Back in 1942 Darlene Decker and Donald Mitchell eloped before Donald took off to fight in WWII. For over two years they exchanged letters while he was gone. When he returned the couple had two children and were married for over 50yrs. I can only imagine how hard those first two years were for them. Especially just being married and missing out on the all important honeymoon phase. ;)
Don and Darlene were my grandparents :) I was taught at an early age the level of sacrifice a soldier will give for his country.
As an American, I am grateful for every single man and woman who sacrificed and gave their time to defending our country. My heart goes out to all of the soldiers that paid the ultimate price so we can have the freedom we have. A special thank you to those families that made sacrifices as well.
A couple of weeks ago I was blessed by a young group of soldiers. My tire had popped on the way to work and they were willing to help. At that time I couldn't help but think of how young they were and could only imagine how much they would sacrifice over the years. They were so young, vibrant, and ready for whatever life is going to throw their way. My heart dropped at the thought that one of these men could lose their life while defending our rights.
It is with a very humble heart and lots of gratitude that I say Happy Memorial Day.
With much love and respect,
1. Spice World- If ever I feel lack of empowerment, or my girlhood has been insulted and I need a pick me up movie. This is my go to. Full of goofy fun and all about Girl Power!! It hits the spot and works every time! :)
2. Dumb and Dumber- Do you ever get in the mood for just a plain laugh out loud movie? This is my go to. I can quote it and every time I watch it, it gets funnier and funnier. :)
3. Grease 2- Great sing-a-long and fun characters. Who wouldn't want a Cool Rider?? Stephanie knows what she is talking about. I have to say my heart skips a beat when the nerd wins out in the end! :)
4. The Rocky Horror Picture Show- Sometimes you just feel like doing the Time Warp! Ultimate cheese factor, yet super fun. Best if viewed at a midnight showing with audience participation! Word of advice- Leave your inhibitions at the door, let loose have fun! Always a fun time. Now if I could just muster up the nerve to go in costume...
5. Superstar- I relate to Mary, we are both awkward, clumsy and dead set on achieving our dreams. I will watch this movie anytime to raise my spirits when the naysayers that live in my head get louder and louder. :)
6. Romy and Michele's High School Reunion- Good for those times when I feel inadequate. Great buddy movie as well. My favorite is Sandy Duncan, gotta love Alan Cummings. :)
7. The Wedding Singer- To remind me that there has to be a great guy like Robbie Hart somewhere in the world. He helps the elderly, goes out of his way, and can sing! What more could you ask for? :)
8. Corky Romano- Chris Penn is classic! As messed up as the family is, it is still about love in the end. Hilarious, always great fun to watch.
9. A Night at the Roxbury- Did you grab my ass?? Two guys following their dreams and taking what is theirs. Great inspiration! As you may can tell, laughter inspires me. So this is my religious fulfillment in a sense. God's got me, he knows what I mean. ;)
10. Wayne's World- SAVED THE BEST FOR LAST! Hands down, best movie to inspire. Best movie to quote. Ahem..."if you are going to spew, spew into this". I am not worthy, I am scum... Mike Myers and Dana Carvey I heart you men very much. You helped define who I am. To this I say Thank You! :)
My animals are cute and feisty. They are balls of energy and happiness. They are also full of attitude and stubborn. I like to think of them much like children minus the capacity to formulate words. Though they try...
All my life I have been surrounded by animals in once capacity or another, and it has shaped me into an odd individual. At least odd in my own right. These lovely creatures have the most amazing capacity to love and feel. Their range of emotions are just as valid as any human. They do communicate to. Those shoes that were peed on? That newspaper torn up all over the floor? Oh and the mysterious puddles that suddenly appear in the middle of the night as you walk barefoot the restroom. Oh wait? Is that just me?
I have seen my little Dorothy cry, I have seen Liza sad, and I have seen love exude from Skeeter my cat, and Snoopy who is cuddled so nicely next to him. I know us as humans know the meanings of hurtful words, but not the animals right? They don't know the meaning of such things. WE ARE WRONG!! I know unfortunately first hand.
I have seen it in their eyes, in their head as they cower away. They know they did something not pleasing. I assure they had a reason. Stop, think, did you ignore them? Did you brush them aside? Did they just want attention and were pushed away because you were typing a text or posting a pic?
Believe me, they have souls. They have feelings. These little guys require attention. Listen to them, observe their reactions. Before long, your conversations will be full of fun and insight. Surprisingly I have had some of my most profound discussions with my dogs. Skeeter is awesome at cheering me up. Dorothy knows when I am down, she will curl up next to me and try to lick my face as if to say "I am here". My oldest Gypsy who is not pictured, will lean her head in to give you love back every time you say I love you. Just a few examples of the unconditional love every animal has the capacity to show.
Laughter is a side effect of their antics. Why else would the world go ga-ga over all the kitty and puppy pictures? All I can attest to is my animals, crazy as it may seem at times, have given me hope, love, and a deeper understanding I would not have had otherwise.
Hug your pets today!! Give them attention, and I promise, your day will be a bright and happy one!
Take care, much love!!
There are a group of super humans out there that live among us. A greater population than we may realize. Society likes to call them Caretakers, I call them silent heroes.
The women and men I have encountered in life taught me that basic humanity still exists. These individuals may not march in protests, vie for society's acknowledgement, or even have names we see in lights. They do what they do out of love. Plain and simple.
I had the most interesting conversation with a gentleman today that was so profound it rocked me to my core. He asked a simple question, "Who takes care of you?" This is a basic concern. Who does take care of those who take care of everyone else? How do they get their needs met, or do they ever really?
Caretakers often get overlooked, putting their own personal needs aside to sacrifice their time, money, and sometimes dreams to care for those who cannot do it for themselves. The reasons may vary, the length of time may be different, but they all have basic things in common.
Now that I too have first hand knowledge of the life or should I dare say lack of, these wonderful people experience, I have come to see them in a new light. Simple tasks that we take for granted are now luxuries for them. Here are just a few:
1. Hot meals- I list this first because of it's need to be seen. Often caretakers are too busy making meals for their loved ones that they have to put their meals in microwaves, or wait till they have taken care of everyone else's food first. By the time there is a chance to eat, it is cold. Either hurry up and eat it as is, or hope for the two minutes it takes to warm up.
2. Time- Have no time for to oneself, and if by the off chance one gets a break, it is either hope to sneak in a nap, or take care of other items that have fallen behind.
3. Peace of mind- Living in constant fear that a loved one's final moments could happen at any time. That if they sleep in, it could mean that our worst fear has become reality. Doctor's on speed dial. Mapped out routes to hospitals stored in phones, or burned into memory. Questioning if sleep will be an option tonight and making sure the phone is charged just in case.
4. Sleep- We fall asleep late, wake up early. Try to mimic our "patient's" patterns, just to rest when they do. Yet lightly sleep, jumping up at the sound of the smallest noise. Oh no, they are awake!! Their goes my time with the pillow.
5. Vacations- Scheduling time "off" is often rare and hard to find. Who will take my place? Do they know the routine? Do they know what to do if A, B, or C happens? Refer to number 3.
6. Socialization- What is this? Socialize? Reminds me of an episode of Will and Grace, where Will was taking care of his mother after she broke her leg. He meets up with (Dylan McDermott) who is taking care of his mom. All of Dylan's worse fears come true the night he and Will finally have some alone time. Yep this episode sums it up.
7. Weakness- This is not an option. Caretakers can not show vulnerability, God forbid someone knows we are sad, lonely, or slowly losing patience. We have to be strong, in control, and on the ball. No time to be meek!
8. Gratitude- I am not saying gratitude from others. It is often those we are taking care of that either forget, cannot say or show gratitude, or grow expectant of actions that we as caretakers are left to pray for patience or added kindness.
As a newbie struggling to manage it all, one thing became apparent. We are out of our freaking minds. Our sense of humor is often off the wall, we hold conversations with animals, or objects. I now fully understand the necessity of "Wilson" from Cast Away. We look for small adventures in the mundane. The weekly grocery trip is now a safari and I am looking for a zebra...
Oh, wait. I am sorry, that could just be me. :)
Above all else, I am grateful to each of you who are caretakers. Not just because I now am getting a taste of what you all have been doing for a long time, but because each one of you have taught me something. Time with family is precious. Each moment, even the trying ones, will be a memory to be treasured. Good or bad, happy or sad, life must go on and we all need a little help at some point. Thank you to those who give with all they have. You are each angels/superheroes/saints in my book. :)