Excieo

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lionnnWith every hurdle you’ve encountered,
How are you still tripping over stones
Weighed down by trivial bullshit
Meant to distract and torment yet
Not big enough to stop you {…}
The Universe
Heard your roar
Once
It was magnificent
How can you so easily forget
The beautiful beast within you
Look in the mirror,
Not at the smile lines
Or at those sought after imperfections
But at the enchanting soul
Behind those brown eyes
Darker than the past you hide behind
Deeper than the well you climb
Let it take over
You’ve lived amongst this noise
Thousands of years now
So remember that you already
Know how to be mighty ©

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Out Of Loss Come Life. A Journey Of Grief.

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I recently lost my grandmother. She passed the day after Thanksgiving and changed my world forever. Her death was sudden, and unexpected, and I still can’t fully grasp that she’s gone. I still dial her phone every so often because I’m so used to our frequent conversations…and then realize no one will be answering my call…ever again.

My grandmother was more to me than most think of when they think of their grandparents. Her name was Virginia, same as my middle name, and she was ever so much like a mother to me. I didn’t have the warmest upbringing, to put it lightly, and so my grandmother stepped in selflessly to try fiercely to raise me right, every chance she got. And she sure was fierce. Nicknamed, ‘The Boss’, she commanded attention no matter where she was, and kept a long list of friends and close acquaintances over the years, even holding onto high school friends all the way to 92 years of age. She was a one of a kind woman, with one of the strongest personalities I’ve had the pleasure of being around.

My grief from losing her has been so devastating, for almost 3 months I was physically sick, and deteriorating rapidly with each passing day. I cried so many times my face began to look like someone I haven’t seen before. My weight has significantly fluctuated, from losing 12 pounds from not eating, and then gaining 8 from gradually eating again, and then losing 6 again. My emotions have been at an all time heightened sensitivity high; I literally cry at almost everything now a days. A movie that I’ve seen before can have a sad or happy moment occur, anything that stirs emotion, and the tears are rolling without warning. Admittedly, I’ve always been an emotional person, but never to this level.

Although this has been a tumultuous time for me, to say the least, I have found that I am somehow becoming a stronger person. In ways that I didn’t expect. For instance, I’ve always cared so much about what others think of me (unnaturally so), and suddenly that seems so insignificant. I am a chronic over-analyzer and so every interaction used to plague my psyche. I would replay every glance, conversation, response…to the point of exaggeration. I’d go grab a cup of coffee from the local coffee shop, and if I wasn’t feeling secure that day, I might spend an hour after finishing my cup of caffeine analyzing how the interaction with the barista went. How insane is that? I don’t know if this is normal for some, but if you’ve never experienced this level of analyzing, I can assure you it is time consuming at best. Suddenly, though, as if in relation with the death of my beloved grandmother, the need to excessively overanalyze every human interaction is lifting, and I am beginning to worry less about what people think and care more about each experience instead.  I’m discovering things about myself that I never truly realized or accepted (more likely), and it is unbelievably empowering. Especially the negatives. I am welcoming all of the negative aspects of myself with open arms, and I feel for the first time as if a weight has been lifted and I can step outside freely.

I believe when you can begin to understand yourself, flaws and all, it can almost quash the fears surrounding others’ judgment or the discovery of those flaws. The more I warmly embrace my own shortcomings, the less it matters to me whether someone else wants to point them out…

And now, after 4 months of grief, panic, and sadness, the overanalyzing begins to dwindle. The negative whispers inside my head have begun to quiet, for good. I am not sure how positive inner changes could come out of a time where I lost someone so important to me, when I was convinced I’d never be able to shop for groceries again because my anxiety was so out of control, but here I am. It has taken almost 30 years to get here, but maybe the loss of someone so significant made me realize I don’t have enough time on this earth to be focusing on the things that ultimately don’t matter.

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It was a day like any other…yet I knew it would prove to be magical before the night was over. You were almost offended I hadn’t let you kiss me yet; making jokes and smart comments about how I’d never kiss you…reminding me how I’d given you my cheek your first attempt, (how dare I not kiss such a handsome man?!). Well, I knew exactly what I was doing, or at least thought I did, and I couldn’t help but find humor in you being so bent out of shape about it. I didn’t know why, but I felt we needed to wait until the  right perfect moment..I wanted it to be special, because I knew that you were different, and a kiss wasn’t just a kiss. You were awful persistent, and although you weren’t a morning person (and still aren’t), you had invited me to meet you for an early coffee before I had to go to work. We went to the White Hart, a place that was quickly becoming a popular place for us to rendezvous, and I remember you were barely awake. It was the cutest thing, and if I recall correctly, you didn’t even get yourself a cup of coffee, just me (you planned to go back to sleep after escorting me to work, how sweet). It was a short date, but I loved every minute of it; your sleepy eyes and close-to-grumpy-demeanor were so endearing, and I found myself in those days loving the time I spent with you more and more. Funny, because here we are a year later, and I still love every second I spend with you.

Before our coffee date ended, we planned to see each other later that evening. I evaded your kiss once again before departing, and left you standing outside so I could go to work. Oh, the torment. I recall you texted me during my shift, acting all bruised and disgruntled that I’d once again thwarted your lip-locking plan. I myself had a plan, and your huffy, yet adorable attempts at guilting me just weren’t going to work. It was very difficult to not kiss you though, believe me, I liked you so much, and our rain date had proved that we had immense chemistry and attraction. I was simply waiting for the moment, and I believe subconsciously, you were too.

At work I thought of nothing but you, all through the ins and outs of my day, between conversations with coworkers and customers..you were the only thing I could focus on. Suddenly, I knew I was going to kiss you that night, I could somehow feel it. You had proven to be a gentleman, and I couldn’t help the feelings that were growing for you inside of me. I didn’t know when or how exactly it would happen, the kiss, but I knew it would.

We texted through the day, and I let you know when I was close to getting off of work. I had to go home and get ready for our date; I wore capri jeans, and a black floral blouse with cut off sleeves that was almost see-through (not quite), but very classy and simple, and blue and white Keds. I didn’t wear a drop of makeup other than lip gloss, but with my sun kissed skin and slightly rosy cheeks, I didn’t need it. I felt beautiful and safe in your presence, and I loved that I didn’t feel the need to be so fussy over my attire. I had never been more attracted to anyone in my entire life, yet I felt more comfortable and at ease than I believed attainable.

We met later in the evening, and had decided to go to the same restaurant where we had our first date. This time we sat at the bar, and the atmosphere felt totally different. The bartender was very pleasant, she took our order, and your food happened to arrive first. I told you to go ahead and eat, and you said you would wait for me. I knew you were starving, so I insisted that you eat, and you agreed. Before you began, you asked me if you could just eat the way you normally would if I weren’t around. Perplexed, and intrigued, I told you to go right ahead…I loved that you seemed worried about what I thought of your eating habits (even telling me you may not talk to me for five minutes, Ha!), and I was excited to see how you really ate..especially with you being such a big and muscular man. Immediately I knew I had made the right choice because I loved watching you eat. You had no hesitations and were so passionate about your food. That spoke more about you than you were perhaps aware. My dinner came, but I almost didn’t care because of the enjoyment provided from observing you devour yours. After, I had coffee and you paid the bill. I had convinced you to go on a walk with me, and with the night falling upon us we needed to get moving.

We pulled into the parking lot of my favorite trail. I had spent many an afternoon running and hiking this trail, and I was thrilled to share it with you. Strangely enough, I had not a single reservation about being on a long path with you at night, and I now understand why. …My soul already knew yours… We walked into the night, talking and laughing and forgetting time and the world existed. After about three quarters of a mile, we came to a little deck with a bench, where you could look over at the trees and the stream, and see all the stars that were brightly shining that night. It was a sight to behold. I felt like a little girl, so excited I was sharing this special place with you, and so enamored by the idea of kissing you or being held by you. The stars in my eyes may have been brighter than those in the sky.

As we looked into the night, and talked about silly nothings, laughing as if we had know one another our whole lives…I wondered when the moment would come…I remember realizing how much you already meant to me, and wanting so badly to be closer to you. A moment of silence came, and we both looked to the sky, in different directions. You suddenly exclaimed you had seen a shooting star, and I turned to look, asking if you made a wish. You told me you had, and I insisted you tell me what it was. “But if I tell you it won’t come true.”, you said. ” How do you know that?”, I responded, knowing somehow you had wished for the same thing I was thinking…. After a few seconds of you thinking about it, you told me you had wished for us to kiss, but you were standing so far away. “Well you have to come closer.”, I coyly told you. “How do I know you won’t turn me down again?” you asked, and I told you that you’d just have to find out. I guess it was worth the risk, because you walked up to me, and leaned down to passionately kiss me, with such a fire, that what lasted for only seconds seemed like hours. I was taken aback, and your hunger almost knocked the air out of me, in the best way. A few moments passed, heat filling the air, and I moved away from you to sit on the railing of the deck, with my legs hanging off…beckoning you with my body language to follow. You did, and I shyly informed you that it was a little aggressive, our first kiss. After some time, you moved in again, yet this time met my lips with the sweetest fervor, not too passionate, but slow and soft and gentle. My insides began to quiver, this time I saw the shooting stars…every notion I had about you being someone special was given validation in that moment, with that kiss. I was completely moonstruck and breathless; my body felt things I didn’t know you could feel, in places I didn’t know felt pleasure. It was the most beautiful silence, and I loved falling into you. After we took a second to breathe, we just wrapped our arms around each other in the warmest embrace, for so long it felt like time stood still. I asked you how you knew to kiss me like that the second time, and you made me burst out laughing with, “I just needed to reassess the situation.” I was quickly discovering your effortless ability to bring me endless amounts of joy, and that night, I knew I would keep you. 

We began to walk back down the trail. You made a joke about seeing some sort of ghost in the night, and since I’m afraid of everything, I became nervous and insisted on holding your hand the whole walk back, as you cunningly planned, of course. I walked very close to you, grasping you arm and breathing in your smell…feeling very calm and content in just the closeness of our proximity.

I replayed our kiss in my mind over and over and over again, and still do from time to time. You have all the hold in the world over me, but in a way that isn’t confining or threatening. You are simply the one whom my soul loves completely, and I knew that…long before that magical night of our first kiss.

I Found Shelter In You

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We sat in front of a fountain, the excitement in the air was so thick you could taste it. You talked of music and artists while I held onto your every sentence, taking in as much of you as I could get. I pondered our different tastes…but you kept me mesmerized and wanting more. Your crystal blue eyes, so deep I could swim in them, and your perfect yet genuine smile…so alluring, I held onto your words like a life jacket, needing them to stay afloat and not drown in your intoxicating intensity. With the sun slowly disappearing into the night, it was the perfect moment for a stroll, and I wanted to go to a local restaurant a few blocks away, so we were off.

As we walked and you entertained me, as if on cue, the sky suddenly began to cry…pouring on us with such immediate force we had to run for cover. I remember laughing like a child, as we found an awning to huddle under, wondering what we were to do next. We looked to each other and decided together to run from one to the next, in search of greater shelter. I hadn’t known you long, but in these moments I found myself so comfortable and filled with adventure…in a situation that would normally prove exasperating. Instead it was exhilarating and liberating, and I found you more and more attractive by the second. Running from awning to awning, up a hill in the downpour, we noticed a car garage and swiftly resolved to stop there to collect ourselves. We sprinted and made it to the garage, wringing our clothes and attempting to tame our wet hair. Abruptly, our eyes met, and I swear volts of electricity shot through us. I pictured you storming toward me and grabbing me for the most passionate kiss of my life…but we merely stared for what seemed like hours, until we broke contact and continued to dry off what we could. Words were barely spoken. I was so stirred by you and the moment I felt like it wasn’t real. How could a man I barely knew affect me and awaken me at such a stimulating and steamy pace, with such innocence? You had my attention completely, with no intention of losing it.

As lightning is a brilliant yet fleeting phenomenon, so was our moment, and we decided to stick to our plan of visiting the restaurant, since it was closer than our cars. I used my phone’s GPS, and we headed back out into the rain. My phone kept malfunctioning from the raindrops, and was leading us in circles. I could feel the frustration building, so I caught the attention of a gentleman walking and asked where the restaurant was. He pointed us in the right direction, and since we were very close, we continued on. Finally we made it and rushed inside, out of the weather, dripping everywhere and hoping to be welcomed. We were, graciously, though you were so shy and worried about our appearance. I told you it didn’t matter, and that we shouldn’t care what people think. We sat at a table drinking water while I ordered a small salad. The entire restaurant was staring at us, and to this day I believe it was due to our chemistry and not just our sopping clothes. Our conversation was small, but on the inside I was doing cartwheels after our rainy escapade. I finished my salad and you grabbed the bill, and as we got ready to leave, a waitress asked what had happened to us. I told her how we were caught unexpectedly in the rain…and then I saw someone I knew who, overhearing the exchange, kindly offered to loan us an umbrella for our inevitable, and dreaded-until-that-very-moment, return walk. It was the owner’s, and we promised to bring it back.

Emerging back into the night, you opened the umbrella for us, and handed it to me to carry, then astonishingly, you wrapped your arm around my waist. I walked as perfectly as I could, not wanting to be freed from your grasp. I felt so warm and safe, even being drenched to the bone, but your arms were and still are so protective. I remember thinking that it was the most romantic and unsurpassable date I’d ever experienced, and jokingly wondered if I was living in a movie. I still wonder that sometimes…you’re so amazing…and you take my breath away daily.

And for the record, I’ll never return that umbrella. ©

I Surrender To You

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You walked into my life, and I’m forever changed

Enchanted by your sacred eyes,

Trembling from your tender touch,

How do you speak comfort to my deepest fears,

Without saying a word?

You give me everything I’d ever want

Melting away my reservations,

Like an ice cube in mid July

I feel as though I can stand before you,

Completely naked and unafraid;

Knowing you’ll protect and cherish my love

The intimacy we share is unmatched,

A blazing fire that could never burn out

And you hold the keys

To all of me […]

I pray you’ll always keep them near your heart ©

A Promise To You

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Whenever I think of the man I’ve watched you become
I feel overwhelmed with admiration and pride
You have given me the strength to love you completely
And from you I never feel I should hide
You touch every part of my soul with your love
Letting me know I’ll always belong by your side
You’ve become such an important part of my life
I can’t imagine never having met you that day
I promise to appreciate you with all that I have
And I will follow you in every way
I’ll never make you feel left behind or alone
In my heart you will always be home
I hope that you know I’ll never go anywhere
With all the love to you that I have shown
When I lay down next to you or away from you at night
There are words that I will forever say
Corey I’ll serve you, respect you, honor and cherish you,
Loving you with everything I have everyday
It’s difficult being so far from you now
While I know it’s in God’s plan somehow
The thought that keeps me going is simple and sweet
I’ll remember until it is time […]
One day I know we won’t have to say goodbye
Only snuggles and sweet kisses goodnight ©

No Matter Where You Are

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When you hold my hand you hold my heart

I hope that you’ll always handle it with care

Somehow I believe you will

There’s something in the look you give me […]

When your lips say nothing

That tells me you’ll always cherish it

Sometimes I close my eyes when I look at you

Because I know they say everything I’m feeling

And it’s almost too much to handle […]

Saying goodbye hurts my heart

But I keep you with me always

So that even when we’re apart

I can feel your arms around me

And that brings me nothing but smiles ©