Thursday, October 23, 2008

I voted!

What a wonderful idea to allow early voting!

If today's line was any clue, next Tuesday should be BUSY! I do appreciate the privilege of being able to vote. :~)

My friend's mother.......... my mother

Today I attended the funeral for the mother of a dear friend. In the quiet moments before the service began, I finally, almost 45 years after the fact, said "good-bye" to my mother.

You see, I was 5 years old when my mother made her journey to the other side, and I was too young to know what happened. Then, the topic of my mother was absolutely TABOO for the remainder of my childhood. For years, I've kept that taboo alive...... except for a conversation here or there with my older sister.

As the coffin was closed before the service, I just started crying, feeling the pain of never having said good-bye. A voice in my heart said "you can say good-bye now"....... so that's just what I did.

I'm so sad for my dear friend, in the loss of her mother. At the same time, I'm so grateful for the chance, at last, to say good-bye to mine.

My dear friend had the privilege of being there with her mother, as she died. She told me how special it was for her to be there, singing to her and praying for her.

I came home after the funeral and called my older sister. I asked her if anyone was with my mother. She said, no, that she didn't think any of the family was there. So, now I'm crying again. I'm so thankful that our attitudes toward death and dying have changed, thanks to organizations such as Hospice. My dear friend's mother had the gift of her daughter's presence. My comfort lies in the knowing that my mother was not truly alone........ God was there.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Being real, no matter what

Life is full of uncertainty and change, isn't it?

Right now, my whole life is in flux!

On the inside, I'm finally learning to access anger, which I've refused to even SEE for decades. Instead, that anger turned into depression. Believe me, this is scary stuff for me! At times I feel like a broken piece of pottery, held together by glue....... and the glue is not holding very well! Ah, but I trust in the process.

On the outside, of course, there's the financial crisis in the world, and the financial instability in my home, as I wait one more month to see if my grown son will "get it together" enough to pay his portion of our joint car insurance policy and pay SOMETHING toward household expenses.

Now, my 94 year old stepmother is in the hospital, and will need to spend some time in a physical rehabilitation facility. My father, who hasn't spent a night away from her in over 40 years, is having trouble coping. He told me over the phone (they live a 10-hour drive away from me!) that, when you get to be his age, (88), you want some stability in your life..... and he's not sure from day to day which of my 2 brothers is going to be able to help him out.

I empathized with him, of course, followed quickly by the thought that when I was a little girl, I needed some stability in my life too. Instead, I was in the care of a stepmother who was a rage-aholic, and I never knew when I was going to do the wrong thing and spark that rage! It's no wonder that any trace of anger in myself scares me enough to bury it! I didn't say any of that, of course!

I titled this post "being real, no matter what", didn't I? Well, the reason for that is that I woke up this morning from a dream in which I was spending this ridiculous (for me) amount of money for some kind of fancy fake fingernails. They looked beautiful, but they were so uncomfortable. I was trying to sing, but couldn't do it very well, because I couldn't get my mind off of those ridiculous fake nails! Part of me wanted them off, but part of me loved the way they looked.

What a high price I've paid most of my life for burying my emotions under a fake smile, no matter what. I don't want that any more. I want to be real. I've been "stuffing my face" to try to hold my emotions below the surface for the past few days. That's not working either.

So, here I am writing, and deciding to trust in God to hold me together. He's the potter, I'm the clay. He created me with these emotions, and God doesn't make junk. I know that God can help me acknowledge these emotions, and at the same time live a life in a loving way.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Staying connected

Whew- where has the time gone since September 22, when I last posted?

It seems I've been so busy, I've only had time to check out blogs for a few minutes here and there, and NO TIME to write! It's amazing how much I miss my friends in the blog-world!

I've been blessed lately, in that my son now has a SWEET girlfriend, and they are starting to eat some meals with me and play a game of Rummikub or two now and then. My daughter still comes home from college, too. Even when she's there, she calls to keep in touch. I'm so proud of her! She's struggling in biology (who wouldn't?), but she's not dropping the course. Instead, she's getting a tutor, and joining a study group!

It feels SO good to be connected with my kids, even when they don't HAVE TO stay connected.

I have a feeling that God feels the same way when I take the time to be connected to God. I'm starting to see that, as important as prayer is to staying connected.......... it takes more than that to REALLY have a connection with Him. It takes ACTION, by reaching out to others, sharing the love that we've been given.

Last night, I helped with the "Parents' Night Out" at our church. I had been having SUCH a challenging week, and I was feeling absolutely BURNT OUT! You know, as soon as we headed to the playground with the children, I felt like a new person! What a joy! I'm so glad we're doing that! It's a win-win for everyonee. :~)