Monthly Archives: March 2016

Unexpected Hugs


There are days when writing is very difficult. I sit here and I think and think and think and nothing comes to my mind. So, I close up the laptop and go on about my business. I don’t stress out or over think things on days when I know I really don’t have anything to say…and then there are days like today when the thoughts never stop! I have enough material for three blog posts plaguing my brain at once…so I’ll probably get them all written today! Ha!

This one is going to be about unexpected hugs. I won’t lie, yesterday was one of the most stressful days I have had since September. I got really upset…twice. And, I got really happy and excited more than that. It was just an emotional roller coaster day to say the least. Thankfully, I had people around me that listened, encouraged, and hugged me until I felt better. It almost seems strange now that just when I needed a hug the most…boom! There they were.

I started my day by going to vote. It was the first time I have voted by myself in seventeen years. I felt very alone and very unsure of myself as I walked into that room. I missed having Greg beside me at the table telling the ladies which ballot we needed. I missed signing my name below his on that blue paper. I missed walking to the table with him and filling out my ballot beside him. I just missed him period.

Y’all know how it is in a small town right? When you go to vote you see a lot of people! Well, in my small town I seem to know a lot of people. So, when I walked in to vote I got about fifteen hugs…no joke. Every time I looked around someone else was coming over to speak and give me a hug. Reason number 72,460,846 why I love this town!

Later, I spent the day with a friend who is quickly becoming someone whom I depend on a whole lot. I am amazed at how God puts people in my life at the exact moment I need them. It’s pretty neat actually. There will be a blog post about this later…wink, wink! Some of the people who have entered my life lately are amazing and y’all will absolutely hear more about it in time.

Anyway, around 4:00 yesterday afternoon, I got a phone call that made me pretty upset. I had no earthly idea about the topic before I answered the phone. When the call ended my friend saw that I was visibly upset and hugged me. No words were needed, just a hug to say I am here and I care. Those kind of hugs are the best.

Last night, I tossed and turned for most of the night. I didn’t really sleep because I was just too mad and upset. I don’t like secrets or cover ups…and I found out yesterday that my dear husband had tried to protect me by not telling me something FIVE years ago.


I know he thought it was best not to tell me at the time and I am sure he never planned on dying before he had it taken care of…but that didn’t happen. Now, I get to try to figure it all out by myself.

Double stinking ouch.

So, today I have tried to work it all out in my brain. I have talked to a couple of friends and I have listened to sound advice from people I trust. I wrote a Facebook post that was very honest and from the heart. I prayed for God to give me the answers I needed to proceed in the right manner. I also prayed that I would find it in my heart to forgive Greg even though I am sure he only did what he thought was right at the time…Five years ago! I mean, what in the world is a person supposed to do when they are fighting mad at someone who happens to be dead? I personally had no stinking idea.

Then, I went to Walmart.

I’m not sure why or how this man knew that I needed a hug today, but I got one. I was standing by the butter waiting on a lady (who had to be at least in her 80’s) to choose the butter that she wanted. Her sweet husband was standing by the buggy to her left and I was behind her in the aisle. I smiled at the lady and then at her husband as I stood there waiting. The man smiled back at me and then slowly walked towards me. He leaned on the basket of my buggy and asked me if I had been hugged today. I smiled and said, “No sir, I sure have not”. Then, he said, “Would you like to be?”

I glanced over at his wife and she was grinning from ear to ear.  I said, “Why, Yes! Yes, I would like that very much!” He held his arm out and I walked into his warm hug. He hugged me tightly and said, “God Bless you,  Child” then turned back towards his wife.

I just stood there kind of stunned. I mean it was so unexpected and so nice. I felt the weight of my anger towards Greg just kinda slip away at that moment. God had just given me the sign that I needed to know that He was not surprised like I was with the news I got yesterday. My husband had tried to protect me from a mistake he had made that he thought would upset me. I know that and I love him for trying to make something right that he had messed up. Bless him. He was always trying to take care of me…and infuriate me at the same time. Five months after his death…he is still doing those same two things!

Not five minutes later, I rounded the corner of the water aisle and saw a friend of mine. He said he wanted to tell me how much my writing had helped him. We talked for a good ten minutes and the whole time I was just in shock by how much my story had impacted him. He had even talked to his own wife this very morning about something he felt needed to be said after he read my post. I was humbled and surprised by him telling me about it to say the least.

I have said this before, but I will say it again now. I don’t know why God has chosen to use me like He is right now. I don’t know why I have had to walk the path I am walking at the moment. What I do know is that I will continue to seek God’s face through the storm. I will never get to the point where His will isn’t important to me. The things I write about come from Him…and I am just trying to be obedient to His will. Today, I got to see a small little sliver of how He is using me to help other people…and I got the gift of a sweet hug as a reward.

I hope this will be helpful to someone out there reading this blog. I hope you can see that no matter what the storms of life are tossing at you…God cares. I hope that when you look at me and you hear my story…you see God’s Amazing Grace. I don’t deserve to be His messenger, but I am honored that He has chosen me to do the hard stuff. Why? Because, I know that the blessings He keeps giving me are worth the pain it takes to receive them. I don’t always like being in the battles of life, but I do enjoy the unexpected hugs that remind me to just keep going.

And that’s the point y’all…just keep going! Life is worth living…and loving. If I can say that after the day I had yesterday…you can believe it! Let your emotions come through and deal with them. Don’t push them aside and try to ignore them, because that only creates more problems. We all have to dig down deep and deal with each new thing as it comes. I am figuring out that I see the real blessings in life much more clearly when I allow myself to do the hard work of truly dealing with life’s issues. And, when I say that I love my life and all of the people in it…I mean it from the bottom of my heart!

I am amazed, inspired, excited, and nervous as I look at my life. However, it is not easy and it is not simple. Is yours?

Exactly! That’s my point…we all have drama and problems. We all have crap to deal with that we would just rather not think about most of the time. All of us have issues.

Every. Single. One. Of. Us.

God is showing me that the blessings in life come from embracing the problems and looking for the rewards among the rubble. However, we can’t rely on our own strength to survive the storms. We have to rely on His. And sometimes, His strength comes from an eighty-something year old man in the middle of Walmart. Kinda cool huh?