Sunday, April 30, 2006

Soggy Sundays and Red Rooms

A soggy Sunday is always better than a sunny Monday. However, this Sunday was not starting out to be a good one. The morning was cooler than usual and she woke up shivering. Last night she had left the windows up to take advantage of the cool night and lower her ever increasing power bills. This morning she wished she had kept an extra blanket nearby.

Wind whipped the trees and the sound of continual rustling traveled thorough the house on the winds. The air smelled divine, even if it was chilly - fresh, clean, and hopeful. Spring was on the way.

She stepped out on the back patio to study a lawn in dire need of mowing and was struck by the intensity of green that filled the landscape. Only three weeks ago trees were bare and grass was brown. Today green leaves, green grass, and weeds were rampant. The mower was broken.

She wrapped both hands around her coffee cup and savored both the warmth and the aroma. Sometimes creature comforts were one's only solace. It was much too gloomy to spend a day on the patio in a soggy green cacoon. One last look, a whistle to the dog, and she closed the door. Her red study was much more comforting and inviting. There, she would try and shut out the world for just a bit longer.

Hollow People

Finally, a long week has ended and a new one begun. I don't want to live through another week as long as this one has been.

I find myself more tired than usual and more restless. I have a week off and tons of stuff to do. I have to make room for all of Mike's stuff. We have crammed 5 people into a space of about 1200 sq. feet. Closet space has become impossible. It was always bad but it is terrible now. No walk-in closets in this house, in fact, you can't hardly get in these closets. They have a door that opens and a rod that extends about 4 feet.... one in each bedroom. Two half size closets in the hallway, one is Jerry's and one has been used for winter coats. Now, Mike has to cram his clothes there.

I know I will get it worked out but not sure when. Dave and Becca have applied for public housing. That is the "projects" to you uninformed out there. No money means you don't live in the nice neighborhoods. He didn't really want to do it but even he can see that we are at a catastrophic point financially. My income will support me and Jerry just fine. It won't support 4 adults and a new baby.

Mike, of course, hopes he will be able to go home to his wife soon. I, and everyone who knew her here, seriously doubt that will be the case. This is not someone I wanted him to marry to start with but I put my objections aside for Mike and tried to make the best of it. We gave her a chance to prove herself to be what she claimed she was - someone who loved our son and cared for him. All she has done is prove that what we originally thought of her was true - a liar who was out to find a man foolish enough to get her pregnant. She was unattracive and our son was the only person she could find to accept her as she was - fat and a sloppy housekeeper. I hope she is completely out of our lives now. She has systematically destroyed everything he had when he met her, including his peace of mind. He has no place to live, no car, no money, and even if he had those things, all the furniture he had when he married her is gone and he has a judgement she caused when she broke their lease to move away. He can't buy a car until it is paid and he has no way to pay it. And he is suffering from severe depression and can't sleep or eat.

Am I being bitchy? Maybe so. I just believe in calling a spade a spade. We all have choices that we make regarding our lives and how we treat others. I despise liars and those who approach me under false pretenses. Invariably they think I am stupid. Equally invariably, I am not. I am seldom fooled. I wasn't fooled this time either. I suspended my belief to give the person a chance to show me what they were made of. Turns out they were hollow and I was right.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Friday Fantasies Foster Fervor For Fun

I am considering lobbying to make Friday the first day of the week. Now before you go saying that it is a crazy idea, think about it. It makes sense.

You get to Friday and you have two free days to look forward to. So, you begin Friday with a positive outlook, as opposed to the Monday morning blahs with its negative outlook toward a long, stress-filled week. On Friday you are thinking about what you will be doing that night and for the next two days. Those thoughts are usually pleasurable.

These positive thoughts often make the day much more pleasant and one often feels it is passing quickly as a result of positive feelings. Throughout the day one can be found contemplating lounging on the patio with a cold drink, warm sun bathing one's body, a good book abandoned on the nearby table but ready to hand should you decide to dive into its pages again. There may be music playing nearby as a gentle breeze wafts across your body. These thoughts alone can make the typical workday stresses evaporate in minutes.

Or perhaps you enjoy working in your yard or on your balcony garden, the warm earth evocking memories of childhood. The warm sun on your back, soothing tense muscles.

So, Friday as the first day of the week sounds like a great idea to me. You start the week with a great outlook. Besides, with Thursday eliminated, it makes for a very short work week!

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Terminating Thursdays

Thursdays are really annoying. I think they should take Thursdays completely out of the calendar. It is the day before the last day of the week. You spend Wendsday thinking, "Oh, I am halfway there!"

But then Thursday gets in the way. Thursdays you wake up thinking I still have to get through two more days. No, I think Thursdays should be eliminated.

Really, what happens on Thursdays? Have any great events in history happened on Thursdays? Anything earth shattering? I truly doubt it. All the momentous things happen on Friday night.

That is so Saturday can be spent regretting it. By Monday you should be over it.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Breath Taking

Close your eyes.



Breathe in. 1..2..3..4..5

Breathe out. 1..2..3..4..5



Much better.

Now, where was I?

Monday, April 24, 2006

Smiling through Tears

It would be nice to write some extraordinary news here and say that life is totally grand. Today is not the day.

Mike flew home last Tuesday, supposedly to visit us for 2 weeks. His wife had insisted he come home to visit. He called his wife on Tuesday night and they had a nice chat, he telling her that he loved and missed her and she responding in kind. On Wednesday he called his wife again because he was missing her and wanted to tell her he was coming home early. He had been miserable all day. But this time no I love you sweetie. Instead, she told him on the phone he could not come back because she had filed for divorce.

It was the most awful experience I ever want to live through. We heard him scream when she told him. When I finanlly reached him he collapsed. He had no idea when he left that she had done this and had started it a month ago. She told him she had been thinking about it for a year. Mike has a couple of learning disabilities and he has a very hard time with changes of any kind. She knew all this when she married him. But he loves this girl very much. He has pleaded with her over and over to not do this.

We had to rent a truck on Friday and drive to Little Rock and get his things. He cried all the way there on Friday and he stood in his trailer and cried "Mom this is my home. I don't want to leave." All she was giving him was shoved in garage sacks and stacked. We got home last night at midnight. While we were there, we talked with her father, pastor of a UPC church in Bryant, Arkansas and he said she had come to him and begged him to buy a ticket and send Mike home but that he had no idea what was going on. They had put him on the plane with $5 and no way to call anyone should he get stranded in Chicago. I had given him my phone card # in case of an emergency and he needed to call. I had no idea he had no money. She had taken him to the airport and told him she was going to miss him and kissed him goodbye.

Unfortunately, none of us here are surprised at her behavior. The day I met her I told my husband she was trouble. We felt that when this girl first came here that she was not the right person for Mike. She has been very dishonest ever since we met her and last year when she moved them back to Arkansas we believed then that she was doing so in order to be at her home when she divorced him. Mike would not listen before he married her and afterward it was too late, we had to accept her and pray about the relationship. We tried very hard to make her welcome in our family but she had proved several times that we were right in our assessment of her. She was just very deceitful and not good to Mike.

Two weeks ago, when he told us she was encouraging him to come home alone for a visit, I told Jerry she was going to divorce him while he was gone. I just felt it so strongly. The whole family was concerned. I tried to think positive, saying that surely I was over-reacting and imagining things. I told several friends what I felt was about to happen. Today those friends looked at me and said, "You were right!"

We now have both boys at home and a pregnant daughter-in-law. Financially we are beyond our means. David is not getting enough hours at work and Jerry is not able to work. Mike's social security benefits that he was drawing when he left last year are in a mess because his wife was not doing the payee duties as she should and he had to appeal their being stopped. We are waiting for a hearing to determine whether or not he will even get them back. He has no job and has limited skills to obtain one.

Of course there are two sides to everything. MIke has told us there were problems for the last year. He made some mistakes and freely admits that but indicates she never indicated she didn't love him. I have explained that it takes two people to make a marriage and she went into this one with her eyes wide open, knowing the problems. She never made any attempts to obtain counseling for herself or for both of them. Her pastor father had talked with Mike several times but as far as I have been able to determine neither of them were encouraged to seek counseling.

They put a learning disabled person on a flight through Chicago, with an hour and a half layover and $5, no money in the bank, and no credit card. Anyone ever had a lay over turn into days? Could you make it on $5?

Some people come into your life to bless you. Some come to destroy you. I don't think we have to ponder this very long to know what she was here for. I am so thankful she is gone and that God has looked out for Michael during the situation. We have had several small miracles since this happend. Not financial so much as confirmation of some things we had prayed about. Sometimes just knowing who is in charge is all we need to lift our spirits.

Tonight Michael was laughing at his brother's jokes. He has such a wonderful smile.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Dropping a Line

It is Wednesday and this week looks to be a swift one. I have a couple of dozen files to process by the end of the month, in addition to a move briefing this afternoon and a Landlord Orientation tomorrow afternoon. I hope the briefing is swift and the Landlords don't show up. I might actually get work done!

I took my doxepin last night and slept really well. This morning I am feeling better, less pain in my joints. I am finding that I don't want to deal with this much pain. I usually handle pain well and with little medication but this, this pain is unbearable. I would take Vioxx again in a second, heartattacks and stroke included. I had no pain on that medicine and felt wonderful. Death as an side effect of Vioxx? When I am in this much pain it is preferrable.

At any rate, today might be a fair day. Thank God for good days.

I am reading a good little book I found at a second-hand shop. I will probably talk about it soon. It is about time and how time is a gift from God to us, that together God and man weave time and how we do not view time in the correct way.

Gotta run now. Just wanted to take a quick break and drop a line and see what bites.

Monday, April 17, 2006

A Brighter Note

Oh wow! What a weekend. I don't know what I got accomplished. Most of the house is a mess still but I did clear the garage of junk for the trash pickup. And I had some time to work in the yard.

I was in an agony of pain for most of the last week. Friday & Saturday were absolutely the worst I think I have ever had. Leg pain all night Friday night, shooting pains from my hip to my ankle. It felt as if my bones were broken and I could barely walk...until I ask for prayer on Sunday morning. Went up for them to pray for me during the service. I was better almost immediately. But today the only pain I still had is in the back of my legs where I was bending over in the yard a lot. The rest of it is so minimal that it is hardly noticable. Always amazes me when that happens. How do non-believers explain it!

Mike is coming in tomorrow for about three weeks. I will be so happy to see him. I hope he can help with some of the stuff we have to do around here. I have been swampped and have not had enough help to get it all done.

I have some writing I want to post here later on but for now, this is it. How boring people must find this site.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Feeling My Pain

Today is, of course, Tuesday. I have had one of the most pain filled weeks I can ever remember having. And if one more person shows me their deformed finger and says, "See, I have RA too and I understand how much it hurts." I am going to break the finger in question.

Frankly, I don't care if you have a nodule on your finger or your big toe. If you were in as much pain as I am in right now you wouldn't be smiling, you wouldn't be able to point to one single joint on you body and say it hurts, and you wouldn't be trying to tell me I can't possible be in more pain than you because you have a knot. You would be in bed begging for painkillers!

In fact, I have a very high tolerance for pain and never take pain medications except when the pain has become excruciating. I was on pain meds two days after my hysterectomy and while I still had staples in my stomach I told them I didn't need anything. Well... it didn't hurt very much. I don't do mind altering if I can help it. And I hardly ever vomit either! My husband knows if I am sick enough to vomit he had better get me to the hospital because I am very sick.

This week I have been so sick with the pain I thought a few times I would throwup. So when I say I am in pain, believe me, it is not your average pain. Every joint in my body is on fire. Several of them feel as if someone has taken a hammer and shattered them with the force of a pile driver. My right shoulder in particular hurt so bad last night that the mucles in my chest contracted and if felt as if they were being twisted in a wringer. Someone shook my hand on Sunday night and I nearly snatched it back because his thumb had touched a point on the back of it that I didn't realize was sore.

My feet feel as if I have undergone some kind of torture with bamboo sticks. The last joints on my fingers feel as if they were mashed in a vice. And my hip feels as if it is dislocated.

So, don't tell me you understand my pain unless you have been hit by a car. If you haven't, I can fix that for you.

Wednesday, April 5, 2006

Someone Else's Answered Prayers

Sometimes God puts us in situations or places we find difficult or even unbearable. We experience great pain and terrible loss as a result of that place. In our despreration, we pray for God to help and to reposition us, to give us an answer that will give us peace or comfort, to show us a way out. But it seems that He has just abandoned us and there is no place to turn, no place to hide away from our distress.

We are often told that this is how we grow, how we find strengths that were hidden. Other times we are told we have done something to deserve God's anger, that this is our punishment.

But perhaps, the reality is much more important than that. Perhaps our position or situation is the direct result of a prayer prayed by someone else, also in straits worse than our own, someone who has prayed for a miracle for themselves or for someone they love. God heard their cry and in his infinite wisdom, looked around for an answer to that prayer. His eye fell on you and he smiled and said, “Ah, this is the solution, this is the miracle. This one will be willing to step in and help when the time comes. This one has strength they will discover in this situation and will move the mountain of another. But… that will mean I must allow them to experience heartache and grief of their own. Still, they are the only person for the job and they won't give up.”

So, only by putting us in an uncomfortable, even painful place can God answer someone else's prayer.

How scary to think that I may be the answer to someone's prayer. Even scarier to realize that God thinks that much of me.