Monthly Archives: February 2015

A Commitment Kept

When the kids dad and I split, I made a commitment to God that I would do my part in keeping peace. I would trust God to keep my kids safe when they were away from me.  Not just with their dad but at school, friend’s homes, etc.

So when he didn’t pay court ordered child support and kept telling me the check is in the mail, I went to court to ask what they were going to do about it.

Once when the kids were in their early to mid-teens their dad was going to pick them up for a visit around 9 a.m.  He called about 9:30 a.m. and said he was on the way.

He sounded inebriated.  When I got off the phone, I looked up at God and told Him ‘I know I made a commitment not to make a fuss but if that man shows up at my door with a beer in his hand, I won’t let him take the kids.’

I don’t remember but I probably put my hands on my hips and continued, ‘I want to keep my commitment to you.  What are you going to do about it?’

Five minutes later, the phone ran.  It was the kids dad.  His friend was in the hospital and he wouldn’t be picking up the kids.

OHHHHHHHHHH

God made it possible for me to keep my commitment because I let Him do what He does best.

Thank you God.

A Promise Broken

I have never considered myself an abused woman. Though I will tell you my first husband was verbally abusive.

At first I was in love, he was a charmer.  I was taught to tell the truth but no one really talked about people who lie.

And for a period of time, I was afraid of him.

But that isn’t why I stayed.  I stayed because I had made a promise. A covenant.

I stayed until I worked out my fear of him.  I stayed until I was clear that when I left it would be for good.  No going back.  I had left and returned a couple of times before we had kids.

The main reason I was able to leave is we had gotten to a point where he acknowledged his promise didn’t mean anything to him. He was out to get all he could from all he could.

When there is a breach of contract, there is no contract.

He didn’t want a divorce, he didn’t want to be a husband either.

I had to be strong enough to make my stand and do so in a way that he didn’t retaliate.  We split in the early 90’s.  During this time, several men killed their leaving spouse or their children.

I had to navigate these treacherous waters carefully so my children could have the life I wanted us to have.

I prayed, a lot.  I would not leave my husband for another man.  I was either going to be in this relationship or not. And on thinks I could have insisted on, I let him have so he wouldn’t think I ‘owed’ him.

The rocky road didn’t end with the divorce papers being signed. He was sporadic on seeing the kids and paying support.  I never knew when he’d show or what mood.  I dealt with each incident when it came.

In the mean time I raised the kids.  Took them to school, checked report cards, taught them life skills and when chores were done on Saturdays we got in the car to do something fun.

The life I wanted.

 

Loving Everyone is Hard

Last year while missing loved ones who had passed, I was sad I had all this love to give and the people I wanted to give it to weren’t here.

So this year for Lent I decided to love everyone I came in contact with.   Should be a no-brainer.  I have all this love to give. And there are so many people in the world.  Easy, right?

Nope.  It’s only been a week since Ash Wednesday and I have discovered loving everyone isn’t as easy as I thought.

You know, the crazy drivers on the road.  Especially yesterday when there was still ice on the road.  People were zooming past me. One the way home I passed a fender bender.  The guys involved were out in the cold exchanging information.

My first thought was not compassion.  My first thought was, “that’s what you get for driving crazy”

And then I remembered my goal. I didn’t do anything awesome like stop and get them a cup of coffee.  I don’t think I even said a prayer.

I took a look at my attitude, said, ‘oops’. And gave sending them loving thoughts a try.

I also said a ‘thank you!’ when I got home safely.

I can tell this is going to be an interesting Lenten season.

 

Thoughts on Dying

I’m not afraid of dying.  Though I have never liked the end of the story is an unknown.

Even if you have a disease, you get a range of time the end may happen.

I don’t like the idea of leaving unfinished business.  But that happens sometimes.  Especially in the case of accidents. People are drying crazier than I’ve ever seen.

Approximately half my loved ones have passed on and half are still here.  It is strange being in the middle.

I don’t know that I can say that I’ve figured out why I’m here.  I get glimpses.

If you asked me right now what is most important, it is relationships.  Others are the only thing you get to have on the other side of the veil.  No stuff.  You leave all your stuff behind.

And this thought is really helping me de-clutter as I prepare for my son and his family to live with us until they get established .

Some stuff I have had for a long time.  Haven’t done anything with it and yet still kinda hard to let go.

Won’t have a choice when I’m dead. So I think I’ll try it now.

Thoughts about Hospice

This week a garden friend was put on hospice. She’s been fighting cancer for a little over a year now.
It’s no longer responding to treatment.

She had a crises on Thursday. She thought she was dying and she was alone. Another garden friend and I were headed to her place. He son left work to come.

She was mad, she told me the angels didn’t show up. I told her I didn’t know what she was talking about. She asked, “Aren’t the angels supposed to come get you?”

“I don’t know, my grandmother’s dad came for her.”

“Well, no one has come!”

I think she decided that now she is on hospice, it’s time to go, now.

That isn’t how hospice works.

It’s an acknowledgement that the end of life phase has been entered. You can be put on hospice up to 6 months before the end actually happens. Um, well, the calculated 6 months. We really can’t predict when we will be done with an illness.

She thought she would be gone in 2 weeks after she found out about the cancer. She’s still here.
She’s fought the good fight. Looks like she still has some life in her.

I’m sorry she’s disappointed. I’m glad I got to spend another afternoon with her.

I asked her what her favorite Valentine’s day was. She had a lovely memory of when she and her late husband were first engaged.

Even though it is good to talk to people about what is happening, I think we need to be careful and ask questions to determine what hospice means to the person who is ill.

Love at First Sight

Love at first sight is not just for lovers.  A dear friend asked me last year what it was like to experience love at first sight.  He was talking about when I first beheld my children.  He didn’t have children and said he would never experience love at first sight.

I thought he was wrong but I couldn’t figure out why.  Until now.  He did when he was born and saw his parents for the first time.

But that isn’t the only time you can experience love at first sight.  There are some people in life that you have an instant connection with.  I’m not sure why we don’t connect with everyone but we don’t.

Yesterday, for valentine’s day, I joined a few other gardeners and helped a senior living facility put in raised beds.  One of the ladies, from Columbia, couldn’t speak much English but she made it clear that she wanted us to join her for lunch.

When we got in line, the lady in front of me turned around and lit up with a smile and said ‘hello!’  The excitement caused me to respond in kind.  The gardener behind me asked if we knew each other.  Not that I am aware of but I replied, “we do now!”

What a lovely way to spend a day devoted to love.  I do hope we get invited back, I’d love to see both my new friend and the lady from Columbia.

Love at first sight is pretty awesome. I’m going to try it on like an attitude rather than an elusive once in a life time event.  And see how many people I can share this experience with in 2015.