"Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, Who is in you, Whom you have received from God? ... So use every part of your body to give glory back to God..." 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Runners Meet.com

Austin and I shared a "Funny" yesterday. He is quite witty and can turn a ordinary story into a comic strip.
I picked him up after school yesterday and was telling him how I ran with a new gal, "Melissa".

AUSTIN: "So mom did you know this chick?"
ME: "Yeah, Austin, she is my client and I went to school with her."
AUSTIN: "So like you kinda know her....Well where did you run?"
ME: "I met her out in Grand Blanc."
AUSTIN: "So is this like "Christian Mingle or Match.com? Is it like Runners Meet.com? You like meet runners in random places??"
"Be prepared, bring a pair of shoes and get ready to sweat, all shapes, sizes and colors welcome!"

I laughed so hard at his Infomercial!

Today at RUNNERS MEET.COM  I met "Danielle" at Indian Springs for our 8 miler!
I am so stinking sore. My hamstrings are hating my guts. Specifically the left side. This is the left over damage from that boxing class.  I had to walk 2 times on our run because my body was puking me out. "Danielle" was awesome at letting me walk from marker to marker. I was surprised at our pace considering we had brought our pace down and added a couple walk breaks in there. We averaged a 9:15 pace. We had a lot of quietness in our run. I was really trying hard to concentrate. The mile markers were full of evilness. at 2.6 miles I thought "WHAT..How the heck am I gonna make it another 6 miles, shoot me now."
It was great to finish this run, but it was bitter sweet because I really enjoy "Danielle's" company.

I had a good day. Very very busy. Directly after running I rushed home to get cleaned up and meet Ariel's roommates at M.A.K.A.  I had some goodies for them. I love sitting and chatting with them. I wish I had done this before Ariel had passed.
Even Charlie showed up, Ariel's boyfriend! It was nice to laugh with them all.

I had to quickly leave there to get to a meeting at the school at 2:15.
The day kept going with a basketball game for Austin out in Hartland, bringing us back home about 7:45 at night.

Tired and hungry I had dinner in the crock pot waiting for us. My family is NOT a fan of crock pot meals. Although I have done good with my choices in this week menu. Today I ran out of favor!
My family loved the corned beef and cabbage on Tuesday and the chicken meatballs on Wednesday but really threw a stink over the pork loin and vegetables tonight.  I caught Andy gracefully chucking a mouth full in his napkin. I looked at him as he gave this little boy flirty look back at me. He was thinking he was clever and unnoticed, "Really Andy?? Come on." He laughed and I had to laugh because I knew he was trying to swallow it.

Not every meal is going to be every one's favorite. But it is healthy and we are so very fortunate.
There are things I eat and things I make my family eat that are not very popular but eating is for MORE than just for PLEASURE.
 We need to eat to maintain a healthy body. We can enjoy food but we also need to eat to sustain a balanced and active life. Our bodies are capable of doing so very much.
My boys have gotten little parts of being sick this season but it has not lasted long and they have not missed any school over it.

 5 Keys to eating Healthy
  1. Eat WHOLE FOODS...live foods...from the earth
  2. Stay away from processed foods, check the labels, keep the ingredients down.
  3. Drink plenty of water. 
  4. Bacteria feeds on sugar. If your getting sick STAY AWAY FROM SUGAR!! 
  5. Double up on your Juice Plus!
"Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul."
 3John 1:2

What tips do you have for staying healthy??
Could you see yourself Joining "Runners Meet.com" ??!


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

"What do I do now Ellie."

Sitting on the couch across from Alec bawling. I love cartoons.  One of my most favorites makes me sob.
It is the music. That slow orchaesrta music. It is the sadness in never reaching his dreams with his sweetheart, and it is loss. Loosing the irreplaceable. 
Mr. Fredrickson. UP.

"What do I do now Ellie?'
I heard this as I was drowning my tears in my apple pie.
I just LOVE this movie.
And I LOVE Apple Pie.

Good thing I had a good run this morning. I met "Melissa" in  Grand Blanc today.  We have never ran together before. I was really excited she invited me to run with her. It was a nice day to run.
I mean aside from 35 degrees and my bootie still super sore from Monday night kickboxing.
As I lifted my legs to begin our 8 mile run I thought "Yeah, this is going to hurt..really really bad."
But I was so stoked.. the pain was secondary.

It was a great run. "Melissa" was great. She ran faster than I thought she was going to run. I think she ran faster than she thought she was going to run!
We ran her route and I learned a new route. Running in new territories is like a mini adventure. Another reason I love running. The outdoors is your playground.

I had a good day.
  • Had a good read in RUTH this morning.
  • Morning went smooth with the boys.
  • Had a great run with great company.
  • Starbucks made me a yummy White chocolate mocha.
  • Got a SHOWER in before 12pm!
  • Met a couple to do a Portrait of Ariel and I. I am not sure how I am going to pay for it but it is going to be beautiful. I will have to lay off the Starbucks for the next few weeks and no more shoes or boot shopping! I am so excited for my portrait. 
  • Even picking up the Austin from schools was perfect. I waited for him outside his classroom. I saw him in the hall a few feet away. You never know how a preteen is going to respond to you in their territory. But he greeted me like a queen. He looked at me smiling and ran towards me. Next thing I knew I was being picked up and swirled in the air like a Dancing with the Stars." 
It was a good day.
Apple pie made it even better.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

"God Aint the Problem."

I have this little problem. It is the whole Codependency problem. A people problem. I always want people to like me. And if they don't - I try even harder and look even more ridiculous trying.

"NOT everyone is going to like you, ANITA." I tell myself this all the time because I am always trying to gain peoples approval....A serious character defect.

So in another vain attempt for a relationship with a certain person I send another text message. I try to be positive and loving. My attempts  usually backfire with either NO response or a really bad response.
This time I got the really bad response. I just stared at the words. I thought of things to say but decided it was best not to say anything because there was nothing I could say.

Jonah4:3-4 Therefore now, Oh Lord, Please take my life from me, for death is better to me than life. The Lord said, "DO you have a good reason to be angry?"

On Tuesday night I lead a addiction class for families who have loved ones struggling with addiction. Pastor Jim gives a small lesson/sermon. Tonights sermon was perfect. 

If you get about 5 minutes read Jonah
God had big plans for him. I have people in my life that I have thought were incredible people with incredible potential...It was just trying to convince them that they were that person that was so difficult. 
This certain "Someone" is one of those people. 

I have had many certain "Someones" in my life I have witnessed s great potential in them, I have seen God want to use them in Big and Mighty ways. My brother is another one of those people. I don't believe that God allowed such hardships in our life growing up for us not to use them to glorify Him.
I believe God wants to turn our Trials into Triumphs. 

God saw great potential in Jonah. 
But a series of things blocked Jonah from seeing Gods vision for him.
GOD sees Great Potential in YOU.
But this is what Happens to many of us:
  1. YOU get HURT.
  2. Then YOU get BITTER.
  3. Then YOU get SELFISH. - Hurting People Hurt People. They FEED SELF.
  4. Then YOU get STUBBURN.
  5. Then YOU get ANGRY.
"Life will make You BITTER Or Life will make you BETTER."

Do not miss out on what God really has planned for YOU.
God IS NOT the PROBLEM. Quit blaming him for misfortunes. I am the queen of misfortunes. LIFE had dealt me some bad cards...NOT GOD.
GOD has carried me through all of them.
I WILL NOT let my hurts hold me HOSTAGE.
BECAUSE our hurts will not only hurt us they will hurt others too!

This sermon helped me give a certain "Someone" a little more grace even though they are hurting me in their hurt. I will NOT attach myself to it...today...

Did You Get HURT????
Do YOU see the domino of your hurts??? 
Are you holding on to resentments causing you Bitterness, Anger? Are you Stubborn to change??


Monday, November 26, 2012

Kickboxing kicking my butt!

 Ability is what you're capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it. -Lou Holtz

"Megan" from work asked me a few days ago if I wanted to go to a Kickboxing class in Royal Oak. At the time it sounded like a great idea. I thought I have been wanting to take a cross training class for a while this would be a good trial.
The more I thought about it the more I wanted to go. I knew "Megan" would be surprised I was following through.

Today I had so many frustrations. I didn't go to the gym or run knowing that I was going to this kickboxing class.
My shoulders were so heavy and I was so burdened with disappointments. I am easily discouraged by the thoughtlessness of people as of late. I am so hurt by the constant degree of "SELF" that is out there. So many people have hurts and have been hurt and yet can not see outside of their own pain. There has to be a point in all of our Pain that we see others. We love others, we help others. Pain is not isolated. I know that at certain places Pain comes in and buries us. This world crashes down on us and so often we can not get a breath. We can not find our bearings. But we do not hurt people in our hurts. This is where I am at. I know people are hurting yet they are hurting others in the midst of it. This is a tough pill to swallow right now.

It would hurt me to know that I could have helped someone in THEIR pain but was so concerned about MY own pain that I did NOTHING. I shared Nothing. They reached out to me and all I could do was address my own hurt and grief. And I did or said things that hurt them as well.
I hurt MORE for not only myself  but I would have ADDED pain, I would carry their pain of hurts, disappointments and discouragements.

The sweat was stinging my eyes. It burned with no sign of letting up. As I hit the bag I could feel the skin on my knuckles give way.
I could hear the instructor screaming " ONE, TWO, THREE, GET Your HANDS Up, FOUR, FIVE...."
I hit the bag hard and fast. Each blow I removed a layer of pain if only momentarily. The physical pain and the physical exhausting of this class still was not close to the pain of what people can do to you. So I punched harder, I accepted the sweat, I embraced the soreness of my muscles and allowed the fatigue to swell inside my body. The muscle confusion was taking a welcomed toll on my body and my mind.

I could hardly walk to the car. "Oh my Booty..It hurts soo bad Megan." We laughed all the way to the car in our sore beat up bodies.

This was a great class. I think I am going to find a cross training class this winter. It will break up the winter and help to build some different muscles.

The afflicted Pain of others will always be there. It is just trying to filter other peoples garbage that they dump on you. People have gotten so SELF driven. It is no wonder people are not internally happy. Happiness and joy really presents itself in being an encouragement to others DESPITE your own hardships. Everyone has Pain but MANY have no one to encourage them, love them, or try to help them. 

Ariel Challenge: This week in your weakest moment think of someone else that is also in a weak moment. Think of a way that you can be an encouragement to them. A phone call, a text message, a card, a bag of Christmas candy, maybe it is a dessert or something so simple as a HUG.

The secret of getting ahead is getting started. -Mark Twain

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Power in Weakness

And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.

I stayed  t0o busy the past 4 days. I knew the hammer was going to come down on me. Today it came down hard. I woke up so drained and burdened. My heart ached and my heart was empty. 
It was the first song at church this morning that sealed the deal. I felt my shoulders drop and my head bow. My eyes were quickly filling with tears. There was nothing I could do to stop my body from shaking in sadness. 
Death. Loss. Grief. It does not make any sense to me. I just cannot comprehend any of this. I see Ariels face and I think 
" You should be right here, next to me."
"Where are you Ariel?'
"Why are you gone?" 
"How did this happen?"
"This is not real..is it?" 

I just want to crawl inside myself. I want to fold into nothingness. I feel so depleted. 
And I hear the above verse at church this morning and I cry harder. I KNOW God is good all the time. I KNOW he is doing a work through this aweful misfortune. I know God made me a Warrior, a Survivor....But in MY strength I feel so very very WEAK. And yet in HIS Strength I know I am strong enough to survive. 

I have also thought of myself as stronger than the average. Even at 5'1, 102 lbs I feel like a fighter. I have always thought of myself as tougher than I am. I have thought of myself as a Conqueror. 
Here I lie crumbled, beaten and confused. I feel weak and powerless. 

I Hear Gods word saying "I will never give YOU more than you can handle." 
So in my Weakness I am again reminded that it is NOT how I feel that matters It is HOW GOD feels about Me that Matters. And HE Knew I was strong enough with HIM to get through this.  He knew this would not break me. 
So I will use what little strength I have to make it to the box of Kleenex and to the next day going forward one day at a time. 
Thursday: Thanksgiving.  Everyone was on good behavior. It was a great day. We had over 30 people come over for dinner. My sister in law "Becky" hosted. The Robinsons came over for games and that was a lot of fun.
I enjoyed watching my boys play and have fun.
There was a piece of me that died with Ariel. I felt that missing peice despite the laughs, food and games. I felt her absence every second that went by. But I tried so very hard to smile and go on. 
I pulled an alnighter minus an hour powernap, meeting my best friend at 11:30pm to go shopping. 

Friday: Still shopping till 12. I met up with the family for lunch and then got my boys from "Beckys" and headed home. 
Got home about 1:30. I put the stuff away, picked back up the house and took a power nap. My Nephew "Brian" showed up at 3:30 with his girlfriend to run the Fantasy 5K in Howel with Alec and I. 
"Danielle" saved us places for the parade in Howell. She met us out there and ran the race with us. Brian ran with his girlfriend and Danielle ran with Alec and I. Brian is 18 and going into the Marines. I was so PROUD of my him and Alec. This was "Brians" 1st race and he did great...but Alec beat him!

Go Go Go. Eventually it all catches up with you. And today it did. Tough day but I am so Thankful for every tear. 


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Super simple

Totally dreading tomorrow.
I am not sure how I am going to do this whole "put a smile on" and go through with Thanksgiving without Ariel.
Ariel was my shadow.

I gotta try.

Ran hard today trying to remind myself to FIGHT.
To Fight all of HELL.
To Fight my FEARS.
To Fight those who have Hurt me.
To Fight to be the BEST I can BE in the worst situations.
To just FIGHT. Fight with everything I have. Every fiber of my being, against the odds, despite my beginnings, just FIGHT.

Gotta Fight.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Sharing Victories

This week has barely started and yet I am flying on some victories of both mine and others!

Let me share.

 “If you think you can win, you can. Faith is necessary to victory.”
- William Hazlitt

For four weeks I have been checked out in the parenting department and many other departments. I am around, I am body but my shell was empty. The last week I pulled up my big girl pants and despite my grief and heartbreak from losing Ariel I knew I had to pull it together.
Today at parent teacher conference's ( great way to start off a Monday..UGH)  I got a lot of the same info.
Both the boys made Honor Roll and both the boys had remarks like:
"He has to have the last word."
"He just needs to learn how to control himself."
"He is hilarious I find myself laughing at him all the time, he is just a bit disruptive."
But even throughout the comments I was so pleased with the grades and also the fact the teachers really do enjoy my boys. My cousin "Vince" made a comment how that reflects my parenting. That meant a lot. So Even though it is my KIDS victory I too am claiming it!

Andy's Mom gets Ariel's mail still. And she got a letter from U of M stating that Ariel made the DEANS LIST again!!!! She worked so very hard.

Vince, Vince, and Sean, my cousins!
I have a Second Cousin, "VINCE M" who had his Pro Deput this past weekend at the PALACE and had a incredible VICTORY!

 "Although there may be tragedy in your life, there's always a possibility to triumph. It doesn't matter who you are, where you come from. The ability to triumph begins with you. Always"

I went for a run later this afternoon when time allowed. I had a great run without any timing device. Only because it DIED..the battery wasn't charged! I took off running in yet another spectacular day. My left knee was a little weak so I really concentrated on my gait and my form. I ran hard and was glad I did when I saw the sun setting quicker than I had expected. By the time I got home it was dark out and I was pooped out. I saw the mail sitting on the counter. I quickly went to see what jackpot I had sitting there...The advertisements and catalogs this time of year are a guilty pleasure of mine. On top of Macys and Bed Bath and Beyond sat a large envelope.
 Today I got my Acceptance letter in the mail from the B.A.A.  They accepted ME!!!

Most Victories  are a little sweeter when conquered after defeat. I have had many adversities try to knock me down and I can say the same about those I spoke of too. But one thing stands true...We Got Back UP!!!

Thomas Paine
"The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheaply, we esteem too lightly; 'Tis dearness only that gives everything its value."

 Be Victorious. Dig Deep. No excuses. Do something Awesome!!


Sunday, November 18, 2012

"Tough Cookie" Strength

"Carpe Diem" = Seize the Day!

Sunny skies and 53 degrees. This equates to Run. Not just a mediocre run, not just a zombie run but a run that would seize the moment. Everyday is filled with opportunities waiting to be claimed but some days are waiting for you to kick it up a notch. Some days are waiting for you to not just move forward but leap and dive into Greatness.

Wearing my favorite running shirt I headed out onto the road. I had my black capris on and my favorite "Ariel Angel" shirt on. Chewing gun and switching songs on my Ipod I could feel my heart skipping a beat in excitement. The sun was bright shining across everything I looked at. And the sky was blue and vast with no boundaries. "Double digits." I told myself. I was prepared for a incredible run and prepared to seize the day with a long hard run but I had not planned my route. I just let my feet direct me as I turned out of my road.

The air was chilled and crisp but it did not take long for the sun to heat me up. My legs felt so swift. I felt like I had a new spirit. I felt Strength like I had not felt in weeks. 
For the last few weeks I have had a couple tough runs in but most of them have been strictly therapeutic.

As I ran I thought of the sermon at church. "Jeremiah" spoke and shared words of  Success, Victory and Strength. 
These are words I attached to. He gave the story or Moses and Amelek
 Exodus: 11So it came about when Moses held his hand up, that Israel prevailed,
and when he let his hand down, Amalek prevailed. 
12But Moses' hands were heavy.
Then they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it;
and Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side and one on the other.
Thus his hands were steady until the sun set.

As I ran I thought of Ariels Sorority sisters, "Michelle", "Katie" and "Alexis" coming to church. I thought of their weakness in their pain. How pain and hurt can crumble you. How pain can confuse you. And if not careful our pains can conquer us. 
My legs were swift,  methodically hitting the pavement with the sound of my breathing. I could hear little whimpers exhale from my lungs and yet it was so comfortable.
STRENGTH: That seems the word as of late. From my own personal experience to the sermon and to conversations I have had with different people- this is a word that has presented itself often this week.
I gave "Ariel" this little keepsake holder a few years ago. Ariels roomates found it and gave it to me. Inside it was the note I had written her. 

My beautiful spitfire. There is so much of you I see in me. Be very careful. While often characteristics that make us STRONG in the Worlds eyes, they make us WEAK in the Lords Eyes......
You fight and you fight hard. ....You never give up on yourself.....Go for the GUSTO. I will have your back....
I Love You~ You can DO ANYTHING..
                   ~BELEIVE~  All My Heart, Aunt Nita

As I thought of the sermon and I thought of the girls, I thought of myself also. Every little detail requires attention in our lives. Strength has hurt me. Too much strength has made me bitter and resentful. And not enough strength has come from insecurity and discouragement. 
I thought of these words I had given Ariel as I began to feel my legs weaken. "Fight Anita" 
I thought of the sermon and the words that described VICTORY when Moses held his hands up. "Get Your Hands UP ANITA."  
The wind was in my face and I had 2 miles to go but up ahead I could see a hill.  I drew strength from the words that I gave Ariel and the words I had been given. I drew strength from the encouragement of others and their difficulty. I am very motivated by others that are striving for something better than mediocre in their own personal struggles.I was struggling and a final thought came to my mind. I thought : 
Physically I wanted to collapse. My body and was stamina was depleting, I wanted to curl up and quit. How similar I had been feeling emotionally. My physical body was mimicking my emotional pain that I have been enduring the pass few weeks. In life we carry so many hurts and like running 10 miles today we just want to crash under the pressure of the pain but we must find strength to push past it and find Success and Victory.

Strength: Comes from within. Inner strength must be ignited in order to Gain any kind of strength. 
  • Philippians 4:13  "I can do all this through him who gives me strength."
  • 2 Chronicles 15:7 " But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded."
  •  Psalm 73:26  "My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever"
  •  Psalm 73:26  "My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."
  •  Isaiah 40:31 " but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint."

Distance: 10.05
Pace:: 7:50
I have had many people ask me "Where do you find strength?" In My weakness HE is Strong. I am not as strong as many people may think. If you could see my pillowcases you would see. But God has Supplied me with STRENGTH through experience,words,  people and circumstances.


Friday, November 16, 2012


I have had so many WOW moments the last couple days.
There are some Awesome People out there and there are some Awesome moments out there waiting to be claimed.
I know in my heartbreak I have missed out on some incredible Blessings. But I also know that there are more out there.
I am just amazing as my eyes are coming out of the fog the love, support and constant blessings from so many.
I would like to share my top 5 WOW moments!!
  1. Completely WOWED at a $1000 dollar donation Andy and I have been given to go towards Ariel. I think I cried all night over the generosity of our friends. 
  2. I am WOWED at the cards that have came into my work from clients. Everyday I receive cards expressing their support and love for me. Many have heard so many years for stories about Ariel and my love for her. I have saved every card and am so thankful for each and every one.
  3. I am WOWED by my running partner "Danielle". I am just amazed every time I run with her at how we got connected after 20 years. I am most WOWED by all my running I have done YET I have not RAN her off yet!
  4. I am WOWED by people who have brought out the greatness inside themselves even in the darkest circumstances. I have met some beautiful people the few weeks and I am a better person from it.
  5. Today I was WOWED by a card I opened at the end of my day at work. It was a very personal card but I did not recognize the name until I read the caption. "Confessions of a Non-runner".  Inside the card was a check to go towards Ariel's headstone. This WOWED me for many reasons but also because it was a fellow blogger and reader. This was soo sweet. 
Andy and I have a envelope of un-cashed checks and cash from donations to put towards Ariels headstone and her Scholarship fund that has been but in place from her Sorority Sisters , "Phi Sigma Sigma".

Thursdays Run!
Distance-8 miles
Pace - 9:07

Danielle and I ran out at Indian Springs. It was a beautiful morning for a run. "Danielle" ran so good. I love watching her push through Defeat. I love seeing her give 110%. I take more from her accomplishment than my personal run.

 " Your belief determines your action and your action determines your results, but first you have to believe.
Mark Victor Hansen"


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Everyone Handles Grief Differently

It is interesting to watch how people perform in the middle of chaos.
Ariel's passing put most everyone on their best behavior. And the bad behavior was completly justified because of the devasting circumstances.
Tomorrow will be 5 weeks. And the emotions are shifting and the grace period for bad behavior in my eyes is coming to a close.
Everyone is hurting. EVERYONE. When I see someone hurt I want so badly to help them. If there is anything I am capable of doing I try to do it. But that is not how everyone operates.
The pain of loosing Ariel will never go away. Ariel was like my daughter. I have read it in her words and I have read notes I have given her that have described her as a daughter in my words.
She knew I loved her like my daughter. And she loved that. She loved knowing I would do anything for her. And whatever she asked for I always tried to get for her or I gave her.
She Loved me back.
She knew I Loved Her.
She Loved me.
She Loved me
She Loved me.
That is the most incredible feeling in the world.
But right now it is the most Painful feeling because she is gone. This most amazing girl who loved me for all my imperfections is gone. She was my number one fan and I was hers. And she is gone.
The girl that text me all the time and called me with life questions is gone. My shopping buddy, my lunch buddy, my inspiration is gone.
And it hurts.
And to make the pain even worse people have to secretly give me things because "You probably won't get it."
How can you have someone for almost complete summers, for entire holiday vacations, be their youth leader in church for years, take them to school throughout the week and all weekend long and not even be allowed to be part of their death?????
Her death hurts so very bad and this is making it even worse.

Closure means different things to different people.

ANDY for instance can't hardly look at her pictures and totally does not understand why I cry all the time. Or why I want anything of hers because he says "Why would you torture yourself like that?"
MOM her closure is trying to get in Ariels head all the time. Trying to figure out what was on her mind in each picture and each card or with each verse underlined in her bible. Mom can't look at Ariels' boxes all stacked in her room where they were left 3 weeks ago without hurting "I can't look at that stuff knowing She is not ever going to have them or wear them again."
M.A.K.A. House ( Ariel's roommates and sorority sisters) are feeling completely abandoned. Left out. They had such a intimate relationship with Ariel for the last 2 years living with her and suddenly not only is she gone but so is all of her stuff. They were left with an empty room. They always congregated in Ariel's room and hung out on her bed. The "M.A.K. A. House" is  so upset that that too will be gone. They grieve over the items that represented Ariel being taken away. The only comfort they have is sitting and crying on Ariels bed and they are tearfully grieving that soon to be loss too.
ME.. I am grieving the loss of the girl who described herself as "The closest thing to a daughter she has.." From the time she was 12 she really started gravitating towards me and my family.  But she was doing more than that she was listening, she was watching, she was taking notes and growing closer to me. And I knew I was more than just a Aunt.
In my grief I want the last 9 years that I was soo close to her. Intimate like her sisters. I want to smell her, I want to feel her, I want to relive every memory and never never forget. I want little items that I was a part of with her because that was us. They have meaning, deep affectionate meaning. I could care less about her stuff but I don't think it is right that someone else is going to have something that has no intimate meaning to them like it would someone else. It makes no sense to me people taking things that had no meaning. But that is MY grief. I want to snuggle in her comforter the way we would when she would come over, I want to sit around and cry over the movie "Precious" on a lonely evening with her, I want to run my fingers through her hair over and over again like I used to and I want to say one last time " Hey, where's your lip gloss?" or  I want her to ask me to put suntan oil on her back and feel her skin under my fingers one more time.....
My Grief is intimate. I want to feel the tears down my cheeks, I want my heart to ache with Love, the love I HAD FOR HER and the LOVE she GAVE ME.
I want to beg for a breath to remind me of the words I gave her.
I want to hurt and know that my hurt is LOVE, Is Intimacy, Is Remarkable and Memorable.
The Love and Memories I have are fulfilling...The hurt is welcomed and endured.
 I am grateful for every tear because it represents Her love for me and mine for her.

What do U think? How do U Grieve? 


Monday, November 12, 2012

The Healing Power Component

"And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them." Luke 6:31
Cold rainy days are often filled with gloom and are a open invitation to a pity party. With my wounded heart it is not hard to go to a pity party and bring a dish to pass.
I had terrible nightmares last night and could not sleep. Every time I thought I was on the cusp of zoning off a memory or a thought entered my mind and shook the sleep out of my eyes.
Although 6 am came quick I did not fight the comforts of my bed because there was no comfort. There was no peace, my mind was raging.

I had plans today and my plans were not going to be sitting at home crying all day. I wanted to feel Ariel in a very real and healing way. I wanted to be close to the ones that were close to her.
The Healing Component was be a Blessing and get a Blessing. I did this in 6 ways Today:
  1. I called Ariel's Sorority sisters, I spoke to "Rebecca"and a couple others. I  told "Rebecca" about some donations we had for her Scholarship Fund in Ariel's name. I also answered a question that she had and just something so simple made her so very happy. 
  2. I went out to our young adults pastors house.  "Scott" and " Jessica" are a beautiful couple.  "Scott" is a good friend to Andy.  "Jessica" needed her hair cut and I didn't want her to have to come out with little ones so I told them I would come to them. We had a very special visit. I learned of some recent loss that their family have been dealing with and it pulled on my heartstrings. It felt to good to hug "Jessica" I could feel her pain and I know she could feel mine too.
  3. Charlie wanted a plant from the funeral and didn't get one but I did. I wanted "Charlie" to have part of mine. I feel like he is part of our family and it was important for me to share my plant with him. I actually took my little plant to a florist and had them split it and put it in a nice container for the both of us. I surprised "Charlie" with it today taking it up to his work. This made him smile. 
  4. I called mom several times and each time I called to check on her she was boo woo-ing. And when she heard my voice she started laughing and said "You caught me, and keep pulling me out of my bad place".   I Love how God used me to encourage mom, even in my grief I could help her in hers. 
  5. I invited "Mo" over for dinner and chat. "Mo" was Ariel's best friend from high school. I really enjoy being close to the ones that were close to Ariel. I gave "Mo" a necklace that matched the necklace I had bought for Ariel for Christmas this year. She was brought to tears. This really blessed me.
  6. As "Mo" and I finished dinner my neighbor "Lori" called and needed a huge favor. Her daughter "Ashley" had hit a deer and needed someone to go out and help her with the police and tow truck. I felt honored that my neighbor trusted me and thought of me to help her.
"And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works"

Life is so much more fulfilling when you fill it with others. "OTHERS" that is the Healing Component. "Others" can bring you a blessing, can birth you a smile, can pull you out of a pit, and can help to heal you little by little. So many people are hurting. So many people out there have pain that is so real and so raw to them. Just as our Pain is to us. But the power in dying to ourselves and our desires and our depression can help to turn our frown upside down. It does not remove our pain, I don't want anything to take away my broken heart but I do want to be used by God all the time and in every way I can.

Distance: 7 miles
Pace: 8:04
Bike 5 miles
Run 5 miles. Hills

Ran Hard today! I Had my Ariel Angel wings on and they were sweating to. I so badly wanted to quit towards my last set but "Failure WAS NOT an OPTION!"
Never Never Never quit. 


Thursday, November 8, 2012

Camping out in the land of Disappointments.

Back to life. Sunny and bright skies made movements a little easier.  "Danielle" my running partner injured herself raking leaves. Being a runner it just seems mean to get injured by anything but running!
So I was a solo runner.
After getting the kids off to school I started my morning reading the rest of "Samson" in  Judges.
From there my feet hit the floor and went on auto pilot.

I got 2 phone calls today.
"Holly" my dear friend from high school who called to check on me. This meant so much to me. Holly is very wise and even keel. She is good at keeping me grounded and looking at the bigger picture even when I don't want to.
"Becca" is one of my nieces. I debated on answering the phone because I am in a funky place. But I did and I am so glad I did. I spoke to "Becca" for almost an hour, till I had to let her go in order for me to get my run in. She is questioning God and her existence. "What is the point? Life is so hard and I do not see it getting any easier."
I shared Gods promises and memorized scripture to encourage her and help her look at this life from a different perspective.
Sometimes we have to take our self out of the equation. We have to look at other people and their needs, their hurts and see how blessed we are. Even in our deepest grief God gives us opportunity to heal by helping and encouraging someone else. It is not easy but I find so much healing in dying to myself in my greatest affliction and wiping someone else's tears.
We are only here on earth for a blink in time. We are going to suffer, we are going to hurt, we are going to be disappointed and discouraged. This world is going to kick our teeth in, we are going to suffer loss and wonder how we are going to make it through the day but this life is just a stepping stone for a eternity in HEAVEN.
"We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh." 2 Corinthians 4:8-11 

The last four weeks I have found myself in the land of disappointment many times. I know the terrain well. I grew up very familiar with disappointment's and discouragements. I jump on the train of Gratitude and Grace to escape this bitter land but somehow find myself camping back out there all over again. 
People are going to hurt you. People are going to disappoint you. I have been terribly hurt by the loss of Ariel and with open wounds of grief I am so confused by the behavior of people.
 "Expectations are Premature Resentments."  This to me means I have to let go of my expectations of people. People are going to hurt me, often not intentionally. They are absorbed in their own pain and I am caught in the cross fire. So I not only remove my expectations of people I also have to lovingly DETACH. I have to love those people from a distance. I have to set up  healthy boundaries that are going to protect me and prevent me from getting bitter, hurt, and all the emotional garbage that goes along with being disappointed. I can not control what others do to me but I can control my response to them. But it is not easy for this little Mexican hot head so I practice:
  • Removing Expectations
  • Detaching in Love
  • Setting Healthy Boundaries
  • Seeking God for Strength, Wisdom and Direction 
I took Sheba for a 5 mile run. My little boxer is a beast! She did great except for when a little ankle biter was walking his owner in our direction... I tightened the reins on Sheba's leash but I didn't get a good enough grip and she lunged towards this little dog just feet from us. I lost my balance and flew through the air trying hard to retrieve not just myself but my pride. I would have looked better just letting myself stumble and fall then the circus act I did trying to prevent myself from falling!

I am so excited to try some new running treats. I finally found the "Stinger Waffles". I think I will have to try them Sunday after my long run!
My Grocery basket. Stinger Waffles and Justin's individual Peanut butter packets! YUM!

I had a nice visit with "CHARLIE" Ariel's boyfriend. We met for a quick cup of coffee. I wanted to check on him and make sure he was doing well. He is a good guy and I believe he is going to be Ok.
The ARIEL CHALLENGE: Find one thing everyday you are Thankful for. Even in our Grief let us be reminded to find GRATITUDE.

What or Who are your Thankful for? Are camping in the land of disappointments or are you on the train to Gratitude and Grace?

“We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.”
- Martin Luther King, Jr.


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Disney Day 3: Celebrate Today

"Christa" and I before our run
Psalms 16:11
"You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore." 

All the girls are gone out on the town here at Disney. It is so quiet you could hear a pin drop. I am in my elements. I can hear my thoughts, I can breathe, I can think about what I want to think about and not feel guilty for any of it.
I am in a condo with 10 other girls from Glitz. It is day 3 of our mini Disney Vacation. We really have an incredible group of girls and a great boss.
I love the girls but I also love my nothing box!
I am not a party girl. I don't drink and do not like to be out late at night.

I got up today with the idea of enjoying a tranquil cup of coffee protected inside from the scheduled rainy weather. I did not get up alone. Before I knew it the first pot of coffee was gone within minutes of me brewing it and so were the other 2 pots soon after. We all gathered around a kitchen table drinking coffee and fighting for air to talk. It was quite the scene out of a sitcom. 1- 6 foot table with 10 chairs squeezed around it and 13 women gabbing, laughing and interrupting one another. We are hairdressers that is what we do, talk loud, use lots of facial expressions and hand motions, laugh like crazed lunatics and think we are the funniest thing there is. We were all having fun. Even I was having fun.

There was no schedule of events for us girls. Actually because of the 40% chance of rain showers most of us made NO plans.
Oh but I had 1 thing on my day...
"Anita what are you going to do today?" someone asked.
"I am going to run till my legs fall off!." I responded in all seriousness.

"Christa" wanted to go running with me. She also wanted to go with the rest of the group to "Earl of a Sandwich". She chose running with me.
We decided to run 4 miles again only I was going to drop her off and keep going and run till my legs fell off, remember?!

As we walked outside there was no rain. And there was no rain in sight. I was getting more and more excited. "Christa" did great. She let me lead her and we went in a direction that was unfamiliar to her and me both. But because I have been running so long I have a pretty good sense of not only direction but also distance and time. She was concerned when we went off the path and ended up outside of our resort. "Christa, just trust me, I wont get us lost." I did even better than Christa could have ever imagined. I dropped her off right at 4 miles directly in front of "Earl of a Sandwich"! And things even got better when we walked in and saw the rest of our girls in line to order their food. It was perfect.
Mile 4 of my run. Running with pirates!
I stuck around for a few minutes and then turned my ipod on and headed back out into the warm Florida sun.

I ran over 14 miles. I never got lost and wouldn't have cared if I had. I had my legs. All I wanted to do was run. I had nothing else planned. I wanted to run brainlessly. The sidewalk was my playground and all I had to do was move. All I had to do was go forward in gratitude that I was capable of entertaining this love affair. It is so fulfilling to create your own happy place.
The whole world was spinning around me and yet in my movement I was alone in my own world. 

There is so much life to live and even when there may not be much time in our life I have learned from "Ariel" that you can always live it to its fullest. 

Even when I do not "Feel" like smiling or laughing sometimes we just have to suck it up and fight for joy. 
In our loss and in our hardships, at the cusp of them the wound is so abrasive and open. The wounds of this life are fresh in their infancy and we are reminded of their discomfort and pain almost constantly.  When our wounds are tender and raw there are many agonizing days. Every moment is difficult and there seems like there is not a break in our agony and yet another wave of affliction crashes upon us. But as the minutes turn to hours and the hours turn to days the bad days turn to bad moments with a few scraps of joy woven in between our heartache. And with each passing day I am told that the bad days with a few good moments will eventually turn to good days with a few tough moments. 
One Day at a Time. 

I can not make sense from senseless. And Ariels death seems just like that in my little itty bitty mind.

But for today I will just try to make it to the next moment. There are things I will never understand and many things I can not figure out. I give it to God in trust. I trust God and his plan. I know that God wants me to crawl up on his lap and cry. He expects me to. He knows I do not understand his plan but he wants me to come to him, my heavenly Father...for comfort and peace. When my mind is twirling with unanswered questions and selfishness h\He gives me not only grace but He holds me and cares for me and He wipes my tears.

Ariel Challenge. At Disney there is a parade that happens at the Magic Kingdom every day at 3pm. We watched it yesterday and I wanted to see "Ariel". Mind you My Ariel never even watched "My Little Mermaid."  But I just wanted to see her because she shared the same name as MY Princess
There she came, the last float in the parade and facing the other side. All I could even see was her long crimson red hair. I was left disappointed. But then as the float cruised past me a banner hung across that read " Celebrate Life"
Let your heart cry. But find a moment to laugh. Find moments to Celebrate Life. Remember that bad Moments in the beginning encircle you but there will be Good Moments in bad days and eventually we will have less and less of those Bad/Hard Moments in Good Days.  

How did you Celebrate Life Today? 

Distance: 14miles


Monday, November 5, 2012

Disney day 2

I am having a moment of unrealness. It just struck me again that your not there Ariel.
Here I am at Disney and everyone is smiling and laughing and this is the place where dreams come true and I have tears streaming down my cheeks.

That was my post at 4:30pm. I had a moment. I felt it building up. As the day moved forward I drew away from the group and inverted into myself. I was not aware that I had done this until my emotions had conformed me into a emotional tragedy.

I sat on the deck of our condo sobbing as the girls were inside laughing and carrying on. "What is wrong with you Anita?" I asked myself. "Why can't you just enjoy yourself and have fun?"

"Ashley" softly came outside on the deck. She was so sweet. I tried to hide myself but she found me. She let me know what time we had to be ready and gave me a hug, You know when you are crying and someone talks to you or approached you it makes it almost worse. Well that is what happened. Poor "Ashley".

I wiped my face and took a deep breath before I entered the condo again.
We got ready and left for dinner.

Overall it was a good day. It was another beautiful sunny Florida day.
We had a great dinner and did some shopping. It seemed everywhere I shopped I found something for Ariel. I loved buying her little things.

MY legs are restless. I can hardly type any longer. There is more I have to say but my body is turning against me. Gonna call it quits and try to catch up tomorrow.

I ran with "Christa" and ran a quarter of  a mile with "Michelle" she separated from us and went to the gym. It was nice to have company and my Garmin actually worked.


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Divine Intervention

My Epic Failure: Last year I was 3 seconds SHY Qualifying for ING New York  City Marathon. I was trying to qualify at Detroit and was short 3 Seconds!! You could sneeze 3 seconds that just isn't even possible to do on accident. I grieved that loss. That was so close I could taste it. And yet it might as well been millions of miles away. I remember thinking "3 seconds, maybe God does not want me to run it, maybe He is protecting me, because 3 seconds is just ludicrous, it is clearly of GOD that I am did not qualify." And sadly enough the Marathon was cancelled Friday at 6:30pm due to Hurricane Sandy.
I truly believe that 3 second was not my EPIC Failure rather Gods Divine intervention.
I got up this morning at 3:15AM. It really wasn't a big deal as early as that seems because I am still not sleeping well.
I tried so hard to be organized and yet I still lost my Disney envelope with my shuttle info in it.
I just decided to except it. And it was at that point that I found it! Andy had put it on his dresser. My wires are just not sending or receiving and nothing is connecting. I fell literally like a chicken with her head cut off.

Poolside at Old Key West!

I am not a fan of flying. I have never really liked it. Of course I loved jumping out of a airplane and skydiving but I do not like flying  in one.
40 girls from Glitz salons are here at Disney for a class. It really is a awesome trip and should be an awesome time.

Florida, sunny and 80 degrees. It is beautful and a great exchange from 38 degrees and gloomy.
Directly after getting off the plane we headed to the pool.
I smiled and tried to show enthusiasm and happiness but it was not as natural as I had hoped.
Ariel was supposed to be going to Florida to see "Sarah". There was a part of me that felt guilty for being here without her.

As the hot sun wrapped itself around me I could feel it warmth radiating against my skin. My skin was bare and I embraced the heat like a blanket. I felt so snug on my lounge chair with my music in my ears that I fell asleep.
But I awoke to Ariel. To memories of the two of us laying in the sun. I reminisced of us in the sand at Silver Lake Sand Dunes.  I love the sun. I love laying out. And I am going to miss terribly not having her to enjoy not only my favorite sun things but hers as well. And then came the tears.
I got up to walk away. I did not want to ruin everyone's happy place with my sadness.
I walked towards the sand. The sand was warm to touch. It sank in between my toes. As my heart cried out I found refuge in the sand and the sun.
I let my heart grieve and allowed myself time to release my tears as I wiped my eyes and started to walk back towards the girls again.

I am going to have many of these moments. I am glad that I am here to have them.

I couldn't wait to get back to our condo and have a run. I didn't have much time before we had to meet for dinner, so a 4 mile run was my everything.
My stupid Garmin wouldn't get a signal so I went by time and new I must be close.
They were not anything crazy but they were good.

My legs are restless and my eyes are heavy, I am going to hit the hay and try this all over again in the morning!

Favorite quote :Katie " My stomach was hurting so bad from being hungry and now my stomach is hurting so bad from being FULL!"


Friday, November 2, 2012

Gratitude in my Grief

I thought the funeral was paid off. Guess I was wrong. Hmm.

Well I just have to say this. Andy and I have been given some incredible donations. I am brought to my knees in gratitude. I have so many Thank you cards to write out.
We were given a Check today for $1000 for Ariel. I had an idea where I wanted to put it towards Ariel and when I showed it tearfully to Andy he was on the same page. I couldn't hardly even look at it with out crying.
I just know she would be so incredibly grateful.  I wish I could share with her how giving and generous people are. Our friends have been amazing.

I miss her so much. It hurts every inch of me.
"I miss your smile Anita"  Kelli at work says.
I didn't even know what to say. I think I smile but then I know I am just entertaining others with an obviously worked smile. A courteous smile.

Today is 3 weeks. It isnt getting any better. With my hands over my face the tears seep through my fingers. My eyes burn and I can hardly swallow back the pain. I cry in the dark. I recite her words of love and adoration for me. I just want to crawl deep under the sheets and melt away.
I can feel her so close but as I open my eyes she is no where. No where close to me but in my heart everywhere.
I lost a daughter. I lost a lover of me. I have never felt pain like this.

I am trying to cling to my gratitude in my grief.  But it hurts. everything hurts.


Thursday, November 1, 2012


I look forward all week to go run out at Indian Springs. I love Thursday mornings. And I love my company. I miss Katie meeting up with us but  I  look forward to seeing Danielle.

It was very cold out there today. No matter how well you dress for 38 degrees it still does not prepare you for what the temperatures do to the body. 
It seems to take longer to warm up and the wind takes your breath away. But it is all worth it, the cold, the chill, the wind, and the grey gloomy sky is better than being at home in my own head.
Having Danielle there running next to me helps me decompress and wash away my sadness for the moment.
A moment that last longer in my heart. A moment that speaks volumes to me.
We saw a few deer out there in the woods. They just casually turned around and looked at us. It was beautiful.
Danielle was having a tough time but I thought she was doing good. My first 3 miles I was having a hard time as well. I was seeing spots and having a hard time focusing. I just tried to talk and not let Danielle know that something was happening to me. I tried not to panic but was scared I was going to faint. After mile 3 it went away. I don't know why that happens to me. But it went away.
Danielle was frustrated with her body and her time.
The mind can really mess with you. GRACE.
We have to give ourselves grace.
Whether we are coming off an injury like Danielle or we are injured like I feel, we have to give our selves GRACE. It is always important to strive for better but it is hard to move forward when we have been injured. I know it takes time. But right now that is all I know.

It was a decent day with difficult moments.
I laughed a little and a cried a lot.
I miss hearing from Ariel. I always sent her a little text, or a little message. I would "Like" her Facebook status or write a little something on her wall. I just wanted her to know that I was thinking about her all the time. 
But I would hear back from her. It might take a day or two but I always heard from her. It will be 3 weeks tomorrow that I have not heard from her. It hurts so bad. My eyes are filled with tears thinking about the loss I feel. A part of me has died, DIED. She always called or text me. I got nothing.

I feel bad it is Andys birthday and here I am. I made him a great dinner and went to Oliver T's for dessert but emotionally I am not a happy gift. I started crying just picking up Andy's birthday dessert. The last time I bought a hodgepodge of different desserts I had Ariel with me. We got 5 different desserts from Oliver T's and jumped into my bed with the boys and Andy and all grabbed one. It seemed like just yesterday.
I tried so hard but Andy could tell it was a rough day. No matter how hard I tried to smile through the tears Andy could just tell.

Going to bed.. Not looking forward to Friday. Tomorrow is week 3. I hate Fridays