They Are Mailed

SC Lourie designed Christmas cards this year. I saw them online after Thanksgiving and fell in love. I was so excited about the cards I overlooked the shipping method and she sent them regular mail.

They arrived last weekend from the UK.

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SC Lourie Christmas cards.

I have fond memories of Christmas cards as a child. Mama would tape them around doorways.

They have become a lost art so I’m grateful for the creative souls who are bringing them back to life.

I realized this year I missed them. You give what you wish to receive. The last one was mailed today.

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Years ago, my then husband and I had cards printed and engraved with our family’s names and mailed by a mail house right after Thanksgiving.

I don’t know if I’m bending the rules to the point of nonexistence, or if they just broke when my marriage did. It didn’t bother me one bit to mail these cards the week before Christmas.

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For my daughter the day she left for England. 

They are full of love and they are mailed.

You’re Not Alone

I published a Blog yesterday, and went back into my Blogsite and deleted it. The same thing happened today. Write, edit, publish, and an hour later, delete. To the 5 people who read them both, “I apologize if I scarred you for life.”

My email followers received notifications of the posts. Clicked on the link, and stared at air. I apologize to you too. I have discovered that waiting on this appointment next week causes me to feel vulnerable. I don’t mind being vulnerable, but to let someone read about it, amplifies the feeling.

If you’re a writer, maybe you do the same thing.

Publish a Blog, and then delete it, or maybe you have some in drafts that you can’t bring yourself to finish, and publish. I have some of those too, but there is something I’ve learned.

No matter how sucky I think that published Blog may be…it’s going to help someone. It’s going to have something in there that someone needs to see. So, maybe if I write this at night, hit publish, and go to bed, you can read it while I sleep. Because waiting on Tuesday to arrive is not working.

My instinct is to disappear for a few days, and become quiet.

To remove myself from the lives of the people I love, so they don’t have to be a part of what I’m going through. That is my way of protecting them. Well, the last time I checked, my circle of people are some brilliant, grounded adults who can decide whether they need protection or not.

I believe you are only as alone as you allow yourself to be.

I don’t feel alone, so thank you, for not leaving me alone.

 

The More I Learn, the Less I Know.

I’ve read more books this year, than three years combined.

I’m reading Melodie Beattie’s, Finding Your Way Home, for the second time. It made me desire for more people to have this level of self-awareness, and self-love. When I began this Blog, it was to show people that a beautiful life is attainable. That was my goal, so now that it’s achieved, what’s next?

I really don’t know, but I’m willing to be patient, and find out.

This year, I detached from Social Media. It was very difficult to do, but it’s done. Three times last week, I left the house without my phone. I didn’t turn the truck around to go get it, and had a beautiful time in town connecting with people.

I’ve become a part of the AA community again. Online is not the same as in person. You get to laugh, and hear others laugh, and that hug at the end of a meeting is irreplaceable.

Technology is helpful in the world, but it can’t replace the human touch.

I found it to be easier to post an encouraging Meme everyday, than to spend time sitting with an actual person.

Memes are not moments.

Every new beginning, starts with an ending. Are people willing to draw a line in the sand, and end the life they have to begin again? I don’t know. It takes grit and grace to do so.

The list is long of what I don’t know, but time reveals all. If you asked me, “How long does it take to attain a beautiful life?”, my initial answer would be, “Five years.” Thinking about it more in-depth, it took my whole life up to this point.

My Kinda Stupid

This has been sitting in my drafts for a couple of weeks. Some moments in life can cause us to look stupid. Maybe it just took time for me to share my stupid.

This has become the big laugh in our home. When you hear the whole story, you have my permission to say, “Stupid gurl.” Lol

But you know I am gonna get a God lesson out of it, and that is what I really want to share. It all started when I gave my dog a bath.

We live in this 1940’s Farmhouse, and the tub has the original lever built in that closes the drain. It also has a manual stopper that you press down to stop the water from leaving.

After my dog was bathed, I unplugged the stopper from the drain, but it didn’t drain. We’ve had a lot of rain recently, so I thought maybe it was clogged with mud from outside. I asked my landlord to look at it. He said it was clogged so he unclogged it, but my tub still wouldn’t drain. You see how I asked for help, but even that didn’t fix my problem?

I took matters into my own ‘fix it’ hands, and drove down to the store, and came home with a bottle of Drano. Following the directions on the back of the bottle, I was already looking forward to my shower. I poured half the bottle down the drain, and waited.

My daughter is very particular about following directions on the back of bottles. Especially toxic chemicals, so I told her I wouldn’t plunge it. It says not to on the bottle, but oh, how I really wanted to! I had been waiting, so I wanted it to unclog right now!

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I was sitting on the side of the tub, and I remembered it said to pour hot water down the drain. My mother used to heat the water in a kettle, because the water coming out of our pipes are not heated to the intensity to scald us, so I heated up a kettle of water.

As I was doing this I was realizing that I don’t want to get to a point in my life where God has to do all this to me for me to obey. The Drano, scalding hot water, and please don’t plunge me! There have been times where I felt stupid, because I didn’t want to see the reality of the situation.

God has used the plunger on me before, but I hope I have learned enough that He doesn’t have to do that today. Actually, I hope I don’t allow myself to become clogged again.

As I was sitting on the side of the tub, I noticed the old, built in lever was pointing upward. I didn’t recall messing with the lever, but I must have because it had moved. I didn’t think the lever would close the drain on this old house, but I guess it had enough strength left in it to do just that.

I reached over, pressed it down with one finger, and all the water went rushing down the drain. How simple was that? Every time my landlord asks, “How is your drain? Is it still doing okay?”, I laugh outloud at how silly the entire ordeal was, but it made me realize how difficult I can make life, and how simple it is to just go with the flow.

Test of Faith

I haven’t had any reliable Internet the last couple of days. Seymour and I took off, and drove to the beach. We saw the ocean, but it was raining, so we didn’t get to enjoy it as we had planned. The trip wasn’t about walking on the beach. It was about all the time spent together in the car, sharing a room, and talking and listening to one another’s life stories.

As I was driving to my Mammogram appointment Thursday morning, all these recollections of my Breast Cancer journey came to mind. Driving down a country road, toward the city, I saw a slide show before me. Moments where my faith was tested, and I was ready to call it quits. Seymour mentioned that I suffered in silence, so why did I feel so exposed?

I arrived at my appointment, was escorted to a screening room, and stood before that massive machine for the first time in a year. The last time I was there, I could only hug it, and sob. This time was different. The technician had to keep moving the machine upwards to accommodate my height. I was stronger now, so maybe I was standing a little bit taller.

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The technician used the machine to take pictures of both breasts in 3D. When she was done, I went to sit in a private lounge, just for women waiting for the test, or the results.

I sat down across from a woman, I guessed to be retirement age. She had been crying, and was clutching the front of her gown, trying to keep it from falling open. I had been right where she was sitting, so I asked her, “Are you okay?” She started to cry some more.

She told me that she had been so faithful with her Mammograms. She had received one every year for as far back as she could remember. She was late in getting this one, and when she did, they saw something concerning. They had just done a more in depth one, and she was waiting to hear the next steps. She was at her beginning, and I was at my end.

The first thing I assured her of was, there is no such thing as ‘late’. You are here now, and that is all that matters. I shared the names of all my doctors with her, and she frantically took notes. The technician came back to get me, and as I left, I looked at her and said, “God bless you.” She whispered the same to me, and I told her, “He does everyday love.”

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My journey created a profound intimacy with God. It’s still there, even though my journey was coming to a close. God was getting ready to test my faith, as see what I had learned.

The technician escorted me to a different room, which I recognized immediately. There was the table I had laid on during my biopsy. She asked me to lay on the table, and open the right side of my gown. I laid down, and asked her, “You realize the lump was in my left?”

She said, “Oh I know Mrs. Holmes, but we saw something in the right that we need to take a closer look at.” My world stopped. I realized I had been so concerned about the left one, that I hadn’t paid much attention to the right. I felt the warm gel hit my breast, and the wand of the sonogram machine started sliding around. At that point, I lost all control.

I broke down, and started sobbing on the table. The female technician patted my arm, reassuring me that it was all okay. I told her, “I cannot do this again! I cannot go through it all again!!!” But you know what? If I needed to go through it again, God would be there. My next thought was, I would have both breasts removed, so at least I could come back as a 36C!

She completed the sonogram, and left the room to review the results with the Oncologist. When she returned, she exclaimed, “You are all good Mrs. Holmes! It’s only a cyst!” There was more than one test given here, and thanks be to God that I was able to pass ’em both.

Barbara is a Writer, a Mom to her 17-year-old daughter, a recent Breast Cancer survivor, and she loves God. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

 

 

Cry It Out

I just needed to write. There is something about it that pulls all the frazzled ends back into my tapestry of life. I should probably stop thinking, and just write.

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This is one of my favorite pictures, and I used it in a Blog written one year ago. To think of it today reminds me, this has been my year of waiting. I don’t mind waiting. God has given me plenty of practice, so I’ve become relatively good at it. It helps when you know what you’re waiting for. This week it was a call.

A week ago Monday, I had a call from my breast surgeon to see when I wanted to schedule the lumpectomy. We talked about Chemo, how I was doing, and when was my last treatment scheduled.

It felt like two doses of The Red Devil had been harder on me than the first 12 weeks combined. I still had two more doses to go, and in all honesty I wasn’t sure my body could take it. She said, “Maybe we can go ahead and do surgery then.” A light came on at the end of the tunnel.

She had to talk with my doctor, but she felt confident the lump was plenty small enough by now to be removed. So, the waiting began. I didn’t expect it to take this long, but 10 days later I received the verdict from my doctor. He said, “No.” That was when I had to cry it out.

I don’t know what God’s plan is, but it broke my heart when He said, “No”, to that plan.

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Did I mention the part where I got so pissed off, I called and left a message with my nurse that I wasn’t coming to Chemo next week? I was nice, but it happened, and it got her attention! She called me right back, so I didn’t have to wait long at all on that call.

So, I’ve gotten disappointed, angry, and cried, all within two hours time. I’m over it.

I try not to let my emotions get the best of me. I have always tried to keep it all under control, and let things like this just roll down my back. It normally works because I know a large part of life is a test. If I can look at it as a test, and God as my teacher, it really inspires me to pass that test. I felt like I was failing the test, but then I realized, this test isn’t over.

I will know it’s over when God gets the glory from this journey. He gets the glory every morning when I wake up, but He is a Master at showing off in my life. He knows I love spectacular endings, so that is what I’m waiting for. I don’t see it yet, but I know its there.

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Time and Patience

I typed in the title for this Blog three days ago. That is when God gave it to me. It has taken me until today for it to fully form in my heart. Was I busy? Did I get distracted? Was He testing me to see if I knew anything about the title?

I went over to my laptop desktop for a picture to use. I try and keep my desktop neat and somewhat clean, so I clicked on the oldest one there. The first one downloaded after the last cleanup. This one caught my eye a month ago.

waitI am learning time takes patience and patience takes time. This has been a big deal for me this year, coming from a woman that was once known as Ms. Ready, Fire, Aim. All year I’ve been waiting on God.

I have found the less I do, the richer my life becomes.

Doing less does not mean being lazy. There are three things I wanted to learn about and grow myself into this year, and by His grace, I am still focused. Writing, teaching how to Let It Go, and encouraging others on my Letitgocoach Facebook page. Magnificent things happen over time.

Has any of these three things happened in my timetable? No. Have they happened quickly? No. Have I felt like giving up and caving in? Yes. linedry

When you keep your eyes and heart fixed on God, you cannot worry about tomorrow. To me, that is not trusting God, and thinking He is going to make a mistake. I’m pretty sure He is incapable of that. God doesn’t make mistakes; we do.

I enjoy calling it, ‘Moments of minding my own business.’ When I least expect it, God will encourage me and let me know, I’m on the right path. He works through people to say, “You doing good Barb! Stay strong!” He will send someone to my Facebook page, or this Blog to encourage me.

November is coming up quick, and am I where I want to be? I don’t think so, but God must have me right where He thinks I should be. It’s going to be His timing and my patience. Now if we can get that ‘like’ button to become ‘love.’

 

blackandwhiteBarbara is a writer and loves being a Mom to her 16 year old daughter. It’s a dream come true for her to be a Letitgocoach and help others enjoy their lives. She hosts Workshops, does one on one Coaching and is writing her first book.  You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com