Posted in Self Help

Out of Touch

Can we be honest?

I’m not going to lie! Lately, I’ve been a little out of touch because I have been wrestling with staying upbeat. I mean I’ve been super busy with family and kids and life, but who can’t say that?

Hubby mentioned the other day he hadn’t seen a blog post in awhile. Yeah, it’s true. I have been off the grid a little more than normal, but actually, I kind of like it. It’s hard to be social and happy while grappling with the weights on your shoulders.

Not that cancer isn’t enough of a nasty curve ball, but this crazy pandemic, a country divided, all the hate and evil amongst us.

What happened to us?

What happened to the free and the brave?

What happened to our America the Beautiful?

It’s shameful the only unity we have is we take life for granted. Think about that for a minute.

Well, unless of course you’re dying or terminally ill.

Do you realize ALL the people who are dying of cancer?

I bet those people don’t abuse the life they were given, wasting it away on fighting with their neighbors.

Life is much easier in a bubble.

I’ve never thought of myself as socially shy. I don’t have a problem talking to people, but I do have a problem pretending. And, I do get social anxiety. It takes a lot of effort to put on a smile and pretend I am mentally strong. It takes energy to make everyone believe I am OK when I’m not.

I AM mentally strong. Some days I just don’t want to be.

Living with cancer in your household is emotional. It’s a roller coaster, ups and downs, twists and turns. Even when it’s not front and center, it’s there lurking. Just a thought away, a reminder somewhere you turn.

You live with it, without a choice.

All.

The.

Time.

I am learning to manuever that obstacle. For myself, to support my children, my hubby. I’ve learned if I don’t take care of ME, there won’t be enough to go around.

Family is priority so I hope no one takes it personally when I decline an invite, or seem disengaged, or silent. Sometimes our schedule doesn’t allow for socializing, and other times we would love to hang out. And sometimes, we just aren’t up for company.

It has been a hard few months. Cancer just took one dear soul from us. I know people who recently got diagnosed. I know lots of people who are fighting. And, it all hits too close to home.

There’s a daughter taking a last minute trip to see her dad who is fighting for his life. There’s a mother counting down the debilitating chemo treatments she takes her terminally ill son to every couple of weeks. There’s a wife in the cancer center who is puzzled about how her husband got mesothelioma but was never exposed to the contaminants. There’s the husband grieving for his wife, the children who lost their mother, the women who lost their best friend.

None of them have a choice.

I look at my children, my husband and then in the mirror at myself.

It’s difficult to cope some days, and I can sense the world wanting to crumble around me. All the suffering and pain just floods my head to the point I feel like I’m drowning in it. My head hurts. I’m tired. No energy. No will to do anything.

Some days it’s too much. But, that’s not every day. I’m not going to set up camp there.

Some days are good. Some days I’m motivated and have the drive to conquer the world.

Some people tell me not to focus on all those situations or not to be a part of those cancer groups because it just makes me upset. What they don’t realize is what else it does to me.

It helps me NOT feel so alone.

Summer has been good for me in the sense I can just focus on my family and stay out of any kind of scene. It’s a good distraction to be able to listen to the ocean, sit out and soak up the sun, hang out with my family. It’s been good to make the most out of a bad time in our country by us all just being together.

Some days I’m happy to not share anything or feel vulnerable. I don’t mind sharing when I have my head on straight and the energy to help others; however, when a battle is going on inside my head, it’s hard to help myself much less anyone else.

Sometimes it’s just easier to cope when you stay out of touch.

“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”

Matthew 7:13-14
Posted in Cancer

JULY – Sarcoma Awareness Month

Do you know what sarcoma is?

When hubby was first diagnosed with cancer it was sort of a shock to hear the long technical name for what he had.

I was like what? What is that?

Then, the doctor began to explain sarcoma is a soft tissue cancer. It was hard for me to wrap my brain around it. My mind was trying to process what I was being told, but I couldn’t quite grasp that the cancer was in his soft tissue, not in his lungs, or liver, or pancreas or something of that sort.

Soft tissue? In my mind, I was thinking, that’s everywhere!

And, literally it can be.

Sarcoma tends to be found in the extremities, but it can be found anywhere in your body. It can be hidden in your abdomen, growing to watermelon size and go unnoticed. It can be in your bones, your blood vessels, your fat cells or any soft tissue.

And, it can literally be anywhere!

For me, the thought of that is a little mind-blowing.

Sarcoma doesn’t discriminate. Not against anyone or in any place.

Young children, teenagers, and elderly people can get it.

And, when they do most of them are in a fight for their life. I am not saying there aren’t survivors of this savage beast, but I feel most would agree it is a war.

There are many factors that contribute to prognosis and another hurdle lies in the fact there are so many subtypes of this disease. Subtype, location of the tumor, and whether the cancer has spread to distant places are all factored in when it comes to treatment and the plan of attack. And, sarcoma isn’t like other carcinoma cancers in the sense that it doesn’t usually respond well to traditional treatments such as chemotherapy.

For me, hubby’s cancer diagnosis was the scariest thing I’ve ever faced. It was like my life flashed in front of me, over and over, without a pause. On one hand I couldn’t believe it was real, couldn’t decipher my feelings, or think about it without stress, worry, tears.

Two years later, I have learned to lean on HOPE, trust that I am on the path I am supposed to be on, and accept some things that I don’t want to admit are reality. I am not going to lie and say it gets easier, that I don’t struggle sometimes daily, or my mind doesn’t wander to that question of Why?

I am not going to say I don’t worry, or stress, or wonder about the future. And, for anyone who believes that’s 100 percent achievable, well, I will let you get back to me about that. If I could shut my mind off, I would. If things could be different, they would be.

Unfortunately, life doesn’t work that way. Neither does cancer. It plays by its own set of rules. It may have ahold on hubby’s body, but it doesn’t have a hold on our minds. Unless, we let it.

For me, family, laughter, the ocean, and enjoying the simple things money can’t buy are about as good as it gets. Doing for my family and myself is priority. And, I’ve realized there’s not a lot of precious time for much else, especially when time may not be on your side. xo

Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. 17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, 18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”

2 Corinthians 4:16-18

To learn more about sarcoma cancer, research, or to donate click on the links below: https://gracelovebiscuits.com/sarcoma-2/ https://sarcomaalliance.org https://www.curesarcoma.org

Posted in Cancer, Family

What Cancer Has Taught Me…

Do you ever feel like you’re going in a million directions?

People used to say they didn’t know how I managed four young children. HA! I find that humorous nowadays.

Four teenaged/almost adult kids, now, that’s a challenge.

Unlike toddlers, their minds are developed. They’ve been exposed to the outside world. They have opinions and real attitudes. They eat more. They are young adults. They still need their mom, but they won’t always admit it.

And, we thought a toddler tantrum had convictions. (Insert laughing/crying emoji.)

Honestly, I love having them all home for the summer. I know those days are far and few between.

June 2018

But!

Some days I feel like I CANNOT get anything accomplished. My routine is out the window. Earlier this week, I spent the better part of the day helping everyone else. I cooked breakfast, I cleaned, I helped with some summer homework, I cooked dinner, and did a multitude of other things, mostly for everyone else. That pretty much took up the rest of the day according to my vague memory .

My weeks have been busy, but like today I cannot figure out what they have been consumed with. Many of my waking hours I feel like I am going through the motions.

And, not consistently in the most productive way.

I think I need a job, but honestly I wonder if it really is what I need. It’s not like I’ve been lying around on the couch all day eating bonbons or sunning on the beach.

I haven’t had an alone minute in I don’t know when.

Until today.

And, I’m behind.

On everything!

But, I’ve found myself fumbling to figure out what it is that needs to be done, first.

I realized a long time ago I thrive in chaos. That’s the reason I consistently volunteered for more than I should have, never learned how to say NO, and most likely why I had four children.

I like to be busy. Too busy!

But, CANCER has taught me a thing or two about all that.

When hubby got sick two years ago all my volunteering halted. I stopped all of it, immediately.

Part of me still wanted to do it, but most of me didn’t.

I wanted to do it for the kids involved, I wanted to do it to help my friends, but I didn’t want to do it for myself anymore.

For once I just wanted to do what I wanted to do, and was best for me.

If cancer has taught me anything it’s that life is too short. It’s too short to worry about all the petty things. It has taught me you can have everything you think you want and still not be happy. It has taught me who my real friends are, and to tighten my circle.

Cancer has taught me to never lose hope, believe in something, and ALWAYS just trust in the Lord because that’s all I really can do.

Cancer has taught me life is hard, an uphill battle, so get used to it. It has taught me to find JOY in every situation and look for the silver lining. It has taught me FAMILY is EVERYTHING, and we always stick together, no matter what.

Cancer has made me realize what’s important and what and who doesn’t matter at all. It has taught me who I can rely on and who I cannot. It has taught me what other people think, say or do doesn’t really matter to me. It has taught me I don’t need anyone’s approval or opinion. It has taught me some people don’t have a place in my world, and I’m OK with that. I’m sorry!

Cancer has taught me so much, but most importantly, cancer has made me realize how thankful I am for my children. I know the Lord knew what he was doing when He gave me four healthy babies.

I will protect them, fight for them, and support them. Always!

Against anything and anyone!

They may not always be perfect, but I love them.

And, they are mine. xo

“Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: ‘Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all.’”

Proverbs 31:28-29
Posted in Cancer

A Time to Mourn

The life of being married to a cancer patient has taken me down a path that has humbled me, exemplified my faith, strengthened me in more ways than I knew existed, and introduced me to people I would never have known otherwise.

Being a regular at the cancer center has acquainted me with the same familiar faces week after week, month after month. I have had some people touch my life who are gone now, but not forgotten. I have made friends I stay in touch with and wondered about others I never see. This illness has impacted my life in more ways than I can explain, but also, it has taught me there is more to life than what’s on the surface.

Much more.

I wouldn’t wish this journey on anyone, but knowing the people who are facing the same difficult obstacles brings a sort of comfort to the situation. It makes me realize none of us are fighting alone. We are all cheering each other on, and we are in this together.

When another cancer patient has a setback, we all experience the punch. We can relate. We feel it in the gut. It hurts.

We are rooting for the same results. Clear margins, remission, NED, a miracle. We are supporting each other, begging for success, hoping for clear scans, praying for a cure.

And sometimes, we don’t get it. Sometimes we lose, and all that’s left is grief.

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;”

Ecclesiastes 3:4

Grief is a funny thing. In all the sadness we look for sunshine. We search for the good and the happy and all the ways possible to figure out how to make our hearts not ache.

There are moments we feel we cannot breathe, or muster up enough strength to push forward. The minutes become hours and the hours run together with the days into a blur, living in the midst of a broken heart. There’s no glue that can fix that, or so we think.

Sometimes it is hard to see what is right in front of us. The people surrounding us that love us, grieve with us. Our precious children, our friends, our family. They all weep with us and for us when we lose someone we love.

It is hard to recognize in that instant we have moments and memories to fill the void. Sometimes we just need a minute to process it all, to mourn, to find peace, to be sad. Just for awhile we need to grieve for what we have lost.

I believe in all my heart grief has a silver lining. In my mind, in the very center of it there is a bright light. I imagine it to be the brightest light ever, one that isn’t blinding, that brings a sense of comfort and peace. One that warms my heart, brings a smile to my face, one that offers contentment and eases my mind, calms my heart and soul.

I imagine serenity will come in time. The sorrow will subside. The heart will slowly mend.

I pray for us all that the silver lining will always reveal itself and that in the midst of our grief the Lord will soothe our souls and give us the strength we need to go on. Today, I pray for all those who mourn. xo

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”

Matthew 5:4

Heaven gained a beautiful soul, an Angel today. It hits too close to home, but I was lucky to know her, to call her a fellow baseball mom, a friend, a great supporter. She undoubtedly gave me a comfort I never revealed to her, a courage, a sense of strength, and a feeling that I was never alone. I hated what she must be going through as a mother, a wife, a cancer patient, but from my perspective she was the epitome of strength, grace, and beauty. She comforted my soul, made my loneliness subside, and soothed my broken heart in some unexplainable way. Her and her family are like a mirror of mine, facing many of the same hurdles and pain on our individual paths. Many days I thought of her, prayed for her, and imagined we must each be able to relate to the other’s spouse during our separate journeys. Today, I pray for her family, her friends and all those who knew her. May she rest in peace. #sarahstrong #ocockstrong

Posted in Cancer

CANCER

Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”

Hebrews 11:1

What’s there to say?

Everyone dreads the word when they hear it. We all want to think positive thoughts, believe we can beat it, hope we will be the one to defeat the odds. But in the end is that possible?

Really, what’s there to say?

My heart is broken. It breaks a little bit more every time I hear about someone I know having cancer, sickened with cancer, their body weakening or suffering from this horrible disease that seems to run rampant throughout our lives.

Every time I hear of another prey, another sad story, another loss it hits closer to home. It eats away at me a little bit more.

Will it ever stop?

Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

Matthew 17:20

Many don’t realize cancer sets the stage. The effects of this monster wreak havoc on its victims, their families, and everyone around them. It creates complication after complication until a healthy figure is battered and wounded. Not only do they have to fight the cancer, but every complication that comes with it. Every new hurdle it creates.

Hurdle after hurdle. We fight one after another, with no end in sight.

At some point in this battle, I’m not exactly sure when, I realized this is the new way of life. It is a fight from here on out, one that we will battle no matter how tired we get. It’s like I hold my breath until the next scan, the next treatment, the next round. And, with every step there comes a new revelation.

It’s an emotional life to live.

Last night, I changed the bandage I change every night, tears filling my eyes as I know the healing is a distant reality if at all. My tears are for all..all those who suffer, all those I can relate to, and for my husband, our family.

Once cancer attacks you or your spouse or your child it is like it’s inside you. You are living with it, it’s in your house, and it is a constant reminder. It consumes every minute of your day, every thought. It steals your peace, tugs at your sanity, plays with your emotions. It hides, it attacks, it doesn’t play fair, and it has no empathy.

Cancer, you’re always on my mind. You exhaust me, drain me at times. You attempt to steal my joy, rob me of sleep, and fill me with worry. You are the devil on my back.

Maybe there is no escape, but I will not lose my faith. I will fight you until the end.

Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits— who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion.”

Psalms 103:2-4 

I pray for strength and healing and miracles. I pray for God to spare us from this battle. I pray for the others I know who are on this path. I pray for their families and for their souls. I pray for my husband, and I pray for my children. Many nights I fall asleep in the middle of my prayers, but I will still pray.

I will pray to the very end. And then, I will pray some more. xo

Posted in Devotional, Self Help

Helpless

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”

Mark 11:24

Do you ever just feel uneasy and can’t put your finger on why?

Lately, I have felt out of sorts in a way, but I can’t figure out the exact culprit. Maybe it’s a combination of things or maybe I’m just tired and overwhelmed.

When in my life have I not felt overwhelmed? It is hard to remember.

It seems to be a recurring role that I can’t rid myself of for one reason or another. I just keep hitting snags, unable to settle back into a rhythm.

Last year at this time, I would say I was in somewhat of a downward spiral. Not one of my finest moments in life, but sadly I was in a very critical place mentally and emotionally. I was a mess to say the least, and for the next few months I continued to descend.

It felt something like when you get to the top of that climb on a monster rollercoaster and feel as if you are going to stall that second before you are full speed ahead in a downhill fall. Gravity is tugging at you so hard you can’t pull yourself up or breathe.

The sad reality of it all is no one noticed.

No one.

Not my friends, not my family, not even the real me. Not until one night, when my hubby was smacked with a sudden truth about the trouble I was in.

I took myself to the doctor, multiple times, and I prayed for strength, multiple times. And, every day, every week, every month I was slowly able to pull myself back together.

I started my blog shortly after that, started taking better care of myself physically and mentally, eating healthier, exercising more, doing things I enjoy. I was in a very good place…and then the virus hit.

It has taken an extra mental effort to get through the last few months, but I am well aware of the struggle. I feel like the social distancing and other precautions were already starting to take place in our lives last year when chemo began. With the virus it was all of a sudden not a choice of when we should distance ourselves, but rather a constant of just having to do it.

Tonight, I was talking to a friend from the past who has been struggling with her own personal hardships for about the same two years as me. Different situations for us, but ironically some of the same harsh effects. Hers was sudden, where my situation is ever evolving.

I realized many of us are going through a variety of troubled waters these days resulting from different situations, but we are suffering from the same emotional and mental difficulties.

We all feel helpless. We all struggle. We all are heartbroken. And, we all have to find the strength to keep moving forward.

In these times, we cannot allow ourselves to slip backwards, to fall, or allow ourselves to suffer mentally. We just cannot.

And, I won’t. I have the strength, and I have the Lord to help me. I know that.

Pray for each other. Build each other up. Show support. And, most of all take notice when you know something just doesn’t seem right with those around you. Don’t ignore what’s staring you in the face.

We all have the opportunity to help someone, each other. And, sometimes we may be helping someone without even realizing it.

Like I always say…if you can help someone, then help them. The reward is far better than paradise.

And remember, if we all pray for each other, someone will always be praying for us. xo

Posted in Devotional, Family

“In Sickness”

When you said your wedding vows did you ever really think about the promises you were making to someone?

All these milestone anniversary celebrations I’ve been seeing on social media, along with hubby being ill and in the hospital, has me thinking about life and the responsibilities we take on.

Like me, many of you were probably young when you got married and 20 plus years later find yourselves quite a bit different than you were back then. I think we all change, mature, focus on different aspects of life, figure out what matters and what simply does not.

…to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part…”

Most of us said those “for better or for worse” vows and not once gave it a second thought. We never imagined that we would be anything other than happy, blissfully in love, and old and gray enjoying our grandchildren well into our 80s or even 90s. It never crossed our minds that we would go through bad times, hard times, worse times, or that one of us would have failing health and sickness.

I know on my beautiful wedding day, almost 28 years ago, the thought of dealing with “for worse” or “in sickness” didn’t enter my mind. I was marrying someone I loved, and we would live “happily ever after.” First, we would buy a house, then have kids, and it would be a perfect little life forever and ever.

That’s what I wanted to believe because every girl wants the fairy tale. Right?

But, in reality I had tucked any of those “for worse” thoughts way in the back of my mind, buried as fear that I hoped would never be truth. Problems wouldn’t plague us, we would always love each other the exact same, nothing would change, and we would stay in that fairy tale forever.

So I hoped.

Isn’t that just being young and naïve?

The thing is we really don’t know what we are in for when we take those vows. We cannot see what path life will take us down, nor the complications we will encounter. The choices we make, the chances we take, and the laws we live by will all have some sort of impact on us and our relationships.

But, when we are standing at the altar, staring in the eyes of the one we are about to say “I do” with, none of that stands in our way. We think we are prepared “for better, for worse, in sickness and in health.”

But, I promise no one is ever prepared for that. Not really.

We cherish the happy times and believe the better will outweigh the worse, but in reality life is hard and “for worse” is inevitable at some point. They say all’s well that ends well, but that’s not always the case either. We just have to believe God has a plan for us, and trust our life happens the way He intends it.

Just as everyday life seems to have no normalcy for society these days, my life has been on that course for awhile. I have been learning to live in the path God has designed for us and my “for better or for worse” vows are something I remind myself of often.

We all are guilty at some point or another thinking we have it so bad, until we really do. But, the truth of the matter is someone out there always has it worse. On some days, I feel I am the friend who has it worse, but in reality I know that belongs to someone else.

In spite of all the sickness, the pain, the heartbreak, the tears, the worry, the inevitable….In spite of all of that, I am blessed and grateful for my own health, my children, my family, my memories and all the “for betters” I have in my life. There are so many happy memories, so many good times, so many blessings, so, so many. And, I am grateful for each of them.

When you are feeling down, think about your own “for betters,” your health, your riches, your love, and everything you cherish. They far outweigh anything you can imagine. Don’t lose sight of them, don’t take them for granted.

You made those promises, but you were never promised which ones life would give back. xoxo

Posted in Cancer, Devotional

Helpless

Do you ever feel helpless?

I find myself feeling helpless often these days. The unknowns, the whys, the hurdles. All of it just keeps mounding.

With every page we turn, we encounter another issue. Every phase presents us with another obstacle.

I guess I always believe if we can get through one hindrance the situation will get better. In reality, each barrier just introduces an unfamiliar stumbling block, and we start over in a different direction.

The sadness to all the realities we face is one day the barrier will deal us an impediment we can’t get around, and we will run out of new directions.

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. The righteous person may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all.”

Psalm 34:18-19

I know all my prayer warrior friends are disappointed in my weakness, but life got a little more real for us this week and sometimes the thought of that is just too much. Those serious heart to hearts on the two-hour drive home from the Cancer Center prove to leave me with a lump in my throat, an ache in the bottom of my stomach and an ocean of uncried tears.

I’m sorry, but if you haven’t walked in my shoes please don’t judge me. Don’t tell me how to feel, or tell me to pray harder or give me that wise piece of advice. Just for a selfish minute let me wallow in my own self pity.

Let me feel bad for myself. Let me be negative. Let me question God. Just for a minute let me be.

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

Isaiah 55:8-9

Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

Hebrews 4:16

Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.”

Philippians 2:12-13

Posted in Cancer, Self Help

Hurry Up and Wait

Jan 16, 2020, morning

I sit here tonight in solitude. The house is so quiet as if sound has escaped existence. It is a peaceful quiet at first, but I have a feeling of restlessness inside. The noiseless night makes me uneasy and allows the darkness to creep up into my thoughts. Scanxiety has set in as scans are only a week away.

Is my uneasy mind justifiable or just nerves shaking my sanity?

I close my eyes and breathe in deeply in hopes of exhaling all the negative emotion. Only one week to get through this leg of the journey before we set out on another unknown. I sense my peace…out there lurking in the shadows desperately searching for my soul. Somehow it will find it’s way to me. 

 Jan 16, 2020, evening

Today, was somehow a somber day. I could feel hubby’s uneasy mind in the room. He sat there and stared off into the morning, and I watched and wondered what thoughts filled his mind. One week until we discover the next journey. Some days I wonder what thoughts consume him. I worry he will tire of the fight and simply take the hand he is dealt without a thought to trade the cards. It wears on my mind, this journey. Giving up only means you’ve extinguished your options, or they’ve annihilated you. I pray for strength and positivity. This has to be just a wind in the road, doesn’t it?


As I look back on my journal entries, nearly four months ago, I realize I am in the midst of another wind in the road. This long road is taking me on a journey I don’t know how to navigate, yet I am here staying within the lines, doing the best I know how.

Familiar scenes surround me, yet they are still foreign to me. I will never get used to the unwelcoming landscape, no matter how hard it tries to consume me.

I sit and wonder why I am where I am. What is the purpose God has for me on this path?

Some days I can ease my own mind knowing it is my fated trek, but on other days like today I am anxious to know the why. I know we are supposed to trust the Lord to lead us, but I can’t help my soul is restless.

At times, it is hard to live and go through life not knowing what the purpose of it all is and the reasoning behind it. Maybe I am heading down a dead end with all my inquisitiveness, but sometimes my subconscious can’t let it go.

I know my journey has a purpose unknown to me, and someday it will reveal itself just like a clear day.

Until then, I must wait patiently and trust God will see me through.

Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’

Isaiah 41:10
Posted in Family

Happy Mother’s Day, With Love

13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”

1 Corinthians 13:13

I have loved being a mother since the day I set eyes on my baby girl 22 years ago. Yes, it is hard to believe I myself have been a mother 22 years, and the fact I am old enough to have children even older than that is astounding to me. Nonetheless, I am.

Having four children has, hands down, given me the biggest accomplishments, while at the same time giving me the most difficult job, the most heart warming moments, the most joy, the most anxiety, the most heart break, the most laughs and the most tears.

Motherhood has offered the best times of my life, as well as some not so easy times. It has been a journey filled with love, learning, self awareness, acceptance, defeat, sadness, joy, maturity, realizations and lessons.

I would like to be able to say being a mother has been pure bliss, a happy, joyful journey with the best days of my life and nothing less. If I am truthful being a mother HAS been all of that, along with some heart breaking, some painful, and some difficult days as well.

For me, motherhood is without a doubt the best part of my life, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. I am so blessed to have four wonderful children who have made my family complete.

I would not trade any part of the journey, good or bad. The joy far outweighs the bumps in the road, and I will love them all the same until the day I die.

None of us are perfect, and we don’t live in a perfect world. Life is not always kind, but that adversity teaches us it is up to humanity to make it better and resist all the bad around us. As mothers we hate to see our children suffer, but it is our job to guide them on how to navigate the path even when it’s a difficult road.

I have always taught my children to be kind to others, don’t judge a book by its cover, or treat others harshly just because your peers may. We never know how people are living and it doesn’t hurt to just be nice to everyone. And, if people don’t bring happiness to your life than distance yourself from them.

I was so proud the other day when my youngest son, who I know has heard me tell my older children exactly that a million times said he just distances himself from people who bother him. It’s the little moments like those that make me feel worthy, like I’m not treading water, and they are actually listening.

I constantly tell my older children, “You don’t have to always do what I say, but you do have to listen to what I have to say.” I call that respect. And, if my own mother (and father) taught me anything, it is to respect your elders.

Many times I feel like the way I grew up and the way my parents were raised is obsolete in today’s society. Call it old fashioned or whatever you like, but I call it essential. As someone once said, if your children don’t learn to respect their parents growing up, they will never respect anyone. There is so much truth in that statement, and I have tried to raise my kids around that exact theory.

If nothing else, no matter where life takes them, I hope they will remember and live by those standards. I am hopeful they will invariably know how much I love them, even though at times they don’t agree with what I think or have to say. I pray they will remember what I have taught them and forever love and respect me.

6 Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.

Proverbs 22:6

This is the first Mother’s Day in awhile I will have all my children together, in one house. I am so thankful and excited to spend it with them.

These days I relish every moment we spend as a family celebrating holidays and special ocassions. I don’t take any moments for granted like I have in the past, that things will always be the way they are.

At times, I have forgotten how precious this life is and how quickly it can all change. I worry about my children just as much now that they are becoming young adults (if not more) as I did when they were little. It seems as they grow the worries become bigger and life gets harder for all of us.

I regret I can’t share this Mother’s Day with my own mother, who taught me how to be a wonderful cook among other things, and my aunt who is like a second mother. Both of them have shaped my life and taught me so many different qualities that established the woman I am today. I am so thankful for both of them, and I know they understand how your heart can be heavy when you worry about the burdens your adult children face.

Regardless, of where they may be, they are in my heart forever.

I wish all the mothers out there a wonderful, special day. And, especially for those mothers who are fighting cancer along side their child right now…you have extra love and prayers for many more celebrations with them. xo

13As one whom his mother comforts, So I will comfort you; And you shall be comforted in Jerusalem.”

Isaiah 66:13