Thursday, December 18, 2014

Decluttering Life


It's been way too long since I have written.  In my opinion, there aren't any excuses that are good enough to justify it, so I will spare you. Life just goes on and time goes by. And before you know it, nine months or so passes like it was nothing at all.

What bothers me the most is how easy it is for me to just stop writing, regardless of how therapeutic it is for me to write.  And when that happens, I tell myself that I'll write tomorrow or the next day, yet that day never comes.

It really is that simple and, yet, it seems so complicated.  Or overwhelming. Or both.

I feel like I'm on the brink of something big, yet I am not sure what exactly. For the past couple of weeks - months even, I've been trying to get my life - or at least my surroundings - together... slowly decluttering my life and making things simpler.  I don't know why, I just feel as if it is time.

It's the time for a lot of things really. It's time now.  And slowly, even if it's one word at a time, life will - hopefully - become simpler again.



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Monday, March 17, 2014

Dear So & So: Being Enough


Dear So & So,

Our conversation yesterday left me with a lot to think about today. I don't know why I can't shake this feeling of being not good enough lately. All I try to do is to leave others in a better place than I found them. I try to love others to the best of my ability. I always try to make sure others know how thankful I am to have them in my life; never forgetting to tell them or show them just how much I love them.

Because tomorrow really is promised to no one.

I don't plan on going anywhere anytime soon, but if I do, I will always wonder if I was enough.  Did I love enough? What did I leave behind? What is my legacy?  Did I do enough to make a difference in this world?

Ever since I could remember,  I have wanted to be a mom. Somehow, I feel inadequate without a child. Incomplete. Like there's a part of me missing. Deep down I know, I am not honoring who I'm supposed to be.

That is not to say that my sole purpose on this planet is to be a parent; it's not. However,  I cannot seem to quiet the desire in my heart that knows there is more to this life than I have been living.

I am not perfect.  I have made mistakes.  I have wished for do overs. As much as I try to live without them, I do have regrets.  There are things that I have wished I said, others that I have wished I had not spoken. And in most cases, I will not get a do over.

Yesterday,  I said I was mad at God, but today, after much thought,  I know that's not true.  What is true is I'm frustrated at life's circumstances. No one promised life was going to be easy,  but no one said it would be this hard either. I know I have made it through tougher times, but knowing that does not make this eaiser.

None of this is easy. I am not asking it to be easier. I just want to know that I will make it through this tough time, and I'm not on this journey alone.  I want what everyone wants... I want to know that I really do matter and,  in the end, that has to be enough.

Love,
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Thursday, March 13, 2014

My Heart's Desire

For as long as I can remember, Jake & I have wanted child.  Actually ideally we would have loved to have had more than one child. However if I've learned one thing in life, it's that life never works out the way you expect.

I would like to say that we have been open about our struggles with fertility, but we haven't.  In fact, for many years our struggles were kept only between us.  As the years went on, we shared our journey with only a selected few.

The truth is, along the way, not everyone has been supportive.  Sad to say, there are a lot of people who think that I don't have the right to be a mom simply bc I have Cerebral Palsy or am in a wheelchair.  And this includes some people who were in my life & even some doctors.

You just would not believe what some people say - right to my face - when they are confronted with the truth I try to live in daily.

Truth is, CP is not genetic.  And just bc someone is in a wheelchair, it does not mean they cannot be a good mother.  It most certainly does not mean I don't deserve a chance to be a mom, if that's what my heart desires.

Then there is Jake who deserves to be a dad just as much as I deserve to be a mom.  You should see him interact with the children he works with.  He's amazing.  I can honestly say that one of the privileges of volunteering where he works is getting to see this firsthand.  He has truly found his sweet spot & the place where his heart lives.

And this is the journey we have found ourselves on... we certainly expected that we would have some challenges to deal with along the way & some things to figure out. To be honest, along the way, many things, which includes our many emotions, have not been easy at all.

And years later, we are still here. Waiting & praying. Knowing that one day things will fall into just the way they are meant to be, whether we are parents or not.
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Sunday, March 9, 2014

Saying Sunday: Shaded Words


"Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes more than the human voice to infuse them with shades of deeper meaning."
American Poet
(1928-    )
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Saturday, March 8, 2014

Words

I've been thinking a lot lately about words.  How words can change things. How words can affect others. How words are powerful.  Our words are more powerful than we realize.

Words can tear people down or build them up. And our choices mean everything.

I really try to be careful with my words. I try to build others up every chance I get.  I try to leave others better than I found them.  Sometimes I fail at that, but most of the time I'm successful.  At least I hope I am. People tell me I'm gifted with writing.  They say I'm gifted with words.

It has taken me forever to honor my gifts.  I didn't always believe the truth.  There's been many people in my life that spent a lot of time destroying my self esteem.  They wrote on the slate of who I was changing who I was meant to be.

Thankfully, I have had a lot of people in my life who spent a lot of time trying to build me back up.  They saw something I didn't see.  They saw the truth.  Not only did they believe in me, but they loved me when I didn't even love myself.

I don't know what it is.  Maybe it's suddenly losing my dear friend, Betsy. Maybe it's the place Jake & I are in lately, which has not without it's challenges.  Maybe it's looking back & wishing that I would have used my time more wisely with those who, for whatever reason, are no longer a part of my life.

I am not perfect.  No one is.  I make mistakes.  I say wrong things. I go over conversations in my head, time & again, wishing I had a do-over; however, I also try to be careful with my words.  I try to be kind.  I try to build others up.  Encourage them. And I pray that, more often than not, my words have left others better than when I found them, even if the place I found them was great.
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Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Lent: Pushing Through

Today, Betsy would have been 52.  I spent most of the day thinking of her.  And wondering if I should go the Ash Wednesday services at Cedar Ridge.  It still baffles me that she's gone & I just can't imagine the service without her.  After all, she was the one who creatively planned the services for what seems like forever.

Turns out, because of pain, I didn't go. Oh, how I wish I would have. I keep mulling over the past few weeks in  my head, still finding it hard to believe that she's gone now.  Yet, there is an undeniable presence of her at church.  How can there not be? After all, she poured out her heart and soul there for years.

I've also been wondering what to do for Lent.  So I give up something or add something? I have decided that for Lent, I need to write more, especially on here.  For far too long, I have gotten away from blogging. And I secretly regret it.

I think of all the moments I have missed.  All the late nights spent not asleep writing stuff that no one will ever read. And I can't even begin to tell you how many times I would start to write a post in my head, but never push through that feeling of vulnerability of being exposed on this very public blog to actually post something.

So, hear I go. Plunging back in. On purpose.  Pushing through all the uncomfortable spots for an important cause, as a friend often reminds me.  Oh, how I'm so grateful for her ever present gentle encouragement, often when I need it the most.

The truth is I've been doing some private writing, which has been therapeutic. And hard.  There have been many times where I have wondered why I keep pursuing a process that is so difficult.  Why is it that I want to work through stuff that I have crammed down for so long?

And yes, there have been many times where I want quit.  I've wanted to just stop dredging up the tough stuff that I've long since buried.  Still, time & again, I continue to plunge in, no matter how deep the waters get.

I wish I could say that these weeks have been easy.  They haven't.  I wish I could say that Jake & I have not struggled. We have. I wish that I could say that giving a voice to my thoughts and feelings came flowing out of me without much effort. It hasn't.

So here I go. I'm all in, whether I like it or not.. After all, I am fighting for an important cause. I'm fighting for me. And that's the most important cause of all.

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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Dear Betsy: Four Days Gone

"To laugh often and much; To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded."

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson,
American essayist, lecturer, and poet,
(1803-1803)

Betsy Love
*Photo Credit: Facebook
In Loving Memory of
Betsy Mitchell Henning

Dearest Betsy,

It's only been four days. Four days since you've been gone.  Four days since the planet cracked open leaving a gaping whole in my heart.  This seems surreal. I'm still shocked.  Still devastated.  Still absolutely heartbroken.  

And I'm not the only one.  There is a whole community grieving. In fact, anyone that ever loved you is missing you right at this very moment.  Anyone that ever had the privileged of being loved by you is feeling a void right now... a void that you once filled.

By your own words, you're a "knitter, writer, cook, designer, parent, wife, puppeteer, leader, teacher, extrovert, liturgist, crank" who lived life as a "suburban Bohemian." 

To me, you were a life-loving, deep thinking, pink hair donning, non-judgmental Christian who lived life free of the box that other's tend to be confined in.  You were a a free spirit whom creativity just poured out of. You were real. You were authentic.

You were my friend. And I loved you.

I will miss our deep conversations about life, love & God.  I will miss your quirky sense of humor, your laughter, your smile & ever-present authentic hugs that were filled with unconditional love. I will miss the way you lit up a room just by being in it. Oh, how I'll miss your light & how bright it shined.

I keep thinking of Eric & Ian, who just turned eight.  I can only imagine how they are feeling right now. I think of how they have to find a new normal.  How they must go on, without you.  Still, it seems surreal.

And, truthfully, I'm struggling with making sense of how a little boy is without his mom. Or a husband is without the wife that he has loved so much for so long.

Then I think of how both Eric & Ian are so dearly loved by many, including by the God who loves us so much more than we even realize.  And how His timing is perfect, whether we agree with it or not.

Yes, there are some things that we are not meant to understand on this side of heaven.

For now, I give thanks. For you.  For your life. For your friendship. For your love.  Oh, how it was a privileged to be loved by you.

Ah, yes... your love.  Because of the love that poured out of you in every way, you will live on.  You will not be forgotten.  You have left this world better than you found it, simply because you lived & loved freely.

Yes, we will carry you with us in our hearts always.  And your light & your love will live on forever.

Forever in my heart,

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