I Finally Got My Big Break!

Yes, it happened. I finally got my big break in life. It took 56 years and a lot of hard work and a little fate, but it happened. I wasn’t prepared for it, but sometimes the big break happens when you least expect it and it changes the plans you had and the direction you were going. Yes, my big break happened yesterday, and before you flood me with comments of congratulations, let me pause a moment. I need to take a little medicine for pain. As I lie here on my bed with my foot propped up on a pillow, I have a different day ahead of me than I had planned.

I wish I could say that I broke a bone in my foot skiing double black diamonds or training for a marathon, but no. I was jumping rope. It was the last station of my Workout
At Rock Steady Boxing. I usually skip the jumping rope part of the workout, because, well you know, after delivering three babies, one of which was ll pounds, jump roping may as well be a double black diamond from my bladder’s point of view.

I had a great work out and this time I would not let the jump rope intimidate me. My bladder said, “ok. I’m not sure about this, but bring it on!” I could hear the Rocky music playing in my head, and in the final seconds as I heard the dinging noise that indicates that the round is about to end, it happened.
Ever so subtly without notice, the rope hit my right foot and twisted it enough so that I landed on the outside edge of my foot. I felt a small twinge of pain, but getting my big break that day never entered my mind. Slowly, over the next few hours, my foot became a painful melon and I was off to urgent care.

So here I am in bed a day later with no shower, eating Ramen noodles, saying over and over in my mind. “Bladder, I should have listened to you.” However, nothing I can do can change the fact that I got my big break yesterday. I was honored with a boot that I will wear with humble pride for 6 weeks. I have given my acceptance speech over and over. People want to hear how I jumped through the hoops and broke through to change my destiny. I just tell them, “life is full of surprises. Work hard and your big break will come some day, too.”

Yes, you never know when you will get your big break in life, but excuse me, I need to pause for a moment. I need to ring this bell next to my bed to get my husband to bring me another ice pack, adjust the tv so I can see better, and perhaps a bowl of ice cream. My big break is his big break too!!

Live fearlessly today those of you checking off lists and getting things done. As for me, I might have a second bowl of ice cream to celebrate my big break.

Exactly

You are exactly who You are supposed to be. Do you believe that? With all of your imperfections, flaws, mistakes, insecurities, do you believe you have worth just as you are? Parkinson’s solidified that for me in a mysterious way. In my early years, I did not believe that at all. In my middle years I knew it was true based on my faith, but often still had to remind myself of that fact. It took having a disability to open my eyes to see myself differently. It took entering the world of disability for me to look around and know the pain of those around me who have lived their whole lives under the umbrella of that word disability. And, You don’t have to have a disability to feel lesser. In fact, it was when I was most able bodied that I struggled with self image and measuring up the most.

In a strange way, Parkinson’s has forced me to slow down enough to let go of many of the unrealistic expectations I had for myself. Because there are things that I do slower and need more physical effort, I have to release my grip on the image of a more perfect Me. It’s easier in some ways just to be.

That’s the sentiment in my heart where these song lyrics were born. I am now going to admit to you my crazy obsession. It’s co-writing music. I write lyrics. I have to co-write because I am a piano drop out and have zero singing voice, but music moves my soul. I have several co-writers and many songs in progress. Lol. I have one song to be released soon by Heather Richardson, my good friend and budding artist. This was my second one written with Lauren and Hannah Hobbs (Melody and vocals) and Jody Peterson (also Melody). At some point I will tell you how this music thing all began, and how The Hobbs Sisters came into my life. For now check out their website thehobbssisters.com. They are amazing country music artists on the rise.

The song is about a new mother speaking to her child, but the chorus could be for any of us who need to hear that “you’re exactly the way you’re supposed to be.”

Help! I need somebody….

“Help! I need somebody
Help! Not just anybody
Help! You know I need someone
Help!”

In 1965 John Lennon was credited for writing the lyrics to a song titled Help! I was 5 years old, I am part of the tail end of the baby boomer era. The words to this song have become a reality in my life.

Song…..
“(When) When I was younger (When I was young) so much younger than today
(I never need) I never needed anybody’s help in any way
(Now) But now these days are gone (These days are gone) and I’m not so self assured
(And now I find) Now I find I’ve changed my mind, I’ve opened up the doors”

Age 49 was the turning point for me when I opened up the door to my home and my heart to accept help from those around me. Up until that point, I was invincible and had life all figured out. A benign tumor on my cervical spine, an arachnoid cyst on C7 and a Parkinson’s diagnosis all within two years brought me to my knees and singing “Help.” I call my three diagnoses “my trifecta.”

The past 7 years have been “a hard day’s night” and I should be sleeping like a dog (Beatles), but Parkinson’s doesn’t let you sleep, so I write. At 4 am, I write. Hoping that this may be the “help” that you need and that we can find each other. Are you out there? What has brought you to your knees calling help or are you still in the invincible stage of life?

I have found this place called Rock Steady Boxing, and I have fully embraced this activity to fight my disease, but the boxing is only partly what helps. “I have found somebody, not just anybody (Beatles) I have found people who understand, who “want to hold my hand. (Beatles again). I have found that if we share with each other we can “Beat it!” (sorry, that was a little Michael Jackson)

The older I get, the more the lines between who is different from me fade in so many ways. I just know that we need to look beyond the surface and know that we all need help and to help each other in some way. We need each other. So, are you out there? Do you have words of wisdom from your life story that can help me and others? That is what my blog is about, coming together to offer hope and encouragement.

Cause “all you need is love, da da da da da da, all you need is love, da da da da da, all you need is love, love, Love Is All You Need!” (I know, enough of the Beatles)

Help! I need somebody!

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A Not So Silent Night

A Not So Silent Night

“All is calm, all is bright”….. on this Christmas Eve of 2016, memories of Christmas 2015 dance in my head. All was not calm and bright. My family had the argument of the century that day. My three boys and husband all aired our feelings that had been mounting like a pressure cooker. It was not the picturesque Norman Rockwell Christmas on a postcard. It was gritty. It was real. It was needed. We talked it out until we all ended that day with new understanding, hugs, forgiveness, and love for each other. Isn’t that what this Silent night, holy night brought to us, not a passive love, but a love of action who fought for us in life and died so that we may forgive and be forgiven? It’s what I pray always for my 3 boys, not silence that lasts for days and then lasts for months then years, but brotherly
Love that is willing to come together and work out any relationship problem they may have. Sometimes silence is good. Sometimes it is the last thing a relationship needs. May your Christmas be merry and bright and not so silent if that is what is most needed at your house tonight. As for us, after church, we plan on a quiet night of watching A Christmas Story and the Yule Log this year! Merry Christmas, Everyone!

Not About the Ring

Last Tuesday night at halftime of the Zionsville High School Varsity boys basketball game, the 2016 Z-ville Baseball Team was presented with their state finals rings. The rings are big flashy and blingy.
Seeing these boys together again made me realize this moment was not about the ring. Those massive rings on their fingers represent commitment. Commitment to each other through the wins and the losses. Commitment to the relationships built. There are countless stories behind those rings. Thirty and a half years ago Kyle Cox placed a blingy ring on my finger and said the following words….. for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, till death due us part. I love the traditional wedding vows. Call me old fashioned, but I think they cover it all. When we first said those vows, we had no idea of the gravity of the words coming out of our mouths. They were just words, but oh, there was a ring. A cherished ring that emptied our savings account at the time and still glitters on my finger today represents all the stories we can now tell that trail behind those vows first promised. The forgiveness when we realized over and over that we each did have a worst side, the job loss that pulled the financial security rug out from under us, and the Parkinson’s. Behind the bling I wear on my left hand is a corner man who has stood by my side through some pretty tough moments.

No, it’s not about the ring. It’s always about the relationship behind the ring. ….BUT, I have to say, a little flash and bling never hurt anyone. 💍

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Another Comrade Down

My mom called me last night. She knew it would be hard news to hear. “Mr. Schilling died today,” she said. Mr. Schilling, the beloved math teacher of my high school days; Mr. Schilling, the father of a good friend and classmate, David; Mr. Schilling, who battled Parkinson’s died yesterday. My heart is broken and a bolt of fear runs through me, and I cry. Mr. Schilling, I will always remember your humor. Mr. Schilling, I thank you for your patience with this girl who loves words and not math. Mr Schilling, fellow comrade in the battle against Parkinson’s, I will wipe my eyes, put on my gloves and keep fighting this disease. It may win the battle, but we will win the war! Rest In Peace, Mr. Schilling. You were loved.