Sunday, November 29, 2020

The Last Time

 One of the things I wished with all my heart is that when our kids were growing up;  I worried less and enjoyed more the moments, the heart beats, the days challenges of busy years.  I am working on it now.  

This is the holiday season, a time of challenges, triggers, tough memories, an occasional flashbacks that make this particularly difficult.  I posted on here before survival guides for the holidays.

This time I am sharing a poem my daughter shared as she enjoyed the Zoo lights with her sons.  She is right, I am wishing we could have one more time together, one more hug, one more story time,   one more of so many things.  Mostly I wish each of them joy in the celebration of Christ.  

The Last Time (author unknown)
From the moment you hold your baby in your arms you will never be the same
You might long for the person you were before when you had freedom and time and nothing in particular to worry about
You will know tiredness like you never knew it before days will run into days that are exactly the same full of feedings and burping
Nappy changes and crying
Whining and fighting
Naps or a lack of naps
It might seem like a never-ending cycle
But don't forget...
There is a last time for everything
There will come a time when you will feed your baby for the very last time
They will fall asleep on you after a long day and it will be the last time you ever hold your sleeping child
One day you will carry them on your hip then set them down and never pick them up that way again
You will scrub their hair in the bath for one last time and from that day on they will want to bathe alone
They will hold your hand to cross the road
Then will never reach for it again
They will creep into your room at midnight for cuddles and it will be the last night you ever wake to this
One afternoon you will sing "the wheels on the bus" and do all the actions then never sing them that song again
They will kiss you goodbye at the school gate
The next day they will ask to walk to the gate alone
You will read a final bedtime story and wipe your last dirty face
They will run to you with arms raised for the very last time.
The thing is, you won't even know it's the last time until there are no more times. And even then, it will take you a while to realize.

So while you are living in these times, remember there are only so many of them and when they are gone, you will yearn for just one more day

My children made these in 1st grade, now their children are in first grade. Yes, I still have them. 

Sunday, November 22, 2020

Healing Power of Gratitude

 Gratitude is a powerful thing. I learned of its power when I was sick in bed for about 3 years. I learned to be thankful for things like getting dressed. Gratitude to children that pitched in and helped. Husband that knew how to vacuum. Savior to reassure me I'm not worthless. Prayer to keep me going when things seemed impossible. Grateful that my faith taught me that Jesus takes impossible and turns it into I'm possible.

Too many people blow off simple things like gratitude when looking for healing solutions. There are scientist that actually study the impact of gratitude on the brain. I read a few articles that show that an attitude of gratitude does awesome and cool things to our brains. Scriptures also back this up with many references to give thanks. I know I went through a tough time when I felt like it took all week to find something to be grateful for. Gratitude is a learned skill.

Our church group decided to start keeping a gratitude journal for an entire year. They gave us notebooks to write in, cute pages for every month and encouragement to write daily. I was very skeptical about one more thing to do in my life. However, I was willing to try. After a few months I had to stop not because I didn't feel gratitude but I realized if I wrote down every blessing, way I was helped, everything I was thankful for, all I would do was write all day long. I finally saw a flood of things to be thankful for. I started creating gratitude chains.....Thankful for a car to drive led to gratitude for roads to drive on, gas, money to afford the car and gas, thankful for amazing place to travel to and see...One blessing connects to several others. It felt amazing. Now, gratitude is one of my go to healing tools when I start to feel overwhelmed or like life is picking on me. I am thankful for the internet where I can share my thoughts on a blog and I am thankful for readers willing to spend a few minutes of their day to read my words. I am thankful for those that leave kind comments and help me feel connected. Gratitude is a powerful healing tool.

Saturday, November 21, 2020

Run the Dishwasher Twice

 I found this on Facebook and wanted to post it here as a reminder to myself that when something is overwhelming, I need to rethink the rules.  Computer being weird, can't get rid of the black so I changed the font to white. It took some digging but I found the link to the original:

I really liked the lesson! *original poster (Kate Scott 2020)*:


When I was at one of my lowest (mental) points in life, I couldn’t get out of bed some days. I had no energy or motivation and was barely getting by.

I had therapy once per week, and on this particular week I didn’t have much to ‘bring’ to the session. He asked how my week was and I really had nothing to say.

“What are you struggling with?” he asked.

I gestured around me and said “I dunno man. Life.”

Not satisfied with my answer, he said “No, what exactly are you worried about right now? What feels overwhelming? When you go home after this session, what issue will be staring at you?”

I knew the answer, but it was so ridiculous that I didn’t want to say it.

I wanted to have something more substantial.

Something more profound.

But I didn’t.

So I told him, “Honestly? The dishes. It’s stupid, I know, but the more I look at them the more I CAN’T do them because I’ll have to scrub them before I put them in the dishwasher, because the dishwasher sucks, and I just can’t stand and scrub the dishes.”

I felt like an idiot even saying it.

What kind of grown ass woman is undone by a stack of dishes? There are people out there with *actual* problems, and I’m whining to my therapist about dishes?

But my therapist nodded in understanding and then said:


I began to tell him that you’re not supposed to, but he stopped me.

“Why the hell aren’t you supposed to? If you don’t want to scrub the dishes and your dishwasher sucks, run it twice. Run it three times, who cares?! Rules do not exist, so stop giving yourself rules.”

It blew my mind in a way that I don’t think I can properly express.

That day, I went home and tossed my smelly dishes haphazardly into the dishwasher and ran it three times.

I felt like I had conquered a dragon.

The next day, I took a shower lying down.

A few days later. I folded my laundry and put them wherever the fuck they fit.

There were no longer arbitrary rules I had to follow, and it gave me the freedom to make accomplishments again.

Now that I’m in a healthier place, I rinse off my dishes and put them in the dishwasher properly. I shower standing up. I sort my laundry.

But at a time when living was a struggle instead of a blessing, I learned an incredibly important lesson:


Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Blessing others


Tough times and hard times people tend to pull back and stay away and less connection.  I like the example in this story where a bookstore employee shares their memory of a most memorable customer.  

Tough times blessing others is not just one more thing to do but a vital way to connect and encourage yourself that if we can't fix anything we can do something to help one another on something.

Sometimes we are just tired and need to rest.