Friday, May 20, 2011

Handling my hands

Hand it over,
Hand it under,
I built this with my own hands
I am handy
My hands are rough
My hands are soft
Have I handed this in?
How have you handled that?
You underhanded me
You had the upper hand
My hands
Your hands
Big hands
Little hands
Man hands
Can you hand that in?
Can you take my hand?
Holding hands
Loving hands
You are handy
He is a handy man

I love hands. They are significant for so many reasons and hand, fits beautifully into so many contexts. I noticed hands before children; but I experience hands after having children. My boy’s hands both look like their father’s hands and for some reason that comforts me. Lately, Luka reaches for my hand quite often and we walk holding hands. As a mother, the simple act of a child reaching up for my hand, brings me the deepest joy.

Hand holding brings a sense of connection between two individuals that are distinctively different and it connects where there was a divide. The act of touching someone with your hands can evoke all types of emotions. It can comfort, it can hurt, it can love and it can hate.

What amazes me about hands is that they have potential to connect us to another human being. They are also, what feeds us and what builds the world around us. Our hands perform so many duties,everyday and yet, do we experience them in our lives?

I want to experience my hands! The added value in my life because of my hands is invaluable. I forget how much of our lives we spend using our hands. So, today I am thanking God for hands and I am feeling blessed for the little hands and the man hands in my family!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Dear Luka

Dear Luka,
I love that every time I get on Facebook or my blog and you see a picture of my book, you say, “Mommy that is your book!! Your book is on the computer!” I grin at this because I have always had the dream of writing the book and publishing it but I had never dreamed the way it would be a part of your life. That is important to me.

I had a woman at the Festival of the Book in Charlottesville, VA approach me after my reading and say what a blessing this book will be for your children. I told her I already had 2 boys. That is when it dawned on me that you would in some way be affected by what I am doing now. My actions will encourage you to pursue many things that I can’t even conceptualize.

Yesterday, as we were riding to school, you were talking about my reading in Charlottesville. You made the connection that I read my book in Charlottesville. As any good 4 year old, the questions continued, “Mommy, who was the man on the book “and “was he pretend”. I told you he wasn’t pretend. That perplexed you.
I have been talking to you a lot about military lately. I am trying to explain what our country is, that mommy and daddy fought in the military and who bad guys and good guys are. The explanations always fall short. I feel like I don’t even know at this point how to explain this and I realized I feel this way for many reasons. Who are the bad guys and the good guys in politics? There doesn’t seem to be a division anymore.

What is war and why are we fighting it? What is the military and why do we have it? Why is Uncle Jonathan fighting the bad guys and why are ships called war ships? The questions you ask are legitimate and somewhere I fall short of giving you any clarifying answers.

The hardest question has been, “Is the young boy on the cover pretend?” No. The next question, “Why not and who is he?” I fall silent, again and again. This young man died fighting to defend our country from the bad guys. That is the simple answer but it takes your innocence. Not that you would comprehend it but maybe you would and maybe it would shatter your innocence, I don’t think I can handle that-not yet!

The complicated answer is that this young man lost his life fighting a war on terrorism. He was a hero. His mother is very sad. I have spoken with her and she has written beautiful words honoring him. His best friend captured this photo and made it one of my favorite pieces of art but it represents the lost of a best friend. This young man died before he was 25 and I really can’t describe the war we are in. Terrorism. That is what they say. However, I think when you are looking back; history is going to have a much deeper take on what is going on.

So, the complicated answer takes away your innocence but it also breaks my heart. We as a nation are failing you and that hurts my heart. That is why I can’t describe the military and serving our country. That is why I can’t tell you what our Country means and the great things it is to so many people because I am heartbroken.

Luka, mommy wrote her book to make a difference. She wrote her book to pay it forward and to recognize the great honor it is to be a warrior for our Nation. Mommy wrote her book to give back to a charity that is trying hard to help veterans meet their mental health needs. Mommy wrote her book because her passion is in some way saving the world.

And now mommy realizes the scope of her actions and how they will help you become brave. It will be common to you to think that mommy’s write books and daddy’s crash cars. It will be common to you to reach out and help others. It will be common to you to do well and be a better person.

Mommy knows that her success doesn’t dictate yours. I know you can go and do whatever you want. However, I do believe if mommy and daddy live their dreams and tell you you can live yours—YOU WILL have opportunities that many people never get. I love you. Your father loves you and I pray many blessings over you and the world you will touch.

I have always known you will be a leader. You are a powerful, charismatic little man. My truest hopes are that you find this leadership and you use it to guide people to a higher purpose and that you always remain compassionate to others.

I love you! I hope I answered some of your questions.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Framing Perception

“What is powerful is the shift of perspective. What is cathartic is the embodiment of change. What is spiritual is living in the present moment. What is wonderful is the experience of deep joy.” CP

Looking at this flower, I feel a deep moment of joy. My own perception and my lens of perspective focusing on what I found, most beautiful in that very moment. What amazes me about creation and the process of art full living is we all have a different lens to perceive from.

I have been very interested in the perception I hold, versus the perception others
see. Is my perspective of who I am, something that can translate, to who others see me as? Am I living in my moment of joy and inspiring others, or have a created a perception that is only my perspective of me? I guess I am wondering have I boxed myself into an image and disallowed others perceptions based on fear or pride.
I know that my perception leads to my own perspective and it is individual. However, I am beginning to believe that living in a place of humility and authenticity creates joy.

When you are in that place of humility, authenticity and joy, I think you shape a perception that is open ended, symmetrical and beautiful. Its in this place, you allow others the space to create an artistic response to the artist you are in your OWN life. Your creative life threads to those around you and your ability to create an authentic life gifts others the ability to perceive the creative life you are living.

I guess what my thought is: If I am not living authentically, humbly and spiritually, those who meet me will see me in a lens that may reflect a perception that isn’t my highest potential. I have to be careful that I don’t box myself in with my own perceptions and perspectives. Imagine the responsibility, we all have –to live in a place of authentic joy, so, others may be able to create a perception that gives them room to see things in a new perspective, thanks to our authentic living. This way of living, also insures that our own selves aren’t getting caught in a self made perception trap.

When people live from a place of joy, they surrender to their own humble truths and create a path of authenticity that others want to follow. In the following, others find their own paths, create the same joy and the cycle begins again. We are in it together. Your story and perspective help create my story and perspective. When we begin to realize the importance of the connection in our personal stories, I believe we will begin to live, share and validate the ways we were meant to!!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Girlfriend Guide

Girlfriend Guide Please take a minute to read about a blog that I am featured in. The Girlfriend Guide is a beautiful testament to friendship and what true friendship is. I hope it resonates with you, as much as it did with me. The blog is written by my bestfriend and is a wonderful place of sharing. The Girlfriend Guide is only one section of the blog and a section I love!! I dont think we recognize our friends enough and how much meaning they have in our lives and who we are. Thank you, Olivia for inspiring me to write, be a better person, live my dreams, dance and move as a woman should--WITH GRACE!! You are what friendship is and you are a blessing in my life.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Allowing myself the space

I guess I am coming back here to find a space to create my thoughts. Not that this is the safest space or the best space but it feels like a good idea. I have followed my BFF's blog and I have thought about starting this up again. Thanks Liv!! I already have a website and that is a place for my activism in the veteran community. I feel like ramblings arent the same status as my veteran website. So, here I go slowly finding my way threw blogsphere.