Long Live The Don 7-11-19

Yesterday was my dads birthday. When my dad was alive I used to love to spoil him on his birthday. I would always buy him something special and super cool. I miss my dad every day. I miss his intrusive phone calls throughout the day. I miss hearing his crazy stories that would always make me laugh until I cried and I miss the comfort I felt knowing that even on my worse and most challenging days I could always count on my dad to be there to pick me up and force me to keep going. More importantly I miss spoiling him rotten on his birthday.

I had to drive to Moses Lake yesterday afternoon. On the way I found myself thinking about my dad. I was a little teary eyed missing him immensely. Suddenly this huge bird landed on the road in front of me I thought “is that a hawk?!” As I got closer the bird didn’t budge. It just kept staring at me. I had to drive around it as it just kept looking at me. I realized it was an Eagle! I couldn’t believe it! In truth, it freaked me out. However, after I passed the bird I saw it spread its wings and fly away. I wondered if it was some sort of sign. Then I remembered. My dad had an eagle tattoo on his arm. When he passed I took a picture of it. I later got that same tattoo. I used to call my dad the The Don because he often lived his life after his favorite movie, The Godfather. I know this sounds crazy but I would like to believe that my dad saw me cry today and felt the painful void I still feel because he’s gone. I’d like to believe he was letting me know that he’s still with me in spirit. I hope so anyway.

Happy Birthday to the man who still owns a piece of my heart. Even though he’s no longer with me, I know he’s with me in spirit. Who knows….maybe as an Eagle. With that said, may he continue to fly like an Eagle enjoying the freedom of no longer being in pain.

Maui….My Paradise 5-26-18

I just returned from spending eight days in Maui. I spent the week with my best friend who happens to be my cousin. We had a wonderful time. It’s always fun to hang out with my cousin. We laugh, we eat, we sing….we do everything we did when we were kids. It’s so much fun.

Going to Maui was a blessing. I am so grateful for the opportunity. After all, Maui is not only my favorite place, it’s also my healing place. Something about that “Maui Vibe” always seems to offer a sense of peace and grounding for me. This trip was no different.

Since 2012, I’ve been fortunate enough to spend a total of 15 weeks in Maui. What can I say, I’m truly blessed. My cousin and I spent much time exploring the island as well as enjoying some much needed bonding time on the beach. We even did reiki. We went to Napili Beach. Big Beach, Lahaina, Paia, The beach at Five Palms (my favorite beach and Hana. It was awesome. My last day I took one last walk on the beach and was blessed to see six turtles. Three of them sunbathing. Turtles supposedly represent long life and good luck. I saw six that morning.

Maui is my go to place when I find myself depressed, stressed out or even overwhelmed with this thing called life. I like to meditate on the peace of being on the beach or the sunsets Maui has to offer. My dream would be to live in Maui part time. If I could do that, I would certainly be one happy camper.

This trip to Maui marked a new beginning for me. A new start. I’ve been in a slump for the past seven years. First my dad passed away causing my life to spiral out of control. Add cancer, an abusive boyfriend, financial challenges, family issues to the mix and you have one big pot of crappy goulash. I used the time to focus on letting go, finding forgiveness, healing myself so I could finally toss that goulash that’s existed in my life and move forward.

There’s a Hawaiian bird called the Iwa. This bird is a very meaningful bird in the Polynesian culture. The Iwa is at times referred to as the “Storm Bird”. The Iwa is 43. inches long. It soars and glides gracefully with a wing span of seven feet. They often travel great distances but rarely soar further than 50 miles from land. This bird has the resilience to withstand storms in its search for food and travel great distances. They swoop down in the ocean and snatch their prey using their hook like beaks.

Polynesian fisherman look to these birds while fishing. If the Iwa is flying above them, they know they are in a fishing area. They also look for the Iwa to find their way back home when they are out at sea.

While I was battling cancer, I used to say to myself, “when I overcome this battle, I’m getting a tattoo”. Well I did just that while I was in Maui. If you have ever been to any of the Hawaiian islands you know that many Polynesians have tribal tattoos. What you may not know is the tattoos they wear proudly have meaningful significance to each person wearing them. I went to a local tattoo artist named Sampson. He’s located on Kehei Road in a small shop called Pacific Rootz. We discussed a tattoo that would hold a special meaning in my life. I opted for a small yet significant tattoo of the Iwa. Like the Iwa I have faced many “storms” these past seven years. I’ve soared great miles to find my way “back home”. The Iwa is a reminder for me that whatever life throws at me, I am resilient and will eventually find my way back. I’m at a point in my life where I’m ready to let go of my past and find my way “home” to where the good lord wants me to be. It’s my guess in a much happier space, soaring through life and living life to the fullest.

We all face hardships and trials. Some of us more than others. If you’re like me, at times I feel like God has abandoned me however I’m reminded in Mathew 6-26 that if God provides for the birds he will certainly provide for me. I hope so anyway.

Mathew 6-26 “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly father feeds them. Are you not more valuable than they.”

I was standing on the sand the last day of my trip enjoying the waves that would come in and cover my feet then would slowly roll back and go back to the ocean. It occurred to me as I stood on the beach that life is like the waves of the ocean. Just like the waves, trials and challenges come in and cover our feet causing us to feel like we are drowning. However, like the waves, our trials slowly but surely head back to where they came from and once again we find ourselves standing on solid ground. Maybe a little “sandy” from all the debris those “waves” left behind but we are standing nonetheless.

The trials I’ve faced these past seven years have been hard. They have caused me so much pain and suffering. I have the scars to prove it. Like the waves, I am beginning to see my feet again. I’m hopeful and I’m happy again. I’m looking forward to enjoying life until the next wave comes in. Until then, like the Iwa, I’ll soar gracefully through this thing called life and keep moving forward towards finding my place and the “home” and the solid ground or land where I need to be.

I’ll leave you today with one of my favorite Outfield tunes. “My Paradise”

Father’s Day – Just Me And My Dad 6-18-17

Happy Fathers Day to all you dads out there. Especially to my son and son in law. In my opinion, two of the greatest dads ever. Fathers Day is a reminder of the void I feel missing my dad. It’s been six years since he passed away. There isn’t a day I don’t miss that wild and crazy guy who always made me laugh. Somehow, even on the worst days my dad had a way with bringing tears to my eyes from laughing so hard as he told one of his hilarious stories. 
On this Fathers Day, I’d like to reflect on the fun memories my dad left behind. As I look at this photo I’m reminded of the good times I shared when it was “Just Me And My Dad”.   

Today the tears are gone and the void in my heart has been replaced with the love and joy I have from my beautiful grandchildren but I’d still give anything to have just one more day. One more day of hearing my dad share one of his funny stories. One more day of just “hanging out”. One more phone call. One more day…..Just Me And My Dad.