The old-fashioned Christmas lights are illuminating the darkness as I pull into home.  I love those big fat red, blue, green, and orange spheres hanging beneath the cedar porch next to the pool.  I leave them up all year and turn them on in the summer when we have folks over for cookouts.  At that time I refer to them as our honky-tonk lights.


It is warmer here than in the mountains of Laity Lodge, but not by too much.  The air is crisp enough to see breath rising from the surface of the pond.


Four days has passed as quickly as breath itself, and I am so happy to hold Doc in my arms and breathe him in, yet, I miss the people and the landscape of Laity Lodge.



Theses are my people.  Here is where I fit in.

Never have I been to a retreat where people opened their hearts so quickly.  Never have I seen women know instinctively that they are safe, and pour out the sorrows of their lives, sitting on couches so soft. Surrounding us are windows big as life pulling in the fall’s splendor. Each of us having tasted a similar sorrow, nod our heads, and a moan is heard as the stories pour out onto Holy Ground.


We all talk about trying to write about the pain, just trying to get it out, so we can help others and to let them know they are not alone.


But we, as writers talk about how we frequently feel alone. Writing requires a lot of alone time to work on the art, and the introverted part of our personalities needs it to recharge, reflect, recall.


Writers embrace the introvert, and live as an extrovert on the pages that we write. 


It is in the writing that we can embrace others in our day-to-day lives.  It is in the words that we connect with others mentally and spiritually.


This is why I write.  I want to speak answers to my Whys out loud.  I want to ask Why, Who and How, then share it with others asking the same questions.


I want my life to live in the middle of all of the questions – pressing one leather sole after the other curious, seeking and begging for greater sight to write.


“Jesus, why do we hurt?”


“Who needs a hug today?”


“How Can I leave this world better than I found it?”


“What is their story – and do I have any answers that can help?”


And like those beautiful lights on my porch, I want to bring joy and clarity to those who might still be walking in darkness, because of pain, because of vision, because of life.


It is when we share our stories – the broken, the ugly, the completely mangled, and the lessons learned that our pain becomes someone’s answers.


What story can you tell that will be someone’s answer?








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Diane W. Bailey is the founder of The Consilium – an online community of wisdom and purpose for women over 45 years of age. She is a published author. Her books include String of Pearls – From Tears to Treasure, and 30 Days To A Better Stepfamily. She creates her own line of precious metals bracelets. Diane lives in the Deep South with her husband Doc. Together they have created a stepfamily, each having two stepchildren and two birth children, and share three grandchildren, one black lab named Charlie and one long haired tabby cat named Lil Girl. Diane’s passion is to encourage women to be all God has created them to be by pressing past fear and daring to live life as an adventure. Some of her life adventures include traveling to Israel, speaking, entrepreneurship and backyard farming with Doc. She loves Gumbo, fried shrimp and seeing all sunsets across water.

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