Category Archives: flowers

love story in there….somewhere….

girl and dragon

There seems to be light at the end of the tunnel.

I seem to have made it through the latest chapter of dark times.

Hopefully.

When I started this blog, I felt lost.  Then I found myself through writing and gave myself a voice that I’d never possessed before, at least for myself.  I’d been championing for others for decades; animal rights, women’s rights, diversity, environment.  It had become painful apparent to me that a great deal of time had been spent advocating for others and not myself.  That was a game changer.

Writing this blog has enabled me to find my voice through writing but look several issues squarely in the eye.  Honoring myself was one.  A simple bumper sticker noticed by the artist, Terri St. Cloud of Bone Sigh Arts.  Honor Yourself.  Simple words that were nearly impossible to integrate.

The next issue was that I couldn’t wrap my thinking around the fact that someone, anyone would want to read what I had to say.  In my mind, my words had to be profound, a literary masterpiece before putting them out for the world to see.  Shouldn’t I get a MFA in writing or something or some sort of artistic approval before being so bold as to put my words, my life, my history into words?  Well, that answer came soon too.  Survivors trickled in, slowly at first, some stumbling and fragmented, some already having honed their beautiful craft of expression.  All were worthy and I felt so blessed to be a part of a counterculture emerging for survivors, men and women, who were taking back their power.  I wanted to be a part of that.  For me, it was coming home.

My most recent absence is due to my utter confusion and re-entry into that dark place.  You see, I thought I’d been through it and had emerged complete, or at least complete enough.  I thought I was finally, finally in that safe cocoon where I could share my story of abuse and survival with the clarity of hindsight.  I was wrong, at least sort of.

This summer I separated from my husband.  My fairy tale crashed and I felt that I was a fraud.  How on earth could I write stories of hope and love when I had failed at my own love story?  Slowly, I moved through the hazy days of summer with my tool bag (purple of course) of rest, solitude, meditation, reading and dark chocolate.  I cried when I felt like it, wandered through the library, raged at Grandmother moon in the wee hours of the morning when sleep eluded me, slept any time I felt fatigued and tried, oh how I tried, to find joy anywhere I could.  I picked flowers and herbs from my beautiful garden and gave them to anyone I could think of; my church for Sunday morning service, the women at the convenient mart on the corner who are always so kind and make me laugh every time I’m there buying chocolate, my dear friend’s mother who was passing this summer, a friend who works long hours and commutes into the city each day.  I gave them just because.  Just because in the absence of my own joy, I needed to create that precious spark of joy for someone else and live vicariously off of that until I had my own.

Many, many people supported me though this passage, you will find them on my blogroll and Facebook page.  I simply couldn’t have weathered this without logging on to see their daily posts on love, writing, poetry, painting, nature, food.  I traveled with several as they made major changes in their lives too and hope that I provided them a wee bit of support also.

Slowly that spark began to burn again.  Now I have more words and more insight into myself.  I tip my hat to the dark side, purpose well served.

I still live a love story.  Really, there is a love story in here somewhere.  One that, once again, must begin with myself.  With or without a partner, my daughter, my dogs, my house.  I can write words of hope because now I’ve lived them again.  I’m not a fraud but an innocent person who stumbles and trips often, sometimes sitting in the mud puddle I fell in, squalling and crying.  But then there are times, when I laugh and dance around with a soggy tutu.

It’s all good.

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running to the angels…

One of my favorite things to do is listen to webcasts and internet radio interviews.  It is there that I can find my favorite people and specific topics that are not only informative but soothing.  Once I put the earbuds in and close my eyes, its as if the voices are speaking just to me.

Recently  I listened to a online interview with Doreen Virtue, the angel counselor and author.  She, of course, was speaking about her angel therapy; how to recognize and interact with the angels around us.  Her gift is so awesome.  I always find her so reassuring and so certain of the presence of angels and ethereal helpers that I find I can ride along just on her faith.  At times when I’m questioning myself, I find her, God or whoever is in charge of angels more believable than my own heart.   I can very clearly picture Doreen as a divine messenger, fluent in the language of the angels spreading the love around us with ease and grace.  Its a role that I can see bestowed upon another, someone more deserving, someone more enlightened.  That makes sense to me in a self deprecating sort of way.

One phrase in particular that she said made me perk up and pay attention.  I’m loosely paraphrasing here but the message is exact.  She stated that once you feel that you are communicating with your angels, once you find your magic that you should run to the angels.  Don’t hesitate, just run to them.

Wow…what a beautiful message!  Run to the angels.  YES! I love it, I’m gonna do that….OK, how do I do that?

Holding onto that message throughout the last few days, I play with the idea of a meet and greet with my angels.  Let me back up and say here that I’ve always felt a presence, a energy bigger than myself, front and center in my life.  I don’t doubt that for a moment….it might be them, spirit guides, my beloved mother, God or a collection of all of them.  I do recognize their magic in just the beauty and abundance around me in my everyday life.  But I want to take this to a more intimate level and am wholly  intrigued with a more up front and personal relationship with my angels and how exactly I’m gonna run to them.

So, I go outside this morning and and under my favorite tree to see if I can summon up any thoughts on this angel thing.  I begin to picture them there, all around me; bobbing around, floating, hovering like little baby fairies.  But wait, I can’t run to them if I make them little, I will squish them.  OK, back to the visualization… I need to work with my human and literalist personality here….I close my eyes and make them bigger, more human adult size and dang, all I can picture is one of those sappy movie scenes where the two lovers are running through a field of daisies with orchestra music in the background.  I smack into one of my angels and we fall to the ground laughing.  Sigh.  This really needs some work.

I’m definitely a work in progress.  Incorporating time with the angels is something I will add to my life but for now, I need to relax a bit and  stop trying so hard.  I recall how Charlie Brown felt when he suddenly was “aware of his tongue”.  He stood still, somewhat frozen as he described the feeling of being aware of something that has been there all along.  His tongue, this meaty mass of connective tissue has been present every day for him, helping him swallow and chew, keeping things flowing in his mouth department.  But with a crazy flash of awareness, he doesn’t know what to do with it now.  So he stays still until he and his tongue reintegrate finally relaxing and moving on with his comic strip day.

I understand that.  I have suddenly been made aware of my angels again.  No doubt  I must be a very frustrating subject for my angelic helpers because I tend to get the more overt signs like billboards and bull horns, usually missing the subtle signs completely.  Thank God they are patient entities that look at my bumbling and stumbling with love and endearment.  Last year this time, they sent me an owl to stay with me for weeks until I finally saw that beautiful gesture for the magic that it was.  I did get it, but it took me a while.  But what I lack in natural aptitude I do make up with genuine love and willingness.

So, I come inside after my episode of angel bumping in my yard and sit.  Rosie hops on my lap and we close our eyes.  We opt for prayers of gratitude and sending love out to the people in my life.  This seems like a more appropriate way for me to connect in this moment. I’ll stop trying so hard and let the love flow through me.   I’m thinking this will make us all happy for now.


a month of letters….

I fell in love with this idea the moment that I saw it on Mary Robinette Kowal’s blog and knew I had to participate in this forgotten, time-honored method of communication.  A month of letters challenge. I can’t even remember when I sat down and wrote an actual letter, probably 30 years, maybe more.  Even though its appeal has many layers, I jumped on an exercise of mindfulness combined with the ultimate slowing down.

I also immediately knew who the recipient of my letters would be. Seeing that it is close to Valentines Day, this all fit together perfectly demonstrating the message of  love and caring that I needed to convey to my friend Becky.  You see, her mother has recently been placed on hospice and as the days pass by, it requires more creativity in finding ways to help her family while going through this type of experience.  Heartfelt gestures seem to be the winners.

For years I’ve shared my flowers from my very abundant garden from early spring jonquils through to the end of the year mums and sunflowers with Becky’s mom. Her mother Grace, was always that, graceful and elegant.  She loved each of my amateur arrangements and would care for them until they were finally spent, then she would wash the vase and have her daughter return it to me for more.  And there always were more until now, middle of winter, I have no flowers or foliage to offer them in her true hour of need.

So they will receive letters.  An entire month of letters, maybe more.  I’m not sure how I could simply stop in 30 days, this must be a project that continues through Grace’s decline and passing as well as the mourning period and beyond.

Each day Becky comes home from her day job, exhausted but determined to continue the care for her ailing mother,  it is a devotion that is pure and patient.  She changes clothes, feeds her dogs, gets her mail and heads over to her mother’s home to feed and bathe her, play cards or sit in the surreal horror of watching her mother trying to breathe.  This takes an amount of focus mixed with acceptance to dance through this minefield of emotions.  And so far they managed to dance with Grace.  

I mailed the first card today after discovering Mary’s blog.  At the very least, my friend will come home to a daily card from me in the mail.  It will probably contain a photo of a dog nose to nose with a cat or an equally funny expression.  These are her favorite types of images to share with her mom, those of animals, babies or flowers.  Before she leaves for the evening with her mother, I hope to give her a small break in her day.   I don’t know that it will be enough to turn away sadness or grief but I’m hoping a glimmer of hope or a smile.  

I will also mail a card a day to Grace, knowing that Becky will faithfully retrieve it from her mailbox and share it with her also.  Hers will contain photos of flowers, its all I know to do for them now.



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