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March 9, 2017

Life's Blessings

Life changes without our permission...it is our attitude that determines the ride.
This was one of my daddy's favorite sayings. Maybe not always- I certainly got my stubbornness from him- my ability to hold a grudge- my ability to be a hard-headed jackass...all proudly from my daddy. But in recent years, he had my mom put this quote on their refrigerator to remind him that life can change and the only part that is truly up to us is how we handle it.

A few ago, I was looking for a new job. Photography used to be my love- but I was totally resenting it more and more with each click of my shutter. I wanted something completely different.

"Hey...is your restaurant hiring? Maybe I could just wait tables at lunch...even though I've never done that before," I said to my best gay friend #ofalltime.

"I do NOT see you slinging food, boo...you need to work at a law firm or something. Heels and pencils skirts- not aprons," he said with all the attitude you would expect. #obxdiva

At the time, I didn't even know any attorneys...except for one whose family I'd photographed a couple years earlier. I was trying to handle my own divorce- with only google as my counsel. Apparently, my diva thought this imaginary law-job was just going to fall from the sky.
Always trust your gay...they have crystal balls. #punintended 
In the blink of an eye, I was shopping for said pencil skirts and heels for my new position at a law firm. (I'm still not sure if it was my photography skills or my hip hop knowledge that landed me the position!)

"Like you needed any reason to perfect your arguing..." my sweet mama told me, while shopping.
"I OBJECT!"
"My point exactly, dear."

So life changed...and it was an exciting and welcomed change. I learned how to walk in heels again- I learned that getting myself out of a speeding ticket has nothing to do with crying- and I learned how to get divorced, with the help of my bossman. (The speeding & divorce part...not walking in heels.)

"I'm so proud of you, sugar...you have a career now. Well...another career," Daddy said one day, when he dropped off pimento and cheese to me at work.

After he passed away, I would stand in the spot that he said those words to me, close my eyes and see him standing there. I would hear him say those words, clear as a bell. Something about seeing him walk into the door at my office, made it tough to make the move to a new office.

Last month, my boss opened his own firm in Kitty Hawk. The first morning I drove to our new place of business, I took the beach road. Daddy always told me it was just as fast- and I, for once, wasn't in a huge hurry. I got to the Kitty Hawk line and could see the ocean- it was calm and breathtaking. I turned the radio up and heard Chris Stapleton's voice bellowing out a song that always seems to play when I am already thinking about my daddy. {Daddy Don't Pray Anymore}

As I rounded the curve by the Kitty Hawk Pier, I got chills as a memory struck me. My Daddy spent summers in Kitty Hawk when he was little. His grandparents had a house in Southern Shores- one of the only houses there back then. I wiped away the tears I had tried desperately to fight back as I thought of a young Don Spencer, running in the sand...fishing on the shoreline...telling stories with his grandparents.



Our attitude definitely determines our ride. My new office is filled with memories of my daddy that I bring with me each day. And my rides to work? Well, they're filled with ocean views and chats with my favorite angel. #blessingsindisguise 

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