R-E-S-P-E-C-T

I will be the first to admit that I am FAR from perfect. Nothing about me, my life, or the way I look, act, or talk is perfect. Nothing visually 20180204_160940says she is imperfect like looking at a woman’s manicure. I just looked down and realized how badly I needed one! And then I struggle trying to figure out where in my day I am going to fit an extra hour and a half into my overly crowded schedule. Sometimes, I look down and think, “oh my God. My grandmother would be SO ashamed of me and the way in which I have maintained my nails.” Sometimes, my nails are chipped or broken or dirty. Some days, I walk into establishments dressed as the girliest girl in the place and other days, I look like…poop. Sometimes, I am dirty like a man. And I’m not just talking about my mouth (and for the peanut gallery out there, I have managed to reduce the number of bad words that come out of my mouth each day). If you’ve ever worked cows or welded, you know what kind of dirty I’m talking about. I can feel people looking down at me with a lack of respect because I don’t fit into “the box.”

But is that cause to be disrespectful to someone? Because they don’t fit into the same box or the same socioeconomic class or the same group of people or the same political party, church group…the list goes on. I have very strong opinions about what respect is and, like many, sometimes feel that I deserve respect because of how hard I have worked in life and what I have overcome. But sitting in church a few Sundays ago, I received a HUGE lesson on respect and what it means through God’s eyes. Not only was it humbling, it was disturbing.

We often think that respect is something that we are due. How many of you remember growing up and your parents would tell you that respect is earned- by the way you treat and interact with people. I don’t know about you, but I think we’ve lost that philosophy in life. We treat people how we feel they should be treated…based on how WE value them. We never give consideration to the fact that they are valued. No matter what. They are human beings. They have their own baggage and their own heartbreak and their own issues they are dealing with or going through.

We don’t give any consideration to the fact that they are divinely created and incredibly loved by our heavenly father. We don’t look at people and give them respect because we don’t stop and look at them through His eyes as being created in His image. We look at them and either disregard them or disrespect them because we look at them through OUR eyes. Through a worldly lens. We no longer give people the benefit of the doubt to grow into who God has destined them to be. We pigeonhole them into where we feel they should be 20180224_150848on our ladder of success or political gain or social status. We don’t give people the chance to be people. We treat them like…well, I was going to say, like animals, but if you’ve been in this house, you know our animals live like kings.

And don’t think I’m writing this because I’m immune to this. Actually, most of the stuff I write and post is because of something that I have done/seen/felt and God is trying to change my heart and the way I look at people. My life is anything but perfect, and that includes me and my actions towards others. I know I need to have a change of heart towards some, and that is something I pray about every day.

My takeaway from all of this is….RESPECT (and showing respect to others) says more about you and your heart and very little about the person with whom you are interacting. Do I DESERVE respect?  Probably not. Do I DEMAND respect.  Probably more than I should. Do I GIVE respect without hesitation? Yeah….anyway. Let me get back to you on that one. You don’t have to like or approve of someone to show respect. And just an FYI, respect and kindness are two completely different things. That’s another topic for another day. So my hope is that as the lines become more clear, and the divisions more radical, that we can learn to be kind again. Nice. Respectful.

Love, Peace, and Pie.

~RED

Bringing Sexy Back

Before you get all excited, let me warn you…the title has nothing to do with the post. I know, what a killjoy.c7ab4cb1c8b3fe8053e4a5ba3f3b22c3 Unless you think bifocals and colonoscopies are sexy. And let me tell you…the nice little Hispanic man in the doctor’s office today who couldn’t help but WINK at me when I left obviously has some deeper issues than a blocked colon.

Sitting in the doctor’s office today (by the way, if you’re in need of a top-notch colon doctor, I have found one), waiting to discuss the health and wealth of my not so perfect colon, it was no accident that the book I grabbed on the way out was, “One Month to Live: Thirty Days to a No-Regrets Life.” Many of you know that I work to encourage others and coach them into living a life full of love, laughter, faith and family. What many of you don’t know is…

I am a self-professed bad-ass. The absolutely random stuff I’m qualified to do (like weld, cave dive, arson investigation, pull calves/palpate/float teeth, bake pies) makes me feel like wonder woman. However, what y’all don’t know is…I am truly an introvert. I could read and sew and bake and paint and hike and write and have no desire to interact with others for weeks on end.  I’m almost 45 and barely getting over my fear of the dark. I don’t like heights, talking in front of people (which is funny since I used to make a living doing so), loud crowds, flying, brussel sprouts (yes, I know that has nothing to do with the price of tea in China), roller coasters, Halloween, or scary movies. In the words of Grammy (or CA as so many people called my Momma), “pansy ass” is a much better term.  Yes, I’m getting to the point.

Living a FULL…an intentional life…one in which I step up and follow the calling God has put on my heart…scares the crap at me and I often back out of it because of fear. Pressure. Because, well…I’m my own worst enemy. I’m a pansy ass.

So, I begin reading this book today, sitting in the doctor’s office waiting to discuss what feels like my 876th colonoscopy – and no, it’s not TMI. Ladies (and gentlemen), go get your innards checked out. You are never too young! Anyway, I digress…

The first chapter of this book is titled, Living in the Dark. Oh wait..never mind, it is Living the Dash. Crap, I guess I better go get that bifocal prescription filled this week. It might as well be titled Living in the Dark because the author asks the questions : What did he live for? Whom did she love? What were his passions? What were her biggest mistakes and greatest regrets?  And I thought to myself, how often do we choose to stay in the darkness – not because we don’t have the power to move into the light, but because we are afraid of living the dash. Of living a life of purpose, of passion – a life that was unique, and fulfilling, one that was deliberate and so authentic that no one could replicate it because they weren’t called to live YOUR life?

So many times the last few years, I get inspired to move forward into the greatness that is God’s calling and so many times, I fall short. Not because I don’t have the support and love of my family and friends. Or because I don’t know what skills He’s given me. Or I don’t know how to start (because honestly, none of us know REALLY where He’s going to lead us), but because I am my own worst enemy. I overthink things. I’m overly critical of myself. Of my art. My writing. How I snort when I laugh and the fact that I am less than graceful, I always feel awkward and out of place, and am really never sure how to interact with others. There isn’t anything standing in my way but myself. I mean, with all the negative and mean people in the world, do I REALLY want to subject my heart and soul to for people to tear me down? So when I read the following excerpt, I knew it was no coincidence that THIS was the book I picked up today:

He created us and has given us another day to live – to know and experience His love, to love and serve those around us, to live passionately the life HE made us for.

The book is a 30 day challenge to which the following shifts will should occur: to live passionately, to love completely, to learn humbly, and to leave boldly. While we truly don’t have control over much, we have control over HOW we spend our time, live our lives, react to people and situations, serve others, and grow our relationship with the One who made us. One of the great things about this book are the key points at the end of each chapter to 1. Reflect upon; 2. Write about; 3. Act on.

d56d964872ef1d05f62c8922652e44bcI hope that you follow along, but more so that you find the passion and the desire to be more, do more. To live outside the box. To be a giver of love, good vibes, and strength.

A big shout out to my family this evening as I worked through a mild meltdown. The best three pieces of advice I received that I’ll cherish forever:

  • It beats the alternative.
  • God’s got this.
  • Worrying never affects the outcome, either positively or negatively.

Remember, NO ONE is YOU and THAT is YOUR superpower. Now, quit being a pansy-ass and go out there and change your world (which will inevitably change the world around you).

Peace, love, and pie.

XXOO,
RED

Honor Your Hero

Thank you to Heroes and Horses for all they do and celebrating our heroes! ! My hero is Shawn (Gus):

My hero is Shawn Dunham. Shawn served in the U.S. Marines during Desert Storm (93-94), and at the age of 35, re-enlisted in the U.S. Army, where he served from 2007-IMG_26792013. He was assigned to the 3rd Armored Cavalry (Fort Hood, Tx) and served in Mosul, Iraq and Al Diwaniyah, Iraq. His primary MOS was 74D-Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Specialist. Shawn was honorably discharged as 100% disabled due to PTSD and injuries (including TBI) he survived from several IED incidents. Since leaving the military, he works to express his emotions through music, learning to write lyrics that help bring healing to other combat soldiers, and those veterans dealing with PTSD and the effects of returning home. Shawn works diligently with non-profit organizations who work with soldiers through music therapy and songwriting. A day doesn’t go by that we don’t give thanks for his service in the military, but that he was able to come home. Each and every day, Shawn proves that you are who you decide to be – not what has happened to you in life. He is no stranger to hard work and his faith, determination, work ethic, humor, generosity, adventurous spirit, and kind heart are just a few of the reasons that make him our hero.

Be sure and check out Heroes and Horses on Facebook, Instagram and their website!

 

My WMW

No filter needed when you’re naturally this beautiful. My #wcw: she makes me laugh, cry, annoys the hell out of me, challenges me, and holds me accountable. Me entire adult life has been spent being her mom, and I wouldn’t change one day of that. Now, I get to be her friend, and it is such an 033016honor to watch her as she moves into her own life. She’s bright, beautiful, snarky, sassy, funny, intelligent, faithful, and has a heart of gold that always sees the best in people. Out of all the jobs I’ve had, being her Momma has been the most rewarding. #143