Choose Life

Music to listen to Perfect by P!nk

Choose Life.

It’s not a hard concept…so why don’t we do it more often?

Life is a huge, beautiful, messy proposition.

Life is painful at times.  It throws curve balls.

Life is adventure, anticipation, promise and more.

Amazing…life is amazing.

When I think of life I can only say that if I could reach up and hold a star for every time Brian, Taryn, Shea or Christian made me smile, the entire evening sky would be in the palm of my hand.  I finally found that the most important place God will ever send me is…home. The lyrics to this song  by P!nk speak to me:

Made a wrong turn, once or twice
Dug my way out, blood and fire
Bad decisions, that’s alright
Welcome to my silly life
Mistreated, misplaced, misunderstood
Miss ‘knowing, it’s all good’, it didn’t slow me down
Mistaken, always second guessing, underestimated
Look, I’m still around

I’m back to the couch today, blood burning and head aching, but I am filled with joy.  Unspeakable joy.  I did get the chance to wander out to deliver some goods to Goodwill – and in my five minute wander found an incredible pair of wedge sandals, brand new, for $4.  And I had tried them on at DSW for $60.  Blessing.  Happiness.  My size!  Sometimes in life, you just know that you’re headed the right way, no matter the outside storm.  That is me today…I’m spending the afternoon editing.  The house is infused with three sets of three prayer incense, continually praying for those that I love to have freedom and grace.  I am at peace with this…abased or abound, I am at peace with this.  I choose life.

The photograph above may seem random, but it represents so much to me.  You see the woman holding the flowers, obviously in her wedding dress?  All the contrast of beautiful color and white?  You can feel her looking down at the little person in front of her, feel the very real, tangible love…but you can’t actually see her smile.

You know that it’s there.

The little girl looking up, adoration showing through even though there are no faces…she is the walking miracle, born with a broken heart, beating the odds and growing up into a beautiful girl now.  This isn’t just a photograph…it’s the photograph of my life.  They’re my daughters.

There is a back story about how things appear and what they really are.  Those flowers look like they cost a fortune…don’t they?  It’s straight out of a magazine.  But as it turns out, the bride has overwhelming confidence in yours truly. Yes, I made those flowers in my kitchen, picked them out myself the day before.  What appears to be so expensive was an act of love. They aren’t the real beauty.  It’s the emotion the picture conveys, the choice to love, that is the priceless message of the photograph.  Choose life. Seize the adventure, try something new.  Believe that you can do those things that you dream of.

The “tall woman” is just that now; a woman who is married to a young man I so adore.  She’s choosing a whole new life as an Army wife, planning to pull three years in Alaska with her new veterinarian hubby.  Can I tell you that I miss the time we spent laughing and rolling around on the floor?  She’s the one that dismantled the gas main in the back of our house in Oklahoma City with a swiped screwdriver because she wanted to see inside; I’ve carried her nearly blue seven year old body into the ER when her asthma was so bad that she couldn’t breathe.  I’ve watched her learn and grow, rebel and comply.  She is one of the best decisions that I’ve ever made…and with her, I chose life. Jobs, relationships, living in Indiana, all of it has been in part or in whole about doing the best thing for my children, seeking authentic happiness.  Its never been easy, and those choices went against some pretty main line thoughts of what a woman with two children “should” do.  Not a big fan of “should.”  In then end, they’re standing there together, and the love that they feel toward each other is real, tangible and exists here with me everyday.

Life, as I said, is amazing. Why don’t we choose it more often?  It dawns on my after hours of conversation with my husband that I’m actually married to the most consistent, decent, loving and capable man I’ve met life long.  He’s really what I’ve always wanted, and now with the changes we’ve made to our lives as a couple, talking and laughing, being together in new and exciting ways…he’s the one for me.  I don’t need anything else.

I spent Wednesday in Indianapolis with my life coach Tim Shurr.  Tim’s one of the best at keeping me on track, allowing my new reality to sink in as something I can live in and grow from.  He’s been with me for six months now; I can’t tell you how much I appreciate his upfront ability to hold a mirror to my heart and mind and allow me to accept myself and others for who they are, where they are.  This is the point today.

When you come to the point in your life where a thought or a “trigger” anchors you to a behavior, question your motives.

Life Principal: What pattern are you running without choosing to do so?  We each develop routine actions in life that are relatively unhealthy; it’s the pain that we know.

Relationships, jobs, education, lifestyles ~ it can all become unhealthy and stagnant  if you’re not actively and authentically engaged in it.  Breaking the habit of “same old” pain takes some deliberate action, and may be uncomfortable for a season.  Only you know if you’re tolerating the life your in, sinking inside or just existing.  The alternatives are living with passion and dreams, engaging with every day joy and being truly excited to get out of bed in the morning.  Trust me, it’s possible, even when you’ve experienced true loss.  Tim asks me about those things we don’t talk about in polite society – what is it that you are doing to fulfill the most basic human needs? Do you know what they are? If I measured you right this minute, would you say that you were more filled with longing and desire for “XYZ” or would you were fulfilled and made whole by the choices you made for “ABC?”  You can’t depend on the social perceptions of society or even of your own family.  I was highly unpopular when I made the decision to move to Indiana as a newly single woman – both for the divorce and for the distance.  Still, that was the healthiest choice for both girls and I.  As I said, my decisions were not “should” oriented.  But the actions set me free to follow the path that lead me straight to God…and to here, where I belong.

So how do I fulfill those needs?

I choose life.  I choose the beautiful mess, want to get down into the mud, want to make a difference.

I want to stand for something.  I am proud of myself..really, in a healthy balanced way.

I fulfill my needs by allowing myself to receive love from Brian, soul sister care from Donna, life changing advice and care from Tim and Bill…and from giving myself time to heal, to mourn, to laugh, and more than all….to play and be in faith. 

When loneliness or pain overtakes my soul, I can close my eyes and remember the moments that were not that way, the warmth of the summer sun.  To fulfill the needs of my heart I give freely into the lives of the people that I love, and direct all this intensity into making the world a better place.  Soon, I’ll have the honor of teaching a cooking class for a new company that I’m venturing into~ but in the meantime, I get to help people who want a better quality of life learn about real food, how to use spices, how to make life more enjoyable.  Wow.  That’s pretty cool.  You can change people’s life if you change the quality of their nutrition, even in the United States.

I mention the cooking class because it’s something I love, a passion.  I’m doing this not because I’ll have a bunch of people watching me.  It’s about them…not me.  My passion is that they live a more healthy, happy life.  That fulfills my need of care-taking.

Question: What is your passion, your need?  Are you fulfilling that passion….or are you fulfilling a need for attention?  One will bring life, the other, misery.


Choose life.

Choose love.

Choose to embrace who I am and be free in it.

Choose to follow dreams.

Choose faith.


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