My tears are a combination of joy and sadness. Sadness because I cannot share my day with my mother for the first time in 67 years! Yes, I am proud to admit I am 67 years young and going for as many more as the Good Lord will provide me. I know that I am responsible for making each day the best day and I cannot depend on others to make me happy. However, I can spread my smile and hope that I will spread a little joy to the lives that I touch, just as my mother did.
As I have written over the past few months, there were many times I was not convinced of my mother’s smile and love being directed at me as much as it was directed at others, until I allowed myself to let her into my proverbial arms. Once, I let my guard down and accepted her love and goodness for the reality it was, was the day I allowed her love to feel my heart.
My tears are filled with sadness because I cannot provide the comfort to my youngest son that he needs. Much like other millennials, he sees life in black and white, right and wrong, the smudges that are part of the reality of life just fade out of his sight. No one lives a perfect life, and if they did it would be boring. For the last 67 years, my life has been anything but perfect, but it has been an adventure and a journey of twist and turns. I have made good decisions and some not so good ones. Even some of the good decisions eventually led me to some of those not so good ones that led me down another path to better decisions. In my earlier years, it was very easy to point my finger and blame others for my faults, or assume I had made mistakes that took me to the wrong places.
Each year has been a journey of learning lessons. Pointing fingers, blaming others never earned me the next step up the ladder, most often I tripped and fell. But, each time I had to pick myself up, brush myself up, and start all over again. My mother and father taught me that, even when I didn’t want them to show me anything! However, it was the best lesson I learned, and it is what has made me a strong independent woman I am today.
Being independent does not mean I don’t need my husband, my sons, my brothers, cousins, and friends. I DO! But what independent means for me is that I can speak for myself. I am not the stupid person I allowed other people to call me in the past. Even if they weren’t calling me stupid, I no longer here the negative language I was hearing. Being independent does not mean I am arrogant either. Again, for me, it means I am willing to collaborate and share with others to become a better person each day.
Today I am crying for my youngest son, a millennial, who is searching to find himself and so desperately wants to do it on his own, no mom, no dad, just him! However, I am human and as a mom, woman, nurturing being I will also share with him and others what I have done, my experiences, my ups, and my downs. I too am searching for myself and wondering who I will be when I grow up?
I did not grow up with a silver spoon in my mouth, I went to work at an early age. I fell in love with love, and it’s possible my first marriage was based on the need to want to be married and be in love. But out that marriage came a remarkable gift, my first born (Steven, I will always love you – Mom.)
When a marriage doesn’t work out, you learn a lot about yourself and who your friends are and aren’t, the road you travel has bumps and curves as well as many rocky pits. Alex, you may think your life is complicated now, you don’t know where your life is going, but at the very young age of thirty, I found myself a single mom starting over. I had nowhere to turn; I could not go home to my mom or dad.
Without taking you step by step through the years, what I must offer you on my birthday is this gift – Open Your Eyes
Look Around You
Take a Deep Breath
Feel the Comfort of the People Who Love – be honest with yourself say their names out loud – don’t cheat
Take A Step Out of Your Comfort Zone
Plan to Go to An Event / Take a Short Trip / Call an Old Friend and Reconnect
Stop Blaming Others – Stop Blaming
Learn How To Do Things Differently
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