One Step Further

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My daughter was having an emotional day yesterday, so I decided to give her one of her Christmas presents early. It’s a full length, body pillow, encased in faux fur. She squealed with delight, and hugged it all day. She gives everything dear to her a name, so lastnight I asked her, “What did you name it?” She said, “I might call it Donny.” I said, “Oh! Like Donny Osmond?” She gave me a puzzled look, and said, “Who?!?” She knows who he is now.

Having her late in life, there is always a gap to be filled in. Thanks to those gaps, she appreciates the Beatles, and John Lennon. She went one step further, and found a vinyl by Julian Lennon. I wasn’t aware Julian had recorded an album, so we get to learn from each other.

Living life together, we do things for one another everyday. It’s not something we think about, it just naturally happens. If I’m washing my clothes, and have room for some of hers, I go get them and wash them too. If she has been driving us around in her car all week, I ask her on the way home to stop for gas. I pay for her gas, so she doesn’t have that worry. We just go one step further, and my hope is, every relationship we have is like that.

There is nothing I wouldn’t do for my daughter, and this year proved that. For years, she has wanted to make a Christmas card, with a photo of our life together. My daughter is creative, and she can get some wild ideas. Like lining up all of our animals to be in the picture, like literally herding cats! This year, I was able to finally make her wish come true.

She wanted our shirts to match, but still wanted it to look Christmasy. We opted for an indoor photo, and included our dog, Mochee. She sat up her camera, and we tried to pose before it started automatically taking pictures. It got to be pretty ridiculous fast, and after trying for a while, we both gave up. It was a fun experience, but she didn’t expect anything further. She was perfectly content that we tried. She had even velcroed a necktie on our dog.

When she went to visit her Dad over the weekend, I found a picture from the shoot, and took it by Walgreens. I had written a Blog about our new tradition with the snowman hat entitled, Make Life Fun. During the photo shoot, I had put on the hat to lighten the mood.

You may have already guessed, it was the best picture of all of them. Would it have been my choice of photos? No, but it was the one photo we were both smiling, and the dog was being still. She was filled with glee when she returned home, and discovered a stack of Christmas cards waiting for her to send out. She immediately sent one to all her friends she had addresses for. This small act brought her so much joy, and now it’s a new Christmas tradition.

Her wish for the past three years had become a reality. It didn’t take a lot of money to make her wish come true. It just took some time, and I will happily spend my time on the ones I love. Give your time to the ones you hold dear. They will cherish the memories, and you will have a full heart. The time you give is more valuable than all the money in the world. Go one step further. Merry Christmas Beautiful Souls! Much love, from Bailey, Mochee and Barb!

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Take A Chance

 

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I woke up at 4 am this morning. Normally, I can go back to sleep, but I decided to get up . I start Radiation today on the breast that had Cancer. My guess would be, I’m nervous about the unknown. How will it effect me physically? Once again, trusting God to go before me.

This has been a year of unknown. When I found out I had breast cancer, everything moved quickly. The doctors were shooting me through the appropriate hoops, to receive the care they thought best. They had it all mapped out…a plan for the cure. Wouldn’t it be nice if someone would hand you a plan for your life? Here it is honey…all mapped out for you.

God has a plan. A couple of verses I remind myself of at times like this are, Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”, and Isaiah 55:8, “My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the LORD. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.”

God doesn’t hand us the full life plan all mapped out like the doctors did for this year. All I know to do is take it one day at a time, and sometimes one moment at a time. I believe if God showed us His plan for us all at once, it would scare us, and we probably wouldn’t believe it. I walked this Cancer path in disbelief for a while after the doctors revealed it.

When I started this Blog a couple of years ago, I thought I would write my most personal feelings, but I haven’t. There is a certain level I hit, and then I stop myself from revealing anything too personal. It’s the same way in relationships. I stop myself from giving my all.

I went to the Farmer’s Market this weekend, and saw my friends that are vendors at the market. These are wonderful women, who have taken care of my daughter and me, on days I wasn’t sure I could. We love one another, and laugh together, but this weekend I was in for a surprise. God was getting ready to show me some truth I wasn’t sure I was ready to see.

I have been steadily working on writing a book, and one of my friends asked about it. She asked what the title was going to be, and I told her I wasn’t sure yet. I told her, “I will probably sign it as Letitgocoach, instead of my real name because that is what people know me as.” We were standing in front of another ladies table at the time, and her expression grew deep in thought.

“Letitgocoach?”, she asked. “I enjoy the postings on that Facebook page. Is that you?!!!”

This Facebook page was my baby, and I started it about the same time I started this Blog.

I had seen my friend’s name on my page, liking and commenting on some of the posts. It was fun for me to respond to her sweet comments, but I just assumed she knew it was me.

That page recently reached what I call a milestone, with 10,000 likes. Some of my peers that have pages, post things that have nothing to do with them personally. I understand that, but I thought I was posting little pieces of my heart all over that page. Each post usually resonates with me in some way. My friend showed me that once again, I was playing it safe.

I am believing that somebody out there needs to hear this today! Are you playing it safe?

I say we drop below that level of comfort and do the things that scare us. Take a chance.

mescarf (135x240)

Barbara is a Writer, a Mom to her 17-year-old daughter, and 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. She found out in March of this year that she has Breast Cancer. She has completed Chemo, and is starting Radiation. She is in the midst of writing a book which you can help support with Patreon. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Make Life Fun

I was pressing coffee this morning, thinking of how fun life is. Waking up each morning, and viewing the day as a blank canvas. I get to do whatever I want, within reason of course.

My daughter has started a new tradition. She likes the concept behind that little ‘Elf On A Shelf‘, but he doesn’t excite me. We went shopping earlier this week for tree lights, and she spotted this crazy snowman hat. It is getting colder in Texas, and my hair is growing, but it’s still quite short. Knowing my head was probably chilled, she placed it on my head.

She looked at my and burst out laughing! It felt like everyone stopped and looked at what was so funny. We both started laughing so hard we could barely breathe. The hat felt soft, and warm to my head, so I continued wearing it as we finished our shopping. It was $5.00, so I paid for it, and enjoyed watching my daughter laugh at me all the way out of the store.

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She has started placing it in different locations before she goes to bed. One morning I strolled to the coffee maker, and he was sitting on top of it. This morning, he was sitting on top of my bag. Now, it’s my turn to move him for her to find him. You can make life fun.

There is a lot of pressure we put on ourselves this time of year. Buying presents for people we normally see only a few times a year can be stressful. Throughout my life, I have given things away, so maybe this idea will work for you too. God wants us to give our very best, and that doesn’t mean expensive. It means to give away something that brings you joy.

When shopping for holiday gifts, or browsing online, I usually see things that I want. Now come on…You know this happens to you too. I have to restrain myself from coming home with things for me! So, when I see these things that bring me joy, I think to myself, “Who can I give it to?” If it brings you joy, the person you give it to can see it’s from your heart.

I feel the need to put a disclaimer in here. Like, if you are a hunter, this doesn’t mean you buy and give someone a mounted deer head you wish was yours. Keep your heart open as you look, and God will show you little things for each person on your list. It works for me.

The holiday season is not about gift giving at all. It’s when our Savior was born, and a time for celebrating that with the ones we love. The world creates chaos with Black Friday sales, and gets us all in a frenzy about buying big gifts on sale! Life should be fun! Giving should bring joy to the giver and receiver. Give from your heart!

Something was brought to my attention after posting my last Blog entitled, Make It Pretty.

I talked about this massive tree my daughter picked out at Elgin Christmas Tree Farm. What I failed to do was post a picture of it, so here it is. For the past three years, my daughter has had a vision of how each tree should be decorated. They are never the same. We use the same ornaments, but the lights are different, and this year was her first year to do garland.

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If your life is not fun, it’s time to stop long enough to enjoy what is happening right in front of you. Thanks to my daughter, and her idea of fun, we get to enjoy this guys presence all day. She even gave the tree a name. We love The Gilmore Girls, so she named it Paul Anka, after Lorelai’s dog. She has made this tree part of our family, at least for a little while.

Before leaving the house yesterday to go into town, we left the tree lights on, along with the porch light. When we got home after dark, Paul Anka was beaming so brightly, you could see him from the street. Walking up to the front door, she peered through the window and grinned. He was shining light all over the den, and in both our hearts. Make life fun.

 

mescarf (135x240)Barbara is a Writer, a Mom to her 17-year-old daughter, and 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. She found out in March of this year that she has Breast Cancer. She has completed Chemo, and awaits Radiation. She is in the midst of writing a book which you can be a part of with Patreon. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

Make It Pretty

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Each day looks different.

I woke up this morning and walked through the den to see a ginormous Christmas tree sitting there. My daughter has been in charge of our tree for the past three Christmases.

That is something I had to let go of. She doesn’t remember my past life of the perfect tree. It was artificial, and pre-lit with hundreds of white lights. There was usually a theme for the tree and the house. I had a florist that would arrive shortly after Thanksgiving to decorate.

It had to look good. That was my motto in life. There is a difference between ‘looking good’, and being pretty. We can cause almost anything to look good with enough help, even ourselves, but to be pretty. That is when I just stroll by and something catches my eye for it’s actual being. It’s just there being pretty. That is the life I have today, and I love my life.

A simple life.

When my daughter and I moved out on our own, we knew holidays, and special occasions were going to look different. I left a lot of things we were used to seeing, especially this time of year. The giant Santa that sat by the front door, elegantly robed in red velvet with precise attention to detail. He was the perfect vision of a Santa, and he cost a small fortune.

I recall walking up to the barn, which housed our Christmas paraphernalia, before we left. I can still feel the sense of overwhelm when thinking about it. Just seeing all this Christmas stuff we had collected for 25 years, laying everywhere. The ginormous tree was laying in three pieces, and looked sad and broken. I drug that tree out to the street for the trash man.

My life at that point and time felt totally trashed. We could make it look pretty with all these things, like we had for years, or I could walk away and begin again. It was time to get real.

My daughter and I started a new tradition by going to a Christmas tree farm for our tree. The house and life we had was all new, so choosing the right tree was a challenge. I still recall the look on her face when she found our tree. After walking the field for what seemed like forever, she came upon what she thought was a big, fluffy tree. It was actually two of them.

Two trees had clung to each other while growing, and they had grown together. The guy at the tree farm thought we were crazy for sure when we asked him to cut them both down.

They gave us a really good deal on the trees because it was obvious they weren’t completely whole by themselves, but together they were pretty amazing. That is how I saw our new life.

Last Christmas is a blur to me. I’m sure we had a tree because we looked for a very long time to find one. My daughter didn’t find one she liked at the farm last year. We were walking into the grocery store, and one was standing out front sorta alone. She looked at it again on the way out, but kept walking to the truck. Needless to say, we went back to get it.

My mother passed away last December, so we drove to North Carolina to be with family.

That within itself was an enormous adventure, and with it being Christmastime, it felt completely out of the norm. I don’t remember much about last Christmas because we were not home, but this one will be different. We are home, and she found her perfect tree at the farm. Again, walking the field, but this time in the rain, and wind, she eventually found it.

Let’s just say, “Thank God I drive a truck.” This tree takes up half our den in width. I had to let go of my ideas, to embrace my daughter’s creativity. The size and shape didn’t matter as long as I could get to the front door. This only happens once a year, so I let her run with it. I’ve never had a tree like this before, and she chose a theme that I was unsure of at first.

Cool white LED lights is what she chose. I was used to soft white, but let it go. She chose this garland that is way too much fun. It looks like strips of iridescence, glitter and taffeta.

Then she saw the icicles. I had rather dark memories of icicles, so I steered clear of them until now. They are messy, and yes, I see some this morning on the hardwood floor. I’ve been picking them up and throwing them on the tree like, “Here, these belong to you.”

As I saw how this tree was unfolding, and the theme she was trying to achieve, I went crazy with the tree topper. Not your traditional topper anymore. No, we now have a giant, frosted, glittery cupcake atop the tree. Because our mantra is, “Cake and icing will fix anything. ”

Walking into the den this morning, I could feel the presence of the tree before I even saw it.

It’s so different than what I have been used to, but it’s the most beautiful tree I’ve ever had.

It looks like a winter wonderland standing in the den. She wrapped the base in artificial snow, and has a pouch of glitter and more iridescence ready to be opened and added today.

I spent years with no glitter in my house because of the mess it made. The same with the icicles. My daughter was gazing at the tree lastnight, admiring her handiwork, as the heat started blowing through the vent above. She said, “I love the way the icicles sparkle when the air hits them.” This year is different, but it sure is pretty. I hope you have lots of glitter.

 

mescarf (135x240)

Barbara is a God follower, a Writer, and Mom to her 17-year-old daughter. 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. Part of her mission is to show people they can start over at 50. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

Different Is Good

When I’m at the lake, the coffee maker usually wakes me up. It’s set on a timer to start brewing, but this morning that didn’t happen. I slept in because I forgot to add the water.

Chef saved the coffee by adding water. He had to go to work, so I put on my favorite CD at the moment, Jennifer Nettles, “Playing With Fire,” and enjoyed my coffee listening to her.

This year has been so different. Not only walking through Breast Cancer, but my daughter and I were apart for Thanksgiving. This was when having two separate lives showed up. She felt led to be with her father, and I wanted to be with Chef and his family. I missed her terribly, but it was nice cooking with Chef, and having Thanksgiving with my new family.

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I have spent twenty something years cooking the entire Thanksgiving dinner myself. This year I was only responsible for two dishes. The dressing, and some sweet potatoes. Mr. Smith, (Chef) had everything else under control. We were going to cook the entire dinner for his family. It’s funny looking at it now, but I was so nervous about cooking the dressing!

His Mother has always made the dressing, and I was in charge of making something they had certain memories of. Keeping it Grandma’s Dressing recipe, all I could do was my very best. Thanksgiving morning, Mr. Smith went to his families home to put the turkey in the oven, and I started making my dressing. Why was I so nervous about making this one dish?

Meanwhile, my daughter had volunteered to cook Thanksgiving dinner for her Dad, and brother. She called me stressed out about cooking the ham. Being a mother, I just wanted to step in and help her, but I couldn’t. This was something she chose to do, and at 17 years old, I had faith that she could. After the call, I had a good cry, and let it go. Later on she sent this.

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She did all of this. I love the way she put the pottery I left behind to good use. This picture reflects what she saw over the years, and she duplicated it amazingly well at her young age. She make it look like Thanksgiving, even though we were apart. I was filled with joy for her.

The expectations we place on ourselves can be brutal. My daughter and I both have a bit of perfectionism we struggle to let go of. The dressing turned out well, and we had a beautiful Thanksgiving. Chef did an amazing job in his Mother’s kitchen, pulling the entire meal together in record time. It’s incredible to watch him, and he only burned his fingers twice.

Maybe your holiday’s look different this year, but I am finding that different is good.

Letting go of expectations of myself, allows me to enjoy what’s in front of me instead.

mescarf (135x240)

Barbara is a God follower, a Writer, and Mom to her 17-year-old daughter. 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. Part of her mission is to show people they can start over at 50. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

Dear Sober Me

It’s been raining this week in Texas. The sun broke through the clouds this morning, beamed through the front windows, and filled my home with light. The air outside was cool, but the warmth of the sun felt fabulous. Now it’s cloudy again, but that is only the weather.

I am grateful every morning I wake up, but even more grateful to wake up sober. Today marks 18 years of sobriety for this chick. So, even though the weather is cloudy, my mind is not, and neither are my eyes. There is a lot on my mind at the moment, but my eyes are shining bright! Asking God for His help 18 years ago, was the best decision I ever made.

I just returned form a very long appointment with a Radiologist. Just to check my level of patience, they had me waiting from the very beginning. I went yesterday, which living in the woods, is a 45 minute drive to see them, one way. They had me scheduled with the wrong doctor, and asked me to come back today. So I did, and there was more waiting.

A nurse came in and asked me lots of questions. Once they were answered, another lady came in that is the doctor’s assistant. She liked to talk, and I sat there listening to her describe every aspect of radiation. By the third time I looked down at my lap and zoned out, she got the message and stopped talking. I just wanted to see the doctor and leave.

The doctor eventually came in and went over the same information as she. It was like they were trying to talk me into it or something, so I said, “What are my next steps, and when do we start?” They said their goodbye’s, and told me to expect a phone call this week, or next, about scheduling a scan of my breast. Two weeks after the scan, they will start treatment.

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It’s a good day to be sober. I cannot imagine following this Breast Cancer Journey hungover.

God took my desire to drink completely away when I asked. I can’t recall a craving in all these years, but the thought of a drink has crossed my mind. Fortunately, I learned very well that a glass of wine, or ten, does not fix anything. The circumstance I was drinking over was waiting on me the next day, along with whatever chaos I caused while drinking.

I was hoping my Breast Cancer Journey would be over by the end of the year. Radiation will begin sometime in December, and be 5 days a week, for six weeks. The journey will fall into the new year. My sponsor would ask me, “Would you like some cheese with that whine?” I have nothing to whine about. We will continue the journey as planned, and stay sober me.

 

mescarf (135x240)

Barbara is a God follower, a Writer, and Mom to her 17-year-old daughter. 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. Part of her mission is to show people they can start over at 50. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

How To Have A Beautiful Life

I woke up this morning pondering how different my life is today, compared to a few years ago. Why is it so beautiful now? Why was it so miserable before? Here is what came to mind.

I believe we all have a beautiful life, filled with God’s goodness. Now, whether or not we can see it, is the question. I couldn’t see mine. The marriage I was in for 25 years, had taken a sharp turn after 15 years. I was sober. By taking the drink away, I was able to unbecome. Staying for 10 more years was a struggle between where I was, and where I knew I could be.

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Many of you have asked about the book I am writing. This is what it will be about. How to have a beautiful life. It took me until I was 50 to figure this out, so hopefully, some of you younger readers can get a clue quick. You already have a beautiful life. It’s just covered up.

Change your thinking and change your life. I thought I was doing what I was supposed to be doing. Staying in a marriage for the sake of the children. Well…hello…When your kids know you are miserable, and watch you live in sadness, does that give them a spectacular life? No.

I’ve listened to a lot of motivational CD’s over my lifetime. One day, some things I had heard over the years came to the forefront of my mind. Tony Robbins was one of them.

Tony said, “Get disturbed. You’re not going to stand it any longer”

“What disturbs you in your life?”

“What are you going to do about it today?”

I wasn’t disturbed anymore, even though my life was very disturbing! We become complacent, like it’s okay to live with the hand we are dealt. Well, I’m here to tell you, it’s not okay. I pondered if this was the very best God had planned for me. Where was God?

Oh, He was there, watching and waiting. This was not the life He had planned. This was the life I had created. Then Joyce Meyer’s words came to mind, right after Tony’s. I had heard on one of her CD’s, “Make a decision, so God can get in line and help you.” That was all I needed to hear. I needed to let my disturbing life actually disturb me, and make a decision.

 

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A Beautiful Soul sent me this Meme this morning. Thank you Danielle. It reminded me of the book, and being willing to admit what I went through to uncover the beauty in my life. It wasn’t pretty, but digging through the mess allows space for the beauty to breakthrough.

Get disturbed, and make a decision.

I had stopped getting angry. My husband was so angry about everything, you could feel it a mile away. So, I stayed calm because anger fuels more anger. He was miserable too, but didn’t know how to fix it. I did us both a favor the day I left even though he didn’t see it at first. Sometimes things do have to fall apart completely, so they can fall back together.

I believe we both have a beautiful life today, even though we’re apart. When Tony asked, “What disturbs you in your life?”, it was my whole life. I had to blow it up, and start all over again. It felt like I had lost everything that made life worth living, but I was still standing there, so, what was it time to do? Get disturbed, make a decision, and light the fuses.

 

mescarf (135x240)Barbara is a God follower, a Writer, and Mom to her 17-year-old daughter. 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. Part of her mission is to show people they can start over at 50. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com