Gift Prayer

Summer and Fall 2013 1086

Tomorrow I turn 47. My Birthday is the day I hate most, pretty much. The day I’m suppose to wait around wondering who loves me by what they say or what they give. This year I’m rebelling. I’ve decided I’m old enough to do birthdays how I like them. So, from now on, my birthday is the gift I’ve been given by God, and so will be letting all the people in my life know how much I love them. I know my family and friends love me. Because they are busy, or broke or forgetful or for whatever reason don’t send something, I refuse to feel sad. I refuse to love the friends who remember my birthday more than the friends that don’t. I rarely or never remember anyones birthday.  Complete bunk. It’s a measure that just hurts in my opinion…so from now on, love goes the other direction… out to you, the girlfriends who have listened to me through every imaginable frustration, who have laughed with me historically over who knows what, who have told me your raw yuck… who trust me enough to do so. My love goes out to Adored Husband for all the ways he has cared for and loved me in his own way. To my four amazing and beautiful children, too amazing to be related to me, and yet call me Momma. To my beautiful Mom who is one of the most resilient, intelligent, fun loving and driven persons I have ever known. To my sisters, blood and otherwise, who love me as is, live parallel lives and share that path with me. To my Mother in Law and Father in law for having a son I adore. To you and the rest of my family all over the country side and world…. I’m glad to be related to you. To the people I’ve worked with, who know how I fumble on remembering names and paperwork and processes we do every single shift, and still I can’t seem to remember. To my clients who are not reading this, but who have made me see the world through a lens of hope and strength, for what they have experienced and still come out the other side beautiful and strong. To all the professionals who have helped me get my license, get organized and start my practice. To the dedicated teachers… Sunday School, and school, who have blessed our kids and family richly. I am the luckiest person in the world.

Out my window is grass green, my fridge is full of food. I sleep each night in a bed soft and beside my best friend and lover. I ware clothes that fit, shoes that protect my feet. Listen to music, read amazing books. I’m so glad for the 47 years I’ve had. I pray that this year, each of you know how much I love you… and know how much God loves and adores you as is. That’s the birthday gift I’m praying for… a gift prayer for each of you.

With Love,


Charred Noodles with Cheese

I Kiss Better THAN I COOK

I’m jarred into the moment with a shrillness of a blaring fire alarm.  Holding my ears, I rush through the kitchen, switch the burner off, grab billowing pan off stove, rush toward the back door to the deck.  This is not a rare event.  It’s at least a weekly one.  I can’t say I hate cooking.  I just like to cook occasionally.  I won’t say I’m a pyromaniac, no that’s not it.  I’d rather say I love to learn and think and write, and kids and husbands have to eat so often.  If I’m ever to think deeply, put something down in writing, struggle over an idea, it will get in the way of cooking.  So when I found this sign, I decided to proudly post the truth:)  The sign is me, not only because I can be forgetful about meals themselves, but because I’m lacking nothing in the way of hugs and kisses to whatever kid or husband will take them!  For the record, our fridge is always stocked with pre-made salad I put together, a pot of chili, home made bread (that’s Adored Husbands nightly ritual), nut and crasin packs, pre-boiled eggs, often a pot of soup.  The freezer almost always has pre-made smoothies, corn dogs… you get the idea.  It’s not that the family goes hungry.  It’s just that spending 10 hours a day in the kitchen gets on my nerves.

There are ideas that float around Christian Circles  -opinions sent through the “A Goldy Christian Woman would …” grid.  Ideas that sometimes stand my hair on end, because they are ideas, not God Speak, and dump a whole lot of guilt on people for no good reason.  Ideas such as a Godly Women will set aside who she for what the family needs “for a season”  until kids leave the home, because time flies by.  That particular idea is partially true for families who have 2 children, two years apart.  However the idea lacks any validity at all for families who have many children, or families whose children are spaced out! – And anyone who knows are kids will agree we have spaced out kids:)… (OK, the acorn doesn’t fall far from the trees – plural.)  We had our first (College Boy) when I was 26.  I will be 60 when Butterfly heads off to college.  Thirty-four years to be exact.  That’s not a season, it’s one year short of 3 and a half decades – and during my prime.  I don’t ever think it’s Godly to be selfish and so centered on what I enjoy that I ignore or neglect my kids and husband, however there is a fine line between caring for my family and loosing myself.  If I don’t at times write, sing, climb a mountain, think a deep thought and express it, take a photo, write some more, I’m just a walking shell – a robot Mother, not myself.  I’ve tried putting me on hold for years at a time, wondering why I’d eat for pleasure rather than fuel, struggle with a sense of meaninglessness, and experience frustration at the feeling of being a failure when it comes to being a mother.   To be honest, I have never been able to come close to competing when it comes to birthday party events, volunteering at school, even keeping the house straight with the world all day every day.  Age has given me the gift of easy does it…,  it’s becoming clear that Mom’s come in all forms – even somewhat intellectual and bookish at times.  Some Moms thrive on casseroles and wrapping gifts perfectly.  Some can make casseroles and wrap gifts, but the tasks drain them rather than give them a sense of accomplishment.  Just as some Dads will coach their kids sports, others may teach their child how to trade stock, how to pull an engine or how to think about Western Civilization.  People are unique… that’s Mothers, too.  When I embrace who I am, my children start to embrace who they are, their sense of value further develops, they become better servants, care for others on a deeper level by the development of their own esteem.  Okay, I shouldn’t be burning up dinner once a week.  This is true.  The important thing is that no matter what has me deep in thought, I’ll not run out of hugs and kisses – well, not permanently, anyway:)  My family might survive on peanut butter and jelly a long time, but wouldn’t last long without love.