All that is Good




I allowed my anniversary to pass without much fanfare, mostly because I wanted to sit back and consider all that had happened in the past year. Where I began and why, what caused me to start and what has changed for me, in large part since I began exploring pieces of myself I didn’t think to explore. This past year has truly been an exercise in redefining my limits and boundaries. I have wandered paths I long since allowed to be overgrown and choked off. I also rediscovered my love of research, history and yes you might have guessed the sociology within politics.

There were things I knew, things I intellectualized but had never spoken aloud. There were other things I knew, a history buried so deep in my soul despite my tough girl exterior I still allowed those hurts to define me. In these pages I began to speak the words, some of them made me weep for days. Some of them made me so angry all over again I could not speak aloud for hours after writing them down. Yet I hit the publish button and it was as if each time I released a piece of myself, comforting myself there was another door in the oubliette of my mind no longer hidden, no longer under lock and key.

When I started I didn’t know I would delve deeply into my history. Even today I don’t know that I could tell you why I did, except it was time. I was made brave by others I met in this wonderful world, others who were not afraid, who stunned me with their courage and their kindness, such as:

Then there are those perfect places of rest and peace. I find them and think, ahhh I am home for a minute and can breathe. When I see there is something from one of these wonderful bloggers I smile just a little then rush right over to read.

We all have places to laugh, giggle, argue and debate. In some cases a mix of personal stories, political shenanigans and the world around us is just what is needed to keep us connected. Certainly, despite what it may seem like to some, even I need that cool wind to blow and make me giggle, some of these marvelous bloggers do just that!

There is one other blogger who I have to send out enormous hugs and great heaping mounds of gratitude to, without her I might not have continued forward. Without her I would have given up, frequently. She has been my bulwark, my voice on the other end of the phone and I am afraid I have burned her ear sometimes with my rants.

Red over at

I wanted to say to all the bloggers who follow me, I am so grateful. For the time you take to read and comment, I appreciate it is your time and you give some of it to me. To all the bloggers who have given their time and energy, who have taught me to let go and soar, thank you; I will never be able to express what it has meant to me to learn, your lessons have been invaluable. To all my new friends, I am so grateful for your warmth, humor and welcome.

This past year has seen me let go of some very old hurts. No, it hasn’t truly healed them, simply allowed me to let them go. This year has also allowed me to find new pathways to old and slightly damaged relationships, without the lessons I have learned here and from some of you I might never have found the strength and courage to reach out and rebuild those bridges, for this I am grateful. Over this past year I have also learned, much to my chagrin I need to apologize more often for my razor sharp tongue, ouch. I have been reminded to say “I love you” and to hug, even if the hug is remotely.

Perhaps most importantly I have learned not to ignore my feelings. Not to find another room in the dungeon of my mind and throw those pesky emotions inside under lock and key. I have learned my emotions will not slice and dice me leaving nothing remaining of who I thought I was, or pretended to be. I have begun to be a complete person again, while I still don’t wear my heart on my sleeve I might consider a tattoo of one someday.

I let my anniversary pass, mostly because I wanted to think about the past year and what it has meant to me. What changes this year has brought about. I have been in a funk this year and couldn’t put my hand on why, finally last week I figured it out (more on this later). This post is all about gratitude, I have much to be thankful for; while I may never be enpoint again my soul has begun to soar.


  1. happy blog anniversary, Val! Thanks so much for the shout-out. I honestly don’t know what I would have done without discovering this community of amazing people (like you). It’s changed my life in so many positive ways. I know that sounds hokey but it’s true.

  2. Deborah the Closet Monster says:

    Thank you–for including me in this post, but more than that, for writing this post. For being here. For making my world better, and the world better, for that–no matter how you feel on the inside–you truly do with your honesty, eloquence and compassion.

  3. Happy Anniversary!!!! What a beautiful and generous way to share it. : ) You need a bigger tiara. ; )

  4. Happy blog birthday, Val! And thank you so much for the comment you left for me this evening. I SOOOOO appreciate it. Will respond to it in the am. Have to run now. Just wanted to say thank you “in person”–so to speak.

  5. Val: Happy belated blog anniversary! I just stopped by to see what you were doing and imagine my surprise and joy to see you had listed my blog as one that makes you giggle. That made my day! One of the reasons I started the blog was to bring laughter via intelligent storytelling with poignient messages to women whose struggles in life would bring you to your knees once you knew their stories. You are such a woman and I am honored to have brought you joy in any shape, form, or fashion because your stories have underscored what courage, forgiveness, and tenancity actually mean. Also, I love the two dance pictures you used. May I ask who the artists are? Cheers!

    • I do not know who the artists are, there is a facebook site called Megaphoto that I absolutely adore, I borrowed them both from there and unfortunately neither were referenced. I did link the photos back to the facebook site though, browse through, it is fabulous.

      You make me giggle, you also make me think. I wait each week for you to post and happily attend any and all your invitations to read. I am so happy to have found you and gratified you threw out the welcome mat.


  6. Val I am so pleased your Soul has begun to soar….. Long my you keep flying my friend…. Life truly is a roller-coaster journey, but each up and down all part of the ride.. I am so pleased you hung on and now you can soar with both hands up in the air… As you Let go.. and let the ride take you to its destination..

    Love and Hugs to a lady who I know has Wings! 🙂 xxxxx Love Sue xxxx

  7. The road ahead can sometimes seem unapproachable and yet with strength and resolve those very same steps forward can be realised. It is nice to know that you have grasped the nettle and pushed ahead, small steps at first leading to a discovery and an exploration into your own thoughts and inner feelings.

    Conquering those fears has already given you the promise of enlightenment, a chance to reach out and expand physically and psychologically with a fresh outlook, one that has already lifted your spirits and will continue to do so as your positivity strengthens. I find you to be a very nice young woman that offers a great deal, and I wish you very well my sweet friend.

    Andro xxx

  8. You are kind, generous and the most selfless person I know, Valentine. Thank you so much for the mention even though I haven’t been as punctual or regular as I would like.

    I hope you believe you’ve made progress this year, in that your soul is more free since the beginning of this past year.

    • It is indeed more free. It is also a bit less tumultuous, this I have many people to thank for yourself included. I could have gone on and on, with my list there are so many. You are one of those who have been here nearly from the beginning, lifting me up making me smile and holding out your hand.


  9. This is a wonderful post from the heart, but in combination with a Blogoversary and Thanksgiving, priceless! I agree with Elyse’s words, plus I scared of disagreeing with her. Meanwhile, keep soaring! …. love the last pic and I’m touched that you included me in your list.

    • Elyse can be scary, nah not really. I am glad I found you Frank so if I can share you that is what we are supposed to do, isn’t it?

      • And I am glad I have found you as well. After all, kindness and respect have no bounds – thus thanks to those who embrace that through blogs. …. and thanks for what you have given us!

  10. frigginloon says:

    Ah, like Red, you are a real treasue Valentine. An enormous hug for including me on your list. Spring cleaning of the soul can sometimes be confrontational but when the dustman picks up all that unwanted garbage and disappears down that road, you can breathe a sigh of relief knowing you won’t be seeing that trash anytime soon. What a marvelous way to end the year. xxx

  11. –What a great group of bloggers. So pleased they’ve inspired you to move forward, Val. Xx

  12. Wonderful post, Val. There is something so utterly rivetting and utterly moving when someone writes from their heart, with total honesty.
    This is why your blog is such compelling reading, whatever you write about….

    • Thanks Valerie, I do so hope you are doing well and everything is peaceful or as peaceful as possible. I miss your writing so much but continue to hold you and your husband up to the light and keep you in my thoughts.


  13. WordsFallFromMyEyes says:

    This is a wonderful post. Funny how we end up writing more than we realise we would ever touch upon.

    I love that I know a fair few of those links you mentioned. That’s great – I agree with you about them 🙂

    That picture at the beginning is just so choice, really choice. Happy anniversary ANYhow !

  14. My dearest sister,
    I have sunscreen on my ear, never fear.

    When we first talked about your blog, neither of us knew you would still be at it come blogoversary time, even if I had a sneaking suspicion you would be splashing ducky feet and plotting the next year. I have gotten to share you with many wonderful souls.

    I am so very proud of you and all you do. Happy Anniversary. I love you,

  15. Happy belated anniversary to you, Val!
    This is a very enjoyable post with many new links of wonderful sites…thanks for sharing them!
    Also, thank you for including me in your list.
    Have a wonderful day, and weekend! 🙂

  16. Happy anniversary!

  17. What a lovely post. Thank you so much for including me! What a treat to find. And the gratitude goes right back atcha. 🙂

  18. I am honored, Val, to be included in this list of lovely vulnerable sharing spirits – starting with you. Happy anniversary, and I look forward to seeing your soul soar through the next year. xoxo

  19. Val! I am so honored to have made your list. And I have been thinking about which people impact me the most, make me smile for an upcoming post! I’m amazed to see how many people we have in common! We really are a small little world after all! 😉 That said, there are a few people with whom I am not familiar, so I need to hop over there and check them out. I hope as the end of this year winds down that you start looking forward to all the good things that are ahead of you. I, too, have noticed much growth since I have been following you.

    Which is really cool! 😉

    • It is a slog sometimes and then we just jump in with both feet and realize, huh the water isn’t so bad after all; think I will back float for a bit.

      Renee, you have caused me to smile and to think. I am happy to have found you and thus to share you. There is no better thing to do I think, then to say thank you and spread the word.

  20. I read some of the bloggers on your list 🙂

  21. Happy Belated Anniversary, Val. Blogging is a bit of therapy for all of us, but I am glad you’ve told your stories and that it has helped. Many answers occur to me when I purge on these pages, and I see that in many of your posts too.

    Thank you for sharing your life stories. Thank you for your analytical take on politics. Thanks for being my bloggin’ buddy!

  22. Reblogged this on One Hot Mess(age) and commented:
    This post touched me beyond words, and it beats any of the blog awards that I get, and really need to respond to properly. Thank you so much, Val! Also, you will find here some of my own very favorite blogs!

  23. Running from Hell with El says:

    I am so happy to be reading this, my friend!! And honored. Now I’m smiling, and thinking of you and feeling so very grateful for having you in my life. Love you!

    • Oh El, you so often make me think, smile, giggle and then think again. You have also made me brave beyond words more often than I can tell you. I am glad you are smiling! I love you as well, I hope I tell you that often enough you are one of my heroes.


  24. OneHotMess says:

    Wow, Val, just wow and thank you so much. I am so grateful for you, as well. You are so lovely, just know that! Xoxoxo

%d bloggers like this: