Happy weekend everyone! It's time to pick up those pens and let it flow! Please feel free to add to the comments any writing advise or quotes that have inspired you!
After having my dream of being a stay at home Mom in a picket fence scenario life implode into a volatile and scary divorce during which I was isolated and mourning the time lost with my precious three year old daughter who now was being shuffled like, and with her baggage, to and from her divorced parents homes – one morning I ran into my effervescent apartment-mate neighbor as she skipped out the door to church service. She invited me along, I declined; I’m an introvert and was a suffering introvert – the saddest kind to be. But, after watching her blossom (and she had her own struggles), one day I bravely accompanied her and in the original modulars heard Pastor Kent speak. I’d never heard a sermon spoken such as his as my religious background was nonexistent with my immediate family and minimal with my distant Southern Baptist and Methodist families who could be quite strict and scary in their religious fervor. That sermon by Kent that changed my life and gave me a church home was over 18 years ago.
I remember when we were first informed that Pastor Mike was to join the church – I was devastated. I’d finally found a Pastor in Kent who spoke truthfully and down to earth and I couldn’t conceive a new pastor could come near Kent’s (to me) lofty reverence (now Kent, I know you well and you’re not allowed to shoot “I’ve won” glances at Mike). Pastor Mike had a skeptical believer to contend with in me. Now, I cannot imagine Oak Hills without the dynamic duo of Pastors Kent and Mike and I hope that each know how very precious they are to me for so many personal reasons.
I also enjoyed cleaning the church with girlfriends and how priceless a time it was to serve humbly and feel God’s quiet constant presence even when the chairs only held the remembrance of congregants.
And as if that wasn’t enough to have moored me to OHC, years later, in a story too long to tell, God brought me together with my husband, Rob, in a most marvelously romantic and God led journey that we’ve been on now for over 10 years and that journey, in providence sustained in part by Pastor Mike’s astute and gently pastoring of us whenever needed.
I cannot say enough about the part that OHC has played in my life, the journey, the staff, so steadfast, humble in Christ and giving of their time and love to each of us in our personal ways.
My blessings and thanks eternally to OHC, and for Pastors Mike and Kent – a parting gift. J
If you’d like to read more OHC stories, click here.
Well, I could start this blog at any number of places but I’ll start it with the New Year, seems appropriate, new year – hopefully a start to a new and improved me. The plan here is to have a place for me to share with whoever cares to listen, all those rattling things inside my head. I’m hoping they’ll rattle at night (like now) rather than when they usually do, in the shower where they seem to flow right out of my mind just like the water from the faucet, until, I step out of my comfy, cozy, warm shower to reality, then the thoughts and realizations and plans and ideas disperse like rats in a gutter. I’m hoping to corral them back for an evening story and then get myself some good sleep – something I’m not so good at even after a full blown Ambien or two.
This being the first post, however, it will have some background to it. Getting to know me, I’m a 50 year old mom and wife (sister and daughter too). I’m on my 2nd marriage and we each came with our own 10 year old daughters at the time; we’ve been married 10 years so they are now each 20 and off to college, mine after studying (praises to her for this!) two years at community college is now off to Berkeley to study architecture and she’s going to be good at it; already has a paid internship. Her boyfriend of almost 3 years is out there with her now too studying to become a doctor and I am ever so thankful he’s there and that she has such good taste in men! My step-daughter (yes, I am an evil step-mother, goes with the territory, I guess) goes to Cal Poly SLO and is studying Journalism, as I write, however, she’s roaming Europe, seeing sites, clubbing, keeping her Dad alive by posting on Facebook (ah the wonders, thankfully, of technology!) hanging in hostels and couch surfing?? News to an old lady like me! So far it’s been safe with just the loss of another iPhone and a bout with Pink Eye that is clearing up.
Hubby (henceforth known as “Q” and the dog are home with me. Q works for the State and I work for a virtual Sales Training and Keynote Speaking company, have been working there this since last May 1st. They actually offered me the job the day of 50th my birthday and my new boss and his wife so sweetly called me to wish me a happy birthday – and the company bought me a new laptop that I’m happily pecking away on as I type this. Could I have had a better birthday present than that!
So, those are most of the facts.
Here’s the guts of it, in no particular order. I’m 50 now and my “baby” is off to college so I’ve got a little empty nest sadness going on even as I greatly enjoy finally having both the girl’s bedrooms and bathroom clean for the first time in 10 years – that’s a story we won’t even go near right now – but due to differing parenting styles and different kid demeanors, I just gave up on trying to get the girls to do chores – it was hell. So anyway, little empty nest depression going on and a little “what’s the meaning of life” turmoil going on too which I blame on one of the episodes of X-Files (I was in love with Mulder), the one with Peter Boyle playing Clyde Bruckman in “Clyde Bruckman’s Final Repose” (1995) for which he won an Emmy in 1996. In a side note, though I scared the hell out of my little girl when I asked her to try watching it with me when she was little and it was first runs, years later she fell in love with the reruns and now we have X-Files posters and even a script signed by Scully herself. Anyway, back to the show … “why does anyone do the things they do, why do I sell insurance? I wish I knew, why did this woman collect dolls? What was it about her life? Was it one specific moment where she suddenly said, (and this is the line that does it to me) I know, dolls, or was it a whole series of things, starting when her parents first met, that somehow combined in such a way that in the end she had no choice but to be a doll collector.” Ever since that episode, knowing our doll collector died, that all those worldly things that made her happy were now just useless stuff headed to the thrift store for someone like me to buy (I’m a thrift store hunter) everything has seemed like just filler in my life, with little to no purpose. It was surely profound commentary and Peter Boyle pulled it off beautifully -not sure I was supposed to relate to it the way that I did, but I did – now every material thing means nothing but a quick fix, like any drug – life is made up of so many material things, like this blog…that help us get through… Lord, I need some serious existential crisis help!
My new boss, has also written a new Sales book, call “Be Bold and Win the Sale”. It’s a Sales book for sure but it’s also a book about learning how to be bold . I’m not bold, I’m a wimp. I like my comfort zone but what he says makes a lot of sense, so slowly, though with the anxiety, it feels quickly, I’m venturing out of the comfort zone and into the Bold beyond. It is my boss who inadvertently helped me select the name of the blog, after I annoyed him at one of our retreats and he called me aside to tell me to give some floor time to someone else, I asked him what specifically I’d done and he simply said; “nothing, you just learn out loud” and he hadn’t wanted to hold the group up with my loud learning – my husband, needless to say can relate, soooooo, you my invisible audience will be the recipients should you care to read of my “learning out loud” as I go through life – and I’ll tell you, I have so much to learn.
Well, that’s a start for the first blog post. If you’ve read it, I thank you for doing so. Please feel free to share any thoughts. I should also have it be said here, that I am an introvert, and HSP, a crier, an analytical, detailed thinking and I love creating, thrift store hunting and I just opened an Etsy store – maybe someone who passes by here will be another kindred spirit and we can learn out loud together.