Saturday, 21 July 2012

Wisdom beyond her years
Procrastinating again, lying in bed searching for inspiration on the web. Some things I find make me laugh, some make me cry. Today was the same, then I came across a news show about Marina Keegan, a Yale student, just graduated who wrote an article for the campus paper. Tragically she died in a car accident shortly afterwards. Her article is inspiring - take a look for yourself

Wise words from someone so young. She may have written it about leaving Uni, yet I think it speaks for anyone's lif, the circles we are involved in, some things come to an end, the apprehension of the unknown. We always have possibilities. Another reminder to make every day count.

The article went viral and has touched many people. Would it have had such an impact had she not been in the car crash? - we'll never know. Perhaps given time the fact her last article has inspired so many, and I feel will continue to inspire them throughout their lifetime, will bring a degree of peace into the lives of family and friends. I pray that it will. It made me also think how many more writers out there are inspirational and are hidden somewhere on the web.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Birthday blessings
What a lovely birthday I've just had. I was surprised how much I enjoyed it. Birthdays are bitter-sweet for me now. When my parents were alive it was always fun waking up on a birthday. I know part of my thinking is looking back in fondness in a way memory can do! I'm still not used to waking up on my birthday and no one else in the house. I don't like that part! It's one of the times in a year when I really miss the ones no longer living. Yet today was a good day - and I was at work too!

I had a lovely lunch with the team leaders. If you're in Belfast try out Failte near Royal Victoria Hospital. They do a great deal - express lunch and a glass of wine or beer or soft drink for £5.95. I didn't have a choice of meal being a veggie, not that it mattered. They do a lovely vegetable curry. Generous portion sizes too.

Monday, 2 July 2012

Keep Calm and ...Drink Tea

I knew last weekend would be a challenge for me on a few different levels. On the whole the Ladies Festival was a good weekend. I only had one bad moment, at least it's shown me something I need more work on and also realised things are not as smooth as I've been led to believe (which is a great shame).

Since going through my prayer ministry and beyond I've developed the wisdom in knowing we can only deal with our own emotions in situations and not others. Ok, there are times when others are open to hearing reason and others they are so self-focused they blank it and see it as being very narrow-minded and, what was it you said?...

Moving away from family, although I know I'd be dead had I remained in Billericay, means there's so much I don't know about them. It hasn't really crossed my mind until this weekend when it was used against me. That was very low and I forgive that person for hurting me. Yet, do we really get to know a person even in close proximity? It's not to do with the amount of time we can invest in someone it's rather how much the person is willing to be vulnerable and enable people to know the real them. And that's a big thing, being vulnerable. Opening yourself up to being hurt - and, potentially so much happiness too. I think it has a little to do with how much we trust others and are confident in our relationship with them to know they like/love you warts and all.

One old demon did raise it's ugly head this weekend. I was peasantly surprised, and relieved, how quickly I killed it to stop it doing damage. I know that had I given it permission to act - and allowing emotions to develop is giving them permission - all the pain and hurt of work would have come flooding out inappropriately and directed in the wrong direction.

It is so hard to see someone going through self-destructive behaviour time and time again. But after speaking truth into a situation I stepped back. I realise each person has their own responsibility for their own emotions and if they are unwilling at that moment to hear the truth it is best to let them be and pray for them to open their ears to the truth.

I love people watching. I do wonder sometimes how I come across to others. I know I am far from perfect and have faults of my own. I do find it very saddening to watch attention-seeking people trying to get attention and sympathy. If they don't get what they are looking for from the current person they will quickly move on to another person hoping to receive it from them and the cycle continues. I was watching someone and in the space of 20 minutes 6 attempts had happened, all with the same response.

If I really listen and take notice of things I read or hear - either from friends, conversations or through the media - it's amazing how much humans blame on emotional responses to things. One example that always springs to mind is having an affair. "I cannot help who I fall in love with". As if just because you have an emotion you have to react to it. I'm sure there are other emotions the same person has they don't put into action. One thing I read recently was about not choosing the best thing to do but choosing the wisest thing to do. And that is where the challenge comes in. It is becoming culturally acceptable to reason things out because of emotions. We all have a choice how to react to emotions. It is your own personal responsibility how you react. There are consequences whichever way you choose.
It is the time to take back responsibility and make it your own.

Last trip to Bournemouth
I've just come back from a great Ladies Festival in Bournemouth. Thank you so much Chris and Barb for inviting me. I was so pleased to be able to celebrate with you. It was also lovely to hear how much you mean to so many (and that's was only a part of your life). It wasn't a surprise in the sense that so many people love you guys and miss will miss you. It was so good to see how many good and genuine friends you have.

I really wasn't prepared for the speeches. I should have realised when I first sat down at the table and felt emotional it would be difficult when it came to your speeches. Actually it was too much at the ladies blessing/song. I'm even blubbing thinking back to it. As soon as you left the room I had to get to the ladies and have a good howl.

I cannot believe how long I lasted on Saturday. It was a very long day. I got up and went swimming at 8with Pam and Kerry. It was a great way to start the day. It was great to get some lengths in. They were shorter than my normal so was able to get more done without stopping. I cannot get into a swimming pool and do more chatting than swimming.

I had hoped to get some rest before I met up with Sharon later. There were a few who wanted to go down town after breakfast so I joined them. Hmm, plan for rest didn't happen. By the time Kerry and I had finished shopping and headed back towards the hotel it was time to meet Sharon.

Talk about time flying. Sharon and I sat on the beach catching up and getting lots of rubbish blown in our direction! Before we knew it it was fast approaching 4 pm - later than I wanted to start getting ready. It was good seeing you, Shaz again. It felt like it was only yesterday we'd seen each other -apart from the amount of news we had to catch up on. I know we're not good at forward planning, but get your diary out and get a flight booked over here, hun! You did say it would be this year...

I got ready in 45 minutes. I was very calm, even when my hair wasn't doing what I wanted it to. Then my zip on my dress broke. So instead of panicking I realised there should be people having per-reception drinks in Chris and Barb's room. I thought I'd ring for some help. That was evidence of improvement in me - asking someone for help and not being so independent. Barb came down, took the dress back up while I put on Friday's dress. If it came down to it I'd have worn it again. I'm not sure how long it took but with a bit of pinning and covering we managed to get the zip up as far as possible and cover most of the rest. So original dress was back on again.

I still don't know how I managed to make it to around 2.45am and get up on Sunday for breakfast just after 9. Probably having a coach at 11am helped!

It was so hard saying bye to Chris and Barb - not too sure where Megs went. I'm so glad they didn't decide to move to Oz straight after this weekend. I wouldn't have been able to come. At least this way there are a few more memories to be made before we have to say see you soon. I'm not too sure when I stopped blubbing, at least it wasn't continuous.

I need to work out when my next visit will be. I know when I want to come over but need to see if my line manager will have a re-think about authorising it, but that's another story (and one that isn't appropriate to make public).

I find it hard returning home to an empty house after spending time away with people. Although it is different this time. I may have similar struggles to before but now have the head and heart knowledge of where I belong and know I am no longer defined by "being single". I am so much more than that.