Dear Me:

Dear Me,

You’ll be older one day. I’m writing from the future and you’re doing okay. Hold onto what you’ve got. Things are gonna change, but change is better than you thought.

Oh, and don’t keep people in your life who treat you like crap. And don’t lose sleep over them either. Never give up on the good that rests inside of you, and don’t believe the non-believers.

When life’s getting serious, just don’t take it so serious.

Your heart will mend.


…because love wins.


When it all looks different than it should.

Humans have a way of messing things up. Stick with me here.

I’m not saying that we’re all supposed to be perfect, or that we need to expect other people to be perfect, but I will say that when things tend to get really, really good, you’ll find people in one of two camps running there:

  1. The best hearts of gold.
  2. The egos that play the world like a violin.

I’m not aiming to be jaded here, but just want you to know that if you’ve loved something or someone with all your heart and someone else’s ego warped it all and took away the sparkle, you’re not alone.

They’ll be better days in the future and people will see the truth in the end. They always do. And, it’s time to be with better people. Not just people who want to make themselves look better. God only knows.

…because love wins.

Haven’t Seen It Yet

Have you been praying, and you still have no answer?
Have you been pouring out your heart for so many years?

Have you been hoping that things that would have changed by now?
Have you cried all the faith you have through so many tears?

Don’t forget the things that He has done before, and remember that He can do it all once more. It’s like the brightest sunrise waiting on the other side of the darkest night. Don’t ever lose hope; hold on. And believe that maybe you just haven’t seen it yet.

You’re closer than you think you are…only moments from the break of dawn. All his promises are up ahead. Maybe you just haven’t seen it yet.

…because love wins.

“I feel bad.”

It’s late and I should be sleeping, but there are just moments in life that ask to be written about.

Tonight was a Brighter Tomorrows night. Those who know me know this is my favorite night of life, every single time it happens. Those who don’t know me now know that it’s my favorite. Moving on.

We had 37 kids RSVP. That’s amazing to me. I don’t want kids to have cancer, but if they do have cancer, I do want them to come to Brighter Tomorrows to play games with us, to laugh with us, and to have summer camp with us once every month.

One conversation (among the many that are seriously the most inspirational things in life) tonight struck me and just keeps playing over and over again in my head. That’s why I am writing and not sleeping.

There is a 7 year old boy with Ewing’s Sarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer. I know most of his story because I’ve read it, met his family, talked with others who know him. But he doesn’t know that. He just thinks I know him for him. So we’re making some crafts and I mention that he still has his port accessed (most of the time kids don’t leave with a line in if they are just going for chemo) and I ask him why that is. He tells me that it’s for radiation and goes on to explain the burns that he has from it.

He rolls down the edge of his comfy pants, and I see the red line where that burn starts. I ask him casually if it hurts (because to him, cancer is casual and a part of life…I remember) and he says “Nope, not at all.” I’m sure at some points it does because his skin is all a deep, deep red and has a rough look to it, but he gave me the right now answer which is technically what I asked for. (Kids are amazing and I love them.) Then I go on to explain to him that I had cancer as well. I explain my leg and why I didn’t need any radiation and why he does but how we are similar. And then he listens and he and his brother start asking questions.

“Do you have a scar?”
“Yes, one here and here and here.”
“How did they hook it back on?”
“With a plate and screws.”
“So you have metal on you?”
“Well, sort of. Technically I have metal inย me.”
“Does that hurt?”
“Nope, not at all, and it keeps my leg on there safely.”

We giggle.

He persists…

“Does it hurt to wear your leg?”
“Nope, it’s made just for me.”
“So your foot is just in there like that, huh?”
“Yes, just like you’re doing it!”
“Wait, so you lost your hair!?”
“I sure did.”

He stops.

“I feel so bad,” he says.

I tell him not to. He tells me he feels bad for me. I tell him I’m okay and everything is good and life is great. He insists that he feels bad for me.

Life is about perspective, my friends. Look without yourself.

…because love wins.

Every day is wedding day.

Today, I want to make mention of these people – who have stood by us in great times, bizarre times, and hard times. Who make us laugh, bring purpose to our lives, and who we could not be ourselves without. These are words for them:

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”

-Elizabeth Kubler Ros

…because love wins.

An Open Letter to America on Veterans Day 2016

Dear America,

I don’t know what it’s like to be away from my family for days, months, and years. I’ve never been through basic training and I’ve never carried a ruck sack – not even a cute one that I could buy at L.L. Bean. I’ve never slept in a trench – in fact, I’ve hardly ever slept in anywhere but a bed. I’ve never had to run through wilderness, face chemical warfare, and I’ve never had to carry a bleeding friend of mine hoping they would survive.

Because I’m American.

I don’t know what it’s like to bury a son, a daughter, or a father or mother because they died in the line of battle. I don’t know what it’s like in Iraq, or Iran, or Mexico, or Canada for that matter. And I don’t know what every day terrorism is like. I’ve never driven a Hummer – and certainly not one of military grade. I’ve never eaten meals from a bag wondering if it’s my last.

Because I’m American.

I have rights – that were fought for. That are fought for – every single day by people who are more brave than I can even begin to imagine being. I stand when the national anthem plays, and I cry when standing in front of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. I don’t let the flag touch the ground, and I fly it at half staff when people are fallen, hurt, or in oppression. I have respect for this country and its beautiful people.

Because I’m American.

I vote. I vote for the economy. For social rights. I vote for who I am given the choice to vote for, because of what the majority of this country says it needs. I am united with my fellow citizens. I will not move, and I will not ransack a city. I will be thankful that I was able to vote, that I have food on my table, and that I don’t have to carry a machine gun at night to feel safe. I am thankful for our system of democracy – electoral college and all.

Because I’m American.

I am educated. Because I am in a country where not everyone is just like me. I am free to walk down the street and express what makes me unhappy, and sometimes I am heard. Sometimes I’m not. But I am able to speak, and that’s something. I pray. Because this country protects my right to do so. And I pray for this country. I am an important part of the fabric of this time of life and the future.

Because I’m American.

I will not lessen or ignore the pain that so many feel today because of an election. But I will speak hope because that’s what our veterans give us. There is an ebb and a flow to countries. There is an ebb and a flow to our dreams, what we think the future is, and what we make of the future. But it’s not up to one person. One person does not MAKE America. We live with a government in checks and balances, and ruled by One greater than who we elect. Therefore I will stand strong today. I will smile at my fellow citizen – listen to them, and create peaceful and productive ways to give us all America. I will learn from people’s pain, and I will change what I am able to change. I will change my insight. I will change my heart. I will choose to speak good when there appears to be nothing but bad.

I will not decide that someone is less of a person because of who they voted for. I won’t think that the leaders, elected or not, are less people than we all are. I will not sit on a computer and argue with people who are hard for me to see as people behind facebook comments. I will talk with them so that we can all remember that we are American – that we all are people. We are the people.

I will hope, as it has for hundreds of years, that America will always prevail. That we all remember that men are created equal – even presidents. I will hope that you will still be my fellow American even if you voted differently than I did. I will give a chance to the American people to surprise me in the way they respond in pain. I will hope, that America remembers that veterans fought to make this the land of the brave and the home of the free. And I will make my voice heard by loving my neighbor.

Because I’m American.

…because love wins.