“It Was The Love”
Lots of things have taken place of late (since March). All have been quite emotional and has taken me on quite the journey of soul-searching and learning.
Without notice, my employer laid several people off – and I was included in that group. My supervisor called me while I was on vacation to break the news to me. The layoffs were effective immediately.
I found myself having to work through quite a few emotions during that time. I’ve been laid-off before…but this one hit me a little differently. If you have read previous posts – you know that I’ve struggled to get back on my feet after the divorce. I literally had nothing financially – I was living paycheck to paycheck. The day that I got the call was also a payday. And that was the day I had been working towards – I FINALLY got out of that dreadful financial hole and was looking forward to breathing a little easier – until I got the phone call, that is.
So, needless to say, it took the wind out of my sail – as the saying goes. I was devastated. I found myself starting to worry about what I was going to do. I was also a tad bitter. You see, I was the ONLY person in my entire department who was cross-trained in all other positions. Therefore, it didn’t make sense that I was one of them to go. I learned later that the decisions were strictly on a whim made by the owners who had no real clue as to who did what….rather they went with the good old ‘seniority’ excuse. Hmph! I also have some other emotions tied up in this – but I choose not to dwell on them and therefore, I won’t bother with them here.
For the most part – I only allowed myself to ‘grieve’ my loss for 3 days. No more. No wallowing allowed. I immediately started the process for filing for unemployment (which I have never done before) and job searching.
I was given a small severance package of 4 weeks’ pay when I was laid off. So – God took me on a journey of trust and faith. Not knowing how long I might be unemployed – I didn’t want to take a chance of losing my home. So I took the severance and was able to completely pay off my mortgage (no, the pay wasn’t that huge….I was just that close to being finished with the note). That left just enough to get me through about a month if I was careful.
During this time, I completely kept my eyes on my Savior and trusted Him fully to take care of me and my son. It was actually a very pleasant and healing time for me. My health improved. I relaxed for the first time in ages. It was wonderful!
It all came to a close WAY to quickly for me! But exactly to the day that I ran out of money (unemployment had not kicked in yet) – I started a new job – though the pay was considerably less than I was making in my previous job. This is as I suspected – I was going to have to accept a lower paying job because they just aren’t paying around here anymore. But I’m so grateful that it all worked out. I thank God for always taking good care of me/us!
I must admit though – I find myself feeling a little down from time to time. Some people will not understand this next part – but it is how I feel. You see, I have always thought that I would marry and have a husband who took care of me and our family. Again as you know if you have read other posts here – that has not worked out for me. That still saddens me. Don’t get me wrong – I am not a gold digger or anything. But I sure didn’t think that I would be in the position that I am now, at my age, in having to take a job because of money and the need to make ends meet rather than because I love it. And honestly…..I’m tired of being the one to carry that burden.
Another emotional roller coaster I’ve been on lately – is the care of my son this summer. I’ve always had him in an excellent childcare facility during the summer. My daughter went there when she was young as well. However, with all of the above-mentioned issues – I simply am not in a position to pay for the childcare this year. My ex-husband is the type of person to cut costs no matter what – so I could not count on him to take up the slack. He did however agree to keep our son this summer. You see, he now owns his own computer repair business.
Under normal circumstances – this would be a perfect solution. But – in reality what that means is that my dear 8 year old son will be sitting in front of a computer monitor day in and day out for 9+ hours each playing some pretty graphic military computer games (that I do not approve of). There is no talking to the ex about this – been there, done that. He won’t listen nor cooperate.
In addition to that, my daughter and her husband have made the decision to move out of town. Initially, I was excited for them – believing that they have so many more opportunities there than here. As a matter of fact, if it weren’t for my father living here – and my not wanting to leave him alone – I would probably live down that way too.
But now, with one week left to go before the big move, I am finding myself feeling lonely and sad already. Yes, I know, I know….it’s to be expected. As a matter of fact, I did the same thing when I was her age – except I moved out of state. I remember my dad calling me once to ask me to call more often because my mom was down in the dumps all of the time. I did. And I made it about 5 years before I came back to Texas…to home.
And finally….though I do not ever want to complain about what God has provided….I find myself feeling down about my new job. It seems that a majority of the people there are unhappy employees. I have worked in that type of atmosphere before and don’t care to do it again. It is too emotionally draining. I keep telling myself that it is simply people struggling to adjust to growing pains of the company and to change. But the longer I’m there….the harder it gets to keep saying that. So I pray that God will lead me….that He will guide me in the direction I should go.
On a positive note though:
One: It’s Memorial Day weekend! Woohoo! May God bless all of our military – those who protect us now and those who have protected us in the past. Thank God for all who have served and died.
Two: It has been raining for 3 days now! We have been in drought conditions for a few years now – so this has been a great blessing! They say we would need 18+ inches within the next 6 months to pull us out of the drought – which is doubtful……but hey, at least it’s a start!
Take care….see you next time!
Movies. I have watched a couple of movies recently that really touched me. Movies that had me coming away still thinking about them and I thought I would share some of those thought with you.
The first was called ‘The Intouchables’ – a 2011 movie and based on a true story – full of meaning and humor. It is about a quadriplegic who hires a young man to be his caregiver – who at first glance would not be your typical caregiver. This movie reminds us not to ‘judge a book by its cover’ in so many ways. First of all – the young man from the projects has more skills and abilities than those who are supposedly ‘qualified’ for such a position – but he also brings other things too. He tells it like it is and is very up front about everything. This is refreshing for the quadriplegic who is tired of the way people see and treat him. He appreciates that the young man doesn’t ‘see’ him as unable or crippled. He ‘sees’ him like anyone else.
The two men grow close and the story allows you to see how each one cares for the other in different ways. It also shows us that though our lives are busy and full – we shouldn’t forget those less capable of the simplest of things like walking or feeding ourselves. They still have life in them too. They still have feelings and desires and dreams. And, they have much to offer if we only slow down a bit and pay attention. And maybe that is why this movie touched me. Suffering from Fibromyalgia means that I am not able to participate in all of the things that I would love to do. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t want to be included or at least invited to activities. It doesn’t mean that I don’t want to spend time with my friends and family….but I may need to make some adjustments to when, where or how.
The second movie is a recent movie by Kirk Cameron called ‘Unstoppable’. I was excited when I heard this movie was coming out because I have really enjoyed the Christian movies that Kirk has been involved in such as ‘Fireproof’ – which was awesome! I have to say that I was initially disappointed in this one though. I appreciate Kirk’s efforts in what he was trying to get across…..but it just took too darn long to get there! My daughter and I kept sitting there wishing he would hurry up and get to the point. And honestly, there were some aspects of the movie that we never did understand the purpose of it – he must have been thinking on a much deeper level than we were – Ha! But I understand that he was trying to present this in a manner to help those who may not be Christians as well as food for thought to those who are Christians.
Ultimately, Kirk is trying to explain some sort of ‘answer’ to the age-old question of ‘Why did God allow (fill-in-the-blank tragedy) to happen?’ For instance, why do kids die of cancer or why did someone die in a car wreck. I’m not going to provide his ultimate explanation – which really leaves the viewer to draw their own conclusions – but I do have some thoughts about some of the things he mentioned.
First of all – he referenced cemeteries as being called ‘Gravegardens’ – and though I haven’t actually been able to find that specific terminology pertaining to cemeteries (I ran across Grave Fields once), I like the term. While using various stories from the bible he suggested that when one passes away we become seeds that scatter in the wind – and that it is part of the process for growing elsewhere. Basically he was saying that we all have a time here before moving on to the other.
But this triggered some other thoughts for me. I’m thinking – aren’t we supposed to ‘plant seeds’ in this life? So it seems to me that maybe we scatter the seeds and touch lives of others while we are here on this earth. We all have a specific ‘allotment’ for whatever God’s purpose is – and when we are done – is it our time to move on?
Think about it. Just think of how those miraculous children with cancer touch our lives. As a society we are always amazed at how strong they are and how happy they are though they are going through so much or how full of faith they always seem to be! They inspire us to be better. They cause people to consider their own belief systems and their own life situations. I firmly believe that they touch more lives in their limited lifespan than many of us who live many more years.
Everyone has a purpose – and maybe some don’t even realize what purpose they serve. But in the end – who is to say that they have not fulfilled their purpose and it is now time for them to move on to their next adventure with their Creator? Grave Gardens – where God’s flowers are planted so they can bloom into the next season.
Okay – maybe this sounds cheesy…..but I like it. I would rather think something like that than to try to ‘convince’ myself once more that ‘they are in a better place now’ and yet not feel comforted. We always say that don’t we? ‘They are in a better place’ or ‘They are no longer suffering’ – which does help some….to a point. But then what?
So for me I like this little picture I now have. I know that we will never understand God’s reasoning behind everything – but for me this helps to paint a picture that provides a bit more comfort in the ‘unknown’.
To sum it up – the movie/documentary is extremely slow at getting to the point. And then I’m not sure what the final outcome is for everyone – make up your own mind with the food-for-thought that Kirk provides. But I am glad that I watched it. I like that it provided some thoughts that had never occurred to me before. I like that it stuck with me afterwards……for me, that is a sign of a good movie!
SO – have you seen either movie? If you have – what are your thoughts?
It’s 2014…..can you believe it!? Another year has flown by already. This year will mark many changes for me – some of them will be bittersweet.
I’m not one to do New Year’s resolutions or anything like that – for me it has always simply been a new number on the calendar and that was it. But not this year – not 2014. Why? Let me tell you…
My 21-year-old daughter and her hubby have finally made the decision to move out of town. They are moving to ‘the big city’ in search of fulfilling their dreams. I don’t blame them. As a matter of fact, I told my daughter that recently. She mentioned moving and wondering what it would be like and whether there would be more opportunities. I told her that if I were her age and had the chance – I would give it a try. They don’t have children right now and they aren’t tied to a mortgage….so now is the time to go and spread wings! Of course at the same time, I will miss them terribly. And it will be weird not having her so close.
Of course I will have a good excuse for getting my tail out of town once in a while – that’s exciting! But it will be hard. I feel that she is my strongest ‘connection’ I have to another earthy being. Don’t worry – I don’t mean that I am all-consumed with my daughter and her life….she lives her own life here and I don’t interfere. But we are close – we are friends and we are in a good place with each other.
2014….here we are a mere 14 days into the year and my poor son has had quite a tumultuous beginning. He just turned a big 8 years old! Side Note: Do you know how hard it is to have a great Christmas for a child and then turn around and have a memorable birthday in less than 10 days afterwards!? Ugh!
So my little fella had a rough time starting this year. He keeps telling me that it was ‘the best Christmas ever, Mom!’ – which of course does my heart good. But my ex-husband and I split up in 2010. Since that time, the ex has been out of the country with his new love during Christmas on into the beginning of January each year. That means he has missed our son’s birthday.
This year, his father decided to stay in town/country and have his honey join him here. He then decides that he is going to basically take over the birthday party planning – and I let him….let him foot some of the cost for a change! Long story short – dad had his times wrong about when he set the party up at the facility – so many of the guests arrived too early. Here we are – my son, my daughter and myself – trying to work something out with the people at the facility to accommodate the guests early…..and dad was nowhere in sight (he arrived late). Then we discover that the party room was set up for a girl…..so they had to take the decorations down and re-do everything real quick.
Then when they finally got around to the birthday cake – my ex’s family has a tradition of smashing your face in the cake – don’t ask me why…I never have understood it. My son experienced this when he was 2 yrs. old and the look on his face broke my heart – they all speak Spanish and my son and I do not….so he had no clue that they were going to do it or why. So at this year’s party, dad sticks to the tradition – and again, my son is bewildered….but also embarrassed because here are all his friends seeing this and laughing…..and again he has no idea why it is done. He then comes running out of the room to look for me (I had taken a child to find his mother) with cake on his face and crying.
After the party – it was planned that our son would stay the night with his dad and come home the following day. When he arrived home the following evening I discovered that he and his father had it out….apparently it was like a war zone at his house. Sadly, at 8 years old, my son told his daddy that he hated him and never wanted to stay with him again. Since then, dad has called to apologize and I even took him by dad’s place to drop off some papers thinking it would give them a chance to visit. Nope. My son is simply not interested right now.
And finally, to top things off – my son came down sick this week and has had to make a visit to the doctor’s office. Let’s hope it gets better for him soon!
In addition to all of this…..I will be turning the big 5-0 this year. Now how depressing is THAT!?!?!?! I don’t FEEL like I should be that old. I don’t WANT to be that old. And it certainly makes you think about life.
I have always said that I have no regrets about my life. Disappointments – yes, but not regrets. But now I’m thinking there are a few things that I wish I had done differently. I think that is probably because I had a different idea of where I would be at this point in my life….and honestly, being an overweight, single mom was not even close!
I really didn’t expect to be in a position of having to work full time at this point either. Now, don’t go throwing rocks at me….but my mom worked because she wanted to and I guess I assumed it would be the same for me. And I envisioned having a good man in my life who desired to be a friend, partner, lover, supporter and companion. I think that part is my biggest regret.
I am without a doubt thankful for my children – and had I not been through what I have – they would not exist. It is because of this that I will never ‘wish’ it didn’t happen…..but I regret that I am not married for the long haul.
And I regret that I allowed myself to be physically unhealthy. I was always really thin and never had to worry about my weight. But when ‘something’ in my body changed, I was not prepared. I didn’t know how to eat healthy and that exercise would be crucial until it was too late. And try as I might now…..I am having a terrible time at this. I often wish I had someone to go through the process together with – but I don’t. So if I do this, I am on my own.
I also thought I would be more financially set by now. Through the many ordeals of my life and starting over so many times….I have nothing. I live paycheck to paycheck. I am putting some into a retirement plan….but too little too late if you ask me.
On the flip side of all of this though….
For the most part, I am happy. I enjoy my family though I wish we could spend more time together. I like my job. I have my own home and transportation (though it is pretty iffy at times – LOL) and I’m still kickin’!
So every day I thank my Father above that I am surviving. I thank Him for taking care of us and for what I believe is headed our way. I don’t give up and I never will.
Here’s to hoping that you too, dear reader, will have a very blessed 2014!
I watched a movie on Netflix called ‘Amazing Love – The Story of Hosea’ last night. Have you seen it? Even heard of it? I was surprised to find out that this movie came out in 2012 because it felt like an older movie. I say this because the acting wasn’t great and it was a bit on the cheesy side in the beginning. But at the same time it had a magnificent story about God’s love in it too! This story is not exactly from the bible, but rather how a specific story in the bible may have taken place – the behind the scenes story – maybe. And, it teaches about unconditional love and faith put in a way that many have never heard it. I recommend this movie for sure – but please make sure you stick it out – the campfire story is well worth it!
I have been listening to Joyce Meyer a lot lately. I tend to relate with her on many levels – sometimes it feels like we have lived the same life (except I was not sexually abused as she was growing up). She talks about thoughts and actions that I have experienced in a way that I fully relate to. And knowing her past makes one think that if she could rise above all that she did – then I really have no excuse for not doing the same.
However, she has been speaking about how our thought life makes all the difference. I’ve written about this in past posts before – but it just keeps hitting home with me. I always have good intentions to start thinking more positively – I really do. But then when I hear another message like Joyce’s I realize that I haven’t been doing it as well as I would like.
I find myself frustrated. Whether it be ‘old habits die hard’ or ‘immature Christianity’ or whatever it may be – I’m tired. I’m lost. I’m saddened. I’m……I don’t know. My inclination is that I need to read more of God’s word until its ingrained in me – but I struggle with this because God’s word is not comforting or helpful when I read it on my own.
Let me clarify this – I like to read – a lot. I grew up ‘living’ in books. But reading the bible is different. Everything I read in it seems condescending or someone making sad pleas to God for something or cold or negative. Now when I listen to people teaching – yes, I can then see their interpretation of the same scriptures I’ve read. But isn’t that dangerous? To rely on another human being – seems like a good way to be misled!
So what is it? Is Satan messing with me? Am I allowing him to constantly keep me in negative thinking so I cannot grow? Maybe I’m being too critical of myself? Or is it something else? I do not believe that God would keep me at arm’s length so-to-speak for this many years. I’ve been trying to break through and have victory over this for more than 20 years, folks. I have been searching for God’s input and His direction. I long for Him to take over my life and to do His will. So what is it?
And surely I’m not the only one on the face of this earth that has struggled with this. Right? But I have yet to find anyone who can relate. Oh sure, I get those well-meaning people who try to offer advice in how to pray before reading, what to read and what to ask God for while reading…..and I’m grateful for that. But ultimately I don’t seem to be making any progress in this area.
All the while struggling with the above – I still believe and have witnessed answered prayers. God does indeed take care of His children – and that includes me. I have no doubt. And no one will ever change my mind about that.
I believe that prayer is not necessarily that you go sit in a corner somewhere with your head bowed and your hands together. For me – it is more of a constant conversation with God throughout my day. And it is not just asking for things either. It should be thanking Him for even the smallest things or simply talking with Him as if you can see Him sitting there beside you.
I’m not completely there yet – but I’m getting closer all of the time. I do talk with Him throughout my day – but not quite as often as I wish I would. Some days I get to the end and then realize I haven’t spoken to Him much. But other days I do – and if is awesome!
Healthy Lifestyle Changes
Changing gears now – I want to mention something about making healthy lifestyle changes. We’ve all heard it. Diets don’t work – it must be a lifestyle change. Everyone talks about it – and there are many who have successfully made those changes. I, for one, am having a terrible time with that.
But before you go judging me – let me set the stage for you. I like vegetables. I like fruit. I like nuts. I love Mexican food. I don’t like fish/seafood. I cannot swallow Hummus (tried it – can’t do it). I don’t like strong seasonings/flavorings.
My problem? Well, I don’t know what to do with my very limited budget, my extremely finicky 7-year old son, my limited knowledge of variety and cooking skills and time. Honestly I find that when I switch my foods to ‘healthy’ – it lasts for less than a week and then I am feeling so un-satisfied and unsettled I don’t know what to do with myself!
In a previous post I mentioned doing a detox of sorts and mainly eating vegetables. I did start feeling better and it was working for a while. But then something kicked in and festered up my Fibromyalgia like never before. At first I thought it was the diet. Then I decided that maybe it was the supplements that they had me taking instead. At any rate – I still haven’t gotten myself straightened out from it and that started back in April. Needless to say – I am really, really struggling now because besides being overweight the Fibro is causing constant pain and I can’t concentrate.
I recently watched a video on people who were juicing and the testimonies of how their physical well-being has improved. This piques my interest except that I tried the juicing thing years ago and it was costly. The juicer was expensive, it took a lot to juice enough veggies/fruits for a glass of juice and cleanup was time consuming. So I thought that maybe the one that actually blends/grinds/pulverizes the whole fruit/vegetable might be better. I got one. I like the way it works. However – I find that I am having an extremely difficult time getting a full glass down – never mind multiple glasses in a day! I simply do not like the strong taste of ‘green’ things.
So, I’m not sure where that leaves me now. Back to square one, I guess.