Showing posts with label love. Show all posts
Showing posts with label love. Show all posts

November 24, 2022

Destination: Life is Beautiful

Bridal Reflections

My wedding day was the absolute perfect day, and I wouldn’t change a thing even though everything wasn’t quite perfect. My groom is the man of my dreams. Everything from my dress to my hair turned out perfect.

When I had wished that I had decorations for my ceremony, my wish was granted: the entire city plaza was lit in beautiful blue, green, and white balls of lights hanging delicately from the trees above us. When we got to the restaurant for our simple reception, the whole celebration plaza streets had decorated for the upcoming holidays too, in beautiful white sparkly and hanging lights from all the trees and light poles. I turned to my groom and said “look, they decorated just for us”. It was like the whole city had decorated in anticipation of our special wedding day.

I also struggled with the fact that some of my family wouldn’t be there with that I would’ve liked to of been there that day. Although they weren’t there, I didn’t feel any less loved or supported. The people who were there made me feel very special and even helped me to think of things that I didn’t think would be important, like taking a bunch of photos in every pose, every angle, and every family combination possible - that I know I’ll appreciate now. It was hard to hear that certain family didn’t want to come celebrate my milestone, but I knew I was marrying the right person, so nothing else mattered at that point except for him and me.

Back to the decorations- I guess I just happened to pick the right restaurant for us to have our reception at too. Everything was just right. they sent us at a really nice round corner table at the end of the room so we had our own private space. The decorations from the ceiling were beautiful glass amber blocks with light filtering down and it was the perfect atmosphere to celebrate our new union. our food was delicious and we ate like kings and queens.

The wedding cake was wonderful. My sweet friend offered to give me a cake when she found out that I was getting married and she arranged the most delicious and beautiful cake from a local deli with little white and royal blue rose sets of whipped topping over a vanilla with strawberry filling. It almost tasted like a fancy strawberry shortcake dessert. I was so thankful that my friend could attend, and that she gifted me with that lovely cake.

I am so thankful and very excited to be joining my new family. They are really stellar people and have a lot of love to share. I get the gift of lots of new family members, including a sister-in-law and two lovely mothers in-law.

I never knew I would make out so blessed in life but here I am and I am so thankful. Family means so much to me and now I have the gift of being able to build my own, with my groom…

There was a time when I didn’t know or see how my life could work out in a beautiful way, so I want to encourage others to keep moving forward with your life goals and have big faith that the universe has your back. I know life can be so dark when you feel alone and without purpose. Keep going friend and you’ll find your happiness too.

Now that I’ve saved the best part of the story for last… I am thankful to have found a partner that not only gives me butterflies but also I can call my best friend. My groom is no more than a regular (amazing) guy - but he’s mine! We’ve had our ups and downs over the past couple years but ultimately he gives me a firm foundation of unconditional love to be a better person and I simply wouldn’t want a day of my life without his presence. I am SO thankful for him!

I finally found my happily ever after <3

#wedding #happyeverafter #amberclee

June 30, 2022

Skin and Body Image #skintoo

Hello internet friends!

I was reading this article from Stylist UK: 

A third of women won’t exercise because of how their skin looks, a new study finds

...And I have to share my own experiences. This article hits close to home because I am definitely one of the 1/3 of women they talk about that has struggled with body image issues, partially fueled by my own skin problems. I hope that by sharing my experience that I can help others who may be feeling the same way.

My skin problems and by poor body image started when I was a teenager. I imagine lots of people start having anxieties at this time. We're hyper aware of our own bodies and how they are changing, and our peers are quick to point out anything that seems even remotely different than normal body development.

I have a skin disease called hidradentis suppertiva that started when I was about 13. We live in Florida, so the hot, sticky summer weather made this skin condition even worse. I constantly wore jeans to hide my skin, even if I was hot, I would lie and say that I was fine just so I could justify hiding my body. In school, I carefully raised my arms when answering a question, being careful that my arm pits would not show where I also had lesions from my skin disease.

Hidradentis suppertiva is a auto-immune related skin disease where my body is overactive in attacking the regular bacterias that live in your skin and hair follicles. It produces painful sores that often leak blood or pus. I am fortunate that I know how to handle my wounds after so many years and my careful diet and lifestyle has made sure that the lesions have not progressed to stage 3.

It is a very embarrassing condition to have to deal with on a daily basis. You see other people's skin and all I wanted as a teen was to have beautiful skin and legs like I saw my classmates had.

Not only did this make trouble for my body image and confidence during my teenage years, but as an adult, I continue to deal daily with my extreme body cleanliness to make sure that the disease doesn't progress. Because it has an auto-immune component, I can sometimes be tired, like you have a constant cold hanging over your energy levels.

I propose a movement for skin acceptance, similar to the me too or body positivity movement. #skintoo

I hope this gives you a window into the struggles of having an auto-immune skin disease that will be with me forever and will hopefully not progress in severity. Please be kind to people around you regardless of how their outside might look... 

The above linked article gives the following advice to build your confidence:

  • Talk about it
  • Exercise in inclusive places
  • Wear whatever makes you comfortable
  • Don't worry about what others think
Please know that...

You are beautiful regardless of your skin type, skin problems, or skin "life character" like scars, sun marks, stretch marks, and wrinkles.

Photo by Eva Bronzini. 
#amberclee #skintoo
Photo by Eva Bronzini from Pexels: Photo by Eva Bronzini from Pexels:
Photo by Eva Bronzini from Pexels:

April 5, 2022

Twenty-Post Challenge: My Favorite Influence

This is the sixth post in a twenty-post series blogging challenge. The challenge is to write about somebody who has influenced you and name the 10 things you love most about them.

My Parents

Dad, mom, and me in late 1984.

I am choosing to write about my parents, Mark and Linda. My wonderful parents have greatly influenced me for the following reasons:

  1. They’re giving of themselves and their resources. Not only did my father and mother give over twenty years serving and moving for the US military, but in their second careers and into retirement, they continue to give selflessly of themselves. They serve at the food bank and independently get food for others, they volunteer at home build sites for low income people, they are always donating and finding supplies to give to the local charities, they find blankets and supplies for the animal shelters, and also their friends and neighbors know them for being giving to them too. My parents love to help other people (and animals).
  2. They’re creative. My mom is the most talented artist and my dad is super smart with anything mechanical, with building things, and systems.
  3. They’re resourceful. Everything in their house stays immaculate and is mostly amazing self- diy renovations. They are both quick witted in solving problems of all kinds.
  4. They’re unwavering in values and character. They’re so solid in their beliefs and how they choose to live an honorable, integrityful life.
  5. They’re loving. They are kind and fair. They have been there for each other for almost forty years and will always be there as they can for me and my brother (and our families).
  6. They were great parents and now great grandparents. My brother and I benefited from their wisdom and influence; and now as grandparents they pass on their life wisdom.
  7. They have great taste. In decor, in life choices, and in conservation of self, they both hold strong to their understanding of what should be in their lives and leave no sympathy for what’s left out.
  8. They’ve traveled the world. Between the two of them and together, they’ve traveled to so many places: Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa, Central America and the Islands, Alaska and Hawaii. They have experienced so many different kinds of people around the world.
  9. They’re thoughtful of others, neighbors, volunteering, with their friends. They celebrate birthdays with special effort, celebrate achievements, and try to make life special for others around them.
  10. They’re MY parents. Firstly, I am thankful to have parents and I realize that not everyone had the blessing of two parents living together while growing up. Second, they are a great influence because they spent time parenting me as a child and continue to provide guidance when needed as an adult. I am truly blessed to have them as my parents.

The original challenge is from Writer’s Write.

#amberclee #20postchallenge #love

January 7, 2012

Invitation to Love (poem)

I wrote this short poem after my KINS Founders weekend: an enlightening and connecting weekend with some very special people I now call my KINS. We shared an afternoon walk of silence and meditated on our individual vision of a green, vibrant Tampa Bay. Sitting at my computer desk at home, I recall that inspiring afternoon:

Invitation to Love
the earth seemed inviting
as the grass crunched under my feet
the sun fell warmly on our bodies
as we stood in communion
with the earth, as one organism
the metal and glass are a contrast
to our natural place of belonging
the love extends from the earth
in a way that man-made never could

Helen, Georgia    taken by: Amber C. Lee

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