Like A Hurricane

Once upon a time I was aging away from being considered young when I started dating my future (still mine) husband. I was the girl who was never going to get a guy, let alone marry one! It is almost 4 a.m., today marks that day in time when I wore a very large white dress and he donned a smart tuxedo. He waited for me at the altar. My Dad proudly walked me down the aisle, where he let me start a new life with the man that I love, and together we jumped into the abyss of married life. I was mentally so young and immature about love, all that it truly means. I was blinded by hope and a false sense of jubilation that I always thought would be there. Loving someone you are not related to is the TOUGHEST job in the world. It is not meant for the faint of heart. LOVE is the best gift you will ever get. LOVE is the best gift you can give, always, as it never misses its target audience, it comes in the right color and size. Love has its own energy by the sheer magic of awe it will continue to spread its good vibes. It is the toughest thing to let go of. Its strength can carry you over mountains. The truly blessed carry LOVE with them until the end of days.

Twenty-five, 20 + 5, 25! I deserve a medal! No. All joking aside I am proud of my younger self for believing that I was enough just as I was to be loved. Choosing to let love into a life comes with a whole caravan of FEELS I was just not prepared for. There is RUSH, that emboldened fool that swells with awkward emotions like squee, childish joy, exuberance. There is Hope. I like her but sometimes she shines so bright I wish she came with a dimmer switch. FAITH, is a quiet creature. I have learned over the years to just accept what she is trying to teach me. Believe in the hereafter, believe in your journey, believe in yourself, believe in a higher being, just believe. HATE, this chick is just too intense for me, Every time we hang out she tries to ruin my life. I try NOT to see her as often as possible. Even now sometimes I find her lurking in the shadows waiting for her chance to jump at the tiniest of sparks. Her main hag is ANGER. I really dislike when these two are at the kitchen table together cooking up a scheme. Anger is just DISSAPPOINTMENT in an ugly dress. Over the years I have learned that their relationships are not healthy for me to hold onto if I want my relationships to be OKAY.

My hubster walked into my life and changed every single thing about life I thought was set in stone. BECAUSE of him I know I am wanted. I am loved. I am beautiful in a way that transcends looks. I am so much more than I ever imagined I could be. He once said to me that he knew I had built a wall around my soul to protect myself from getting HURT but he was smart enough to walk to the edge and peer in through the cracks in my foundation to see the beauty contained within. He had me at peered in through my cracks(pun intended)LOL. Our relationship has its ups and downs, all great rides do. There has been doubt of concept. There have been failed attempts at being parents. There have been times of despair. There has been loss. There has always been US, him and I . I love him like a hurricane.

Love the people in your life EVERY DAY is a GIFT. I am grateful for every day I am given. Anticipation is the most under rated emotion. Life is like a lottery ticket. Sometimes one just has to scratch the surface to find the prize inside.

Thoughts…

that I am thinking at about 4 a.m. Today is not like any other day for me. Today for the first time in forty years I am having major surgery. I am nervous but confident that things will turn out as they need to. Somewhere along the path on my journey through life I figured out how to be a good person. I know? Right? I don’t know how things are going to play out but let me say this; I LOVE YOU. I love having you in my life. I enjoy our time together and you are valuable to me. You have taught me how to listen and to be heard. You have taught me it is okay to be myself, even if sometimes that self is an ass. You let me be a part of your lives and for that I am so blessed. Growing up I always felt like I was not worthy enough to have friends. Wow, how wrong could I have been? At this moment in my life, right now, today I am the most content I have ever been. My life is surrounded by good vibes and great people.

The pandemic we are all trying to live through has been tough on everyone for many varied reasons. I have let a few people slip out of my life quietly but on purpose (TOXIC). Knowing your value is being wise enough to let someone or something leave your plane of existence when it is not HEALTHY or helpful to a life worth living. I struggle with my own sense of self worth and love. I DO NOT need the burden of carrying around someone else’s negative juju. It is amazing just how light that can make you feel. There is no reason to be nasty to them just LET THEM QUIETLY stop being a part of your parade.

Because I felt unloved in my youth I felt alone in the world. Because of YOU I have learned how to be loved. Because of you I am no longer feeling alone. I love having you in my life. I love being in your lives. Thank you for taking the time to try solve the riddle that is me. Because of you, for you I shall live on in a much better place than the one I started out in.

My fear is that I will lose my voice. I love to sing. It s my therapy. Singing brings my world into tune. It makes me feel beautiful both inside and out. It is my happy place. Thank you for putting up with me singing in the most inappropriate of places. Thank you for being patient with me. Thank you for being pleasantly surprised that I can carry a tune. Thank you for just being my friend, my family, my framily.

Love the people in your life. You never know what you mean to someone else. You are someone’s everything. You are ENOUGH. You are loved. You are my world.

Never Give UP On The Person You Are Meant To BE.

Do YOU Believe…

in magic? I mean the kind of magic we are surrounded by everyday. A smile you weren’t looking for? A kindness not sought after? Yes, that kind of magic, not HOCUS POCUS but the simple magic. Simple magic exists in the every day moments and in people around us who have no idea of the power they possess. I did not start to write this to wax on about the beauty in the friends that I have around me and yet this is what this post is about.

Do you know how to tell if you are a successful person in life? No? Yeah, I could never quite grasp that either until I noticed how the room I walk into where my friends gather feels warm, inviting, inclusive, safe. That, my friends, is the magic. The magic of the smile I give/receive just by being in their presence. Knowing that even if it is a momentary thought shared that our days are made better by the happenstance of the moment. I used to be of the school of thought that I had no real friends. My life empty of people who I enjoyed that enjoyed me. What a fool I am some times. It is not the length of the parade that you remember but the spectacle of the joy it gave you.

I used to laugh reading those corny sayings. You know, “be the change you want to see in the world”, “to have friends you must first be a friend”, “live, laugh, love” and so on. Well? who knew all of these sayings work? I try to apply them in my life and I am better for it. I love in a grand way. If I let you into my life as my friend I will always be in your corner. I will do my level best to be present in our conversations or our time together. I want you to enjoy our friendship as much as I enjoy yours. I am odd. I own that shit. I used to just want to be “normal” but that is not where my groove is, sorry, not sorry. I will take odd and magical any day over normal and mundane.

Cheers to the people in my life who have made it past the preliminary rounds. A lifetime of adventures await.

To know the value of a true friendship is the best gift you can give yourself. Love the people in your life. I do.

For my BFF, for…Marie, Raven, my Book club ladies, Peg, Emily, my adventure ladies, my work peeps, my WWS peeps, my hockey framily, for all the wonderful friends that my life has…thank you for you time, your attention, laughs and love. You make my life so much better just by being a part of it. You mean every thing to me and I don’t tell you often enough how much I appreciate you. Thanks for all of it.

My favorite kind of MAGIC…

October{SIGH}

I love this month. I am a big fan of Halloween which is strange because I do not like masks or clowns or costumes. There is just something other worldly about this month and its holidays that I find hard to resist.

Maybe it is the leaves turning a shade of wonderful that I like. Or the fact the shorts become pants and I can skip a few days (ALL WINTER INTO SPRING) and not shave my legs. Or maybe it is the snuggling in on the couch with a good book and a blankie. Or that it suddenly becomes okay to put cinnamon, nutmeg , and ginger in a beverage and call it “Pumpkin” whatever. I do not care. I honestly think it might be because I love orange and the rest of the year it is kind of too brash to be displayed without causing a rush of odd comments. Here is to ORANGE, a color you can not beat and a word that does not have a rhyme. That is reason enough to be a fan. Well, at least in my book. Let’s chat about my other near favorite color…GOTH! Okay, Goth isn’t a color but it should be.

When I was a teenager I was a Goth chick. The only color I was ever interested in was black and shades of black. It is a great color to wear when you want to hide who you are from people. I wanted to hide. I was a DUFF. Look it up it is a thing. On the other hand black can also be sexy and alluring depending on the cut of the clothes and the person wearing those clothes .

Me in retirement. WOWZA

I can totally see myself rocking this outfit shopping at the local grocery when I retire. Stepping out while I am out! While the slinky little number found below these words ?!? I think I can work this look on occasion, just not every day. I certainly give it up for those of you out there that can but I for one JUST CAN NOT!

Bazinga

See what I mean? I do much better in one version versus the other . You decide. One takes humor, the other RBF( resting bitch face). I mean who am I really? I guess my only other question; Can orange be the new black?

Autumn is the time of year when things calm down a bit for me. No rush to get anywhere, no last minute Summer excitement, all the tourists everywhere find their way back home and the my area of the Globe settles in for the up and coming hockey/winter/Christmas merry-go-round. And I can watch Hocus Pocus in peace.

I See You

for all the things that you are. I see you for all the things you are capable of. I see you for the kindness you carry in your soul. I see the beauty of you that you keep missing. I see you in a way you don’t see yourself. Walking around wrapped in a blanket of self doubt never does anyone any good. True beauty is found in the things that you do, in what you say and in how you treat others. Kindness is an odd gift. You can be touched by kindness yet you can’t hold onto it. Its very nature demands that it be given away. That is its secret power. Its strength lies in the act of being given. It is not anyone’s to keep it needs to be shared.

My soul used to be so heavy from my own negativity about people, life, the world and its craziness. I never really allowed myself to appreciate kindness. The smile I wasn’t looking for. A word of encouragement from a total stranger. An unexpected day filled with a positive outlook. I have changed. Life threw some high speed curve balls at my head. I was set on a course that I did not know how to navigate. It left me feeling vulnerable and alone. I was angry for a long time. I wanted someone to blame for my losses. No matter how many times you cry yourself to sleep moaning the mantra “life is unfair” it is what it is. Being alive is hard, not living your life is harder. I finally got back to the business of living. And you know what? I am no longer angry.

It is what it is. I work really hard at being the kind of person I want to be. I want people to feel my soul shine when they are with me. I want you to know how important you are to me, to the people in your life, to you yourself. Believe that you are capable of great things and then go do the things. In time you will find your greatness. You are enough. You mean everything to someone. You are loved. Be kind because it matters.

Be The Rainbow…

…Not The Cloud

Sometimes you don’t understand how much you need something until you have it. Or lose it. I was in Gloucester MA recently with some friends for some SAFE adventure fun. I LOVE this town. I come here to find my joy when I lose it or when the winter has been too long. I think we can all agree this winter is still lingering. It has been a season of loss, loneliness, uncertainty and anxiety. Holding onto JOY has been a battle. We came to town to refresh our souls, reset our sadness and sail.

There is a local collection of volunteers that maintain the garden spots along Western Avenue. They do amazing work, breathtaking. These green thumbers help to make the magic that is Gloucester. I tip my hat to you for all the hard work and hours that you GIVE. I love to go for a walk along this avenue. Stage Fort Park is along this stretch of road. The seasonal parking rates are reasonable. The grounds are vast and fun to explore. There is a “seafood/ice cream stand” called The Cupboard that has been in operation some 40 odd years. I love the vibe here. It makes me nostalgic “for the good ole days” Yes, I know I am showing my age but I don’t care. I come here to reconnect to my JOY, to reassure myself that there is still beauty, kindness and caring in the world.

I came to Gloucester with friends to go for a sail aboard the Schooner Lannon. We arrived in town a few hours early and set out to explore, take in the sunshine, the ocean views, the breeze and enjoy each others company. We tried a new {to us} BFast stop, Sherry’s Corner Cafe (amazing food, owner operated, friendly staff, excellent prices). We made some new friends, connections, and yes, I sang for some old timers who were sitting on the porch while they were eating their breakfast. Hey! I had a mask on and I was more than 6 feet away. It is sad to me that I even have to say that here, but safety first.

After finding a nice shaded spot along the street to park, we ladies went for a stroll. Walking along Western Avenue I came across this sweet reminder:

BE YOU…be the rainbow not the cloud…

Sweet amazing human whomever you are, where ever you are, THANK YOU! I needed to find this. It helped me in ways I can not list here. Once upon a time in my life I was more comfortable being the storm instead of the sun. It really is amazing how LOVE can change a life. I am very blessed to have the best: hubster, friends, family, co-workers, WW leader/peeps. I don’t tell you enough how much you mean to me but I try. This pandemic has not been easy on any of us but you have all made it easier to cope.

Love,

Sunshinewp-1596368083975.jpg

Mulligan Anyone?

A mulligan is a second chance to perform an action, usually after the first chance went wrong through bad luck or a blunder. Its best-known meaning is in golf, whereby a player is informally allowed to replay a stroke, even though this is against the formal rules of golf. The term has also been applied to other sports and games, and to other fields generally. The origin of the term is unclear. I lifted this definition from Wikipedia.
that-golf-swing

What if this is your chance? a do- over? Reach out to someone you have lost touch with.  Maybe it is someone you miss, apologize and make that relationship whole again. Or does there need to be a deep cleanse of your Facebook page? Unfriending is an option. I found myself tempted by the prospects of letting go of the toxicity that often comes with “social media”. I have set a few people free and in doing so I have set myself free. Maya Angelou has a saying “when someone shows you who they are, BELIEVE them the FIRST time!” If I had only heeded this advice more often than ignored it I would have been in a much better space right now. = )

Truths? Most people on the periphery of your life DO NOT GIVE ONE DAMN about you. I am learning real friends ask how you are. Real friends owl mail special things to your door on a rainy day. Real friends laugh with you. Real friends hold each other up, build bonds, offer help. Even if that help is just a video chat, a text, or a phone call. Everyone has a village. I am proud to say that my village has the best people. Some I chose, some chose me. My family, my book club ladies, my WWs peeps, co-workers, hockey peeps,  have all become more of an important part of my life. Something in my life I never dreamed of having, acceptance for everything weird thing that makes me who I am. You know what makes me stronger? and helps me see the next day and the next day and the day after that? YOU. So in case you still have not heard my message: you are important, you are beautiful, you are wanted, you are enough. I love you. I am always waiting in the wings. Curtains up!

(virus) We interrupt your regularly scheduled programming to bring you this important message. Love the people in your life while they are in your life. Life is a precarious balance between good and bad, love and hate. Be in your moments, all of them, make memories, be honest, be true to who you are not what people want. Try to leave warm thoughts of you with someone instead of a trail of sadness and anger. Try to be kind to everyone, self included. You will return to your busy lives soon enough.

My Inner Child

sometimes gets in the way of my 55 years of age. I had a panic attack today. In my life I have gotten myself into some shitty situations because I tend to leap before I look, or plan, or think. In a very short short span of time (6 days to be exact) I will be going on an adventure to of all places to Universal Studios in Florida. Wait, wait for it…without my hubby. I have never been to Florida. The last time I went to an amusement park? Just about 26 years ago in 1994, my kid sister and I took our nephews to Rocky Point Park in Warwick RI. A lot has changed since then.

My inner child decided late Spring of 2019 to be bold. I was out somewhere with my friend Jadira when inspiration hit me. I NEEDED a grand vacation. I needed to see Harry Potter in all its glory. I needed to feel like part of something bigger than myself and my small life. I think a little back story is necessary here just so there is no WTF moment later on.

My Dad always wanted to take his kids to Disney. After my Aunt Mary died in March of 2004, my kid sister and I were going to surprise him. We were going to find a way to get my Dad and his three girls to Disney. We never got to because life often has other ideas. My beloved kid sister died in a car accident, just two months after my aunt passed. I was broken, the family was broken. I struggled for years with my parents declining health. I was never really in a good frame of mind for long. I just sort of lived on the periphery of life pretending to be in my moments, being happy, “moving on “.  Don’t get the wrong idea. I had plenty of happy. I have a good life. I love and I know I am loved but grief is like a scarf you can’t take off. It hangs around your neck both easing your pain and causing it. Eventually both of my parents died and I was suddenly free but still a captive.

I wanted to be more for myself so I decided some time ago to work on being better to myself…and that is when my inner child took that leap of faith. I was finally ready to let my soul soar to new heights, to be invested in my well being.  I am excited to be flying, to be traveling, to be on an epic adventure but I am also anxious. Over the years I have fallen into the habit of singing in public. I guess you could say it is my therapy animal. Singing is my escape, my solace, my friend. It doesn’t matter if my notes fall flat. It is who I am. It is what I do for me. It can also be highly inappropriate, embarrassing and a burden to the people I am hanging with. I want to have fun on my mini vaca. I want to sing with reckless abandon but it’s not fair to my travel companion or her kiddles. I am feeling anxious because I am trusting the journey. I am not in the drivers seat. I am being in the moment without a safety net.

I have let Jadira make all of our travel arrangements as I have no experience at all in this arena. She is very knowledgeable about destination vacations and all of the manusha that goes with it.  We will have the best time.

The Heart of the Matter

I have experienced great loss in my life. My kid sister, my Mom, my Pops, my cousin Mike. I love each of them dearly in entirely different ways. Both my cousin and my sister were on the younger side of life. My world was shaken to its core the day my sister died. Losing her changed me in ways I never imagined a person could change. I am kinder. I am in my moments. I tell people I love them. I HUG. I am less guarded with my emotions, which is both a blessing and a curse. I am not perfect nor do I want to be. Some days I am still a shit. I can be hateful but I try to be the better version of myself everyday.

I am writing this because I am trying to reign in my emotions. I have had a tough couple of days which in all honesty pales in comparison to the last couple of days in life of someone I love, my Auntie T. I love this woman. She is my Mother’s kid sister. She has always been the cool Aunt. The one who took you on adventures when you were a kid. The one who bought you the Christmas gift your parents didn’t know you needed. She took me to have my picture taken by a photographer before I started Kindergarten. I was petrified of the camera. She was so patient. I am part Native American so who knows maybe our ancestors knew a thing or two about soul stealers? When I was a little girl, before my Auntie started a family of her own, she was my magic. There was always something about her, almost like an energy, a force of nature.

As life sometime goes, in the process of growing up you also grow away. Life is a selfish journey sometimes and though no one is at fault we all move in directions that sometime remove us from the people we love the most. My teen years and her own growing family changed our dynamic.  We were busy moving in our own circles. Our lives on very separate paths for a long time…and then my sister died, and my mother was not well. Over the next few years I grew closer to my Auntie again. I guess I never realized just how much she has meant to me until she told me that she needed heart surgery.

My own mother had heart surgery when she was 48 or 49 years old. She almost did not survive. My mother smoked. She was obese. She struggled with mental illness. The real problems with her recovery were linked to a 3 pack a day smoking habit and the amount of psyche meds she was on. She was in a medically induced coma for several days and her body did not want to breathe again on its own.  Eventually my mother got better and after a very long 10 months she was back to herself. The vision of my mom lying lifeless after surgery lives in my memory. Needless to say I was very afraid for my Auntie.

I prayed. Small thing, right? Not for me. Not for the girl who feels invisible, even to God. I was relieved when the text came through my phone that my Auntie had pulled through surgery ok. Maybe just this once God heard me. I went to visit with her today. She is doing well. She is so much more healthier than my poor mother ever was. She has a long recovery in front of her but she will make it. I hope she has many well lived years ahead of her. Never underestimate what you mean to someone. I have always tried to be the best example to my niece and nephews because of my Auntie T. She knows I love her but I don’t think she knows how important a role she has played in my life. Thank you for being you.

You are loved more than you know.

You are stronger than you realize.

I Love You.

 

 

Extraordinary

52592516_10155845309072676_6878891334342541312_oWe walk right by it everyday. Extraordinary beauty in ordinary things. I hung out this weekend with my BFF. Sometimes I forget about the beauty, in the kind of person she is. The little thoughtful things she does for people because she cares. I would be lost without her. She takes NONE of my bullshit. She lets me be silly. She lets me sing no matter where we are. She listens to me when I feel like no one hears me.  Do you have anyone in your life who take you for all that you are? No? I feel sad for you. She is a perfect bloom. A rose in a bunch of flowers that catches your eye. Sunshine when there is only rain. She gives so much of herself to others. I am truly blessed to be able to call her my friend.

I am not sure she knows how much of an impact she makes on the people in her life. She is an amazing friend. I don’t tell her enough just how much she has added to my life. Our friendship flows as easily as if we have known each other a lifetime. We started out as strangers, who became friends, who became family. Friends are the family we get to choose. Choose wisely it will enrich your lives in ways you never expected.

You just call out my name and I will be at your side, I promise.