Why Lularoe? Why now? My “Why”.

 

When you sign on to be a Lularoe Consultant, they ask you to create your “Why”.  Your reasoning for signing up with the company.  It’s not just about selling clothes, or their amazing leggings.  It could be, they are that good. It’s about so much more.  They are a company who motivate and inspire people to work hard and achieve their goals.  They built their brand with ethical business practices at the forefront,  a unique plan for customer engagement, and a beautiful product. So, this is my “why”.

The Backstory

A few months ago, I started to get bogged down a little.  I felt like I was starting to drown. One morning I was reading the news and came across a story about recurring dreams.  The most common one is where you feel like you’re falling.  I had recently started having this dream almost nightly.  The article said that usually means that you feel like you’ve lost control. And it was right, I had.  There was so much going on at home, with my brother, professionally, financially.  It was overwhelming.  I didn’t feel like any one person or thing or task was getting  100% of what they deserved or needed.   I was keeping a running tally in my head of who I had disappointed.  J.J. wanted to go to the store one night, but the dog was sick so I couldn’t take him.  I told him we’d go the next night.  The next night, something came up with Kruno, and he needed something.  But I had already disappointed J.J. the day before so I couldn’t do that two days in a row to him, so that night I had to disappoint Kruno.  My work suffered, my relationships, my health.  One of the biggest reasons we moved home was because of my health.  I was stressed to the max in Colorado.  I was having migraines almost every day.  I had lost feeling in my left arm and leg, and I had a 1.3 cm cyst in the middle of my brain.  Stress does very strange things to the body.  And some of the same symptoms had started happening again. I had to regain control, prioritize, and just get my shit together in general.

 What I realized

As things started to fall into place, and the stress was subsiding, I started to wonder about these episodes.  They seem to come on during times when I was in, what I consider to be, a mild state of depression.  I was down and out, unhappy, a real negative nancy.  In going along with my New Year post, that simply wasn’t going to do anymore.  I desperately wanted to change.  My outlook. My situation.  In order to do that, I had to do some serious soul-searching.  This is my theory:

I decided to take on a second job…  I know, it sounds crazy.  I’m sure most people would think that taking on additional projects or business ventures would be counterproductive.  Hear me out. While I enjoy my lovely little life.  I am truly blessed in all aspects of it.  There does seem to be something missing. It’s hard to put into words exactly what it is.  It’s lacking a little creativity, a bit of a social aspect, a desire to be in control (to a certain degree) of my future and success. I don’t feel completely fulfilled.  And I really really want to be, or at least know I’m working towards it.  Think of your life as a set of gears.  Lots of them, but all different sizes. Some big some small, remove one and everything after that one, will stop. And the end result will never be realized the way it was meant to be if all the gears were there. And maybe that missing gear is an aspect that you unknowingly long for, and just didn’t realize until now. For me, I think  that gear is something that brings a sense of accomplishment and confidence.  And it only took me 33 years to realize how important these things are both professionally and personally.

The Plan

Kruno and I want to be business owners.  We both have an entrepreneurial spirit.  We want something of our own.  Where we get out exactly what we put in.  We don’t expect to quit our jobs and start a business, have it be a success and make six figures tomorrow. But we wanted something to work towards.  We’ve tossed around business ideas for months.  There was always something that held us up.  Not enough time, or space, but mostly money.  It takes a lot to start a business.  But, what we’ve come to realize recently, is there will, most likely, never be the “right” time or specific conditions, for anything.  And if, by chance there is, you only realize it was perfect after its passed. I think this is true for most everything.  I probably shouldn’t be giving advice so early in the game, but at this point, I say if there’s something you want, or feel like you’re missing in life, get after it! (responsibly, of course)  You want to go on a trip?  Book it.  Want to start a new career?  Make the leap.  Want to adopt a child?  Do it.  I am a firm believer of the “everything happens for a reason” theory.  I think this opportunity came along at exactly the “right” wrong time for us.  It’s a wonderful company with a product I believe in.  I think this will give me the exact gear that I’ve been missing my whole life.   And Kruno and I couldn’t be more excited.

When a flower doesn’t bloom you fix the environment in which it grows, not the flower.                                          – Alexander den Heijer

 

 

Going To The Mattresses


 

 

 

I’ve never seen “The Godfather”. But, I have seen “You’ve Got Mail”. Many, many times. In the movie, Meg Ryan’s character, Kathleen, is at odds with a big businessman named Joe Fox, whose company is about to put her’s under.  Unbeknownst to the both of them, they are each other’s secret online love interests.  Joe Fox, played by Tom Hanks replies with the following message to Kathleen when she asked him for business advice:

“Go to the mattresses. You’re at war. It’s not personal, it’s business. It’s not personal its business. Recite that to yourself every time you feel you’re losing your nerve. I know you worry about being brave, this is your chance. Fight. Fight to the death!”

This post was a tricky one to write.  There are so many variations of what it means to fight.  You can fight for an injustice, for someone’s well-being, or for something you believe in. My family has been tackling some of those lately.


My first lesson about “Going to the Mattresses”

For my entire life, I have been terrible at all sports. Awful. I have no business being on any sort of field or court in a competitive setting.  However, in 7th grade, I signed up to play on our middle school soccer team.  Every sport I had played leading up to this, I had been coached by my dad or his friends at the rec department.  That wasn’t the case this time.

During one match, our team was winning 7-0 and we were in the final minutes of the game.  The coach called my name for the first time that day and put me in as fullback.  The whistle blew and an opposing wing came at me with the ball.  I managed to take it away and kick it in the opposite direction.  A few seconds later the whistle blew again and I had been replaced.  As I came off the field I saw my dad get out of the car and start walking towards our sideline.  I thought “he’s probably coming to tell me what a great job I did, kicking that ball away.” I was mistaken.

“Darci! Get your shit, we’re going home!” I stopped in my tracks, shocked.  He didn’t stop there though.  He then turned to the coach.  “Hey!  You’ve got an awful lot to learn about coaching!” he said.  “You’re up 7-0, and you can’t leave her in there for more than 30 seconds?  You’ve been playing your first string the entire game!”

That was the end of my soccer career.  I was so embarrassed.  I remember crying and dreading going to school the next day.  We are from a very small town where everyone knows everyone.  I knew kids and their parents would be talking about it. Later on that night, dad came to have a talk with me about what had happened.  I believe this was after he had had a phone call with my former coach.  While I don’t remember his exact words, the moral of the story was “That wasn’t right.  That’s not how to be a good coach.  And she needed to know how I felt” My dad lacks subtlety, at times.  It’s a blessing and a curse.  But, I’ll never forget that day and the lesson I learned. He fought for what he believed.  It’s a story I tell often.


 

Our family has fought our share battles recently. All of the varying levels of intensity and for different reasons. Some have been fought as a group and some have been taken on singularly, and even internally.

My mom, for example, has fought for my step-dad every day since September 1st.  He was in a car accident and has been in the hospital since then.  Most of the time he hasn’t been fully awake.  She has fought for an adequate level of care. She has fought to keep him alive, more than I believe the doctors have since the first days after the accident.   She has been at the hospital (with the exception of when my brothers’ accident happened) every day she could since the beginning.  My mom with her vigilante style bedside monitoring, and her demand for answers.  She’s fought real hard.   He woke up last week, and I got a phone call from him. He said, “What’s going on, kid?”  That’s always how he started a phone call with me. It was probably the most amazing phone call I’ve ever gotten in my life.  Unfortunately, he did have a bump in his recovery road a couple of days after that phone call.  But, he’s still here.  He’s still fighting.

Today is the 3-month mark since JJ’s accident.  There is no way for anyone to really understand what he must battle with every day.  There’s no way to measure how much he has to fight on a daily basis.  Even in his first days in the hospital, the doctors and nurses all talked about how tenacious he was.  How much strength and determination he had.  And all that was said before he was able to talk.  My family knew he had all that in him.  But I never truly noticed the degree of it until then.  When he would insist on doing things himself when he had 6 very willing family members in his room to help.  When he would surpass every expectation the doctors had set.  Stand with almost full weight on a leg that he doesn’t have full feeling in.  And most recently, when he was told he wouldn’t be on a snowmobile this year.  He showed them all just how much fight he had in him.

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Just from a personal standpoint, my brothers fight aside.  This is what I’ve learned in the last 3 months:  Fighting is hard.  It is exhausting and often tear-inducing.  And because of the recent uptick of occurrences in which going to battle is required, I’ve had to pick them more carefully.

My brother is home from the hospital.  And everyone in the family is ecstatic. We have been looking forward to this for three months.  We knew that the transition would be tough, but I was totally unprepared for how tough it would be at the beginning.  In one week alone, I have cried at 2 different pharmacies trying to pick up my brother’s prescriptions because of issues related to billing.  I’m sure I looked like a lunatic.  And then, inevitably feel immediately embarrassed and start pleading my case as to why I’m not a lunatic and then probably look like even more of a lunatic then I did at the beginning. It’s a vicious cycle.  Anyway, One of the battles we’ve taken on is making the house handicap accessible.  We have been begging for 2 months for someone to come in an access our house.  Get it set up for him so when he got home, he’d be able to be mostly independent.  We were met with every stall tactic and excuse they had.  And I, having never navigated through anything like this before, fell for it.  At this point, there are 5 or 6 different people or companies involved in this.  The caseworker, the caseworkers assistant, the insurance company, the contractor, subcontractor,  and as of today the owner of a very large home modification company.  Everyone is pointing the finger at the other as to why this is taking so long.  I make multiple phone calls a day trying to figure it out but usually end up more confused than I was at the beginning.  Today, I made an extra phone call.  To a lawyer.  As this process goes along, I’m seeing that sometimes you can’t fight your battles alone. And I need help fighting this one.  There won’t be many more niceties.  It’s not personal.  It’s business.

I have yet to find a manual or script anywhere to offer me any guidance on how to fight. The desire alone, to fight, comes from within.  It’s propelled by a person’s heart, gut instinct, and moral compass. And not very often, do those 3 things combined steer you wrong.

 

“If you’re feeling froggy, go ahead and leap” – Butch Hanson

 

 

 

 

As my Meme would say – “To Us”

As the year comes to an end today, and we reflect on the year past, there are surely lots of things to be remembered.  Good and bad.  It’s what we make of the year to come that matters most now.  Looking at things with rose-colored glasses is difficult for some, and I am that “some”.

While the traditional New Year’s Eve song “Auld Lang Syne” isn’t necessarily relevant to my life right now, it is a symbol of new beginnings. It brings us into a new year. A new state of mind. Resolutions, promises, and expectations. 2016 seems to be a year some would like to forget. If you find  yourself on any sort of social media, you will inevitably see things like “worst year ever!” or a growing list of hashtags with similar sentiments. Celebrity deaths aside, it would appear that more people than usual have experienced hardships, tragedies or loss this last 365 days.

I find myself coming up short on the positives often. Every year on my birthday, I get a call from a friend of mine. Her name is Katie, we’ve known each other since elementary school and she is a rose-colored glasses kind of girl.  She does this thing on birthdays. She’ll ask “What was the three best things about this past year? And what three things are you looking forward to in the next year?” I turned 33 on November 22nd, and I knew the call was coming. I had tried to prepare for it.  I dug deep for answers to both questions. So deep, in fact, I don’t remember what I said. I think maybe I’ve forgotten because the responses I gave her maybe weren’t the truth, or particularly important. Except one answer. In response to the best thing about last year was “I moved home.” That’s all I had, but it was a big one.  When she called,  my brother was still in the hospital.  Our lives were in a mild form of chaos.  I couldn’t see the forest through the trees. I had tunnel vision, and I mean like longest tunnel in the world vision, with only my running lights on.  What I could see, was very dim.

I know that I am more negative than I intend to be.  I envy the optimists, the positive Polly’s of the world.  Negativity creeps up on me. I’ll start a sentence or story with the intentions of it being neutral, and before I know it, it’s taken a turn south. Or when I’m preparing for something.  An event, not in a social way, but more of an outcome of something.   It’s hard to see when you’ve crossed over from being prepared to pessimist. “Prepare for the worst, and hope for the best” is a saying that sums up my outlook most days.  I don’t see that perspective changing for me. While I believe in this saying wholeheartedly, it does, more often than not, tend to slant towards pessimism Negativity spreads like a weed, while the opposite somehow takes more care and nurturing to hit not just mainstream media, but self-acknowledgement.

But in this time of reflection, I’d like to publicly declare my one and only resolution attempt for 2017. I will be that positive Polly. No more negative Nancy. I will make a serious attempt to see the best of situations and speak only to that. Not in the annoying overbearing way some people do, but in a realistic, non-condescending way. A way that doesn’t demean the gravity or seriousness in the situation, but simply emphasizes the best possible outcome.

With all that being said, or typed rather.  I’m going to start the new year early.  My rosey glasses are on.  I’m going to take today and celebrate the end of an unforgettable year.  For better or worse, it is done with.  I will raise, perhaps a few glasses of champagne tonight.  As I have been known to do, often without a special occasion.  We will move on to the next year and I’ll do my absolute best to make it one where #bestyearever will be my most often used hashtag.  As soon as I figure out how to use hashtags…

 

To Us!

The Good and Bad in Goodbye

There are many ways to say “Goodbye”.  It can have many different undertones.  It can be sad or even happy in some cases, and other things in between.

My brother has hit a milestone in recovery from his work accident. After 46 days in the hospital, he has been transferred to rehabilitation in Boston. There, he will get his first prosthetic and soon start walking again.  We have been preparing for this day since he was out of the ICU.

J.J. doesn’t remember much of the ICU.  How could he?  When they first brought him in, he was hooked up to multiple machines and had 19 different bags of fluids hanging from what the nurses called his “Christmas tree”. As they days went on, and specifically after the amputation, periodically the nurses would come in and trim the tree. And soon enough he was down to barely a shrub.  During his stint in the ICU, those nurses were his lifeline.  They were our lifeline.  They barely left his room.  We relied on them for everything.  And they never did disappoint.

The day that J.J. was moved from the ICU to a regular room was one of those confusing types of goodbyes I’m talking about.  We said goodbye to our lifelines, and cried a little.  It was tough.  The uncertainty of it. What this new floor, with the new nurses was going to bring.

These men and women were every bit as amazing as the last bunch.  The nurses seemed to love J.J. like a member of their family.  Some brought him in homemade food. They hung out with him in the middle of the night when he couldn’t sleep.  They checked in on him even when he wasn’t assigned as their patient.  J.J. loved them too.  He had a system, how he liked things. Certain pillows in certain places on the bed.  All the nurses knew this secret, sometimes unspoken system, and obliged.  If they were ever bothered or annoyed by his requests, they certainly didn’t let on.

On Friday November 18th, J.J. was told that he was ready for Spaulding. He would leave Monday morning.  I asked him a few times if he was excited.  He response was always the same.  “Yes and no.”  I know the decision to leave CMMC was a hard one for him.  But his case worker assured him that Spaulding was the place to be.  That Sunday, we said goodbye to a couple of our favorite nurses.  Shelby, Kristen and Abby.  I started to cry, and so did they.  J.J. said “way to go, Darc.”

Monday came, more goodbyes were said.  I’m sure there were fewer tears considering I wasn’t there. They loaded him into the ambulance and headed to Boston. He’ll be at Spaulding for about 4-6 weeks.  The facility is amazing.  It’s a state of the art, futuristic looking place right on the harbor.  While the first day was tough, just getting accustomed to their way of doing things, J.J. knows this is where he needs to be.  And in time, saying goodbye to the people here will be just like before.

To all his nurses at CMMC, we miss you terribly!

 

 

Macedonians in Maine: An Interview

I met my husband, Krunoslav on Match.com.  He worked 7 days a week and I worked at a busy Irish Pub.  We both had odd schedules that didn’t afford either of us many opportunities to meet a potential girlfriend/boyfriend.  He sent the first message, I noticed his name was not an American one.  He said he was from Macedonia and that he liked soccer.  I made up a story about needing some info about soccer for something I was working on for the pub. And within only a couple of messages our first date was arranged.  It went well.  So well in fact, we met again the next night.  He watched “Glee” with me and I helped him deliver papers at midnight.  And as they say, the rest is history.

The first time I met his parents was when they made the long trip from Macedonia to Denver for our wedding. Their names spelled phonetically are Nikola and Kruno’s mom is Blageetsa. His mother speaks english “little bit” as she says.  She speaks it better than she thinks.  And his dad can say a few words.  It’s amazing what you can tell about someone without speaking.  Just by observing a single moment.  As I walked towards them coming out of the international arrivals gate, I knew that they were lovely people.

Well, the In-Laws have arrived for another visit.  We have been looking forward to it for months.  For the last few days I have been thinking about what to post.  And this morning it came to me.  An interview with my in-laws.  I wasn’t sure how the request was going to translate.  But, they agreed and thanks so my wonderful husband and his translation services, it went very well.

Q: How did you meet?

B: We met at a party at a restaurant.  We were introduced by friends.

Q: Do you remember your first date?

N: Not the specifics, but it lasted awhile.  It was the next day after the party and we had our first kiss.

Q:What is Skopje, Macedonia like?

N: It’s very historical (dates back to 4000 b.c.) . Similar to the Old Port portion of Portland.  Our house is in the Suburbs of the capital, Skopje. It’s a very tight-knit community.  Learn more about Skopje, Macedonia Here.

Q: What are some customs or traditions of Macedonia during the holidays?

B: On Christmas Eve (usually on or around January 7th as they use the orthodox calendar), we make a loaf a bread and put a coin in it.  When we sit down to dinner we each take a piece, and also have a piece for family afar and Jesus.  Whoever gets the piece with the coin, it will be their lucky year.  For us Christmas isn’t about presents, it’s about family and emphasis is on the meal with family.  On August 2nd, we celebrate our Independence from Turkey. It’s like your 4th of July.

Q: What is the biggest difference between your country and the US?

B & N: How friendly people are here.  Whenever you go into a shop or store.  People greet you.  They say “hello” and “how are you”.  People don’t do that in Skopje.  The other thing, is that people seem so busy here.  We work either the same or more hours per week back home, but aren’t always in a hurry.  We have time to spend with family and friends.  Back home, families only have 1 car.  Here, everyone has a car to get where they need to go quickly.

Q: What is your favorite thing about Macedonia?

N:  Family.  Not just the family as in people but the sense of family and community.  Kruno added – Our country was recently in a way.  It went though a very hard time and what got people through that, was family.  It’s very important there.

What is the hardest part of international travel?

B: Being bored on the long flight.

N: Blageetsa being bored on the flight.  She kept getting up and moving around.

~ They did add, that being in the last row was nice.  It seemed a little less cramped then the other flight.  I asked if they minded the long wait to disembark the plane.  They both agreed that it wasn’t a big deal.  They are far more patient than I.

What has been your favorite thing you’ve eaten while in the US?

B:  Yummy Chicken (A family recipe of mine, find it here)


 

It’s interesting how a short visit with someone can give you so much perspective.  How different families and different cultures go through life.  I always thought that my family was an affectionate group.  We pale in comparison.  The love my in-laws have to give is immeasurable.  When they said during the interview how important family is, it was an understatement.  They love with their whole hearts, their whole being.  I can’t count how many times I’ve been told “I love you” Or “Kristinia (kruno’s sister) says she loves you”. And it’s not just me.  It’s to all members of my family, and friends.  People they have only met one, maybe two times.  Their second day here, they asked to go see my brother in the hospital.  They talk about him everynight.  They’ll ask how he is doing today, if I’ve talked to him. They’ll tell me how much they love him and that they pray for him. They share memories of their first trip here and the people they met.  How our friends are lovely people, and how nice they were, how much love they have for them because they are our friends. The language barrier is tricky to navigate, but when sharing a feeling they are able to communicate with ease.

I knew it the first time I met them and I know it now.  They are some of the most kind, generous and loving people I have ever met.  And I am so very lucky to have the Petrov family as my in-laws.  I couldn’t have asked for better.

 

 

 

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The Petrov’s First Thanksgiving!

 

 

 

Bravery in the blogging world.

Well well well.  Today marks 2 weeks of blogging.  To most that doesn’t mean much, and I’m sure in a few months, it won’t to me either.  But today, right now, it feels like an accomplishment.  I’ve gotten over the initial hurdle of nerves and worry about putting myself out there.  I feel like I’ve set a stride that’s comfortable but challenging.  I don’t post if I have nothing to say. But try to take a few minutes everyday to just sit and think.  Think if there is something that I’m going over that I could put down here, and if that would help free up my mind a little.  Today, there is.  There is this one thing I’m kind of hung up on.

How much is too much info?  How personal can/should a post be?

I had lunch yesterday with a friend and I mentioned the blog to him.  Like I have done to literally anyone who would listen to me these past 2 weeks.  We started talking about how difficult it is to write about some personal experiences. And about how much bravery it takes to write about your life.  At first, I thought, it doesn’t take that much.  It’s not a big deal.  Then I thought about how this  populates to my Facebook account.  While that’s a setting I have chosen, it does cause me to second guess somethings.  I hesitate before writing and posting.  The fear that people you know may read something very personal about you is, in fact, really scary.  It’s not the strangers or the once-in-a-while glancers, but the people you are friends with, or even the people you see on occasion.

That leads to the next question that I’m surely over analyzing.  How much bravery in the realm of blogging is an acceptable amount?

I certainly would never write something with the intentions of offending someone or to purposely make someone feel uncomfortable.  But one of the primary purposes of a blog is to share your life with others. Not just the pretty surface stuff, but the tough stuff that can sometimes be ugly and heavy.  The kind of stuff that maybe could help someone through a difficult time or situation.  Or even sharing a particular story that could potentially connect you to someone who’s been through what you’re going through and offer insight.

I’ve had a post in the hopper now for a few days that I’ve been wanting to publish (I hate that term, it makes so unnecessarily official.  But that’s what they call it).  And every time I’ve looked at it and wanted to hit the button, I’ve hesitated.  And I’ve gone back and forth on whether to post it or not.  I worry that it’s too much.  Too personal. As people and social media evolve things that were once taboo, are becoming the norm.  Things that would once send a religious person straight to confession are commonplace and barely warrant acknowledgement. 

So, here I am.  Asking you.  What’s your opinion on the matter?  What are you comfortable writing and reading?  I need some guidance.

“Writing is both a mask and unveiling” – E.B. White

 

Superstition ain’t the way. Or is it?

I’m superstitious. I can’t help myself. As I get older it seems to be getting worse. The other day it  was raining pretty hard and a co-worker asked to use my umbrella.  This co-worker has been known to leave an umbrella open inside to let it dry. I don’t approve and have voiced that opinion. He tries to appeal to the logic of it, and I won’t have it. Anyway, I was nervous about him using it. It was a surgery day for my brother.  I watched the door for him to come back in. He came back with it closed and I breathed a sigh of relief. He brought it back to my desk, and I forget exactly how it played out but I thought he was going to open it to dry. I just about came out of my skin. I yelled at him a little bit. “Are you crazy?!?  JJ is in surgery! Don’t you dare open that in here!” Did I overreact? Possibly. JJ’s procedure went fine. Had the umbrella been opened indoors, would it have changed anything? Who knows… I do. Of course it wouldn’t have. But my feeling is generally – let’s not take any chances.
And when it comes to the NFL season, it is even more prevalent.  I’m a Cincinnati Bengals fan. There, I said it. I love ’em. Can’t get enough of Marvin Lewis and the whole gang. I have done the organization a great disservice this season. You see,  I have drank coffee out of the same bengals mug every Saturday since my husband bought it for me 4 seasons ago (side note, the bengals season has gotten better since then) A few weeks ago, when the accident happened it really screwed up my coffee drinking schedule. I wasn’t able to drink out of the mug for a few Saturdays, resulting in a couple of loss’s. So, to the entire Bengals organization. I’m sorry.

I also wear bengals attire on Sunday’s. but, weeks like this pose a dilemma. The Bengals play on Monday night. What’s a super superstitious gal to do?  I went with my gut. I drank out of the mug yesterday, wearing a bengals t-shirt today and will wear my jersey tomorrow.  It’s the only logical thing to do.
“Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere” – Albert Einstein.

Survivng Succulents

 


I have this terrible habit of getting excited about something like a project, starting it and never finishing it.  Like wanting to start an indoor succulent garden for example.  I bought the plants, the special dirt, pots.  The whole shebang. I put them in the garage with the intent of planting and caring for them.  But, there they sit.  Dead.

I believe this is one of my greatest faults.  I know it drives my husband absolutely crazy. I’ll have, what I consider to be, a great idea.  Convince my husband that it’s a great idea. Start the project.  And that is generally where the story ends.  He is always very supportive, god love him.  But I think that maybe he is kinda over it at this point.

I’ve mentioned this new blogging venture to him a few times expecting some sort of response.  I’ve got nothing in return.  Barely a nod of the head.  I worry that I’ve used up all my “great idea” chips.  So now, this blog not only has become a creative outlet but a “finish what I start” challenge.  But that’s the thing about blogs.  There is no such thing as a finish line.  It can go on forever!  It’s a little daunting, let me tell ya.

For the other bloggers out there, do you remember when you got your first like? or follower?  Man oh man, it was the biggest adrenaline rush I’ve had in a long time. It feels so validating and gratifying.  To have proof that someone somewhere has read what you’ve written.  It’s such a motivator.  I literally couldn’t even guess how man times a day I look at my stats.  Too much, I’m sure.  That amazing little “stats” button is what is going to get me through the days where I think “Nah, I don’t need to do a blog post today, or this week, or month”.  So here’s another post, with many many more to come.

Tell my husband.  Darci says “I’m all in!”

And don’t forget…  I’m also just a girl, writing a blog, asking for you to love her…. posts.

Follow The Yellow Brick Road

It’s been a month.  One month today since the accident.

When I got the call that my brother had been in an accident.  I immediately left for the hospital.   It was the simultaneously the slowest and quickest drive there has ever been.  I arrived, and found my way to the ICU floor.  I was met by 2 nurses, later they said they knew who I was by the look on my face.  They sat me down and explained the situation.  It was bad, labeled as critical and life flight was used.  I excused myself and waited for other family members to arrive.  Later on, while at the ICU door waiting to get buzzed in, someone came up next to me.  They had a loved one that had been in the ICU for a few days.  I was looking down at the floor and then I heard them say “The floor here reminds me of the yellow brick road.  Ya know, from the ‘Wizard of Oz?'” That’s my favorite movie.  From that moment on, I thought about the similarities between the movie and the situation that we were in.

I was the Scarecrow.  Asking for a brain to figure everything out.  Trying to learn the medical terms, which monitors meant what, blood pressures, oxygenation, medications.

I was the Lion. Asking for courage.  Courage to be strong when others couldn’t be.  Courage to help my brother with the unknown.  Courage to believe that everything is going to be just fine.

I was not the Tin Man. My favorite quote from the movie is “hearts will never be practical until they can be made unbreakable”  My heart has felt more this past month than perhaps my whole life combined.  It has been broken, mended,  but mostly filled will love and gratitude.

And then there’s my brother, J.J..  Unfortunately for him, he is a girl in this analogy.  He’s Dorothy.  Wanting desperately to find his way home.  He’ll be there soon.

“You’ve always had the power my dear, you just had to learn it for yourself”