Yesterday, I was 30

I’m going to be cliche and write 30 things I have learned in the last 30 years, in light of turning 30 yesterday.

  1. Your love language is extremely important to understand.
  2. Nothing in life ever goes the way you planned.
  3. The most important role in your life is simply to be You.
  4. When your world shatters, don’t make dumb decisions.
  5. The people who are supposed to love you the most, have the strongest ability to tear you apart.
  6. Trust is fleeting.
  7. Fulfillment doesn’t exist in mortal things.
  8. If you know with the core of your being you shouldn’t do something, don’t do it.
  9. Pleasing people gets you nowhere.
  10. You’re going to miss the most important things in life if you rush through and don’t stop to listen and consider the “why shouldn’t I do this?”
  11. You cannot rely on someone else to be what you need. They will fail you when you need them most.
  12. If friends are distant, just let them go. No matter how much it hurts.
  13. If you matter to someone, they will keep you in their life.
  14. Children are the most delightful joy you will ever possess in this Life.
  15. If someone is relying on you, always make sure to accomplish what they need in a reliable amount of time.
  16. It’s better to lie to everyone that you’re okay, than tell them when it’s not.
  17. Life is continually disappointing, and there’s no turning back from a mistake.
  18. Everyone has an opinion. Seek the Truth, that is what matters most.
  19. God will never leave you, or forsake you.
  20. Jesus Christ is literally the only entity you can count on.
  21. If you know it is a bad idea DON’T DO IT.
  22. Staying stuck on the things that make you unhappy, makes you unhappier.
  23. There is so much peace in silence.
  24. Making friends past 25 is hard.
  25. Isolating yourself, while it does protect you, only makes you lonely.
  26. Sometimes, you go through things in life, and literally have NOBODY you can actually talk to about it.
  27. The loneliest place you can be, is in a crowded room where no one knows you.
  28. The second loneliest place you can be, is in a crowded room where everyone knows you, but you cannot connect with those people, no matter how hard you’ve tried.
  29. Having friends with things in common is worth Gold.
  30. Don’t be afraid to take chances.

Dismal list, the inside of me isn’t exactly the happy, bubbly Sprite I try to be.
Because of my own loneliness, I try so desperately to light the world around me, so others know someone loves them, someone thinks they’re important, and someone doesn’t want them to know the same emptiness I feel.
You can always rely on me to be there for you. No matter the time of day.

Shine brighter than the stars. Even when it kills you inside.

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Presenting: Dauntless

Dauntless full cover

Dauntless is a coming of age story set against a fantasy background.  When Kacey Alexander turns 18, she finds out that she is a Mage, one of a long line of magic practitioners.  When Kacey’s mother dies, she leaves all of her belongings to Kacey, including a journal that details her past as a monster hunter.  When the details of her mother’s past come back to haunt her, Kacey must learn to master her powers and put together an unlikely alliance of friends to stop an army that threatens to destroy her city.

What inspired it:  I was in the middle of a long writer’s block when I came up with the idea for Dauntless.  One day my roommate Brandon and I were watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  I complained about how TV and movies never had characters like her anymore.  Characters who were strong, sure, but who also had the ability to be weak.  Characters that were well rounded and experienced the full range of human emotion.  My roommate challenged me to write a character like that and, after many incarnations, Dauntless was the result.

Dauntless is a book that lets us know that family means more than just who we’re related to.  The strong bonds that Kacey has with her friends make them just as much family than her blood relatives.  In fact, more so.  Further the struggles that Kacey faces in finding herself in an unknown world mirrors a lot of problems people face when trying to fit in.

Find it on Amazon!
https://www.amazon.com/Dauntless-Thomas-G-Atwood-Jr/dp/1612967256

author portrait

Thomas Atwood Jr was born in Colorado Springs, Colorado. His love of writing was kindled early when his father gave him a copy of The Legends of King Arthur as an Easter present. These presents continued every year and he would devour them all. Soon he was developing further adventures for the characters to go on. When his high school teachers encouraged him to pursue writing, he embarked on a journey that would result in Dauntless, his debut novel.

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/tatwoodauthor/

twitter:  https://twitter.com/tatwoodauthor

Check out his other books also available on Amazon
https://www.amazon.com/Dauntless-Thomas-G-Atwood-Jr/dp/1612967256

 

Don’t Judge Me

I see you there, waiting in line behind my conveyor belt of groceries.  My two children are ready to be home, and frankly so am I.

I pull out a little white card, and hope you can’t see.  Swiping it quickly, shamefully, I dive my hand into my purse so you don’t know what the card looked like.

Don’t judge me, please, as you watch my transaction in process.  You tap your button and glance at your display, I know you know.  Please don’t say anything.

I walk the aisle in the store, and purchase the same as I would if I were buying for my family.  We’re vegetarian and don’t drink milk–but we eat yogurt, eggs and cheese.  We drink coffee and herbal tea instead of soda and juice, we sweeten with agave and honey.
These things are expensive, I know.  It’s not my fault eating right is for the elite.  But I’m not going to stock up on junk food because it’s “cheaper”.

Don’t watch my hand dive in my wallet.  Please don’t look at me as though I’m a criminal.  I’m honestly just trying to feed my family, and my husbands income is not enough.

I’m not asking for a handout.  I don’t want your help.  We have barely been scraping by.  Our bills are paid, our rent is covered.  We put gas in the car …. once.  But now the money is gone, and we still have needs.  I don’t know how the laundry is getting washed.
The diapers were a gift.  Someone blessed us this month.
The trial is only for a little while, we expect to have it better soon.

My husband goes to school, and has a job.  I can’t get one too.  Right now, my job is Mommy.  Don’t judge my decision, it’s really not up to you.

I write, I draw, I can make use of my time.  Simple little ways to earn some extra money from time to time.  Though writing jobs are hard to find.  I’m subscribed to receive opportunities– and so are hundreds of other writers.

I teach.  However I have no college hours, substituting is out of the question in this town.

I came out of poverty, and have to poverty returned.  A degree would have been of no use, I wanted to be a youth pastor.  Ministerial degrees aren’t in high demand.

Don’t judge me.  You don’t know where I’ve been.  I only wished I’d never be in that place again.  But we are.  And you don’t know how hard we work to fix it.

My husband is at school on scholarship.  Thats the only way he can go.  Being in the military, you’d think he’d have earned more respect.  This isn’t the same Military it was in 1945.  This isn’t the same America either.

We’re fighting to make our way, and pushing really hard.  The numbers aren’t rounding up, they continue to plummet instead.

I’m a white American woman, married, with two kids.  A soldiers wife, proud and strong.  A minister fighting for the Kingdom.  I’m the Warrior cast.

….but right now we’re in need.  So unless you have the magical ability to feed my family with two loaves of bread and five minnows–until our boat comes in– I suggest you go judge someone else.  I’m not in the mood to feel anxious over what you think of me.