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!

Dear Saint Rita . . . .

This week I fell to my knees and begged for success. My heart dream of writing has been exhausting at this stage as I pray for my fame and fortune. I even contemplated sharing the Saint Rita Novena someone posted online—Share this novena and in an hour Saint Rita will grant you your miracle. I always loathed the bribery involved in such an idea. I would yell out to myself that this is not the way the miracle thing works. To think, I almost pushed the send button. There would have been a lot of extra Hail Mary’s for that and sadly I already have too many to say for real dilemmas.

It’s just not that easy, nor is it smart to have success land directly on your kneeler. (Although Saint Rita, it sure would be nice just once, and maybe this little mention of your name would count.)

So I was moping and then an angel sent her inspirational blog post. This week Demi Stevens suggested tiny, consistent steps toward your goal that can be more valuable than a huge leap. I read her story of success—proof the path to overcome a mountain in life is best climbed on a steady path.

The nice thing about showing up for church each week is that it is a quiet time to think and talk to God and make a weekly plan for strength to move on. It is like that in front my computer. I struggle with numerous projects on my desk that pile higher than the steeple at St. Mary’s. By the end of the week, I hide from the office, instead typing on my faithful iPad Mini.

I attack bookwork, organize my diary entries, and work on placing notes in my novels. I read blogs from my mentors like Debbie Herbert, Demi Stevens, and Paula Munier. I might even receive divine inspiration from Saint Rita or whoever is the patron Saint that week.

I organize, manage, and write in little steps. I zero in on my writing success. Remember, zero in and be fearless at your writing.

Alas, Demi is right. Two years ago googling Alicia Stephens Martin might have produced Alicias like Keyes or Silverstone. Today there is a whole page of Alicia Stephens Martin successes—a blog, a Facebook page, a Twitter account, and even published articles and posts. I think I won’t ask for the miracle just for the strength and energy to keep going.

I hope this helps you in your quest…

Blessed are the Women who Endured!

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I think that it is important to remember women before us who suffered great pains at the hands of a patriarchal society. Women, such as, those who were forced to believe their babies were in  “Limbo”  if they died before being baptized. According to the church, these babies never made the journey to heaven. Really? Or as for this Victorian woman who was posed with her deceased child- a popular form of photography during this time period. I think of these women often, and the hardships they endured.

Awakening

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Awakening! I did it- I graduated! I lost touch for this entire semester juggling through college courses, muscling a business, stumbling with motherhood and just encountering this journey of life but, I graduated-with honors. I came across some words from this remarkable woman and would like to share them. I hope this is my awakening to forge onward with my research, this blog and writing on inspirational women! I am back!

Inspiration

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Today I read, “We Are All Bound Up Together,” by Frances Ellen Watkins Harper. I was captivated by her strength when she was left a widow. She writes, “I stood within the shadows of my home.” Harper’s journey was not easy. She was left only one thing along with four children , a looking-glass.  Because she was a woman Harper was  “without a single feather bed in this wide world . . . ”  Harper rose up against inequality and declared to women, “we are all bound together in one great bundle of humanity.  . . ”  Thanks to women like Harper who paved the way, I have been able to equally support myself-providing for my family after the loss of my husband. What an inspiration!