Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance


20 Comments

SoCS & JusJoJan: Manifesting and Letting Go

Your prompt for #JusJoJan and Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “close eyes and point.” When you’re ready to write your post, open a book, a newspaper, or whatever is handy and close your eyes and point. Whatever word or picture your finger lands on, make that the basis of your SoCS/JusJoJan post. Enjoy!

The book closest to me was, The Language of Letting Go, by Melody Beattie. It’s a daily meditation book for codependents. Her first one. It’s my second copy because I wore the first one out. But I haven’t read it in a long time, so I’m surprised it was close by. Maybe I was going to lend it to someone.

We’ve been through a lot together.

Anyway, here’s what I pointed to:

“It may not happen the way we wanted it to and hoped it would. But our controlling wouldn’t have made it happen either. “ (July 23: “Making it Happen”)

Hmmm. Some things have actually turned out better than I hoped they would. Other things did not. Life is full of surprises. Trying to control things is a hard habit to break. The other day, I went out with my adult daughter and found myself telling her she should do this or that. She was relatively patient with me, and I need to apologize. It’s not like I was doing it a lot, but more than I should. Yikes! There’s the should word again! We are human.

When things don’t turn out the way we hoped or dreamed or did all that manifesting stuff, maybe it’s because God has other plans. God or the Universe, whoever. There are powers greater than us who know better what we need. And it aint over til it’s over. Maybe God has something even better planned!

All we have to do is our best. That does not mean perfect. My best is different on any given day. Sometimes my best is listening well, being kind, sorting a stack of papers, throwing stuff out, exercising and eating well, or maybe my best is just doing one of those things. Some days, my best is getting a load of laundry done and watching a movie.

We should can let God and the universe know what we want. Name our hearts’ desires, imagine the feelings we’ll have when we get what we want or something even better. We can go ahead and work hard for our hopes and dreams increasing the chances of them coming true. But God and the universe might have other plans. Maybe there are lessons we need to learn first, like I wrote about in my book. Maybe we need to walk the long and winding road. Or maybe our dream come true is right around the corner.

The point is, stop trying SO hard. Stop worrying SO much. Ask, do your best, and let it go. (Note to self.)

Stream of Consciousness Saturday and Just Jot January is brought to us by Linda Hill. For more info, visit:

The Friday Reminder for #SoCS & #JusJoJan 2021 Daily Prompt – Jan. 23rd | (lindaghill.com)


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A Letter to My Past Self About Reasons to Keep Living

This post is inspired by Eliza at: https://elizajourneythroughlife.home.blog/

I’m sending this back in time to myself whenever it’s needed most, sometime in my late teens or early twenties when I had thoughts about suicide. 

Dear JoAnne, 

It’s me, your future self, writing this to you when I am 65 years old which doesn’t feel as old as I thought it would back then when I was 20. Believe me, there is plenty of life to live. 

I know this is hard time for you. I know you are confused and lost trying to figure out what to do with your life. I know your heart aches and that you’ve had thoughts of giving up. Don’t give up!  It’s very important that you know life will get better. There will be hard times ahead. There will be times when you feel your heart is breaking, but the good times will vastly, surely, and greatly outweigh the bad. When I look back at all the good times over the past 45 years, I am so grateful that I didn’t give up.

You will gradually gain the skills to navigate and overcome the hard times. Things that seem impossible now, will someday be easier or less important. 

There are good times, wonderful times, ahead with the constants in your life: nature, art, writing, dogs, horses, cats, learning, and spirituality. These are the things you need to focus on now – the true loves of your life that always nurture your spirit and feed your soul. There will be love. Love from men, friends, and family. Your parents love you very much, even more than you can realize right now since you haven’t had children, yet, but you will. The love of family and friends is important. For now, don’t worry about the men, especially the ones who act like boys. You deserve love that is kind and caring, mature and strong. It might take a while, but you will have it. For now focus on loving yourself. 

You are valuable! You are worth so much more than you know. You have so much to give to this world with all your gifts, gifts that are still being developed. 

I know you might not want to hear this right now, but God loves you deeply, profoundly and forever. Just trust me on this. Your family is praying for you every day. Let this knowledge strengthen you. I know your ideas about religion are eclectic and nontraditional, and that’s okay. That’s part of who you are. But understand that there is a Higher Power who loves you dearly and has a wonderful plan for you! Trust the timing.

So, forget about men for now.  Remember your dreams. Your dreams may change, but they will always be about helping others and Mother Earth. For now, focus on loving yourself and learning. Cut down on the drinking. Be safe. Go back to college. Feel free to explore different classes, different interests.

There’s a whole world of possibilities waiting for you!

I’m sending big hugs and abundant love across time to you. Be still for a moment and feel it. Then move forward with you wonderful life. I promise your life will be will be interesting, beautiful and full of wonder.  

I love you always, 

JoAnna

Today’s Just Jot January topic was, “Letter.” I’m thankful to E for her nudge and patience on this letter and to Linda, our JusJoJan host for getting me to go through my draft ideas to get it written.

For more on Just Jot January, visit: #JusJoJan prompt the 11th – “Letter” | (lindaghill.com)


35 Comments

SoCS: Brushstrokes

Today’s prompt is …brush.” Use it as a noun, a verb, or an idiom. Have fun!

“Brushstrokes” keeps coming to me. Oh there’s brushing my hair, brushing the dog, don’t brush too much under the rug, or you’ll trip over it…. I could brush up on my yoga and do more than just stretch and warrior poses…..

But brushstrokes keep coming back to me. I like painting whether it’s painting a wall, a painting, or a cabinet. Just one cabinet, not all of them. Did that years ago. I’d rather paint a painting.

Sometimes, I’ll plan something I’m going to paint in great detail and then it turns out differently. So, I’ve learned to go with the flow. Just start with a general idea and see what happens. It’s not easy for me to do that until I get in the zone. It’s good to have a clear idea of what you want, but even though God listens, God might have something even better in mind.

I wonder if God, our Creator, knew exactly what she or he or both, whoever, whatever – God – wanted to create in the beginning. Was there an outline? A blueprint? I don’t think so. I bet creating earth and fish, trees, animals, and human beings was more organic, like a great experiment, flowing from one adventure to the next.

Does God ever wish there had been a blueprint? Does God shake her head and think, maybe that free will business wasn’t such a good idea after all?

But here we are with our free will. Making messes that hopefully we can fix. I don’t know. I think I’d rather paint. Brush strokes, or dabbing like Bob Ross. He used brushes in different ways. I’ve been meaning to watch one of his videos just for fun. Maybe I can find one now! If I do this in a real SoCS way, I might pick one at random.

I have a plan to paint a bridge, so that’s the one I picked. I have not always been a big fan of Bob Ross, but my how relaxing it is to watch him. It’s an ASMR thing. Can I remember what that stands for? Autonomic Sensory Meridian Response. Soft, repetitive… I could get hooked…..

Watching Bob, I’m all relaxed now. Forgot what I was writing about. Seems like I remember reading Bob Ross was in the military before he became a sweet, painter. I bet he had another side, cause we ALL do.

Here’s the photo of the idea I have for a painting.

Wait. Where’s the bridge?
There’s’ the bridge in the distance.

Except I’m going to make it one of those stone bridges with an arch. But who knows….. Anything is possible.

Thanks for letting me ramble around getting ready to paint. It’s actually a little scary, because I have a BIG canvas for this one, and I’m not used to painting on a big canvas. I have to get psyched up for it. Bob will help. I’m going to start before the end of the year. I’ve already done a very simple sketch. One step at a time.

I have a lot of art on my Redbubble page if you’re interested. 🙂 If you go there, you’ll see my artist name which is also my married name. My author name is my maiden name. Shhhh. Don’t tell anyone.

For more brushes with the Stream of Consciousness, visit our host, Linda Hill at:

Here are the rules:

Here are the rules:

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. I will post the prompt here on my blog every 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 will simply be a single word to get you 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 all of them! 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 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!


15 Comments

When I Call God, Mother

Sunday Morning Revelation:

Whenever I hear a church leader or reader refer to God or the Holy Spirit as Her or She, I think, YES!. Sometimes, I do the same or say “Mother” or “Creator” instead of “Father.” I do not do this to exclude men or masculinity. Men and masculinity are equally important with women and the feminine. My growing understanding of the Black Lives Matter movement has helped me realize a parallel. For a very long time, the Christian church has been dominated by a male hierarchy. At the time the Bible was written, women were considered property. Women have had to fight for the right to vote, own property, and make their own decisions. In some churches, women are still not allowed to be priests or ministers. Yes, men are important. Yes, all lives matter. But for much of history, black lives have not mattered. For much of human history, women’s lives have not mattered. When I refer to God as She, Her, Mother, or Creator, I am not trying to exclude men, I am trying to create my own sense of balance. God is bigger than gender or race. God is inclusive. God is all colors.


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Gaia Talks with God

Earth, The Blue Marble (2)

 

“I’m so tired.”

“You do look pale.” The Creator caressed her face as a tear fell into the hand of the One who loved her since her birth so long ago.

“When will they learn?”

“Some are becoming more aware.  The fires and floods have gotten their attention. They  are making progress.

“Yes, but too many are still blind. It’s got to be something bigger. I don’t know how much more of this I can take.”

The Creator sighed. “You know dear, Gaia, that I do not wish to cause suffering.”

“I know. I only ask that you allow natural consequences, that you do not intervene so readily. They need to understand that their actions have consequences. Yet so few are making the connection.”  Gaia coughed and felt her chest burn. The Creator felt her pain,  as she drew on her healing reserves and struggled to compose herself.

“I need respite, my Lord, time to build my strength.”

“I will consider it, my child. I know you have suffered much.”  The Creator wrapped loving arms around her. Her blues and greens became more vibrant and she was blessed with a moment of hope.

 

Mother Earth is a living organism

 


16 Comments

Desire and Divine Intervention

Here’s something different for a Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt:  The word is, “want.” Make the word “want” the first, second, or third word of your post. Have fun!

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I didn’t want to want a man in my life. 

The divorce had strangled my heart – figuratively, and acid reflux made me think I was having a heart attack. The rebound from hell should have made me swear off romantic relationships. Rebound number 2 was better, but still stressful. I couldn’t relax with him, even after three years. Men were too much stress. The little bit of romance and security was not worth the headaches and stomach aches.

So I asked God to take away the desire for a partner. Then, as an afterthought, I said, “or send me a good one.”

And eventually, when the time was right, God did just that. (God didn’t take away the desire, though I relaxed a bit just turning it over.) God sent me a good one.  Not perfect, but maybe perfect for me – allowing me to work on my issues and him to work on his issues, and the little bit of (normal) stress is totally worth the abundance of security and compatibility.

The long version is my memoir, Trust the Timing. But I’m also working on a short version, called From Loneliness to Love, Five Steps for Finding a Healthy Relationship.  It’s almost ready for publication. Just when I think I’ve got it all lined up, there’s a formatting issue that pops up between the uploading and the proofing. I guess I need to keep plugging away and trust the timing.

I want it to all fall into place, which happens occasionally, though not as often as I want. A friend of mine told me, “If it don’t fit, don’t force it.” If you want something really bad and it’s not happening, don’t force it.  Don’t give up, but try something a little different, take a break, take up a hobby. If it’s meant to happen, it will.

When David was 15 and moved far away,  the lady I babysat for told me, “If you are meant to be together, you will be.”  It stopped my tears and gave me hope. Life went on and on. David became a sweet but distant memory.  Then, 39 years after we said goodbye in 1972, he found me again. Now he is my life partner. The good one. Not forced, but falling into place.

We are all waiting to see what will happen in the world and in our lives. But we are not alone and never were.

Don’t force it. Trust the timing.

I’m still learning that one.

This is for all the lonely people.

For more Streams of Consciousness, visit our host, Linda Hill at:

https://lindaghill.com/2020/05/15/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-may-16-2020/

Here are the rules:

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. I will post the prompt here on my blog every 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 will simply be a single word to get you 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 all of them! 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 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!


39 Comments

Reasons to Live

This post  was inspired by Eliza at Reasons to Live

IMG_1972 (2)

In 1976, I thought about suicide. I was in 21, my boyfriend had broken up with me, and I dropped out of college. Things weren’t working out like I had hoped. Not even close.

I didn’t act on my suicide thoughts because I knew how much it would hurt my parents. They had already lost my younger sister who was killed by a drunk driver. They didn’t deserve to lose another child. No parent deserves to lose a child to death.

Eventually, I went back to college and married someone who I had a lot in common with like art, science fiction, pizza, and beer. We grew up a little and made wonderful memories having two children who I love dearly.  If I had killed myself at 21, I would not have know the love and joy of a family.

Over twenty years of marriage, my husband and I grew apart. We didn’t seem to have as much in common anymore, but I still believed in our marriage. I believed we’d grow old together and travel across the country in an RV after the children were grown.  But that wasn’t what happened.

My husband left me around the turn of the century. I was in shock. Devastated. I didn’t want to live anymore with the pain of being rejected and “alone,” though I was never really alone.  Thoughts of suicide crossed my mind, but I knew I couldn’t act on them. My children needed me, my dogs needed me, and my parents loved me. I couldn’t abandon them.

Vulnerable and confused, I made things worse by allowing myself to fall into a terrible relationship, now dubbed “the rebound from hell.” But I survived and moved on, putting one foot in front of the other. Sometimes I got dragged.

Cartoon about footprintes

In time, I learned to love myself again. I rediscovered my value, my gifts,  and the constants in my life that have always been important to me like nature, animals, music, art, family, and God who has been with me through every heartache and every challenge.

Now, I am married to the love of my life who found me when the time was perfect. Together and as individuals we’re exploring creative ventures, living our dreams, and building wonderful memories.

If I had remained single, I am certain that I would have been happy in the company of friends and family, loved unconditionally by dogs and by God, growing in confidence, peace, and gratitude.

 

I would not have wanted to miss any of this life.

 

JoAnne and little Ayla on a horse at Ashton Farm (2)

Me and my daughter 1995

Jesse swimming (2)

Jesse 2006

Bride & Groom framed  by doors

2012 with my high school sweetheart

JoAnne painting rabbits

Painting on a community mural 2016

sunset scarlet with bird

So many spectacular sunsets…

birds on beach w blue

Walks on the beach…

Jess looking at hole in tree

…. and adventures with grand children.

 

 Miracles are everywhere.

Remember these words from Mary Oliver’s poem, “Wild Geese”:

 

Whoever you are, no matter how lonely

The world offers itself to your imagination,

calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting –

announcing your place in the family of things.


10 Comments

Prayer for a Lost Dog

Today is the feast day of Saint Francis of Assisi, patron saint of animals and the environment. You can read my favorite Saint Francis story in this post about Saint Francis and the wolf.

The following events happened just a few days ago.

dogs running Pixabay (2)

 

On the way to the laundromat to wash my 17-year-old dog’s favorite bed, I saw a dog running down the busy street in the opposite direction. It was a dark grey dog, maybe a hound/pit bull mix, running with that panicked, I’m lost gait. Without thinking, I pulled onto a side street to turn around and fished out the leash I kept in the console. I couldn’t see the dog, but traffic had slowed considerably, and people were honking ahead of me.

I prayed out loud: “God please help that dog! Please get him off the road! Help him Now! (I had no idea if the dog was a male, but that’s what came out.) Within a few seconds I saw the dog, several cars ahead, make a right turn into an apartment complex. Okay, he’s safe. You have things to do, I told myself.  But somehow, my car turned into the apartment complex. He’s not safe; he’s scared.  Maybe he’ll come to me, said my other voice, brushing aside thoughts of then what are you going to do if you catch him?  I parked my car and started walking through the apartment complex carrying the leash. A guy near the pool house asked if I was looking for a dog.

“Yeah but it’s not mine. He was running down the street. I thought I might be able to catch him.”

“He went that way,” the pool guy said pointing further into the complex.

I kept walking, past the dumpsters and around a corner, seeing no sign of the dog.  He’s gone. Let it go. At least he’s not on the street. Maybe he’ll find his way home, I told myself. But for some reason, I kept walking through the unfamiliar apartment complex.

Then, I saw a young woman walking toward me. She must have seen the leash. “Are you looking for a dog?”

“Yes, but he’s not mine. He was running down the street,” I said pointing in the direction of the busy road.

“He’s in my apartment. He came right to my boyfriend.”

“Oh, good. Thank you. I’m glad he’s safe.”

“I work for a vet,” she said. “I’ll take him into work so see if he has a microchip.”

“Thank you so much for taking him in,” I said bowing slightly with praying hands.

“Thank you for looking for him,” she said.

“Of course.”

I walked back to my car feeling grateful that the dog found a safe place and someone in a position to help him, and that I’d kept walking long enough to find that out.

Back in my car, I said to God, “I didn’t mean to be rude with that, now! part.

God just smiled.

(The photo from pixabay reminded me of the dog.)

 

Happy Saint Francis Day!

st-francis-of-assisi-and-birds from Robert Kennedy's book

This picture is from the book Saint Francis of Assisi, A Life of Joy,

by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.


26 Comments

Newbies at the Senior Center

FA8B561A-59CA-4E63-8F22-815B036DD1A4

Today’s SoCS prompt is: “lip”

To be honest, the first thing that came to mind was how my lips are thinning. A lot. Then how I have a lot of lipomas, benign lumps inherited from my dad. But don’t give me no lip about that. I’m gonna flip the script. We all have “imperfections.” But God made me this way. We all age differently.

Speaking of aging, my friend from high school who just got an early retirement thrust upon her is happy about that – retirement – not necessarily aging. We went to the senior center to check out the classes they have. Most classes are free, and they have a gentle yoga class for back issues that’s like $5. I drove the hour to my real home to go with her. It was her idea, but it was a good one. I had to laugh out loud when we were making plans to go. This friend and I hung out a lot off and on in high school and in our early 20s. Then we had little contact until the girlfriends’ reunion in 2011. Then she moved back here to retire. It’s just funny to think about the two of us going to the senior center. As we approached the front door, it felt like going to a new school or something.  We filled out forms and then got the tour of classrooms, exercise rooms, bulletin boards, and the dining room. They have free lunch! Though they ask for donations – pay what you can. Not much in the way of vegetarian entrees and not much recycling, so I probably won’t partake much, but it’s nice that they have free lunch. We were the youngest ones there. “Newly retired.” They have art studio time and an art support group I’m going to check out when I get back settled in my newly renovated house.

I believe we’re going to start moving back on Monday!!! Can’t believe we’ve been “displaced” to my parents’ old house for 7 months. But it was all part of God’s plan. Our house renovations and processing my parent’s things are wrapping up at the same time pretty much. I had a feeling it might work out that way. Just one more lesson to Trust the Timing!

To learn more about Stream of Consciousness Saturday, visit Linda Hill at:

https://lindaghill.com/2019/04/12/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-april-13-19/

Here are the rules:

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. I will post the prompt here on my blog every 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 will simply be a single word to get you 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 all of them! 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 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!


12 Comments

One-Liner Wednesday: Dirt

water flooded street from pixabay

There’s a reason God made dirt instead of pavement.

 

Actually, there are many reasons. Feel free to comment on the value of dirt.

One-Liner Wednesday is brought to you by Linda G. Hill. Find more one-liner’s here:

https://lindaghill.com/2018/04/11/one-liner-wednesday-who-are-you/

One liner Weds 2017

The rules for One-Liner Wednesday that we don’t always follow are:

1. Make it one sentence.

2. Try to make it either funny or inspirational.

3. Use our unique tag #1linerWeds.

4. Add our very cool badge to your post for extra exposure!

5. Have fun