed so carefree
And yet I’ve learned that even today, will someday be tomorrow’s memories.
Diane Reed 2015
13 Feb 2015
Tags: moving on
Like a vapor in my past
or a thought that doesn’t last
it all comes and goes so fast
dancing inside my mind
all the things I’ve left behind
seek and you shall find
though better to let go
to not always have to know
to leave everything just so
it doesn’t matter anymore
don’t need to settle any score
I’ve finally shut the door.
“The turning point in the process of growing up is when you discover the core of strength within you that survives all hurt.”
― Max Lerner
11 Jan 2015
in ALS, Attitudes, believing, Care takers, Compassion, faith, Good friends, healing, illness, kindness, Memories, Miracles, Poetry, prayer, Spiritual, Thank you
Tags: Being Grateful, Fundraiser, Lou Gherig's Disease, Poetry
His words are stored inside our hearts,
His life has been a work of art.
He’s planted seeds and grown new vines,
And he’s done God’s work all this time.
His eyes reach out and touch my soul,
his body is no longer whole,
this disease has come to take control,
to snuff the flame and take it’s toll.
But, life still lives inside of him,
the light dances, it won’t grow dim!
He still has lessons we must learn.
The fire continues still, to burn!
His mind is wise and he is there,
and hosts a heart, we’ve found so rare.
the numbers climb of those he’s touched,
the ones he’s taught, the ones he’s loved.
We can’t repay all that he’s done,
though if you are one of the ones,
and you are here now reading this,
Please reach out and help our friend Chris.
Diane Reed 2015
When I first met Chris, he had a Bible in his hands and that was always his trademark. He was and has always been the carrier of God’s word. Planting seeds and reaching out to anyone he felt led to approach. I am glad he felt led to our little store, because he changed things up in our lives as soon as he walked through the door!
I have said time and time before that I will never believe that pain and suffering and illness come from God! Or that bad things happen to punish us. I truly believe that God is not sitting up there choosing who to inflict with what. We live in a fallen world and that is just part of the deal. People suffer and die. They have financial successes and failures. Sure, some have brought on their own form of suffering through bad life or business choices or even health choices. But things like babies dying and ALS and meaningless accidents just don’t make sense and probably never will. Though I believe God allows opportunity in every instance and I have known people who have used their pain for God’s glory and Chris IS one of them!!
I will never forget sitting in a pre-marital counseling class when I was 21 with my on the fence non-believing husband to be. Our pastor at the time, Wayne Frase, shared with us something that even I never knew… that his baby son had died earlier in his own marriage. He was sharing the story to teach us that sometimes heart wrenching, life changing events that can come up in marriage, can either break it or make it stronger, and in that moment, I KNOW that a seed was planted in my soon to be first husband’s heart that would later lead to his own decision to accept Jesus as his Savior. At the time though, he was so confused at how this Godly man kept his faith, and yet very intrigued by his faith in God. Later, when my dad who we ALL loved died suddenly of a heart attack, my husband finally made the choice to believe after watching my mom’s strength through losing my dad and all the other little seeds that were planted along the way. Seeds like Chris has planted all throughout his lifetime!
I guess what I am trying to say is bad things happen to good people daily and it is how they handle them that can be used for God’s glory. And that life is not fair. And the formula has never been that bad things only happen to bad people and good things only happen to good people. If that were the case, Chris Pickens would be living on top of a hill in a mansion without infliction! But the fact is that he’s not. He is in need of our support. I have written about my friend before. (Through Papered Windows) https://dianereedwiter.wordpress.com/2014/02/16/through-the-paper-windows/
But as this horrible disease progresses, my heart was pricked to share again.
One of my best friends, Michele, (Chris’s wife) has been her husband’s caregiver now for about 70 hours a week or more. Chris is totally paralyzed. He can no longer talk and with the occasional flick of one wrist, he is totally dependent. I have never seen Michele complain and she is always smiling. She is now in desperate need of funds to be able to hire capable caregivers to take care of her loving husband and take some of the load off of her. Another friend has set up a fund-raising site for him.
Also Michele sells Shaklee. We all use cleaning products and need vitamins along with so many other things I never knew they sold that I use everyday!! Please take a look at the millions of things that she sells (on the handy link below) and instead of going to the store,why not support Michele and become a regular customer?! (she is even offering free shipping!) It doesn’t matter where you live within the United States. Why not just decide to order everything you would have gone and bought at a store, through her? And the products truly are so much better than any you might find on the shelves AND…. reasonably priced! If we all did it, we could turn their lives around financially by just supporting their business! Please click on the site below for information there! http://www.healthysteps.myshaklee.com
Natural Products Supplier and Nutrition Consultant
714.536.6555 Cell 805.423.2064
Improving the lives of everyone we touch
If you know Chris and Michele, you have probably read this all the way through because they have touched your life. I remember our friendship when Chris was the one who approached us, invited us to church and embraced our family. Even when they had to move back to Southern California to be closer to family and doctors, I’d hear stories about how he’d take his little scooter to town and witness to many, many people who came to the Lord just by Chris being Chris and sharing God’s Word.
The last time I visited, Chris could no longer take those rides to town and was in a wheel chair full time, by then, but those eyes and that heart still were strong. He is in there, still believing and loving God. If he has touched your life or if you don’t know him and his story has just touched you… Please pray for them and then if you will, reach out to him (them) in any way that you possibly can and thank you!!!! And along with just clicking LIKE (which I always appreciate!) How about stopping a minute and looking at Michele’s Shaklee site and perhaps sharing this post on your facebook page or send the link on email to your praying friends and any other site of theirs that you think might help!
Chris and Michele before ALS hit hard
18 Dec 2014
in Acceptance, Attitudes, believing, Believing in yourself, Determination, ephifanies, future, Goals, God, growth, happiness, humility, lessons learned, lessons on the job, Life Journey, Life lessons, patience, Perseverance, Perspective, process
Tags: Hope, self evaluation, Self improvemnt, Survival
I’ve realized that the paths we take, may not always be the ones we envisioned. They may be charted out for reasons we don’t understand right away. In my journey, I’ve discovered that it is not about the job, nor definitely the title, and it may not have anything to do with what you feel you bring to the table or what your talents are. You may just have to “be there” because God wants you right where He has you. It has taken me a long time to realize that. And to know the difference. Am I trusting HIM? Or am I just stuck? Even in writing, I catch myself thinking one or two words ahead and am constanly having to back space. It is not even just a mispelled word. I have actually observed that when I back space, it is because I have written words that I am thinking of, ahead of my current thought. And it has caused me to reflect on how I’ve lived my life.
I’ve gone through many doors in my lifetime, and have been PUSHED through a few! Recently that has really been the case for me.
It was as if some of the keys on my keyboard were stuck and I couldn’t really finish the story. I’d just typed around the broken keys. NOW, the keys have all been repaired and I have been freed! I see the path before me and though it wraps around many hills and valleys, I am writing this story! It is not finished! I must stay on the path and continue the journey to the end! Even if it’s not really the one, I would have written into my own story. Sometimes I just need to let God do the editing!
In my lifetime, I have realized it is not about the power of others, it is about the power that you define as yours. I’ve met some very brave people in my lifetime and I have met a few cowards. It has all been a measuring stick for me. WHO I have become and am becoming. Do we ever stop becoming who we were meant to be? I don’t think so. No, I really don’t. You only must believe.
“How can I get there?” Asked Dorothy. “You must walk. It is a long journey, through a country that is sometimes pleasant and sometimes dark and terrible. However, I will use all the magic I know of, to keep you from harm.” The Wizard of Oz
10 Dec 2014
in After the earthquake, Attitudes, Believing in yourself, Break Through, character, Everyone's own story, faith, hope
Tags: faith, Goals, Revelation, self evaluation, Survival
Have you ever felt just a step away from everything? Almost as if when you try to walk, there is an invisible membrane snapping you back, so you just don’t ever quite get to where you are going? Today I feel as if I have figured out how to break that membrane and keep walking. Getting older may not be all it’s cracked up to be, but there is something to be said for experience and that with it, comes wisdom. Unless you are pretty dense, after a half a century, we all have something of value to contribute to the pot.
I had my day when I owned my own business, did my own accounting, booked my own shows and found the best sources for supplies. I created a brand and a trademark that was unique and had a loyal customer following.
Later, I opened up a store, and we teamed up with my in-laws to create a pretty successful little inity all of its own. I did the display and buying, the hiring and managing of the employees and in its own right, it was a favorite in our little town. Until… of course, the earthquake that happened this month, eleven years ago.
I guess as the “anniversary of that date” grows closer, it has made me reflect on all the things that have come in-between, and made me take a personal inventory. Sure, I worked for other people in my younger years. I was a Dental Assistant, and a preschool teacher, I taught Aphasic children, and for a while, thought I might go into Speech Pathology. I worked in a hospital as a Unit Secretary in the Psychiatric Dept. in Southern California and then later, became a counselor for the adolescent unit. (Probably my favorite job to date!) I remained there for several years. But as insurances changed, that department kind of fizzled out and the unit became more geriatrics, which in turn meant more medical duties, which was just not my thing. Though I admire everyone else who does it!
I left the hospital and got a job working in an Orthapedic Surgeon’s office. Again too medical and that job was short lived and not my thing. And then I found a position at a lighting company that kind of changed my perspective on business ethics and during that time, became pregnant with my daughter. It was a highly stressful job and having a history of miscarriages, I was not going to chance it and so left that there, praying that I could find a way to NEVER work of anyone ever again. Thus was the birthing of my ART Business. And for over twenty years, I didn’t.
After the earthquake, I had to work. There was just no question about it. During the store, my time was so monopolized by the business that my own business suffered greatly just in devoting all my time trying to make the store successful and I had to take a hiatus from all my shows. My art studio became more of a storage place and those doors were closed shut.
When I began even considering the possibility that I might have to brush off a resume and figure out what my talents were, I was at a loss. I guess I never really considered what I brought to the table.
The bottom line is, I had to get a job, I got one, stayed there for almost a decade. The first part of that decade, I learned a lot and was being groomed for better things. The economy changed, the higher salaried people were eliminated, and I was moved to another division of the company. My boss left and so did my opportunities for the most part. I think I just stayed stuck. For too long!
I guess my point is that it’s never too late and you must never give up. Even flowers can break through the sidewalk!
04 Dec 2014
in Anniversary, Husband, Love, marriage, Poetry, True Love, twenty one year anniversary poem
Tags: celebration, Childhood memories, Poetry, relationships, Survival
Posting this one a little early since tomorrow is our actual anniversary but also the 1st day of my new job. So had to get in the lovin’
Though years have seemed to fly by and life has thrown us curves.
And the love that you have shown me is more than I deserve.
You wake up every morning with a song inside your heart…
(singing in the shower)
You’ve made me feel as if I were queen, from the very start!
Lord knows we’ve had our challenges and you may have had your doubts,
when I’ve been mad and showed you the door, and tried to kick you out!
You never, ever, wavered, or let me see your love fade.
And I have to admit I’m impressed, you really, actually stayed!
Staying in love is like magic, not everyone does it forever.
But somehow we managed to find a way, and we ARE still together!
So here we are at twenty-one years, I guess we’re all grown up!
And who ever knew, that just loving you, would someday be enough.
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY MY LOVE!
29 Nov 2014
in affirmation, Appreciation, attitudes about your job, future, Goals, growth, happiness, hope, Life Journey, New Day, opportunity
Tags: confidence, Giving notice, moving on, Quitting a job
This post may seem as if I am kind of puffing myself up. But for the first time in a long time, I am! I need to! If you are reading this and feel stuck or under valued wherever you are today, I hope it will empower you to take a look at your own life and make some changes.
Today, is the last day of my two-week notice. It is funny, over the decade that I worked ‘there’, even the “cream of the crop” or what was thought of as the cream of the crop employee, didn’t ride the whole two weeks out. I am not looking forward to today as such. At 9AM we have a tourist bus arriving. Though I am scheduled at 9 and my final pay has been previously calculated and a check of everything owed to me has already (hopefully) been cut, I intend to arrive early to help a new employee deal with everything. (I smile as I write, knowing that I will never have to ever do this particular task ever again.) And make this an exceptional experience for the group and their guide. Ugh!
My best friend who has ridden the ride with me for the last ten years, and who has heard all the stories from afar (she lives out-of-town) texted me this morning and said: Hi Diane, TODAY is a day of celebrating your freedom. 1 last day of being under appreciated and under paid. Tonight, you need to celebrate your freedom from the chains that kept you tied down. This is a fresh start for you which is exciting. A new chapter in the book of Diane. Can’t wait to hear about it. I love her. She has been my sounding board over the last decade. Having had much success for many years in the Corporate world, she has practically climbed through the phone in anger as I shared my experiences with her. Our emails could actually, be made into a book!
In leaving, I have two weeks of sick pay that I won’t be taking with me. Over the years, I never called in sick. I’ve come to work and been sent home because no one wanted to catch something! But at least, they knew that I really was sick. I’ve used a day here or a day there, to go to a funeral or tend to a sick family member but most of what I’ve used was pre-planned and not just calling in and making people scramble to cover my shift, which is the way most people work now days.
Since I’ve given notice, I’ve been approached by colleagues telling me that they will miss me but are happy that I’ve finally seen the light. I’ve worked years with some of them and we are like a family. But they understand and are happy for me that I am finally moving on. How could I not see what others so clearly did? My best friend, my family, close friends and coworkers all saw it. Now, all I can think is…. I was TEN years younger ten years ago! And yet, maybe I really can take something more valuable with me that has taken me a decade to grasp. I AM valuable and the next door I go through will gleam my value and benefit from the lessons I have learned here. If I can really believe that and find my voice again, well then I guess that it wasn’t a complete waste.
So TODAY really is the first day of the rest of my life. Even if it is ten years later. As I close one door and cautiously open another! Never to make the exact same mistakes ever again. I know now, that I give 110% wherever I go. Though for a long time, I felt unappreciated and almost as if my value was raped from me. Though recently, as my co-workers privately have approached me with tears in their eyes telling me how appreciated I really am. I feel validated. I guess, I kind of lost knowing that. I think that I’ve been very depressed for a long time without recognizing it.
In a huge way, I think my friends here… the ones who come and faithfully read my ramblings, who pray for me and give me advice and share with me their own journey, have given me the best gift of all. The validation and confidence to stare right back at me and really see me for the first time. And for that I thank you all! You know who you are, and I love you!
My next adventure WILL be different! If anything, I have earned an MBA and have graduated with honors at how not to stay stuck! I take some valuable lessons with me. The biggest one is to never lose myself ever again. To stay true to me! Stay tuned for the next Chapter of Diane!
Brand New Mirror
Standing in front of the mirror, I saw a stranger looking back.
Though faintly familiar, she was lost behind the broken glass.
Inside a world of old crushed dreams, I really didn’t look to see,
that the one staring through the cracks was who I used to be.
For a long time my world was broken, though I longed for a better view.
Until I finally received a gift… A brand new mirror from you!
25 Nov 2014
in affirmation, Attitudes, attitudes about your job, Determination, ephifanies, frustration, future, Goals, greatfulness, growth, happiness, honesty, hope, lessons learned, lessons on the job, letting go, Life Journey, Life lessons, moving on, old friends, opportunity, patience, Perseverance, Perspective, Poetry, pride, process, Progression, reflection, Renewal, Self affirmation, self awareness, self worth, surviving, trust, validation
Tags: confidence, faith, Inspritaiton, Poetry, Revelation
I am starting a new job in a few days. And though opening new doors gives me hope, I have learned over the years that happiness is not found behind some unknown door or even in closing an old one that has filled me with so much frustration that ANY new one is going to be better than the one I feel like slamming!
I know that “happy” is found inside of me. And in discovering that, I have learned some valuable lessons that I will take with me. In leaving, I leave friendships that I’ve made over the decade since I’ve been there. And yet, I know it is time to move on, to give myself permission to climb out of this quicksand that has sucked me in for far too long. To understand that it is up to me to make the change, and never again give power to someone else, trusting that they will make it.
And in making that change, I am free! Instead of feeling that I wasted a decade of my life, (though it wouldn’t hurt to have the age I was ten years ago, back!) It is my choice to leave with my convictions in tact. And to understand that I have learned some valuable lessons. So as I close one door and open another, I leave with a wealth of knowledge that I WILL use inside that next door that I walk through.
The funny thing about doors is you have gotta close one before you open the other, or you leave a lot of doors “ajar” in life. I’ve always loved doors. I collect photos of them. They’ve always fascinated me. I imagine the people who’ve walked through them, lived behind them, opened them and slammed them and feel the magic of their power.
The Funny Thing About Doors…
The funny thing about doors
you must walk through one
before going through another.
And every one you open
leads you to something to be discovered.
There are grand ones and small ones,
creaky ones and tall ones,
ones you open quietly,
and ones you just want to slam!
Ones that lead you to the light,
to be damned!
But every door I’ve chosen to go through,
has taught me things I had to know.
From them, I’ve taken things with me,
and others I’ve let go.
Each one led me to a place,
to find new parts of me.
But not one of them was the “only” one,
that held the happy key.
06 Nov 2014
in Editing, Mistakes, My Blog, My Book, Posting mistakes, Wordpress friends, Writing, Writing my book
Tags: Feedback, Review requests, Whoops!, Writing
This is so embarrassing! But I accidentally published the rough draft of my book for a few minutes and then realized it and deleted it. So hopefully most people saw the message COULD NOT BE FOUND. But when I e-mailed my rough draft of my book to my blog, some of you evidentally received the whole thing. It is filled with errors that I was going to do my best to catch before I let someone read it and then re-edit before I hired an editor to go over it again. You know, kind of like the way you clean your house, before you hire a housekeeping company to come and clean it! I KNOW some of you know exactly what I mean! But I feel it is the same way with our writing. There are those people who are just comfortable. We trust them to not judge us, no matter when they come over, no matter how our house looks, they are welcome to just pop in. And there are those who you always try to have your house looking nice for and wouldn’t ever want them to see otherwise.
I feel that our blogs are like the first friends. We feel un-judged and loved regardless. Though there are some that give us welcome and constructive criticism that I appreciate. I think my rough draft slipping through the cracks here, puts me somewhere in-between. I wanted to straighten up my house so to speak before I shared it with the special few who have offered to read it. I understand that asking someone to read 200+ double spaced pages is a LOT. And I don’t take it lightly I am grateful for the ones who are willing. And anticipate their feedback!
The favor I am asking you guys is… to tell me what you have seen. I’m just wondering how many received my rough draft accidentally? I have received several messages that you guys are loving what you are reading and most have read it in one sitting and I am blown away with gratitude. I told Quiall, one of my very special reader friends that I would provide a place for your reviews. I actually am not posting my book. I published the draft for a few accidental moments before I realized that it actually went through! Embarrassing. If you did receive it, please let me know here. I am just wondering how many slipped out! If you are interested in reading the edited version of my rough draft, I will share it with those who want to give me feedback as I continue to edit… such as… was the ending what you expected? Did you feel it had a redeeming message in the end? Was it confusing in certain places? etc… Any suggestions…. etc… THANK YOU!
Once again through this journey of now three years! I thank all who have shared it with me…. through joining me at the beginning and throughout. Even following me to: http://kerisjournal.wordpress.com which I know I have kind of left hanging. You ALL are the GREATEST and I love you!
aka Keri :)
04 Nov 2014
in Editing, first draft, Writer's frustration, Writing, Writing my book
Tags: Editing, Typewriters, white out, Writing
Have you ever written something and gone back to it, trying to rework the sentence and then realized, hey I can just backspace this and add that and change it to fit perfectly into what you had in mind? I’m always a little surprised. Not because I’m old enough to remember typewriters with ribbons and then remember when they came out with white-out built right into them. Or carbon paper that we used to use to make copies. (Though I am.) But because it is just so easy to write now days. As I edit my book, and find myself stuck at times, I always feel myself thinking… Oh yeah, I’m not stuck with this sentence or I can actually make this character say something completely different and back space, and delete and wahlah, I am the master of their journey. I wish life were as easy. There are times I wish I could rewind and backspace some of the stuff that comes out of my own mouth. I wish that I could write the speeches into my brain, that I would like to say to certain people without getting flustered. Ah, now wouldn’t that be nice? To have auto-correct built-in to our mouths! LOL. Anyway, I just wondered if anyone else ever thought these crazy things?
Maybe it is just something that those of us who remember the old ways of writing a story appreciate more. A friend asked me a while back, if I touch typed. I asked him what that was, and realized that it was typing without looking. Yes. I can proudly say that I touch type. And pretty fast at that. My mom made me take typing in High School. I hated it, but I am so glad that she won that fight!
I am not sure that the kids now days even recognize the advancements. I for one am grateful that I am not forever having to white-out and rewind or use carbon paper if I wanted to make more than one copies or stand in line at the library and run off copies for ten cents a copy which is kind of a lot even now. So as I edit and rewrite, it made me really appreciate the fact that I am not stuck with ruining a whole page if I want to change the direction of one of my characters. And of course, you know, I am going to find something metaphoric in all this… A lesson so to speak. So…. Just maybe… I should be a little more tolerant with me and stop kicking myself for having to rewind or backspace and just know that it’s okay to rewrite a scene, because in the end, it might be even better than the first draft!
I’d like to take this opportunity to say… That I’m happy to report that I think that I am done with my book! After all the deleting and rewriting, I am now in edit mode!
03 Nov 2014
in Appreciation, broken heart, Broken spirit, change of attitude, change of heart, Children's attitudes, daughter, family dynamics, Parenting, Parenting adult children, Relationships, Self affirmation, Son, tolerance
Tags: Adult Children of Adult Parents, attitude adjustmement, Poetry, relationships
In life, we have mountain top highs and valley lows. We have anticipation of joyful events yet to come, planned and unplanned. And we have pain that hits so hard we feel sucker punched. We are blindsided by how much it hurts. In my lifetime I have had friends come and go. The going is sad for me. In most cases, it has been a move out of the area that takes those friendships away from my everyday life, and things get busy and you lose touch but remain friends. And yet others have totally been removed from this life through death, which as you get older seems to be a bit more frequent. And then there are the ones you choose to no longer have in your life for important reasons of your own. Though, I think that if I’ve ever made that choice, it was with very good reason because the more I experience how quickly we can be snatched from this life, the more I value the people I love. And the more willing I am to try to work things out. I am a talker. I like to talk things out. I like to gather information. I’ve been called a story-teller, (Heck I’m a writer.) I can tell and retell the same story a hundred times. (My poor husband has heard them all twice.) When I was younger, I imagined my life. I’d fall in love and have kids and be a writer. All so simple. In my head, I had it all planned out. But life is not like that. Crap happens and you are constantly in clean up mode.
We imagine our children, We hold our bellies and pray that we won’t mess up too much. We want to give them the world. We want their lives to be better than our own. I wrote a song when my son was two or three… the lyrics were…
Little boy in my arms,
tiny and new~
of what the world holds for you~
Lump of clay in my hands,
still yet untouched~
Oh Lord, please guide me closely,
I love him so much!
Eyes so wide look at me…
What do they see?
Do they see you Lord,
looking back through me?
Such a gift
You gave to me!
Yet, I always knew…
That the day
would some day come Lord
When I’d give this precious child
back to You!
In my heart, I strive to do what is right. I am a hard worker. I love my Lord, I love my family, I love my husband and I love my children and now grandchildren. I am a good and loyal friend, and if you happen to be mine, I will be there for you to the end. My daughter “GETS” me. She is my Jiminy Cricket, my sounding board. I love her but I really like her too. I love the friends she chooses and that she lives life with a love of it that is inspiring. She is my best friend.
If we ever have a misunderstanding, it is resolved that day, usually that hour! But funny, we enjoy each other more and more without those rare misunderstandings of her youth. I think we both have kind of grown up together and just appreciate each other too much to have them. But I do appreciate my parental boundaries and try to respect them, as they make their own journey. I love my son. I love his children. And I love both the girls that gave me grandchildren.
Though, I feel that my son and I totally misunderstand each other at every turn. I feel that he blames me for a divorce that he has no inkling of what really happened and probably never will because I will never talk poorly about the father of my children. He knows the basic reason we split up and I feel that is enough. I feel that he has his own issues with me that I don’t understand most of the time, but I’d like to.
Recently, I have talked to more moms than I can count who are not talking to one or more of their children for different reasons. A lot has to do with money. It hurts more than losing a friend, when we can’t make our kids understand our hearts. And yet, I won’t be silent anymore to just “keep the peace” Why should they be allowed to say anything they want to us, but if we are too honest, we are basically “hung up” on? Or “cut off.” It astounds me how entitled our children are today. Not just regarding finances, but our personal business. I wouldn’t open up my adult children’s mail any more than I’d expect them to read my bank statement. I am tired of hearing the horrible things that adult children feel perfectly justified saying to their parents. But cut them off if they have a response. If this sounds like you, repeat after me….
I will not be held hostage.
I will continue to voice my opinions.
I will not walk on eggshells.
Nor will I butt into their affairs.
Is it too much to ask for the same courtesy? We all want the best for our children and their lives. It is not a competition. It is just wanting the very best. I pray for us all. May our children see our hearts. May they GET where we are coming from and not guess. And may all of our relationships be restored. AMEN And if you are a kid who happens to be reading this… it is not an accident that you are reading this right now. Go call your mom! :)
“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.” (3 John 1:4)
03 Nov 2014
in answers, lessons learned, letting go, Life lessons, lost loves, Memories, My Book, Poetry, prayer, process, reflection, Relationships, Reminscing, self awareness, Wisdom
Tags: Letting Go, moving on, Poetry, Survival
The other day, I was talking to someone closer to my age about how scary it is that life seems to be dashing by. Yesterday, I was planning a summer get away and now POOF it is almost Christmas. I brought up a point I made in a past post…
About how good God is, and about how when you really look back at the important stuff, it all worked out in the end. I had a prayer tin when I was a young wife and mother and faithfully put prayers in it. I found it years later, and every single one was answered in some way. Perhaps, not the way I’d envisioned. But they ALL actually were answered.
Later that day, a young girl that I was talking to, shared with me how she was heart-broken about the ending of a relationship and I told her my prayer tin story and how things that seem so important now, really won’t in four or five years. Of course four or five years to her is a lifetime, or at least a quarter of her young life, and I’m not sure if she believed me, but…. It made me think. Age is not such a curse. Good things come with experience. Hopefully wisdom is a biggy.
In my life, I have had a few hard lessons. And it’s funny, because NOW, all these lessons that I refer to have seemed to have collectively gathered at one time. EVERY day, I have had quite a few of those light bulb moments recently. And I guess you could call it wisdom. In writing my book, I have re-written the ending at least a dozen times. I do know that since I typed that first word of the first page, I have lived a lifetime in my heart. The poem below is not where I am today. It is just part of my story, a chapter in my book. I am so glad that I have lived past that time in my life. I am so glad that God answers prayers and that life goes on, and that we are forgiven of our indiscretions. In the end, I guess it is all about the lessons.
In the corners of my mind,
behind the closed doors of my heart,
I struggle with the melody,
that keeps us far apart.
Loyalties and passion,
twirl inside my head,
memories of the past play there,
like a story I once read.
Heartache is the tune that plays
in the background of my soul,
charging for my sins,
like a gate keepers constant toll.
Diane Reed © 2014
23 Oct 2014
in Acceptance, affirmation, Appreciation, Attitudes, Broken spirit, change of attitude, Confidence, ephifanies, growth, happiness, healing, humility, lessons learned, Life Journey, Perseverance, Perspective, Poetry, process, reflection, self worth, STRENGTH, surviving, validation
Tags: Goals, Letting Go, Moving forward, moving on, Poetry, relationships, self evaluation
Transition is a place that we move from, after being stuck. A few words that come to mind are change, evolution, conversion, shift, move, switch, altercation, modification. Just a few synonyms that explain a little of how I am feeling right now. I’m not going to waste time on talking about where I’ve been. That would not be proactive, and I think that the words I just shared are words moving me forward and so as I climb out of the rut I’ve been in for oh so very long, I don’t leave it without a decade of education. Life has peaks and valleys, and if you don’t miss the stream of knowledge that trickles through, you will have gained more and learned more than any degree could ever offer. I have learned a lot. As ANNIE said, “It’s a hard knock life.” But the sun is gonna come out tomorrow!
And in honor of my blog’s title (THE ONE THING I KNOW FOR SURE) and the fact that this is my 300th post, I will add another few from my list of things that I know for sure…
It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks of you. It doesn’t matter what happened in your childhood, or how great or horrible your parents were, (GET OVER IT already!) <<< I hate when people have said that to me, and I could probably write a whole post on the subject, but really we need to move on!) it doesn’t matter if you have made a ton of mistakes or if you have no money or a pile of it, it doesn’t matter if you are popular or if you feel that the whole world is against you. What really matters is what you REALLY believe about you. With all the other junk aside, what do you KNOW about who you really and truly are? There comes a time when you finally learn to NOT care what anyone else thinks, if you truly know you have done your best, if you have good work ethics and value others, if you know your heart is in the right place.
And well, if you have true character….
No one can take that away from you. Not your parents, nor your friends, not your kids, or coworkers, not your spouse or your boss, NO ONE knows your true value more than you. Except of course God and He values you more than even you value yourself. But my point is… that there comes a time in life when you know you are worth more than someone else is valuing your worth and only you can change that. Whether it is a significant other, a family member, a boss, a teacher, a coworker, or a friend… The operative word here is… TRANSITION. Ya gotta have one! One step at a time, putting one foot in front of the other… gets you out of where you are stuck and moving on!!!!! There was a movie in the seventies where the guy shouts out his window, how he’s not going to take it anymore! Well, neither am I. And it’s about time that I figured out that…. Only YOU can STOP the BS in your life!!!!!
Sure….It is a hard knock life sometimes, it’s unfair and people can be judgmental or just plain mean, and crap happens. And not everyone is going to toot your horn, or admire you. Not everyone is going to love you or see your value. And that’s okay. Because when you finally “GET it” and understand that you are valuable and worthy and can shine even in the most dismal places and maybe even change someone for the better but if you don’t and they are unmoving, it is so freeing to really and truly be able to say… “You know what? I don’t really care.” And truly mean it. You can stay in the pits and teach, you can get down in the fox holes and help others have faith. You can stick it out through the thick of things and it will be okay. Unless you are in a place of constant scrutiny, negativity and judgment and you lose faith in yourself, then you need to change, to step out and away and know that you are worthy and no matter where you are, the sun is always going to come out tomorrow!
It may take a life time to understand
And yet the two go hand in hand
Poise and honor- style and ease
Come in stages if you please.
Life has a funny way of teaching
those that merit the toil of reaching
they shine long after their words are but a ghost
for, they’re the ones we’ll remember most.
I just realized that this was my 300th post half-way through writing this! I knew it was coming… and I really wanted to write something uplifting. But perhaps this is aprapos.I mean, I have stuck it out… who knows what I have had to say three hundred times. LOL. But I have tried to have a redeeming message through out and so maybe it is about time we started to toot our own horns without feeling dumb! Excuse me while I go find the nearest mountain top to blow mine! :)
18 Oct 2014
in friendship, Good friends, good neighbors, Goodbye, letting go, Life Journey, Life lessons, Loss, Love, Memories, reflection, Relationships, Reminscing
Tags: Childhood memories, Friendship, relationships
You know that one house and that one friend’s mom that you remember from your childhood? It was the one place you always felt welcome by that one mom who was not yours. You felt special because you knew she really wanted you around and it wasn’t because you were her kid and she had to feel that way. It was your first experience of knowing your worth and feeling valued because of who you were and not because of who you belonged to. Sure, I knew my mom loved me and that mattered to me, a lot. But there is a time in your life when you feel funny and interesting and likable because you are who you are, and only because of that. And someone else enjoys you and wants you around.
I grew up in Palos Verdes California, down the street from Lucy. She was that mom in my memory and always in my heart. I was about eleven when I met her. My mom was an artist when I was growing up and Lucy was always decorating something. I am not sure what ever came of the meeting or if my mom ever painted the mural she inquired about, but I do know that her oldest daughter, Kathy and I became fast friends along with all of Lucy’s daughters. She had four. It was like I hit the Jack Pot meeting them. They all went to a local Catholic School and because they didn’t go to our public school, the neighborhood kids were small minded and slow to embrace them. Well, all I can say is… their loss was surely my gain!
I took turns being good friends with each of her daughters during different stages of my life. And then a few years later, Lucy went through a divorce and met a man named Bob, who she married, bringing two more kids into the fold. It was a wonderful family and I loved each one of them in different ways throughout my life. But Lucy ended up being my friend that I’d go visit years later. I remember staying up late at night for hours at a time talking to Lucy. I loved spending the night at their house and when they moved, I think I went into a small depression. Until, we reunited when my mom discovered a phone number that had gotten “misplaced.” That summer, I promptly moved in with them in Orange County where they’d moved and spent several weeks hanging out with Lucy as she picked out new wallpaper and tile for the 6000 foot home she was building in Fallbrook overlooking their several acres of avocados that Bob was going to manage.
The plan was for me to find a job somewhere in Fallbrook and join them. But between getting very engrossed in a serious relationship and missing my own mom a little more than I thought I would, I didn’t follow through with the final plans to move there with them. Though, I did get a job offer after I’d moved back home. And always kind of regretted not getting to live in that amazing house that my sweet Lucy built for her family and included me in that plan. Even though I never lived there, I visited several times a year for many years until I got caught up in having my own family. Slowly, the visits became less frequent. Though Lucy and Kathy, attended my dad’s funeral and Bob and Lucy attended my second wedding, and Lucy even came to stay at my house a time or two, I regret letting life interfere with our visits and I often wonder how different my life might have been if I’d moved into that wonderful home.
A few years before Lucy died, I took my daughter to visit her and we had such a neat visit. I wanted to share a piece of Lucy with her and I really feel she “GOT” who Lucy was to me. I will always be grateful that she agreed to go and that we have that memory.
Tonight, while I was driving home, I drove past a house with a long driveway filled with cars and it reminded me of that house in Fallbrook. It always looked as if it was having a party, because of all the cars parked there. But they all just belonged to her family, each in their own rooms or in different parts of the house just living there. And it gave me this warm melancholy feeling. And it made me think. Legacy isn’t just something physical that you leave, it’s not a building or a fortune, but something intangible. Something far more valuable. It might leave a hole when it’s gone that takes your breath away, but even more, it gives you that place in your heart to fall, the one person, or place you remember when no other place works quite as well.
It’s been over a year since she has left this world
and yet, sometimes knowing that she’s not just a phone call away any longer,
takes my breath away.
05 Oct 2014
in Break Through, Breaking, Broken spirit, confusion, courage, Depression, ephifanies, fragile, growth, healing, STRENGTH
Tags: Healing, Survival
I heard somewhere, someone talking about that feeling of just wanting the night to be over. In my life, I’ve had those nights, even those seasons, where I’m constantly waiting for that JOY in the morning. The joy that we are promised if we just believe. And sometimes, I wonder did I just miss it? When I drive by a dead animal at the side of the road. It makes me sad. I wonder, is their family waiting for them, as we just drive over or around them? Do they know that their poor little body is just lying there, for all to see? No respect. Living in the country, that, unfortunately, is a casualty that is not uncommon. And it always makes me cringe a little as I imagine how they must have been just running across the road, when BAMM, they probably didn’t even know what hit them. Hopefully they didn’t suffer! But it makes me reflect on just how fragile life is and how in the blink of an eye, it can all be carelessly over. Metaphorically speaking. And… How our lives matter. And yet, I try to imagine the life of that little creature, now, just a dead carcass and it seems so simple and yet horribly complicated.
Yes, there are those happy times that take your breath away, where you just want to take a picture and slow everything down and capture that moment in a time capsule, to be able to bring it out and experience it all over again whenever you like. “Those Kennedy Moments.” That make life worth it. Even the pain.
I am not sure where this poem even came from or even how it relates. But I am tired of always having to be fine when someone asks me HOW I AM? The right answer is “Fine.” No one wants to know if you really aren’t fine. They look uncomfortable if you start to tell them otherwise. Well, maybe I’m not fine.
All I know is, that I am constantly fighting that feeling a baby feels as she tries to catch her breath after a long cry. That catch in her sigh that catches as if she is remembering and forgetting all in the same second what made her so sad. As adults, we learn to filter and guard and hide our pain. But sometimes, I feel as if my breath is catching and I am feeling it all in that one second.
And then I hear a song or hear a message with God in it. And I realize that it is all about the moments. The ones with Joy and the ones where I guess I miss the Joy. The ones that really suck. When life hits me upside the head and I am so overwhelmed with the pain of it all. When those I trusted betray me, when I am unsure of everything and the breaths I breathe shudder with pain? What happens when I am just not fine?
In the subtle whisper of a cry
In the flicker of a candle’s light
Within a well-rehearsed goodbye
Waiting for the ending of the night
Like a mirror that’s been uncovered
Like eyes closed that now can see
Like a flame that once was smothered
Like a light just my heart can see.
No longer do I bend in fury
No longer do I shake with fear
No longer do I rush and scurry
Just because, you might be near
I’ve found strength in recognizing
That you are more frightened than I am
I am saved in the breaking and refining
SAVED now, just exactly how I am.
21 Sep 2014
in A book review, affirmation, Best Friends, change of heart, friendship, honesty, humility, hurts, Life Journey, Life lessons, Loss, moving on
Tags: Broken friendships, Endings, My first book review!
I am at a place in my life, teetering at the edge, where I am just finding my voice, and am at the very early stages of feeling comfortable in my own skin. Defining me and who I really want to be. And you know what? It’s not really what others say about you. It is about what you think of yourself. I think I have finally grasped that. Took a half a century but better late than never, right?
I have a hard time trusting people enough, to really make the friendship effort at this stage in the game. And yet even though I have tons of friends, and several really good ones, I never really felt as if I fit in to any one place perfectly. Today, I just read a great line from a book I am about to share with you guys (below) where the writer said; She refused to make the hard choices, to fight the waves”. Wow! How profound is that?? I related to that sentence so much that it brought tears to my eyes. I never belonged anywhere because I never wanted to fight the waves. I have ridden most of them in to shore. Not that my life has been a picnic but when it comes to making the harder choice, well, lets just say that, THAT line took my breath away!
I was at a shower recently with a bunch of church friends and someone who I would consider more a friend than an acquaintance genuinely hugged me “hello” and told me that they were happy to see me. After a bit of catching up and other small talk, I confided in her that I really felt that I was “faking it” and “not just here, but really at any of these church things.” And…. Without missing a beat, she leaned over and whispered, “Diane, we are all faking it!” At that moment, I think I loved her more than I had the moment before!
And I know what she meant, not that we are faking what we believe and that our faith is not real, but that the veil is pulled down a bit further at parties like these. We share just enough. We only know parts of each other. The other half is covered for only the very few to see. The smiles are real, well they are NOT, not real, if you know what I mean. But I want more. I think we all do. And, I always feel glad I made the effort to go, and yet a little empty when leaving. And yet the little affirmation about faking it, about perhaps I’m not the only one that feels that way was like a little unexpected party favor that I got to take home that day.
I just finished reading My Other Ex by Jessica Smock & Stephanie Prenger and I have to tell you that I know what my Christmas gifts for my friends are going to be this year! I am in love with this book! I originally purchased it because a great friend and fellow writer, Leah Vidal was a contributing author. So I knew that I would not be disappointed. But I literally, could not put this book down! It capsulized my friend’s statement; “Diane we are all faking it!” Each story makes you nod and cry and connect and feel as if we are not alone And in someway, I could relate to each and every story and friendship. The twist here… is these stories are of great friendships, best friend friendships that went awry.
Some as far back as childhood, some from college, some from business, or through kids or other chance meetings. All compiled in a format that reminds me a little of the Chicken Soup for the Soul style, and yet the stories here aren’t contrived nor always healing with a happy ending. It is real and heart wrenching and makes you cry and laugh and like I said, nod, a lot!
I have taken away something from every story. No faking it here. No sugar-coating the facts. Just honesty pure and simple and sometimes painful to read. In my lifetime I have had some great friendships. Some that I have shared about here in this blog. But there have also been a few that fell through the cracks, for reasons of their own. Ones I never thought about writing about. So that makes this book even more interesting.
It is the first book in a long time, that I haven’t just skimmed over to get to the next page when it got a little tedious. There is no tediousness here. The women sharing are all obviously top-notch writers, hand-picked from the authors and you know from their other projects (see their website) http://www.herstoriesproject.com that each story was chosen with the utmost care. This one is a no brainer. Ya gotta read it…. If you are a woman and you ever let go of a friendship that still haunts you a little today, this book will help you realize that we all have a lot of the same feelings. kind of like the way I felt… when my friend said to me… “We are all faking it a little Diane!” We really aren’t alone. This book just put it in print!
Note to the authors* (Would love to buy the audio of each woman sharing their own story!)
18 Sep 2014
in affirmation, Appreciation, Attitudes, Broken spirit, Compassion, Gratefulness, kindness, Life lessons, Love
I cried all the way home today. I don’t know their story, she looked a little younger than my daughter, I drove right past her trying not to look, but kind of seeing it anyway. The sign she held said, “Just Hungry” As I passed her, I wondered how many people had just kept going as I just had. I couldn’t do it today for some reason. I pulled over and pulled out a few dollars and a few things from my stash of groceries that I’d just purchased without even looking at the receipt. I pulled up again and I noticed the guy sitting off in the background and wished I’d added something more. The girl jumped up and gratefully took what I gave her as I mumbled something about how I wished it could be more, and she graciously responded with, “Oh this helps a lot, thank you.” I wanted to go around again and empty out my wallet, to offer much more than a few dollars and some token groceries.
It all started with the sign. Just Hungry. I know that much. Such a simple plea and yet the combination of the girl and the guy and the simple fact that I can’t imagine my kids ever having to be; JUST hungry really got to me today.
I know some people might say they are going to use it for drugs or booze or that I was scammed and they have more money than I do. Well, that is not my place to judge. And who knows, maybe the lesson was all mine and had nothing to do with them. I have been in this total funk of feeling stuck where I am right now. Feeling so sorry for me and unappreicated. But I forgot something, it is not all about me! Hey wake up call and all! I have been looking for the wrong people to affirm me.
It puts things in perspective. We have grown suspicious and selfish and it horrifies me that I even drove by and had to think about stopping. I understand that not everyone who holds a sign that says: WILL WORK FOR FOOD really wants to work, and I do know that some of the sign holders are actual scams and have witnessed a few of my own. But how sad that we have grown so hardened that we pass them ALL. God forbid that one of our kids ever needs help like that. But if every now and then my heart is pricked and I am touched when some other mother’s child is Just Hungry, how can we not just help?
09 Sep 2014
in Acceptance, affirmation, Appreciation, Attitudes, Broken spirit, change of attitude, Depression, ephifanies, Gratefulness
Tags: reflection, Young moms
We live in a world of instant gratification. Of fast food drive thrus and microwaves, where the click of a key allows us to pay a bill, buy a birthday present or reconnect with your past, all in a quick minute. We have remote controls to change a channel, turn up or down the volume, and turn off and on lights, we can now, even start our car from inside our house! They even have new techniques where a machine does stomach crunches for you with electric shock rather than good old-fashioned sit ups! So we’ve become entitled creatures of habit and expectation.
I’m sorry but it’s just not that easy. A good old-fashioned sweaty jog around the block a few times is better than some magic pill. I know. I’ve lost and gained and lost and gained the same freaking thirty then forty and now fifty pounds over my lifetime and am heading toward losing again! Hopefully!!!! And have found that it is in the hard work of counting calories and maybe being a little uncomfortably hungry to see the results. Things worth working for take time. And it in the discomfort where we learn the most! I find it so funny when someone asks me how I lost weight when I have in the past, and answered Weight Watchers and seen their disappointment. Everyone wants me to have disovered this magical way of losing so they can get in on the secret. When in fact, there is no secret other than calories in and calories out. Sorry. And if you watch Bambi a thousand times, his mom still dies. :(
I think the same goes for all things in life worth working for. We have to go to school for approximately 12 years in order to graduate. Not all twelve years is pleasant but in the end the accomplishment is worth the work.
I know that when I was a young mom, newly married, with a baby and a full-time job and not much help from my husband in way of child care or helping around the house, I wished that I could fast forward everything to an easier time. And to all the young moms out there, I am here to tell you all that you don’t need to push that button, it happens faster than you ever can imagine! Suddenly, those babies are getting married and having babies of their own. I look back and remember how overwhelming it all was and wonder…. how can I even miss those chaotic days now? Well, I do. At least from time to time. And I wonder… Did I remember to kiss those fat smudged cheeks enough? Did I breathe in the smell of freshly washed baby hair as many times as possible? Or did I just rush through their baths to get some “me time”? I am here to tell you that you WILL get your share of “me time” soon enough. So enjoy being without a moment to call your own, because eventually they will be abundant and you will want to rewind back to the crazy days when you had no help and thought it was too much to handle. Or at least put NOW on pause and someday realize that even though some days are really hard, they will someday be your Good Old Days. I know, I look back and wonder what was really that hard? Don’t get me wrong. I remember the panic and pain I felt, but wow, there were some pretty great times that I missed altogether just being so upset.
I also remember how disappointed in my marriage I was. How selfish my once very attentive and handsome young husband suddenly seemed to become. I mean, we were both working full-time jobs. It seemed as if he checked out as soon as he walked in the door. Popping a can of beer and turning on some game, totally tuning me out. I felt so alone and disillusioned. Hind sight is 20/20. I look back at all the hard times and see where I could have handled them differently, where my reactions could have been more clever. And yeah, if you want to call that game playing, well I wish I’d played more games! I also see why I am so desperate for affrimation now. I wish that my marriage hadn’t ended in divorce the first time around. I wish I could show that I appreciate my much more attentive (somewhat more helpful) :) husband now. At least he keeps my car maintained and fixes my computer issues and loves me like no one else has. I guess I can pick up his dirty clothes and rinse the dishes he leaves in the sink a little more lovingly. :D
I guess my point is, that in that first marriage I was disappointed in, or the diet that seems to be a constant test, or the job where I know that I definitely deserve better, or wherever it is that I need validating in, it is not a fast fix. Things take time, (as for my job… maybe ten years is enough! ) But in the meantime, we need to gather the lessons learned and see that the solution may not happen like an instant breakfast or flicking a remote control, it may take time to really get it right, but it is in the lesson where the magic is! And I guess the magic is…. realizing that every moment is important and it is up to us define every single one!
05 Sep 2014
Originally posted on Gideon & Brisby:
Spoiler Alert: This post may contain too much cuteness.
I have been meaning to post this for some time but these little buggers never want to sit still long enough for me to properly capture all their sweetness. My new green chair was the perfect solution. So how do you make your bunny/kitty/dog/llama as fancy as mine? I will tell you! You will need just a few things.
.glue gun & glue sticks (I usued about 5 small ones for both crowns)
.thick wire (you can get this in your jewelry section at your craft store)
.fabric or dried flowers (I used a mix of different ones from Michael’s but Rachael and I were in Hobby Lobby today and they have a far superior selection, especially when it comes to more life like foliage)
There are so many ways to go…
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05 Aug 2014
Hey my friends….
Just wanted to share my daughter’s blog! She doesn’t post much and so I want to encourage her and share my friends! THANK YOU for letting me share you guys!!!! PLEEEEASE take a moment and go over to drop her a few words of encouragement! And check out her great Etsy shop.
Originally posted on Gideon & Brisby:
Hello all! It has been a long year full all of the wonderful things and go into a year of life. And I am so happy to share this fabulous feature of my You and I brooches in the latest Flow Magazine! I was contacted by one of their freelance editors a few months ago and she requested a some photos to include in their Dutch issue. The magazine is available in several languages all over the world. I didn’t know that they had made the cut until one of my customers in the Netherlands saw my work in her magazine and sent photos one morning via etsy convos. I love my customers ♥ So here is a clip of the page. I don’t speak Dutch but it basically says that you send in photos and I’ll sculpt custom brooches to look like you. I’m currently working on some for someone…
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04 Aug 2014
in Acceptance, aging, Appreciation, Attitudes, Change, change of attitude, ephifanies, greatfulness, happiness, Memories, Perspective, Poetry, reflection, whimsical, Wisdom
Tags: attitude adjustmement, Carpe diem, Learning how to be happy, Poetry, reflection
Sometimes I wander through my mind like rooms inside my past.
Going back to different places that left my life too fast.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could go and find,
all the special places that we’ve left behind?
If at any given moment we could go down memory lane,
and everything we left once, could somehow be the same?
I know exactly where I’d go and who I’d want to see.
I know if I could pick an age, just how old I’d want to be
But I know there’s no such thing as going back again,
to find our yesterdays in places where we’ve been.
I guess in all that I have learned to finally understand,
that being happy is done best, exactly where I am!
27 Jul 2014
in Blog friends, Editing, Friends from Blogging, Goals, My Book, Perseverance, Wordpress friends, Writing my book
Tags: Goals, Writing
She originally started her blog to write the outline of her book. At first, she wasn’t going to share it. She was just going to use it as a place to store the rough draft and some of her ideas.
Not being too technically inclined or really knowing how to set up blogs or sites, it took her the best part of a morning but she finally created what she thought, was a private place where she would be the only reader. Though she still “tagged” each new post as she was prompted to, and for a while, she would just write and publish what she’d written, never imagining anyone else was ever reading it. Until one day she got a LIKE and then the next day another, and still the next day two more.
She thought to herself that she needed to go back into the part of the blog where she set up her profile and make it private because she wasn’t sure she wanted anyone reading such rough and raw ramblings she’d started compiling there. But each time that she’d sign on, she’d be so excited about some new thought she wanted to get down before she lost it, that she kept forgetting about going into the technical side of things to fix the settings.
And then one day she published a poem and got eleven LIKES and four people who’d actually clicked FOLLOW and a few comments. One reader told her that it had made her cry and thanked her for writing it. After that, she was hooked.
Just checking IN!!!! I am on a roll. I have been editing everything and think I have an ending to my book.
“THIS” is an excerpt from my book but it made me think of you guys!
I didn’t want you all to think that I haven’t been thinking about you guys. Also, I have been reading your blogs faithfully but if I am on my phone for some reason, it keeps saying “LOADING” so I can never LIKE things and if I am at work, can’t really take the time to comment like I’d like to. And then when I go home to my laptop, I am writing my book… Soooooo just wanted to stop by and explain and tell you guys I am still here working away and will eventually be back again!
Have a good weekend!
14 Jul 2014
in abusive relationships, asking for feedback, Believing in yourself, Book in progress, Break Through, closure, first loves, healing, Life Journey, lost loves, prologue, synopsis, Writing, Writing my book
I’ve written a few synopsis during my final drafts. I think that this one capsulizes my intentions. I’d love to have your feedback if you have the time. Does it capture your attention? Would it make you want to read more? Any changes you’d care to suggest? I appreciate you guys!
This book is for all the silenced voices out there, trembling under the shadow of someone else’s demons. For those who know how treading lightly and walking on eggshells feels. And how we all become a little confused about love and loyalty to someone else while forgetting to love ourselves most of all.
I remember feeling so conflicted when I thought about the oxygen mask scenario and how we must save ourselves first, before we can save our children. We instinctively want to give them everything to save them first. But the fact is that without us, they would not survive. And so we must save ourselves before we save them. By receiving the oxygen ourselves first. I believe that it’s the same in love. We cannot love someone else without learning to love ourselves first.
This is a story about a young girl who came from a loving home. Who didn’t have a lot of experience with grown up relationships. She was romantic and a maybe little boy crazy. But the intensity of everything that was to come caught her off guard. She began chronicling everything in a “Writing Journal” that started out as a simple English class assignment. Years later, she found the journals again and decided to share the stories with her young daughter, now close to the same age as she was when she wrote in them. And through the sharing of the journals, it inspired her to write her story.
One morning, up in her study, half way into her writing project, she sat down with a mug of coffee to continue writing what she’d begun, as she noticed a friend request pop up on her Face book page and the name she’d never forgotten even three decades later, stared back at her. Little did she know that in the click of a key her life would change forever, in ways she could have never predicted. Accepting the friend request would allow her to confront her own demons that had followed her in every relationship since. It will be the closure that I’ve needed all these years, she reasoned with herself as she clicked ACCEPT.
If you are interested… Below is the book that the above will prologue…
06 Jul 2014
in aging, Appreciation, change of attitude, ephifanies, falling in love again, Gratefulness, growing older, growth, Love, marriage, passion, Poetry, reflection, Relationships, True Love, whimsical
Tags: Marriage, Poetry, relationships
You fall into my heart like a catchy tune
on a slow lazy car washing afternoon.
We fit together more than I realized
you’ve touched my heart like a sweet surprise.
You never really had any doubts about us
and believed all we had would be just enough.
Even when I messed everything up
you hung in there and wouldn’t give up.
Oh yeah, Lord knows we’ve had our go rounds,
when we were anything but on solid ground.
But we’ve learned to give and let go some more
and have come out even better than before!
For falling in love and falling for you
was something I didn’t know that I’d do.
It took me a while to understand God’s plan
That you are the place He had me land.
22 Jun 2014
in Attitudes, believing, change of attitude, ephifanies, God, growth, healing, humility, lessons learned, letting go, Spiritual
Tags: Lessons from my mistakes, My Aha moments, Things that I have learned, Writing ephifanies
As I reflect upon this journey that I am on, certain things have been triggered that I must share. In going back through journals and memories and even in just writing this blog… I really wish I could have grasped all this at a much younger age. It might have saved me a lot of pain along the way if I’d “gotten” this stuff much earlier!
But so far I have learned…
That God probably (most likely – oh okay…. He DOES!!! ) has a plan for all of us and a lot of us miss it by being impatient and forging ahead without HIM a lot of the time. Forgetting to bring HIM along on our journey. Just like the Garden of Eden, when He gave us the gift of life, His plan was perfect. We were the ones that messed that up and thought we needed more. I mean now how did that work out for us? You’d think that we would have gotten the very first lesson He taught us now wouldn’t you? But we are hard headed. At least I am and slow learners and so we have had to deal with the fall out.
God does not see the sin nor pain that hits us the second we breathe our first breath. He only sees the beauty of our potential and His plan. It is our own nature that feels greedy and angry and wanting more. If only we could keep that plan of His in tact. But we live in a fallen world with sin and pain and grief and there has been only ONE human being who has lived it perfectly and that is Jesus. Though, that doesn’t mean that we can’t strive to imitate His life the best that we can. And I think in the end, when all is said and done, that is “The Plan.”
I’ve learned that every day I have the choice to see the glass half full or half empty, to pray and believe in answered prayers or to doubt and give up. I have learned that I can get angry and take my ball and go home or stay and try to be a team player for the sake of the bigger picture. I have learned that not everyone may see my full potential and may pass over me several times in way of promotions or rejection letters, job offers or in my own personal relationships. And that I can consider it all and stay offended and stuck because of it or I can be true to myself and realize that they are the ones losing out and continue to shine and move on. And that God’s plan may be better in the end anyway!
I have learned that not everyone has the same story and to be sensitive to where someone else has comes from, to not judge as quickly but to find out their story and have compassion. I mean didn’t Jesus teach that over and over again? We need to drop those stones and learn the art of loving for once and for all and maybe in the act, we might just learn our own lessons.
I have learned that you have to let things go or you will drive yourself crazy. It takes more energy hating than it ever does just moving on! Whether it is people who you know or strangers that randomly choose you to cut off in traffic, it just is not worth ruining your day over when they have probably forgotten about their own offense shortly after they did it. I am robbing myself of joy by staying mad.
I have learned that it is better to keep your mouth shut than to gossip or to listen to gossip. When someone is talking about everyone else constantly, I pretty much have to accept the fact that they are also probably talking about me as well. And it just feels better to say nothing, rather than worry about my words being repeated.
I have learned that the bad times make you grow and the good times are the rewards for getting through the bad times. That there is always joy in the morning and that every time I have found myself on my knees, I have received a bigger blessing even amidst the pain. Because God’s voice does not return void.
I have learned that every mistake I have ever made, every wrong choice and even my worst sin, can have a redeeming message that I can learn from. And that God is a God of Second Chances.
And finally, I have learned that the lesson is all about trying to bring God’s plan to life for our lives. When we smile at a random stranger or love the unlovable, when we forgive an unforgivable wrong, we are finally “getting” it.
Heaven may seem far away but it is actually very close and we can have it in our life daily if we are constantly on our knees remembering to seek His plan first.
“The LORD will keep you from all harm— he will watch over your life; the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.” -Psalm 121:7-8 Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica
10 Jun 2014
in Empty Nest, Love, Memories, MOM, Parenting, prayer, pride, reflection, Relationships, Reminscing, Son, STRENGTH, surviving, Time, Wisdom, worry
Tags: Empty Nest, Letting Go
This is the time of year…
We are trying not to count the days. We know it is coming up. We are trying to be happy. And yet it is extremely hard. This is bascially a re-share that I posted before my blog was very well known. I thought that I would reshare it as some of you are approaching that time in your life as you watch your babies graduate and wonder where the time has flown off to. It is hard to believe that the boy in this story is going to be 34 tomorrow! I just had to stop today to say….. Happy Birthday Chadly! Your mom loves you!
I remember when my son left home. It was his Senior Year. It was a crazy time for us to move and yet it happened. I remember always shaking my head when I’d hear stories of parents uprooting their kids from their last years of High School and yet we found ourselves in that same position. I was not ready. He was not ready. And yet it is a choice I made and will always look back and wonder about. In the end, he moved in with his dad. I am glad because his dad is gone now and it was a great bonding time for them that my son will always cherish. And yet as a mom who was pretty over protective all of his young life, I had to let go, knowing for the most part, that the supervision would not be identical. In fact, it was pretty non existent. I am pretty sure all curfews flew out the window along with my baby bird!
I remember once my son calling me and telling me that one of his dad’s room mate’s had brought home Jack In The Box for everyone but him. I am sure there was food in the house and he was not going to starve and that there may have been a good reason for leaving him out… mainly his attitude which has always been a bit challenging… Smile… But I can’t imagine his father partaking in the food while our son sat watching. Though I “get” that I was not privy to the full picture. As a mother missing her baby you can imagine my heart. So I began sending care packages.
Sure I could have sent money and saved the shipping, but I found joy in choosing his favorite things and “knowing” he’d be fed. I don’t doubt that my ex was supplying the basic needs but not the hugs from his mom and so I sent those packages pretty regularly. Until I was asked not to.
One day I got a phone call asking me to “stop” (sending the packages) by my ex. He said, “Diane, you are not helping.” I will never forget how hard it was. I understood that my son was actually 18 by that time, had a job and was living rent free so just had to pay for his gas and food. My ex had moved out of his parent’s house his senior year, and I know that he just wanted our son to grow up and learn about life the way he had to. It was a love thing. He wasn’t trying to be mean. But it was hard for him to understand my “mother’s heart” and that the thought of my baby being cold or sad or going hungry for even just one minute was hard for me. Okay well maybe I wasn’t that bad but I did want to confront him about that Jack In The Box incident but I didn’t want to betray my son. And I wanted to tell my son that it was his dad who was making me stop sending the care packages but I could not betray his dad.
It seemed as if everytime I turned around that year, I’d see a little boy that reminded me of my son. I missed him so much. But I knew that he wasn’t that little boy anymore. He was all grown up and I needed to let go.
I guess I actually was glad that his dad taught him the hard lessons that I couldn’t.
I’ve shared this poem before here but it is one that I wrote right before my first baby bird tumbled out of my nest… This one is for all the moms having to let go this year as their baby birds fly off to school or where ever it might be. I understand and feel for you all. And I am here to tell you that you will survive! My son did! He has his own business and a beautiful family. Letting go isn’t always easy, nor is letting our baby birds fall out of the sky sometimes… but if we let them… experience the highs and the lows… someday they will learn to soar and that is enough hope for me. (This poem is also for the young moms who can’t wait for school to start and need a little reminder… of just how FAST it all flies by!)
Seems like only yesterday I held you in my arms
Oh how you swept me away with all your baby charms.
The days just flew by quickly, soon you began to talk
and then a little later, you began to walk….
“Mommy will you cross me? I want to go and play.”
Oh those words ring sweetly, now seem like yesterday.
The years have swiftly passed,
don’t know where they’ve all gone,
And when you cross the street now,
you don’t need to call your mom.
It has happened right in front of me, before my very eyes…
packed away, your faded jeans, one of every size…
Teddy bears and old match box cars,
all packed with loving care,
baseball cards and folded notes of secrets that you shared.
I sit amongst the boxes recalling our memories all alone
and realize that baby, once in my arms,
is now fully grown~
And silently I wonder through a mixture of joy and tears…
Did I truly show how much I loved you
through those tender years?
Sometimes it’s hard when you’re the mom
to make your child understand
just how VERY proud she is when he becomes a man!
(Time flies! The one I wrote this this poem for now has a family of his own!)
07 Jun 2014
in Blog friends, Blog Report, Blogging, Book in progress, Break Through, Critiques, Determination, Diaries, ephifanies, first draft, Friends from Blogging, Invitation, Life Journey, Writing, Writing my book
Tags: faithful readers, Thank you, WordPress, writing journey
I am back! I feel as if I have been away on a long trip! Some of you have come along with me and faithfully stuck it out beside me the whole way and I am forever grateful!
For the others reading this…
I am Sorry that I took a powder for a while. I have been working on a project for my book. Some of you may have gone to my page and searched for Dear Journal Entry #1 and then followed as I have written a draft on here. Kindly offering to edit and read as I write. I have gained a wealth of knowledge from you all as you have offered different suggestions and even told me that you have cried in places! Which I know is the highest form of a compliment! A friend and published author http://dgkayewriter.com/ approached me last year with an idea. She suggested that I take some of the journals that I found and recreate them in my book in place of some of the chapters that I’d already written. Soooo I created another blog: http://kerisjournal.wordpress.com/
If you are interested after reading “ABOUT” It is important to know that I started this in November 2013 or to go to :http://kerisjournal.wordpress.com/2013/11/14/dear-journal-entry-1/ to begin reading.
I am far from finished but… I’d love to hear your feedback!
There were times that I was signed on under Keri’s name and have wandered around your posts and comments and forgot where I was! I am not done and still have poetry to write on the other blog but for the most part I am back! And will try to get active here again! I have written here and there since I’ve been working on the other project and thank those of you who are still reading “here” but not as much as I would have liked. Anyway…. I Just wanted to explain!
It’s good to be back! I’m gonna go unpack now!
15 May 2014
in Acceptance, Attitudes, Perspective, Renewal, STRENGTH, Survivial
Tags: Healing, self evaluation, Survival
It has been a few weeks since I checked in. I’ve been hanging out over at my other blog http://kerisjournal.wordpress.com/
and trying to work on my book. But never want to be away so long that you think that I don’t care about you guys here! I thought I’d come here to touch base and share something that was on my mind…
I work with people who are my kid’s age (funny how that happens, the older we get!) Sometimes it’s just the two of us working. Most days, it’s hopping and there’s not a lot of down time. But on those rare occasions when the phone’s stopped ringing and clients don’t need to be checked in or out or shown here or there, we’ve had some pretty heavy talks. After we lost our business (gift store in the 2003 earthquake read my ABOUT page for more info on that) both my husband and I have had the opportunity to work with the youth in our community. Funny because, my husband actually wanted to be a Youth Pastor in his younger years and worked for about eight years as the General Manager at our small town’s theater before going back into business with his dad doing what he did before we opened the store. During those years, he employed a lot of our community’s youth and was able to counsel several of them over the years and invite them to our church.
The other night I worked with a sweet girl who shared this heartbreaking story with me about her break up with an ex-boyfriend. Which also involved some mean girl antics which all seemed very dramatic. As I listened, my heart-felt for her. Especially since I am writing my story about that time in my own life. Another girl around the same age, also began talking with us and I told them how everything seems so important right now but in about ten years they will look back and have families and different perspectives and priorities and lives and everything that seems so important now will all seem silly someday. They both looked at me with blank looks on their faces and it made me realize that of course I could see from where I was standing but they had not made that journey yet. And so they had no idea what I was talking about.
Do you think perhaps that God might look at us a little like that? Wanting to help us see the BIGGER picture while we are lost in the chaos of our smaller worlds? He knows that we need to take the steps on our journey to be able to look back and see what was important and what really just wasn’t.
As I write my other blog, I have traveled back a few decades. And it has been a bit exhausting. But I know that I have learned one thing. In all the years since I have cried all those tears. I am a survivor.
27 Apr 2014
in aging, Attitudes, Life Journey, Life lessons, Memories, Midlife Crisis, reflection, Self affirmation, Stuck, Time
Tags: Poetry, reflection, self evaluation
The older I grow
the more I don’t know
the faster the days go by.
the minutes don’t last
it make me just stop and sigh.
The laughter and tears
the hopes and the fears
another candle blown out
Inside every minute
the memories in it
Well, In the end
THAT’S what it’s ALL about!
Diane Reed 14
14 Apr 2014
in Appreciation, believing, cinnamon rolls, faith, Spiritual, worship
Tags: Answered prayer, Childlike faith, Gratitude, praising God
I just want to share a silly little story with you. It really happened and I know would happen more if I’d ask more. But with a grateful and rather humored heart, I wanted to share my story with you today. When I was about nine I had a little orange patent leather purse. It had eight dollars in it and back in the late sixties, that was a lot of money for a little fourth grader. I tore the house apart looking for that little purse.
Finally I remembered Mrs. Anderson, my Sunday School Teacher telling us that all we had to do was talk to God when we needed something and He would listen. So I shut my eyes and Prayed believing full well that He’d answer: “Dear Jesus” I prayed… “Pleeeease help me find my purse.” And for some reason I just happened to look out the window as soon as I opened my eyes and there in our car, in the garage ,was my little orange purse sitting right in the rear window of our car.
Okay, so I have lived a few decades since then and I have come to the realization that the answers are’nt always that forthcoming. Or at least the answers that we think we are or aren’t recognizing. But I know God heard my prayer and He was right there when I ran out to retrieve my prized possession and knew my heart as I marveled at just how specifically HE answered my prayer. And on that day, that prayer changed my faith.
In the years that followed. I have prayed for things and it is not always like magic for me. But because of that little orange purse memory, I don’t doubt that HE hears my every word. And that if we ask for specific answers, He is not above giving them. Now, I dont mean to minimize the important prayers, and believe me, I have needed to pray for life and death answers before. But recently I have been pretty out of touch with my walk with God and I needed a reminder that HE is always there, even when I don’t always feel Him. On this particular morning… I’d decided to make cinnaomon rolls for work and my name to fame is the cream cheese icing that goes on top. I buy powdered sugar by the bag and usually have a small stock pile of bags in my cupboard.
This particular morning, I had to be there early and when the cinnamon rolls were finally in the oven. I usually make the icing while the rolls are baking. So I opened my cupboard only to find not even one half of a bag anywhere to be found. I am not sure what the big deal was, and why I was so invested in making them that particular morning. But I pulled everything on every shelf in my cupboard apart and there definitely was absolutely NO powdered sugar in it, anywhere. As I closed the doors I was about to give up and that little orange purse popped into my mind and I almost laughed at myself but I prayed: “Dear Lord pleeease give me just one box of powdered sugar.” Now I told you that I normally buy bags and I don’t remember buying a box. But I opened the cupboard doors one more time and there was one sitting right out in front.
Magic? No way. It was my reminder that God hears EVERY prayer, no matter how small. In fact, I’ve always thought it was a lack of respect to ask for things like parking places or other things that aren’t life and death when HE has much better things to do. But I think God wants us to be in conversation with HIM much more than we are, or at least than I am. And I know that it was that same God who found the importance in answering my prayer almost fifty years ago that took the time on that morning not too long ago, to find a silly box of powdered sugar for me. I truly think I needed a reminder, that I need to talk to God more about even the little things. This was a refresher connection, personally with HIM to remind me what a specific God we love! Because after all, it really never was just about the powdered sugar.
01 Apr 2014
in criticism, growth, healing, honesty, humility, humor, lessons learned, pride, reflection, Relationships, self awareness, self worth, STRENGTH, tolerance, validation, Writing
Tags: Affirmation, It's not always depression, understanding our moods
This has ended up being kind of a series and I promise this will be the last of it. But as I have dug my way back out of my hole I have tried to figure out yet again what brought me there. The kicker this time is that it was nothing in particular. I mean I’ve had much worse times of life and I know things could still be much worse. And I really don’t want my proverbial memory of a metaphoric “I’ll give you somethng to cry about” happen to me. But what the hell is my problem?! Sorry.
And then it dawned on me that everything that led me to my journey down that dark, dreary hole was about me and my crazy imagination. And though the good thing about a crazy imagination is, that it helps a writer write. The bad thing is that it doesn’t help if you still have to find a way to live in the real world (above the hole) I’d like to say that I am not easily offended and that I have a pretty tough skin. And in some ways that is very true. And as I have grown older, I’ve realized that stupid is… as stupid does… and been able to consider the source of most things. But when it comes from someone that I care about, it hurts just a little. Recently a lot. I’d like to think that I’ve grown an even thicker skin but most likely, I have lost a layer and so perhaps become a little more easier to offend.
So the trick is, deciding to just not be offended. Right? Yeah right. But you can be aware. My husband has a saying when someone is a little off: about how they are… “just a bubble off” it is related to the carpenter’s tool that is called a level that is used to measure if something is well, level. How can I not be offended when I am married to someone who guages me with a level? I’m KIDDING now but in the end I guess the answer is… if you can’t learn to laugh at yourself then you might as well jump back in that hole and pull in the dirt!
Thanks everyone for the support! I think that I am going to go fill in that hole now! (With me on the OUTside of it!) ;)
Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense.
30 Mar 2014
in Appreciation, Attitudes, Blog friends, Break Through, Broken spirit, change of attitude, Depression, Determination, earthquakes
Tags: attitude adjustmement, Letting Go, reflection, self evaluation, Self improvemnt
First of all I want to say that…. I am so blessed to have you guys! Thank you ALL for your support and prayers! You guys are amazing! I feel that we have a little church or at least a prayer circle right here in our midst!
It’s not all that easy to just break out of that dark hole that I’ve been stuck in and just shake it off as if I’ve just fallen down and skinned my knee. When it is something that hurts from the inside out, it takes a bit more than a bandaid. I remember once when I’d just had my daughter, she was three days old and we’d both come down with chicken pox! My first husband and my son, who was seven at the time, had gone to his baseball game and come home early with a huge black eye! From what I could gather my son had been beamed in the eye and my husband was not happy about it at all! He was the kind of dad that said; “Hey man just shake it off!” Okay so you can imagine how I felt. My poor baby was hurt. And I wasn’t there to comfort him and his father was no help at all! On top of it, I was not feeling too well myself. Later my husband apologized and realized that he’d been embarrassed and made it all about him but I guess my point is… sometimes you just can’t shake stuff off.
We all have our broken times. Our losses, our heartaches and crisis. Some of us are dealing with life and death, some of us are dealing with catastrophic financial issues and debt and then others can look at their own lives and realize that they don’t have it quite as bad but still can’t seem to snap out of it. My grandmother used to say that someone’s hangnail is just as important to them as the other guy’s broken finger is to him. It all depends who is feeling the pain. I guess that makes sense in a selfish kind of way and I guess I’ve been feeling kind of selfish lately. The funny thing about being “selfish” is you don’t really recognize that you are being it until much later. Hind sight is always 20/20.
I remember once going to marriage counseling and having our therapist tell me that I was depressed. I wanted to shout. “Ya think?” I was abused by my first boyfriend, My dad who was my best friend, died from a heart attack too early in life, I had two miscarriages that pretty much did me in. I finally divorced after struggling to keep my marriage alive for my kid’s sake for far too long, I remarried and then we lost our business in an earthquake…. yadda yadda yadda… my husband had to take a job beneath him that required him to work EVERY holiday and then after nine years got laid off and now I am still stuck in my going no where job after almost ten years. After being my own boss for the last twenty years, working for someone else. Depressed? No. Just circumstances.
INSTEAD… I could be thinking…. I was given a second chance with a wonderful Christian man who helped raise another man’s kids and has been a wonderful father to them. I had a chance to have a cute little store that was very successful for a while. And though our store did not survive. It was pretty amazing that WE DID! And I need to remember that everyday!
And by the grace of God we both were given the opportunity to slip into some very good jobs. My husband always wanted to be a youth leader and being General Manager of our local movie theater gave him that opportunity for almost nine years! He was paid very well. His boss was very generous and offered him commissions that many larger city theaters probably don’t offer and so it was nice while it lasted. And just when those doors closed due to the theater’s finances, his boss generously provided him with a severance package which allowed him to go back to work with his dad as God opened that door, just as his dad needed him again for an old job they’d done years ago. Which he may not have been able to do, if he’d still been working at the theater due to the demanding work schedule.
As for my job, it has given me the opportunity to meet some great friends and learn humility! I am learning lessons I may never have learned without the experiences I am having each and every day.
Also…. my daughter just checked in and told me that though she felt the recent 5.2 earthquake in Southern California and it upset her, she is okay! If you have read our story in the link above (right below the photo of our crunched store)… I have to be reminded that I appreciate and need to live for every second of every minute of every hour and looking too far ahead is just too overwhelming…. For God reminds us that THAT really should be Enough! Though… The next few weeks… If I could ask for prayer for health and business stuff for my father in law and their business there is power in prayer and I am a believer in this little prayer group!
Sooo…. Though I am not checking in with some profound life changing aha momentish message…. I am telling you there is light at the top of the hole!!!!!
28 Mar 2014
I can’t seem to escape this place that I’m in.
I’m overwhelmed and the tears begin
I feel trapped in here.
Inside the walls of despair
The sadness floods me like a sob
and i can’t catch my breath.
It is like that feeling you get as a kid,
when you cry for no reason and for everything sad…
all in one good sitting.
I am sad for my pain and for all those I know afflicted.
I am sad for the unfairness of it all,
and for the answers I can’t find,
and for the ignorance I feel inside the years
where wisdom should be.
I am sad for all of my failures and unmet goals
and for the place that I know I should be grateful.
I am sad for the holes I can’t seem to fill.
and for the life passing too quickly before I can make a difference.
I am sad that I am so old and yet I still feel so young.
When am I going to feel like I’ve arrived?
When am I going to GET it?
When am I going to feel Gotten?
When am I ever going to escape this place?
I can’t seem to get out of here…
I am stuck inside my very own tear!
27 Mar 2014
in Acceptance, affirmation, Attitudes, attitudes about your job, bad neighbors, broken heart, Broken spirit, change of attitude, communication, Compassion, Confidence, criticism, Depression, emotional abuse, God, gossip, growth, healing, humility, kindness, patience, Perspective, Relationships, Self affirmation, self awareness, self control, self worth, STRENGTH, Survivial, tolerance
Tags: attitude adjustmement, confidence, self evaluation, Self improvemnt
My daughter has been telling me about this thing called The Rice Experiment. A Scientist took 3 jars of rice and for one month, he said to the first one, “thank you” and to the second one he said “you are an idiot or I hate you.” And the last one was just ignored. Watch the link below to see what happened. It is pretty incredible. The result is that the one that was told “thank you” grew fragrant and flourished while the others grew bacteria etc. The video is only about a minute long and is worth the time you take to watch it.
Lately, I have been in a horrible funk. I have pretty much felt like the other two jars of rice. I am not sure what is going on. I do believe that outside energy does have a lot to do with our lives. The negative people that we give power to, and the power we give away is within our control. I have come to the conclusion that we don’t just have to sit there and allow someone to come along and ruin our day and create fungus in our lives. Too many times I have allowed the negativity of others to take over.
I believe that it is a conscious choice to love ourselves and embrace our positive-ness and all the fragrance that comes with it. We don’t have to wait for someone to come along and spew the expected or unexpected words we have grown accustomed to that catch us off guard and throw us off kilter. We need to find the love. It is there just as much as the hate. They actually sit next to each other all day long. It is up to us who we give the power to.
TODAY I know that I am loved. By God and by me and that is ENOUGH!
26 Mar 2014
in Attitudes, change of attitude, change of heart, Compassion, Depression, frustration, God, Gratefulness, growth, healing, kindness, lessons learned, Love
Tags: A Little Child Shall Lead Them.
I just needed to share this with you guys. It sounds kind of silly now as I try to explain why I was brought to tears by this funny little incident, but maybe it is one of those times where you just had to be there… but I wanted to try because it was such a special moment. Seems that I keep getting reminders from God a lot lately.
I was in a hurry yesterday for no known reason. It was my day off so I’m not sure what was up or why I was so up tight. I was just annoyed at everything. Stuff at work, at home… nothing at all and stuff I was trying to deal with, without going too crazy. I mean something was really bugging me that I couldn’t put my finger on, and even today I’m not sure why I was so impatient. I’d run to the store to pick something up and was trying to get out of the parking lot and get home.
As I waited, I absent mindedly waved a family on in the cross walk, though they actually already stepped out. The parents were in deep conversation and didn’t even acknowledge me but for some reason I glanced at the little boy and saw that he was staring right into my face smiling and without missing a beat, caught my eyes and waved. Nodding to me as he mouthed “thank you” as he walked by. I smiled back and that little old soul who couldn’t have been much older that three and a half, changed my whole perspective and every cell in my soul.
I can’t explain it but it was like connecting with God. As if He slowed me down and gave me a reminder what it really IS all about. My Aha moments usually involve someone homeless or sick but this little boy looked well loved and obviously well raised. But it made me remember how God told us that He’d use the children to be HIS messengers and to lead us. I had to stop and thank God for that little guy who brought a message to me on a day when I needed a reminder that it’s all about love and connecting and being grateful for even the smallest things.
God’s messages don’t need stamps they are sent with smiles!
24 Mar 2014
in Goals, library, passion, reading, Writing
Tags: Childhood memories, Goals, Hope, Inspritaiton, reflection, Writing
I knew at a very young age that I had words and stories locked inside of me. In Elementary school my teachers noticed that I could write. But not until High School did one particular teacher actually take me under her wing and offer me Independent Writing classes. I think that most writers can tell you when they knew they had that light bulb moment when they wrote something special or different that set them apart from the rest of the other kids in the class. Like an artist who paints their first masterpiece or the singer that sings a song that takes someone’s breath away. Or a comedian that makes you laugh until you cry, and the dancer that makes people stop and really watch till the end.
When I was in elementary school I loved to write for me but when I was in college, I put my amature talents to use and totally BS-ed my way through my Sociology class with my essays. I had no idea what I was talking about! But I received this comment on one of my most blatantly ramblings…. “100! If I could give you more, I would! Brilliant!” Okay, now I am coming clean. Like I said….I really, truly had NO idea what I was talking about! I just took the question and re-wrote it a bunch of different ways. But I knew then I could possibly fake it and so I did.
Today, I have a much more humbled outlook. I mean, in fifth grade there aren’t a lot of kids that love to really write. I was a different kind of fish in a small pond that stood out a bit because of just that. But in the bigger world, there are trillions of great writers in a much bigger pond. I am just one of many that likes the same bait.
The world has changed a bit also. When I was assigned to write those reports that we all remember. Remember those STATE reports? Didn’t we all have one assigned to us before we reached Junior High? I’d spend hours at our local library, pulling out drawers filled with information, clinking dimes into a copy machine copying pictures in books for those reports.
Now kids today can find it all on line. It makes me dizzy just how far we have advanced but in the same breath, I am kind of sad that our kids will never experience pulling out a library catalog drawer filled with index cards with information on them. But though their computer knowledge will always far suprass mine, there is still something to walking into a library and smelling the leather bound books with words pressed on pages, and being able to walk to a certain section of the library, finding the shelf, and pulling down an actual book and breathing in the scent of words.
12 Mar 2014
I was writing a new post in my head about this very subject when I stumbled upon a blogger friend’s version of Defining Moments. Those times when we have the opportunity to let a situation define who we are and THAT may be the only time we have to show our character. It is easy to shine when everything is going great but it is those times of inconvenience that is when we have the choice. Teresa’s version of this subject is a wonderful reminder. And check out her blog it is truly filled with treasures♡
Originally posted on Moore to Ponder:
But these are written so that you may believe Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and by believing you may have life in His name. John 20:31 HCSB
Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. Psalm 51:10-12 KJV
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Romans 12:2 KJV
For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. Philippians 2:13 KJV
I am thinking about moments.
We do like to capture moments; both good and…
View original 333 more words
03 Mar 2014
in Attitudes, faith, God, Gratefulness, hope, patience, Poetry, prayer, reflection, Spiritual
Tags: faith, Poetry
The thing is, that no matter how low you go, the great thing about valleys is that there will always be… Well, not valleys.
I think that my problem is that I have always looked for the mountain top high. My best friend and I were having a conversation today and she shared a little story about how when she was a little girl she remembers when she made a conscious effort to not expect more. It was a sad story (maybe another post) but we ended up laughing, deciding that;
Expecting less out of life may save us from disappointment but it would be sad to go through life only to find that your only joy may be… not being disappointed because you expecteded less.
When I was in my twenties a friend gave a few of us prayer tins as a party favor at a luncheon she threw for our friend’s birthday. Each one had blank cards inside waiting for our prayers. Her only instructions were not to open them until all the blank cards had been filled out and placed in the tin for three years. That little tin was packed away in-between the three year waiting period during a move in a box with journals and other personal books. Life went on and I lived it as a young mother in a struggling marriage. The tin had been filled and forgotten.
Years later I found it again and I sat in my cozy little home, one rainy afternoon as I emptied out the little tin onto the floor and began unfolding dozens of prayer requests that I’d written to my Lord in quiet desperation.
Remembering the time in my life when I’d written them all, believing each time that I inserted a new one that some how it was magically reaching Heaven from my pen to God’s eyes. And you know what I discovered? Every single one had been answered. Maybe not the way that I’d envisioned it but in a way that had been good for me and made my life better.
Oh Little Prayer tin
forgotten in a box
holding all my pleas,
I thought that you were lost
I recall the times when
I fed you every prayer
if ANYONE would care
You hold a special message
I needed to see today
That God answers if you ask
regardless of the way
HE hears our heart felt prayers
and listens to our pleas
whether we are standing
or we are on our knees
He sees the folded prayer requests
folded in a tin
long after we have written them
and sent them up to HIM
HE is at work answering
long after our request
All inside a little tin I found
my faith had passed the test.
Seriously, it is kind of a pretty neat exercise. Keep a prayer journal or start a prayer tin, and then look back a few years later and see how many of your requests were answered. It is really amazing how God really does hear us and how we always are so surprised to see how faithful HE truly is!!!!!
28 Feb 2014
in abusive relationships, affirmation, character, emotional abuse, faith, God, healing, hope, Love, Poetry, reflection, Self affirmation, Soul, Spiritual, STRENGTH, Survivial, trust, validation
Tags: Lamb, poem, Shepherd, Surviving the past
What is failure? Everything about the word stings. I think in the end, it is like everything else, a choice. We look at the glass as half full or half empty. We look at failure as rejection or opportunities to try again. In my life I have recently been on a downhill spiral. I have allowed myself to shut down. My life was interrupted in a way that I could never have predicted at a time in my life when I needed a change. I reacted in a way I never could have imagined and only now am beginning to recover. Trying to understand the notion of who I am. I mean really Who Am I?
Have you ever felt crazy? I am not sure what crazy is. Perhaps it is carrying around a version of someone else inside your body. You function, you exist, you let this thing called a body carry you around and yet you don’t connect with it or anyone around it. You just kind of fake it. I think in a way, that has happened to me twice in my lifetime. The first time I think I was unaware what was happening and the second, well it just blindsided me.
I was raised in a home which had its own issues but for the most part it was a loving and good one. When I started dating, I was pretty innocent. I didn’t have a lot of experience and I got involved in a pretty abusive relationship. A little physically, but most of it was emotionally, and the damage was so great then that it has impacted me all these years later, I have carried the damage with me, trying to deny it. I have struggled with different issues all of my life stemming back to those days. Though, I’d really thought that I was past it all. But something happened recently that made me wonder if I’d been faking everything about who I’d convinced myself that I was.
Where I was reasonable, I was foolish, where I was truthful, I was shady, where I was faithful, I was non-committal. I craved a “soft place to fall” and looked for it in all the wrong places. My final stand was that it was MY TURN and I was going to make me happy “finally”. I started losing weight and taking care of the body that was carrying me around whoever I was. But I was in this fog of instant gratification. And for a while, I can’t deny it. I liked the feeling.
But there is this place in all of us… the part of the “me” that we know that we are. The place that brings tears to our eyes if we stay there too long. Where we feel love and pain and we are REAL and I am not sure if that is where home is or our heart or soul. A place where we still can get healthy and feel good about ourselves for the right reasons. A place that is the keeper of our heart. And for some of us… that place may be hard to find. We may have lost the key but yet… I know that is where God is always waiting. And somehow I always manage to find my way back there. And you know what? He still remembers me. Even though I think that “this time” I may have fallen out of HIS grace. He still remembers and loves me anyway. It is not about being crazy, or failure or guilt. HE is that soft place. When I ask; “Who am I?” He replies You are my lamb.
Still My Lamb
I couldn’t stand the world’s pain
and so I ran away
like the lone lamb from the flock,
I was the one who strayed.
I fell from grace still clinging,
hanging to life’s limb
as the Hand Of Life came down,
the one, that belonged to HIM
He left the nintey nine
to come and set me free
I didn’t understand why
He’d do that just for me
I asked Him “Why My Lord?
You don’t know who I am.”
He said, “Oh my child yes I do,
you are still my lamb.”
20 Feb 2014
in Memories, Mistakes, Perspective, reflection, Relationships, Survivial, tragedies, True Love, Wisdom, Writing my book, young love
Tags: Blog, Jack, Keri, Revelation, Writing
As I have recently taken time to work on my book and go back in my memories to gather information. It has been like therapy for me. And what I have come to realize does not only apply just to young love but to true love…. It has boggled my mind that I have not figured this out until now! After living well into five decades, I am baffled that it has just come to me so clearly during this Valentine’s Day month….and it is this: There are two kinds of love. One is TRUE LOVE and one is… well, it is… just not! And in writing my book and amidst decades of confusion, and a few broken hearts, I think I may have figured it out.
Let me explain… I have been loved two ways in my lifetime (a few times) And there really are not a lot of options other than two. True love is loving someone purely because you love them for who they are. Almost like a parent loves a child. It is an unselfish love. A hard to explain kind of love. A love you because of who you are kind of love. The second kind of love is a selfish kind of love. They do things for you to get something back. They give you gifts, they woo you, they promise you the moon… all for their own gain. Not that true love can’t give you genuine from the heart, unselfish well thought out gifts and promise you things to the moon and take you there too… but it is all in knowing which kind of love you are receiving and that my friends is where the trick comes in!
As you know, our emotions can get in the way and whether we are ten and writing notes or fifteen in the backseat of a car or fifty in the back seat of a car! Some of us just don’t stop and think. Age should provide a guage and for most of us it does, but sometimes our hearts have so many holes in them we just want that FAST fix-it job, trying to fill them up the best way we know how. And sometimes that does not mean with our brains kicked in or with a lot of patience.
I think that God designed love in this amazingly perfect way. He mapped it all out for us and and gave us the best example first. A mother’s love. The problem with that is… some mothers suck at loving. And sadly some even only give their children the second kind of love. They only know how to love selfishly and so they in turn don’t teach their kids how to love correctly and then their kids grow up to love other kids that may have had mothers that sucked at loving them and they find each other in that messed up kind of loving way they have kids and so on and son… and well, we all know how messed up this world is. Even though God Himself has provided some pretty good Mother Love examples.
And if we do it HIS way and wait and get to know WHO we are loving, we could save ourselves a lot of pain. But then who does that? And even if some of us do… it is no guarantee that even if they had the best kind of mother’s love there wasn’t some glitch and they just didn’t get it! Arghhhh!!!!
I guess since this month is coming to a close and I didn’t really get a chance to blog about Valentine’s Day because I was so busy with my project on my other blog: http://kerisjournal.wordpress.com/ where I was feeling a little cynical there focusing on a relationship with a selfish kind of love and am coming to terms with a mother in that story that affected a lot of lives. I had to stop here and make a side note of how grateful I am for truly WAKING UP and recognizing TRUE LOVE for what it really is…. It is not what you can get out of it, it is what you can give, it is not how happy you are all the time, it is about how happy you can make the other person…. it may not always doing what you want… it may be bigger… like moving somewhere away from your friends and family for his or her job for a while, or going on a vacation you really didn’t want to go on because they did… or letting them choose the restaurant or movie for a change… or even as simple as watching a differnt TV show and then not keeping tabs about who owes who, because love is not about owing. It is about giving and not needing anything in return!
16 Feb 2014
in Attitudes, Best Friends, Care takers, Church, courage, Divine Appointments, faith, Finding a church, friendship, future, God, Good friends, greatfulness, growing older, healing, illness, Life Journey, Love, Making new friends
Tags: ALS, faith, Friendship, Lou Gherig's Disease, strength
When we were in the process of opening up our store Rose In The Woods This nice man with kind eyes started stopping in pretty regularly just to chat. He began showing up even when there was still paper on the windows and we were still setting up. I remember him peeking in one day, he seemed so interested so I invited him in.
Even though it was pretty much more of a female type store, he said he was sure his wife would love it. I remember him being one of our first customers, buying his wife some little mice figurines.
When he was getting his wallet out he mentioned his hands. I don’t think that at that point, that I would have ever noticed them, if he hadn’t pointed them out but he shared that he had been diagnosed with Lou Gherig’s Disease a few years earlier. He also shared how his wife Michele, was helping to counteract it’s onset by being pro-active with her own research in nutrition and vitamins along with their strong faith in God. We began talking about where he attended church and I remember thinking that I wouldn’t mind going where he went.
He told me that his name was Chris Pickens and I couldn’t explain it then, but as I look back now, I know he was planting seeds. There was just something different about him. It was as if I’d gone to church and been refreshed each time he visited. He would share a little something more about his life and his walk with God everytime we met and I was hooked without even realizing it. Once my husband had been behind the counter at his desk working while I’d been talking. I knew he was trying to get a print order out but I was annoyed that he had not gotten up to meet Chris.
I knew he’d like him. And later told him that next time I wanted him to get up to meet him when he came in if he happened to be sitting at his desk. I also mentioned that if we ever went to church again, I wouldn’t mind going to his. Which I think perked up my husband’s interest because at that point in my life, he was definitely more interested in finding a church than I was, because I was so busy getting the gift side of the store set up. But Chris told me that they had a great youth group at his church and since we both benefited from youth groups growing up, we wanted our daughter to experience it.
I’d met my husband at his church when a friend of mine invited me and my kids to hers when I was going through a divorce. But when we’d moved to our town where we currently lived, we just never got around to finding one. But we’d recently talked about wanting to find a good youth group for our daughter who’d just gone into Junior High. So the next time he came in, I encouraged my husband to get up and meet Chris. It wasn’t that he didn’t want to meet him, it just had never been a good time. They hit it off right away. Just as I thought that they would! And that next Sunday, we all showed up for church and it turned out to be the one that my parents had sent my daughter and her cousin to snow camp from the year before, so she knew some people and felt right at home.
A few weeks later, we were invited to a friend’s 40th surprise birthday party who we’d met at that church and we sat at Chris and Michele’s table and never looked back! We became fast friends. And Chris and my husband became the best of friends and so did Michele and I. They are those kind of friends that you feel you have known forever and through them we met Art and Pam! Two more best of the best! The guys went to Promise Keepers weekends together several times over the years and served together as leaders of the church. Until Michele and Chris moved to Southern California to be closer to family and medical facilities for Chris’s condition and Pam and Art later followed to help care for Chris, I was spoiled by being able to just pick up the phone and know that we could get together on a whim. I have a joke about the friends that I especially let into my heart… they eventually always move away! But I understand. And I am in awe of the friendship that the four of them have and that is why they are all my friends too.
And as I look back at our friendship and how it evolved, it amazes me… that we still question and prod God… begging Him to do this and that… not realizng that HE really DOES have it all planned out… all of these Divine appointments… if like Chris… we just listen and look through those paper windows when HE tells us to!!!!
Now I know that his life is just naturally Chris’s own mission field. He is like a lighthouse in this world. Regardless of his own storms he has always faithfully served His Lord! Some of us may choose to go to third world countries, some may do it from the pulpit and some may do it one seed at a time…touching lives as we go! That goes for all four of my friends that I mentioned here! They have all been on their own mission fields! I love you guys and MISS YOU!
Good Friends!!!!! (Because one listening heart kept peeking through those papered windows!)
Please pray for my friends… for Chris and his healing for Michele and her strength and for Pam and Art as they support Chris and Michele and now for Pam as she has recently learned that cancer has returned yet again. We know God is a God of miracles and that He has answered our prayers before! Please join us as we pray for this wonderful couple. I am a firm believer in this verse:
“Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” (Matthew 18:18-20 RSV)