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Tag: inspiration

How are you doing?

I don’t know about you, but these days I have been feeling very claustrophobic. I have never been a person who does well with people telling me what to do, and, this…feels very much like someone telling me what to do. The weird thing about this though is that I am a homebody at heart. If I’m not out in the wilderness, exploring or going on an adventure, I prefer to be at home. I like fires in my backyard and if I do hang out with friends or family, it’s in their homes or mine. So why does this bother me so much?

I am grateful for this time at home though, I recently suffered a great loss within my family. I lost my beautiful boy, Bruno. For those of you who don’t know, I have had Bella and Bruno for almost twelve years. They are my yin and yang, my salt and pepper. They went together like peanut butter and jelly. Everything they did, they did it together. Bruno suddenly stopped eating and his stomach began swelling. I’m not going to go into detail here, but long story short, I lost my boy very unexpectedly. It was a devastating loss for me, Bella, my mom (his grandma) and those very close to us. I was in complete denial for about four days and I did not speak or acknowledge anyone or the situation for about three weeks. I relish being a dog mom, I know for a fact it is something I was meant to be.

One month and two days later, I decided it was time to adopt. Bella had always had a partner in crime. I knew if I was going to do this, it was going to be Bella’s decision, not mine. So Bella, me and my mom went to an animal shelter. We weren’t allowed to go in (COVID-19) so they brought the fur babies out to us. Bella did not want anything to do with the first two they brought out and wouldn’t even acknowledge them. Then, they brought out Rebel. It only took a matter of minutes before Bella was wagging her tail, and inching her way towards him. I instantly fell in love, so did Bella. I’m very happy to say after much communication, phone calls and detective work (due to his health), I have officially adopted Rebel. He is a black and white Border Collie mix, four years old and full of life and love. We couldn’t be happier having him in our family.

It is hard when this pandemic hits home personally. I can’t even imagine what those out in the world are going through. There are a few people I know personally who have been affected by this, either themselves or those close to them. I am truly sorry for those who have felt the pain of loss or know someone who has tested positive and is awaiting their 14-day quarantine outcome. I can’t begin to know what you are going through or how you feel.

We are all adjusting to this new way of life, however strange it may be. From the bad, there can come some good. Had I not had this time working from home, I would not have had the time to be home with my fur kids and be able to help Rebel get acquainted and comfortable. I hope everyone is finding their new normal, finding ways to connect and remain close to those they love. I hope this time can help those who have lost that personal connection to people, who have struggled with getting lost in their phones and scrolling have taken advantage of the time and learned ways to re-connect and get back to the fundamentals of human closeness and interaction.

I hope that those reading this have found ways to occupy their time, healthy new habits, new routines, and have given some thought to reconstruct their dreams. Dreams are never a waste, and with dedication, can come to life. Please take advantage of this time and dream. Bring to life ideas that you have had on the back burner for months or years. There is no better time than the present. Think, refocus, create…and make it happen!

Thank you for reading!

The Wandering Soul Writer

The Night Before

So here I am, sitting at my laptop the night before my very first book signing. I’ve waited entirely too long and didn’t think soon enough, “oh I should have cards to give out”! So, of course, I ordered them from staples an hour ago hoping and praying the man calls me to say I can pick them up tonight (fingers crossed). This dream come true is so real I can taste it, along with the bloody mary I have made for myself. I am sitting here alone, well Bella, Bruno, and Sweet Pea are here with me (2 dogs and a cat aka my children). My mom is relaxing in her home more than likely enjoying a good book, my love is at work tonight on a double shift and my friends are probably unwinding from a busy work week. I should be doing the same after a busy work week, but nope, I’d rather be sitting here writing, sounds about right.

Where was I? Oh yes, sitting here typing away listening to The Lumineers’s song Scotland. This song is extremely empowering for me (could be because I am Scots) and I feel the strength of Mary as I listen and type. Where would we be in this life if we didn’t have dreams? What is it like to not have them? There was a very brief time in my life when I couldn’t see the brighter side of things. This time period lasted roughly 10-15 years. It was brief because at the age of 35 thinking back, that time flew past my face. Don’t get me wrong, it was rough and the time didn’t go fast during these years in the slightest. I definitely struggled and had my own ugly to work out to find myself. I’m still working on that, but honestly all that ugly made me into the person I am today full of grit and gumption, I wouldn’t trade any bad, good, ugly or beautiful for where I am today. It’s all taught me something I just had to learn to be exactly who I am at this moment.

At the age of 13-14, I was in a pretty bad car accident. The one time I got a ride to school after my mom said I had to walk (definitely learned from that). I was also attacked by a pit bull walking home from a friend’s house and the dog had been chained up on the side of a house I was walking by on the street. It had bit my lower jaw and lower lip, as well as played tug-of-war on my right inner thigh, then proceeded to follow me home peacefully until I got to the top of my backyard. As I looked back to see where the dog was, it began to growl and show its teeth. I ran as if life depended on it, literally. My mom coincidently was working on a project in the basement and had seen me crying and went to the door assuming it was neighborhood kids picking on me and then she saw the dog. The door flew open and I ran in and by the grace of the Universe, the dog slammed into the screen door as it slammed shut. The outcome as we saw later was pretty bad and the owner of the dog who had assured my mom would cover the medical expenses had moved and cleaned out their house in one day.

I also found out during that time that my father (who I had called Dad prior to this) had kept me a secret. Before then I had assumed that Mom and Dad just weren’t together anymore especially since over half of my class in school were full of split families. This lasted until I was 27 years old after countless attempts of being known, acknowledged and meeting a family I had known about my entire life. At the age of 27, let’s just say my mom was done seeing my heartbreak over this and she did what she had to. Thanks to my mom, I now know my family and have spent the last eight years working on our relationship and getting to know each other.

The reason I am sharing all of this with you is that circumstances don’t make you who you are, you do. You can wallow all day and succumb to the wrong that has happened in your life or you can choose to see beyond that and continue striving for your best life. Believe me, since then I have experienced the worst of the worst and also the best of the best. I have seen myself through not knowing where I was going to sleep from day to day, abusive relationships, family trauma, and turmoil and here I sit writing this story. I can truly say life is really what you make of it because I am living it to this very day. I have accomplished many of the goals I had set for myself due to my drive and upbringing. I am that person always reaching for the next goal, bettering each and every day.

I bring this positive attitude with me every day, sharing it with any who crosses my path. At work, at home, in the grocery store. Why dwell? It’s pointless really. Does the past still affect me, absolutely! Are there parts or memories that continue to bring pain, yes. I am a work in progress, growing into myself daily. If we don’t learn from our past, grow to inspire ourselves as well as others then what is there? If there is anything that you take from this article, please know you are not alone. Grow, grow and grow some more from each experience, hardship and use them as opportunities to better know yourself and then spread those learning lessons to help yourself as well as others. Bad days come, but guess what? We all wake up to a brand new day with fresh eyes for a whole new outlook! Please take each new day as a challenge to be who you are meant to be!

Thank you for reading!

The Wandering Soul Writer

Live A little Or A Lot: Part One

When opportunities present themselves, do you run with them or do you question and/or allow fear to take hold? Do you follow your heart or your paycheck? Believe me, I of all people get it. When people ask, are you happy? Do you like what you do? How many of you have said, “it pays the bills”? Unfortunately, I’ve heard this more times then I can count, even out of my own mouth. At a very early age, my mom showed me just what following your heart and dreams looks like. I am and will always be grateful to her for instilling guts into my upbringing (at the time, of course, she didn’t know she was teaching such a valuable lesson).

My mom taught and showed me in more ways than one how to stand up for yourself, (get ready for the swear words) take no shit, follow your passions and most importantly, follow your heart. She taught me literally one hundred million other things and continues to do so every single day but that’s a story for another day and we are on a different track tonight. Let’s get back to the point, shall we? Do you live where you are truly happy? You might not work where you thought or hoped you would, but at the end of the day, can you walk out of your front door, take a deep breath, and do what your heart longs for? How about the views? Do you long for and see sky scrappers and beautifully lighted busy streets or wonderous mountain views with the fresh smell of every tree you could possibly think of? Are you where you want to be?

My boyfriend and I recently took a trip, knowing this could very well be the place that we would want and need to spend our lives and guess what, it was and is! I have played the song “Sleep on the Floor” by the Lumineers for him for over a year and a half. (“Pack yourself a toothbrush dear, pack yourself a favorite blouse. Take a withdrawal slip, take all of your savings out. Cause if we don’t leave this town, we might not ever make it out. I was not born to drown, baby come on” (lyrics from the song). If you don’t know it, I highly recommend! I have always known I was meant for somewhere else, nothing against where I am now, but it’s just not for me. I have lived in so many places and been all over. I did exactly what I was meant to do here and I am truly grateful for the experiences and people I have met here. Leaving will definitely make me cry but there comes a time in your life when it’s just time to go.

At the end of our trip, I cried. I cried grabbing our bags out of the lodge, I cried giving back the key, I cried as we drove away in the truck, I cried once on the road and I cried when we got back to where we are currently living. My boyfriend and I have made the decision to follow what truly makes our hearts happy and that is to move. It takes a lot to leave what you know and where you are comfortable (not to mention having the funds to do so). We both have such a strong pull to where we were that it only makes sense to follow that deep down, know it in your soul gut instinct. We’ve been back for less than a week now where we currently live and we are so heartsick. We will be back to our dream location in just under five months to look at properties and such and we have a plan to move within a year. Sometimes something happens or you see something that just triggers a distinct feeling that you know deep down you should follow.

Where I am going with this, is that life is short! How many times have we all heard that? Too many right? I have said before, live, really live! Yes, I know it takes time and money to pursue that which makes you happy but damn it, do it! Sorry for yelling through my blog but if that’s what it takes. No matter what your situation or where you are, you are capable of achieving, please always remember that. This world moves so fast, and the bills will always keep coming. Put some dollars into that savings account every pay, even if it’s just a couple. Your situation isn’t permanent, you are here now, living. I’ve seen a lot and lived through a lot (that’s an understatement) I can truly say with experience I am where I am today because of everything I have been through. Was it easy, hell no! Was it worth it, absolutely!

You aren’t where you grew up, you aren’t your surroundings. If what you want is the complete opposite of what you know, that’s okay, as long as you live! Work towards what you want. Believe in yourself and your goal and/or dream. I see day in and day out people who talk but don’t put in the action, dedication and work needed to get where they want to be. Guess what? It’s not going to be handed to you. Drive, ambition, grit, gumption, tenacity, accountability, and responsibility are what it takes to make it happen. But it can happen. Live the life you want and can look back and say I did it! Not one that makes you look back and regret. Life is full of lessons, good, bad, beautiful and ugly. Learn, grow, move on and keep going!

Thank you for reading,

The Wandering Soul Writer

Adventure awaits

After taking a deep breath, Mrs. Mallard opened the door to her sister’s welcoming arms. As they went down the stairs, Louise looked in awe of the new life that awaited right in front of her. Although she felt saddened by the death of her husband, the life they lived was not one of love or adventure as she longed for. The funeral was full of friends and family giving their regards and sympathies, as Mr. Mallard was laid in the ground, she began to to cry. Cry for the man she wished he was, cry for the man he was and cry for the years with him that were lost.

Weeks after the funeral, Louise and her sister Josephine took a trip to the south. They saw many splendid places and experienced the finest foods. ” Louise, are you ready to get back home and put your life back together? Louise, you do realize you’re going to have to find a new husband, someone to care for you, look out for you? Of course you won’t be able to take care of yourself, not with your heart trouble”. Louise pondered a moment, thinking about what it would feel like going back to a life where everyone controlled her every move, where every moment was planned out and all hope for adventure was lost.

“Josephine, I’m afraid I’m not going to return home with you”. Josephine gasped and said “of course you have to return with me, don’t be so foolish, you can’t make it out here on your own”. Louise asked her sister kindly to please understand that this was something she just had to do. She knew it seemed to be an impossible thought at the time, but she was determined to find what she so desperately needed. As she walked Josephine to the train station, she held her sister tight and asked to please believe in her. Josephine reminded Louise that she could always come home if she needed to, please write and seek out a doctor for her heart condition right away. As they parted ways, Louise felt free to do as she pleased for the first time.

Louise purchased a lovely country home with a few acres of land with the money she received from her husband’s passing. Louise soon added chickens, goats and a few cows. Becoming more accustomed to her lifestyle out in the country, she built a wonderful garden of vegetables and herbs. Louise began selling her produce and was eventually able to buy a bull to bred her cows.

After a long day’s work, Louise sat on her porch in her rocking chair and admired all that she had accomplished. She was content, her heart filled with love, for she was finally living the life she had always wanted. Louise wrote her sister weekly and Josephine couldn’t be happier for her sister’s success but always reminding her that she could come home whenever she needed to. Josephine wrote and said she’d love to come for a visit. The sisters worked out a date and Josephine made the trip the following year for Christmas.

Years down the road, a butcher who had admired Louise from afar asked her one day if he could court her? She was happy to say yes. For she had also admired this man. Months and many dates later, they became wife and husband. Together they worked the farm, while maintaining the butcher shop. Every night they shared their dinner, he held her hand as they took walks and he kissed her every morning when they awoke. Louise finally knew the love she had always longed for and it was not of imagination. She had true happiness.

This short story was inspired by “A Story of an Hour” written by Kate Chopin. Again, this is my own personal ending to the story. The one I felt Mrs. Mallard was desperate for. It makes my heart happy to write a beautiful ending.

Thank you for reading!

Now That Everyone Knows

It’s all so puzzling, she said. What is? Said the man accompanying her. Life is, she said. The decision one can make that can impact their whole life and also the life of others. Why do you say that? Said the man. I am speaking of tragedy, loss and having to go without, she says. Why are you bringing this up all of the sudden? Says the man. He said, have you been hurt? She looks at him as though all air had been taken out of her, she cannot breathe. She says, I have had to live my life up until now without you, because of a decision you made and you ask me have I been hurt?

The look on the man’s face was as if someone had punched him right in the stomach. He blew it off and said, but I am here now. The woman stood there, in shock, thinking to herself, is this it? This is what I have waited for, for 27 years? She looked at him and said, you have kept my life a secret for 27 years and now you come here and say I have finally told everyone, you can come out of your hiding spot. Am I supposed to welcome everyone with open arms as they stare and judge? The family she had wanted to know and be a part of. Although she had wanted this all of her life, now that it was here, she had no idea what to do with all of it?

She said, what now? How do I forget all of the rejection, the hurt, the feeling of not being worthy? He looked at her and said, please do this, because I am finally ready to be your father, now that everyone knows.

As promised, above is one of the short stories I wrote inspired by “Hills Like White Elephants” written by Ernest Hemingway. I hold this story close to me. Staying true to myself, I write with my heart.

Thank you for reading!