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Wild Heart

As I head into the room to create

the things on my my list

My boots are on my feet

and my jeans hug my hips

I’m wearing a shirt

that says it all,

“Listen with all that you have”

I find myself praying

like my momma used to do

just talking on to Jesus

as if he was in the room

I’m feeling overwhelmed

and under loved

an emotional roller coaster

that I can’t get off of

The tears come

for no good reason

in between the smiles 

and rambunctious laughter

so I’m just talking on to Jesus

telling what I want

 Come on, Lord,have mercy

 keep me wild and broken

open and loving,

tender and strong,

adventuresome and still content

blissful and hopeful,

giving and gracious, 

wise and curious,

 forgiving and accepting. 

Let my body dance,

please, Lord, let me dance

Let my soul explore

  Let me dare to live my dreame

  chase my own wild heart.  

And let me ride

this roller coaster of life

with my arms raised high

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Glow

If only I could see me

the way you see me

everything would be different
I keep the lights on

because the darkness

hides your lips

and I can’t, 

for the life of me,

 understand a word you say
But the same light 

that lets me see

to read

shows everything 

I wish I could keep

hidden in the dark
You see my imperfections

the scars on my body

the way time hasn’t

always been so kind
it’s a double edged sword

a battle that I fight

day in and night out

trying so damn hard

to see beauty in the ages

embrace the changes

to keep on dancing

with all the broken pieces

to glow in the light

and not hide in the dark
I look in the mirror

remembering so well

when the reflection

showed a different woman

a different time
if I could only see me

the way you see me

everything would be

so different
I would look beyond

the imperfections 

straight to the heart

of the matter
and I just might be able

to glow in the dark

from the light in your eyes
ūüíóJeanna’ Mead

6 25 a.m. 12-10-17

http://www.jeannasoul.com

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Roses and Thorns

A person that plants thorns, must never expect to gather roses.           -Paulo Coelho

I read this and sat outside on my patio, pondering the wisdom of these words as I looked at the garden filled with flowers and green plants,and tall trees that are losing their leaves.

There’s a chapter in Paulo’s book,The Spy, where the mother gives her daughter a package of flower seeds and tells her to carry these seeds so they will remind her of who she is and where she’s from. 

The mother says to her daughter, “These are seeds of tulips, they will only bloom into tulips. The seeds you plant will not change into another type of flowers.”

There it is. Simple as that.

What you plant, is what will bloom. 

Or at least, that’s the way it works in the garden and the yard.

 I dig up wayward trees that are growing in cracks and even in the gutters of my studio, and I replant them where I believe they will grow deep roots and become tall, beautiful trees that offer shade and shelter.

I buy clearance plants from Lowe’s- bedraggled, pitiful, little things and I plant them and I nurture them fully expecting them to thrive and bloom…and they do. 

That’s another lesson from my Mema, who would tell me over and over, “Don’t give up…the tiniest little root is all it takes. You just gotta pour love on it.”

This is how people are,too, but sometimes you can plant roses and tend to the roses as they grow and bloom, only to find out that others look at the beautiful roses and only see the thorns.

They may breathe in the scent of the roses, understand the time and work put into establishing the roots, nurturing the soil, making sure it receives plenty of sun and water and is encouraged to grow, but instead of focusing on the beauty, they point out the thorns.

“These thorns can cut. They might leave a mark or even a scar. You could get caught in those thorns and they will rip through you. There’s just too many thorns here.”

Never mind the intoxicating scent. Never mind the way the roses add beauty and color to the garden. Never mind how the roses climb along the bricks, offering shelter and privacy.

All they can see is the thorns.

I think that’s one reason I don’t really like roses. I always think of roses as high maintenance flowers. They are beautiful but they require pulling on gloves that reach to my elbows, using special tools, wearing shoes and tip toeing around as I work.

I’m the kind of woman that likes to reach into the garden with my bare hands, picking off dead leaves, pulling up weeds, digging holes and laying in plants without giving any thought to thorns that might cut me. 

I prefer to stand with my feet in the soil, turning stones over with my toes, wiggling down and using my body as a tool instead of looking for something that might make it easier, but won’t feel as good.

I may be “good and sore” as my Mema would say at the end of the day, but there’s just something special about the feeling of good, simple, hard work that you can feel and see.

That’s so much like the relationships we have. Sometimes we plant roses, and get distracted by the thorns. Sometimes it’s because others point those out to us.

Sometimes we plant yellow tulips and to our delight, find that a single red one somehow got mixed in the package and bloomed- making the garden even more beautiful.

Sometimes we plant flowers in pots and find that a tree has taken root in the fertile soil   and we know that, in order for it to really reach it”s full potential, we must transplant it out of the confined pot and into a place where it won’t be limited.

Sometimes we have to sit back in a rocking chair and wait and watch for the seasons to change, the roots to get established and the time to be right for the beauty to grow, show up and ssurprise us.

Just remember…anything can grow if you pour on the love and attention….and you can grow beauty or only thorns….it’s all in your hands and in the way you choose to look at the garden of life.

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Handkerchiefs

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On Cue

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Something Else

 New soles and new shoes

Jeans,  pants,and a few more shirts

A real good reason

A need and a want

Money well spent

But still

Could have been

Something else

A need and a want

Money well spent

A real good reason

But still

It was something else






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Set Me Apart

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Another Day

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Touch

She figured it would be

just a bite to eat

a drink or two

Skim the surface

Like most people do

She didn’t expect

To be heard

Get her soul fed

Thirst quenched.

Hand held

She should have figured.

She would be

Touched.

Jeanna’ Mead

1 33 – 3/15/17

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Collections of Connections

While at the store, I stopped to look closely at¬† a beautiful table display with collections of vases,picture frames and knick knacks and as I touched the items, the reality struck me that I really didn’t want any of things on the table.

You see, a family friend had told me just last week that she was teaching her son to build connections instead of collections and that simple comment has been stuck on my mind every since.

“Connections instead of collections.”

Let these words roll over in your mind,speak them out loud,and write them down.
Whisper them to yourself and see how it causes you to reflect and ponder,and to take a deeper look at the things you have collected.

Do you really want a collection of blue vases and bottles or do you want a good friend that you can count on to chase away the blues?

There’s something incredible about having a kindred spirit that just gets you, someone who will catch your eye and without a word,understands what you’re feeling.¬†

It’s not just in family members or life-long friends,sometimes a simple connection is made while exchanging smiles as we pass by each other in the grocery aisles.
It is in the knowing look between¬† two moms carrying toddlers, as one elderly couple passes another, as we make eye contact and acknowledge another’s¬† presence.

That’s what life is really about -seeing the invisible red thread that connects each of us,seeing the divine in the dust,the possibilities in the seed, the beauty in the chaos.

It’s being open and willing to take the first step in building friendships. I think about all the people that I’ve wanted to get to know better but just didn’t.¬† Instead of offering¬† the first invitation, I hesitated and let the opportunities pass by.
I found excuses,instead of reasons to connect with others and, in doing so, I put up walls against the chances for wonderful things to happen.

I know that all deep connections go through hardships and difficulty and that’s exactly why I believe it’s important to reach¬† deep within and find forgiveness and mercy, acceptance and hope, faith and trust,again, to rebuild the relationship.

Sometimes, we realize that, although relationships change, it doesn’t have to be the end. There’s still goodness,still worthiness,and yes, still reason to continue but in different ways.¬†

There’s other connections,too, that have been formed by social media. I became part of Massage Therapy groups to learn more about my craft, not expecting to gain such insight and help for my day-to day life.¬†
One online friend found AVA, the Audio Visual Accessibility app that has changed my life. I haven’t met JT yet, but every time I use¬† AVA, I think of the Florida graphic artist that not only designed my first logo but also took the time to research accessibility apps after reading my post about not being able to understand group conversations.
Then there’s Joshua, the ocean lovin’, guitar playin’, skateboard ridin’, husband,papa and serious massage therapist who finds time to put together music selections on Spotify so that I- the deaf therapist- have clients exclaim that they absolutely loved the music played during their sessions.

Over time, understanding and intimacy¬† grows as stories are shared and bonds are formed and these people become the ones that know each other well. Distance may stand in the way of gathering¬† and sharing meals, but there’s still the “connection” that brings people together and lets them be there for each other.

Another thought that occurred to me, that actually has always been part of my “love language”, is that the “collections” that really matter to me have all came from my “connections.”

I spend hours in my massage studio room,  giving others my touch and attention,
surrounded by things that I’ve chosen to display because they bring me a feeling of contentment,of love,of security, of the connections I have made.

I look around and see a painting that reminds me of blue crab dip and beer with my friend, Keri. There’s a book from Jan, a quilt from Judy, a wooden bowl, framed quotes and painted words from other friends.
The dresser and desk were my mom’s that my husband repainted a bright turquoise ,my favorite color.

So when I look around, I don’t see “things,” I see the faces of the givers, I hear their words, I feel their touch and I know they are with me, in spirit and in truth.

Truthfully I do feel something special-a sense of empowerment and confidence, of love and strength when I wear certain things. It’s almost as if I’m being wrapped in an embrace, given an encouraging pat on the back, having my hand held as I go through my day just because I’m wearing something that came from someone else.

When I feel like I need an extra boost, I reach for my mom’s amethyst ring, layer on bracelets that have been given to me, and slip my feet into a pair of cowboy boots from my collection.
I have cowboy boots from back when I was 20, to the¬† pair my Mema bought me just weeks before she went to glory.¬† There’s the flowered pair that I tease my clients about…one bought the right,the other bought the left when they surprised me with a Christmas bonus two years ago.
My newest black stitched boots came from a long time client who tucked a Cavendars gift card in my hand to make sure I kept on waltzing around the table.

These things I wear are more than just accessories, they are wearable memories. It’s tangible collections showing me and others what’s already carved into my heart.

I’m building collections from my connections….and I’m going to begin giving bits and pieces to others so that when they look around their space, or at their wrist,or touch their neck, they will feel¬† my presence, my warmth,my love and gain a little extra confidence,a shot of sassiness,and waltz out to make their own connections in life!

Connections AND collections….this just might be the beginning of something wonderful!

Feel with both hands, Jeanna’