Contrition: Holding Myself Accountable

August 1, 2013

A very traditional part of being a devout Catholic is confession.  Some people hate the act but I find it cleansing.  The Sacrament of Reconciliation always begins with, “Bless me Father, for I have sinned.”  My Baptist friends have occasionally chastised me over it, but it was another way I held myself accountable for my actions.  I enjoyed chatting with the Priest and try to do my penance.  You never want to do anything that your too ashamed to tell the Priest.  

Today one of my dearest friends became my Priest.  I was watching the news  and I had the worst thought cross my mind.   I didn’t contemplate hurting anyone or anything similar.  It is tough to openly admit that I had such a terrible thought.  I saw coverage of a fatal car crash, and I checked to see if it was someone I knew.  I thought to myself, “If it was them, I wouldn’t shed a tear.”  Seconds later I was mortified.  How could I have let that cross my mind?  I immediately dropped what I was doing, and I messaged my friend to “confess”.  I can’t begin to describe how deeply it bothered me.  I know everyone occasionally has ill thoughts toward another but this was very atypical of me.  My biggest fear is that I will become bitter and not better.  I have devoted the last few years of my life to helping others. When Brandon was murdered I was heartbroken but I handled my grief differently.  I desperately wanted to improve the lives of others, my mission was to help and not hurt.  

I messaged her for two reasons, I wanted to be held accountable for my thoughts and to try to understand them.  I don’t want to become “that person”.  You know the person who is so angry at the cards they have been dealt or the people they have encountered, that they forget how to be happy.  She tried her best to reassure me that I wasn’t that person, but for a split second I saw a glimpse of myself that I did not like.  In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Sirius Black yells, “You know the man you truly are, Remus! This heart is where you truly live!” when Professor Lupin is turning into a werewolf.  Lately, I feel like I need a Sirius Black to remind me where my heart belongs.  There is an old Cherokee proverb that I try to live by and you can read it on the left.  Everyone is capable of both good and bad.  We should remember to feed the good by thinking before we speak, surrounding yourself with kind people, and never let hate or ill thoughts consume you.    

I am not perfect.  I am only human.  I will never be flawless.  I am however, accountable for my own words, thoughts, and actions.  I know I haven’t made some of the best choices when handling personal matters the last few weeks.  My personal relationships seem to spill over to one another, and occasionally the wrong party receives the backlash that was meant for someone else.  I just need to remind myself to stay on course.  How do you hold yourself accountable for your own actions?  What do you do to feed your “good” wolf?  

Happy Thoughtful Thursday

If Love Could Have Saved You…

May 25, 2013
I stole this from my sister 

Brandon and I were 13 months apart, there wasn’t a moment in a my life that I don’t remember having
him around.  The pain of losing him was nearly unbearable.  I often sit and watch the clock on May 25th, thinking about what our lives were like that day before he died.  We never saw it coming, and I’m sure he didn’t either.

Brittney, Lauren, Renae, and I were sitting at Tapas in downtown Lexington the very last time I heard his voice.  He called and I answered, but only briefly.  I was enjoying dinner and drinks with my girlfriends before heading into a night of work at UK.  I wish I would have talked longer.  I will be forever grateful for the last few seconds of conversation and a final I love you.

Our lives have changed dramatically since he left us.  We have three new babies in the family.  My sister is engaged, and I am getting divorced.  His daughters have grown up so much, and he would be so proud of the little women they are becoming.  The last few weeks I have needed you more than ever and I guess you are listening to my prayers.

There will never be words to describe how much you are missed.  Your laughter and antics, you always knew how to make anyone laugh.  I hope you know how much are loved and cherished.  I know that you would like nothing more than to teach your two nephews to fish, hunt, and play football.  It is a somber day for our family.  I take solace in knowing that heaven is a little goofier place because you are there.

Today instead of remembering the day you were stolen from us, I will remember the days that we shared.  Our first trip to Disney World, breaking my leg racing you on a bicycle, and the time you nearly knocked me out playing “balance beam” on the edge of our parents water bed.  The absolutely ridiculous stuff like trying to light your farts are some of the most amusing moments of my life.  

I love you Brandon Michael Peace.  
You might have left this earth but you will never be forgotten.
December 15 1981- May 25, 2009  

Happy Sorrowful Saturday,

A Focus on Friendship

Photo Credit: Galleria of Art

Here lately I have had mixed emotions about how I feel.  I really am relieved.  I realized that being lied to that much is emotional and mental abuse.  He destroyed every ounce of trust I had for anyone.  It is stressful to constantly feel like your being lied to, and in my case I was.  The last few years have just been full of lies.  The stress was overwhelming at times and it was often compounded by being a single mom.  I want my marriage to be over but it is just hard to watch 13 years of a relationship come to a close.  It is like mourning the loss of a loved one.  I struggle with the need for human interaction and the  strong desire to isolate myself.  It took every ounce of courage and strength I had to go to my clubs Federation Day last week. I am glad I went, I love my girls and they are incredible support.

There is an old saying that, “a true friend walks in when the world walks out.”  I realized how many true friends I have.  We might not always talk, but they always show up when I need them.  Last night my Navy friend from 16 years ago, made plans to come us from Arizona in July.  We haven’t seen each other in 14 years.  There are some bonds that are never truly broken.

Today another dear friend and I went to lunch, and then got our kiddos together to play.  We laughed about how much our lives have changed.  It is nice to see a smiling face and have a few laughs over a beer.  Last week, I mended a another friendship that I thought was irrevocably broken.  I had cherished her like a sister, and I was always heartbroken losing that friendship.  It was a spot of blue sky on a very cloudy day.

Well this Belle has to run.  Gabe and I are going to watch my nephew play ball, along with seeing a few old friends.  Gabe also go a invite to a pool party.  I am looking forward to seeing how the future unfolds for the both of us.

Happy Friendship Friday,