Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Happy 19th Anniversary!!!!

Then....August 21st, 1993


Who knew on a fateful day 20 years ago while driving up the 805 freeway in San Diego, my life would change forever?! That was the day I met my husband and our future was set in motion. The story still amazes me. http://themanyshadesoflove.blogspot.com/2010/05/how-heck-did-you-two-meet-i-mean-she.html

Flash forward to today...August 21st, 2012...our 19th wedding anniversary! It's hard to believe that so much time has gone by. We have been through trials, tribulations and triumphs! Neither one of us would have ever imagined that we would be where we are today. We are friends, shoulders, lovers, parents, partners, soul-mates and so much more. There are days when we laugh, there are days when we cry and there are days when we drive each other crazy, but there is never, ever a day that goes by that we don't love each other completely. We don't take each other for granted and we realize how lucky and blessed we are to be together. 

Time has changed circumstances, but time has not changed us. We are more in love today than the day we got married. There is a deepness to that love that only time, heartache, life, happiness and challenges can bring. It's the getting through and making it out of the dark times that has truly allowed us to embrace the bright times with joy. 

I love my husband not just with all my heart, but deep to my soul. We fit so perfectly while also being totally different. It's a wonderful combination that works for us. We are two best friends from opposite worlds that continue to meet in the middle to build our beautiful life.

So today, on our 19th anniversary, I want to say thank you for the most amazing, life altering, fabulous, 19 years! Fate brought us together, love made us grow, strength and respect made us last.

I love you always and forever Jamie J.


Happy, happy anniversary! 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Out of the Box Christian

My Peaceful Space

Religion, it’s a recurring theme in my life. Just the other day I was in Starbucks, anxiously awaiting my Caramel Frappaccino (my other religion), when a very attractive black man in a suit came up to me and said, “Do you practice?” I wasn't sure what he was referring to, and at first I thought he was asking if I was a practicing attorney because this particular Starbucks is on the bottom floor of a law firm. He clearly saw the puzzled look on my face and pointed to my bracelet, and said, “Is that just an accessory or do you practice?” Ohhhh! I finally got it. My bracelet had Buddhas all over it and he wanted to know if I was a practicing Buddhist. I thought about it for a second and wondered if I should give this complete stranger my true beliefs on religion, or the quick and easy answer, which would have been, “I’m a Christian.” The easy answer, however, just does not cover the full story of how I feel about religion. I’m a Christian, but there is so much more to it than that. I decided to be open and give him the more. I said, “No I’m not a Buddhist, but I’m a very out of the box Christian, open to all religions. I practice bits and pieces of many religions, including  practicing some Buddhism, because in the end don’t we all want the same thing from whatever religion it is that we practice?” He literally looked at me, smiled, took my hand in both of his hands, and said, “Thank you, that’s exactly how I feel and I’m so very happy to meet you!” In that moment, two strangers understood that if we all open our minds and hearts to each other, the world would be a much more peaceful place. It was a pretty cool moment.

A few days after that, my sister and I were talking and she told me how she loved the fact that my friends were from so many different backgrounds, ages and religions. She is so right! My friends are a we are the world gumbo. I have friends that are Christian, Buddhist, Jewish, Mormon, Muslim, Atheist, Goddess, Universe, and I’m sure I’m missing something else, but you get the idea. I love them all. I respect them all. I’m thankful they are all in my life. Period.

As a child I was raised as a Lutheran -- I even taught Sunday school -- but as I got older I held on to some beliefs and let go of others, while opening my mind to so many more. Being in an interracial marriage automatically frees your mind. How could it not? We are living a life that is not the norm, but it’s a life filled with love, so why would a religion that is not my norm be any different?

Religion to me is now all about faith, peace, love, kindness, caring and giving. I pray to Jesus. I meditate to Buddha. I talk to God. I look to the Universe. It’s all good as far as I’m concerned! So when someone asks me what my religion is, I have to ask, “Do you really want to know?” If the answer is yes….well then….”I’m an out of the box Christian and so much more!

(Originally posted April, 2011)