DON’T download the old systems

I am reading the book, “The Four Agreements”. I read half of it before but wanted to re-read, which I highly recommend, since we become different people more often then we think we do.

Anyway, a crazy thing happened to me this morning. I woke up and started thinking through my day yesterday. I was thinking hmm… should I have had those drinks, what interactions did I have with people that were stupid or I could have done better at, did I work hard enough, should I have talked to that old guy at happy hour, what if he watched me leave and followed me, do I feel good enough to start this day or is this day shot.

Then I realized: “I’M DOWNLOADING THE OLD SYSTEMS”.

By the old systems, I mean this, we are trained at a young age to do the acceptable things. The things that give us love, approval, and help us “Fit In” to society. We are trained in how to do life, from parents, teachers, siblings, religion, and the social proof of it all.

But we wake up each day with fresh and new energy. Like the bible says: “His(or Her, referring to God or the Universe) mercies are new every morning.” I have all I need for today each morning.

But guess what takes away my energy….. THE SYSTEMS. So, just like a computer, this morning, I said, “DON’T DOWNLOAD THE OLD SYSTEMS.” Save your energy for yourself and however you can love people today.

So, my friends, my advice to you: 1.) Read this book it’s awesome – BUT- more importantly “DON’T DOWNLOAD THE OLD SYSTEMS” They keep us sick and blind.

Much. Love.

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The Tough Girl Problem.

Until about 2 weeks ago I had never mowed a lawn. I guess I always thought that was a “boy job”. But my husband is gone, so I looked out at my lawn and thought, how hard can this be. Well, we have a push mower, old school, but less intimidating than a real one, I guess. So I decided to give it a try.I mowed the lawn. I felt really proud of myself.

Then I thought back to a month ago when I had a competition with my sisters to see who could do a 3 min. plank, I won!! Yep, pretty proud about that.

Then I realized, I am always trying to prove how tough I am. Always wanting my husband or my dad to be proud of me, doing physically taxing or boy things. Now, my husband is a pretty tough guy, so I can’t usually say I am tougher than him, but if we are in an argument and he says, I’m not tough…. It’s like rockets to the moon with my emotions, I go from 0-100 in a milli-second.

WHY? Whenever we have really strong emotions toward something, I think it’s good to ask why? What is my deal with being tough? Why do I need to be so tough?

I think it’s because I think tough = strong. And strong is a praised quality. Nothing bothers me more than being weak or considered weak. It’s not like my dad or husband are going to think I’m cool if I say, “guess what, Today, I let someone cry on my shoulder. Or I sang my baby to sleep. Or I painted my own toe nails.”

But it’s ok to need to be nurtured sometimes. It’s ok to let down and allow the sweetness of life to come in. It’s ok to be a women and have receptive energy. It’s ok to be compassionately kind. It’s ok because what the world sees as weak, is not so in the eyes of God, or the universe, or our truest self.

So to all you tough girls out there. You’re already tough you don’t have to prove it. The world could use a little gentle kindness right now.

Much. Love.

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Mesa Ridge Lane

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This is the street I grew up on. Now, per google maps this is the current sky view. I lived in the house at the end with the 2 cars in the driveway. My neighbors were and still are our best family friends, The Greene’s. Next to them the McGregor’s, the Purkhiser’s, the Martinez’s, and then the end house changed a few times. The other side, the Powell’s and the Ruiz’s (I think that’s how you spell it).

It was the BEST!! Everyone moved in around the same time and everyone had kids the same age. We had the best 4th of July parties where we would shut down the road and all the kids would do a parade and one time we had a dunk tank. We did shows, created music videos, shared pools, and grew up together. I always dreamed that when I grew up I’d be one of the mom’s who sat outside drinking wine while all the kids played.

We moved out of that house when I was around 12 yrs old, so I lived there for 6 yrs.

What a great way to grow up. Seems like a lifetime ago, but it was the best little world to grow up in, where life seemed dreamy and safe. A little piece of my heart lives there.

Fighting in marriage is a good thing…

If you know me, you know, my husband and I have been through the ringer. Not necessarily that bad of things have happened to us, WE just happened to us.

We are strong personalities. Both of us. We don’t back down, we both want to be right, we fight, hard.

But… I still would choose him.

I think I knew I wanted the challenge. We can live the easy road or the hard one, just because it’s easy doesn’t make it worth it, ya know.

Marriage is so odd. You choose this person to create a life with and to be honest who really knows if you can grow together. Because you are going to grow. It’s either together or apart.

Anyway, almost 5 yrs. in and I still really like him. I like when he likes something I’ve written, because I think he is really smart and that’s a big compliment. I like how he listen to my concerns (he would call critics) and changes. I like that he works hard. I like that he’s a really good dad. I like that he is FULL of information, wait scratch that I like it most of the time. And I like that he works hard to connect with me.

I guess, I would just like to say, Marriage is hard. But I’m thankful I choose him, fighting and all. Because what does a strong personality need to change … another strong personality. So, cheers to all you fighters out there, it’s worth it. You are growing and changing, good for you!

Open Letter to Judah.. My thoughts

Well, there has been quite A LOT of busyness on Facebook this morning. I wanted to see what I thought and to do that I have to write, so here you go!

First off, I do not think George is wrong, now the manner in which it was publicly posted is up for debate or maybe it is also that big of a deal that it needs this much attention. I guess I would think so.

People do not see things at they are, they see things as THEY are.

So, as I am this is what I see.

When I first came to EastLake years ago, we were in the same place as city church. Yes, our style was different, our approach was diff, but Mega Church on the path to American success, that we were.

I asked the leaders what they thought about gay people (LGBT was not a thing then) and they said, “We love them.” I kept pushing and did not get the answer I was looking for, but because of the fact that I really liked the church and was feeling loved, it was not a make or break it deal for me at the time, because I am not gay.

Now, I was already in such a place of despair and in need of love and acceptance, if I were a part of the LGBT community this answer would have crushed me. Because I could hear behind the lines, “We love them” but we want them to change. “We love them” but that’s a sin, “We love them” but they are not ‘ok’ in God’s eyes.

Thankfully, we, EastLake, and other churches have been blessed to see where we were so clearly wrong before. There are probably 1200 other things we are not right on, we just don’t see those yet.

With all that being said, This may not be a HUGE issue for you. You maybe white, sexually attracted to people of the opposite sex, and pretty much fit in. Well, imagine if that were not the case.

George spoke at EastLake a few weeks ago and described a situation at a party where he was told he looked like a terrorist, he ask his friend later why he didn’t say anything and he said, I didn’t know if you wanted me to. George said, speak for the minority who can not speak for themselves, they need white allies.

So…. I think it is important to speak on behalf of those who really are shamed here and can not speak for themselves, because they are the supposed “wrong ones”.

If you are calling yourself a loving community and you can not be clear about where that love ends… I think it’s obvious you know that feels wrong. If it didn’t you would not NEED to cut the clip. You know you are NOT inclusive, but you preached Jesus is. It’s ok, we all do that from time to time, but apologize, be clear, and be honest.

It is a BIG DEAL!

The one and only Heidi Green

April 14th 2016 – I took my friend dinner last night, chicken phad thai 3 stars, I don’t cook. We had plans for me to bring my son Huck over, but she had chemo yesterday and her white blood cell numbers were too low, so she can’t be around anyone that may cause her to get sick. So I made the decision not to bring him.

As I came in, she was in high spirits per usual, seriously one of the most positive people I know. But she said she had a breakdown earlier with her dad.

You see, it’s been 8 months she’s been fighting cancer for the 2nd time. Her mom passed away from the same cancer. She had scans yesterday to see if the new medication is working. And she said to be honest we are running out of options. And then she apologized for the breakdown?

I was thinking, Oh my God, it’s amazing you are even talking to me right now.

What amazing strength you have. I am utterly impressed with her. She is one of the strongest people I know. If you could heal yourself by being a positive person, she would have been well a day after she got it.

Then she proceeded to thank me for bringing over a $15 dinner, that I just picked up.

Heidi Green. I am honored to know you. I am a better person just to be in your presence. You are incredible strong, lovely, wonderful, and put a real beautiful human face on a disease that is Fucking Horrible.

May the Lord bless you and keep you.
May the Lord make his face to shine upon you,
and be gracious to you.
May the Lord lift up his countenance upon you,
and give you peace.

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The Beautiful Heidi Green
Jan. 19th 2017 I went to see Heidi Green yesterday. I probably have not seen her in 3 months. Last time I saw her she was sick but still mobile. Yesterday was not the case.

She is thin. Her hair is growing back, so that was nice. She has lost the use of her left leg. She can’t take care of herself, she can’t move around, her foot is floppy with no feeling. Because the tumors are on her spine. She is confined to a room and going stir crazy.

That is the realistic state of affairs.

BUT Her. She is still smiling. She is still beautiful. She is still saying how blessed she is by her friends and dad taking care of her. She is hopeful and excited about things that will better her way of life in this current situation. Like a coffee machine that can be close to her bed so she can still have her coffee right when she gets up.

I am not sure of how hopeful the situation is, but I felt hopefully leaving her.

Life is so strange and hard. Death is coming for all of us. But you know when it’s not scary, is when you watch people face it at 48 yrs old, with strength and grace. Leaving this life, is just a part of it, a part of the whole thing.

Hope when my days are a number I know, I can be as beautiful as my friend Heidi. Who shined with blonde shiny hair, a positive outlook on everything, and a beautiful smile. Thank you for the lesson my friend.

I will always remember it.

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The Wonderful Heidi Green

Feb. 7th 2017 Damn it. I missed the phone call I was going to make this morning to say goodbye. But it’s ok cause I know you know.

But here is what I wanted to say:

You, my friend, what an honor it was to know you. Especially these last couples of weeks. You lived more life than most. You loved better than most. You gave even at the end. Praying prayers for me and my family, still thinking of others, even in so much pain.

It was truly an honor. To know you. To see you. And to watch you face the end, with more grace and dignity than I thought was possible.

You made me less scared. And that is such a gift. You helped me see all of life is gift, even the scariest parts.

Today I will mourn you. But tomorrow I will live more like you.

I will travel and think of you. I will lay on beaches and remember how much you loved the sun. I will talk about Jesus, like you. I will offer everything I have to the other and do it with joy and love.

I want to be more like you and that is how you live on.

With deep gratitude thank you for sharing your life with me.

Same Convo, Diff. Perspective

I don’t know about you but I feel like we are going around and around the same circles. A bunch of opinions all over the place, but missing each other.

I am hoping we can have the same conversation with a different perspective.

What I mean by that is. It is not logical for me to think everyone that voted for Trump is an idiot. Just like everyone who voted for Trump can’t assume I am not following the truth.

I want to talk about the deeper issues and try to understand each other. My goal is to understand you and in hopes you will understand me.

The reason I am up in arms right now, is because my husband is African American, so is my son. My brother-in-law is Muslim from Senegal. I have a bunch of LGBTQ friends. I am a women, not just a women, a women that has been objectified by men. I did not have to have an abortion, but was thankful the option was there, since I may have needed it. When I was 25 yr old, I traveled the world to expand my views. As a missionary I saw LOVE, beauty, and joy in all cultures. Which widen my understanding of others. And I am white, I will never understand the privilege my skin gives me and I am sad of the responsibility  I hold and the responsibility of my ancestors who stole this land and continue to think we are better. I am fearful of what we are doing to the planet and what my kids will inherit, and trying to find ways I can personal help.

You see the reason I can’t be quiet is because EVERY area of my life is affected by the decisions being made, directly and in-directly.

But I do not want to assume that I am the only person that matters. I want to know why you stand where you stand. Is your husband in the military? Where you raised in a faith to believe that abortion is wrong? Are you a small business owner? Do you have the view that this is a Christian nation and this is a spiritual battle? Or do you think we are safer if we do lock our doors to other nations?

(Please do not hear the tone of judgement in those last questions, I am actually just asking, because those were some beliefs I’ve held before).

What are your VERY REAL Fears? The deep ones.

I want to know. Not to argue with you, to understand you. The divide begins with us, so let’s build a bridge.

Especially as women. We can’t turn against each other now, there is too much at stake. We are together in this.

Much. Love.