Bad Weenie Dogs!! 

mugshots

OUR MUG SHOTS

My name is Winston and I’m four months old. My big sister, Li’l Red is three years old. We live with our two sisters, Mina (3 yrs) & Dixie (9 mo). Mom and Dad moved us way out into the country about three month go. We live about a half mile from the big road. We have a huge yard to play in which we do several times a day. We get to run without leashes and sniff all kinds of sniffable stuff. The only time we leave the yard is to visit our close neighbor, Mrs. Jessie Mae who is 99 years old. (I like numbers; can you tell?) Sometimes her son, Mr. James, who is our other neighbor, works on his vehicles and we go over there and bark and bark at his tools. It’s a lot of fun.

When Mom calls us we go in…mostly cause we think we can con her out of treats. But she usually tricks us and ends up making us stay inside for a while. That is when we nap to get energy to play outside again later.

Yesterday was just a normal day ’til Li’l Red smelled somethin weird. She put her nose to the ground and then she started running really fast down the road. I thought it looked like a really fun new game so I followed her lead. We went on a very long run, stopping every once in a while for Red to teach me how to sniff those funny looking marks in the soft dirt. Red says they are deer tracks. I hope when we find this “deer” it wants to play!

After a while we were very far from home. I could only see a lot of plants that were really tall, and not much nice soft grass at all. There were lots of sticky things getting caught on my long fur. I didn’t mind, though; I was having too much fun. We could hear Mom far away. She was calling us. She sounded kind of mad and worried and sweet all at the same time. We knew she was a human so she would be ok without us for a while, so we kept on our hunt. Suddenly, we couldn’t hear Mom calling us. (We found out later she was on the phone and online getting lots of help lined up to look for us.)

About 5 hours later we decided we were really tired and thirsty. And we still never caught up with that deer thing with the weird paws. I started to be a little afraid because it was gonna get dark soon. But Red was brave. She sniffed the air and sniffed the ground (her sniffer works REALLY REALLY GOOD). She took us home a different way through a HUGE plowed field. Then we saw Mom. She was at the edge of the woods looking at the deer tracks and our tracks that went from our front yard, way down our dirt lane, and off into the woods. Red called to Mom but she didn’t hear us, so I helped call her. Then she heard and saw us.

Mom usually doesn’t move very fast because her knees hurt a lot, but yesterday she must have forgotten they hurt cause she was going really fast to see us and was smiling and crying and calling our names. She let us inside after she picked us up and checked us all over. We drank lots and lots of water and then we rested in Dad’s recliner. I don’t remember much after that cause my eyes kept wanting to sleep. I did hear Dad get home from work and Mom told him we had a 5 hour afternoon adventure and she nearly had a heart attack. (I don’t know what a heart attack is…but I’m pretty sure it means she loves us so much her heart wants to explode.)

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Mothers Day: Best or Worst Holiday EVER?

sophia loren mom quote


Mothers Day….ah, the joy and celebration. Love and hugs and warm fuzzy feelings abound. Retailers are making a mint. Kids are burning breakfast and pouncing on their mothers’ beds in the wee hours with handmade cards, hugs, and kisses. The Hallmark Channel is playing sappy mom-themed movie marathons for the week prior.

All the while there are throngs of people who avoid the holiday at all costs. There are those who duck and hide, avoid the greeting card aisle or shopping altogether, or sequester themselves at home dreading the ring of the telephone or doorbell. While the masses celebrate, there is a portion of society that mourns, grieves, avoids, or cocoons its collective mind in an insular hideaway.

Though many choose not to embrace the holiday because they grieve the loss of a beloved mom, others make the decision for vastly different reasons. Outside of the idealistic fantasy that all moms are the moms the greeting cards celebrate, is a reality in stark contrast. Some mothers are narcissistic, manipulative, mean as hell, or abusive. Many are absent, neglectful, or simply emotionally hard. Some withhold the basics in life, nurturing, and affection. A percentage are active addicts or alcoholics. Many birthed children and are technically mothers, but leave the children to raise themselves for all intents and purposes. Other mothers give their children away or have had them taken away. A select few are just plain toxic. From the perspective of many of the adult children who came from households with such mothers there is little reason to celebrate Mothers Day. It is those people who either cry or want to puke in the Hallmark aisle.

This year my own card-shopping experience made me think more deeply than usual about my own mother. She is not perfect, nor is she horrible. As a young mother I, like most young moms, tried to glean the good I remembered about my own mom’s mothering and avoided the negative. That statement alone opens up a can of worms. What was good and what was bad in my childhood experience as it relates to mothering? What is my mother’s perspective about that same question? On the other hand, do my adult children think I did well or poorly as their mom? How do I think I did? Every mother fails daily to some degree. Not every mother sees her failings or victories the same as her children view them.

The fact is we are each the owners of our experiences. We may have had other actors alongside us in life’s play, but each of us has a different take-away from our experiences. If you ever doubt this just commiserate about a childhood experience at a holiday meal. In our family each of us siblings have a different recollection of our experiences…and our parents’ version is different enough to make our collective eyes roll back in our heads. Most of the time these differences in perception of shared experiences is simply comedic fodder. For some, however it is serious business and for others it is devastatingly painful.

That being said, it lends the question: What if we, as mothers, received in our old age only the measure of love, affection, kind and harsh words, and attention from our adult children that which we gave them when they were kids? What if we were dealt a like hand, in our twilight years, to what we dealt our children in their youth? Some of us would live out our old age in bliss while others of us would have a miserable existence.

If you either no longer have your mom on this earth, or cannot find a reason to celebrate your own mom…..the next time Mother’s Day rolls around try to celebrate someone else’s mom. Was there someone who was there in your mother’s stead? Celebrate that person. If your own mother was great but you have hurting people in your life, support them through this emotionally difficult day by acknowledging their experience, listening to them, and loving them. Plant positive words and deeds where negative emotion abounds. It will do them good and work wonders for you as well.

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A HIGH SCHOOL ACQUAINTANCE RE-DISCOVERED

I’ve recently reconnected with a high school classmate via FaceBook.

I remember him well. Back then he was Murray Paul Mitchell. He was a shy boy, slight in frame, with a nice smile. He was soft-spoken. He was mild mannered. He was reserved. He was the only boy with four sisters.

We lived in a very small rural farm town in the 70’s and 80’s. Back then, as it is still today (for the most part), there was distinct segregation among races and classes of people there. Murray and his family lived on “the black side of town,” my family on the “white side”.  At school, white kids sat together in the hallways and the lunchroom, and black kids sat together. Regardless of that, I remember Murray being nice to everyone…..black or white. He was just nice.

I always wondered what ever happened to him because somehow, even in the self-absorbed world of a teenager that I lived in, I felt as though he was sad and hurt inside. I don’t know if I perceived that because of his oral presentations in Speech class, or because of anything he’d ever told me. I know now that he was sad and hurt, and that because I was too….for similar reasons……I must have recognized those things in him back then.

Fast forward to now. Murray Paul Mitchell reinvented himself. He did that for lots of reasons, but I think he did it mostly to become whom he felt God destined him to be instead of being chained to the abuses and hurts of his younger life. It was his catharsis….his rebirth.  That fuzzy sweet little caterpillar wound himself up in a cocoon. While he was in there he spent 22 years in the military serving our country. He traveled the world. He had relationships that molded his character. His body became strong and muscular. His brain became more adept and sharp. He increased in knowledge. He developed his own style of humor and wit. He realized it was okay to dream and pursue those dreams. He came to realize that he was worthy of a new and better existence.

When the caterpillar that was Murray emerged, he was no longer a caterpillar….but instead, was Paul Trahan, a majestic Monarch butterfly. Paul uses his given middle name, and changed his surname to one with close personal significance. He discovered God and has a personal relationship with Him. He found his voice and writes beautifully, sharing from his heart and soul. He is a fine physical specimen, a handsome man with an air of confidence without pride. He is an all around good guy.

paul trahan

I’ve introduced you to my old friend because I believe that we reconnected for a reason. I don’t believe in coincidence. I believe in God, through the Holy Spirit, orchestrating the lives of people so they intersect at a time most opportune for God to reveal himself to both parties.  I’ve introduced you so you can see for yourself what an awesomely cool guy he is! Yep….the Murray Mitchell I knew would never have believed in high school that the buxom blonde girl with the sassy mouth would ever call him “cool”, but I am…..because he is. And I can because our God is awesome enough to see fit to cross our paths again and I have subsequently been able to see the results of Paul’s metamorphosis. My God, what a change! And the best part is….he is not just my friend……he’s my Brother in Christ.

So….check out his WordPress page! You’ll be inspired now that you know some of the back story!

A Soldier’s Journey on the Wings of the Wind

May your day be blessed and your being enriched by the things you find there to inspire your soul.

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Do You Know This Guy?

I know a guy. He’s young (30-something), able bodied, relatively intelligent, but with number of dead brain cells from way too much pill-popping and pot-smoking in his life. (God bless him…if he’d get saved God might be able to work that to his good one day.) He’s not a bad guy, just lost and clueless.

For the sake of this story we’ll call him Tommy. Well, Tommy was married for 10+ years. He has an elementary school-age son. Tommy had a problem with drugs and has a problem with alcohol, which I assume because he’s been known to roll up to work early in the morning with a beer in his hand. He and his wife of ten years are now divorced and he’s re-married with a new baby.

This fellow (i deleted the word yo-yo cause God don’t like ugly), quit a high paying union job with benefits….and stayed unemployed for a year during the separation and divorce. This was done “conveniently” in time to not have his high union wages counted when his child support calculation was done. He lucked out and it was agreed he would only have to only pay $400 a month. He complained about that.

He is married to a woman who makes more than he did when he earned top union wages. However, between them they can’t come up with his monthly obligation to his son. I suppose he may feel a greater obligation to his current wife and new child than he does to his ex-wife and old kid.

His ex-wife had always worked part-time, even while she attended school, but was unemployed when they divorced. Since then, he has worked piece-meal jobs and laid out of work on a fairly regular basis. He’s a couple of months behind in his child support. Though his ex-wife is now employed it’s at an entry level pay grade. She has a hard time making ends meet with her small check and his markedly inconsistent child support payments.

What galls me, I guess, is that while her family is pitching in to help buy her son’s school clothes, this model dad gets on FB and brags about what a great dad he is and “everyone” knows he’s always taken care of his kids. Granted, he’s bought the boy a couple of school outfits, but a growing child needs more than that to get by with for any length of time. He needs shoes, he needs school supplies, he needs other things. Tommy’s ex-wife has been the first mother in several generations of her family to rely on government help. Tommy’s son lost his insurance coverage when Tommy quit working enough union hours to qualify for benefits.

It’s just so sad to see someone so far in denial, so lost, so unconcerned with the welfare of his own child. He fusses at his ex wife for not providing things like cable television, etc. for their son, but he hasn’t paid her any child support other than a few dollars here and there to placate her. He doesn’t offer to take his son to dental or doctor’s appointments. Before getting fired he worked a part-time job in the same town in which his son lived and often passed up opportunities to see his son, even if for a few short minutes, so he could hurry home.

If this story seems familiar to you it’s because it could be a picture of someone in your family, someone that you work with, perhaps one of this story’s main characters is you (figuratively speaking, of course).

Drugs and alcohol wreak havoc in people’s lives. It makes them lose their good sense. It makes them mis-prioritize their lives. It makes them be an absentee father or absentee mother whether they live inside or outside the same home as their children. It turns them into a poor excuse for a spouse. It affects their ability to support their family financially, spiritually, and emotionally. And worse of all it deadens them to the call of God on their lives.

When folks who are entrenched in this lifestyle perform as if they are in bondage, it’s because they are. When people are called out on their action or inaction they are prone to defending or justifying their actions. They often do this because they want to convince others that their actions are okay, as if that act will make it all better. The truth is, no one can guilt or shame them into changing. They will have to hit their own rock bottom and want to make a change for the better for themselves and their families.

If you know someone like this, pray for them. Share the gospel with them, live out the Holy Spirit in you in their presence on a regular basis. Above all, love them with the love of Christ.

In my humanness, in the flesh, I want to take this guy I know and shake some sense into him…and maybe smack him on the back of the head for good measure. When he justifies his actions to me or corrects small inaccuracies in my thinking about the situation, I know he is struggling to make himself feel better about his own lack in his role as a dad. I remind myself that most people who use drugs and alcohol do so because they can’t deal with some area of their life, or deal with hurts they have been dealt, or feelings of worthlessness that someone has inundated them with. There is always a core reason.

I still want to “Tommy” how he is affecting his son…not just for the present, but for the boy’s entire lifetime.  One day his son will grow up and realize that the financial lack his household experienced during his childhood was contributed to by his dad. He’ll have to deal with becoming the adult child of an alcoholic and all the inner conflict that brings. However, because I serve a higher standard I will, instead, endeavor to practice what I preach. I will love him in the Lord and pray for him. It is the right thing to do as a Christian, and I encourage you to consider doing the same thing with the “Tommy”s in your life.

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It’s a Choice: Are You A Materialistic Christian?

materialism defined

In today’s society, with the ever increasing numbers of young people reaching the age where they are doing their own shopping, materialism seems to be worse than before. Gone are the days of kids being satisfied with a BB gun or a $20 Toys-R-Us gift card for birthdays and at Christmas. Nowadays parents are buying themselves and their children smartphones and tablets that cost hundreds of dollars, going into debt to purchase vehicles for every licensed driver in the home, and sinking themselves into 30 year mortgages on homes that are beyond their means. As a whole, even in the midst of our  repressed (or depressed, depending on who you ask) economy folks are still spending money like there is no tomorrow.We’re teaching this new generation of consumers that if we want something, we buy it … without considering the consequences of our behavior.

pup and pearles

If society at large chooses to run itself into insurmountable debt without accountability to anyone but their creditors, that’s their business. However, Christian people are not being good stewards of the money that God has given them either. This is not limited to young married adults and singles, who have not had the advantage of being raised in a home where sound money management was practiced and taught. It extends to the previous two generations as well. As responsible Christian adults it is our duty before God to get a handle on our spending and our lifestyle and become good stewards of what He has given us.

I suspect that when he walked the earth Jesus chose his words carefully. When he spoke to someone during his short lifetime, many folks believe that he spoke not only to the person or people who were physically present at that time, but also to believers in every generation to come for use in their own life application or in the forming of their personal doctrines and thinking on those subjects he addressed. Don’t let His words on this subject of money, wealth, and stewardship fall on deaf ears and a hard heart today.

what shall it profit a man

When Jesus was speaking to his disciples in Mark 8, one of the things he noted was that it is not profitable for a man to gain the whole world if he lost his soul in the process.  In Luke 16:13 Jesus says, “No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” Mammon here is not simply money; it is defined as wealth regarded as an evil influence or false object of worship and devotion.  In doing a spiritual accounting of your thoughts and attitudes, do you devote more time to shopping and spending, collecting, saving, or hoarding than you spend seeking God’s face, falling before him on your face in intercessory prayer, or telling someone your testimony in hopes of leading him or her to the Lord’s saving grace? Be mindful of where your heart and mind are set.

When we become more concerned with money than with man, love things more than we love people, and serve our own desires for worldly trappings  and appearances more than we serve the Living God, we are treading on dangerous ground. Not only are we taking the chance that we will end up financially destitute, but we are virtually guaranteeing that we are headed for spiritual destitution as well.

God is not asking you to be dirt poor. In fact, the contrary is true; He wants us to have life and have it abundantly.  Don’t be misled into believing that abundance consists only of material goods. Abundance comes in the form of the favor of God, blessings of good health, a family, and the love of a good church family. Abundance from God can materialize in your life in the form of a devoted spouse, a God-fearing truth-preaching Pastor, or a beautiful sunset at the end of a long day.

God gives us all that we have, and he gives us the choice to be good stewards, or not, of our assets (our money, our time, and our talents). He expects that since he gave us these things that we should use them in our service to Him. Does this mean sell everything you own and give it to the church? No. But it does mean spending and using what you have so that it best benefits God. Does God expect you to live like a church mouse? No. But it would undoubtedly please him if you took a good hard look at your life and re-prioritized and re-appropriated your assets. Spend a portion of your money for the furtherance of His kingdom, spend more of your time growing spiritually, and use your talents to honor and glorify Him.

When Jesus spoke to the thousands of people gathered to hear him, as recounted in Luke 12, he spoke to them about a certain rich man who layed up for himself all sorts of things for use in the future and Jesus, having spoken of him in the previous verse as a fool said in verse , 21 “So [is] he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”

Could living in a less expensive house mean that you’re able to give to the young lady at church who is planning a mission trip? Could eating out less mean you have a few extra dollars to donate to the soup kitchen that feeds the needy? Does buying your kids less at Christmas mean that you are focusing more on the true meaning of the holiday rather than seeing who gets the most stuff? The list could go on and on.

i want everything

Because of my salvation in Christ and my renewed desire to please God, the materialism of my youth has been put down forever. When my spouse and I decided to marry a couple of years ago we made the tough decisions about money. We are content to know that our mansion in heaven awaits us, so while we are on this earth we live in a 11 year old single-wide mobile home on 1/2 acre of land at the end of a country lane. We bought it used and did some minor repairs on it. It cost $15,000 and will be paid off in less than a year.

We know that God could not care less about what we drive so I gave away the Lincoln Town Car I drove and I now drive a 19 year old Chevy S-10 pickup with mis-matched seats and 274,000 miles on it. The clear coat is peeling off and the exhaust system needs a little work on it, but it’s a good reliable vehicle with freezing cold air conditioning. (The Lord KNOWS I don’t tolerate the south Georgia heat very well). It gets me from point A to point B and since I know God isn’t concerned with what I drive, I don’t really care what people think about it.

I knew when I married my husband that his mother was in ill health and his father was only going to get older before he died. We decided that we would live next door to them and that I would stay home to be available to help them as needed.  I don’t miss my job in a stock broker’s office at all anymore. I enjoy this phase of my life and am happy with our choice.

My husband and I live contentedly on a single income. We don’t eat out very often. I choose to cook at home from scratch because it’s 1/10th the cost of buying processed boxed foods and eating out. I buy store brand products over name brands by choice. Doing this allows us to occasionally treat someone else to a meal at a restaurant or take our grandkids out to their favorite eatery every once in a while.

As far as personal “stuff” goes, we chose  $20 titanium wedding bands instead of a more expensive diamond wedding set and gold band that my husband would gladly have purchased. We had a private beach wedding with 6 attendees (including us, the officiant and his wife and son, and one seagull). We didn’t “honeymoon” and we don’t celebrate anniversaries or Valentine’s day because we are living that honeymoon every day of our married lives.

We choose to own a few personal mementos that have some sentimental value to pass on to our children, rather than shelves full of collectible junk. I clean my closets and go through our storage stuff once a year.  My rule-of-thumb is if I’ve not used something in a year and don’t foresee myself using it in the next 2 years, I get rid of it by giving it to someone who needs it more than we do. I shop at end-of-season sales, thrift stores and yard sales if I need to replace that little something down the road.

My closet does not have a single designer label hanging from the racks. I don’t think my glorified body is going to need clothes and if it does I’m counting on a heavenly designer to clothe me as royalty…the child of the King.

Don’t pity me or on the other hand think me pious. I have made my own choices and have chosen this more simplistic way of life. I can assure you…through Christ I am rich beyond measure. It is my hope that this will inspire you think on these things.

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Making Amends with An Old Love

olive branch

A couple of years ago I was at a juncture in my life that led me to do some self-assessment. I was just coming off of my fifth divorce to my fourth husband (yes, that’s what I said…like an idiot, I married the first one twice; and yes, I’ve been married that many times). I was trying to figure out where I stood and what I believed, as well as what I wanted to do about my past, my present, and my future. I decided to regroup and go up to Rome, Georgia to have a short visit with my parents. While I was there a cousin of mine in Atlanta invited me to her annual Mardi Gras party. She warned me beforehand that my first really serious boyfriend, whom she had initially introduced me to some 27 years before, would be in attendance.

After attending the party, seeing him and his wife, and visiting with them, I took a day or so to form my thoughts and feelings and I wrote him the following letter. My hope and intent in the writing is clear, and in hindsight I hope it gives you encouragement to make amends in your life, as I did and am doing in mine.

amends 1

After talking to you on the phone a few months ago, and particularly since seeing you last night, I think there are some things I should let you know, mostly just to get them off of my mind and conscience. There is no other reason than that, except that I think you might want to know these things for your own reasons.

Way back, 25+ years ago, when we were together I didn’t realize the value of what we had. I discounted it as young love surely destined to fail. I had no faith in myself to make it work. When you asked me to marry you, I wanted to so badly. However, because I loved you and, at the same time, felt sure that I would screw it up in the end, I made a conscious decision to hurt your heart a little then instead of what I was sure would be more later.

What I have learned over the years since then is that I was very foolish in regard to you for several reasons. First of all, there was nothing to say we would have failed (except for my fears) and we probably wouldn’t have. Secondly, I know deep down within myself that I did not just hurt you just “a little” back then. I realized, only too late, that I had absolutely broken your heart. I have never said so before, and I do wish I could say it to you in person, but for what little it’s worth I am so very sorry that I caused you so much pain. Choosing not to marry you has been the single greatest regret of my life. My second greatest regret was marrying my first husband. My third was marrying my subsequent husbands. I think I subconsciously measured them all against you (or at least my image of you then and what I conjured up you would mature into)…….and they all failed miserably.  I’ve always remembered that time we had together with great fondness and bittersweet remorse.What you’ve become for me since those days is that great “could have been” I missed taking the opportunity to hold on to forever. 

I’ve kept track of you off and on through mutual acquaintances over the years. I’m so genuinely happy that you have a good woman for your wife. I do hope she realizes the value of you as her husband. I am particularly glad to see the pride in your eyes and the love in your voice when you talk of your children. (Sadly, though, I always wondered what our children would have been like. To tell the truth, until I saw the pics of your three children last night I hadn’t thought of that in years.)

I am glad that you thought enough of me to let me meet your wife. She is quite a unique woman. She seemed nervous about meeting me and quite unsure of what to expect. (I’m sorry about jumping all over you at the front door. I really embarrassed myself with that move. Trust me, it was not planned or even considered…..it just happened.)

When you left the room at one point during the evening your wife leaned in and said to me, “You know, he really wanted to marry you. He was very much in love with you,”  and then she let me know that I was nothing like she had expected me to be. She almost seemed like she felt she must let me know this stuff and seemed relieved to have gotten it out. We had a brief conversation about how love changes and that there are different kinds of love.

Sitting there watching her fidget with the hem of her blouse, I told her that I was aware that I had hurt you badly, but we all have to look at the positive side of things. I said what I hoped were words to reassure her, bringing to light the fact that I had married you back then, you and she would not be together and you wouldn’t have those three great kids……and I wouldn’t have my two girls or granddaughter. I think I made it clear to her that I have deep respect for your relationship with her and that I had no intention of trying to wiggle my way into it. I hope I made her feel as though any feelings you and I had for each other are in the past. I would NEVER want her to think anything else.

love and loss

At one point she wistfully told me that she could tell in your voice when you spoke about me that you loved me very much. For a split second it sounded like she thought you still loved me…..her voice quivered when she said that, but only momentarily. It made me want to cry, not so much for you, but for her. However, whether she was putting on a strong front, or is just a very strong person, she seemed to have come to accept the finality of that reality.

I had always hoped that I hadn’t had that marked years-long effect on you; that the wounds I inflicted on your heart had not been so deep that that they’d only healed on the surface. I realized last night that such might be the case and that your wife might know that in her own heart. I hope that isn’t the case. You see, for a woman that is just like having to share her man with someone else who gets first dibs. I do not wish that pain on anyone. 

Seeing you again, and meeting your wife were a wonderful gift, but hearing that little bit of pain in her voice when she spoke of me and you made me really think about you at great length and in detail. I could tell when you hugged me good-bye for just that extra second or two, and then kissed me on the cheek, that you were feeling one of two things. You were either glad to see me and happy that I am back in your life, albeit to a very, very limited degree or you were closing a chapter in your book of life that has been needing to be closed for a very long time. Either way, I was very glad to see you, to talk to you, to be able to hug you one more time.

Now comes the disclaimer. I’ve been married and divorced so many times I sometimes wonder if I’m a secret sister of  Zsa Zsa Gabor or Liz Taylor. I am at mid-life and am re-assessing myself and my life choices in the physcial, mental, and spiritual realms. I’ve pretty much sworn off men and physical relationships; I’m just not interested in getting into any kind of personal relationship. I’m not trying to do that with you either. Please don’t take this message that way. I want you to be happy and I hope you are. I just had to tell you all of this stuff or I was going to burst is all. I don’t want anything from you, and I definitely don’t want to upset your apple cart, so-to-speak.

One of the things I am striving to do this second season of my life, is to right some wrongs. You are at the top of my list. I can’t go back and change things, but I hopefully can make you understand that I am truly sorry and perhaps shed light on things you may have wondered about since then.

In any case, now you know.

And also, just so you don’t have to wonder, as I did, I have always loved you and I will always love you in a way that I cannot explain. I suppose it’s just that pure innocent first love kind of thing that resides so deeply within a person that it’s just part of who they are. That is the only way I can describe it. And I sure hope that is okay with you because I never could make it go away and now I don’t want to. I have chosen to embrace it and be glad for it. Now it’s just much less bitter and much more sweet. Thank you for that.

forgiveness

This letter was well-received and responded to in like kind. That old flame of mine and I have made our peace. We are friends and touch base on occasion through social media. I rest so much better now knowing that I was brave enough to step out in faith, reach out, and attempt to make amends for a great hurt I’ve caused.

Not all attempts at righting wrongs are met with such openness. Many times doors are slammed in our faces, letters and messages are unanswered, and apologies are made in vain. Let me assure you, however that purposing in your heart to attempt this is half the battle. Whether the person with whom you are feeling the need to reconcile or make amends with is interested in doing the same is the other half of the battle, and it is theirs to attend to or not. Do your part, and let them choose whether or not to do theirs.

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NEWSFLASH: YOU’RE AN ADDICT

addiciton

 

You may think you have your friends and family,  your employers, your kids’ school teachers, and everyone else fooled into thinking you’re not…….but we all know.   Some people may judge you, but we don’t.  We love you, but hate the disease of addiction.

 

When we call you out on lies, refuse to be taken advantage of and manipulated, or hold you accountable, it is because we cannot allow you to pull us down a parallel path of destruction that you are on. We have to dig our heels in and stop allowing the madness of your addicted world to suck us in and consume us. We cannot continue to enable you. We choose to start our own path of recovery from our co-dependency and habit of enabling whether you ever choose to start recovering from your addiction or not.

 

lost love

 

Loving you means we have to detach ourselves from you in love so you can bottom out and get some help. It means there will be a lot of pain and heartache for us and for you. You will feel betrayed, hurt, and treated unfairly. That is textbook classic, and it’s ok.

 

When and if you get clean you will thank us for standing strong. We do this because we love you. We are tough on you because we love you.  We are praying for you because we love you. And we will never give up on you….because we love you.

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