Spires and inspired…

The sun sets on another day…

Sunset dropped over the western sky while I drove in the middle of the world, or at least the middle of Michigan. The western sky was splattered with clouds making the light ebb and flow as the evening slowly crept in upon us. It was magnificent.

Welcome to Reed City, at least that was how I felt this morning. It was a fast drive that the GPS could not really find at first, but I used to be around here long ago and found my way.

Today I was at The Reed City Evergreen Festival. There are a lot of festivals and events each year to visit and talk to people about books, reading, and more. (Yes, I like talking, oh well). Usually, there are good and bad people at every event, but today there were no bad, and the event was filled with positive people and positive interactions.

Three people and a group stood out today that I wanted to think about, and so I did on the drive home through cellular blackout land:

I spoke to a woman who was engaged and positive. She and her mother were walking among the booths, and she was driven. She talked about doing Tough Mudders and how much she loved them, and for a moment, we talked of my daughter and how she outshined everyone in a tough mudder. She was genuinely proud of herself, and next to her, her mother beamed in delight. It was a good interaction, and I love seeing people passionate about doing more.

I spoke to a woman who was working on her book. She had worked on it for a long time but needed to be more confident presenting it. We discussed a great deal, but the essential item to consider with her was she had a story to tell but was cautious about telling it. She doubted herself, but as I listened, she had a foundation she could explore that people would enjoy.

Another author was at the event that I did not know (gasp, choke, oops). She writes children’s books, and I purchased one for my grandson. They were cute, witty, and imaginative. This author had a way about her and the young innocence that I find very rarely. A sparkle in her eye and a passion for her work made the discussions with her very good.

The group focused on this event was a wrestling team. The wrestlers, who helped and ensured everyone was doing well, were incredibly professional and polite. I have rarely encountered such a cheerful group of young people driven towards a singular goal that has control and poise at all times. I was impressed.

With that in mind and if you consider the above, I want you to know you are special. You may have a story to tell, a quilt to make, a cabinet to build, a car to repair, or any of a hundred other things that define you daily. It is time to believe in you. You define who you are each day, and if you can share your gifts, it does not matter if it is one or one hundred or one thousand you share with. It is a goal that you can touch at least one person, help at least one, inspire at least one, entertain just one, and so on. If it is more, so much the better (At this point, I pause for you to consider buying a bunch of books so that I can sell a few million, ahh, that would be nice). The point is if you have a gift, believe in yourself and share if you can. Believe in you, and the rest will follow.

So as the sun sets on another day, it was a good day. It was filled with fun, and in the end, it taught me more. Every day I try to learn. Every day I am overconfident and humble. (Weird, yeah) Today was no different, and thank you to all the people who shared my day. Believe in yourself, and make your day the best it can be every day, no matter what.

Sleep sweet, love life, and believe…

Wavy lines…

The sun sets on another day…

Sunset was another day of perpetual whiteness, but it was filled with laughter and wonder and I laughed all I could all day!

If you read here ever I think and post a lot about differing perspectives and how we as people often do not understand the foundations for our counterparts, mainly other people. In my extra time to think today while freezing outside walking the puppy and mounting a new camera in the midsts of the woods I thought a lot about that again.

As I thought about it I sat down and watched a few mindless videos and relationship items passed by. I watched as different ages presented ideas on how to make relationships work. They were sometimes similar, and sometimes very different. I also watched a few quick videos with wonderful people talking about “pulling” you or noting they did not have a boy/girlfriend while their accounts had thousands of views and affirmatives. The online world continues to be interesting.

You know, in my strong opinion things work between people because of how they are able to adapt. A lot of people talk about compromise, but compromise means neither side gets what they want. Someone has to give, or both sides give, and in the end, everyone loses. (If you don’t think I am correct here, look it up) For long term success there has to be cooperation. That means both sides have to find a way to win together. Not by giving up anything but by developing a situation that works for both.

Do I see this?

No, not often. I usually see compromise and worse. I have experienced it as well. If someone dictates how things will be, it is a loss. If you dictate, it is a loss. Instead we have to learn o show empathy and understanding, and in the process receive the same.

This is a long topic, I should run a podcast. (I would at least make you laugh)

So as the sun sets on another day, let’s try to see what others need and in the process receive what we need. It is time to stop settling for what someone doles out to you, and if you are doling out what you think someone else can live with, you need to consider getting a cat. They really don’t care. (Joke here but somewhat serious). Instead lets find a path to helping each other find and be more, every day, no matter what.

Sleep sweet, love life, and hugs for everyone…

A better world…

The sun sets on another day…

While driving to an event across the west side of Michigan, I saw the wind and rain part for a moment. As it did, I pulled over to take a picture of the fantastic angry sky. The moment I pulled my camera out, the clouds closed in and took the light for a moment. I kept driving and saw the same over and over but did not stop. I would instead enjoy it than stop and make it hide.

There are events in your life that cause you to feel both good and bad. I spend each day trying to overcome the bad, and focus on the good. Sometimes that is easy, sometimes a challenge, but always an adventure.

Tonight I met a young woman for a second time that will eventually change the world. Her warm heart and grasp of life made me smile and I found myself fascinated with a particular set of interactions.

The night was eventful, with music and words flowing constantly. People sang of love lost and love found, of wonderful times and challenging moments. People read of passion, discord, and all the beautiful things that make us unique. (If you would like a good read, I read from “A Slice of Passion” and “The Gift.”)

During the night, I helped a group take some items to their car, and on the way back, a young woman began talking to everyone. I watched with patient, pensive eyes as the moment unfolded. One of the musicians invited the young woman into the event, and she was initially over the top. She was lost in music and people, and as I ran and got her a coffee, I watched everyone walk away from her except one. Like a fantastic symphony, I was bespelled by magic as this woman engaged, spoke, and truly listened. I did not want to interfere but watched with awe as the young lady transformed into a person with care and concern, and I watched as she gifted the young woman and came back in and sat down.

Others who began the interaction had walked away, but this young woman did not. She knew what to do and made a difference.

Super job Maddie.

So as the sun sets on another day, thanks to all the people who take a moment and make a difference. The world is a better place because of you. I hope your night is spectacular, and help when you can, no matter what.

Sleep sweet, love life, and be good to people…

This is Halloween…

The sun sets on another day…

Take 3. Sunset was a cascade of color and cloud, and each moment I watched, I saw changes.

I have dumped 2 posts tonight as I wandered down the depths of negativity. If you think I am always positive, well, I am. I also have to fight to be that way sometimes.

Halloween is simply amazing. The landscape covered in nothingness there are still some leaves in the tree and still some color on the horizon. With that in mind you also have to consider the constant barrages of negativity flowing from just about everywhere. I have watched numerous discussions about politics and the world and the way that it is, but I sit here today telling you that you have a choice. This is Halloween, and you have a choice! Take it!

You see, sometimes we’re lost in the middle of all this and sometimes we just have to step out. It really isn’t worth it to get spun up over things you can’t control. That includes people. We have control of ourselves and no matter how hard we try we will never have control over other people. (Unless we start implanting chips into the brain and shunting the way our minds work.)

I hope that you got out tonight and got to see all the Halloween trick or treaters and all of the fun people getting outside just to have some fun and maybe a little more. Take a moment and take a deep breath and enjoy the evening. Take a moment and just let go of all the silliness that seems to be bombarding us all. Now let’s just have some fun.

 So as the sun sets on another day, it’s our choice. Let’s make good choices for ourselves and set aside the bad ones. Keep a few mediocre ones around just to drive you a little crazy. Find a way to enjoy the day with everything swirling around you and in the middle of it all laugh if you can. I will find my way to laugh, no matter what.

Sleep sweet, love life, and Happy Halloween!!!

Moments…

The sun sets on another day…

Sunset brought a tear to my eye as I ended a fantastic week with family and friends. The sky was covered in curious colors while I smiled it at all.

I got to drive a lot today. Driving gives you insight into a lot of different people. It is always amazing to me how people act when they don’t think they are being seen, and even more amazing how people act in a car where they obviously are being seen.

Of course, the biggest thing you see when driving is the plethora of nose-picking. I know it’s probably making some of you queasy, but the idea of being in a car with windows all around you and putting your finger so far up your nose that many people think you would lose a finger is ridiculous. It makes me laugh but makes me wonder, and in that wonder, I present to you a question.

As you consider your day today, do you think of yourself as alone even though people see you? If you do, I want to tell you that you’re not alone, and those of us out here will be there for you. You have to figure out who those people are. It’s not that hard. Look around. There are people who care about you.

There was a time when I felt alone. I was never really alone, but I felt that way. I had two things happened to me. First, I learned to be alone and had no issue with it. The second was that I realized that I was never really alone; all I had to do was reach out, and people would be there. That could be the lesson today: if you feel alone, people will be there if you let them.

So as the sun sets on another day, you’re not alone. No, I’m not trying to scare you for Halloween, but I am telling you that people are there for you if you’re willing to let them. It’s a hard choice, but in the end, it will open your heart and your mind.

Sleep sweet, love life, and stop picking your nose in the car..

Reality check…

The sun sets on another day…

I watched sunset slowly sink into the Western sky as I crossed new horizons and readied myself for another change in the world. It seems there is always change in the world.

I was talking to a friend today who was having a particularly bad day. As we talked they made the statement that they know I am positive all the time but I have to admit that some people suck. I laughed to myself for a minute.

Each day as I sit down and write I try to make sure I am staying positive. There are hundreds of posts that go awry and I either have to delete them and start over or I save them and start over and consider writing about the issue later. The world is not always positive but how we see it can be.

I want to say wholeheartedly that there are a lot of people who suck. People whose minds are closed and cannot see beyond themselves. People who only consider others with like minds as valid points of view. People who purposefully hurt other people or take advantage for no cause other than their own twisted pleasures. People whose hearts are full of hate and want others to feel their hate. All of these people and so many more suck.

It’s kind of a funny word but it’s very accurate. Negative people suck the life right out of you. They suck the positivity out of you. They suck the potential for good feelings out of you. Mostly they suck away your chance of having an amazing day.

Yes, I agreed that there are many people that suck but I’m not going to let them take my power away. I don’t mind because they don’t matter.

Tonight you will be surprised to know that for a few moments I became excessively angry with the advent of a situation where someone thought they were being cute but obviously didn’t remember the depth of their past transgressions. It didn’t last long simply because I was aware that they probably weren’t aware (due to poor memory) and in that I was giving away my power to enjoy a happy moment. I set it aside and spent time with my grandson. That always makes me laugh.

So as the sun sets on another day, some people suck but I will not let them suck the life out of me. I hope you find a way to feel the same. Set aside the negativity of others and let’s find a way to have an amazing day or at least a highly tolerable day, no matter what.

Sleep sweet, love life, and find a better path…

Happy for you…

The sun sets on another day…

Sunset was at the end of a very long day. I was at peace for a few moments as the sky was painted with amazing colors.

As I drove around a little today in the middle of nowhere I thought a lot about people. I was reminded of those who were very special to me and who slowly faded away. I was also reminded of those who found another way, another path, or, for whatever reason, chose to make the world different for them.

There are a lot of things that I wanted out of life. Some I have gotten and some I have not. If you think about it this is how life is and if you got everything you always wanted it would be pretty boring. That being said there are times that I have experienced significant agony when people have disappeared from my life. I’m not talking about the friend who moved to Germany or the ex-girlfriend that I accidentally found in the columbarium at a cemetery. What I’m talking about is when people find another way and they are gone from your life. What are my thoughts, what comes to mind?

I want them to be happy.

As I was thinking about it perhaps that’s all we should ever want. Perhaps that’s all any of us should ever want. If you truly love someone shouldn’t you want them happy with or without you involved in their life? Maybe we can take a step back and wish someone happiness even if we miss them. Whether friend or love, isn’t it best to say, “I hope they are happy!”?

I know it is hard sometimes. Losing someone special in your life can be devastating, Still, our grief can be a doorway to realizing that we can grow, and in that moment we can realize that our hearts can be broken, but open to someone else finding happiness.

Who cares, right? They are gone, let em suffer or be happy.

Yeah, I can see that, but letting go sometimes gives you the clarity to see further, know further, and with that there is a certain peace. I won’t say it is easy, but I will say that we can be a little better if we let go. Funny, there is a statement about it, something about loving something, setting it free, you know the drill.

So as the sun sets on another day, I hope those who we have known have found their way. I hope those in our lives know how special they are, and I hope the future will be amazing, no matter what.

Sleep sweet, love life, and be happy…

The chains…

The sun sets on another day…

Sunset was again filled with clouds. Rainy huh? Sure is! Still, the rain cascaded across the windows and made music that no musician could easily duplicate. It turned out to be a good day.

I have written twice about Dickens. Here and here.

I was thinking a lot last night about the chains we wear. According to Dickens, we forge our chains link by link. Marley says, “I wear the chain I forged in life… I made it link by link and yard by yard; I girded it on of my own free will, and of my own free will, I wore it.” If you read about it much, you will find many people have different and like opinions about these chains. Whether built of selfishness or material wants, the chains Marley bore were heavy and more.

So, what chains do we bear today? I carry chains that I try to shed daily, but I know many hold on. My chains are forged with lost loves, past indiscretions, and past situations that I did not seize. I forged my chains by being too cautious sometimes, and too aggressive others. I wear a burden built of not doing things to my potential for any other reason than the fear of others. Each day I try to come to terms with what I have built and leave some positive in my wake to lighten that load.

What chains do you wear? Are they the chains of chances lost to fear or avoidance? Do you wear chains that are built of greed or envy? Are your chains built strong to wall you from others, or do you let loose your chains and try to fly? Have you ever thought about your chains and how they came to be?

I have found that some people hold back for fear, and some hold back to have others feel for them. I know people who wear their chains proudly and those that fear the weight of their bindings. I know others whose chains are heavy but will never easily see them there. It is all personal. It is all based on bias and belief.

Funny. Bias and belief are sometimes our foundations.

All I can say for sure is we all need to come to terms with our chains and find a way to build our best self every day. After all, when tomorrow comes, it would be easier to face realizing we live the best life every day.

So as the sun sets on another day, here, hold my chains. I believe in myself and will find the best me I can be and bring others with me if I can. I believe there is more to life than rules and more to love than a simple surface statement. Ultimately, I hope we can all find our peace, set aside our chains, and be free. After all, life is pretty fun if you allow it to be. Make your best day, and set aside your chains, no matter what.

Sleep sweet, love life, and where’s the hammer….

Cold fish…

The sun sets on another day…

Sunset was cold, crisp, wet, and full of that stuff in the air called rain. At least it was fun walking the puppy in it!

I get a kick out of conversation always. It is always enlightening to see people’s opinions about the world. Today while in a conversation, I was laughing with someone who noted that they were a cold fish. After our interaction, I thought about that for a while and considered the words that were relayed to me.

I find that people are often self-deprecating when they don’t see the world from the outside. It is easy to pick on yourself when you don’t have a reasonable view of yourself. As I thought about this, I considered how many people build walls to keep themselves from being hurt. I have written about this many times, and it is my opinion that as we age, we sometimes try to protect ourselves from the world with self-deprecating humor, humor in general, walls of sarcasm, or disdain. Sure, there are a lot of other options, but we become so intent on not being hurt that we actually hurt ourselves a little bit more.

This is, of course, completely subjective. Some people may think of having walls to keep other people out is a good thing. Some people just feel safe without the chance of someone tearing their heart out or worse.

I think when we’re children, we don’t worry about this as much. We fall down 100 times or get hurt 100 more and get right back up without a worry or a cry (until people start paying attention to us and we realize we’re supposed to be crying). It doesn’t hurt as much because we get right back up and do the same thing until it works(hopefully not grabbing a hot stove, but you know what I mean). We are not alone and instead we have people that help us, and we can find our way.

Maybe it’s time for some of us to get back up. Maybe it’s time to set aside the different types of walls we have and our self-deprecating humor barriers and realize what wonderful people we are. After all, we have a choice every day to have a great day and believe in ourselves or not. Personally, I would rather think of myself as someone at least half way decent to someone else and maybe to quite a few someone elses and make my day the best it can be. It’s worth thinking about, at least.

So as the sun sets on another day, let’s all be spectacular or at least as good as we can be. Sure, it’s cute to not think too highly of yourself, but don’t think too lowly of yourself either because I happen to think everyone is awesome until they prove themselves differently. Be the best that you can be each and every day, no matter what.

Sleep sweet, love life, and be a warm puppy…

Just be you…

The sun sets on another day…

At sunset tonight, I considered the colors as I arrived a few moments late. Still, the sunset was stunning, and I enjoyed watching people as they walked away and went on with their lives.

I have a news flash for you. You are special. I know this sounds contrived, or it sounds like something someone has to say, but I don’t have to say anything. You are special.

Take a step back for a second and think about all the people that tell you things. Some have ulterior motives; some are being nice, southern nice, New York nice, or even West Michigan nice. I really am not worried about all of them. If you meet me in person, I will look for the best in you if it is there. If you meet me in person, I will tell you something special about yourself right away. If I don’t, I’m seeing something a little different and not being shy. I will likely tell you that too. The point is that even if it is good or bad, you are special, and most likely, it is something good.

Take a second and take inventory with me. Suppose you can look in the mirror and feel like you’ve done one thing positive today, then you are doing super. Hold on to those positives and realize that you are a good person. Keep being you, just be you!

So as the sun sets on another day, take a second and believe in yourself. Take just a second and drop all the negatives while you consider the positives. Take just a second and realize how special you are, and your day will be fantastic, no matter what.

Sleep sweet, love life, and be you…