• Jill O. Patrick

Inner Peace

Over the past few weeks my sister Katrina has encouraged me to focus on writing and maintaining my blog posts. I'm up to my third one so far!!! I must admit there is on occasion where I have not been as motivated as she to promote myself as not only a children's book author and active participant of social media, but as a good person who has accomplished many things in my life.

In addition to starting book clubs for children, starting an art group for adults and participating in many other things, I also enjoy culture and cultural events, education, spirituality, family and friends just to name a few of my interests.

Recently I have set a goal to post a blog possibly each week or every week.

Last Sunday I sat at the table in the dining area in our resort at the Wyndham Palm Aire in Pompano Beach, Florida, to write my blog.

I tried, but I wasn't quite connected emotionally to the article and words I saw in front of me. I was sleepy, and the content I was plugging into my Samsung tablet seemed like I was trying too hard to write a report or letter on behalf of a family member or friend.

After a full blog, I closed my tablet and went to bed, saving only a draft format of my thoughts.

The next day and the following days, I continued to enjoy the surroundings and view of the Wyndham Palm Aire, a vacation spot we had stayed before. I love exploring the nature I see when visiting South Florida.

I love the trees, water, family and friends and the Florida sun.

On Thursday, my husband Darryl and I loaded the car, checked out of the resort and began our drive back home to North Carolina.

Depending on the time of morning we travel, we usually stop in or near Georgia during the lunch hour. For lunch, we agreed on Hooter's, a location we had visited before on a prior trip.

After we arrived at Hooter's, we were escorted to our table. Nearby was a woman and about 4-5 gentlemen sitting with her. Their conversation seemed light and comfortable as they too seemed to be in no particular rush for either their food or to leave.

A short while later, a gentleman with gray hair walked in with a younger guy and girl. When I say "younger guy and girl," maybe they were early 20's or 30's. Perhaps the two younger people were accompanying their grandfather.

As we sat nearby, I could overhear parts of their conversation, including the joy in their voices as they appeared to jokingly, proudly and lovingly dote on the younger guy, I might assume on an accomplishment of some sort.

I then overheard the lady who was sitting with the initial crowd say, "We've been watching you!" Those words, "We've been watching you!" made me feel some kind of way.

For some reason, I thought back on my unfinished and still drafted Sunday post. The words, "We've been watching you!" dropped in my spirit. In my gut. In my "healthy gut," as my friend Grace says when referring to trusting what she feels.

After lunch, Darryl paid our bill and we headed back to the car, our bellies full of good food, we were ready to drive the remaining hours home.

It was exactly 12:45 P.M. after I buckled myself in and pulled out my new orange journal to begin writing what I did not want to forget.

Recently, I began to hear people saying similar things not only to myself, but to others as well in observance of accomplishments, milestones and other events where social media posts, pictures and words of affirmation are pouring in over one observed success or another.

As I began to write and reflect, I thought of a picture that Darryl had recently taken of me, and the words, "We've been watching you!" The following thought came to me, as I continue on this journey called life, it is my hope that each day I do my very best, not lose focus of my goals, and that I not sacrifice my inner peace for outer praise.

Take good care of yourself,