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Get Real

Monday, April 01, 2013

Dear Self:

Who are you?

If you were able to peel back the layers of your life, disrobing the learned behaviors and shaped beliefs that you have carried with you throughout your life, would you do it? Who are you behind closed doors, when no one is speaking, when no one is listening, when no one is watching? What is your innermost dialogue that seems to be speaking with every heart beat, your true definition, your real purpose, of your life here on this earth?

Is it to be considered a success in your career? Is it to be labeled as a strong and dutiful person whom everyone looks up to? Are you tough? Are you soft-hearted? Are you intelligent? Proud? Remorseful? Do you put yourself under a daily microscope and vow to do better or do you just "float" thoughout your every day hoping the next is a better one? JUST WHO ARE YOU? When the lights go out and the house is quiet, when you are alone and no one is around, what is the true you?

If you could cast off the garbage that your heart has carried over the last few years, would it be liberating, freeing? Most of the time, you do not like what you see when you look in your soul's mirror. Flawed. Imperfect. Handicapped. Broken. But it is in the mess of you that you will find your truth. You know this to be true. So why do you hesitate? You know it is within this kaleidoscope of pain, triumphs, successes and failures that your true definition lies.

One of your biggest endeavors is better health but you seriously have to begin within. You have to find a way to get to your true nature, forgive your imperfect thinking, develop a different dialogue and find acceptance of YOU. If you cannot love yourself at 210, 180, or 150 pounds, what makes you think you are going love yourself at your goal weight? And what makes you think that you are going to be capable of loving others, truly and deeply, if you cannot love YOURself AS IS? Are you capable of doing that when you are wallowing in self-pity or giving yourself grief because you have deemed yourself unlovable and imperfect??

Newsflash. You ARE imperfect. You always will be. You must accept your physical flaws and make an agreement that you do not have to have a perfect body. You do not deserve to beat yourself up over your past mistakes or sins. You are perfectly imperfect and your life is a beautiful chaos of mistakes and learned lessons that have taught you so many things. It is then and only then you will be able to clear the smoke of your thoughts and look at the person across from you with no filters, with no judgments, with no prejudice and see the heart deep within THEM, THEIR fears, THEIR social awkwardness, THEIR joys, THEIR longing for acceptance and love THEM despite THEIR imperfections, too.

So who are you?? Do you abuse your emotional well-being? Do you belittle yourself, make fun of yourself, make fun of others? Do you tell yourself that if/when you get to your desired weight, get that promotion, etc, etc, you will finally be happy? Or do have the courage, right now, right here, to accept yourself for who you are, at this point in time? Are you willing to admit that we are all connected in this life, in this fragile existence, by the same cord that makes us all human? Are you willing to forgive yourself for past mistakes, casting them off like an ill-fitting coat? Are you willing to step out from behind your excuses, behind the lies you are proclaiming and just get real? Are you willing to finally accept your flaws and imperfections because they are unique, beautiful and exquisite...?

It's time. It's time to throw off your blinders, expose the true you and embrace yourself with the same encouragement and compassion you claim to have for others. You're not getting anywhere by sitting in the dust of your self-criticisms. You're not getting anywhere by spinning your heels in the same direction that didn't get you anywhere before. Be bold. Be strong. Take action.

Have the courage to love yourself, the real self, the one that lies in the depths of your heart. You are worth it.

The Self You Were Meant To Be

God bless.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MISHKALA 5/3/2013 1:03PM

    You're amazing. Thank you. emoticon emoticon

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BEAR8MM 4/6/2013 7:32PM

    I looked deep inside, and I think I'm a pervert.

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GABIBEAR 4/6/2013 12:41AM

    Great Blog Michelle! Thanks for posing the question and having us ask ourselves!!!

emoticon emoticon

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LOVINGAFRICA 4/4/2013 2:33PM

    I was asked that same question by someone else recently.
'Would you want to know your TOUCHSTONE MEMORY that has caused you to be resilient and cloaked? The thing that defines so much of who you are, but that you can't remember?'
And all I could answer is 'I will have to check with Jesus'
It is the best gift in the world to have a Friend who knows all the answers and always decides with wisdom and total love for us. That is why we can thank Him for EVERYTHING, the imperfections and flaws too. Even the things that we have forgotten.
May you daily grow closer and closer to Him, and be completely Blessed.

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SUSIEMT 4/3/2013 4:15PM

    What a great blog! Great food for thought! Keep up the good work!

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KIMCOLLINGS 4/3/2013 3:17PM

    Beautiful. Just beautiful!!

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BRADMILL2922 4/3/2013 1:52PM

    As you said to me last night, we are our greatest critics. It is really easy to sit around and say that if we change this or if we do that, we WILL be much happier. Do it now. Don't say WILL, say AM! There are things that happen in everyone's past that we would like to change but it really does no good to dwell on those things. You can not change them. They happened and have shaped you into the person you are today. They are still shaping you into the person you are going to be in the future.

"Who are you behind closed doors, when no one is speaking, when no one is listening, when no one is watching?" Such a good question that everyone should take the time to really think about. It can be easy to put on a "public face" of strength and confidence, but deep down in your soul and spirit, who are you? What are you doing to make your life and the lives of the ones you love better today? Better tomorrow? Self reflection like that can be eye opening. Self reflection like that can be painful. But, self reflection like that can be liberating! Find that person you have always wanted to be. Find that person that you want the rest of the world to see.

This journey that we are all on isn't always about a number. It isn't always about the number. It isn't always about the physical reflection in the mirror. Sure, those things are nice markers along the way but the real journey is for your inner peace. For your inner happiness. Nobody is perfect, so don't try to be. But try to be a person that shines bright upon the world with the little time that we have here.

Michelle, I am forever grateful to call you my friend because I know how you as a person have been shinning bright in my life through good times, and some bad. You have helped me more than I can possible say. I know because of the presence of your spirit in my life, that I am a better person for it. I hope that when you peel back your layers to yourself that you see the beauty within that I have come to know over the past months. It is exceptional. I am glad to "know who YOU are". I love you.


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MANDELOVICH 4/3/2013 1:28PM

    Very moving blog. Thank you. I think this is at the crux of the efforts we are all making here, and yet, I find it so hard to do!

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AJDOVER1 4/3/2013 12:54PM

    Well said. You're an incredible inspiration.

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SAMI199 4/3/2013 10:48AM

Sharon suggested I come over to read your blog & I am glad I did. Awesome

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GOANNA2 4/3/2013 8:04AM

    Powerful blog. Thank you. emoticon

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CHERIRIDDELL 4/3/2013 3:18AM

    Awesome blog!

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JERMADSON7 4/2/2013 9:19PM

    It's funny how much easier it is to hide behind our excuses, eh? Or to blame our imperfections for why we can't get to where we want to be. I see myself in these words. I think we all can. If we could cast aside these "limitations" of our self, could you imagine how far we could go? What we could accomplish? It's time for all of us to be honest with ourselves. But why is that so difficult? What do we have to lose but the very thing that is keeping us stuck in the past?

Very true that we are a complete package, not just portions of here and there. Our bodies, minds and hearts are connected and not separate from one another. Finding the sync is crucial for our overall well-being. Wise words. Once again, you force us to look into our nature, our hearts, and ask ourselves some difficult questions. The answers won't be easy either but once we break through, the freedom to be, the acceptance of self, is well worth the journey.

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_BABE_ 4/2/2013 9:00PM

    There comes a time when it gets more and more difficult to say I will be this or that in the future because you likely have more years behind you than in front. I finally realized that THIS (whatever this is) is what I am rocking in my life and reading your blog has reminded me, ”Make the rest of your life …the best of your life.” emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 4/2/2013 8:54PM


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L*I*T*A* 4/2/2013 8:12PM

    emoticon emoticon

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KING_SLAYER 4/2/2013 4:38PM

    That was deep. I have a lot of work to do it seems. Although I can say one thing with honesty, I try to live my life with integrity. You ask some very serious questions in this blog post, questions that can't be answered quickly. I'm going to copy and paste this into a word document to save so I can come back to it and maybe even share it with family and friends.

Thank you my sweet friend :)

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VICKI-B- 4/2/2013 4:30PM

  Wonderful blog. Thank you. emoticon emoticon

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JACKIE542 4/2/2013 4:18PM


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WORKNPROGRESS49 4/2/2013 3:53PM

    emoticon blog post!!! emoticon

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PURRRPY 4/2/2013 3:26PM

    Thank-you for keeping the Spark Alive - You are truly awesome and an inspiration.


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WALLAHALLA 4/2/2013 2:48PM

    You made me feel like an onion....peeled for the very 1st time emoticon emoticon You are just too emoticon for words!

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PHOENIX1949 4/2/2013 2:41PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SHARON10002 4/2/2013 8:46AM

    Amen, sister! *hugs* I may be wrong, but it seems as though we both are walking along the same path in search of our true selves, and struggling to find that core truth of the pure love that resides deeply buried in our very being. I do feel that we are making progress and turning corners in our journey. Thank you for sharing yourself in this very POWERFUL blog, and all of your precious experiences with us along the way. You're my North star, the one who helps me to right my bearings along the way, and points me in the right direction - always toward my true self ... emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LMB-ESQ 4/2/2013 7:21AM

    Wow! What a great blog! How painful was this to write? Stripping back the layers of yourself is one of the most painful things anyone would ever have to do. And yet it's so necessary. I've found that the way to avoid the worst of the pain is to do this consistently and always try to be self-aware. I hate surprises and one of the worst surprises is to realize that I've been hiding something from myself. For me, pulling off the band-aid and watching the wound heal is a lot less painful than letting it heal and then reopening it later. Sounds cruel maybe, but it really isn't.

Thanks for sharing... emoticon

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BEANIES_MOM 4/2/2013 4:11AM

    Great blog! emoticon

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JUNIAATROME 4/2/2013 2:56AM

    Note to self: Get a grip on yourself! On second thought: never mind! emoticon emoticon

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JADOMB 4/2/2013 1:29AM

    In God's eyes we are all perfect. Who are we to argue with God?

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DOVESEYES 4/2/2013 12:39AM

    Great blog!!!
I've found in the process of losing weight I have had to do just this and work through my 'self awareness' I am the same person inside now as I was at 110 kgs as I will be at 56 kgs if I don't analyse and work through the reasons and motives I have at each stage.

But also if I thought I was perfect, would I have started this journey at all? Would 'being perfect' have been my excuse to stay the same and not go after my dream of being healthy?

Deep stuff that I will process in the 'process' of changing the outside of me.

Thanks emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JOHNTJ1 4/1/2013 10:57PM

    I am not my past nor my future. I am my present. This moment, the right here, the right now is all I have.

"Yesterday is history, tomorrow a mystery, today a gift."

When my dad lay dying about a year ago he looked up at me and his last words to me were. "I've lived a good long life but gosh its went by so fast." He was 87. I cherish today.

My real self is the one who sits here present to this moment of creation that will not come again. I will savor it

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Sticks and Stones

Saturday, March 16, 2013

We are defined by our words. How we say them, when we say them, if we even say them at all. Our tongues are our most powerful attribute...they say that actions speak louder than words, which is very true in most cases, but words have the power to build up or tear down just as well. The old childhood taunt of "sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me" has lost its strength as we are faced with the reality that bullying in our schools has reached an epidemic level. The tongue truly is a two-edged sword...we can act like we don't care what people don't say about us but if we were to be completely honest with ourselves, angry words, untrue statements or totally being ignored DOES hurt, just as a compliment boosts our ego and makes our day flow a little bit better.

We make assumptions about people who speak certain ways. Or about people who don't speak at all. We consider them "snobbish" perhaps if they stand off in a crowd without speaking or don't return a "good morning" or just simply don't JOIN in a conversation. Maybe we wave them off and quietly think, "Well, just be that way, then" and go about our way.

Such is the case with Janet. I've worked with her for about five months now and she barely speaks a word to anybody. She is an attractive lady, smiles on occasion, but I've noticed that she doesn't really care to join in on meetings and prefers to sit off to herself during luncheons. My coworkers speak to her and she nods but that's about the extent of it, much to their frustration. I have sat next to her, trying to draw her in during conversations but to no success. It has bothered me. I was very tempted to label her as "unfriendly" and move on.

She and I were the last ones to leave last night. As we both stood in the locker room gathering our belongings in silence, I put my arm through one of my coat sleeves and a bundle of ear plugs and hair nets came out the other end. I started laughing because it was yet another prank we play on one another to cut through the monotony of the day. I looked at Janet and she was smiling quietly not wanting to meet my eyes. I said, "Those whippersnappers. Just wait. This means war." We both walked out of the room, made our way to the exit, her steps always a step or two ahead of me. Once outside we had a long walk to our vehicles and I noticed it had rained. I made the comment that at least it wasn't snow. I heard her say something. I said, "I'm sorry, I didn't hear you..." and she turned to me with what looked like pain on her face.

"Yes. I don't like snow."

But her words were a little jumbled. It was evident that this beautiful woman, whom we all thought was a snob, whom we all thought didn't want to associate with us, had a speech impediment. My heart jerked. I didn't know what to say. Should I perhaps nod and wish her a great evening or should I try to continue to talk to her the remaining minutes to our cars?

I smiled and caught up with her as she quickly marched on and matched her steps.

"I hate snow. I hate cold. I can't wait 'til it warms up to plant my flowers. I just hope that I can keep the deer out of them this year. I have always wanted a garden full of vegetables but the deer and ground moles get those too. And I get so cold on our line that my toes go numb."
"Really? Mine too. I wear two pairs of socks."
Laughing, I said, "I wear long johns too! And two shirts!"

A few more seconds of silence ensued and I was ready to wish her a wonderful weekend when she stopped and put her arm in front of my body. I was about to walk in front of a car that was pulling out...I would have been smooshed. I thanked her quietly and she smiled.

"I'm sorry. I don't like to talk much."
"It's okay. I DO. So if I'm around, I'll be content to do all the talking and you can just listen if that's alright with you. Seriously, God gave me the gift of gab."
Smiling broadly, she nodded and said, "Oh, I KNOW! And yes. That would be fine." I could not stop looking at her face...her smile was so beautiful.

We got to our cars and bid each other careful going home. I noticed the smile did not leave her face. Quite frankly, neither did mine. Then on the way home I was overcome with sadness.

I made assumptions about this woman.

We all did.

How incredibly unfair is that? How often do we do that in our lives, without truly knowing the situation, their individual stories? I feel Janet has developed her quietness out of self-image and the things that people have said over the years. She would rather be thought of "snobbish" than reveal her impediment. It's very disheartening in so many ways.

But I like her. I'm going to keep talking to her. And I'm going to keep Colossians 4:6 in mind. "Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person." Maybe I need to remind myself of that with everyone, not just Janet, as well.

Words define us. Just as much, if not more than, our actions. They have the power to break our spirits or to lift our souls. Most of us were given the gift of perfect speech, unlike Janet. But just because we have it doesn't mean we should use it carelessly. My mother used to say, "You really need to learn to think before you open your mouth." That is still a work in progress, by the way. But as I get older I am learning the importance of it.

"Let the words of my mouth and meditation of my heart be accepted in YOUR sight, O Lord..." -Psalm 19:14

Have a beautiful weekend, my friends. God bless. You are loved.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUNIAATROME 4/1/2013 2:47AM

    emoticon emoticon

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CHALLENGER15 3/30/2013 8:19AM

    Thank you for sharing this!

With a life-long hearing problem, I often didn't hear someone and was and probably still am considered standoffish by those that don't know me. You can perhaps imagine what torture it was for me in a group - and as an educator, lunch duty was horrible but necessary. And even now there is very little medical hope, since cochlear implants are not always successful, very expensive, and definitely not covered by my insurance now that I have essentially finished my working life.

You wrote this very beautifully with much food for thought for those who read it.

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JERMADSON7 3/29/2013 10:58PM

    You are the way you are. That is a beautiful thing, especially to all of the Janets of the world. It is tempting, even easier, to label people and move on. It takes effort and a special person to see beyond the exterior and look in depth of the other person, then reach beyond our comfort zones to try to understand them and ultimately accept them for who they are and why they are the way they are.

Most people would consider me to be obnoxious. I tend to speak my mind, to say what I think. I try not to be distasteful, rude or to inject my opinions in a harsh manner but I know at times they can come across that way. Yet after people get to know me, they know that I will be honest in my feelings. Eventually they see that I have their best interests at heart. (Wink, wink.)

You are right. Words are hurtful. At the same time they can be a comfort. It is crucially important that we all remember we are all different and communicate in different ways. In the end, we all want to be accepted and ultimately feel free to be who we are. Although Janet has been shunned at times, I am sure, she eventually felt comfortable to let you in on her "secret." That is a great compliment to you and a burden lifted for her.

But then again, who wouldn't feel free to be themselves with you?


Comment edited on: 3/29/2013 11:00:43 PM

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LALMEIDA 3/28/2013 11:21AM


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KAILYNSTAR 3/22/2013 7:52PM

    So nice of you to figure out what was going on with Janet.

My Mother and my DD3 are both shy. They are quiet in company and nod and say very little. I find that people think that they're are being snobs.

If I'm with DD3, I just pipe up and say "Don't think she's a snob. She's a shy one. Once she gets to know out!" :)

There are so many expectations of people, thinking that everyone should conform to the social norm. Or just act like they do.

I am not one of them. I myself am better with writing and talking over the phone. Put me in a room of people that know each other...I shut down. I have very little to say. Or, put me in a room of people that are new and uncomfortable with each other, I break the ice. I cause smiles and laughter and lessen the tension in the room. Once everyone is talking, I sit off to the side or corner and just listen.

Michelle, you are a fantastic person, who can put the right words down and get you humour and your heart on the page.

Thanks for the blog.

Thanks for being Janet's friend. I'm sure she is thankful for you as well.

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KIMCOLLINGS 3/22/2013 4:33PM

    Terrific story and I'm glad you ran towards her, rather than away. I bet she's had a lot of people in her life either be nervous or not want to take the time to get to know her and it sounds like she has a sweet soul. Good for you for taking a genuine interest in her and breaking that barrier. I bet it means more to her than you know. You are AWESOME!

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MISHKALA 3/21/2013 4:30PM

    Michelle, you are a beautiful soul, and your words of wisdom are something we should all keep in mind. God bless you and your gift of writing from the heart.

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GETTINGFIT4HIM 3/21/2013 3:10AM

  You are so right! We must always remember to reach out and try and encourage one another. What a blessing you are to her, just as you are to all of us! emoticon

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STAYCXL-NOMORE 3/19/2013 3:31PM

    Great blog as always Michelle , you have such a writers way about you that makes it amazing as always !! I am glad you wrote this blog cause honestly I need it this week , I now am going threw so many emotions with my separation , I have a hard time not expressing my feelings and not be so nice about it :( my son told me the other day that it makes him sad cause I don't think before I speak these days , I think alot of it is anger that has built up but this blog reminds me that I really need to do what God would and season it with salt , cause words are painful and now more then ever do I realize someone words hurt and hurt deep , but instead of watching mine, I cut back !!! Thanks SF one more lesson learned :) from u !!!!

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WHOVIANGIRL23 3/19/2013 9:21AM

    What a lovely thing of you to do, your story made me a bit teary eyed.

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TRIANGLE-WOMAN 3/19/2013 9:02AM

    Beautifully written!


:¦:-* ♥ ~ Hugs,
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``•.Έ.•΄ ~~

ΈΈ.•΄Έ.•*¨) ♥Έ.•*¨)
(Έ.•΄ .♥ (Έ.•΄ .♥ (Έ.•*΄¨`* ♥☆Έ.•*΄¨`*♥☆
`*♥☆ Keep Spreading the Spark!!!

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BRADMILL2922 3/19/2013 3:57AM

    I think your mother was right when she said, "You really need to learn to think before you open your mouth." Everyone always says to think before you speak but really, they should learn to think before they speak! Just because they think first, doesn't mean they think correctly. I think that is always a work in progress for us. It is something that we learn the importance of but do have to be reminded of from time to time.

Someday, you will have to actually explain your "gift of gab" to me. No, I mean really explain it like i'm sure only you can :) Janet is a lucky lady to have found a friend in you. I also have to say that you are lucky to have found a friend in Janet as well, if for just the fact that she saved you from getting smooshed. Remind me to send her a thank you note or something!

As always Michelle, a beautifully written blog! I love you and your perspective on the ways of the world. We should all be so lucky as Janet to find such a caring and understanding spirit such as yourself to work with everyday!


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SPUNKYDUCKY 3/18/2013 11:06PM

    I love this story
I love you
You are kind and always willing to challenge your own assumptions

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BKNOCK 3/18/2013 2:20PM

    Great blog! You the gift of gab? No Way!!! emoticon

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JOYFULSPIRIT920 3/18/2013 7:59AM

    Oh how I am guilty of this?!?
Oh how many times on the flip-side have I been accused of being a snob when in actuality I am an introvert.
Thanks for reminder, our words truly do have power.
Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. I pray my heart is full of God's grace, compassion & mercy so that my words convey those attributes.

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WALLAHALLA 3/17/2013 8:51PM

    Great blog. Also shows we can learn so much more by listening than by just talking. Janet is lucky to have found you for a friend.

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JADOMB 3/17/2013 6:21PM

    You are so right and she was lucky to have met the right person to help her feel more comfortable. As a sub, I have to work very hard NOT to judge my students since there are just so many reasons they act as they do. I just try to continue putting a good foot forward and showing them they can trust me. It works for the most of them.

Funny thing you brought up speech impediment though. The other day one of my Th graders that before now has been very quiet, started speaking to me. He's always been a good kid and I have recognized him for that. But until then he was very short with answers or questions when he spoke. Then the last time I was fortunate to sub for that class he began to talk very freely and frequently. He has a speech impediment, but it is the cutest one I've ever heard. It's almost like an accent.

I don't think I brought him out of his shell as much as he just finally felt comfortable enough with me to talk more. But as he spoke in front of all the others, he did it with great confidence and no shame. I only wish more folks could face their differences more as a blessing than a curse and ignore anyone that doesn't accept them instead of allow them to define who they are.

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MOONANDSTARS77 3/17/2013 1:58PM

  THis was a sad blog. I am guilty of making assumptions as well.

I remember one job I worked there was this woman who never dated and was very clingy and close to her family. Everyone made fun of her as being someone with "no life"

Well one day me and her got to talking and she told me that she made the mistake once of being drunk and taking a guy home with her from the bar.

She went to use her restroom and when she came out he raped her at knifepoint .

I felt terrible for making fun of her.

Thank you for this blog so I can keep it in mind not to judge people.

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JOHNTJ1 3/17/2013 9:23AM

    There was a very real blessing in what you did, not only for her but for you. I think we spend much of our lives in search of the grandiose only ofr god to remind us that his sheep, those a bit lost and lonely are right there with us at work or in the neighborhood or at the gym.

In many ways you embodied the Good Shepard. Thank you for sharing this Michelle, you have enlightened my day.

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PJBONARRIGO 3/16/2013 11:01PM

    Great blog- thanks for posting. Food for thought and I learn something every time. I have the gift of gab too aka I talk too much. I am trying to remember "God gave me two ears and only one mouth.... so I will listen twice as much as I talk". Yeh, good luck with that ;-)

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CARTOONB 3/16/2013 10:28PM

    You definitely have a way with words.

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DOVESEYES 3/16/2013 8:44PM

    What a wonderful blog thanks for sharing this. emoticon

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AJDOVER1 3/16/2013 8:20PM


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SHARON10002 3/16/2013 5:14PM

    Michelle, you are my mentor. Your heart is so open that it's always stretching and reaching out to expand your love, and it touches not only those to whom you can give it easily, but as this story shows, also those who need it so very much. You are a true angel in disguise . . . Love . . .

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KING_SLAYER 3/16/2013 5:13PM

    I absolutely understand your story. I am an introvert and when around people I don't know very well I am quiet and try not to draw attention to myself. I'm sure that there's lots of people that think I'm a snob or that I'm aloof, when the truth is that I don't like attention and feel very unworthy of attention. The people that know me however know that I am in no way a snob, I'm just quiet.

Bless you for seeing further into Janet's persona and realizing that her aloofness was about her, not about her coworkers. I'm sure she probably feels better herself.

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SCOTMAMA 3/16/2013 4:18PM

    I always knew you were a beautiful person, both inside and out. The story about Janet proves it -- not everyone would pursue her friendship like you did.

Like you, I'm a talker, and I can't imagine what I would be like if my Gift were suddenly taken from me. I love getting in front of a crowd and talking -- even speaking with a microphone doesn't bother me -- and at times I wish I had more of a message to pass on.

When the time comes, and you're at the Pearly Gates, I'll bet they will welcome you with open arms!

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DIETSAFARI 3/16/2013 3:24PM

    Michelle, I could just grab you and hug you for sticking with it until you touched Janet's heart. I know Jesus feels like that too. I know you won't let her be lonely.
Lots of love!
Proud of you, Daughter of God!

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LMB-ESQ 3/16/2013 3:18PM

    Kind of a kick in the pants to find out your assumptions about people can be wrong, isn't it? Glad you made a new friend :-)

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Trampled By Elephants

Sunday, February 17, 2013

My old man and I both work the same shift so everyday before we leave we try to spend as much time together as possible. Whether we go out for lunch or just cook together we talk about our kids, grandkids, the bills, our health or what's going on in the news. But there are some days we get bored and that's when stupid stuff happens. (Like seeing who can make the most points tossing cashews into the other's mouth. You get double points if you don't choke them doing it.) Or watching reruns of "Everybody Loves Raymond."

See, that show is a trouble-maker. We are always amazed how it relates so much to our lives, minus the kids being small and at home. (And unlike Deborah, I am a pretty good cook if I say so myself.) But the other day, as we sat on the couch unwinding a little before our departures, we tuned in and they were discussing who they would marry if something "unfortunate" happened to them. Brian looked at me with one eyebrow raised and I thought, "Oh crap. Here we go."

"Well, missy, who would you marry? Gerard Butler?"
"First off, how do I go?"
"What happens to me?"
"Who cares!! Who would you pick to get shacked up with?"
"Let's say I get trampled by elephants. There ain't no elephants in southern Ohio. So that happening is very very unlikely..."
"I'm going to pick someone for you. I think that's how Ray and Deborah are doing it. I choose Jake."
"Jake?! Our NEIGHBOR?! He looks like Willie off of Duck Dynasty!! I want Don from the tire place. Can I have Don?!"
"Don!? You don't like Don. You just want his Mustang."
"Who would you pick for me?"
"Hmmm. Nea."
"Nea. She's 73! And her hair is blue."
"You want Pamela Anderson."
"Who DOESN'T want Pamela Anderson."
"Well, I want Dr. Oz."
"But Dr. Oz doesn't want you."
"And Pam wants YOU??"
"Everybody wants me."
By this time I'm getting miffed. "We should discuss how you go out."
"You're getting close. To being strangled. By me."

I got up and started packing my lunch for work. He followed me into the kitchen with a grin and stood there watching me. I skillfully ignored him. I didn't have anything to say to that, that...PAM-lover. I fingered my old-lady bun that would later be covered with a hardhat and smoothed the creases in my unflattering work pants. So unPam-like...I was just a glob of everydayness. A person who paid the cable and internet bill and bought him sugar-free pudding on rare occasions.

"Funny thing is," he said, "Pam would was always second choice because I picked the most beautiful woman in the WORLD to marry..."

Holding my hand up in the "talk to the hand" fashion, I continued stuffing my fruit into my bag and crammed in my ice pack. I hastily zipped up my items and caught half the banana...I didn't even care that half of it's guts was hanging out as I slammed it onto the counter.

"You're gorgeous."
"Especially when you're ticked."
"C'mere you sexy thing..." and then he scooped me up in his arms and squeezed me tightly.
I laughed a little and said, "Even if I've gained back a few pounds?? Like, seriously, my badonkadonk is junking it a little these days..."
"I like your badonkadonk. And I will save you from the elephants. That's how I will go out. Saving you."

Tears stinging my eyes, I looked at him and said, "I love you."
"More than Dr. Oz?"
"Yes. More than Dr. Oz."
"Pfff. What's he got that I don't have anyways..."
"Bite me. Oh, and I love you too."

After 20+ years, it really is still good to know that I can beat Pamela Anderson hands down. Well, with MY old man anyways. And watching him stand at the window that day as I pulled out of our driveway for work, waving and blowing kisses...I felt like the luckiest girl alive. Big badonkadonk and all.

I wish you all a blessed Sunday. Hug your husband/wife closely today. Always remember what brought you together. Don't let the little things blur the big picture and work everyday to keep that bond alive and intact. It IS important to remind the other of your love for them. It IS important to tell them that they are still your one and only...

You are loved. By them AND me.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OLDERDANDRT 4/2/2013 1:04PM

    You have such a sweet guy! And I love reading your blogs! Be well and be happy my friend......always!! ((HUGS))

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BYEFATNANNY 3/17/2013 7:38PM

    So sweet and timely. We just found out my hubby has heart troubles and I've been hugging him a little harder lately....and we both need to loose our badonkadonk's emoticon

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JERMADSON7 3/13/2013 4:20PM

    HA! You have more beauty than you realize. Inside and out. Your husband knows he is one lucky man.

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KAILYNSTAR 2/26/2013 3:22PM

    You are some person. Just, thinking of watching Raymond? I can't stand that show. Never could. All that yelling and such...

I have to say, stay away from the zoo, if there are elephants there! emoticon

In all seriousness, I do tell my DH almost everyday. 20+ years here too.

So glad things are going well there.


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SHARON10002 2/25/2013 9:25PM

    Oh, Michelle, your love stories get me every time! I'm in a puddle in my chair. I think Dr. Oz should have you on the show to share the secrets of keeping the love alive for over 20+ years. You got it goin' girl, and any woman would chuck it all to be in your shoes - including Pam Andersen! emoticon

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BRADMILL2922 2/21/2013 11:24PM

    What can I say that hasn't been said before? You are funny, insightful, caring, ornery, loving, and on and on an on...

There is that love story again! How great is your relationship that you guys can have that after 20+ years? Pamela Anderson and Dr. Oz have nothing on you two! Everyone should be as lucky as you two to have found that partner to share these kinds of moments with.

No matter if elephants are roaming Southern Ohio or badonkadonks are junking, you guys have each other through the thick and thin! Good luck winning the cashew tossing title ;)


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SPUNKYDUCKY 2/20/2013 12:01AM

    Excellent blog - badonkadonk and all!

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TRENTDREAMER 2/19/2013 6:06PM

    "'I'm going to pick someone for you. I think that's how Ray and Deborah are doing it. I choose Jake.'
'Jake?! Our NEIGHBOR?! He looks like Willie off of Duck Dynasty!! I want Don from the tire place. Can I have Don?!'
'Don!? You don't like Don. You just want his Mustang.'
'Who would you pick for me?'
'Hmmm. Nea.'
'Nea. She's 73! And her hair is blue.'"
* I am so thankful that I am single. And what the h*ck is Duck Dynasty!?

"'Funny thing is," he said, "Pam would was always second choice because I picked the most beautiful woman in the WORLD to marry...'"
* He just totally pwned P.A. :D

'Tears stinging my eyes, I looked at him and said, 'I love you.'
'More than Dr. Oz?'
'Yes. More than Dr.Oz.'
'Pfff. What's he got that I don't have anyways...' "
* Make sure poor D-Ozzie can't read this. It might hurt his feelings....
Did I mention that I'm really glad that I'm single.

"I wish you all a blessed Sunday. Hug your husband/wife closely today. Always remember what brought you together. "
* (Trent inserts usual smart alec comment about how he would if he was married.) See it's "phone-it-in" Tuesday in comment land.

"I wish you all a blessed Sunday. "
* You as well!

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JADOMB 2/18/2013 12:56PM

    emoticon Sometimes the scale just doesn't tell the story. ;-)

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NEEDBU66 2/18/2013 11:01AM

    Whatever job you got quit it today. Call the publisher and get published. You are an author. You should be writing books.

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AJDOVER1 2/18/2013 10:03AM

    You guys are wonderful! I love reading your blogs.

I hope the elephants stay far away from you both!

Comment edited on: 2/18/2013 10:04:17 AM

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BKNOCK 2/18/2013 9:39AM

    You should write a book! Thanks for the laugh!

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KAYOTIC 2/18/2013 8:54AM

    Love it! You have a flair for writing a story that resonates..

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TRIANGLE-WOMAN 2/18/2013 7:25AM


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DOVESEYES 2/17/2013 10:09PM

    This is lovely thanks I bet you had a smile on your face all day in between hard work. It must have been a hurry to get home as well.

it's nice when you both get that.... emoticon

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WALLAHALLA 2/17/2013 9:46PM

    so sweet

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KING_SLAYER 2/17/2013 7:12PM

    Very nice blog :) It's heartwarming to read things like you have written here. You are blessed and so is your hubby, maybe more than he realizes!

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CARTOONB 2/17/2013 6:21PM

    I knew you could beat Pam, hands down. And, it would be fun to watch you take her out if she came after your old man!!!

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    Ha-ha You are way hotter than Pam..who? Great to hear from you. I do believe that the old man really loves you!

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HWNHMMBRD 2/17/2013 2:49PM

    Thank you for sharing the aggravation and joy of have the right person in your life. emoticon emoticon

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KONRAD695 2/17/2013 2:48PM

    What happens when you bend over loading the dishwasher? emoticon

We have a no "other person conversation" rule in my house, the 10 year old twins would interrupt just about the time we get to the hug part. Glad you two can stir up the emotions still. Doesn't matter how they start, as long as they are still there.


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PJBONARRIGO 2/17/2013 2:40PM

    Woo Hoo! You had me from the elephants; but I got a tear in my eye when I read about "going out trying to save you from being trampled". Yeah- give the DH a huge hug :-) emoticon

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It Doesn't Take A Brick To Fall...

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

We've all seen her. The little girl in the corner at the party with her arms folded across her chest and a pouty mouth, mad because something didn't go her way. The people around her are trying their best to make her smile, to reassure her that it's going to be okay, just come out and have some fun. She won't look anyone in the eye and quickly turns away from them with tears in her eyes, defiant and a little testy. All she can think of is how "unfair" life seems to be...

A couple of weeks ago I got hurt at work which resulted in an accident report, a few days of being incapacitated on the couch and light duty at work. Not to mention the ultimate loss of a friendship that I didn't have the energy to try to maintain anymore. I went into "pout-mode." Then my weight increased. (I am now back up to 124.5.) I ate to numb the physical and emotional pain. My appetite/cravings escalated and now it's a battle to keep them under control. There is the rabbit's always lurking but this time it seemed bigger and strangely more welcoming. Self-pity? I was and still am the poster child for it. But...

You guys won't let me wallow, will you? I've checked my page...the SparkMails are overwhelming with kindness and concern. The goodies spoke equally as much. Now you guys have resorted to commenting on my page, some with "tough love." (I gotta admit, one of them really ticked me off but I guess it got me on here spilling my guts. But I will deal with "you" later in a private message and it won't be pretty so consider yourself for-warned.)

It doesn't take a brick to fall on my head to know you all care. But I'm still a little mad. I feel a little failure in the fact that sometimes my health gets all screwy and I can't run with the big dogs. I'm ticked that a friend decided that, after all, I WAS just an option, no matter how much I cared and tried to be there for them and "checked out." But it gave me time to see the others around me who really DO have my best interests at heart. Who really do love me for...ME. So I thank that person for allowing me to realize my worth does not lie in their eyes. I thank that person for helping me to see the others around me who truly care about my heart and what it stands for.

Like Betsy. And Brad. These two people have basically kept tabs on me every day. I would say they are my two greatest friends. No matter if I was at work or home, I would check my phone or go to break and find a funny text or a sweet voicemail. Even a funny picture or two. It's kinda hard to stand in the corner pouting when you get a funny pic of Dewey posing for the camera (Dewey is Betsy's extremely handsome cat, btw) or a hand-drawn picture of a stick figure with arms open wide screaming, "I LOVE YOU THIS MUCH!!

Or even this cute little pic from my daughter exclaiming that two heads are better than one...

Sooo, I guess it's time to let a little smile replace the pout, even though the arms are still folded, albeit not as tightly, across my chest. I'm looking secretly out of the corner of my eye and feeling a little break in my defiant attitude. I want to slowly join in the party again. Yes, I'm still a little miffed at myself, weight gain and all, but I will get back out there on my trail again, huffing and puffing off the pounds. So, you see, PumpedUp, I did not quit. I may have felt like it, been tempted to do it, threatened to do it and had myself believing that I did it, but there is a spirit in me that won't allow me to. So there.

It's time to see, feel and enjoy the company of my TRUE friends. Who never gave up on me. Or who kindly gave me the space to go through the torrent of emotions that needed to be steamed off.

I'm healing. I will be okay.

God bless. You are loved.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SHARON10002 2/17/2013 11:54PM

    Michelle, I'm sorry that you've been navigating potholes in your life lately. So very sorry to hear about your accident at work. But I am TRULY glad to see you back and read this blog. I have missed you! But I also knew that you were having to concentrate what little energy you had, and trying to bring yourself back into balance once again.

I know that little pouty girl myself. It's rough when she decides to show up. I know she is trying as only she knows how to protect me, but I also know that I just have to let her be, not judge her, and she'll leave on her own accord eventually. I've gained back much of the weight I lost too, so I know how you feel. It's hard not to let those ANTS get to us, and make us crazy. Of all the judgments we pass in life, none is more important than the judgment we pass on ourselves. You have been an example of that to me through your blogs, and your precious notes, and goodies.

I stumbled upon your page by accident, and I'm here to tell you that it is one of the best accidents that I've had in this lifetime. You set the bar high, Michelle, but in the best possible way. You are a shining star to me, and your spark has illuminated many a dark night for me.

I've missed you. . . You are so loved.

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TRIANGLE-WOMAN 2/15/2013 8:16AM

    Oh, that little girl resides in me too. No worries for us though because we KNOW she is there.

Give her a big hug for me!!


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GEEMAWEST 2/14/2013 12:09PM

    These 'rough patches' are never fun but they make us stronger. I too am struggling right now. Just lost my job. I spent time wallowing and now I need to move on.

We can do this!! Hang in there, Michelle. You are a very strong woman.

Love and Hugs!

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TNGRAHAM 2/14/2013 11:09AM

    I saw your post and had to leave a comment.
I too had a rough patch it lasted almost 3 years I gained most of the weight back that I had lost, I am now back on track and hope to stay there. Good Luck to you in YOUR journey don't let anyone dictate to you how your supposed to do this. emoticon
Taniya a fellow sparker

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JUNIAATROME 2/14/2013 10:03AM

    Welcome back on track - makes two of us already. emoticon

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STAYCXL-NOMORE 2/14/2013 12:31AM

    Glad you are back in action my friend !! You have been missed but sometimes we all need to do is step back look over the bigger picture and you are right, you are not a quitter , you are anything but !!! You may kick us when we are down but once we get up your screwed !!! Hope you are feeling better from your work injury :( You know who has your back anytime this SF for sure !! You are loved Michelle , by many here and in your personally life I sure of it:) Have a good rest of the week !! XOXO

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SPUNKYDUCKY 2/14/2013 12:22AM

    Hey beautiful, I am in Belize on vacation but I just wanted to reach out and send some love your way. I am also a pouty girl so I know how you are feeling. I am sorry for the loss of your friend - regardless of whether or not he/she was a true friend, I know it hurts to feel rejected. I am sorry too that your body has been a source of stress and not a source of comfort. It is hard to keep a positive mood when you are cooped up, sick and in general short on endorphins. Regardless, you are wonderful and you will be back on top of the world soon. If it helps to know that people care - here I am - I care!
Take care of you,

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ARUNNINGKAT 2/13/2013 2:43PM

    So sorry to hear about all that you are going through! I have missed your comments and involvement on Spark, although I admit I have not been so good at expressing that and checking up on you like some others have. Sorry about that! You have been such a huge encouragement to me and I am glad to have you as a Sparkfriend! Hope you feel better soon! emoticon emoticon

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JADOMB 2/13/2013 12:01PM

    Thank you for letting us back in to your thoughts. I know before this year I didn't know you from Adam. (or would that be EVE?) anyway, I've come to know you like a best friend or sister and don't want to lose you. I look forward to your posts and your stories and knowing that I have a great friend I can always talk with. DON'T YOU EVER LEAVE ME AGAIN. ;-)

So sorry to hear that things went south for a bit and I pray things will get better soon. In times like these I know space is sometimes the best medicine and I will always give you what you need to work things out. I also can go through the pouty stage from time to time and it doesn't seem like any of my old tricks helps me through them. But eventually I regain my strength, dust myself off and go forward. I know you can too.

So take your time, find your strength, and know that we are all here to help when you need it. God bless, my good friend.

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TRENTDREAMER 2/13/2013 8:33AM

    "We've all seen her. The little girl in the corner at the party with her arms folded across her chest and a pouty mouth, mad because something didn't go her way."
* It's amazing how quickly people jump to the conclusion that having negative emotions turns them into little whiny/pouty little kids.

"The people around her are trying their best to make her smile, to reassure her that it's going to be okay, just come out and have some fun. "
* Yes, people who do that make it worse.
"make bad emotions go away!!........they make me uncomfortable......can't address.......'Pity Party!!'".

(That's why when I'm struggling with sadness, frustration and disappointment, I stop talking to anyone I'm not really close with for a time. Makes the noise go away.)

"A couple of weeks ago I got hurt at work which resulted in an accident report, a few days of being incapacitated on the couch and light duty at work. Not to mention the ultimate loss of a friendship that I didn't have the energy to try to maintain anymore. "
* Really sorry to hear about these. Both of those would really hit me hard. emoticon emoticon

"You guys won't let me wallow, will you? "
* I absolutely will let you! In fact I strongly encourage you to do so.
* Feel it. Experience it. Work through it.
* In both cases you've lost something (even if only for a season)...
* grieve them.
Please don't make me write another "Power of Negative Thinking" blog.

"Now you guys have resorted to commenting on my page, some with 'tough love.'"
* I haven't read the comments, I admit. If it the usual "tough love" that involves the usual cliches, then it's anything but tough. It's avoidance.

Trent's "Really-Really-This-Love-Might-Kill
-You-Type-of-Tough-Love" Love:
* Don't get over it. Get through it. Process it.
* Experience the pain. Treat yourself exactly as you would treat someone else going through the same thing.
* Find someone who you've been close with who you have been able to experience this type of thing with and lean on them for a season. Make this a real person and real friend, not a lucky rabbits foot deity or acquaintance who only knows what you give them.

"Then my weight increased. (I am now back up to 124.5.) "
* Really sorry to hear. Weight gain is big-time frustrating.

" I'm ticked that a friend decided that, after all, I WAS just an option, no matter how much I cared and tried to be there for them and "checked out.""
* again emoticon emoticon

" I would say they are my two greatest friends. No matter if I was at work or home, I would check my phone or go to break and find a funny text or a sweet voicemail. "
* I'm very thankful that you have them in your life.

"Sooo, I guess it's time to let a little smile replace the pout, even though the arms are still folded, "
* I stand by what I said earlier. Please make sure that it is.

"It's time to see, feel and enjoy the company of my TRUE friends. Who never gave up on me. Or who kindly gave me the space to go through the torrent of emotions that needed to be steamed off. "
* Amen!

"I'm healing. I will be okay. "
* w00t!

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BKNOCK 2/13/2013 6:45AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 2/13/2013 6:46:15 AM

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CELESTE_B 2/13/2013 6:30AM the photo's! What great friends to have.

I recently had the spat with a friend. I have to admit...she wont be missed. She's the type that like to start problems and when you call her on it (which is what I did) she blew up. She even turned it around that she was the victim in the end.

Thing is, sometimes there are people in our lives that really don't belong. Kind of like that car you bought when you were single. It was fast, only had two doors and it was cool. You loved to drive it. It was perfect. Then, you got married and decided that you wanted a more practical car. You still love your old car but you decided to keep it around. Every day, you pull in your driveway and see the car. You know it's not for you anymore but you look at it and you don't want to part with it. But in your heart of heart you know it's time to let it go.

Friends are like that. Through life you'll have lots of friends. You'll also have those core friends you've had since grade school. Those are the friends you can see once a year and it's almost like you never missed a beat.

Then, you have friends you enjoy spending time with and you don't always get to see each other but you make time.

Then you have friends that are more like acquaintances. They seem like a big deal...but really when the tough get going...they're gone.

Your worth so much more than that...and don't get me wrong acquaintances are nice. Some will surprise you...but you can't let it get you down when they feel overwhelmed by something going on in their life. Lord knows, they may have something going on in theirs they don't really know how to deal with.

Big hugs to you. Get your workouts in and the weight will come off. You know it will.

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MARINEMAMA 2/13/2013 5:17AM

    Smile beautiful! Sorry about your rough patch! It's time to dust yourself off and spread your sunshine! emoticon

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DOVESEYES 2/13/2013 12:53AM

    Oh what a time you have had ...sorry... emoticon emoticon emoticon

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FLEMIDG 2/13/2013 12:27AM

    Sorry you had some bad times. Good for you for not giving up. You are too special for that. You are so loved. I love the pic of your daughter. Put the past behind you and reach for the future. You can do this. We're all pulling for you. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BRADMILL2922 2/12/2013 11:39PM

    Lift that chin up, unfold those arms, and turn that frown upside down! Why? Have you seen how cute that "two heads are better than one" picture is? What a great picture! I also think the "I love you this much" picture is full of awesomeness but I may be a bit biased on that one!

Your spirit is to strong, your smile is to bright, and your your soul is beautiful to be held down for to long. You may come across the ever present rabbit hole but I for one will stretch across it to help keep you from tumbling down!

Life can be unfair and the self-pity may want to take over but you have people who DO have your best interests at heart and who DO love you for YOU! But, if you were to tumble down that rabbit hole from time to time, just check that picture and see how far those arms will stretch to catch you. Just sayin'.

You will be ok. YOU ARE LOVED.


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KING_SLAYER 2/12/2013 11:07PM


I am so happy that you are back, you are that ray of sunshine that brightens everyone's day! I know my world was just a little more bleak while you were gone, but now you're back and the world seems to be getting itself back in order.

Welcome home :)

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WALLAHALLA 2/12/2013 11:06PM

    Gotta love that picture of your daughter. I had a stinky evening, and that made me laugh out loud. Glad to hear you are recovering.

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KATRINAKAT23 2/12/2013 10:59PM

  emoticon emoticon

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MCSPRYGADA 2/12/2013 10:58PM

    Beautiful writing and a beautiful testament to your character!

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AJDOVER1 2/12/2013 10:38PM

    It's GREAT to see you back!
emoticon emoticon

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CARTOONB 2/12/2013 10:32PM

    I'm sorry that you've been through a rough patch. But once again, you've pulled through and set yourself straight...with help from those who love you most. Missed you.

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A Little Ramble

Sunday, January 13, 2013

One of my challenges in life has been my illness. Most of you know, I have lupus. I always carry a low-grade fever and deal with muscular and joint aches on a day-to-day basis. I have been on every medication that treats it and have had to discontinue them because of the side effects. I have also used home remedies, herbal therapies, modified my diet, etc., etc., but still have to deal with some very bad days when it just wants to rear its ugly head and make my life, well, hell.

There are times when it not only makes day-to-day activities very difficult and painful, it wears and tears on the spirit as well. I'm not a vain person but I take alot of pride in my appearance. I believe in looking your best even if you're just running to the grocery store for milk. But it would seem this disease doesn't care about that. When the rash appears, it comes with a vengeance. No amount of make-up or creams will cover it. At times, to this day, I still cry when it happens because the little girl inside of me is afraid of being laughed at or shunned.

I cried last week before work when I woke up to the pain, swelling and rash. I was scared. My new coworkers had not seen this side of me. They met me with understanding and compassion. Some even put their arm around me and asked if they could help with some of my responsibilities. That helped. Of course I was stubborn and insisted that I could still function at my normal capacity. And I did. But inside I still die a little bit when this hits me. But I am surviving. I WILL survive.

The rash is now subsiding a little. It seems to have lasted a little longer than normal this time and my eyes are still swollen terribly!

Thank you for your prayers. Thank you for your support and understanding. It helps to complain a little, lol. So thank you for listening to that as well. :) I hope that you all are doing well and had a very wonderful weekend. I miss getting on here and aggravating you all like I used to. For some reason "torturing" others makes me feel better, lol. I carry you all in my heart and hold you in my prayers each and every day.

God bless you. I sure do love you.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARINEMAMA 1/30/2013 7:50PM


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SPARKONSKATES 1/20/2013 8:21PM

    awww I'm sorry. I have a friend who has Lupus. Prayers for you. Hugs. I hope your feeling better now and the rash clears up and the new job and coworkers learn to help you through the tough times. emoticon

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SPUNKYDUCKY 1/20/2013 1:39PM

    Just wanted to let you know that I am thinking of you and happy that you are feeling better.

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FAERY_FACE 1/18/2013 4:37AM

    Michelle, all my prayers go out to you. I really hope that in 2013, will will have more good and "feel great" days than there are in the Year! I am really glad that your co-workers are so supportive. emoticon

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SHARON10002 1/17/2013 10:26PM

    Michelle, I am so glad to keep reading about your co-workers, and how they are truly embracing you and all that you are. On the other hand, I am so sorry that you are not feeling well right now. Please know that I am sending you healing vibes as I type this, and will keep you close in thought and in my prayers . . . I do miss seeing you here, and was thrilled to see you were online! Must have been ESP because I was just getting ready to come over and leave you a note and a goodie - which I'll do now!!!! emoticon
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JADOMB 1/15/2013 10:29PM

    emoticon I only wish I could be there when you need that hug or a shoulder to lean on my friend. emoticon I will always keep you in my prayers. God bless and watch over you.

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BKNOCK 1/15/2013 2:41PM

    I am glad that you have support work so much better than that "other" place. I hope that you are soon feeling better and I am glad that you "dropped" by!

Love ya,


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STAYCXL-NOMORE 1/15/2013 9:58AM

    Michelle , you are one of the most beautiful woman emoticon I have ever met and guess what I haven't even seen you personally , the lupus makes you who you are inside and out and if a little rash and swollen eyes even tore a piece of that amazing heart you have don't let it cause my friend your beauty is within and every time you talk or even are in the presence of people that know you , I am sure your looks are the last thing they see !! The person inside ... lights your path my friend and that lady is amazing !! Swollen eyes , rash , bone aches and all :)
Love u

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WALLAHALLA 1/14/2013 7:26PM

    My heart goes out to you. Too bad wishes can't make it all go away, but I send you a wish and a prayer anyway.
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CMBELISLE 1/14/2013 12:36PM


Any kind of illness that causes chronic pain will just wear on the soul. Just remember that the pain is not who you are. You are doing great!

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GETTINGFIT4HIM 1/14/2013 3:32AM

  Bring it!! LOL!! Whatever helps make you feel better, we can handle it. emoticon

Know that I emoticon you and include you in my prayers.

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BRADMILL2922 1/14/2013 1:14AM

    I think I can speak for many people saying that we sure have missed seeing you around these parts recently :)

With that said, I can't even pretend to know the kind of pain that you deal with on a daily basis or when your illness decides to really kick your butt. I hate to hear that you have to go through any of that stuff but I do hope you get to feeling better really soon!

You have to go through a lot, and I definitely admire your resilience. I know it wears and tears on your spirit but I sure wouldn't know it! You are one of the kindest and sweetest people I have ever known! You are a friend to many here on Spark and you have touched them all with your never-break-uplifting spirit! That's you! That is the Michelle we all know! Trust me when I say that no rash will keep down the kind of beauty you posses in your soul!

So I say, complain, aggravate, and torture away! It just wouldn't be as fun around here if you didn't! Keep your chin up Michelle and remember that you are loved!


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FLEMIDG 1/14/2013 12:18AM

    Hi, Michelle. I have missed you. I am glad you have such a wonderful, supportive group at work. I am sorry to hear you are having so many health issues. You are in my prayers. You are loved a lot. God bless you.
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CARTOONB 1/13/2013 11:18PM

    You definitely made the right choice moving to this job...sounds like your new coworkers are the kind of people you want to be around. Hope you start feeling better and the outbreaks are few and far between.

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AJDOVER1 1/13/2013 10:12PM

    Never feel that you're alone. We may have different struggles, but we share this journey one step at a time.

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KING_SLAYER 1/13/2013 9:59PM

    I'm sure you know the saying "God only gives us what He knows we can handle". But I'm sure that you're like me in wishing He didn't have so much trust in how much we could handle! Would be nice to get a respite from both the seen and the unseen weights that we must carry. They surely do take their toll. I hope you are feeling much better soon :)

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LMB-ESQ 1/13/2013 7:34PM

    emoticon People sure can step up when you need them to, don't they?

Comment edited on: 1/13/2013 7:35:10 PM

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CELESTE_B 1/13/2013 7:24PM

    Very Big hug to you!

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KONRAD695 1/13/2013 6:29PM

    Last October I remember a little rough patch where I had sent you some candles, and said I would light on for you that night. We're on candle number 7 or 8 now, but I still light it every night. A few people have borrowed it, and Lord knows I've been using it a lot lately. Tonight I'll make sure you get it back.
I believe it is Christmas Wreath scent. It's got to be hard, but hang tough. I'll send you all the extra energy I can. emoticon

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GEEMAWEST 1/13/2013 5:32PM

    I really do understand how you feel. When I first got the 'butterfly' face rash about 12 years ago I was so embarrassed to even go to the pharmacy to get the medication. I felt like everyone was looking at me and wondering what was wrong with me. I am so happy that your coworkers were understanding. There is nothing wrong with letting someone help you with some of your work. In fact, it takes a strong person to accept help.

Hugs emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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IAM_HIS2 1/13/2013 5:32PM

    Michelle, I truly feel your pain. I do not have lupus, however, I have RA, fibromyaglia and MS. There are days when I cannot walk and I see my feet and hands twisting from the RA and so much nerve pain from the fibromyalgia. Your quality of life is affected and I feel less independent. I have found following an anti-inflammatory diet helps.

I hope you check out the Fighting Inflammation & Enjoying Your Life! team for the foo list. It really does help.

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LYNNA1968 1/13/2013 5:03PM

    LOL torture away!!! I wish there was magic cure to make you feel better, its reassuring to know that you work with people that will help you out. Feel better and stay strong!!!!

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LUNADRAGON 1/13/2013 4:55PM

    Thinking of you. Bravo!

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KATRINAKAT23 1/13/2013 3:34PM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 1/13/2013 3:35:40 PM

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