courage

When the First Bud Blooms

 
Today is Anais Nin’s 111th Birthday. Let’s celebrate with some of her revolutionary words about living
a hot, free, brave, beautiful life!
 
*****
“You live like this, sheltered, in a delicate world, and you believe you are living. Then you read a book… or you take a trip… and you discover that you are not living, that you are hibernating. The symptoms of hibernating are easily detectable: first, restlessness. The second symptom (when hibernating becomes dangerous and might degenerate into death): absence of pleasure. That is all. It appears like an innocuous illness. Monotony, boredom, death. Millions live like this (or die like this) without knowing it. They work in offices. They drive a car. They picnic with their families. They raise children. And then some shock treatment takes place, a person, a book, a song, and it awakens them and saves them from death. Some never awaken.”
*****
“I, with a deeper instinct, choose a man who compels my strength, who makes enormous demands on me, who does not doubt my courage or my toughness, who does not believe me naïve or innocent, who has the courage to treat me like a woman.”
*****
“How wrong is it for a woman to expect the man to build the world she wants, rather than to create it herself?”
*****
“There are two ways to reach me: by way of kisses or by way of the imagination. But there is a hierarchy: the kisses alone don’t work.”
*****
“You have a right to experiment with your life. You will make mistakes. And they are right too. No, I think there was too rigid a pattern. You came out of an education and are supposed to know your vocation. Your vocation is fixed, and maybe ten years […]

By |February 21st, 2014|Love and Making It|1 Comment|
  • Permalink LOVE and MAKING IT is a new series on sex and marriage, bodies and souls. It will be candid and sometimes messy.  It's not just about having a great sex life; it's about having a great body life.Gallery

    Tonight I Can (a quick and honest thought on sex in marriage)

Tonight I Can (a quick and honest thought on sex in marriage)

LOVE and MAKING IT is a new series on sex and marriage, bodies and souls. It will be candid and sometimes messy.  It’s not just about having a great sex life; it’s about having a great body life. I want one of those.  Read at your own risk.

An Honest Prayer About Sex in Marriage
Tonight
I cannot shave
I cannot be thinner
I cannot grow or shrink my breasts
I cannot learn to dance on a lap or on a pole
I cannot be anything but me
But I can be brave and I can smile
I can kiss and I can love
I can move toward you instead of away
I can stop disqualifying myself from fun
For tonight I will to let you love me as I am in this very instant
not as I will be tomorrow or was yesterday
I can forget my age, weight, rules and responsibilities
I can decide to play for just a night with the love of my life
Tonight I can
 

 

(Addition: I sent this to my husband for his privacy-release, and his comment just made me laugh. “also, rereading your post… I get all the other things you can’t do by tonight… but why can’t you shave? That seems doable.”  yep, seems doable. I agree. but sometimes, it’s just not.)

 

Hello Monsters, Poem

When I was small
even smaller than this
all smiles, fine hair, and freckles.
I lived in a room with my little sis.
 
In that room was a window
looking out on an old maple tree bigger than God
whose leaves made me feel free enough to sing
at the top of my lungs.
 
But on the opposite side of my room hung a door
a wooden shutter, slatted and white
and that door haunted us every single night.
 
You remember those cracked closet doors,
that fear of childhood, right?
Well, mine was more evil than most
a shutter-door with one missing shingle
a pitch black rectangle of terror
waiting to host the glowing eyes of some child-eating monster
with a taste for freckles.
 
And with these thoughts, came FEAR.
Fear that freezes your bones
that makes your body turn to stone
on the inside but never enough on the outside.
Fear that takes today as ransom
for a kidnapped tomorrow that will never come home.
 
So after months of sleepless nights
I could not hide any longer.
I did the most courageous thing of my little life
I moved in with my monsters.
 
In a flurry of determination
I grabbed my pillows and blankets and books
a flashlight and my sister
and we moved into that dark closet.
 
Slept there every single night
and not ONE monster was ever brave enough to show His face.
 
This is when I learned:
Fear is a lion
that only backs down
when we stop acting like prey
and stand our ground.
 
But we do grow up
and the monsters
get darker and smarter
and the next thing we know
we are running much harder.
No longer daring to face down our fears but away
from the beasts who will swallow us whole
who make closets that scare our very souls.

Monsters: like betrayal, hair loss, loneliness, and grief
failure, sprained ankles, botched interviews, and spinach in our teeth
at just the worst times.
 
I am afraid […]

By |September 11th, 2013|How Can I Help, Poetry|1 Comment|

Courage and a Poem

What have you done in your life that took courage?
This is what my boss asked us all in our staff meeting: What have you done that took courage?
Sitting there quietly, hands knitted together, making eye-contact so as not to seem distracted or weak; I let him finish and I listened as my friends and coworkers stood up to speak about skydiving, surviving strokes, having kids, traveling on missions trips, going to college… so many amazing things.
And while I can remember doing individually impressive things that took courage, the truth is… for me…
 
EVERYTHING TAKES COURAGE
Getting out of bed
Answering the phone
Calling AT&T
Singing when you can hear me
Talking to my neighbors
Admitting to really liking something
Going after my dreams
Parenting my girls
Creating from my heart
Everything

Calling AT&T takes as much courage as skydiving, for me.
But now, I have come to a place in life where I realize, I cannot take fear into consideration anymore – at least not anxiety, worry, insecurity. FEAR in it’s purest, most primal force, can save our lives. I am not talking about that kind of fear… I am talking about the insidious kind that takes us captive, binds us, so that we never grow in the direction of the sun.  We bend and warp to it’s controls. We never grow straight and strong. I don’t want that for me and I surely don’t want that for You or my daughters.
So remember today; the day this very scared person told you to be brave. DO IT AFRAID.
So remember today; the day this very courageous person told you to be brave. DO IT AFRAID.
This is why I wrote this poem, “Hello, Monsters”

 
“Tell fearful souls,
    “Courage! Take heart!
God is here, right here.”
Isaiah 35:3

Friendship Rugburns

Through the big glass window, I watched my daughter in her first dance class. It’s like going to the aquarium, except the fish are more beautiful and they smile at you as they swim by.

On that very first day she made a friend. They danced and held hands and made each other laugh.  Tiny girls in tights and pink shoes and smiles.

Watching your kid make a friend is one of the best experiences in life.

We were excited to go back the next week and see her new friend. This second week, though, a new girl came. My daughter’s friend and the new girl hit it off.

So now I watch, through that giant window I wished would shrink to pinhole-size, as my daughter’s friend and this new girl clasp their four hands together, spin around and dance. They have a great time; truly enjoying each other. And I watched my daughter watch. From the side, she sees their joy and friendship bloom. I witness her move forward, asking so politely to join in the dance. Again. Again. Again, she asks, “Can I dance too?” Can I please hold hands and join in your circle?

The two other girls look at each other, because they are connecting and they don’t want to let anyone else in. They dance around some more and they see out of the corner of their eyes, my daughter still watching them… she’s too new to this friendship game. She doesn’t know how to hide her desire – to look busy or confident or just-fine-being-by-myself-thanks.

I hold my breath. Wishing. Praying. Not just praying that they would include her, but for her heart’s confidence and courage.

And eventually they did let her enter their circle. […]

By |April 3rd, 2013|Honest Home|1 Comment|