“Learn the wisdom of compromise, for it’s better to bend a little than to break.” – Jane Wells
As children get older and go on their way to self discovery, parents sometimes get nervous and worried about the paths they are choosing to go down. We hope and trust that we have taught them right and that they will hold true to the principles and knowledge they’ve gained while growing up.
Yet, there is a time when each person asks the question, “who am I and why am I here?” “What’s my purpose?” “What am I going to do with my life?”
Some figure out the answers to these questions early on and hold true to their dreams, growing and learning, constantly reaching for their goals and owning their destiny.
Others of us go through different stages of growth and self discovery, a journey that lasts a lifetime, filled with ups and downs, leaps of faith, grand mistakes and endless opportunities.
No matter the background, whether born into a life of plenty, or growing up with a struggling single parent, we each own our own destiny. It is our response to life, to the challenges that we face and the choices that we are given that make us who we become. Our perspective, our ability to remain open and humble enough to admit when we are wrong so we can learn new ways to do things can make all the difference.
I’ve been a parent now for over 19 years, and I am learning as I go. I am not perfect and don’t profess to be, and neither are my children. Yet God put us together on this journey for a reason. Together we will face the future, learning from each other, facing obstacles in our path and offering hope and encouragement when needed.
Take a moment today to be thankful for the people in your life, whether friends, family or co-workers, we each have a purpose for being in the life of the other.
Cherry Coley (c)
“One should, every day at least, hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and if possible, speak a few reasonable words.” – Johann Wolfgang Van Goethe
Every now and then I find myself at a crossroad in life. A time and place where you know you need to choose a direction, make a decision and that the choice you make will affect the rest of your life.
I’ve sat at this crossroad wondering how I got there, trying to look at it objectively and thinking that once I saw the decisions I needed to make in the clear light of day, there was no debating, no wondering, no hesitation at all, the choices are simple.
You see, when I moved away from my ex husband my self-confidence was gone, my self-esteem was non-existent, and my self-worth was hiding in a dark corner somewhere. The verbal and emotional abuse had taken its toll and it has taken a long time to get back to…me.
So, after going through a very rough holiday season where I spent a lot of time alone, grieving and generally feeling sorry for myself, I suddenly realized that I was choosing to feel alone, choosing to grieve, choosing to feel sorry for myself. I had to stop and think about that awhile. What else have I been choosing either by doing nothing, trying to ignore things, or just not dealing with things I knew I needed to own up too?
The answers have astounded. How did I find them? By truly looking at where I was and thinking about how I want to be remembered when I’m gone. If I were to die 3 years from now, what would the people in my life say about me? I didn’t like the answers my mind came up with. I have a lot of work to do. There’s nothing like visualization to get your goals clearly back in focus.
One thing I’ve learned is that it takes far more energy to sit down and put up with things, force yourself to accept things, and look the other way, than it does to stand up, take responsibility, own up to your mistakes and take charge of your life.
When you find yourself feeling bored, unhappy, depressed, or just down, ask yourself why? Are you choosing to feel that way? Or are there things you are allowing to go on in your life that are not in sync with who you are and what you believe as a person? Either way you have choices, you have options and possibilities. Stand up and take action! It will change your perspective and your life.
Cherry Coley (c)
When you make excuses about why things didn’t get done, or create obstacles to use as an excuse to give up on that project, diet, or exercise routine the only person you are really hurting is yourself, right? Wrong. Like it or not we are all part of a community of sorts. We each have friends, co-workers, and family members in our lives that pay attention to our choices and decisions. What you do and don’t do, affects the people around you.
Someone who make excuses about meeting deadlines, or personal goals rarely exceeds anywhere else. I know for me I have to be careful because the excuses try to slip in there unnoticed when I least expect it. “I can’t go jogging tonight, it got dark outside too quick,” or “I wound up running errands for other people the last few days and it threw me off my whole routine.”
Life happens, accidents, incidents, whatever might come up can either be worked in, worked around, or incorporated into daily routines if you are really committed to a positive goal.
Let’s make 2013 a year when we reach our goals. Let’s make it a year of encouragement for the people around us, the year to do random acts of kindness and start something good.
I am determined to do some charity walks this year so I have started training to be able to reach those goals. It’s something I used to do quite often, but it’s been awhile. I look forward to doing my part, to giving back, to raising money for good causes and most of all, I look forward to crossing the finish line and knowing I stuck in there and made it!
2013 is going to be a great year! Let’s do this!
Cherry Coley ©
“He who is not thankful for little, will not be thankful for a lot.” – Chinese Proverb
I am thankful for holidays and especially for Christmas. I am thankful Christmas symbolizes the birth of Christ, although according to Jewish calendars I think he was actually born around passover. Still the music is beautiful, the images are wonderful and the peaceful, quiet that comes in winter with the cold weather adds to a sense of peace.
I love everything about Christmas. The trees and beautiful decorations, the sparkling lights, the candles, the dishes, the spirit that comes to inhabit the homes of those that welcome Christmas. I’m not talking about the commercialism and greedy parts that Christmas has grown into, I’m speaking of the true love and caring spirit of Christmas.
What I really wish is that this spirit of Christmas would stay with us. Not the rush, the hurried and frantic parts, but the quiet peace that is Christmas that settles after everything is done, all the presents are unwrapped, everyone is fed and happy, and content. The quiet hush that comes after a day of excitement, sharing, celebrating and being with people that we love.
I used to love to watch my kids sleeping among their new stuffed animals at the end of the day, smiling and cuddling a new toy. We are blessed, truly blessed.
Today and every day we can capture a little of the spirit that is Christmas. It doesn’t have to be a holiday to show someone you care. It doesn’t have to be Christmas to contact loved one’s you don’t talk to that often. Kindness doesn’t have a season, thankfulness doesn’t have a limit.
In everything give thanks. Thank you, God for giving us another day, let us use it wisely.
Cherry Coley (c)
The news of the Connecticut shootings made me angry, then heartbroken. I cannot begin to imagine the pain the families of the victims are feeling, or the pain of the children that survived and have to deal with great loss so early in their lives.
I don’t believe we should ever mention the criminals in these types of crimes. They should remain nameless – “Devil Walking” – that’s how they should be referred to. Never should they be reported by name, never should they be remembered. Take away the fame and the pictures, the stories of their lives. They are a Devil Walking doing unspeakable harm, and that’s all anyone needs to know.
If they are brave enough to live through their crime spree then they should forever be stripped of their identity, they should have their names taken away and be made to spend the rest of their lives sending financial support to the families of the victims. With a consequence like that they might think before committing such crimes. Where are their rights? They gave them up when they took the lives of others.
Yet, the mass shooting Devils perform the ultimate cowardly act of committing suicide and going down in history. Stop it! They don’t need to be remembered. The innocent lives they took – THOSE people are worth remembering, they were stripped of their lives, their hopes, their dreams, all taken in an instant.
On the flip side of this I can only say that mental instability is a growing problem. The answer - don’t just pray. Prayer is good, but prayer is NOT ENOUGH! Get involved, be aware of the people in your life. Take time to get to know them individually. Take time to find out what they are going through and if they need help, offer it if you can, or offer them a place to genuinely find help, above all – CARE.
There are at this very moment people all around each and every one of us that are hurting. The economy is bad, there are people going through job loss, financial worries, sickness and dealing with losing family members and friends. How many people do you ask how they are doing each day, and actually stay around to hear the answer? Do you just want to see them smile and say “fine” So you can go on your way? Would you like someone to ask you how you’re doing and know that they care what you say next?
It’s interesting how in an age when we are all so “connected” with social media sites and texting, we are disconnected for the actual events in each other’s lives. Those people that share their problems in the social media world can be shoved to the hidden lists or skipped over if they complain too much, or if things never seem to get better for them, God forbid the issues last too long. It’s easy to stop answering the texts or stop checking on someone if they are continuously having a hard time, don’t move on, or things don’t improve after a while. We are not a society that breeds patience.
Seeking help for working through problems, divorce, grief, job loss, abuse, health problems, from a therapist needs to stop being a stigma. If you need the help, get it. Stop worrying about what the masses think or say, it doesn’t matter what the social world thinks, what matters is that you are healthy and living the best life possible.
What’s that saying? It takes a village to raise a child? How about we rewrite that to read – it takes a community of caring individuals working together to create and maintain a healthy environment to live in. Let’s start today, reach out to the people in your life and get to know them, you will be glad you did and so will they.
Cherry Coley ©
Today I am thankful for accountability. Accountability plays a big part in our lives. It’s a wonderful thing to have people who are accountable for their own choices and actions in life. Those are the people who are not the one’s causing drama, pointing fingers, blaming others, and whining constantly because things aren’t the way they planned.
Being an accountable person means taking responsibility for your choices, decisions, actions, thoughts, and words among other things. We need more people who hold themselves accountable and live up to a higher standard.
I am thankful to finally realize what being accountable means and to be able to study and grow as a person. Life is so much more than having a positive attitude, or spouting a bunch of inspirational quotes. Becoming accountable is taking responsibility for yourself and your life and it’s a journey that changes and grows over time.
Life is much for enjoyable and fulfilling when you are in charge of your own decisions and own up to your own mistakes.
Cherry Coley ©
Today I am thankful for the seasons. How appropriate that we would have Spring, Summer, Winter and Fall. When I think of the seasons I think of the trees and a story my dad used to tell me.
There is a Native American story of a chief that had 4 sons. His sons were very impatient and reckless. He wanted to show them the meaning of life, that patience is important and to not judge things too quickly.
So he sent them each on a quest, in turn, to go and look at a pear tree that was a great distance away. The first son went in the winter, the second in the spring, the third in summer, and the youngest son in the fall. When they had all gone and come back, he called them together to describe what they had seen.
The first son said that the tree was ugly, bent, and twisted. The second son said no it was covered with green buds and full of promise. The third son disagreed; he said it was laden with blossoms that smelled so sweet and looked so beautiful, it was the most graceful thing he had ever seen. The last son disagreed with all of them; he said it was ripe and drooping with fruit, full of life and fulfillment.
The man then explained to his sons that they were all right, because they had each seen but only one season in the tree’s life. He told them that you cannot judge a tree, or a person, by only one season, and that the essence of who they are and the pleasure, joy, and love that come from that life can only be measured at the end, when all the seasons are up. If you give up when it’s winter, you will miss the promise of your spring, the beauty of your summer, and fulfillment of your fall.
I am thankful for the seasons in life and the wonderful examples God gave us to look at. Pay attention, be patient and don’t judge too quickly, but most of all enjoy each season as it comes.
Cherry Coley (c)
Today I am thankful for glitter and sparkly decorations. I just love glittery things. You can add a little glitter on something and it just becomes fun.
I used to love buying the glittery t-shirts, when you put them on the glitter would somehow wind up on your skin and hair making you look like a faery got ahold of you at some point.
We still like glitter on our Christmas tree and ornaments. We add white glitter to make figurines and ornaments look like there is snow. There are even greeting cards with glitter added in to give them that little extra something to grab your attention and make you smile.
Little girls love glitter on hair bows, purses, and shoes. There are whole collections of glittery sticker designs.
Humans have had a love of glitter since ancient Egypt where they used the ground up iridescent shells of beetles as part of their cosmetics. Even before that there is evidence select minerals were used in prehistoric times for cosmetics. Glitter as we know it was born in America after WWII by a cattle farmer named Ruschmann who found a market for scrap material ground into glitter made of plastics.
I love glitter because there’s just something about it that makes you think of magic and it makes me smile. I love glitter because it’s pretty! Today be thankful for glitter.
Cherry Coley ©
I love walking into a candy store and smelling the sweet flavors in the air, and the way different candy stores smell. The smell of a salt water taffy shop is sugary elation, but it cannot come close to walking into a chocolatiers like Godiva. The smell of chocolate is sensual and sweetly intoxicating.
There are many fond memories associated with candy, from shopping for it and trying it in the candy shops to making it in the kitchen at home. Candy is not just sweet to the taste, but a treat to make memories. I am thankful to have sweet memories and plan to make many more.
Cherry Coley ©