Healing!

This house doesn’t seem to want to swallow me up as it did months ago.  I’m actually getting closer to finding me in all this space.  I no longer hide in the master suite upstairs which seemed like a ship so far out that a fog made it impossible to see the lighthouse.  On this ship, prayer become a book I started to read but never finished.  I could start a prayer but soon the words left me and the tears found me.  Looking back now, I realize I didn’t need the words for God to hear my heart and how grateful I am that tears are a language he understands!

Regardless, I hid this struggle,  even from the strongest person looking back at me in the mirror. If she could smile, laugh, sing, or sleep (a lot of sleep), this demon stayed under control.  Oh but it would show its face, especially around the Christmas season because it was my time of the year for reflecting on the past!  The childhood memories, teenage years, rebellious twenties, early marriage years, and the secrets kept for just about everyone in my life.  It drowned me!  It choked me!  It haunted me!  It was destroying me!  It made me angry, a lot!  My empty nest stood in replace of my mirror and like a movie it played. Scene after scene it pulled out ever childhood hurt, dug up ever teenage regret, judged my twenties, displayed marriage mistakes, and repeated everyone’s secrets over and over in my head until the coffin cover blew off and exposed myself to me!

This empty nest that I thought would kill me has actually rescued me. There was nothing left to distract me, keep me busy, to mask my every move.  It forced me to seek God’s help like never before to heal my soul, repair the heart, and to teach me to forgive.  Sure, I won’t forget but should I forget what has caused me to be so strong?  This ship is near the shore now and I am not taking my eye off the lighthouse until my feet stand firmly on shore.  This process of healing only began because of my empty nest.  It is because of great sorrow I now have great strength.  And, how grateful I am for it all!

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The wrinkles tell my story!

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It’s 1984 and high school graduation is behind me.  These boys I’m dating are not marriage material but I’m far from saying, “I do” to anyone.  I’m 19 years old which is the same age my daughter Grace is today and I was not about to do the norm and by norm I mean marriage right out of high school or college.  The gym is my second home, I’ve just learned to drive a car, and the world is now calling my name.  To speed this up, the next 8 years are filled with traveling, dating, dancing, laughter, and memories of lessons learned and lessons taught…sorry boys I never meant to hurt you but you were the path that led me to my soul mate!

All I can think about now is marriage!  A blind date? Ok, haven’t done that yet, why not!  Thank you Lord he’s handsome and tall.  He’s making me laugh, ok that’s a plus.  He has a career not just a job, another plus.  The final test…does he have a relationship with the same God I serve?  Well, it would be something I witnessed.  He walked down to the front of the church and I was honored to see him give his life to Christ while on our 3rd date!  We were married 6 months later.

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Now 23 years, 2 kids, a son, a daughter later we had our ups, downs, many blessings, laughter,  failures, farewells to love ones who left us way to early, quick trips to Texas Children’s Hospital, friends moved away, job loss, several homes taken right from under us, financial loss, career change for the better, major surgeries, heartbreaks, graduations, car accidents, floods, snow, and many many wrinkles later. 
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I may be in an empty nest trying to find myself now but I didn’t get here without the hard work of pouring the foundation for their future and ours.  This empty nest is a blessing.   A blessing for my wrinkles.  It’s a pat on my back for raising a well rounded responsible son and daughter.  The silence is loud and the nights are long but it’s showing me that my wrinkles tell the story of how I got here!  This empty house is not a punishment but an accomplishment!

A special thanks to Debi Caballero for the title! I love you!

Being…mom

As a little girl, I was told I could be anything I wanted to be when I grew up…the sky was the limit! I dreamed of the possibilities. If the sky was the limit, then heck why not? Why not be a teacher, a police officer, a politician, a doctor, or president. But this little girl dreamed about being a mom to a son and a daughter.

I wanted more than anything to raise children. The joy it gave me to hear their first words, see them take their first steps, and to share memories of laughter. The first day of school to their graduation celebration. Their first love and first heartbreak. Helping them choose college courses and driving them to their first jobs. All that came along with being a mom, I wanted! It has given me such great
happiness!

So now that they are grown…a son moved out and a daughter in college, where does that leave my “mom” role? Is it over? Is this it? In one sense yes because I did my mom thing. I raised respectable, independent young adults who now have dreams of possibilities of their own. In another sense no because a woman never, ever stops being “mom” once you are a mom. I mean who else but mom looks at their son or daughter at any age and don’t see those tiny fingers stretching up at you saying, “up up?”

I find and found great comfort, peace, stability, worth, and accomplishment from being a mom! I wouldn’t change one thing!