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Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Memorial Day

Memorial Day-the unofficial start of summer.  Mother Nature saw fit to cooperate and let the blue skies take over for four whole days straight!  It was a fabulous way to kick off the summer season.  Recharging with a sunny weekend spent with family and friends was exactly what I needed.

However, I am fully aware that for me to be able to enjoy my weekend, a soldier has to spend their time in the harshest conditions imaginable.  For me to rest safe at home, a soldier has to spend months away from their families facing danger around every corner.  For every day I continue to live in freedom, a soldier lays down their life to protect that freedom which I hold so dear.

The tears of thousands of mothers, fathers-sisters, brothers-daughters, and sons rain from the heavens mourning the heroes they will never hold again.  How do you thank someone for a sacrifice that big?  I don’t think we ever truly can.  What we do is make sure to live our lives the best way we know how.  We make sure to appreciate all that we have.  The price for all our opportunities is too steep for us to squander.  We must cherish all the precious gifts we are given.

On Memorial Day we remember that as they say, “freedom is not free”.  To all those who have served or are serving our country, thank you, for everything you give up so that I may live knowing my dreams are mine to chase.  To the families who have lost loved ones for the sake of our country’s freedom, words cannot express the gratitude I feel for what your soldiers have given for me, my family, friends, and each and every person I meet on the street. 

I look in the faces of the children in my life and know that their futures are so bright because of a soldier I’ll never meet.  Everything they do cannot possibly be in vain with the innocence of those children poised to lead us into the future.  My hope for the future, and for the futures of the children in this country is that one day we’re going to live in a world where war is only in the history books.  That dream of a peaceful tomorrow is not possible without the soldiers of today.

Thank you to all who are or who have served.  Stay strong, be safe. 

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Because She Was There

Like a sunflower standing tall despite the violet storm, she stands strong.

Like a warm Spring breeze reaching out to bring comfort after the frozen winter, she embraces us.

Like a star in the night sky showing the way to the morning light, she guides us.

Through her compassion she makes us understand that a world with love is possible for every human being.

Through her tears she shows us that sadness does not equal weakness, and that being vulnerable enough to cry gives us the courage to care.

Through the realized dream of a little girl from Mississippi, we learn that dreams are the wings that let our spirits fly.

Because of her we know tears can mean happy or hurt, surprised or sad.

Because of her we know that giving someone a gift, no matter how small, allows the giver to receive a reward much greater than any material object: gratitude.

Because of her, books were read, children were educated, and the meek became mighty.

Teacher. Advisor. Entertainer. Generous. Kind. Friend.

Thank you, for everything, thank you.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Waiting on Springtime

Dear Spring,

I’ve missed you so much.  It has been far too long since you’ve come to visit.  I hate that you travel so much that you’re only able to be in my area for a short time each year.  Don’t think I haven’t noticed that you’re trying to sneak in and surprise me.  There have been some gorgeous days in the past few weeks:  a day I could leave my house without a jacket, the day where the sun was so bright that I had to put on my shades, heck, even the rain in place of snow was a nice touch.

Alas, just when I think you’ve finally made it, winter blows back in and takes over.  You know, winter is such a bully.  You should really stand up for yourself.  Claim March as your own (and February too for that matter).  Let that old season know who’s boss.  Tell winter you don’t care how pretty it looks in white, it’s time to move on.  Throw all the colors of the rainbow in winter’s face and laugh at it.  Laugh, and then barge in and kick winter to the next hemisphere. 

Don’t you miss me too?  I give you all the attention you deserve when you’re here.  I leave the confines of my house and spend time outside in your pleasant, crisp air.  I listen to all the songs of the birds that you bring with you.  I tell you how much I love you and how much that grass color goes with your sky.  You are the very first one to see all my cute, colorful spring wardrobe, and I even let your breezy little fingers play with my hair.  All this, and you’re just teasing me right now.  Making me wait until the last possible moment to swoop in and save me from the icy, gray clutches of Jack Frost.

Don’t get me wrong, I know you’re not perfect.  You tend to get a bit carried away with the rain….seriously, you have to watch that because the rivers and streams around here can only hold so much water before they cause major issues.  Oh, and why do you wake your birds up so early in the morning…..on Saturdays…..when I can sleep in.  It’s ok though because I don’t expect you to be perfect.  I love you despite your flaws.

I know you’re on a schedule and I’m being impatient.  It just a few short weeks you’ll be here greeting me each morning and singing me to sleep at night.  You know what, you’re worth the wait.  I’ll make nice with winter for a few more weeks…..just make sure you arrive on time.


Attic Dweller

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Generation Gap

I’ve recently become borderline obsessed with finding out as much as possible about my family history.  Where did we come from?  Why did we come here?  Who are the people who make up parts of who I am?  I blame my obsession on the television show, “Who Do You Think You Are?”  Of course this search looks a lot easier on television.  I’ve been searching through with a two week free trial to try and find as much information as possible.  Then it occurred to me; in this age of technology where so much information is available at our fingertips with a few clicks of the computer mouse, I overlooked a wealthy source of family information.  A living breathing relative who has a mind like a steel trap.  So, I called her up and went to visit.
Auntie has always been the person in our family who can tell you when something happened.  Not only that, but she can tell you what you were wearing, and what the weather was that day.  I’ve always been told I’m a lot like her.  I tend to remember things with details that surprise a lot of people….including myself.  See, Auntie, my great-aunt, is 85 years old, and although it’s quite possible that she’s still got decades left in her, I just want to make sure I learn as much as she’s got to tell me while I can.  I would hate for all the stories of our family’s history to be gone when she is.
This past decade hasn’t been the best for her.  She struggled with anxiety that made it impossible for her to stay in her own apartment.  She moved into a retirement community, and has basically hated it ever since.  She hasn’t been the same fun aunt she was as I was growing up.  She’s been sad.  Many times she’s been downright depressed, and I hate seeing her this way.
I admit I don’t visit her as much as I should….Mother and Aunt  do, but the rest of us….not so much.  Auntie never married or had kids of her own.  She took care of her parents and some of her siblings who fought and lost their battles with cancer far too young.  One of those siblings was my grandmother.  I never got to meet Grandma……but Auntie was always there.  She was a surrogate grandmother to my sisters and I…..always there for us….it’s our turn to be there for her.
She’s gotten to a point where she does not like to leave the place she’s at.  She has missed holidays, birthday parties, and countless other family events because she can’t bring herself to leave.  We tend to get angry with her when she refuses to come; we roll our eyes, and just get aggravated with the fact that most people would be thankful to be as healthy as she is….but she wishes she could have taken the place of family members who have already passed away.  What does our anger help?  Nothing.  Our anger isn’t what she needs.  She needs to not feel alone.  She needs to not feel like a burden.  She needs to remember why she’s so lucky to be there with us.  She needs to be reminded that she hasn’t been packed away at this retirement community and forgotten.
I went there this evening to hear what stories she could tell me about our family.  I went there to absorb whatever I could from her.  I did learn a lot about my family, but I learned something about myself too.  I miss my aunt….and I love spending time with her.  Tonight we laughed and joked, and time flew by so fast.  Granted, she had her moments.  At one point she told me that she wanted to kick the doctor who put her there in the shins, and she wished she would die in her sleep.  I politely told her that if she said that again around me I would kick HER in the shins.  Yep, I said it just like that….and she smiled.  We were members of two different generations enjoying each other’s company, and making each other laugh.  I went there to see what I could get from her, and got so much more than I expected.  I hope I was able to give her something in return.
We’re going to make these visits a weekly date.  Maybe we can learn from each other….she’ll teach me where I came from, and I’ll teach her that there’s a world out there that she’s missing out on.  Who knows, maybe she’ll even come explore it with me one day. 

Monday, February 14, 2011

Singles Awareness Day

Well, it's February 14, 2011.  Valentine's Day.....or as I saw on my cousin's Facebook status, "Singles Awareness Day".  Here I sit at a romantic dinner for two with dim lighting, soft music, candles, and flowers, staring into the eyes of.....whoa, wait, that was on tv.  I'm sitting in a hotel room in our lovely state capital.  I spent the evening with, yes, my boss.  So, yeah, no big Valentine's Day romance for me.

As thick as I am laying on this sarcasm, I don't really have anything against Valentine's Day.  It's just one of those days during the year where I tend to be very aware that I am indeed still single.  This year though, is the first in a while where I am not sitting here wishing I were in a relationship.  I am ok with my single status.  That's not to say I'm not ready for a relationship, I just don't feel depressed not to be in one.  Maybe it's the medication. 

What is depressing is seeing what's on the tv in front of me right now.  I'm waiting for Castle to come on as I do each week, and as I do each week I am catching the tail end of The Bachelor. While I admit that I used to watch the show in its first seasons, as I got older, I realized I don't understand it.  There are a handful of women, all relatively attractive I suppose, who are throwing themselves at this pretty boy bachelor.  They are begging (mostly figuratively, but sometimes literally) to be given a rose.  The beautiful rose, a symbol of a bachelorette's worth to this particular bachelor.  I get that it's all entertainment.  I am taking this way too seriously, but um, ladies, if I'm not mistaken, this is the same bachelor who couldn't manage to make a choice the first time he tried this.  It's no better when the show is The Bachelorette.  Men don't need to be throwing themselves at the feet of one woman just for a chance to find their "true love" on tv, and then boo-hooing in the limo when they're sent packing by someone they've only known for a few weeks.

Granted, I don't know how many of these people participate in these shows for the slight chance that they'll find their soul mate and how many are in it for the time they'll spend on camera.  I'd respect them more if they just admitted that they want to take the quick way to being famous so they've hopped on the reality tv train.  Maybe they sould give Survivor or the Amazing Race a least you get a cash prize at the end of those, even if your plans to make it big via reality tv don't pan out, you've still got a chunk of change in your pocket.  At the end of The Bachelor/Bachelorette, you may get a relationship that ends in happily ever after, but based on the track record so far, all you're going to get is your fifteen minutes of fame followed by a nasty breakup in the tabloids.  Oh well, at least it's not 'Jersey Shore"

Hope all of you out there in Blog Land had a wonderful Valentine's Day.  As for me, I'm lucky that I have a fabulous family and an awesome group of friends that I can call my valentines this year....and I di have a pretty good Valentine's Day even if there wasn't anything sugary sweet about it.  Sleep well all you hopeless romantics.  Until next time my dears....goodnight.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Five Months Later……

Hello, my name is Attic Dweller, and I’m a bad blogger.  So, it’s been five months since I’ve posted anything.  In reality, the only person that probably bothers is me, but I hate feeling like there’s an unfinished project out there.  Of course, this project is one that is more ongoing rather than one that has an end, but still, it’s just out there, neglected, alone, and feeling totally left out.  Poor little blog.  So, I’m going to try to give it more attention.  I know, I know, I’ve said that before, but seriously, I will try……if only for my own sanity.

So, what has happened in the last five months?  Well, for starters, it’s a new year.  I didn’t really make a resolution this year per se, but did decide that for once, I’m going to be the me I want to be.  I know, I know, I just gagged too, “the me I want to be”  how sugary sweet and love thyself do I sound right now.  I’ve always had this idea of who I am, and what makes me happy, but that person has just been a little lost.  Anxiety took me and hid me away from myself until I was just going through the motions some days.  People, medication helps.  I know, it’s not always the answer for everybody, but for me, it made a huge difference.  I feel like a cloud has been lifted off me and I don’t have to hold me breath waiting for the next panic attack to strike.  It’s a great feeling…..believe me.

I’ve probably mentioned my “list” before.  It’s the type of list that some would call a bucket list, but to me, it’s my “to do” list.  I’ve always been uncomfortable calling it a bucket list because I feel like if I accomplish everything on it, all I have left to do is kick the bucket.  What if I’m super efficient and cross everything off in a year.  I’m only 27 years old….so not ready to kick the bucket.  So, the last thing on my list is thing of more things to do.  It’s an ongoing list of things I’d like to do.  Some are silly, and some are possibly impossible, but it’s a list of what I’d like to try to do for me.  My success in life will not be measured by how many things I cross off that list, but how much fun I have trying. 

So many fun and exciting things have happened in the past five months.  Heck, there have been some totally sad things too, but I’m choosing to block those out of my mind at the moment.  See, little ray of sunshine”…..that’s me.  Maybe I’ll touch on some of those exciting (and not so exciting) things in future posts.  For now, I’m just going to end this post by saying, I feel like I can accomplish anything I put my mind to.  It’s a fabulous feeling, and I challenge all of you to find that feeling in yourselves.  Until next time my dears……adieu.