Sunday, March 31, 2013

My Sunday Quote of The Week...

Reaffirmation of life everlasting.

“If Jesus rose from the dead, then you have to accept all that he said; if he didn't rise from the dead, then why worry about any of what he said? The issue on which everything hangs is not whether or not you like his teaching but whether or not he rose from the dead.”
~Timothy Keller

What does Easter means to me?

In the practice of my faith and the way I tailor it within my life, I can say that nothing as humbled my pride like the power of God, nothing in my life and all my surroundings has reflected perfection like God, nothing has equipped me with courage needed in my most challenging moments like the Charity of God, nothing has inspired me more than God’s sacrifice for me…for us.
Easter gives me a reason to be thankful - for the death of Christ, as He paid for my sin on the Cross; it reminds me to be joyful - because He rose from death and lives today; and it also reminds me to be faithful – to the truth I was taught and know to be true.

In every single day of a (practicing or none-practicing) Christian life, we should know and acknowledge what Jesus did for us and his promise of Resurrection.


Thursday, March 28, 2013

Is Your Closet Full of skeletons Too?

“Judging others makes us blind, whereas love is illuminating.
By judging others we blind ourselves to our own evil and to the grace which others are just as entitled to as we are.”
~Dietrich Bonhoeffer

One might wonder why I would choose to talk about the “skeletons” which are meant to stay in our “closet.” It’s essentially like admitting (openly) that you have some dirt hidden/tucked away, where eyes aren’t supposed to wander. To the casual observer, it might seem like I’m breaking the number one rule of self-preservation, and offering myself up for judgement, doesn’t it? No, friends… Rest assured… I am not only throwing myself under the bus with this one…We are all being ridden over!!! J

The facet of the matter is; we all have skeletons in our closet. Yes, each and every last one of us does. Everyone has something to hide, and if someone claims that their life is an open book, I’ll bet that there are at least a couple chapters you’ll never get to read as they have been conveniently omitted. Everybody has “those things” that they would rather keep to themselves; we all have things, events, and stories that belong to us and probably need to remain just that … ours! Secrets-Skeletons/Skeletons-Secrets I believe are a reality in everyone’s life. It can be the smallest, pettiest, most insignificant thing, all the way over to the vilest, most contemptible, and life altering acts, depending on how - who has done the action - perceives it.

There are certain things that even those who we are close to, do not know about us (scary thought huh?). We have all done something in our lives that we are not proud of and, given a second chance, would never repeat it. Let’s put some emphasis on never. Or, some of us have done things that we deem acceptable but know that someone else would see it as wrong, and therefore judge accordingly…So to makes ourselves feel better, we keep “it” buried in our closets.

BUT yet still we like to critique others’ lives.
Here comes the purpose of this post J… this is why we all are getting thrown under the bus! We like to judge, critique, give advice and perform the “holier than thou” act, without acknowledging how tainted we are ourselves. I mean, how many people do you know, that you laugh (hard) on the inside every time they try to give you “advice” on something you should do with your life; knowing all along that their life is a hot mess, and they should probably talk with their mouth closed? The point is that we like to put ourselves as coming from a place of perfection, while truly nothing can be more interesting (and disturbing) than our own backyard.

My rationale is not that for one to be able to give advice, mentorship or guidance to someone, you have to share all your secrets and release all of your skeletons, so you can be deemed credible (shoot, I have mine and let me tell you, they are staying 10, maybe 15 feet under!!!). My point is that we have to be able to recognize that we have flaws like everybody else and our assessments/judgments have to come from a place of knowledge and love, and (again), not from a “Holier than Thou” attitude.
The skeletons in our closet have shaped us to be what we are today, and most importantly, where we are in life today. I speak for most of us (if not all of us) in safely assuming that the skeletons in our closet have made us better human beings. For my part, my skeletons have made me a positive, open-minded person that knows that everything is possible. Looking at times, and thinking about what’s behind that closet door is the proof that we are able to overcome everything. If we could only move past what we’ve done, we could move on to what we want to become.
If you have to adopt one motto in your life, let it be, “Whatever happened, happened for the best, and after some time, you will notice that the skeletons in your closet will start to appear as a positive, driving force in your life (versus negative).” Ultimately, it’s up to you to view the glass as half empty or half full, and up to you to translate it within your life. You can choose to be positive or negative, however; you can’t ignore the reasons for your choices, and you can’t ignore your skeletons. Each life is a story worth telling. We have all - in one way or the other - faced and overcome obstacles in our life. We have all asked the question, at least once in our lives, “Why me?” Stop casting stones at those who wear their “sins,” at those who make open mistakes, and at those who trust you/us enough to share their secrets. Judging unfairly and from a place of resentment, while your own backyard is crowded with limbs, is the absolute worst thing to do.

The skeletons are there, brothers and sisters, in all of our lives.... sometimes they teach us, sometimes they haunt us, and sometimes they plague us. Let’s not give into them by letting them ruin us. They happened and are there because they shaped and helped mold our lives today. We all have something to hide at some place in our lives. It is how you feel about revealing it, that matters... and that is if you want to reveal it at all. Be confident in yourself and be able to own up to the responsibility and consequences of your past actions. And while you might chose to conveniently forget your past actions, remember when you judge and give advice to others that anything done in the dark eventually comes to light and you don’t want to be exposed as a hypocrite.

“Everybody's got skeletons in the closets. Every once in a while, you've got to open up the closet and the let the skeletons breathe. Half the time, the very thing you think is gonna destroy you or ruin you is the very thing that nobody cares about. My advice to people with skeletons is to dust them off every now and then-- as long as your closet's aint full of them. It's not good to have more than two or three.”
~Tyler Perry

Let’s try to be human and not like the skeletons in our closet. Life is all about embracing the good, the bad, the ugly, and the skeletons in our closet and making the best of it.


Monday, March 25, 2013

Hopeless Belief in Celebrities…

“The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum....”
― Noam Chomsky

Celebrities…Why do we profess our love so gratuitously to them, while we fight tooth-and-nail to give it to our everyday counterparts? Why do we believe them blindly as if we’ve known them forever, while doubting and challenging the ones we rub shoulders with on a daily basis? What is it about these complete strangers, who when we adore, we REALLY adore, that makes us care so much? I’m not quite sure what it is but maybe we need to change our perception….

There was a French actress that said something very remarkable once (she is very well known but for the life of me, I can't remember her name). She had been invited to a talk show which I saw back home (in Belgium), and the audience began to ask her the questions we often think our celebrities should have answers to: "What are your thoughts on war? How can we solve the problem of world hunger? What about Aids?" They continued to ask these and other random (but very astute) questions and she replied, "You know, before I became famous, I was just the average girl next door, with an average life and average intelligence. Now that I'm famous, I have not magically become smarter - so I don't see why there would be a point in asking me about these matters."

Ummmm…. Let me think… Yes, She is the only celebrity I ever heard respond in such a mature, candid way… Her answer didn't read "I have no clue or opinion in those matters" to me it read "Is it because I am a celebrity that now my opinion matters?"

I - like many other people - am very fond of some celebrities. Some, because of their artistry abilities (I will automatically go see their movies, buy their albums or read their books, regardless of the negative or positive reviews), some because of their insightful opinions on everyday matters or global subjects, and then there are some that although I cannot totally relate to them, I admire their journey and accomplishments. However, I find it amazing when I notice and see us, common people, hang on every word they speak and take advice from those who don’t know us. I mean, it’s certainly possible that they could have gone through the same/similar experiences then us at some point, but so haven’t the people we encounter on the train ride in to work. Do we want to know what they think we should do concerning our love lives? How about taking parenting advice from the hard working woman/man sitting across from you at the office café…. yeah, not so much. Something about a person being in front of a national television camera makes us think they are the authority on whatever it is they’re speaking about.

The main problem is we look up to these people far too much, instead of the people who are so much closer to us! I think that maybe we should rely on the advice of teachers, family members, and church/community leaders. These are the people who can have a direct impact and provide sound examples in our lives. These are the ones, who when they make a mistake, we should be able to forgive them easily, but sadly we don’t. We’d rather cheer on and forgive Kobe Bryant, even after he was accused of raping (but inevitably admitted to having sex with) a girl in a Colorado hotel. We’d much rather repost pictures of Kim Kardashian on our Instagram accounts, even though we’d probably never become friends with someone from work who published a sex-tape, had a televised, sham wedding, and had zero personality. Funny business, but absolutely true. We have a much shorter tolerance for regular humans, and expect them to be super-human, while expecting celebrities to fall constantly, like average Joes. Maybe it’s time to elevate our tolerance/respect across the board….

 I am a “follower” of Jada Pickett-Smith’s Facebook page. She is definitely one of those actresses I find very beautiful and at times very interesting. So, the other day, I was on her page and she asked this question, Will there ever be a day in which women will be able to see each other beyond race, class, and culture?” She then went into some specifics. She wondered if we’d ever allow our Caucasian sisters to grace the covers of our predominantly black magazines (Essence, Vibe, Ebony, etc.) as we’re requesting for us to cover theirs… As in any discussion worth discussing, you get a plethora of opinions and this particular subject did just that. So… nothing wrong with that. Where I had an issue is where people started to answer, “Amen Jada”, “My God Jada, you are always so right”, “Jada, can you please get your own talk show”, “I Love you so much, God Bless you”… and on and on… What happened to having an opinion? What ever happened to thinking for yourself? What happened to (even if you agree) being able to state in a complete sentence, the reasons why?
I shake my head. Our society seems to have a habit of placing athletes and actors on such a high pedestal, that when they make the slightest remarks, we want to find a connection even when there is none. Again, why do we do this to ourselves?

I have come to believe that many of the celebrities I personally admire, like Oprah, Jada, Beyoncé - to name a few- become very self-centered. And while this might be a normal reaction to almost idol worship by their loyal fans (which pushes them to feel larger than life), we have to remember that they are not God! They are only human, with a larger platform than we have and with circumstances that we might wish we had. They cannot heal cancer, or turn water into wine. They cannot catch bullets with their teeth or leap tall building in a single bound. Well, Beyoncé might, but that’s it! Their opinion and advice is no better (or worse) than ours, the teachers, or everyday parents… the everyday people we are in constant contact with.

While I believe that their journeys are amazing, that their opinions do have definite substance to them, and their caring behaviors are genuine, we have to remember that being desperate and needing to find role models and people to aspire to be like should not make us disregard what we are. I believe they are opening our eyes to opportunities, to possibilities that may not be obvious to us. They have the platform which, the wise ones, set up and land to us so we can build, voice, share intelligently our own opinion and NOT follow blindly because we assume they know better. I say, seat at the table…don't place so much faith in all of them, because just as much they can and will motivate us, at some point they are sure to disappoint. Remember we ALL make mistakes. Believing they are better and know better is a cop-out. So stand tall by your aptitude and be accountable for your opinions…


Sunday, March 24, 2013

My Sunday Quote of The Week...

“The beautiful thing about memories is that they are yours; whether they are good, bad, or indifferent. They belong to you, and no matter where life takes you, your memories tie you to where you've been, and to where you are now”

 I think our memories are the sum of our journeys, the lives we lived and now live and our aspirations. Without our memories we would be incapable of learning, of knowing who we are and we would be unable of progressing. Our personalities come from the way we interpret, analyse and live our experiences after the fact.
I think that every day of our lives are full of moments, lessons which are meant to be beneficial to what our tomorrows will be. Big moments, life changing moments that we can’t go around measuring but that we know will be carved in our minds or branded on our bodies for life.

“There are random moments —tossing a salad, coming up the driveway to the house, ironing the seams flat on a quilt square, standing at the kitchen window and looking out at the delphiniums, hearing a burst of laughter from one of my children’s rooms— when I feel a wavelike rush of joy. This is my true religion: arbitrary moments of nearly painful happiness for a life I feel privileged to lead. Think of the way you sometimes see a tiny shaft of sunlight burst through a gap between rocks, the way it then expands to illuminate a much larger space —it’s like that. And it’s like quilting, a thread surfacing and then disappearing into the fabric of ordinary days. It’s not always visible, but it’s what holds everything together.”

Life is made up of so many things. It's made of big moments and lasting memories. It's made of flashbacks and recollections. It's made of goals and aspirations. It's made of in-the-moments living and spontaneous decisions. Those are its compartments. Those are its pieces. But, the most important parts are the ones that don't always stand out in our minds. The most important parts are the little details that shape us; the minute aspects we may contently recall but overlook in the grand scheme of things. Then, however, when we least expect it, we remember that brush of the fingers we shared with our first crushes, or that smile we allotted with best friends, or that joke someone cracked in the middle of math class, or the embarrassing attempt our parents made to look cool.. We also remember the less definite conjectures; we recall the support of our family - as well as the times they let us down. We recollect the companionship of our friends - as well as their faults and betrayals. We relive the chemistry and passion between us and our lovers - as well as the arguments and insecurities. We may not be able to cite the complexities of every situation, but we remember the way we felt. We remember our reactions and it comes down to whether we are ashamed, complacent or proud of our decisions. The most important part of all that, though, is one simple truth; it is better to have made a decision than none at all. It's better to look back on a full life with mistakes, than one you slid through without focusing on the beauty all around you. Because to be alive is to feel, and if you have no lasting memories, no decisions to feel the repercussions of, you haven't lived at all. And, not that I've made it there yet, but I imagine you don't want to feel empty in thirty years, haunted by all the things you never did…

Source: Xanga

To cherishing our yesterdays…

Saturday, March 23, 2013

The Truth... The Cold, Hard Truth.

Let’s talk about how feel-good, politically correct teachings created a generation of kids with no concept of reality and how this concept set them up for failure in the real world… 
Unfortunately, there are some things that children should be learning in school, but don't. Not all of them have to do with academics. As a modest back-to-school offering, here are some basic rules that may not have found their way into the standard curriculum.

Some Rules Kids Won’t Learn In School” Charles J. Sykes

1. Life is not fair. Get used to it. The average teen-ager uses the phrase, "It's not fair" 8.6 times a day. You got it from your parents, who said it so often you decided they must be the most idealistic generation ever. When they started hearing it from their own kids.
2. The real world won't care as much about your self-esteem as much as your school does. It'll expect you to accomplish something before you feel good about yourself. This may come as a shock. Usually, when inflated self-esteem meets reality, kids complain it's not fair.
 3. Sorry, you won't make $40,000 a year right out of high school. And you won't be a vice president or have a car phone either. You may even have to wear a uniform that doesn't have a Gap label.
 4. If you think your teacher is tough, wait 'til you get a boss. He doesn't have tenure, so he tends to be a bit edgier. When you screw up, he's not going to ask you how you feel about it.
 5. Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had a different word for burger flipping. They called it opportunity. They weren't embarrassed making minimum wage either. They would have been embarrassed to sit around talking about Kurt Cobain or Britney Spears all weekend.
 6. It's not your parents' fault. If you screw up, you are responsible. This is the flip side of "It's my life," and "You're not the boss of me," and other eloquent proclamations of your generation. When you turn 18, it's on your dime. Don't whine about it, or you'll sound like a kid.
 7. Before you were born your parents weren't as boring as they are now. They got that way paying your bills; cleaning up your room and listening to you tell them how idealistic you are. And by the way, before you save the rain forest from the blood-sucking parasites of your parents' generation, try delousing the closet in your bedroom.
 8. Your school may have done away with winners and losers. Life hasn't. In some schools, they'll give you as many times as you want to get the right answer. Failing grades have been abolished and class valedictorians scrapped, lest anyone's feelings be hurt. Effort is as important as results.  This, of course, bears not the slightest resemblance to anything in real life.
 9. Life is not divided into semesters, and you don't get summers off. Not even Easter break. They expect you to show up every day. For eight hours. And you don't get a new life every 10 weeks. It just goes on and on. While we're at it, very few jobs are interesting in fostering your self-expression or helping you find yourself. Fewer still lead to self-realization.
10. Television is not real life. Your life is not a sitcom. Your problems will not all be solved in 30 minutes, minus time for commercials. In real life, people actually have to leave the coffee shop to go to jobs. Your friends will not be as perky or pliable as Jennifer Aniston.
11. Be nice to nerds. You may end up working for them. We all could.
12. Smoking does not make you look cool. It makes you look moronic. Next time you're out cruising, watch an 11-year-old with a butt in his mouth. That's what you look like to anyone over 20. Ditto for "expressing yourself" with purple hair and/or pierced body parts.
 13. You are not immortal. If you are under the impression that living fast, dying young and leaving a beautiful corpse is romantic, you obviously haven't seen one of your peers at room temperature lately.
14. Enjoy this while you can. Sure parents are a pain, school's a bother, and life is depressing. But someday you'll realize how wonderful it as to be a kid. Maybe you should start now.

I say BRILLIANT! This should be mandatory teachings…


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

I'm Afraid of Losing Control and Not Achieving All My Dreams in Life...

“Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
~Thomas A. Edison

I was once told, “You always seem to have your s*it together, no matter what. You are always so positive and confident that everything will be alright. I wish I could have your assurance in life…” I smiled and said, “Would you really want to witness my worries? Do you want to be a constant spectator of my fears? Do you really want to be the perpetual shoulder I cry on, or the ear I complain to constantly? No you wouldn’t…”
So I’m thinking, what good can possibly come from stressing and/or worrying? At least not all the time…. We all stress-out about bills and the debts we have accumulated, and we all worry about our relationships (or lack thereof). We worry, we have fears and doubts. We are jealous, anxious and we get frustrated… Should we carry all those feelings around like a coat for all to see? Should we be comfortable laying in negativity and all of us drown in the same pool of despair? No we shouldn’t…

“You are my friend and I know you have (and will have) my back in my time of need. However, I also know that just as much I have my own qualms, doubts and failures to worry about, you have your own. But believe me, when I am in a place where I can’t deal, fix and sort things out on my own… you will be behind that door I will knock on!”

I am about to knock on that door… the pressure is finally catching up to me… I’m scared that time is flying by faster than my willpower to disable the negative hold my circumstance has on my pictured tomorrow…

I need to regroup. I need to realize - with real eyes - the realities that surround me. I must be absolutely grateful and not in constant wistfulness of the “what ifs”, and “what more”…

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; but remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for”

I wish that, while I regroup and let this quote by Epicurus bring me back to appreciating what I’ve achieved thus far, I would automatically see the hidden (but true) meaning of the quote. I wish I would ALWAYS see the sense of progress, the sense of uninterrupted evolvement this quote should enlighten through my life. I’d like to always see that while I should be content and happy with where I am right now, it is okay to feel that I may not be “there” yet. All that should matter is whether or not I’m moving forward, towards wherever “there” happens to be.

Long ago, possibly a lifetime, or even many lifetimes ago, I was a little girl who dreamt big dreams. These were dreams that once I shared them I was told, “You can achieve anything you set your mind to.” I wish I had known that there was no hurry to become a “real” adult. There was no need to fall victim to the “rat race”, making “that money” and being “successful” much to the detriment of everything else. I feel like I have been doing what is expected of me, while not paying attention to what I truly wanted to do. I have been progressing in life but stepping away from my passion… from my big dreams…
I work harder and harder to earn more money to pay bills, the mortgage, sort out the kids’ needs, and afford nice vacations. And when I finally do stop, I realize that I am still not at a point where I can get out of “the race.” No matter how many things I have and accumulate, it is still not good enough. All the while, the days, weeks and years go by so quickly that the dreams I had as a little girl seem to be out of reach… and it is that feeling of being unsatisfied with where I am, and what I have, that puts that un-needed pressure upon my shoulders. It’s the horrible feeling of always wanting more, while not appreciating my accomplishments. I wish I would truly grasp and live by the knowledge that the journey, not the destination, is the real achievement.

“Everybody gets everything they really want” depending on how bad you want it and how long you’ll persevere…

I let circumstances and environments dictate my life, dictate my ups and downs. I let the outside world run my life, instead of listening to the good I have done so far. I let my unaccomplished dreams strip the joy from my previous successes. I am spending most of my life focusing on what I don’t want and wishing for all that I don’t have. I sometimes live in misery for all that I am missing in my life, forgetting about all the things I already have. Everything else moves on, everyone else enjoys the accomplishments as I sit and watch things go by, complaining. But isn’t the one thing I have desired most of all in my life, happiness? For the longest time I have told myself and others what I really want in life is to just be happy… Here I sit, and instead of realizing I have always had it, I find justification in the pity party I am throwing for myself. Isn’t that the way things always work? We always remember the past victories as more important (and victorious) than they were, and we always see the present as worse (and more difficult) than it is. Many of us are guilty of this. Why couldn’t I just understand that even though I’m not where I absolutely want to be, I’m blessed to be where I am…..

Well, thankfully that all changed…

Happiness to me means love, friendship, laughter, inspiring myself, growth and setting challenges for myself to become better. And now that I am focusing on all that I have, instead of all that I don’t have or have missed out on, I see how wealthy I truly am in life. Things I have hoped for, I have; plus some. And for those things I have yet to gain… time is on my side. And even though I had not noticed it before, it continues to multiply daily.

Experience is the best teacher. Everything I have gone through has helped shape the person that I am today, and for that I am grateful. I have learned that I have the capacity for greater potential than I myself realize at times. But the greatest thing that I have learned is to strive for more. You can achieve more than you thought possible and in some way along your journey there are things you will achieve that are greater and bigger than the dreams you have not achieved yet. But instead of always looking back I need to realize that I, along with my dreams, am evolving. I have to realize that I am every bit capable and deserving of achieving great things and experiencing all the love, achievement and excitement this world has to offer.

What fulfilled hope will you acknowledge today?


Sunday, March 17, 2013

My Sunday Quote of The Week...

What you feel right now is the result of what you've commanded... 

“Every day I wake up thankful for what I have and what I know is to come.
Every day I plan my path so I can leave a trail worth following.
Today I will be courageous; I won’t let my circumstances cripple me.
Today I will make smart decisions; I won’t let fear prevent me from trying.
Today I will demand; I won’t let anyone convince me that I’m undeserving.
Today I believe, I ask and I shall receive”
~Rose Sanderson

I read somewhere that, “The most inspiring quotes come from within us” and I couldn’t agree more. The more I read and try to understand other people's messages and points of view, the more I spend time analyzing and living my life lessons. I am able to summarize what I have learned in a few easy, efficient sentences. The sentences consist of what strikes me (to the core) to be true, so I can effectively remember. This process has proven to be gratifying and empowering. Being able to share - with you all - my perspective, has freed me of so many things. I am not the smartest person in the world… I am not rich and I am not famous but what I am, is someone that is learning to know herself! I am someone who has past experiences and a perspectives relating to my life, which to the world, is unique. So I write down my thoughts and ideas, I come up with quotes and catch-phrases beneficial to me but maybe also beneficial to whoever else may need to hear my point of view at a particular moment…


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Life Ain't over...Until It's Over...

“There is a fountain of youth: it is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age.”
~Sophia Loren

 A few days ago, I had a great conversation with one of my good girlfriends. We were talking about marriage; speaking about our respective partners in “that” journey… Yes, a journey with unbelievable highs and dangerous lows, but a journey which we (obviously) treasure, as we are still in it. Anyhow, in the midst of the conversation I said, “You know what, as for this thing called marriage, you will NEVER catch me at it twice! I am giving it all that I can (and have inside to) give, and right now is the single opportunity I have to make it everlasting… There’ll be no second chances; no second try. If - God forbid - this wouldn’t work… I’m good… I’m all set!” Then I said, “I’m not sure that if someone were to come and ask me my opinion on whether or not they should get married, that my answer would be a positive one…”

But isn’t that so selfish of me? I mean, I do feel as though keeping happy and staying in an healthy marriage is the hardest thing ever (compromising, dealing with different personalities, the woman’s PMS-ing, and not to mention all the things you give up… willinglyJ). I love the hubby, I love being married to him and I love the security of knowing that I have someone to grow old with. But sometimes there is a but…
Growing old with someone; isn’t it one of our main desires? Having someone to share all of our aches and joys with, having someone to just listen and sit next to. When you hit the low points in your relationships (which will inevitably come) and you’re at a point where you wonder if you can still do it… if you still have the energy to fight for the love that was once vibrant and bursting at the seams, but now seems to be slipping away, you have to then re-evaluate your thought process! That’s when you think, why leave? After all we’ve been through… after all we’ve built… No, I will stay and enjoy the fruits I’ve seeded… Why should I start over?
“My grandmother started walking five miles a day when she was sixty. She's ninety-seven now, and we don't know where the heck she is.”
~Ellen DeGeneres

That same evening (after the conversation I mentioned earlier), we were amongst family and friends at my cousin’s house and amongst us were three of my aunties. They are mothers, grandmothers and all three are at a different stages in their life, although roughly the same age.
(For the sake of their privacy I will change their namesJ)
Aunty Isabelle is a widow. She’s an independent woman who gets to travel, and enjoy her kids and grand-kids. There’s Aunty Marthe, who has been married for more than forty years and also enjoys her kids and grandkids. Then you have Aunty Nicole, who is divorced and decided a few years ago to completely change her life.
The aunties were sitting, having their dinner (with glasses of wine in hand), and we - the second generation - decided to sit and listen to Aunty Nicole, who was giving the ladies some straight talk. She really opened up and explained that after a hard, long overdue divorce from a man whom she had given all she had to give, all while losing herself in the process, she finally decided to give another go at life. In her sixties, she decided to move to another country, first with her daughter, then by herself, in this community catered to elderly independent people. Now, ten years down the road, I do see in front of my eyes a different aunty than the one I once knew…
“Francine”, aunty Nicole’s daughter, started to tell us stories of when her mom first moved on her own in the community and how it had changed the dynamic of their relationship. Francine had become the “mother” pushing her “daughter” to go make friends, to meet people, and get involved. She had become the one giving advice on what to do, what to say and how to act on a date…We laughed so hard that evening, listening to aunty Nicole tell us stories of her dating escapades and how at her age, she had no filter. She was telling the men she was dating she loved them after the first coffee date, as she felt they knew what was in her in her mind… however, ultimately scaring them off with her candidness… Francine had us all laughing hysterically at her mom’s story of dating a ninety year old man with a pacemaker, whom she sent to the hospital “as they gave a try at intimacy”… his heart couldn’t take it… While we were laughing and enjoying her tales, she seriously told Marthe and Isabelle to come over and visit her so she could show them a good time.
That night while we were laughing so hard at my aunt’s love antics, I learned a lot…
Sitting at the table, I was looking at these three beautiful ladies who have truly so much in common, as far as where they are from, the life/culture they married into and the sacrifice those marriages entail. As I said earlier, one is a widow, one is still married and one is dating and they have shown me some of the many possibilities life can bring.

I understand now, that I should never say never… Maybe my story will be like aunty Isabelle’s, one of contentment after my life partner has been taken away from me. Maybe it will be like aunty Marthe’s, where I would find no reason to change what I’ve always known and that is if I needed to consider changing it all. Or, maybe I could be like aunty Nicole, ready to take life by the horns and go for new experiences… What I have learned is to not settle. Whatever decisions you make, make them because you are comfortable with them, make them because it is what your mind, body and soul tell you to do; knowing that it aint’t over until God says its over. Tomorrow is no guaranteed but if it does come, you better be ready to make the best of it!

So if someone were to come and ask me my opinion on whether or not they should get married, I would tell them, “If you asked the question, then that means you want to. There is no surety in matters of the heart, so take a chance, live it up, and if it is meant to be everlasting, it will be. If it wasn’t … there is always a next time…”
Don’t make promises or set boundaries today on a future you are clueless of. In doing so, you are limiting your tomorrow and sealing off priceless possibilities…
“The End” of your story, to share with your kids, grandkids, and even the world, is not to be heard when you think it is over or when you think you have received and accomplished all that you deserve… Let the unpredictable be. Be random and enjoy what you may think is beyond your time and watch the abundance of new memories you create…


Sunday, March 10, 2013

My Sunday Quote of The Week...

“At best, love is simply the slipping of a hand in another's, of knowing you are where you belong at last, and of exchanging through the eyes that all-consuming regard which ignores everybody else on earth.”
― Laurie Lee

Love is not a necessity you can acquire or summon to existence when you want. Don’t make it your life mission to find it because it can only be given. It is life's greatest gift and luxury that will unfold when you are soulfully ready and in the least expecting. Love can be strong, yet so fragile so don’t challenge it or try to mold it to what you perceive it should be, it should bring you or should make you feel. If and when you find it, hang on to it, cherish it and nurture it as you will wish it to be everlasting but reality is that we don’t know…
“Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement. They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful. There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are. The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever. Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it’s like being young again. Colours seem brighter and more brilliant. Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn’t exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day’s work and always brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby. Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you. You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon. You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.”
~Bob Marley


Sunday, March 3, 2013

My Sunday Quote of The Week...

“Every saint has a past, 
and every sinner has a future.”
~Oscar Wilde

Christianity has taught me that everyone is a sinner at some point in their life not only because of actions they have done but also because of this thing we all inherited, called the original sin. Christianity has also taught me that we all are capable to turn our life and anything “given” to us into positive. We all have potential, and that is why although we have all sinned, we also have a future. Every saint has a past because they have already made the choice to do something with that potential.

Luke 15:7, "there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent."
Everyone at any given moment in time is governed by their action and thought at that exact moment in time. A Saint, in an instant, can become a Sinner. And a Sinner, can become a Saint. You cannot be labeled by your past, or what you promise to do will in the future.

You are who you are now, but not what you could be. Don’t let the moment define your whole… Your potential is infinite.
Blogger Widgets