All We Have

The photographers were here for almost five hours yesterday. Hours I spent sitting in this chair holding both Abi and Charlie. Because they REALLY wanted to go into the kitchen and run through the many cables and cords. 

So I sat with one hand keeping them from jumping down, and with the other I worked online, read and passed the time. I never went in there. I stayed out of their way completely. 

And then I read about Michelle's dying. I knew it was coming. But still it twists your heart. Freezes you in disbelief.

As bloggers, we mostly know one another through blog posts and emails. Yet there is a connection that is strong and vital and gathers us all together into a community. 

Otherwise, we might never have crossed paths. 

I love this thing called blogging. It has allowed me to meet people from all over the world through my computer. Just because we may never come face to face does not lessen our deep feelings of kinship. 

I am in a reflective mood today. One where I sit and stare out the window at the bare branches across the way. I go back in time and remember why I started to blog, though it was really begun on a whim. I was at a crossroads. I needed to lay down a stone at a certain juncture that said: "I was here."

It was a much needed way to sort my thoughts, and it became a way of communicating with all of you. 

I feel a sense of belonging in this diverse place where we share our home and lives and hopes and dreams. It is rooted in one's nature, this needing a place to belong. 

Writing has always been therapeutic for me. And, though I lost all my blog posts last July, still I feel they are somehow bound together in one place. Years of words. Never to be retrieved. But they said: "I was here."

Our experiences mold us into the women that we are. Every painful loss stitches a wound that becomes a scar within our souls. 

We have mettle, a word you don't hear much anymore. We become strong as we trudge through life, soldiering on through many losses as time moves forward. Lost loved ones. Lost love.

I am reminded of one of my favorite poems by Robert Frost, "Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening." I have always love this last stanza that is filled with such meaning for me.

The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
- Robert Frost

Life is a journey. Whether long or short is a mystery. What we truly and undeniably have is this very moment in time. 

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  1. I needed those photos of trees and sun light. Today we have warmer temperatures and sun; sun makes such a difference. Days will be getting longer, one thing I like about winter is I put my flannels on around five and then settle in for the evening. It's my way of saying you don't have to do anything - no chores, "to do list" just enjoy listening to music, read, watch TV or just silence.

    So sad for Michelle and her family, way too young.

  2. I have always loved that verse by Robert Frost as well. I feel a connection with his words every since high school I have felt I held a kind of bond with Frost. Your blogs....I am happy to tell you several years ago I sat down and started from the very beginning and have read all your blogs! Im so glad I did that. I knew we held a bond just like Frost and I do.
    Have a good day. Im so glad snow is gone and sun is out. Glad thigs went well yesterday. Still praying for Michele's family. Take care my friend!!

  3. Hi Brenda. Just a thoughtful heartfelt post today. I love our blogging community too although it's not like the early days, is it? I do know life is short. Just came back from the funeral of a friend, she was 60. A year ago we never would have thought of her passing away. We must live our life to the fullest and have our hearts right with Jesus. We just never know. I just kept hoping Michelle's meds would help her to kick that ole cancer.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  4. Very beautifully written Brenda. I was so sad to hear of Michelle's passing too.

  5. I truly love your exquisite words and beautiful images. Thank you for sharing your inspirational thoughts with us. You have reminded me to be present in each and every moment.

    My deepest sympathy on the loss of your friend...

  6. I love the blogging community, too. Thank you for such a beautiful, heartfelt post.

  7. It's funny you mention that RF poem. When I was in high school - growing up in a summer vacation area winters were long and difficult and dark and boring on that north coast. And it was during the Blizzard of 78 my senior year we were stuck for over a month of no school due to the weather...............and I wrote piano music to that very poem. I played it the other day and remembered when/how/why I wrote that music............and now you mention it.

    Yes, we are all connected somehow in more mysterious ways than our minds are meant to quite understand. So I just smile and nod and say to myself "Ah, of course," and go on my merry way, knowing one day All Shall Be Revealed. : - )

    Stay warm. Hugs.

  8. And congrats on the photo team, that's just awesome and can't wait to see it all in print!

  9. Brenda, thank you for such a beautiful post and beautiful pictures. I did not know Michelle, but I viewed her blog after seeing your post. She was a wonderful person. We never know when we are going to leave this earth. What a reminder to live in the present and savour each and every moment. Congrats on the photo team~! I love that Robert Frost poem and have held it in my heart for many a year.
    The blogging community is a wonderful community that I am so thankful to be a part of.
    Thank you again my friend for the inspiration. Soon after the plants have had their winter nap, the flowers will be blooming and nature will wake up and reach for the sky ~ I dream about this daily with the wind whipping and the snow blowing ~

  10. Life is a journey i have been so blessed by the friends like you I have met blogging. i have lost some blog friends also and it is so sad, even though we have never met in person, we have met! Wishing you a good weekend!


  11. Beautifully written, Brenda! Great reminder.

  12. I visited Michelle's blog a few times in the past, so I was aware of her cancer struggle. So sorry she passed away. The Robert Frost poem is one of my favorites as well. Just a few beautiful lines can offer so much insight. Thanks for sharing it.

  13. You are right about the gifts that blogging can create. I too so appreciate the new friendships that I have made in my two years. Bloggers who have similar interests, feeling and frustrations. We all speak the same lingo. My heart broke when I heard the news about Michelle. Thinking about her children and family that she will leave behind.

  14. I read that she had passed when I first signed on. I feel terrible for her family, but I am sad for the blogging world, too. We are connected, and last night after going to the wedding of a friend's daughter, a friend I met through blogging, I realized how wonderful this activity is. It connects people in a special way and makes us sisters. That may sound corny, but it is true. And I am glad I have gotten to know you, Brenda. You are a special lady, and I hope you know how much we appreciate your talents and love your kindheartedness.



  15. I love reading blogs. Please let us know when your magazine will be out. How exciting. Have a great Sunday.

  16. I visited Michele's post once a year ago or so and thought to myself that a young mother shouldn't be suffering from cancer. I feel sorrow for her family at her passing. You're right, Brenda. Even though many of us may never meet, our blogs have provided another way to connect.

  17. You really do feel you come to know people through their blogs. It's one reason I prefer blogs where the blogger feels it's ok to share about their life, even when it's not going well.
    No one has a perfect life and it helps us all relate to one another when the ups and downs are shared. I've thought of Michelle every day for the last year. I will miss her blog very much. Her sweet family has such a hard time to go through. My prayers are for some comfort for them.

  18. Hi Brenda...I love your blog! Have you tried the Wayback Machine website to locate some of your lost posts? It is an archive site with millions of saved websites...I found some of your old pages there.

  19. I feel the same way about blogging as you do Brenda. Even though we haven't met each other I always imagine meeting my favorite bloggers some day. I think of several as my true friends. Of course, you are one, as you know. You were one of the very first blogs I followed. Your cozy home and words and pictures just touched my heart. Some blogs I don't spend much time on and may just look at the pictures, others I can't wait to read what they have written.
    I didn't know Michelle. I did go to her blog and read a few posts. Her last one broke my heart when she said, "t's over." She knew it was and that's sad when all hope is gone. I know she tried it all. My children were young when I had cancer. It really was so hard thinking about what they would do without me. I think that's when my husband really stepped up as a dad. He took a more active role and made decisions that I couldn't make at the time. Even the littlest decision was difficult for me. I am hoping that during her time of illness prepared her husband to take on another role. The sadness is hard for us to imagine. I hope and pray that they will be adjust and be happy in the future. (((((HUGS))))

  20. I should proof read......I meant "It's "

  21. Love, love that stanza that I discover as a teenager. It still triggers so many things in me!

  22. I feel very much the way you do, Brenda. I think we all grabbed something from this post. I feel so badly about Michelle...her husband and family. She really fought the good fight (I went back and read some of her blog). I rest knowing she is at peace and pain free.

    I'm looking forward to seeing your kitchen in the magazine! Yay! What issue will it be in?


  23. Yes, life truly is a journey and you summed it up beautifully. When I lost my good friend Teri to cancer, it was amazing the lifes she touched. She delivered both my girls and made such an impact into the world. Hugs to you. Beauty surrounds you. Di@Cottage-Wishes

  24. Very well said, Brenda. We do have a wonderful supportive community. xo Laura


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