faithfamilyfearlessness

My life and the world from my eyes

It’s the little things September 29, 2011

Filed under: Inspirational,Life,Random,Thoughts — faithfamilyfearlessness @ 8:12 pm

If I am anything, I am a summer girl.

I love flip flops,

Splashing around in the swimming pool,

Basking in the warm summer rays.

I love the way my skin glows from a natural tan,

I love that I can leave the house with my kids

without the hassle of jackets, hats and gloves.

I love that the sun glows until bedtime,

And rises long before we get up.

But like pretty much everything in life,

Summer is only a season.

A beautiful, glorious time that passes way to quickly.

Normally, this time of year leaves me really bummed out,

I HATE being cold.

So I have decided to cheer myself up with a list of all the little things that make me happy about fall/winter:

1: The crisp smell of fall air

2: The amazing colors of all the trees and bushes

3: Hoodies

4: Bonfires

5: Roasting marshmallows on bonfires

6: Snuggling under the covers with my munchkins and my hubby

7: Hot cocoa

8: The apple orchard, and all the apples and doughnuts that come with it

9: Halloween, and how excited my kids are to dress up every year

10: My son Anthony’s birthday

11: Thanksgiving: food, fun and family time.

12: The way my boys eyes glow every time there is a fresh snow

13: Catching snowflakes on our tongues

14: Christmas (enough said).

15: Warm, fuzzy sweaters

16: Christmas music and how happy it makes me feel inside

17: Eggnog

18: Apple pie, pumpkin pie, any pie.

19: Slipper socks

20: Peppermint ice cream

So there are just a few of the little things that I have to look forward to over the next couple of months.

What are some of your favorite parts of this time of the year?

After all, it’s the little things that make all the difference =]

 

Stairway To Heaven September 24, 2011

Filed under: Family,Inspirational,Life,Random,Thoughts — faithfamilyfearlessness @ 1:17 pm

1999 is a year I will never forget.

It was a hard year for my family:

My parents were both almost completely absent,

My mother physically,

My father, unable to cope with her illness, mentally.

Our home was pure chaos,

Six children running wild.

We had little or no accountability, which is a bad combination when you are nine.

Dad had to make a living,

Mom had to get well again,

That left us to our own devices.

In all the madness of our home,

My big sister Liz was my safe haven.

We are twenty two months apart,

And were practically inseparable since I was an infant.

Whenever I felt scared or unsure,

There she was, no matter what.

The house we grew up in is in the middle of town,

Big and white with burgundy shudders and front door.

The back yard is a full acre, with tall old trees all around it.

The chain link fence was the boundary we were to obey, always remaining within it’s confines.

Behind our home was a nursing home with a large field next to it and a pond where Canadian geese would raise their young.

Railroads tracks were nestled behind the trees of their property line, the familiar whistle of the trains roaring by echoed across the field.

Beside our home was my dads office, with an apartment building across the parking lot.

For the most part, we were isolated from the rest of the world,

No one bothered us,

No one asked questions,

No one stopped to wonder why these little children were always outside and never doing school work.

No one noticed most of the time we were by ourselves.

Our backyard was strangely therapeutic to us.

The projects we would build and the games we would play,

They helped us think of something, anything besides how sad we were.

There was a grove of pine tress in the south eastern corner of the yard we called “the woods.”

It was probably a total of seven medium sized trees and three very large pine trees.

They majestically towered high over our heads, watching over us as we played.

The tallest one had a thick branch that hung just low enough for us to reach on our tippy toes.

I don’t remember the first time Liz and I climbed that tree,

But I know she was the bravest, the trailblazer,

So I know she was the first to try it.

She taught me to pull myself up, when I didn’t think I could.

To close my eyes for a second and catch my breath,

When my stomach churned with fear.

The smell of the pine needles was enchanting,

And the gooey sap would stick to our hands and legs for days.

But as soon as we sat there and looked down at the world below,

It felt like home.

How we loved that tree.

One day we decided to build a tree house,

It was nothing more than a few boards we found laying around the neighborhood in ravines and ditches,

But it was ours,

And that made it amazing.

The pine tree bled it’s sap as the nails pierced deeper into it’s branches,

But it never gave way.

It was our refuge in the storms,

when we sat in our tree house, no one else could touch us.

Sometimes when the arguments got too loud, I would sneak out and climb that tree.

I would venture a little higher each time,

The branches became more fragile with each step,

But there was a rush not knowing whether or not you would fall,

And I loved it.

The pinecones that speckled the floor grew tinier,

And when I reached highest point I could go,

I felt like I could see the whole world beneath me.

No one could reach me,

And as I sat nestled in the pine tree branches,

There was no one but me and God.

I would pray up there,

Sometimes for hours.

I would sit and just talk to God,

Tell Him my stories,

And how out of place I felt.

Something about nature makes people feel connected to God,

That was when God really became real to me,

When He first felt like my friend.

It was like I was the only person on this earth in those moments.

It didn’t matter what happened in that house,

How lonely I felt,

How hopeless it all seemed,

How confused or chaotic everything was.

Because when things became overwhelming,

I could climb my stairway to heaven,

To sit at the feet of my God.

 

Mrs. Lonely September 21, 2011

Filed under: Family,Inspirational,Life,Marriage,Parenting,Random,Thoughts — faithfamilyfearlessness @ 4:23 pm

I was eight when my family completely unraveled before my eyes.

Not with divorce, although sadly, throughout my childhood I did wish countless times they would put us all out of our misery and go their separate ways.

I woke up one day, and my mom wasn’t home.

“When is mommy coming back?” I asked.

“Mommy is sick, and she had to go to the hospital to get better.”

My stomach turned.

My father is a chiropractor and believes very strongly in natural therapies and eastern medicine.

I never remember going to the doctor as a child.

But I had seen movies, and the hospital is where you go right before you die.

Is my mommy dying?

“What’s wrong with her?” I would ask through tears of confusion and fear.

No one ever gave me a straight answer.

They danced around my questions awkwardly, and I knew something very serious was wrong.

I couldn’t figure out why it was all such a secret, and at the age of eight I became very angry and frustrated with virtually everyone in my life.

I couldn’t see that they were trying to protect me from the cruel reality of her illness.

It wasn’t until a couple of years later, my oldest sister blurted out to me that my mother had actually been suicidal.

Her illness was a personality disorder, eating disorder and severe depression…a bunch of things that no elementary schooler really understands.

I was devastated.

Suicide meant that she wanted to die.

Suicide meant that she felt she had nothing worth living for.

Suicide meant she didn’t love me enough to fight.

I didn’t realize that in reality, her children were all she really had to live for.

I couldn’t see that it wasn’t really 100% her choice to feel the way she did.

That life had simply gotten to be too much for her, and she needed help.

I didn’t know all the horrific things she had been through over the course of her life that had added up to her breaking point.

I didn’t know any of that, and so from that day on, I felt that I couldn’t really trust anyone, because even my own mother didn’t love me.

I became very withdrawn and detached from people.

I was very good at surface relationships.

Smiling, laughing, never letting people close enough to hurt me.

Never being honest about my pain.

Never letting people past the walls guarding my heart.

I was good at faking that everything was fine,

My siblings and I all seemed to master it.

No one knew what was going on behind closed doors, the stress and the drama and the anguish.

It effected every friendship I ever had.

And as I grew older, it’s rippling continued to touch my life.

I wasn’t very good at keeping friends, and the slightest rejection crippled my self-esteem.

I always felt like an outsider, no matter where I was.

Being home schooled didn’t help making me feel more included or normal.

I begged and pleaded with my parents to send me to public school, but it wasn’t until high school they finally gave in.

And kids will be kids, mean and insecure, and all I wanted was for people to like me.

But that really didn’t happen like I hoped.

Their cruelty continued to hurt me, as friend after friend slipped through my fingers.

I became a mom so young.

When all my friends were worrying about homecoming dances and football games, I was planning a baby shower.

Even now after all I have been through, most people I know are either single and childless, or if they do have kids are more concerned about dates and partying than being parents.

The few I have found whose family is top priority are much older than me.

Although I don’t mind the age difference, they always seem to feel weird around someone as young as me.

I hate that I haven’t really found my niche yet.

I wonder if people realize how lucky they are to have best friends in their lives.

There was a time I had “my girls,” but as your priorities change it becomes harder and harder to maintain high school relationships.

It becomes harder and harder to find common ground.

Sometimes, to be the woman you want to be, you have to let go of people who aren’t necessarily bad for you, but who aren’t motivating and encouraging you to become all that you can be.

And so one by one my group seemed to slip away.

And now, I’m lonely.

Yes, I have a wonderful husband who gives me the world and works harder than anyone I have ever met to be there for his family, to be a man of God.

But being married doesn’t fill every need;

And I really just miss having girlfriends sometimes.

I look back at photos and the shadows of my past.

The smiles and memories of friendships whose time passed long ago.

Many moved away.

Many of us grew apart.

No ones fault really, it just happened,

But I miss those nights of girl talk and giggles and having someone to share your laughter and pain.

I miss shopping without strollers and trying on clothes just for fun.

I miss the feeling of belonging.

My sisters have been a part if my life always, and they always will be.

Even though they are so precious to me, both my big sisters live too far away to really be a part of my every day life though.

We cant go work out together, take a dance class just for fun, or take our kids to the park ju because its nice out.

I just want a friend.

One who knows what I’m going through.

Someone who can relate to me.

Someone to just hear me.

My oldest sister’s recent blog post left me reflecting on myself and my emotions.

One of my all-time favorite television series is “Friends.”

Part of why I always loved it so much isn’t just about the crazy humor and lovable characters, although they were a huge part of it.

It was the amazing closeness they all shared.

They were family because of something besides blood.

The fact that they were inseparable and a part of each others every day everything that was so beautiful.

I want that so badly.

Is that so wrong?

No one really wants to be alone.

I just want a friend who isn’t going to move to California or Texas or some other far away place when I need them the most.

They say in your lonely seasons, that God is trying to teach you something.

So right now, I am working on myself.

I’m becoming a better woman, wife and mother.

But there comes a time when you just want someone to tell besides your twitter feed the funny stories of your day.

When you have some good news you want to share and get a squeal of excitement, not just a “like” on your status.

Don’t get me wrong all my Internet friends I love you all to death, but there is a desire in all of us to have something deeper than virtual reality.

Coffee. Lunch. A hug for goodness sake!

I know someday I will find true friendships again.

Rekindle old ones, make some new ones, I’m fine with whatever!

Until that happens I guess all I can do is work with what I have, me and my hubby and kids.

If you want to have a good friend, you must first learn to be a good friend.

Words to live by?

I think so.

 

Spilled Milk September 18, 2011

Filed under: Family,Inspirational,Life,Marriage,Parenting,Thoughts — faithfamilyfearlessness @ 8:00 pm

CLANG!

The small glass hits the table and milk cascades over the edge like a waterfall, creating a white pool on the carpet.

The cliche “don’t cry over spilled milk” comes to mind as I spring into action.

Whoever came up with that cliche didn’t have new carpet.

Grrrrr.

“I’m sorry mommy!” Jordan wales with his giant brown eyes staring tearfully into mine.

His chubby cheeks just scream “pinch me!”

How I love those kissable little cheeks.

But wait, I’m annoyed.

Oh yeah.

Can’t let his cuteness distract me.

I spout off some lame reprimand on exactly where on his placemat his glass is to be at all times, and how if he followed instructions this mess would never have happened.

My tone is edgy.

It’s probably the thirty fifth time I have had to correct one of my youngsters today,

and it’s only lunch time.

He feels bad, I can tell.

And so do I.

Why am I so frustrated?

Why do I let things get to me?

But let’s be honest, after a while even the smallest things add up to something.

I have found that as my children grow older,

I become increasingly annoyed with the sound of my own voice,

mainly because I hear it so often,

repeating the same things over and over and over.

“Clean your room!”

“Make your bed!”

“Stop fighting!”

Man does it get old after a while.

No, I do not expect my preschoolers to be perfect little angels (although hey, a mom can dream right?)

But it would be nice for them to eventually catch on to what’s expected of them, ya know?

I have this constant pit in my stomach on the trauma that I may or may not be inflicting on my youngsters.

I get compliments all the time on how sweet and well behaved my boys are, so I guess I must be doing something right…

…but still, I have doubts.

Mostly in myself I guess.

How does a girl who was never really fathered or mothered correctly become a good mother?

It’s so easy to talk about what it means to parent effectively, but it’s different living it out on a day by day basis.

How do you keep your voice soft and calm when inside you are screaming with irritation?

How do you keep them from throwing one of their tantrums when inside you find yourself on the verge of one.

I have a hard time “winging it” with things like this, which is admittedly what I have ended up doing most of the last five years of my existence as a mom.

I hate the thought of each of my kids being test dummies for the process of a better me.

We learn from our mistakes, sure, but I hate the thought of them suffering because I’m still trying to figure things out.

Although, every kid is different, so i guess all of us are kind of stumbling around in the dark.

We learn from trial and error, and what worked for our first kid may fail with our second kid.

I guess that’s why you see so many parents of teenagers, now independent in thought, so at a loss.

None of us have “done it before,” at least not with the exact child in front of us.

Maybe God does that on purpose, to keep us reliant on him.

If we knew all the answers, humans, being the way we are, wouldn’t feel much of a need to depend in Him.

Maybe it’s a gift to have it all be such a guessing game.

Nothing adds a little spice and adventure like never really knowing what’s around the corner.

We will all have problems, that’s a fact.

Some of us will face harder challenges than others, but it is not without rewards.

It wont matter how many wrinkles and grey hairs I get, as long as they are from the countless moments that sparked a smile.

It won’t matter how many nights I stayed in, as long as I was there to tuck them in and say goodnight.

It won’t matter how many dishes I washed, or shirts I folded, as long as their bellies were always full, and they always had something to wear.

It won’t matter how many sleepless nights I had, protecting them from monsters or cleaning up vomit, as long as they always knew they were safe and loved.

Yes, the rewards far outweigh the sacrifices.

Because someday those little boys will become men,

Men of God,

Men of character,

Men I know I will be proud of.

When we focus on the wonder and beauty that our every day is,

And when we picture the end result,

it makes everything a little easier to get through,

Even if it is something as small as spilled milk.

 

Fleeting Moments September 17, 2011

Filed under: Inspirational,Life,Random,Thoughts — faithfamilyfearlessness @ 10:58 pm

A young woman was found murdered today,

Just down the road from my hometown.

Just beginning her life,

Freshly graduated from high school.

The whole world at the tips of her fingers.

Her future ripped heartlessly from her,

In a single, final night.

The question lingers,

That we always seem to ask,

But can never really be answered:

Why?

It’s futile to be angry,

To question the reasons of such horror.

But every ounce of our beings want answers,

We know we will never get.

I won’t pretend to know the pain,

The emptiness of those left behind.

It makes you wonder,

And search your soul.

It reminds you how short our time is.

God told us our days are numbered,

From before we are even born,

But we always seem to forget this,

Until someone leaves us unexpectedly.

You wonder if it happened to you,

What would your last thoughts be?

Whose face would be etched in your mind?

What voice would you imagine?

Who would you long not to leave behind?

Life is so beautiful,

And sometimes it feels too short.

But if today was your final day on this earth,

How would you want to spend it?

Smelling the sweet scent of crisp fresh air,

Embracing the warmth of a hug.

Enjoying the taste of your favorite treat.

The feeling of true loves kiss.

My heart breaks for the family with an empty bed in their home,

The anguish is simply unfathomable.

I am so grateful to be sitting here writing this,

Breathing in and out.

Making me remember the basics we sometimes forget:

Be slow to anger,

Be quick to forgive.

Cherish every blessing.

Soak up every tingle of laughter,

Every second of snuggles,

And giggles and grins.

Every ridiculous joke late at night,

Every star that twinkles overhead.

Cherish every fleeting, amazing moment.

You never know which one will be your last.

 

When I am afraid September 16, 2011

Filed under: Family,Inspirational,Life,Random,Thoughts — faithfamilyfearlessness @ 7:29 pm

You look so small laying there,

In pain, without relief.

No answers come to your rescue,

The unknown seems dark and haunting.

But here we are here trusting,

Having faith when everything is so unsure.

Keep your head up my brave solider,

Tomorrow is a brand new day.

I reach out to touch your hand:

The blistered hand that works so hard,

The brave hand that protects me from bad,

The firm hand that holds your ground,

The strong hand that lifts me up.

The gentle hand that comforts.

Somehow these same hands seem smaller,

In the pale hospital light,

Your eyes a little more grey.

Don’t loose hope my angel,

Everything will be okay.

A childhood song comes to my mind,

“When I am afraid I will trust in you,

I will trust in you,

I will trust in you.

When I am afraid I will trust in you,

In God whose word I pray.”

I sang this lullaby to myself,

In the dark when my childhood nightmares would taunt me.

I would whisper it gently under my breath,

And somehow the dark didn’t seem quite so inky.

The dream wasn’t quite as scary.

That is what all of this seems to be,

Just one big bad dream.

The faceless monster of a pain,

Whose cause you just can’t seem to pinpoint.

It’s a frightening giant to face,

But just breath.

Have faith.

Everything will be okay.

I am here for you my angel,

Like you have always been for me.

I won’t leave your side,

I will be right here.

This time I can’t make it all better,

But I know someone who can.

God has a purpose for every little thing,

Even this,

In it’s doom,

Is for a reason my love.

Hold my hand,

Close your eyes,

And let’s sing a lullaby,

With childlike faith all things can be conquered.

Ultimate trust, that no matter how bleak,

God will never leave us nor forsake us.

We may not have all the answers right now,

Today,

But someday we will look back on this and smile,

Just we have every other trial.

We will smile how when we were weak,

God carried us through the fire.

God carried us through the storm.

He never left us for a moment,

And He never will.

 

A Peek at the Past September 14, 2011

Filed under: Family,Inspirational,Life,Parenting,Thoughts — faithfamilyfearlessness @ 10:12 pm

Throwback Thursday: Week 3
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
It’s the year 2006.

Its approximately eight weeks after my sixteenth birthday.

My large, round belly carries a tiny little boy inside.

My belly button protrudes playfully from my light pink shirt.

I am the only girl in my high school whose walk resembles a penguin.

It is thirty four days before his due date.

Thirty four days until he takes his first breath.

Thirty four days until I officially become a mom.

I’m scared out of my mind,

Even though I try tirelessly to hide my fear.

I have my usual confident and giggly demeanor.

A smile is the mask I hide behind.

I tell myself I don’t care what they think,

But my eyes avoid the disapproving looks,

And I stare at the floor when I walk.

I refuse to admit how it hurts me,

The way they judge me,

The way they look at me with disgust and contempt.

They way they shake their heads with pity,

of the inevitably horrendous life my child is destined to lead.

After all, what good can possibly come from a young teenage mother?

If I am stupid enough to get pregnant, I must be too stupid to be a good parent.

They think I don’t hear their whispers.

I refuse to cry.

I will NOT let them see me cry.

It’s not like what they think really matters,

But for some reason their hatred still burns.

They don’t care that inside all I want is someone to hear me,

They don’t care that I just want someone to talk to.

They don’t care how many people have abandoned me.

They just want to feel superior.

They just want someone to laugh at.

They just want their lives to feel a little less empty,

Talking about me deflects from that I suppose.

In a way I feel sorry for them,

For living their lives with so much hate.

I feel his tiny feet kick inside me,

As if to remind me he is still there.

To remind of the reason my life has changed,

And how all of it is more than worth it;

How he is more than worth it.

I hold my head a little higher,

Half smiling to myself.

I feel a little warmer,

And the sky is a little bluer.

Because one day, years from now,

My son will know how hard it was.

And in his heart I know he will thank me,

For choosing choosing love,

For choosing life,

For choosing him.

Even if I have nothing else in this world,

I have my baby,

And I have my God.

My God restores and reconciles,

My God turns ashes into something beautiful.

And I believe in His promises of a hope and a future,

And I believe that however motherhood may come,

It is always a miracle.