Life or Something Like It

We are Not What We Seem

We are Not What We SeemWe are Not What We Seem

Do you ever stop and realize that jealousy has overcome your thoughts and emotions?  Well, We are Not What We Seem, this is where I am being convicted.  Honestly, I don’t even like the word jealousy, so I use the word covet LOL… how is that any different?  LOL

I’m so extra!

There are times when I look at people, situations, homes, social media, etc. and I struggle.  They look like the happiest, most in-love couple.  Their houses are Hallmark worthy.  The kids are well dressed with awesome haircuts and their dogs don’t shed.

I mean, let’s be real.

Big Daddy and I have disagreements.  Now, we certainly don’t “fight” but we’ve had our issues over the years.  One issue, in particular, has taken me a lot of time to forgive and come to peace with.  My house has all sorts of different flooring, there are vomit stains on our carpet, pee stains that have warped my laminate, and it smells a bit like green onions and feet at all times.  The children wear the same clothes day in and day out.  I mean, seriously, these clothes can walk themselves to the laundry room.  However, I have learned how to cut hair, so if you want to be bald, buzzed, or go for the Amish look…I’m your girl!

My animals.

Well, I have Karl who is very much a lover of people but is quite the exhibitionist, so we gotta cover him up quite often.  Karen likes to lick your face and get in your personal space while you pee.  Chip is a bit crazy and likes to bite toes.  Inez, well, she isn’t my cat.  I have named her and I feed her, but she isn’t mine.

Francis is a senior dog and she has bad hips and a bad back.  We think she is going blind and she doesn’t hear as well as she used to.  Her anal glands are a bit potent.  Ted has short man syndrome.  His mouth doesn’t shut all the way so the tip of his tongue sticks out all the time.  Lola.  She fell off the couch and swallowed 4 teeth.  Honestly, she falls going up and downstairs.  She falls walking across the floor or getting in or out of her bed.  Also, she walks with her right leg up, at all times.  She thinks she is a princess.  When you pick her up, she is a nervous licker so you get the full effect of her breath which smells like sewage.

Nothing I own is nice.

Parts have flown off my van while I have driven down the road.  I have buttholes (literal) in my walls.  There was a child that was thrown through a wall and lest we forget the head that was plowed into the wall.  The leaves and frogs in my pool.  Our chicken nooses still hanging on the mancave.

This is our reality.

So when I see the images, my brain perceives one thing when the reality is so different.  I feel those fleshly feelings of wondering why my life cannot look or be like another.  That person has the perfect marriage.  This couple never has to worry about money.  Their kids are so respectful, see where I’m going?

YET the Lord has shown me that what I “think” I see is not reality.

There are so many instances of Him showing me this.  Honestly, I can distinctly remember when I was chatting with a friend that I perceived as having it all.  I mean, a Hallmark worthy home, great kids, great jobs, a great marriage, always in church, etc.  It seems like nothing is out of their reach.

As I was speaking to her, I made a statement about something I had dealt with in my past and I looked over and tears were streaming down her face.  It caught me off-guard.  I sat there, in silence, with my arm around her.  At that moment, I knew that words did not need to be spoken, just love and silent prayers.  She shared, briefly, what was going on inside her Hallmark home and her heart was broken.

Which humbled me and broke my heart.  People, you just never know.  Unless your feet are under their table or you are able to jump into a person’s skin and walk around a mile or so in it…never assume.

The guilt I felt after the realization of the truth was profound.

There are no perfect people.  Also, no perfect families.  My job is to love one another.  Share my story and use my story for His glory.  Do my best for my family and live a life honoring to God.  I need to stop coveting (being jealous) of others and be thankful for what the Lord has blessed me with.

Big Daddy, I adore.  My kids are precious.  The animals bring us joy, most of the time.  We have a home, vehicles, and the ability to pay our bills.  God is good, all the time and all the time God is good.

I need to get over myself.  Simple as that.

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Thoughts from a Hospital Room

Thoughts from a Hospital Room

I have spent a lot (I literally mean A LOT) of time in hospitals since 2015.  Between my Lady, daddy, mother-in-law, son, and more…my job is night duty.  That is my thing, I don’t sleep well anyway, so why not stay so other family members can rest.  As I was sitting with my MIL last night, these were my Thoughts from a Hospital Room.

Spectacular Human

First and foremost, my MIL is an amazing woman!  Her love and devotion to her family are astounding.  She is humble, kind, and just precious.  I’m so thankful that I was blessed with her in my life.  We had some deep conversations.  Many, I am sure, she will not remember.  I will though!

Tears were shed, honesty was spoken, love was present.  Also, she is a freaking powerhouse.  I told her that she cannot be a superwoman, at this point, in her life.  She needs to take care of herself (she had a hip replacement).  The doctor said she took that hip as far as she could.  Honestly, he was amazed that she had endured so much pain. She pushed herself as far as she could.  Rockstar.  That is what she is.  A freaking rockstar.

Polar Opposites

We are polar opposites!  I mean, not just a little bit.  She is quiet, reserved, and self-assured.  I am loud, balls to the walls, and self-conscious.  Yet, we mesh.  It is so funny how I blew into this family and shook them all to their core.  I brought LOUDNESS to this family.  Honestly, I adore her.

Thoughts from a Hospital Room

We were talking about books (where we have similar tastes)!  I have not had time to read because I’ve homeschooled for 20 years.  The books I read are to my children because I am a firm believer in expanding your mind through the written word.  We are not big on tv, video games, or phones.  All my children have a deep love of books, unlike their father!  He is not a big reader.  Actually, he is a bathroom reader LOL.

We were talking about The Client and that I was struggling through it.  Honestly, neither of us like fiction too much.  I told her that I was read the first half of the book and then I put it down.  Deep down, I struggle with the fact that I have not finished it.  We talked about my Type A personality or OCD.

Type A

I read that “Type A individuals tend to be very competitive and self-critical. They strive toward goals without feeling a sense of joy in their efforts or accomplishments.”  HECK YES!  I would finish that book even though I could not stand it.  This time, I went against my grain and I put it down.  It is killing me that I did not complete something.  Seriously, I feel like a failure.

Stupid, I know.  Yet, that is how I feel.  Like when I get in my obsessive mode and watch a tv show, I have to watch every episode.  If I don’t, it disturbs me greatly.  Yet, as I was speaking to my MIL, she was like “if you don’t like it, why to waste your time and finish it?”

Revelation

That statement gave me permission and freedom to say “NO!”  This is a minor, first-world issue.  Sadly, it is still an issue and a thing for me.  Fellow Type A or OCD people get this feeling.  Lately, I have been very intuned with triggers that are not healthy for me.  I’m learning to step back, not complete, calm down, re-evaluate and not finish something.  So hard.

Triggers suck.  There are some topics I stay away from whether it is a person, situation, book, movie, or whatever.  Some things I stay away from is anything that surrounds sexual abuse or rape specifically.  That word, itself, triggers me and makes my stomach hurt.  Anything that deals with suicide or even actors or have made that choice.  I don’t watch movies with them in it.  That issue stabs me in the heart.  War movies or books.  I have mad respect for those serving and who have served.  It breaks my heart to think of what these people/families have endured for me.

Maybe it is Silly

Yet, to me, it is real.  It affects me.  Why would I want to purposefully do something that will alter or trigger my mental health?  Our job is to surround ourselves with things that bring us joy and/or happiness.  With my mental illness (clinical depression and PTSD according to my doctor), I choose to say no.

So, as crazy as it may sound, I put the book down, skip shows, fast forward through parts of movies.  Heck, I have gotten rid of movies and books.  If someone in my life is toxic, I love and pray for them from afar.  I don’t voluntarily jump into their lives and try to fix it (though I wish I could all the time).  It is not my job.  That is the job of Jesus.

Sincere Love and Appreciation

For my mother-in-law because in her hazy moments after surgery, she spoke such truth to me.  I felt loved, appreciated, and understood.  Today, I choose joy.  In all things, honestly.  Today, I give you permission to SAY NO and put things down that you don’t dig.  Let it go.  Just let it go!  Oh, and don’t forget…LET IT GO!

 

Life or Something Like It

Thoughts Swirling Through My Head

Thoughts Swirling Through My Head

Thoughts Swirling Through My Head

These are the Thoughts Swirling Through My Head.  If you want to go Back to the Beginning, you can click there.  I have been traveling many hours in vans, cars, planes, and buses.  There have been 7 hospitals, in 3 states, that I have slept in…oh…and one nursing home.  I have stood in more funeral homes than I would like to.  Also, I have cared for and prepared the bodies of too many people I love.  I have cried many tears.

It should be said that I have learned so much.  Possibly that I have found the meaning of life through births and deaths.  Sadly, I haven’t.  I would be remiss if I didn’t say something about growing closer to Christ.  Maybe that I have found the secret to peace in the midst of chaos.  Yep, haven’t felt or done those things either.

All The Things

This year, I vowed that I would not spend ANY time in hospitals, nursing homes, doctors’ offices, or funeral homes.  Guess what…that vow flew out the window as soon as it could.  Panic ensued when my mom said that daddy might need a “procedure.”  After he had a stroke and then quadruple bypass the following year…he needs no one to touch him because he is fine.

Then, Hunter got worse and we traveled for answers.  We got our answers.  Now, I travel monthly just so he can receive the medications he needs.  Another person, whom I love deeply, is facing the battle of her life.  All I can do is to cook and send cards or call.  Another dear person to my heart had tongue cancer.  Oh, then there are 2 people that were in my “tribe” growing up and they both have Alzheimer’s.

Hits Just Keep On Coming

I mean, seriously, it goes on and on and on.  In the face of it all…all the travels…all the tears, I have seen the face of Jesus.  We have argued, a lot (by we, I mean me).  I have cried so many tears but then I am reminded of this verse:

When I read that, I realize that He has not left me or forsaken me.  He has the perfect provisions in mind for every single moment that something comes up.  I have learned how to trust Him, most times.  Also, I have learned how strong my family is and how protective they are of their tribe.  Lastly, I have learned to let go…for the most part.

So, with all that being said

Why does it take a life-altering condition, a life-threatening disease, an accident, or a death to fully tell the ones that you love how you feel about them?

Take a moment and call, text, write a letter to someone.  Tell them that you love them.  Tell them what they mean to you. Don’t let another moment pass.  If you need to forgive someone, forgive them.  If you need to hug someone, hug them.

Life is too short.

Treat those around you with love and respect. Quit the judgment, quit the lecturing, quit the hate. Speak with kindness.  Who cares if that person is gay, straight, black, white, male, female, family, friend, someone you do not like, or acquaintance.  The Lord places every single human you see, in your visual sight, for a reason.

Have you ever thought about that?  It is all purposeful to Him.  How are you using that knowledge?  I set out to do better, but then satan whispers in my ear.  My goal has been to retrain my thoughts and words.

Stop focusing on the negative and giving Satan more power than what he needs.  I’ve been rewording things in a positive manner.

Life is but a vapor.

Today, I got a call from a friend.  We have been friends for about 10 years or so.  I was incredibly close to her daughter.  Her daughter chose to end her life a few months back.  I had the privilege of preparing my friend’s body for her mom and children to see.

That was one of the most difficult things I have ever done.  I still struggle…but those pains will stay within me for only Jesus to see and deal with.

However, today, she called to tell me she loved me.  She thanked me for all the years that I have been there for her and her family.  I heard how special I was, in her eyes.  What a precious thing to hear.

A Long Time Ago

I found out a friend of mine…her mom…had cancer and was dying.  Now, we all went to church together growing up.  Parents, kids, we were all friends.  One of her daughters was at my wedding.  The other daughter came, as well.  I love her family.

When I found out, though I had not talked to her in 10 years, I called.  First, I spoke with her husband.  It had been a long time, so I used my maiden name.  Of course, he remembered me.  I explained why I was calling.  I got the privilege to speak to Frieda and fully tell her how much I loved and appreciated her when I was growing up.

Months later, she died.  I thought no one knew of that phone call and that her husband was so grief-stricken…it didn’t really matter at that point.  I went to the visitation.  When I saw Buck, her husband, he looked at me and cried.  He hugged me and then told me how much he thought of me.  He said that that phone made Frieda’s day.  That he could never thank me enough for my words to her during that time.

What took 10 minutes out of my day meant the world to her and her husband.  That’s what it is all about.  Step out of self and reach out to someone from church, from your childhood, an estranged family member or friend.

Challenge

Reach out to 3 people a day.  Write a letter, send a text, call, send an email to someone that you love. Tell them 3 things you love or admire about them.  God will bless you and you will be blessed.

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Relaxation A Beginning

Relaxation A BeginningRelaxation A Beginning

Relaxation A Beginning.  I live in the land of stress.  It is not a nice land…..lots of moles, vermin, sewage issues, etc. My Lady fusses at me all the time about my stress level and how much I take on.  I mean, I care for her (I see that more as a privilege).  Also, I have 7 kids.

My Kids

There is one who is trying to find love and a job in her field.  Oh, and one just left love and is heartbroken, as well as going to college.  We have one in military school because of her behavior.  Then there is one who is finding himself as a “man” and beginning to drive.  Also, one with FASD and depression, along with learning disabilities.  Another one is hearing impaired.  Lastly, we have one with Opsoclonus Myoclonus Syndrome (OMS).

A Bit More

I have the counseling I do when I have the time, I have parents who I think/worry about, sibling issues, work issues, Big Daddy’s health stuff…..blah blah blah blah.

The first one, I experienced tonight!  The weather is starting to turn, so it isn’t too hot and it isn’t too cool.  My favorite times of the year.  I love love LOVE to have my windows down when I drive.  To hell with the snot that flings out my nose and hits the child in the seat behind me.  To hell with the bird’s nest that resides in my hair and I cannot get a brush through it.

Exhibit A:

This is what happens when you get a bright idea to be a girl and curl your hair…using LOTS of hair products.  This happens to be the same day that your daughter has therapy and it is one of those glorious cool/warm days when I drove 40 miles to the therapist’s office.

I got out of the car, with my daughter who never said a word.  I walked into a room full of clients who are staring at me.  My first thought was “I am on fire today and I look like a girl and they are all being jealous.”  I smile…I go to sign the register.  The receptionist looks at me and gasps.  I smile and say “yep, I know you never see me looking all nice with my hair curled, so yes…it is still me…just with my hair done.”

She gives me this weird smile.  We sit.  The daughter does her school work and I decide to run to the bathroom…and this is what I found.  This was the result of freshly fixed hair, lots of product, and my obsession with the window being down.  “It’s All About Mary” came to mind.  I about died.  Died.  I just about died.  There was no laying this sucker down.  Short of me sticking my head in the toilet to wet it…..I just decided to embrace it.

I Can’t Stop

As we were driving home from a family movie/dinner night…we rolled the windows down and I just sat there, with my eyes closed and the wind blowing in my face…I was at peace.  I couldn’t hear the children because of the wind in my ears (and hearing loss LOL).  I couldn’t see anything around me because it was dark.  Just glorious wild wind.  I’m glad Big Daddy was driving so I could enjoy the full scope of it all.

Try it sometime…..but carry a brush with ya 🙂

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