Thursday, October 8, 2015


I have nothing to say, yet the word bubble up inside.  This drive to create, to speak, to act, when all else says "No".  In discovering the rhythm of the heart there is a choice............  To let it set the pentameter of your life or to keep it out of sync.   Things get better in time.  Or at least that is the hope.  I am tired of loosing people, but I know that the longer I live, the more I love, the more I will loose.  It is worth the risk, but difficult none the less.  I don't seek a life of comfort and security, tho it bays at my window.  Complacency knocking at the door, the american dream and all of its addicting qualities.  But it is nothing but lies and as I see humanity for what it is I know that the dream is false, a charade, dressed in sheep's wool.  Get away from me, let me see the world for what it is and with sober judgement cross the line.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Forever in our hearts..........

The lonely ballerina plays as I type.  It is haunting, achingly beautiful.  Sounding within a deep place of the soul.  The choreography across the piano keys, dancing, twirling around the melody line.  It only plays for a short time, but the mark is left none the less.  Moments that form memories, memories that form bonds, bonds that form relationships, and relationships create family.  His song is done, but the melody of his life lingers.  The beauty outweighing the dissonance.  The love keeping the bond.  Beyond death and the end of the song.  Forever in our hearts.  He was family, he was loved, he was a beautiful, tortured, dissonant melody leaving a mark that will not fade.  We love you Ben.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Hard choices.............

There are moments when choices must be made........  To lay down something that you love for something that you hope to love again.   It is a hard choice.  But I trust that God will meet me here, in this place of complete dependence on him.  I decided a month ago, but have waited till now so that I could tell the teens and my peers first.  I don't know what I was expecting as I typed the emails, something, anything I guess.  I got nothing, and I found that I had made the right choice.  Too many evening full, too many double bookings, too many no shows, too many teens looking up to me all the while feeling a fraud.  If you only knew how small my youth group is, how I struggle to get them to any events at all, I am not as awesome as you think.  Camp was the high and low this year.  I found myself wildly cheered for by 100 or so youth every time I went to the stage.  It unnerved me deeply, they don't know, not really.  And while I found it very lovely to be loved so well during that week, I knew it must come to an end.  The debate has been happening for some time in my head and heart, and finally twisting my ankle one day showed me how thin I was spread, and how easily I could come undone.  You can't pour yourself 100% into 2 ministries.  And the choice needed to be made, do I stop community living or step down from ministry for a time?  I chose the latter.  I do not know what this year will hold, but I will try to immerse myself in things that bring life and joy to me, trusting that God will meet me in this place, even if I don't know exactly where it is that I am.

Friday, September 4, 2015

The world is so big, and I am so small.

Article after article, post after post, heartbreak, soapbox's, lifestyles, crafts, ways of living...........  So many things, and only one me.  I want to do it all.  Be the crafty mom, the hot skinny mom, the artist, the leader, the humanitarian, the protester, the chef, the friend and housemate, the wife, the perfect human being.  Only I am not.  Not perfect and only one person.  I have tried, oh how I have tried.  To be all that we should be, but I am only one person.  The more that I try to do all the less I seem to do.  Butter spread across too much bread.  My heart breaks.  I read about the Syrian crisis and want to open my home, build bunk beds in every room, cook huge pots of beans and rice.....  But I can't, there is no physical way this can happen right now because they aren't here, they are over there.  So many things, the world is so big, and I am so small.  We anesthetize ourselves with media, videos, cat pictures, and small personal stories where we can pass judgement.  Nothing but diversion.  Apathy, denial, complacency.  Share and article about it and my job is done.  Nothing changes.  Slipping into doing nothing because everything is overwhelming.  The world is so big, and I am so small.  No more excuses.  Bloom where you are planted, touch the lives around you and let those in other places do the same.  Quality over quantity.  Because honestly if every human being simply poured into those around them the world would be a beautiful place.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

First day................

The twinge lessons with each child.  I remember Ezekiel's first day, waking early, picking the clothes, marking everything with his name including him.  I actually put tape on his collar with his name and bus number.  What is it with the first that makes it so important, so memorable, so very beautiful.  First time holding hands, first kiss, first home, first child, first loss, first fight.............  etched forever in memory.  Today was a first for Leif, yet I was so much more at rest.  The school is different, there is no busing, but the child is different as well.  I don't worry about him, he will be just fine.  This child is something special, loving, energetic, charismatic, well spoken, magnetic, athletic, and cute.  I don't know how I was gifted with such a child, but I will cherish him.  I don't worry about him, he will do well in life, but this summer I realized that if I am not careful I will loose him.  He is so good at everything, it is easy to not worry, focus, stress about him.  But he is still a child, my child, and I will grip him with an iron grasp.  Kiss him each night, tell him how much he is loved, and spend extravagant time with him.  Sit with him, read with him, play with him, snuggle with him.  Because even though I don't worry about him, I cherish every moment I get to spend with him.  Happy first day of school Leif.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Loved so deeply...........

The passion that Fern loves me with can at times be overwhelming.  Wanting no one else when I am around, clinging to me, crying for me, calling my name as Andrew carries her upstairs.  This season of life like all others will pass, I am consoled that some day she will not need me so very much.  But is that a consolation?  To be loved so deeply and completely, to be cherished above all else, to be sought after no matter what the cost.  One day she will not need me, will not want me, will not call out for me.  There will be a time where Leif will no longer make an excuse to come into our bedroom for more hugs and kisses before sleep.  There will be a time where Ezekiel no longer crawls into bed with me upon waking up for snuggles and "quality time".  One day they will see me for who I am, a flawed human being who makes mistakes, many of those while parenting them.  They will not be as quick to rebound from discipline showering me with hugs and kisses.  They will look at me as old, outdated, old fashioned.  My body will seem ancient to them, my standards archaic, and my hair a bad throw back.  They will fight me at times on the core of what we raised them to be.  There will be days when I look back on a night like tonight when my children needed and loved me so deeply and cherish them.  All the while hoping to some day be needed again. 

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Side by side

There is something about the quiet moments side by side.  The comfort and trust.  The complete comfort around each other.   The lack of need.  Need to entertain.  Need to carry the conversation.  Need to pretend.  Need to flatter.  Need to keep it going.  We are next to each other, sharing the same space, breathing the same air, loving the same children, ignoring the same clock, feeling the same fatigue from the same family vacation.  Unity in the silence, rest in the moment, love in the marriage.  Side by side to the end of our days, with no expectations, only appreciation.  Amen.

Friday, August 14, 2015


The surgery is good, helpful, therapeutic, and life giving.  But in the moments after the surgery, when the anesthesia wears off, there is the pain, the time to heal, to regaining of strength, and the need for help.  Recovery times seem to last forever but eventually the pain dissipates and function returns.  This does not mean that the process is over, now comes the time for building strength, becoming independence, and increasing range.  At times hard decisions are made, things must be set down so that focus on the therapy may happen.  Do we forever loose these things, or is it just for a time?  I don't know, but it is hard none the less.  I know that some time down the road it will be a benefit, but right now the anesthesia is wearing off.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Stepping out on the waters................

There is a bin in the basement, at the bottom right hand corner of some shelves in my unused pottery room.  The contents contain hope and frustration, longing and disappointment, dreams and reality.  Every woman has one who has ever dealt with the ups and downs of motherhood, the constant transitioning, the ever changing shape and form of life.  Fir 6 years it has been downstairs, come with me on the move, only to remain untouched.  Never mind the fact that I probably wouldn't even desire its contents to be used anymore.  They are outdated and old, yet I cling to them.  A talisman of sort that proves I haven't always been this way, I was once another person, another shape, another form, and led a very different life then I do now.  It was so easy after Ezekiel to glide back into life, to fit in, one child not making too many waves, portable, having less impact.  But after Leif I was forever changed, this little dynamo of a human being will not be ignored, he is memorable, loving, kind, energetic, and leaves a mark on your life that will not be erased.  Fern came and life got sweeter, I slowly am growing to except this new me, yet I still hold onto the bin.  I don't know if I will ever be a size 6 again, or if I would even want to wear these old things, you can be certain that if I ever achieved getting back down there that would want to celebrate with new things, fresh and exciting.  No the time has come to get rid of my "skinny clothes".  I used to view it as giving up hope, letting go of any possibilities of future relevance.  But I am clinging to the old version of myself and in doing this I am not making space for the new, the refreshed, the reborn.  I can never go back to who I once was and as long as I cling to that graven image there is no space for who I actually am now.  Giving up something that you have clung to for so long can be like loosing a friend, an identity, a beacon that you hope would return you safe.  But this is no longer my destination and so my beacon must change.  There is something about stepping into the unknown, with no familiar comfort to cling to, trust must be developed, old textiles cast away, new wine skins for the new wine.  I am not the same person I was 6 years ago, things have shifted, priorities have changed.  I am stepping out into something new, where there is no space for old things.  I made a decision recently that felt like throwing out everything I have been recently, a major part of my identity is now gone, and I am stepping out on the waters trusting that it will hold..........

Friday, August 7, 2015

Thank God we don't get what we ask for.

We will celebrate 13 years of married life this Tuesday.  We have grown together in such a way that I cannot imagine myself with anyone else, occasionally I look back at former crushes and thank God that I didn't get what I want.  How often does this happen where God refuses to give us what we ask for but rather gives us what we need.  Tonight at the dinner table I sat next to Leif as he begrudgingly ate the kale salad on his plate, he didn't see the nutritional value of what lay before him or that I was expanding his palate.  All that he knew was that if he didn't eat it he would have to go to bed.  A little harsh?  Maybe, but I stand behind it knowing that it is worth it to send him to bed once or twice in order for him to learn to enjoy foods that are good for him and for him to be grateful for what is placed before him.  If we are honest our base nature is a selfish one, and when given the chance we will choose what benefits us, this is the flesh.  Yet somehow we think that we are able to rise above this nature of our own initiative, to choose best.  Yet I still see women pass up good men for hot guys, I see people eating fast food (myself included) instead of beans and rice, I see people abusing their bodies, staying in unhealthy relationships, and making poor life choices all over the place.  We are run by our flesh, all you have to do is look at tithing to see where our hearts are at, if the church truly tithed 10% the face of the church would look very different.  But we don't, so it doesn't.  The way we spend our money says a lot about what we truly believe.  What would we do with what we ask for from God?  Unless there is a change of heart we will the same things we did before.  I thank God that I didn't end up with who I wanted, but rather got who I needed.  Any of you who know Andrew know how different we are, this is Gods grace.  We balance each other and sharpen each other.  Are there sparks?  Of course, but the refining process is good, only through Gods refining and conviction will the attitudes of our hearts change.  And once we are faithful in the little things, then we will be given not what we ask for, but what we need.  There are many things that have been placed in my life to steward, my marriage, children, friendships, finances, properties, ministry, gifts, physical abilities, this planet........  My only hope is that I steward them well.  Happy Anniversary Andrew, thank you for being what I needed.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

A God who moves mountains.

Moving mountains has never been my thing.  People say its all the rage, getting the big stuff taken care of, but for me it never happened.  You get used to the mountain, start enjoying the view, not realizing all that it is impeding, not allowing.  People say prayer moves mountains, but I have been one to wind through the switch back trails, the ups and downs, sheer edges, unseen turns, never knowing what to expect.  Or to tunnel under, moving earth and more earth so as not to disturb the giant.  Going out of your way to make it seem as nothing has changed.  But a mountain changes everything, the very landscape of your life, impeding your path, and stalling your destination.  I am tired of this mountain, it has no beauty, it was not carved by Gods hand but rather placed there with different design.  It is rubble, garbage, good intentions gone wrong, mindsets that wouldn't shift, it is full of attitude, unwilling to bend, shaped with all the mistakes that come with life and casts a shadow on the land.  I had become so accustomed to it, that when it began to shift I did not know what to do, but slowly it is coming down.  Piece by piece, bit by bit, and I am once again aware that I serve a God who moves mountains.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

What ifs at 1 am.

I am not sure if I am in the right mind to type right now, sleeplessness has once again over taken my life and all the social filters have been turned off.  The fact that myself unfiltered is a threat worries me, must I check myself at the door before entering civil conversation?  What if?  What if I want to speak my mind in a loud voice and have opinions that go against the social norm?  What if I do not follow PC rules?  What if I do not adhere to party lines?  What if, I am a blend of the left and right?  What if I am a feminist who values the life of the unborn?  What if I am a Christian who recognizes that I can not push my morality on an unsaved nation?  What if I love life?  What if I am willing to lay it down?  What if I refuse to take political sides?  What if I choose to follow the narrow path?  What if I choose to honor the promises I have made?  What if I find my identity beyond myself?  What if I do not look the right the way?  What if I am trying to love myself?  What if I second guess my parenting every day?  What if I miss the life I left behind?  What if I would never go back again?

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Small things

The moment my life ended and the world continued without a pause, I was stunned.  To have something so valuable taken and no one to take note makes for troubling thoughts.  How many times have I walked by someone whose world was just taken from them and not taken note.  Our lives are comprised of small things that somehow come together to form an image beyond ourselves, with the fragrance of heaven on our minds.  Something so small tied to emotions so big.  Someone so small whose life meant so much.  An action so small that brings about monumental things.  We dream big, and imagine ours lives played on a large screen for all to see.  But we are small and big things must be prefaced with small things done well, small moments of trust, small hearts and hands that we allow to move in our lives.  We are not so big, yet can be everything to some small person.  Smallness is easily felt in these disjointed times as humanity crushes in setting standards of beauty that cannot be met and pace of life that will not sustain.  And we shrink as no one sees our world being taken away, the loss of something or someone valuable.  So we fight to be seen, to be heard and appear large in someone else's eyes, but it does not satisfy the desire to be seen.  To be known in our inmost parts, seen for who we are, for our pain to be noticed, and for our hearts to mend.  1 of 7 billion, yet known by one who knows.  Yielding slowly step by step, striving to see the unseen, grasping to truth and trusting that on that day there was one who paused with me and saw. 

Monday, July 27, 2015

2 am

I have become well acquainted with this time of night as of late.  Sleep has never been easy, and has been growing increasingly more difficult.  It occupies my thoughts throughout the day but when my head hits the pillow I find my mind wandering.  Tonight is especially hard, it has been 6 years since Levi left us, and my sleepless mind drifts to him.  The last week was one of pouring out spiritually, emotionally and physically to an amazing group of teenagers.  By the end of the week sleep deprivation was hitting a new high and Friday night after I lay down I did not rise until 1 pm on Saturday.   I have moments of rest here and there, this weekend at a friends lake home was a much needed pause from humanity, finally by this evening I felt myself enjoying the moment, restful, peaceful, content.  Tonight my thoughts have been of how I wish I could linger a day or two more, breath deeply, pause and recalibrate my thoughts.  I remember after Leif was born going through a time where I was being touched and needed so much by my little men that come evening all I wanted was to sit alone with no one on me.  I had been touched out.  The break this weekend and lightness of my shoulders at being out of the city makes me wonder.  Am I touched out?  Living a life as we choose to live involves much humanity, our family, our housemates, our neighbors, our church, the youth group, mothers fellowship, our neighborhood.  Could it be that this extrovert has reached her population max?  There are many things that I have been debating as of late, one of which is taking a break from ministry.  Hitting pause and finding my emotional health again.  Things have been better as of late, but I find that disappointments seem to hit me harder.  When I used to brush off a no show Wednesday now I feel defeated.  When doing a VBS that is primarily our kids I wonder why this is and if my ministry will ever be more then being faithful in the little things?  Then something like camp happens where it is amazing, I feel respected and appreciated.  But this year instead of it reviving me I found myself angry.  Like a carrot was being dangled in front of my nose to motivate me for one more lap, one more year.  One thing is for certain I will not reach any kind of a conclusion tonight, and I am tired.  Please pray for me that I would seek wisdom in the next few weeks.  Good night.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Deep Breath

Swimming is quickly becoming part of my rhythm.  Wrapped in the cool quiet.  No sound, just water, breathing and thoughts.  Swimming is of course a loose term here, as I more float and glide then plow through the waters with a destination in mind.  The time passes quickly and I am sure that there is someone waiting for my lane.  As a child I was not a strong swimmer, I could get by but was spent by the time I reached the raft.  First times are always full of trepidation.  Can my body do it?  Will it hold me?  Can I hold it?  Stepping out on the water with nothing but trust and hope.  I watched Leif jump off the diving board last week at swimming lessons, the goal to come back up on his own and tred water.  Needless to say I could barely watch, even though there were two swimming instructors in the water waiting for him to jump.  He was perfectly safe and in good, well trained hands.  My heart hit the back of my throat as he splashed in and the few moments that it took felt like an eternity, soon he broke back up through and the instructors cheered him and guided him back to the edge of the pool.  I breathed, realizing that I had been holding my breath with him as he hit the water.  He was breathless when he came to me at the end of the lesson.  Pride swelled from every fiber of his being, the feeling of accomplishment and bravery evident.  I realized that I had almost robbed him of this moment, wanting to protect even though he was safe.  I could have asked him not to do it, but then he would not have known what he was capable of.   My protecting him could ultimately hurt him.  One day he will jump in when there are no swimming instructors to cheer him and guide him.  One day he dive into a life of his own.  Will I have protected him too much?  Or shall I let him step out on the waters while it is still safe to see what he can do.  If it will hold.  Tomorrow I jump into something new.  Organization has never been something that drives me, but leadership and family do.  This VBS is a stepping out on the waters for me.  My only prayer is that as a dive in there will be someone cheering and guiding me along.  Deep breath.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Folding the fitted sheets.

The children are playing in the laundry, so far they have showed enough restraint to stay away from my folded piles and are currently rolling in the pile of fitted sheets that I always put off till last.  Meticulous work that is not creative bothers me, and fitted sheets seem to embody that kind of work for me.  They don't take long and once they are done the laundry pile shrinks impressively, but it always takes a while to get to it.  Perhaps that is a good analogy for what is happening within.  I am finally touching the parts of me that I have been constantly setting aside, avoiding, preferring other things over.  It interesting how people respond when you start doing the deep work, those responses trigger emotions and memories that seemed long forgotten.  I I am trying to journal more to work through these thoughts, this blog in an extension of that, no more.  I don't do it for likes or comments, but rather for myself.  Sifting through thoughts and emotions, I have been tempted to stop this public sifting, but I believe that there is something to transparency.  That perhaps one of the personal things that I share might resonate with someone else and let them know that are not alone in their journey.  There is an ungaurdedness in this, which for me is big.  Those of you who truly know me know how infrequently I share my emotions, it is protective response to things long past, but something I have not been able to shake.  I see danger in emotion that left unchecked, to open myself wide is to leave unguarded the tender spots.  This is why I must be transparent, to open wide and not fear.  Sideways glances have always gotten to me, I am a straight talker, and the idea of muffled tones bothers me.    I watch my children as they play, they have not learned that skill yet.  They are honest and sweet.  Zeke is gone this week and I miss him, but I think that Leif misses him more.  Everyday he asks when Zeke will be home.  Theirs is not the love/hate relationship that some siblings have, just love.  I am grateful for this, and pray that it continues to be this way.  Please remember:  "This blog is merely a creative outlet for my soul. A journal posted to the public. This may not meet your expectations, but I do hope that you can go on this journey with me as I attempt to give light to the inner dialog of my mind and share openly the state of my heart. Be gentle."

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

If only....................

I got what I wanted.  This is it, the life I pined for in my early twenties, overtaken with romanticism and optimism.  I wanted a husband, children, to be a stay at home mom and to live in community.  But the romantic in me never saw the details, the day to day reality, the tole of events.  But perhaps every young person is fraught with the "If only" delusion.  If only I were married.....  If only I graduate college..........  If only I have kids......  If only I were a home owner.....  If only, if only, if only...........  Sorry to say honey but if you are jacked up before the "If onlys" no amount of these things will make it better, as a matter of fact they might make it worse.  Got body issues?  Try pushing out a few babies and then see how you feel.  Have a hard time keeping a budget, a house is a dream.  Look to relationships to fill the void?  What an unfair burden to place on a spouse.  You see I got what I wanted and whole lot more.  I got the muffin top (and while I love muffins, not this kind), I got the house full of life (and cheese wrappers, applesauce pouches, laundry and dishes), I am a homeowner (pain in the butt), I live in community (death by consensus), I got a great husband (who is human) and I stay home with the kids (I live in pajamas).  It doesn't look the way I imagined it, it doesn't feel like I have arrived or that I am suddenly fulfilled.  On the contrary I still deal with the same issues that I always have, only now I have a husband, 3 kids, and 7 housemates to reflect them back at me.  So why do I say all this?  I got what I wanted and still need something more, something that no "If onlys" will fix.  I am working on my stuff, but it is harder with the demands of life, family and community.  Only God can help me sort through the junk drawers of my life, but I do think that it may have been simpler if I had cleaned house before moving all these lives into mine.   I love my life, and I got what I wanted, but the work is not done.  So for those of you who are constantly looking to the "If onlys" in life to find meaning, please consider getting your crap in order before inviting other human beings into your mess. 

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Remembering Joi

I remember you.  I remember your Joy, your love, your compassion.  I will continue to remember you.  Not all is rose colored, least of all your life, but oh how the tone suited you.  You taught my children about Jesus, you loved without reserve.  Oh that you would have saved some of that love for yourself.  I hope that now you are well loved, whole and complete, that the wounds have finally been healed.  We balance between darkness and light, and even though the darkness got the last moment, light dominated your existence.  Things have not been the same since you have left us sweet friend, as well they shouldn't be, you have left your fingerprints on our hearts, and I hope to never erase them.  Rest sweet Joi, we will see you soon.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Reflection in the mirror.

I looked into the mirror tonight, long and hard.  The fine lines are growing deeper, skin tougher, eyes bloodshot.  This is not self loathing but rather somber reflection.  I am no longer young, but I am not yet old, and feel the same as in my 20's.  At least I like to think so.  But if I am a truth teller in my reflection many things about me have changed.  Reality of life and death has set in.  I am not immortal, not above pain, not below grace.  Romanticism is not sustainable, and I tire of trying to be culturally relevant.  Image is nothing, money is nothing more then a means to and end, accumulation of things is gluttony, and political correctness is shit.  I don't want to be a people pleaser, to convince this fickle world that I am worth while.  I am done with the idolatry of self: my job, my calling, my education, my image, my identity, my Facebook.  Tear down the shrines in my life, there is only one whom I long to please.  I am in this time of not young, and not old.  Enough wrinkles to mark my face, but enough to bear artistry in the living of a life.  There is nothing about me that sets me above others, and that is just fine.  I see the beautiful people, all the time, energy and money that goes into maintaining that beauty, it must be exhausting.  As age sets in they cling to their beauty in pathetic ways, spending obscene amounts of money on something that will not last.  It all goes south in the end.  I want to be known for my substance and not my packaging.  For my character, not my facade.  This body of mine, this face of mine, will never be as it once was.  It transitioning from youth to maturity.  I can only hope that my inward being is moving to maturity as well.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

random words

I have this deep desire to throw words at page and see what sticks.  To unleash all the thoughts that mash around in this brain of mine, and speak the truth of what I feel.  But I wouldn't.  There are precious few who can withstand one of my tirades, and there is no space for my emotions.  Perhaps one day, I will, if I dare, and if you dare.  But that day is not today, and the space is not available.

Saturday, April 18, 2015


I have come to this blank page several times in the last 2 months, it greats me coldly, daring me to type.   I leave it there not having a spark of insight, no script of my life.  Green things are springing up and so as the sun touches my pale face, leaving it with a strawberry glow, and life comes forth from the ground, I wait.   I wait for the lifting of my shoulders, the raising of my eyes, expecting that the past season was the cause of all this whatever it is.  But it has not come, and I realize that there are leftovers from years past and residual effects of having lived closely with so many people pressing down.  All that is left is to relinquish the burden, but where to start the sifting, how to come out from under this load.  Some things are clear, as I prioritize ministries and mission.  Others not so simple, as it is the relational component.  A basket too full of relationships that are imbalanced, mutuality is not there.  Jesus had his 12 and of those his 3.  Who are my 12?  My three?  I simply cannot continue pouring into relationships that do not reciprocate, it takes too much, and it is hard to be the one calling, tracking down, figuring out schedules, and making it work.  Butter spread too thin across too much bread, and it is finally beginning to show.  For some this may be simple, but for me it is far from that, as I have an affinity for people, and do not wish to leave anyone out.  But I am looking for quality not quantity, and so I will let them sift themselves...... 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

The opening piece I wrote for my sermon....

My children leave traces of themselves all around.  Littered about the house.  Doodles in my sketchbook, stickers on my dresser, muddy footprints in the kitchen, mittens and coats everywhere, and cheerios as far as the eye can see.  Tangible pieces strewn about as if to say.... I am here, see me, hear me, touch me, love me.  The traces on my heart run much deeper.  I am forever changed by their sticky little fingers, gooey kisses and lazy morning snuggles.  I see the world differently now, they have changed my vantage point, my understanding of God, of love, of joyful sacrifice, and forever left a mark upon my heart which cannot be erased.

Friday, February 13, 2015

One is harder then Three

I need a break from my baby right now, so I ran her a shallow tub and let her play.  Every couple of minutes she yells mama in a pathetic tone just to let me know she is still here, and to ask why I am not entertaining her.  Truth be told I have never been good at entertaining my children, and am a firm believer in good old fashioned boredom to inspire creative play.  The boys are both at school and so Fern does not have her big brothers to entertain her. All that she has is me, and I am not enough some days.  Some days I am tired, others I am busy, some days I am missing a friendship that has slipped away.  On those days I am not enough for Fern, thankfully she has 2 wonderful brothers who adore her, tolerate her and entertain her.  When Zeke was little it was just him and I, he was a hold me baby and a mamas boy.  It seemed as if I were unable to complete basic life tasks, he just needed/wanted me all the time.  I remember the day I decided that more then one child was the way to go.  I was shopping with my sister and our babies sat side by side in the shopping cart.  Zeke was so happy to be next to his cousin, the shopping trip was a dream.  I knew that we couldn't just have one child, it wasn't for Zeke's sake, but rather for mine.  Now with three our house is chaos at times, but rarely am I expected to entertain the little ones.  They are off playing with legos, telling Fern not to knock them over and then building structures for her to knock over.  Shrieks of joy and indignation come close together, wrestling, hugging, baths together.......... Life together.  I am a better mom now that I have three, because I don't need to be one child's everything.  The boys will be home from school soon and I am thankful, because truly one is harder then three.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Fresh snow

Snow is falling.  It brings freshness to my soul.  I grow tired of dingy, brown winters.  They feel as if we are stuck, not moving forward.  It should be spring, but the ground is too cold and hard for life to come forward.  And then the snow falls and I am reminded that there is beauty in this season, it covers the ugliness until it is time for the thaw.  The fresh snow reminds me of  beautiful moments of the past, hikes, skiing, snowboarding dates, snowmen that have eyebrows like Opa.  This time is not bad, but it is not spring.  This moment is good, and I don't want to taint it with past ugliness or future uneasiness, but rather drink in the beauty of the falling snow.  Knowing that spring will come soon enough, in its own time, and I need not rush it.  All that I need is to savor this moment and cast off the rest.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Sweet and Petite

I've got this little girl named Fern.  Sweet and petite, feisty and spicy, with a quirk all her own.  There is this little thing about this little girl, truly small but so endearing.  This little thing that she loves so much, unique to her and highly delightful is her floppy little belly button.  This is no mere "outy" but rather takes on a form all its own, distinctive to her since the cord dis-attached, and she loves it.  This peculiar little place on her tummy is a source of endless delight, a built in play thing if you will.  A soothie of sorts that can take her from an all out meltdown to calm baby when combined with sucking her two middle fingers.  I love this funny little girl with this funny little belly button so very much.  I love everything about her, every little piece of her...........  One day she will notice that this little place on her body it different then most.  Navels are everywhere now a days, and so this special little spot on her body will be comparison shopped, and it will not fit in.  My heart will ache the day that one of her favorite things becomes her least favorite.  It will signify a change in her.  This little girl will be growing up, and will no longer love things that used to delight her but rather seek "normalcy" and value things based on the opinions of others.  I know that this day will come, and while it is a small thing the significance of that small part of her strikes something deep within me.  Its enough to make you Amish, and it awakens the mama bear inside of me.  I dare someone to be the first to tell her that every part of her isn't lovely, see what happens.  If only it were that easy, there will be no words spoken telling her that she is not enough.  The message will be received none the less as she is bombarded with images that tell her beauty is:  white, 5'10", a size 4, has straight teeth, compliant hair, flawless skin, perky little boobs, a thigh gap and an almond shaped belly button.  What shall I do then?  She will not be little any more.  I will not be able to scoop her up in my arms and sweep her away to a place where photo shop does not exist.  She will be beyond sucking her fingers and playing with her belly button.  I will not be able to sooth her as I am now.  So I will start now with telling her how fantastic she is, an image bearer of the most high God, bought with a price, and loved with his life.  I will tell her of the inherent beauty within her, the value that her life holds.  That each part of her was planned and designed with Gods artistic flair.  And that will her he said "I have this special little thing, for this special little girl and it is just right for her."

I really don't care what the media has to say............

Billboards bombarding
bombing my eyes with navels and drivel
of how perfection ought to be
and them saying thats not me

Women's eyes lowering
abuse apparent to any that would witness
don't you see them cowering
with eyes that are listless....

Still payed for their bodies to be prostituted
mens eyes take want they want
its all free
plainly posted for all to see

Plastered and smeered
gauked at and leered
Making women feel inferior
because of their posterior

Anxiety sells
to the weak and empty
Perpetuating a myth
a lack of plenty

Filling the void
shoving it full
all while assuming
all it takes is good grooming

A bag
or a beer
a car
and a good career

Crap covered in glitter
and priced to sell
all while endorsing
consumerism hell

The lies are apparent
the language is plain
All that they want
is yourself to disdain

To create longing and fear
to prey on the weak
to optimise sales
and for profits to peak

There is no desire
to meet our needs
but to feed the beast
that they will never free

To hell with the billboards
 and the magazine ads
I am sick of  profit whors
and consumerism fads

I done with the game
of trying to achieve
that mythical place
in which I don't believe

This is my body
Its all that I've got
and while I may not be a model
my husband thinks it hot

So screw the photos
that tell you to think
that something is wrong
and to just go along

Its time to declare
in no delicate way
that I don't really care
what the media has to say.

Bread crumbs on the table.

I am not sure how it happens, but it does none the less.  Little things pile, small pieces of a busy life, a full home are left lying around.  They get ignored, left for another day and soon it is not so little.  There is something to a home that is lived in, where traces of life in this space give a certain comfort.  The safety in knowing that none of us are quite there yet, that human perfection does not exist, and permission for authenticity is granted.  I sometimes choose not to clean before a friend comes over, wanting them to know that their lovely little tornadoes are welcome in this space and no personal possession that I own is worth more then that relationship.  But it is a delicate balance between authenticity and aesthetic.  Function and form.  Healing is happening but my wrist still has little function, limited range.  Typing may be easier but yoga is still out.  Knowing that limitation makes want to do it all the more.  Never mind that yoga and I had been apart for some time before this.  As I had written it off as trendy fitness, for beautiful late 20s single, who while being able to balance in tree pose could not balance a check book, let alone a baby on the hip with a cold cup of coffee in hand.  Like the cold coffee it had left a sour taste in my mouth, and I wanted none of it..........  Until now.  The lure of what I cannot have drawing me in.  As long as I chose to forsake yoga there was no desire for it, but now the choice removed by physical limitation I think of it longingly.  As my wrist heals this longing shall pass and I shall again be in my right mind, fully realizing that not everything I long for is my true longing but rather an emotional knee jerk reaction to the moment.  Because we can't live life in a studio and balance is a myth.  There is only reality, and the reality is that my house is dirty, and for now I am okay with the breadcrumbs on the table.