Funny how the world sees "real women. . ."

Evidenced by all the Real Housewives of. . . shows which seem to be overtaking our televisions, it appears that the world believes we should all be wealthy, pampered, enviable, catty, curvaceous, gorgeous, and more. While we may be gorgeous, most of us are not rich or spoiled or even catty. We are ~ simply put ~ real.

The idea for this blog came after watching a few of those real housewives shows and realizing just how skewed the views of everyday life can be through the eyes of these women. Particularly to those of us in the trenches, working day-in-day-out to take care of ourselves, our children, our parents, our spouses/partners. Those of us who are out there earning a living, who may be dealing with catastrophic events or troubled children or medical issues or partner concerns.

This is a call to all women everywhere who live everyday lives and who want to simply do their best as they love all, laugh often, and live fully. Let us unite with our whole heart and soul, with humanity and grace, with vigor and hope. We are women and we are thankful to be so!

Monday, April 25, 2011

My Monday Hero - Tremendous Trish!

Of all the women I have met in this awesome island town, I have to say that Trish is one of the most honest and sincere and truly remarkable. She has become an icon among women and men alike, running her businesses with the utmost integrity and dedication. A native of Sitka, Trish is easily the most unassuming, character-driven, compassionate individual one would ever expect to encounter.

If running several businesses was not enough, Trish is an awesome mother, a wonderful wife, an incredibly committed community member. She supports any request ~ whether it be for the purchase of Girl Scout Cookies or a donation to any number of sporting events. As a mother, she never misses an opportunity to be present at an activity in which her children are participating. As a pharmacist, Trish provides extra assistance to those within the community who may be unable to afford their medication. As a business woman, she gives freely to any organization or agency that may come calling. 

Trish is well-known and well-loved. The few opportunities I have had to lunch with her, she has a ready smile and kind word for every single person who passes by. This is a woman from whom I have never heard a negative comment about another human being. She is the essence of unconditional acceptance. 

For you, Trish, I love the woman you are. And tho' it is difficult, I try to integrate those considerable character traits of yours into my own psyche. If all women would emulate you, the world would more likely be at peace!


Monday, April 18, 2011

My Monday Hero - Astonishing Natalie

Honestly, Natalie is truly astonishing! I believe I have never met any woman quite like her. Whether she choses to be blond or brunette, she is gorgeous. And while I have not had the privilege of seeing what she looks like as a redhead, she is certain to pull that off, as well. Exceptionally photogenic, Natalie commands the camera. She could easily be a model, but has chosen instead to be a wife and a mother ~ two of life's most glorious options! 

Natalie is an adventurer, a writer, a lover of all people. She embraces her own life, her own style, her own way of being. And anyone who is privileged to be in her presence will naturally pick up the feeling of worth and value. Rarely without a smile, Natalie looks deeply into the eyes of the person with whom she is communicating, quickly summing up the depth of their character. She knows who that person is, on the inside where it truly matters. She is not dissuaded or distracted by labels or flaws or assumptions. She clearly sees the heart of another as she befriends all.

Natalie is also brilliant. She is a reader, a speaker, and an intellectual. She capitalizes on her talents by putting what she knows into the written word to share with others, to dispense wisdom and fantasy together in stories to reach all people, effectively affecting them according to their age, generation, and station in life.

However cliché-ish it may seem, to know Natalie is truly to love her. It is impossible not to love her, fully realizing the empathy and charity which exists in her soul and which is naturally extended to those around her. 

Astonishing, indeed, Natalie ~ Women of all cultures, races, ages, and generations could easily learn from your fine example of womanhood.  I honor you, I admire you, I appreciate the woman you are and love you for it!

Monday, April 11, 2011

My Monday Hero - Cousin Paula

One of my known-forever-grew-up together cousins, Paula, is this week's Monday Hero ~ she is and always has been an awesome example to me in so many ways. Just barely older than me, I always wanted to be like her: her beautiful dark hair, her sparkling eyes, her great smile. As children, our families lived a couple of hours from one another in Southern California. We often spent days at a time at their house, and they at ours. I can still picture the layout of their home, the colorful non-breakable kitchen-ware (melmac, I seem to recall), and her dad's endless practical jokes!

Unbeknownst to Paula, she remained an example to me throughout the years. She has raised an incredible family while experiencing multiple challenges and trials. She is a happy, loving grandmother who still looks like she could be a young 40-year-old! But the most extraordinary single thing that Paula has done, in my opinion, is when she literally gave of herself to help prolong the life of our Uncle Ted. 
Less than a decade ago, Uncle Ted needed a kidney. I know of others who were tested and were certainly willing to donate if they qualified. Despite that, only one person could. That one was our Paula. She did it quietly and purposely. She did it with compassion and love for a family member. And she would do it again, regardless of any physical or emotional pain it may leave her with. She is just that way.  

Paula, you are one of my most favorite people in the world, and I am more than blessed to be your cousin! My hat is off to you, I appreciate who you are and what you represent. You remain an example of goodness, graciousness, and generosity. Thank you for being you!  

Monday, April 4, 2011

My Monday Hero - Patty

If you ask me how many Pattys, Patricias, or Pattis I know, I am not sure I could name them all. However, this particular Patty has become quite special to me over the years. A most genuine woman, Patty has been a part of my life for over a decade. 

A very first impression of her was the day I witnessed her gift of a pair of shoes. While the recipient probably did not need new shoes, it was very obviously a gift from Patty's heart, just to say that she cares. From that day forward, my observations and reflections and gratitudes for this awesome friend have only proven to be an example to me of a truly compassionate woman making the greatest difference. 

Free with her compliments, she shares them with sincerity. Hugs come with true giving rather than taking. When asking about someone's well-being, the pure intent behind her words is obvious. Patty is a natural when it comes to giving of herself. Regardless of one's station in life, she loves and cares and is not afraid of saying so. No one is beneath her, no one is ever deemed "unworthy" of the compassion she has to share. We would all do well to emulate Patty's sincerity, her genuine self, her pure love.

Patty, you are my hero ~ you are always there to lend a listening ear and a shoulder when I need it. From the depths of my soul, I salute you and your womanhood!