Weekend Wisdom

Weekend Wisdom: Olivia and Melanie

Welcome to August!

Today’s Weekend Wisdom pays tribute to two time Academy Award-winning actress Olivia de Havilland who played Melanie Hamilton Wilkes in Gone With The Wind. Ms. De Havilland moved to heaven this week at the age of 104 years old.

I felt ‘Gone with the Wind’ would last five years, and it’s lasted over 70 and into a new millennium. There is a special place in my heart for that film and Melanie. She was a remarkable character – a loving person – and because of that, she was a happy person. And Scarlett, of course, was not.

Olivia de Havilland

Gone With The Wind is my favorite movie, followed very closely by The Sound of Music and then Jaws.

“Be kind to Captain Butler. He loves you so.”

Melanie Wilkes (speaking to Scarlett O’Hara in Gone With The Wind)

So be kind and loving to the Captain Butler’s (the bad boys and girls) in your life. We certainly need more people loving others nowadays.

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while managing call center teams, co-facilitating a grief support group, and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, and a lover of history, chocolate, red roses, and golden retrievers. She is also the amateur photographer behind the blog OgleOhio.com


The Power Of 3 Words

Once words get into your brain, they can hold lots of power over your life.

Here are short stories of 3 words that held power over my mind.

#1 Story
Joe was in a lot of back pain weeks before his back surgery. I was up at least once a night helping him switch positions. Once he got comfortable again I would go sleep in the guest bedroom.

One night he woke up twice in excruciating pain. After getting him settled for the second time I flopped on the bed in the spare room and had one of my talks with God. (This is where I do all the talking and none of the listening.)

I told God I did not understand why he was not answering my prayer for Joe’s healing. Why was he still in pain? Please heal the pain even if it means he has to go live with You. I will muddle through somehow.

#2 Story

The morning after he passed, Rommie jumped on my bed and was all happy and excited because Mom was home after being gone 29 hours. I told her “Daddy is not coming home because he died last night. I am not sure what will happen to us but we will be okay, I do not know how but we will be okay.”

#3 Story

My anthem after Joe passed became “I Will Survive.”  Not sure how soon after his passing I adopted this anthem, it might not have been until 2009 when I got laid off. My thinking was since I survived the first year of widowhood, I can survive unemployment as well.

Key Words

The key word in my prayer was “muddle.”

The key word I spoke to Rommie was “okay.”

The key word in my anthem was “survive.”

Muddle, Okay and Survive – nothing good can come to you when you live by those words.

Merriam Webster (m-w.com) defines muddle:

to think or act in a confused aimless way

Yes, that describes my life since Joe passed. There were moments of clarity (like when I started this blog) but most of the past 6 3/4 years, I’ve been muddling or as another M-W.com definition

to make a mess of 


Merriam Webster defines Ok as

fairly good : not very good or very bad

That also describes the past 6 3/4 years – not very good and not very bad. They were neither because of my muddling.


The definition for survive is:

to remain alive or in existence, to live on, to continue to function or prosper

Yes, I continued to function, to remain alive, and remain in existence, since Joe’s passing and the onset of career upheaval. But that is it – survive, barely keeping my head above water.

This “Dancing Queen” has nothing against Gloria Gaynor and her song. Lord knows it helped me dance again during troubled times. There are times when grief is fresh that one focuses solely on surviving but surviving is not a good theme for one’s life.


Well life changes this year.

Muddle, okay and survive are Gone With The Wind.

They have to be.

I can no longer barely survive.

Stay tuned on Monday January 5th when I will reveal my word of the year, a word I’ve already started focusing on and making a part of my life.


31 Days of Joy: Day 10 – Joy in Exercising

I got away from doing this exercise a long time ago and after the day I had yesterday, I need to do it again – every day.

  • I need to do it because I care about my sanity.
  • I need to know that at the end of the day there are more good people out there than bad.
  • I need an attitude adjustment towards my fellow humans, because right now I do not think fondly of you. (My fellow “31 Dayer’s” excluded). Yes, I realize it is not fair that my opinion of humanity is based on about 75 conversations per day.

So here is the exercise I am doing starting today.  All that is required are black beads, blue beads and a clear container. (If you are a klutz like me, make sure your container is plastic.)         😉

  • For every nice, caring person I have a phone conversation with, a blue bead will go into a clear, plastic container. 
  • For every mean, nasty person I speak with, a black bead will go into the container. 
  • On those days when black out numbers blue – I pour out the beds knowing


“After all, tomorrow is another day.”

Hopefully by the end of my shift, there will be more blue beads than black beads. Although yesterday there would have been more black.

This exercise can be adapted to any job or to life in general.  All you need to do is to define a blue bead moment and black bead moment.

Won’t you join me in doing this exercise?