Sunday, September 11, 2016

I remember 9/11.  I didn't personally know anyone who lost their lives as a result of it but the event changed my life nonetheless.

I had to acknowledge the evil in our world.  The evil that happened in other countries that I had read about in newspapers finally touched my life.  I mourned those that lose their lives because of terrorists.  Through my husband, I hear that first responders continue to die of cancer believed to be a result of carcinogens they were exposed to during the rescue.  I read the newspaper differently now. 

And I acknowledged my own mortality. 

I stopped accepting a life with regrets and I started living a life that took advantage of opportunities that were presented to me. 

I started doing more for others......

EX:  I started donating hair (in the name of friends and family who are associated with cancer), I made pet beds for shelters, with a group of friends I started making quilts for disaster victims and those that need comfort, and I started Angelgownsbyjacki

I took a few more of what I previously considered huge risks....

EX:  I took part in a long weekend trip to the first Mardi Gras after Katrina, I moved across country, I bought my first longarm, I finally accepted the limitations of my health and retired from my job, I took a cruise with quilting people I didn't know well, I forced myself to say "no" when I thought I was being abused or taken advantage of by "friends"

and I started doing more of what made me happy.

EX:  I love doing Angelgownsbyjacki, I am seeing more of my mom, I am spending more time sewing/quilting, I am doing the traveling I always wanted to do (Hawaii, NYC, Jamaica, Bahama, San Diego, etc) , I bought my "I always wanted one of those" car,  I joined a quilt guild, I upgraded to a bigger and better longarm

With these changes, I note that I have become less tolerant....  of takers... of abusers....  of those that that suck my happiness.  I haven't decided if that is a bad thing.  I am happy to help or lend a hand but I will not do it for them.  Each of us needs to make our own happiness and within our skills, we all have something to offer the world that will make us happy.  I have found some of mine.

At the end of the day, I know I am blessed.  I thank God for who I am and what I am.  I also know I can't change the entire world or eradicate the evil that is in it, so I am making me and my little part of the world a bit better.   That's all any of us can do.

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