Monday, April 6, 2015

Making sense of nonsense

A short entry in processing. When you run out of trusted "safe" outlets, there is power in the keyboard. In my own frustrations, I've  been watching very closely the behaviors, thoughts and functionality of friends and members of support groups in regards to people who have been in relationships where one party has been unfaithful or dishonest or secretive, enter whichever adjective you wish to enter here they're all fairly synonomous in the scope of violating trusts 

Something I've noticed is the true presence of the desire to be desired and the genuine wish that the offending party would be not only apologetic for but moreso truly sorry for the hurt they caused. Instead , the damages souls find themselves moreso in the Twilight Zone where nothing makes sense. 

Something else I've noticed is the inexplicable levels of impatience on behalf of the offender in the victim having to mourn the loss of that trust. And more interestingly and annoyingly, the shifting of blame. I've discovered this blaming the victim is common, if you don't believe me just google something to the effects of " why do cheaters blame the other person? " or " why do people lie and then blame others " . You'll get the same responses... 

A murderer or thief as mandated under the laws of the land have done wrong and caused injustice. Therefore they must stand before a judge or in some cases, a jury to hear the restitution deemed acceptable in relationship to the actions on behalf of the people, society, those who suffered the injustice.  What you will not see is the opportunity ,in a court of law, for the defendant to determine and then fulfill their own sentence. 

Why then are cheaters and liars under the assumption they can cause afflictions and determine the nature and duration of their consequences? And in so many cases I've seen,they act hostily and in disgust of the product they've produced in their victims.

So I began looking at the psychology of it and long story short, it makes absolutely no sense. Many of these "get over it, why can't you get over it, leave the past in the past" mentalities are at best selfish and further, truly narcissistic. Best case scenario is the offender is guilty , and immature. 

What's my favorite constant in these instances (brace for sarcasm)  My favorite is most definitely the fact that the person who violates and oversteps the boundaries of their relationship and thus their partner's trust then begins to damn the partner for the emotional aftermath. This includes: rage, distrust, depression, isolation and sadness. But they didn't care about their pain before their actions so why bother worrying about it after the fact right? Let's just insult and say the injured party never suffered the injury and if they did, forget the brokenness like that of a broken bone, disregard the accepted course of healing action (in the case of a broken bone , a cast) and just disregard the need for a healing process. No. And nowhere have I found it to be so. I did find a very informative article written by Sheri Myers Psy.D as quoted below. Rest assured victims can and DO get over it and for these reasons so the behavior is NEVER excused.

"Getting past the pain of betrayal can be difficult and forgiveness can seem impossible. I've seen friends in this situation - locked in an endless well of bitterness, hurt and blame that's left them untrusting, depressed and lonely. Some remained single for years after a breakup, unhappy and convinced that there were "no good people" out there. Long after the divorce, the betrayal kept affecting them and their choices, over and over again.

This is why forgiveness is so important when you've been betrayed. Forgiveness is not about them as much as it is about you and creating a better, emotionally healthier future for yourself. After infidelity, you are the one that lives with the rage, jealousy and feelings of victimhood, not the cheater.


Forgiveness means letting go of the anger related to cheating, not condoning what the cheater did.

Forgiveness is the choice to not suffer.

Maybe you're telling yourself that you want to feel better first before you extend forgiveness. What I'm suggesting is that you'll feel better faster if you forgive first!

Forgiveness is not saying "What you did to me was OK" it's declaring, "I'm not carrying this anymo re ".

To start the process of forgiveness you must first give yourself permission, out loud, to heal and move on. In doing so, you are acknowledging that you are ready to see beyond the pain of today and project a brighter, more joyful future where you are loving, happy, and clear of anger and guilt. What happened is in the past and cannot be changed or controlled. What you can control is your current actions and emotions. You can reflect on what happened and make wiser decisions in the future.

The way back to love is choosing peace over anger, love over hate and forgiveness over blame and resentment. Remember, forgiveness is not about the person who hurt you. It's about you, your future and opening your heart to receive love and trust again." 


Trust again indeed. And trust when the injury heals up just like a broken bone sometimes it's stronger . So what happens when we realize our value and realize we have a right to heal on OUR terms and better yet G-d's terms and with your HELP not your accusations, deflections and outright resistance.



Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Faithfulness? Spiritual, religious

I haven't blogged in awhile, one of life's cruelest tricks, busyness. But I find it a good touch point in my life to reflect and assess and record. 

I've been living for quite some time at the mercy of many others who had heavy influence or others making decisions on my behalf and as an extension, on behalf of my children. Anyone who has walked through the demise of my two marriages with me knows this well. And I was in the minority of making extraordinary efforts to remain faithful. 

So now I find myself in a place where decisions made for me but not by me are affecting us in highly impactful ways and moreso because we have experienced strife and struggle before and we enter in damaged. 

Part of the great mystery of faith and faithfulness is discerning what is truly right. I most definitely believe that G-d wants the best for us and in our minds of lesser complexities, we can easily believe what we think is consistent with the anointings of the Holy Spirit. I have been witnessing more frequently lately that there is a new "modernized" Christianity. This mentality " I want this and surely G-d wants me to be happy so therefore I can deduce that G-d wants this for me too ". The problem I see is that though times have changed our Alpha and Omega ( beginning and end) are still the same. While Christians believe we are saved from our sins through Jesus' sacrifice , is it taken for granted? Maybe so, because we are still walking with the same G-d as Adam and Eve and all of the patriarchs and believers who have gone before us.

take time to revisit a number of books I've studied in depth over the years and then of course my Bible. I do this because I find it interesting how different messages can pop up off the page as they relate to different stages of life.

I've heard the book of Ephesians debated at great length many times and have quite frankly heard portions of it being considerably distorted in attempts to force compliance in relationships and then further deteriorate the actual UNIONS G-d designed .

In a counseling session last week, it was emphasized that certain restrictions and boundaries are placed upon us by G-d, clearly because in His true infinite wisdom , He knows that there are troubles on the horizon in any way.

My latest struggle, how to approach those who claim to be believers but who adamantly negate and dispose of fundamental verses.

So I have always battled between the charge ( and boy what a charge it is) to be a mother who raises her children on a faith that is quickly losing its popularity and maintains a Christ-centered home, and balancing being a Christian wife. This is especially difficult as one directly impacts the other. We all know "do as I say not as I do" doesn't work with kids. But what about influences that AREN'T you . 

So enters one of my greatest supporters and prayer warriors, and she leads me to 1 Corinthians 7 which was actually a verse I referenced often when I wanted to give up on my previous marriage. In my current place, I have been seeking G-d's expectations for the faithful spouses when their counterparts maintain pursuits, behaviors and theories and ideology that contradicts not only G-d's will but also their very own promises and proclamations. 

1 Corinthians 7 New International Version (NIV)

Concerning Married Life

Now for the matters you wrote about: “It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman.” But since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife, and each woman with her own husband. The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband. In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body but yields it to his wife. Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt youbecause of your lack of self-control.I say this as a concession, not as a command. I wish that all of you were as I am. But each of you has your own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that.

Now to the unmarried[a] and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I do. But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.

10 To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband. 11 But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife.

12 To the rest I say this (I, not the Lord): If any brother has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to live with him, he must not divorce her. 13 And if a woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to live with her, she must not divorce him. 14 For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife has been sanctified through her believing husband. Otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy.

15 But if the unbeliever leaves, let it be so. The brother or the sister is not bound in such circumstances; God has called us to live in peace.16 How do you know, wife, whether you will save your husband? Or, how do you know, husband, whether you will save your wife?

"If the unbeliever leaves," faithful ones, yhere is freedom. So the truth is, perhaps the happiness so many seek and seek and seek will never be reached until it is understood we are wired for eternity. And the complete satisfaction of the fulfillment of blessings is reserved for the faithful. In Heaven. "Your will be done, on earth as it is on Heaven". 

What does an unbeliever look like? I suspect but at the end of the day I don't know and am not going to make it my business to monitor. I think everyone has an angel and a devil on their shoulder like in the classic cartoons where we are given choices to follow the voice of one or the other.


While I agree some words and actions seem blatant and definitive, our judge  in Heaven has the pleasure of hearing the process to reaching our decisions and the deep down meditations of our hearts and minds, even if they are the dark and fleeting ones that are stifled to the point some have convinced even themselves don't exist.

So justice. As I sit here and listen to the sounds of waves reaching the sand and recessing, I have always heard the voice of G-d carried in the whispering currents. Blessed are the faithful and those who stand for justice for those who cannot go it alone. And I pray tonight too for the faithful. May G-d bind ungodly actions, thoughts and influences, may He bind oppressive viewpoints and depression and may He loose the strongest of His fleet to battle for truth and justice for those feeling weak and deceived that they may be blessed and protected. I call upon the G-d of the Psalmist David and I pray reward for those who in their human imperfections,still strive to cloak themselves in the full armor of G-d. Heal hearts, minds and bodies of all that harbors their deterioration . 


I have just been led elsewhere as this image popped in my head so I had to go search for it. Since it leads me down another rabbit hole of thoughts I'll have to write about it later....


Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Sick...and tired

It's 3:27. I put him down finally after hours of trying at 11:30 and he's been up twice since then. I am not looking forward to another sleepless night only to awaken to another uncooperative and disrespectful morning.

Of course I've prayed and tried all of my "I'm good enough, I'm strong enough and gosh darn it, people like me" positive affirmations and every Christian cliché known to man. I have verses on my mirrors and gratitude cards on my dresser. Here's the truth,my attitude of gratitude is non-existent. And why , because the theme of my past year and further has been, lack of cooperation and consideration and sheer exhaustion.

I consider myself a fairly experienced and knowledgable parent from a number of perspectives but the truth is, I have no clue what this child's problem is. I do know what mine is. I'm sick.. And tired. I had no intentions of adding more to my plate as a result of selfishness and broken promises. That's the simple answer. So, as I have once again risen to the occasion of being a single parent, this time I'm actually growing angry. I've tried it all, rocking, singing, walking, humming, standing, patting, Tylenol, teething tablets, lavender essential oils,chamomile essential oils ,letting him cry, not letting him cry, milk, my bed, his bed .... All tags resulted is him still waking up and me looking at all the things that cause me actual pain now. And it's resulted in me with extreme exhaustion, perpetually tangled hair, a pinched neck and resulting headaches, a shorter fuse and an overall poor outlook on my family.

Children are children I know, but when does it ever register that, me as the only one who Iis and always has been here, tired is not great for anyone? Eventually I'm going to scream about the dish left in my room , definitely not from me because I haven't eaten in days, and that is in direct violation of the forever standing "no food upstairs" rule, the same dish I've asked ANYONE to put away. 

Sooner or later I'm bound to get pissed about all of the same daily messes that I have offered many solutions to avoid and even clean that don't involve me doing it every single time. If I go out and buy and prepare the food, how difficult is it really to retrieve it and/or even eat it? 

So I walk around the house with my lately permanent infant hip fixture and notice , the dog my eldest promised to and has left for us to care for has eaten his second loaf of bread this week and has chewed corners of the beautiful leather sofa . Same socks on the floor, a million dishes in the sink, not even a step away from the dishwasher. But, the dishwasher is full. It's always full because the child responsible for the chore won't do it without a minimum of 10 reminders.

I can at least get the baby dressed for the early morning we have because the kids have a field trip that requires me to leave the house early. However, it becomes me refolding all of his clothes in his baskets because everyone rummages and leaves the coordinated and folded outfits a mess. And each room has it's own reflection of discourtesy to display. That makes me even more tired. Clutter is draining . 

I catch a glimpse of the disgusting and cluttered bathroom counter in the kids' bathroom. And I'm trying to tell myself, I'm thankful I have legs to walk with him, the ability to provide him milk, I'm grateful for his smile, I'm thankful for her generosity. Over and over, please continue to bless us. But I'm still angry. 

I've had friend tell me that no one told me to have so many children. Rude and assumptive , yes. And bullshit. People did discuss them with me and then decided later that they would prefer to place their desires and needs first and even more insulting, OTHER people's desires and happiness before that. Parenting was intended for two people. 

So here I am about to face another day for everyone else with no sleep and less desire. Tired of people not caring about me as I do them. I'm sorry, I can be thankful for G-d's portion and blessings, but I am not thankful for the selfishness of humanity nor will I try to make excuses for the egocentricity in this world . 

So, do I try to lay him down and run the risk of starting over or do I sit here with the same awkward position so I can half doze off and feel half paralyzed in two hours when everyone gets up , stomps around, turn the lights on and re wake him anyway? Sigh . Someone TRY to tell me I should also deny myself a Starbucks ... 






Saturday, January 10, 2015

Clarity

Once again I'm grateful for the silence at night when the final little eye has closed to rest. It's true sometimes when surrounded by what seems like a million people it's absolute bliss and other times despite all of these people you can also simultaneously feel alone. 

This last year, I've literally taken on aspects of life that few believe anyone should have to endure, alone. This year I promised myself and my children I was not going to compromise on G-d's promises for us. Trust me, it has not been an approach that is thrilling to the masses nor is it gaining rave reviews. Yet, it is right and in the long run what we truly deserve. And, it's not between us and them , it's between us and Him. 

I watched one of my all-time favorite movies "When Harry Met Sally" and throughout the course of my life, of course because of the nature of its pointed outlooks on the complexes of relationships, certain messages have struck many different chords. 

I was subconsciously reflecting upon the number of movies I've watched alone, and I realized that,I'm tired of doing so. I'm tired of being expected to function alone and I'm tired of being beaten down for the times where well, I'm beaten down from exhaustion, the overwhelming feeling and knowledge that of I don't do it , literally no one will. I can be sick, I can be sad, I can be hurt, I can be angry. But I cannot be absent nor can I just break and disappear (and I'll never say there weren't times I wanted to, the importance is I didn't and haven't). Ever. 

Why then is this perfectly acceptable for those who allow themselves the right ? If I made the decisions many have made and currently make, I have no doubts I would suffer phenomenal levels of judgement." While her kids were... She did what ?!?? She was where!? who?!!" And on and on. But I'm held to an unjust, invisible,acknowledged higher standard. 

I love clarity because I am now able to recognize its moments and examine why things stand out to me.

Throughout all of "When Harry Met Sally" there's the struggle of marriage and commitment, infidelity, loss of promise and the re-establishment of trust . So as I heard the following quotes,I started to recognize the need for me to adhere to what is fair, just, right and acceptable . When I became a parent I resigned my abilities to be impulsive and selfish until they are grown (getting there,slowly but surely) and probably still not then. My parents still give me more than they expect from me. 
 
The most impactful quotes :

1."I'm sorry Harry I know it's New Year's Eve, I know you're feeling lonely, but you can't just show up here, tell me you 'love me' and expect that to make everything all right. It doesn't work that way." (Sally)

Hmmm. Well that seems simple and very cut and dry. What doesn't speak the loudest are words. Where and with whom people find themselves does, choices. Simple. 

2. "All this time I've been saying that he didn't want to get (or for me-'be')married. But the truth is he didn't want to marry (or for me 'be married to ')me. He didn't love me." 

So this is beyond my control and sorrowfully escaped my discernment. But,if this is something that I can't control, why should it be permitted to control me? If someone doesn't want someone, there's no need to launch an individual's marketing campaign. It is about me first in this regard. 

Sally's friend was in a relationship with a married man and always clung to the hope that some day he would place her as his priority, not statistically likely but, somewhat parallel to a marriage where the importance of the marriage comes after other people, other things, other ...excuses. Not in the sight of G-d. And, all religious implications aside for those who prefer not to claim a faith, a pure heart grounded and nurtured in integrity and morals would align. 

So she clings to the hopes "He's never going to leave his wife ". And the response from all of the friends was consistently "of COURSE he isn't". 

My new facebook cover photo says "When people show you who they are believe them." If anything is worth elevating above such a serious commitment or even above you,trust it will remain there,inwardly or outwardly ,doesn't matter. 

I have a beautiful family and each day that passes I know that even on the worst days, we all manage to intentionally try to rise above and do what's right. Not what's solely right for US,but morally right. 

Sally says," I'm sorry. I can't do this anymore . I can't be your consolation prize". 

Wow. Yes and amen finally! No consolation prize. If you're not a heart priority simply because there are more fun and entertaining times, or there's an option to be elsewhere, you're not a priority! "One man's garbage, is another man's gem." Of course I have my rough edges, but my children especially and I are still gems, and like the revered diamond, the more heat and pressure we can withstand and endure, the more brilliance evolves! I choose me and them and I want to be a part of a team that does the same. We thankfully aren't for everyone , but we are priceless to someone. 

Monday, December 29, 2014

10 REAL things you didn't know you signed up for- parenting, parenting solo

There are some things you expect in becoming a parent.Sometimes I think in a grand design to secure the continuation of the human race, moms,either by lack of recall,or by some unspoken code (lol) fail to share some of the nitty gritty of being a parent.Heck I even deluded myself at the recollection of labor pains,only to be reminded with the onset of the first one in each pregnancy. 

So after probably my billionth sleepless night tending to a child that didn't feel well on my own, I decided I'm breaking the code. Here is a short list,that involved parents know all too well, of tasks you WILL be reduced to do all to hold the title of parent .(If you're fortunate enough to have help from your partner,consider it a blessing.If not, Godspeed.) 

#1. Cleaning the results of the yellow fountain. This happens during diaper changes where you've lost the standoff and didn't "rope and tie 'em" fast enough. The baby has now peed, on themselves,on their changing pad, and if a boy;you,the wall,the wall behind it,and ironically the fresh diaper you were trying to put on. 

#2.  Literally, number 2. Dooty duty.All intelligent people accept changing dirty pants are a part of the deal. The fine print: when the diaper is cleverly escaped.You may be lucky and catch it before a "smearing campaign" ensues or before you are forced to follow a treacherous footprint trail to the little Houdini. I hope you are quick enough,otherwise, not enough bleach water in the world.... Oh, and you also don't realize how much you will inspect ... Apparently form, amount and so on is an indicator of your child's health. 

#3.Attending puke fests. Disclaimer : the majority of vomiting will occur in the most inopportune places(never on easily wiped surfaces, carpeting and expensive fabrics and upholstery are preferred). They occur very late at night or during the wee hours of morning. If you're like me the sight and smell of it makes me queasy and it's all I can do to avoid joining in on the "fun". Also,if you are like me with only other children to "help". "Help" comes in the form of additional wretching,pointing, squealing "ewwww" and then freezing in time and space when you plead for ANYTHING besides your bedspread to be sacrificed :towel, trash can, bowl.... 

#4. Discarding the wrappers of evidence of "forbidden fruit" consumption. Despite having a trash can in every room, you will still within every few steps,locate candy wrappers,and wrappers,usually of sugar based snack foods they're supposed to have permission to have in the first place,  just tossed on the floor. No one will recognize "Exhibit A" when placed before them, so keep your line of questioning brief. 

#5. Search and rescue. Even if you've never seen or touched a revered possession of any member of the household,you must always know where it is.This is in your parenting contract.If your honing skills are lacking,you must drop everything you're doing and locate it urgently.You'll recall having asked them to pick up the item in question and return it to its rightful place.The logical and sweet,naive side of you will go directly to where it belongs but it won't be there. Instead you will find yourself:

#6. Discovering and evacuating petrified foods and collapsed, leaking juice boxes, and dirty inside out socks you will need to put your hands in to turn rightside out, shoved behind furniture and other visual obstacles.This includes pieces of bread from a turkey sandwich, with the meat eaten out of the center and it's inverted Ziploc bag. Also the charger for your phone someone borrowed a week ago will be back there too. 

#7. Sounding like a broken record. "Get a coat, call when you get there, call when you leave,please put your shoes away". You can sing the requests,act them out like charades, but kids have rules too. And theirs is,"the more we hear it, the less we do it." And it makes sense. 

#8. Scrubbing bright red and purple stains out of your nearby white carpet. Don't ask, it's fruitless, "I Don't Know" and "It Wasn't Me" (the two most annoying members of our family)broke the no food or drinks outside of the kitchen rule. It's magic. No one did it. 

#9. Scrubbing bright red and purple mystery globs from your kitchen counters . See number 8 in regards to the guilty party. Additionally, you'll never know WHAT it is since it's not consistent with anything you've prepared in the last week. Jello, jelly, ketchup,paint. Regardless, break out the elbow grease.

#10. Ominous wall smudges and "schmears".NEVER treat as scratch and sniff stickers.It's too real.You don't want to know what they are, if you investigate it will change who you are forever.Scrub it and move on.Trust me. 

If you only have one child you may only experience a few of these, but give them time! Remember, children operate from a pack mentality, they are all each other's teachers and apprentices! 

Good luck in your parenting journeys today,I'm there with you tired mommies. I hope each day you can shake off the bad and stick to the good, and that you laugh more than you cry.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Giving Thanks Amidst Trials

Every morning I wake up admittedly way earlier than I'd like ( I hate mornings and all things morning, and snow, sorry but it's true - human downfall lol) to the sounds of my sort of middle son's pounding , yes pounding footsteps whether he has school or not , because his internal clock has no appreciation of school breaks or vacations and he apparently lacks the ability to tip toe lightly. 

My daughters are polar opposites, my youngest is generally awake before all of the children but has learned that if mom isn't up , she can get her "shows" in , before homeschooling starts , so she is slow to alert her being awake. My oldest daughter is seemingly allergic to daylight and likes to stay up late and sleep in. Oddly, she is the one that accomplishes the most of the children in a day. 

The teenager is well, a teenager, sleeps until the last possible second , and expects everyone to be out of his way as he condenses an hour's worth of chores and preparation to leave into 15 minutes . 

My quiet, middle son is never interested in getting up, and in fact is very literal and intentional. He believes he will get up when the world has something to offer him that sparks his interest. True story. 

Sometimes earlier or almost at the same time , my youngest wakes up and I can hear him playing which lasts sometimes for 15 minutes until he starts calling for me and as if he knows that I hate mornings and that each day brings me an entirely new set of challenges, he greets me with a big smile. Trust me when I tell you , throughout this day as any , I will ask myself "why am I even here?" , heck I'll even say it out loud . Clever as always , G-d reminds me of this playful chatter and smile. 

I have more children than most, more than most married couples, that means for me going about it daily alone is even crazier. We have dynamics most will never understand . I know I take on more homeschooling but I entered into parenthood wanting to be a parent . My parents worked hard and always and I was through no fault of their own ,raised by sitters, nannies, housekeepers , their employees, teachers and dance teachers. During my younger childhood my parents struggled, a lot . It wasn't until I was in high school that the fruits of their labor financially paid off. So, it was important to me that I was present and that my children were raised by me intentionally and not by others circumstantially. 

What definitely was not part of my plan and probably not G-d's original plan was for those who vowed to walk alongside me in these daily ventures to choose other priorities. People often ask how I live my life and this is how I see it. Take the number of children you have and multiply it by two  , sometimes three,(if you have one child , well, there was a comedian once that stated that due to so many missing elements that comes with siblings, it's just not the same-lol- it's a joke not meant to offend , but I've had one,two , three and forward and I can attest there IS a difference). So, reflect on what you and your spouse do and face daily , now subtract your spouse being there when you need help or moral support. 

 Every day is like a bad highwire act starring me. It's like a wire suspended from the highest points of some structures and all I have to do is get from one side of the other every day without falling to my death and taking those I'm responsible for with me. 

As if the feat of getting across isn't a challenge in itself, I also have to balance this full bowl on my head  ( everyday parenting battles, teaching, finances, cooking, health and maintenance  ,everyday survival expectations, everyday stress , and on and on . I have this times two because there's no one to pass the torch on to when I'm overwhelmed.) In my bowl, there are smaller bowls , one each for the children who share many of the same pains , and as their mother I will carry them with me too.   On top of their bowls is that representing my parents' and their new financial and health distress . Is anyone else seeing this illustration of me like a page out of a Dr.Seuss book? 

I also have to catch and deflect balls being thrown at me. Below to my right there are people throwing balls at me as I pass by with positive and helpful input. This is good because I'm right handed so every once in awhile I'll catch one.  But, sometimes in trying to reach a miscalculated throw I waiver and have to let go to maintain balance or maybe adjust my bowls to prevent them from falling, and then , steady on.   If these people miss, they stay where they are and wait for me to cross by them again . 

There is this snickering ,  negative , left side in the form of devaluing words and actions, being told I'm not good enough as a woman ,attacks on my faith or values my children's well being. These balls are weighted , and have an even better chance of knocking me off the wire than those on the right , and if they hit their target ,and I don't fall,  they leave huge bruises and scars. If these people miss , they run along side me to remind me that they will be trying again. 

Directly below me are the people I can't tell which side they're on until their balls make contact , so not only is it hard to discern if it's worth the risk to try the catch it or to take the risk of letting a good one whiz by. This is the most irritating and disheartening group however because focus and concentration do not need the element of surprise . And steady on. 

It's  easier for me to take on the hurts , rejections and moral injustices to my children than it is for them. I've been doing it for quite some time now . Notice I said easier, not better. But at least I have minimal " highwire" training . They, do not so I have slightly better odds of getting through. Then I truly and genuinely absorb the hardships of my friends and family. I find just about no time to do anything solely for myself it's ok, it's not my season. Certainly I don't wish to do anything solely for myself that lets anyone else down. 

I remain prayerful that G-d uses our trials to open bigger and better doors for us. 

I know it seems my opening and illustration have no relations but here's the connection , our family has been taking a ton of "hits" and as the Bible says "There is a season for everything " Ecclesiastes 3. I will pray to G-d, and while I'd like Him to come on down and tap me on the shoulder and say, "Ok here I am I'm ,  here to save you all now ," He doesn't make it a common practice . He does however offer safety nets if I do fall and lifeboats when we're sinking. Pray to G-d but row to shore. He does promise better blessings for endurance and perseverance and certainly in persecution ( I know some equate persecution to extremes in physical senses, but there are various degrees of it, including punishing someone for their faith or belief system ). 

Let's face it, different things drive people  and I've spent a long time now picking up the pieces for other people and trying to glue them back to together. Things resemble the old form but you can still see the "repairs", especially from the inside . When we repair things we put the largest chips and cracks in positions that they are the least visible , so outwardly ,the piece seems whole. We spin the Christmas tree to display it's most favorable three sides , placing the sparse points into a corner or against a wall. Just because it isn't immediately obvious doesn't mean the item didn't break or the tree wasn't weathered or roughly handled . 

Those tiny moments and encouraging smiles from a child and the assurance of knowing them well, are safety nets, minor things that allow me to keep taking another step. More than that , they are a reward at the end of the rope . When I feel completely battered and immersed in cruelty and surrounded by people who are against me, it helps me see .. 

Here 's a safety net ," Tosha , I know you're a Christian woman  and want to do  good, and be helpful and do the right things. But not everyone thinks like you or is driven by what you are. Some people only know how to act how they act. These people are attacking you and your children, the well being of your children. Their mental well being is at stake here.  I mean enough has to be enough."  I thought about it , this is truth. "To everything  there IS a season". If we're going to be pursued it's time to step up my tightrope training and to hand some bowls over to those who can help , it's time to get a stronger , reinforced safety net.


I mention the song frequently , "Every Season" by Nichole Nordeman. On this Thanksgiving its lyrics are very appropriate to the physical changes in seasons and to life's seasons of change. Here's to the beauty in being immersed in cold and stifling circumstances that ordinarily do not produce life: 

"And even when the trees have just surrendered 
To the harvest time 
Forfeiting their leaves in late September 
And sending us inside 
Still I notice You when change begins 
And I am braced for colder winds 
I will offer thanks for what has been and was to come 
You are autumn

And everything in time and under heaven 
Finally falls asleep 
Wrapped in blankets white, all creation 
Shivers underneath 
And still I notice you 
When branches crack 
And in my breath on frosted glass 
Even now in death, You open doors for life to enter 
You are winter

And everything that’s new has bravely surfaced 
Teaching us to breathe 
What was frozen through is newly purposed 
Turning all things green 
So it is with You 
And how You make me new 
With every season’s change 
And so it will be 
As You are re-creating me, Summer, Autumn,Winter,Spring."

True to G-d's way, in these very thoughts this morning I came across a friend sharing this story about the beautiful and persistent Soldanelle flower, I've shared its image as a true testimony of how you can bloom where you're planted. 


"Far up in the Alpine hollows, year by year G-d works one of His marvels. The snow-patches lie there, frozen with ice at their edge from the strife of sunny days and frosty nights; and through that ice-crust come, unscathed, flowers that bloom.

Back in the days of the by-gone summer, the little soldanelle plant spread its leaves wide and flat on the ground, to drink in the sun-rays, and it kept them stored in the root through the winter. Then spring came, and stirred the pulses even below the snow-shroud, and as it sprouted, warmth was given out in such strange measure that it thawed a little dome in the snow above its head.

Higher and higher it grew and always above it rose the bell of air, till the flower-bud formed safely within it: and at last the icy covering of the air-bell gave way and let the blossom through into the sunshine, the crystalline texture of its mauve petals sparkling like snow itself as if it bore the traces of the flight through which it had come.

And the fragile thing rings an echo in our hearts that none of the jewel-like flowers nestled in the warm turf on the slopes below could waken. We love to see the impossible done. And so does G-d.

Face it out to the end, cast away every shadow of hope on the human side as an absolute hindrance to the Divine, heap up all the difficulties together recklessly, and pile as many more on as you can find; you cannot get beyond the blessed climax of impossibility. Let faith swing out to Him. He is the G-d of the impossible" . Taken from J.B. Cowman , Streams in the Desert . 

So while we are in the midst of so much heartbreak, feelings of abandonment, hardships and everything that leave their marks on us , while I/we weren't good enough for him, you, them, we can rest in the assurance "that G-d".. Just that "G-d". Elohim, El Roi, Yahweh we know you are near to us and have huge blessings for us . Help us to pass your tests! Help me to reach the end of the tightrope ! Help us bloom in the cold. 

"And what was frozen through is newly purposed....." 

Today we are grateful for what we do have that we desire and need and thankful for what we don't have that we don't desire or need . These people may make me crazy day in and day out and our days may not feel fulfilling to me now , but one glorious day.... And today and everyday I'm thankful for faithful hearts for G-d. Happy Thanksgiving lovies!!! 







Friday, November 7, 2014

Mom Fort

It's official. I.am.going.to.flip.my.you-know-what! I have to accept the fact that my days are filled with the desires and needs of practically everyone else before mine. Some days I process and approach this well, today is not one of those days. 

There just comes a point when the tone of my day is set by an early hour , like 8a.m. , and you realize 1. I'm outnumbered 2. This what not what I had envisioned for my life, nor is it what was promised 3. People can talk all day long but until they LIVE it day in and day out , every hour , all year , just shhhhh!

A mom is a mom and we are all somehow bound together by that single common fiber. But I'll tell you this right now , sometimes , in fact most times , it's not all rainbows and unicorns and mommy and me classes and precious baby talk. Having one child is a blessing but I having had one and forward, it's not the same as multiple children. The sibling rivalry (and comeradery)piece is missing and after 3, I think the amount of work increases exponentially! 

Motherhood is a sieve , and drain that adheres to no hours and sends you down a wormhole of despair and helplessness sometimes. I've worked outside the home and it is easier and definitely more tangibly rewarding.  If you have a husband to do it alongside you , although that opens up a can of worms , bravo. But some don't. I love the movie Jerry Maguire. There is a point where he says " I am out here for you. You don't know what it's like to be ME out here for YOU. It is an up-at-dawn, pride-swallowing siege that I will never fully tell you about, ok? ". Sounds like motherhood. 

Sometimes the pertinent yet mundane is all I can handle : changing toilet paper rolls ( a super power that apparently never develops in adolescence) setting appointments, going to the appointments , shopping for food with a screaming infant who has discovered how to screech like a velociraptor in attempts to communicate and several other children who have their input as well, checking out with the employee who hates their job to return home to dirty dishes in the sink and trails of random shoes and toys and mystery food on the floor you just cleaned crunching under my feet. Then, there's the pressure of school work and the endless activity rat race. 

Needless to say I get so sick and tired of asking for help that the extra stuff becomes even more annoying. My kitchen this morning was mayhem accentuated by a screaming 7 month old. I am convinced that this is a sound that only exasperates mothers. And yet, this is the time my daughter decides to drop a stack of bowls while I'm trying to get some vitamins for one who is looking like he's getting sick. My other daughter was sneezing all over the table , yelling at one who is home from school today for the billionth time this year to pick up the screaming baby . He did and bumped his head standing up. For the love of everything that is holy. 

Meanwhile I receive a text from my eldest 
What the hell am I supposed to do with THAT!? This awakens the spiritual and intellectual in me. Now I am riddled with anxiety, pissed at humanity and expected not to show it. So. Should I take this threat seriously and have him come home ? Do I teach him faith and trust? 

There used to be a time where my mornings were a quiet cup of coffee and time to myself to even shower, put on make up ,watch the "friendly "news  or anything. Then it was off to work . This was even possible two children deep. Now it's up to THIS three ring circus and crappy, obnoxious kid shows. 

I just wish I could some days do like the kids and quite frankly many others in my life do. Just be emotionally and physically responsible to myself. I love them I do and anyone that knows me knows this. But by 9 a.m. today I'm ready to go upstairs , close the door and hide. More than that, I'd like to take all of my pillows and blankets and build an impenetrable,sound-proof fort of my own, complete with a guiltless $4 latte. A mom fort. A sit on my bed ,undisturbed with my laptop and latte, and watch or read something that isn't trying to cleverly teach the ABC's and trigonometry to toddlers, by myself, mom fort. 

Here's something else moms know though, if we do that , it's another mess to clean up and there will be bigger ones if "they" are left too long unsupervised. So it's steady on with the rest of the daily expectations in the hopes the worst challenges were reserved for this morning . 

Monday, November 3, 2014

Things I no longer respond to

Through the course of my life I've heard some things over and over again to the point that I'd prefer to rip my ears off and throw them at the speaker. Of course that would freak them out, especially when out of the mouth of babes , but whether written or spoken , here are some phrases I refuse to respond to , neither by facial, written nor verbal expression .

1. "What's for dinner?" - I'll explain. First of all these people have never missed  a dinner outside of illness or freewill. Believe it or not , I cook . A TON. This is also aggravating because it's not as innocent of a question as it seems. It's  an  attempt to open negotiations as to how much is required to be eaten to qualifyfor dessert, or to try to ask for something different despite its obvious preparations . Also, as a general rule , this question has already been asked (yes by the same child )  and answered numerous times. 

2. "Oh he/she's so cute. How old ?... Oh wow he /she is so little/tiny/small. Was he/she premature?" . Yes in fact , 9 months premature (huge eye roll) Seriously , I 'm aware of my children's growth , I'm their mother! All of my babies were very small , it's a little thing called genetics and yes some were premature. But, thanks for instilling concern in me and acting like my child is not up to "community standard. " Gee whiz people. In case you didn't notice , I'm small too. 

3. "Wow. Looks like you have your hands full. "  Really? How so ? Do people reach this conclusion by simply noting I'm outnumbered? My children are generally calm, collected,well behaved ,helpful and cooperative in public. This is more than I can say for some of the children 's behavior I've witnessed. I've seen things. They leave me traumatized. 

4. "Oh, let me transfer you to that department for assistance on that."    This one is a real pain , generally because somehow , inevitably the call will just be hung up and lost in the "transfer". Also ,please , I've seen these call centers, quit acting like that "department " couldn't just involve handing the person next to you the phone.

5. "I'm sorry you feel that way " a.k.a " As long as you think so." Condescending and just indicates that there is a lack of empathy , there is no true heartfelt apology intended or expected in the near future . If you say this AS an apology , well, it's not one and the problem is going to hang around. 

6. "I don't know how you do it all. " Everyday. "How?" Or do you mean "WHY? " I do it. I touched on this in a previous post , because I have no choice generally and because somewhere along the line someone else has decided they don't need to. If I don't do it, trust no one will. As for why, I can tell you it's not for the "thank you " parade! 

7. From teachers , generally in a Fall email :" ... Please make sure your child has a coat." Don't these people work with or HAVE children? Duh. They swear we don't try ?  It goes something like this , EVERY morning .
 "Everyone bring a coat it's going to be cold today." 
"I can't find mine" 
"Well you had it yesterday " 
"I'm not cold" 
"Please just in case you never know if you will be later or outside later, especially here ."
"I never get cold" 
(And this direction of call and answer banters back and forth times the number of children leaving the home ) 
I've even tried " Just humor me , you make me look like an idiot parent when you show up without a coat". 
This conversation is similar to the "please don't wear shorts in the winter " one. 
So inevitably , one will bring her coat to be obedient and then will forget to bring it home because she wasn't cold . The rest will bring them and leave them in the car, including the one that couldn't find theirs( because they never brought it OUT of the car) . 

8. "Trust me". Yeah , just no. Unless you've established trust with me I've learned the hard way that fewer people can be trusted than can be . At least this has been my experience to present... I hope I'm blessed enough to someday experience a rebirth of the trust of my youth .

9. Any conversation attempted through the door while I'm taking a shower. Or going to the bathroom . Nothing can summons a full fledged emergency like my need to take a shower.  It seems like EVERYTHING has a heightened sense of urgency and  simply cannot wait until it  can be condensed  into the  ten minutes most people get to themselves. The funny thing is , they KNOW I can't hear a word they're saying. But  , without fail, they will sit on the other side of the door ( muttering through the wood and  the sound of running water) and repeat the same phrase over  and over , each time  increasing in volume .. It slips their mind that louder is not always clearer. There's no beacon to attract children like a closed bathroom door. Or a telephone on the ear.

10. "I can't find .... (Fill in the blank) From backpacks, to dance bags, shoes, laptop... I've heard them all. In all of my years as a parent I've learned that if I'm to be responsible for literally everything else, these are not my problems. Unless I was the last person to have something in my possession there's no way to know where their things are. Believe me, after all of the food trash stashed behind the sofas, and inside out socks in the Ficus tree, the locations are endless. They've improved a bit on this as well because they are realizing they have to be responsible for certain aspects of themselves... And please I'm looking for my own keys and phone lol

This leads into my new unfavorite:
"Can you please pick that up/ put that away ? "
11. "That's not mine." Great. I didn't ask you if it was yours , I asked you pick it up.There was a time I'd play along and ask "whose is it then?". This is a terrible mistake, any experienced mom knows what's coming. NO ONE claims the items as theirs and why? Because then they know they'll be expected to pick it up! I was appalled by the ownerless items always about and more annoyed by the blank stares trying to get a little help . My response became , "well fine if it's no one's , it's mine and I don't want it, I have plenty of stuff. So I'll throw it away" . FYI this proved ineffective for my children because they then would rally together outside of my presence, identify the owner amongst themselves and retrieve it for the guilty sibling from the trash. I called it "belonging hauntings", throwing  something away only to trip on it again two days later... 


I'm still thinking lol I'm sure I'll add more to this list as I hear them, so I'll consider this a progressive entry... 




Sunday, November 2, 2014

Now I lay me down to not sleep - family, spiritual


There has been so much going on in our lives. I remember when I had my first son, watching that monitor that tracks contractions ;their frequency and intensity. The machine logged them as they came and went with a busy little inked needle to paper similar to a lie detector test. I wish I would have saved at least one of those printouts! The peaks began small and were reached gradually and they were moderately uncomfortable, then they would slowly subside and taper off to a resting point. As baby time drew nearer I noticed that the peaks would reach a higher plateau more drastically , would hover at an excruciating point of pain and then slowly return to a place where I could catch my breath. I certainly recall this process vividly because I had opted (yes I said opted) for no anesthesia or pain management. Yes. I was crazy.  I just tried to breathe through those bad boys. Don't worry, I wised up eventually and noticed they don't give out trophies for drug -free labor and delivery for my future babies.

At any rate, our family is being tested for sure and so what isn't happening around is a consistent amount of sleep and a decent amount of uncharacteristic general disruption. I have no doubts while we all have our own hearts and minds , we are wrestling with the same heart and mind meditations.

That monitor's documentation of my contractions offers a certain parallel to the peaks and valleys in our lives, the basic "emotional roller coaster". 

We have good days and not so favorite days like many others. It's life. Part we didn't ask for and was impressed upon us (thus the angry days) and part just circumstances, and then even further , we are watching many struggle alongside us! And we ALL want to help everyone . But how to help everyone if you can barely help yourselves, you know? 

One of the hardest things to watch is children 's hearts being pained. In a recent study I've been learning as much as I'd like to be the author of our stories, I'm not, there's a better One to be in control.

And lately yes, just as recorded with my contractions , the rising and falling seem to be growing closer together and to more extremes. Just as it was difficult in that situation, it's almost impossible to catch my breath! And then I get annoyed. 

After another thankless and ridiculous , rocky morning, I was able to listen to a service that spoke to my soul. If you consult the wrong maps you're going to get lost ! And I know what's truth and I was encouraged today that I was NOT placed on this earth to serve myself. My position of observing the theory of altruism by far is honorable and right. Just like the serpent tried to convince Eve( successfully by the way , thus the reason I had to be hooked up to a contraction monitor during painful labor, thanks for THAT curse lol) that what she knew was right could be avoided, people have been trying to convince me that it's possible to act outside of faith  and receive blessings. I was being told that my worth was conditional and I was dispensible and where I turned was of no value. 

This is the same message my children received. But then after my frustration this morning, I hear a series, appropriately entitled "#SELFIE" . One of the main points was "the Real Destination of a Self-Centered Life" . The pastor mentioned a twist on the way people have allowed self -seeking to become so prevelant as evident in that old phrase "He who dies with the most toys ,wins." He pointed out ,that while it's ok to have stuff, there's a problem when stuff has us and becomes the ruler in our lives. Then we lose sight of what we were supposed to be focused on. In truth," he who dies with the most toys, still dies." Whoa. Today was one of the most powerful messages I've heard in a long time. 

http://messages.jfc.org/messages/selfie/selfie-week1.html

I was in a valley this morning and He scooped me up and sort of kicked me through the uprights at the top of the peak ! Then I heard it , I am not living a selfish life , that's where my rant from earlier in the day came. It was born of anger and frustration for sacrificing for others only for the message to return to me that I'm not worth sacrificing FOR. It's been a life theme for me and it extends from there down to my children . We are definitely better than that . Collectively , we understand living what we proclaim. There is absolutely no point in saying one thing and acting another. Even my young children get that. But what happened more importantly, is that my feelings were validated and quite obviously the exact same point I was reaching was stated more eloquently and less emotionally and that is not by mistake. 

What I'm seeing in my children is exactly what is to be expected from the way we had been regarded. And nothing can negate these feelings.  Mentally taxing. 

So we have changed it up in a purposeful effort to seek every level of protection for ourselves. We are going to follow the right course for our mental, physical and spiritual health , and in sowing in that we will reap great fruit.

The kids and I are working on personal "Sankalpas" to access G-d's truth about ourselves throughout the day and as we prepare for bed , it's becoming quite a project but every little thing helps. 

Every night I lie down with intention. I reflect on the day , I identify my struggles and strengths,and then check them with a devotional or something of that effect. Or I'll receive it in a message or while at rest as I did today :-) I pray for each of my children and then generally enter my wormhole of prayers as people are placed on my heart. "Pray without ceasing" no joke. I pray for my children's friends and future spouses, and I have been following actual prayer calendars. 

Regardless, even on my worst days my children see me engaged FOR them and it seems to be helping . Perfect parent I am not , or person for that matter. But, present and seeking solutions for them before myself , in practically every way absolutely! It may be demonstrated that I'm / we're not worth sacrificing or fighting for but we already have received the gift of the sacrifice that by far surpasses anything here on Earth! 

Back to my little reference to the contractions. It's called labor for a reason, because it requires work and definitely focus . The good news is after that darn monitor ,which actually became my nemesis , finally quit charting the mountainous measurements, it was because the blessing had arrived! "Fruits of my  labor...." That's good stuff:-) 

Projects

I just looked at the calendar and realized I need to plug away at about a million things! Soon it will be the holidays and then it's "deuces" as Kam says from there! I've already had the discussion that there won't be really Christmas presents this year as they had been accustomed to in the past just based on finances and how much they actually cost already! My "anointed " daughter says, " that's ok, Christmas and all of the holidays aren't about presents anyway. We don't need anything anyway" . Arrrgggghh of course that makes you want to get them all everything! Then she says , " maybe Santa will bring us something". Sigh. Lol, she is working this Santa angle I'm sure for a number of reasons this year, and she's even found  a phone number to call him and make requests. These girls are exhausting. My other daughter did the same with the tooth fairy, locating a website that assigns a tooth fairy and all correspondences which are sometimes multiple times a day , are to be managed by yours truly. Curse Google somedays. 

So now virtual tooth fairy and Santa has been added to my "daily occupations "list . We've been making crafts,cooking, making gifts and volunteering endlessly and I know that come December I'm going to be walking zombie. 


I've been working on a couple of books. It's taking forever, mainly because one involves developing recipes . It's actually been quite cathartic and family-centered which was the entire point of the book. The other is more of a spiritual book( I know shocker). I figure I might as well be writing if I'm going to be sitting and waiting for children, and not sleeping. 

I 'm going to begin placing excerpts in my blog too as well as a ton of things I have in the makings. , so it's going to be all over the place ( still lol). I'm sorry if it bores anyone but , part of the purpose of my blog is to thought organize and have a simple place to reference , Pinterest is ok too, heaven knows I spend time on there! It's good time spent though, I'm finding I'm actually going back and doing the things I've pinned, so I consider it a win ! 


Default parent how about only...

Warning. This is going to be a crusty post because it's 11:20 a.m.and I'm already tired , I've been all over the place, broken up two sibling arguments, adhered to everyone else's schedule and I am pissed. So Bitter Betty coming at you..I have already been up for over 4 hours and slept for probably 3, 2 soundly. 

I have come to the conclusion that people believe this is how I really desired to live my life .  Don't get me wrong, I love my children and I couldn't imagine my life without the contribution each one of the makes to our family. But it is absolutely no secret that I was the teenage girl that boldly stated I didn't want to have children. Again, I wouldn't give up any one of my children today but my point is I was just a selfish teenager. I'm an adult now and I made choices and it seems I'm the only person willing to follow through consistently and unconditionally . 

I'm sick and tired of people now looking at me functioning primarily in "single mom land " with all of my children and saying things like, " I don't know how you do it, I have a hard time and I only have (enter number of children they have less than me here ) ". Mmmm hmm and a husband . 

I'm sure that no one makes these comments with the intention of insulting me in any way, I wish to be clear about that! However, here's the long and short of it. I do what I do because I have no fricking choice , because this life was decided by me by OTHER PEOPLE. And it pisses me off.  People have hollered ,lied and cheated their ways  out of my life and my children's lives and managed to go their separate self-fulfilling ways, because clearly they were more important. 

My new favorite statement is "you should take some time to yourself and not deny yourself so much". Lol, like snorting lol, well, I think there's plenty of THAT going around . And if I entertain that notion, who is going to run this show?  Thinking back , I cannot remember that last time I haven't gone to bathroom hurriedly because there was a child screaming , nor can I recall a shower where there wasn't some negotiation occurring with a child through the closed door, all muffled by the sound of the water running. 

Let's just do the math, I have been seemingly pregnant or nursing for nearly 20 years and that in itself is limiting and a large sacrifice. 

To these kids I'm full-time mom, chaffeur, nurturer, counselor, chef, grocery shopper , scheduler , party host, birthday present wrapper, emotional and physical injury healer, spiritual leader , allergist and it goes on and on. I know every detail about every single one of them. That only comes by being immersed in parenthood. 

Oh and I know , "nobody said you had to have so many children". I'm here to tell you that's a crock. I WAS asked to have these children and it was NEVER supposed to be done solo, in fact it was promised it wouldn't be and it was never intended to be part time. That's the truth and I don't care who can make excuses for what. 

Parenting is a full time job and anyone who says otherwise , is not a parent. The.end. Do people think there has ever come a day where I wake up and NOT want to be a mom? Well that's an unfair question . There have been a few, but I still remain the person that didn't change her mind about commitments and I still do it all whether it feels good or not , whether I'm happy , sad or indifferent. What I haven't been found doing is entertaining myself . Very simply because it's not my season any longer . I never walked out on my marriages or my children and therefore my family. 

I'm not even going to bother to get "all preachy " and talk about G-d. Because I don't want to and the truth is some things are just common sense and HUMAN issues. It is a good thing it's Sunday though so I can listen to a spiritual perspective fairly soon.

That's another thing. I don't choose a faith and make a conscience effort to access it in my thoughts and actions to pretend to be perfect. I do it to be better . That's it. So people can dismiss and criticize all they want. 

As I'm ranting, I'm trying to pinpoint the catalyst of my current state of mind. I'm realizing it stems from my daughter telling me how disappointed she was in adults placing their own feelings before a child's. "Mom I'm really sad, I really wanted ---- to be at my birthday". That's it. This birthday celebration was months ago. And she's STILL upset. So adults break promises to my children and I'm always left here punished and having to re-establish their worth. It's wrong by any form of measurement . It's bullshit. Pardon my french. 

So I leave it with this. If you wish to lie or half truth people , at least own that as a part of your being and suffer your own consequences. 

Yes I do deserve just as much consideration as the next person, but the rules change as we become adults . I do deserve to do for myself, but not at the expense of other people's emotions and mental stability . Anyone saying things to selfish people like " as long as you're happy" are idiots. Only a portion of that statement is true. The fundamental right of the "pursuit of happiness" that this nation was built upon was based on the premise that it didn't infringe upon the rights of others. I saw this picture awhile ago and found it to be very true so I searched for it. I agree. 


Thursday, October 30, 2014

Cheating-Life, Religious, Spiritual

What does it mean to women when it's revealed their spouse has consistently in some form or fashion sought some sort of pleasure outside of their relationship ?  Cheating comes in many forms :chatting, texting, emailing  flirting, dating sites...it can cost you many things and can only be undone by true reconciliation and G-d's grace. Sorry has to mean sorry and has to demonstrate repentance .   A quote from Dr. Phil McGraw " cheating is doing things you wouldn't do in the presence of your significant other". Admittedly society has become very lackadaisical in this regard lending itself to gray areas that did not exist before .I had a conversation with a person who had struggled with pornography , etc. I'm making a note for myself for future reference as it seems to be a topic of concern. All forms leave women feeling broken and inferior , and unwanted and unimportant. As an encouragement to women when the facts point to infidelity , the odd phone activity,  hotel room bookings etc. and seeking strip clubs and anything outside your relationship, not all men try to justify these behaviors and it is a reflection on their hearts and not your value. Social networking also adds an element that if used irresponsibly can open the wrong doors . Regardless of the struggle G-d does have a position and it's in the side of faithfulness and "staying focused on what is good" . G-d wants better for you , and me . Harsh truth. Anyone that claims differently has been deceived by the evil one and will never experience the anointing G-d has for their lives and relationships . Here's a conversation with a heart transformed by G-d to a woman he lost ,  quite a departure from trite excuses and dismissal, even justification. Mature and accountable . It is honorable in its transparency and most certainly from a man that chooses to walk with G-d and not with some of the fallen views of modern day society.

"Let me tell you something,  you are perfect,  and if I didn't see that then,  it's my loss (and it had been my loss) and if someone didn't see that in you,  then it's their loss too"

"I'm not perfect" 

"You are fearfully and wonderfully made,  and I delight in you (but God delights in you more)"

"At all and I can't and don't want to be 
I see what you are saying,  I am certainly not perfect but what I desire is for Him to welcome me in His arms and say,  "well done. ""

"The struggle with pornography (at any level) has nothing to do with you.  Realize that and accept it.  It has everything to do with (his) walk with God
To answer your question,  what do I think it does to women... I think it tears at the very fabric of what Good intended to create with sexuality (especially marriage).  It puts up an unrealistic expectation of what love and sex should be and will not allow a woman to live up to that fantasy. It makes the woman feel unimportant and undesirable and at the same time build a wall between a man and woman.
As a man who has learned a few things in his life,  that's how I feel.  I hope that helps.  
To reiterate...  The struggle with pornography has nothing to do with you.  Realize that and accept it.  It has everything to do with (his) walk with God" 

Men , learn from good men. Women too if it's your struggle. If you don't wish to hear from women in your life , better to listen to G-d and men who have lost . 
It's not worth the spiritual and other real world battles and what it can cost you. There are tangible character witnesses on Earth , and moreso Heaven. No one can shield themselves from the long arm of God's law. Clearly some are able to be moved by God's conviction and seek to rise above complacency and status quo be better . 

Pastor Mark Driscill outlines the process of departing from forgiveness which (involving only the conflicted party) and reconciliation (involving the offender(s) and the party injured. 

STEP 1: CONVICTION

God made us with a conscience to guide our decision making through life and to make us feel convicted when we do wrong. God the Holy Spirit shines the light of grace on our sin, exposing it for what it is, calling us and helping us move to repentance (John 16:8–11; 1 Thess. 1:5; Jude 1:15). The Holy Spirit often does his convicting work through other Christians who love us enough to ask about junk they see in our lives. Conviction is an essential step to exposing sin for what it is so we can be free from enslavement to sin.

STEP 2: CONFESSION

As the Holy Spirit convicts us of sin and renews our mind, we must then name our sin as God does and accept the truth that we have sinned. Confession means agreeing with God and telling the truth about who we are and what we have done. Confession includes naming our sin to Jesus and anyone else we have sinned against, or who may have been affected by our sin.
James 5:16 teaches us it is best to confess sin to faithful Christians who will pray for us and help us grow in holiness.

STEP 3: REPENTANCE

The heart of repentance is changing your mind about who is god in your life. When we sin, we are worshiping someone or something else as a false god and functional savior. In repentance we turn from those false gods back to the true and living God of the Bible, who alone loved us enough to die for our sin and freedom.
This means a deep change of values occurs, and we change our mind about what we deem important. Then there will be a heart-sourced change of behavior. We must learn to repent continually by turning our face to Jesus and turning our back on sin.
Repentance is not trying to manage our sin, but rather putting it to death before it puts us to death. Colossians 3:5 says it perfectly: “Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.”
True repentance is among the greatest gifts given to us because of Jesus’ work on the cross for our sins. In it we find our humility, joy, forgiveness, hope, redemption, perspective, identity, and future.

STEP 4: RESTITUTION

When we sin, we are also stealing from other people. This may include actual property or such things as trust, love, and intimacy. The Bible is clear that our redemption is a gift of grace from Jesus alone to be received by us through personal faith in him (Eph. 2:8–9). The result of this gift of salvation is a new heart that loves Jesus, is humble, and leads to an ongoing life of good works (Eph. 2:10)—not so that Jesus will redeem us, but because he has.
These good works will include our seeking to make restitution for all we have done, whether directly or indirectly, to damage others. Because we love people at a heart level, we want to restore what we took. Parts of the Bible, such as Exodus 22:1–17 and Numbers 5:5–10, speak of this kind of repayment, and men like the rich people in Nehemiah as well as Zacchaeus in the New Testament modeled it when they repaid the people they had stolen from (Luke 19:8).

STEP 5: RECONCILIATION

Once the previous steps have been undertaken, the sin that separated people is forgiven and taken away by Jesus with the hope that they can be brought back together in a loving and trusting relationship. No matter what, if we commit ourselves to the lifelong pursuit of the above gospel process, then reconciliation with others is possible in this life. However, trust, friendship, and relationship are restored only upon confession of sin; they are the fruit of repentance.
Confession and repentance involve: (1) real acknowledgment of the offense; (2) remorse (beyond “I’m sorry I got caught”) for the pain it caused; (3) restitution where appropriate; and (4) renewal of character and lifestyle.
Trust is always lessened or destroyed when sin is glossed over or “forgotten” without restoration. Such spiritual denial subverts forgiveness and reconciliation.

A FINAL WORD

It almost goes without saying that this is a very difficult process. Even when all parties involved are working hard to ease the impact of sin, the bruising and pain sometimes make restoration impossible.
If you, or those involved in the disruption of your relationship through sin, fail to work through the process in good faith, restoration is impossible. But by God’s grace, even if it does not occur on earth, we have the promise that it will happen in heaven if those involved are Christians. If they're not that's an entirely different salvation issue .
G-d is good and here is His truth : (Robert Driskell) 
"Adultery is not only a sin against one’s mate, but an attack on the sanctity of marriage, and a course of conduct that can cause havoc in many people’s lives.  Adultery is also most importantly a sin against God.
Marital failures, and many other destructive conditions, exist because of sin.  They exist because humans have decided that their way is better than God’s way.  They have decided that fulfilling their desires is more important than obeying and glorifying the Creator/Sustainer of the universe.  Nevertheless, the Christian must learn what the Bible says about adultery in order to see it the way God sees it.  Only when we change our views to line up with God’s views can we live the full, blessed life He has waiting for us.

In the Old Testament, God Declared Adultery to be a sin Deserving Death

When God set apart a nation to be His special people, He gave them a set of basic guidelines for living.  They were the basis for every other law He would give them.  These laws were a written record of the way God expects His people to behave.  The seventh commandment God gave His people was, “You shall not commit adultery” (Exodus 20:14).  God knew that the heart of humankind would naturally seek to fulfill every desire it experienced.  God gave these laws to make His holy standards clear.
God viewed adultery as being a sin so terrible that it was punishable by death.  “If a man commits adultery with the wife of his neighbor, both the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death” (Leviticus 20:10; cf. Deuteronomy 22:22).  If we ever think that God takes adultery, or any other sin, lightly, we should remember what penalties and punishments He assigned to them.

Adultery is not just an outward action

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’  But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matthew 5:27-28). This tells us that adultery can take place within the heart [mind] and is just as sinful as an outward act. The sin of the mind may not affect as many other people, families, and friends as the outward physical act, but it is still a sinful affront to the holiness of God. This applies to the prevalence of pornography in our culture.  Often claimed to be a ‘victimless offense’, the damage pornography does to the heart of the one involved in it, and often to those around him/her, can be just as devastating.  Pornography and adultery often go hand in hand.

Adultery can keep you out of the Kingdom of God

In First Corinthians 6:9-10, the apostle Paul lists some sins that, if continued in without confession and repentance, will prevent the practitioner from entering God’s kingdom, “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God?  Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy..nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God”.  Included in this list is the sin of adultery.  This further emphasizes how serious God views this sin.  He knew the devastating effects adultery has on individuals and families and He wanted to protect us from that heartbreak.  He still feels the same today."

As I say frequently," hope the temporary satisfaction or fix is worth the eternal price."