Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Precious Moments.

I remember the precious moments spent with my kids when they were babies.  I was their rock, their fortress, their protector - their world. 

I learned very early as a young mother that MY happiness was not paramount.  I was here to serve them.  I was happy doing so.  

As the years go by and they grow so fast it gets harder and harder to fill that role.  You can no longer make their world right by hugging them, cuddling them and picking them up.  A sweet song in their ear, pacing the floor with them, or showing them a new toy no longer brings the joy it once did.

I am entering a strange era with a now 20 year old "man child" that needs to be taken care of.  His needs different than those of his 3 brothers.  A brain injury and mental illness come into play as do limitations on what he comprehends and how he sees the world.  

Having a 15 year old is another ball of wax.  I remember what it was like to be hyper focused on body image, style and peers.  I get that.  I also know that the respect my mom expected and the expectations she had of me were not far off from what I expect of him.  Difference is times have changed and kids seem to think THEY are entitled to NOT follow the rules and give that respect.

I hold out hope with my 7 year old and 6 year old.  It is all I can do.

Turner is gifted and special in his own way.  He has limits and challenges that are different from his little brother.  He has Asperger's Disorder.  At times he appears just like the others.  Then there are times when he locks himself into "his world" and acts very different.  I wonder what life will hold as he enters his teens and beyond.  At times I am flooded with emotion at the thought of my children not fitting into the "world".  Other times I embrace it.

As our world continues to become a harder place to live, I try to hold out for the "moments".  Moments that have sparked a gleem of hope into my heart and forever left a mark.  Moments that I can make with my boys for them to cherish.  I try to make joy and make time for the opportunity to present its self as one of these.  

I have been hugely impacted by the strength I have seen in my friend Irini who is a single mother.  Her precious baby Sophia is pictured at the top.  Being 30 years old and beginning a life with her precious daughter she is embarking on a journey.  It is not easy.  I see her dedication to her sweet girl and her love spills out in all she does.  I strive to have that force back.  I am committed to being a better mom for my boys this year.

This brings me to my sweet friend Sue.  I met Sue a year ago.  She wrote me after reading my blog and told me that she felt the Lord put us together for a reason.  We have laughed and cried over the past year, shared play dates and birthday parties with our kids and have had "girls night out" together.  We have talked on the phone, chatted on FB and emailed one another.  We have so much in common...soul sisters.  I just learned that she is home on Hospice.  Her husband had to tell her 4.5 yr old daughter and her 7.5 year old son that mommy may have to leave and go to Heaven.  I am heartbroken.  I do not understand God's plan and know it is not for me to question.  

I saw things in Africa this Summer and had a chat with God.  I know He knows what he is doing, but I beg him to help us who do not understand His ways find a way to cope with the heartache.  I know he wastes no hurt.

Through all of the trials and pain I push to find His message.  Not my will Lord, but yours.  So, I thank all of my dear friends who have been here to encourage me, help me and pray for me.  I ask you to continue to do so.  I stumble, I fall, but I vow to get up and keep on going.

I am off to make "moments".  I will capture "moments" with my work.  I will try to find a way to honor God through my pain.

Here is a Poem sent to me by Chloe, it was read at Grandma Daisy's funeral...it is so fitting for my season of life...

The Dash

I read of a man who stood to speak
at the funeral of his friend.
He referred to the dates on her tombstone
from the beginning...to the end.

He noted that first came the date of her birth
and spoke of the following date with tears,
but he said what mattered most of all
was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time
that she spent alive on earth…
and now only those who loved her
know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own;
the cars…the house…the cash.
What matters is how we live and love
and how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard…
are there things you’d like to change?
For you never know how much time is left.
That can still be rearranged

If we could just slow down enough
to consider what’s true and real,
and always try to understand
the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger,
and show appreciation more
and love the people in our lives
like we’ve never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect,
and more often wear a smile…
remembering that this special dash
might only last a little while.

So, when your eulogy’s being read
with your life’s actions to rehash...
would you be proud of the things they say
about how you spent your dash?

by Linda Ellis


Monday, January 10, 2011

44 reasons why I have not updated my blog...

I use to be great at updating my blog...as if anyone really cared in the first place!  I have gotten a few emails asking if I was still alive, but with Facebook it is easy to keep tabs on people these days.

So here goes.  I have 44 reasons why I have not updated.

1.  Taylor came home to live with us mid-November.
2.  We moved to a larger apt. to accommodate all 6 of us.
3.  I got crazy busy with photo sessions.
4.  We had Thanksgiving and I prepared a grand meal.
5.  My kids decided to all react to Taylor's homecoming in different ways.
6.  Turner took it the best and just needs more love from me.
7.  Trevan regressed in behaviors and is "off the chain" 99% of the time.
8.  Trenton decided to completely not apply himself and has failing grades.
9.  My mom and dad went on a 2 week cruise to Hawaii and I found myself floundering without     emotional support.
10.  Stace's lack of work threw him into a tailspin with Christmas approaching.
11.  I wanted to have a memorable Holiday and could not figure out how to pull it off with lack of funds.
12.  Facebook needed my updates rather than my blog.
13.  My allergies and asthma decided to deal me fits and I was sick for 10 out of 12 weeks.
14.  My kids all decided to get sick.
15.  Having kids with the flu requires doing extra laundry and making numerous trips to the store.
16.  We tried to unpack and are still in process.
17.  My car decided to breakdown.
18.  Stace's truck decided to breakdown.
19.  My camera broke down.
20.  I tried not to breakdown.
21.  I made a feeble attempt to erect a small Christmas Tree for the kids this year.
22.  We decided to make a Gingerbread House and Christmas Cookies.
23.  It rained.
24.  It rained some more.
25.  It was super cold in our new apartment.
26.  I attempted to do some very last minute Christmas Shopping without much money.
27.  Then the gifts had to be wrapped.
28.  I had customers who waited till the last minute to order items.
29.  My kids had Christmas Break.
30.  My brother came to visit with my nieces and nephews.
31.  I was exhausted.
32.  Taylor has his ups and his downs.
33.  Taylor often does not cooperate which causes a lot of frustration in our home.
34.  Stace is in need of medication.
35.  I probably am in need of medication.
36.  We laid low for the New Year.
37.  I decided to make some changes in 2011. {I had to take time to be deep in thought}
38.  Chloe came home from College and we had to Celebrate her and my mom's Birthdays.
39.  Laundry.
40.  I discovered Nutella and realized how much I love Bacon.
41.  Nutella and Bacon are not on my "Health Plan" for this year.
42.  I made new friends who I love to spend time with.
43.  I got my new camera and am learning how to use it!
44.  I am just plain lazy.  

So in a nutshell that is why I have been on Facebook and NOT updating my blog...I vow to do better {if I can find more minutes in the days ahead}.