Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day

I am taking pause to remind myself of what this day represents. 

It is a bittersweet day. The sweetness is for celebrating the fact that we can live our lives in freedom. We can have our barbecues and pool parties and shopping sprees in peace and live our every day according to the way we want to. The bitterness is the reason we are able to do these things. It's because of someone else's sacrifices. We silently honor and respect those individuals every day, but today we actively bring attention to them. They give their lives to us every day. These people deserve our respect, honor, appreciation, and gratitude.
 Memorial Day is a day to remember. It's right there in the name. What exactly are we remembering? The men and women who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom, both in their life and from their life. The people whose lives were taken, we think of them. But it doesn't end at the end of their lives. Let's not forget the people they leave behind who are left with grief and losing someone they love so we can live in peace. All those people are someone's sons and daughters, sisters and brothers, mothers and fathers.
 Let's remember that the men and women who lost their lives protecting what freedom stands for, lost a future with their loved ones. They knew they were fighting for something more. Something that they were willing to let their life be represented by. That sacrifice meant leaving behind a parent outliving their child. A child growing up without their parent. Those loved ones left behind for a greater cause, doesn't make the hurt go away. And let's not forget that sacrifice doesn't just mean loss of physical life. Let's not overlook the veterans who've served and survived. What about those brave service members who have become disabled? Loss of limbs and body parts, whose lives will never be the same and will have a physical limitation reminding them of their bravery. What about mental, emotional sacrifices? The horror they've seen and experienced, possibly fellow soldiers falling to their death before their eyes. The trauma, the nightmares, the difficulty of experiencing normal life after living the extremely abnormal. It takes a determination, strength, and power we do not know. To brainwash your mind into being okay with killing and fighting back at those trying to take our lives by taking their lives in return. Yet they volunteer to live this life. Unforced. To make their lives a sacrifice. Their bodies, their time away from loved ones, missing out on opportunities and memories, all so we can be free to live our lives as we choose. Not having to fight, because they do it for us. They take that on.

Men and women who are serving and have served your time: Thank you so much for your dedication. Thank you seems not enough. Two tiny words. I appreciate you and honor your service to our country. The sacrifice you make every day to wake up and do your job. It's not just a job. You are heroes. Thank you for making that choice, knowing that it could mean ending your life for the freedom of others. Even those who you don't know. I admire and respect you all. Grateful that I have my life that you work every day to protect. Thank you so very much. I'm so proud to be an American and to live in this country. It is flawed but our lives are our own. We have much more than others do. Thank you for protecting it.


Friday, May 24, 2013


Yes, I am tired. In a deep sense of the word. Exhausted, fatigued, weary. Physically, mentally, emotionally, even spiritually. Such an easy response to the "are you okay" question. Just tired. It's a great answer because everyone already knows what that answer entails. But does the assumption fit the reality? Tired because I have trouble sleeping? I have trouble sleeping because most of the time I sleep on the couch because that's where I am most comfortable emotionally not physically. I don't like sleeping in my bedroom. Most bedrooms in fact. I have bad memories of bedrooms. When I do sleep it is a restless one. A lot of tossing and turning and waking up multiple times. This has sadly become a regular part of my life. Also for the past few years I've discovered I grind my teeth when I sleep resulting in a sore mouth and jaw when I wake up. Tired of the daily, monotonous routine of no routine. Desiring so much more but laziness, fear, procrastination all get in the way. I am my biggest stumbling block to my own happiness. Laziness because I want a change, any change, and it needs to be a big one; but I don't want to put in the effort or work to make one. Fear because change means different, which is out of my comfort zone and familiarity. Fear that what I want in my life I can't obtain because I don't have what it takes to obtain it. Procrastination because there is always tomorrow and next week and next month to make the change. I have this delusional idea that I will be a different person and have the things I want in the next few years without knowing how it happened. It will just happen somehow. Sounds immature, I know. I'm tired of not having things the way I want them to be, yet tired that I'm not content and making the best of the way things are. Because the truth is, I have a great life. Everything that I always dreamed I'd have when I was younger. A husband that is my best friend and who is a good father. A child of my own. A beautiful house very close to family. It all looks right on the outside. The perfect picture wrapped up in a pretty little bow. Yet it's not enough. And I'm tired of the lack of fulfillment feeling. It's draining, and hollow. There is a stirring inside, an irritation, and that's how it starts. Then it gets stronger and slowly turns into anger. I'm a pretty quiet person emotionally. I am very good at covering up how I feel and maintaining composure on the outside. Yet on the inside I'm screaming. It's actually quite loud in my head, more often than you'd think. More often than I'd like. I long for quiet. Not only in my surroundings, but inside as well. I'm tired of being tired. What will finally be enough motivation for me to put action behind my words and behind my desires? What will it take? How long can I talk about being tired without doing anything about it? It's been said that if you want a different outcome you must do something differently. There's also the famous mantra that it's never too late. But it's uncomfortable. But I'm too tired today. But it won't happen overnight it will take time. But I don't feel like it. But I'm not good enough. But I've never done it before. The poisonous words I tell myself that cripple any type of motion forward. God tells us to keep our eye on the prize. To follow the straight and narrow path. To look on things above and not below. Such simple truths and yet I am still distracted by "things". Realigning my perspective is the key I think. The bigger picture. I guess we'll see. Time will tell. But God, the universe, luck, fate, and all outside forces can't do all the work, right? I've got to do my part right? It all comes back to choices doesn't it? Opportunity knocks, you answer. A door opens, you walk through it. Something must be done about it. You can't just listen to the knocking or stand still and stare at the door. One foot in front of the other. One day at a time. Gotta keep moving.