Who gets this life??

Hiya Everyone,

This past weekend was “The Harvest Gathering”… I am still reveling in its wonder… Harvest Gathering is a beautiful music festival in my hometown. I look forward to it each and every year… BUT. It’s not just about the music. It is so much more than music.

It’s about connection. It’s about community. It’s about love and support. It’s about the environment and caring for each other.

I remember a few years back (MySpace… years back!) I wrote on my “MySpace” about the gathering. I remember mentioning that I wanted to be a Hippy. I wanted what these people had to offer… so loving and generous with all they have. I wrote about how the festival changed me and that I wanted to become a hippy. (Insert sarcasm here… ) I also wrote that I didn’t want to become a vegan, wasn’t willing to not shave my legs/arm pits and still wanted to eat cheeseburgers!

Well, I am here to say- the festival has grown… and so have I. Harvest Gathering has changed… it’s expanded and what used to be a few hundred friends and musicians, is now over 2,000 and growing. I remember when they added a second stage… now there are four stages and over a hundred bands that play for three whole days! (And late into the night…)

I have watched the festival become its own energy. It draws people in. It changes them. It nourishes spirits and it mends the brokeness within. The music and the people speak love. It is universal. Many cultural ethnicities, races, religions, beliefs, sexual identities are represented… and they all get along beautifully. They conduct workshops and educate one another. They dance. They do yoga. They bless one another. They spread change and they nurture the young. These people respect their elders and they honor them.

As I sit here 12-15 years later… I say it again… I wanna be a hippy. I want what these humans have. I love who they are… I cannot wait until this weekend, next year. It imprints my heart and enriches me beyond these words.

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I tried to explain it to someone last week, I said- “You show up and you quickly realize that this is what you have been missing… all of your life. It’s magic.”

This year as I waited for my lunch … (Which is a totally different blog… the food is incredible. They have such wonderful choices… my mouth salivates, at the thought of that grilled cheese with green apples and Havarti cheese… topped with an aoli sauce with a small container of cool tomato basil soup for dippin… oh….mmmmm….geeeeee. )

Anyway… I digress… as I was waiting for my lunch… I was approached by an old friend. She and I went to highschool together and she still lives locally. I see her name mentioned by friends, but we have not stayed in contact. She makes these colorful hand crafted window shutters and I have been thinking of her a lot lately probably because I need a pair of these wonderful shutters for my she-shed/massage shed… anyway, she mentioned that she spotted me and wanted to tell me that she reads my blog. She said that my words often touch her and she wanted me to know this.

You could have knocked me over with a feather.

You see, I don’t know who reads my blog. Unless you comment here or on my Blog Facebook page, I really have no idea who reads these posts.

I guess in the spirit of The Harvest Gathering, once again… I am blessed. Not just by the music and the love… but by an old friend- who stepped out of her comfort zone to pay me a compliment. I probably walked away just a little bit taller with that grilled cheese…. thank you friend, your kind words were appreciated. Namaste.

So… I ask myself this question often… especially when I see memories on social media. Who gets this life??

On this day I have memories of past Harvest gatherings… a visit with my daughter and first grandson, the Dixie Chicks concert, a friend/massage client who tagged me and said thank you, for “seeing her” and a new post from a friend who shared her heart and thanked me for being her shining star through the years without even knowing it…

My life is full today. I have so many wonderful friends. I have a husband who works hard and supports my dreams. He allows me to putz and play… I get to make crafts and write blogs. A few years ago… my life was full of sadness. I was picking up the pieces of a shattered heart. Some of my pictures and memories show a deep sadness in my eyes. My smile is placed where it should be… but my eyes tell a different story.

Hailey and I at Harvest in 2012

I write these blogs to keep my memories. I write these words to share hope. I share my heart and my silliness to show other people that anything- is possible. I want whoever is reading this blog to know… this is just one day. Today is just a little blip… in the big picture.

I am reminded of a story….

A little girl has a really bad day at school. She is crushed. She runs home after school sobbing. She asks her mom for a piece of chocolate cake, to forget her troubles.

Her mom agrees.

Her mom hands her a tsp of baking soda. The little girl whines and asks why would she do this to her?

Her mom then hands her a stick of butter… again, the little girl wonders why her momma would be so cruel… she has had the worst day ever.

Then her mom hands her some flour in a cup… the little girl is beside herself… her mom asks her to sit down so they can talk.

She explains that this day- is just a single day. Just like in a recipe… if we take this single day without the other ingredients… it’s just a stick of butter. God is not done with us. If we stop now… we will never get the whole cake. This rough moment… this bad day… is just like a tsp of baking soda. It’s necessary… but alone… is not very good.

This path is not always fun. It’s not always concerts and kind words… but when I look at it all together… I am in awe. Who gets this life? Me. I do. (And… so do you.) I see you… I am proud of you. Don’t stop now… we all want to share in that cake…

 

Until next time peeps… Peace and Love~

 

 

Just Send Love…

Hiya Everyone,

Last night, I got a message from my best friend. She said the Lansing Police Department had contacted her to do a “wellness Check” on her ex-husband. A little bit later they contacted her to let her know he had passed.

Today is a day of sadness. Today is a day of anger.

I hate the disease of addiction.

He was one of the funniest men, that I have ever known. He was one of the brightest, smartest humans. There was such an ease with his gentle soul… until Addiction took over. His life became conflicted. He began to spiral and he lost it all.

He went from a prestigious position in IT with many certifications and respect, to living in a shady part of town and not able to keep a job.

He could remember random facts, and was the person you wanted on your team in any board or trivia game. He knew details and could recall any Actor, scene or title to whatever movie you were watching. He loved animals.

I remember his gentle nature and smile. I loved his laugh and his ability to make anyone feel like they were the center of the world. He did this well. My best friend had one of those picture perfect marriages… from the outside.

From the outside, looking in- we all saw how he adored her and went out of his way to make her life rich. From the outside we all saw how hard he worked to provide and how much he loved his job. From the outside, we watched him build a life in a small community and supported her dreams.

On the inside… he was withering and dying. He battled with addiction and even though he wanted to be all of these things for everyone… the addiction kept him feeling alone. It pulled him. It lured him… and eventually he believed it. He didn’t feel like he had a choice. He didn’t think he could ever stop.

My heart aches for this lost life. My heart aches for this lost possibility. My heart aches for my friend. I am so mad.

I go from tears staining my cheeks to angry with fists clenched and jaw set. I go from praying to God to help her and her family… to questioning God for allowing this to happen. I miss him. I haven’t spoken to him in years, but knowing that I never will again- brings the ache and the guilt of allowing someone their own pain.

In recovery, I have heard it said many times that sometimes a person has to die… to be free. I will hold that in my heart today. He is free.

When Paul was sick, people asked what they could do to help? My comment was “Just Send Love”. It’s a universal language and in the Love, I found healing.

I ask you today, for my friend and those who loved this man… Just Send Love. They will need it.

If you or someone you know is suffering today, I pray that you find your way. I pray that nobody ever reads a letter at your funeral about how things could have been. I ask the powers that be… to help you and guide you. May you find peace on this side… not the other.

God Bless…

Until Next time… Peace and Love~