Saturday, March 29, 2014

Communication is Key

I am breaking from my typical serious side of things for today and telling some funny-isms on my girls.  Enjoy.

When one of my children (who shall remain nameless) was very little she brought a McDonald's toy up to me and asked me to tell her what the words said.

I looked and told her, "Made in China".

Her eyes got as big as saucers and she asked incredulously, " IN CHINA?!!!!????!!!"

Me, "Yes, in China."

Her, "MOM, MOM?! In CHINA? Like in," she looked down and pointed, "my china?!!"  disgust and horror filled her face.

I laughed so hard and said, "No, honey, the country, the country of China."

And she was filled with relief.


Another daughter who shall again remain nameless saw a package of sausage links on the counter and said, " I don't like those."  When I asked her why she said rather matter of factly, "Because they look like testicles."

Me, looking at her with big eyes, "They look like what?"  my mind racing at one how she knew what that word was and how she thought they looked like that.

Seeing my look of "Say whaaaaa?" I could tell that she was wondering if she had said the wrong word.  She started explaining, "You know that thing in your stomach." She rubbed her belly as she said this.

With much relief I asked, "Do you mean your intestines?"

"YES!That is what I meant.  What does the word I said mean?"

Again relief that she had no idea, followed by an explanation.  This time she was the one who was horrified and mortified by the word she had used.

When my oldest was quite a bit younger I was having a talk with all the children (only 5 of them at that time) about my expectations of their behavior while out in public.  I was telling them how I wanted people to look at them and exclaim how well behaved they were and wish that they were their kids.  I did not want them to look at us and say how glad they were that they were not their children.  My daughter's response to this discussion was this:  "Well at least we always have our good looks to fall back on, Mom."  

I fear she missed my point entirely.  =)  And yes my kids are cute and they know it.  

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Five Minute Friday: Crowd

*a factual fiction of a moment in time, which took more than five minutes to write*

She sat in the crowd not knowing if she fit in, but she was there and for now that would have to be enough. She looked around at the other faces and backs of heads in the crowd.  They all seemed to know something that she didn't; how to be comfortable in their own skin.  Some raised their arms up, others swayed back and forth, and others were crying - openly letting the tears stream down their faces.  As she watched the crowd she wondered what it would be like to feel emotions the way they did, integrated, mind and body both working in collaboration instead of being separate entities.

The man up front started to speak and the words broke through her observations and seemed aimed directly at her heart.  Her eyes stopped looking at the crowd and focused solely on the man.  She watched to see if he knew who he was speaking to, if he knew his words were aimed at her or not.  He spoke of freedom and of being whole and she watched his eyes closely.  He believed what he was saying.  She could see it in his face that he meant every word, but she still wasn't sure if it could be for her or not and then he looked at her. He looked right into her eyes and he talked about chains binding hearts; she felt as if her heart stopped beating and she held her breath.  Was he really speaking just to her, did he somehow know?  She felt visible, as if he could see through her eyes and into her blackened soul.  As much as she had hoped to be seen, this viewing seemed too exposing and she looked away.  When she looked back he had moved to the other side of the stage.  She was safe again.

When the man stopped talking he invited the hurting up to the front.  He offered healing.  She ached for that healing, but she knew what would happen if she let her feet take her up there.  Her body would be present, but her mind wouldn't be there.  It would be wondering what she was supposed to do, how she was supposed to behave.  Her mind and her emotions would be frozen, because if anything came all would come and she would wash away with them and take everyone else with her.  So, no, no she would not move.  She would stay and watch as others went forward.  She would watch as they were able to let the waves wash over their eyes and hear as their sobs left their lips and she would wonder how they could do that, especially in front of eyes like hers that were watching, and how they could feel without being washed away by the feelings.

It was time to leave, the healings were over, the crowds dispersing. She left wondering if she would ever learn how to go about being whole.

Five Minute Friday

Friday, March 14, 2014

Bone weary: slipping through that crack between forgotten and remembered

**A Warning that this could be a trigger for those who suffered from abuse**

I am tired.  All the time.  It is the kind of tired that makes my bones want to dissolve into the bed when I lay down.  It is more than just a physical tired, it is an emotional tired.  This subconscious leaking into conscious is exhausting.  It is like living in an internal fog where you walk and you walk and you never know what you are walking into until you run smack dab into it.  

It is loading the dishwasher and having a half formed memory slip through that crack between forgotten and remembered, causing you to lean heavy into the sink sobbing.  It is the kind of tired that comes from being 38 in body, but 4 or 5 emotionally and all you know is sadness and fear and you don't have a clear understanding of why or what or who.  You know enough to know that it is something, but not enough to work through the story.  You can feel the weight of it like chains that bind you; but you can't see them or touch them - feel them under your fingertips.

It is waking up from a sound sleep with hands clawed and battle ready, your legs kicking hard.  It is knowing that it wasn't a dream that brought out this fight, but a memory that still hides in shadow.  It is telling yourself where you are, reminding yourself of the present so you can drift back to sleep only to wake up fighting off the memory that is as dark as the night you are thrashing in.

It is lying on an exam table having your throat pressed on and in your mind you are child being choked, feeling as though you are going to pass out, breath quickening, lip quivering, praying for Jesus to come and rescue you from your mind, because He didn't come rescue your body when the choking was real.  

It is riding down the road wondering if you are losing your mind and a memory comes that isn't new, but this time it brings with it the taste of soap and cologne so strong in the back of your throat and on your lips every time you take a breath that you ask out loud what that smell is, but the other in the car can't smell it.  It is not wanting to acknowledge where that tasted smellmory is coming from and having to turn your head over and over again to make it finally go away. It is the nauseous clawing in your chest that is fear, sadness, and anger intermingled.

It is wondering if your mind is writing its own story, but it isn't one you want to read, so you tell it to stop, but it won't.

It is wanting to run away from everything that is internal and leave it behind, but you can't.  Running away from the depths of you is like trying to run from the color of your eyes -f impossible. You can avoid your reflection for a time, but eventually it is going to be there looking back at you.  You can try and hide it, mask it, but masks are only temporary, the reality never changes.  

It is being tired, so tired of the fight.  The fight to forget alternating with the fight to remember.  It is knowing that you need something, but never being able to figure out exactly what that something is.  

It is hearing that all you need to do is X,Y, or Z to be better, but you have no idea how to do X, Y, and Z and no one can give you the instructions they just expect you to do it.  

It is straining your ears hard to hear hope singing, because sometimes he is hidden deep in the fog.

It is the constant grinding friction of what you know to be truth in all those parts of you that are rational versus what you feel, see, and hear in all the other parts of you that are not so rational.  

All of this is what makes me bone weary and I just want some rest.

Thursday, March 6, 2014


painting #8 "hope" 3/4/14

Emily Dickinson calls it
 "that thing with feathers that perches in the soul."

And this little bird, he looks like hope to me.

I sent this painting off in the mail yesterday and on the back I wrote these two verses:

Philippians 1:3 "I thank my God in all my remembrance of you,"
Philippians 1:6 "And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ."

The first verse was mine to that person, the second was the verse that this person had said to me sometime back.

In Emily's poem she goes on to say, "And sore must be the storm - That could abash the little Bird - That kept so many warm -"

Some days it feels like that little hope bird in my soul has been abashed and yes that storm is sore.  It blows and it rages and it leaves me tattered and torn and wondering what progress am I making? Where is my good?  How can I ever get from here to complete?

Then hope starts singing, his voice no longer hushed by the winds that blow, and his voice is reminiscent of the person who will receive this painting and the tune he sings carries the words of that verse.....

"I am sure of this, I am SURE," 
and the tune gets louder, 
"YES!  He, He who began a good work in you," 
oh the sweetness of his song, 
"I am SURE that He will bring it to completion." 
and on he sings, 
"You will be complete and it will be good and He will bring you there."  

I can feel those wings flutter and stir within a warm and peaceful breeze of assurance, because of that verse that brings hope.  The hope that I am a work in progress and that until the end I will continue progressing. The hope that a good work is being worked in me, has been being worked all along, and it will continue to be worked until the day that Jesus comes.  The hope that the work is indeed good.

Can you hear hope friends, can you hear it singing, or do your storms drown out the song?  The hope song is for you as well, it is a much yours as it is mine.  When the winds start to die down listen, listen, listen for the melody, a good work is being worked in you.  You are loved.  You are deeply loved and it is His love that will bring us to completion. 

*If this little bird helps to bring you hope and reminds you that you are loved then you have my permission to download, print,  or share him via social media, because hope is for everyone.*

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

How Can I Keep From Singing?

Last Friday my friend wrote a blog post.  Her words painted a picture in my mind and sent me searching for a song that would compliment the picture.  (Please go and read Amber's post here.) Her words always paint powerful pictures.  Tonight I painted the picture that was in my mind.  The song I found to accompany the picture is entitled "How can I keep from singing".  If you want to hear it sung just click on the youtube video below.

painting #7 "how can I keep from singing" 3/4/14

My life flows on in endless song;
Above earth’s lamentation
I hear the sweet though far off hymn
That hails a new creation:
Through all the tumult and the strife
I hear the music ringing;
It finds an echo in my soul—
How can I keep from singing?
What though my joys and comforts die?
The Lord my Savior liveth;
What though the darkness gather round!
Songs in the night He giveth:
No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that refuge clinging;
Since Christ is Lord of Heav’n and earth,
How can I keep from singing?
I lift mine eyes; the cloud grows thin;
I see the blue above it;
And day by day this pathway smoothes
Since first I learned to love it:
The peace of Christ makes fresh my heart,
A fountain ever springing:
All things are mine since I am His—
How can I keep from singing?