A Leader is Borne

Courage, strength, depth of character and leadership are often borne from traumatic times. Sometimes in life, we gain strengths and talents along the way, dealing with the curve balls we are thrown.

Someone close to me mentioned that I am a leader. Actually they corrected me when I said that I was not a leader at all. They told me that after watching me handle all the craziness in dealing with the estate, the family, the closing, the repairs after the hurricane and the subsequent fallout, that I was very much a leader.

And I have to say, that I believe him.  I remember a day very clearly, when I was sobbing and praying in a tiny room at the hospital in Dothan Alabama. The hospital chapel was under renovation, so this room was the most that they could offer.  Mom was dying and there was no one there to help or who knew what to do.  My father was too heartbroken, my half siblings were ready to break out the champagne at my mother’s death, and my closest sister did not care at all and refused to come. They all just wanted the money when Dad died.

And I sobbed, and begged God to help me make these decisions that needed to be made, to lead the people related by blood, because I had no idea what to do or how to do.  I begged for God to give me wisdom, Grace, and guidance, because I was not ready to do all of this alone.  I was not strong enough, or smart enough, or good enough, or enough of a leader to do what needed to be done.

And over the last 2.5 years, I have come into myself and my leadership qualities. I have become comfortable with being the matriarch of whatever you would call those related by blood (I will no longer call them family). I have done all if it, some things well, others not so much, but it has been my best. I have led with a true heart and good intentions. I have been honest and forthcoming and I have been extremely tough when needed.

And now, it is coming to an end. And I look back and have to smile.  One of the last gifts that Mom and Dad have given me is the ability to lead through fire,because with fire within me burn brighter, stronger and hotter than the fire around me. They have given me that ability, the reluctant leader coming into her own. They knew I could handle it, they had faith in my and their choice that I would. And that means the world to me. I know that I have not let them down.

I know that if I can lead my way, and those by blood through all if this, I can lead through anything.  I am a leader.  I do not seek it, but when it comes to me I will rise and deliver. That is what I have discovered about myself.

So when times get tough, when you are terrified and don’t think you have what it takes to make t through, trust me, you do.  You are stronger than you think and you can rise to soar above all the minutia.

I sit comfortable in the chair of a leader, of a strong woman, and i=of a human being who can. And you should too.

Life is short.  so is trauma. But the gifts you develop from that trauma, will last and carry you through the toughest of times.

 

 

The Busy Time

It is that time of year where everything gets cray busy. Between work, friends, decorating, shopping, planning tips, catching up, and everyday business, it is hard to cach your breath.  Add to that the craziness that has been getting ready for the closing, doing voice work, dealing with crazy family drama and moving things up from point A to point B…and Life has been going at break neck speed. I need to double my vitamins just to keep up.

I am very much looking forward to the day when things slow down.  When I can breath and when all of everything is handled. But even in the most hectic of times, we must take a breath and let go.  I have been praying that it all comes together and works out, letting God work His magic through my life. After you have done everything you can do, it is what ever it will be.

And isn’t that the case with life?  We cannot force it, and if we do, things usually end up worse how they started. Maybe we try to force it because we are afraid of it not working out the way we envisioned. Or maybe we, as humans, are just stubborn to give up control.

When this week has been overwhelming, I go to where all the heirlooms are in my house.  Those wonderful things that have been passed down to me.  And I am instantly at peace with the world.  I am not a materialist person, but these items, cherished my my parents, are now cherished by me.  There is comfort and belonging with them.

Yes, in this busy time, we can all take a moment to observe what gives us peace, purpose and fulfillment.  Because on the busiest or hardest of days, that is what will get us through. And now, all before this chapter is closed and other is spectacularly opened, I cherish those quiet seconds, as I am comfortable with my place in this world.

The Packing

The house is all quiet, except for the Crickets that can be heard. And when I step outside to hear the Crickets more, I look up and see every single star in the sky. There are no city lights out here, so there is no light pollution in the star shine brighter than I remember them in a long time. And there is a piece in the column that washes over me standing in the driveway, looking at the stars on this cold night.

I am here packing of all the books, the rest of the kitchen things, and the rest of everything that needs to be taken with me. And instead of being an emotional wreck, I’m at peace. I’m at peace with the fact that the closing will happen in a week, a piece with the fact that this will be one of my last trips here, peace with the fact that the torch will be passed from this family, to another family to enjoy this beautiful place.

Somehow I know that all is how it is supposed to be. This is exactly what my parents would have wanted, and I have carried it out well. While there is still much to be done, there is still time to reflect.

And isn’t that how it is in life? Sometimes we just need to take a moment, take a breath, to catch up with ourselves. Sometimes it takes a moment, and a breath, and a Beat, to truly grasp the meaning of a moment.

And U droft to sleep knowing thst even when it’s hard, life always works out for the best. And so I have to trust it. Tomorrow morning continues with the packing, and the moving, and the everything. But for now I fall asleep under the warm blanket of the love my parents gave me to last a lifetime.

The Sacred Geometry of Chance

“He deals the cards to find the answer
The sacred geometry of chance
The hidden law of a probable outcome
The numbers lead a dance”- Shape of my heart, Sting

Life is a series of chances and outcomes, it is calculated risks and leaps of faith. The fact is that we all do the best we can at any given time, with the cards and information we have. And sometimes we get lucky, sometimes we fall on our face, sometimes it’s a wash.

And when those unexpected hands come to you?  PLAY THEM. It’s true that you may get stung by someone who is bluffing, but you also may end up with a royal flush. You won’t know until you play. And make the wager worth it.

I have recently been dealt a very unexpected but amazing hand of cards. And I do love taking calculated risks, but sometimes even I get nervous.  But life is short, and sometimes you have to make blind bets.  And so far taking that leap of faith seems to have netted me the jackpot.  What are the chances?  Maybe a mathematician could run the numbers, but right now I am basking in the glow of bliss.

The bottom line is that you can go over the numbers every which way, but there are never any guarantees in life. Sometimes the best thing we can do is let go and have faith, even when the stakes are high.  Right now they are very high in my life, and I am banking on a lot.  Between the repairs finishing on time, staying on top of the details, and wagering my heart, there is a lot on the table.

But I have a feeling that the sacred geometry of chance will swing in my favor. It feels like the odds are with me. And any good gambler knows that sometimes you have to follow your gut.  And isn’t that the case in life?  Sometimes you just have to go with it.  Sometimes you have to say your prayers close your eyes and have faith.

And would we really want it any other way?  The easy answer is yes, because then we would always know the answers and which way the odds would go.  But that is not what life is about.  And what makes life so rich are the chances we take. And if you win? If you can take the chance, then some might say that you already have. Because you are still living life to the fullest. And if we can go through life, with all it does to us, and still be willing to take chances, to grow, to love, to create a life…then that is the biggest jackpot of all.

So don’t just play with the numbers, dance with them – drink with them, move with them, get to know the mysterious ways in which they move. I have a hunch, that maybe in those numbers can be found the secrets to life, love and all the beauty the universe holds.

 

 

 

The Happy Christmas Tree

There are times in life when we look up and realize that things have all worked out, that we are good, that life is good.  This realization can happen in the grocery store, at home, at work, in the car, or just about anywhere. And many times it is not one huge moment either. Many times it is a quiet moment, a small stitch in time, when it happens. And when it does, you the reaction isn’t always big, but many times small as well.  Subtle, maybe even unnoticeable to those who are not observant.  But you smile and feel warm all over.

It is the holiday season, one of the hardest seasons of the year for many people. Those who are alone, who have lost loved ones or who are away from home. Last Christmas was terrible difficult for me. And throughout the year, there have been some very hard moments.  There has been some very deep healing. And many times, you do not even realize that the healing is happening, because you are simply going through your day and your life, getting things done.

Last night I was putting up the Christmas tree. I decided that this year, Christmas was going to be celebrated. The tree, the ornaments, the decorations, the lights, they were all going up.  This year, life and all it’s trappings will be celebrated. And I put the lights on the tree, quietly humming and smiling. And then it was all the ornaments, placed carefully, finding the perfect place for each of them.

And there in my living room, I had a wonderful, small, quiet moment. I looked up from the tree and felt a warmth in my heart. There I was in my little house, decorating the tree, celebrating the holidays and my little life. And it occurred to me that I am happy.  Blissfully happy.  In this moment,  everything for which I have prayed: A life full of love, wonderful friends, a great job, a wonderful career, I am no longer alone and everything is falling into place.

And maybe that is how it is in life…slowly, surely, as we are busy taking all of those baby steps, we travel thousands of miles to where we are happy. And so seamless is the transition, we don’t even feel it until we are fully in its embrace.

Then when we get to that happy place, we get to decorate our life however we want.  Because we feel joy borne from tragedy. And that kind of joy bubbling up from the deepest places is so true, so distinct, so strong, that it can make any life beautiful.

And so it goes.

 

 

Grasp

There are moments in life where you recognize just how close you are to your dreams coming to fruition.  This is that time for me.  In the twilight of all that is past, there is a new sunrise and my dreams are on the horizon. Everything I want is just within my rasp.

I would love to write something amazing and wise, love to say something profound.  but the truth is that this moment is so pure and simple, that is is profound all on it’s own.  My words are not needed.

And as excited as I am for the dreams, I am extremely aware of this lovely time and want to enjoy these moments. I want to remember the feeling of seeing all that I want right there. I want to remember the anticipation.

Life is short.  Don’t forget to enjoy those delicious moments.

The Final Days

Here it is, the home stretch, the final days before the closing. And there is a frenzy of activity getting everything ready. There are many loose ends to tie up, with only 9 days to go. And how else would be really? Life is often a mish-mash of last minute details to work out, even for the most organized people.

And in these final days before the closing, I am finding myself looking forward to the sale, if not terrified to making sure it all goes smoothly. I am looking forward to the closure, to the knowledge that I have served my parents well.  Looking forward to the peace after the storm of all of it.

Because for one chapter to begin, another must end.  And I feel that this deserves and will be given, a good ending. And there are beginnings waiting for me. Beautiful. amazing, exciting, beginning of life.

But before the beginning, I will cry at the closing. I will cry while at the last night, and shed tears of joy as I raise a toast to a job well done for my lovely parents. And I will smile when I think of the many memories, in these final days before the closing.