Wherever You Are

Dear Birth Mother,

I hope this finds you well.  The weather here is fine.

It’s a beautiful, awful day.

I am thinking of you and the selfless life-changing decision you made.  Of your stated reasons.  And the ones you will never tell.

And what I know is true about us moms.

You are thinking of us today.  Of the promise you trusted in, that someone would love your child with their unique needs.

No matter how fantastic the celebration, you’ll wonder what’s up with us.  I’m getting the recognition for how these guys turned out.

Well.  I need to let you know.

Most days, I am pretty sure that anything good in them is all you.

They are amazing.

They stop people in their tracks.

They move in incredible natural gifts.

They make the issues unavoidable.

Your decision changed your life forever, but if I may say.  It keeps on changing lives. More than I can count. Every day.

Wherever you are, I honor you.

With love.  Fearless.  Like yours.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Being Still

“Be still and know that I am God…”

Not really very easy in this age of distraction.

Be still…

Until you can smile at the mess.

Until you can say, “It’s beautiful.”

Until you can say, “I have no need.”

Until your mind is changed.

Until you are okay without the answer.

Until you let go of what you want in favor of what is given.

Until you let someone stronger lift the load, someone wiser solve the problem, someone more loving fill the cup.

Be still…

Be quiet.

Be satisfied.

Know.

And be known.

The dork.  The cowgirl.

The patient.  The impatient.

The loner.  The liar. The lover.

The mind. The body. The soul.

Be still.

Until you know.

 

 

 

 

 

Prescription for Trust

It’s frightening to be diagnosed with something real.  It’s more frightening to stop eating and sleeping and know you should both eat and sleep, but not feel the hunger or the exhaustion.  Still more terrifying, is to have felt a moment of sheer joy…

And lose it in a chemical cocktail…  The first prescription locked me out at the top of the range of emotion and focus and energy.  The second, has me locked out at the bottom.

I can’t think about myself.  I sat in a conversation the other day, and I couldn’t take the question: “What is God emptying you of and what is He filling you with?”; and apply it to myself.  I could understand the answers others gave, but I couldn’t answer it for myself.

I apologized to my sisters for sitting in silence in a very personal and vulnerable conversation(as I am typically a sharer, a feeder back and a verbal processor); because I didn’t want my silence to be attributed to anger or offense.  And I began to cry.  Well, now.  If I can’t complete a thought as it applies to my own heart, mind, and spirit.  What am I crying about?

Fear?  There is actually no middle ground between mania and misery. I can understand you, but I am a stranger to myself.  I can’t connect.

Anger?  This is the very reason I’ve avoided doctors and diagnosis for years.

So…

I go to the auditorium.  There, waiting for the good stuff to begin, is a new friend– the one  I just wanted to get to know because she’s raised such remarkable children.  She stopped me and asked me how I was doing.

I broke down.  I was so embarrassed.  I am still today, 4 days later.  So weak.  So out of control.  At this point, so ugly, as this was my second cry in an hour.

She understood.  She knew what I was going through.

She took me by both arms and stared me in the eyes and said, “God is with you.  He is with you.”  Over and over.

I locked on her eyes.

I’ve seen them all week, when I’ve heard her words.

I can see them now.

It was only this morning(or last night, I’m really not sure.  It was dark.), that I understood them.

I cannot feel anything.  I cannot do any higher order thinking.  I cannot connect on anything deeper than surface level (Hi, you are wearing a red shirt today.).

God is still here.

He hears my hunger for connection.  He knows I remember the spiritual moments I had when I could feel thankfulness, intimacy, and delight.  He knows that the memory is slipping away. Even though, I can’t even think or reason or decide or pray–He is still here and still actively protecting me and providing for me and the ones I am supposed to be caring for who shouldn’t be having to take so much care of me.

He is here.  He knows my thoughts and my lying down and my going out.

He is here with me, right now.

It turns out she understands better than I do myself.

She’s been through it and had to learn that the hard way, I guess.

So I stare back in those sparkling eyes.  And drop into her aching arms.

To wait until My Deliverer passes by.

 

 

 

Oh, Yeah. It’s Also That Time of Year

I think it is going to turn out to be a really good idea to make that list I was referring to in this post.  The list of ‘Expectations: Met’ has come to mind over and over again.

See, the last week has been grueling in terms of getting where we are supposed to go, with what we need, for whomever needs it.

Tuesday Night’s Choir concert was meant to be a last hurdle before a short breather.

We had to make another trip to the Orthodontist because the “mouth guard, retainery thing” the boy wears, disappeared.

The tree is up in the living room.  No lights or adornment of any kind.

Then something happened that could be a routine thing, but in the twinkling of an eye, you know.  It won’t be.  Hassle.  Stress.  Dealing with something that wastes time, energy and money.

Did I mention, next week is the anniversary of Mickey’s mother’s passing?

Yeah.  The office Christmas Party is on her birthday. She passed the evening before her birthday.

I desperately need a list of things that are going right.

THE ACCIDENTAL ACCOUNTING OF EXPECTATIONS MET OR EXCEEDED

1) The house is warm and solid and looks freaking sexy when decorated for the holidays.

2) I worked in the attic for several hours the other day and “found” massive amounts of space to store things up out of the way.

3) The veterinarian’s office had the flea control tabs for both dogs this month.  The medium can get back ordered.  After the new year, I’m hoping to buy several months at a time.

4) Daughter’s solo?  Please.  She is not afraid of being on stage.  She nailed it.

5) One of the other youth leaders called me Wednesday and took my group.  Some other families brought the kids home, so Mickey and I could chill.

6) The coffee maker works.  Every day.  It’s over $100, new, but I got this one for $10 at the thrift store.  Five years ago.

7) Whatever the little cold was we were passing around, it didn’t turn into the viral brochitis-y thing that we were warned about.  And we completely dodged the bullet on the stomach thing.  (I wouldn’t mind a little round with something that would blow a pound or two off me, but only if no one else got it.)

8)  I got to volunteer for the home tour.  In so doing, I had the opportunity to visit with a near neighbor.  It was pretty great.  The house was ultra unique in that the couple are artists and they converted a warehouse to a residence.

9) The weather has been fantastic.  So we are not fussing with boys about being adequately dressed or misplacing hats and gloves while all this intense action is going on.  And the gas bill is not gouging us more than usual.  Someone told me we were supposed to have flurries by the 7th.  This is why weathermen need to figure out another way to do this.  And I need an emergency kit.  One of these days, someone’s gonna say,”It’ll miss us.”

10) Today is the last day of Co-op before the holidays.  Hip hip…you know the rest.  Oooh, the catching up with non-co-op schoolwork that will get done!!!

Bonus: Compared to last year at this time? The cupboard is full and the new TV is this season’s “Soft glow of electric sex”.

 

 

 

 

 

To Edify

To edify means to build up.

We can edify by means of words or actions.

The activities of the last week have made a tremendous impact on me.

I have made a conscious choice to be aware of what comes out of my mouth and to really listen to other people’s meaning.

Not only in my house, but out-of-the-house, and online.

Why do I mention online?

It’s funny you should ask.  As it turns out, I, having spent most of this election season writing about Fall and Pinterest and Dogs with Low Self-Esteem, found myself at a blog which attacked the political party I belong to and lumped all members of the party with racist bigotry, ignorance, hatred, and evil.

The post wasn’t characteristic of the quality of writing the blogger is FAMOUS for.  She received a lot of positive encouragement.

I was hurt and that was her intention.

I am became convinced at that point that I would never be found behaving in such a way, and that I would study to be a voice for honor, if I have failed to be one up until now. In the three years I have been blogging, I have not been so disappointed in someone whose work I had admired so much.  I now understand better (okay, I am hungry and I wrote the word butter three times before I finally wrote better) a disappointment I experienced early on.  And may seek to mend a fence the other blogger doesn’t know or care was broken.

I wrote a much needed email to a blogger who inspires me.

I called to communicate by spoken word with someone I was getting more and more frustrated with by email.  We parted excited to meet and with a much better understanding of each other as persons.

I lost my temper, and had to take responsibility for why I did that.  Unmet expectations drove my little tantrum.  And the the realization that that causes almost all conflict and it’s a very human trap.  Because we don’t keep a list of our expectations that have been met or exceeded.

Should I begin such a list?

Suddenly I began to notice all sorts of ways we build each other up and make our preferences known and fail to give all the information necessary.  I’ve begun to realize the ways we evade understanding to avoid responsibility.  Not necessarily me, but by observation of what’s going on around me. Then I begin to wonder if I do it too.  Usually, I do, just in a different way.

It’s as easy to learn from someone else’s mistakes, as it is to learn from their good example.

This combination of experiences is making a huge impact on everything.  It glows like inspiration from my heart, and as if by magic, my daughter is aware and testing my resolve.

Words can hurt, but words can heal.

They can build a bridge or just throw the bricks and slide around in the mortar.

If I am going to build something, that’s a luxury I can’t afford.

 

 

 

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