Anything is Possible!

With Hope, Faith, and Perseverance


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I’m Thankful I Didn’t Walk In Front of a Truck.

“The Suicide Note” at Manifesto Amelioration   reminded me that I thought about suicide when I was 20 years old.

It was in the late 70s, after high school when my codependency emerged full force. The guy I’d been dating was not a good fit. But I didn’t get it. Depressed, I dropped out of college, worked in nowhere jobs, and drank more I should have.

I had no active suicide plan, just thoughts about leaving work at the pizza place where I washed dishes with tears dripping into the sink, and walking in front of a truck. I thought about it more than once. Because my stupid boyfriend didn’t love me anymore, and life wasn’t working out at all like I planned.

What stopped me was that I didn’t want to hurt my parents. My little sister had been killed by a drunk driver less than two years earlier. The night she died, my father, the strongest man I’ve ever known, sat in his chair shaking his head and holding a cigarette for the first time in years. I felt his agony.  Even then, I knew that losing one child was a horrible burden for any parent to bear. I would not add to their pain.

I didn’t know how hard my parents were praying for me when I was 20. And that angels were watching over me, sometimes peeking though their fingers, shaking their heads in disbelief as I meandered along the edge of sanity.  I did not walk in front of any trucks, but I did put myself in some risky situations.

Thank you, angels.

 

Angel from Pixabay

Putting one wobbly, angel nudged foot in front of the other, I got over the boyfriend who was never a good fit. I had other boyfriends. I got married, graduated from college, and had two children. There was more heartbreak, but there were joys, too. Big joys. And lots of lessons. Today, my life is better than I could have ever imagined.

My point is that when I was 20 years old and thought about suicide, I didn’t know that the best years of my life were waiting for me.

Hope is always with us, waiting patiently. It gets better.

1-800-273-8255 

Suicide Prevention Lifeline

https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/

It ain’t over yet.

 

(The angel photo is from pixabay.)


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A Well Armed Veteran

Today’s Stream of Consciousness prompt is “arm,” brought to you by Linda Hill. You can read all about SoCS at: https://lindaghill.com/2017/11/10/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-nov-11-17/ 

In dress blues (2)

Early 1950’s ?

My dad was well armed. But he wasn’t in the army. He was a marine. For 20 years. He served in Korea and Vietnam and was wounded in both wars. But I’m sure it wasn’t because he was disarmed. My dad was a gunny in Vietnam. They gave him his own platoon to lead, a duty usually assigned to officers.

It’s ironic now that I have two of his guns in my house. Me, who is all into peace and even worked for peace in my younger years. When Dad died in January, his awesomely helpful neighbor secured four guns he found in my dad’s house until I could take them. There was a shotgun, a 22, a 30 caliber rifle like the one Dad used in Vietnam, and a pistol. That’s more than I ever knew about guns before I became the owner of these four.

With help from a friend who knows guns, we sold the shotgun and gave away the good rifle, and still have the 22 and the pistol. I can hardly believe we are planning to keep the pistol and take a class about how to use it. It’s only because it belonged to my father.

When I was in my early 20s, a boyfriend bought a pistol and took me to the target practice place of some kind with him. I thought I might practice shooting it. But when he fired the gun at the target, the noise was so loud, something clicked in me – fear that I had not expected. I couldn’t even bring myself to hold the gun.

But back to my dad. In my later years, I came to respect and admire him. I miss him, but know he is where he wants to be, with Mom, Jesus and the rest, singing and praising and probably doing some kind of volunteer work, cause that’s what my parents did.

Dad in raincoat at rehab (3)

Dad was well armed, but not just with guns and rifles. He was armed with courage, integrity, ingenuity, and perseverance. I could go on and on about him. But I’ll never forget the time when I was in 5th grade and got into a “fight” with a girl on the way home from school. It was right before Dad went to Vietnam. When I got home, he must have seen the tear trails on my face. I wasn’t hurt physically. It wasn’t much of a fight, but it had been scary. Dad pulled me into his lap, and held me in his recliner. I have never felt so safe and loved as that afternoon in my father’s arms.

Dad with Baby mk and me (2)

That’s me on the right and my sister on the left. 7 years before the “fight” in fifth grade.

(You can read more about my dad in my book.)

SOC winner 2017

Here are the rules of Stream of Consciousness Saturday:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing, (typos can be fixed) and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. There will be a prompt every week. I will post the prompt here on my blog on Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The’,” or simply a single word to get your started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours. Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read everyone’s! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later, or go to the previous week, by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find right below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!


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The Blessings of Letting Go

I’m posting this from the mountains of North Carolina just after midnight. Yesterday was cold and misty, so my friend and I stayed in most of the day and enjoyed a fire. Right now, the temperature is in the upper 20s and a little snow has fallen. Since I’m on vacation and will be seeing my grand daughter this weekend, I’m trying to rest up as much as I can. So instead of a regular post, I’m sharing my October Newsletter below.

Will check back in later. 🙂

IMG_3122 (3)

October Newsletter

I’ve been wondering about fall leaves. How can something that appears to be dying be so beautiful? Maybe because they are beautiful, and it’s not so much about dying as it is letting go to make room for something better.

This article explains how shorter days and cooler nights signal leaf-dropping trees to line up “abscission” (scissor) cells in just the right place to release their leaves. This letting go saves the trees energy and protects them from freezing.

In Trust the Timing, A Memoir of Finding Love Again, I learned to let go of burdensome relationships and resentments to make room for love. Letting go is rarely an easy process for me. Like I wrote in chapter 21, a friend once told me that “everything she ever let go of had claw marks on it.” I thought she was joking. Now, I understand.

The benefits of letting go do pay off in time.

When we let go of burdens, we make room for blessings.

 We let go of resentment to make room for love.
We let go of worry to make room for hope.
We let go of doubt to make room for joy.

Lately, I’ve been practicing letting go with my adult children’s lives and my parents’ possessions. The tasks are not easy. Okay, they are downright hard, and sometimes, I’m not that good at it. The logistical challenges make up the tip of the iceberg while the emotional challenges weigh heavy beneath the surface. But I’m doing the work because my grown children need to make their own decisions, and my parents don’t need material possessions in heaven. It helps to remember this message:

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”  Matthew 11:28 – 30

My children will learn as I did, (or rather do, since I’m learning all the time) and some day, someone else will be living in my parent’s house, just like new blossoms and leaves will grow on the trees when spring returns. In the meantime, deer have found comfort in the stillness of my parents’ backyard and make their beds in the fallen leaves.

What do you want to let go of?
What blessings might you make room for?


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A Meditative Prayer

 

 

red glowing candle

On Sunday, having spent the night with my friend who helped with the estate sale, I visited her little church which is much like my own. Next to the hymn book, I discovered this meditative prayer. It’s helping me deal with something, someone, beyond my control. I hope you find it helpful, too.

 

AN INVITATION TO PRAY

 

Enjoy three deep breaths.

The first breath will help you be fully aware of your body.

The second breath is to clear your mind so you may be fully present.

The third breath is to open your heart and welcome the holy spirit.

 

Notice a question that draws you in.

 

Are you bringing someone with you in your heart today?

See that person in your mind’s eye.

Picture that person whole, healthy, restored, reconciled.

God is at work in the person’s life.

Ask God to show you the role you may play.

Are you counting your blessings today?

For what and for whom are you feeling thankful today?

As you get in touch with gratitude, express it to God.

 

Are you anxious today?

Whatever this is, God cares about you, and all those for whom you care.

 

Are you in need of laying down a burden today?

Hear Christ, the burden-bearer:

“Come to me all who are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

Be ready to lay down your burden at the foot of the cross.

Open your hands. Close your eyes.

Breathe deeply and slowly.

Empty your mind. Let sounds pass you by.

BE STILL AND KNOW THAT I AM GOD.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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One-Liner Wednesday: Don’t Force It.

puzzle pieces

 

“If it don’t fit, don’t force it.”

( From Trust the Timing, A Memoir of Finding Love Again.)

I first heard this expression many years ago from a co-worker who is in recovery. The lesson became clear at the end of my second rebound when I realized my boyfriend and I were like two puzzle pieces that just didn’t fit together.

Can you think of a situation where trying to force something didn’t work?

One-liner Wednesday is brought to you by Linda Hill at:

https://lindaghill.com/2017/09/27/one-liner-wednesday-works-for-them/

 

 


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Back in First Grade

School boy from pixabay

I recently started volunteering at an elementary school one day a week helping first graders with reading and writing. My job is to invite one student at a time to a back table where we read a book together, or I help them with a worksheet.

Three days after my first visit, I came down with a bad summer cold and had to miss the second week. (This happened after saying to myself, “I never get sick.”) So, I stocked up on vitamin C, echinacea and zinc, and I’m making a renewed effort in my goal to get more sleep.

rabbit

Yesterday, I helped the first graders write stories using the prompts, Who, What, Where, When, and Why with the theme of what they like to do for fun. One student said she liked to go to “Jungle Rabbits.” I had to smile, because I remembered my daughter, many years ago calling the water slide park “Jungle Rabbits” when it’s official name is Jungle Rapids. The word, rapids, makes no sense to first graders, but rabbits do. It doesn’t matter that there are no rabbits there. When I said, “I think it’s called, Jungle Rapids, she insisted it was Jungle Rabbits, so I joined the journey and helped her spell rabbits. The next student who said he liked to go to Jungle Rabbits, got no argument from me. Jungle Rabbits it is!

But my favorite experience, so far, was when it was almost time for recess. Two boys in the back of the room started getting on each other’s nerves. I re-directed them to their work and wondered it I was going to need to get the busy teacher’s attention. A third boy came to one of them with a letter he had written. It said simply,  “I love you,” followed by the author’s name. Then the letter writer went back to his desk and wrote another letter, and brought it to the other boy. It said the same thing. “I love you.”

“Isn’t that nice?” I said.

The restless boys didn’t say anything. They didn’t quite know what to make of the letters. But they were distracted from their irritations and settled down long enough to make it to recess without any problems. There’s just something about a hand-printed letter.

I think I’m going to like first grade a lot better this time around.

(The images are from Pixabay)

 


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Desperado

Song Lyric Sunday

Today’s Song Lyric Sunday theme is gambling/risk, brought to you by Helen, at

https://helenswordsoflife.com/2017/08/19/song-lyric-sunday-theme-for-82017/

In Trust the Timing, I write about my fear of falling in love again when my high school sweetheart comes back after 39 years.  It was a gamble. I’d learned that people are on their best behavior when we’re just getting to know them (even for the second time), and the infatuation stage of romance had clouded my judgement in the past. As I started leaning toward taking one more chance on love,  I sang the song, “Desperado” to myself,  changing the words a little, like replacing queen of hearts with king of hearts, and “things that are pleasing you” with “fears that are teasing you.”

Desperado was written in 1973 by Don Henley and Glenn Lewis Frey. I originally wanted to share the Eagles version, but I do love Linda Ronstadt’s voice in this beautiful video.

 

The following is from AZ Lyrics

Desperado, why don’t you come to your senses?
You been out ridin’ fences for so long now
Oh, you’re a hard one
I know that you got your reasons
These things that are pleasin’ you
Can hurt you somehow

Don’t you draw the queen of diamonds, boy
She’ll beat you if she’s able
You know the queen of hearts is always your best bet

Now it seems to me, some fine things
Have been laid upon your table
But you only want the ones that you can’t get

Desperado, oh, you ain’t gettin’ no younger
Your pain and your hunger, they’re drivin’ you home
And freedom, oh freedom well, that’s just some people talkin’
Your prison is walking through this world all alone

Don’t your feet get cold in the winter time?
The sky won’t snow and the sun won’t shine
It’s hard to tell the night time from the day
You’re losin’ all your highs and lows
Ain’t it funny how the feeling goes away?

Desperado, why don’t you come to your senses?
Come down from your fences, open the gate
It may be rainin’, but there’s a rainbow above you
You better let somebody love you (let somebody love you)
You better let somebody love you before it’s too late