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February 14th❀

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(Diane July 14th 1956 – February 14th, 2015)

I have never been one of those people who think Valentine’s day is too dumb to celebrate because it’s extra cheesy or because love should be celebrated everyday! Umm…duhhh! lol Of course love is something to be cherished each & every day but it’s not something we’re going to celebrate with gifts, restuarant reservations, surprises and all each & everyday, right?! That may be exhausting\taxing physically and\or financially. So what’s wrong with choosing one day to celebrate love, platonic or romantic, with gifts and all? Also, maybe it’s just a scam the candy companies & greeting card businesses pull just to get our money. Oh well, it can still be fun! I have also never been one of those girls who sit around dreading the holiday or crying because I’m single. I don’t care if I’m single and to me Valentine’s Day is about all kinds of love, not just romantic. And there’s always next year! πŸ˜‰

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But I have also never been the biggest fan of v-day. I love holidays like Halloween & Christmas and Valentine’s day to me just always seemed bland next to those ones. My mom, sister, & me always bought each other gifts for the day for as long as I can remember. And my friends & me in school would buy each other roses & stuffed teddy bears & cute things like that. But I never really got completely into the holiday the way some do.

On February 14th, 2015 I lost my coworker who I was very close with, unexpectedly to a heart attack. She died at work that day. Just collapsed and died instantly. I wasn’t there that day. I took off work to go on a meditation retreat. I wasn’t there but I still can’t get the image out of my head. Collapsing & dying on the floor.

Not only did Diane die that day, Valentine’s day was one of her favorite holidays. She loved it! ❀

Losing Diane is one of the worst things I ever experienced in this life. It’s the greatest trauma of this life of mine. Even two years later I have occasions I feel as if I’m being suffocated, submerged under water, like I have to struggle just to breathe. It’s not always this bad. Often my grief is now calmer, quiet, still deeply painful, but easier to bear. But it flares up and reverts back to the raw grief that I can hardly bear. It throbs throughout my whole being like an abcessed tooth but worse. It’s so heavy and I sometimes find it hard to keep standing. Losing Diane feels like losing a limb; like part of my body ripped off. If I believed in a soul I would feel as if my soul is disfigured, slashed, burned, traumatic amputation of part of it. There have been so many occasions I felt if my pain were physical I would believe I was dying and need emergency medical attention. The way it throbs and cuts, there’s just no words.Β 

The love Diane has always shown to me is very similar to that of a mother’s love. Diane has three adult sons and grandchildren & great grandchildren, all who she was very close with. When she died she was 58 years old & I was 28 years old. She talked about me and bragged about me like I was her own daughter. Sometimes she would embarass me like a mom can embarass her children in public. Lol She would make me lunch some days and bring it to me and always gave me money even though she hardly had money herself and I would tell her not to. She would yell at me & scold me if she thought I was doing something not good for myself. She was always checking up on me. We had so much fun laughing and talking together day after day, year after year for almost a decade until we lost her.

My pain is mostly for her because she is no longer here and those of us shattered can move forward & find some sense of healing. Diane can never eat her favorite food, smile again, work again, experience happiness, sadness, love…but we can. The second main thing is my pain is for her children and family\friends outside of work who knew her better than I did. I knew her very well but of course not as well as her own sons and while it’s so extremely difficult for me I know some aspects are likely more difficult for them. And last, my pain is for me. She was snatched out of my world so suddenly without warning. Β I used to feel as if I was going into a panic when I would think like this. My chest would tighten, my heart would race, my eyes would turn completely black but my years of practicing Buddhist meditation helped me with this before I would go into a fullblown panic.

Last year, February 14th was the first anniversary of my friend’s death. I had to work for ten hours straight with no break and wasn’t sure just how I would find the strength but somehow I did. I felt like we were losing Diane all over again. I felt the life drain right out of me. I was in a fog like when it happened a year before. I was pissed at the world. I was snippy with everyone. They got snippy back and none of us were in a good mood. This wasn’t just the actual day but the days leading up to the date.

I had no money and my mom suggested after work we try to find a store to buy an inexpensive gift for each other. I just did not have it in me. I couldn’t find any desire to do anything that had to do with Valentine’s day. It seemed so cruel that my poor Diane had to lose her life like this on a day she loved and now can never celebrate again ever. I would have died for Diane. πŸ’”β€ If I knew her heart was going to stop I would have given her my own if it were possible.

Her son also said he could just never celebrate Valentine’s day again & hoped his future girlfriend would understand. But Diane’s other son, who never celebrated Valentine’s day, said he will now begin celebrating and suggested all who love her keep on celebrating or begin celebrating her holiday to honor her & help us cope with this tragic loss of ours. What a wonderful idea! A day that we can see as so terrible, let’s turn it around and make it wonderful. It’s the day Diane lost her life. But it’s not only that. It’s also a day full of hope & possibility for those of us still alive. A day of LOVE not just grief. Grief is like a form of love. But there’s other forms of love to focus on. Diane’s son found the strength to celebrate a year after his mom’s death but I still couldn’t muster it. I just tuned it all out in my head.

This year though, I am much stronger than I was last year. I am not completely recovered. It’s not a loss I will “get over.” But I am strong and this year I choose LOVE. Last year I couldn’t seem to find the strength & wisdom I have discovered since then and now know.

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This year I am going to celebrate Valentine’s day to honor my sweet Diane. I can still feel something inside my chest feeling like it’s physically breaking. Some moments I still feel as if I will physically collapse in my grief. Sometimes I still lay in bed late at night, my whole body wracked in grief & still in immense shock, I still have these overwhelming urges to scream her name, on rare occasions I am filled with fury and want to scream, but I have love, gratitude, sweet memories, happiness, joy, laughter, smiles, strength….more than anger & pain. Diane never had to come into my world and be my friend but our lives did cross and for that I am extremely happy & thankful.

Something about Diane: she was extremely compassionate. So loving. She was assertive, sarcastic, loud, mouthy, always cursing, but loving.Β She loved not only her own friends & family but strangers as well. She hardly had money & borrowed money a lot and if she found someone else who needed money she gave the money to that person. She borrowed money and I would tell her not to pay me back, that it’s ok but she insisted and always paid me back even though it was a struggle for her. She used to give me one dollar bills & five dollar bills for no reason just because she knew how little money I had myself. And whenever she paid me back the money she borrowed, she would pay me back one dollar here & there until it was all paid up. I always thought it was so cute & funny. Diane told me once that one of her worst fears in life was that I would lose my quiet, sweet, gentle way if I ever let the bitterness or problems of others get to me. She told me to always stay loving and gentle even with those who are difficult to deal with and in situations that are a struggle for me. She told me to never change and I never will.

So how will I celebrate this year? I want to help others. Diane is dead and there’s nothing I can do about it. My chest aches to write it but it’s the truth. Like Diane, I love people and love to help. And I know she would absolutely love what I’m going to do. She’ll never know it but that’s not the point. She won’t feel the love but that’s not the purpose. My purpose is to help & inspire others. And I will carry her love with me always. Even though I lost Diane and experience a tremendous sense of loss and agony, I have never once felt that I lost her love. She loved me. She told me so and showed me everyday. What I will do is buy those small Valentine’s Day cards that come in packs of like ten or twenty or whatever, like the ones I would give to all my friends when I was a little girl, and write love messages in them, not romantic love messages but universal ones that can apply to everyone. Inspiring quotes, words of encouragement, positive messages, comforting messages….and leave them in random places for random people to find. This is what I planned to do and is good enough but I was trying to think of something I can do to help others in a more practical way as well. Then I remembered Diane & her dollars.

The dollar tips she would give servers, the dollars she would give me on random occasions just because, the individual dollars she would pay me back after borrowing thirty dollars, the dollars she would leave around for me at work, the dollars she would give to people who were struggling….Diane and those dollars! Lol I smile so much thinking of it. And I instantly knew what I have to do. Put a dollar in each little love note I slip into all those random places!

This isn’t to brag about the good I will do. My pain is so great I wouldn’t brag anyway but in my grief I especially can’t even care about getting credit. It makes almost everything seem so trivial. This is to inspire others to turn your love around and do something for the goodness of others. It doesn’t have to be this. This is just my story. But it can be this if you want! I would love for others to be inspired & do this, even if it’s just one card & one dollar! Imagine how happy my sweet Diane would be if she could know that her life & death inspires this kindness. If you knew Diane you would love her! I’m sure of it. She was the kind of person everyone loves. ❀

Or you can put your own spin on this or do something completely different to honor someone or just to do good. I met one sweet girl who lost her mom in February to cancer and a year later on the anniversary, just like Diane’s son, she somehow found the strength to honor her mama. She got all her beautiful long blonde hair cut off and donated it to cancer survivors who lost their hair to chemo treatment. What a beautiful soul. What can you do to honor someone you love so deeply and lost so painfully? Or just to do good for no specific reason other than wanting to make the world a bit more beautiful?!πŸ˜πŸ˜€β€ Please let me know in the comments if you want or write a post of your own! And remember it’s totally not about bragging or receiving credit but bringing consolation, hope, & inspiration to others while sharing our own stories. ❀

Please remember the anniversary of the death of the one you love so much isn’t just a messed up, tragic, terrible day; it’s a day you are still alive and you can make that day anything you want to make it. Maybe not right away and it may take practice and strength you never could have possibly imagined you can posses but it’s a day like any other, a day of hope, love, chances, possibilities. It’s up to us to make it beautiful. The beautiful may never completely obliterate the ugly but it can certainly come into the mix and make it even just a little bit better.

This is for any loss, human or animal. Pet loss is just as bad and I understand it well. I have loved & lost pets as long as I have been alive and find the death of a human a bit more traumatic but both are devastating. My grief for Diane isn’t healing as well as it could be but so much better than it was. I’m wishing you much love, light, healing, always. I hope you will be inspired to do something and go on to inspire others! ~Hugs & love~ I love you! πŸ˜πŸ˜€β€

xoxo KimΒ 

Free Hugs for all! :-D <3

This is something I posted on Facebook & Instagram today and here it is here on WordPress as well!

“What’s broken can be mended. What hurts can be healed. And no matter how dark it gets the sun is going to rise again.” ❀

 ~Big bear hugs to everyone who wants any!~ ❀

 This is me in May 2015 but I give hugs any day of the year! πŸ˜€ ❀

 Also, thank you for the recent comments! I will respond soon! πŸ˜€

 xoxo Kim ❀

Closing TimeπŸ˜–πŸ˜€β€πŸ˜

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“Closing time
Time for you to go out to the places you will be from.
Closing time
This room won’t be open ’til your brothers or your sisters come.
So gather up your jackets, and move it to the exits
I hope you have found a friend.” ~ Semisonic ❀

I wrote this October 30th and tried to publish it then but was having some difficulties (technical\practical difficulties not emotional ones even though it is quite sad! )

I’m a sad, sad girl today! Saddest girl in the whole world! Ok, not really. lol I’m not usually this dramatic! But I’m happy and sad. Today is my last day as a server\cashier at the job i worked at for over ten years! I knew I would be so sad when i heard we may be going out of business but I’m more sad than i could have imagined I would be. Heartbreaking!! β€πŸ’” ❀ I’m actually in a state of grief almost like when someone dies but nowhere near that bad. I’m shocked and feel disbelief and a bit of numbness. I knew for over a year that my boss was trying to sell the place but it’s still kind of a shock to have a significant change like this. Β I can’t imagine not being here anymore after so long. And I worked so much in Spring & Summer,i felt like i lived here and practically ran the place myself when everyone was on vacation. I worked 10\11 hour shifts with no break days in a row. So many days I opened and closed the place myself. When I first began working here two of us worked each shift. That’s how it was for years. But one day one of the girls couldn’t come in so I worked myself even though it was super busy and my boss decided to have only one of us on each shift, after she saw I handled it well on my own, so she wouldn’t have to pay two of us. So mostly each shift only one worked unless we had to train a new employee. I love working with others but also love my own company. I Β came to love my shifts alone, especially on slow, cold, rainy or snowy days. When I wasn’t working I would read my books and drink hot chocolate or tea or coffee. I still saw my coworkers a lot.

I worked so much here, more than any of the others because they all have other jobs too and I don’t. Also, im the only one who would work 11 hours a day. Β I feel a great sense of loss but also like I’m not losing anything because the job and experience never had to be given to me in the first place. So i feel more that I gained than lost. It doesnt completely take away the sadness and grief but definitely helps it. I’m naturally more prone to seeing the positive and if i dont, i remind myself to focus on that.

I wasnt told until yesterday that I would lose my job! I heard people talking about it but my boss did not let me know and never said a word til yesterday that in two days I would be jobless! People are saying negative things about her for that but I can only see that for over ten years, she gave me a job and I am forever thankful.

Another thing that lessens the pain of this loss is, I loved every second of working here and never once took it for granted. People complained about the low pay but it’s better than no pay! And i loved the busy as well as slow days. Some rare occasions I definitely complained about something about work but even in the midst of that I felt gratitude for it all and felt more positive emotions for my job than unpleasant. I took so many pictures in here and shared stories and life lessons learned here, through the years. I have countless memories to always cherish. Even the things i disliked about my job I usually also loved more than disliked. For example, I often felt that I would prefer more regular hours like morning until late afternoon but i also loved the night shifts and not always having to wake up really early for work. Also, even sometimes when I felt overworked and exhausted, I also felt satisfied and productive working so much.

So my point is; there’s always pleasant and unpleasant and we can choose to focus more on what is good.

I also have come to learn that while it’s so great to have some big career helping people, it’s not the only way to help others. Even at a simple store job, (or no job) there are so many ways to touch lives for the better. I saw how grateful and touched people felt when I asked them if they want napkins or boxes to carry stuff or anything else to make things easier for them. Something as simple as that can show someone that we care to make something even just a little bit better or easier for the person. It helps in a practical way but also in a deeper way. People can feel the love we express even in the seemingly smallest ways. That’s the greatest lesson i learned. ❀

Even when I was depressed, grieving, or suffering a flareup of my chronic headache disorder, I made it a point to be friendly to customers even if I wasnt happy myself or in too much pain to think straight. And work almost always cheered me up! πŸ˜€

It was extremely rare for me to not feel like going into work and even on those occasions as soon as I got here, I felt happy to be here. So many days I was having so much fun I did not even realize it was time to leave. Some of my best days are here.

I havent been jobless since I was a nineteen year old college girl. It’s embarrassing. I dont judge people who choose not to or cannot work but i love to work and it feels strange and awkward not having a job. Having significantly less money is not going to be good but my worst issue is missing the place, the people, the experience. But all good things (and not good) must end! And I’m thankful for the experience in the first place.

I never planned to leave here unless I had to. I planned and still plan on having a more “real” job but I always wanted to still work here like maybe on the weekends or one day a week if my boss allowed it. Like I have said being a food server is a pleasant job that brings joy in ways other jobs dont. Even if they bring as much joy, it’s not the same.

But I also feel a sense of liberation. Whenever I applied for other jobs I would keep trying to work out how i can work here as well. I tried often to see how my schedules would be compatible. Also so many nights I wanted to do something, like go out but I couldn’t because I had to work at night. I missed quite a few things because of unusual hours. I still loved the hours but it also came with unfortunate things.

I loved when it was busy but I will love nights off that aren’t so demanding. And now I am completely free to look for another job. I have no restraints. For now, I’ll look for another store job since I have so much experience (over ten years!) then try to move onto a more “real” or “professional” (im not n never will be a professional but you get the picture, right?! πŸ˜€ ) job like maybe a technician in a hospital or health center or a position at a marketing company. I love marketing but do not want to start out with sales, knocking at people’s doors, which many marketing employers require! Also, I want to work with children with extra needs one day.Β 

And, now I can look more for a volunteer job as well! No job to hold me back! It’s hard finding a volunteer job at some places! They require all stuff like a paid job!

Here are some of my last pictures here:

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My friend who used to live next door and me used to call this stuff the Purple shit. It’s a pretty color though! It has a terrible afterscent. I couldn’t stand using it. If we were out of other cleaning stuff I had to use it. Yuck! I dreaded it! But now I’m going to miss it! Oh, purple shit, I’ll miss you! ❀

The cash register! I get angry at it sometimes for not functioning properly but I really will miss it! And seeing all the various kinds of money coming in n funny messages written on some of the bills. “My sweaty nuts touched this!” for example, is a message I saw years ago! lol

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I’m going to miss mopping here and cleaning the utensils. I’ll miss every crack in the floor and mark on the walls. I will miss the beauty of the shadows and reflections on the walls and floor and glass freezer tops at sundown. But i have lots of pictures! I will always miss & cherish the occasions when a beetle or ant or other kreepy krawlers would land on one of the counters or freezers or even on me! I have many pictures of those too! I’ll miss making myself chocolate milkshakes! We were allowed to eat\drink anything we wanted for free as long as it was our shift! πŸ˜β€πŸ˜€ And so much more I’ll miss and cherish forever.

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Usually when we think of missing something, we seem to think of people, food, “big” things but there’s so many little things we may overlook and miss that we may never realized we would cherish and miss.

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Years ago I broke one of these and I told my dad and he brought me one out of his work to take to mine. He works for a company that sells\fixes parts to things like machines and cars and stuff.Β 

The counterfeit detector pens. Sometimes we got to slacking with checking the money and brought in fake ones by accident. I have gotten angry phone calls unexpectedly about fake cash in the drawer! oopps! 😱

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Inventory! I loved writing lists and seeing my manager’s list of all the stuff we needed!

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I’ll even miss the notes I would sometimes find hanging up scolding us for something (not cleaning good, forgetting to stock something, leaving something out on the counter that should not have been left out…)

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And I will miss the people(and doggies!)! My coworkers, the customers, my boss, manager, and their family, having conversations with people about various things, helping people….I’ll miss it all but I’m very thankful for the work friendships I have found through the years. β€πŸ˜πŸ˜€

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I think this thing is at least twenty years old! See how the phone number doesn’t even have an area code in front. 😱 And that was still our phone number even after all these years. If you call it now, I won’t be there. 😦 Also, the place is called Scoops not just because it’s an ice cream store, even though that is a good name for an ice cream service, but because the original owner’s last name is Scoops. lol

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We still have most of the same stuff now. These prices are so low! Only $3.50 for a banana split! Now they’re $6.00! And just $1.50 for a small gelati?! Now they’re $4.50! πŸ˜€

And here is the last one of me at work:

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I shared this on Facebook with my experience n someone commented and wrote, simply, “sexy boobs.” lol I’m quite flattered and must say, I agree. But I just lost my job after ten years and that’s what someone says. It gave me a good giggle! πŸ˜πŸ˜€

I even got a couple hugs today! My friend, Chrissy at the bar my boss owns said she’ll miss me and hugged me goodbye! And my newer coworker came and hugged me goodbye and said she really liked working with me. aww β€πŸ˜πŸ˜€ I love how sad things often show us how much love is in the world. ❀

It’s raining tonight and thundering. It seems fitting for my last day ever. I always loved rainy nights at work. ❀ 

I tried to take pictures of every square inch of the place. Most of them arent pretty but they arent meant to be. Theyre just for me to always have. I can never forget this place and have so many habits ingrained into me that i picked up here. One, for example, is when someone is talking to me, even not at work, I often look to the right while talking because when a customer asks for a certain kind of ice cream before saying ok, I look to the freezer on my right to be sure we have it first even though there are other freezers, that one is closest to see and i carried the habit over into conversations outside work. And I reach for a refrigerator that isnt there. It hasnt been for years but once in a while I reach to open it to get milk. The habit is so ingrained. And once in a while I still reach for the dipwell that hasnt been in place for about nine or ten years. I dont need pictures to help me remember! But i love to have them!

This reminds me how very powerful habits we develop are and I’m inspired to maintain\develop positive ones.

It’s going to take some getting used to not being here now. The place is a part of me and always will be. There are always good things about each stage, age, phase of life we’re currently experiencing. Closing time reminds me to always appreciate where I am and what I have; I usually do anyway but reminders are great! And Im inspired to share with others and suggest we all cherish right now even if it seems like it’s not so great. Single or taken, jobless, dead-end job, stressful job, great job, stay at home mom or dad, new child or no child, in love or not, college student or graduate, wedding planning, just married, living at home with the family we grew up with, on our own… or whatever stage we are in now, let’s embrace it, cherish it, look for the goodness in it. Each season or stage of life has its struggles, challenges, blessings, beauty, heartache, positive aspects, difficulties, love, joy….and there’s a chance when it ends we’re going to miss it even if we never thought we could. There are less regrets and less sadness, more joy and beauty when we lose something or someone if we did not take it for granted while we had it. It’s easier to let go or move forward when we knew what we had while we had it. Let’s be mindful of the love & beauty here & now. Β There is nothing more painful than losing something or someone Β that we love but never stopped to appreciate while we had the chance. I’m so thankful I knew what a blessing my job was (and always will be) to me. I always knew. So saying goodbye is still sad but so much easier than it could have been.

The girls gave me a shot of strawberry tequilia to see me off. At first I refused because I don’t drink alcohol and am not attracted to it in any way but my boss owns the bar across the street and she and the others, her family, my coworkers who work at the bar\kitchen really wanted me to take a shot so I did after some pleading and pushing! They all drank one with me and toasted to me and the business. ❀

The flavor is good! It’s kind of like a strawberry milkshake but alcohol flavored. But I did not like the sedated feeling or “buzz” feeling it brought me. It was nothing terrible or that I couldn’t handle but it also wasn’t the most pleasing. However, I did like how when I swallowed it, the very instant it went down my throat, I felt it throughout my whole body; it traveled up to my head n down to my toes. It was very powerful. I was reminded of being alive and mindful of my existence and body. I’m thankful for the experience. ❀

I will be seeing them at the Christmas party next month! πŸ˜€πŸ˜β€

I got so many well wishes today! Just about every person i encountered today I told my sad news to and they were all so encouraging about it and told me better things are coming to me! I know it’s true! This is the end that will lead to a new beginning! β€πŸ˜πŸ˜€ And here are a few songs that resonate with me:

“Closing time
Open all the doors and let you out into the world
Closing time
Turn the lights up over every boy and every girl.
Closing time
One last call for alcohol so finish your whiskey or beer.
Closing time
You don’t have to go home but you can’t stay here.” (this song has always resonated with me in a deep way since I first heard it when I was very young. ❀ It gives me chills in a good way and tugs on my insides.)

Closing Time – semisonic – mobile

Closing Time – desktop

“You’re gonna miss this
You’re gonna want this back
You’re gonna wish these days hadn’t gone by so fast
These are some good times
So take a good look around
You may not know it now
But you’re gonna miss this”

You’re Gonna Miss This – Trace Adkins – mobile

You’re Gonna Miss This – desktop

“I’ve been walkin’ these streets so long
Singin’ the same old song
I know every crack in these dirty sidewalks of Broadway
Where hustle’s the name of the game
And nice guys get washed away like the snow and the rain
There’s been a load of compromisin’
On the road to my horizon
But I’m gonna be where the lights are shinin’ on me” ❀

Like a Rhinestone Cowboy – Glen Campbell – mobile

Like a Rhinestone Cowboy – desktop

I’m wishing you much love, light, and happness, always! ❀ ~hugs~

xoxo Kim

Beginnings. ❀

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β€œAuercliff is a house of secrets,” I continue, lowering my voice a little. β€œToo many secrets over time, all twisted together in knots. It’s too bloody old, is the problem. If I were queen of England, I’d decree that any house above one hundreds years in age should be knocked down so that its inhabitants can start again. In fact, I think I’d outlaw history entirely. All I’d keep would be literature and poetry.”

I’m reading a thrilling ghost story by Amy Cross! She’s one of my favorite authors! I don’t know where she comes up with this stuff! She writes mostly paranormal stuff i think. It’s all so fascinating! Her books though, are in some serious need of editing! She has no editor or her editor is a real slacker or something. But it never lessens my love for her writing! Hers are the books that keep me up reading late into the night until the sun comes up! Then i wake up a few hours later with bags under my eyes and dark circles and an aching body. lol But irresisible her stories are! ❀ 

This book is called “The Body at Auercliff” about a supposedly haunted mansion! I love ghost stories! I get all giddy! lol The excerpt above is out of this book. It’s said by a character named Verity. What a pretty name! It means truth.Β She is a little girl who is about to die but no one knows it yet. She’s going to contract influenza. That’s supposed to be how she dies but i don’t know if it really is yet. She if fourteen years old and says this shortly before she becomes ill. I find it inspiring that she sees destruction as a beginning to something better. A clean slate to rebuild something for the better.

I especially find this inspiring now because it can apply to my current situation. Recently I found out that very soon, as soon as the next week or two weeks, I may be out of a job! Sucky! lol Β The store is closing up. Actually, I don’t know how true this is. My boss is trying to sell it but she doesn’t really tell us much. There has been a few occasions throughout the last year that I came close to losing my job. It’s disappointing and not the best news but certainly not the worst news! It will feel bizzarre not working. I havent been without a job in over ten years. That’s probably true for most people at least in the U.S. We mostly all have jobs and it sucks to lose them. But along with my disappointment I feel inspired. This is an opportunity, a push, to begin something better. Through the years I have tried to find other jobs but not as hard as I could have. It wasn’t urgent since I did have this job. But now I’m inspired to look more seriously for another job, even if just another store job temporarily.

I do have some work experience other than at the store but not much so it’s hard to find a different kind of job. But not impossible! I don’t like some of the comments I received in person. They seem too somber for the occasion! Like, it’s my job I’m losing; not my life! gee whiz! lol It’s only a job! I’ll find another one. I live with my dad who works and my mom so I won’t be out on the street or anything. πŸ˜€

I will greatly miss it here at the store. I love every second of working here and got so much experience in various ways. I love the customers, the joy it brings, everything. I always said even if I got a “real” job I want to still work at least one day as a server at a store or restaurant because nothing can match that joy of bringing joy to others, the families, the kids, the doggies, sometimes! It’s a very happy job! (usually! of course there will always be the occasional person acting in a difficult manner! but that’s just the way it goes!)

Even if i never again have a job as a food server, I will always have the memories to cherish! Also, another kind of job can be just as pleasing, even more in some ways! One of the things I absolutely love about my job is the simplicity of it. It is joyous and fun having conversations with customers, telling people our different toppings and confections, seeing the joy on their faces, the way they take pictures and laugh when it’s better than they expected. But I hope my next job or at least one in the near future will be more challenging. I want to work on projects, expand my creativity, come up with new ideas, do teamwork…. I definitely want a job working closely with people. How thrilling! But I am ready to move on to bigger and better things! ❀

Now I just have to hope I find something available! πŸ˜€

If you are experiencing the end of something great like I am and finding it overwhelmingly sad or seeing it as unfortunate or negative, try instead to see it as transition into something new. Focus on the inspiration of a new beginning instead of the sorrow of an ending. If you’ll be out of work against your will, like me, how about while searching for a new job, also use all your free days to learn something new, develop new skills, find a new or rekindle an old fun activity, do volunteer work, study something on your own. I felt anxiety off and on and embarrassment that I’ll be not working but i won’t let that drag me down. I’m going to fill my days with beauty and joy like I always do but add even more to it. I often work long hours, weeks in a row. I rarely have two days in a row off work. And just after a couple days off, I miss it and cant wait to be back. So being out of work will be hard not just because of less money when I already have very little, but it will take some getting used to. But I’ll fill my hours that I would be working, with something worthwile and positive instead of sulking.

I feel that this experience is like an invitation to evolve. And i want to inspire someone else to do the same. This doesnt have to be a low place! πŸ˜€πŸ˜ I am more full of wonder than sorrow or disappointment, more thrills than anxiety, more inspiration than attachment.Β 

Destruction, endings, ruin, losses…are all opportunities to rebuild, to come back even stronger. ❀

“So gather up your jackets, move it to the exits,
I hope you have found a friend,
Closing time, every new beginning,
Comes from some other beginning’s end…” ❀

Closing Time – Semisonic – mobile

Closing Time – Semisonic -desktop

Much love & light, always! ❀

xoxo Kim

 

 

Survivor❀

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(suicide survivors)

“Risin’ up, straight to the top
Had the guts, got the glory
Went the distance, now I’m not gonna stop
Just a man and his will to survive”

Eye of the Tiger – Survivor – mobile

Eye of the Tiger – desktop

I met these beautiful souls Sunday morning! They were laughing because their big beautiful dog came running over to my dad and me. lol 😍❀ They lost someone close to them to suicide and they survived it! And they survive it each & every day and take their agony and use it for the good of others. πŸ’”β€ How heartbreaking but inspiring! ❀

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(this isn’t him & this isn’t my photo – i got it on the Afsp page! Isn’t s\he adorable!? There were so many adorable furkins there!! πŸ˜β€πŸ˜€ )

On Sunday morning I attended the Out of the Darkness walk for suicide prevention. The money that is donated goes to education and community programs to help save lives.

I have been told by a couple of people that paying money for these kinds of things is pointless, stupid, and a waste. I completely disagree because days, weeks, months, years of ongoing research and exploration can all add up to eventual breakthroughs, discoveries and enough skills, knowledge, and ideas to come up with a cure for something or to discover a way to make things better.Β 

When a cure or solution or important info. is found for something, I don’t think it was usually found in a day with no previous research, funding, education, developing of skills…it all adds up and the journey of exploration, experimenting, or searching itself is valuable. There can be smaller but still significant steps along the way. Also, these walks do not just help in a monetary way, they are so healing and inspiring just to see all those people who care to show up. Each person has been touched in some way personally or just deeply cares about the cause. And often, it’s already too late for the ones walking. Many of them already lost someone to whatever it is, suicide, cancer, asthma….but they want to walk to bring awareness to and show support for, and prevent it happening to others. During the suicide prevention walk, we all wear honor beads of various colors to show the way we have been impacted by suicide. Or to show that we just support prevention and awareness.Β 

I loved doing the walk. I always feared that a suicide prevention walk may be a trigger for me, especially now because I am just coming out of a severe depressive episode, a bad one, one of the worst ones I experienced and this thing has lasted longer than they have in a while.

But I gathered up my inner strength and my courage and attended! And I found the walk inspiring and healing. To be surrounded by people who understand the pain of mental health conditions is a great thing. There’s a kind of irony about it. It’s amazing to see so many people supporting suicide awareness & prevention and understanding the pain that overwhelms those with mental illness and those who care for them. It’s so great that so many care and act on their love for those who are sick and have died. But it’s also extremely devastating because most people there on those walks have lost someone to suicide and know that pain all too well. And many others there struggle themselves. So while it’s a great thing that so many care to come out and walk, it’s so unfortunate that so many have experienced something so tragic and that so many struggle with mental health problems.

But at the walks, we focus on the bright side. The awareness brought to suicide and the research and programs supported by donations have so much potential to save lives. And we see that none of us are alone in our struggle. While we dont ever want anyone to be afflicted with our pain, we know they are. So it’s great to come together and find each other and see the incredible love everyone has for those grieving for their lost ones and those of us struggling. We take our pain and turn it into something good, bringing light into so much darkness.Β 

We were all given beads of various colors. Whatever our personal relation to suicide\mental illness is, we are given beads to indicate that, so others can see and know that someone understands our pain intimately.

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At first it felt so awkward wearing the beads, like I was advertising my condition. Everyone who looked at me knew so much just by the color of my beads. And most people there were not wearing the ones that are for a personal struggle; very tragically most seemed to have lost someone. Some individual people even wore just about all the colors to show they lost multiple people to suicide, parent, sibling, lover, friend, child….how tragic to lose even just one and some have lost many! πŸ’”

So, anyway, for a while I walked around with my arms trying to cover my beads. It felt as if I was flaunting a thing that shouldn’t be flaunted. I felt in a way like I did when i experienced my first psychiatric hospitalization years ago, after years of suffering in secrecy then telling all of my deepest, darkest pain to a doctor (who was extremely compassionate & understanding), a person I did not know. I felt stripped to the bone, like people can see right through me, right through my flesh and guts and whatever else, and see the darkness of me. Β But then I realized there was no need to conceal my beads! Everyone there understands. Even if they don’t struggle with suicidal inclination like I do, they love someone who does or someone who did and lost the battle or they were just there to support something they are passionate about even if they have no personal relation to it. No one was going to look at me and think “Psycho!” and even if they would have, so what? I know me and that’s really all that matters!πŸ˜€ It’s my light that is stronger than the darkness. My light always shines through. ❀

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But as open about my condition both in person and online, as I am, see how still difficult it can be to let people in and know? Imagine what it’s like for people who aren’t open about it, to have to struggle and feel alone or try to conceal something so significant to them.

The great thing about wearing the beads is, others with the same struggle can feel a deep connection.

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(I love this bracelet especially because it glows in the dark! How inspiring! I did not even know until I walked into a dark room and a green light came on. ❀)

One of the other things I loved about the walk is the general atmosphere; it was cheerful and positive. Even though it had to do with suicide, it wasn’t gloomy or dark. There were lots of smiles, singing, lots of laughing and chatting. One person even said “It’s a beautiful day!” And the scenery is beautiful, water, trees, flowers, stones, weeds, buildings, statues, grass, concrete, plants, people, dogs…So much positivity and beauty through all the pain that brought us together. I also love the universal love that is expressed. Most of us don’t know each other or all the other sufferers like us, but everyone there has a strong desire, a great passion to help and save others, even those we don’t know. A few people talking through speakers who lost a person close to them said the deaths of those they love inspires them to work to save someone else. As sad as it is it’s also beautiful. There’s nothing they can do now to bring back the victims but they can honor them, helping others like them live as survivors instead of becoming more victims. β€πŸ’”β€

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I have met people or read stories written by people who have lost someone to suicide and said if their story or donation to research can save even just one life, just one, they will feel like the death of the one they love and lost isn’t so senseless and will feel as if their person is being honored and still living on in a way. I am so inspired and so shattered when i hear or read a sentiment like that. I am inspired to live for them. Even when it is difficult and seems impossible or completely pointless, I want to live so their deaths don’t have to be so senseless, so their people can have their wish of even just one life spared, fulfilled, even if they won’t know it. I want to live for all the suicide survivors who do all they can to save a life I want to carry on for all those we lost and all those struggling, to try to bring hope and inspiration to anyone I can in any way I can. Though I’m not a saint and not always kind and loving. Sometimes I argue with people, laugh at stuff I probably shouldn’t be laughing at, sometimes I reject favors someone asks of me….and that’s ok and probably true for most of us! We don’t have to be absolutely perfect to be perfect in our own way and to be loving, kind, compassionate, and generous in general. ❀

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The thing about depression is that it does not necessarily get us to only see the negative or unpleasant side of life, as some may think. That is possible but not always so. Often with depression, we canΒ and do see the bright side, the goodness, the beauty, the love. We often can see the positive things. But it doesn’t matter. The pain or the numbness make it so nothing has purpose, nothing matters, the good things aren’t enough to cheer us or if we’re suicidal, not enough to get us to want to live. I’m not speaking for everyone with depression but this is my experience and the experience of many of us. Sometimes even when something brings me deep joy, like my dogs for example, or the holiday season or beauty of nature….it just is vanquished by the pain, the deep despair of depression. It’s not always that there’s no joy with depression; but when there is, often, it just feels like it doesn’t matter.

But it is possible to seize all the good things, all the beauty, all the good things we can do for others, and hold on for them even in the throes of suicidal depression. It may take practice for it to become easier to list and live for the good but I can tell you it is possible. Recently I found myself in a very dark place that I almost forgot exists. It frightened me because it got to the point where my pain and despair felt so profoundly and so frequently like I was in another world, another place, one that is dark and pointless and never ending. My pain was connected to nothing on Earth and I knew it. It was nothing at all to do with anything. It’s not that I had no problems(though I had nothing serious going on), just that they were not what was depressing me. Some people do have environmental depression that is beyond the grief or distress almost anyone would have in that situation. But this isn’t what I have usually. What I have more than environmental depression is a deep, inherent sense of purposelessness and despair that has nothing to do with what I have or do or dont have or do. I do not have low self esteem so this depression i have is not a secondary thing as a result of that. When it flares up though, it’s often a general sense of despair about nothing in particular. And it starts on the top of my head like something physical and invisible and so heavy just crushing my whole body beneath the terrible weight of it. It surrounds me and is within me. It makes it hard for me to stand.

I knew I was in a bad way when i got out of a shower one day recently and saw my sweet boy sitting on my bed, my lil pomchi. He looked so adorable and was wagging his tail at me and i felt so much love for him and so much joy well up in me. But my despair was just so deep and my joy was just drowned in the depression, even though I was able to still feel it. I wanted to die even though my dog brings me so much love and joy and happiness.

So, you see, it’s not that we feel we have nothing necessarily, just that it’s like nothing matters, like nothing can conquer that despair and purposelessness. Nothing. But it’s not true. Love & beauty can conquer this illness. This sickness I know so well. It is a sickness. I know this because I can feel it. When it reaches a certain depth, I can’t think that it’s anything but a dark sickness come to take me, suffocate me, consume me. A sickness that grips me so tightly in its bondage I can hardly breathe. My whole body feels it. But Love can conquer it. Love for anyone or anything we can love. Even if we still want to die, still are in deep pain or so numb we can’t feel a thing; even when joy is drowned in despair, there is a reason to push through. It’s so hard but so possible.

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I live to bring hope to suicidal people. Hope that pain can end and until then, we can still live, still love, grasp any sliver of light we can. Even if the pain keeps coming back, it’s worth the struggle to live. And I live to bring hope to suicide survivors. Hope that the deaths of those they love and lost are not in vain. Their stories touch me; their love lifts me. I wish they never died but since they did and that cannot be changed, their pain can be used for goodness. I will keep giving, keep sharing, keep loving, keep living. I will always live to love even if I don’t always love to live. ❀ And I hope everyone else will too, no matter how hard it can get.

❀;;;;;❀

~L;ve~

~surv;vor~

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(A boy was carrying this sign Sunday, holding it up for anyone & everyone to see and I wanted to get a picture but did not have the chance then later i saw it on this rail thing here! This kind young man brought me so much love & hope with this act of love for all of us. Wishing us love and positivity even though he doesn’t know us is a perfect example of someone surrendering to universal love. ❀😍)

Much love & light to you, always!! πŸ˜πŸ˜€β€ And lots of hugs! Keep letting your light shine on us all. The world needs all of us. ❀

xoxo Kim

 

 

 

Love❀

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This week is suicide awareness week and today is suicide prevention day and I’m going to share a few things I recently shared on Facebook. ❀

 

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This is my response to someone who commented encouraging us to reach out in love to people who may be suffering with suicidal inclination because he knows the devastating effect suicide has on those who love the person who died. Suicide survivors(those who have lost someone to suicide) I believe, are suffering the most usually(grief for someone who died, human or not, is the worst kind of pain there is, IMO – though some may disagree), but it’s important to remember that a person’s life is valuable and important to save whether or not that person has close people who will be affected. And living for specific people is not our purpose. Each life is valuable on its own.Β Β 

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This is Β my new semicolon necklace! I got it yesterday! The semicolon is a symbol of continuation, just like in grammar or writing; it is used when a sentence can be ended but the person chooses to keep on writing. How inspiring! There are all kinds of jewelry and things with the semicolon used to inspire us to keep going and bring awareness to mental health issues. The word I choose for my necklace is L;ve.

Some other word choices are f;ght, warr;or, surv;vor…

(Did I spell everything right!? Lol πŸ˜‰

Here is where I got the necklace:Β https://www.etsy.com/shop/iCraftCafe

Kayce is a very compassionate girl who makes beautiful jewelry. Some of the money for some of the semicolon jewelry goes to an organization that brings awareness to mental health issues. She is very open minded and makes jewelry for just about every cause and life situation, infertility, miscarriage, depression, grief,…and just for any occasions or no occasion. She even makes urn jewelry so people can send her the ashes of someone they love, human or pet, and lost to death and she’ll put the ashes in the jewelry. And if there are ashes left over, she will throw them onto the San Diego beach if someone wants.

Isn’t that beautiful? Not necessarily that the ashes are being thrown around. I have always found that off putting throwing a corpse’s remains around but beautiful that she would do that for someone she doesn’t know. Even though I am put off by it, I would do that for a person who dies if it was her\his wish. I love to honor the dead even though I don’t believe they can know it. It’s like our last gift to them or way of keeping their memory going. My friend Diane wanted her ashes scattered on a beach when she died and that’s what her family did for her. It’s comforting to know they honored her wishes. ❀

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This pic is totally NOT intended to show off my boobs(though I see nothing wrong with that! I love me some boob pics!); it’s to show my necklace at an angle where it doesn’t show up all blurry and with a glare. This is the clearest one I got. ❀

And both of my beautiful necklaces show up mostly clearly! The other one is a Tibetan symbol necklace with the Buddhist mantra, Om Mani padme hum, the mantra associated with Avalokiteshvara, Buddha or Bodhisattva of indestructible compassion for all sentient beings.Β 

Give it a listen:

Om Mani padme hum – mobile

Om Mani padme him – desktop

https://inspirationalgem.wordpress.com/2015/09/29/protector-day-avalokiteshvara/

It’s incredibly beautiful. I played it for my dog the night before she died. It’s meant to generate loving energy and inspire feelings of love and compassion. I heard our Teacher, Gen Tenzin, at the Buddhist center, chanting it at a Powa ceremony once. A powa ceremony is a Buddhist ceremony that generates positive, loving energy and is believed by Buddhist people, to help aid the recent dead into their next lives. I only believe in one life, this one. But the ceremonies are beautiful and so loving. ❀

I am going to share another response of mine to someone who wrote me a comment. He suggested we don’t directly talk someone out of suicide but instead attempt to inspire the person to live and to love. When we directly try not to focus on something, the thing gets stronger and more difficult to ignore.

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This is an important concept, not just ending the pain but incorporating love & beauty into it until it can be eliminated if it can be and learning to live with it if not. ❀

One contributing reason many people, often children, but even adults too, kill themselves is difficulty coping with bullying, in school, workplace, anywhere. Bullying is abuse. Even if it’s not physical, it’s severe abuse. Please let’s not engage in it! Let’s include everyone in our circle, refuse to engage in malicious gossip, not smirk and whisper about others (adults do this too!), be warm and friendly to everyone and if we aren’t warm and friendly it’s OK as long as we aren’t callous and cruel.

This goes for cyber-bullying as well which is just as bad as in person bullying.

Let’s love one another instead! β€πŸ’™πŸ’šπŸ’›πŸ’œπŸ’

And here is a song to inspire us to keep going no matter how low we sink. πŸ˜€

IfΒ you’re going through hell – Rodney Atkins – mobile

If you’re going through hell – desktop

“If you’re going through hell keep going!”

How inspiring!πŸ˜€

And here’s a sweet song about getting together and loving each other, looking on the bright side:

“Let’s look ahead
With faith that things will be better
If we just look up to the light
Look to one another for love
And everything will be alright
And the world that we share
Can make us happy” ❀

Look to each other for Love – Bill Withers – mobile

Look to each other for Love – desktop

And one more song to get you pumped!Β 

“Risin’ up, straight to the top
Have the guts, got the glory
Went the distance, now I’m not gonna stop
Just a man and his will to survive” ❀

Eye of the Tiger – Survivor – mobile

Eye of the tiger – desktop

And here is a little something something to make you giggle (if you have a dirty mind, that is)

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My sister sent me this because she knows I like risquΓ© stuff. Her and my mom tell me just about everyday how “filthy” my mind is and how “you really shoulda been a guy!” And quite frequently I hear “What a pig!” Referring to me! πŸ˜­πŸ˜‚πŸ˜€

Any way, I am laughing hysterically at this. All day.

My sister said it isn’t intentionally dirty, that spongebob fell or something and someone just happened to pause it Β right there.

It took ages to convince me this isn’t intentional. And I’m still not completely convinced. It would be way more believable if not for the completely satisfied look on Squid’s face. 😍

So yeah..

Also, if you arent a perv\pig\”guy”(or whatever) like me, here is something cute to brighten your day instead:

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My adorable two year old pomchies!! ❀😍😭

They are so cute, wild, snuggly, and playful!

Please share this photo anywhere, Facebook, twitter, any social media account…. But if not that’s OK.

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(I saw this at a busstop one day! ❀)

Maybe just one person can be comforted just seeing that someone cares to share or put this sign up.

My heart goes out to all who have been touched by suicide or suicidal inclination in any way. ❀ ~hugs & love to you~

Much love, light, & inner strength to you (everyone)Β always!

;;;;; ❀

❀

Xoxo Kim πŸ˜€