Friday, October 7, 2016

taking the test

The months since June have felt like one test after the other. Tests of character and resolve.

Tests of integrity and living by truth. My truth.

More than ever, there have been tests. seemingly endless. Moments for tea and breathing and living in-between. But, tests.

I've been learning more about myself since June. I'm learning old patterns and unlearning them. 

Learning new patterns of self-care and self-compassion.
Learning new ways to give myself permission.

Permission to be alone.
Permission to heal.
Permission to be myself....

to create
live my own life
beat my own drum

and listen for what's next.

Is there ever a time in life where we know, without certainty what's coming next?


Sometimes we have an idea. We've dreamed a dream. We've made our best laid plans. 

Oh yes, we. do. plan, don't we?

But, in reality, the only thing we know for sure is what is right now. What's right in front of us.

Taking personal tests of bravery, courage, fortitude, steadfastness, creativity, longing, looking, learning and more have been in my recent past.

I'm guessing more of those things are coming right around the corner.

I know I'm up for it, good for it. Gonna show up for it.

How about you? What tests are you facing these days?

Thanks for stopping by!

Blessings to you.


Linking up with other writers for Five Minute Friday where we write for five minutes straight with no fancy edits. Stop in over at Kate Motaung's blog to see what it's all about! This week's prompt is "test".

Saturday, September 24, 2016

When I'm five

I'm at the table for coffee time. I'm with my parents and the old people. 

I'm always with the old people. They are my dad's aunt and uncle. But, these old people are like grandparents to me. They raised my dad from age 16 after he came to the New Country from the Old Country. His aunt taught him English.

I love my great aunt for that. She is nice. She is lovely.

I'm five. The adults at the table are dunking their rusks into their Sanka, which has been laced with a sugar cube or two. I can still hear the clank clank of the spoon sliding against the side of the coffee cup (always a cup on a saucer) as they would stir in the sugar. Rarely cream.

I'm five. Life is good. I am an only child so far. My brother would be born the next year. I get all the attention from my parents and the old people who we are with. A lot. I get all the attention from people at church.

I have a farm with a swing set. I like to swing. Alone.  I fly high into the air, but always come back down. Only to fly again.

I am five and I don't know what's coming soon. 

I don't know that my bedroom will change from the one that I've always known. The one with the yellow sweet peas on the walls, my white four poster bed, and where my brother's crib is on the opposite wall as mine. 

The bedroom where the house is so old that corn cobs were used as insulation. 

This would be the reason my mom, in the coming years, after the tornado came through my life and I was moved out of my farm, 
then moved back, 
and then back and forth...

this would be the reason my mom buys fancy fire detectors for our ceilings, so that she can feel like I'm safe. 

Because she is not with me.


Blessings to you!

Thanks for joining me for Five Minute Friday. Today, I took the prompt "five" into mini memoir mode. I'm linking up with other courageous writers over at Kate Motaung's blog. Come on over and see what other writers have written for this week's prompt!


Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Listen to your heart

You should do what people want
Listen to your heart.

You should be more helpful.
Listen to your heart.

You should care more about what others think of you.
Listen to your heart.

You could live your life pleasing other people, forget your dreams.
Listen to your heart.

You should bury the hatchet and pretend nothing ever happened.
Listen to your heart.

You should follow this career path, not that one, because it's more suitable.
Listen to your heart.

You will only be hurting yourself if you don't do what they say.
Listen to your heart.

You'll be sad and all alone if you choose that.
Listen to your heart.

You won't be liked, admired or respected.
Listen to your heart.

You're not good enough to do what other people do. You'll see.
Listen to your heart.

You should take care of others, even when they can take care of themselves.
Listen to your heart.

The voices.
They are loud.
They are many.
They arrive unannounced and uninvited.
They laugh.
They sneer.
They try to manipulate and control.

But, I won't listen to them.
I won't.
I will not.

I will listen to my heart.
It's there that I'll find truth and integrity.
I will listen to my heart.


Sharing on a theme that's been ringing in my ears this week. Linking up with other writers for Five Minute Friday. Last Friday's prompt was "listen". I listened and wrote. Come on over to Kate Motaung's blog to read what others have written on this prompt!

Thursday, September 8, 2016

the path to wholeheartedness

Linking up today with other brave writers for Five Minute Friday, almost a week late! The link up is over at Kate Motaung's blog. So, hey there! The prompt for last week was "path". It took me this long to decide which direction to go with it. What path are you taking these days?

There are myriads of paths to take. Even with this prompt, I'm tempted to give up even before I begin. 

Know why?

So many choices! How do I decide where to take this?

What path will I choose for this week's prompt?

The path that comes to mind over and over again is wholeheartedness. I think that's been the theme of this blog.

My dream and desire is to take the path of truth, both to myself and to others.

The path that might be the less worn, but the path that leads to wholeheartedness.

Sebasco, Maine

Being brave in the face of fear.

Facing the fears or enemies of peace head on.

Protecting myself from danger when possible.

Leading my soul to greener pastures that promote peace in the midst of chaos.

Pointing my spirit to the One and only One who can point me to truth, peace and all other good things.

This I believe. 

This I want to live.

Wholeheartedness and truthful living means that I might find myself *face down in the mud, in the middle of the arena more times than I would like.  It means that I'll have to remind myself that I'm not alone. That I am a warrior, living out my messy story. But, it's my story to live. No one else's.

I'll have to remind myself that I can get back up from the mud. That with my fellow brave warriors around me, I can survive and thrive the tough stuff. I can wash up, get up and try again. That I'm not alone in this.

I've got friends.
I've got fellow warriors.
I've got myself.
And, I've got the God who made me.


Blessings to you, friend. Thanks so much for stopping!!


*references to the "arena" are from author Brene Brown's book, Daring Greatly, which has had a huge influence on my wholehearted journey. You can click on the Daring Greatly tag at the bottom of this post to read other posts I've written on daring greatly and wholehearted living. :)

Friday, August 19, 2016

when you're picked last

Do you remember grade school recess? I do. Some were fun. Some, not so much. 

I wasn't very athletic, and I was a little chubby. I was pretty much one of the last to be picked for the team, whatever game was being played that day. 

Funny, how most of the games that were played in grade school involved running. I think about that now, and I wonder why? 

Hmm. Thinking out loud here.

Sometimes i can feel "picked last" as an adult. 

Oh, it's not the same. I'm not playing kickball or Pump Pump Pull Away, but I can feel picked last anyway.

I'm realizing that this feeling is something I've carried over from childhood. Digging deep, I realize that by being picked last for games, and coming in dead last at the annual "Fun Day", I started to equate being last with my worth.

Not a good combination.

I started reading a book this week that has begun to heal this feeling of being "picked last", or to put it another way, low self-esteem.

The grocery store clerk isn't always silently mocking me. People probably aren't talking behind my back.

Lysa Terkeurst used the term "live loved" in her book Uninvited. 

 I soaked that phrase up like a damp sponge.

I think that's the key to kicking the feeling of being "picked last" in life.

I'm going to start reminding myself that I'm loved deeply.
I'm going to say, "live loved" to myself a lot.

I hope you do, too. Because it's true.

Blessings to you, friend. Let's live loved.


Linking up today with other writers for Five Minute Friday. Head on over to Kate Motaung's blog to find out about it, or join in. Today's prompt is "team".

Friday, August 12, 2016

lift the hand

Linking up today with other wild writers at Kate Motaung's blog for Five Minute Friday. We write for five minutes and don't do fancy edits. In fact, today, I didn't even reformat. Just added a photo. That's really wild. Today's prompt is lift.

What if you don't know what to do, but you know you have to lift your hand to do it. 

Anything you want to do has to have effort behind it, and initiative.

Is there a dream burning a hole in your pocket?
Have you had dreams come and weigh heavy, and then vanish into thin air?

Have you wondered what to do with the rest of your life?

What would you do if money were no object?
What would you do if happiness was the result?

Sheer happiness with no strings attatched?

Sometimes it takes some deep soul searching.
Sometimes the hand is heavy and sluggish.
Sometimes the hand doesn't know which way to go, so it's paralyzed, so to speak.

Paralyzed by inaction.
Oh, the ability is there. 

But, the initiatve and motivation are lacking for some reason.

That reason may be unknown.

Lift your hand.

Lift the pen.
Lift the brush.
Lift the saw or hammer.

Lift your eyes to possibilities.
They are truly endless.

Why don't we think this way more often?

The freedoms we have to create and make something beautiful from nothing are here. They are right in front of us.

What will it take for us to lift ourselves out of the un-initiative, the un-motivation to start?
What makes us stuck?

What if the doing something big (or small) is just in the "getting started". 
The lifting of the hand.

Thanks for stopping by for Five Minutes of crazy free writing!

Let's lift our hands and do our happy work!


Friday, August 5, 2016

choose the happy

Linking up with other amazing writers at Kate Motaung's blog today for Five Minute Friday. Five minutes of writing for the fun of it without fancy edits. Today's prompt is happy

Sometimes it takes work to find the happy. Life isn't always as you want it to be, nor how you planned it to be.

Is it possible to be happy even though?

Sometimes it takes work to find the happy.

But, sometimes it's in the work, or in the looking for happy that happiness is found.

I find that the older I get, the more intentional I need to be about finding my own brand of happiness.  I mean, the only things I get to choose in line with finding happy are 

my thoughts and my behaviors.

I cannot control those around me and "make" them "make me" more happy.

Can I?

I cannot control them. I can only control me.  I can only control ME and my happiness and my way of being in the world.

What will I choose to fill my mind and my days with?

What will I ruminate on? I can choose. It is my privilege to choose my thoughts.

I can either choose to ruminate on a disagreement I had with someone, and what I could've done differently. 

Or, I can choose thoughts that lift me higher. Choose the happy.

Painting makes me happy.
Smiles and good times with my family make me happy.
Writing makes me happy.
Having a cup of tea makes me happy.
Watching birds outside my window makes me happy.
Thrift shopping with my daughter makes me happy.

I get to choose what to focus on.  Sure, life is not always happy. What happens to me on a daily basis doesn't always make me happy.

So, I have to CHOOSE my happy.

How about you?

Blessings to you, friend,

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