Oct 25 2007

Life-Affirming: A Contest

Posted by Jane Devin

at 10:28 am under Contest

e2.jpgLife-affirming. . .an experience or thought that captures the best of human nature.  Something that evokes a sense of gratitude for living.  A feeling of spirit that transcends the day-to-day — that stops you in your tracks, and leaves you saying Wow, it is awesome to be alive or how come I never noticed this wonderful thing/feeling before?

Share your most life-affirming story here.  Winner will receive their choice of:

*Rosie O’Donnell’s Celebrity Detox; or
* a DVD of “Radio Flyer”, one of my my favorite movies; or
* my series of articles on Anna Nicole Smith and Howard K. Stern, which are no longer available online. 

Winner will be announced in this thread, and via email, October 28th. 

37 responses so far

37 Responses to “Life-Affirming: A Contest”

  1. Barbaraon 25 Oct 2007 at 12:41 pm 1

    I guess I didn’t need as long as I thought…and in NO way is this meant to be self-serving…and will gladly forgo any prize just to say…

    Terry’s story. How a small group of people gathered, heard, and cared so deeply about someone they never met. How you wrote about her Jane, with such a fine and gentle hand, expressing not just her problems, but her spirit of generosity and her love for angels, and the childlike aspect to her nature. You say rosie writes in 3d, well so do you. And Terry very much came alive for so many of us through your words. And the wow moment had to be My Mothers Daughtr, from all the way in Canada offering an additional 10K reward for the arrest and prosecution of the murderer. It was so extraordinary to see that kind of loving generosity on the internet.

    And I will always remember Terry. She is etched into my heart memories and my prayers. I know that I will continue to search for any news about her, for years
    to come, if her murderer is not caught.

    A story about a terrible crime is common unfortunately, and most often isn’t looked at twice. You made us not only look Jane, but care deeply. And that was totally Life-affirming for me.

  2. Cattgrrlon 25 Oct 2007 at 3:54 pm 2

    I don’t know if its the most life afirming but it was the first time I remember ever feeling someone’s caring about me so strongly. It was in HS, and I just xfer’d as a jr. I had no friends, but I never did. I wasn’t billied much , but I was just blanked out. Like I wasn’t there, people ignored me. I was, frist of all, really tall, five-eleven then, six-one now, and I’ve always been heavy. In school any diffrence is tough, but being the incredible hulk which is hwat people called me when they noticed i was there was really hard.

    When I went to Jefferson I didn’t expect tyhat anything would be diefferent, but then I met Amy. five-two, eyes of blue, cute as a bug. She was assigned to shadow me on my first day, and kept on shadowing me all through hs. She overlooked my sz, and was the first person to really ’see me’ as a person. 12 years later, though she moved to Nc and I moved to Chicago, we still talk on the phone at least once a wekk. She and I have been thru so much together.

    This little bug taught me not to be afraid of or ashamed of my size. and that I didn’t have to be the wallpaper other people expected me to be. I don’t know what my life would have turned into if we didn’t meet in HS, but I am genunily happy now, with myself and life. I can love and be loved, and am really having a second childhood, only this time its a very happy one.

  3. Laurieon 25 Oct 2007 at 9:48 pm 3


    Every mother would probably say this, but after thinking about your question all day there was nothing more life affirming for me than the birth of my daughter.

    Even when I was only a few weeks pregnant, I felt her in my heart, and there were just things I knew about her and how our relationship was going to be. When she was born, it was absolutely best day of my life. The rest of the world just kind of disappeared and it was me and her and my husband. And all those things I imagined were true. She is just the most sweetly natured, fun, loving little girl, and being a mom, I feel, has been my life’s calling. I have never had so much fun, not even in my own childhood.

    Thank you for letting me have an opportunity to talk about how much being a mom means to me.

  4. Lyndaon 25 Oct 2007 at 10:41 pm 4


    I know anyone with children or grandchildren will understand this part of life. Ten years ago I was diagnosed with Bi-polar disorder,. since then life has been one roller coaster ride after another. I have had to sell my home, give up driving and worst of all, get a divorce. I am living in a Granny suite at my daughter’s. People try not to treat me differently, but I am different. Unfortunately suicide ideology is common and frightening. My grandson comes into my apartment almost every day. I let him watch cartoons and he teaches me about computers. He will be 5 next week. They are late coming home from work so I feed him, he loves mac & cheese. I hadn’t seen him for a couple of days so I went next door to get my Jacob fix. When I went in he came running out of the living room grabbed my hand and yelled” look mommy nan is here’ like I had been gone for weeks. At that moment I new I had something worth living for. There is nothing in this world that is better than the feeling of a child’s warm arms around your neck and his cheek on yours.

  5. allisonon 25 Oct 2007 at 10:53 pm 5

    First of all, Cattgrrl I would say that most assuredly qualifies as “Life affirming”.
    I celebrate your” little bug” and your new freedom with you! I have struggled with weight in the past, and I know what it is like to be among the invisible.
    My life, as with us all I’m sure, has taken some strange twists and turns in 48 years.
    And so my “Life -affirming” event happened after the death of my only sibling,beautiful Sammi,my baby sis.
    I have always been a spiritual person. Many years of my life were spent on a constant spiritual journey. My parents were not religious, but had no problem letting me explore religion and faith with family and friends. Aunt Rosie was the person who introduced Christianity to me. We attended Reynoldsville Baptist Church, and I went to Bible School.
    I loved singing all the hymns, and hearing the Bible Stories.
    Dad was an enlisted man in the U.S. Air Force. We moved to Japan in 1967, and I went to church with a Catholic friend on one Sunday, and the next it would be with a 7th Day Adventist! In High School, A girl gave me a ride, and next thing I know I’m going to church on a regular basis with Evangelicals. Of course, I was 16, and when they said I had to wear dresses, never cut my hair, and I couldn’t attend High School Football games…well I was just too independent for that. For some reason I had to keep searching. Christianity posed some problems for me personally( Please, I mean no disrespect to anyones faith, I respect everyones religion).
    I had the unique perspective of hearing at least a dozen interpretations of the same book, and all of them a different opinion of the same words. I had deep faith. I had felt God’s grace, but I had questions.
    My Mother had dreams that would come true down the line.
    She would say, I had this strange dream, and she would relay it to us, and maybe months, sometimes years later, they would come true. In fact there are a few of us in the family that do this.I remember being at the movies with my boyfriend, and telling him I had to call my Mom. I didn’t know why I was calling her. I just had the strangest feeling and I got up and called her. I said Mom are you alright? She said Yes, very slowly. Then she paused and said, well your Grandma just called to tell us her Mother died. Why did you call she asked? I have no idea I answered.
    I started reading about the ancient Eastern religions, and learned about Buddhism, which led to a fascination with reincarnation and more studies.
    I had an actual religious epiphany at this point. One day my head buried in a book it just overtook me. It was emotional, draining and exhilarating at the same time. I shook, I cried. All my questions were answered. It just clicked. I had finally found my truth!
    And so my religion was born, my path finally chosen, and I was blissfully comfortable with the beliefs and philosophies that I had adopted. One of these beliefs is that there are no accidents, in life or death. The belief that we as spiritual beings, choose when, where, how, and who we are ourselves. We know what we are here to learn and we map it out.
    It all has a purpose, and a plan of our own making. The gift God wants us to learn is Love.
    Love for yourself, your friends, family, and even your enemies.
    Like I said, I was blissfully happy with this “knowledge”.
    And then the bottom of the earth fell right out from under us.
    My baby sis was murdered by her spouse who then killed himself.
    When a horrible thing like this happens to you, there is no way to describe all that goes on.
    You are in shock. Mentally, Physically, Spiritually. Every time I closed my eyes for months I saw the images of my sisters murder happening. I wasn’t there, but it was described to me, and the mind is cruel. I was in a bad place spiritually. Oh it was fine to talk the talk, about how spiritual I was, and there are no accidents. Wait a minute, How could it be a plan for Sammi to lose her life the way she did?
    I didn’t have time to ponder, I had a family that needed to adjust to three new babies in our house, but that is another story. It did eat at me. How could I accept her death as the way it was meant to be?
    As she would do in the future, many more times, my beautiful baby sis gave me a sign.
    I was feeling low. Aunt Mary Ann invited me to her house for lunch.
    She said “Al, I need to tell you this dream I had last night. I was at a big gathering. I didn’t see anyone that I knew at all, and there was a huge crowd of people. I started walking through the people, and then I saw Sammi! She was beautiful and vibrant, just glowing with light and happiness. She saw me and came right over. I said ” Sammi you are supposed to be dead, what is going on”? She smiled and said,” Don’t worry, things are all going according to plan. We had to do it this way, it was all a hoax. Everything is well”.
    So I thought, well that was a nice dream. Kinda strange that she would get this dream. I wish I had been the one to have it.
    The very next day, Sammi’s former baby-sitter and long-time friend called to ask if she could bring her children over to visit Sammi’s kids. She said they were worried about them. The kids hit the back yard, and Leanne and I sat at the dining room table. We chatted about the kids, and she got a funny look on her face. ” I have to tell you something” she said. I had the strangest dream last night. I was at a gathering of people…
    She related the same dream that my Aunt had told me word for word, not 24 hours later.
    It wasn’t just the same dream. Two people who never met each other, each told me the same dream exactly the same way. All going according to plan, A Hoax, Everything is well.
    Thank you sis. Had I just had the dream myself, I would have passed it off as wishful thinking on my part, a subconscious effort to keep my belief system intact.
    But the way that it happened, I knew this was a message for me. She is alive and well in spirit. All is well. There were many more gifts, but this was my first, and allowed me to step into my future, Faith intact, knowing I could raise her children, and yes, forgive Miguel. Life-affirming?
    Yes Indeed.

  6. QVon 25 Oct 2007 at 11:05 pm 6

    Jane, this is going to be a tough one for you to decide. These stories are all so nice that you may have to resort to drawing your winners out of a hat. :-)

  7. allisonon 25 Oct 2007 at 11:06 pm 7

    I am so sorry it was too long!
    It just came out.
    Sorry you guys.
    Jane Thank you for all of this. You are amazing!

  8. LJBon 26 Oct 2007 at 3:14 am 8

    Allison, that was not too long and no sorry needed. Your story was sad, but inspiring. How long have you had the kids now? How old are they? I can’t imagine being in the situation of having to explain their parent’s deaths to them. You sound like you have handled it with a lot of grace.

    Jane, this happened not too long ago. As you know I work in a residential treatment facility for young women, most who were court-ordered into treatment after trouble with the law, and some who could no longer live at home due to behavior or family problems. Our recidivism rate is high, as it is with most programs. It can be discouraging to see the same faces over & over, or to hear news about some of the kids from others.

    A few years ago, we had a very angry young lady I’ll call CJ, who was court-ordered to six months. She was among the most difficult, stubborn, frustrating clients any of us had ever encountered. Spending five minutes with her felt like an hour…she was just exhausting and she never never listened. Instead she talked over other people, pointed fingers, and really got “in your face” and it didn’t matter what the subject was, from minor to major.

    I didn’t think there was much hope for her, but I kept trying and trying, and the counselor assigned to her was a very mellow guy whose goat she could never get. Others tried with her, some more patient than others, but when it was time for her to go none of us knew if we had made a difference but felt we probably didn’t. She had calmed down some, with routine and consistency, but her anger was always just beneath the surface even with meds for depression.

    Last December, I got a call while at work, and a very polite and sweet young lady was on the other end. It took me a few minutes to recognize her name, and I was blown away that she called. She asked if she could come visit, and I got clearance for her. A couple of days later in walks this absolutely stunning young lady, with an ear to ear smile. She had a leather folder in her hand…her college diploma.

    CJ, the angry girl no one seemed to be able to get through, had totally turned her life around. She left our facility, and later went to live with her grandma, who made sure she continued counseling and taking her meds. Cj told me she never wanted to lose control of her life again, and she realized that her way of trying to keep control…by using her anger to ward off or intimidate people…was not the way. She then said “I learned that from you and _ _ _ _ _ (her counselor).” I could hardly keep from crying.

    It was definitely an affirmation, and one that keeps me going on even the worst days.

  9. allisonon 26 Oct 2007 at 8:19 am 9

    LJB, That was so beautiful.
    It is good to hear a happy ending for someone in that situation.
    Unfortunantly I have experience with this myself, as our son (Sammi’s) has also been in the past, court ordered to a treatment facility. God Bless people like you!
    That must have been a great day for all who witnessed it.
    Oh, to answer your question, We lost Sammi and got the kids 15 years ago. August 15,1993. All our daughters are well adjusted, working, and the baby who is 14 is headed to college with so far, all A’s. We also have two daughters of our own, so four daughters, now thats drama!

  10. VIVIANon 26 Oct 2007 at 8:56 am 10


  11. mishon 26 Oct 2007 at 9:05 am 11

    Yo know me I have to think, think, think and listen. I a listener you know………

    Im also silly at times. Im sitting here thinking what is the most Life-affirming experience Ive had………Hmmmmm. You know what popped into my mind? I have not thought about this in a long a very long time.

    When I was about 4 years old I loved butter cookies. I at the time didnt like chocolate chip or Oreos(weird huh?). I loved Butter cookies. One day I wanted them and we didnt have any it was late in the week and my mom would be shopping the next day. I couldnt wait.
    So I decided I was going to make butter cookies. Now to a 4 year old something is what it is. Chicken is chicken, pork is pork, popcorn is popcorn. I thought butter cookies were butter. So there I sat scooping spoonfuls of butter onto cookie sheets to make butter cookies. My dad walks into the kitchen and I ask him to help me “bake” my cookies. He tried to explain I would not listen so he put the first sheet in the oven and as I waited I “licked” the spoon, and ick……was my reaction as my dad took out the butter cookies from the oven. You have to know what my cookies looked like(a big puddle of melted butter).

  12. roseon 26 Oct 2007 at 2:16 pm 12

    it was two years ago that our dog Bob ran out of the front door to chase after something he saw. he wasn’t weaing his elecrtic fence collar. i screamed at him to come back, but he wouldn’t listen

    then as i’m grabbing my shoes to go after him i hear the slamming of breaks. i run out to the street barefoot, and Bob’s lying in a puddle of blood. i approach him and
    he wags his tail. i was hysterical, crying, and thank god the man who hit him had his wits about him. he grabbed his son’s blanket from the car seat, wrapped Bob up, and drove us thiry miles out to the vet. bob’s blood soaked through the blanket onto my leg and the man’s car seat.

    i aplogized to him for Bob getting out, but i was too much a mess to really talk. he came inside the vets with me and carried Bob to the table. he patted my shoulder and said it would be okay. he asked if i needed him to stay, but said he was late for work. i told him to go ahead, go. he gave me some more reassuring words and then petted Bob’s head and said you be okay for your mom now, boy.

    Bob had a broken leg and two broken ribs and needed about twenty stitches, but no surgery. he had to stay there though for two days. my husband picked me up and i realized i never got the man’s name. i didn’t know where her worked, nothing. i felt so badly and wanted to do something nice for him. at least thank him.

    when we picked Bob up and my husband pulled out his credit card, asked how much we owed and the lady said 34 dollars. that can’t be right, he said. the lady said no, everything’s been taken care of except the prescription. she told us that the man drove back after work and paid 750 dollars. we tried to get his name, but she said he did not want it known.

    it was just incredible. the most incredible total act of kindness from a stranger, and it made me feel blessed and humbled and awed all at once.

    and we never let Bob’s collar off until he’s in for the night!

  13. Lyndaon 26 Oct 2007 at 6:24 pm 13

    Your story was not too long and thou it was tragic I can tell by the tone of your voice that your sister lives on threw you and her children. They are fortunate to have family

    with enough faith to raise them without bitterness. Your faith will see them through.


  14. allisonon 26 Oct 2007 at 6:27 pm 14

    Rose, Oh my, that was as you said “incredible”.
    It was wonderful to read, I can’t imagine how it felt!
    You had my cousin in tears as I read it to her.
    An act of kindness like that you may only see once in your life.
    There are beautiful souls here. Wonderful.

  15. allisonon 26 Oct 2007 at 6:31 pm 15

    Thank you Lynda and LJB for your nice comments.
    I feel so happy here.

  16. Lyndaon 26 Oct 2007 at 8:30 pm 16

    Every story I have read here today is a testament to the strength of a persons faith. Not to be confused with religion, faith is just knowing and accepting, a person with strong faith can’t be swayed,all thought at times it is difficult. I have met amazing people on this site, they help me keep my faith.


  17. Deeon 26 Oct 2007 at 9:17 pm 17

    The day my grandmother passed was a total shock for me… I had seen her two days before she was very healthy and a young seventy-two years. She meant SO much to me, so when I got the phone call “she’s gone’ it was truly a shock.

    As difficult as it was for me and my family to accept our loss… for her, she got exactly what she wanted and I think what most of us want. She passed in her sleep…. Not even a hint of discomfort, she was eternally dreaming. Peaceful, graceful, and with dignity, she died in the way she lived life.

    That afternoon I stood outside her house with all my childhood memories flashing before me. I was filled with tears knowing I would never feel one of her hugs again, never get the little pep talk, (that I didn’t even know I needed). I was staring down at the ground and crying, when I noticed a little white square, no bigger than a scrabble tile. I knelt down and picked it up, held it for a bit and then turned it over…. Inscribed the words I love You. No doubt she was telling me, she was still with me. The heaviness lifted. It has been twenty-two years and I still have the plastic tile.

  18. Deeon 26 Oct 2007 at 9:25 pm 18

    LBJ- what a wonderful gift! Sometimes I think we impact people without even knowing.

    Rose- Sorry to hear Bob was hurt… but how wondeful to be on the receiving end of a caring person.

  19. Jane Devinon 27 Oct 2007 at 4:15 am 19

    There is no way I can pick out the best story here. Wow. . . I have some awesome readers, and am absolutely loving these stories of encouragement, hope, and love.

    I will have to put the names into a hat!

    Thank you, and please keep sharing your beautiful and inspiring stories.

  20. Deeon 27 Oct 2007 at 12:12 pm 20

    Jane, No need to put my name in a hat…. I didn’t write to enter, I did so to share.
    BTW - radio flyer is on my top ten.

  21. Lyndaon 27 Oct 2007 at 12:42 pm 21

    I am with you these stories are like winning a lottery. A reason to believe ther still people who care for others.


  22. roseon 27 Oct 2007 at 2:47 pm 22

    lynda and dee i agree! jane, i love your site and will be sorry when your not posting as often!

  23. Freidaon 27 Oct 2007 at 4:36 pm 23

    Dear Jane,
    I sure would like to read more ‘Life-Affirming’ stories here.
    I need to read more ‘Life-Affirming’ articles here.
    I really love what I’ve read so far, and crave more, and more.
    I need ‘you’ all…please respond…and tell me your stories…and give me faith.
    Love Always,

  24. Freidaon 27 Oct 2007 at 5:27 pm 24

    Dear Barbara,
    The ‘picture of Terry’ is etched in my mind, too.
    And, I’m pretty sure I know what she really looked like.

    Dear Cattgrrl,
    You were like a couple of ‘girls’ I used to hang out with and tried to keep up with, and ‘really looked up to,’ I’m really short, LOL.

    Dear Laurie,
    Your name is like poetry, to me, anyway.

    Lynda, Dear,
    You are were ‘born to lead,’ even if you don’t realize it.

    You have my daughter’s middle name, although her’s only has one ‘L.’ I feel very ‘close’ to you…’by coincidence.’
    You know why we’re here, just like me, I’m pretty sure anyway, LOL.
    I too, believe in dreams.

    Darn it, sure wish you still had that site, where we could just ‘type’ and ‘feel’ and respond and…well, I know it was a chore for you but a pleasure for me and many others.
    Instant recognition…and right online.

    I think, once upon a time, I was more than a little like your ‘hardest case to crack.’
    Assertiveness is so hard, when you’re up against this ‘world,’ and all of ‘us’ are critics, and often ‘family’ just isn’t there…so, we’re rather left alone among many, and feeling like victims, or left behind…or really what it boils down to, is just down right scary.
    Especially, when you feel weak and defenseless.

    Although, I often don’t agree with you…you are awesome, LOL.

    I often agree with you most, and wonder why that is.

    Dear Dee,
    I love you!!!

    Dear Jane,
    I sure hope I haven’t left anyone out, yet I know there are so many and of course I have, but didn’t mean to.
    Love Always,

  25. A.P.on 27 Oct 2007 at 11:03 pm 25


  26. Barbaraon 27 Oct 2007 at 11:32 pm 26

    Flying away from the waterfall…and into the sky…alone as you must be. I am sad, and A.P.’s link brought tears to my eyes, but Jane? I am so proud of you. Not just for what you’ve done here, not just for your generosity, but for taking the time away you need to accomplish your goals and nurture your visions. And I cannot wait (altho it looks like I have to!) to read your book!

  27. Laurieon 28 Oct 2007 at 12:49 am 27

    Jane, I’m dedicating Mary’s song to you today, from one Mpls. girl throwing her hat in the air, to another throwing her hat again into the literary ring. I agree with Barbara: I AM PROUD OF YOU! Go get ‘em, tiger girl!

    Who can turn the world on with her smile?
    Who can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile?
    Well it’s you girl, and you should know it
    With each glance and every little movement you show it

    Love is all around, no need to waste it
    You can have a town, why don’t you take it
    You’re gonna make it after all
    You’re gonna make it after all

  28. Deeon 28 Oct 2007 at 1:28 am 28

    One last post before we press pause….

    I live in a place that is literally paradise on earth, most people come to vacation, as did I, nine years ago…. how I got here isn’t important and I am still trying to figure out why I am here, but what I do know is there are days I look around and I am in awe.

    I am embarrassed to admit that I get so caught up in my day to day that I don’t notice, but when I do… oh my gosh….Nature in all its glory! The majestic green mountains, turquoise water, white sandy beach, flowers of red, yellow, pinks! And on the darkest days of rain, somewhere right around the corner is the most vibrant rainbow… or two… or three. (One day I counted twelve all different and all within 30 minutes)

    I feel blessed/lucky/grateful…. I have been brought to tears as well as have my breath taken away countless times…. I was not born here but I feel at home. I also feel privileged to be part of a community which lives with Aloha.

    Freida - you made me blush

    Jane (and all those who share) finding this blog is Life Affirming…. And I THANK YOU all.

  29. Alisonon 28 Oct 2007 at 9:13 am 29

    That was so beautiful and so befitting the occasion, thank you. It brought tears to my eyes as well.

    I feel like everyone else, I’m sure. Happy for Jane but sad that this harmonic convergence of very special people is going on extended hiatus. This site has become such a peaceful sanctuary for me over the past months. With so much in the world to be depressed, angry, fearful and at times despair-ridden over, this was always a place I could retreat to where the voices were calming and the topics were always guaranteed to provoke rational thought and a moving discussion. It’s the site I’d go to first in the morning and last at the end of the day. I will miss that and I’ll miss all of you.

  30. Juleson 28 Oct 2007 at 9:57 am 30

    I wish you the best Jane! I am sorry though that you removed your past articles. I had just skimmed over the Stern ones, and wasn’t yet through with the ones on Terry Armstrong, which left me crying and wanting to see justice done. I don’t think many people could read your stories and then forget about the people you write about. You fill your stories with too much light for them to ever really go dark. Terry is still very much on my mind.

    You are a wonderful writer, particularly gifted it seems, at making people think about
    people and situations that would normally be bypassed or pidgeonholed, and you come at stories in a very fresh and unusual way. Your novel is sure to be stunning.

    Thank you, Jane, for your Rosie article, which led me here and allowed me to discover the rest of your work. You can consider at least one of your books presold.


  31. Jane Devinon 28 Oct 2007 at 10:52 am 31

    A.P., thank you! That was very moving and meant the world to me! Thank you for all the intelligence and insight you have brought to this site. I feel very fortunate to have had you for a reader.

    Jules, I sent you the stories and a note through email. Thank you.

    Alison, I am going to miss you SO MUCH! Your wisdom, intuition, and care is just astounding and totally inspiring. Just as you checked for new stories, I always checked for your latest comments. When you talk about sanctuary, know that you are one of the ones who helped create it, and then stayed to nurture it and the posters here who were also in search of community.

    Barbara, you’ll be among the first to get a sneak peak. Thank you for being there for me.

    Freida, you’re always unique and enchanting. Your daughter, living between the Yin and Yang, is sure to turn out beautifully, with an enormous spirit and intelligence to spare.

    Dee, I moved to a Paradise once, but it wasn’t nearly as beautiful (or warm!) as yours, which I have yet to visit. Your words make me want to go. Maybe that will be my reward when I’m done writing. Thank you, Dee, for all your posts — beautiful!

    Allison with two “L’s” — your comments here have been awesome to read, and your political awareness is astute. I hope you will continue to spread the message wherever you go.

    Laurie, it’s too early for me to be proud of me, but I know I’m moving in a right and positive direction.

    Everyone, THANK YOU!

  32. allisonon 28 Oct 2007 at 10:59 am 32

    Dear Jane,
    I ditto what Jules said, and others as well.
    I have found here that quiet place to come and reflect, share common and not so common thoughts and feelings, and meet new friends. All because you have a wonderful gift. Your writing is “paying it forward” in it’s truest sense. You are giving so much of yourself to us, and it has provided us with a window into all our souls.
    I am going to miss all I have been fortunate to converse with here. I hope we can all come back when Jane is ready to discuss the new Book!
    Peace & Love
    Thank you Jane

  33. Kathy M.on 28 Oct 2007 at 12:21 pm 33

    Jules, I am 59 years old. Not much really ruffles my feathers anymore, but that case was an exception. It left me thoroughly pissed me off in every way, and I am still angry about it. I won’t ruin this article by saying any more.

    To the writer of this blog, a woman blessed with both exceptional brainpower and heart, I say: Jane, I pray that your words will prevail. That you will, by way of your book, open the floodgates to truths that go ignored and to understandings that would not otherwise be known.

    I tend to stay in the background and observe, like a fly on the wall. And what I’ve seen and learned here by listening, from March until now has been volumes of lessons. In defending the underdogs Jane, it’s easy to become one. You never did,
    even when you became the subject of attacks by people who seemed not only to want to share in your portion of the sun, but to steal it from you. The names you were
    called, the dramas from other sites you were dragged into, the baseless accusations you had to endure……….so many people would have caved in or given up on their higher cause. You did not. You just kept writing, talking, and showing the true and bright light of your spirit. So I stayed here, Jane, and I learned. Goodness prevails, good sense prevails, kindness prevails……….eventually.

    I look forward to next summer and learning more about the story that’s overflowing.
    Godspeed, Jane!

    Kathy Moore

  34. Freidaon 28 Oct 2007 at 1:32 pm 34

    Dear Jane,
    Wish there was a poem as powerful as this for a ‘Lady.’
    The ‘Lady’ that you, and many here, ‘are.’

    It is the mission of each true knight…
    His duty… nay, his privilege!
    To dream the impossible dream,
    To fight the unbeatable foe,
    To bear with unbearable sorrow
    To run where the brave dare not go;
    To right the unrightable wrong.

    To love, pure and chaste, from afar,
    To try, when your arms are too weary,
    To reach the unreachable star!

    This is my Quest to follow that star,
    No matter how hopeless, no matter how far,
    To fight for the right
    Without question or pause,
    To be willing to march into hell
    For a heavenly cause!

    And I know, if I’ll only be true
    To this glorious Quest,
    That my heart will lie peaceful and calm
    When I’m laid to my rest.

    And the world will be better for this,
    That one man, scorned and covered with scars,
    Still strove, with his last ounce of courage,
    To reach the unreachable stars!

    Love Always and Forever,
    Give your children, and all children ‘all’ you have to give…and remember yourself…for each of us are children, were children, will always be children…so, play, and pray, and have some fun and work hard, and eat well, and learn, and give, and be careful.
    Love yourself and be the best that you can be.
    When you feel lonely or depressed…remember a million others feel the same way.
    You (we) are not alone.
    Don’t be selfish…share your feelings…maybe you will inspire someone else…
    which in turn, will inspire ‘you.’


  35. Lyndaon 28 Oct 2007 at 2:10 pm 35


    I think you are one of the beautiful souls God put on this earth. Yes we are all children no matter how young or how old, my Mother is still in shock from realizing I’m only two year off 60.
    She says she is much too young to have a child my age. Always a child.


  36. ksetteron 28 Oct 2007 at 5:45 pm 36

    Hi Jane,
    When does the contest end? Everytime I try to think of something that is life-affirming for me, a thousand and one things keep running around in my head… I find myself saying….ah, yes this one…no, that one is better. But oh, I forgot about that!

    I feel like I really want to write about what is inspirational to me just for being here on earth as a human and being able to enjoy the simple things in life. Writing about something like that draws me so deep and makes me feel passionate about life and what life has to offer. If people would just take one minute and think of the simple things in life; just a simple blade of grass. Has anyone ever picked a piece off and felt it and smelled it and wondered where did it actually come from? Has anyone ever pressed that blade of grass between their two thumbs and press it up against your lips so that you could blow on it to make that familiar sound our older brothers and sisters, parents, grand parents, uncles, aunts or a best friend showed us how to do? Who decided to call it grass? Why does it grow like it does? Who ever thought if “had” to be cut? Who figured out how to build/make a “lawnmower” to cut it?

    I remember when I was a child living in the country. We had a very large yard. There was farmland for miles across the street from our house. I would stand in my yard and there wasn’t a house to be seen no matter which way I looked. I remember the summer that the grass was not cut. I remember my sisters and I rolling around in the tall grass. It was tons of fun! At night we sat in the dark and watched the fire flies out there in the grass. We never thought to catch them in jars like I’ve heard people do. They were much too pretty to capture them. Sitting in the dark - just watching them glow between the long, long blades of grass…..well, it was like our own private fire works in our very own yard.

    Okay, so that was just about grass. I could go on and on about the simple things in life that we all take for granted. Things we don’t stop, pause and reflect upon.

    Life is so short. Everyone needs to stop and just We are surrounded with mystery and things that just awe us (me). Don’t take life for granted. Before we all know it, it just slides through our fingers. Hold onto that blade of grass and make it sing!


  37. Jane Devinon 28 Oct 2007 at 5:49 pm 37

    It seems the affirmation stories have been told, so the names were put in a hat (actually in a cup), and drumroll please. . .the winner is Rose.

    All of you had great stories, there was no way I could pick one except randomly.

    Rose, check your email!

    A sincere thank you to everyone who posted. Karen, beautiful post, and a beautiful last comment for the board!