His sermon spoke of being stuck in the burden of trying to make a living, TRYING to find happiness, peace, and JOY… and TRYING to accumulate prestige and prominence… and he said to LET ALL THAT GO and LEARN to sing at the TOP of your voice with JOY no matter of your circumstances.
His sermon gave me so much peace that I drifted off to sleep like a swaddled baby.
And for some silly reason, I sprung out of bed this morning with childish unexplainable joy, and my children’s kindergarten song, “Jesus’ love is bubbling over,” ran through my brain, but I couldn’t remember the tune.
I quickly texted my daughter Tarah and asked her to sing the song.
Here is the song. Click on arrow!
So, I know you are probably thinking, “Well, that’s good for you, Lisa. You are silly. You are ridiculous. You have no idea the problems I have. Life is rough for me. I am in a season of ugly.”
Well, I can tell you this, twenty years ago, one of the most brutal times of my life, when I went through a divorce, my ex became a paraplegic, and I was a broke single mom; I remember a guy whom I started dating told me you are one of the happiest people I know. Even though you have all this crap, how are you still happy?
It wasn’t my inner strength. It wasn’t me trying to have a pleasant disposition. It was ALL GOD! I knew my troubles were more than I could handle on my own. I asked God to fill me with unexplainable JOY! And He did! And he does now! But sometimes, I am a spoiled brat, like a kindergartener who wants her toy back, and I scream at God, “GIVE ME JOY!”
So, as I skip the streets of Santa Barbara this afternoon, heading to yoga, I am sending you all love and asking you to ask the one who sees you, loves you, and wants to help you; to ask Him to fill you with the JOY of JESUS.
Salt gives food flavor. You can BE JOY! Share JOY! You are the salt of the earth! Can you be salty?
“You are the salt of the Earth.” Matthew 5:13
“… I have learned the secret of being content in every situation… I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” Philippians4: 12-13
This past weekend, I attended my church retreat in the Santa Monica Mountains.
It was beautiful, fun, and restful. As I made new friends and visited with familiar ones, I felt like a kid at camp, sitting on a log, roasting marshmallows on a stick.
Even though I was filled with bliss over the weekend, I admit that yesterday, as I washed my dinner plate, I thought, Ugh! Why do I feel the funk creeping back in?Ugh! You are alone.
I dried my dish and thought of the demographics of the retreat attendees. Married! So many married couples!
I looked out the window and up at the sky and said, “You know what is going on? Let me keep focused on all the good you bring me. Drown negative thoughts and restore my silly, child-like joy.”
Today, as the light filtered through my sheer curtains, a smile covered my face. Morning! I love that God does not allow my hiking boots to get stuck in the mud but gives me clean fresh boots every morning. And like a kid excited to go hiking at camp, I strapped on my backpack, hopeful, for the new day.
I worked and then looked at the clock and thought, 10 o’clock. Time for Kipper’s walk. But before I did, I heard the whisper, call the box office. So, I did!
“Hello! I’m looking for tickets for a Death Cab for Cutie?”
“We have one ticket left in general admission, and we take no phone orders.”
I looked at my officemate and said, “Kipper, let’s go! Time for a walk.”
Kipper must’ve anticipated my excitement because I was not prepared for a run, but Kipper was on a full pace and had me not skipping but jogging down the street in no time.
Eight blocks later, I walked up to the ticket booth and said, “Is that one ticket still available?” It was meant to be. A credit card was handed, I snapped a picture and then sent a text to my favorite concert junkie saying, “Guess who is going to Death Cab for Cutie?”
Tarah, my daughter, responded, “cute.”
As I walked home, I tipped my hat and threw a smirk up at the sky, you do hear me!
1 John 5:15 “And since we know that he hears us when we make our requests, we also know that he will give us what we ask for.”
I am headed to Michigan this weekend to celebrate the wedding of one of my favorite nephews, Jacob.
This afternoon, after I finished packing my carry-on ,I zipped it up and thought, should I park my car at the airport or should I text a friend to drive me?… the airport is only 10 minutes away, I could ask my friend Heidi or I could just pay the 20/day fee?
I scratched my head and thought Ok God, you know I don’t want want to be a burden to anyone, what should I do…
Before I could finish my thought I received a text, Hey Lis, when are you going? Do you need a ride to and from the airport?
A smirk crossed my face as I looked up at my ceiling and thought YOU DO SEE ME!
I texted Heidi, YOU and God REALLY love me!
I called Heidi and gave her the details on my trip to Michigan.
After I hung up the phone, I dug through a box of old photographs and found this picture.
I glanced at the photo and thought, my babies.
I studied the photo and recalled that months before this beach snapshot, my ex had become a paraplegic. With no child support, a quick weekend away to Southaven Michigan was all I could afford. Every year the trips to Michigan became symbolic, as if the sun setting over the pier was God saying to me, I got you Lisa.
And he did then… and twenty years later,he still does. He knows my thoughts and answers my requests. Even the silly ones.
“If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” James 4:3
Yesterday, I was in planting my fall mums when my cell phone rang and with one syllable I felt transported from my backyard, to my house in Westmont, the house of my youth.
“Well hello Amy. How is my girlfriend today?”
Within moments, it was as if no time had passed; as if we were sharing stories, freshman year in the cafeteria line or on the bleachers of a Hornet football game.
“Who did you go to prom with?”
“Who was your big crush?”
“Do you remember that toga party at Knez’s?”
It was like I was fourteen years old again and could still feel my braces getting caught on my gums as I giggled.
We shared memories from our youth but also some of the lows of today; aging parents, work, jobs, life, etc.
I hung up the phone, looked over at my mums and instead of resuming planting, I put down my shovel and went inside.
I thought more about Amy. That girl always could make me laugh.
I dug through my old photo album and found a picture of us. I can still hear “Surprise!!!” echoing the hallway of my childhood home.
I thumbed through the photo album labeled SWEET SIXTEEN PARTY and saw friends of my youth.
As I recalled names of the faces who gathered in my streamer-filled basement, a quiet smile covered my face as I remember how happy I was that night but then another thought entered my mind.
Wait! That was also the same day of my high school conference gymnastics meet.
That meet still ranks as my most embarrassing moment EVER! Let’s just say, “my monthly friend” decided to pay me a visit in the middle of my floor routine. SURPRISE! And this SURPRISE visit was not something that was easily disguised. I remember Amy sitting outside the shower as I cried with utter distress.
I thumbed through some more pictures and thought how could I be SO FREAKED OUT and SO HAPPY all in the same day. And then I heard the whisper, ” With me anything is possible.”
So you may ask, why do I share such raw and personal stories? For likes? For Comments? Self-promotion?
No. None of above.
The reason is simple; to show that no matter what you are going through, or how your day, your week, your month, or yes- even your painstaking year is going- that we have a real and personal Jesus who sees us, loves us, and listens to us.
He wants to help us, if only we will ask.
So if you are stuck in a season of slow bleeding… ( Sorry, I am giggling! God wrote that! I didn’t.)
Don’t be stuck! You have a friend who wants to be with you; whether you are crying in the shower or celebrating a birthday. God is good and will meet you right where you are!
“Many are asking,’ Who can show us any good? Lift up the light of your face upon us Lord.” Psalm 4:6
It has been over a year and half since I traveled by plane. I am sure many of us feel the time lost. I close my eyes and rest my head on the headrest and a soft smile covers my face. I can’t wait to see my children. My family. My dad. I’m going home.
My mouth twitches Is Chicago home?
My lips seal like an envelope. Home?
Quickly images of my Fourth of July backyard party fill my head. I recall giving a toast to my friends, all gathered around my table. In the toast, I reference the movie Under the Tuscan Sun starring Diane Lane as Francis.In the movie, she gets divorced, buys a run-down house in Tuscany, and in moment of weakness, confesses to the realtor that she is sad but wants a wedding and family at this new house; that she was tired of being alone.
I quietly smile recalling telling my friends how at the end of movie, the realtor tells Francis, “I think you got wish.” She smiles, “ You’re right. I got my wish.”
My heart is full as I recalled telling my friends that having my table filled on the Fourth of July brought me so much joy that I feel like Francis from the movie. I got my wish! I continued to say that I had been praying for twenty years for a husband but if I met my husband in Chicago I would not be here and through all the trials and tribulations, God orchestrated a life better than I could possibly imagine and that it was only possible through him.
The evening went on, we prayed.We ate. We danced with sparklers like little kids, and yes, we watched fireworks. The night was magical.
Near the end of the night, my friend’s husband, John, gave me some parting advice, “ When you go back to Chicago, keep your eyes down. We don’t want you finding your husband in Chicago, unless he is willing to move to Santa Barbara.” I remember smirking.
I hear over the intercom, “Please prepare the cabin for takeoff.” I look out the small oval window and see palm trees kissing the blue sky and think Thank you God for unanswered prayers. You knew me better than I knew myself.
Are you willing to wait on God and trust him to provide for you ?
“Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4
This week I was in the attic and found a box full of random pictures of the last twenty or thirty years.
As I scattered the pictures across my kitchen table I recognize most of the people in the pictures and thought, How lucky am I that I’m still am friends with a lot of the people in the pictures?
I grabbed my iPhone took a few pictures and sent it to those in the photos with a text saying something to the effect of, “Those were happy days. Good memories of you.”
The responses varied from sweet to silly. Some reciprocated by sending photos back to me. One in particular warmed my heart as she responded, “Thanks for the walk down memory lane.”
She then reciprocated and send a picture of her own to me.I was stunned It was like opening a time capsule.
I quickly texted back, “Love, love, love this photo. It was John Guido’s wedding. I sat with my ex at that wedding even though we were already three months divorced.”
I looked closer at the photo remembering that I was recently divorced and I asked myself Why did I look so happy? I think I was at peace and I was hopeful for the future. I believed God had good things for me.
I remembered that wedding and celebrating the wonderful couple that now been married eighteen and half years. It was a joyous occasion. I was glad that I could sit next to my ex and feel fine.
I looked closer at the photo and thought Wow! I was only 35 and now I’m 54. Never thought I’d be single almost 20 years!
Within moments a small smile covered my face. Thank God I did not remarry back then. What I wanted in my 30s is definitely not what I need in my 50s. Back then I may have had a faith in God but I wasn’t looking for a strong Christian man, let alone a warm body to sit next to me on the pew.
God was in the delay. He has been working on my heart and my desires; to be with a man who not only adores me but adores God. So today, as I got ready for church, I looked in the mirror and felt hopeful again. God knows what he’s doing.
I stepped outside and snapped a selfie and thought,I am happy. I am healthy. I am hopeful.
So today, for those of you who are single and wondering what’s taking God so long? Don’t give up hope! Believe that God has good things in store for you ! Maybe just maybe, like me, he is changing you for good. I believe the wait will be worth it !
“I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, in his word I put my hope.”Psalm 130:5
This morning Kipper and I were on a morning walk when I saw a piece of paper laying on the sidewalk. I bent down and read the note.
It read: Tom- I love you with all I am or will ever be. You are my protector, lover, best friend, and so much more, and I am so happy that I am truly able to be your wife now too!! I am so happy to have found my soul completion. Love you forever!
Love and peace
Reading this notes filled me with so much hope￼. I thought Love does exist.￼
I quickly took a picture of the note and texted it to some of my single friends with these words, Saw this on my morning walk. Praying this perfect love for you. Feeling hopeful!￼
The text ￼responses from my four of friends varied from:￼￼
Heart and peace sign! I hope Tom feels the same and he accidentally dropped it? I would keep a note like that.
But why was it not saved in a safe place by Tom?
Aww!How sweet! LOL, maybe he didn’t feel the same and threw it out his car window!￼￼￼￼
Awww.Tom needs to learn how to hold on to things like this. LOL. Leah is like, “You lost my love note?” Tom’s like oh crap! I lost her note￼￼!
My response :
LOL! He probably kept it tight in his pocket at all times but it fell out while he was walking and now he is distraught wandering the neighborhood trying to find it.YEP! I’m A HOPELESS ROMANTIC!
I looked down at the note and thought, I hope Tom finds his lost note. ￼
Kipper and I continued on our walk.
I threw a smirk up at the sky and silently thanked God for the sign and thought, True love does exist.
Love, Peace and Hope IS just a step away. IT IS COMING !
Can you believe God has good things for you ?
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
This evening,as I walked the beach,I thought, “Wow, I can’t believe a year ago I put an offer on a house to move here.”
A quiet smile came over me as I surveyed the stretch of sand. I looked up at the clouds and asked “Why did you bring me here, God? Why Santa Barbara?”
I thought of my neighbor Heidi.She said, “Lisa, why do you have to have a purpose for being here? After everything you have been through, maybe God just wants to bless you. Maybe this is just for you to enjoy.”
Later that night,as I was dragging the garbage cans to the curb,a neighbor asked,”How was your day?”
“ Fine.” I quipped. “ How was yours?”
She walked closer to me with her head hanging low, “I lost my job.”
My heart sank. I knew she was a single mom and had heard she just battled cancer.
I walked over and hugged her.
I told her that I knew her story and then shared my own. Then I asked if I could pray over her. I wrapped my arms tight around her and poured out my heart, begging God for mercy.
Moments later, she wiped her tears and said ,”I don’t know why I lost my faith in God but thank you for praying with me. Lisa, I’m so happy you are my neighbor.”
I walked away and thought, “Why me? I have spent a lifetime asking “why me” for the bad stuff; why am I questioning the good stuff, too?”
As I sat on my front deck, I thought about what Pastor Greg said to me years ago as I was leaving Illinois and moving to California and questioning the plan .
I remember asking,”How will I know that this is the right thing?”
With a gentle sincerity he offered,”Don’t worry.Don’t question the plan. God will use you where you are – you just have to let him.”
He was right and so was Heide.
Maybe God wanted to both use me here and bless me,by bringing me here. I just need to let go, stop questioning the why, and enjoy.
As I watched the sunset, I saw the beach in front me and a life with a purpose, to serve the one in front of me… and then heard the whisper “…or maybe just serve the next door neighbor .”
Moving here was HIS plan.
Are you open to surrender and wait for the best plan?
What is your heart whispering to you?
Live in the joy.Live with purpose. Live your best life.
Psalm 37:4 “Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”
Are you willing to crawl towards a better finish even when faced when obstacles?
The saying goes, “You have everything if you have your health…”
Almost four years ago I finished a triathlon and shortly afterwards I started to have weird symptoms; burning, electric shocks, and my body feeling like I was a cell phone set on vibrate. My Chicago doctor blamed it on adrenal fatigue but then the laundry list of symptoms starts piling up like the dirty laundry basket of my two teenage athletes.
The symptoms of vertigo, tinnitus, night sweats, insomnia, and numbness mirrored the dreadful diseases of MS, Parkinson’s, and ALS. I did not recognize my own reflection in the mirror. I am a buck twenty, maybe a buck and quarter on a good day. After losing twenty pounds over a few months, I found myself sitting in the shower, too weak to stand, hoping the shower would drown my wails of anguish.
After months of MRIs, C-scans, blood work, my doctor was fresh out of ideas and handed me a prescription for Zoloft. I crumpled up the scrap of paper, tossed it in the garbage,and with a crooked smirk laughed, “Come on. You know me. I have been through a divorce, my ex becoming a paraplegic, raising the kids alone for the last dozen years as a single mom , a robbery… Seriously, depression? I will walk my way out of this … just like everything else. I will exercise until I feel better.”
As he walked out the door, he cocked his head around the corner, “Let me know how that works for you?”
Well, it didn’t. No flip turns in the pool would turn my sickness upside down. I was stuck running vicious circles at the track, hoping an answer was around the next bend.
Finally, after a year of misdiagnosis, I had an answer. Lyme disease. Yes, a little crawling tick created all this chaos.
Three year later, watching a crew of wetsuits enter the fog-ridden shore of the Pacific Ocean, I was a little jealous wishing I too could dig my toes in the mushy shore and get in the race. Since my restless energy would not be expended, my curious nature got the best of me. Silently I thought, “Why did this happen to me? Why did I need to be on the sidelines?”
In disappointment, I turned and watched athletes from previous heats cross the finish with smiles plastered across their face, proud of their character of “going the distance”. A smirk crossed over my face, as I realized how far I, too, have come. My course was not easy but through some waves, potholes, and flat tires, my character developed .God was using a rough course to design a better me.
Anyone who knows me, would testify that I am a strong individual competitor, not needing or wanting direction.( You don’t get the nickname ” sassy pants” for nothing.) I like to think, I became sick so maybe, just maybe, I could be weak.
“For when you are weak, He can be strong.” 2 Corinthians 12: 10
I am better me. I have surrendered that it is ok not to always be the strong one. I will get back in the game. I will walk away and leave Lyme disease in the dust and hopefully, God-willing, swim, bike, and run to a better finish …and maybe, just maybe I will stop being an individual competitor and allow for a running partner to run beside me or better yet run ahead of me to clear the obstacles so I can have an easier finish.
The journey has been long but I am getting better . Day by day,month by month, year by year, I see the progress . And until my body, completely catches up with my brain, I will keep getting out of bed,work hard,and believe the whisper,” I AM WELL.”
” I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength.” Phillipians 4:13
Are you willing to face your obstacles, head- on?
Believe in your inner strength , Your Whisper Within.
July 4th 2001. Not single yet… but definitely beach bound.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms who make hard choices !
Because I loved my kids …the benefits of being raised by a single mom …
1) You learned if you didn’t get up for school a bucket of water would be dumped in you .
2) You learned that mouthing off would result in a “free pass” to walk to school in the middle of winter .
3) You learned that misbehaving at x-mas eve service would earn you… the ” push-ups for presents ” prize.
4) You learned that NOT learning math was NOT an option- I was not afraid to be called a math nazi .
5) You learned if something stunk – it was time to crawl under the deck to see what creature was rotting – usually a raccoon .
6) You learned how to earn a wage at 8 & 9 yrs old – I think $5 is a fair wage for staining a deck .
7) You learned summer was not a vacation from homework … that worksheets before breakfast is part of life .
8) You learned that no matter what , WE were a team – poor but surviving .
9) You learned that I was always in your corner .I would pour every ounce into you – but you had to do the same – FOR YOU !
10) You learned that I love you – no matter what ! #mothersday#momlife#mom#singlemom
It’s 4 am. I am awake. Sleep has not been my friend. I am not sure if it is because I am visiting family for Christmas and sleeping in an unfamiliar bed or if it simply dreaded menopause. My thoughts are twisted and tangled; mirroring my legs and arms caught in a web of bed sheets.
I could try to break free from this misery called insomnia but I have learned a different method.
“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10
I have learned my best answers come when I don’t think but listen. As I lay still like a wrapped mummy I say, “Quiet my thoughts so I can hear yours.”
As I reflect on 2016, I know many have posted on social media of their unhappiness in this world. They are distraught but what are they doing about it? Are they asking God for direction?
God has the plan. You just have to listen. DAILY.
As I stare at the ceiling I recall what my pastor said to me five years ago,” I don’t think your husband is here – he is where you will be “
I asked, “Where am I going?”
He responded, “I know how much you love the beach. I think you are moving to the beach. He is there.”
After fifteen years of being single and raising the kids by myself, God brought me a new plan, new friends, new life, new hope. Yes, God brought me to California and … the companionship like I prayed for.
Here’s a rundown of the gifts God brought me.
My hiking girls; Judy, Marji, and Anne. My small Bible study group, Jeanne, Lynn, Bea, Hilda, Jamie, and Susan, My Tuesday night homeless meal friends, Marlys, My Centennial Guild friends – LA Children’s Hospital Group and my Lyme friends
Judy and Marji joked, “You prayed for companionship – you thought God would bring you a husband instead he brought us. You have to be more specific or next time he will bring you a dog!”
I am so thankful that God told me to leap and not look back. So what is God telling you?
I’m challenging you to do two things . One if you have insomnia,lay there and say, “ Quiet my thoughts so I can hear yours.” And two, before your feet hit the floor, say this, “Tell me what you want me to do it and I’ll do it.” God will give you answers but you have to be brave enough to not just listen but DO IT.
“ If you want to know what God wants you to do ask him and He will gladly tell you but when you ask him – be sure that you believe that he will answer you , otherwise you will toss and turn like a boat on the sea.” James 1:5-6
No more tossing and turning.
Grateful for my life. Grateful for new starts. Grateful to the one who whispers to me. Happy 2017!
This may come to a surprise to my friends but I don’t like Christmas. I would rather “shoot my eye out,” than walk into a mall at Christmas. Any single person knows what I am talking about; couples walking hand in hand, fused together like conjoined twins. This week as I sat on the couch watching The Holiday, surrounded in wadded up tissue from nursing a cold, the sadness crept in; tiptoeing around my Christmas tree like the Grinch. Not even Jude Law’s dreamy blue eyes could spark excitement. The holidays can be simply depressing for the single person.
Attempting still to get in the mood, I resorted to the classic, It’s A Wonderful Life. No matter how many times I have seen it, the ending still grabs me. I feel like I am swallowing marbles and my eyes are pools of emotion every time I watch it. That’s when Christmas hits me like Santa’s sled going full steam.
We know the reason for the season but in a commercialized world we need to make the joy ourselves. So, I wadded up my tissue and threw them in the trash along with pity and heard God whisper down the hall. I made little booklets that read, “You have been a gift to me. In turn, I want to give you a gift of my favorite Bible verses.”
Here were some of the responses:
“Your booklet helped me this week” ~ my massage therapist
“The best gift is when you give of yourself” ~ a client
“Thank you for the reminding me, that the thirteen-year-old me had good instincts. I can’t imagine how someone from so long ago and so far away could feel as connected right now, but I do.” ~ a High school friend.
Sitting on the bathroom floor, letting the tears pour down my face, I was transported back to high school Biology class with my braces, pony tail, and all. We all want love; whether we are thirteen or a hundred and thirteen.
There is a week before Christmas and someone you may know may be lonely. I “triple dog dare you” to reach out and make a difference. Do you bake? Bring cookies to a neighbor. Write a note “You are loved this Christmas.” Give an extra Christmas hug.
Be willing to give love. “No man is a failure who has friends,” God whispered to me. What is God whispering to you?
Philippians 2:1 “Is there any such thing as Christians cheering each other up.”
I don’t like Christmas. I love Christmas. Be willing to find the true magic of Christmas
I have been single for fifteen years so I am always looking for signs that I am on the right path. Some people wait to see one sign in their whole lifetime.A friend says I’m greedy. I get three in a week and I am still begging God for answers. This past this week, my greed factor was escalated.
On Monday, as I bent down to tie my running shoes I was happily surprised to see rain outside. That’s right, the rarity of rain! It is true it really does not rain in Southern California and this Chicago girl misses the sweet taste of raindrops christening her face. The moment was sweet but short-lived because as I turned the corner, a second display of extraordinary was flaunted; a rainbow, biblically announcing that hope was in the horizon. Letting my mouth give way to a smile, I let my running shoes guide me home.
A few days later, I received another rare sign as I received this text from my nephew, Jacob.
“Hey, Aunt Lisa! I’m in LA. Going to see the Cubs. Wanna join me?”
Jacob, a lifetime Cubs fan, flew in from Denver to see his beloved Cubbies in the playoffs for the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Within seconds I responded,” SURE! Send me your ticket.”
With seconds, I had a picture and moments later, I found a ticket one seat away from him for only $80! Talk about luck or a perfect sign.
Without hesitation, I texted, “I’M IN! SEE YOU AT 5!
Sharing the once in a lifetime experience of watching my beloved Cubbies in the playoffs with my nephew was rare and simply priceless.
Sitting in the stands, I became a little reflective on all the good in being single for fifteen years.
“There is a right time for everything and a season for every activity.” Ecc.3:1
Embrace your single time!
Be content in who you are. Be ok sitting alone in the bleachers.
Being alone means no bathroom lines like at the ballpark and you avoid sticky shoes or sticky floors from a miss-aimed toilet.
Eat what you want, when you want. You want a helmet full of nachos washed down with a “soda” of choice, do it!
No need to ask permission to do anything. I want to go to the game, I go to the game.
You are a free agent, not tied to any team. You have options to move from Chicago to Los Angeles (like I did!)
You get to play the field.
Embrace the dugout. Hang out with your teammates and have some fun!
Stay in the game! Work out like a player. Do not get out of shape like a retired manager or someone who is out of the game.
Do I want companionship? Heck ya, just like my Cubbies want to be World Series champions!!
Is this the year of the Cubs or me? Either way I came to play, enjoy the game, and enjoy the moment.I will wave the white W flag not in surrender but in victory; because just getting to participate in life is winning. I am patient like the Cubs; it took them 71 years to attend the rare dance of the World Series but just like finding that perfect mate, tonight will be SWEET.
So YES, I believe in Rain, Rainbows, and the Rare Event!
The year was 2003 when everything changed for my beloved Cubs and for me. It was a bone-chilling, blustery February day that life as I knew it would never be the same. I can still hear the phone call from thirteen years ago, clinging to my memory like the ivy on the brick walls of Wrigley Field.
I was newly divorced and financially broke, single mom of two young children when I was confronted with the news that my ex had a horrible snowmobile accident, leaving him a paraplegic. That was the same year my beloved Cub’s heart was broke as well. When Bartman leaned forward to catch Marlin’s second baseman, Luis Castillo’s, foul ball. His attempt distracted Cubs left-fielder, Moises Alou. Marlins wound up scoring eight runs that inning. The Cubs lost. They were eliminated the next night. The curse lived on or was it really a curse?
I don’t believe in “The Bartman curse,” and I don’t believe the curse of the Billy Goat either. I am hopeless optimistic like a loyal Cub fan at Wrigley; who waves the W flag when their precious Cubbies are losing 8-0 in the bottom of the ninth. I believe that even if you are dealt a bad pitch or someone plays interference, you always have a choice to dig deep, brush the dirt off, play a little scrappy, but get the job done.
That’s what I did, without a relief pitcher in sight. Thirteen years later, I see how things turned around for my kids and me; as well as the Chicago Cubs. My kids, Jake and Tarah ,are both in college and the Cubs are in the playoffs, hopefully, heading to the World Series.
How does one keep walking forward with hope when your world seems hopeless?
1) Get out of the dugout, (or your bed) every day. You may fall on your face but at least it is momentum in the right direction.
2) Never settle. Wake up every day and say “Nothing but greatness today.” Play like a champion.
3) If you are unsure of an answer – Do nothing! Don’t try to pick up a “new player” or spouse. That is not your answer .
4) Be open to change. The best plans change without your permission. You need to be flexible to adjust. You need to know when it is time to steal 2nd.
5) Write down your thoughts every day.The Good, the bad & the ugly. See your progress. What are your stats?
6) In this time of transition – be the best you. The Cubs may not have always have a winning team- but they are the best team at Wrigley.
7) Do everything without complaining and arguing. Nobody likes a poor sport!
8) Always believe you will win. Get The W flag out and start waving. Fake it until you feel it. 9) Trust the plan. No matter what it is. You may not agree with the GM or God but they are in charge.
10) Allow yourself to be sad but you need to get up and take another swing. You could hit a home run.
11) And lastly as a “suffering cubs fan” there is always next year!… Hopefully this is the year!
I know I said 10 ways… but the 11th is the bonus! Hoping me, you, and my beloved Cubbies get an extra inning – if it means winning.
UPDATE : This was written pre- World Series . 2016 was the Cub’s year & mine as well ! Here is hoping the winning streak continues in 2017!