Is there anyone out there like me?

I have a Dr. Seuss quote on the back window of my car.  This quote is also on my Facebook page . . .

dr seuss

We are not created to be clones of each other with the same personality, and wearing the same clothes, and going to the same restaurants, and driving the same boring cars.  Life is meant to be lived and experienced while embracing the full uniqueness of ones self.

With that being said, sometimes it’s lonely here in my uniqueness.  Is there anyone out there like me?

A Tale of a T-Rex does not exist to wax poetic about exotic travel destinations, the latest beauty trend, gourmet recipes that you absolutely MUST try, or even to show off some fancypants photography that you and your Instagram filters captured (says the woman whose front page photo was taken and filtered with Instagram because I liked the way the clouds looked).

A Tale of a T-Rex exists to display me.  ME!  The real me.  Not the me that I want to create and manipulate for you to see.  Here is my heart.  Here is my soul.  Here are all the little bitty things about me that make me Heather.  Yet, as I search for others like me, people that I can connect with, blogs I can delve into and see that I am not the only unique person here, I find that most posts are exactly like everyone else’s.  They are khaki-pants-wearing-prius-driving-falsely-intellectual, and they have absolutely nothing to say about anything that is important.

I don’t want to hear yet another opinion on sports, politics, or global warming.  For that I can turn on any self-righteous news channel.  I want to find posts from people that are being honest and real.

I want to find people that are opening themselves up to others and displaying their own heart and soul, their brokenness, their sadness, their joy, their tears and laughter, their real selves.

But instead I see nothing but people who post just to have posts, rather than posting something of quality.  Today I unfollowed somebody because their most riveting post in the past 24-hours was about what is coming to Netflix in October.

Who are you?

What makes you, you?

Are you unique?

What makes you unique?

If you are willing to lay yourself out for the written world to see, then I want to follow you, because that is what A Tale of a T-Rex is.  I have little to hide.

**knock knock**

Is there anyone out there like me?

Hello?

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2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 1,200 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 20 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

A look back over T-Rex’s first year

I meant to do this on October 30th, but between work and church time has just absolutely gotten away from me.  So here I sit, a week and a half after A Tale Of A T-Rex celebrated it’s first birthday, finally looking back on it’s first year of life.  And what a year it has been.  The posts over the past 12 months have seen a lot of things . . . anger, love, joy, forgiveness, wonder, peace, heartbreak, and growth.  So today I am here to remember with you some of my favorite posts over the last year.

My Musings

10.30.13  Nice to meet you . . . The post that started it all.

11.02.13  Ahead of the game . . . Carrie v.s. birthday shopping

11.14.13  Giving thanks . . . Showing my thanks for the important stuff in life like toilet paper, antibiotics, and the remote control.

11.26.13  Renew perspective through my mom’s eyes . . . Just when I was about to give up on my book my mom said just the right words to renew my goal.  Aren’t moms the best at encouragement just when we need it most.

12.30.13  Lessons . . . Some things I have learned in my almost 38-year journey through life.

01.21.14  Don’t overthink it.  Just write . . . Among the best advice I have ever gotten, and I’ll bet that the speaker of those words has absolutely no recollection of ever saying them.

02.02.14  Shadows in the clouds . . . What an amazing and prophetic night that turned out to be for me and for my relationship with God.

02.03.14  Dear Friend . . . A missive to my best friend.

 02.16.14 The winds of change . . . God was working in my life.  I didn’t know it was Him, but I could feel it.

03.13.14  Rebirth day . . . One of the greatest days in my life.

04.23.14  Unequipped armor . . . A lesson I learned about going into spiritual battle unprepared.

04.23.14  My ink pen has a-d-d . . . random thoughts from Carrie’s brain . . . Part 1

06.03.14  Random thoughts from Carrie’s brain . . . part 2 . . . Because one post of random thoughts just wasn’t enough.

06.30.14  Saving Martha’s Vineyard . . . God always provides for those who do His work.

07.20.14  A letter to me . . . Something that everyone should do at some point.

09.30.14  Toilet paper trivia . . . Getting to know me one square at a time.

09.30.14  Wonderfully and fearfully made . . . We are God’s greatest creation.

10.14.14  How can I pray for you today? . . . A question we should all ask more often.

Short stories

11.05.13  Broken Fairy Tale . . . My best friend and I were going through a difficult time and my insecurity made me feel like I was losing him.

11.06.13  Breaking Hearts . . . Another story inspired by insecurity and my best friend.

12.10.13  Cut . . . A short story from my book.

03.18.14  Their End . . . A short story of fiction that became somewhat prophetic.

09.29.14  Music In The Shadows . . . The story may come to an end, but the music sometimes still plays on.

Poems

11.05.13  Scrapbook Memories . . . During a particularly bad fight my best friend and I did not speak for about a month.  I wondered if we would ever speak again and mentally mourned the friendship.

11.10.13  Glance Into The Sun . . . That first feeling of attraction.

11.12.13  Hiding Eyes . . . The eyes say more than the mouth ever can.

11.16.13  Who Are You? . . . Love makes us question everything.

11.20.13  My Pen . . . Yes, it’s an ode to a writing utensil.  I’d be lost and voiceless without my pen.

11.21.13  Lost . . . I wrote this after the tornado in Moore, OK in May, 2013.

12.01.13  The Quiet End . . . Sometimes love pisses you off . . . badly.

12.22.13  Boisterous Girl . . . A moment when I was letting another person control how I saw myself.

12.25.13  Dying . . . Sometimes my poetry is more honest with me about people than I can be with myself.

12.27.13  Two Scared . . . Another poem inspired by a disagreement with my best friend.

12.28.13  Pride . . . Even baseball fans write poetry.

12.28.13  Real? . . . A good friend of mine lost her son in a car accident.  I had known him for years.  His death still sometimes seems like a dream.

12.29.13  The Beast . . . Another moment when I was letting someone else control how I saw myself.

01.10.14  Searching . . . I didn’t know what I was searching for until I found it about a month and a half after I wrote this.

01.20.14  Broken . . . Sometimes a girl just has a really bad day.

01.28.14  My Heart . . . I may not be made of sugar and spice, but this is what I am made of.

03.12.14  Reborn . . . Pretty self-explanatory.

03.19.14  Temptation . . . My fight against want I knew I had to do versus what I wanted to do.

03.28.14  God’s Flight . . . I did not sit down to write this poem.  This is what came from my pen when I sat down to write.

04.09.14  The Last Next . . . Sometimes there is no next time.

05.20.14  Minute . . . We are never guaranteed another minute.

06.10.14  Waiting . . . We are always waiting for something.  We are waiting our life away.

06.13.14  Dance . . . Sometimes you just have to.

09.04.14  Goodbye To Nothing . . . People struggle with goodbyes, but sometimes it turns out that there is nothing left to say goodbye to.

09.05.14  Praying . . . The Lord wants us to go to him with anything and everything, to pray in good times and bad, when we’re thankful and we’re scared.  He is always listening.

09.10.14  Teach Me, Lord . . . Asking the Lord to make me his empty vessel to fill up with Him.

09.18.14  To Dream . . . We’ve all had dreams that just seem SO real.

I hope you enjoyed this little trip down memory lane.  I look forward to seeing what the next year brings in my life and in my posts.  I hope that you continue to join me for the next exciting adventure of A Tale Of A T-Rex.

Until next time . . .

Carrie

Toilet paper trivia

Have you ever used toilet paper to get to know a person?
No, I am not kidding.  No, I don’t mean, “you can tell a lot about a person by the kind of toilet paper they buy.”  I think the fact that they are buying toilet paper tells us more than enough about some people.  They are regular.  They do some pooping that necessitates the purchase of bum-cleansing paper products.  Let’s all be honest and admit that aside from that fact that we all know everybody poops, there are just some people that we do not want to know anymore about.
Last night at my bible study group we used toilet paper to get to know more about each other.  I know what you’re thinking . . . “Gross,” but stick with me here.  Each Sunday evening I go to a bible study group.  We eat.  We talk.  We delve further into the sermon from that morning.  Last night after we finished eating but before we got into the discussion my pastor lead the group of us, about 10 people, in an icebreaker.  It’s a different question every week, and it serves a couple of purposes.  It helps the group get to know each other a bit better, and it helps everyone loosen up and get into chatty mode.  Nobody noticed the two rolls of toilet paper that appeared in the room until our pastor started passing them around with instructions to take off as many squares as we thought we would need.  What he didn’t tell us was what we would need them for.  We are all giggling like little kids as the rolls make their way around the room.  Some people only took a few squares.  Some people took many, many, many squares.  Nobody noticed that our pastor and his wife each only took one square each.  That is until . . .
“For our icebreaker tonight you have to tell the group something about yourself for each square you have,” says my pastor.  That is when everybody noticed that he and his wife each had only one square.  The people who had many, many, many squares groaned.  The others giggled.
“Who’s going to start us off,” he asked.  I raised my hand.
Six squares.  Six things about me.  I realized then just how difficult it is to come up with things about yourself on the spot.  I resorted to the standby facts.
1.  My favorite color is purple.
2.  My husband and I got engaged on our 2nd date.
3.  I knew when I was 14 that I wanted to be in radio.
4.  My husband and I got married in Elvis’ birthday.
5.  My favorite artist is Elvis.
6.  My favorite band is Aerosmith.
As we made our way around the room I thought of other things I could have said, but in the moment it was much like writing the “about me” page for this blog.  “What do I say?  What would people like to hear about me that makes me sound fun and interesting and not like the geek that I am?”  Then much later you think of ten-thousand other things you could have said.  It never fails.
In honor of all the great things I could have said, (picking up where my toilet paper left off) here goes . . .
7.  My husband and I got married twice.  Legally on October 29th, and before friends and family on Elvis’ birthday.
8.  My second favorite color is silver.
9.  I was a band geek in school.  I played the B-Flat Clarinet from the time I was 9 until I was 22, and E-Flat Clarinet and Alto Saxophone my Sophomore and Senior years.  I tried playing the Flute and Oboe, but I had a hard time making that transition.
10.  I adore The Who as much as Aerosmith.
11.  I was the product of an abusive, alcoholic stepfather.
12.  I own, and sometimes wear in public for no reason other than every girl should do it, a tiara.  It’s amazing how much confidence a cheap, plastic tiara with shiny, plastic rhinestones can give you.  No woman is too old to want to feel like a princess.
13.  At 37 years old I can still do a crazy good little girl voice.  I use it for commercials at the station.  That voice even has a name. She is a 5 year old named Tiffany who loves chicken mcnugget happy meals with orange drink, and gets pissed because her mom won’t let her have the happy meal toy until her food is gone.
14.  John Cusack is one of my all-time favorite actors.
15.  I adore classic black-and-white movies.  Movies these days are crap.
16.  When I was 20 years old an ex boyfriend tried raped me.  Later he and his mother guilted me into not saying or doing anything.  I kept it a secret for years.  By doing that the only one who suffered was me.  Never keep something like that a secret.  Never let somebody else steal your voice.
17.  My first (and still favorite to this day) vehicle was a 1986 Toyota pickup truck.  She was blue with silver stripes and her name was Baby.
18.  I am a Dr. Pepper junkie.  Must. Have. Caffeine!
19.  I think everything is better with more color and sparkle.
20.  I believe there is something good inside everybody, even the people that everyone else has given up on.
21.  I can’t use utensils that are bent or have textured handles.
22.  I published a 250-plus-page book on Amazon.
23.  I handwrote the entire rough draft in purple, 3-subject, spiral notebooks.
24.  I love kitties.
25.  I believe in ghosts.
26.  I was born in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
27.  I grew up in St. Louis, Missouri.  Go Cards!
28.  The biggest thing holding me back from doing anything is myself.
29.  I rarely cut my hair (like once ever two years, maybe) because I am afraid the stylist will cut too much off and make me look like Mrs. Potatohead.
30.  I am TERRIFIED of spiders.
31.  I am a child of God.
32.  I don’t have grey hair.  I have naturally grown hair glitter.
33.  I always get the best writing ideas when I am in the shower or just about to fell asleep.

I know there is a lot more, but well save that for another roll of toilet paper.  What I want to know is what would your toilet paper say about you?

Until next time . . .

Finding the lost spark

Last night as my husband and I were laying in bed I asked him when the last time was that we’d had a good ol’ fashioned make-out session.  Take a moment to think back to the beginning of any relationship you’ve had.  There was something glorious and about just making out.  I’m not talking about foreplay leading to sex.  I mean just sitting on the couch while some stupid show play on the t.v. in the background, or the never-goes-out-of-style making out in the car.
I’m not trying to gross you out or be all pervy.  It’s just that last night I realized that my husband, somewhere along the way, have misplaced that spark that all relationships start with.  Our intimacy has fallen into a routine of quick pecks before falling into a snoring slumber.  After almost 10 years of marriage our conversations are mostly, “how was your day?” and “what’s for dinner?”  We have fallen into a comfortable rut.  That may be why I turned to another man almost 3 years ago.
I will admit that I got bored in my marriage.  There was nothing exciting left, I thought.  We both worked so much and then had to come home and be mom and dad to our son.  At the end of the day there was nothing left for the husband and wife.  So I turned to another man.  I turned to someone who wanted nothing from me.  I turned to someone that for a little while made me forget that I was a wife and mom.  With that man I was just a woman.  It felt nice to be just a woman.  That “relationship” went on behind my husband’s back for almost 2 1/2 years.  It ended in February of this year when God held a mirror up in front of my face.
Since February I have struggled to let go of the things that were toxic to my life and to my marriage.  It has been difficult, but things are turning around slowly.  I’m not proud of who I was, but that girl is dead and over the last several months I have started getting to know the Carrie that God wants me to be.  He is slowly restoring my family, bring us closer to Him and to each other.
Part of the restoration to our marriage is, of course, intimacy.  Hence the realization last night that we have not had a good make-out session in ages and ages.  To restore what has been misplaced we must strip it down to where we started and rebuild our marriage.  We have to rediscover what it is about each other that we fell in love with.  We have to find the man and woman that are beneath the “mom and dad” and the long hours at work.
God showed us both the road to each other 10 years ago.  Somewhere along that road we got lost.  God is the one who will get us back on the road to Him, and to each other.
Until next time . . .

Hiding from my best friend

Almost a year ago A Tale of A T-Rex was born.  I wanted a place to work on my writing in a public forum, and also a place to be open and honest about my life.  At the time there were things going on in my life that I could not talk to anybody about.  I needed a place to get that stuff out.  I write under a fake name so that people I know can’t find me, because there are times when I speak far less than highly about some people I know . . . more specifically, my son’s babysitter and a certain co-worker.  I don’t use the real names of people, if I use names at all (the drummer has always been “the drummer”).  All of that is so that I can open up and still maintain a certain level of anonymity.

Last week my best friend came to me and asked where he could start a blog without being found.  He knows about A Tale . . . though he doesn’t know its name or the name I write under.  The next day he started his own blog.  I had no fear of him finding me since he doesn’t read other posts.  He just writes to write.  I didn’t ask him the name of his blog or anything.  I didn’t want to know.  It wasn’t from a lack of interest.  It was because I knew he would be writing about very personal things that he might not be ready to share with those that know him.  There is safety is sending thoughts out into the great big void, but it’s terrifying to share those same thoughts with people you know.  It’s the same reason I started posting almost a year ago.

Then a few days ago he told me the name of his blog.  He wanted me to read it.  I asked him if he wanted me to follow it.  He said he didn’t care.  I am a bit torn as to what to do.  If I read his blog then I will be climbing into his head and encounter things about him or his troubled past that he has fought for so long to hide from me.  If I follow his blog than he will have access to mine and thus anonymity goes out the window.  I have written about him . . . several times.  I have also written things that I have not told him.

I know this all sounds rather trivial but I feel like the mask I have spent almost a year wearing is in his hands and he’s about to pull it off.  How can I hide behind “Carrie Leigh” if he reads my posts and sees not just some random person but friend and co-worker?  How can I continue to be as honest as I want to be if I’m worried that he’ll see my post?

Though he has taken a big step and invited me further into his head that he ever has by inviting me to read his blog I think it’s best if I just stay away.  It’s best for him and for me.  I don’t want to have to sacrifice the one place I have to really open up for the sake of someone else’s feelings (as horribly selfish as that sounds).  I spend my whole life censoring myself so that others don’t get hurt or offended.  Right here, right now is the only place I have to strip off facade and let it out.

I love my best friend, but letting him in here is the only thing I can not do for him.  I’m just not ready for that yet.

Until next time . . .

Finally recognizing God’s voice

About a week ago I started a class at church led by my pastor.  The group in the class is very small.  Aside from me and our pastor there are only 3 other people.  I like the small size of the group though.  It makes for a more intimate setting.  With only a few people contributing to the conversation everyone gets a chance to speak, nobody is left out or fighting to be heard.

Near the end of the class last week our pastor told us that he wants us to start keeping a journal.  He asked if anyone already did that, and was surprised to hear that I do not keep a journal.  His words were, “I’d figure you of all people would keep a journal.  Aren’t you the writer?”  So needless to say it has been a bit weird this past week to get back into the habit of sitting down each evening and writing a journal entry.  You’d think it would be no problem, especially since I write most of these posts like a journal entry.  And, honestly, my journal entries over the last week have sounded like something I would post here.

Journaling is not the point of this post though.

Something else our pastor told us was that he wants us to be open to hearing the way God speaks to us.  I sat there and immediately got terrified because in that moment, had he asked, I would have said that I have never heard God speak to me . . . EVER!  Our pastor wanted us to be prepared to share with each other at the next class the way God has spoken to us since our last meeting.  I just knew that I was going to be the only person in that class to say that God doesn’t talk to me, that He ignores me.  I’ll be honest and  say that I started to panic.  If I can’t hear God speak to me does that mean that I am not a Christian?  Does that mean that He has given up on me?  Does that mean that I am failing in my search to turn my life around for him?  Does that mean that I am a fake?  Rather than trust God to open my ears and heart to be able to hear his voice I immediately fell into doubt.

I went home that night and prayed, sharing with him my fear and asking him to open me up to hear him speak to me if he had anything to say.

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. – Matthew 7:7-8 (NIV) (text courtesy of biblegateway.com)

The next morning I got up and got ready for work.  I don’t have to be at the station until 9 a.m, and usually leave my house around 7:45 since I have a 50 mile commute.  I was all dressed and ready to go by 6:45, a full hour before I needed to leave.  Usually if that happens I will sit on the couch and take some time to do a little reading, but as soon as I came downstairs into my living room a thought went through my head that I needed to leave right then.  I remember thinking that I would end up getting to work extremely early, but I could work on some stuff to pass the time.  Again the thought went through my head that it was time to go, NOW!  I gathered my stuff and walked out the front door.  I climbed into my car and tried to start it . . . **click click click** . . . dead battery.  I tried again to start my car.  **click click click**  Yes, that battery was absolutely dead.

My husband had driven my car the previous day and said nothing about it acting weird or out of sorts, but with a car battery you rarely get any forewarning.  They usually work one day and then all of a sudden give up the ghost.

I called my husband to see if he could come help me, but he was already in his work truck on his route and was nowhere near me.  I knocking on my neighbor’s doors, but at 6:45 in the morning they were all still asleep.  I tried calling a coworker who lives nearby, but she shuts her phone off at night and hadn’t turned it back on yet.  I tried calling my husband’s former mother-in-law.  We are still friendly with her and she has always told us not to hesitate to call if we needed anything.  She wasn’t answering her phone either.  All I needed was somebody to either come jump start my dead car or give me a ride to my husband’s car so that I could use it to get to work, but I couldn’t get anybody to answer their phone.  GRRRRR!!!!!

I thought about calling the drummer, but as soon as the thought popped into my head it was followed by another thought.  “He won’t come help you.  He will make excuses to get out of it.  Don’t call him.”  I never dialed his number.  Instead I tried calling my friend Tim.  He and I don’t talk that often, but I had no doubt that if he was awake he would lend me a hand.  It turns out that Tim had a doctor’s appointment that morning and my dead car was on the way to his doctor.  He showed up, hooked my jumper cables to his battery and patiently waited the 10 minutes it took for my battery to get enough charge to finally start.  He never asked for anything in return.  He was just doing a friend a favor.

I realized that morning that God listened to me when I asked him to help me hear his voice.  As a matter of fact he didn’t even wait 12 hours to let me hear him.  He is the one who told me that I needed to leave my house at 6:45 that morning.  Had I sat my butt on the couch until 7:45 then I wouldn’t have been able to get Tim to come jump start my car.

I have always “gotten a feeling” about things.  We all “just get a feeling” sometimes.  Some people call it a gut feeling.  Some people say they “just know.”  Is that God speaking to us?  Could it turn out that God was speaking to me all along and I just didn’t recognize his voice?

On a side note . . . the drummer.  It turns out that God has been telling me since November to leave the drummer alone.  My friend also told me the exact same thing back in March.  I did not listen, at least not until almost 2 weeks ago.  That was the last time I saw or spoke to him.  I ended up saying something that would have taken me back to the old me.  I realized that being around the drummer is so very bad for me, and that once and for all it was time to be done with him.  That thought that I had the morning of the dead battery . . . “He won’t come help you.  He will make excuses to get out of it.  Don’t call him . . .” was a moment of clarity for me.  I realized that in that one thought (God speaking to me again?) was summed up every aspect of our friendship.  With all of the times that I prayed and begged God to help me remove the drummer from my life but then went right back to him it was the realization that I couldn’t go to him in a moment of need that finally let me close the door on that friendship.  Up until that moment I wasn’t ready to let go.  I couldn’t see a reason to let go.  So God put me in a situation to be able to see it the reason with giant flashing neon signs.

God does speak to us.  He speaks to us all the time.  Sometimes we understand the words.  Sometimes we don’t want to hear them, but God always tells us what we need to hear when we need to hear it.

What has God said to you today?

Until next time . . .

Who God wants me to be

Lately I have been doing a lot of reflecting on my life.  There has been no significant event to bring on that reflection.  Sometimes you are just able to step back and see things for what they are.

I am a 37-year-old wife and mother.  I am an aunt and friend.  I am a dedicated employee and newly reborn Christian.  Am I now where I thought I would be by this age?  Nope.

When I was a kid I wanted to be a firefighter, neurosurgeon, truck driver, and in the military.  When I was a teenager I found my calling when I watched my dad practice for this bar dj’ing gigs.  I knew that radio was what I was meant to do.  I was a fine arts geek in school . . . band, choir, theatre . . . but my passion lie in my clarinet and saxophone.  I remember thinking that I would never be able to feel whole if I stopped playing music.

I look back at the friends I had when I was younger and vividly remember writing notes to them that were signed “best friends forever.”  You never think when you’re younger that the friends you had then would not be the same friends that you would  have when you are older.  Many of those friends from high school I don’t even talk to anymore.  They were people who were there for me at some of my hardest teenage times . . . break-ups with boyfriends, fights with other kids at school, struggles with classes.  I thought that we were building friendships that would last forever.  But when you are a kid it’s difficult to see past today much less see years into the future.

I remember my first love . . . Bill.  My world rose and fell on him.  He was adorable to my little high school mind.  He was tall, blonde, the most beautiful blue eyes, and very smart.  Everybody loved him.  He was my first boyfriend.  He was my first kiss.  He was the first one that encouraged my writing.  He was IT . . . my first love.  I thought that relationship would never ever end.

I haven’t seen or spoken to Bill since December, 1995.  I do know that he is father to a couple of children and married to a beautiful girl that we graduated with.  She has the same name as me.  It’s funny the way life works sometimes.

As a kid I had lofty dreams of where I would be when I got older.  I would be living in a nice house, driving nice cars, and doing very well off financially.  I would be married to the perfect man, and I would be a raging success in my career.  Basically I imagined my life as a fairy tale.  How does the saying go . . . “Want to make God laugh?  Tell him your plan.”

We can make all the plans we want, but only God knows where our life will go.  Only He knows what lies ahead of us on our road.

I do not live in a nice house.  I live in a two bedroom apartment.  I do not drive a nice car.  I drive a little Kia.  I am not well off financially.  I struggle every month to make the ends meet, and sometimes they don’t.  I am not married to a perfect man, but I am married to a man who is perfect for me.  I am not the raging success in my career that I pictured while I was in broadcasting school, but I have listeners that enjoy me being a part of their day.

Thanks to Facebook I still can keep up with many of the people who I was friends with as a kid.  But, honestly, if I deleted my Facebook account the loss of their constant updates about their trips to the gym and what they made for dinner would not diminish my life.  Why?  Because I don’t know those people anymore.  I am not the same person I was when I did know them.  Just as they are not the same person they were when they knew me.  We have grown and changed, and have not talked in years.  Facebook is just the last vestige of holding on to the past.

I just realized that I sound kind of bitter right now.  Bitter is not at all how I feel.  I feel so very thankful for the way my life has turned out so far.

2-and-a-half years ago I realized my dream of going to work for a station I had been hoping to work at for 10 years.  I have been married to a wonderful man for almost 10 years.  I have an amazing 8-year-old son that tries my patience but makes me love him more everyday.  I have a 14-year-old stepdaughter that is growing into a wonderful young woman.  In the past couple of years God has brought so many people into my life that have brought change in me that I could have never imagined when I was a kid.  I have met people who are like family to me.  I have more moms that I can count now.  I have friends that are more like brothers and sisters to me.  I have met people who have helped me find my way back to God, and people who have helped me grow in my relationship with Him.

A year ago I was on a path that was leading not only to my own self-destruction but to the destruction of my family also.  I was having an affair with one man, and just a few months away from meeting another man who I would actively try to seek an adulterous relationship with.  Did I plan on that when I was a kid?  Nope.  I was going to have the perfect marriage, remember?  But one year ago I was lying to my husband about where I was so that I could go to another man.

I am not saying that my life is perfect now.  It’s not perfect at all, but it is getting better.  I am getting better.  I have learned to have faith in God to lead me where he wants me.  I have learned that he will bring the people into my life that he knows that I need to be better for him.  I have let go of the adulterous relationship, but am still struggling to extricate myself from the other man I was actively pursuing.  But God will show me the way and give me the strength.

I had great plans for myself when I was younger.  But God had great plans for me from the minute I was born.  I am finally able to see that.

I have not taken the radio world by storm.  I am not rich or famous.  I don’t have a big, fancy house.  I don’t have a super nice car.  But I have a roof over my head, food on the table for me and my family, a job that I love, and the faith that God is giving me everything I need.

As I reflect on where I am in my life I look back and see how far I have come in the weeks, months, and years of my past.  I am not who I was then.  I am not who I will be in the future.  Who I am is who God wants me to be right now.

Are you who God wants you to be right now?

Until next time . . .

A New Page (poem)

You were an addiction
You were a phase
You were a detour
In my life’s race
We shared a laugh
And a common interest in you
But when I needed you to step up
You were too afraid to move
I gave you almost all of me
To you I was an open book
But your selfishness kept you blinded
Beyond your world you couldn’t look
You used me to build you up
On my foundation of sand
But when my foundation washed away
You never offered a helping hand
You turned your back and walked away
I was no longer of any use
Our one-sided friendship thrown back in my face
As I was cast away from you
I tried to open your door
That you keep shut so tight
But your selfish anger keeps it locked
As you hide behind your fright
You were an addiction
A weakness, a phase
You were a chapter
But I’ve turned a new page
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
04.09.14

The Last Next (poem)

Until you look for the next
You’ll never realize last was last
Moments are fleeting
Time flies by too fast
What we hold onto so hard
What we give our all
Can disappear so quickly
Like summer flowers in the fall
What we think we can’t live without
Means nothing when it’s gone
Our heart keeps beating, we wake, we sleep
Life continues on
Assuming tomorrow will be a next
Only to discover yesterday was last
Burn bright, fade from life
Hold tight, let go fast
Look back tomorrow
See what has gone
Know sometimes there is no next
And the last will stand alone
The last will hold the memory
The unspoken, unknown goodbye
The last will keep its secret quiet
Of a next it forever denies
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
04.09.14