Young and Stupid

109AFED2-EACF-4123-A491-4DAFC3FF4F62I definitely remember being just that… young and stupid. A lot of things could be said, but I got through and learned some major lessons, some the hard way. So I try to remember my youth and the rebelliousness and my ways when listening to my son with his thoughts and plans recently.

I am sure each one of us could admit that, too, of making crazy decisions. This one thing that came to mind when talking to him and growing irritable with him 897E95B7-AE85-48FB-AFB8-49BE3FCE5C83within, while trying my best to remain calm, was when I withdrew my retirement.

I did not listen to anyone, ask for direction or do any research of what happens if I took out my retirement of almost twelve years working. At that time in my life, being newly married and expecting a baby, we did not feel that old age would be an issue or come so quickly. How crazy is that? It did! While it was a nice down payment on our first house, I lost out. I find myself still having regret over this but there again, young and stupid. I could have retired many years ago, remain working at my present job to accumulate more for a second retirement. Now, I will work longer in life but thankfully I enjoy my job. I learned my lesson and will advise others to not do what I did.  83C51930-D5F0-4ACF-BB1C-242F4E6701C6

No doubt years from now, my son will have some regrets. He is so much like me. Somewhat scary. Still he will learn, the hard way. E6246A32-09B3-4C05-8DD3-3A3B90CE9804

He is a full-grown adult now, I have no say really in his life anymore or the decisions he will make. As his mother, it gives me great joy and pride in how well he has done but in other areas, I want to scream, please listen to me or someone. While the control and panic is felt within my body and my mind is swirling of how it would be better if he would listen, I still have to let go and realize he has to walk his own path. All I can do is pray.F0C03789-7C93-4E10-8546-7AABEFC5690C

Being a parent is wonderful but it is hard. No matter how old they get, there is still that motherly instinct to oversee them. Letting go was hard years ago when my boys attended college, knowing home would never be the same, for them or for us. I feel as though it is letting go once again.

594E5D97-9828-4048-9114-D852E3644F95One day, the roles will be reversed by them taking care of me and making decisions on my behalf and odds are, I will not listen to them or be happy with some decisions made or worse. Guess I better keep my mouth shut now.BA016A88-5F6D-4BE7-A682-4D876C84F3F1

Oh to be young and stupid. I would definitely do things a lot differently in so many ways. I have heard that from so many through the years.

So I will continue and will to my dying day, pray for my boys, love them and support them in all they do. I may not like some things but they will never have to doubt my love for them.17CDC782-B2B7-4571-9385-0DD5C62B8848

The Lord knows and sees each one of us and we all make and will make  some not-so-good decisions at times and mistakes, etc. Still, He loves us like no other and He will always be there for us. May we never doubt His Love for us. Trust Him.

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A Thanksgiving Production

DF277E5B-F9B8-42AF-9532-9C1260DA1F91It’s about time! Time for family and friends to gather at my home and I am sure yours also or the home you are hopefully going to and celebrate Thanksgiving.

As I was getting my last-minute items, I was thinking while driving home that this is like getting ready for a production. The spotlight is on me, my home, my food, my welcoming each one that comes through the door. There was a slight panic but I have no time to panic, as I must continue on and keep my thoughts together and get everything done.  Somehow, someway, it always falls together.

Well, almost everything. I have learned through the years that if it is not perfect, it is okay. It does not need to be A73AB2C1-2C78-4EE2-9DD7-89399A60B732perfect, I do not have to expect perfection out of myself. What a relief. Actually, I forgot salad dressing. Before, I would stress and push myself to go get, adding onto my to-do list. This time, I contacted my daughter-in-law asking her to take care of this for me. My goodness have I changed, counseling has definitely paid off. For that, I am thankful. It’s okay to ask for help.

This time tomorrow night, everyone will probably be gone and another Thanksgiving is over. It is not worth being stressed although there are moments, of course, but to be in the moment and enjoy those present, that is what I want and need to do.  We all do!

Take time to enjoy and the others will also. My saying always is to make yourself at home. I hope they all feel welcome to help themselves and I think they do.

May the ones that walk through my door, feel the love and joy being thankful for all that we each have, as we are blessed. May the Love of God and His Peace cover each one that they know Him, to place C26128AA-8021-4D13-AA1D-56E2CC00CCBBChristians in their pathway to lead them and help where perhaps I can’t; put Angels all around each one as they leave and protect them. That would be my simple but heartfelt prayer.

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🍂 Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family/friends. 🍂

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I Cancelled Thanksgiving

5C2A1F8F-F0E8-4B04-B87F-AC23C8C8CD13This time last year, my life was going in all directions, feeling lost, abandoned, grieving, overwhelmed and well, you get the picture.

There was an excitement just months prior of me enrolling in a medical class, which was a big step for this old girl.  I finally felt empowered enough to move forward after many years of feeling hopeless.  Counseling for years was helping me cope and understand myself plus my faith knowing I could do this and my dreams and desires were coming alive. Wonderful.  Life was good.

It was in September though as classes started and my counselor of almost four years decided to close her office due to medical issues, of course, unexpectedly. While I understood and was concerned, I could not help but feel abandoned by her.  My heart was hurting and my emotions were everywhere.

I would work full-time, go to class in the evenings and when I left, I sat in my car and cried, the grief was too much.  This class was too much.  My life was too much. 6315B5C0-B00E-4882-B65D-6B42AD8F745AHow can I do this? Overwhelmed was an understatement.

Through all of this turmoil within, I also knew I had to put a Thanksgiving dinner together for my husband’s family and our own, although my oldest son, now married would be with his wife’s family several states away.  The month of November was one with my nose in the medical book, studying for finals the week before Thanksgiving, my house not ready and no desire to go forward, just managing the best I could. My surprise was to get a 94 on my final, which shocked me completely. The joy of the results disappeared soon after, as I was still falling apart within and now no counselor to counsel me, left totally in the dark.  Now the anger was more prevalent due to it all.

Being so overwhelmed and grieving, I cancelled  Thanksgiving.  I did. I was done.

Thanksgiving Day was lonely in my home, just like any other day.  My youngest son, living an hour away, decided to stay at his home.  I offered for him, me and his father to go out and eat but he had no interest. Loneliness all around with depression raining down on each of us.

Finally, it was late that night when I spoke to my son, instead of texting.  In the voice, a lot can be heard and discerned.  I knew he was sad over no Thanksgiving.  He probably thought that since his older brother was not present, he was not worth it.  Still, that thought brings 4BD339ED-93A0-4EE6-BECF-84F34CD16FEDsadness all over me.  I will NEVER cancel Thanksgiving or a family gathering again.  He did not know my circumstance and the struggle I was dealing with but I was wrong.

In our telephone call, with my motherly instinct, thank God, I told him to get ready as I am coming down to his house.  It was dark and late but off I went to be with him, I apologized and told him I will never do that again.  We went to eat, get groceries, do all of his laundry and went bowling at midnight.  We both had fun and I put a pot of chili in his crock pot to enjoy the next few days.  In the end, he received my undivided attention and his mother’s love. He needed me and I needed him.

This year we will have the family in for Thanksgiving and if I get the house clean, fine and if not, fine.  I learned my lesson.959C31B5-EC01-444A-AF14-044F96E476B1

Thanksgiving is the holiday where people come together. At least, that’s what most of us are conditioned to believe. While Thanksgiving has the potential to be the most inclusive and unifying holiday on the calendar — particularly for families — it also has the potential to generate the most loneliness.”

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-art-closeness/201511/4-reasons-thanksgiving-is-the-loneliest-holiday

Holiday Depression, it happens! 

https://www.healthline.com/health/depression/holidays#1

Self-Care During the Holidays, it’s needed!

https://psychcentral.com/lib/the-importance-of-self-care-during-the-holidays/

30 – 60

Next month marks two big events in my life.  I am unsure how to handle these occasions although they will come and go whether I like it or not.

2C0279E6-C4D8-48E0-B45C-04A63DC01C33Just yesterday I was in my twenties, thirties, forties and, of course, fifties.  Now, the BIG 60.  How did that happen so quickly? I also often wonder how I and/or we have made it to our 30th anniversary.  Wow!  30 years!389EAFA5-9581-4788-AF1B-6FC6D46B9E41

Thinking back, the twenties were me finding my independence and partying in the first part, being young and stupid. The second half, I realized that is not the life for me and because I knew, too, the Lord was drawing me to Him and needed to get my Christian walk straight. It was time to stop running, which I did. To have a complete stranger say to me one night, “You need to quit running from God” definitely got my attention. I knew that was a warning. Later, I met a man at church and we dated three years and married four days before my thirtieth birthday.

My thirties, well our first year of marriage was not enjoyable, to be honest.  Several days before our wedding, with all plans made, etc., I remember standing in the church parking lot looking at this man with the thought to call off the wedding.  Of course, I did not.  Thinking, it was just cold feet and nervousness.  Was it?  It did get better and even more so with my first and second child born in the next few years, they were and are my life. I loved our little family.

145F47B7-AD82-4284-AD28-7B1F1C3F5147As I was busy with toddlers and caring for my aging parents, things changed in those years. My parents passed within two years of one another, then dealing with the estate and family issues.  Sadly, my marriage died, too.  Alone within and being private while wearing a mask of us all being a happy Christian family. Taking this all upon me, as it was all my fault, accepting the lies and rumors being spread that I am a bad person, etc., was weighing heavy upon me.

I remember my fortieth birthday, like it was yesterday.  My small office had cream colored carpet that I had just moved into but it was dirty from the traffic pattern of the other person walking in and out.  I wanted a nice, inviting office with clean carpet. We were slow that day so I got on my hands and knees scrubbing the carpet, 4718957F-EA4C-495C-A61C-C9DD39DDC3D5thankfully not a large space.  While scrubbing, I remember thinking I am just like the fairytale we have all read, Cinderella.  As for much of the forties, I do not remember, as I lost myself in those years.  My focus was on my children and my energy went to them, otherwise depression was overtaking me.

In trying to better myself, I had a short stint of counseling before he moved his practice out of state.  I felt I was gaining ground trying to find myself but only at a snail’s pace. The sudden death of my brother and dealing with his estate and the same family members that stirred up strife before but now more hateful, which got the best of me. I allowed their words and anything and everything negative rip me to shreds.

Finally when turning fifty, I was attempting to get myself out of the pit by taking care of me by having weight-loss surgery.  Looking back, I dealt with emotional eating and I still do at times but I recognize it now, but I had gained well over one-hundred pounds in twenty years of our marriage.

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We are now both feeling the effects of having an empty nest.  We are two strangers in the same house, both working full-time jobs and just going through the motions. I know I was dreading my home life and feeling stuck and feeling the craziness of it all. Too much! Everything went to the wayside, isolating myself from the world around me.

I knew I had to reach out for help. It takes courage to do that so if you find yourself in this loop of hopelessness and despair, please reach out. I found and was blessed with a wonderful Christian counselor five years ago to help me see light again and have hope, when all hope was gone.  Had it not been…ADFEB088-C85D-43CD-BFEC-2B40D3DC6411

I am about to hit my Big 60. I can truly say, I am happier today than I have been for such a long time; by understanding myself and working on my issues? I cannot control others and had to know deep within and to hold onto the fact that God said in His Word that He will fight my battles. Is everything perfect and did everything fall into place? No. I have had and still have some rough moments, but I know not to let it all get me down for long and to pull me down into a pit of despair and depression. I am moving forward. I am stronger today in my faith, as counseling has held me together and I know that the Lord has a plan and a purpose for me, even at this age.

I am expecting that the Lord will use me to glorify His Name and bring hope to others as I continue to grow older.  I want that.  Trust Him.

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I’ve Been Warned

BBB80A59-D2BF-498C-82F4-7120309FCD86I had the pleasure of being a mother to two awesome boys. When I was growing up, I always thought I wanted a girl. I knew with my husband being from a family of all boys, the odds were pretty good for another boy.  I decided against a third child due to caring for my parents while having toddlers. I was overwhelmed. Two was plenty and a joy but also hard work, as they keep you on your toes.  I was responsible for these two and I hoped and prayed I would be a good mother.

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I enjoyed each age and stages in their lives and so proud of them as they grew up, and still.   Both are grown and successful in life with their professions.  My oldest is married, celebrating their second anniversary in several weeks.

The other night, I again had to deal with the fact of being asked to watch their dog while they go do something fun with her parents this coming weekend. This was not the first time. While I do not mind, I would enjoy time with them, too.  I had to laugh as I remembered my boss warning me 96AFF840-1BBA-414C-B2F5-E73ADC6354B3before their marriage that I will lose him as a son and he was correct. Still, it hurts.

I know I am not the only one that gets sad in this scenario. Am I?  As I tried to talk myself out of the pity party I was having, I thought I would just write about it.  I was warned not just by my boss but my sister also having boys.

9C7CD8FD-00D4-4C6B-9794-9F05ED099623In having boys, I have to wonder and sometimes fret over my age, if I will need care or a nursing home.  What will happen? I certainly hope my daughter-in-law loves me as much as I love her. I am in the role of watching others in this position and if the boys step up to the plate in caring for their aging parents.

So, if you have boys, you’ve been warned. lol

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Which Door?

The open door? The closed door? The shut door?

1236B6DB-E353-4844-9F47-07C755EED023I am waiting for the open door, to walk through to freedom in life, as there is more for me and I await patiently because it is happening, I feel it. I want to rush through it but I continue to stand, knowing the Lord’s Timing is always right on time.  I wait.

There have been situations where the door has been shut in my life.  While that can be hard to understand, I realize also that the Lord closes doors on our behalf.  It will all make sense later and we will be thankful for that shut door whether that be in an opportunity or relationship.

I have had to shut the door this year to a relationship, sadly a family member, as I know my boundaries and I am stronger within than I was before with their rumors and lies. It’s okay to shut the door.  Sometimes lock it and throw away the key.  CA2CB93D-0546-4B1B-BC93-F69ED34BA8CD

The closed door tends to sting somewhat, okay a lot, as I do not understand and I am left standing with questions.  I will not knock or pound on it to let me in. Perhaps time will open this door and if it is meant to be, the door will open.  Life goes on.

God’s Timing is always right on time.

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Imposition

Isn’t it funny how things come about and make sense, perhaps years later, more like decades in my case?

As a small child, I was always told to sit down, be quiet and do not bother anybody or anything.  I would go to work with my mom many times when she cleaned 5A620FB0-F8CF-4D5A-AE94-7BB47297B8D2houses.  I knew to never touch much less breathe on anything.  What I did though was look at the beautiful homes we were in, imagine what it was like to live there.  While we had a nice, clean home ourselves, it was my place to escape within my mind.  I can still smell the Ivory bath soap and see the bathroom at Betty’s house.  I can see the beautiful knick knacks and remember looking out the window in the side room to the back yard at Addie’s house.  I was a good kid, I could entertain myself just within my thoughts.  I had to in order to stay out of people’s way, including my mom.  I was no bother.

0550A961-9751-4A3C-9C03-8BD377E9EEC0Many times, I have noticed through the years that I would not call others, ask for help, etc,, and I am still that way.  For instance, I have been given permission by my former counselor, in the past, and my present counselors to contact them, if needed.  Each one, my comment is that I appreciate the offer but I did not and will not bother you and I don’t.  The risk of rejection, of them having no time for me would only magnify the panic within me.  In a situation at work, just yesterday, now I had to bother several and got a little more involved than usual.  Perhaps that is me not being so independent, codependent, passive aggressive, etc., as I will take so much and then… Enough!  Majority of the time, I will solve the issue and figure out how to rectify the problem for ease on me and all involved.  As in this work situation, besides my time and a stress headache pounding on each heartbeat, I now have a solution and will put in place starting tomorrow.  Done.

The imposition came to mind when discussing abandonment with my counselor yesterday.  I was an unwanted burden.  We both know this has been an issue for me in life.  One of those things yet again, I never had a word for of how I felt until my former counselor identified.  So, that is what I felt and it all made sense, that was just in the last five years.  Not easy to work through but at least I am not questioning the whys within me.

Abandonment, odds are came early for me, birth to eighteen months.  Seems unreal and kind of crazy to even consider but makes sense to tie all the lose ends together.  No maternal bonding as that was one of my questions wondering why our relationship was not like most mother-daughter connections.  There was never a mushy greeting card to reflect what was not there, ever.  Still she was my mom.  One of those moments, all my life, to sit back and look at the situation but never understanding.

“If my own mother can’t love me, who can?”  “Is there something wrong with me.”

Talking to him about this abandonment, I remembered mom’s words many times through the years the fact that right after having me, the day we came home from the hospital, she had to make Thanksgiving dinner. Back then, they kept mother and baby for days in the hospital, unlike today.

So, with a large family already, knowing I was the seventh child, seven years younger from my sister, other family members visiting, you know the general holiday gathering of family and friends, odds are I was tossed from one to another and that continued.  Take care of 309CD4E2-F84A-45BA-ABE9-A81E7CAF0CBAyour sister and don’t make her cry.  I heard that so often, as she did not really care to hold or even hear me.  How sad.  I have always felt and known I was an oops baby.  To realize even back then, I was an imposition as a baby, a young girl, adult and still an almost retired lady, it kind of does something to you.

Partly, there is shock and working through for healing but then comes strength in knowing the facts.  With all the comments, whether in joking, sarcasm and perhaps hatred of being in the way, it happened to me.  I heard all of that and it affected me, more than I realized.

As I told my mom while sitting on her bed, while she was putting laundry away, and out of her way; it was when I was about seven or eight, I questioned if I was a mistake with no reply.  I still remember that day, as if it was yesterday.  I shrugged my shoulders probably knowing already or why would I even ask, but then said to her that perhaps I am here to take care of you and dad later in life.  That actually took place, until their deaths.  Out of the mouths of babes.

649F54F8-B095-41BB-A5F9-F45960CD43A6While I may have been an oops, an imposition, a bother, felt the abandonment in life, I know one thing for certain and that I am a child of God.  I think I even knew it back then, too, but nobody to encourage me spiritually.  I know that He does not make mistakes.  I am not a mistake.  I know that He loves me.  I am loved and B806CA6C-2627-4DE8-A085-0F28E1E301DDlovable.  The ‘I Am’ statements are not just off the wall and flippant but necessary and truth behind each one.  It has taken me years to truly grasp His Love for me.  It’s when you know because you know.  Joy!

So many times in life, we are put down, ridiculed, etc., to where we do not know the who, what, when, where and whys in life.  But God…  It’s when you put your trust in Him and believe He has your life in His Hands, and trust Him and watch your faith grow, then the other does not matter as much.

I am no bother or imposition to God.  He is there for me 24/7 as He is for you.  Trust Him.

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https://healingbrave.com/blogs/all/i-am-affirmations-healing-purpose-abundance

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-legacy-distorted-love/201105/when-mothers-don-t-bond-their-daughters