Me in the Middle ~ WordPrompt ~ April

I’ve been waiting for the April WordPrompt from the WordPress Team. It’s been a slow process of getting back in the groove for blogging. And now I begin! Pondering the word GREEN!

The Green Heart emoji 💚 depicts a classic representation of a heart, colored green. It is commonly used to represent love, support, close bonds, and admiration for things that have some relation to the color green, from nature to sports teams that use green.

Looking back over the years I find the color green leading me forward to LIFE and RENEWAL. A little girl learned the miracle of a small seed sprouting into a green plant by placing the seed in cotton and placing it in a glass. Each day carefully watering it and checking to see any signs of life. In Girl Scouts our uniforms were green. We’d work toward badges that included nature.

Junior Girl Scout Nature Badge

Ireland is the heritage of my family and green reminds me of Ireland in many ways! On my two week visit to Ireland we travelled the back roads of beautiful green scenery especially on the West Coast. The Shamrock is: ‘While trying to convert the Irish into Christians, St. Patrick used the shamrock to explain the holy trinity with each leaf representing the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The three leaves of a shamrock are also said to stand for faith, hope and love. A fourth leaf is where we get the luck from.’

a low-growing clover-like plant with three-lobed leaves, used as the national emblem of Ireland.

Even our society has recognized the color green as a sign of well being, moving forward and healthy growth. Our traffic lights are Red on top, Yellow in the middle and Green on the bottom. Red alerts us to those red flags, signs of danger to our well being. Yellow encourages us to proceed with caution and be aware of possible risks. And GREEN tells us it’s safe to proceed and move forward. Sometimes some unforeseen event will happen as we’re proceeding and moving forward. And that we can’t control.

‘Traffic signals control the flow of traffic through intersections. Even young children are taught what the three colors of the traffic light mean: Red means stop, yellow means caution, and green means go. Although traffic lights are now used for automobile traffic, their initial use came before the car’s invention.’ (TitleMax)

So there you have it! Why GREEN means good things for me (and you?). I like to wear green and more likely in March. I’m always thinking of Spring and Ireland!

Me in the Middle ~ WordPrompt ~ Bridge

WordPress is helping us break the blogger’s block. It just might work for me! It’s got me thinking about the March word prompt ~ BRIDGE.

Looking back over my life I can see the different ways that I saw a bridge, sometimes real and sometimes a metaphor. A bridge is a way to get you to the other side when it would be impossible to get there without a lot of difficulty.

It’s like a midwife assisting the birth of a new life. When we’re born we’re thrust into the world and the midwife is there to guide and make the process less challenging.

Growing up there were two bridges that come to mind; one is the George Washington Bridge and the others are the smaller bridges over brooks, creeks and streams while exploring nature around my area which was pre-suburban at that time. The GWB was ominous and high above the Hudson River, carrying us away from our little village in New Jersey into the concrete jungle of the big city. The brooks, creeks and streams were fun to cross over, leaping from stone to stone or across logs that were laid out for crossing the water.

One symbolic bridge was the moving into adult life which, for a young woman back in the late fifties and early sixties, was marriage and starting a family. Part of that symbolism was that the man you married would be there for you in a supportive way throughout your life together. A bridge to support you emotionally and financially during good times and bad. ‘Love is all you need’, only it wasn’t all you need.

Around 1970, as a mother of four little ones and watching the upheavals brought about by the Vietnam War, I turned inward to find peace and hope. My husband had moved from job to job and then unemployed. It was stressful times for us and for our country. There were songs that moved me to trust and hope that we would make it through. One was ‘Let it Be’ by the Beatles and the other was ‘Bridge Over Troubled Waters‘ by Simon and Garfunkel.

That song, ‘Bridge Over Troubled Waters‘ had two meanings for me at the time. One was inspired by the Jesus Movement (Charismatic Renewal) which opened me up to a simpler faith. “The Spirit is within you.” The other was for myself ~ to be a bridge over troubled waters for others in my life. It brought me a centering peace. It helped me focus on my immediate responsibilities and Trust.

From that point on, bridge became a metaphor for me of finding a path to my inner strength ~ to be a bridge over troubled waters for myself in my own life guided by Love. At times it was through reaching out to others during a time a crisis and seeking a bridge to help me cross into better times. I learned the limits of others in their ability to be that bridge for me. I learned that I was, for the most part, alone on that path and trusted that there would be a bridge there for me as I moved forward.

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Me in the Middle~Random Act of Kindness

I want to share with you a wonderful act of kindness that totally blew my mind.

After our big snowstorm I went out to start my car and found that the battery was dead. I called road service, and someone came and jumped started my car. I was so grateful as there is a labor shortage and it took a while to find someone. He recommended that I have an auto parts store check the battery because it’s about 5 years old and they can install a new one if needed. He waited to be sure I was okay while I drove over to get my mail and get rid of garbage.

When I went out again to start my car the next day, it wouldn’t start again. I called the local auto parts store and was told I would need to get it jump started and drive it over to them. When I explained to him that I already had it jump started and this is the second time the car wouldn’t start. I was concerned because I’m handicapped and older and didn’t know if the car would stall out on my way over.

The person on the phone then said “Hold on. What make, model and year is your car?” I told him and he asked where it was. I told him it was in the front parking lot of my apartment complex. He asked if I could be out by the car and he would be right over.

He came right over and we chatted the whole time he worked on removing the old battery. When I said “At least the sun’s out today!” and he replied “Every day is a beautiful day!” He lifted my spirits and I told him I liked his attitude. After we talked more and he continued to put in a new battery, I turned the key in the ignition and the car started up beautifully!

I asked him how I should pay, by calling the store or here with him? He looked at me and said “You’re fine! Happy New Year!” I looked at him, not sure what he was saying? “You’re fine! I was given a second chance at life and the Lord wants me to live it out by helping others.” He went on and told me more and started to get into his car. I handed him the tip that I was prepared to give him which he declined at first, and I insisted. “What’s your name?” I asked. “God has always brought good people into my life just when I needed them. Thank you so much”

At first he hesitated, “It doesn’t matter.” he said. And then he paused, “My name is John

God’s Love is everywhere!

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Me in the Middle ~ Welcome 2019 (Our last ‘Normal’ Year!) Bring It On 2022 Challenges

New Year 2019

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Courage, Forgiveness, Gratitude, Tolerance, Joyfulness and Service.

So how did I do over this past year of 2018?  None of these virtues come to any of us that easily.  It takes a transcendent mindset to be able to rise above the very human struggles we all go through no matter what our age.

Courage ~It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what.”
— Atticus Finch, To Kill a Mockingbird.

Forgiveness ~ “It doesn’t mean that you’re excusing someone for past wrongs, but it does mean you’re no longer going to allow those wrongs to rule your life” ~ Sue Fitzmaurice

Gratitude ~”I don’t have to chase extraordinary moments to find happiness–it’s right in front of me if I’m paying attention and practicing gratitude.” ~ Brene Brown

Tolerance ~ “I have learned silence from the talkative, tolerance from the intolerant, and kindness from the unkind; yet strange, I am ungrateful to those teachers.” ~ Kahlil Gibran

Joyfulness ~ “Joy is a door opening to the Divine, to God, to the Universe.  Joy is the flow of Spirit within us.  It is so powerful that it can heal our bodies and soften our hearts at the same time.  It is the manifestation of love and has the power the change the world.” ~ Sue Fitzmaurice

Service ~ “If you’re feeling helpless, help someone.”  Aung San Suu Kyi

New Year 2019 #5b

Image by MLQ

Me in the Middle of a JFK Revisit

One-Inch Picture Frame (1)

JFK Revisit

While looking for a new inspiration in my posts, I picked up Anne Lamott’s book ~ Bird by Bird ~ “Some Instructions on Writing and Life”.  One idea she had was to write short assignments ~ about as much as you can see through a One-Inch Picture Frame

My second short assignment was writing for five minutes about as much as I can see looking through a one-inch picture frame of revisiting  John F. Kennedy’s Assassination.

On November 22, 1963, two months to the day before our first child was born, I was standing in the living room ironing my husband’s shirts while watching television.  The screen suddenly was filled with the news that President Kennedy had been shot in Texas.  Life changed from that point on for all of us in America.  As I stood in stunned silence watching the news unfold over the following days, I saw images of Jackie Kennedy and her small son, John, standing by the roadside as the fallen president’s casket passed by.  I felt like I knew Jackie personally, as we had both experienced miscarriages and heartaches in our lost pregnancies.  She gave me hope that I too would be a mother one day, just as her husband gave us hope that we, as a country, could overcome our adversities and become greater still.

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(2017) And now, over fifty  years later, “The documents—441 files that had previously been withheld entirely, along with 3,369 other documents that had been previously released only in part—were made public under terms of a 1992 law that requires the unsealing of all JFK assassination-related documents by October, the law’s 25-year deadline.”  And the interesting part of all this is that our president (Trump) has the power to block the unsealing of some controversial documents regarding the CIA and the FBI.  It’s possible that he will be asked to block some that are being released by the October deadline. “It does not reflect well on the legacy of either the CIA or the commission that, half a century after those gunshots rang out in Dealey Plaza, the newly released documents suggest that at least some of those conspiracy theories might be true.”

~ Stay tuned for the unfolding of the Real Camelot ~

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How the CIA Came to Doubt the Official Story of JFK’s Murder

What we know about the newly released JFK assassination records—and those yet to come

(Update November 2021): We’re still waiting for the release of the secret JFK Assassination Records. The current administration (Biden) cited COVID-19 as the reason.

“Congress declared in 1992 that all government records surrounding Kennedy’s assassination “should be eventually disclosed to enable the public to become fully informed about the history surrounding the assassination.

But a part of that law also says that the release of these records can be postponed if their public disclosure would cause “identifiable harm” to military, intelligence, law enforcement or foreign operations.”

https://www.npr.org/2021/10/24/1048813624/white-house-delays-release-of-jfk-assassination-records

11-22-63 #3

Sketch by Mary Lou