Monthly Archives: November 2013
The majority of my life, I have lived it in the northern Hemisphere in the great state of Louisiana on the central west side. Thanksgiving Day always holds a very special place in my heart because it normally fell close to my mom’s birthday. I love my mom to bits. She was an amazing cook! Thanksgiving is a special time to be with family and friends. Any North American can identify with this wonderful holiday. It doesn’t matter if you are from Canada or the USA, you know what Thanksgiving is all about. The only difference is if you are Canadian you celebrate in October and if you are a native of America (USA), you celebrate it the 4th Thursday in November. Another special thing about Thanksgiving is that the two sisters I grew up with both married fellas whose birthdays also fall around this special day. Glenn was on the 25th of November and Eric is on the 28th which means this year is the actual day he shares it with the holiday.
When I first moved to Australia, I would still celebrate this holiday inviting friends over who didn’t quite get the special day. They didn’t really like the way I did the sweet potatoes with marshmallows but they ate politely. This year, I didn’t do a big Thanksgiving meal. I didn’t invite anyone over but I often think of my family across the world. As I type this blog, they are getting ready to get together and celebrate. They will watch the parades, eat turkey and football (not soccer or rugby but gridiron as the Aussie’s term American football). I will be with them in spirit and try to call.
It’s sort of strange trying to explain something that I grew up with to friends here. Adam gets it but we always seem to get each other. I always say I was made for him and vice versa. It is like trying to explain mate-ship or Anzac Day to Americans who would just have to experience it for themselves. Some people still might not get it which is what I found when I try explaining Thanksgivings Day to Australians. They get it but not quite.
Also, when I first started celebrating Thanksgiving in Australia, I would do it on Thanksgiving day Australia time but then I thought maybe I should do it on the actual day that Americans do because I would have the dinner on the same day as my family. I know this might seem strange to some that I was so wish-washy about it. It was also easy for people that I invited over to come over on the Friday instead of the Thursday. It just made sense to me.
I am not feeling the best which is another excuse but I don’t see a point in doing a huge meal when it’s just me and Adam. We took our dogs to the beach and enjoyed our companionship. I feel like I had an epiphany yesterday, which was my mom’s birthday (27th). I had been struggling with something for the longest time inside of me. I thought I had given it up long ago but I had a dream.
In this dream, I came to realize that I don’t need anyone’s approval to proclaim the Good News. I had felt the Lord had draw me towards Evanglisation when I was living in St. Marys. I went to classes to learn more and wanted to contribute more. I was well on my way to do this because I had finished a course on St Paul and it was as if the scales on my own eyes on my feeling of unworthiness fell away and I could see the greatest potential God wanted for me. I just got side tracked is all. Someone asked me a question about something and I was honest with my answer. This person was the one who I looked up to and felt mentored by. It was after my honest answer, that I was instructed that I could not teach for the School of Evangelisation because I needed to do something which I felt was unnecessary. She let me do more menial things. I could lead songs and write a piece for the newsletter but actually talk in front of people…. it just wasn’t allowed. I wasn’t worthy enough in her eyes. My dream though had a mixture of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in it and my own mother and they told me that if I felt the need to speak the truth about Him there was nothing to stop me. I didn’t need a sanction from the church to do God’s work. I just had to be lead by the Holy Spirit.
God has a way if you are open to Him. It may not be the way you may have ever imagined but if He wants you to do something, you will do it with His guidance on His time table not yours.
I am thankful for the opportunities the Lord has put my way. I know I am not perfect but I strive to love like He does, with acceptance and compassion. Lots of forgiveness and openhearted, with anticipation of what He has in store for me. He has given me a unique family and some very wonderful friends (Shauny G and Bishop Eddie Tatro, and Rachie from WordPress a huge hug too from me). I will try and give thanks not just because it’s Thanksgivings Day but because He has given me another day to simply BE!
It’s that time of the month again. It used to be so dang easy for me to meet these challenges that Kozo Hattori put out but as 2013 comes closer to an end, he has ramped up the challenge in the best possible ways. I don’t know how he does it, but I am just grateful that I have found him. He inspires me and really gets me thinking. This month’s challenge though he wants us to write about loving thy enemy.
I have two things to share with you. Please bare in mind that I do like to write poetry/songs. I was trying to compose music to go with the song I have written but time is not on my side and I am wasting precious time trying to do it. My songs often just come to me as melody and words. I can hear it so clearly in my mind. You will have to forgive me for singing a capella but I am not a gifted pianist yet.
There is a story I must share with you to explain about my song which I have entitled “Leads Back To You”. It’s about two young girls about to reach puberty. This story is part of my life and has helped to form me. When I first met Jenny Schultz, I was riding the school bus to school. Jenny and her brother, Johnny, lived further down Vernon Lake Road in a trailer park not far from Vernon Lake Spillway which was at the end of Vernon Lake Road. I don’t know why we at first didn’t like each other. She would get on the bus snarl in my direction with a most disagreeable glare and bark at Judy and myself. I think I was in year 5 and she was year 6. Judy was in year 8 and always looked after me because that is what my older sister always does when it comes to me.
Everybody always loved sitting on the very back seat of the bus. It was a huge competition to get back there before it got taken. Maybe it was the fact that Judy and I often were sitting on the back seat that got under Jenny and Johnny’s skin so much. We did live closer to the beginning of the road then the Shultzes in the morning pick up. The trailer park was at the end of Vernon Lake Road. It really doesn’t matter what it was that put us against each other but the fact is, some how we became friends.
They just moved to Vernon Lake Road and starting riding Bus 4 when this animosity between us started. I just know when I was in the sixth grade, I actually decided to try to change the mood between us. It was a hot day. The bus was getting pretty overcrowded by the time it came to pick me up at Vernon Elementary. Johnny had been held back the year before. We were never in the same class but I was aware that the Shultzes didn’t like us Miller girls very much. On this hot day with the bus overcrowded, I moved over so that Jenny could have a seat. She looked exhausted and her school bag weighed her down. She was hesitant at first but the load of what she was carrying must have over took her reservation because she accepted the offer to sit down.
I tentatively introduced myself and she looked at me stunned. I offered my hand to shake and she refused. When my sister noticed that Jenny was sitting beside me, she thought I was insane. Judy was sitting with Nancy and Tammy if I recall and couldn’t believe that I was trying to make friends with her. We didn’t say very much to each other but a seed had been planted.
A couple of days later, Judy was sick and I got one of the back seats. I waved to Jenny when she got on and motioned for her to come join me. We began a friendship then. I learned about her and her brother. He had a learning disability and she had a kidney condition that often made her sick. She was going to dialysis often. Kids on the bus thought we were an odd pair.
Assumptions are often the things that lead to distrust and fear but if we confront the fear and are brave enough to take a risk, to let someone in, it will pay off big time. Jenny and I lost contact ages ago but I often think of her. She helped me be a better person. She helped me break out of my shyness shell. I am so glad that I decided to break the ice because I discovered a really wonderful friend.
She moved from Vernon Lake Road and ended up staying with a lady from a church that she attended. She married the lady’s son when she was 15 and had a baby. They moved to Alexandria or Pineville but I will never forget Jenny. Jenny is the inspiration for the song I wrote for this peace challenge.
I would like to thank my husband, Adam, for editing the song for me which I recorded this afternoon. He’s another great blessing in my life! I will have to rerecord this to a better job but I really wanted to put it out there in time for the month of November.
I am not trying to start a rant or anything like. I know I have been too quiet with my blog lately but I think I am over thinking. I do have a tendency to do this. I am doing two diplomas online. My mentor is telling me that I have a tendency to over think but I just can’t help it. It’s in my nature. I am sure there are lots of others out there that feel the same way. I just express it more!
My over thinking mind has a way of taking over me. It stops me from being more vocal. I know some people who know me one on one may scoff at that statement but it is how I feel at the moment. I also second guess myself a lot. Surely there are others out there with this tendency as well.
My good friend Shauny G has nominated me for yet another blog award which I am very flattered about but I am not sure I am deserving of this because of being too quiet. I have so many ideas for blogs but I am over thinking as well as second guessing myself which is my Achilles heel.
Shortly I will put up my monthly peace blog challenge. I know my lack of confidence is taking over which isn’t exactly the best feeling. I guess I want it to be perfect but how can I put out perfection when I myself am the farthest thing from perfection. I want to push myself to be better than what I currently am. There is a drive inside but lately my spark isn’t catching like I think it should so maybe I am being too hard on myself.
Basically, I am a lazy person but I do love sharing. I like expressing myself which is why I choose to blog. I know there are others out there who know exactly the feelings I am trying to express even if my words are inadequate. I just want to say thank you for reading and if you feel like sharing drop a comment or two.
I’ve always loved tennis and never really thought I was that athletic but I really enjoy goofing around with a racket and ball. This goes all the way back to the my youth. I begged my parents for a tennis racket and balls to bang on the barn my dad built with the help of my brother, Kevin and myself. It wasn’t a really huge barn; it was more like a wooden shed but it really fed my imagination into overdrive. I would ask my sisters to play tennis with me but when they would get bored or didn’t feel like playing I could be found banging the tennis ball against a wall of the barn before or after I did my chores. I would pretend I was competing in Wimbledon or the French Open. I was just mad about it.
When I went to Uni, I discovered racquetball. I always wanted to keep banging the ball against the wall, any wall that I could find but as I got older I just didn’t follow through like I used to do. In the numerous moves that I have done, I always wanted to go back to playing racquetball even by myself but of course, I never did do it.
Last week, I was talking with Adam and we decided it was time for me to get another racquet as well as balls so that I could pick up my favourite sport that I liked to do. Today we went to town because he had an appointment. He also booked me some time at a squash court. We both thought it best for me to start out with half an hour. Lenny was with us too and when we got to the squash court, I was given court 4 which had a glass wall. Adam sat outside the court I was in on a couch with Lenny in harnass sitting on the floor. I went inside and started banging the ball with my new racquet. I wish we had recorded Lenny’s reaction. He was actually making a crying sound. He was very excited in his harness trying to get to me so he could play as well. It actually got pretty distracting for me. Poor Adam couldn’t even listen to his podcasts that he had on his Iphone. I had to move them away so we both could be able to do what really wanted to do. When I came out to talk to Adam, he asked me why I was crying. I responded it was Lenny not me. I am having fun and laughing at your dog so I moved them to a table further down so that Lenny couldn’t be tormented by seeing me enjoying myself in the court.
I learned two things today. 1. Don’t take a guide dog with you when you want to play racquetball because the dog will create a racket because he can’t be in the court with you. 2. I really loved playing racquetball and was glad I only did it for 30 minutes. I think the last time I played it was 1989. I am looking forward to doing it again and building up my stamina so that I can play for an hour but I think that will take a little more time.
I am a little sore and tomorrow I may regret forgetting to warm up and cool down but I had a blast. I can’t wait to do it again.
Racquetball revisited: I loved every minute of it and hope to do it at least 3 times a week!
Today my optimistic self has fled from my soul at the moment. I am wondering and pondering big questions in my head trying to decide the best course of action for my melancholy mood.
I know lots of people have it worse than I. I have a good family even if I don’t speak to them as often as I should but I know they love me too even though the distance between us is humongous. Recently though, I am wondering what I could do or say to help my brother whom I haven’t seen in 30 years. I am trying to take a leaf out of Sting’s Lyrics praying that perhaps by setting him free he may come back to me. I know I can be a very possessive little sister but I love him to bits. I love him so much it’s disgustingly good. I know when he is ready he will let me or the rest of the family back in but I really wonder if it’s going to be another 30 years before it happens. I certainly hope not because I am planning a trip back to the states in 2015 to visit family and friends.
I want to make new memories with him and his own family. I do think in time it will happen but in this moment I am feeling melancholy. I don’t want to interfere with him but I want to be part of his life. Maybe I am asking too much but maybe it is what he needs too because I can’t imagine my world without him. We don’t have to speak all the time but just knowing he’s out their in the universe makes my world brighter.