🚨 deep breaths please 🚨 I once sat around a table with a group of beautiful women for dinner. We had only just met that morning. We talked about our children...our passions...our struggles. And at one point in time, the conversation turned to firearms... What kind of gun do you carry with you, Gen? I've never held a gun in my life, I replied. There was silence. Followed by confusion. We sat there in awkward stillness until the missing link finally began to take shape... I was the only Canadian at the table. This single moment created a dialogue lasting nearly two hours long. A civilized...curious...and compassionate conversation about two very different worlds. There were no angry words. There were no backhanded insults. There were no verbal attacks at the hands of uncertainty. But there was a lot of questions... So, you don't ever carry a gun with you when you leave the house? (No) You don't have any guns in your house? (Absolutely not) And you feel safe without one? (Completely) How do you protect yourself? (I don't need to protect myself...no one is trying to hurt me) We ended the conversation with some empty bottles of wine...some aching hearts...and an understanding that none of us had the answers. When all was said and done, we acknowledged that we would never entirely understand each other's perspective because we had never lived it. And that was okay. But we were all mothers and sisters and daughters and friends. And THAT - we could understand. All of us had a piece of our hearts on the table in that regard. And it makes me wonder... Maybe the answer doesn't lie in our rights or our governments or our illnesses or our parenting. Maybe the answer lies in our humanness. That single thread that we all have in common...the single ache that we all share when lives are lost...the single thing that can never be replaced once it's taken away... Each other.
WHEN. This word has been haunting me lately. I feel like when I try to close my eyes, I can hear it fiddling with the door handles and I can feel its shadows lurking in the corners. It’s keeping me up at night. Because I think I’ve been using it too much lately. As in… “I’ll feel better when…” “I’ll have more time when…” “I’ll get around to it when…” And the problem with ‘when’ is that it tends to slip right between our fingers until it becomes ‘never’. At least it does for me. And I’m starting to feel the frustration of that these days; the nagging feeling that comes with ‘waiting for when’. I sat down to open up my Bible a bit this morning. Now, I feel like I should take this opportunity to mention that reading the Bible is not something that comes easily to me. I know many people who find great peace and comfort and solid footing when they open their Bible. I know people that can’t go a single day without opening their Bible. I know people whose entire world makes sense the moment they open their Bible. I am not one of those people. I love the Bible. So very much. And I try. Honestly. But if I’m being totally transparent here…it usually just makes me super sleepy. I’m not trying to be casual or flippant about it…I take the Bible very seriously. But it takes some solid effort on my part to make those pages part of my life and most of the time, I really have no idea what’s going on. BUT! But - every now and then - a verse hits me. I mean...REALLY hits me. Like, it hits me the way 'Little Women' hit Joey Tribbiani! And today, it happened. (continue below...)
My husband’s not on Instagram...so don’t tell him I’m only in this for his cute butt... 😉 photo credit // @lwakephoto #bemine #happyvalentinesday #husband #marriedlife
Romance was so lost on me when I was younger. It's as though I was wrapped in this veil of desperate intensity and unless it was a moment torn apart by great tension...then I just didn't see it. If you had dark eyes and an even darker past...then I was hooked...I could handle anything you threw at me. Except roses and candlelight. Until it struck me one day that less is more. That the small gestures are the grand ones. That the subtleties speak louder than the words we use to express them. Until it struck me that I was surrounded by vulnerability... It was receiving a heart shaped pizza from the delivery guy...or getting asked out on date by a cute smile and overwhelming sincerity...or having my boyfriend learn how to play St. Lawrence River on his guitar...or the sunflower left at my door with a note wishing me a beautiful day. It was everywhere. Truly. Madly. Deeply. One morning - a few years ago - my son crawled into bed with me. He curled up under the covers and said Happy Valentine's Day, Mommy...I love you! When I thanked him and told him that it wasn't actually until Sunday...he just yawned and replied I know...I'm just practicing! And so it goes, my friends. Love takes practice. Love takes more than a day. Love takes more than heart shaped candy. Love takes more than lining up for flowers. It takes practice. Enjoy your loved up day, everyone...then keep at it for the 364 days that follow... ❤️ photo credit // introvertdear.com #happyvalentinesday #valentinesday #instamood #writersofinstagram
So, somewhere between the Olympics and Valentine's Day...I almost forgot that Lent starts tomorrow!! And if any of you out there still haven't decided what to give up for the season...may I suggest one of the following... Give up doubt Give up comparison Give up guilt Give up punishing yourself Give up procrastination Give up hating your body Give up perfectionism Give up dread Give up toxic relationships Give up hurtful words Give up old wounds Give up the lies Give up the struggle Give up anything that doesn't let you soar... ❤️ #lent #livefolk #writersofinstagram #writer