I so love this Scrapbook (Paper Crafting) site for the inspiration of using a single word as the focus. The current Word Up is "NO." Ronda gave such a poignant description of how this word has affected her life. I can say the same word has made such a difference in my life, too. A true must read! OLW: Word Up #49; NO. I so love working from sketches and I loved the sketch for Pencil Lines #129 this week. So be sure to check this sketch out and their awesome DT works of art! I also want to thank Kat, an online scrapping friend who just recently paid tribute to her parents. You can see her as a follower of my blog. Her post are much better written then this one. Your inspiration led to this layout, too!
For me NO does include the courage to say Yes to things we need to do.
I'm a parent. At times it hurt to say "No" to my children. At a time when we couldn't afford some of the things James and Lynn wanted, and deserved to have saying 'no' to them truly hurt me! I always believed in telling them why I said 'no.' I hated it when I asked why to my parents, I would get a response, 'Because I said so!' Both Lynn and James came back to me as young adults telling me they were glad they were told 'no.' They've learned that sometimes one just has to tell themselves 'no' to things.
I love my parents very much. The picture is one of the few taken without my brothers in the picture along with our parents. Actually it was taken in March of 1974 at Disney World. No Epcot, or the other parks existed back then. Just Disney World. I love this picture as my Dad passed away in 2005 and he was really having fun with us on this day. In so many ways I found out at my Dad's Memorial Service just what my Dad meant to my brothers in a way I'd never known. His good friends also let me know how wonderful a friend my father was. How supportive and how fair he was in all of his dealings with others at work or at play. My mother is still there for us, as she was when we were growing up. A SAHM who guided us and loved us. She still does the same today. What little time she had from house work, to being a soccer Mom for three kids all with different activities she gave of herself a volunteer paramedic to Clear Lake Emergency Medical Corp. She also gave of her time as a Girl Scout Leader, a Cub Scout Leader, Treasurer for ten years to Arabian Riders & Breeders Society, and 4-H Leader. At the age of 74 she is still Volunteering and in 2007 was named Volunteer Employee of the Year for Taylor Lake Village (the city in which she lives). She serves as TLV's Animal Control Officer. She is absolutely wonderful to the animals she has to pick up, finding the owners or if the animal was dumped she gets the animal enrolled in Second Chance Pets. Oh and I forgot she volunteers for them and is a foster home to at least one or two pets at all times. She was a great wife to my father, is a great mother to my brothers and I and wonderful friend.
My parents were parents first. They saw loving us meant raising us to be contributing members to society. We were taught "no" didn't mean yes. There were a host of things they would say no to as I have with my two children. At times like me I knew it hurt them terribly. But, I also know in my heart it was out of their undying and unconditional love for us. They were always fair in their dealings with us. I came to realize as the only girl, what held for me wasn't necessarily what held for my brothers. It wouldn't be until I was in college as a first semester freshman that I really understood why I was kept track of closer then my brothers. I even one night remember chastising James for leaving the movies in Lake Jackson and not waiting on his sister as they met there in separate vehicles. 'Don't you ever leave a young lady, never mind your sister and not make sure she gets home, ok!' I know I said some more things I could not repeat here to drive it home to my 20 year old son. I ended it with, 'You won't understand until you have a daughter of your own. Don't dare do it again!' Then when Lynn walked in the door, she got Mom's wrath, too! 'Don't you dare let a young man leave you to your own devices after dark, he is to escort you home even if it is in separate vehicles, do you understand!' Another dumbfounded look from my 21 year old. And on went the story....like with James. I am profoundly grateful for the things my parents said "no" to, I'm much more grateful when I look back at all of the now wonderful "no's" my parents said to me.
For seven years I worked for TDCJ as a Livestock Supervisor. Part of what my responsibilities were was to oversee inmates in the performance of their job assignments. And yes I worked in a male penitentiary. I once had a new employee ask me, "What's the best piece of advice you can give me?" My answer, "NO!" I added nothing more and received a look of, 'How could you!' Trust me it was a little more expressive then that! I then explained.
"I told you that way to make you understand saying "NO" is the one word you should say that makes it seem like it's the only word you can utter from your mouth. Say it and say it often! Do not get into the crap these inmates will try.
If your a female running around alone on 17,000 acres with anywhere from 1-50 inmates, you need to say that word and say it often. I even laughed one day when an inmate who worked for me for those seven years, told me I could say 'NO' more often then any boss on the farm. Boss is the terminology the inmates use for employee.
When I get done with the layout I'll put it up on this post. In the meantime think about what you want to say "NO" to, it can be a very positive word! Well the LO went up on the 10th, and I can think of another 10-15 no's I could describe that were really very positive ones.
Thank you OLW, Pencil Lines and Kat for the great inspiration you give to the followers of your blog!