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03.09.04 (10:23 am)   [edit]
I haven't updated for awhile, so I figured I'll do a quick update before I head to class. I've lost another 2 inches in my waist this month, and I only have another 7 more to go before I'm satisfied. I moved my goal to a lower number recently. Instead of a 32" waist I want a 28" waist. So here I go....

02.28.04 (7:16 pm)   [edit]
Something in me has changed recently. I can't fully explain what it is, but I feel free. At focus...satisfied.

02.21.04 (9:17 pm)   [edit]
I did a lot of thinking this week, and I hope my decisions turn out to be for the better...But time is the only thing that is going to tell that for sure.

working with a great big smile
02.20.04 (10:06 am)   [edit]
Went to work again last night, and was literally skipping down the halls singing "Do you need somebody to love?". There's something special about making people laugh and smile. So fulfilling. Augusta (my sister) trains me at least slightly tonight, which is going to be fun. She seems to know more about what people want than most of the workers at that nursing home. I think its because she cares more. I hope I love it as much as she does. The nursing home is her home away from home. The residents are family...but again, they are becoming that way to me too. Its like having 50 grandmas and 50 grandpas. :) Wonderful. Unfortunately, I'm not going to have time for anything else for a long time. 5 to 6 days a week, and the day off I'm on call. But hey... The idea of improving someone's life is definitely worth it.

02.19.04 (11:25 am)   [edit]
I love my job! I was really worried that it wouldn't work very well, or that I would mess up a considerable amount. But I love the residents, and I love staying on my feet...Overall, I must say this job kicks ass. I'm glad I found something so fulfilling.

I support same sex marriages
02.16.04 (8:23 am)   [edit]
Marriage is love.

The Funeral
02.16.04 (8:16 am)   [edit]
Its strange, the funeral gave me a really good sense of closure. There's a song they played..."American Soldier" by Toby Keith. In one of the lines it goes

"And I will always do my duty, no matter what the price
I've counted up the cost, I know the sacrifice
Oh, and I don't want to die for you
But if dyin's asked of me
I'll bare that cross with honor
'Cause freedom don't come free.

I realized that Josh died for his country, and for the lives of thousands of people. I admire him for that, he became my hero. I never truly understood the importance of Independence day, or the songs that say things like "And I won't forget the men who died who gave that right to me." I will never take the freedom I have been blessed with for granted again. It was gained at a great cost, and I am ashamed to think that I didn't realize that sooner. But at least I realize it now. And God holds Joshua in his arms now; probably laughing at the many jokes Josh has to tell. :)

02.14.04 (7:51 am)   [edit]
I went to the visitation last night. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but it wasn't that. It was open casket, and the man in the casket looked so much like Josh I went numb. He didn't have his famous smile on his face, and he looked so dead. I suppose that is suppose to help you find closure, and perhaps in a sense it did. I finally realized that he is dead. He's not coming back. They had tons of flowers all over the church, and people were piling into the church. The funeral is suppose to be even bigger. I'll write about that later.

02.13.04 (1:53 pm)   [edit]
I am going to Josh's visitation tonight, and then following that I'll probably come home and listen to Pure Moods or something. I'm not sure.
I worked again today at the nursing home. I fed people, and helped them back to their room. I have a feeling this is going to be a very wonderful job. I'm glad I can be doing something to help people increase the quality of their life. :D

02.12.04 (2:34 pm)   [edit]

February 11, 2004

Dedicated to Spc. Joshua Knowles: He left footprints in the hearts of everyone he met. He will not be forgotten.

Today the flags fly lower for a man they've never seen
Strangers pray with strangers for a face they'll never meet
Friends who've grown so distant find comfort in friends' arms
As one man finds his meaning and reaches for the stars.

Today a silent country bows its head in silent prayer
A family feels it's broken and sheds so many tears
The gift of love engulfs the world within its tender care
As one man lays his life down by ignoring all his fears.

Today the world feels empty without the laughter of his voice
But comfort comes from knowing the effect of his great choice
The life he gave for men unknown will lay long within my heart
And deep within my own heart he will always be a part.

Today the world cries out for the loss of its great son;
But I am sure that through his greatness his life has just begun
And even as I'm speaking, God's smiling at his words
Laughing at the strangest jokes that even GOD has heard.

So today we mourn the loss of a great brother and a friend
And perhaps it will take awhile to truly understand
But one day we will look back at the impressions he has made
And appreciate the world for which his life he freely gave.

My views on Operation Iraqi Freedom-Opinion submitted to Globe Gazette
02.11.04 (12:07 pm)   [edit]
My personal views on Operation Iraqi Freedom have changed significantly over the course of the last few days. I heard about Josh Knowles’ death Friday afternoon before my drive to work. My initial reaction was one of anger towards the government for having sent troops to Iraq in the first place. My opinion remained the same until early Saturday morning, when I picked up a Globe Gazette and read the article about Peter Bieber’s injuries. The article refers back to an email Bieber sent the Globe in June, 2003, and the part that struck me was the final quote: “For Josh, myself and other members of the 1133rd we’ve told that story to, it is all the justification we need for why we are here.” I began to think about how little we know about what is going on in Iraq. The media can’t pick up everything. The news that we hear can’t fully get into the minds and emotions of the soldiers, or the people they are helping. We sit here, in our comfortable chairs with our television sets and three meals a day, judging what we are doing in a country so different from our own. These soldiers, Josh and Peter included, have been fighting for people they have had contact with; people whose lives have been dramatically changed by their presence. I guarantee you, the man and his grandchildren mentioned in that article, will never forget Josh or Peter. Perhaps there are no weapons of mass destruction. Perhaps men are dying for people who don’t live in our country, who don’t possess our luxuries. But these men died selflessly to better the lives of other human beings; these men willingly endanger themselves every day fighting for what they believe is right. We owe it to them to see Operation Iraqi Freedom through THEIR eyes, through the eyes of the observer, rather than the eyes of the blind.

02.10.04 (4:09 pm)   [edit]
I'm at home today, listening to Evanescence and waiting to play Scrabble with my dad. It should be fun. I went into the nursing home and got my TB test today, I go back Thursday to have it checked and begin training. I have to watch adult abuse videos (which I have previously watched) and then I can start working on the floor. Life is becoming more precious to me now, so I think I will enjoy a job that revolves around making people comfortable. I want to give something to the world. This is my oportunity to do just that.

I'm assuming I've lost more weight, my pants are gigantic on me now. I don't have the financial resources to buy any new clothes yet, so I'm tightening a belt and doing my best with what I've got. Since I've dropped about 8 pant sizes now, its very amusing to see how my clothes fit. I'm looking forward to getting down to a size that will make buying new clothes beneficial. Just another 6 sizes to go. Then I'll have gone from a 46" waist (oh my god, was I really that big??!) to a 32" waist. I'm actually at about 37 1/2" right now, which is a nice jump. although honestly, I don't notice any change in myself. I suppose that single fact could lead into a dangerous zone. Especially considering my past eating disorders. I never see myself as what I am.

Operation Iraqi Freedom
02.08.04 (1:51 pm)   [edit]
My views on politics have changed significantly over the last few days. Josh was killed on Thursday in a mortor attack at approximately 2:15 p.m. The newspaper yesterday and today was covered in articles about Josh. He is the 549th American to die in Iraq, the 10th Iowan to die, and the first out of the 1133rd. My initial reaction was to absolutely detest Bush. But I was reading an article yesterday, about how glad Josh and his driving partner were that they could be in Iraq, helping the Iraqis. I began thinking about how little we know about what is going on there. The news can't get everything. It can't get into the minds of the soldiers or the people they are helping. Josh was determined to continue doing what he was doing. That is admirable, as well as eye opening. I think my views on this war have been permanently changed. He died fighting for a country other than his own. He died for people from different lifestyles, so that they may be able to experience the freedom that Americans so often take advantage of. I am proud to say that Josh was a friend of mine. And North Iowa is proud to call him a hero.

The flags
02.07.04 (2:24 pm)   [edit]
In Sheffield today flags were at half mass all down main street. All businesses put two flags out. I think its finally sinking into my head that Josh died. Its sunny today, and the warmth of the sun makes me think of Josh's pleasant nature.

02.06.04 (12:26 pm)   [edit]
I hate president Bush today. My friend was killed in Iraq. I really don't feel like writing much about it, but I want to tell everyone, Bush is an f***ing bastard!

Its beginning to look a lot like Christmas
02.05.04 (8:09 pm)   [edit]
Ok, Christmas is over a month past, and NOW we're getting the snow. I'm not sure exactly how much we've gotten so far this year, but its a crazy amount. Especially considering the fact that its all happening within the same week. It just keeps snowing, and snowing and snowing...

I got off work early today, and am staying at my Grandma's tonight to verify that I will make it to work tomorrow. I should put my notice in soon, but it would be nice to have two part time jobs for awhile. The D.O.N. at the nursing home called and talked to me today. The nursing home is only hiring part time (probably to avoid benefits), but part time is better than no time. Until I'm caught up with my bills and everything it might be nice to carry two jobs. No free time though. Crazy.

02.05.04 (11:02 am)   [edit]
McDonalds burned down yesterday, which was really shocking to the town. Something that is so insignificant really was an eye opener. For me, it made me realize how intangible the world really is. And I don't even eat at McDonalds.

snow and justin
02.02.04 (6:37 am)   [edit]
I get to see Justin today! I'm incredibly excited, I haven't spent alone time with him in over a week. Today will definitely be a good long as the weather holds up long enough for me to get there this afternoon. I'm meeting him at the library probably around 11:30 or so this morning. Yay!

In other news...It snowed here A LOT! I think we've gotten close to 8 inches now, with a good chance of another 3-5 inches this afternoon. Crazy stuff. Not to mention the winds are suppose to pick up. this reminds me of the blizzard we got a few years ago. You could barely get into town because the drifts were so big across the roads that the plows couldn't get through. Pray that doesn't happen unless I get out of town today. :)

02.01.04 (3:23 pm)   [edit]
I've decided to start meditating to clear my chakras again. I haven't practiced meditation towards my chakras in quite awhile, and I think it would be something beneficial to relearn. Wish me luck.

02.01.04 (7:14 am)   [edit]
I had work yesterday, which was great, since it put an extra amount of money on my paycheck. However, we finished the survey yesterday, so for the next couple days I once again do not have work. No complaints from me, though. I get paid tomorrow, and the check is going to be kind of small, but it will get my insurance and gas paid off.

I also get to see Justin tomorrow. Its strange. I promised myself I wouldn't get close to someone again, and within a couple weeks I've fallen head over heels for him. I'm hesitant sometimes, because I know how easily relationships can end. But I can't risk being with him just because I'm frightened of losing him. I'd rather be with him for a little while than not at all. And if I have my choice, we'll be together a lot longer than a little while. :)

Its snowing here today. I actually don't mind this kind of snowfall, its really pretty. Big white flakes calmly falling from the sky. no wind to cause drifts, its just kind of a peaceful, calm, embracing feelings. Wonderful.

energy rush
01.30.04 (1:44 pm)   [edit]
I had an interesting experience today that frightened me beyond words. I was changing a lightbulb in the basement, and must have just barely stepped in some water from the shower (which leaks). Next thing I knew, I was forcing myself to keep standing. A shock wave of energy had gone through my entire body, and all of a sudden my body went numb. Once I collected on what was happening, I screamed like crazy. I guess I probably over-reacted a little, but the thought that all that energy had gone through my body frightened me.

01.30.04 (6:11 am)   [edit]
Is it really the 30th already? Wow, I've been on my diet a total of 30 days now. I really should weigh myself, I haven't done that for two and a half weeks. Wonder where I'm at. Hmmm...Maybe I should measure my waist...(two minutes later), well I've lost another half an inch in my waist since Tuesday. that's a good sign that the diet is still working. It feels so strange being on a diet that I'm not tempted to quit.

My cousin is coming up this weekend, he should be here around 6:00 tonight. We're going to visit Justin for the evening, and then tomorrow we'll probably watch movies or play games or something. I'm not exactly sure, but it'll be fun just hanging out with family. I need to be around people I trust right now.

oh my god!
01.29.04 (3:03 pm)   [edit]
Ah, yes, I remember why I moved. Don't get me wrong, I love my family unconditionally, but the fighting is getting old already. I've only lived at home for a month, and I'm already going crazy. Thank God my room is done! At least then I have a sanctuary. Headphones, a CD player, and my books/writing/etc. At the present, I just kind of breathe and walk away from the noise and clutter. It feels so crazy. I can't wait to have gas so I can go visit Justin again. I miss him terribly.

I'm going on 20. I remember when turning 14 was such a big deal to me. Now I'm an adult, but I'm still living at home, lacking a full time job. I hope the nursing home calls. I could use being gone from 2-10 five days a week. Its got to be better than the constant arguing that seems to possess this family. UGH! :(

01.29.04 (1:43 pm)   [edit]
I heard from Amanda today about Jason's stuff. She also told me that she doesn't blame me for her going to the hospital. Amanda has a lot of problems that she needs to deal with, and I know that we will never be friends again. Probably more from my decisions than from hers. It feels so tempting to run back to that group, to be the wallflower again. But I know I can't do that. It wouldn't be healthy for me and all the work I have put into developing my strength would be gone. I can't have that happen. I need to know that I am a stronger and better person.

In other news, mom and I painted my room today, the color is absolutely gorgeous. There's quite a bit of work to be done still, but I appreciate how nice it looks. It'll be a much calmer atmosphere, and the energy moves a lot more smoothly. Now I just need to be allowed to light candles...

01.29.04 (5:59 am)   [edit]
I am up extremely early for me again this morning. It seems that living at home requires me to be up by 7:30 in the morning. UGH! Oh well, we can get all the painting done today, and then I don't have to worry about it tomorrow. 8)



Here I sit perched amid the darkness and the pain
Crippled wings of broken hearts long driven full insane
Darkening nights within the shadows of life's dreary game
Death holds out a helping hand but will not say his name.

Shrouded in a blanket of a past I'll never know
Memories rise like vultures from the hellish depths below
And standing in the dark of the devil's evil flow
Death points out an easy path to help me past my woe.

Danger rides at every angle in the blackened night
Rodents screech in agony, enthralled by hell's bright light
I wander through the solitude of His eternal sight
And walk into the nightmare of Satan's ancient rite.

I witnessed many horrors as I watched him laughing there
Something in his footsteps made my insides shrink with fear
Just as I began to think my soul was soon to tear
Life stole me away from him and moved me to fresh air.

Once again I traveled to the fading world I hate
Holding tight to memories of my most recent fate
But there within the circle of time's eternal gate
I tried to hold these memories one moment soon too late.

So once again I perch amid the darkness and the pain
My crippled wings of broken hearts are frozen in the rain
I watch the darkened nights within the shadows of life's game
Once again death offers help but will not say his name.

Silent pondering of a depth I never wished to see
Fires that burn once in man burn almost thrice in me
Nightmares wake in shadows buried long benieath the sea
Death just smiles and offers me another cup of tea.

~Carla Funk
October 2003


I want to start back in the past
Where only memories go,
Where silence causes footprints
In the fading sand below.

I want to live in fairy tales
Where I can be the queen
Where daffodils and lilac scents
Exist in every scene.

I want to travel to the worlds
Of which I've only heard
Where fantasy and silent dreams
Exist in every word.

I want to walk the footsteps
Of every living many
And live inside the pure heart
Of an ever giving hand. ~Carla Funk
January 2004