Sunday, November 28, 2010


messy hair

I want to hit pause and fast forward and rewind all at the same time.

Writing out six hundred and forty Christmas cards, a labor of love, but more than that, love letters of gratitude and best wishes. Wishing kick ass, laughter-filled, make your heart burst, awesome, loving, blessed Christmases and a fantastic, better-than-amazing, 2011 ahead.

Hand written, because real mail in a mail box is just special.


Remembering, reminding, reminiscing. An ache, a longing, an overwhelming gratefulness for the way things have unfolded and the ends that have become of the means.

Too overwhelmed last year for cards, too caught up and in the thick of things. Too raw, too painful, too crazy to even put words onto paper when everything was still so surreal. Ready, and proud. I sign off, one less last name, without a hyphen. I have found my identity again, I know who I am now. I know who I am as Racheal. Not Racheal, Jarrod's wife, or M's stepmom, or Carol and Peter's daughter, or Daniel's sister. I know who Racheal is.

I know who I am without the hyphen.

And that, that is kinda amazing and kick ass all at the same time.

Be consistent. Be true to yourself. Be honest. Be real.

So many conversations in the last couple of weeks that have reinforced this again and again and again. Good is happening, stay faithful, stay true to yourself. Believe. Know who you are and hold on so incredibly tight to that. Be open to lessons, to change, to the twists and turns, but stand tall, stand proud, claw, grab on, to your soul, your strength, your light.

Do the hardwork. Do the hardwork and it will pay off. It will pay off when you aren't looking, it will pay off when you don't know how to measure it, it will pay off when you look back and you realize, holy shit, holy shit, holy shit...look how far I've come. Look back, and see, that broken, that shattered, that lost, hurting, girl and see the woman that has grown from it. Look back, and realize, this didn't just happen, this wouldn't have happened without the hard work, so persevere. So be consistent. So do the hardwork.


For so long, I held my breath, afraid that this would be a house of cards. Afraid that if I started dreaming, if I acknowledged all the amazing, if I started charting out hopes and wishes that it might all fall apart, that I might get my hopes up and be devastated again. Afraid that if I moved, if I let myself stray and dreamt at all that I might screw it all up. Afraid that dreaming would mean that I would lose focus on the right now, on the hard bits, thinking that maybe the dreaming would just come later, much much later. In that strange faraway place of healing and healthy.


Dreaming of a future.


Of things that I find so incredibly hard to say out loud.

Like of being a mom again.

Or a wife.

And as soon as I say that, I want to take it all back.

I want to erase.

I want to deny.

I want to pretend that that is not a want.



And it is because of this fear that I know that I need to keep on trucking. Keep on depositing into my "healthy" bank. Keep on doing the hardwork.

Because it is when I am not afraid anymore, when I am able to say it out loud, when I am able to talk about it and process it out loud, that I will be ready. That I will know that the hard work has paid off.

The hard work, the kind where you confront all your fears and face them head on. The kind where you dig up all the sludge and wade through the muck. The kind where you throw yourself into that dark sinkhole of insecurities and fears, of mistakes and regrets, of failures and disappointments. It is that hard work, where the past gets regurgitated again and again and it hurts and it sucks and it makes you want to throw up for hours. It is the hard work where you have no control, no idea where the "hard work" will take you, only hanging on by a thread, a thread of hope, a thread of knowing that no matter how backwards, no matter how many steps you slide towards the wrong direction, that this will pound and break and scar but this will also open and unlock a whole new you. A whole new different kind of whoop ass happy.

And the pride, the assurance, the gratitude when you have conquered that fear, will be overwhelming. The success tangible in everything that you do. The way you think, the way you interact, your relationships, your friendships. The way you view the world, and the way you view yourself.

This journey has taught me so much, forgiveness, kindness, compassion. Humility, acceptance, loyalty.

We move in this week. The parallels of building a home, the piecing of the little things to form the big picture is a metaphor hard to ignore. The taps and tiles and kitchen and switches you picked weeks and months ago with a vague hazy picture in your head have become a reality as you see it all come together. Some look better than in your head, some just makes your heart smile and some, just didn't work at all. But you have learned, and you will know better the next time.

You learn, a simple lesson on happy.

Pick things that make you happy, pick things that make your heart smile, pick things that make a positive impact.

Be patient.

Don't rush into it, don't rearrange your thoughts and force yourself into liking something you do not love, don't mold and remold it and work so hard to change your gut, stay true to yourself, listen.

Bare, is a whole lot better than junk.

Learn to not give up. Learn to be passionate. Learn to persevere.

Good things come to those that wait.

Be faithful.

And I've stop talking about the house.

It's life.

Because sometimes, you should just get the chandelier.

Life is better with some sparkle and sometimes, you should use the fine china on regular days.

Just because.

Because life is special and precious and you get this one life. This one amazing, beautiful, crazy life.

Live loud, live proud, live real.


Don't make the same mistakes again, don't take this chance to do it all over again and not listen.

"[The void] It's that place in our lives where what we've been hanging onto . . . clinging to for dear life . . . is stripped away. It's that place in us where we let go of what we know, what we think we know, and what we want and surrender to the unknown. It is the place of saying and meaning, 'I don't know.' It means standing there with our hands empty for a while, sometimes watching everything we wanted disappear; our self image, our definition of who we thought we should be, the clones we've created of ourselves, the people we thought we had to have, the things we thought were so important to collect and surround ourselves with, the job we were certain was ours, the place we thought we'd live in all our lives. . . Surrender control to the supreme wisdom and authority of God and to the Divine in your soul. Step into the void with courage. Learn to say, I don't know. That's not blind faith. It's pure faith that will allow God and your spirit to lead you wherever your soul wants and needs to go."

-Melody Beattie