Soccer, Tears and Wedding Bells

It has been years since I’ve written a blog post. It’s a blessing to be able to make money doing something you enjoy, but when the joy disappears, it’s time to take a break. I’ve done that and now it’s time to start again.

As you can imagine, much has happened since my last post. My son started playing soccer and then stopped playing soccer when he broke the longest and strongest bone in his body…his femur! That happened in January and we still have doctor’s appointments and X-rays. God was good and my son is fine. He isn’t cleared to play sports yet and for now that’s fine with me.

My daughter got married in February of this year, about a month after my son’s injury. He still took part in the wedding, walking down the aisle with swag and a pair of crutches.

With so much going on, my husband and I found ourselves emotionally drained. We were not expecting the effect these two events would have on us. My husband would catch me crying in one room and a few minutes later I’d catch him crying in another. We have talked to close friends about this and it seems to be the norm when the fledglings leave the nest. Transition isn’t an easy thing. Thank God for God.

I guess I have a lot more to say than I thought I would in this post. Honestly, I planned on writing about something else entirely; but that’s okay. If you are going through an emotional time right now, whether it be an injured child, an empty nest or something else, God is there to help.

I had a crazy dream last night. I am getting older and many women say menopause causes your dreams to be more bizarre and vivid. I have to say, I agree with them. Last night I dreamed I was driving my friends’ truck with a Winnebago attached to it. I backed up the truck and Winneabego, (which I would NEVER do in reality) and lost control of the vehicle which resulted in the destruction of everything behind me and around me. When the vehicle finally came to a stop, I just sat there stunned. I was not looking forward to explaining what happened to my friends. When I woke up, I was beyond relieved! Then I had this thought, “How can you help someone when their devastation is REAL? When you can’t do anything to make it go away?” Then I heard that still small voice… “Give them hope that is eternal and be there when they need you.”

You see, we can’t always change the circumstances, whether it be our own or of the ones we love. We CAN, however encourage ourselves and others with the eternal hope that God’s Word speaks of- Jesus. We CAN lend a hand or give a hug. We CAN listen. We CAN wipe a tear, or send a card. Life can be so daily sometimes. Then other times it’s unpredictable, hard and sad; but with God’s help and with each other we can make it.

1Peter 1:1-25

 

Awkward Family Photos

Tonight I decided to look at family photos with my kids. I asked them if they were interested and they seemed to be into it. So, I got out the “picture books” and  sat down in the middle of the couch, with room for one kid on each side of me.

I have to say, I have forgotten many things from my childhood; and the childhood memories I do have, have a corresponding picture. The pictures reinforce the memories. This is one of the reasons I think pictures are so important, and one of the reasons why I take so many pictures.

It has, unfortunately, been years since we have taken the time to look at old pictures together. Most of our pictures are digital these days and even though I have a digital frame, it’s just not the same.

I have been thinking about this activity for days and really thought it would be a good way to reconnect with the kids. I am so thankful that God gave me a sense of humor. If He didn’t, my spirit would have been crushed tonight.

The first problem with my “picturesque” activity was that there were too many pictures of my daughter and not enough of my son. The fact that she was alive for six years before he was born was irrelevant to him. It was obvious that I like her better and therefore have more pictures of her.

I also found out that I really hurt my daughter because I didn’t let her carry my son around when he was a newborn. She was only six, but that was beside the point. It took her a long time to like babies because of my heartless ways. I tried to explain that she was my first six-year-old and I had no idea how capable six-year-olds are; If I had, I most certainly would have let her carry him around. But alas, the damage has been done.

Earlier in the evening my son told me how cruel I was to make him eat lettuce when he was little. He even performed a reenactment. My daughter sat on a stool and played the part of my son. My son played me and held a white plate in his hand that represented the lettuce plate. I made him try lettuce with ranch, lettuce with italian, lettuce with honey mustard and plain lettuce. Apparently, he would be an avid lettuce consumer, but because of me, he doesn’t eat lettuce to this day! What child can stand in the wake of my recklessness?! I ask you?

During our pictorial travels, we came across a picture of a little black shitzu that we kept for a weekend when the kids were little. It was then I learned that I have ruined the kids lives because I didn’t keep that little dog. My daughter was eight at the time and my son was two. The little dog was sweet, but I am not an animal person. The dog pooped in the house and then my son picked it up! That was it for me! He had to go! (The dog, not my son.) The next picture was of our trip to the pet store to buy our first pet…clown fish. “See, kids! We bought you pets! Clown fish!” “They are dead,” said my daughter.

And as if their lives were not tragic enough, somehow, the topic of breast-feeding came up. My daughter has admissible proof that she is NOT the favorite. Why? Because my son was breast-fed and she was not! Because of this, she did not get the nutrients that she needed as an infant! This, my son pointed out, is the reason he is smarter than her!

This love fest made me declare that I am obviously a horrible mother and if it wasn’t for the fact that I cook and clean, I would have to go! My son was quite perplexed and asked me where I would go. I assured him that there were plenty of people who would take me in. Then he said, “Yeah. But who would drive you there?”

A few shoulder punches were thrown and we laughed so hard we cried.

Foster Awkward Family Photo

2000- Our family before our son was born. This proves nothing.

 

 

 

Am I A Dreamer?

Today’s sermon was about dreaming; the kind you do when you’re awake. I’ve been thinking off and on this year about that subject. Am I a dreamer?

Growing up I was a bit of a dreamer. I remember when I was in elementary school, I had a late-night discussion with my cousin about our dreams. I told her that when I grew up I wanted sliding glass doors, a boyfriend and a dog. Two out of three ain’t bad. I have sliding glass doors and a boyfriend that I married. Please don’t tell my kids that I once dreamed of having a dog, that fact could come back to bite me…literally.

I also dreamed, as a kid, of becoming a nun. I was a Baptist so there wasn’t much hope for that one. As I got older, I dreamed of getting married and then having babies. Check and check. I think that’s when I stopped dreaming…for me anyway. That’s when I started dreaming for my kids.

I have so many dreams for them. I asked my almost 18 year old daughter if she knew what my dreams for her were. She said, a bit smugly, “To be happily married and to live in eternal Christiandom.” She’s right. The two most important decisions we can make are: whom to give our soul to and whom to give our heart to. Making the wrong decision about either one of these can affect the outcome of our entire life. That statement may sound a bit dramatic, but I’ve seen it happen firsthand, again and again.

I just want to encourage you to consider the importance of those two decisions I mentioned; and to put your dreams in God’s hands. He is a loving father and a dream molder, not a dream crusher. I’ve seen that firsthand too.