Thursday, April 05, 2007

Thank you to everyone who entered my YES contest. It was a true honor and pleasure to read about what makes you say YES in your lives.

I had the hardest time choosing five winners out of the over 50 entries--I was moved by all of them. I decided to eliminate people I know from the running, because I struggled with the ethics of giving prizes to friends; that made the pool a bit smaller, but it was still tough to select the top five. These entries are the ones that ultimately made me say YES, that I chose to say YES to. Congratulations to all of you--books and random self storage auction items are on their way!


Deborah Fochler:

When I was 22 – it was a time when my world seemed to go crazy. I dropped the boyfriend/fiancĂ© of 5 years, met a new guy and married him in less than 8 weeks. I had a wonderful job, had just graduated college and woke up one morning 10 days after my wedding horribly sick. Never in a million years would I have ever entertained the idea of cancer at my age. But there it was. And no one had good news. I had waited too long and it was a very aggressive cancer. So, began radiation, surgery and chemo. All my life I wanted to be a mother. So I bit the bullet and asked the million dollar question. It has been 30 years and I can still hear the screams – NO WAY. But I was young, stupid and fearless. And wanted what I wanted. So I got pregnant and didn’t tell anyone for almost 4 months. When the doctors finally figured it out – they got a court order and tried to force me into an abortion. But everytime I thought about my baby – I just knew it would be okay. I gave birth to twin girls and they have been the most wonderful things of my lifetime. They are what makes me say yes to life and whatever I want to do. For them. After a very long and drawn out process, I have been in remission since 1990. After the initial remission I had 3 reoccurences and I know that one day I may hear news I don’t want. But TODAY IS WONDERFUL AND I PLAN TO ENJOY EVERY SECOND OF IT.

Danice Sison:

Sometimes a song will be played that catches you completely by surprise and paints the mood you’re in. I have this list I keep that’s called “perfect tune, perfect moment”. Every entry simply contains a song title, what I was doing and where I was when I heard it: “Tonight, Tonight” by the Smashing Pumpkins – coasting along a near-empty highway with my dad at 4am.” or, the theme to “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind”- my bus going through a tunnel. This series of moments strung together by notes, chords, cadences and riffs – my tiny explosions of yes.

Georgette Symonds:

In a hundred words or less what makes me light up, wake up and feel most alive? itself. Life as I feel it slowly awakening in me each morning as I open my eyes. Life as I kiss the one I love and share my life with as I close my eyes each night. Life as I press on each key of the keyboard as I write.

JD Boucharde:

Last October, my wife and I were in transition.

We'd decided we needed to leave our rented apartment and find something else. Everything was so expensive, and every opportunity closed systematically in our faces. We'd put in our thirty days, we'd ordered the truck, and we had nowhere to go.

One night, both in tears, we knelt by the bed and said aloud a one-word prayer: YES. Yes to Mr. God and Ms. Universe, and whatever they wanted for us.

The next day-- the next DAY-- a family friend approached us about helping us buy a house. A month later, we owned a home. The three-letter word has been our mantra ever since.

Wanda Butler:

What makes me say Yes is the fact that I am finally coming into my own and appreciating the gifts and creativeness that makes me who I am.

For years I had tried to do that which others expected me to do. While this is not wrong in and of itself, it let me feeling depleted

And unfulfilled. I finally got to a point to where I realized that no matter what I did and no matter what I contributed someone always

Wanted more without any concern of my feelings.

I have finally said Yes to being the best I can be for me, no more trying to impress others or being Super Woman.
Many in my circle of friends think that I am a very strong person, why because I have given them that impression.
So many times when I needed help most failed to come to my aid because they felt I had it all together.

I said Yes to being human, Yes to feeling afraid and unsure of myself, no matter what others would think once they
Realized I'm human just as they.


Jordan E. Rosenfeld said...

This utterly brought me to tears. Truly. People are so magnificent (you, especially, Gayle)...

By the way, I adore your father's blog. What a kick he is!


Anonymous said...

Beautiful--I'm so thankful you did this, even though I didn't enter the contest. I've been busy following my "yes".

Kit Stolz said...

I was touched by the responses, especially Danice's... what heart, what courage.
Real emotion-inspiring words are not so easy to find in the blogosphere and should be treasured.

Great idea, Gayle.

Anonymous said...

thanks for selecting my small essay, gayle. :) i look forward to reading "self storage"!

i don't want to get credit for another person's work - i think kit stolz was referring to deborah's essay. i agree with kit - deborah's story took real courage, and to find the YES in all she's been through is amazing and inspiring. :)

--- danice sison

Georgette Symonds said...

Thanks for picking my 68 words. I received my copy of "Self Storage" and my auction item. I can't wait to start reading it. I'm hoping to get a chance to meet you sometime if you are doing a signing in my area. Wishing you continued success.

-- Georgette

And thank you for adding a link to my novel "Look Not Upon Our Sins" and my website.

dawn said...

Lovely. Thank you for sharing this.