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Save-A-Lot


Today, I did something, something about someone else’s life. I did make a difference.

I went to the local grocery store, purchased 10 $5.00 gift cards and then hand them out. I gave $50.00 worth of food or non-perishables to 10 people. I decided to stop focusing on me (at least for this moment). I choose rather to focus on some GOD WORK. I decided to share a smile, share a wee bit of money, and share in a life.

It was great fun. My very good friend and I did this together. He purchased his $50.00 worth also. (Actually, I believe this was his idea).

We walked into the grocery store, and began immediately to hand each person we saw, a gift card. I would say; “here this is for you. Or here… this one must be yours. Or this is a little gift for you.” I did not stick around long enough to see their reactions; I just hurriedly toddled my way back out the door towards the car. My friend however made a few brief connections – enough to see a tear shed and enough to come out beaming with a smile and tears in his own eyes. The whole thing was priceless (no puns intended).

Yet I ponder; is this all about me? I guess…. kinda. I’m not sure if I should feel bad about that or not. Someone said “there are no selfless acts”, I’ve debated that in my head for years. But I have come to the understanding; that it’s true. Everything we do, we get something from it; even if it’s the slightest feeling of joy. And…. that’s not a bad thing. If we can do something that brings all parties some joy, then why the hell not? Makes much sense to me! So, I did it for me as much as the others; maybe even more for me. But I get to have joy too, and what better way to experience that joy than to do a small random act of love made manifest?  I/we liked it!

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I feel so irritated at this whole case.  One media says one thing, the other another.  We try to filter but the tools we have are often misdirected, callused, self-serving and politically motivated. How the hell are we supposed to know WHO to believe?! I’m now hearing “other stories” and it pisses me off.  Why can we not depend on mainstream media to do their jobs truthfully and with fair balance?  (Damn…. It just keeps pissing me off more and more as I think and write.)  I have felt the pain too of what happened to Trayvon…. Sent love and compassion to the family as well as the family of the “murderer”.  My heart goes out to all of those around all of our cities that loose loved ones to needless violence, & gang killings.  When will love and gentleness abound?  When will all of mankind understand that hate begets hate, pain begets pain and that sadness and bewilderment spreads through our lives like angry waves?  My heart is saddened by all of this.. my heart is angered by the fact that we can’t be sure we get the truth and that the misleading steer us in mass thinking and more pain. 

The changes will come, soon we will focus on the good, the heartfelt selfless love that comes from deep within our spirits.  We must be the change we want to see… I think I shall be about MY business of changing the world. Little by little.

My story…


This was prompted by another blog, thought I would share it here too.

I’ve been hanging onto this post for a bit now, until I had the time to put into it. So, here goes… my story. My complicated mess.

I’m a pretty happy-go-lucky gal for the most part.  I live happily within my means, I enjoy the love of many others, both friend and family.  I live simply yet joyfully.  I don’t let much put my out “light”. I love my work (although far to harsh of a word).  I can’t imagine having to go into the world of greed, fear and anger to earn a living. I think I would surely perish; well maybe it wouldn’t be that bad, but you know what I mean.

I’m 60 and still struggle with this age thing.  I feel more like 40ish, that is until someone ELSE reminds me that I’m getting old.  Asses!! But it beats the alternative, at least for now :).

My life is filled with abundant amounts of goodness.  I see “happy” everywhere I look. I see it the eyes of my pets, my lover, my friends, my family…. and in the eye of the storm. Most of the time.. :).

My biggest struggle is with me, my self worth. But aren’t we are own worst enemy?  I don’t want this to sound like a pity party, but you asked for my story and this is a major part of it, so lets’ have at it.

I was adopted at 18 months.  That can, and often is, a good thing. And it was for me in many regards. However, people that really didn’t want me adopted me. They really wanted my older ½ brother.  Back then it was a pretty easy process; you could literally do it with little of no effort. I was second choice.  I know because my mom used to tell me; “we really wanted Billy, but we got you instead”. With a frown on her face and sadness in her heart the words still ring in my ears.

My adoptive father (dad) was Hungarian, with dark hair, eyes and complexion.  I was a toe-head all the way.  I think my family wanted Billy because he had a much darker skin tone as well as dark hair and eyes. He would have looked more like my dad and therefore fit in better. My dad’s parents had no use for a toe-head or a GIRL. Grandparents being straight from the OLD Country were very set in their ways.

My adoptive mother (mom) was really my aunt, because my birthfather was her brother.  I know… a mess. No incest or anything like that..  I just stayed in the family so to speak. That in it’s self caused a lot of family gossip and pain. I won’t go into it any more, it’s just way to complicated to write it all out.

But here’s what my childhood gave to me.

Birth parents that didn’t want me.  Not that it was real personal; as my birthmother gave up a total of 3 of us here in Michigan and then lost another 10 to the Department of Social Services in Indiana. But I took it VERY personal!

My birth-father (whom as I grew up was my uncle) simply wanted no part of me and shunned the fact that I was really his daughter.  He and others in the family would say in their ‘secret’ voice… “you watch, she is going to grow up to be just like her mother”.  You know what that means right?

My adoptive parents (mom and dad) struggled with their own personal demons and in the process I was left feeling not wanted and abandoned emotionally. My dad was a quiet, mild-mannered man that found it difficult to stand up for the right thing unless accompanied by a bottle of cheep wine, and then it was weak and disrespected.

My mom was resentful of having to raise her brothers’ daughter with no help from him. The family dynamics from both my mom and dads’ side was twisted and filled with alcohol, hate and disillusionment.

My grandma (on moms side) was the only one that I felt really loved me, and she went on to bigger and better things (died) when I was only 11. I still miss her and cry about it if left to my own thoughts and emotions.

Having been in and out of therapy my whole adult life with these issues, I still struggle with the darkness within me of self worth and all the complexities that come with it. You would think by the time you’re 60 you would either have come to terms with this or let it go… NOT.

This has left me always reaching and stretching for acceptance. It has left me harnessed in a collar of “I’m not good enough”.  It has made carry guilt for all kinds of things, big and small, like it’s part of my DNA! I am one to speak my mind; as if I HAVE to stand up for myself… and at times I’m harsh and unyielding. Now, I find, I have to be friends with someone a long time, before I feel safe with them, because I am always waiting for them to leave me, abandon me in some way. And sometimes they do.. but most often they don’t.

However, I have come to embrace my life the best way I can and that is to be as grateful for it.  I have come to the knowing, at least for me, that this is all a great part of the fabric of my life. The experience is so valuable, worth more than silver, gold or all the education in the world.  It is why I am who I am today. It is why I try to love the best I can. It is why I sometimes have to say to other “put your big-girl panties on and deal with it” and it is why I find the soulfulness in the eyes of others as often as I can. It is why personal ethics is so very important to me, it is why my word has to be kept and it is why trust is of such a great value.

I also believe, now, that this will never leave me totally. It will always be a part of me, as well it should. It keeps me remembering. Remembering the need for compassion and understanding.  It causes me to feel the pain of others when they are being enslaved by hate, prejudice and bigotry. It has helped me to always keep a little fight in me.  And most importantly, to do what I can, when I can, to LOVE everything and everyone.  (Oops.. GUILT, I don’t do that very well sometimes).

There have been some wonderful happenings from all of this too.  ½ sisters galore (I grew up as an only child) to share the rest of my life with; nieces, nephews and love I didn’t’ have as a child. It is most wonderful! More good stories too, but that will be for another day of writing.

So, although only a fragment of my life, this is the jest of it, and it is well with my soul. (Most of the time :))

Reaching up…


May this day, be a day of awareness, one of love, one of hope and joy. May today be a blessing in all ways and may we have the vision to see those blessings. May we also have that perfect vision needed to see beyond what the eyes can see. Me you and I hold in the palm of our hands the clay of this day, and mold this day, warm and seduce this day as if it’s the most important day we have ever had.  May we be love… “made manifest” to all those we meet for today.

 


It seems the older I get the more I expect from friends, however not in a bad way. I have found myself weeding out some not so “healthy” friends. Healthy in the sense that they are not healthy for me. Not to long ago I had a “friend” that I thought was a pretty good gal. She had her issues for sure, but then again, don’t we all? And isn’t it our friends that help us through those issues and help us remold ourselves?

However in this particular case I was betrayed, in a most hurtful way. I debated and wrestled with myself for several days as to how to deal with this situation. I did not want to be too hasty.

Was this friendship worthy of “working it out”? I thought of several good ways to deal with this; I put a good share of time into this question. Much left-brained and right-brained thought went into it. As I pressed on towards the goal of resolution it became very clear to me that; “ya gotta know when to hold ‘em and when to fold ‘em”. This one I chose to fold, and have no regrets

Friendships take work, like all relationships. Like a garden they have to be planted, watered have a good share of sunshine, weeding and a lot of cultivating. I have so many great friends, several that I have been close with for 20, 40, 35 years. We have cultivated all of these relationships. We have had ups and downs, disappointments, disagreements and all the other stuff that comes with that many years. However, we, each of us, chose to fix it. We were willing to do the hard work it takes to fix the situation and move forward, to keep the friendship alive and healthy. And it has worked… that’s why we are still friends. Mind you I am talking close friends, not casual, catch up with each other once in awhile friends. Close.

I have found a few choice words that describe a friend to me. Past all the “fun and easy” attributes of friendship lies this for me.
Loyalty – no matter what.
Integrity of self and our relationship.
And responsibility… first to yourself (the friend) and then to me.

I have also found it takes time to decide if someone is worthy of friendship. I find myself holding back a bit, not being an open book so quickly. I think, like with any relationship, it takes at least a year to know if you really want this person in your life. Going through the seasons, holidays, ups and downs, and everyday problems with them will tell you a lot about them and the attributes I mentioned above. How do they handle their own stuff, how do they handle your stuff? How do they deal with their other friends? Do they have other friends?

I don’t take my friendships lightly. I was raised as an only child, my friends have always been very important to me. Mind you, I have not always done things right, I have done things that betrayed my own self-worth, my own integrity, my own loyalty, which in the end hurt my friends. I still feel the pains of quilt because of it. (Guilt seems to be my own private, personal cross to endure in this lifetime). But I have learned to give what I expect, and I do the best I can to do that.
It’s important for me to bring a quality level of love, happiness, laughter, joy, integrity, responsibility and peace to my friends. I try to do that, and they do too. New friends will become old friends in time, or not. I know it’s a two-way street that both of us must choose to walk. With some we walk that journey together, others split off and go another route. And that’s ok. I find it falls into that “reason, season or lifetime” thing. I am blessed by every friend I have ever had, no matter how long we shared our lives. And I am good with that. Without my friends, new and old, I believe at least a part of my spirit may surely die… for it is with them, through them and because of them that I find fulfillment, laughter, joy and promise of goodness.


Gratitude… what a special gift to us.  But, as usual I forget about this tool. But not today, today I REMEMBER!!  Here we go, A Rampage Of Appreciation!

I am grateful for:

My second daughter C, she not only loves me, she cuts my hair and makes me beautiful!

My first daughter C, she strengthens me by using HER strength (a reminder for me)!

My grandchildren… all 8 of them. Each have their unique quality, a special spirit within them!

N – he loves me… seemly no matter what.

Zeus my dog… he makes me laugh and is such a friend.

Shadow… my cat he loves to cuddle with me and makes me feel important.

My Heat Bill…. I’m toasty warm and I really like being toasty warm!

My water bill, I love a nice long hot shower and to be able to wash my hair.

My electric bill… I have lights!!  I can burn my wax burner so it smells so nice etc.

S – my good friend. She reminds me that we are all in this together, and has never forsaken me!

M – another good friend. She shows me the tenacity of the human spirit – she is so strong.

A – another good friend. She tells me like it is, not just what “I” think I “want” to hear. Her honesty is priceless!

B – he is sooo down to earth, I love the freshness of his character.

B also know as J – He is so calming, so grounded, he shows me what I could be.

I could go on and on for paragraphs about the wonderful friends I have, but I’ll quit here :).

My car!!  I’m so grateful I have a decent car that can carry me to my sister in IN, all around town and places I just want to go.

Gas for my car and the money I need to buy it!

MONEY.. to pay my bills, get some things I just want and much much more!!

My neighbors – they are so kind and warm… they help me feel secure and cared about.

My slippers!!  I love being toasty warm ;).

My TV and OH MY GOD… My Laptop!!  They keep me connected to the world around me, quickly and easily.

My work… I have the most wonderful clients!  I love what I do and I love the shifts that are being made within my work.

My refrigerator, my microwave, my stove, my coffee pot!  My furniture. It’s all so wonderful!  Any of these “things” I would truly miss if not in my life!

Now, that’s only a beginning.. but you get my point!  I just love my life!!!!


Still not any to sure how to do this.  But for now maybe this will do.  Take a listen. Turn up your speakers, close your eyes and feel the beauty of this song.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDcqJHGRgSI&feature=share