Kristina Furey

An Invitation

 

What would you do if your child met with a tragic accident?  If they were placed in critical care?  Are you prepared for this financially?  Chances are that won’t happen but for some, this is a reality.  Losing a child is hard enough without the complications of hospital and burial costs.  For some, an experience like this can wipe them out emotionally and financially.   It was a tragic accident that put Anthony Fowler’s parents in this position.  It was their love for their son, their desire to leave a legacy and their ability to find a way to pay it forward by being there for other parents in this position, that led to the creation of the Anthony Fowler Foundation.  They chose love instead of despair and they come to the aid of others to help them do the same.  They understand the currency of life is love.  It’s giving from the heart even as life, so loved and dear to you is being taken.  I am in awe of their compassion and that’s why the Anthony Fowler Foundation is so dear to my heart and why I ask you to please support them in their endeavors.  

Please come out to the Florida Railroad Museum, Saturday April 29th, from noon to 6:00pm.  It will be a celebration of life, Anthony’s and those saved as a result of his families vision to pay it forward in Anthony’s name.   Through this event, community members like you, can come out, celebrate and support the efforts of the Anthony Fowler Foundation to reach out to families side blinded by tragedy and struggling to meet the unforeseen financial obligations and complications brought on by the hospitalization and burial costs of a child.   April is “Donate Life Month” and comes just before Anthony’s birthday of May 1st and this is why the Anthony Fowler Foundation chose April 29th to hold this celebration.  Come,  celebrate and help us spread the word, spread the love, raise funds to lift the spirits and hearts of those future individuals that will be faced with their own tragedies.  We can lift them up.  We can be their heroes.  And if you can’t make it April 29th, please consider donating here.  Donations will help support families of children that have faced or are facing a life-ending tragedy, and will fund the Anthony Fowler Sports Equipment Grant Fund for youth residing in Parrish, Florida.  If you’d like a download of Dan’s and my song, “Deeper” look for the link there for that option.  100% of the donation money received goes to the Anthony Fowler Foundation.  It’s our way of paying it forward and our attempt at supporting the Anthony Fowler’s Foundation in leaving a legacy.  

One last request, please consider registering to be an organ donator.  I am registered and who knows, maybe one day my heart may be yours… ;-)

With all my heart,
Kristina <3

For more on this event: check out my calendar

 

"He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother"--Bobby Scott and Bob Russell

 

Continued from last weeks blog…

My brother Kevin (K1) and I (K2) were both born in the month of April.  That wasn’t all we had in common.  There was our love of animals and also our love of music.  I was more a music geek, with a love of Julie Andrews, Doris Day and of course Olivia Newton John, while Kevin was more into whatever the older kids were into at the time.  Our next door neighbor was a young adult drummer and I think my brother Kevin admired him and wanted to be cool like him.  He was and he was that guy everyone wanted to hang with and be like, much like Ferris Beuller and I often was just known as his little sister but I liked that.  It was more he, that preferred his distance, from his geeky little Sis.  So I, often not allowed in his room would sit outside his door and listen to whatever music he would be listening to in his room.  Often I’d be out there listening to KISS, JIM CROCE and the EAGLES, I liked them.  Some of his music, I wasn’t so much into.  I admired his innate ability to understand and play music, especially when he was playing the radio songs on the piano, and I was still plunking out beginner songs on the piano, after years of lessons that never seemed intent on helping me, play the music, that I loved and wanted to play.   Eventually I begged my parents to end my torturous lessons and they did one day, when one of my piano teachers told them I couldn’t read music after so many years of lessons.  I had just been memorizing the material…  Still,  I couldn’t help but wish my brother would someday see me as the Marie to his Donnie but I guess too,  I kind of knew somewhere in the back of my head that even Donnie and Marie, were geeks by my brother’s perspective.   

More than ever my brother didn’t want me around when he was in middle school.  I remember looking for him one night when we had gone to our church for a Fellowship Dinner and he disappeared. I walked outside and saw people getting in a car.  The car just sat there in the parking lot, so I headed over to see if he was hanging out in it.  It was dark and as I tapped on the glass, someone rolled down the window, smoke poured out of the car and I heard my brother’s voice, from the back seat of the car, telling me to go away.  I did.  I was very conflicted but I didn’t tell my parents.  Corporal punishment was practiced in our home and I didn’t have the heart to see what might go down if I told.  It was apparent to me that he and my Dad rarely saw things eye to eye and I wanted to keep the peace.   Soon, very soon after that, there was a parade of a few parents, some of them with their teens, one by one, every so many weeks, going up to the pulpit and apologizing to the church for experiences the teens had with drugs and asking the church to pray for them.  I was just a kid but I could feel the embarrassment, shame and fear even, that was there in the church.   No one from my family ever made that walk of shame but our church going days, soon came to an end.  —to be continued—

The Osmond's performing, "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother"

 

"There goes my hero"--Foo Fighters

 

When I was a child I had free roam of the world around me.  I had a brother named Kevin, who we called “K1”, my early pronunciation of Kevin, when I was just learning to speak.  That nickname made me “K2”  This was fitting, as I was his sidekick.  Well, when he allowed it or maybe better put, “when no one else could show up for the job.”  Hanging with his kid sister wasn’t exactly first choice for K1 but that did not stop my enthusiasm.  I was always up for the adventure.  A lot of it involved critters, wether going fishing, hunting for crayfish, creating our own butterfly or aquatic habitat or building a pigeon coop and learning that when you buy someone else’s homing pigeon, you may pay twice for the same bird.  One thing was for sure, we loved our little friends!  We wanted to learn about them, be entertained by them and we watched over them like a protective parent.   So it happened on more than one occasion that we’d find an animal in some unfortunate state.  Wether it was a bird that had mistook a window for a roosting spot, a lost dog, cat or ferret we found roaming the neighborhood, a turtle in the road or an injured bunny, our world would come to a stop and we’d do the best we could to help.

In our neighborhood, about a mile from our home, lived a vet.  He had a small farm with animals and  he had kids my brother’s age and mine.  My brother spent time hanging with one of his sons and understood that the vet would nurse non-domestic animals back to health when he wasn’t working.  The man was our hero!  When we would find an injured animal we’d plop ourselves down on the corner of our yard and wait for the vet to pass by on his way home from work.  Our parents used to 1/2 joke that he was going to find another route home if we didn’t stop interrupting his drive home with more work but we paid no mind.  We would stop him and show him the critter and ask him what we could do to help it.  He always took the time and occasionally the animal with him, if he thought it was something we would not be able to handle.  After he doctored it up and it was healed he’d drop it off with us and tell us to put it back where we found it.  

So touched by our heroes kindness and consideration for life, his quests to preserve it, I was inspired by his actions and thought back then that I wanted to marry a vet/farmer when I grew up.  I remember considering the vet’s son that was my age as possible husband material.  We were in the same class and even back in elementary school I noticed how he was like his father, soft spoken, kind and considerate.   Later, when I was in high school, he was working with his father after school, the day my dog was put to sleep.  He was no longer on my husband radar as I had decided by then, I was not marrying.  He was like his father though and I never lost sight of what I had admired in his father and recalled when he so kindly tried to comfort me with the description of what happened as they put my dog to sleep.  I could not bear being there but needed to hear from someone the details or rather that it was okay.

I thought my brother would become a vet or a national park’s ranger, with his love of nature, people and animals.  Still, I’m not surprised where he eventually ended up…  To be continued… 

"My Hero" by Foo Fighters

 

Just some random thoughts as I get ready to sleep

 

I'm visiting with family this week.  Last week my youngest was here on Spring Break.  We are like a revolving door for loved ones since last week and this will continue through mid-April.  I have been highly anticipating these visitors.  The hardest part of our move to Florida was being so far from our loved ones.  Not wanting to live so far away from them was a reason we stayed for so long.  Having loved and having to let go of my foster siblings as a child I would expect would have prepared me for the leaving and losing in life.  Having left friends practically overnight, at age 16, that I had grown up with since pre-school, again, I would have thought would have prepared me.  Having lost loved ones since, has only reminded me to cherish the moments I spend with those people that I develop close relationships with.  Savior those moments.  Life is constantly changing.  I know it sounds cliche but it doesn't feel cliche when you realize you will never see that person again, you will never again experience what they have been to you.  It doesn't feel cliche at all it can make you want to rage against anything and everything that you feel is responsible, anything you chose to put that blame on and if you're not careful, it can make you rage against yourself for everything  you didn't do when you had the chance.  If you're lucky you come to the acceptance that life plays out, with or without your participation.  Not choosing is choosing and choosing is really up to you.  I can't say it enough choose love!  Choose to read the whole story to your kid even when you don't think they'll notice if you don't.  Choose to be in time to eat dinner with your family.  Choose to work at and maintain your relationships consistently.  Communicate.  Apologize and understand that, apologies honestly given, are like band aids.  Do you need a band aid to heal?  Probably not but it makes the process easier and it makes us feel loved when someone takes the time to say, I know that hurts and we're going to patch you up.  It's also like a promise when you take responsibility for the hurt.  It doesn't have to be taking responsibility for anything more than that.  A simple "I'm sorry, I know that hurt you and I won't do that or let that happen again" says I don't want you to be hurt, I don't want to hurt you and I am working on helping you trust this world a little bit more by doing my best to see that doesn't happen again. 

Maybe, this is all coming out of left field but it's stuff I learned and I just don't want to see you blind sided by "inconvenience". Many of us go through life reacting to it, blaming others for it and refusing to take responsibility.  Life can be drastically different when you don't react.  <--This is something I have been working on for years.  Some days I'm golden and some days I'm reminded why reacting is not the best choice.  Taking responsibility doesn't have to mean you've done anything bad or wrong, it just means you are being proactive.  Much of the time, most people are clueless not by choice.  As Barenaked Ladies lyric goes, "It's your fate but not your fault"  <-- I love that line!  It's true about so many things and brings to mind Douglas Adams book "Life, The Universe And Everything" when he so humorously delivered God's message "Sorry for the inconvenience". 

Anyway, I am deliriously tired and as I sit down to share something in this blog this rant is the best I could come up with.  ;-)  This rant has been brought to you by the letter K and the number 2. Just

 

 

A continuation to "Deeper"

 

I apologize as I realize this blog is about as disjointed as the dream that inspired it yet I’m hoping it paints the picture as clearly as I believe my dream did.  

I woke up from a dream in the wee hours of the morning.  I tossed and turned in bed, feeling still deficient of a good nights rest and desiring to fall back to sleep but this daring thought persisted, "How crazy would it be if I shared the dream?"  I think, I believe things happen for a reason or at the very least, everything that happens is an opportunity of some sort to evolve but its not a given, it's a choice.  

I should maybe give you what I believe may be back story to my dream.  Yesterday, while cleaning around the house, I chose instead of listening to the radio, or running YouTube music videos, I would listen to one of my favorite radio programs. (Sometimes too, I'll just let the TV run and half listen to that but I didn't trust that I wouldn't end up on the couch being a potato and I really wanted to get things done.) I chose to indulge in the TED RADIO HOUR.   While I don't always make time for it, yesterday, I felt a strong need to.  I'll add I believe by immersing myself in other people's stories, much like immersing myself in music, I am inspired to create ways of increasing my ability to better understand my human companions in this world and maybe even feel their victories, challenges and lives in a way I otherwise could not.  There's a part of me that needs to feel connected without the exhaustion of commitment (which the older I get the more exhausted I make myself as I try to live up to an unattainable standard that has been set in my mind on what it means to support-I’ve heard it labeled co-dependency and I do my best not to let it take my health.  As a child I was taught, this was being a good Christian.  Which I’ve pondered and thought “Well, if you lay down your health and spend your life on others, that is in a way, Christ like but certainly choosing to be a sacrificial lamb is not healthy.”)  So I’ve found there's this cooperation between the immersing in the stories, filtering and then creating some solution based delivery system that may be the crumbs another can rely upon to find their way through the perils of life, that satisfies my own self importance, I seem to find in helping others, while hopefully proves to be a more healthy choice for me.  

So, I listened to this weeks TED RADIO HOUR show, which was on decisions and how we make the choices we make.  This is something I myself became incredibly aware of about three years ago, when I tried to curb my complaining, as I was going through some difficult life issues and losing my own ability to keep focused on and put my energy into things that were most rewarding in my life during that time.  I came to understood the complaining was an ineffective action for the most part but not entirely useless because as they cover in the program our choices are not always what they seem and sometimes we are set up to believe we are making choices that we aren’t really making.  If you listen, pay special attention to what Dan Ariely has to say on this.    http://www.npr.org/programs/ted-radio-hour/    

My dream:   In it, there was a human chain of love.  The song, “Deeper" was expanded upon.  Love wasn't just the answer, it was the gift.  I think the gift it gave was forgiveness.  Like a missing piece of DNA, strung together, people began to create the chain by linking hands.  They were looking to their left and saying I love you and I need you to forgive the person to your left, so you can forgive yourself, be whole and grab my left hand with your right.  I need the best of you, what is whole, to take my hand.  I forgive you for not being whole.  If you will just do the same, forgive yourself and the person to your left, you will be the whole of what I love, trust and can build a future on and if you grab my hand, we can get through this together.  We can't get through this alone.  We have to do this together and to do that we each have to be the trustworthy one that can be relied upon and we need trust to be reaffirmed, which means we each need to trust in the truth and not make excuses or lies for our short comings only apologize to ourselves and each other for them.  If we can do this, we can re-establish belief in our own ability and the ability of all to move forward and build our future.  Without this we are not building on a solid foundation and we are certain to fall pulling each other down.  Lifting each other is a choice.  I just hope it is really ours to make and if it is, that we choose it.  

Anyway, that's all I can remember and it seemed really important when I woke up and hugely impossible but at the same time doable.  

 

"Paint me the picture" The Judds

 

We had a wonderful time playing at the Chili Cook Off!  We got to play our song “So Far From Home” which you can download at https://www.paypal.com/webapps/hermes?token=5D040567U3685040A&useraction=commit&rm=1&mfid=1488927790943_f03f9905b9ef4#/checkout/login

We also played our original song “Deeper” which can be downloaded at: https://sellfy.com/p/pVyZ/

I’m so glad we had the opportunity to get out and play, it was very rewarding.  There’s nothing like when people tell you after a performance, that your performance moved them in some way or that they heard you playing and followed their ears to find you.  I learned some important things too.  Like, maybe tell the sound engineer that you are considering getting off the stage and heading out into the audience.  There’s this thing I learned about called FEEDBACK.  Whoops.  MY BAD.  Sorry to the awesome sound engineers at Mojoe's who really covered my boo, boo and my ass with quick reflexes.

The Chili Cook Off itself was so much bigger than I expected!  I found myself wrestling my nerves since it’s been a while since we played for so many people.  After we played I had the opportunity to walk around and meet some of the locals.  Had I done this ahead of time I think I would have felt much more comfortable on stage as we have so many kind and community focused people here.  They are so personable and interesting to me.  Having lived in the DC area all of my life prior to moving here, I can get so tightly wound over what is going on with our country and I’m learning that seeing locals coming together, working together in support of their neighbors and the community, is really helpful to me in keeping me from drowning in the concerns that seem at times insurmountable and helping me to focus on where and how I can effect positive changes and help others as they strive to lift each other with care, compassion and community pride.  I now have a real understanding of the Florida Cracker and the Cracker Cows that created them and I know a little more about where Parrish and Manatee County came from.  I kept thinking throughout the day about the Judd’s song, “Grandpa”.  It probably helped that I also got to talk to Kim Betts, who just recently opened for Wynonna.  It’s easy to understand why everyone around loves her, she is as sweet as she is talented.  

I know this blog is getting loooooong but I really do want to tell you exactly how it was we ended up in Parrish because it almost didn’t happen and I think its a worth while story:   So originally we had intended on moving to Lakewood Ranch which is more like my beloved Reston.  We actually began to pursue a house in Lakewood Ranch that had many of the things we were looking for and the floor design we really thought we wanted, along with a low HOA and no CDDs.  However, it was also a Flip.  

Anyone remember 2008?  Well here in Florida, I think everyone does.  We were cushioned from it in the DC area but there were still many there that were affected by the crises.  Here, there was a lot more loss and as I understand it, there were also not enough rental properties for all those losing their homes and it was hard to find rental homes for those who could no longer afford to own.  Also, people were losing jobs during this time.  Meanwhile, there were some people from our country and other countries that profited by buying up homes at reduced prices for the purpose of income properties and vacation home use.  Some countries don’t allow anyone but citizens to own land in their countries.  I once heard it remarked that our country could be bought out from under us piece by piece.  On the other hand, I guess the foreign investors saved us in some ways, buying the homes and relieving the banks…  I don’t know if I have an opinion on this as I’m not sure I understand the pros or cons fully.  I don’t.  I just have a lot of questions and concerns, especially after seeing the movie, “The Long Short”  I miss the days when journalist and news reporters could be counted on to help educate us on things we might not otherwise understand.  They used to empower us.  I’m thankful we still have 60 Minutes out there.  I digress.  

I actually found myself freaking out over the house that had been flipped.  Was there mold?  I looked up the history and found, they bought it cheaply.  It had sat there for a few years and I doubt they had the air running while it sat unoccupied.  Did it have rodents?  They did not open any of the walls during the flipping and well who knows if rodents had gotten in the walls and nibbled on the electrical lines.  My concerns were alleviated when we chose instead to purchase a home a family lived in.  We were helping them get what they needed and in return buying a house that we knew had been loved and cared for and we also were, in a sense, buying American.  I never expected that decision to land me in such a great community with such a rich history and with so many members of the community willing to make choices that support the community members in so many ways.  Perhaps karma, or maybe just luck.  Whatever it is, I am very thankful to have the choices we’ve made, land us here amidst such a wonderful group of people.     
"Grandpa" by the Judds

 

Chili Cook Off @ 2pm

 

We will be playing The Chili Cook Off in Parish, Florida this coming Saturday.  It starts where the Heritage Festival parade ends.  Approximately at 11am.   We play from 2:00-245pm.  It is $8.00 in advance and $10.00 at the gate to get in.  I would suggest getting in early if you want to try all of the different chilis.  

Dan and I are currently not actively seeking gigs.  We are still slowly and carefully building what we hope will be a life that works synergistically with each of our needs being accounted for, resources, health, music, relationships, etc…  The Chili Cook Off is an opportunity for us to get out and play, while supporting a worthy cause and making some money to put into our music resources.  Also a reason to rework our original song, “So Far From Home”.  Which we have worked on in our humble home recording studio for the past month and I’m currently working on a way to make it downloadable in the best way to support Dan and I in our music endeavors but in meantime here is a sample of the song: https://www.reverbnation.com/kristinafurey/song/27583258-so-far-from-home-sample
The music side of our lives is a slow process and I don’t think most people realized it was a slow process the first time around as well, as we balanced the recording of our first CD around the lives of our loved ones, our responsibilities and efforts to contribute to our community.  I know many people have made comments to me that suggested they believed that we just did it all over night but honestly it was years and it’s not always easy to be patient as we come together, negotiate so we each get our needs met and build something we hope to  look back on with satisfaction.  Our lives are just as full with responsibilities and unforeseen circumstances as I expect your life is.  Each of the songs on our first CD was an accomplishment and cause for celebration, as was seeing all the hard work, resources, hours of practice and careful planning we put into our gigs, come together at our performances.  Our American dreams continue and we hope to find ways to encourage you to keep believing in yours.   

Hopefully I will have more on how you can download “So Far From Home” in next weeks blog.  In the meantime we invite you out to hear it live 3/4/17 at 2pm.  For more on the Chili Cook Off:  http://parrishchili.com/

 

"Some Say I Got Devil"--Melanie Safka

 

Once upon a time my son was sick when a friend called to check up on us and see if we could meet up somewhere.  I explained to her my little guy was sick, sick, sick, on antibiotics and had actually told me just that morning that he hated me.  Her words to me were so insightful and changed how I looked at people for life.  She said, “He doesn’t hate you.  That’s just the antibiotics talking.  He’s just not himself.  They always make my sons mean.”  This made me realize that if someone was cranky and snappish, they just weren’t themselves.  Nobody really wants to be miserable… do they?  Man, I wish that someone had used that phrase with me when I was child and acted out due to some disturbances in my emotional reasoning, that were just the results of my being made to feel uncomfortable by something or someone I had no control over.  It would have empowered me to make better choices along the way and I know I would have encouraged others to do the same because that was my nature, to help people be okay.  Instead, I rebelled defiantly and that worked for me sometimes but so many times as I stood my ground for another, I realized the other had turned tail and run.  Other times holding my own ground, for my own sake, I would also look around and see I was alone.  It occurred to me, the harder I pushed, the harder my “opponents” pushed back.  Being petite I wasn’t good at that  and when things got real heavy, I realized I needed to find another way but by then I had already been branded by those around me for my previous stands and defiantly I said, “Challenge Accepted!”  When I accepted their label I didn’t realize I would lose parts of myself.  Well…  between you and me, I didn’t lose them so much as they just went underground until spring returned.  

So imagine for moment your spouse, child, friend, whomever, has a lousy day and then at the end of the day, you get the privilege of all their bottled up angst.   Under other circumstances, would they be the same person their actions  represent them as at that moment?  or Are they perhaps, not themselves at that moment?  We could expand on this and ask , “What if they had a lousy childhood or life, up until that point when you got the privilege of all their bottled up angst?”  These are things I’ve pondered many times since that day my son said he hated me.  I’m really glad I didn’t react to him when he said those words.  When I think of all the times I’ve jumped into reacting over something someone said or did, aye, yi, yi!   I loved that TV show, “Ally McBeall”!  I loved that they used the term “Bygones!”  Like, “the slate is clear”.  “We will strike that”.  “Forget it about it”.  I understand we can’t forget about everything.  Sometimes it’s best we carefully move through it.  So that people can come together in an effort to have everyone’s needs honored, everyone feeling safe and able to trust that each participant involved will uphold that safety.  We are AMAZING when we come together in the service of all!  We create something we can all believe in.  

So this is a long way to get to the point of this blog but please stick with me if you have thus far.  I have never equated myself with feminism.  It just always seemed to me that it was more of an anger and venting thing, even a male hating thing, more  than a solution based thing.  That’s not to say that I haven’t been hurt or angry by the ways women appear to be held back and down in societies.  I’ve been affected, hurt and angry over it and even came out swinging a few times myself.  That said, I kind of had a sinking feeling when I first heard about the Women’s March that took place a month ago, from yesterday.  I wondered “What is it about?”  “Why now?”  “What do they hope to accomplish?”  “Are they just venting?”  “I hope it doesn’t get out of control and I hope people aren’t hurt.”  “What do they hope to gain and is this the best path to that?”  I always feel this way about groups getting together in this way.  But I’m not judging, just easily concerned.  I get concerned because I fear unchecked anger, including my own.  I think when groups of people with an angry tone to them, come together in abundance, their behavior changes, not so much unlike locusts, as they become group identified, often in anger and lose themselves and their own logic  in the process.

I was staying away from the news a month ago, before, during and after the march.  I needed to keep a firm grip on myself and not let myself fall to sorrow over concerns and fears I have over the new US leadership.  It goes back to that, “Groups identified in a anger” concern I have.  I’m not going to lie.  I am concerned and that’s not something I can just turn off.  So please don’t be angry.  Time and experiences that show my concerns are unfound are really the only thing that is going to stop my concerns.  I am trying to be patient and brave.  I ask that you be patient and understanding that this is not as easy for me and some other people, as it might be for you.   Okay.  So here we go, it was just a little over a week ago when I heard someone mention Ashley Judd and the people all around me chiming in, like she had maybe done something disgraceful.  I came home and watched a video of her speech.  The first thing that occurred to me was that she was not herself there.  The second thing noted, she was reciting what someone else had written.  The third thing that came to mind was Tori Amos’ lyric, “Maybe she’s just pieces of me you’ve never seen,”  and I wondered, what is Ashley’s personal story…?   Maybe it would have been better if Ashley had spoken from the heart and told her own story.  You see all those years ago when I was fighting and it stopped working for me, I did uncover another tool.  Instead of screaming truth in the face of my “opponents” I could try to make an emotional connection to help them perhaps see what I do.  I can understand how an actor would choose to tell someone else’s story, what someone else has written to say something that person them self can not muster up the words or courage to say them self..  It’s no different than why a song appeals to a person.  It resonates with them.  Like the one minded hord of locusts.  I believe we resonate.  I believe we can do that in a more proactive way.  It might take a little more thought and a little more restraint but I do believe, whole heartedly, believe it is possible!!!   I had to stop watching the video of Ashley.  I felt emotionally affected and it was out of my control to do something about it but it haunts me, “like an echo the wind leaves unreconciled”—Carly Simon.  I wonder  did she maybe have her own story to tell?  She seemed to be pushed by some intense motivation.  I think when people tell someone else’s story to demonstrate something they feel so passionate about, they normally have a story of their own.   What is her story?  Has she previously told it, only to have it disregarded?   I know when my own experiences are disregarded, I look for validation in other people’s similar stories, just to feel not so alone.  I also know how vulnerable we make ourselves when we tell our own stories and how sometimes we don’t tell them because we don’t want to harm others or disconnect ourselves from those we love and have forgiven.  Some of us forgive.  We say “Bygones” and hope life will be kind enough to allow us to move forward without the weight of such trespasses upon us.  We don’t forget because we realize to forget would be to lose the lesson that we went through so much pain to learn but we see ourselves in tandem with those we have forgiven.  We know we need to keep in mind we are in this together, not against, only together do we get to the other side.    Sometimes the pain is the reminder of how important it is to act with love as our motivation.  Maybe Ashley has her own story to tell and maybe if she told it she would have been putting someone on trial again for something she has said “Bygones” to or maybe she has another reason.  What would happened if she told her own story and nobody cared or worse, they reacted to her with intense dislike and shamed her in the public?  I guess it’s just safer to use someone else’s story, at least then you don’t have to take the public shaming to heart…   I  hope.   Maybe, I’m just reading too much into all of this and just looking for a way to tell my own story without revealing too much.  In case that’s it I will add I have learned that It’s so easy to be misunderstood when I’m angry.  It’s also so easy for people to scapegoat me, when I’m reactive.  When I’m angry and reactive it opens me up to being easily manipulated.  I’m no stranger to self loathing after bouts of anger and I’m now trying more and more these days to consider my underlying needs and balance them alongside the needs of others before I move forward.  More and more I can see where anger only gets in the way of getting needs met. I’m learning to walk away and let the anger and anxiety to react subside.  That way when I’m ready to walk through, rather than away, I can with focus on exactly what it is I am aiming to head towards.  Hopefully that’s not too lofty a goal.   

Melanie Safka:  “Some Say (I Got Devil):  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v1PKA2tn1Ms

 

"Love, it is a flower. In you, its only seed"--Amanda McBroom/Bette Midler

 

What is your love story?  I think about love, a lot but maybe not in the way you might think.

I once had this dream when I was young and in it I died.  The dream continued on, as I saw things from the third person perspective, I saw myself, sit up in a trough filled with blood.  Then this beautiful woman, who resembled Audrey Hepburn, dressed all in white flowing material, came over to me and lifted me out.  As I sat in her lap, she said it wasn’t my time yet and it was important I go back.  I remember feeling this intense love, I saw that the blood I had been completely immersed in, was all over her as she held me and she did not seem to pay any attention to that.  She just wanted me to understand something important that I’m not sure I did, as when I woke up, I only remember that she said it wasn’t my time and the intense feeling of being loved that left me with such a strong impression for such a long time.  I think it was the most intense feelings of love I ever had and I don’t want to confuse you with the idea that it was just between this dream figure and myself it was coming from everywhere.  When I woke up there was this intense feeling that love came from everything.  It surrounded me, it was in me and it extended everywhere.   Yet, like so many things, as time went by the ability to feel that love that surrounds, lessened, until one day I found myself questioning when it went away.  It became like a photo in my mind and a memory of something I once remembered but now just remember the memory of what it was like to remember for real.   I wish I could remember how it felt and possibly feel it again for a moment because it held such weight in my life.  It was believing in something, so completely and without doubt.  Few things in this world I can feel that way about now.  The closest I ever got to that feeling again was right after I had my son but sadly, even that intensity did not last out the years.

If I could make you feel for a moment what I felt coming out of that dream, I feel you would understand why I cringe when we judge others and forget to see each other as the source of love and nurturing that we really are and why I hurt so much when I forget and give into fear, angst, pain or that tired feeling of hopelessness, instead of feeling the abundance of love all around waiting to be chosen.  I wonder sometimes, if maybe the dream was reality and this, is just a dream... or is the only real thing in this world the love and the rest is just the manifestations of our own fears.  I only know for sure, I want to choose love.  I wish it were so easy for me as it once was.

Amanda McBroom's unforgettable song, "The Rose" : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dBWa_2pJjU

Bette Midler's unforgettable version of "The Rose":  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zxSTzSEiZ2c

 

"What the good Lord gave me"--me ;-)

 

Look at me, playing the Rock Star and showing up late with the blog this week.  As Joey Ramone once whined out, “I can’t make it on time!”  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kyYHGMiy1Ec  “I keep a tryin’ and tryin’”.  I once read a hororscope, one that was based on the day I was born, year I was born, etc, etc, uniquely mine to sum it up.  Yes, uniquely mine and it said I would always be an anachronism.  That I had been born in a time where I did not belong and that I would always be too early or too late.  I did not want to believe in it’s Voodoo Magic and I said “Pooh, Pooh!” but sometimes I do wonder, if somewhere, God is not having a good laugh.  Most of the time I imagine it in good nature, like when you may, for just a second smile at a loved one as they vent to you, their frustrations with another and you think to yourself, “Well now that they’ve figured out how frustrating that behavior can be for people, perhaps they will stop pulling the same crap on me…” Yes, I know, the funniest or saddest part of this, is when I share this jubilation with someone that has the nerve to ask me, “Well does this mean you’re now going to stop participating in this most irritating of behaviors?”  Ah... Touche...  <—Don’t know if that’s pronounced “two-shay” or “touch-ie” but I suppose it fits either way.

Anyway as “Out of time” as I seem to be, it was my resolution for 2017 that I would not let people "Steal My Sunshine." (Len:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1fzJ_AYajA )  That I would shut out the voices that seem to deliver messages that something about me is not up to par and see it for what it is, I don’t fit their intentions for me.  Period. Exclamation mark!  I’ve made choices all along the way that support me being content with my actions.   Some have been pretty crappy choices to choose from.  So often, I realize, there are better scenarios but often too, I feel like I can turn straw into gold!  Just the other day, I went to make scrambled eggs and learned as the stove would not heat up, that the self cleaning oven mode disables the stove during its cleaning process.  I looked for a solution, looked at my toaster oven, put some tinfoil on the tray (not the grill), basted it with a little butter and poured in the egg, milk, salt, pepper mixture, I had failed at being able to cook, no, excuse me—>the stove had failed to cook.  In the toaster oven, the eggs cooked beautifully and more fluffy than when I cook them on the stove.  I pulled it out and wondered, how I would dislodge it from the foil and get it onto the plate.  I lifted and tipped an edge of the foil and VOILA, not only did it come off with ease, it folded better than any omelette I have ever made in my life. Eggscellent!!!  Tasty too!  I could not have been more thrilled and I continue to use my new technique. (but under close scrutiny as unwatched toaster ovens seem extremely unsafe to me.)  I could have gotten disgruntled and thrown the eggs in the trash.  NO WAY, these eggs were the kind that cost a small fortune, on account of the chickens getting to run free, live the good life and eat what the good lord gave them.  I find them so worth it, as their yolks are sooo rich and when I fry them up they taste like butter and I don’t use butter when I fry them, just a spray of olive oil.  

On topic with what the good Lord gives, two weeks ago, I wrote a song that goes with that.  Don’t know when or if we’ll get around to recording it, as we’re still working on “So Far From Home” and Dan has been really busy with work and worn out by the end of the day.  But the lyrics were fun and when I shared the song with someone, they said, "I didn’t know you wrote gospel."  Ha, funny thing is, neither did I, even as I was singing it.  ?  It didn't occur to me.  I don't think about things like that, I just allow it to come through me because it is a gift and just happens to be...


“What The Good Lord Gave Me”
He said, “I know you’re a sinner and I come to save your soul.
The good Lord has forgiveness and he’s put me in control.”
I said, “No. No. No. NO, YOU can’t save me.
Only one thing can and that’s what the good Lord gave me.”
She said, “I’m praying for you now that you’re gonna change your ways.”
I said, “Then pray all night.  Pray all day.
But No. No. No. NO, YOU can’t save me.
Only one thing can and that’s what the good Lord gave me.
And if the good Lord give it, he can take it away.
I’m sure if he cares, he’ll have his say.  
Yeah, I bet he had a reason to make me this way
And I’m guessing that it might have been to hear me say.
No. No. No. NO, YOU can’t save me.
Only one thing can and that’s what the good Lord gave me.
And I don’t need you to be judging on me.
I talked to God about it, seems that he agrees that
No. No. No. NO, YOU can’t save me.
Only one thing can and that’s what the good Lord gave me.
The good Lord gave me.  What the good Lord gave me.
Only he can save me.  Only he can save me.
Keep your judgements to yourself, lest you be judged by HE.
Keep your eyes on yourself, instead of on me.  Cause
 No. No. No. No, YOU can’t save me.
Only one thing can, that’s what the good Lord gave me!”


after thought:  Me thinks perhaps I have watched too much “Young Pope.”  but HBO, I’d prefer you bring back “Vinyl” Things were just getting good.  You had such an incredible cast.  How could you just scrap it?!?   I have a song for it…  EPIC, should you ever bring it back…