Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Nitty.Gritty. invitation for you~

First of all, I have to admit that when I re-read my blog posts somedays I realize the depth of my words even more than when I type them out. It's sort of strange, but true. For the record, I don't always talk the way I write. I mean really, I can't recall the last time I said the word "sought" in real life (have you used it in a sentence lately?!), but it totally fit what I had to say a couple of days ago. Just had to note that for the record.
Next, I'm serious when I talk about all the thinking and reflecting going on in my head these days. I think it's partly because of some of you too. You see, besides the comments left each day on this blog, I get several emails each week from readers like you. Old and new, rarely have I ever met any of you, nor will we likely meet in the future. But blogging creates a certain connection. Even as a communication graduate, I'm not sure what to call this relationship, but it's definitely real.
Beth, emailed me a digital scrap layout that she said was inspired by my blog and Teagan. I love it when someone feels led for whatever reason, to share with me their story of how my life has touched theirs. This particular layout (using Rhonna Farrer's Tattoo "something" kit) made me stop and think. I realized how important it is for all of us to be sharing our stories with one another as we walk through life. We gain insight and meaning and purpose when we share the important parts of us with others.
There are so many of you who have left nice comments and sometimes you send a picture or two, or tell me about a product that you bought that made you think of me or my story. You know who you are...you've walked up to the barista at your local Starbuck's and as you say, "non-fat, coconut latte, venti, extra hot, please", you can't help but think of Nitty.Gritty. Right?!
So, here's my latest quirky challenge for you. Drop me an email- nitty.grittyjody@yahoo.com or leave me a comment, on a specific thing you do or say differently in your life because of me and my blog. It doesn't have to be life-changing, but it can be. If you can take a picture of an item, or scrap a layout with some journaling, I will post it here. On Nitty.Gritty.
My hubby's gonna think I'm looking for people to gush about me or get emails that will make all the love you have for me go to my head. This happens to be one of the times in his life he is wrong. =) {Love ya, Chip!} I just think it's a neat thing to see how one person's life can affect another- especially when it's a good thing. So, if you're up to it, I'd love to hear from you.
To get you started, I'll share a couple of ideas. One blogger (Stephanie T...what a sweet lady and we've never met) left comments on occasion, and on the day we marked Teagan's birthday, she happened to be having a party for her own son. She had candles on the cake that spelled out "Happy Birthday", and she took a picture and told me that when she lit the "T", she did it in memory of Teagan. And it just so happened it was the one purple candle in the bunch. Yep...that was Teagan's favorite color. Her email warmed my heart and made me smile that day.
Finally, some of you know that Andy W. and I share a unique friendship. We could sit and sing with him playing his guitar and the two of us harmonizing old hymns for probably a whole afternoon and never tire of it. Besides that, he and his wife have been there for Chip and I since he saw us at the Gaylord ER the day of our incident. Actually, they've been with us in the ER or watching our kids when one of us has been in the ER more times than they care to have been - dear people- and yet they're still our friends. That's how great of friends they are!
Anyway, back to my point. Back in February, I wrote a limerick on this blog and asked everyone to have fun writing their own. I personally emailed Andy and asked him to write a limerick- he's so great at poems and stories, oh, yeah, he writes songs too. Instead of a limerick, he wrote an ode to me. I just seems fitting for me to post it now. I hope he still means every word of it. But really, it's not me. It's been about God and me relying on Him since I was just a kid. But I still think this is a sweet poem. Now, if I could just get Chip to write me something. (hint...hint.)

ODE TO JODY
ITS TIMES LIKE THESE WHEN WE REFLECT
ON FRIENDSHIPS WE HOLD TRUE
OF THOSE WHO MAKE US LAUGH AND CRY
WHICH BRINGS MY THOUGHTS TO YOU

FOR SURE WITH YOU I'VE LAUGHED AND CRIED
I HOLD THOSE MEMORIES DEAR
MY ONLY HOPE IS THAT THESE TIMES
CONTINUE YEAR TO YEAR


I KNOW THE PEAKS AND VALLEYS THAT
HAVE FILLED YOUR MANY THOUGHTS
I KNOW THE BLESSINGS AND THE PAIN
THAT LIFE YOUR DAYS HAS WROUGHT

I WAS THERE THAT DAY YOUR OLDEST CHILD
WAS SNATCHED AWAY FROM YOU
I WISHED SO BAD TO HEAL YOUR PAIN,
AND HELP TO PULL YOU THROUGH


I'VE SEEN YOU GROW THROUGHOUT THE TOIL
YOU'VE GONE AGAINST THE GRAIN
FORGIVING THOSE THAT CAUSED A VOID
FORGIVING THOSE THAT CAUSED THE PAIN

AND NOW YOU DAILY PRAISE YOUR GOD
FOR ALL THE GIFTS HE GIVES
YOU'VE TOUCHED OH SO MANY LIVES
WITH JUST THE WAY YOU LIVE


YOUR LIFE IS NOW A BLESSING
FOR ALL THE WORLD TO SEE
YOUR FAITH HAS REACHED SO MANY LIVES
INDEED IT HAS REACHED ME

THANK YOU JODY FOR ALL YOU DO
AND TO ALL WHO READ THESE LINES
BE GRATEFUL TO HAVE CROSSED THE PATH
OF THIS PRECIOUS FRIEND OF MINE

10 comments:

glo-girl said...

:)

Sweet-ness.

Anonymous said...

Jody, you certainly have a 'way with words'....I so enjoy reading what you have to say.

The loss of your daughter I imagine has changed your whole outlook on life....death has not touched me in the depth...I often wonder how I would accept such a loss...

So as this month moves on towards the 29th your heart must brace you for the impact of the memories...I can only pray for you and I will.

Lauren said...

Amazing, just amazing.
Lauren

Anonymous said...

You have been through so much. I know God only gives us what we can handle. There are the times now when something seems like a big deal to me, all I have to do is think of what you have been through and it keeps things in perspective. You are a great role model to us all. Keep up the attitude!
Becky

Anonymous said...

Jody, there are no words for the pain you must endure--why these things happen is so hard to grasp-

I want to learn from you and from the trials you go through-- thanks for allowing me to get to know you,
a mom

amy j. said...

I think the main thing reading your words has done for me is to try and realize how I can be too sensitive when it comes to my kids, meaning get frustrated over the things that kids do etc. My daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes last year so I can relate very much to your feelings, just on a different level. You deal with the loss of your child. I deal with the fear of losing mine. Both are lifelong, for us both. She will always have Type 1, therefore I will always be fearful of losing her. That's hard, as you can imagine. But in reading your words, the pain of what you've gone through, I try and realize that though I am scared of the "what ifs", I have her. I can't live my life fearful of losing her because that's nothing in comparison to what I'd feel if I did...ya know. You help me put things in perspective. I can easily understand your pain because it's my biggest fear, if that makes sense. You remind me to not do that...to enjoy everything and live as happily as I can because we can do nothing to change what comes our way. I seriously have thought so much about the day you lost Teagan recently...the fact that you didn't have a clue. It's like that Tracy Chapman song, "Would You Change"...if you knew this was your last day, would you change. I'd have to say yes to that alot...on the days I'm just not paying attention to my actions, being ill or short, or just going through the motions. I would regret that hugely if that was mine or my children or husband's last day. It's hard, for sure, to live consciously like that. But knowing your story, it makes me want to attempt it. You can always say, "If only" about things such as what happened to you, like you wrote. Like the changing seats or not going to the restaurant. But really, other than the fact that might have changed the outcome, it's not something you feel bad about because there is no reason to. But, if you'd lost your temper with Teagan over something insignificant before she was killed...that would haunt you. That is something you can control. That's what you've made me realize. I'm really working on it. I can't change what is in the cards for me. But I sure can change the way I am...the way I treat others...how I react to things. Thanks for that. This blogging thing goes two ways by the way...I encourage you or any of your readers to leave me comments on my blog is they stop by. I can see where people come to visit from your blog, but alas, few ever stop to say something in a comment :(. I consider you, and really all the blogs I visit, friends. While else would I be interested in your lives, right?

stephanie said...

go here to see the picture from Benjamins party www.homegrownhospitality.typepad.com...thank you for mentioning it..it was a specific moment I will not forget...I was just doing a doodling piece of artwork for a friends daughter and when I asked her the middle name...well, I gasped when she said the name...you know...the only other time I have ever heard the name TEAGAN....love you and pray for you often.

shawnna said...

:) i am going to email you - hopefully sometime today

Portia said...

Jody, Jody, Jody!

What can I say? You inspire me so much!

~You remind me to be a better mom. A more loving mom. The mom who hugs and kisses even when she's feeling overwhelmed.
~You remind to be patient-- even if my son has covered the bathroom floor in tub water for the 5th time this week. ;)
~You remind that it will be okay. Everything will be okay.
~You remind that even though we don't know why that things happen for a reason.
~You remind me to continue to love my daddy (even though he's in Heaven) and to keep myself in "good grace" so that I can see him someday!
~You remind me to smile about the little things.
~You remind me it's okay to stop and grab a Starbucks for ME.

I could go on and on. Even though I don't "know" you, I feel like I do. You have given me soooo much strength.

I love your words, your entries, your blog. You are beautiful with a gorgeous family!!

I laugh about what Chip thinks. My husband thinks it's crazy that I read blogs and actually leave comments for people I've "never met". He just doesn't get it when he walks into the room and I've got tears on my cheeks after reading an entry...

The words you write are from the heart-- there's no better place... other than Heaven!

Hugs from Oregon!

Shelly said...

Because of you, I remember to live my life and count every second as precious.