Shine is #4 in a series: Stay Connected by following one or more of the networks at the end of this post.

The steps that one must take in order to improve their quality of life can sometimes be daunting. However, in spite of the rigor, I am confident that I am headed in the right direction. As I still remain somewhat submerged in dark liquid, I have begun to feel the positive affects beginning to take place. As I moved throughout my week, I was given glimmers of hope, gentle reminders that it's all going to turn out just fine. In other words, as I begin to make progress on my journey...as I begin to push the darkness aside...I am beginning to see the light! And, it is evident that wings are beginning to form.

Some ask what am I trying to improve? What is this journey about? I hesitate to share what the specifics are because it is my hopes that the writing would touch anyone who finds themselves wanting a better perspective on life. However, after much weighing of the pros and cons, I am making the decision to go ahead and release what has caused me so much angst in my life...what has caused so many road closures...

In a nutshell - I have lived most of my life in the past, and finding it very hard to embrace my future. I grew up in a two parent household with an older sister. However, I only received approval and love from my mother, and never from my father. Rather, what I received from my father was verbal bullying (a word that I don't use lightly), and a very obvious display of favoritism (with I not being the favorite). I grew-up feeling unloved and lacking self esteem. As a young woman, I didn't notice how severe his words were until my latter years; when I found it hard to move forward in life. Self doubt crept in, and I would talk myself out of pursuing many endeavors. There were times when I did manage to stand strong, but later sabotaging my own efforts because I never received a phone call from my father saying, Good job. So I adopted the philosophy of sitting on opportunities because I felt that I was never good enough. I sat and wondered why I didn't receive love and approval from my father. I sat...

Until one day I woke up and said, "Enough - I choose a better life!" And this is why and when my chronicled journey of self approval began. I am optimistic about my choice to move forward. Like I stated at the beginning of this post, this week has met with many gentle reminders of my new found freedom of living my life in the now and letting my life SHINE. 
  • First, I received a lovely gift from Artist and Blogger - Joni James - the beautiful and inspirational butterfly interpretation seen below. The art piece was enclosed with a note that read, "May the sun always shine on your horizon."
  • Second, on the same day of receiving the artwork, as I drove on a clear day, I stopped at a traffic signal and spotted a butterfly. It was so beautiful that it seemed unreal and out of place...Almost as if it had been photo-shopped into my reality. I saw it fluttering about in someones front yard, near a plush, green tree. Its yellow-orange hue with black details stood out with such magnitude that it seemed to be painted into the landscape. Just before the signal turned green, the butterfly made its way toward my vehicle and fluttered right over my front windshield. It was there to remind me of the great things to come.
  • Third, also on the same day of receiving the artwork, I received a much anticipated phone call. I'll tell you more about this later (suspense is fun).
  • Fourth, and also on this same day, I was reminded of the lyrics to a song by India.Arie called I Choose:
Because you never know where life is gonna take you
and you can't change where you've been.
But today, I have the opportunity to choose.
[Verse 1:]
Here am I now looking at 30 and I got so much to say.
I gotta get this off of my chest, I gotta let it go today.
I was always too concerned about what everybody would think.
But I can't live for everybody, I gotta live my life for me.(Yeah)
I pitched a fork in the road of my life and ain't nothing gonna happen unless I decide.
(And I choose) to be the best that I can be.
(I choose) to be authentic in everything I do.
My past don't dictate who I am. I choose. (Yeah) 

Butterfly by Joni James

Just like a caterpillar, I sit in a dark, yet peaceful place, as the reformation takes place. I am beginning to sense what feels like wings taking shape...beautiful, light and airy wings that shine when the light hits them.

For today's post I wear an outfit that depicts my life journey:
An accordion (knife) pleat skirt that shines when the light touches it, and reminds me of wings.
A cropped leather jacket to represent the remaining reformation of the dark liquid.
A colorful, painterly floral top to represent my new life amongst the flowers.

Today's Look - Skirt: Talbot's via eBay (some still available), Jacket: vintage purchase, Peplum neoprene top: Zara (past season), Sandals: vintage purchase option at Nordstrom.com, Wallet by Bosca (options on Amazon). 

Soon, the reformation will end and a new Glenda will emerge. I can feel the warm sunshine on my face as I hold my head up toward my future, and there...

My wings will take flight and I will shine. To be continued...{wink}

No. 1 in this series is called Confident. Click CONFIDENT to begin the journey.
No. 2 in this series is called Dark Liquid. Click DARK LIQUID to continue the journey.
No. 3 in this series is called Road Closed. Click ROAD CLOSED to continue the journey.

If you haven't flipped through The Ultimate Fall Fashion Guide click HERE and enjoy (cannot be viewed from mobile devices)
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Photographs by Freddy


  1. Thank you dear Glenda for trusting us and sharing this part of your past, I am profoundly sad and angry reading about your father but proud of the steps you are taking and excited for you, as I see a better road ahead . you have take the first, and hardest step..
    And to segue ...you look so chi as you embark on this journey as though the path before you is clear, Lovley and visible . Love the pleated metallic skirt, the mix of happy prints in the top, and the black leather jacket, which anchors this outfit so perfectly .
    I wins you joy and discovery on this journey and admire your confidence, even if it does not seem completely sturdy to you, it is obvious to me, and other readers too. I imagine .
    XX, Elle

    1. Thank you so much Elle. For once, I am truly looking forward to the road ahead. I feel like I'll be able to navigate it much better.

  2. What you shared with us here only shows how strong you must be! I know difficult things like those described by you put us in shape and make us resistant if only we can find enough strength and wisdom in ourselves to look at them from the distance. And you have this strength and wisdom Glenda. Looking forward to the next part of the story :)

    And your skirt is wonderful. I need it in my wardrobe and I need it now! ;)

    1. Mag, there are still some skirts available on eBay. It is very lovely. The shiny quality is unbelievable in person.

      Thank you for your words of encouragement!

  3. I believe that whatever happens in life eventually helps us to become who we are today. But it must be really tough to go through this. *hug*

    1. Thank you Melissa. One thing for sure, I love both my sons equally and without reserve because I know what it feels like to not have experienced it.

    2. I can't imagine it any other way, really.

  4. Thank you for another heartwarming and life affirming post, it strengthens my own resolve to love me and appreciate the me I am to the universe.

    1. I am glad to read this, Denise. I only shared in hopes that it would strengthen others.

  5. My favorite part of the whole story is the timing of everything! Well, that and your honesty and revealing to your readers the struggles you are currently working through. There's so much freedom on the other side of the work. I think that's one of the blessings with getting older, the freedom we can have after working through some things from our past. I too have some issues coming up recently about my dad, who is gone now by his own choice, and I need to do some work on letting go myself.

    This outfit represents perfectly the wings of a butterfly and the fact that there is no real color or pattern on the skirt makes it look like a young butterfly's wings. You will feel much lighter when you're able to put down those negative voices from your past and believe in yourself.

    This is simply heartwarming Glenda! And once again I am reassured that taking that extra little step to respond to a desire in my heart to do something for someone, even if it seems small, is a nudge from a higher power and will be the right timing for the other person.

    1. Joni, just seeing your Instagram post sparked so much in me. Thank you for listening to your inner nudge. Tomorrow I plan to visit IKEA in search of the perfect frame. I'm hanging it over my desk. My delightful work area. It's a perfect addition.

      For once in my life I feel good about what I'm doing in life. I'm learning to swat that negative voice away.

  6. Wha a heartfelt post. I'm happy to read you're trusting the process and moving forward with your life.

  7. I get a real message of hope from this. One of the big virtues. Go the butterflies...

  8. Hope springs eternal and my hope is that we all take flight and emerge as our true selves. Thanks Ms. G for talking to me today and I hear you loud and clear. . . .
    BTW. You look fab!!

  9. Living your life in the now: the best advice there is.

    1. I wonder why it took me so long to figure this out. Thank you!

  10. I know I've said it so many times but your words are always so inspiring! Love this skirt on you too!

    xx Cara

  11. I am sorry that you had such a sad childhood Glenda. I am no good with words, you know that but I am really sorry. Well I like your outfit, the skirt is so beautiful.
    hugs dear Glenda

    1. Difficult on one end only. I was blessed with a lovely and nurturing mother. I had her in my life for 29 years. And for that I am grateful. Thanks Lenya!

  12. this skirt is gorgoues let me first say, i have a similar experience as you though what i realised is it makes me(one) stronger. it is well with you.x

  13. Dear Glenda, I tried to comment on this post two or three times, and something interrupted every time. Now I am alone and ready, so here goes. :)

    I felt very uplifted after reading this. Wounds from our past can be so haunting. I think you really understand it well - it is support from a father what makes it easier for us to succeed "in the world". It is very difficult to make it without support and acceptance. But once you realize that the power is in your hands, it must get easier from here! You are such a wonderful, talented, intelligent, strong-minded and beautiful lady - you deserve all sorts of successes. As I've told you before, your butterfly analogy really resonates with me. I even can tell you that what's holding me back is also my past, though more recent past, not childhood. I think that in the end what makes us forgive and let go of whatever holds us back, is the realization that all the people at any point of their life do the best they can at that very moment, and we all are wounded in some ways. As soon as I feel compassion for my "offenders", I feel peaceful. Not superior in any way - I call it "love" - not the romantic love, of course, rather brotherly love. I wish I knew how to stay at this state forever, but I'm not there yet. :)

    Thank you for being so open, honest and vulnerable. I really admire you for that.
    Sending you lots of love and light and peace, xxx

    1. As soon as I feel compassion for my "offenders", I feel peaceful. Not superior in any way - I call it "love"
      This is a beautiful way to think and I completely understand it. Thank you so much for sharing this with me. And thank you for such positive affirmations. I appreciate it so very much!

  14. "Living my life in the now and letting it shine!" I could take it as a key sentence for me as well! Not too easy to accept the lack of love...and you deserve now all the best!
    Relly wonderful skirt and top...I love your look!!

  15. Hi Glenda. I've been taking a bit of a blogging break to take care of some "stuff" but I just decided to check in with the gorgeous Glenda and Wow! have you been busy! So many wonderful things going on in your life! You remain, as always, an inspiration. XXXOOO

    1. Connie, you are missed. I hope all is well and you're getting rest. Yes, I'm engulfed in developing a new and improved Glenda. I'm excited!

  16. This was a brave thing to do. To share such intimate things with the world. Bravo, you are well on your way. Yes, I know what devastating effects such a father can have on somebody's life. I have seen it with a friend. Always seeking the approval which she was never going to get as he was not capable, unable to give love. Her father was in a dark place too, for not giving. As you'll get what you give. And he didn't give a lot.
    It is hard for a wounded soul like yours to accept the words of others when they say you are good, worth it, lovely etc. As there always seems to be a little inner voice saying it is not true. And the slightest hint of disapproval will be blown out of proportion.
    So yes, it is a difficult road. And it doesn't help when I say: look at what you already have got and have accomplished. Look at all the love around you. But I will say it anyway.

    1. Darn, forgot to say I really like your shint outfit. And what a great butterfly artwork. So fitting your road.

    2. You understand my plight. I am learning to plot out the negative words. This has been a great journey. Hard, but so worth it. Thank you, Greetje!


Thank you for taking the time to comment, it really means a great deal for me to connect with my So What to Twenty friends. I hope you subscribed via email or by social media - I wouldn't want you to miss anything on our True Style journey. Stay True, Glenda