How sweet it is

15 08 2016

 

August 15 is a special day. It has been since 1982 when I married my soul mate. Ed has not been here to celebrate with me since April of 2011. This makes me sad and every August 15th I feel the ache in my heart and I cry a little, usually a couple of times throughout the day. I have come to accept that it is normal to miss someone so much that it can cause tears. What was surprising to me is the actually ache in my heart. I used to think the term “heartache” was a metaphor but my heart physically hurts when I think of how much I miss him and still love him. This all sounds a bit morbid but if you can stick with me, you will see I am going in another direction with this. I believe all the actions I just described are normal parts of grief. Grief is not a dirty word. I have had to give myself permission to express my sorrow. It only means I have loved deeply.
I have loved deeply. What an honor that is. What a gift to be able to grow and mature in that love and learn to trust another human being. I had that one person that I could count on through all of life’s winding roads. One person who knew I was filled with insecurities, imperfection and inconsistency and he loved me anyway. He couldn’t help himself any more than I could turn my love for him off. We were both far from perfect and we accepted that in each other. If I was mad at him, yes, it happened, he learned to leave me alone for a while until my hot Italian temper had time to cool off. Before the day was through he would put his arms around me and remind me that I couldn’t stay mad at him. He was so stinking cute, and he was right. We practiced the Biblical principal of not letting the sun go down on our anger. There is a free wisdom tidbit for you. it is important to the life of a relationship. Do not leave things unresolved.

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Today is a special day. I have felt the familiar ache in my heart and I have shed some tears because I miss my Eddie. But sorrow and grief will not define this special day. I have washed my face, brushed my teeth and put a little mascara on. I have called the florist and ordered flowers to be sent to the house. I will celebrate that fact that I have loved so deeply that I am still in love with one man. I am celebrating the fact that I have been fortunate enough to be loved and understood by a soul mate. I honor my husband today and I feel a touch of pride that I was Eddie the baker’s wife until death parted us. This is a joyous day.





God only knows what’s next.

19 01 2015

Lately, I try to tell myself, (yell at myself) “finish what you are doing now and then move on to the next thing”. Sometimes it actually works for me. Like today. I am going to write a post. God only knows what will come next but for right now, I write. But first, a cup of vanilla hazelnut Keurig coffee will help the creative process. Be right back.
This has been a very busy and fulfilling year. There have been a few work challenges that have stretched me and made me stronger as a film hairstylist and, I hope, nicer as a human being. I really do love what I do. Most of the time it doesn’t feel like work.
I still miss my Eddie every single day. It helps me a lot to work. I am surrounded by people who strangely feel like family. Albeit, crazy and dysfunction family. I smile most of the time at work and I laugh out loud very often. I enjoy my hugs from my coworkers and feel blessed when folks call me Miss Coni. Once in a while, my guys (yes, I have taken possession of them and claim them as my own), will crank out some pretty foul language. I do not take it personally. Usually, if they see me nearby, they will curb it and that makes me smile and feel like an honored member of the tribe. But, sometimes, Words Just Need To Fly. I understand.
Last October, my co-workers threw me the best surprise birthday party ever! The first surprise was that I had to wait outside the trailer while they finished getting it ready for my entry. I was getting anxious because I needed to get my station ready for my first actor but they cheerfully urged me to go to the catering tent and get my breakfast while they “straightened up”. Of course, I figured what was going on by now and I decided to let go of any anxious thoughts and roll with the day. Best idea ever!! What fun I had at work. We started the day with Carvel ice cream cake handing many pieces out the door to my Teamsters and base camp PAs. There were flowers, balloons, finger foods and, wait for it… Frank Sinatra tunes on Pandora!

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These ladies, Cece Verardi and Linda Kamp, know how to make a girl feel special! My Cristy was very much a part of the shenanigans too. I am grateful for their friendship.
I am 62 years young. My life is nothing as I imagined it to be when I was in my twenties and thirties. I feel like I am exactly where I am supposed to be, using the gifts that God gave me. Loving on people, doing hair and singing are my three favorite things to do in this life. I am triple blessed when I get the chance to do all three in one day.





Did you just judge me?

6 10 2014

I am a Christian. That means I have come to believe that God, in His mercy, sent a Way for me to get back into a pure relationship with Him. That Way is Jesus Christ. Without getting all preachy, suffice to say that I have decided to follow Jesus. I am a Christ follower.
Chances are, you have just made a judgement about me based on what you know about others. One of your judgements is probably that I am judgmental. The pot calls the kettle black.
Relax. Breath. Open your mind for a minute.
Do you want to know what I really think it means to be a Christ follower?

A-Christian

  • love God with all my heart
  • if I truly love God, I will love His people
  • love without hypocrisy
  • give and it will be given unto you
  • includes helping others
  • when you refresh others you will be refreshed
  • true religion gets dirty, goes where the needs are
  • closest to the heart of God is helping others
  • widows and orphans
  • God did not call me to judge people, he called me to love them
  • I need to judge myself, search my own soul. Not yours
  • I am full of miracles
  • miracles don’t always come with a fireworks display
  • a hug, a gentle word brings healing
  • encourage
  • help others and your life will break forth like the dawn and your healing will come

Now that I have revealed some of my inner thoughts, judge away.

In my over six decades on this planet, I have learned that we are all seekers. Every one of us are trying to find our way through this thing called life. We are not all on the same path. Each of us must find our own way. I believe that I have found mine and I TRY to walk it out every day. I am not interested in convincing you that my Way is right and yours is wrong. I welcome anyone to join me and the many others who are following Jesus, but it must be your own revelation that puts that desire in your own heart. If I truly believe that God speaks to the heart, I must believe that He has you in the palm of His hand and He will direct you. I respect your choice to walk where you feel led. We are not immortal. One day we will draw our last breath and then we will know in truth. Until then, my prayer for each of my friends is that God will lead us to the truth and help us to be true to what we believe.





twenty years and still having a blast.

19 05 2014

In an unashamed attempt to rebuild my audience, I am posting pictures of some of my film work.

I have found my voice again after being silent for too long. I let my care about what others think of me stagnate my words. That concept is a writing killer.

so, let me say, I love you all but I don’t care if you like what I have to say. I am going to write.

But, for today, PICTURES!!!

image  Here I am in my first film endeavor. I was a featured extra in a movie called RadioLand Murders. I came to my first day of filming with my hair done in finger waves that I did myself and soon after was hired on in the hair department for the remainder of the shoot. Ha, God has a sense of humor.

image  Yep, this is my Eddie. He also worked on the same film as a photo double. When they asked if he would be willing to shave his mustache for it if they gave him a hundred dollars more, his reply was, “for a hundred bucks I will shave my legs too.”

image  Marilyn Manson and the wiener in Eastbound and Down.

Army Wives, Catherine Bell, 1980s hair

Army Wives, Catherine Bell, 1980s hair

this is season one of Army wives. Loved every day of working with this lady.

and…….

Sally Pressman/ Army Wives season 1

Sally Pressman/ Army Wives season 1

This lovely lady too.

I have enjoyed this career for twenty years this year and it has been my pleasure to work with many  kind and nice actors. There have been a few stinkers in the mix but, thankfully, they are few and far between.

These are a few of the good ones…

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It takes all kinds to work on a film set. For the most part we are all a little crazy some way or another. I don’t mind crazy. Crazy just adds to the fun.

My favorite films are the ones that have lots of laughter behind the scenes. The older I get, the more I realize that I don’t have to compete with anyone else in my industry. I have my own unique set of skills and so does everyone else on a film set. I have the most fun when I can let go of my fear and my ego and appreciate what each person brings to the table. I am pretty sure this translates to any job. It is in that kind of atmosphere of freedom that a job ceases to feel like work and begins to be a place and time for the creative juices to flow.

well, it appears I found something to say after all.

It would not hurt my feelings at all if you left me indication that you looked at my post today. Thanks for hanging in here with me.





Hello, I am Addiction

3 02 2014

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Maybe it would make a difference if addiction would just come right up to our face and introduce itself. Maybe if it should come right up and dope slap us in the head we would realize the imminent danger. Probably not though. Addiction is insidious. I had to look that word up when I first heard it. The definition is;  • treacherous; crafty , proceeding in a gradual, subtle way, but with harmful effects. 

The brain of an addict has no logic when it comes to getting high. Our brain says things like, you can do it just this once!; everyone else is carefree and having fun, why not you?; this time you will stop after two beers.; this time you will not chase the high, one hit will be enough to take the edge off; you have a high tolerance, you need more than the normal person. 

And, sadly, we end up thinking; how did I let this happen again?; it was not supposed to be this way.; it is always going to be like this, I don’t know why I even try.; I may as well have the ‘hair of the dog that bit me’.; I am always going to be a worthless loser.

We always have to keep our thinking in check. Always. We don’t ever get a vacation from doing an inventory of our thoughts. One slogan that I learned in AA has been a healthy reminder. It says, Stinkin thinkin leads to drinkin. Yeah, I like to misspell those words. It gets my attention every time. This slogan reminds me to take an inventory of myself daily. Once my spiritual and emotional conditions begin to decline, my sobriety is in danger. If I catch it early, it is easier to come to the God of my understanding and confess my ill thoughts and ask His help in getting back on track. Unfortunately, the longer stinkin thinkin goes unchecked the more difficult it is to recognize and it doesn’t take much more before I could be off and running in the wrong direction.

I went through a season after my husband died where I found my thoughts wishing I could enjoy a nice glass of red wine. Many of the people who were important in my life were able to drink in relative safety and enjoy themselves. I would see the pictures they posted on FaceBook about the fun they were having and the lovely get-togethers they were having that included wine or beer. They were thoughtful enough not to invite me because they knew I was clean and sober. While I appreciated their consideration, it also made me feel left out and a little sad that I could not unwind with a glass of wine too. I let that thinking go on for more than a little while. Mix those kind of thoughts with the fact that I had been grieving the loss of my soul-mate and that I have not been able to bring myself back to AA meetings and I had a lethal combo going on. Self pity began to creep in along with a desire to isolate. I reached out in a couple of ways to a select few but, honestly I did not have the energy to chase anyone down for help. Tears flowed for days. I tried to go to meetings and I saw my Eddie everywhere. It was destroying me! I would be sobbing all the way home. I finally decided to stop torturing myself and withdrew all together from meetings. To this day, I have not been back. But, I remember what I was when I came into AA and I remember the principles that saved my life thirty seven years ago.

Sometimes, it is God and God alone who can save. That has been the case for me. I have not shut Him out or withdrawn from Him. And he shined a spotlight on my thinking. He brought me back to sanity and He gave me the strength to walk away (in love) from the people who could not comprehend the danger I was in. I literally heard the Voice of my God say to me, You are not safe here anymore. You must walk away NOW. I will not keep you safe if you do not heed my warning. Those are probably not the exact words but that was the message that He spoke loud and clear into my innermost being. I was ruined. It was heartbreak upon heartbreak. As I write this, I can still feel the ache in my heart. And, somewhere under all the commotion in my soul, I heard the voice of my first AA sponsor say to me, “Constant vigilance is the price we pay for our sobriety.” My God gave me the strength to walk away. He gives me the strength every day to make the right decision regarding my sobriety. Without sobriety I have nothing.

Phillip Seymour Hoffman, I will not let your death be in vain. I admire the fact that you had 23 years of a clean and sober life. You have reminded me today how fragile and how precious is the gift of sobriety that we have been given. It is the unmerited favor of God that gives us this gift. Addiction is an insidious thief. Your fate could very easily have been mine, and it could yet be. Somehow, I think you would like us all to be mindful of that today. Your spirit will be missed.





Gratitude and Slippers in the snow

30 01 2014

unnamedThis is day 3 of Sleet-ageddon and I am experiencing some cabin fever. I stepped out onto my back patio and expected to sink into the 2 inches of snow accumulated there. As you can see, I did not sink. The snow that fell in the evening was mixed with sleet. It covered the ground with ice. Let’s just say that this precipitation will safely hold over 125 pounds. Very safely.

Wilmington is virtually shut down due to icy driving hazards. There are news reports of wrecks all over town. We don’t do snow tires or snow chains in South East North Carolina. However, I am pretty sure that everyone I know  made it to the store to buy bread and milk (and beer for some) before the first snowflake (make that sleetball) hit the ground.

I can’t count how many times I have thought about Ed’s answer to people who ask what brought him to Wilmington. “I tied a snow shovel to the roof of the car and drove south. When someone asked me what it was, I stopped.” His other favorite joke was, “Sometimes I wake up grumpy. Sometimes I just let her sleep.” I never got that one.

My oak floors were scheduled to begin installation today. It probably will not happen for another 3 days now. I am disappointed but, my PollyAnna side is just grateful that I was not stranded in my car on I-20 in Atlanta for 21 hours as some folks were. I am safe and warm in my house with a refrigerator full of food.

unnamed-1I tried to take Bella out for a short walk on my street. Between her doing the splits and me, fake skating along in my Uggs, we turned around within five minutes and headed for the safety of our torn up, semi- carpeted floor.

I was surprised when the floor man told me that he had been chewed out a couple of times this morning because he was not able to get his installers in to work. One man reamed him because he will not have his oak floors in time for his Super Bowl party! It is not like they took a day off to go fishing. Although, that does happen around here sometimes… but not this time! All of our news stations are reporting that the Sherif’s department is requesting that people stay off the roads.

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I guess I have just had some real stuff going on these past few weeks. Two of my friends have gone to meet their maker. My friend Ruthie passed of cancer of the uterus and my friend “Cuz” passed suddenly of complications from the flu. Both leave beautiful families behind. Another friend has contracted some weird bacteria that left him in the hospital for 45 days! During that time his kidneys failed, he was on life support, had both legs amputated below the knees and some fingers amputated off both hands. His pain level from the amputations was so intense that they had to keep him knocked out on heavy duty pain meds to the point that he was hallucinating and having terrors! He and his wife are raising 5 adopted children all under the age of 10! By the Grace of God, he is alive and undergoing intense rehab to learn to move all over again.

If not getting my oak floors in as scheduled is my biggest problem, I am very blessed.

These are some of the fund raising pages for two of my friends. If you feel like you can give anything to either one of these, your donation will be used well and so appreciated.

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https://www.giveforward.com/fundraiser/55w3/lee-spearman-s-rehab-fund?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=fb_share_stream.share&utm_campaign=BA_FBshare&fb_ref=1808402

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https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/0gex2?psid=9a0ab849f5674601b44e02a8ac55e393