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Archive for October, 2011

Finding My Romeo

I have been happily married for almost 9 years. Add another year to that and that’s how long I’ve been with the love of my life. Although we’ve known each other for over 20 yrs. I am 6 yrs older than him and as a teen I meet him when he was 10 yrs old. He was the most annoying child. Ours is a unique situation for our family however not so unique to the world. I married my step-brother. His father married my mother.

We didn’t grow up together and shortly after I graduated high school I took off and didn’t come back until he had graduated.  I got married to my first husband and had a my oldest. After a couple of years of cheating and lying I moved home. By this time my step brother at the time had graduated and was a very nice young man. I wasn’t attracted to him in that way at all, and all this time though he always had the hugest crush on me and I never knew it!

So he had girlfriends, I had boyfriends and over the years he helped me so very much with my oldest. We’d go on outings, christmas shopping, out to eat, my oldest son looked at him as a father figure and I started seeing him in a different light. Not “that light” though, it’s just that I realized that I deserved to be treated like he would treat me, you know.  We became very close friends, watch movies together, give relationship advice to each other, share our dreams and hopes for the future and wonder why we couldn’t find someone who was like the other. Years went by and so our closeness just formed a deeper bond.

It was spring of 2002 and I had just gotten out of a very abusive relationship the previous fall. I was not, I repeat NOT looking for anything. I do believe I had told my family that over my dead body would I marry and have more children again. I had moved home for the 6th time and I just was in “give up” mode. My father had remarried again and my new older step sister and I were going to get a place together. I liked the idea of living in the city since I was an insurance agent at the time and “married” to my work.  So I yet again up rooted my son and packed it all up to move in with my father and his wife along with the step siblings until we could save the money to get out and into our own apartment.

I remember her and I talking about guys one night and her great need to find me “just the right one”. I didn’t want a guy, I was sick of all the crap that went with them along with. I had been putting my son through an emotional roller coaster with all the moving I’d done. I swore that where ever he started school was where I’d stay and he’d graduated! I wouldn’t move and switch schools on him as my parents did me ( I was a military brat and hated it ).

Easter weekend was upon us and my father and his wife had plans to go somewhere so I decided to take my son, little sister and little step sister down to the farm for a visit and stay the night. The older step sister had plans with her boyfriend. So we come down and my step brother is going out with friends. I tell ya I was pissed! I was thinking “how dare he when I came to visit! he should just stay because I’m here!” I didn’t say anything though and didn’t know why I felt the way I did. My mom ended up telling me about a girl he was checking out at the local market and how they had become friendly, she wondered how long before they were an item. Jealously stirred deep inside and again, I had no clue why.  We had a nice visit with everyone and after the kids all were asleep I stayed up with my brother just chatting, really waiting for my step brother to come home. He did eventually and was a tad drunk but not too bad. We all stayed up and chatted for a bit and ended up somehow on the subject of relationships and such. I remember him telling me that he loved me and he’d be with me if only I’d love a poor man and agree to live in a shack. Like I said, he was a tad drunk, but when I looked into his eyes and asked him if that was actually true, he asked me right back if I could feel the same. Now here we are eye locked for a while and swarms of thoughts racing through my head. My brother says “its late and we should all hit the hay”. Yep! So I quickly went to my bed and pulled the covers over my head, hoping that the conversation would have been forgotten by the morning.

I got up early with the kids and did the “bunny thing” then we headed out actually before I could even have a conversation with my step brother. Wether or not he was avoiding me I still don’t know that answer, LOL.  I went back home and that evening talked to my older step sister, she looked right at me and smiled and said, ” you’re in love with him” .  If you’ve ever since “George Of The Jungle” the moment Ursula realizes she’s in love with George is exactly how it was for me. I couldn’t believe it, after all these years of friendship and what a line crossing. Leave it to me to put a kink in the family tree! We were going to have the house free for the next weekend and had decided to have my brother and his wife, step sister and her boyfriend and now me and my step brother all over to just “see”. Maybe he was like every other guy and just wanted a “notch” on his bed post, and THAT wasn’t going to happen!

My stepsister, and sis in law and I went out for drinks one night and were discussing the weekend. My father and her mother would be gone for the night so it would work out just fine. We’d get rid of the little sis’s and it was my ex husband’s weekend for our boy so no kids! Terrific! Well except I hadn’t called my step brother yet, and was a bit nervous, I mean here I was kinda going out on a limb here based on a drunken look and conversation, if I dove head first I really didn’t know if it was filled with water or empty. Would I be embraced with the love I had been searching for my whole life or used heart and soul and left empty like so many times before? I love LOVE so I had to take the leap of faith! It took some convincing thought from the girls and I believe they both said if I didn’t call then they would, so really I had no choice.

I called the house and my mom answered, I nonchalantly asked if he was there. She said no, he was over at his aunt’s house. Okay, so I called the aunt, no she said they just went to the cousin’s house. Okay, so reluctantly I called the cousin’s house, sooooo didn’t want to do that! But I’m a sucker for true love and all that crap! So my step brother gets on the phone and I can tell he’s wondering why on earth I’m calling him, mid-week, at his cousin’s house. Then I tell him about the planned weekend, and the sleeping arrangements and then he gets it. I truly would have loved to see the look on his face, LOL. From what he’s told me he thought it was a joke and was so stunned he really couldn’t believe what he had heard. I’m sure TOTAL SHOCK would be a good way to describe it.

It was all planned we were so happy and the next day was April Fools so you know what I did? I went to see my mom on my lunch break and told her that my step brother and I were in love and getting married! She was in such disbelief and refused to believe me. I’m not so sure I even believed myself. I mean, we were very close and great friends but we were about to “cross the line” and within the family that might be a bad deal if it didn’t work out, holidays could be tricky at best. I had no clue if he felt any thing more for me than a roll in the hay. I had not talked with him. My sis in law had though and she called me one night to let me know that while he was in shock he was very much looking forward to it and no pressure, slow was good. I was glad to hear that and still very unsure of a very unstable situation. One false move and the whole thing could tumble into a huge pile of bad really quick.

And it did, the very next day. One day before our big weekend. I was at work and I get a phone call from my father. He was livid! He had heard about our “love” weekend from the little sis’s and had canceled his weekend so ours couldn’t happen. He was appalled by my behavior and that fact that it was with a family member well that was just sacrilege! He said a number of horrid things that sent me into the back room crying and to this day I truly have blocked many of those things from my mind. It’s just not something I care to recall. My boss who I was very close with not only in age but as a friend came back to see what happened. I cried on his shoulder and he told me to take the rest of the day but to call him if I needed anything.

I went immediately home to pack a few things for me and my boy and then headed to my Grams house. My son was still at daycare and I explained it all to her. She was totally okay with the whole thing and said she could see it all along. I asked her why didn’t she clue me in on my feelings and she just patted my hand and said it was for me to figure out but that I needed to call my mom. So I did, and then after I explained it to her she said I needed to tell my step father, his dad. Oh my! I was instantly sick, I seriously thought I’d lose my lunch. Okay I thought, cowboy up girly! I took a deep breath and told him that my father and I had gotten into it again. He wasn’t surprised and then he asked me what it was this time ( to give you some history, my father and I are so very much alike that we fought like cats and dogs constantly ) Okay so here’s where I had to tell my step father that I was in love with his son, not knowing if the feelings were even going to be reciprocated. I was so very scared, not scared of his reaction, scared for my heart… I didn’t know if I could handle another break. But I had to try, that’s me the hopeless romantic!

I wish I could have seen his reaction. He didn’t say a word for a long while and then after a bit he said, “well I guess you and that boy oughtta just come on home then”.  We hung up and I told my Grams everything and went to pick up my son and head home. All the while I’m driving home I ‘m thinking to myself, what if this is all one-sided, what if he doesn’t feel the same, what am I going to do? I shouldn’t have said anything, I shouldn’t have even had these thoughts!

My step brother told me this years later: While I was driving home having all these thoughts race through my mind. He walks through the door of the house and greeted by his father with a smile and the words, ” just talked to your girlfriend, she’s on her way home “. He thinks “what?” And by the look on his face I’m sure that was a clue that my step dad realized that his son didn’t have a real idea of who or what he was talking about. So he fills him in on our conversation and the fact that I love him 110%. He was in TOTAL SHOCK, he had to go outside on the porch and get some air but out there in the air thinking all the things and putting the two and two’s together he came to the same conclusion that I had. After all the relationships that we’d had over the last couple years we always compared our mates to each of us. We were best friends, could tell each other anything so why was it so hard to believe that we fell in love? ( by the way everyone around us already could see it, we just took longer in seeing it. OH and my mother never did believe us until weeks and weeks later. she just thought for sure it was the biggest April fool’s joke ever )

So I get there and we just look at each other, we don’t say much but our eyes said a lot believe me. I called my boss and ended up having the next morning off to go move out all my stuff and then come back for a meeting that afternoon. My step brother, now boyfriend, helped me. Over the weeks we talked and talked. We realized we were perfect for each other and that we did truly love one another so very much.

My mom told me years later that she had cornered him one day and asked him if he was serious and was this thing really for real? He looked right at her and without hesitation said, ” I love her and I love that boy. Somebody need to take care of her, it might as well be me, I know everything about her. I’ve loved her forever.” That was when my mom finally realized this was real and not an April fool’s joke.

Like I said its been almost 10 yrs all together since we first realized our love for each other. And I’m happy to say that my father and I have a very good relationship now. My wonderful husband and I have two other boys along with my oldest from the first marriage. ( As I recall one of the last boyfriends I had my oldest didn’t like and had asked me why couldn’t I just marry Uncle then we could all by a family, at the time of course I scoffed but maybe that was the bug in my ear.)

Romeo’s out there, for me he was in my own back yard, LOL. Everyone in the family had been totally okay with it, at the beginning I can’t remember how many times I heard “well its about time you two got together”.  You have to take that leap of faith, and while you may get hurt you also never know how caught in total blissful love you might become either.

Suprising For Us But Never For Him

Luke 5:21-2621The Pharisees and the teachers of the law began thinking to themselves, “Who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” 22 Jesus knew what they were thinking and asked, “Why are you thinking these things in your hearts? 23 Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? 24 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” 25 Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God. 26 Everyone was amazed and gave praise to God. They were filled with awe and said, “We have seen remarkable things today.”

In my experiences people think one of two ways when someone is going through a tough time or they are horribly sick. One, that you must have done something horrid against God and are being punished or Two, that the devil is got a strong hold on you. Here’s what I think: whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. I’ve heard that a million times from my late Grams. I think, and believe me I’ve had my share of rough times, that yes bad things happen to good people but we can use these bad things as stepping-stones toward a glorious future.

The Pharisees didn’t think  Jesus had the authority but also they probably thought the guy that was sick deserved what he was getting even though were not told his faults. Jesus doesn’t say a word about the man either telling us through these words that whatever our sin if we believe and ask we will be forgiven and also its just between us and the Lord.

Luke 5:27-32 27 After this, Jesus went out and saw a tax collector by the name of Levi sitting at his tax booth. “Follow me,” Jesus said to him, 28and Levi got up, left everything and followed him. 29 Then Levi held a great banquet for Jesus at his house, and a large crowd of tax collectors and others were eating with them. 30But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law who belonged to their sect complained to his disciples, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?” 31 Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 32 I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”

Levi, which its reveled to be Matthew one of the chosen disciples and author of one of the gospels, was a tax collector and sinner extrodenare! YET… out of  the crown of  great religious leaders and powerful people Jesus goes to him and has dinner. Asked him to just pick up and “follow me” and he does without hesitation. WOW, what a testimony! And from the most unlikely character, I would have loved to see the look on those guys faces. The other were already following in the flesh but what about following with the whole heart? Jesus chose Matthew because of his heart and not his outward show to everyone.

People today do the same, some go to church (I’ve said it before) and talk the walk but never walk it themselves. So with this story before us in scripture is it truly so hard to believe that one who was a most grievous sinner would be the chosen one to lead a congregation back to the folds of the true church? One of the worst things we all do is think “we’re better” for one reason or another. Maybe because of our last name, or we have more money, perhaps what we should do is stand-off our pedestals for a moment and actually mingle and listen to “the worst ones of the bunch” because they might just teach us something.

Dear God,

Open my ears and heart to listen to the ones you sent with a message for us to learn more about how to live for you.

Amen

 

Knowing We’re Ready But Needing That “little” Push

John 2:1-5 ” 1 On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, 2 and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. 3When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.” 4 “Woman,why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.” 5 His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”

I don’t think Jesus knew he was ready. I know that obviously he knew what his job and goal was on earth for his heavenly father but I don’t think he truly knew that this particular time was “the time” for the first miracle. I think he was waiting for God to personally tell him that “now” was the time face to face. God did tell him though, through Mary his mother and face to face. God does that for us as well, using our parents, friends, loved ones maybe even our kids to tell us things we need to know or signs we need to listen too and he’s telling us face to face but we say we aren’t ready or that’s not the sign I’m looking for all along its God sending it.

When Mary says “they have no wine” I don’t take it as a minor observation. She turns right around and tells the servants to “do whatever he tells you”. I believe maybe they shared some looks between them, mother and son. She knew now was the time just as Jesus knew now was the time, he just was waiting for the right sign and didn’t take that as the one. He did in the end and we know this because he did in fact change the water into wine. Maybe it was the tone of Mary’s voice the look on her face that caused him to “know” now was in the time, even if at first he didn’t think it was.

How many of us say that all the time with the continual signs that are thrown in our faces? I’ve done it tons of times, waiting for God to personally come down and have a face to face with me. It’s the simple signs that are the easiest to overlook. If your missing them then just take a break from everything and everyone. Give yourself a time-out so to speak. Pray and be still and listen, the person that God is working through may just be the person you are ignoring most.

Dear God,

Help me to see the little things you put before me as the signs you’ve sent to help me along my path.

Amen

“Its The Devil Bobby!”

Bobby Boucher: “Everything is the devil to you, Mama! Well, I like school, and I like football! And I’m gonna keep doin’ them both because they make me feel good!” This is a quote from the movie “Waterboy” with Adam Sandler. I absolutely love it but I love Adam Sandler and anything he does is great in my book! So if you’ve never seen the movie let me sum it up for you..  Bobby Boucher lives in the Louisiana Bayou with his Mama, played by Kathy Bates, and is a few french fries short of a happy meal. Anyway that’s how it seems at the beginning. So it’s just him and his Mama and somehow he ends up playing football and going to college. Meets a girl, makes some friends, they have a problem and it all works out and they live happily ever after. But the one thing that gets me is the Mama is always telling him his whole life about how the “devil” is everything and in everything and he must just listen to her and just her because she knows what the “devil” is and what the “devil” isn’t.

I know I’ve heard this before. Some people think that the internet it the devil, maybe its drugs, too much tv? Perhaps its a combo of all the bad things we shouldn’t do. But hears my question, Who decides what or what is not the “devil”? My dad swears Facebook is the devil while others have led souls to Christ through that “devil”. My mom swears that some people are born with the “devil” inside them never able to get rid of it yet I’ve seen them change their lives and their souls live for God forever.

I think that while the devil exist in the world its the free will we have received from God that gives us the freedom to choose to follow the devil or follow Him. Each of us has our own devils to face and to fight if we choose to. My devil has had many faces just like our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ along with our Almighty Father from heaven has shown me many faces to help me fight my devils.
I have lived so far out of the warm and safe embrace of my Lord that I feared my devils would consume me. Death was immenate and so was my destruction. Not of my body but of my soul, although when the spirit starts to deteriorate so does the body. They seem to go hand in hand really, is there really surprise there since we were created in God’s image that when we turn our backs on Him that we as His creation begin to fall apart?

I have a brother that is going through a rough spot now and I sent him a text of encouragement. “Faith is hope that it will get better and loving God is just knowing your never alone.” Good words I thought for all of us. Whatever your devil is that your facing, whatever demon is trying hard to get you down stop right now and just pray. Pray to your Heavenly Father because just like the prodigal son in Luke 15:11-32 of the christian bible it truly doesn’t matter what you’ve done, He loves you so very much, has always loved you and will never stop loving you! He may not like the things you’ve done but just as a loving parent has unconditional love for the children they bore and raised so Our Heavenly Father is always there with open arms to take us back to the warm and secure embrace again!

Finding Jesus Is Easy, Its Finding Yourself That’s Hard

I’ve struggled this morning on this blog post trying to find the right words to say, I’ve been praying for days about it actually and then it just hit me so here it goes.

I grew up fundamental independent baptist, whatever that means. Seriously the baptist and Christianity in general have more flavors than Starbucks. As a teen I wrestled with not only who I was but also I had tons of spiritual questions as well. Why is the bible the word we go by? Who really wrote it and is there actually proof that it was not altered by men? Why are women viewed as second class citizens and why can’t I ask questions like that? I was turned away from the baptist religion for lack of understanding and teaching. So I went searching for an answer, and to fill the void in my heart but it wasn’t all spiritual, I had no clue what I really wanted out of life, but really who does at 19 yrs old?

I got a job, found a guy, got married young, had a baby and now was a stay at home mom. Okay so I knew what I was going for the rest of my life… motherhood. Not a bad job, my mom did a great job as I recall and its not like I had any intentions to go get a career type job or go to college so here I was and yet again thru myself into the baptist religion this time though as a mother and wife, not a teen with issues. It seemed though that I still had issues. Now how is that possible well with a non-believing, cheating, druggie husband how could I not have issues. I turned to God and still it was all about the “man” WHAT?!!!! More like whatever at that point in my life, so I started reading the bible for myself and found some things were different than what I was being told. Most preachers are like that, only tell what they seem to think you need to hear. So I started questioning again, feeling that need to fill the void. At the time I thought it was the void for spiritual enlightenment but my heart was hurting from a whole other reason.

I was divorced and a single mom when I started working at an insurance company and thought well I’ve lucked into this one and I think it could be a pretty good career for me. I went to the schooling, I got all my permits and licenses that I needed. Worked with some of the best people on the planet that to this day I miss dearly. I was in and out of church, had boyfriends once in a while but my main focus was my boy and myself. I thought I was doing pretty good with my life but there was still something missing. I still had questions about God and the whole picture along with some serious life delima’s and very dramatic situations.

So I fell in love, you know the type, head over heals 100% in love! Wow and it couldn’t have been better for me or my boy. We’d been best friends forever and already knew each other’s gruesome “love” history so it was actually perfect and everything just fit.

We ended up agreeing to have more children and with being pregnant and trying to work along with having a little one in kindergarten I was feeling the pressure. After 9/11 insurance got outrageous and it was just too stressful, I didn’t want to hurt people I wanted to help people! So I quit and yet again found myself as a stay at home mommy. I was happy with just tending to the farm and the children. As the youngest grew and I was at home with alot of thinking time I struggled with my spiritual questions and with the Internet at my fingertips I dove into theological studies. I looked up every religion I could google and then studied every aspect of it to find the answers to my questions. I found some pretty interesting links to them all and wondered why couldn’t we all just get along but then I realized that men in general find the need to play “king of the mountain” even as adults so that explains it.

The one spiritual path that pulled at me the most was the pagan path. The idea that God is both male and female does appeal to the feminist in me. I dove head first into learning everything I could. I spent alot of my time and $1,000’s of dollars to buy all that I needed to do the ritual’s, offerings, and ceremonies. The one thing was that I thought I was actually getting along with it all just fine, had my hubby, and kids, the religion of my choice but… yeah there was a but, hate it when that happens, dang!

I ended up pregnant for the third and final time wondering if I was going to loose the baby, I had already lost my grandfather and didn’t have a very good relationship with my father along with strained relations with my mother and step-father, whom we were living with and was my husbands father. I tryed every spell I could think of, even bought some on line, yeah I know waste of money, time and stupid. Hang on thought because I said there was a but!

After the birth of my last boy I wanted to find myself, or was I truly just someones mom and wife? What happen to me? My dreams, my hopes, my life? So I went to work at the local nursing home just to get away and yet again found myself working with some of the most wonderful people on the planet to this day I am still very close to some and love them dearly. So motherhood of three boys, a job, the stress of living with the parents and a strained marrage all along with my spiritual questions still and not finding the answer I was looking for. I was so ready to throw in the towel of life and just go away forever!

I ended up quiting my job and yet again found myself again “just” a stay at home mom. I wasn’t too happy with the thought of it but pulled up my big girl panties and just got over it. Yet I was still lacking something. I put away all my pagan stuff and began reading just regular old romance novels, grrrrrr baby! That’ll help the ole marrage relationship! Things were going great and even though there was still that “but” it was very silent. Then my gram’s died, wow did that blow my world apart!

I was so close to her, way closer to her than I am my mom. I contemplated all that I had learned spiritually and then got all my books out and dove into it all again trying to find the answer to a question that I had but didn’t really know what it was at all. I just knew I was searching for something. My sister had been on my butt about getting back together with our father, whom we’d had a severed relationship for 7 yrs and he had never meet his last two grandboys. So I decided by-gone’s and gave it a go.

That first summer we had a blast with my dad, my marrage was getting along terrific, we were getting along really well, I was still a nut and had my “questions” about life in general and actually deeper questions now that my gram’s was gone. But…. yeah there’s that but again, nasty little word always throwing itself into things!

That fall was when my back finally called it a quits and when I got into the therapy part of it I had alot of time on my own to think and read. With the pain I was in I had said every spell, called to every god and goddess I could think of, reaserched every thing I could to help me. My chropractor and his wife are good christian people, the ones that are far and few between. Not pushy just there. I found myself contomplating talking to God again but I had gone so far away from Christianity how in the world would I do it?

One day as I was strapped into my therapy session, I was all alone that day and having a very painful day. I cryed, I really tryed not to but everything just came to a head that week and with this I just couldn’t handle it anymore so I cryed. As I looked out the window I found myself thinking of Our Holy Father and just broke down and prayed. I prayed for forgivness of all that I had done against Him. I prayed He heal me and if I was to truly go on the path of Christianity again to show me a very clear sign!

I put up all my pagan books and things again and didn’t tell a soul. As far as anyone was concered I was a pagan still even though I was living a christian, so I was a closet christian, LOL. I have to laugh at that as it sounds so very wrong and messed up. My therapy went on along with the entire summer and then right before the holiday’s my middle boy came to me and asked me to read the bible to him and how excatly do you get to heaven. WOW I thought, Lord when you give a sign, you really give a sign!

My two youngest were saved that night and my while my oldest was saved as a young one such as them he is up for listening to all we teach and read, and yes even pray. I prayed a rededication to Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ along with His and Our Holy Father to live my life as He see’s fit to live 100% for Him and for Him to help me be the type of wife, mother and woman He would have me be. The next morning I felt awake, like a weight had been lifted. As if all the questions I had been searching for had just been answered, I for once in my life felt peace spritually and that was one of the most wonderful feelings that you can feel.

I went out and bought a bible, I perticuarly like the NIV over the KJV just because Shakespere is a little hard for me to grasp. As I’ve been reading bible studies and diving into the written word of God I’ve found out that its just so much easier to pray to God for Him to just handle it all and then the fact that you only need one book.

So my oldest whom has grown up with my openminded pagan way of thinking is blown away at the fact that I can just change overnight in my thought. It wasn’t overnight I explained as you’ve well read, it was over years and many thoughts that I ended up to my final place in my path to enlightenment. We all have that road to journey. I did find my way back to Jesus and it was easy, he was hiding behind the couch the whole time. Me, well I’m close but I’m still searching for myself but… don’t worry this one’s a good but, I’m very happy with the journey I’m on now. I don’t know what’s around the bend but i’m still on the road and I’ll get there when I do and I’ll just take one step at a time and get there just when I’m supposed too.

Everyone of us has our own journey to travel. I don’t like pushy travelers, your road is your own and you don’t need to tell another what shoes to wear.

I’m very happy in Our Lord and in my life, I love everyday and find great joy in my boys and have a love I never thought possible in my husband. My wish, hope, and prayer would be that you would find the same. Give life a chance, make the most of what you’ve been given in this world. You may not be given much but as Jesus points out in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John…. You are so worth it, and your giving in any shape or form is most welcome.

Three Herniated Disks And A Pinched Sciatic Nerve

That’s what I was told over a year ago one Jan morning at the local clinic after getting the MRI results back. I had been having problems with my lower back for years and having children just didn’t help but what do you do, right. As I’m thinking of how exactly to tell my story I almost have to laugh at the thought that it might just come across as an info-mercial. YUCK! I sooooooo do not wanna do that, I know I hear enough of that crap and seriously hate it when you’ve spent hours and hours at your computer screen to hopefully find an answer to only reach the bottom and realize you must “buy” something they’re selling before you get the “real” secret then when you do buy it, well the secret is that they just took your money and are getting rich off it. Grrrrrr!

Well I’ll try really hard to NOT sound like an info-mercial. I’m not selling anything, & not promoting anything. I’m simply telling my story. I had all these problems and they were telling me surgery, but I told them NO. I did find another way and YES it did cost money but so was the surgery, I just didn’t like the idea of being cut open if I could help it.

I have scoliosis. Have had problems for years. The more babies I carried the worse my back got. I just didn’t realize how bad until I let it go too far. I don’t have insurance and don’t qualify for state help so I’m in health care limbo and on my own to pay for everything. So you don’t go unless your dead or dieing!

Over the years my back would give out, bring me to my knees and painfully for a few days to a week I’d have to have help getting around. I never really worried about it because I could always go back to normal so to speak after a couple weeks. There wasn’t any bad pain, just discomfort really.

I wanna say around the summer of 2009 I really started to notice a problem. My periods were more intense and it didn’t take much to kill my back. I was just getting along though and with no insurance and the pain wasn’t “that” bad and I just didn’t want to be a burden.

It was that fall, around Thanksgiving that my back finally said loud and clear, “THAT’S IT I’M DONE”

From then till Christmas I just took it slow but slow wasn’t good enough. I was in pain and the normal week or so wasn’t cutting it. I was using the walker here at home and the cane when I went out. The holiday’s were close approaching and my husband was getting more and more worried. He was begging me to go see a doctor but I was stead-fast in the attitude of after the holiday’s because if it was something major I wasn’t ruining Christmas for the kiddos.

January 1st came and went and I was worse than ever. My husband was having to help me in and out of bed, the had to bathe me, he had to help me get dressed, and assume all the parental responsibilities for himself. I couldn’t sit, stand, lay down, or even go to the bathroom without being in pain. He finally set his foot down and made me go the the doctor.

I went to our local clinic and they started with steroids and supped up ibuprofen. They took xrays and couldn’t find a thing. They sent me to get an MRI. That was a little scary, never had one before and here I was only 34 almost 35 yrs old and I’m getting around like an 80 yr old. I cryed, and I cryed alot. Not so much from the pain but I wasn’t able to live and take care of my kids, my family and that was killing me more so than the pain.

The MRI showed 3 herniated disks and the lowest one was so bulged it was pinching the left sciatic nerve. I had little feeling in my left foot anyway and the doctor told me that I was to get some cortisone shots then after a few weeks or months if things were still bad then back surgery was the only way to go. I cryed yet again. He also told me that the nerve damage was so great in my leg that I would never regain my foot as it was ever again and that if I didn’t act soon, like in the next 6 months or so, then I could loose my leg. WHAT?!!!!! I was devastated, here I was supposed to be in the prime of my life and it was already over? So I cryed and felt sorry for myself. Then I went home and did what I do best, one ~ never give up, and two ~ google it!

I looked up those cortisone shots and then called the office that did them. HOLY COW!!!! It was going to be a series of 3 shots two weeks apart at $2500 a pop! If that didn’t work then I was looking at a back surgery, which I called and asked about, at about $30,000 without complications. Geez I could buy a house with that money! There was also no guarantee that it would work or that I’d keep my leg and I’d never have my foot back to normal. Again I was devastated, and I cryed. I’m not a cryer and I don’t give up easy but this was my biggest mountain yet to face in my life and it was really getting to me.

I started taking it out on my kids, my husband who was by the way the most wonderful and generous man ever to care for me and our children day in and day out. He did the outside chores then came in and did the inside ones, fixed supper some days and just gave 110% and more. He just wanted me to be better. Every part of our marriage was effected and still he had a smile on his face everyday just being there for me and telling me that it would all get better, for me not to give up.

My mother in law works for a chiropractor and had mentioned another chiropractor that is also a spinal restorationist. I was like okay, I’ll bite but how much is it? And seriously he’s going to “fix me” without surgery? Whatever. So I did what I always do, “google”. I did find his website and read how with spinal manipulation along with acupuncture, adjustments, and some at home exercises it might actually help. I told my husband of the difference physically. We did not know the price yet but we did go with the knowledge of the price of surgery.

I made an appointment with the chiropractor/spinal specialist and when my husband took me over. I couldn’t hardly walk, I couldn’t open the door, it hurt tremendously to sit in a chair, & I couldn’t lift my left leg. I’m sure I looked like the hunchback of notre dame and in the worst pain of my life. I had had two c-sections, and also an abscessed tooth, this pain made both of them put together like a minor ankle twist. They always ask you “on a scale from 1 to 10, 10 being the worst, how bad is your pain” Well lets just say this at my worst point I actually considered putting my hand into the pan of grease as I fried chicken because I thought maybe I could take away the pain of my leg. I’d say that’s a 10 loud and clear!

I yet had more xrays and I’m thinking at this point could I start glowing? I mean how many xrays is too many? He gave me some all natural pain reliever herb mixtures and I slowly was to do away with the muscle relaxers and heavy pain killers. I then did a two week trial that consisted of muscle stimulation therapy, acupuncture, “the rack” as I like to call it, you strap yourself on and flip upside down, and regular adjustments to my spine as I could handle (which wasn’t much at all).

We came in after a couple of weeks for our evaluation and he told us how he could fix my spine and how much it would cost, both in price and time. The price would be $4,200 the time would be about 6 -9 months and at home exercises too. I would go to his office for therapies 3 times a week for at least 6 months to start with. YIKES! Talk about a time taker and the gas money, its about 40 miles give or take from my house there. Well my husband and I talked about it and we decided it was worth a shot not only for the money but also the time. So for the price of a cortisone and a half I was getting fixed? Like I said it was worth a shot, no pun intended.

My husband, thankfully was laid off at this time, took me 3 days a week and so started my road to recovery. It was painful. I cryed alot. I never gave up, and my hubby was there the whole time. My boys missed out on their whole summer due to my therapy and then I just added less time to the whole factor for my husband that was doing everything already. As I’ve said we live with our parents so my mother helped in the evenings and on weekends when she wasn’t working.

I meet some very nice people and talking with others and hearing their journeys help me along mine. The first couple of months I thought I was wasting my time because the pain was still there but what was pointed out to me is that my pain while still there and running my life had lessened to a 7 possible high 8. I’d say the biggest turning point was when my pain had reduced to about half and I drove for the first time in 7 months since all this had started back in November.

So my first day driving and I have a car accident! Yup that’s right, I truly couldn’t believe my luck. Here I’ve gone through all this already and I have a car accident? Well that’s just great!!!! I was making a left turn to come home after a cousin’s baby shower, getting ready to turn onto my road when the big truck behind me wasn’t paying attention and saw me at the last minute and hit my drivers side and sent me and my mom into the ditch. Metal crunching and glass breaking is not something I’ll soon forget. I was frozen, my mom was frantic as she kept thinking just how bad my back just got again. I called 911 and en route to the scene was my brother one of our local volunteer fire and rescuers. I can’t imagine the emotion it caused him to come onto a scene and it be your own family. On top of that my husband along with his father and our boys had come when my mom called them. Along with my mom I was terrified to move and get out of the car, like I could anyway. The drivers door had been smashed in and they almost had to get the jaws of life out to get me out. So all secure I was hoisted out of the car and into the ambulance off to the hospital to have yet again, more xrays. The whole time I was so worried but never cried, that is until I got to the ER and was left alone. It was about 45 mins before my husband could get to me so I had time to actually accept it all and replay that left turn in my head about a million times. I can tell you now that Nascar doesn’t really appeal to me all that much.

Xrays and about 6 hrs later they released me with whiplash and a bruised head and elbow but nothing major. AWESOME! I was so very thankful about that and seriously couldn’t wait to see the look on my chiropractor’s face when I told him.

The accident happened on a Saturday and so the next Monday I walked into his office and told him. He was floored and at first didn’t believe me because I wasn’t really that bad, just minor discomfort. So yet again, more xrays and I had to ask him seriously how many xrays is “too many”? At my surprise you can actually have like a hundred or more and for the amount I have had if I’d had any cancer cells they’d be toast. Weird but cool. Okay so what did they show, what did the accident do to throw off my therapy? How far am I going to be set back? To both the doc’s and my surprise not much really. He was blown away at how well my back stood up to the jolt really. So I needed a few more adjustments, some muscle therapy and deep tissue massage for the whiplash but that was pretty much it. Cool!

After the accident therapy I got back to my regular therapy. Slowly but surely I kept getting better and better. It wasn’t fast and it wasn’t easy. As I write this, to this day I still go over every 3 weeks to keep up with my spine staying where it should for a while. I also do yoga everyday ( okay I don’t do it everyday but I’ll tell ya what, the day’s I don’t do it I more than feel it). I also invested in the Wii fitness with the balance board and it has really helped too. I walk about an hour or two each morning, that helps tremendously. My journey is not over. I still have a road to travel but I can tell you this.

My pain is completely gone! I have full feeling in my foot and full use of it as well as my leg. I can run, play with my boys, drive where ever I want, sit, stand, walk, lift (to a certain extent, of course), I’ve also rearranged rooms, flipped mattresses, and the hubby’s happy too.  All without surgery! Now I still have a tough day once in a while and the rainy days don’t help but the doc did say that while he’s straighten my spine the damage is still there so I have arthritis discomfort but that over the excruciating pain is a cake-walk.

I share my story for those that are going thru the same thing that might want to know if there is another way to heal than man made drugs and being cut open. I hope this helps you.

Loved Ones Missed But Not Yet Gone

Do you have that family member that doesn’t come around? Maybe something in the family happened and now they are shunned. Or maybe its you that has been shunned for something that you did or didn’t do.

I am both. Have been shunned and have shunned. Why? The latter is because of hurt and following the crowd. I wonder then if that is why I’m being shunned? If I have hurt people, loved ones in general then I am so very sorry for this. I ask forgiveness for all that I have done. For the ones I have shunned: you are forgiven for everything you have done or are doing.

God tells us to forgive one another as He forgives us. So if we hold that grudge and don’t forgive we are sinning against God. Judge not the bible says! Not one sin is greater than the other! I’ve read all of that. Have you?

So if we shun a family member for something they did, weather or not we feel it is most gravous it is not our place to do so. It is the Lords. Is thier sin greater than ours? I think I’ve also read something about casting stones and removing the plank out of your own eye so you can see clearly then to help your loved one out with the grain of sand in thier’s.

All of us need to be a little more forgiving to others, we’re all the same here on earth. Especially if we’re family!

I forgive all those that have hurt or continue to hurt me. Because you hurt me, proves I still care and love you very much.

Just Keep Swimming!

My youngest who’s almost 5 and  my middle one who just turned 8 think that they can go all over the field and play without Mama’s watchful eye. They told me they are too big now for being watched. So I stay close to the door and have both ears on them! As I hear blood curtaling screams and go running. I am  greeted by two smiling faces that are now laughing because I came running. They said they were fine. I asked why the scream. They didn’t seem happy that I was there too quick because they had to let me know again they are too big now for a Mama to always be there. I asked what they were playing. Storm chasers and the last tornado almost sucked them up! NOT FUNNY on soooooo many levels! UGH and my babies are growing up! And I suppose I’ll just have to let them. Its so hard though and I have to almost have a “Finding Nemo” theme here because like Marlin I just don’t think my little nemo’s are ready yet! But as they keep telling me as long as we “just keep swimming” we’ll be fine.

We Farm, We Don’t Vacation!

Gerald O’Hara : It will come to you, this love of the land. There’s no gettin’ away from it if you’re Irish.

Gerald O’Hara: Do you mean to tell me, Katie Scarlett O’Hara, that Tara, that land doesn’t mean anything to you? Why, land is the only thing in the world worth workin’ for, worth fightin’ for, worth dyin’ for, because it’s the only thing that lasts.

That’s two of my favorite quotes from the movie “Gone With The Wind”. Scarlett is flighty and just wants to move away constantly, hates the farm and living at home ( I can sympathise). Her father, Gerald, is always trying to get her to see the bigger picture.

I’ve spent alot of the years here wishing I was somewhere else, hating everything to do with the farm, always making excuses to everyone, especially family as to why we just can’t make something or that we can’t plan the party they want or why did we say we were going to at the last minute back out. Maybe at times only one person from our house showed up at a wedding or funeral and that made you pissy. Maybe your upset because we won’t plan a day getaway from dawn to dusk.

We’ve had alot of family quit having anything to do with us over time and quit inviting us to anything, those family member would be what we country people call “city folk” and you will never understand the love of the land, the love of the animals that we put above ourselves. We will skip Christmas if our animals need us, and we raise our children to respect them just as much. Our kids are spoiled and we do all buy gifts all through the year, but it just might be that year that a holiday has to wait for the next day or so because when you live on the farm, poopy-doo happens.

My father in law is a bit of a….well drover comes to mind, a person who moves animals over long distances in Australia. In the movie “Australia” Hugh Jackman plays the drover and my father in law is just as hard on us to keep up and maintain as he is. Just like Katie Scarlett’s father, wanting us to see the love of the land and to fight with blood, sweat and tears to keep it! And that’s precisely what I’ve done over the last 10 yrs. I’ve come to see his love of the land and see it all through his eyes.

My wish would be to my family to understand our love, our passion to farm this land along with other land we will own in the future. No we will not ever have concrete plans with you, nor will we likely be on time to anything. We may at the last minute cancel and we won’t ever stay the night any where with you. Be mad if you want, but this is our life choice and while our family which is myself, hubby and children comes first the animals come second and everyone along with everything else come after.

THAT is farm living, every farmer knows that. City folk just don’t get it and that’s okay. I’m not asking you to get it, just understand our passion and way of living that’s different from yours.

So if your wondering if I’ll be there next week, well “we’ll see, just have to wait for that day to get here”. That’s the best answer I can give.

Forks In The Road, So Which Way Do I Go?

I could talk about Robert Frost poem, The Road Less Traveled, however my reason behind this particular pic is the crossroads and choices I have before me in my life at this precise moment. I feel almost torn apart inside and unable to make the decision. Oh I know I can make one, but I’m scared. I don’t want to have to make one. I want God to just clear the path for me and make it easier to walk the path. I want all the debris out of the way so I don’t have to get hurt while I’m on that path that I know I must travel now. I didn’t know before but today it has been confermed with a big loud sign and I fear that like Jonah if I don’t go to Ninivah the whale just might get me.(read the book of Jonah in the christian bible) Or perhaps I’m in the whale now?  In anycase, I’m scared. Okay so scared of what? I actually had this conversation with myself. Scared of the rude comments, the bad mouthing, the name calling, I’m scared of rocking the boat, of the ridicule, of the evil looks. Now what did Jesus go through? WAY more than that! I feel so guilty almost when I compare what I might just have to put up with verses what He actually went through. But then I feel that gentle hand of God on my shoulder lovingly telling me “its okay, i’ll wait for you, i’m here and your not alone”. So my prayer is this…. Dear God, just be with me and never let me go! give me the strength to do what you will and help me move the unmoveable mountains in my life! Amen