Friday, October 27, 2017

Jesus, Coffee and Wine

Well....It's official.  I will never sleep again.  It is interesting really becoming a parent, all the parents around you warn you about having babies.  Babies keep you up all night. The days of having a continuous night of sleep are over. Books upon books upon books are written all dedicated to helping you with that first year as a new parent. You even get help for the toddler years.  My days as a mother to babies and toddlers are over.  Where are my books? Where are the warnings?  Where are the people and the support groups and mom groups I'll tell you where they are: Total Wine.  That's where I am, man.  Nothing in life makes sense and I just want to drink a healthy fruity adult beverage and attempt to sleep at night.  Life as we have known it is now over. O-V-E-R!!!  I can't even.  Total Wine and Target with a Starbucks that's where those moms are.  Laugh all you want all you young moms, I was you once, it's coming for you too.  Sit there all you confident ones who think being your kid's "bestie" is the answer.  Ha!  You're adorable.

OK I'm going to break this down for you.  While all the other girls and boys were dating in high school and the moms were all freaking out I was sitting pretty.  I was feeling all confident.  I had raised MY children that school was first and dating was a distraction that would come later...after college...when they're thirty...or I'm dead. Get off your high horse over there Mable!  Yes, I remember being young.  Yes, I remember dating in high school and college and I remember all the things.  Which is why I'm saying no....just no. It is a brand new ball game when it is your child and not you.

For the record my husband is calm and cool as a cucumber over here.  He's all...."It was going to happen eventually, Let them have experiences and live their life."  He watches comedies and sports and has never seen the movie Taken.  Obviously he doesn't know about the world today. He's also never watched Sex and the City which I think furthers my point. I know things. I grew up on the wrong side of the tracks.  I have street smarts and I have seen both of those movies and I've seen all of the Karate Kid movies and the Hunger Games.  I. Have. Got. This.

All of this has come about because Megan now has a boy...who is a friend....I feel sick.  OK fine she says he is her boyfriend.  Whatever.  He's a boy.  He can be her friend.  She has a 'boyfriend' and I have apparently turned into Tony Soprano and I have never even seen that show.  I'm a mob boss and think I have 'people' at my disposal. Obviously, I'm handling this well.  I also think I'm Iron Man's a problem having an overactive imagination.  What I am is a middle aged woman whose cervical spine is deteriorating and sometimes even holding my head up hurts.  I'm not lethal or deadly, I'm a writer.  It'll have to do.  It's amazing the lengths that we are willing to go to protect out children though.  Feasible or not.  This letting go business is HARD.  I'm not a fan. 

So as I was sitting pretty, or so I thought, all the other moms were actually getting all prepared.  They were getting practice for this sort of thing.  Jokes on me...again.  Kind of like when I was in high school and I said I would never get married and have children and we are.  God does have a sense of humor.  Which is obviously where I get it from.  I couldn't be pretty, or a doctor, or an artist, or anything good, nope, I get to appreciate a great joke.  It doesn't exactly pay the bills is all I'm saying.  Mother always said she hoped I got a child just like me.  I got three of them that are just like me to varying degrees. She gets to appreciate it from her front row seat to the show in heaven.  Paybacks are fun.  I look forward to the day, when I'm sixty five and they get married and get their little paybacks themselves.

This boy will probably be the first of many that will vie for my daughter's attention.  My other daughter, though she doesn't believe it, will likely experience this as well.  Once my son starts bringing girls home I will likely be buying boxed wine instead of wine coolers.  We'll have to keep that on tap.  I'm told that Total Wine has an app and you can get rewards so...there's that.  Life as I knew it is now over.  All I need now is Jesus, coffee, and wine.  I should probably throw in some bread too. I shouldn't probably drink on an empty stomach. I'm new to the adult beverage life.  They were never on my shopping lesson when I had a small hold on my life.

He seems like a nice kid so far....for the most part.  He tried to teach her how to cook this evening and they made us dinner.  He cleaned it up too!  You have to give credit where it is due. He can cook and he isn't scared to hold a conversation. She's terribly young though I mean she's five...ok...she's twenty but in my mind she's five.  She's a beautiful young lady and she's my little girl.  I will always like every boy more if they aren't dating my daughters.  Can anyone ever be good enough for your little girl?  Can a girl ever be good enough for your little boy?  I'm no sure....All I can do is pray that God places the right people  in my children's lives.  Well, pray and drink so I can get some sleep.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Beautiful One, You Can Do Hard Things

Beautiful girl you can do hard things.  I recently saw a bracelet for sale online that had those words on it. Of course, I loved it.  I didn't buy it because I wanted to buy one for not just me but for my girls as well.  Then I started thinking that perhaps a bracelet wouldn't work because my oldest doesn't wear a lot of jewelry.  A necklace maybe would be good.  A placard really might be needed.  A sign to wear around that we could look down and see....a t-shirt might be good.  The number of times I say or I hear my daughters say that something is too hard is immeasurable.  We could really use a reminder that we can do hard things and even if we can't do it alone we can do it because God is with us.

Writing is too hard.  I can't do it.  I don't know what to say and it doesn't matter because no one will notice if I don't write anyway.  Physical therapy is too hard.  I feel terrible the entire next day afterward anyway and my arm and fingers are still going numb anyway.  I'm not smart enough to figure out how to do half of the things my job (that I only mildly hate now) entails. I'm not qualified to get another job.  I can never seem to keep the weight off, it's too hard.  I never say the right thing to the kids.  I'm a terrible parent.  Why does my husband stay with me?  Dreams don't come true for girls like me.  I can't have the job I want because no newspaper, magazine, or website will look at my work because I lack a bachelor degree and I'm internet illiterate.  I have thirty five followers and I'm pretty sure to get noticed you need in the neighborhood of thirty five million. This class is too hard, I will never figure this stuff out.  This piano piece is too difficult for me to play.  I can't play anything but classical, jazz is too hard.  I can't make friends, no one likes me.  I'm too weird.  I can't decide what to major in because I'm too worried about disappointing you.  I can't do this assignment.  This workout is too hard.  I'm not pretty enough.

It's a constant stream.  Do you have this?  Do you get the constant stream of things that you can't do and you're not good enough or smart enough for from your inner voice as well as those voices around you.  Do your kids say these things and you try to figure out how on earth they came to become this way when you have told them their entire lives how beautiful, smart, creative, talented, kind, and wonderful they are?  Am I the only one who has messed this up?  Do you try and figure it all out and then realize you say those things and think those things about yourself?  Are you nice to yourself?  If so, can you teach me?

My kids are all beautiful, smart, witty, kind, and compassionate human beings who I am certain God has big plans for.  They are far from perfect.  They are just as flawed as any other human walking on planet earth but they are also full of just as much potential as any of them too.  I have tried to raise them to help them to be aware of who they are and yet humble at the same time.  I have failed.  I didn't want them to be full of themselves and snobbish and what I created were daughters who are just like me.  We are a fine trio.  Three girls of God who were born to stand out but so afraid of making a mistake we tamp down every dream, every idea, every thought of something great in fear of being mistaken for something we are not.  Three girls who really aren't sure who we are.  Three girls full of potential but too scared of what that means.  Anyone?  Are you there too?

Greatness is for other people.  Is that you?  Let me tell you a secret that this world will never tell you.  Oh you can read it on jewelry and t-shirts and maybe hear it from your mom (who my kids say are required to tell you nice things because of being your mom) beautiful child of God YOU can do hard things.  Yes YOU!  Yes my girls and even me.  We can do hard things.

I try to tell myself nice things.  I do self affirmations.  I have found that of all the things that I have to offer I like my feet.  I tell myself that I have beautiful feet.  It might sound crazy to you, it kind of is really.  I mean how beautiful can feet really be?  But when you fight a constant stream day in and day out sometimes you need to find the one thing that you can like about yourself.  For me, it's my feet because even when my weight fluctuates my shoes fit.  I can still wear cute shoes.  Even when I hurt because of arthritis that I think I'm too young for, my feet are spectacular.  When I feel as though I have messed up my kids and I am a terrible wife because I have ruined another dinner and all I have to offer is peanut butter, at least I have cute feet.  Is it enough?  Of course not.  Am I enough? No.  Will I ever be?  Likely not. That's what my inner voices tells me.

But my internal stream, and probably your internal stream at times as well, lies.  Our biggest problems are that we either don't know who we are, we forget who we are, and we don't know who we work for.  I keep telling my girls that they can do hard things.  I remind them of all they have accomplished so far.  I tell them they are daughters of the One True King.  I tell them that there is absolutely nothing they can do that will make me stop loving them.  I can't be disappointed because they are trying, they are out there giving it their all.  They can do hard things!  I am their biggest cheerleader.  In the line of people who love them I am right behind Jesus.  Jesus loves them more than any of us can possibly imagine or understand.  I have failed to show them how to live it out though.  I forget who I am.  I forget who I work for.  I forget I'm not alone.  I forget I too can do hard things. I second guess who I am.  Do I even know who that is?  What if I only think I know?  What if what I think is what God wants me to do really is only my own desires?

My oldest daughter is smart and witty.  She is quite possibly one of the funniest people you will ever meet if you are lucky enough to witness it.  When she smiles the sun shines brighter.  She is a brilliant writer and has a beautifully creative mind.  If anyone is meant to be in English or writing as a major it is her.  She is an accounting major and it is killing her spirit but she can do hard things to get to where she needs to be to come alive in her passion and purpose.

My middle daughter is smart and musical.  She plays four different instruments.  She was playing the piano last night and I was amazed.  She is her own worse critic.  She will play something so beautiful and I will be so impressed and when she is done she will say it was terrible.  It was terrible, she's terrible, and she can't do it but she can do hard things.  She has a love for music and bringing joy to others.

My son is smart and sarcastic and witty.  He is very much the most extroverted of the bunch.  He never met a stranger and he is a good friend always looking for a laugh.  He loved Jesus and reads everything about the Christian faith he can. He wants to lead people to Jesus...maybe one joke at a time.  I'm not sure what his future is going to entail but he also can do hard things.  He does hard things every week that wear him out.

Beautiful ones you can do hard things.  God knows the desires of your hearts.  He knows the things that bring you life.  He knows the ways you will serve the kingdom.  He knows you can do hard things because you won't be doing them alone.  You are never alone.  You are a child of the One True King who 'will never leave you nor forsake you'. (Deuteronomy 31:8) You are the child of the One who knows his plans for you, plans to prosper and not to hurt you plans to give you a hope and a future.(Jeremiah 29:11)  'For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.' (Ephesians 2:10). We can do all things through him who gives us strength. (Philippians 4:13) Beautiful ones we need to know who we are.  We need to remember who we belong to.  We need to remember who we work for.  I don't know where you are.
I don't know what your struggle is.  I can only share what I'm struggling with in the hopes of shedding some light for you and for me.  Remember who you are and know you, beautiful child of God, YOU can do hard things.