Thursday, October 29, 2015

Living Kindness

I have the luxury of loving kind people. A bunch of them from a bunch of backgrounds. They are all people I am thankful to have in my life every day.

In a perfect world, this post would be read while listening to Bebo Norman's I Will Lift My Eyes, as that's what I was hearing when I wrote it.

A kind person is not the same thing as a nice person. I've known nice people and I want nothing to do with them.  Their version of nice meant they followed the rules when others could see what they were doing, but what they did behind the scenes was all about lying and cheating and stealing and hurting.  Their rage at being "outed" was and remains a fearsome thing.

A kind person is one who will tell the truth.  He or she will be listen and be supportive without pushing or "advising" another.  He or she will absorb tears and fear and anguish and will call to mind laughter and courage and joy.  He or she will encourage freedom and success without losing him or herself.

I am kind.  I have hard edges, for good reasons.  I tell the truth, even when it's painful truth and even when it's about myself.  And I am fierce, and that's what sustains me.

Know what else sustains me?  The kindness of my family and friends.  I am often humbled by what people have done and will do for me.  My future is bright because of them.  It sometimes makes me bend over and giggle with joy.  Knee slapping moments must be celebrated, my friends!

Last week a friend discovered I was having an abundance of difficult events crowding my days, and he bought me a ticket to Texas. 

He wanted me to relax and feel cherished and beloved. 

It worked.

I slept a ton, worked a ton, and because of it, I have a solution for what was troubling me.

The joyful part of it? Last week's setbacks mean I'm going to release my app a couple weeks sooner than I planned.


And that man?  He's a work of art.  He lives kindness. And though he is physically, mentally, and spiritually strong, he is gentle.

Nice?  Not even a little bit.

Thank God.


Friday, October 23, 2015

Momma Love

I have a broken heart.

Tonight was supposed to be our annual pumpkin carving event and my son can't come. This latest in his series of choices to not be with me has effectively destroyed my hope. 

This last year has been a long journey. Though I wrote about all of it, I'm not done posting, so there are gaps in my story. I will close those gaps by the end of the year. And then I'm closing the book on the events and the emotional and physical pain of the last year. It's time. 

The one thing that won't ever stop hurting is the loss of my son - the boy who shared my love of fiction and corny tv shows, who has my affinity for people and relationship, and who loves like I do, with a heart fantastically generous. 

He has made the decision to stay out of my life until I achieve some unmeasurable and undefined standard of wellness. Meanwhile he is surrounded by people to whom I will always be the worst of what I was.  There is an element of injustice that I cannot wrap my mind around. 

And so I surrender. 

There is an ache in my heart constantly for the massive loss of the boy who is such a beautiful spirit. Some days the grief is so intense, it stops me in my tracks and I have to catch my breath. 

I don't miss my husband. I don't miss my friend. I don't miss my dad. I don't miss my career. I don't miss my friends. I don't miss alcohol. But my boy? 

Imagine the loss of a piece of yourself and then imagine that it was your own actions and choices that caused the loss. 

Yeah. I did that. 

I'm proud of my boy though. He was hurt by things I said and did. I can't take those things back or make the hurt go away. My mother's heart is broken for his pain. And because I taught him about being strong and confident and about boundaries, he was able to draw one with me and stand firm. I believe his actions are about making the healthiest decision for himself and about holding me to a standard of good behavior. Accountability is a good thing. 

But. Man. The aching grind of the grief on my heart and in my spirit never relents. 

The grief is just so painfully profound. 

So. There it is. 

"I am" says Jesus, "I am the peace the world cannot give."

There is peace in managing this pain without trying to banish it by abusing alcohol or using some other method of escape. 

There is peace in the love and nurturing of the people who knew me at my worst and love me anyway, and trust in their constant belief that the best is yet to come in my life.

There is peace in knowing that I did nothing to deserve the gift of grace in my life and there's nothing I need to do to keep it. 

There is peace in knowing that the very grace that sustains me every day can work in my boy's heart too, and that I will love him and wrap my arms around him when he comes, and I will do it without recrimination or shaming but with perfect joy. 

There is peace in knowing that I love unconditionally. 

Thank God. 


Thursday, October 15, 2015

Memes and Social Values

I built my first meme this week. It's from a photo I took while riding Harley last week in Texas. 

I like it. 

Then I made this one from a photo I took out my new front door on Monday. 

And my final first week offering is this one in support of all the men who know how dangerous pornography is to healthy relationships. 

Memes really are the new arbiters of social values. And anyone with an editor can have a voice. 

It remains to be seen whether that's a good thing or not. 


Monday, October 12, 2015

Born to Ride!

This was my view from the back of the Harley I rode all last week in the evenings when all the work was done each day.

I actually love this view.  There's the world to look at and admire.  Then there are those arms and hands.  They are powerful and strong. I'm never afraid riding this Harley with this man.  He's cautious and confident.  He would never take a risk that would result in me being hurt.  He's wonderfully trustworthy.

He also thinks I'm eye candy on the back of his bike. Can't beat that.

Well except when you drive the bike yourself.  One year from now, I will.


Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Tribute to SALT

Awww, I loved our music group.

SALT was a big part of my life at one time - and a big part of the my friends' lives too.

We did a number of public performances.  This one happened in 2008 at the Monticello High School.  We called it "Welcome Heaven's Light" and performed 18 songs or something like that.  It was heady, good stuff.  Look how young our kiddos were!

Not long after the Christmas stuff, we produced a bunch of videos with great advice for couples, added some music and some dialogue, and celebrated "The Feast at Cana" with a bunch of folks around the area.  That event was a ton of work! We sang the music, produced the show, cooked and served the meals, and danced with the folks.  Best, we were able to witness our friends and their friends renewing their marriage vows each time we performed our show.  

When we made our last cd, Chris Lommel made this composite for our group.  Our kiddos still look pretty young in that photo!! Chris was able to modify that photo for us as people came and went too.  He did a great job.

I miss the music.  I miss the friends.  I miss the service.

But people and things enter our lives for reasons, and some of them stick around for a long time while others only last a relatively short time.  This was a short timer.