Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Pumpkin Pics 2006

From our trip yesterday...

"Hey everyone - Look, Pumpkins!"

"I call this look, Blue Steel...with Pumpkin"

"How could you? I love it here!!"


D :)

Sweetberry Farms

Yesterday I took Kiddo to a wonderful place called Sweetberry Farms. It resides about an hour drive from here into the hill country. Most of the year Sweetberry Farms serves as a pick-your-own strawberry and blackberry patch, but in the fall they transform it into pumpkin patches, hay rides and petting zoo for all the little kiddies to come and play.

This trip was organized through a mom's group I am a member of. I think the next time we go it will be on our own accord. Kiddo does not do well in a place like that (with lots of room to run and play) waiting on other people. I spent most of the time ripping him away from what he wanted to do, thereby making him mad, and standing around waiting for our tour guide to get it together and move us on to the next thing. But, aside from the negative aspect of the group tour, I enjoyed seeing all the moms and kiddos together having fun. We went on a hay ride, fed the goats and got to look at donkeys (mommy, daddy and BABY! aww!), chickens and horses up close and personal. Kiddo was in HEAVEN! He could run and play, there were pumpkins and hay bales everywhere, and the animals were most fascinating! There were even a couple of farm kitties running around, AND they served homemade ice cream to all the kids. The place was well spread - even though there were at least 6 school groups there, we never felt like we were in the crowd. Everyone had their own space. Kiddo got to paint his own little pumpkin; he's such the artist!

So here are some pics! Enjoy. :)

More Later!
D :)


Wow, it has been a while since I posted. Sorry about that. We had a busy weekend. Sunday morning we got up early (thanks to the time change) and went to the early service at church. Kiddo actually stayed in the nursery all by himself! Yay! That afternoon we attended a birthday party for out friend's twin boys. They turned 2 this year and had their annual costume/birthday party. Kiddo went as Dash - this time I spiked his hair!

Poor guy, tons of gel and hairspray couldn't hold his inherited fine hair for more than 20 minutes. It looked great before we left, but at the party it looked like this...

The weather was perfect and the kids had a blast. Kiddo had lots of fun swinging on the swingset and chasing their new kitty. Notice the hair getting flatter and flatter!

Isn't Froto a cute Kitty? :)

We had a great time. Kiddo was exhausted when we left. We hope the twins had fun too.
More to come,
D :)

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Truth be Told

So last night Hubby was out late helping a friend get his show Jeep ready for some big convention in Las Vegas this weekend. Since I didn't know what time he would be home, I didn't bother cooking dinner (and momma needs a night off every once in a while, right?). I was going to eat cereal, but since I discovered that we may have pantry moths (another blog for another day, but - YUCK!), cereal didn't sound too appetizing. I had my usual salad for lunch, so I didn't want to repeat that and the only quick thing left in my bare cupboard house was cheap frozen pizza. So, that is what I had - man was it good, and when Hubby came home later he made himself one as well.

You know how when you bake cookies or make a cake the whole house becomes infused with the scent and it is so lovely? Well, when you cook cheap frozen pizza, the same thing happens. I don't really mind; it's not that bad. But then today - well, my sweet, sweet neighbor had a play date at her house. I didn't have the energy to shower before we went over (thank you Mother Nature)and I made the mistake of throwing on the jeans I had on yesterday. No biggie -we have all seen each other in the mommy pony tail and with no make up. Anyway, her sweet boy (who is 3) was flirty today and he kept sitting next to me on the chair, showing me his toys, sharing his snacks - you know how they do. Then, out of the blue he looks up at me from his play spot on the floor and loudly says "I Love YOU!!!!" :) I say back, "you love me?". He says....
"Yah! I love you! You smell like PIZZA!"

I was mortified.

Then his mom says something like it was a compliment because pizza is his favorite thing, and I am thinking - ok maybe, but kids are more truthful than that.

Never again will I leave the house unshowered. And I will always wear clean jeans. ;)

Later :),

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

My Beautiful Friend

She has been with me through it all. The headaches, the heartaches, the good times, the bad times, the times we should have just stayed at home... and the times we did. I love her so much, and after all these years when I see her in person I am instantly filled with all these things I want to say and tell her about and discuss. There just isn't enough time in the day to get it all out and when we do have dedicated time together, we talk non stop. We don't have near enough of those moments anymore; not near enough time to just talk, and sit, and drink coffee, or Dr. Pepper or iced tea; not near enough time to express how we feel about things, how others actions and things that happen in our lives effect us. I don't think we could devote enough time to get it all out. When I do see her in person, the time is limited and yet we almost always find ourselves standing in the driveway talking looong after we have hugged and said goodbye. In the midst of our conversations, we lose track of time and obligation. We tune into each other and it is difficult for the outside world to penetrate our little bubble.

She lives so far away from me; or rather I live far from her...regardless, I wish we were closer. After college and marriage I moved far away. She stayed in the same general area. And even though I have moved back into the same state, I still feel worlds away. I miss the days in college when we lived together and talked all the time. She was my confidant, the one I came to with EVERYTHING. No topic was taboo, nothing of limits - and I trusted her (and still do) with my life. She is the most kind, caring, thoughtful and amazingly strong person I know. Everything I know about doing good and being nice and thoughtful I learned from her - and yet I feel so inadequate in comparison.

Without revealing too much, I'll say she has been through a lot. To say it that way is to grossly understate it. What she has experienced is something that you would never wish on anyone, and for a while after I really didn't know if we still had a friendship. It was not that I didn't want to be her friend, I didn't know how. And for a long time I mourned not only her tragedy, but our relationship as well. We have hung on - thank goodness. And slowly she is healing and emerging from a very, very dark place I am finding myself longing for that sweet friendship with her again. When I got home and looked at the photos I was able to take of her family recently, I came across this one and it stopped me.

If you don't know her personally, you won't see it like I do; but it is there. For the first time, in a very long time, there is a glimmer of happiness in my friend's eyes. She looks so pretty; so beautiful in this picture and I am so overjoyed that sparkle is in her eyes; so excited to see some hope for happiness. I can't wait to print this and carry it with me!

The last time I visited with her we had an all too brief conversation in the driveway about no longer having someone to talk to; to confide in. Why is it that as teenagers and young adults we discuss so much and then when what we call "life" happens, we clam up. Suddenly finances, relationships, everyday stuff seems too personal, too unimportant to our friends and surely too taboo to talk about. Why is that? Why does it suddenly become no one's business? Sometimes I think if we were more open about things they wouldn't be such problems in life; we can help each other through our own experiences - who better than a trusted and lifelong friend is there to help?

Instead we find ourselves seeking out council from total strangers. We surf chat rooms and forums, finding millions of nameless and faceless entities on the world wide web, just waiting to unload their advice and experience. Who knows who we are really talking to? We are scattered all over the place. Is there safety in distance? After all, how often does a simple Texas girl find herself near say, Dayton, Ohio? (luv ya, G!) We post our troubles and triumphs and personal info on blogs and web pages and then gasp in shock and horror when we hear of some twisted person finding their pray through one of these avenues of communication. Why don't we talk to our friends anymore?

I read an article in the paper recently about an ongoing study (inconclusive, but still) that is finding that though we are a more "connected" world, we have fewer close friends on average and less in-person communication with people now more than ever. We are isolating ourselves from the very human contact we work so hard to initiate through gadgets and gizmos of the 21st century. And though I have no idea if the study is accurate, I find myself realizing that I haven't spent more than 5 minutes with one of my best friends in over a month. She lives less than 5 miles from me and I NEVER see her. The friend I was speaking of earlier lives 3 1/2 hours away and I see her more often. My "closest" friends these days are the ones I talk to daily on line. My bbc Moms and a few IM buddies, photography forum regulars - I've never met any of them in real life. I would love to be able just jump in my car and go see them - but is that really, ever going to happen? In some cases, I hope so. But in others I find comfort in the knowledge that I will never meet them - that they will always be my cyber friends. And in a way that is strangely comforting.

I have sort of ventured off topic, but I wanted you all to see my amazing friend and know that I miss her and love her very much. And if I could find a way to make it work, where my family was happy and taken care of at the same time, I would move nearer to her in a heart beat. How cool it would be for our children to grow up together as she and I did, in each other's back yards; lifelong friends.

Miss R, I love ya!

Monday, October 23, 2006

Just one more Picture

I had to include this one, and for some reason Blogger wouldn't let me in the last post. Anyway, here he is...

Whodathought a crusty nose would be so cute? :)

D :D

Wedding Rings, Pop Top Rings and Silly Things

I put my wedding ring on today for the first time in about 2 1/2 years. I couldn't believe it! It finally fits again. When I got pregnant with Kiddo, I started swelling at about 20 weeks (gotta love early on set pre-e!) and though it normally had a little wiggle room, the unusually wide band was instantly uncomfortable. I think my fear of having to have it cut off (since Hubby designed it himself and it could not be replaced) made me remove it a bit early. And even though I lost most of the weight I gained within the first two weeks post partum, I still could not get the rings on.

Now, I was not by any means heavy, but I did hold on to some "extra" weight for quite a while. My back problems kept me from doing anything too physical, and staying home all day with Kiddo before he was mobile did nothing for weight loss. In January of this year I decided I was tired of the extra pounds and that my eating habits were not doing me any good. I changed my diet to salads for lunch and healthy eating during the week, and left weekends to my discretion to cheat or stay on track. It worked, and to date I have lost 20 lbs. I am finally back down to pre-pregnancy weight, without too much effort on my part. My back problems have disappeared, and today, my rings slid on like they had never been off my finger! YAY!

Took Kiddo to the park today. There is this really cool place just up the road from our house that has a little playscape next to a recently dried up lake. Our mom's group had a meet up there to look at and learn about fossils. Then we scoured the dried up area for shells and interesting things. Kiddo wasn't too into the fossils, but he loved running up and down the wood deck that led out to a gigantic drop off where water once was!

Here are a few of him in action!

Just to show you how long it has been since the lake bed saw the sun, I will share what was littered all around the perimeter...

Those little pop tops were EVERYWHERE! Do remember those? :) I remember my parents telling me to be super careful opening soda and how many times I about cut my finger off just to get to my Nehi Peach!

Kiddo did great playing with the other kids. In recent months I have had to watch him carefully around other kids because he can get upset or aggressive when things don't go his way. Today though, he happily followed everyone around, appreciative of finally being in a group of little people. Then, for no reason that I could see, a couple of the slightly older boys decided it would be real fun to throw handfuls of mulch at him. At first they threw it at chest level, but it soon got more vindictive and mean and they were throwing it roughly at his face. And rightly so, Kiddo laughed at first, but when he found himself spitting chopped up wood he got pretty upset. He cried for me, of course. Not having dealt with this kind of thing before (and since the other moms were preoccupied) I walked up to him, dusted him off and told him, rather loudly, to tell the mean boys "no" and that throwing is not nice. He went back to playing, and when the boys started in on him again, he did it! He told them "no, not nice! don't throw!" and they left him alone. Yay Kiddo!

The park was really fun until I decided it was time to go, and true to form Kiddo tried to throw a major fit. (there's more to the story involving poop and other things but I won't bore you) I managed to meander until another mom was ready to leave and we walked out of the park together with her daughter. It was just enough distraction for Kiddo to not notice that the playscape was disappearing in the background!

He had a royal melt down when we got home, and finally crashed on the couch promptly at 6pm. Joy. Looks like another late night for me. :)



Saturday, October 21, 2006

My Cutie Patootie

I simply cannot get over how cute my little one is. I know I am supposed to be biased because I birthed him and all, but the Kiddo is CUTE! And he is growing like a weed, dang it. I put these jeans on him this morning thinking I would most certainly have to roll them up. Nope. They fit perfectly!

He looks like a little teenager. Please excuse the messy house behind him.

We made a pilgrimage to Tar-jay today as I was in need of several items. Included on my list were various odds and ends for the photo biz (does it ever end?!?!) and I wanted to gander at their costume selection for Kiddo. I kinda thought he'd be Dash, since after all he thinks he is Dash most of the time anyway, but I thought I would end up piecing the costume together from various things around the house. But, true to form, Tar-jay had everything I needed (and then some) and we found a complete Dash costume at a very reasonable price.

So, without further adieu - and for the sheer reason that from the moment this was in the cart, Kiddo wanted it ON NOW....

I give you DASH! :)

But he is still Cheese Face to me!


D :)

Friday, October 20, 2006

Five Things

Five things I find myself saying daily..

1. Please don't squish the cat
2. Yes, Daddy tee tees in the potty.
3. Yes, Mommy tee tees in the potty.
4. Did you bonk your head?
5. Yes, you can tee tee in your diaper or the potty.

Add yours!
D :)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Chilly Feet and Hot Coffee

It's early, I am up and Kiddo is still sleeping. *ahh!* Sometimes I love mornings like this. Normally I would just sleep as long as Kiddo would let me, but I couldn't go back to sleep after Hubby got up for work. It is very chilly out this morning - I think the coldest morning we've had so far this year, and my feet are screaming at me to go get some socks. I hate socks. I love to go bare foot. But, being the cold natured one that I am, if the temperature drops below about 70 degrees I have to wear them or I will run around shivering all day.

I haven't taken Kiddo anywhere in 2 days. I've been strapped to the computer editing photos and trying desperately to get caught up on everything. Being without a computer for a week really threw everything off. My neighbor is having a play date today with some of her friends and invited me along. The plan is to meet at a nearby park, but if the weather is bad we will meet at her house. I'm hoping for the park - Kiddo needs to do some running and he is no good at in home playdates. He gets very possessive of things that aren't even his and shows a lot of aggression when in too close quarters with other kiddos.
Kiddo just came down the hall. His little feet padding along quietly as he let out a couple of primal cries for me - I love him so much first thing in the morning - so warm and cuddly. I love that when I pick him up he nuzzles his face in my neck. I love the sigh of contentment he releases when we lie down on the couch together. He would be happiest if we slept there every night (and for a long time we did). I love it when he goes back to sleep and I can kiss the top of his little bed head and smell the sweetness that only he possesses. I love him finding contentment when he tangles his fingers all up in my hair. Best of all, the little voice he uses when he talks in his sleep - it is high and airy - "tahp, tahp, no deh day car deh day pumpin, pumpin, tahp pumpin" which translates to: "couch, couch, no it's a car or a pumpkin, pumpkin, couch pumpkin" I wonder what exactly he is dreaming about! I left him all cuddled under a blanket on the couch, presumably asleep, and after about 1 minute I hear "Mommy, Incredibles on the TV?" So I turned on Curious George instead and he is happily snuggling into the couch cushions. What ever happen to Sesame Street anyway? It used to be on (just recently) a few times a morning, and now I can't find it at all after 7am. That sucks.

ETA: Oh my goodness, speaking of Elmo, I just found this link on Karrie's blog, Elmo. This it too funny! Kiddo must have one!

Well, I guess I really didn't have anything interesting to talk about, but I am trying to write more often, so I felt the need to contribute. I think I need another cup of coffee.


Monday, October 16, 2006

Peanut Butter Crackers and Dr. Pepper

Mmmmm, I feel like I am back in college. Peanut butter crackers and Dr. Pepper were the staples of my life back then. I really miss peanut butter - used to eat it all the time. But now my rendezvous with the sticky goodness are few and far between because Kiddo has a peanut allergy. And, since EVERYTHING I eat is met with "bite, puweeze?" I have to steal away to hidden places just to have a much needed snack. So here I sit, hiding my crackers under a notebook and popping a whole one in my mouth every time Kiddo looks away. Last one....mmmmmmmm!

Kiddo is snacking on some "nee nee" which is Kiddo Speak for macaroni. No Kraft for this boy, only Momma's homemade will do. Just thought you'd want to know. ;)

So, do you ever go out to run errands, etc and have the feeling you have somehow driven though an invisible portal to the Twilight Zone? I guess in our little town we have "freak days" or something and I keep missing the flyer. A few days ago I had to run to the local grocery for a few things and as I was driving through the parking lot I saw some pretty amazing individuals! One gentleman in particular, who appeared to be in his 60s or older, was lumbering through the parking lot, wearing his dark wash denim hiked up almost to his armpits. Peeking above the black leather belt that was strangling his rib cage was a navy blue t-shirt. On the shirt it simply said "COLLEGE" in big, bold, white letters. ummm....ok. A few parking spaces away a woman emerged in sweat pants and what a could only be called "dressy" flowing top. Not exactly how I would put that outfit together! I don't know, maybe HEB shoppers are just fashion challenged.

Saturday night I was able to get out of the house and go with my neighbor to a bunco game. Now, if you have never played bunco - you should. It is really fun. Imagine 4 tables with 4 women each, throwing dice and trying to rack up points before the bell rings. It can get pretty crazy depending on the people involved, and though this particular group does not partake, most bunco games are "enhanced" with fruity adult beverages. I think this group does just fine with getting crazy - no alcohol needed! Since it was our October game, we all had to dress up, so I often found myself sitting across from some interesting characters. The group is extremely diverse, ranging in age from 20 something to 80 something, and we all had a great time. Thank you to my neighbor, S, who talked me into going with her for the first time a couple of months ago. I will be an alternate any time! :) Hopefully no one minds, but here's a pic of the group...

I am the foot-taller-than-everyone-biker chick on the right (in case you can't see me ;) ). Don't they look like some fun ladies?

Anyway, so while I was out, Kiddo and Hubby had some wonderful bonding time together. I don't know exactly what happened, but suddenly they are best buddies. Hubby even gave Kiddo a bath and put him to bed! Well, I guess I should clarify, I was witness and resident coach to the bath/teeth brushing/ear cleaning before I left and Kiddo was asleep in our bed when I got home, but at least he was down for the night. Hubby forgot to feed him dinner, but that was no biggie - Kiddo would have asked him for something if he was hungry enough.

Well, I guess I should get back to editing pictures. I just thought I would share.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Eaten post from yesterday...

is down below. I couldn't get it to change the date, so it posted below the entry from yesterday afternoon.

stupid program...

I'll figure this all out someday! :D

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Gagging on a Crouton

What is it about my daily lunch salad that makes my 2 year old need to poop? I kid you not, without fail, every day as I sit down to my delicious, hopefully e-coli free salad, my beautiful baby takes it upon himself to poop. And then he will just stand next to me so I can smell his marvelous creation until I can't stand it anymore and have to change him.

It really puts a damper on lunch.

I had typed a big long entry this morning, but it got eaten by blogger and I am too tired to re -hash the weekend's events again. Maybe I will tackle it again later. Suffice it to say, I had a great weekend; got to hang out with my friends and family, and take some great pictures along the way.

Hopefully I can add some pictures later too.

Until then..

H-town, the G man and a Boo Shirt

Here is what I can remember from the post that got eaten yesterday...

I had a really great weekend! My best friend's mom asked me to go to H-town to photograph their family for them. They were keeping their grandson for a few days (G man) and wanted some good pictures with the whole family together. Of course, I had to go, and was honored to be asked to document such a momentous occasion.

Hubby had been on vacation for several days before, and came home the night before I left. He was surprised to find that I bought a new lap top, as our old one is out of commission for an undetermined amount of time, and I absolutely could not stand another moment of the dinosaur in our cave of an "office". I should have told him what he told me, to suck it up and deal with the dinosaur, but being the wonderful and sweet wifey that I am I allowed him to work on his pictures on MY new computer - yes, I said MY computer, don't get your panties in a wrinkle. I bought it for my business, so I shall call it mine. pppbbbt!

Anyway, I drove with Kiddo to H-town and stopped at my friend's house for a quick visit and to take a few pictures of her beautiful little girl. This child has the most soulful eyes I have ever seen. When she looks at you it's as if she is looking into your soul - it almost makes me uncomfortable, but I love her too much to be bothered by it.

Later on we headed over to the grandparents house, and Kiddo got lots of good Grammy and Happy time before bed. The next morning I met the family at a local pumpkin patch for pictures. We had so much fun chasing the G man around and snapping pictures - it was tough to get everyone to smile and look at me at the same time, but I think I got some great shots anyway.

The G-man... :)

The next day I had the opportunity to visit with another good friend, who has a beautiful 4 month old girl and 2 older boys. God bless her for even getting out of her pjs; I really don't know how she does it! Unfortunately, I had to cut that visit short because an obnoxious storm was rolling in. I left just as the rain started and ended up pulling over in the parking lot of a gas station to wait the worst of it out. As I was sitting under the awning, praying for everything to blow over quickly, I noticed a guy in the lane next to me pumping gas. Um, ok. Maybe he needed it right then and there, but picture this - the sky is that oh-my-goodness-we-better-run-green that only happens in Texas when tornadoes are in the general area, the wind is blowing tree branches down all over the place (and we are surrounded by pines - not the sturdiest tree out there), and the rain is coming down so hard you cannot see 5 feet in front of your car to drive. So this yahoo is in his little chef's jacket, pumping gas into his new mustang *rolling my eyes*. And I am sitting there, trying to remember all the safety procedures that have been pounded into my head for years when - BAM!!!! Lightning struck right next to the guy in the parking lot. I have never seen another human jump so high! He bolts into the gas station and I am sitting there taking inventory of body parts and making sure I don't need a change of clothing - I imagine Mr. Chef did...

After a few minutes the storm blew over and I continued home to my inlaws. Picked up Kiddo and we headed to my friend's mom's house. She had forgotten to bring me something the day before and so I had told her I would stop in on my way out of town.

Now, my Backyard Mom (as I fondly call her) lives in the same neighborhood and same house that they did when her daughter and I were in high school. Their house was directly behind mine, and her daughter and I would spend countless hours standing at the fence talking into the wee hours of the night. (for a funny visual - I am tall so I stood flat footed and looked over the fence, my beautiful, but height challenged best friend had to stand on a chair!) :) Anyway, my parents moved out of state years ago, and I haven't been back to the old 'hood more than a couple of times since.

It is really funny what the heart and mind remembers. As I drove down the major road that leads to the neighborhood, I was overcome by a series of emotions and memories flooding over me. By the time I got to their house, I was about to go nuts! I felt like I was 18 again, and though the neighborhood was well worn and the trees were much bigger than I remembered, the feelings and sounds and smells were all there. The visit was nice, but short and soon we were on our way. Kiddo made sure to have a glorious melt down right as we were leaving, just to give my dear friends a good look at his charming personality.

The drive home was one of mind boggling emotions and thoughts - I was still stuck somewhere in 1992 and it was very strange. Haven't been there in a while...

Oh yes, I mentioned the Boo shirt - my Backyard Mom had purchased these adorable Boo sweatshirts for her grandkids and was sweet enough to think of my Kiddo and get him one too. He spotted it on the car seat next to him on the drive home and began demanding I put it on him. And - he was wearing his beloved Incredibles shirt - can you believe it?? He hasn't taken that shirt off in over a month, but the Boo shirt was just that cool. Of course, I couldn't oblige him at that moment as we were barreling down the freeway at 65 mph, but as soon as we got home he had me put it on. He wore it all that night and all the next day (don't forget it is still in the low 90's here during the day). I finally had to hide it in the garage so I could wash it. I don't have a picture yet, but I will get one soon.

And one of my favorite pictures from the weekend is.....drum roll please!

Man, we torture those babies, don't we?! ;)



Monday, October 02, 2006

Superstition, Joy and God's Whispers

Before I start, I want to apologize for being away for a few days. Our lap top is in the shop and therefore I am cut off from the world with no internet access. I pestered Hubby enough today that he signed us up for a 30 day free trial of dial up, just so I could feed my addiction and check email and such. The dry heaves have stopped, but it is taking everything I have not to log on to BabyCenter - I miss you mommas!

Anyway, I am sitting in the Junk room that is supposed to be our office, typing clumsily on the dinosaur of a desk top that we have in here. Oh, how I miss the effortlessness of lap top keys - but all is well, I have a bag of Oreos and a glass of milk and I am ready to begin!

This post has been swirling around in my head for some time now and it took something happening today for me to finally be motivated enough to sit down and write it out.

I have a hard time experiencing Joy.

There, I said it. Really, I do. Only a few times in my life I have had that feeling; when all is right in the world and I am content and peaceful and smiling; you know the one, right? I have rarely ever been just over the top happy - and I shall tell you why. Now, I am not a superstitious person per say; I don't avoid cracks in the sidewalk for fear I will break my mother's back, nor do I worry much when a black cat crosses my path. After all, I had black cats mainly when I was growing up so I actually thought of them as good luck. But some things tend to stick in the back of my mind that others would label as superstitious.

It seems like every time I have had that feeling, it was immediately followed by a tragedy. I can name a few times - when I was about 15, I had been reunited with a childhood friend and was able to spend the weekend with her at her parents house. We had a terrific time; talking, laughing, all that girlie stuff, and when we woke up the morning that I was to go home, I remember standing in the mirror brushing my hair and reflecting on the weekend. I had that feeling - the one of happiness and contentment, "joy" I guess. And I was so excited for the first time in a long time. About that moment was when her mother came into the room and told me to get my things and that my parents were picking me up early. Turns out, my cousin, whom I was very close to, had committed suicide.

I could go on and on with examples. I was given an amazing graduation gift of a trip to the Cayman Islands and the week after I got back my boyfriend (who I though was my soul mate) dumped me. Every time there was an extreme life high, I would get hit by an extreme low. When I had my son, a perfectly normal and happy pregnancy turned into a frightening delivery and a very sick child with no explanation for several days. My best friend, who was supposed to have her first born only 9 days before mine, tragically lost her baby at 38 weeks gestation.

I guess lately I have been trying to make sense of all of this. Trying to understand why every time I start to let my guard down and enjoy life something like this happens. I know everyone has ups and downs; that's how things work of course, but the fear of the downs is what keeps me from really allowing myself to experience the joys of life. I am always guarded, always afraid of the next thing that will come around the corner. And often times I can really spiral down into a depression. I try not to let it show, but I am sure people know.

In the past I could lock myself in my room and play depressing music and cry it all out until I felt better. But as an adult with a husband and a child, there is just not room for such things. It's no wonder to me that mothers are the silent sufferers. They are forced to take care of everyone first, and if there is time left in the day, maybe, just maybe we can cry in the shower or in the car on the way back from the grocery store...

I often cry in the car or in the shower. How sad is that?

But, in all of this, I have to say that I do have a saving grace. God whispers to me. He doesn't do it often, but when he does, his timing is perfect. (of course it is, right?) Shortly before I turned 21 I was at probably the lowest part of my life. The locked in the room nights were way outnumbering the normal and I was at the end of my rope. I was driving to work (crying in the car) and suddenly that feeling came over me. It was Joy - pure, untainted joy. All my troubles didn't exist and suddenly I heard a voice in my head saying "have faith" over and over. A warmth washed over me and filed all the empty places - it was like nothing I had ever experienced. That was the day I got saved; I called the preacher at the church I had been singing with through the university and asked for a meeting. I had no idea really of what being saved meant, but I knew it was what I need to do.

Fast forward to today, again driving in my car with Kiddo on the way to the grocery store. I have been down a lot lately. It gets worse around the glorious PMS time and then tends to subside a week or so after, but lately the sadness has been sticking around a lot. I don't know what it is; I can't explain it, other than the sheer fact that we, like most people, can never seem to get on top of finances; something it always breaking or in need of repair, or we have a medical bill or the insurance premium goes up AGAIN - it never ends, I know. But it has really gotten to me lately and I can't seem to shake the funk. So today we are driving and that feeling came over me - warm and fuzzy and inviting - and the song on the radio (it was Nickelback - "Far Away") played softly in the back ground. Now, the song is new and so I am not terribly familiar with the words yet, but what was loud enough to hear were the phrases "keep breathing", "hold on to me" and "I will love you". And, though it seems silly writing it now, I knew it was God, whispering - gently reminding me of His love and Grace. And I know that no matter the troubles I think I have, if I just keep breathing and hold on to Him, I will be alright.

And so I just want you all to know the same thing. Hold on, keep breathing. We will make it.


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