Archive for Laura

Mother’s Day in March

Yes, I know the official Mother’s Day comes in May, but my mother’s day – my mother’s birthday – comes in March.  Today, in fact: March 18th.

So, I want to take this opportunity to publicly thank my mother, Mary Annette Luck Overstreet Taylor, for being the best mother a girl could ever want and/or need.  Here goes…

Dear Mom,

You have loved me when I wasn’t lovable, helped me when I truly needed it, laughed with me to the disbelief (and sometimes disdain) of others, taught me innumerable invaluable lessons, and cried with me when crying was all we could do.  

No matter what I say here, I will not be able to capture into words the love I have for you, the gratitude I feel for you, and the honor it is to be your daughter.

So instead I will simply say I love you, and hope that you can take it all the way in, believe it, and never forget it. And, in your words, I’ll say, “You hear me?  I mean it!”

I love you.
Laura

Thank you, loyal blog readers, for indulging me.  🙂

Is it Winter in Your Heart?

Regardless of what or how we celebrate this time of year, there is an unspoken expectation to be joyful, grateful, giving, and loving.  And for some of us this is simply not how we feel, not what we are experiencing.  Whether it’s due to the loss of a loved one, or the loss of a connection to the spark within us, the holiday cheer can be a painful reminder, if not downright heartbreaking.

To put it more beautifully, I’d like to share with you a poem, written by my dear friend, Janie Cook, on her blog, Living with the Loss of a Child.

 

in the shadow of blinking Christmas lights

of holiday parties and celebrations

surrounded by gift shoppers

and promises of peace, hope and joy

it is winter in my heart

i am the cold, cloudy days

the damp leafless trees

the stark stillness of the night sky

filled with longing

so . . . Holy One who knows the seasons of our hearts

be the sunrise that warms

be the breeze that freshens

be the light that illuminates

and help me give birth to The Love that is ever deeper and more sustaining

(To read Janie’s post in its entirety, click here.

Regardless of what it is you are feeling during this holiday season, please consider this note a kind of permission slip to feel whatever that is – whether it’s joy, sadness, grief, gratitude, indifference, anger, etc.  You may even want to share with someone close what is true for you so that you don’t feel so alone in your seemingly unique situation.

Remember, we can’t put our feelings on a timer, and only feel them when they are welcome.  We must welcome them when they are present so that they don’t overtake and cripple us for even longer a time…

May you find some peace with your feelings this holiday season, and know that I’ll be joining you in doing my best to honor my feelings.  May we all find peace, all over the whole wide world.  Amen.

Love,
Laura

PS  This post is directly lifted from my December, 2012 newsletter, True Voices Express.  To make sure you don’t miss another offering like this, please go to the the top right of this page, and sign up to receive future issues.  I’d love to be in contact with you more often – but not too often, I promise.  Thanks!

 

Gratitude and Want – One Paradox of Being Human and Divine

Hello, my dear lovely,

I am writing to say – out loud – that I want to write for 15 minutes a day.  I would love to write for an even longer time, but setting that bar hasn’t served me lately.  So, inspired by Dawn Goldberg of Write Well U, I’m going to write at least 15 minutes a day, for at least 15 days in a row.

This shouldn’t be difficult, as there’s a lot I want to say.  It’s true, I want people to be moved and educated and inspired and empowered by what I write.  But mostly, I want to do it because I want to do it.  And I believe that because I’ve wanted to write regularly for so long that I am meant to do it.  So there.

There is a lot I want.  Off the top of my head, I’ll say I want to sleep well and eat well and get (and stay) fit.  I want to (want to) exercise.  I want to be in nature more of the time, and be with the people I love even more than that.  I want to create and connect and learn and teach and grow and be me out loud.  And I want to help others do the same – if that’s what they want.

I want to make so much money that I am not only able to have the things and experiences that I want for myself, but I also want to be able to share it with others.   I want to share my things and experiences with those I love, and I want to give money to complete strangers, supporting people and causes I believe in.

I want, I want, I want. Sure, I want a lot.  And there’s a lot more than what I’ve mentioned here.  The paradox is that I am also very grateful for all I have  and am and all I am able to do.

One thing I am grateful right now is the fact that I just wrote for more than 15 minutes!  Thanks for being here for that.

I wish for you all that you want.  And I wish for you wanting what you want without judging or shaming yourself in any way.   By our very nature, we are human and divine, and inherent in that is paradox.  Embrace this paradox, and all others, if you can.  Life is far more enjoyable this way, for me at least.  And as a result, I feel so much more free to be me out loud.

Isn’t that a nice way to feel – free – here on the 5th of July?

Won’t you join me?

love,
Laura

PS On another note completely, there is a fabulous play by Lanford Wilson called Fifth of July.  He wrote lots of powerful plays worth looking into, if you’re so inclined…

 

 

What’s in a Name? Or, Why “Lala Land”?

Hello, my lovely,

Welcome to the place on my blog where you’ll find letters from me to you!  And now, to get us started, a little about the name of this category of posts…

As you may already know, the name I was given at birth was Laura Luck Overstreet.  I was named for my Great Aunt, Laura Jean Adams, although I never once heard her called that.  I only heard her greeted or referred to by her nickname, “Dimples.”  In addition to having a great smile, she was one brave lady, my “Aunt Dimps.”  Although she has been gone many, many years now, I still count her among those on my “Inner Board of Directors.”  She had countless interesting adventures, including serving in the Army Nurse Corps, in North Africa, during WWII.  That would be quite a job and a trek for me, even now, a grown “city girl,” in the “new millenium;” but for a “county girl” from Lavonia, Georgia, in the early 1940s, I’m sure it was nearly unheard of!  See why I still “call on her” for advice?

My middle name came from my mother, whose name at birth was Mary Annette Luck.  She never knew her father, Paul Booth Luck, but she chose to honor him and her heritage by giving me this name, too.  And I have always worn it proudly, and my mother set that example early.  When I was a little girl, and people heard my full name, they would often comment, “Laura Luck – how cute,” to which my mother would almost always reply, “It’s not cute.  It’s family!”

Whether family or cute, or both, it was a lot of name for a little girl.  Even when shortened to Laura Overstreet, it was a mouthful.  So, as kids often do, I shortened it even further, and for the longest time, when asked my name, I replied with pride, “Lala O’teet!”

Now, zoom forward with me about 25 or 30 years.  When I discovered the book, The Artist’s Way, and began doing art of all kinds, it was my “little girl” inside that was doing it, or at least helping the rest of my have permission to do so.  She is a part of me that is creative, curious, loving and awe-inspired.  And so, even though I, my adult, am the one writing these letters to you, I am giving her a nod, thanking her, and letting you know that no matter where I live, or what I am writing about, it will always be from Lala Land!

Be good to yourself today, and don’t forget to ask your “little girl” what she has to say.  My guess is that it’s quite a lot!

Much love,
Laura

 

PS Are you wondering about what this picture has to do with this post? I’ll tell you! Sometimes people say that when I’m in Lala Land, it’s because my head is in the clouds. What’s your version of Lala Land?