Sunday, March 5, 2017

Beautiful Rose, a gift from my garden.

And Then, She Said "YES!!!"

This Big Bright and Bold 2017, I've made a commitment to saying YES! 
"Yes!" to LIFE!!! Yes to new adventures. 
Yes to a new career, and Yes to LOVE. 
"Yes" to anything I'm invited to, or exposed to, our included in that I can do, I will do. 
I'll just say "Yes!" for 2017.

Recovering from a LONG Valentines week full of love and laughter, pain, tears, anger and suffering, I've escaped to Santa Fe New Mexico for a respite for my mind, body and soul. And I must say it worked! The Bright Blue Skies of Santa Fe are healing. I could hear the soothing sounds of the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Francis of Assisi from my room....It was heaven for sure! It is gorgeous there! The sky is Robin's egg blue and it was about 40 to 50 degrees with no humidity. Not to mention, there is not a lot that a few great meals with green chilies can't heal. Walking 6.5 miles up Canyon Road and back with a dear friend that is a Breast Cancer Survivor, was motivating and calming. I used this quiet time to course correct, find my new compass and ask God for discernment and direction. I'm excited to see what He reveals. 

The Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis Assisi 
Santa Fe, NM

I met the priest after mass by chance (or not!) in a wonderful French bakery near the church. I wanted to met him because I loved the letter he shared at mass from St. Peter Damian about rejoicing after sadness. I wanted to share it with my widows at Modern Widows Club. I spoke with him and other parishioners about our mission with MWC. The letter he shared revealed that there is Hope and Peace and Joy for us. It's all around us. It's just in the asking that we get dismayed. I love mentoring my widows. It thrills me to see the transformation right before me as our members learn to lean into their new lives with resilience, and becoming purposeful and productive and contributing back to society. They are saying YES to LIFE.

There have been a lot of YESes to Love lately too. Sooo very happy for Jodie Rodenbaugh and her "Oak" Matt Orf and their February engagement and commitment to Love lasting for ever. Love Always, Love All Ways. My congratulations to Mary Hines Wade and her marriage to JB. Wade. So excited to see these two beautiful families become one in faith and in love; enjoying life and saying YES! I am delighted to share in the joy of my dear friend Annette Little Cox 1 year anniversary for her Chapter 2 - She said YES to love and to live and to live out loud. Sylvia Salazar married her Philip Crowley and enjoying her 2nd year of a new life! When I met Cindy Toledo the first time she was so in love with Robert, it really inspired me! Now they are married too. We Celebrate YOU! All of you that have found new love after losing love. Many, many other dear friends have become engaged this month, recommitted to a life to be lived out loud with another and saying YES to LOVE. And to LIFE! Life after great Loss with lots of LOVE. I celebrate YOU!

Saying YES doesn't mean you have to say yes to a new relationship, or marriage, or anything you don't want to say "Yes" to. It only means you have to say "Yes" to New Life. New life after surviving loss. Yes to surviving cancer!!! Yes to new opportunities. Yes to Standing Tall in your NEW Life. Claim it for You. You deserve it. You worked hard to get here and now is the time to bloom where you are planted. 

Throw your shoulders back, take a deep breathe, breath in the beauty that surrounds you, and lean into LIFE.  Enjoy this journey that your are on. Enjoy the here & the now. Just say Yes. Yes Yes! Indeed, just say "YES" to life. 

Wind Sculpture Art on Canyon Road, Santa Fe, NM

Message from Mass in Santa Fe, NM:

Let us rejoice in the joy that follows sadness
You asked me to write you some words of consolation, my brother. Embittered by so many tribulations, you are seeking some comfort for your soul. You asked me to offer you some soothing suggestions.
But there is no need for me to write. Consolation is already within your reach, if your good sense has not been dulled. My son, come to the service of God. Stand in justice and fear. Prepare your soul; it is about to be tested. These words of Scripture show that you are a son of God and, at such, should take possession of your inheritance. What could be clearer than this exhortation?
Where there is justice as well as fear, adversity will surely test the spirit. But it is not the torment of a slave. Rather it is the discipline of a child by its parent.
Even in the midst of his many sufferings, the holy man Job could say: Whip me, crush me, cut me in slices! And he would always add: This at least would bring me relief, yet my persecutor does not spare me.
But for God’s chosen ones there is great comfort; the torment lasts but a short time. Then God bends down, cradles the fallen figure, whispers words of consolation. With hope in his heart, man picks himself up and walks again toward the glory of happiness in heaven.
Craftsmen exemplify this same practice. By hammering gold, the smith beats out the dross. The sculptor files metal to reveal a shining vein underneath. The potter’s furnace puts vessels to the test. And the fire of suffering tests the mettle of just men. The apostle James echoes this thought: Think it a great joy, dear brothers and sisters, when you stumble onto the many kinds of trials and tribulations.
When men suffer pain for the evil they have perpetrated in life, they should take some reassurance. They also know that for their good deeds undying rewards await them in the life to come.
Therefore, my brother, scorned as you are by men, lashed as it were by God, do not despair. Do not be depressed. Do not let your weakness make you impatient, Instead, let the serenity of your spirit shine through your face. Let the joy of your mind burst forth. Let words of thanks break from your lips.
The way that God deals with men can only be praised. He lashes them in this life to shield them from the eternal lash in the next. He pins people down now; at a later time he will raise them up. He cuts them before healing; he throws them down to raise them anew.
The Scriptures reassure us: let your understanding strengthen your patience. In  serenity look forward to the joy that follows sadness. Hope leads you to that joy and love rekindles your zeal. The well-prepared mind forgets the suffering inflicted from without and glides eagerly to what it has contemplated within itself.

1 comment:

  1. Lovely Natalie, and Timely. Spoke of you today to Grandson in my home. They flew in from Houston and I had a short visit with them. The visit also brought Baby Boy Walker was a delight straight from the Heavenlies! The joy was palpable.