• 24Oct

    Five years ago today I was up at 4 a.m.  I was wearing a maternity jean jumper that had seen some serious wear.  I was fighting heart burn and pregnancy exhaustion.  I was worried about my husband, but calm in the peace that only God can give.  And I was embarking on one of the most horrendous weeks of my life.

    Today, I woke up a little bit before 7.  I’m rested, I’m wearing some khaki pants that make me look slim and trim, and I’m healthy and fit although sporting a few new gray hairs.  I have a few small worries for the future (absolutely none about Dan =}), but am still calm in the peace that only God can give.  And just because that was a horrible week five years ago, doesn’t mean that this one will be.

    Things change, but I find that my God still hasn’t.  I can rest just as safely in His love today as I could five years ago, and I know that He will care for me no matter what this week may bring.

  • 11Oct

    All night long she heard the relentless drumming of the rain on the roof.  It had been a pleasant sound at first, the monotonous drumming had lulled her into a pleasant state of relaxation that she assumed would lead to a long blissful night of sleep.  And she had drifted off, later than she intended, but at least she had slept.  Unfortunately, it was short-lived.  By six a.m. the sound of rain in her ears, again, was a cause for annoyance.  The fact that she could hear it and knew that she could hear it meant that she was, again, awake.  She sighed and debated the wisdom of starting her day like this.  The thought that the kids usually slept-in on rain-days encouraged her to slip back between the covers for a little bit more shut eye.

    The next sounds she heard were the noises of little children making their normal morning ruckus.  Surprisingly, none of them snuck into her room for a chat.  Either they were being considerate of her (since she had informed them she wasn’t feeling good the night before and had spent a large portion of the evening curled up in bed chatting with one or another rather than up working), or they were trying not to wake her so they wouldn’t have to do their chores and school work.  She smiled at that thought and rolled over and groaned.  The rain had stopped, but her body had absorbed the grey morning and she moved as slowly as the morning fog settled in the valley outside her window.  By the time she pulled herself out of her bed it was too late to even seriously consider school.  Company was coming this afternoon and she wasn’t moving fast enough to try to squeezing in a few cleaning jobs between tasks.  Better to skip the tasks, take it slow, meander her way through cleaning the kitchen and smile and encourage her children to help as they felt the urge.

    The grey slowness of the day kept things relaxed and peaceful and by the time she slipped between the covers again she became aware of the inner comfort and stillness of soul that had been missing these last few weeks.  Thank you so very much for this lovely day, Lord.  This grey day could have been a source of depression, especially since the kids have been reminiscing about their daddy, but You have given me peace and relaxation.  I don’t deserve Your goodness and love, but You never fail to give it to me anyway.  Help me to remember these days of peace and Your faithfulness to provide what I need, when I need it, and the way I need it (not the way I think I need it).  I am content in You.

  • 03Oct

    To go along with Payden’s (5) Summer socks:   =)

    While putting away the laundry in his basket, Payden holds up his brother’s underwear and announces, “Look Mommy, I have the boys box tops!”

    He makes me laugh.

  • 19Jan

    I woke discouraged by the thought of the battle I would be facing that day against an almost invisible enemy.  How does one gird on their courage for the invisible and unknown?  Several elements conspired to make me feel somewhat emotionally weak and I wished there were some way I could hide under my pillow and emerge after the battle was over.  But the call of my children pulled me from the depths of my bed and my day began.  One minute at a time we fought the good fight.  Often I felt like slumping to the floor in tears, but the grace to continue was always there.  Finally, reaching the end of what I and my family could physically accomplish to vanquish the enemy I slumped in a chair, tired and emotionally and physically worn out.  Then a knight in shining armor appeared with a simple bottle of tea.  He had noticed my preference, had known the need for a pick-me-up, and had made a small purchase on my behalf.  I cried.  Again, God uses the people in my life to give just that touch of encouragement that helps to keep me going.

  • 08Jan

    I’m getting old.

    And to those of you who are “older” than I am and are laughing at me and my apparent youth, take a moment and think back to when you realized you weren’t “young” anymore.  Maybe you looked in the mirror and realized that skin didn’t quite have that youthful blush anymore, or you looked down toward your toes and noticed that things were starting to sag, maybe you couldn’t see your toes, maybe you found one of those nasty strands of gray hair, and the realization started settling in that you were on the downward slide of old age rather than the upward growth of youth.

    Did your spouse remind you that he thought you were still beautiful?  Or did he laugh at you and comment that at least he didn’t have to grow old alone?

    You are only as old as you feel.

    Right.  Well, most days I’m somewhere around 29, but every now and then I hit a day or two where I feel like I’m closer to 92.  Especially after a string of days where everyone has been sick like this past Christmas vacation.  It wasn’t much of a vacation as we were all feeling quite lethargic, coughing all the time, runny noses, fever, lots of naps, medicine, blankets, and some grouchiness.  We offset some of the negatives with a few positives like cuddles with mom, puzzles, and movies, and for those feeling a bit better, some sledding and playing in the snow, but we would all like to get out of the house at this point.  I think we’ve been stuck here pretty much since Christmas, no church, no shopping, no nothing.  Not quite sure I’m ready to expose the world to this just yet, though.  Got to hang in a bit longer.  We are back to school, but that is a bit of a struggle too as we adjust to the mental work required when our brains still feel a bit fuzzy.

    God is good.  It could have been worse.  It wasn’t a messy kind of sick (other than the house getting disgustingly dirty), it wasn’t the kind of sick that debilitated us and made it impossible to do anything, and strange as it may sound, at least we all got it together (well, mom held out a bit longer).  It’s easier to sympathize with each other that way and I hate to think how long this would have drug on if we had gotten it separately.  I might not have gotten back to church before spring!

    Well, time to get a move on and head for school.  Another day is before me and with age comes the wisdom needed to keep going.  =)

  • 18Dec
    Categories: Family Updates, Musings Comments Off on Christmas Spirit

    Well, the Christmas season is in full swing and yet my heart is heavy.  I cry for those I know who are going through their first Christmas of their season of grief.  I have accepted my new normal and feel comfortable with my life, but there is just something about this season that seems to send signals to my brain telling me that all is not quite as it should be.  I also tend to need more sleep this time of year so that could play into it a little bit.  =)

    We do have a tree up and some lights in the playroom.  We had our annual ‘cookie day’ where we got together with cousins and friends and made . . oh, I don’t know . . a hundred dozen cookies.  Most of them are gone already.  We had our Christmas Cantada at church (all but the youngest were involved in that).  I have some cards . . . I just haven’t done anything with them.  There are a few gifts in hiding . . .

    And yet there is so much more to Christmas than that.  The GriefShare group that I co-led this fall reminded me that we are celebrating the birth of the one that came to DIE for us.  As a widow I have  a new perspective on the idea of celebrating a death.  I still can’t put it into words, but somehow the HOPE that Christmas presents is so much more poignant and real.

    I hope you all take some time to meditate on the real meaning of Christmas and the Hope that we have in Christ if we believe on Him.

     

     

  • 01Dec

    Wahoo!  Basketball is back in season!  I do so love going to the games.  It is my chance to get out, to socialize, and to have some good old fashioned fun.  Of course you might think that my whole personality changes . . . =)  I jump and yell and scream myself hoarse, rather than being the calm, quiet mother of seven with a load of responsibility on her shoulders.  Maybe that’s the fun part; I can forget for approximately 60 minutes that I have all that responsibility and just relax and have fun.  So, if you saw (or heard) me last night and thought I was going crazy . . . ha ha, well, you were right.  =)

  • 15Oct

    I overheard a conversation the other day between Dassy (7) and Payden (almost 5).

    Dassy, noticing the major holes in Payden’s socks:  “Payden!  You really need to get rid of those socks!”

    Payden, my ever cheerful chatterbox in his most matter-of-fact voice:  “No I don’t.  These are just my summer socks.”

    =) A child’s view on life really just has to make you smile sometimes.  =)

  • 10Apr

    Jasper, as someone who has also experienced this type of loss I feel like I should have some great words of wisdom to say, . . . but I
    don’t.  I know each grief is different and each grief is experienced in different ways and so all I can say is, “I’m sorry.”  But then I realize I’m not.

    I’m sorry for your pain,

    but I’m not sorry for your growth.

    I’m sorry for the hole in your heart,

    but I’m not sorry for the peace that fills that hole and soothes the frayed edges.

    I’m sorry that you feel the loss,

    but I’m not sorry that you had something so precious to lose.

    I’m sorry you no longer have the love of a wife,

    but I’m not sorry for the love that continues to surround you.

    I’m sorry you are about to face one of the hardest years of your life,

    but I’m not sorry for the time you will spend with God.

    I’m sorry for your lost relationship,

    but I’m not sorry for the many you have gained.

    I’m sorry for your painful vulnerability,

    but I’m not sorry for a soft heart that God can mold, shape, and use for His glory.

    And so Jasper, I’m sorry, but then again . . I’m not.

    Lean on Him.

  • 04Mar

    I looked up rejuvenation in my thesarus and found these words: renewal, revival, restoration, revitalize, replenish, repair.

    Sounds lovely!  To be honest, it feels great.

    No matter what this world tells you, Parenting Is NOT For Singles!  It wears you out and wears you down.  I am very thankful for the fact that my Lord foresaw the problems we would face in a sin cursed world and created the family and the church body to help.  I don’t know where I would be without them.

    However, there are just some things that even family and church family just can’t do.  My spirit has been overwhelmed with the noises of necessary tasks, needy children, and my own desires.  The clash and clamour of the world was drowning me and finally early this week I said “Enough.”  I needed a break, my kids needed a break from Mom, and I wasn’t doing anyone any favors by just trying to hang in there.  So I made arrangements for a babysitter for the weekend and I skipped town.

    It has been an interesting weekend.  I got to relax in a hot tub, do a bit of swimming, didn’t do much cooking (warmed up a potato and some soup), and hardly talked to anyone.  It took me at least 24 hours to get used to the quiet.  I tried going to bed early the first night and ended up being up later than I usually am.  I’ve managed to accomplish quite a bit on my computer (really have a hard time focusing on computer work with kids running around so it was nice to catch up), and even had some time for some playing.  And most importantly I’ve had some time to talk to my Lord uninterrupted.

    I’m really not ready to go home yet. . . but I guess sometimes soldiers are called into battle even when they aren’t prepared.  It’s the Lord’s job.  He will have to do it.

    Please pray for spirit revitalization and more of God’s grace.  Thank you all so much!