"Lone Star State" MD2nd's Profile
The flag of the great Lone Star state was adopted as the state flag when Texas became the 28th state in 1845. As with the flag of the United States, the blue stands for LOYALTY, the white represents STRENGHT, and the red is for BRAVERY. Both the state flag and seal have a Lone Star. The Lone Star came to be when in 1821 Governor of the Mexican Providence of Texas, Henry Smith was reading some important papers. He signed them and then declared that Texas needed a seal. His overcoat had large brass buttons with the impression of a five pointed star on them. The Governor cut one of the buttons from his overcoat, and stamped it in sealing wax on the documents. Boerne, Fredericksburg, New Braunfels, Comfort, Luckenbach - in the nineteenth Century German pioneers found their way to the lovely landscape of Central Texas and created a fondly favored fusion of Europe and Texana.
Houston, which vibrates with the energy of three million citizens, calls the coastal corner of Texas yet its home as it lays fifty miles inland from the Gulf of Mexico which coast extends from Louisiana to Mexico. The very first far away travel out of Germany took me to Houston/Texas. Since then at least half of my heart beats in Texas. With personal, great losses of lately and of earlier, life has changed. There for I felt like to build a 2nd, new VT home page, the way possible for me to stick around here, which I would like to do, while trying to connect to myself again. My former VT member name is Maria250. I do consider VirtualTourist a most friendly travel community with interesting & detailed informations provided. I found VirtualTourist back when I did my very first travel to the states.
Now, I do hope travelers, or visitors, or friends, or maybe grievers, can benefit from this or that note or link, I'm going to set. Speaking of friends and, or fellow travelers, thank you to those who are willing and able to walk along side me on my personal journey of grief, and who will allow me to determine when my time of grief is up - like Pat Schwiebert said.
When we are grieving we may feel like the rest of the world is going on as usual while our life has stopped. Most people will allow us about a one month grace period. During this time our friends will probably seem to be attentive to our needs. But when the month is up they may be telling us, that it’s time to move on. They want us to get back to normal. We may be surprised how many of our friends & relatives will become uncomfortable with our need to dwell on our sorrow. We may need to redefine what is normal for us, and choosing new friends, friends who are willing and able to walk along side us on our personal journey of grief, and who will allow us to determine when our time’s up. Grief may make us feel imprisoned in hell. We won’t like who we are. We won’t like it that our loved one has gone. We just want out of here, and we’re not sure we want to do the work that grief requires in order to be set free from this bondage. Some of us will remain in this uncomfortable place for a short time while others of us may feel like we have been given a longer sentence. I find it hard to make decisions. I don’t trust myself to make the right choice. I want someone else to be responsible. Sometimes my wasting time is about not having the energy to get started. I am physically exhausted and my body refuses to make an effort to reclaim my former self. I’m not sure I even care enough about anything to make the effort. What’s the use, since it seems like everything I love sooner or later gets taken away from me.
When we grieve we spend most of our time looking back. That’s where our missing loved ones are. If we were to look forward, that would mean we would have to imagine our lives without those we have lost. And that’s what we aren’t ready to accept--not yet. We think we have to keep those memories in front of us, or surely we will forget those whom we have lost.
It is natural for us to gauge our life after a loss as we anticipate and then go through the first times --first day, first week, first month, first summer, first Christmas, first vacation. These first times are like benchmarks, notches in our belt that prove we are surviving when you weren’t sure we wanted to, or didn’t know we could. There’s an empty chair at the table. There’s the conversation that seems to be just noise, having little to do with the absent one. We still prepare more food than we now need because we haven’t yet figured out how to cook for one less person. Sometimes the food seems to have no taste, and is not able to do what we want it to do--to fill that huge hole within us. Sometimes what we need to do is to take a time out from our regular activities to reflect on what has happened to our personal world, as we knew it before our great loss. To do so is not to run away from life but simply to realize that to act as if nothing has happened doesn’t work. This loss is too big to allow us to pretend that it hasn’t had a big impact on us. Others will have to be okay with our need to bow out for a while. When it’s time to re-enter a normal routine, it’s our choice what we will reinstate and what we decide to lay aside. Loss tends to redefine our priorities. What used to be important may not be as important now. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing. In the end, time will change things. The intensity we experience when grief is new, where we can see nothing but our loss, and where every moment is filled with thoughts of the one who died will gradually diminish and become softer. Time forces the big picture of life back into our vision whether we like it or not. In the years following a loss, life will eventually start to re-emerge. This will not happen because we come to understand the death but because, with the passage of time, it will become easier to live with. Time will not remove grief. The scars of our grief will remain and we may find ourselves ambushed by a fresh wave of grief at any time. Time is a gift that we have taken for granted. We’ve been given our lives one moment at a time.
-Pat Schwiebert, Grief Watch
Remember me in quiet days
but in your memories, have not grief.
Just let the joy we knew remain.
Remember me when evening stars
look down on you with steadfast eyes.
Remember me if once you wake
to catch a glimpse of a red sunrise.
And when your thoughts do turn to me
know that I would not have you cry.
But live for me and laugh for me,
for when you are happy, so am I.
Remember me when spring walks by.
Think of me when you are glad,
and while you live, I shall not die.
When one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language.
"For I know the plans for you", declares the Lord.
May the Lord hear the prayers for the families of Marine Pfc Chad E. Bales (died April 13, 2003), Marine LCpl Michael B. Wafford (died April 8, 2004), Marine LCpl Aaron C. Austin (died April 26, 2004), Marine LCpl Nickalous N. Aldrich (died August 27, 2004), Marine LCpl Rhonald D. Rairdan (died January 26, 2005), Marine Cpl Steven P. Gill (died June 21, 2005), Marine Sgt Christopher Zimmerman (died September 20, 2006), Marine Sgt Gary S. Johnston (died January 23, 2007), Marine LCpl Brandon T. Lara (died July 19, 2009), Marine LCpl Christopher S. Baltazar (died September 3, 2009), Marine Cpt. Joshua S. Meadows (died September 5, 2009), Marine LCpl Cody R. Stanley (died October 28, 2009), Marine Sgt. Cesar B. Ruiz (died October 31, 2009), Marine LCpl Shawn P. Hefner (died November 13, 2009), Marine Cpl Nicholas K. Uzenski (died January 11, 2010), Marine LCpl Garrett W. Gamble (died March 11, 2010). May the world never forget the sacrifice of these precious Texan Marines, and their fallen fellow service men/women. May the Lord hold us in the palm of His hand, and give the strenght to overcome the want of having our loved ones with us still in physical form. It is not for us to know the reason when a life is cut short, when all doesn't look fair and just - it is in God's hand and will.
The birth of a Marine is on that day
Having earned the Eagle, Globe and Anchor.
For that's the day of standing tall
With a pride that couldn't be greater.
Throughout the rigors of basic training
There's a metamorphosis taking place;
A past life ends while another begins
With a title that can't be erased.
With a heritage passed on
And distinctions so easily seen,
It's more than just the uniform
In the making of Marines.
It's fortitude and conviction,
Values taken to their graves;
It's honor after tours have ended
For the remainder of their days.
The fire contained within the ember
Hides its heat without a glow!
It's the Marine's fire that burns forever,
The "Spirit" within their soul.
"Once a Marine, Always a Marine!
It's the ultimate of all truths,
For there is no other service on Earth
That's paid such heavy dues.
Whether they served for 30 years
Earning ribbons and medals galore,
Or never having tasted battle,
They are Marines for evermore.
To say a Marine is "X" or "Former"
Will warrant immediate retraction.
Marines are Marines till the day they die
But even then, the Title is everlasting!
I'd like to ride down Memory Lane
together, you and I.
And sing the songs we used to sing
in the pleasant days gone by.
Our thoughts will bloom like flowers
and we'll laugh at things we used to do,
the joyous things we've done.
And then someday if God is good
perhaps beneath the sky, we'll ride once more
together, you and I.
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