Angels On My Shoulders

 

This past week my mentor Demi Steven’s http://yotbpress.com/ wrote,  “My hope this week for you is that you can identify someone in your universe who shines in that way, and reach out to them and let them know how much you value having them around.”  These words pierced my heart. After a tough year of losing two very special guiding lights (my beloved mother and her sister -my dear aunt), followed by some other earth-shattering changes, my universe of wing-men (in this case women) seems to have diminished. A life without valued individuals who have had your back no matter your age is scary.

I found a book on my Aunt’s nightstand after she died, God and the Afterlife, by Jeffery Long M.D. with Paul Perry.  Fortunately, I felt compelled to open the pages.  The book is an extensive study on people who have died and returned. I encourage everyone who questions life after death to read this book. Although I have always believed, sometimes I do wonder if life after death is really possible.  This book retained a sense of relief that I will indeed see them again and will experience an overwhelming sense of love like never before.

So my stars are illuminating in a different way. I truly believe the two are winged-women on my shoulders, flashlights in hand, directing my journey. One that is getting closer to them everyday! Yes, reach out and find your stars!

 

A Beautiful Snowstorm

A few years back, I hated snow days. I loathed that crack in the sidewalk. The one I hit every time I shoveled. The shovel would come to a sudden stop and the metal handle would slam into my belly with such force I coughed up a few choice swear words. The day was all about extra work and a loss of income; shoveling, plowing, and most of all rescheduling my clients. But my priorities have changed since I published my first novel. A snow day is a perfect day to write. No more excuses after a year of hard knocks.

My second novel is ready. A novel about an over-the-hill hairdresser.  But, I hit a snowstorm. A crack in the sidewalk. The majority of agents I researched today are young and wrinkle free, not to mention calling for teen fiction. Really? What about us second-time-around writers and readers. Dried up?

I don’t think so. Today, I completed two short stories and a novel. As life moves along,  so must I. Never give up. It’s only a crack in the walk. It’s a beautiful day!

What’s Your Heart Dream?

This week Demi Stevens of Year of the Book posed a question: What is standing in the way of reaching your dream? I didn’t have to over-tax my brain because as I stated before, Demi’s questions miraculously seem to be a message aimed at me each week. This morning (and this may change tomorrow) my answer to what is standing in my way, is Zero. Not the number, the word. Zero in. Zero in on what exactly is my own personal heart dream.

Heart dreams can change over a lifetime, especially if you are shushly. In my family we have our own language called Stephenese, and Shushly is an adverb my parents and grandparents called me repeatedly. And not just in my youth.

Like many artists, my train of thought is more like a spaceship orbiting at light speed. In my youth, I zipped from one project to another leaving a trail of crumbs, paint splatters, and cuttings from my latest creative venture. They tried to follow my space dust armed with a rag or broom hollering, “You are so dang shushly.”

Adulthood has not transformed my habits, just the size and expense of my projects. I have dabbled in everything from farming to football, knitting to scuba diving, college to hairdressing, horses and invention of all kinds. And yes, I have managed a very successful career as a stylist, salon owner, and teacher.  But writing, my heart dream, has been held at bay because of my shushly ways.

After my recent interview with Guy McLean, internationally renowned horseman, I published Follow your Horse’s Heart. I realized I need two guidelines in order to zero in. Determine what is my heart dream? Then let go. Let go of the shushly in my life. Zero in. Because I am running out of time.

I am in my fifties and I have managed to evade writing. For some reason I fight it. Sure, I have published a few articles, received a degree in Creative Writing, have bins and baskets of journals throughout my house, read books, have taken courses and joined organizations… but to follow my heart dream I must zero in.

Letting go is difficult, but I can come back and just maybe all those extra dreams will be even better. My heart searches to be fulfilled. So button down the hatches, Alicia, this spaceship is zeroing in!

What’s your heart dream?