Running on Empty, But…

Have you ever been so tired that you can’t sleep? A conundrum not many people say they can associate with, but I am just that tired sometimes. But I can’t give up on my goals. Where do you pull strength from when you take an inner inventory and find yours is all gone?<

For me, on days like today, I have looked around at my family spread across the living room. The youth that surrounds us, the children laughter, inquisitive minds, tiny voices, and even the cries make you appreciate life so much. Then I look out the window, with rain coming and the heat index over 90, it may be too hot to go outside, but, within this beautiful summer, God’s glory is magical.

Then I think about the generations in this room. Seventy-five years of wisdom sits to my right embodied with the anointed vessel I am blessed to call Mommy. The remaining next generation her children ages 50, 48, 45 years old. The third-generation are grandchildren of hers at 26, 24, 21, 20, 20 all caring for babies, watching young one’s color, making powerful music in a makeshift studio. Then within the fourth generation are seven children ages 7 years to 5 months, all loved, protected, and safe from harm. That’s God’s grace.

So at those times when you feel as if you can’t take another step, look around you; beyond the surface, past the unpaid bills, sink of dishes, loads of laundry, and lawn to cut. Look at those God blessed to subsist in your world. See them. Hear them. And thank God for days like this. You never know when the same room full of people will be less one, or two. You may be running on empty, but be grateful because tomorrow brings with it, one more chance to be great.


Valerie Collins
Valerie Collins
Valerie Collins was born in Tucson, Az, the last of six children. She has loved writing since a child but decided to pursue a career in Orthopedic nursing. Shortly after her marriage and birth of her first child at the age of 22, she was diagnosed with the chronic pain disease, Fibromyalgia, its subsequent conditions, illnesses, and syndromes. Once the disease disabled her in 2001, she revisited her passion for writing poetry and short stories and has accumulated over 100 poems and spoken word pieces over the years. She became a member of the International Society of poets in 2002 and The International Who's Who in Poetry in 2006. She currently is a member of Realistic Poetry International, Who's Who Among American Business Women, and Women of Facebook Create. Her accolades include 2005 Poet of the Year. She was awarded both the Outstanding Achievement Award in Poetry and the Official Commemorative Poetry Ambassador Medal while serving as a Poetry Ambassador associate in 2007. She wrote a play entitled “Fix Me Jesus” in 2012 for Alabama 1st COGIC State AIM Youth Convention Competition drama category which was awarded second place. Currently, she is in rehearsals for her second stage play for the local playwright, Shawna D. Moore which will be on stage in August 2019. She is in the process of compiling a two-volume poetry book entitled My Poetic Life: A Memoir of Love and a book detailing her life with Fibromyalgia, entitled Behind the Walls of Silence. In July 2018, she created her first blog site My Poetic Life (The Book) as @vfurrmstheblogger to act as a launch for both books and it has taken on a life of its own. She also owns a small crochet business, Val's Gifts of Warmth, where she sells her handmade crochet items.

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