Friday, April 27, 2007

There You Are

When I was young, I was a passionate letter writer.
My favorite people to write to were my sister and my friend Dave.
My friend Dave grew up to be a real writer among other amazing things.
My sister grew up to be a coach to people who want to become better.
(Sales Coach would be the more accurate title, but after watching my sister in action,
her advice rarely stays with just sales)

I used to end my letters with "Wherever you go, There you are."
"If you don't know where you are going, how will you know when you get there?"
Yep, even in my teens, I had a strange view of the world.
At 14, I tried out for mascot because I believed if more people had school spirit,
there would be less people taking drugs.

The kids in Junior High that I saw turning to drugs
were the ones not plugged in to any club or group.
So they found their comfort and acceptance elsewhere.

This Friday afternoon I was thinking that I wish there were more people
who were able to find things to be really passionate about.
Dave and my sister have always been on the move.
Always finding a way to influence great numbers of people.

What makes some people understand their giftings
and what gives people a vision so compelling
that they just keep moving forward?

They are undaunted by failure.
They are for the most part so sure that everyone can do what they do
that they are both an inspiration
and a mirror for the people they encounter.

What makes other people give in to a belief that they are here by chance.
Where ever here is ,
they are unsure of how they got there.
They do not attest that the reason they are where they are
is because they controlled where they went.

Not only do they not know how they got there,
they are unsure about where to go next.

There are so many visionless people.

What a lost feeling.

You just want to reach out and cheer them on.
There is a purpose for your life.
You are important.

It is Friday night. 34 years ago, this would be ok...
but now....I suppose it would be a bit wierd to throw on my Eagle suit..
Head out to find a crowd...
And rally them together with a battle cry, a cheer against
Visionlessness, indifference, and isolation.

I would guess that it would also be strange to start a pep club for
middle aged people that are not plugged in.

So, instead ... since I have a vision of encountering other people
that need encouragement, and I am willing to go there when the opportunity presents itself,
I will believe some interesting things will happen this weekend
Micheal and I will get a chance to act on being a souce of encouragement.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

It is not what happens to you in life

Day five
First let me start with thank you for the cards, calls and comments.
I am so thankful for all of your friendships.
I was touched by the common understanding of how painful it is to be where we were onTuesday.
The first day was mostly heart wrenching.
The second day toggled between heart wrenching and hurt.
The third day more hurt than heart wrenching mixed with numb,
numb came at first on its own
Numb became choice day 4...yesterday.

It would have been easy to give in to Numb.
To be a person who handles loss as if it is expected, but it does not touch me for long.
Right or wrong, for me...numb, not caring, distancing myself ...
that does not sound like someone I want to become.

A part of me wants to go rescue a puppy for Micheal and I from the pound,
Maybe some day.
A part of me wants to find out if I could donate money for a puppy to be given to a shut in who needs a friend.
My dad has been on my mind this week as his health is not good.
He is not here in TN, we talk often, but I am at a loss to help him first hand.
Maybe doing something for other elderly people and for pups that need a home will help.

Back to the decision not to stay numb.
I handle stress better when I turn to working out and prayer.
So, we went to the gym yesterday morning.
I woke up without tears yesterday.
Mostly, I was numb.
The problem with numb is you are distant from the people who are still with you.
I could see the dangers in staying numb and how unfair that would be to people whom I care about.

Thankfully, "Happy Feet", was playing in our cardio theater.
I adore this move.
As a person who knows she can not sing, but has convinced herself she can dance...
(no comments please on this one, I like my illusions)
I love this movie.
The first time we saw the movie was with our nephew.
The second time was yesterday.
You always catch new things on a second viewing... especially with great films that have many layers.

What made me smile yesterday, was the example of
"It is not what happens to you in life, but what you make of it."
A funny looking older penguin gets elavated to a regal position because he was able to turn his encounter with pollution into a badge of honor.
Because something happened to him, a six pack plastic holder got caught around his neck, and he survived and was able to convince himself and then other penguins that this experience had made him stronger...
He became a hero, a mentor to them.
I am not proposing that we manufacture our experiences into myths to get where we want to go.
I was however, thankful to be reminded that we can make something positive happen, even when we are scared, even when we are hurting.

Last note..
A couple of years ago I watched a program on aging...
specifically on people who were still living independently
At age 100!
They had 2 things in common.
They all agreed that they handled change and loss well.
As I listended to thier testimonies of their lives, it would be easy to understand that there were times when they could have given into bitterness, heartbreak or the more subtle emotion... numb.
Some how they bounced back.

On day 5,
I still want Annie back
I hurt again this morning, having beaten numb back.
But I am starting to smile...

Tuesday, April 17, 2007


Today I have to make a decision to let my heart be healed.
The problem with letting the healing start is that my heart, like all growing hearts...
will begin to be vulnerable to attachments.
With attachments come the potential for losing control of how much you can be hurt.
I said out loud to my husband today, "I do not ever want to go through this again."

The pain, came in waves.
My heart is breaking deeper with each breath I have taken since her last.
I have heard this will make my heart stronger, that the cracks will be filled in thus enlarging my ability to love.

No, at 47, this is not the first time I have lost something I have loved so deeply.

It is the first time, I had to help a friend die.

My friends tell me it gets easier.
My husband tells me, be careful not to let that happen.

My struggle is in not knowing how to heal myself. I know God can, but I am not ready.
My struggle is against not wanting to love anything...
.... that would ever need me to help them more than I am able to.

You see, today I gave the word that it was time to let our Annie be put to sleep.
It was. It was the right time.

Tonight- my consious does not second guess that decision but...
.... in matters this deep, my heart has a mind of its own.

Right now, it wishes I had not been so brave.
Right now, it wishes I could not remember the trust in her eyes before I gave the word.
Right now...

I just want her back.
Right now, my heart does not want me to find a way to heal.
It never wants to be the person who is supposed to make it all better, but can not.

I know, I hear you. Where is the silver lining? Where is the promise in this message?
Despite the tears, a small part is still able to say thank you.
I would not hurt this much had I not loved this much.

And so, I will leave these words to find my husband's arms.
This night, I know our broken hearts will speak to each other.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

If you can think of something good to say

Growing up children are usually taught that if they do not have something good to say, say nothing.
Being able to guard what you say,
to never gossip,
never vent,
never discourage....
What power there would be in that kind of self-control.

When we try to break a bad habit, we tend to feel a void.
We miss our old habit, no matter how distructive it was.
Bad habits are like bad relationships, we get used to the space they take up in our lives.
I have heard coaches say that the best way to get over a bad habit is to have an immediate new good habit to replace it.
No great news to you reading this.
This concept got me wondering how powerful our words are when spoke over children, ourselves and others.
Then....I got to dreaming.
What if instead of saying to children, "If you don't have something good to say, say nothing"?
We more often said...
"If you can think of something good to say, say it...
Don't hold back.
Never miss an opportunity to be a source of encouragement to others.
You never know when you might see this person again.
Your words have positive power when spoken over others."

If we did this, what kind of people would we raise?
How much easier would it be for our children to be confident, and attractive to others?
What would thier self-talk sound like?
Would their world be one new positive possibility after another?

What would it hurt to try this?
Well, some may say that we would risk them getting hurt.
That life is hard.
From where I sit tonight, I would agree, life is hard.
It is harder for people who don't work hard and it is harder for people who are negative.

Kids are going to get hurt no matter what. So why not teach them to be positive in the face of adversity....
To look for good at all times....
I think if we could muster up the confidence to try this we would find that more kids in the next generation more determined, so in love with life, that even when someone got in thier face and was trying to make an ass ofthemselves, they could shout back with joy, confidence and determination?