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It was two years ago June 8th 2019

It was two years ago, June 8th 2019 when I found out my sister had passed away.
It was a shock to hear it.
My sister who was a reason for me to pray, who was often a reason for me to feel responsible.
My sister. Passed away.
Just like today when I opened up my face book page; and realized a precious lady at our church had passed away over the weekend.
My sadness sits in quiet and remembering.
My sister had been ill, and she had struggled for some time before her death.
But it is still a huge shock to one’s heart.
My ‘friend at church’ was ill and fighting for 18 months.
Her journey was much different than my sisters.
Her lifestyle very different too.
My sister was the second born of three girls.
Kind of a restless soul since she was able to walk or talk.
She was stubborn and didn’t really fit in the way one would think she should.
You know the society etiquette stuff where one is expected to act or be one way.
Yeah that wasn’t her.
She was my sister and if I could do one thing; it would be to sit with her and visit one more time.
She often tried to protect me but in her attempt; she would fail in her efforts.
Then she would just leave and not return for months.
She was a wondering soul.
Two years ago she passed away.
I never said good bye and never did closure with her.
It will always bother me.
Maybe she never noticed, maybe she did.
I cannot undo what was done and or said, it is all over now.
All I have is memories.
Just like the memories I have of my lady friend at church.
She was a warrior of the Lord and always a delight in whatever she would do.
Sometimes all we end up with are a few memories and few letters.
My sister sent me cards and gave me a few trinkets throughout the years.
Nothing of great value or cost, just a thoughtful gifts from her heart.
Like I said, she was simple. Not complicated. Not high energy or high in expectations.
She was herself.
The second born daughter out of three.
It was two years ago June 8th 2019 My sister left for her final time.

I saw a quote on face book and it stirred me

I saw a quote on face book and it stirred me to write about it.
The quote: A child’s shoulders were not built to bear the weight of their parents’ choices.
The quote is from TobyMac Speaklife website and I think it’s ok to use it.
Coming from a childhood that was difficult and testy, I see this as a very important quote.
As we were growing up we didn’t get to choose, where we would be living and with who.
It was not only disturbing but very emotionally unstable.
Our mother was a single mom and often times her ‘choices’ were not good.
She did provide a home that was clean, and we did have food on the table.
But the burden of ‘her singleness’ and the need to provide for us was hard.
We had to bear the consequences of what she would decide.
I have also seen parents confide in their children, and act like their children are best friends.
I am not so sure that is a good idea either.
They can’t decide how to support a parent, because they always want to.
It has to be age appropriate sharing and often times the parent can make a wrong choice.
Whether it be a good balance or an uneven one.
Psychologists have said, often times kids who are from abusive homes, want to go back there.
It is familiar to them no matter if it’s healthy or not.
The weight of parents choices are often heavy.
Parents’ who are unhealthy do not stop to think how this ‘decision’ will affect my children.
They are often self absorbed or just coping and not really into the ‘psychology of choices’.
We went to so many schools growing up I never knew what was going on.
I still can’t do basic math very well, because one school was doing one kind and another school another kind.
I was just into surviving.
Bearing the weight is a heavy set of words.
I remember that weight.
It pulled me down so hard for so long, until I was able to push past it.
After working in therapy I am now way past it.
My parents are no longer here, but the choices they made affected each one of us.
Even as adults.
Nothing goes unnoticed.
I saw a quote on face book and it stirred me to write about it.

Today is a birthday to remember

Today is a birthday to remember.
Today would have been my dad’s birthday.
I don’t remember any birthday’s spent with him.
It’s hard for me to imagine or even say that.
He was not in my life for many years and then when he returned, he lived very far away.
It was not a convenient drive to see him, it was miles of traveling to get there.
He was not a man who would enjoy parties or festivities in his honor.
I am sure I sent him a few cards throughout the years, but they are long gone by now.
Birthday’s are funny things, for many of us.
As you get older it is just another day, another spot on the calendar.
I have made a wonderful chocolate cake and I have celebrated a few birthdays with it.
In fact I am making one tomorrow for a Sunday gathering.
My dad might have liked that one, I don’t know.
There are many things I don’t know about him.
Did he even like chocolate?
He was a cowboy. He was strong in his opinions. He cared deeply but never really showed it.
He loved dogs. Not so much a cat person.
I remember one time when we were together.
I wanted some ‘cat tails, and thistle’ and he stopped alongside the road and picked me some.
But oh did he complain about it with my husband, “who would want those things?”
Around the fields and farms they were every where.
My original ones got ruined by my cats; so we picked me a few new ones a few years ago.
When we were back in the area where they grew.
I think of dad every time I see them in my kitchen window.
He was a cowboy. He did farm work for many years, he used to be an auctioneer.
He did welding for many of the neighbors when he lived at the coast.
He pretty much taught himself many trades.
Happy Birthday dad.
Today is a birthday to remember.

There was a challenge on a writing site

There was a challenge on a writing site to write about six different words and then post the daily writings on Instagram.
I don’t use Instagram like that.
I do post there; but it is usually pictures of my cats or flowers or assorted things around the house.
The word I have chosen to write about, after a lot of thinking… is Middle.
She was the middle child.
Second born girl out of three.
I had an older sister, and then a middle sister and I was the youngest.
She was by nature a lost child.
A bit rebellious and maybe in today’s term, troubled.
She as also funny, and caring and confusing.
In today’s world of children she would be attention deficit or a slower learner.
I am glad she wasn’t labeled. She had enough issues to deal with; a ‘label’ would just make them worse.
School was never easy for her and she had no interest in academics.
Junior high and high school was just nothing, not important and she didn’t care.
She didn’t graduate or finish high school. She ran to the streets instead.
They became her family.
Drugs became a friend and an enemy and how she survived them is miracle.
I would see her a few times a year, usually around Christmas and she would stay till her birthday, a few months later.
We were close and when she was gone, she would would often call me, and then I would have to tell our mother her news.
It wasn’t easy for me to be ‘in the middle’… I got the responses after being the bearer of bad news.
It was hard to be the one telling.
I missed her often and so many days and nights; I would look out my window and wonder.
If she was dead or alive.
She was living the words spoken to her. No one expected anything from her and she did not disappoint that expectation.
She actually didn’t have a huge chance at becoming more, it just wasn’t in her ability.
I actually don’t know if given the chance; if she would have proved herself able and praiseworthy.
I do remember she was good at math, and it was amazing to watch her figure it all out.
She was smart on some levels, and simple on many others.
She was funny and pretty and caring, she had thick dark hair and I was very jealous.
She went through many difficult and hard moments in her life and survived them too.
She eventually met a man who loved her deeply and accepted her daughters as his own.
She fell back into the alcoholic life as she aged; and one more time we rescued her again.
Over coming her ‘inner self’ was too hard. We did what we could to protect her, but it wasn’t enough.
She passed away a few years ago.
She was the middle child; the second born of three daughters.
There was a challenge on a writing site about six different words; and I chose the word – middle.

Another Mothers day is here and we celebrate

Another mothers day is here and we celebrate mothers all over the area.
I remember going to church on this day; and watching the uncomfortable stirring of moms in the pews.
The pastor being insensitive to moms who have lost their children, or who never had any of their own.
Then he would say, “stand up” if you are a mother.
I often felt like it was a slap because for many in recovery, maybe mom was not a good warm feeling.
Maybe this day brings all kinds of deep feelings that try to be buried.
It is a process always.
I often told my own children if they needed therapy to send me the bill, because I would probably be the topic.
To be a mom is a privilege that some don’t get to experience.
Maybe the desire to be a mom is so deeply rooted it has caused a bitter root to grow.
I have known those who have ached for that tiny little gift to be born.
I think we need to be really sensitive on these kinds of days.
I don’t like the expectations of this ‘holiday’.
I remember when we were young married and doing the ‘must do’ list.
We would go buy flowers for my mom, his mom and my grandma.
That was expected and although appreciated; it kind of took the surprise away.
My husband has learned throughout the years, do not do anything over the top for mothers day.
One year HE DID surprise me; and we got all dressed up and went downtown Portland for a very large brunch.
It was nice, but now he knows I am not a crowd person.
I would much rather have scrambled eggs and coffee at home.
I remember standing at the card section for many years trying to find the ‘right’ card.
Never could. The flowery prose was just not my experience.
I told my counselor one time that someone needs to create ‘cards for those in recovery’.
The words just never matched the feelings.
I would finally settle for a flower on the outside, with few words as possible.
How sad, but it was truth.
My experience was not a rose colored picture.
I am very proud of my son and my daughter, and all of their children who call me grandma.
It is something I never get tired of hearing.
If you are a mom reading this, take some time for YOU today.
Another mothers day is here and we celebrate mothers all over the area..

I love to read the promises of God

I love to read the promises of God.
11 For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.
12 Then when you call upon me and come and pray to me, I will hear you.
13 When you search for me, you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart,
14 I will let you find me, says the Lord, and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have driven you, says the Lord, and I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile.
Jeremiah 29
I love the promises that show us His compassion and concern for us.
Read it again, [surely I KNOW the plans I have for you]
[Plans for your welfare…(safety) and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.]
But there is a condition that is mentioned.
[When you search for me, you will find me; IF you seek me with all your heart.]
Then a promise again.
[I will let you find me, and restore your fortunes and gather you from everywhere] My editing.
Plus HE says He will hear us. Don’t we all want someone to just listen?
It is so easy and so manageable.
SEEK HIM and search for Him and HE IS always available.
I find this such a comfort and such an easy promise to grasp.
The conditions are not that hard.
The direction is very clear and the promises are very solid.
He says, YOU do your part and I will do mine.
Hope is a big word within the Bible. If we do not have hope we have very little to stand firm on.
It is found 202 times and as I did a quick search I found another wonderful promise.
[and you will have confidence, because there is hope; you will be protected and take your rest in safety.]
Job 11:18
I find these words to be very comforting and solid.
There is a plan and there is a concern; we just have to trust.
I love to read the promises of God and allow myself to take them into my heart.

In life one of the most important things

In life one of the most important things that matter the most to us, is something we so often don’t even think about.
It’s our breath.
The capacity to breathe in and breathe out.
Genesis 2:7 then the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life,
and the man became a living being.
Ezekiel 37:5 Thus says the Lord God to these bone: I will cause breath to enter you and you shall live.
It is so important yet we often don’t think about it.
Every day we wake up and breathe, and then go to sleep and still breathe, not even noticing the rise and fall of our lungs.
In church we sing a song that says, “It’s your breath in our lungs, and we pour out our praise.”
I really thought about that when my dad had COPD and was on oxygen.
It allowed him to breathe more intensely and in comfort.
I also remember the only two times in life we record the taking of breath is in life and in death.
When a baby is born, the clock is noticed and recorded. When someone dies, the clock is noticed and recorded.
Time of life and time of death.
Mark 15:39 Then Jesus gave a loud cry and breathed his last breath.
The bible talks about breath 109 times.
God has the power and the ability to create breath or remove it.
The testimony that breath is so important was noticed, in the New Testament after Jesus came back to the disciples,
John 20:22 When Jesus said this, he breathed on them and said to them, ‘receive the Holy Spirit’.
It was a power given through breath.
In life one of the most important things that matter the most to us, is our breath.

When you rest your sleep will be sweet

When you rest your sleep will be sweet.
Proverbs 3:24 gives us this promise.
When you lie down, you need not to be afraid, when you rest, your sleep will be sweet.
Have you ever had a nights sleep where you woke up and felt so unsteady, so unsettled and not rested?
I think we all have had those nights.
I tend to do this occasionally if my blood sugar is acting up.
I can feel my heart race, my feet hurt, my mind is going a hundred miles an hour it seems.
Oh my we get ourselves into a tizzy sometimes.
I have found if I have a glass of wine about an hour before I go to sleep, I sleep very well.
Now I know they say not to do that, but it’s organic healthy, no sugar and no sulfites.
I cannot have ice cream or other treats because I am pre-diabetic, but the glass of wine relaxes me.
(Don’t worry, my doctor knows about it.)
In my past before I was married, going back a LONG time, I used to not like night time.
It was not safe for me and I tended to sleep very restless.
When you are used to a trauma filled environment; even when it is not present, it can still affect your rest.
I am healed now and it took me YEARS to figure out how to fall asleep and stay that way.
A good routine is helpful. A quiet cool room is helpful too.
We just purchased a new mattress that is amazing and we have cool crispy sheets and a soft comforter too.
Anything one can do to get that rest our bodies need.
I am not into pills, for a while I had a prescription while I was in therapy, but I did not like the way it made me feel.
I like the promise, ‘when you lie down’… not IF… but when.
Because we all know… we must stop and rest our bodies.
I am not one for napping although sometimes it would be a welcome addition to my day.
We have a massage bed and if I am feeling the need to rest, I lay down on that and it works well.
It is a 45 minute warm massage and just what my body needed.
I also like the words ‘your sleep will be sweet’.
What an amazing promise. Sweet gentle sleep.
[When you lie down, you need not to be afraid, when you rest, your sleep will be sweet.]

Spring is coming soon and I am excited

Spring is coming soon and I am excited for warmer days and opportunities for planting flowers.
We bought our vegetable plants yesterday but we won’t plant them until the nights are warmer.
I am so looking forward to fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet peas in the pea pods.
We also purchased a blue hydrangea, pink and white one too. My favorite is blue.
We have been purposefully trying to watch our diet and finding time for a walk.
Even if it’s just a few miles it is better than none.
I have been increasing my water intake, they say if you weigh 150 you should drink half your body weight.
No wonder I can’t go far from the little room :o)
I also need to get back on the recumbent bike that sits in the garage.
It is so good for us to get our bodies moving and it’s good for our mental state too.
My heart has been heavy with prayer needs for a few friends.
One especially who thought her remission was solid, only to find out she has to do more radiation and chemotherapy.
Another friend has surgery coming up and treatment.
Another friend has leukemia and is stable but it’s always a concern for me.
It is always something and there are always needs around us.
Our neighbor just got home from the hospital with severe breathing issues.
We live in a senior community so there will be health concerns all the time.
I am trying to remain positive and helpful when I can.
God is still one who heals and I know for my friends, he is not going to give them more than they can deal with.
The key is to be a friend and a prayer warrior.
We all could use prayer.
Spring is coming soon and I am excited for warmer days.

Sunday comes and brings a new resurrection

Sunday comes and brings a new resurrection.
The disciples had all seen Jesus die, and taken away to be buried.
They felt the heaviness of the moments that they had just experienced.
He had told them he would return but how could they ever really believe that?
Mark 16:
Very early at sunrise the two Mary’s went to the tomb and they chatted on the way over there.
Who will move the stone for us when we get there. it is too heavy for us to move?
As they arrived closer to the tomb, they realized the stone was already moved and inside they found a young man clothed in white,
sitting on the right side. The angel told them, “don’t be afraid or alarmed, you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth and He is not here.
He has risen from the dead. See where his body had laid down? He is gone.
Go tell the disciples, especially Peter, that Jesus is going to Galilee. You will see him there.”
I would imagine he mentioned Peter specifically because he had denied Jesus three times.
It would be Peter who would be deep in grief and deep in repentance, should he see Jesus in person.
The angel mentioned him; so I think that is very significant for this part of the story.
The women fled, it said they were trembling and bewildered, and they said nothing to anyone because they were too frightened.
When they found the disciples they told Peter and the others as the angel had told them to do.
After Jesus rose from the dead Mary Magdalene was the first to see him.
She didn’t know it was him until he spoke her name.
Can you imagine? Her love for him so deep and she thought he was gone, and now right before her,
he says her name in a way only he could say it.
Such love, such tenderness.
She told the disciples he was alive but they did not believe her.
Later it says he appeared to the eleven disciples as they were eating together.
He rebuked them for their stubborn hearts and unbelief.
Thomas did not want to believe it unless he saw the nail marks in his hands and his wounds on his side.
He told him to come look, come see for yourself.
He then told them to do ministry in his name.
He stayed with them a short time, then returned to the Father in Heaven.
Sunday comes and brings a new resurrection.