A friend still loves you

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“A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you.” – Elbert Hubbard

No matter what you do in your life (good or bad) a true friend will see you through it all. It is that sort of love and loyalty we all seek in this life.  Life is about relationships with God, our family, friends, casual relationships, strangers, etc.  Life is the culmination of interactions for better or worse and the events, emotions, and over all cultivated lesson over time.  That is what creates a life.

Sometimes it takes giving up our selfish dreams to see what God’s purpose is.  It is hard to think we don’t have control over our life in that regard, but that is where the mystery and excitement comes in to play!  Control is a hard concept for us humans.  God’s plan is much bigger than we could ever know!  The only thing we really have any sort of control over is our actions.

This week has been focused on saying yes to God in little ways.  That means examining my intentions of actions, intending to do good (not harm another) in these daily choices, and supporting God’s purpose for me here and now.  You might also say life is to the culmination of ‘yes’ over a person’s lifetime.  To me, I don’t think I could ever say I was 100% fulfilled by not at least trying to say yes in my actions at this point.

I believe that everyone was created with a purpose.  It is our life’s goal to figure that out before we die.  I don’t think it is as much in the “figuring it out” that is where our focus should be as much as it is in allowing God to reveal that purpose when we are ready.  Saying yes is taking the first step.

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God as He reveals His purpose for us also allows for relationships to exist for better or worse.  I must confess I believe I have the best set of friends a girl could ask for in my world.  They support, speak the truth to my face (even when it is hard), and are there for me through the ups and downs of life.  They are there to listen and love when I find it hard to do so with myself!  They, like God, never leave.  They are constant, consistent, and most of all I know they love me for me.  This is flaws and all.

A friend still loves you.  🙂

❤ CatMan

True Humility

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So, in this poking and probing of the meaning of LOVE, I have come to understand actually in order to love you must be selfless.  This doesn’t mean to forget or not take care of yourself as much as it is to develop your gifts and talents for use. Not for your OWN use, but in that of such a way to make a difference in other’s lives.  This to a certain extent requires all prideful emotions and notions to be set aside.

First, we must recognize our pride in the many forms it takes and manifests in our very core.  Once we are able to define and acknowledge where these prideful actions occur or reside, it is only then to which we can begin to cut ties and learn how to live out humility.

Pride can be seen most apparently through self-flattery and vanity.  I am most definitely a victim of this.  I look and what I see is a glorified person.  I shouldn’t be desiring others to see me; however I should be desiring others to see God’s reflection and likeness through my body.  You see as humans we are the vehicle for delivering God’s messages, healing hand, compassion and actually embracing all of these wonderful emotions feelings in witnessing to the very Truth to which he has provided us.  This sounds way easier than it really is.

As humans, due to sin, we really make a mess out of our lives.  We are damaged, hurt, and sometimes we wallow in our misery.  When we wallow, we are just sitting hurt and doing no good for ourselves and others.  I was taught to let that go.  Let as much negative emotions go.  They only weigh you down.  A good friend brought something to my attention in regards to feeling sad or hurt.   He suggested redirecting our hurt into making someone else’s day brighter.  He also suggested always trying to see the good in others no matter what.  How many times a day do we sit there talking badly, gossiping, or commenting on how someone is doing a task or living their life?  That is not fair of us to do that as now we are judging them.  We do not know their circumstance.  In fact, we should be trying to see the good that is in them and setting an example.  This can be hard when this person is someone we don’t get along with well.  We are called to love them anyways.  Love our enemies, love our friends, family and strangers all alike.

It takes true humility to love.  It takes true and genuine humility to make strides forward and it takes a tremendous amount of courage to stand for the Truth as God proclaims it to be.  Once we are able to take our ego out of the picture, see that we are just the vessel to which God works and realize that is the only such way to discover a deeper love.

Letting go of my pride and hurt is hard at this point.  I am really pouring my energy into it so I can do myself and others a favor.  I know it is something I need to do.  The past is finally the past in my mind, soul, and body.  Here is to a new page in this chapter of discovering what it is to really love!  🙂

Here is a good resource for anyone seeking more information on humility.  I like the way it is broken out.  http://www.chastitysf.com/4humility.htm

Bring your awareness up to the plate and do something nice for someone else today!

❤ CatMan

When Harry Met Sally….Challenge for love continues!

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This weekend was spent learning a lot about love.  I am brought to one of my all time favorite movies of all time…When Harry Met Sally.  I love the chemistry between Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal. “Humping and pumping isn’t Sheldon’s strong suite”

As human beings we are constantly making and breaking bonds.  The bonds we do break leave imprints positive or for the negative.  Bonds that exist could be one of many types–physical, chemical, emotional, mental or spiritual.  Some people immediately connect and for that reason we must always be on guard.

There are songs written about love all the time.  But I don’t feel like the songs speaking of this love thing are really referring to love as much as they are referring to lusting for someone.  People automatically think sleeping with someone makes you able to love a person but that simply is not the truth at all.  Sleeping with someone out of context only leaves you open for physical and emotional hurt.  Why bring that upon ourselves?

What I have discovered that in order to know what love actually is you must have God involved.  He is the definition of selfless love.  Forgive me if this is a less than perfect verbalization.  Love is not simply partial but fully inclusive.  It doesn’t choose parts of a person, but desires a total transformation and fulfillment.  Love ultimately is a choice.  You choose to love others just as you choose anything else.  Love starts with appreciating who you are, what you have gone through and making a vow to commit to someone who sees how precious you are!

“Someone is staring at you in personal growth….” I believe the best things start from a friendship.  I believe this goes against what Harry states on that cab ride to NY, yet I am a firm believer.  If you cannot be there for your friends or yourself, how the heck else can you be there for a significant other that you are potentially have a family with…yeah I just don’t think that is possible!

Strangely, my dad and I were talking about relationships.  I haven’t necessarily had the best track record to date.  I am grateful for my past as it makes me feel like a survivor.  It wasn’t easy but heck now I know what I stand for and just how important it is to date the right person.  It is setting standards and never compromising on what is important to you.  Morals especially.

So, how do you know if you ‘love’ someone?  That’s the next thing on the list.  Love NOT lust someone.  Love is putting someone else’s needs in front of your own.  “The beginning of love is to let those we love be perfectly themselves and not to twist them to fit our own image.  Otherwise we love only the reflection of ourselves we find in them” Thomas Merton (No man is an Island)  Love is a broad word.  It is something that should never be taken lightly.  It is something that we should all strive to do.  Think about this quote I just posted.  It is not just limited to those individuals we know and encounter on a regular basis.  It is also the strangers on the street, the customers, the people who give us grief…it is about loving each person with the same love.  Of course, we demonstrate that love differently for each person we encounter, but the underlying love shouldn’t change.

Support, commit, and love on someone you normally wouldn’t today.  🙂

Harry Burns: I’ve been doing a lot of thinking, and the thing is, I love you.

Sally Albright: What?

Harry Burns: I love you.

Sally Albright: How do you expect me to respond to this?

Harry Burns: How about, you love me too.

Sally Albright: How about, I’m leaving.

Harry Burns: I love that you get cold when it’s 71 degrees out. I love that it takes you an hour and a half to order a sandwich. I love that you get a little crinkle above your nose when you’re looking at me like I’m nuts. I love that after I spend the day with you, I can still smell your perfume on my clothes. And I love that you are the last person I want to talk to before I go to sleep at night. And it’s not because I’m lonely, and it’s not because it’s New Year’s Eve. I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.

65: to love on another

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“To love another is to will what is really good for him. Such love must be based on truth. A love that sees no distinction between good and evil, but loves blindly merely for the sake of loving, is hatred, rather than love. To love blindly is to love selfishly because the goal of such love is not the real advantage of the beloved but only the exercise of love in our own souls”

(pg 5) No Man Is an Island, Thomas Merton

Nomad bought his book Sunday. I picked mine back up for reading last week. Such a beautiful connection he and I still have. I am proud. 3-6 is the date. 36, that is quite possibly the most repeating number for me! It was a great day…chao!

Day 39: I am tired and this is getting hard…

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As Jonathan Livingston Seagull said, “keep on working on Love.”  Dumb book, good quote.  😉 (as delivered by a friend)

Even though this is hard, I will still find humor!  I must as this is a rather heavy post.  Just jam to this one for a while….good ole’ Whitney Houston classic!  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8C-fD54Inn8

Love most definitely is something that is to be worked on throughly each and every day.  It is hard to think, but much like anything that is a seemingly new way for our brain process we must think about it in everything at first until it becomes second nature.  Love is not something we learn over night, yet if integrated into our lifestyle now, it will become easier and easier to love.  They way of love is deep and intimate.  You start to look at a person and love them despite hurting you.  The hurt as I understand it is what comes across when someone is deeply troubled.  Look past the initial wrong doing.  Stare a little deeper into their heart and soul and realize that this person is very special despite their flaws.  I was taught not to judge another as that is not loving them.  We are taught to help our brother and sister’s out if we are able to yet not to be taken advantage of.  We are encouraged to look through the eyes of God and not that of our human nature.

It is easy to sit and judge a person.  It is harder and more challenging to love on them and pray for them.  The more we pray, the easier it will be to come into a loving light with them.  There are a lot of people in my life that have hurt me or hurt those that I love.  I tend to react verse take a step back and see the reality of the situation.  Emotional, mental, physical, and spiritual misfortune whether warranted by self or other such situations is something I have been called to look upon with TRUTH and conviction.  Yet, if I am really loving this person, then I need to love them in a real way and not speak everything on my mind even though this person lies to themselves, others and really uses and abuses himself and others involved.  We say you are old enough to know better.  It is a tricky sort as to say “he should know better”.  But if a person is really ill, then should we say that?  I think the thing that makes me less tolerant of this specific situation is that the person involved is above getting help.  So as reckless as this road is he is walking, he is the only one that can choose otherwise.

How to have compassion toward someone that has a problem with substance abuse, how to have love toward someone whose demons seemingly mask themselves underneath the surface–then they are OK until the next episode where they manipulate their way back,  and how am I to do this??  I will tell you.  I am called to pray for them.  That is the hardest.  Pray for their awareness.  Pray for my ability to have compassion and to speak the TRUTH toward him and be the beacon of light to which I am called to be.  That is how one develops compassion through times as such.

I am a big proponent that if someone has a problem, you hit that nail on the head.  You fix the problem and you move on….in many cases it is not that simple.  I would like to think that everything should be so simple, yet due to fear, anguish, guilt, and other such negative thoughts that are infiltrated into our core as we are humans all cause such complications as to “not deal” with the situation rather put a temporary bandaid on it.  Bandaids will fall off and nothing will be corrected.  That part frustrates me.  Get help.  I say this out of love because I am tired of seeing the same wrong doing repeated toward others.  I am tired of seeing those I love hurt.  I love him, really I do.

Today’s Prayer:
“Lord grant me the ability to love this person as you love me and all of my many faults as I know I am not perfect.  Let me think about every word before it escapes my lips.  Let it be words driven by truth and love.  Let me contemplate my every action before it is done.  Let my action be driven by truth and love.  Let my thoughts be pure and think only out of love of my family, friends, and those who are placed in my path today.  Let all of my life be driven by love! Amen.”

Exhaustion at it's finest

Exhaustion at it’s finest

Too Busy for Life…

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We all have had those moments where we feel swamped.  We feel like we cannot take a moment off to truly relax under the sun or perhaps enjoy the gorgeous weather before the world starts drifting toward fall and the arch-nemeses of the CatMan (GASP!) winter.  I think I just vomited thinking about it!  Don’t mind my lack of appreciation for the season…sigh…ANYWAYS, yesterday I had this waking moment as I peacefully drifted in the pool, “It is AUGUST and this is the first time you have put your suit on to swim?  What is wrong with you?”  I laid on my raft and stared up at the clouds…I always loved looking at the clouds even when I was little.  It amazed me that one moment you could be looking at this fluffy translucent wonder and the next second it could be in transition to becoming an elephant….or a T-rex…or disperse completely.  They are whimsical just perfect for a woman with an imagination and a great sense of wonder!

The next thing I noticed was how large the trees look from this perspective, especially this one in particular.  What a beautiful creation!  It was as though I was laying below a sleeping giant and at any moment of freak disturbance it could come to life and take this bathing beauty out!  No such thing occurred on that note.  The tree stood tall with all of its pine needles proudly displayed.  This was a tree of great dignity you see having been one of the oldest on the property.  I was careful not to disrupt this little moment that I was witnessing as the rhythm of nature continued.

There was a slight breeze and the sun shined as bright as ever even though it was later in the evening.  It was unreal, serene really.  Who would have thought that a Sunday afternoon could bring such joy?!  And then the cousins arrived and all peace flew out the door as quickly as it had shown up.  Once everyone was suited up, let the games begin!  From noodle wars to raft wars, whirlpool creation to floating on the lazy river…we had a bit of everything.  When it got to be chilly later on, we moved on to the trampoline and played volleyball.  It was nice to enjoy my siblings and cousins.  There was no work obligations, no pressure to leave at a certain time, and for sure just some good old country time fun!

Because we have had such dry conditions lately, our surrounding counties have been under a burn band.  Yes, no cookouts…no bonfires…no fireworks on the 4th of July!!!  Lame, I know.  Burn band ended a week ago so we also christened the fire-pit.  We ate “s’meers” and “s’mores” by the fire.  It was awesome.  Seriously, the “fat kid” was in heaven last night!

Now, if you are wondering what a “s’meer” is let me tell you it is even more delightful than the original “s’mores”.  Let me educate you….(clearing my throat)…

“Ladies and Gentleman, boys and girls!  Step right up to hear about the most exciting thing you will ever hear in the world (lie #1) next to the man walking on the moon!  (lie #2) This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to see the creation of something so original it will knock your socks off!  (lie #3) You will be so amazed at the complexity of this item as it took YEARS upon YEARS to perfect!  Feast your eyes upon the “SMMEEERRR”!”  OK, literally a “s’meer” was an accident…when my Aunt and Uncle were dating in high school, they sent my Aunt to get chocolate for the group.  Well she got Nestle’s Crunch bars instead of Hershey’s Chocolate bars…that is really what happened. (ABSOLUTE TRUTH! NOTHING BUT THE WHOLE TRUTH I PROMISE!).  A “s’meer” is no more than a s’more using Nestle’s Crunch Bars instead of Hershey’s chocolate.

I have to remind myself from time to time, ditch the calendar and rigid schedule and just enjoy life.  Enjoy every little moment as it could change at any point of time.  Nothing is guaranteed.  Enjoying the little things is such a fantastic little pleasure.  Will you choose to be too busy for life or choose to enjoy every ounce of it?

❤ The CatMan

Behind every man….

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Behind every great man is a woman rolling her eyes.
Jim Carrey

 

There is great truth behind this comment.  Think about it….how many “great ideas” come before one is achieved?  (eye roll)  The answer is too many.  Just do it.  Stop over thinking it and just do it already!  How hard can it be?  ha.  OH very hard apparently.

When we over think we are allowing our brain to over ride our natural ability to listen.  We process until we process something to death.  Now that is not very productive AT ALL.  So why do we do it?  Good question!  Because we are control freaks.  So, today is about listening to the whole thing not just one aspect but ALL aspects.

This week, I managed to throw my back out picking up a box.  Yes it was as silly as it sounds.

I went to the chiropractor and a massage therapist.  I feel 95% better.  After last night, I have more mobility than I did and I feel like she really did a great job!  Crunch, crunch, crunch…I was a regular hot mess.  When I got home and relaxed–I felt so much better.  I was drinking lots of water.  I am a little sore, but it was well worth it.  Icing has been helping.

While I was in the massage, she told me that she was trying to intuitively listen to where my body was pulling.  So can I do that too?  Sure I can!  That isn’t hard…I mean sometimes it can be tricky…but anyone can listen.  I decided that I was really going to make a conscious effort to listen better.  Shut the pride and brain down and listen to what my heart and body were saying.  Seek the listening first.  Then adjust accordingly to seek balance.  That is going to be my goal.

Maybe if I had just listened to my body say “that’s too heavy CatMan”…I wouldn’t be in such pain.  The parts of the body are so intricate and everything hinges off each other.  This being said, your heart, physical body, spirit, conscious mind, intellect, emotions, soul and over all energy have some “words to say about you”.  If you want to feel your best?  All you have to do is listen!  When something is out of whack, it might scream at you until you do something about it.  Simply stated, if I had listened to my body saying “no way!” I might not be in this mess.  I would have saved approximately $167 and the pain of looking like a sissy.  Nothing hurts the ego more than that.

Through all of this Nomad has been a peach.  Very empathetic as he has back issues and knows it is a pain in the rear literally.  These painful times are a good reminder to balance.  Where there is an action, there is an equal cause or reaction…or something like that.

Well speaking of Nomad, he is doing some really great things.  He is looking into going back to school.  This is a very positive long time coming decision.  I am really proud of him.  It took him a decent amount of time to discern this whole thing and figure out what his best option was going to be and I think he is on the right track.  Maybe not exactly to the program he needs, but he is getting there!  I have been trying to encourage him, motivate him, and etc…but you know people move in their own time.  (eye roll)

My Catwalk down the Red Carpet….

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So my beautiful friend Zahara (Earthquakes and Rattlesnakes) did something amazingly hilarious.  She apparently feels like I fit the category of most stylish blogger hehe.  This makes me laugh…considering I sit in my stylish rood sweatpants and my IU t-shirt….definitely don’t match at all…HOWEVER, I do have my pool boy by my side so that is always a plus!  He will be my exotic escort as I strut down the Red Carpet…I see the flashes now!  Click!  Click!  (Thank you!  Thank you, oh you are so kind…)

 

SO here are the rules:

 

  • Present seven things about yourself
  • Name about a half dozen bloggers you think deserve the award
  • Contact those people
  • Create a link back to the person who gave you the honor
  •  

    AND HERE WE GO:

    1.  I love the Dutch language, culture, etc.  Can’t really tell you why…but I just do!

     

     

     

    2.  I have a passion for media, sports, and helping others.  Just trying to mesh them together  🙂

     

     

     

    3.  I am actually very short.  I am 4 foot 8 inches…enough said…

    4.  I have been a cheerleader for 12 years which is half my age minus one…it’s all starting to make sense now huh?

     

     

     

    5.  I have the best mentors and friends in the universe…online and in real life.  That is just fact!  But my family will always be number 1.

    6.  I am addicted to Bravo and The Food Network (um…but who isn’t???)

    7.  I speak my mind and stand for Truth.  I let that govern my actions.  I am who I say I am  🙂

     

    I would like to give my nominees:

    The Edmonton Tourist:  ET is fabulous and is the Queen of traveling.  She logs her travels and lives life from place to place.  Her and the Muppets–they never have a dull moment!

    Working Tech Mom:  Oh a working mom that is just trying to get thru while keeping everything in perspective.  What a dear friend!  I would encourage anyone to read her blog if you are seeking a balance and fresh look on your life.

    Speaking from the Heart:  For anyone that is looking for some spiritual perspective or guidance, Laurie does an amazing job explaining aspects of spirituality on levels one can really relate with.  We all could use a little more relaxing and calmness here….

    Adventures and Insights:  This gentleman is so great!  I love his simplicity toward life and just amazing heartfelt freshness.  He brings some culture, music, common sense and over all just “amazing insights” to the playing field!  You might be surprised what you find on his adventures…

     

    Thought of the evening: “Idea’s are nothing without action and attention”

     

     

     

    Today I am thankful

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    Listen for your enjoyment:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQIH3iq1xVw

    Today friend, I would like to say thank you.  Thanks for being there for me when I needed you the most and thanks for always giving me the honest truth.  Thank you for telling me when I have lipstick on my teeth, or when those pants fit too snug….OR when I am being that girl and  just laughing at me.  Thank you for always standing up for me when I was being made fun of and thanks for sticking with me even though I would have never blamed you for calling me too weird to hang out with in public.

     

    Thanks for never letting me out of the house looking like this!!

     

     

    Thanks friend for laughing with me and sometimes at me when I was having issues.  Thank you for healing me when I was sad about a boy or just listening to me vent about people in my life who are demeaning…thanks for caring how I feel and what is happening in my life.  Thanks for the hugs and love you give me and thanks for always knowing just how to cheer me up.  I appreciate it.

     

    BIG HUG!

     

     

    For all of this, I am so thankful and happy to consider you my friend!