Thursday, February 14, 2008

Author Unknown

Author Unknown
Tena Bastian

She is sitting in the hospital, waiting to be seen
Nine months pregnant and barely sixteen
When a voice in her head says “Take a deep breath”
And “pick up a magazine.”
She flips through the pages as she sits there alone
She wants to call her mother and ask if she can come home
When she comes across a letter there on the magazine page
That seems to be written by another young girl approximately her age.
It says…

Mama, I need your guidance
Because I don’t know what to do
I’m scared and alone and I want to come home
Because I feel safe with you.

Through her tears and her pain, as she reaches for her phone
She notices the letter is signed
Author Unknown.

She sits in her car in the parking lot as her world comes crashing down
She has been diagnosed with cancer, a tumor has been found
When a voice in her head says, “Take a deep breath”
And “turn the radio on”.
She flips through all of the channels as she sits there all alone.
She wants to call her husband and ask if he can come home
When she happens across a familiar song there on the radio
That seems to be written by another young woman with a long, long way to go
It says…

Honey, I need your guidance
Because I don’t know what to do
I’m scared and alone and I want to come home
Because I feel safe with you.

Through her tears and her pain, as she reaches for the phone
She notices the radio says
Author Unknown.

She is sitting with her mother on her very last day
She knows it won’t be long now as the seconds tick away
When a voice in her head says, “Take a deep breath”
And “listen to your mom”
She has something important to say to you and you need to hear it before she is gone
So she leans in ever closer as her mother struggles to speak
She takes her hand and kisses her as a tear rolls down her cheek
She says…

Lord, I need your guidance
Because I don’t know what to do
My daughter is scared but I want to come home
Because I feel safe with you

Please help her find the strength Lord, not to miss me when I am gone
It is at that moment that she realizes that it was HIS voice all along
The magazine, the radio, as she takes her final breath
Through the tears and the pain, he was always there from her birth until her death
When she was pregnant, when the tumor was found, every time she felt alone
It was God that loved her, that showed her the way
Until now HE was the
Author Unknown.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

My Funny Valentine

Valentines day is a day for lovers, right? Well yes but it is also a day for companies to exploit those men who are clueless as to what to get their girlfriends or wives so they look to commercials to decide. "He went to Jareds" or "What your girlfriend really wants is blah, blah blah!" Listen guys, I am going to clue you all in on something very important. The truth is that we dont know what we want. No really, it changes by the day and we dont have a clue what it is that we will want tomorrow so how the heck can these commercials know? I can tell you for sure what we dont want.

We dont want the following...
A teddy bear from Vermont that looks like us (creepy)
The same circle or heart pendant that everyone else is wearing (redundant)
Roses (expensive and lacks imagination)
Expensive jewelry (ok, that one is still a winner)
Lingerie (admit it, this is really a gift for you)

What we want is imagination, creativity and something that says you know us. My daughter wants a puppy. I want a break from this horrible winter weather with the sun on my face. Now that doesnt have to mean an expensive trip to the Bahamas, be creative. It could mean tanning visits, a night at a hotel with an indoor waterpark or a dinner in a summer themed restaurant. Do not listen to thecommercials, Ask her what she wants or just listen closely and follow the clues.

Dove chocolates is holding a contest for thebest sentimental saying for their wrappers. To give you an idea how much womens opinions vary, mine was "
Two hearts. With every beat,,,one love, one life."
Ok, sentimental, right? My eldest daughterwho is forever the smart ass and not sentimental at all teased me for entering at all with her entry of
"next time I do you better, k? Sorry."
It made me laugh in hysterics. I dont think she is going to win but funny just the same.

My point is that you all need to stop being so manipulated by these companies that try to convince you that what your girlfriend really wants is blah, blah blah. Step up to the plate and take a swing. If you strike out, at least she will remember that you tried. If that doesn't work, a puppy with a big red bow around his neck will always beg forgiveness.

So the view from the back of my horse today is that of the companies that try and take advantage of the poor saps that are willing to jump through any hoops to please their sweetheart. Shame on you for trying to put them in the dog house by telling them what women want with commercials I am sure were written by yet another clueless man. Hang in there guys, you will come up with something.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

The Horses We Love The Lessons We Learn

Now that I've gotten the most aggravating piece of garbage in our lives off my chest, its time to move on to horses. The title of this blog is the same as the title of one of my books. There is nothing so rewarding for an author as to walk into a book store and see a book that you wrote on the shelves for everyone to see. It sort of immortalizes who you are and leaves an imprint on the world that says "I was here and this is what I did". Out of the the three books on the shelves that I have written, this oneis near and dear to me for more reasons than one.

My dad, whom I loved with all my heart helped me with this book. We spent many hours on the phone recalling stories from my childhood, friends names, horses names, the details surrounding the tornado that took our house and sparked my true love of horses. He shared family photos with me that were used in the book and the entire time Wiley publishing was putting it together, I couldn't wait for my dadto see it finished and on the book store shelves. It was bittersweet because dad passed away in February of last year and the book hit the shelves the following September. It is dedicated to him and he never got the opportunity to see it.

I have recieved many emails from people who read the book and saw in it a connection to their own lives and shared their own stories with me. A short while back, I recieved one from a woman who ironically had a very similar story to ours in that her husband had suddenly become ill and she fought a similar battle. Her battle and ours ironically began on the same day. On the exact same day, we were both sitting in emergency room hospitals at different ends of the country fighting for our husbands lives. They lost their battle and her husband died.

Today the view from the back of my horse is of this woman and how brave she is in her basic survival after the loss of her best friend, her husband. Ive learned a lot from the horses we have met and loved over the years and also from the people I am fortunate enough to meet. The people that see my books on the shelves of a book store and purchase them. Not all of them send me emails or call me but I am sure glad this particular woman did. Our stories are so similar and hearing hers makes me feel fortunate that even through all of the hell that Dr. R put us through, my husband is here with me and God has given us the gift of one more day. Every day is another gift and another and another. Each one gives me one more chance to get it right by remembering to tell him that I love him or smile at the sound of his laughter and even get angry with him sometimes. The only thing that matters is that he is here today and it is all bonus time. Our friends think that he is immortal and tease us about it.

He has survived two back surgeries, three strokes, two open heart surgeries and three months after the last one, he stoodin a neighbors barn with about eight people around him and we all watched in horror as lightening struck the metal lead light he was holding. He survived unharmed after being struck by lightening. Immortal maybe but we never take it for granted. We know by all odds that he shouldn't still be here but he is and I than God for that.

As for this woman, one thing she said really struck a chord with me. She said that the love of her horse was what got her through her terrible ordeal. Horses have that ability because they are such gentle, loving creatures. They are not prejudice or judgemental. They do not hold a grudge and there is nothing so soothing as spending time with them in a quiet barn in the early morning or watching them play out in the pasture.

So again, the view from the back of my horse today is this woman and her strength. Know that I think about you all the time and wish you well. I admire your strength and I thank you for reminding me just how precious every day can be with the people that we love.