By Bernadette A. Moyer
Another year, what have I learned and what have I done with it, how have I spent my time?
In just a few days the calendar will flip over to October. Then I will have yet another birthday (God willing) and it will be my last year in my 50’s. Where does the time go?
Today I am happy and at peace with all areas of my life. I have become better at not “stepping in it.” I see it all and I hear things and many times I shake my head. Our political climate is torture for someone like me who often believes that neither extreme is all right, or all wrong, but that grace truly lives in the center.
I like the center. I like it because it is there where I can view both sides. It is there where I can gather the best insight. It is there where I may find mutual ground and a place of peace.
Right this moment in time there are people in our country who believe they know, they know who is innocent and who is guilty just by looking at them. Sad. We are living in a time, where if you “feel” “think” and “sense” that someone is guilty or innocent that is enough. Me, I still like to have the facts. It is not enough just to think it, I want to know for certain. I want to be sure and armed with facts.
I have a friend who when I first saw her in public I honestly thought she was a weirdo and that she was NOT someone that I would consider as “friend material.” Her story is that I didn’t want to be her friend because she wore red cowboy boots. My story is that it wasn’t just the red cowboy boots it was that she wore them paired with leopard print pants/tights and to pick up her elementary school aged children at a Catholic (conservative) school! The same school that my children attended.
We have been friends for more than two decades now. She still tells her “red cowboy boots” story and I tell mine. The end of the story is always the same for the both of us, “don’t judge a book by its cover.” Maybe it is even more than that … don’t judge at all and certainly don’t judge until you have all the facts. My friend is one of the most soulful, spiritual and deep-thinking people that I know. And if I would have clung onto my initial judgement we would never have been friends at all. How very sad that would have been.
The older we become the more aware we become of just how much life we have already lived and how many days are still ahead. Life has a way of presenting us with the people and the lessons that we need to learn. I am still learning. Every single day I learn, I seek out new and different things to learn.
This year was marked by a lot of work and success. My husband, my adult son (who lives at home) and myself have all been plugging away at different careers and jobs. We all work hard. But it was also marked with a significant loss in our most precious pooch Happy unexpectedly departing this life. The void and the grief months and months later still so painful. She had our hearts and was beyond joy for us. I waver between wanting to love another puppy and/or just focusing on the one that we still love and adore at home. Her death taught me once again, just how deeply I can and do love and for that alone I am most thankful. It also drives home for me just how much better I have become at letting go. Practice lots and lots of practice of loss but it hasn’t hardened my heart. Thank God!
Yes, like most people I am a work in progress. Today I love myself, warts and all, I know who I am, where I come from and most importantly what I am made up of. Life-long living that all adds up to my sum-total of me. I have lived well, I have loved deeply, and I have lost incredibly too. Together it all adds up to a rich rewarding and full life.
As with most years we have traveled to the beach to the mountains and so many places in between. Our road trips are just one of the secrets of our long, loving and lasting marriage. There is nothing like spending hours and hours in a car together to determine if you are compatible.
Through our almost 27 years together, my husband Brian and I prove that we are by all our many road trips and many miles spent together, really together. We get along, we enjoy the same things, we travel well together. It is us and us alone in this big beautiful world. We talk uninterrupted and with full attention and we look out for each other. We stop and explore we eat meals together at various restaurants. It is always a good time and opportunity to refresh our souls and our marriage.
Getting older is cause for trimming back some things and valuing more in less. My prayers are often but also less complicated too. Each day I pray to God to help me to be the very best that I can be, what more could I really ask for?
Here is to another year, another chance and another opportunity to learn and to continue to grow. Be happy, it is a choice and one worth making day after day and year after year.
Blessed and blessings … Bernadette
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