Saturday, May 28, 2011

The Best Laid Plans

I woke up this morning eager to get outside and begin planting the flowers that have been waiting so patiently, in their pots and flats, for their new home.  We are preparing for a big party celebrating our oldest son's graduation. We are expecting A LOT of people. We are not ready. 

When I awoke, the eagerness faded as I saw the gray skies outside. We have experienced days upon days of rain here. Trying to be optimistic, I told myself that the earth will be softer....easier to work with after this week long monsoon.  But as I stopped outside and my feet sunk an inch into the grass and water puddled around my optimism waned a bit. 

I wanted to be outside before the day got too hot.  However, 52 degrees is a bit nippy for me when it's combined with the wet ground and damp air.  I wimped out and came back inside.  The plants will have to wait a bit more for "moving day".

There is much to be done inside.  Rooms to be organized and cleaned...little (and some big) repairs that we have learned to live without to plan...calls to be to organize...the list goes on.  Rest assured, there is plenty to keep me occupied inside.  But like a spoiled child I wanted to stomp my feet and whine, "Noooooo....I want to plant my pretty flowers todaaaaaaaaay!"  I craved that time of communion with God as I worked outside.

It looks like God has other plans...and, after my momentary tantrum,  I've graciously decided to just flow with them. Of course, what else can I do?  Yet, I have decided to face this Saturday with a smile, to let peace precede where stress wants to lead, and to bask in the sense of accomplishment that occurs when completing any task...big or small.

It seems as if my communion with God will be done over dirty dishes and messy closets.  Repairing damage rather than adding beauty .  On further reflection, I think maybe that's what was meant for me today.  Repair, clean, and organize the internal as I work on the external.

The flowers will still be there...waiting to bring their beauty...tomorrow.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Kept In My Heart

Pictures scattered as I sort them.
Piles of baby smiles, smeared cake,
Wobbly bike rides, missing front teeth,
Each brings a smile, a memory
I've kept them in my heart.

First day of school, grin wide
Backpack bigger than your little body.
Sending you, without me to buffer
The social customs, the language barrier
But you were sure and confident.
You were right, my worries unfounded.

Today...your last day of school.
Tousled hair..grumpy on being woken.
You want it're ready
To move on..conquer the world.
Different feelings than the first day.
No snapshots this  morning you say.
Save it for the graduation day.
I try to respect your wishes
I quickly snap a mind picture.
Your smile, your scowl, your nonchalance
To be kept in my heart.

The worries that I still have
Hoping you make the good choices.
Sending you, without me to buffer
Into college life, all the responsibilities.
You are still sure and confident.
I pull the memories from deep
Kept for all these many years
For a moment such as this.
You were right that first day.
Reassure myself that you're right today.

I can't keep you to myself.
The world is ready for you.
You're ready for the world.
God bless and keep you, Son.

Inspired by the word~ Kept

Monday, May 23, 2011

Truth, Shame, and the Crazy, Busy Lives We Lead

I'm sitting here tonight...hands poised over the keyboard. Not only do I have stage fright since I've only posted once this whole month, I've also forgot how to do simple things. 

Two months ago I posted this. I talked about my Word of 2011 which is create.  Yet, here I am, again, and I have not been creating. I've been back working full time, hubby is home recuperating after surgery, and we are preparing for our oldest son to graduate. These plans include an Open House party for about 300 people.  Literally, I feel as if the world has been spinning at warp speed, and I'm barely hanging on. 

I'm not trying to wine whine.  I know that we are all busy, and my burdens are bearable. What I'm trying to figure out is why, when life gets crazy, I still slide into my default setting....which is to stop taking care of myself.

I am avoiding looking at mirrors.  I am avoiding looking at my house.  I am even avoiding looking at my family.  I am doing what needs to be done but I am not doing it with the same sense of joy that I have in the past.  What little I have in me I am pouring out to others...and in the process leaving little behind for myself. 

That voice of compassion that I extend to others I am not extending to myself.  That acceptance that I offer to others is not so easily offered to myself.  That feeling of hope that I have in my heart for those that are struggling is not alive in my heart for myself.

I just started reading another book by one of my favorite authors, Brene Brown. The book deals with the subject of women and shame.  Before I started reading her work I would have said that I don't carry shame inside. Yet, I know now that I did..and I do...I just called it by other names....embarrassment...poor self-esteem...guilt.  I am now naming it for what it is, and I'm learning to practice shame resilience with courage and compassion.

But...I have a long way to go.

Back to my post on my word for the year...create.  I think when I am not honoring myself, when I am not valuing who I am, I smother my creative voice.  I don't feel that I should post anything that is less than uplifting or inspiring. In doing so, I am not being authentic.

So tonight...this is me.  In all my all my openness...sharing what my struggle, at least for today is.  I hope that in all of this vast Blogsphere there is one woman who will "get" me.  One woman who can say, "Yes!  I know how she feels."  Because in this great beautiful gift that is  my life, I have learned that to be connected to others is the only way I can experience true joy. 

Connectedness to God and to others...that is the light that carries me home.

It feels good to be back, even though I am not writing the lighter, happy post that I wanted to return with.  Yet, this is the truth. This is me. 
And the truth I know is......that this too will pass. These feelings ebb and flow...just like the rhythms of my days. 

I am looking forward to "seeing" more of you, my blog friends.  I have been MIA, and I may not be around consistently until I learn how to better manage my life. But I am here this moment...creating something by sharing part of my story...and it feels good!

   Stop by for a visit!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Sweetness At Thirteen

Tonight was sweet...
and the reason was my little girl.
Maybe I should clarify and say she is MY little girl,
but, at 13 years of age,
she is not a little girl to anyone else.
(Well...except to her daddy and papa.)

She is an enigma at times.
All those hormones surging,
and not quite sure what to do with them
she can release them on me.
With eye rolls, indignant voice, or just the closed door...
which in itself speaks volumes,
I am not often on her "favorite" list
for more than a few minutes at a time.

But, tonight....yes tonight!
She asked ME if I wanted to go run
on the boardwalk...
with her.
Seriously, she will laugh with me,
but that is usually in the privacy of our home.
To actually invite me to accompany her...
in public...
to a place where her friends could see her
running along side her middle age mom
is a rare honor.
And I say that without a touch of sarcasm.

we ran.
Although my feet hurt from the long day,
and my emotions were raw from some hurtful events,
we ran.
We walked when I needed a break.
We laughed.
We made fun of each others music as I took her for ice cream.
We laughed.

We arrived home and found her dad and brothers
draped upon the living room furniture watching the news.
So she and I took the floor.
She came to me fresh from the shower
and asked me to french-braid her wet hair.
She wanted rolling waves for school tomorrow.
I braided...remembering how many times I've done this task.
And then,
she curled up, her head upon my lap,
and I forgot to breathe.
I touched her hair, her back, and stroked her arm lightly.
I blinked...
and she jumped up to go reply to a text.
But I had that moment.
I had moments tonight.
They were rare and therein, lies their beauty.
There was a day I took the hugs, laughter and hands-on care
for granted.
But that day is long gone.

tonight was sweet.
And the reason was my little girl.