August 22, 2016

My Ten Year Old Self...

I was recently asked, if I had the opportunity to go back and write a letter to myself when I was ten years old what would I tell my ten year old self? I thought about it for a bit but not too long because now at forty-six I know exactly what I would have said. My letter would look something like this. 
Hello ten year old self. 
Why don't you come and sit down next to me here on this cozy blanket so we can talk a bit. 
I know you're afraid. I know life seems uncertain and scary. I know the kids at school are being cruel to you and I know that you feel like everything has been ripped out from under you and everything has changed. 
In one aspect you are right. Everything has changed but just because it's changed doesn't mean it's going to be bad. You don't have to be frightened. Your mom will still be with you for a long, long time. You will feel comfortable again in a house that you will eventually call home. The kids at school don't understand what you're going through so do the best you can to ignore them and when you can't talk to your teacher. Don't be afraid to go to school and when you are tell your mom and she will help you. It's only a few months until summer and the next school year will be better. 

Soon you will feel comfortable around kids and grown ups again. In time the world will feel secure around you again. It won't be the same as it was before but it will be alright and you will grow and mature and become a confident young woman who can feel safe and accomplish whatever you put your mind to.
Good and bad things happen all the time and they always will no matter how old you get but even when you feel like no one understands and you're all alone there is one person that is always, always with you. Jesus is always with you even if you can't see Him, He's there. All you have to do is say "Jesus I'm scared" and I guarantee you that in a few moments you will feel better because Jesus will put His arms around you and make you all better. Just like you know your daddy isn't here where you can see him but you know he's in heaven and  he is always watching you and putting his arms around you too.
I know everything I am telling you right now seems impossible but I am asking you to hold my hand, trust me and go forward. Your world has changed but all that change will get better and you will stop crying, you will stop being afraid. You will smile again and you will shine again.

Your adult self. 

August 20, 2016

Soul Unhealed

I don't usually post much on a Saturday but this Saturday is different. This Saturday, August 20th, marks seventeen years that I have now been missing my Mom. Even just writing that still makes my head spin because in my mind it was just yesterday. Time truly is a mystery.  My mom passed away on August 20th 1999 after a short battle but well fought with Pancreatic Cancer. She wasn't ready to leave us and we weren't ready for her to leave. It was and has been a devastating loss to everyone in my family. In most families, and I say most because there are those out there that this does not apply but, blessed as we have been, in my family Mom was the glue that held everything together. While we have all carried on as best as is possible there are sadly, a lot of things that just fell apart because well, when the glue isn't there anymore things tend to crumble. 
This is the one and only photo I have of my mom and dad together. We lost dad in 1979 at age thirty-six but thats another story for another day. This photo was taken on Christmas approximately 1977. In our house, Mom was Christmas and because of that we have many lasting, warm, loving memories of Christmas. 

This next photo is a photo taken in 1985 just before my oldest nephews first birthday. My mom was an awesome grandmother and the "kids" (who are all grown up now) considered grandma their best friend. She loved and nurtured them in every way. She was the sun and the moon to them. 

This photo here was taken on November 9th 1986. My oldest nephews first birthday party. Yes, my mom was fun and funny. She could crack a joke and take a joke just as good as anyone. 

This last photo was taken on Christmas 1997. The last Christmas we would all spend with her in her home. And the last Christmas she would be well. Pictured here with her grand daughter and my niece Jillianne at age seven. Grandmas was Jillianne best friend, champion, cheerleader, booboo fixer and her everything. 

My Mom loved to read, she loved to be in her garden. On a nice spring day you could always find her out in the backyard cleaning up her flowers and the backyard. She just loved being outside. She also used to love to blast her music on Saturday mornings when she would clean the house which consisted of Barbara Streisand nine times out of ten an Saturday nights were her nights with Frankie. Frank Sinatra that is. Every Saturday night for as many years as I can remember the local radio station always had a show called "Saturdays with Sinatra" and mom would be tuned in every week singing right along. 

My mom was many things. She was an excellent mother who when widowed at age thirty-six did everything possible she could to provide a roof over our heads, food in our stomachs and clothes on our bodies. It wasn't easy. In all honesty, I don't know how she did it and I don't know if I could have done it.  She was also a brownie and girl scout troop leader, my cheer leading coach on and off the field, my best friend in the whole world and after she got sick and I saw how she endured everything with such perfect grace she then became something else for me.......... my hero... ......
Seventeen years may have quickly passed by but in my heart and in my mind it's still 1999. I Love You Mom...