By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee/@GeeGranny
Tiny houses ... unexpected acts of kindness ... no strings attached ... people caring when no one knows ... I am one of them. This is what is on my mind this morning. The only thing between me creating bigger miracles, acts of kindness is ... money :)
I do with what I have always wishing to do more ... and hoping no one thinks my little 'miracles' are ... jokes ... because they aren't 'big' enough. When I do something good ... I go on to forget ... I never-ever expect anything back ... and I don't need 'thank-yous' ... this is what I feel I've learned in my Life ... at this time and day. Do for others ... no one has to know ... never expecting anything back ... forget it.
Just like planting a garden ... if you plant beautiful flowers ... you will leave a wonderful path behind you as you go forward. Never stop ...
In my long lifetime, I have learned many things ... I know how people feel ... I have been on many journeys in Life ... many roads many of you have never traveled, or dreamed to. I never-ever talk about them ... they will go to the grave with me. I never feel the need to brag ... to force you to like me by telling you any of these things. You can either like me ... or dislike me ... accept me as I am. It's your choice ...
Some things I'm proud I was a part of ... some I am not so proud of at all ... but, to be the person I am today ( a good person, nothing more ) ... these were Lessons in Life that were thrown at me until ... I was pushed to the right path in my life. Damn ... so many years were wasted ... yet, not wasted at all. I learned the hard-ass way. I had to learn these things to be ... Me ... Gloria.
Some things have been my mistakes in Life ... I promise you I learned from them. When I say 'I know what you mean' ... you will know I honestly do and have experienced what you have. I don't say 'idle' words ... I say words that are real, meaningful. I listen to people who are used to saying 'I know what you mean' ... 'they don't know nothing.'
I heal each time I feel the good, happy feelings inside ... when I know something good has happened to you. It does my Heart good ... I love it. <3
I 'need' to hear, see, do good things ... I need to know good things happen to others, myself, my loved ones. Have you seen people who 'hate' when good things happen to others?
When I tell someone about anything I do, or have done ... I hope it makes someone begin thinking ... what they can do around them. Wouldn't it be something if everyone did this? I don't need to be told 'oh, what a wonderful person I am ... or how good you are!' I wonder if you look at Life like this? Do you look around, thinking like I do?
I know people who look blank when asked this ... their world is all they see. Their eyes are open, yet they can't see. Their minds are small ... never knowing what's past their back door ... do I knock them for being like this? How can I? Life will teach them their lessons ... just as it did me. It's not my place to force my beliefs on them. If somehow ... my actions, words 'happen' to touch, influence them ... in a good way ... I can only be honored.
I'm a person who has little ... who like everyone else ... tries to make it everyday. I try to look like I'm somebody when I know I am a mere person who really is nobody ... when I say that 'nobody' ... I don't mean it in a bad way. I am ... somebody to me, Skip and Pups, and people we know. I mean 'now' ... I've taken an interest in 'being pretty' again ... and doing the best with 'what's left of me' ... after my battles of grief, pain. I almost lost those battles, this time. I'm 'trying to work with' all that's left.
(These are the true faces of ... pure pain, grief ... a grieving mother who doesn't know she is in this world, and if she did ... it didn't make a damn difference ... she had lost her only child, her son. This is me when I completely let go ... didn't care for anything anymore ... I was the walking dead ... the only difference was that I was alive. If I had died, I would have never known it. I was already in Hell. Below are today's photos ... I wonder if you can see the difference in 'before' now photos ... before coming to peace, accepting my son's death? Can you see how at times 'I tried to come back' ... No one knows the battle I came through to be here today ... excepting for another grieving mother who also, made it back from the worse grief, pain in her whole life.)
I want to dress, look nice like all women ... the past 5 years since Tommy's (my only child) death ... I didn't think about trying to be pretty anymore. My beautiful clothes had been pushed to the back of the closet ... my hair has looked like 'pure hell' ... do you think I cared? I think you know the answer to that. All you have to do is to ask yourself that question.
Until recently ... this summer ... I began working on my weight ... trying to get back in the habit of putting a little makeup on each day ... dressing in something other than the damn-old 'fat' tee shirts, pants I'd been wearing 'too' long.
I have lost so far 37 lbs on my own ... no diet aids. I found by the time I began trying on clothes ... lots of them had price tags still on them ... they were too big. Skip and I decided to go to the flea market to take some 'clutter' to make room in the house. I took a lot of those 'big' clothes there ... I sold some ... and gave a giant pile of clothes to a woman, some were very expensive clothes ... clothes bought at a time we were doing well.
The beautiful clothes I have left now ... I am beginning to wear! I am getting compliments ... I am amazed. I'm going forward in appearance now ... I have come so far in my mental outlook ... coping with my grief. I've taken interest in myself once again!
I'm 'almost' seeing the person I knew in the mirror 'before' ... Tommy died. When I began getting more aware of everyday life several years after Tommy died ... my eyes began seeing this person I didn't recognize in my mirror. Oh my God ... where 'did I' go?
I began grieving also, over the loss of my youth ... I no longer looked pretty as I was used to looking ... I had ... become ... OLD! I have grieved over this for the past couple of years as I came to grips with the loss of Tommy. Truthfully ... I will tell you ... I am lucky to be here at all. Too much ... too much ... just way too much for this one person ... Now ... I don't have a living child ... and I have become OLD, ugly.
Thankfully, I went on to know there are more important things in life than just being physically pretty (it's hard to let go when you've always been ... I am being truthful here ... not at all vain). I can't tell you how it feels to age, 'lose your looks' ... but, I will begin to from time to time! :) I promise ... just as I promised to always tell you honestly about grief, pain when I experience it.
Oh ... now, when I get an opportunity to shop for a blouse or slacks ... instead of buying clothes at Walmart ... I go to a favorite shop ... look on their clearance racks, sales. I always find something with design 'at or about the same price of Walmart'!!! I'm so thrilled.
I've always went to Goodwill stores to look for books that are new! for only 49 cents! I always go to the shoe department and ever so often ... I find a new pair of very expensive shoes for $3.19!!! I just found a beautiful pair of B.O.C. shoes for that price. Laugh, if you want ... only the 'place' and price are different. I'll take 'cheap' any day for something ... quality. I'll admit it, also.
I don't pay much for clothes now ... I don't have the luxury of affording expensive clothes anymore. But ... not long ago ... I was so happy when someone said 'my clothes' were beautiful! I'm beginning to look better, feel happier! Those words meant more to me than anyone could know! I needed to hear, know that. Skip always tells me ... but, he thinks I'm beautiful when I'm ... ugly! :) <3
As for my jewelry ... I've had for years, and years. I don't always wear it so, it all looks ... new! I learned to put it up when doing housework years ago. I knocked a diamond out years ago ... when the washing machine lid fell on my hand ... I learned my lesson but, it was the hard way ... I did the very same thing ... twice, after having it replaced! I still have a diamond to replace in one ring ... so, that's why I put my jewelry up. I never know what craft, or project 'I could get into' ... that could damage.
I always stop to remind everyone that I am just me. Why do I do that? Because I don't feel I'm deserving sometimes, of the special words you all say to me. I always worry about on Facebook of appearing to be more than I am ... I promise you I'm not. I'm not wealthy ... and I 'want' everyone to know that. It's easy to appear that way in photos shared on Facebook. You can make everything look so neat, nice and 'look like you are somebody' ... even if you 'have nothing'. You know ... we want others to see the best of 'us'.
I see, know people who have re-invented themselves on Facebook ... and I know better (I keep it to myself). I know they aren't a bit more what they project themselves to be. Everyone wants to feel, be important. Everyone wants to give the illusion they are 'somebody'.
If I'm honest, sincere ... then, when I meet someone ... they'll see exactly what I am, no surprises or disappointments ... they'll see only ... Me ... Gloria ... no more, no less. Just a person who doesn't have to pretend to be more than I am. It's just too tiresome to ... pretend, so disappointing to discover someone is ... otherwise. In the end ... not worth it. When one gets OLD ... they should know these things! :)
I don't have to impress anyone ... God, at the years wasted as a young woman ... I thought I had to look 'just right' ... be so 'extra-beautiful' ... starve myself to keep a 'perfect' figure ... I thought I 'had' to do this in order for others to like, love me. Love me, they did! I learned the difference when I began to live in the real world ... everyday people.
Those people are 'above' ... everyday people. They look down their snooty noses at 'real' ... it's not 'perfect' enough. Of course, through time when I began to become 'real' ... I was no longer looked at ... I couldn't be seen ... I wasn't 'beautiful anymore, I wasn't good enough ... my light didn't shine that bright anymore. I'm left with memories.
There was love ... not a lasting, real love ... but, in a room of beautiful people where that's all that mattered was being beautiful ... I can smile and say this with all sincerity (not vain at all ) ... 'there was a time when I could take a room' ... when I 'made an entrance'. :) Every eye would be drawn ... to me. I used to be told I was a 'queen' ... 'every eye goes wherever you go' ... and such things.
These are things a 'beautiful' person never lets people 'know' they know ... nor are spoken of. Since I write ... I can write anything, even the ... truth. A beautiful person takes all this for granted ... they know everyone loves how they look.
Maybe I was ... vain ... to a degree! I'm smiling now ... 'those were the days!' ... when 'beauty' was most important. See ... that's 'why' it's hard to cope with realizing one is getting OLD! That's 'why' one grieves over their youth! That's 'why' when my eyes opened to an OLD woman in my mirror ... caused such extra grief in my Heart until ...
(True face of grief, pain of a grieving mother ... life got too real ... too much for one mother to have to live with ... she either has to cope, accept with the knowledge her child is gone ... or go on and let go. I, thankfully ... chose to live ... to accept, cope in the most positive way I know how ... to write my grief away, make golden, beaded dragonflies and leave them as a surprise for someone to find joy in discovering a treasure. Look at how my face has changed ... do you 'see how I got lost from ... myself? When I began to become aware at times of myself ... I didn't know the person looking back at me from my mirror.)
When months, and months went by ... I realized that Life has to be like this. This is a part of life, becoming older. I've had my time ... it's time for others. I needed to accept getting OLD ... take what I 'had left' and do the best with it I can! I began thinking I'm a good person ... that's what's important. I have begun to 'see' ME in my mirror ... once in a while! I see ... Me! again! I see 'kindness' in my eyes ... I see what I want to see on my face ... a 'good' look.
I don't see ugliness, bitterness, meanness on my face ... I'm determined to grow OLD ... gracefully. I meant to do that all along ... if I made it to be OLD. I'm so fortunate, thankful to be here. I earned every year ... so, if I don't look pretty enough for someone ... too damn bad ... I've fought battles just to live that you know nothing about ... if you think like that ... it doesn't bother me at all. I don't hate you ... we all have to think ... thoughts of something. And ... it's okay if you don't like me ... you never need worry that I'll 'get in your life' ... I am a private person ... I mind my business, stay in my life ... that's all I can handle ... it's been more than enough.
You can think I'm a Dreamer ... doesn't matter to me ... this is the real Gloria. I do know what's reality ... dreams. We all have to have dreams, hopes ... or we have no reason to go on. We all have to help in our small, big ways when we can ... or we as people will just collapse, hate, be bitter, mean, ugly. Facebook ... this is what's on my mind this morning. <3
I project myself to be ... just me, Gloria. I am nobody ... yet, I am somebody. I have big wishes that may be impossible to transpire in my life ... I am not an imposter. I sure am not perfect ... I'm just everyday. I'm nice, mean, ugly, beautiful all the time ... sometimes, one more than the other.
The one thing I can promise about me ... I'm a good person, I care .... I'm basically honest, though once in a while I will tell a 'white lie'. :) I do that to help more than hurt others.
Why do I tell anyone these things? Because I don't want anyone to think I'm so perfect, good. Like my drawings .... there are many imperfections ... I can only do my best. I can say if I chose a friend truly like myself ... I would be so happy. Can everyone say that? I do like myself as a person ... though sometimes, truthfully ... I don't if I am mean, ugly ... say anything to hurt anyone. I'm the one who has to live with myself! I can't take a break from ... Me.
I'm glad I'm a private person ... so, I don't take the chance of saying anything to hurt another person ... never meaning to. If I ever do unintentionally ... it torments me until I make amends.
Oh ... if I make mistakes when writing ... you can see more imperfections. After all , I warned you ... I am NOT perfect ... I used to want to be ... tried to be exactly perfect for 3 years ... I wasted all that time ... to make others like me! When one woman was jealous of me ... said something hurtful ... it almost devastated me!
Well ... it opened my eyes to being something I truly wasn't ... because when I got out of sight of the 'world' ... at home ... no one saw how imperfect I was! I was unhappy because I stayed hungry ... I couldn't wait to get the damn high heels, dresses, panty hose off!
I was 'so perfect' that if I wasn't dressed just right ... had the most beautiful of clothes on my 'perfect' body ... every hair 'just right', make-up on ... I couldn't even put one foot outside my door! I couldn't even run to the mailbox, go to just a store unless ... I was 'just right'. Heck, I wouldn't have dared to stand outside on the step unless ... all was 'Perfect' on Me.
If I ate one mouthful too much ... I ran to the mirror and I could 'see' the weight it put on ... I would feel so HUGE ... I was a size 6-9. I couldn't function until I starved enough to feel tiny again. I was ... PERFECT.
The torture both mentally, physically ... I could never describe it to you in words. Needless to say ... when my eyes opened to the fact that no matter how 'PERFECT' I tried to be ... both in appearance, actions, deeds ... there was always that one someone who would say something mean, bad, ugly.
The day I began to quit trying to win a losing war ... I took a sigh of relief ... I began to be ME ... Gloria. A real person. I'm not saying my life began to be better ... grief, pain, and many 'bad' things have happened to throw me into many shocks through all my years. How I have survived them ... I can only say through sheer determination ... my Grandma Alma's fighting spirit ... and the will to live.
So, Facebook ... this is what's on my mind this morning! Colors, dreams, wishes and hopes ... in my Life. Sharing with others the true faces of pure grief ... and recovering from it within the last five years. I never knew I would ... I pray I give hope to another grieving mother.
Note by this Author:
These true thoughts are exactly what's on my mind this morning, Facebook! Reflections ... wishes ... dreams, hopes ... lessons learned in Life, true colors of my Life ... Me ... Gloria.
I have been looking back at how people saw ... me ... during the time I was at my very worse. They thought I was just trash walking around ... I looked so damn bad. They looked down ... on Me. I never bothered to tell them I was a walking vessel of pure grief, pain. I truly don't think they'd cared.
I looked just like I really was ... in Hell. Even I am amazed today ... at my faces of grief. I will do a story with lots of photos to compare ... see, I can also, 'see' ... when I share with you. Like you ... I can hardly believe the difference. Didn't I really come so far ... I traveled many roads to get to today ... I made it!
All photos, words are written, owned by me ... Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee/@GeeGranny on Twitter.