Blog Posts

Grateful, Thankful, and Healing!

Changes!

I changed the heading on my blog today…

the name.

To reflect where I am at on my journey!

I am grateful for being pushed into this journey of self-discovery.

I am thankful for the life I had with my love Larry and the lessons he taught me. I would not be the person I am today without his influence and guidance.

Finally, I am healing.

This blog reflects my journey through the wilderness of grief. The darkness and the light. The raw feelings laced with swearing and tears.

But it also reflects healing with time and my choice to not give in to the darkness — many, many times.

Thank you for reading, commenting, and following.

I appreciate each and every one of you!

XO Lisa

Why I Write Rewrite III

This is the third rewrite of “Why I Write”.

The reason I started blogging can be found here: Why I Write

Here is the first rewrite of Why I Write

And here is Why I Write Rewrite II


“This life is for loving, sharing, learning, smiling, caring, forgiving, laughing, hugging, helping, dancing, wondering, healing, and even more loving. I choose to live life this way. I want to live my life in such a way that when I get out of bed in the morning, the devil says, ‘aw shit, he’s up!”

― Steve Maraboli, Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience


Today my grief/mourning/healing journey has taken another turn.

I am still moving forward, embracing my shadows, weirdness, demons, kink, depravity, and acknowledging them so they no longer have power over me.

However, since they are identified, I am not afraid to let them out to play occasionally…


As a result of embracing my shadows and the rest of mySELF,

I no longer believe that healing is an impossible task that will last forever.

Broken bones eventually heal.

Grief and mourning are not incurable diseases.

When I do the work and embrace the process of healing,

I can and will heal and live a life of happiness.

Therefore, I do not believe that I am required to mourn for the rest of my life.

Because I am a realist, I realize that there will be sadness ahead.

However, at this point I can recognize the difference between transient sadness and the all-out, consuming pain caused by grief and mourning.


Larry is pain-free and wants me to heal. He does not want me to live with the defeatist attitude that I must spend the rest of my life healing as a result of his death.

Do I miss him? Of course!

Will I forget him? Not in a million years!

Will I talk about him? How could I not?

Is he with me? Absolutely!

Does he talk to me? Yes!

I will love him forever, love is not a competition.


Today and going forward I seek peace.


My paradigm has shifted.

I am ready to live this life that I have been granted

in full-on Happiness

with Joy

in Peace

with Mindfulness,

Love,

and an occasional swear-word or three.


I will not tolerate negative, defeatist individuals in my orbit.


I am ready to level-up my energy and shine!


Thank you for being a part of my journey – through the sorrow, pain, and the happiness.

XO Lisa

Zoom zoom!

More Gratitude Day 107

“We all have forests on our minds. Forests unexplored, unending. Each one of us gets lost in the forest, every night, alone.”

Ursula K. Le Guin, The Wind’s Twelve Quarters

I have always viewed forests as dark, scary places…

Maybe I was traumatized as a child by the enchanted forest in the movie “Snow White” that my mom took me to see as a child.

 “no copyright infringement is intended”

“And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul”

John Muir

Perhaps I was always afraid of the dark

or what I perceived as my darkness…

“My battle with the forest depths was wholly lost, or so it seemed. My hand still shakes with the thought of how close I came to dying, for I felt the burning coldness of Death’s breath upon my face, and the whisper of sliding bones in my ear. But alas, I am still among the living, or so I believe.”

Christopher C. Fuchs, The Depths of Redemption

But after I embraced myself, my shadows, weirdness, demons, kink, depravity, all the parts that I always thought were not good enough, not ‘perfect’ my inner darkness became less scary.

I began to notice sunshine.

I was able to see the glorious light streaming through the trees

I finally felt whole.

At night, the deep dark depths of my mind no longer seemed as scary

and I found comfort sleeping in total darkness.

As a result of self-discovery, I no longer need the validation of others

to feel complete.

I am content with myself in this moment, and will make improvements when I decide to do so.


Many do not want to face their darkness because it is not a task for the faint of heart. But I view it as a ‘Why?’ on my road less-traveled through the forest.

I always seem to take the road less-traveled.

It is my main road.

I am curious, probably in more ways than one.

However, I want to know things. Not just know, but KNOW.

I like to find out not only how, but also why.

I probably drove my Mother a bit crazy as a child.

‘Why am I afraid of the dark?’

‘Why do I feel unworthy at times?’

‘How can I change those things to live my best life?’

Always questioning, seeking, and looking for answers.

The Road Not Taken

“TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. ”


― Robert Frost Ph.D., The Road Not Taken and Other Poems

I used to wonder what my life would be like today had I taken another road.

I wonder no longer…

My life is a rich, beautiful, cacophony of experiences that are mine alone.

All have melded to create the person I am today.

I am grateful.

XO Lisa ❤️

Badassery 9/21

Well hello little bad asscalendar!

I can attest that this is true.

Unless, of course, one is on a dating app and gets hit upon by scammers, liars and untoward individuals who desire to control.

Four words: “Buh bye, move on”

Y’all aren’t worth my time!

I am a badass who is worthy to attract quality- like me!

(No conceit here, just the truth…)

XO Lisa ❤️

Gratitude Day 107

Today I am grateful for…

The sad thing is,

that it is hard to realize

during the collapsing,

crumbling,

and destruction phases,

that life is worth living,

it isn’t my end,

to be patient and roll with the changes,

take the waves of grief as they come,

mourn the death,

let tears flow as needed,

ride out the storms of mourning,

and rebirth is just over the horizon.

Unless one is a super-evolved human being.

I’ll admit, I am not.

Luckily, during early grief, the brain doesn’t let the full weight of what happened hit like a sledge hammer.

It sinks in incrementally – when it can be absorbed and processed.

I think that the incremental realization of what can only be described as loss of someone or something dear is a necessary defense mechanism. For if the full depth, breadth, and weight of grief had hit all at once, it would have been unbearable.

But, at least for me, it was an incremental realization that allowed me to heal in steps. Sometimes baby-steps, and sometimes leaps and bounds, but not all at once.

For instance, my reaction to the videos yesterday in Gratitude Day 106.

Yesterday, at first hearing Larry’s voice and seeing him struck my heart and soul. I felt the familiar wave of grief coming on, cried most of the morning, then was comforted in an odd sort of way.

Painful at first, but a reminder of the pure, enduring love between Paw Paw and Miss B., that transported me to our love throughout the years we spent together.

One year ago or even six months ago, viewing a video of Larry would have turned me into a hot mess puddle of crying. I would have crumbled at the sound of Larry’s voice for who knows how long. I might have thought it was the end of my world. That life wasn’t worth living.

I hope that I am past those self-defeatist feelings now.

My grief journey has been a long and winding road. Three steps forward – two steps back, but always (correction, mostly) moving forward.

I no longer see collapse and crumbling as destruction,

I see it as an impetus to rebuild my life for me,

to experience rebirth,

to facilitate healing,

look back when I want to,

cry when I need to,

and live life at my fullest potential.

XO Lisa ❤️

Badassery Sept 19/20

Well hello little badass calendar…

I will be a bad ass today

I will be a bad ass today

I will be a bad ass today

As I click my ruby slippers (that look amazingly enough like black and gray tennis shoes) and repeat to myself over, and over, and over again.

Through the tears of remembrance

Through the battles of getting to know myself

Through the sheer loneliness of Covid

Through all the crap and division in the world today

I will be a badass

Scratch that, I am a bad ass

and I will not forget it

not for a minute!

XO Lisa

Gratitude Day 106

Today, I am grateful for memories (I think).

“Memories are bullets. Some whiz by and only spook you. Others tear you open and leave you in pieces.”
― Richard Kadrey, Kill the Dead

I opened up facebook and it was full of memories of my Love Larry.

A ‘battle of the bellies’ photo with pregnant Sarah (my daughter-in-love), reminiscent of the same photos taken with previous grandchildren. Memories of all those moments flooded into my consciousness.

Pictures of Grandpa with granddaughter Madison – the first time we met her. There was such joy in our house that day.

But the thing that made me literally bawl my eyes out was a sweet exchange from afar between Miss B and her “Paw Paw”. They had a particularly close bond.

Miss B still talks to me about her “Paw Paw” and how much she misses him. She is nearly five years old and I hope the memories never fade, although I suspect at some point they will.

But the poignant memory that showed up today was of a rock gifted to “Paw Paw” from Miss B that I brought home and presented to him – along with a video.

“Paw Paw” recorded a video in reply.

The exchange between the two of them showed the love and joy they shared.

At first, I didn’t think that I could watch and listen to the videos. However, since I was already crying just thinking about them, I pushed play.

The love was palpable.

Hearing my Love Larry’s voice again was comforting and felt like a hot poker thrust in my heart, all at the same time.

Perhaps someday I will be able to watch and listen without crying, but, as my daughter-in-love Sarah says (in all of her wisdom):

“Maybe, and if it always makes you cry, that’s okay too ❤️”

You are correct, Sarah, it will always be okay to remember.

… and cry.

XO Lisa

Gratitude Day 105

Today I am grateful for spoiling myself!

Yes, I spoiled myself today…

Did something badass!

For me!

My last sewing machine was purchased in 1986.

Yes, it still works, but it doesn’t do everything I want to do…

So I took the plunge today.

I bought a new machine.

A Cadillac of machines.

Not only one for me, but also a buy-one-get- one deal that will make a dear one very happy! I can’t wait to gift it!

I am ecstatic — over the moon!


I learned to sew on my grandmother’s treadle singer sewing machine making aprons. Later, she helped me sew 4-H projects, clothing, and I helped her sew quilts. I cherish the memories.

I have always loved the process of creating, cutting, color, picking patterns and fabrics, quilting,

tearing things apart and putting them back together.

When I cannot find what I want in a store, I just make it —

like my red wedding dress!

I love to sew, unless I have a deadline…


I have always thought of everyone else first. Their needs and wants before mine.

But not today.

I spoiled myself

and I am glad!

Excuse me, I need to go play!

XO Lisa ❤️

Allow Me to Introduce You…

To Earl Musick!

Shared with permission from Earl Musick @ http://www.earlmusick.com

Earl is from my hometown, Bucyrus, Ohio, USA.

He is a cartoonist, comedian, and speaker. He has worked as a photographer for the FBI, Disney, the United States Postal Service, and many more. He has traveled all over the USA and parts of Canada drawing cartoons, speaking, and doing comedy. But that’s not all, in addition to being a class-act, he is also a kind human being.

I have followed him on facebook for quite some time and the following story he told earlier in the week caught my eye and touched my heart:

To quote Earl, “Something really cool happened today. In 2018 I had traveled all over the country drawing cartoons, speaking, and doing comedy. I traveled 48 out of 52 weeks of the year. I was on 59 airplanes in less than 3 months. On a flight from New York City I was seated by a priest from Bombay. When he sat down he said “Are you Catholic?” I said “No, but I love Jesus.” We talked for over 2 hours about Jesus. He told me of his many adventures working in the mission fields, working with refugees, and of terrorists pulling him out of his vehicle, pointing a gun to his head and threatening to kill him. I know it’s like preaching to the choir but I told him that God gave him this life and story to share. I highly suggested that he write a book. Well, it’s been two years since I spoke with this man. I received a copy of his published book today.

(A word of encouragement can change the world.)

I am honored that he mentioned me in the book and in the introduction.

This is a short portion of the introduction:

(He was having a very bad day and having great difficulty getting to the airport)

However the entire scenario changes on the flight. Beside me sat a man whom I presumed to be a Christian pastor or a preacher of some sect. that impression was presumably because he was the first to break ice, and strike a happy conversation, mentioning in the course of the dialogue that he went around conducting some programs. Secondly, he seemed interested in knowing about my mission experiences and gently expressed that some of the many experiences that I had shared were out of the ordinary and worth putting in writing. At the end of the trip his kindness touched me when he volunteered to buy dinner and drop me at my destination. To me it was unimaginable that you could encounter a foreigner – though one with a clerical collar- and go to such extents of hospitality. The pastor from the parish of residence however, had agreed to pick me up. I thanked him for his kind offer and accepted his card before parting not sure if the distance between us would ever let us be in touch again.2020 will mark my sixtieth year as also the silver jubilee of my ordination. So reflecting back I reminisced, why not jot down, as a token of thanksgiving, all that He had done for me? So thanks to Earl Musick – who I realized after checking his card – was a man entertaining his world with humor! Earl wherever you are, thank you for planting this seed in my heart. Yes, it had lain buried for quite a while for I had convinced myself, that apart from me it would not make an inch of difference to anyone else.“”

Earl’s story illustrates that one never knows what impact a small gesture of kindness can have on another human being.

Always speak to strangers

and

always be kind…

Thank you for the inspiration, Earl!

You can find Earl on his website at www.earlmusick.com

XO Lisa