Saturday, October 25, 2008


My toddler just handed me a wad of poop. A big one.

Just thought you should know....

Friday, October 24, 2008

Where are still waters when you need them???

I'm tired.

In the past year I have experienced more transitions and adjustments than some people experience in a decade. I have lived in 4 different places, worked in two different towns, held 3 different positions within this company, and switched banks twice.

And now...suddenly....the movement has kind of stopped. Somewhat. Transition has quickly settled into routine, and I find myself aching for the wind of change to blow in my direction again. However, routine in my life does not at all equal relaxation, and for the past couple of weeks I have been wandering around in a fog of exhaustion. Between working Monday through Friday, going to class on Saturdays, chasing my toddler around 4 nights a week, working out, trying to find a new church, and attempting to have some semblence of a social life, there hasn't been a whole lot of time to just breathe in and breathe out. And I'm REALLY TIRED.

So I'm about to blomit (blog + vomit) all of my frustrations...(If you don't want to hear me someone else's blog)
*I'm frustrated that I am the only person putting money in my bank account. There's never enough there...and now I don't have anyone else to blame it on.
*I'm frustrated that there's no one around to kill that big hairy spider that has set up residence in the cabinet where I keep my canned goods. Since he doesn't look to be going anywhere anytime soon, I have named him Sam... I'm considering charging him rent.
*I'm frustrated that my cat thinks my bathmat and my kitchen rug are ideal places to pee.
*I'm further frustrated that when I washed said bathmat and kitchen rug I severely faded one and turned the other one a hideous shade of purple that now matches absolutely nothing.
*I'm frustrated that when I put on a great dress this morning there was no one in the house tall enough to zip it up for I drove from Gallatin to White House with the dress unzipped and a stout breeze blowing down my back.
*I'm frustrated with dating. I hate dating. I would rather God send me Mr. Right and us just curl up on the couch in our pajama pants with a good movie and a mutually agreed upon flavor of Ben and Jerry's. here's what I'm thankful for.......
*I'm thankful to have a job that pays me well and regularly. Even though it never seems to be enough...somehow it always is.
*I'm thankful that my baby boy is healthy and amazing. Just having him in the room makes everything so much brighter. If I could bottle and sell his cuteness I would make an absolute fortune. But I can' I'll just soak up every ounce of him that I can.
*I'm thankful that God has blessed me with girlfriends, new and old, to go to movies, have shopping dates, eat sushi, talk about men, and laugh with. I am forever blessed by their friendship and HIS faithfulness.
*I'm thankful that I'm now going on 2 full weeks of all of my plumbing fixtures and electrical appliances working properly and not melting anything. Praise God!
*I'm thankful that God has given me direction in my life and the means to get there. School has been very rewarding so far, and I'm enjoying it more than I ever thought I would!

And finally....
I'm thankful that God knew I would get tired and knows just how to uplift me...

"The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul."

In the midst of my crazy life, I am reminded that God wants to rejuvenate my spirit. He doesn't make me lie down in dry fields or lands of despair. His rest comes in a lush valley with an air of prosperity and a hope for rebirth. He doesn't lead me beside rushing waters, running tirelessly through the twists and turns of the earth. He leads me to still that in this stillness I can see the reflection of how my maker sees me...and knows me...and loves me.

It isn't in the hustle and bustle and ebb and flow of the journey that my rest will come.

Rest comes in knowing the One who brings hope for tomorrow and peace in the stillness.

I'm frustrated with how tired I get....and thankful that HE restores my soul.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Toddler Translations

There are many roles that I have taken on since becoming a mother. Some of these were expected and welcome as a source of newfound joy in my life. Others...well....they just come with the territory. When daydreaming of being a mother, most women visualize something along the lines of rocking their precious baby to sleep at night and cuddling in bed reading stories. This is, of course, the better part of the deal! The less appealing roles of "Wiper of all things that ooze" and "Person to throw up on" aren't usually what people envision when they are preparing for the leap into parenthood. But like I's all part of the package.

My new favorite role that I never really thought much about until recently is "Translator for the Toddler." Evan has started to fling new words from his little mouth quite rapidly, a scenario that has caused a ton of laughter...and a fair amount of embarrassment on my part. Below...some of his favorite new phrases...and of course, my translations....

"Mama...Tuck Tuck Tuck Tuck!!!!!!!"
TRANSLATION: "Mama, my car is stuck under the dresser...again. Could you please get that hanger back out and help?"

"Piss, Piss Piss" (Done with wild hand gestures in the direction of the cat)
TRANSLATION: "Cat, get away from my hot dog!" (I'm still not really sure what word he's actually saying...but this is DEFINITELY what he means.)

"Daaawg" (while yanking on the door to the fridge)
TRANSLATION: "Yo about a frankfurter?"

"Er Titty?"
TRANSLATION: "Mother, have you seen the cat?"

"Cock Cock"
TRANSLATION: "For any of you who may have been curious, this is the sound a duck makes."

Not to be confused with...

TRANSLATION: "I would love to have a cup with something liquid in it. Any old liquid will do."

TRANSLATION: "Mommy, when you have a minute, I would like some cheese."

And the one that he likes to holler out wildly in the toy section at Target....

" *uck!" (think "fudge" with a u-c-k on the end.)
TRANSLATION: "Mom....get a load of the size of that truck!"

Friday, October 10, 2008

Averting Disaster....

So yesterday I'm at my former in-laws house picking up my little boy. I do this every Thursday. I'm still very close to Brandon's dad and step mom and consider his step mom a very good friend. We talk about EVERYTHING, and she hasn't let the divorce get in the way of our relationship at all. So when I pick Evan up from her, I usually sit around and talk for a good while. Last night was no exception.

I knew that my ex was going to be coming over to watch a movie with his dad. This wasn't really a big deal for me. I see him usually at least once a week, and we're on extremely good terms. We are actually still the best of friends. However, I haven't seen his girlfriend since before we seperated. This is the girl who he had a very inappropriate relationship with during our marriage and who he is now dating. There is still a lot of pain attached to the two of them in my past, and while I'm happy now, it's still hard to accept the lack of respect that occurred over the last few years.

I was standing in the kitchen talking to Beth when I saw Brandon's truck pull in the driveway. It immediately hit me like a ton of bricks that she was with him. I don't know how I knew...I didn't see her in the car, and no one knew she was coming...but there they were. I'm guessing as soon as they saw my car in the driveway they freaked out in the driveway much like I was freaking out in the kitchen. Could I run out the front door? Could I hide upstairs? How was I going to slip away, collect my child, and get the heck out of dodge without having to face "THE FIRST MEETING." I just wasn't prepared or ready to see her. I didn't know how I would react or what I might say. I'd love to say I'd act perfectly's no big deal. We've both moved on. But in all honesty, I'm not sure I have that kind of strength.

Just as I was about to have a panic attack over what to do, I saw Brandon's truck pull out of the driveway and head off into the distance. Apparently they weren't ready for "THE FIRST MEETING" either! So I went outside and took Evan from a panic strickin father in law. He tried to pretend like she wasn't with him and Brandon just had to run home....but the sweat on his brow told the truth...and he finally cracked and admitted how nervous he was! I got in the car, drove down the driveway and called my ex....

"It's can turn around."

"No, wasn't about that."

"Yeah, nice try. Turn around and go back....have a good night."


Disaster averted.

Dear Lord,
Prepare my heart for "THE FIRST MEETING." Help me to see this woman as you see her...with love and acceptance and forgiveness. Give me strength to handle this situation with grace, and give me a willing spirit to bring peace to the table.

And Lord....if at all possible....make "THE FIRST MEETING" happen in a place where there are no blunt objects or sharp pointy sticks...just to be on the safe side.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Happy Anniversary

Every girl wants the fairytale...Prince Charming to take her by the hand and say, "I will love you forever, I will never leave you. No matter what life throws at us, we'll handle it together. We're a's me and you." Every girl wants that.

When I got married over 4 years ago, I thought I married someone who wanted that with me. But I am quickly approaching the anniversary of the day that he walked away...the day he said he didn't want to do life with me anymore...the day he gave up on our family and left me sitting in the living room floor amid piles of folded laundry and broken dreams.

I have been dreading this day all year. For some reason I have been afraid that this day is going to hurt....hurt almost as bad as it did a year ago. But after a recent inventory of my life, the anniversary isn't so scary. It's not only the anniversary of the day he's the anniversary of my rebirth.

A year ago, I looked in the mirror and realized that I had some semblence of control over the reflection staring back at me. I realized that not only did I barely recognize the woman I had become, I didn't really love her. A year ago, I began the journey of discovering the potential that God planted in my spirit, and I unlocked enthusiasm for life that had been held captive beneath an emotionally abusive marriage.

Before that day I had very few friends, no direction, and nothing to call my own. My only hobbies were taking care of my husband and son and fitting into their lives and their schedules. If someone asked me what I liked to do, I didn't know the answer.

Since that day I have learned to pick myself up, brush myself off, and stand firmly on my own feet. I have taken charge of my finances, lost over 20 pounds, rediscovered my skinny jeans, bought my own house, started school, paid for school (somewhat painfully), learned how to fix a toilet, painted MY walls, made my own curtains, run a mile in the rain, started taking pole dancing classes (which I LOVE!), and fallen in love with the joy of being a mom.

When he walked away and the slam of the door echoed behind him, I thought my life was over. But in that moment I got my fairytale. God met me on that living room floor, took me by the hand, and said, "I will love you forever, I will never leave you. No matter what life throws at us, we'll handle it together. We're a's me and you."

That's the amazing thing about being a child of God...

...when the going gets tough, the Grace gets greater.

Bring on the anniversary...the best is yet to come.

I haven't given up (written April 2008)

The last few months have proven to be the most uncomfortable leg of my journey thus far. Circumstances have been less than ideal, and my life has slowly been stripped down to a place of uncertainty and longing. I have seen my family unit snuffed out. I have walked away from the home that I had stored my dreams in. I have found myself at the beginning of a path that I didn’t willingly choose. There have been days when I handled this curve ball like a true champ, but honestly, they have been few and far between. Most of the time, I feel like I must have packed my joy away with the rest of my belongings, deep in the back of a cold storage unit. I know it’s in there somewhere, but the effort that it would seemingly take to dig it out at this point requires more energy than I’m currently equipped with.

However, every now and then there is a glimpse of light at the end of this long tunnel. Today, that light came from a dear friend of mine who knew I could use some inspiration. This sweet friend, who spends her days in the office two doors down, sent me an email with a link. The subject line read “Powerful.” Within a minute of receiving the email, she was standing in my office saying, “I figured you would get this.” As she walked out of my office, gently shutting the door behind her, I clicked on the link that would ultimately revitalize my spirit.
It was a segment from “Oprah.” The speaker was Randy Pausch, who is a college professor at Carnegie Mellon University. Randy is dying from pancreatic cancer, and while he is still undergoing treatments, the doctors have given him mere months to live. But Randy hasn’t let this prognosis diminish his spirit. Instead, he combined inspirational thoughts on how to live and offered them to his students in what is now known as “The Last Lecture.” The speech in its entirety is incredibly thought provoking and wise, but it was one sentence in particular that struck me like a bolt of lightening. Randy was speaking about his football days, when a coach “rode him very hard for long hours” in practice. He was miserable after this, feeling as if he had been beat against a rock. But another coach standing by saw the tenacity that his co-worker had used on Randy. He told him that if the coach didn’t care, he wouldn’t have pushed him. He knew that you didn’t keep working someone who you’ve given up on.

In these last few months, I have attempted several times to make sense of the turmoil that my spirit has been caught in with little to no avail. There have been questions upon endless questions that fly through my mind like missiles. I long to curl up on God’s knee and ask them, if only to find a shred of comfort residing there. But the answers, while laced with love, have been short.

“God, why didn’t you save my marriage?”
“Because I didn’t.”
“God, why am I stuck in this place?”
“Because this is where I have you.”
“God, what’s next?”
“You’ll see.”

Quite frankly, this has been a little more mystery than I typically prefer from my Deity.

However, I have learned through this process that God isn’t in the business of making me comfortable. When life is packaged all neat and tidy, it’s easy to forget the One who gave you the gift in the first place, and I feel that God is calling me to a place of gratitude for what He is ultimately building in my life. I realize that this journey has put me on a path to make new choices, better choices, choices that glorify God regardless of what comfort level I might be walking through.

As a result of this journey, God is changing the tape playing in my mind. In the past, (the past being as recent as this morning!) it has been easy to get caught in questions like “God, if I go through this pain, will you reward me for it down the road?” and “Lord, I know you know what you’re doing, but could you just make something go my way?!?!” I realize now that these are dangerous questions, because they place the focus on my earthly comfort instead of the divine plan that God is working in my life. I wholeheartedly believe that God wants me to be happy. He wants me to be fulfilled, and ultimately I believe He wants me to be comfortable. But it has become obvious through these past months that He will not sacrifice an opportunity to stretch my faith and allow me to experience His grace in increasing abundance just so I can live a lounge pants kind of life. In times of trial, whether you allow your heart to believe it or not, it’s easy to feel as though God is farther away than you’d like. It is with this feeling of apparent abandonment that the questions come.

But today, God has whispered to me through the stillness. I know that His goal is for me to be fully revitalized while in this place of discontentment. His desire is for me to live up to my full potential, and to see his bountiful plans for me unfold with glorious magnitude. I know this, because, like Randy’s football coach, He is pushing me to limits that I didn’t know I had, pressing me to examine aspects of my character that until now have been collecting dust in the corner. He is working me to a new level of discomfort so that my eyes see only Him.
Today I asked Him, “God…why?”

And today He answered,

“Because I haven’t given up on you.”