Tag Archives: Love

Faith Works by Love (and the New Wow)

What I had faith for was that I should go to sleep and wake up when this birthday was over.

To look at the circumstances (which is never a great idea when it comes to faith), my life was in flux, my marriage over and the future uncertain.

Uncertainty, by the way, is the #1 culprit of fear…and since faith works by love, well you know where this story is heading…

…except I was love-bombed.

With each gesture of love, like a flat tire being inflated, so were my spirits.

First, a pre-birthday card from my mom, with a $10 bill to “go buy ice cream.” Thursday was like Christmas – every hour I got a call from the lobby desk saying, “We have a package for you, Ms. Viola…”

There are so many flowers in my apartment right now, I feel like Miss America, not Ms. Viola!  (Thank you Renee and Steve and Roseann and Mike).

Cynthia is NOT a card person.  But she knows that I am and she sent three awesome cards – two laugh out loud funny ones, and another tender one that prompted liquid to spill out of my eyes.

OK, I need to share this one with you:

Then Linda sent me a card that touched me so deeply I have to share the words with you:

THE OAK TREE

A might wind blew night and day

It stole the oak tree’s leaves away,

Then snapped its boughs and pulled its bark

Until the oak was tired and stark

But still the oak tree held its ground

While other trees fell all around

The weary wind gave up and spoke,

“How can you still be standing, Oak?”

The oak tree said, “I know that you

Can break each branch of mine in two,

Carry every leaf away

Shake my limbs and make me sway.

But I have roots stretched in the earth,

Growing stronger since my birth.

You’ll never touch them, for you see,

They are the deepest part of me.

Until today I wasn’t sure

Of just how much I could endure

But now I’ve found, with thanks to you,

I’m stronger than I ever knew.


I am writing this on Thursday night because another present is arriving.  My friend Anita hopped on a plane today and she will be here with me all weekend.  Vats of coffee, endless conversations, laughter and some tears comprise the agenda. And some Face-time with the rest of the Fab Four throughout our time together.

I am blessed.  I am rich.  I am not alone.  I have faith for tomorrow.

Love wove a miracle, stitched my broken heart together and has given me the best birthday of my life.

Who’d have thunk it?

Prior to being love-bombed, I faced another form of faith that attempted to suck the wind out of my sails.  Here’s more on that and the new WOW:

Never, ever, ever have I picked the word BEAUTY.

What a lovely word to begin a brand new year of my life.

Thank you for sharing it with me.

I love you –

Brenda

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Adventures in Simplicity (and the New WOW)

When a business trip takes you to the other coast and it’s a place you’ve never been before, it merits tacking on a couple of play days to make space for adventure. Yes, I had adventures – but most profound were simple acts of love.

The weeks preceding my trip to San Diego involved pre-bedtime Googling the best restaurants, must- see landmarks, the hip neighborhoods and nature’s hot spots. In keeping with our Word of the Week, simplicity, I opted to establish just one must-do goal and let the rest play out in serendipity.

The sea lions were a must.

The Cove at La Jolla smells like sea lion and seal poop, but the majesty of the Pacific and the doe-eyes of those howling, napping critters was well worth the pungent aroma.

Well-timed suggestions fueled my adventure, like that of the proprietor of the inn where I lodged recommending a drive to Coronado on my first full day.  (Side note: No matter WHERE I wanted to go, the pat response was, “Oh, it’s only fifteen minutes away!”  Lo and behold, it was true – most everywhere I wanted to go WAS just 15 minutes away.)

Overcast skies and a too-cool wind tried to dampen my spirits to no avail.  There were sandcastles and crashing waves…and in the distance, the behemoth that is the Hotel Coronado, a famous historic landmark with an equally legendary breakfast buffet.

Of course, I did!

Yes, breakfast was amazing, but what I observed was far more thrilling: A simple act of love.

I noticed her the minute she walked in; an elegant woman dressed impeccably in a pink tweed suit, her gray hair folding in a smooth, longer pageboy. More than the clothes she wore, her smile lit the room, removing years from her face and intriguing me.

Unfortunately, it is a rare woman in her advanced years who so readily smiles, and yet it is a trait I aspire to.

I watched what appeared to be her daughter – likely my own age – and granddaughter, setting a celebratory tone.  Was it her birthday?

I tried not to be rude, but I couldn’t stop glancing their way.

Then, in walked a tall, handsome man with what appeared to be a bouquet of 50 roses.

And I watched the lovely lady hold back tears.

I bowed my head; this was a sacred moment.

He attempted a photo and I leaped to offer my services.  It gave me a chance to tell the woman I found her to be beautiful.

Later, at the buffet, the man – her son – told me the back story.  Fifty years ago, on that day, she got married at the Hotel Coronado.  Though her husband was no longer alive, it had always been his practice to send her red roses, each representing a year of their marriage. On this landmark 50th, her children wanted to honor the tradition.

What love! What a testament to a life well-lived; so well done that her children were overflowing with gratitude and honor.

Elaine’s wedding photo also had a place of honor at the breakfast table.

I wanted to capture some shots of this glorious encounter, but didn’t want to be intrusive of their family moment.

The spirit of her beloved was surely smiling down on them all; I FELT it.

Emotionally sated, my adventures continued. I drove to the “Om Dome” in Encinitas for a spiritual concert with my newfound airplane friend, Myrna, who had a “Gypsy Soul” necklace made exactly like my go-to “Salt Life” silver flattened spoon choker.

I scheduled a table for one at the Marine Room, where the waves lapped against the window in front of my table (and the lobster bisque was swoon-worthy.)

The next simply wonderful highlight was to spend quality time with my cousin, Debbie, who gathered her two amazing daughters – Carolyn and Colleen – her granddaughter, Charlotte, her husband (who I had NEVER met, Craig) and Carolyn’s firefighter husband, John, for a night at an authentic Mexican restaurant in Old Town.

The conversation flowed as only it can when great love is at the table.

The reunion reminded me off what cemented my love for Debbie, despite decades of not seeing each other.

Her father, Joseph, is my father’s younger brother. When I was ten, as you all know, my father died suddenly from a heart attack. Joe and his family immediately traveled from their home in Virginia Beach, Virginia to attend the services.

We were all devastated, and I vividly recall sitting around my grandmother’s apartment picking at catered food and trying to find comfort in each other’s presence.

No longer able to hold it together, I remember erupting into sobs and fleeing to the back bedroom.

One person came to me.

My cousin Debbie.

Just a teenager herself, she wrapped me in her arms and just hugged me and hugged me. I will never forget that moment.

And throughout our magical evening in San Diego, I enjoyed her hugs once again. They felt familiar and oh-so-comforting. Her daughters are also world-class huggers! I loved them so much I wanted to say, “Where have you been all of my life?”

Of course, they were there all along.  I just never took the time to know them.  But that, of course, all changed in one love-filled evening.

A bouquet of 50 roses.

A simple hug, perfectly timed.

And then, in line at security on the way home, I marveled at a husband/wife team, so adeptly keeping their two toddlers entertained. The little boy kicked off his shoes as daddy patiently put them back on. His tears turned to giggles as mommy blew fart-sounds onto his belly. Finally, he was hung upside down by his daddy (to his glee), and mommy, weighed down with diaper bags and luggage and minding strollers reached down to lift the older girl.

The husband looked at her quizzically as if to say, “Why are you doing that? You’ve got so much to carry.”

She covered her daughter’s face with gentle kisses and said, “Because she wants to be held, too, and I love her.”

I bowed my head again.  It was such a tender moment, so very sweet and lovely. 

What a good mom.

I told her, too, on the way to take my seat home.  She looked at me with eyes that revealed she is far too often hard on herself and feels a bit overwhelmed by this most noble of professions. She couldn’t imagine that I had observed something that so impressed a stranger enough for them to comment on her parenting skills.

Chocolate stained faces and poopy diapers be damned.

She was an amazing mom.

She simply loved.

Sigh.

I hope that you, too, relished in the adventures of simplicity this past week.

Onward to the new Word of the Week:

You mean there IS a tomorrow?  And I don’t have to do everything right now?

Sigh.

For me, there will always be a balance between resting in patience and letting it do its perfect work – and cramming 27 hours of activity into a 24 hour day.

When you see me careening off of the edge – pull me back!

I will nuzzle into PATIENCE this week and see what fruit it bears.

And for those of you waiting for something (or someone) – I am standing in faith WITH you.

xoxoxoxo

Brenda

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Sisters and Brothers from Another Mother (and the New WOW)

Don’t you love when friends turn into sisters and brothers?

This week I was reminded of how my circle of friends has widened since moving to Sarasota. My first six months were spent in tears of loneliness. Would I ever find my tribe?

I’d go to get my nails done and actually look around for potential friends. (You know, like in the children’s book, “Are You My Mother?”  only the “Are you My Future Friend?” version.)

Thank GOD for my main posse, who were my anchors during those stormy (and lonely) months. Renee the kind comforter; Anita the soulful listener; Cynthia the sassy sophisticate. They never failed to “show up” for me.  Because they are so GOOD at being sister friends, I made the mistake of comparing everyone new that I met to them.  Who could measure up?

Then there’s my sister sister, Shirlee, who is an earth angel.  I won the sister lottery when I was born, and she’s a gift that keeps on giving me tidings of comfort and joy.

There are the friends you hardly see at ALL (unfortunately)…but they are THERE.  If I needed Cindy or Roseann, Judy, Linda, Hilary or Antoinette, at a moment’s notice they’d drop everything on a dime to lend their wisdom or kindness without judgment.

When I finally began to relax (and stop whining), a new bouquet of budding friendships emerged. Five-foot-nothing, southern belle Kyle instantly became a huge connector and cheerleader who never fails to make me smile.  Karen, who I always introduce as my “two-time-published author” friend has proven to be a true go-to for impromptu adventures and rich conversations. My new across-the-street neighbor Darcy looks like Blake Lively (and I won’t hold that against her) because she makes me feel like her most favorite person in the world (and who doesn’t love feeling like THAT?)

I’ve got two Kim’s – my cousin as well as a long-lost friend from ages ago who came back into my life this year.  You couldn’t find two bigger hearts so full of love.

There’s all of you out there that I’ve never met, but you have become my sisters.  Suzan Alexander, can you feel the love?

I can’t forget the guys. John, my brother, sings Sinatra to me and no matter what my week is like, it heals or lifts my heart. Eric, my favorite collaborator, is always learning new things and sharing them with me, while being a genuinely kind man. Doug, who calls me “lass”, notices new shoes and hairdos (and, along with the other Sarasota Lounge Lizards made Sarasota finally feel like home.)

That really is what our sisters and brothers of the heart do for us.  They make us feel at home in this world.

We go back with them…and we go forward.

I say all of this with a heart full of gratitude and love along with a little fear and trepidation that I have certainly left someone out who should be named.  If you were omitted, part of the reason I love you is because you are so wonderfully forgiving.

I count on that breath of kindness from my sisters and brothers.  No matter how much is in your bank account as you read this, if you have at least one sibling of the heart, you (and I) are rich.

Now for the new Word of the Week!

Hmmmmmm!  I’ll admit to a teeny buzz-kill when I pulled the word OBEDIENCE. However, if history continues to repeat itself, I’ll find some nuggets in the week ahead for which I’ll end up being grateful.

Who are your sisters and brothers of the heart?  And how have they impacted your life?

xoxoxox

Brenda

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A Resolve to be Happy (and the New WOW)

Some people hate the whole resolution ritual. To me, it’s a tradition that sort of forces me to establish my priorities for the year and resolve to take steps in support of them.

Hmmmm…that sounded a bit too much like a corporate memo.

Take two:  I think about the stuff I want to happen and dream about what I can do to make them burst forth into reality!

I really wish I had learned this earlier in life.

My approach through my teens, twenties, thirties and most of my forties was to “wish, want, hope, pine, yearn” with feeble faith that I could impact any outcomes.

Something clicked in recent years. I was acting like a tennis ball, being directed by forces beyond my control instead of being the tennis racket and directing my life in the way I wanted it to go.

This does not preclude my dependence on God, the Holy Spirit or Jesus. But I do feel that the heavenly host has been sitting in the bleachers all these years saying, “Will you finally take a swing? We can’t do it ALL for you!!!”

Well, when you put it THAT way, Jesus…

We’ve got the equipment. We were BORN with it.  Our gifts, our talents, our special sauce – it’s all there, waiting to be whipped up into a unique and remarkable treat for the world -and us – to enjoy.  But too often we spend time focusing on what we DON’T have when it’s actually irrelevant.

If we don’t have it, we don’t need it to fulfill our calling.  We are completely equipped for our purpose in life.  And if you read this and start to protest, ask yourself, “Why am I fighting?”

So you’re flawed.  Join the crowd.  So you think your flaws or ailments disqualify you from certain joys in life?  Only your faith in that faulty line of thinking keeps you there.

My resolve every year is to be happy.  And I am.  Annoyingly so!  (Except to those who also are fans of happiness.)

Some people are as devoted to being miserable as I am to being happy.

Every ache or pain or bend in the road is a license to complain or make excuses or blame someone for their station in life.

Seriously, how’s that working for you?

No, I do not live a perfect life. I’ve had my share of broken hearts, physical challenges, disappointments and paralizing fears.  I choose, however, at this later stage in my game – with time fleeting and tomorrows not promised – to see the disappointments as a detour because something better is coming my way.  I acknowledge my fears and then do the work to get back to love because I don’t to waste one moment of this beautiful life living like a deer in the headlights.  I have a weird bump on my leg that needs to be biopsied next week and I am positive that it is either nothing, or if it is something, I’m going to beat it.

Can you tell I’m fired up this week?

I put some of that energy into this week’s message:

Isn’t that sweet?  What a lovely way to start 2017!

Be gentle with yourself first, my friends. It makes it a heckuva lot easier to then be gentle with others.

Hello, 2017.  I welcome you with open arms, an open heart, and a full expectation that you will be my best year ever.

And I wish that for all of you, too.

xoxoxoxo

Brenda

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Enthusiasm is to be Taken Seriously (& the New WOW)

Enthusiasm is NOT to be taken lightly.

It’s not for the fainthearted (or boring, for that matter.)

Knowing this has helped me stand up a bit straighter this week and walk in a little more power than usual.

I have ALWAYS lived an enthusiastic life and my zest for even little things like greeting cards and puppy dogs is sometimes met with a head shake.  Really?  C’mon Brenda, it’s not THAT exciting, is it?

I once interviewed an elected official in my previous job as a Public Information Officer, and I found one of her answers to be so interesting I responded, “WOW!”

She literally (on camera) said, “Wow?  What’s there to wow about?”

Fast forward 15 years and I’m still “WOW-ing” with my Word of the Week.

Only on a few occasions have I considered ramping down my approach to life a bit – particularly when it is met with an eye roll – but this is the way God made me and I’m sticking with it.  

And, if I need further reinforcement, here are a few good ones:

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And one final kicker:

opportunities

Why do we curb our enthusiasm?  It’s the old “Don’t get your hopes up and you won’t be disappointed” scenario.

In my early teen years I lived that way and it didn’t work for me.  Since then, I’ve always got my hopes up.

Each week, I literally EXPECT to win the lottery.  (I haven’t.  YET.)  When I check the numbers I say to myself, “Oh…not this week.” (With full enthusiasm that it MIGHT be next week…)

I could list a million things that make me enthusiastic…but one of the tricks in life is to summon enthusiasm for what OTHER people find thrilling.  Instead of accompanying them under duress, it doubles their joy if you get into it, too.  So while at first, the band YES was a no for me, I am now completely taken in by Jon Anderson’s voice and wouldn’t miss a chance to see him in concert.  (YES is definitely a Duane thing.)

No, I don’t like to eat blue claw crabs.  But I am enthusiastic about the picnic tables at Peace River Seafood where you sit with strangers for hours.  Duane gleefully tries to beat his world record and I make friends.

I will never be enthusiastic about the Dallas Cowboys, but I’ll gladly go to a game (enthusiastically wearing my throwback Randall Cunningham jersey.)

Some of my greatest experiences in life have been those where I swallowed my LACK of enthusiasm and just joined in (parasailing, zip lining and snorkeling come to mind.)

Interestingly, all of the above involved my friend Anita.

You may not be enthusiastic about WHAT you’re doing, but if you are stoked about who you are doing it with, it can still fan your happy flame.

So no matter what this new WOW will be, let’s keep the fires of enthusiasm stoked (and stay stoked about life.)  It just may be the fountain of youth!

Here’s the reveal of the new #WOW:

With all of your sweet comments about Duane’s special guest appearance last week, THIS week is a bit more subdued.  (Hopefully we can get him to come back in the future and jazz things up.)

For now, may it ALL COME TOGETHER – for all us this week.

Love,

Brenda

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Compassion is FEARLESS (and the New WOW)

I had an “AHA” this week when I considered the connection between being fearless and being compassionate.

This was the springboard:

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So where does intolerance and judgment come from?

Yep. Fear.

So the next time you are faced with an ugly attack of intolerance and judgment, take a step back.  (This is what I am doing.)  Find within yourself the compassion that can ask (probably not verbally) “What are they afraid of?”

Too often, in my own life, when feeling the attack of the self-righteous or intolerant, I become defensive and argumentative.  

Oh, I also get insulted and appalled and equally self-righteous.

Why?

Because I’m afraid, too.

Aren’t we all?

That we are sometimes is a fact.  But what we vote with is our choice.

I go on a little bit of a rant about this, but I hope you find it encouraging as we head into a new Word of the Week:

Well hallelujah sisters and brothers!  I LOVE the word ENTHUSIASM.

(In fact, I’d rather you be flaming hot MAD at me than lukewarm.  Blech!)

What makes you feel enthusiastic?  Do some more of THAT.  Please tell me in the comments what trips your joy level into overdrive (because I think enthusiasm and joy are kissing cousins.)

Let’s have ALL the fearless feels this week – and my hope is that we enthusiastically count our blessings heading into the Thanksgiving holiday.

Be safe and enjoy!

xoxooxoox

Brenda

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In the Dark about Light – and the New WOW!

For all my exhortations about being light (lightening up, letting your heart be light, etc., etc., etc.) I found myself in a bit of a funk this week.

I may be coming to a “come to Jesus” moment about my level of busy-ness in life.  When 12 hours go by and you realize you haven’t stopped to go to the bathroom, it’s too much.

This, by the way, is no one’s fault but my own.

Trying to keep all the balls in the air when juggling can be an amazing skill, but the downside is you never get to enjoy crossing one project off of your to-do list, because you’ve got to quickly move to the next one before it comes crashing to the ground.

That’s not living.  It’s a hamster wheel that never stops. And I’m not a hamster.  (Though I’ve been acting like one.)

Oh, I have been trying to squeeze fun in here and there, but my phone remains tethered to my arm and I have been less than present in my human interactions.

Add to the mix some health challenges (like eyes that are still blurry – and much of what I do all day is read, write and proof things!) The internet is and endless pit of diagnoses, non of which make my heart LIGHT.

As I write this I am on another airplane, this time headed to a girlfriends weekend in Charlotte, NC.  While my friends have excitedly texted each other about what they are packing and what we’re going to do while together, I’ve been AWOL, sucked into the vortex of too many irons in the fire.

My plan of action?  To seek their wisdom this weekend.  This Fab Four (me and Renee, Anita and Cynthia) are some of the best sounding boards a person could have.  They are kind, honest, loving, funny and want the best for me.  I am going to sink into the comfort that they provide and believe for some clarity this weekend (in between or during shopping excursions and karaoke.)

Perhaps that is part of the reason why, when recording this week’s WOW I had the word WISDOM on my mind instead of LIGHT.   (And yes, I did also enjoy a rousing ‘put your foot in your mouth’ episode that also prompted this week’s parting message.)

WOW!  And boy do I need me some power.  How about you?

Power. Love.  A Sound Mind.

Sign me up!

May we all be empowered to make the decisions we need to in order to have the life we want to live.

xoxoxoxo

Brenda

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Irreconcilable Differences and the New WOW

So as we sit in the Tampa Airport, he reading his sports page and me typing this blog post, I  I chuckle to consider the host of irreconcilable differences that have been survived to date.

It’s far more than his love of the Cowboys and mine of the Eagles.

It’s his propensity to watch the same movies (Caddyshack, the Godfather I, II and III, Diehard and Happy Gilmore, along with Young Frankenstein and Christmas Vacation – even in the summer) over and over and over (and over) again, while I clamor to stay apprised of pop culture and the latest films, TV shows and music.  He thinks if it was created after 1989, it’s irrelevant.

I think the only way to STAY relevant is to know what the cool kids are watching and singing!

It’s his belief that one pair of dress shoes, one casual, sneakers and sandals are the only four items of footwear ever needed in a lifetime. And his horror when MY shoes moved into his house.  Ten pairs of black alone – flats, pumps, sandals, wedges, stilettos, mules, patent leather…in multiples of each.

I wonder at the men who sit in lounge chairs at department stores, waiting as their wives try on outfits. Not all of them seem miserable.

I wouldn’t DREAM of asking Duane to do that, nor would I have fun knowing he was unhappy every moment wasted there instead of watching the game.

Before I got married, I had so many unrealistic expectations, despite well-meaning friends and family warning me that marriage was no fairy tale.

The good news is, it isn’t always a nightmare and more often it is a happy, uneventful companionship that features him watching Hogans  Heroes reruns while I couch dance to “The Get Down” on Netflix on my iPad.

And this is how we reconcile those differences.  I do my thing; he does his – sometimes we do them together and it’s all good.

Our pillowcases say it all.  Yes, the struggle is real – but so is the snuggle.

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He golfs on Saturday mornings, and I play around Sarasota – shopping, strolling, wandering…

I stopped being disappointed that we are so different in our tastes and ideas of what fun is and started to embrace the fact that, in our marriage, different works.

Because the one thing we love more than Happy Gilmore reruns and new shoes is each other.

And THIS has been the wisest discovery in marriage for me

Here are more parting thoughts on WISDOM, and the new WOW!

Ah…let your heart be “LIGHT” this week.

(Let means you need to give yourself permission to lighten up.)

Undo those heavy burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ – which is LOVE.

Find your giggle again.  Force yourself to smile.  You’ll feel better.

Be with people who encourage your heart.

Or encourage someone else.

Have a light-filled week, my friends!

xoxoxoox

Brenda

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Testy Challenges on the Way to Understanding (and the New WOW)

My greatest UNDERSTANDING challenges occurred this week on the way to Philadelphia for a work trip.

Impatience produced eye rolls, heavy sighs and overall displays of irritability.

It later struck me (hindsight is 20/20) that my inability to have EMPATHY for the other guy and gal was related to just how much the world (that day) revolved around ME.

It was the tri-fecta of doom when traveling: A middle seat in the back, a crying/screaming child behind me, and a seatmate who was at the height of a horrible, coughing, sneezy cold.

Yes, I asked for a seat change.  No, there were no other available seats on the flight.  Yes, I caught the cold.

It’s easy to be understanding when nothing goes wrong, isn’t it?

Fortunately, I arrived to my sister’s haven of a home and was love-bombed, which I can always count on from her.  Then I traveled to PA for my meetings and stayed at my home away from home with my friends Renee and Steve.  Steve likes to say, “If I can choose who I can come back as in the next life, it would be one of Renee’s friends.”

True that.  I’d want a repeat.  (This is the woman who has soft music playing and fuzzy slippers waiting for me when I arrive.  She makes me protein smoothies for breakfast and sends me to bed at 8 PM if I need it.  Plus, we like the same TV shows and can watch The Voice together.)

My prayer for both households is that they do not catch the bug I may have brought with me from my Sarasota seatmate.

Even though I was starting to feel yucky, all the love I received made me a much more UNDERSTANDING and kind person on the trip back home.

Which leads to my point: If your understanding tank is running on empty, maybe you need to fill it up with some love.

Don’t feel bad about being testy.  See it as a signal that you need some self-care.  Then take care of yourself.

This commercial demonstrates this concept better than any words could:

You might just be one snack away from a more understanding day.

Parting thoughts on that here (and the new WOW!)

Yep – we’ve definitely got a progression going on here.

Be good to yourself this week – and then you’ll have something to give away.

xoxoxoxo

Brenda

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Acts of Kindness (and the New WOW)

What I’ve marveled at this past week is how bright light shines when it enters a dark place. How people come out of the woodwork with acts of kindness when they sense you need it most.

Like this meme said so clearly (thank you notsalmon.com:

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The new of hurricane Hermine was EVERYWHERE, and the location of Sarasota was front and center. Sure, we had our generator ready to go and the pantry and fridge stocked; candles ready to light and our phones and iPads fully charged.

But what really lit me up were the messages that flooded us (far more than the storm did.)

The big galoot I used to work with five years ago who private messaged to make sure I was OK. He’s not the warm, fuzzy type – so his concern touched me especially. The Facebook posts from family asking for updates and reminding us to “batten down the hatches.”

Not to make light of what was a damaging storm to many in our area, I do thank Hermine for passing through simply for the kind connections that made us feel so cared for this past week.

I observed from afar a dear friend undergo surgery for that “C” word this past week, and firmly believe that the love he was bombed with expedited what his doctors are calling an amazing recovery.

Darkness brings out the best light in us.

There’s something particularly fierce and vocal about our expressions of love and kindness when someone we care about is going through a tough time.  We become demonstrative and lavish…and it’s a beautiful thing that, having NOT gone through that dark tunnel we might not know otherwise.

I am reminded that we need to be that way with ourselves – whether it’s the big “C” or a little hormonal uprising.  Kindness is the special sauce that makes anything we face in life not only palatable but sometimes, remarkably wonderful.

Here’s a little bit more about how KINDNESS touched my path this week:

Feel free to choose your own word, but like I said, I’m sticking with HUMOR.

(And feel free to tell me a joke!)

xoxoxox

Brenda

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