Friday, May 31, 2013

The big busy day fell on its face

I had big intentions today! I was going to do laundry, fix up a few things around the house, go grocery shopping, scrub a new to me baby gate, send out some packages, get some things done at the library, and plan my tutoring lessons.

Wanna know what I did?
I woke up feeling awful! A potsy kind of awful where I stand up and the room does a little jig. So, I sat down on the floor and scooted around to where things needed to be cleaned. Ha! One thing started. It's still not finished. I got feeling worse.

I have these magic Gatorade packets that I mix into water, down the nasty tasting stuff, and it makes me feel all better. So, I ate, and then drank a couple packets worth. Then, I went grocery shopping with my mom. Well... she went shopping and I kept her company. It was a HOT day, and things wouldn't keep in the car. I'll have to get my things another day.

As I pushed the cart out of the store, all the sudden, it felt like an elephant fell in the cart. It took so much effort to push a cart that had a few things from Costco in it. My mom took over.

The rest of the day, I didn't do much. I slept! My body thanks me. I didn't know how tired I was. The frustrating thing is that I don't know what causes these episodes. They just hit me out of the blue. It does keep me humble, though.

I think I was getting a little too excited to plan my daily activities. So, Lord willing, everything I didn't do today, I'll get done tomorrow.

James 4:13-15
13Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: 14Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. 15For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Work is a blessing

I have work to do. You cannot know how exciting that is! Today, I will be writing articles and tutoring, and I'll get paid to do both. A few months ago, I had no income whatsoever. Now, I am excited to be moving forward.

I find myself musing on the fact that so many people thing work is a curse, but before Adam and Eve ever took part of the forbidden fruit, they were to till the ground and tend the animals. The curse just added weeds, thorns, and other difficulties.

To me, it makes sense that work is part of paradise, and I do believe we will be working in Heaven. I get a sort of satisfaction from making a living. It just feels right. Conversely, when I just sit around, I end up getting depressed, frustrated, and snippy.

The neatest thing about my work is that everything I get paid for I enjoy. I cannot believe that I've found a job where I write and another job where I tutor. It's just too perfect! And I've recently been given a huge honor! I was told just last night that I'm one of the top writers for her company! One of my articles had been featured as an example of how to write a good article. It was about toothpaste, of all things, but she said it was written in a way that conjured emotion. Well, then last night, she sent me an email thanking me for being one of her top writers! There's only one word to describe how I felt: honored. I felt very honored.

I kinda want to tell the whole world, but it's not really good to brag. But it's not really bragging if you don't know who I am, right? So, celebrate with me! I enjoy the work I'm doing, and my boss does, too! It's very satisfying! I pray that each of you can find similar satisfactions.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Getting out of the house

People who spend a great deal of time at work cannot wait to have some quiet time at home. Those of us who spend a great deal of time at home cannot wait to get out of the house. I believe it is truly important for the emotional well-being of the household as a whole that every member gets their break, whether it be inside or outside of the home.

So, today, I am venturing out. I will be doing some grocery shopping and some other shopping. I am most excited about getting a package together for my sister. My husband sent me a bunch of her teas. They need to get back to her, and I'm going to slip in a few special things for her to enjoy.

I am also going to get a free candy bar, and some almost free sunscreen at CVS. If you haven't heard about the drugstore game, I highly recommend looking into it. Money Saving Mom is an excellent resource for all your couponing needs, and the drugstore game is no exception. Last week I got paid to buy nail polish, and I got 3 jumbo packs of diapers for $6. Don't be too impressed, the jumbo pack is the small one.

I really enjoy couponing, especially when it grants me something I need for an incredible price. If I had coupons for Jergen's lotion, I would be making money buying it. As it is, I'll be paying a minimal amount.

After all my venturing, I believe my itch to be out of the house will be scratched, and I can sit at home again. I hope that those of you who need a break will be able to get one soon. Meanwhile, I hope you find joy doing that which the Lord has called you to.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Anger abated

I'm not sure exactly why the anger ruled in my heart for the last week or so. I was truly getting concerned. Unfortunately, I spewed my anger towards innocents in my path before finally the storm finally broke.

The wonderful church I've found is filled with people who care. So many have been ready and willing to open their arms to me and help me through. It's been truly amazing. So, why is it that my anger spills at the place I can call home? I found myself angry over a trifling matter in Sunday school, and I made sure the person knew it. I owe him a deep apology the next time I see him.

After church, I sat outside by my car. It was several minutes since the doors closed, so I let the storm break and cried in apparent solitude. I am so alone. I have so many choices to make, and no one to help bear that burden. I sobbed as I sat, wishing for a hug, but having no one to share one with. It was then that an older lady pulled into the spot by my car. She had lost her husband three years ago, and came to visit the grave. She said she still wasn't used to being alone. We both cried for awhile, and then we shared a much-needed hug before she left to take lunch to someone recovering from surgery. Some people minister through their grief. I must learn to do that. It's much better than lashing out.

As she left, I found more tears pouring down my cheeks. If God was with me to provide a hug when no one was around, will He not provide a job, child care for my daughter, a better doctor, safety for our little family, a home, and the comfort I need when the pain is too much? Surely the God who cares enough to send a hug also cares enough to meet every other need, however impossible they may seem.

As I consider everything, I think a big part of my anger was rooted in stress. So much on my little shoulders. So much weight to bear! I am so glad that He cares to send a simple hug when I need it. I must trust that He will provide every other necessity.

I pray that He will now provide the wisdom to mend the wounded relationships, and give me the wisdom to restrain myself from taking my anger out on others in the future. Oh, that I not become a bitter old hag before I turn 30! I need to bear my burdens with grace. No, I cannot do that. They are too weighty. I must cast my cares upon Jesus, let Him bear my burdens, and follow Him for my own sake, the sake of my daughter, and the sake of the poor people who would otherwise be casualties as my anger strikes.

I may be going through a lot, but God has promised to never forsake me. I was considering that last week, and the thought provided little comfort. I really just wanted a hug. Turns out that my God can supply that as well. He really will supply my every need. I rest in His care.

Friday, May 24, 2013

A look to the future

I went to a bookstore with a friend. I love books! My dream was always to have a library, and that dream still persists today. I wasn't planning on buying anything, but something caught my eye that I absolutely had to have! And it was on the bargain table!!! This treasure was only $10!!

There are many books on the market in which you can record the precious memories with your little one. This one I especially like because it begins with only  20 pages that I will have to fill out now, but it has 100 pages yet to go that cover from her first words through her teenage years, her marriage, and finally, her first child.

I was going to place a link where you could order it yourself, but after looking at,, and, I determined the reason it was on the bargain shelf was because it was discontinued. It seems to have completely disappeared! I sincerely hope you can find one, because I love this book already!

It will especially help me to deal with all my anger about things in the past and things that are occurring now. I can flip through the pages and imagine when I will fill these empty pages. This book beckons me to dream of a future, and I am gladly and excitedly embracing this! I need to stop dwelling in the past, and I believe this will help by beckoning my gaze forward. Best of all, I will be able to write about the special moments that are occurring now! That will be so helpful to keep me from missing out on my daughter growing due to an incredible amount of grief and anger.

I praise God that He cares enough for me to lead me to such special treasures, and pray that He will guide me through my pain and a grief to a place of forgiveness and acceptance. I know that one day in the future, I will be able to look back and see God's mighty hand in my life. Until then, I am yet learning to trust as I look to the future.

Angry all over again

Sometimes, like right now, a smoldering fury swells within me as I think about what has occurred at my husband's hand. The thought of the pain, heartache, and fear he placed upon those I love makes my blood boil.

I know I need to forgive him, so I've tried to talk things out with him. He still makes excuses, telling me that it's ok that he was tempted to rape my sister, because nothing actually happened, telling me that peeping on someone doesn't hurt them, because they don't know he's there. Telling me that his comments about my daughter were innocent. As I hear him defend his indefensible actions, I get angry all over again.

I don't think I can ever trust him again, and I only wish there were a way to put him on the sex offender registry. I fear that he will do something horrible to someone else in the future unless he finally takes responsibility for his actions. I just don't see that happening based on his actions in the past.

Beyond that, I am now angry at the pediatrician we left. I cannot believe that she would treat me with such disrespect. She's violated my trust, and I feel so furious that I truly hope I do not see her on the street. I know I would have at least a few choice words for her, and I am far too angry right now to be able to address her.

I've had a hard time trusting doctors, and the distrust just seems to be validated around every turn. There have been doctors that I have trusted in the past. Those that are willing to talk to me, listen to me, and let me have a say in my own care make me feel safe. There are doctors who infuriate me, like this most recent doctor. They treat me like I don't know anything, and go behind my back to do what they deem best despite my plainly stated desires.

It used to frustrate me when they were my doctors. Now, as they go against my express desires for the safety of my daughter, I become absolutely infuriated!

Unfortunately, my husband and the doctor are not the only sources of my anger. It seems that anger begets anger, and I am increasingly concerned about the state of my heart. I told a friend that I was concerned, because I had so much anger in my heart. She said it was understandable, and I suppose that I have gone through a lot to be angry about. Yet, I cannot say that because it is understandable, it is right. I am hurting myself more than anyone else.

I really need to work through my anger, let it go, forgive, and move past things. It will take God's power to do so. Please pray that His grace will lead me through. I do not believe I can forgive these offenses without His power. Forgiveness is not easy, but it is necessary.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

The pediatrician (continued)

I'm even more angry at the pediatrician now. I just feel so incredibly frustrated! But, the good news is that I have found another pediatrician in the area. She was recommended to me by a friend, so I trust that much more than a random search.

To update you on the pediatrician:
I have been very careful about what vaccines I give my daughter. I have never had the flu vaccine, and I don't intend to ever get it or give it to my daughter. There are other vaccines that I feel are not necessary. That said, there are others that are necessary in my opinion. I do not think they are bad parents who choose to give their child every vaccine, nor are those who give their children no vaccines bad parents. It is up to the parents to decide, and the parents have a duty to research the subject and do what they feel is right.

I am allergic to a vaccine and my brother was allergic to a couple of them. Therefore, I wanted the vaccines to be given one at a time. By the time she was six months old, she had only had the dtap, because my life fell apart shortly after she was born. I decided I could do two at a time, if the first were proven safe for her. I told my plan to the pediatrician. We agreed to give her the dtap and polio vaccines that visit. I was there as they gave my daughter 2 shots.

As I was switching pediatricians, I called to verify which vaccines she was given. Surprise! Apparently, my little baby was given Hep B and Hem. I don't even know what Hem is! And I was never intending to give my daughter Hep B unless I needed to put her in day care. I feel betrayed. I trusted my daughter in their care, and they went behind my back.

I certainly hope the next pediatrician accepts that I am the mom. Really, how could someone do that??? I am so glad to be out of that woman's clutches! She needs a change of profession, in my opinion!

Overall, I am glad that my girl didn't have any reactions, but I'm just confused about what to do now. I have questions that need answering, and I don't know who to trust. For example, I know Hep B comes in a series. If I just stop the series is that ok? What if I need to start it again later? After all, I may need to put her in day care. And what is this hem???

I sincerely hope that I'll be able to trust this other doctor.

UPDATE:  I called the doctors office to confirm the vaccines. Turns out that it's not hem, but hib. While I don't know exactly what that is, it does seem that it's one I would have opted to give my daughter anyway.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The pediatrician

My daughter had a doctor's appointment today, and I have determined that she needs a new pediatrician. Last visit, my little baby had a horrible diaper rash. It turned out to be from a yeast infection, so my efforts to treat it were only making it worse. She prescribed what I assumed to be an anti-fungal cream. I always read everything and I'm still kicking myself that I assumed I knew what I was doing with the so-called anti-fungal cream. After almost a week of applying it with only minimal improvement, I finally decided to read the information. I about cried when I realized I had been spreading steroid cream over my baby's bottom. I was able to find some herbal remedies, like putting yogurt on the affected area, and her rash cleared up within a few days.

Once I realized the doctor had given steroid cream for a fungal infection, and nothing to fight the fungus, I knew it was time to find a new doctor. I've been searching for one since then, but didn't know who was good. I decided to keep today's appointment. My daughter has been throwing up since she was 3 weeks old. The doctor in state A assured me that it was a laundry problem rather than a health problem, and said that we could medicate to ease the symptoms, but the side-effects weren't necessarily worth it.

Well, my little one doesn't throw up as much as she used to, but she won't keep down solid foods except potatoes. I would give her the smallest spoonful of one thing or another, and she'd seem fine for a few minutes, and then all the sudden I need to give her a bath, calm her down, clean the floor, and do another load of laundry. I determined to wait a few weeks, because she just didn't seem ready.

After trying again just a few weeks ago, I determined to exclusively breastfeed until she is at least one year old. I had read that it was considered ideal for them to be exclusively nursed until that time anyway. Since I can give her body time to develop, I decided I'd do so! It will save her throat and my sanity, not to mention that it just can't be healthy to throw up so much.

When I told the pediatrician the scenario and my plan, she said she wanted to refer my baby to a pediatric GI specialist, just to make sure nothing's wrong. I'm fairly certain there's nothing wrong, but there's nothing wrong with verifying. Then she continued to say that if it is just a sensitive gag reflux, as I suspect, she'll start my baby on medication to treat it.

I mentioned that I would prefer to just breastfeed my daughter and re-attempt solids at a year old. She said if new tastes aren't introduced before a year old, it will be difficult to get my child to accept new things. I was about to tell her that I'll cross that bridge when I get there. Really I was thinking that every child is different, so how does she know? Before I could say anything, though, she said that my daughter has to have solid foods added to get the proper nutrients or she'll become malnourished.

I left confused. Surely everything I had read before wasn't false! Surely it is ok for me to choose to exclusively breastfeed my baby for the first year of her life. I threw out the question to other moms and then pursued research. To be fair, I haven't found much research, but lots of anecdotal evidence that my plan is fine. I want a second opinion, and I need to find a pediatrician who thinks twice before giving meds.

I am so glad I found such a good church, because some people have started helping me find a doctor even today! I'm praying God will lead us to a good doctor!

A difficult task

I am a freelance writer. I found the job through If there are some looking for a job you can do from home, I highly recommend looking there. For my particular job, I write articles for a blog. The publisher has asked me to write the most difficult thing I can imagine writing: Father's Day for a single mom. She wants me to write about the emotional difficulties of the day, my plans for how to celebrate Father's Day this year, and the plans for the years to come.

I dread completing this assignment. I have no clue what I'll do for Father's Day in the future, and taking writing about the emotional difficulties means that I'll have to take a long, hard look at just how hard the holiday will be.

Honestly, I've thought a lot about the future Father's Days. I can't decide whether to have my daughter make special things for him or if I should discourage an emotional attachment with the man I am seeking to protect her from. I suppose a big part of the decision will be determined by the custody arrangements.

The assignment is making me think ahead to something that I would otherwise avoid, and that is a good thing, though it is very difficult. I typically avoid thinking about difficult things, so this will give me an opportunity to carefully and prayerfully consider my options as I seek to make the wisest decisions.

If you would like to pray for me regarding these choices, I would appreciate it, and any advice will be prayed over and taken into consideration. As always, you can reach me at

Monday, May 20, 2013

God hears

Just yesterday, I wrote that I didn't know how to overcome the dark times that overtake me so easily. I asked God as I asked all of you, and though I didn't get many responses from my readers, God heard and replied.

In church, the preacher discussed how to get out of the "slough of despond." This was a reference to Paul Bunyan's book, Pilgrim's Progress. The amazing thing is that the preacher answered my question. He made a point to say that we need to be careful what we tell ourselves. He said that we have the greatest influence on ourselves, because we talk to ourselves the most.

We were studying the life of David. David was at a point in his life in which he was despairing. He said to himself that surely he would die by Saul's hand, and he fled to the Philistines to escape death. The preacher pointed out that this is referred to as a "God-less text," because God's counsel is not sought nor His faithfulness considered. David looks only at the circumstances and makes decisions accordingly.

The preacher said that we need to be careful what we tell ourselves, lest we deceive ourselves. We must look to God for the counsel we need. As we find counsel from God, we will also receive encouragement. The only way to recover from "the pits" is to turn to God and rely on Him to provide the needs of one's life.

As I considered these truths, it occurred to me that when I begin to feel down, I pull away from God, and wallow in the grief. I begin to think about how hopeless my situation is, and the great difficulties that currently fill my life. Rather than being consumed with fear, worry, and agony, I should turn my eyes to God. I should take my fill of His workmanship, recall His faithfulness, and bask in His love. He has not forsaken me yet, and I can see His providence clearly in my life up till now. I know I can trust His promises that He will never leave me nor forsake me. I know that He has a plan for my life, and a way to turn all this bad into something good.

The next time I start to wallow, I pray that God would reveal Himself to me, and that I would meditate on that which is true, honest, of good report, and full of mercy and praise. I pray that God will give me the strength and wisdom to bring every thought into captivity. As I lift my eyes to God, surely I will be relieved of the emotional torture that has plagued me so intensely.

For all those of you who read my last post and prayed that God would reveal Himself to me, I thank you. God truly is faithful. I'm glad He's on my side!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

No such thing as "Good Grief!"

I have been trying to work through my grief, and one of the things I've noticed is that I'll be doing great, and then I'll hit a slump where I just feel defeated and sad. I picked up a book about grief from the library, and it said that people working through grief often go from happy to sad and vacillate between the two.

While I know that what I'm going through is normal, I really want to stop the slumps before they even start. I am asking for your help on this. I know most of my readers are not licensed psychologists, but I imagine that all of you have gone through hard times. I would like to know how you keep from getting down after a devastating experience.

My trouble is that I'll be doing great, but the smallest thing will set my emotions reeling. For example, last week I drove to Once upon a Child to try to sell some of the things my daughter had outgrown. There were some very cute outfits and a bouncer. I thought for sure I'd get at least $10 and make up for the gas I spent getting there. Instead, they bought nothing. My mom echoed what I was already thinking when she said it seemed like a waste of gas. I kicked myself all the way home and just got moody. When my mom asked what was wrong, I sheepishly admitted that even the smallest defeats like that tip my emotional scale. She tenderly said it was just because my emotions are still tender.

I imagine it may be like a bruise. Any time you bump a bruise, it hurts. If you ignore it, it may ache, but you can pretty well go about your day without noticing it. I know that if I let God and time heal my aching heart, the slumps will slowly go away. Unfortunately, I'm a single mom now. I need to be able to be a successful tutor, a dedicated freelance writer, a devoted mother, and take care of myself. When my emotions get out of whack, it's hard to do it all and hurt, too.

I went to get my car fixed a few weeks ago. One of the tires had picked up a nail. They fixed it for free and offered me insurance for my tires. I was instantly distrustful, and had the most terrible time trying to make a decision about whether or not to get the insurance. I spoke to a pastor about it, and he said that it seemed to him that I have so many big decisions to make that the little decisions just overwhelm me right now. He added that he thought I was making good big decisions, and suggested I just get by for a little bit. But, I still don't know how to make these little day to day decisions. In fact, I still haven't decided whether or not to insure the tires. There's just too much grief in the way.

Is there a way that you have found to express your pain so you can continue to focus on life? I would really appreciate some ideas, even if you read this long after I publish the page. I just need some direction on how to deal with the hurt so that it's not affecting my life so much. Is there a way to grieve "silently?" All answers are appreciated

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Days of silence

I have heard from a few different readers that they do not view my blog as much because I have been somewhat inconsistent lately. I would like to explain that inconsistency, and then try to improve it.

I have been going through some very stressful times lately, and I have a hard time knowing how to deal with the stressful days. I have two defaults: 1. Stop eating. Not intentionally, but I just don't get hungry, hours and hours pass, and then I realize it, and try to make up for the lack of eating. Some people eat a ton when they get stressed, I do the opposite. 2. Clam up. And this is the cause of the inconsistency. When things are hard, I tend to keep to myself and "disappear." I fully recognize that neither of these are the best ways of dealing with stress, and if you have any suggestions, I'm all ears.

The depth of my struggles cannot be published for the world to see. It's not right to drag people through the mud or complain on a blog about how very difficult things are. Though sometimes I complain because I need someone to listen, and this is one place I can come and spill my heart without bothering anyone. I know that whoever clicks on my blog is looking to help support me, and that is a great relief. But I must write responsibly.

On the days when new things come up that I cannot share, I am at a loss of what to say, so I say nothing. Some days, I am able to think up a post, but not on the really, terribly difficult days. On those days, I often pull up my blog, stare at the empty page, and want so badly to let my fingers swiftly type about how cruel my circumstances are. I want so much to share what is on my heart, but I cannot, so I stare at a blank page until I eventually close the page and cry myself to sleep.

There are a few different ways I fix this situation. The first is that I could have "back-up" posts written that I fill in on different days. Another option is that I could just tell my readers openly that I'm going through an especially hard time, but cannot discuss it. They would be short snippets of posts, but it would at least be something. Then, on those days, you would know to pray for me especially hard. I suppose the best alternative is to combine those two.

I do so appreciate everyone's prayers! I know that eventually, my daughter and I will have made great strides on the journey towards peace. Eventually, our new life will have begun. Until then, my heart may be heavy often as new developments arise. I would appreciate prayers for wisdom about how to deal with those days.

A moment of reflection

I am having a very difficult time understanding how my husband can do everything he has done, and get away with it. It seems unjust and cruel to consider how freely he can throw money around while I literally pick up pennies from the street. He faces no consequences, except that my daughter and I left. It just seems that God should send His judgment now. Yet, God is long-suffering.

I consider how many many times God allowed sin to ruin the land of Israel and other nations before He finally sent His terrible judgment. In Sodom and Gomorrah, there were fewer than 10 righteous men within the city before God destroyed them in His judgment. I must consider the fact that perhaps God is waiting until there truly is no hope for the man I married before He unleashes judgment.

I do wish I saw some of God's judgment being wrought out right now. It would make it easier for me to accept everything. Don't get me wrong. My God is truly supplying my every need. It just seems that my husband's every need is being met as well. Yet, who am I to tell the one high God that I think He is misjudging or being too soft. His thoughts truly are higher than mine.

And I do know that all things will work out for good for me and my daughter. I know that He will lead us safely beside the still waters. I know that He will provide for my needs beyond all that I ask or think.

So then, why do I have such a hard time seeing my husband walk free, unencumbered with consequences from his sins? It seems that I have some soul-searching to do. Perhaps it is time for me to truly attempt to forgive the villain in my story. Perhaps only after I forgive him will I truly be able to accept God's guidance and blessings in my life.

It does seem like forgiving him is an impossible task, so please pray that I can move past my anger and resentment towards him as I forgive him in my heart. I do not want the root of bitterness to take hold of my heart. Please pray it away with me, and pray that I can grant forgiveness, leaving judgment entirely in God's worthy hands.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

We're ok

When my daughter and I arrived at my mom's house, I had 2 suitcases, a stroller, and a car seat. I had brought one toy for her. The rest was all clothes, burp clothes, diapers, and some basic toiletries. Living out of a suitcase was easy. At first, my daughter and I slept on the floor. We had no where else to go. So many people have contributed to our comfort. It astounds me.

It used to be that 3 loads of laundry washed all of her clothes, all of my clothes, and all of our bedding. I am blessed to be able to say that it is no longer the case. Friends have shared clothes with me, both for my daughter and for myself. My mom bought several outfits for her, and continues to do so on occasion. And did I mention that friends share clothes? I have received boxes of clothes from people. It's been a blessing!

Shortly after we arrived, my mom bought a mattress for me, and a pack and play for my daughter. Because my daughter had been sleeping next to me for so long, it took time to "crib train" her, but as I type this, she is contentedly sleeping in her pack and play. She is such a cutie!

The other day, I put her in her pack and play to play while with her toys. As I set her down, I was overcome with how many she had. Her crib had various toys scattered on its floor, though the storage bag for her toys was not yet empty. Downstairs, she has several toys, including a walker, a swing, a play pen, and a few toys inside of that. It is astounding that we have come so far! It is owed mostly to generous hearts of friends and family. My sister-in-law has sent several items as her youngest son outgrows them. We have so many people looking out for us!

I am sitting in my bed, astounded that more than just our needs have been met. Sometimes, I look ahead in fear of the future. As I survey the blessings that fill our lives, I cannot help but rest in the knowledge that God will continue to provide. Perhaps He will even provide for our wants.

There is one thing in particular I would really like to have for my daughter, but it is far from a need. Yet, I cannot help but feel a deep desire to buy one for her. Please pray that God will provide this. I love seeing her eyes light up as she enjoys this particular item. I've looked for one at thrift stores, but there are none. Someone at church said she'd bring one to church 2 weeks ago, but she didn't. I feel almost guilty for desiring to provide this fun thing for my daughter when I should just be grateful that our needs are met so abundantly. Above all, I know that we truly are ok. The journey to safety is well on its way, and almost complete. I marvel at God's goodness, and as I do, a song from my childhood plays in my mind. I truly stand all amazed!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A day for mothers

I had thought out some possibilities for Mother's Day activities, but nothing set in stone, and God took the day and made it more wonderful than I could have imagined, beyond anything I could ask or even think. He's an amazing Father!

Today began with me waking up for no apparent reason at 6:30. That meant that I got only 4 hours of sleep, yet I wasn't tired. In fact, I was happy, and excited for my first Mother's Day. I got ready for church, woke my daughter, and headed to the grocery store to pick up some donuts for Sunday School. The donuts were my breakfast, and Sunday School was a delightful time of fellowshipping with like-minded people who are my age. In fact, it was so good that 5 of us decided to meet for lunch after church.

In the church service, God spoke to my heart as we studied how David didn't kill Saul, even when Saul was most vulnerable. I was reminded that even when others are being evil towards me, I ought to stand blameless before God. As I do so, God will surely bless. It is His to reward and punish. It is mine to be faithful to Him.

The friends from Sunday school and I met at a Chinese restaurant. We chatted and laughed for hours, while everyone played "pass the babies" with my daughter, and another couple's son. I needed the sweet, godly fellowship, and laughed so hard, I nearly cried. Have I mentioned that I love my church? It's because of people like these, who are willing to be godly friends when I need them so badly.

After lunch, I came home and offered to take my mom somewhere, but I fell asleep while feeding my daughter. She and I slept for at least 3 hours, and it was wonderful. I woke up and offered again to take my mom somewhere, but she was talking to her other children on the phone while attempting to finish a movie.

As I reflected on the day, I realized that I hadn't used a single dish, and therefore, had to do no housework on Mother's Day. I determined to keep up the trend, and ordered in pizza. I then proceeded to eat most of a large pizza in one sitting. I have 2 pieces left for breakfast, unless someone else eats them first, of course.

So, today, I spent time with friends, took a nap, had good food, did no housework, and even received flowers from my parents. It's been a wonderful day! The best part of the day was reveling in the idea that I am indeed a mom. It really is a dream come true.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to all my dear readers who have little ones they have loved, nurtured, and tucked into bed. More specifically, to all those who know what it is to be a mother. To those who know the tug of a heart with the smallest wimper. To those who understand that feeling that only motherhood can bring. The bond between a mother and her child is unbelievable. Today, I celebrate my daughter and I. For, I would not be a mother without her.

She started today by not wanting to go to sleep, except in the comfort of my arms. She is finally sleeping peacefully in her pack and play, but for a while I thought I would not be able to post tonight. She would sleep for a few minutes, and then cry to be held. I would pick her up, soothe her, and gently lay her down. The cycle repeated so many times! I'll admit that it was frustrating at first, until I thought about how much I love snuggling with her. Perspective changes everything.

My daughter is getting to the wiggly age, where it's difficult to change her diaper, and almost impossible to clothe her with all the snaps lined up appropriately. These precious moments of just being together are getting fewer and farther between. I'll happily soak them up as I celebrate motherhood.

My plans for today include going to Ikea for a free breakfast, attending church, and then doing something with my mom, my daughter and I all together. I'm going to let my mom decide what exactly we do, but the zoo is free on Mother's Day, and so is the arboretum with a coupon, so those are possibilities. I also want to schedule a time to get portraits done of my daughter and I together-- I have coupons for that as well. She is growing so fast! I would love to professionally record the start of this new journey where she and I are together alone. It's special, and I want to always be able to look back at just how precious she really is.

I hope all of you have days that are as delightful as I intend to have. I'm praying that all mothers rejoice in their position and their opportunity to raise their children. I'm overwhelmed when I think of everything I must prepare my child for, and all the character qualities I wish to instill in her heart at a young age. Perhaps some of you reading this have wisdom to share. I am ready and willing to receive it.

I do want to share a couple things that melt my heart, though I've shared one before. Just make sure you have tissues ready before you click on the links below, and have a wonderful Mother's Day!

The Secret

Salute to Mothers

Friday, May 10, 2013

Words have power

My sister came to visit. She is one of the most caring, sweet, and encouraging people I know. She always seems to have uplifting things to say. As she left, I felt saddened. I already missed her, and how very uplifting she is. After spending time with her, I was encouraged to use my words carefully, knowing that things I say impact others. My words have the power to make someone feel small and worthless or happy and full of joy.

The Bible says a lot about our words. James 3:10 states, "Out of the same mouth proceeds blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be." Ephesians 4:29 exhorts, "Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers." According to that verse, I should only say those things that are edifying. That is a very lofty goal, and one that I will almost certainly be unable to achieve. In fact, James 3: 8 says I won't be able to. "But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.

At one point in my life, when I was less mature than I am now, I would have thought that if I couldn't succeed, why try at all. Graciously, God has granted me more wisdom over the years. If my stubborn perfectionism rises, I can rely on personal experience to squash the thought. See, at one point, my husband and I were living in a place that was infested with roaches when we moved in. I was determined to keep the house clean to make our place less desirable. One time, when I was ill, I asked him to clean the kitchen so bugs didn't get in. He didn't see why we should bother if they were there when we moved in.

I can't fault him too much for that sort of thinking. I find myself often thinking that if I cannot accomplish something perfectly, why bother with it at all. However, the line is drawn with bugs. Because I can finally see the wisdom in working on something, whether or not it can be perfectly executed, I now acknowledge the fact that I ought to endeavor to speak only words that edify. Much as I would never want my house to be constantly infested with roaches, I also don't want my words to be those which tear down, hurt, and discourage.

I am so blessed to have many friends who seem to speak words of edification with grace and ease. I will certainly need to work on it. The time to change is now. I would like to not hurt one more person, but only offer uplifting words to others. I say with the psalmist, "Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer." (Psalm 19:14)

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Giving time the wings to fly

When I left my abusive husband in December, I knew I couldn't file for a divorce for 6 months. At first, time dragged on, and it seemed that I would be stuck in this transitory state forever. I got my tutoring job, and time picked up its speed. Suddenly, weeks were going by in rapid succession. I tutored for just over a month before it was cancelled. I cannot believe I began tutoring that student at the beginning of April. A whole month was swallowed in productivity.

The amazing thing is that I wasn't even doing that much. I was just tutoring three days each week. Just that little bit of scheduling sped time on. I was venting frustrations to a friend, and she pointed out that I've already made it 4 months. Would you believe I actually had to check the calendar? Four months!? No way!! Sure enough, I already have 4 months under my belt. In just 2 months, I can file and no longer be yoked to an abusive man. I will no longer fear for my daughter's safety.

I was concerned that now that I no longer have tutoring, time would go back to slowly marching. As I considered how my productivity affected the passing of time, I determined to fill my weeks with a reliable schedule.

My hope is that by filling my week with reliable, productive events, I can artificially create the productive passing of time.

So far, I am planning a day for shopping, a day for cleaning, Sunday and Wednesday are church, and maybe I can go over to a friend's house once each week. There's also a Bible study I can attend on Tuesdays. Beyond that, I intend to write for an hour every day, and reach out to one person each day about my tutoring.

I hope that very soon I will see that it is time to free myself from the fear of pain from the hands of one who is supposed to love me. It feels that it is too far away to comprehend, but maybe soon someone will remind me that it's just around the corner. Soon, my pain will be behind me, and a life of peace will be waiting. I intend to make it seem sooner.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Be still and know

Life as a young mother is busy. Yet as filled as my days are, my mind seems doubly filled with plans, worries, schedules, thoughts, and so much more! It's hard to just be. My daughter reminded me today of just how important that is.

My daughter is just learning to crawl. She is fascinated with her surroundings, as though she's seeing everything for the first time. She wants to touch everything, and, of course, whatever she touches must go in her mouth. She was very busy today, and reminded me of a bee as she went from one thing to another to another. She never settled on one thing for very long.

As I watched her, it dawned on me that my days are filled with very much the same thing. My mind flits from one thing to another, never settling long enough to really solve anything. Rather than resolving to change, my mind jumped some more, and I was soon consumed with probably a dozen different thoughts. I was concerned about the present, mulling over the future, and attempting to puzzle it all out so that it would all work.

While my mind had all gears turning, my daughter began to fuss. I picked her up and set her in my lap. She is at the age where she almost never sits still. This was an exception. She just sat on my lap for almost an hour! I'm ashamed to admit that for the first while, my mind continued to run full speed on multiple tracks. However, my daughter frequently came up, no matter which track my mind pursued. Every time I considered her, I was overwhelmed with how wonderful it felt to have her sit in my arms. I grew increasingly astounded and touched as she sat.

Eventually, I was more consumed with the treasure of holding my daughter than anything else. I looked at my little girl, and the engine in my brain slowed down. The steam ceased, and I just sat, enjoying the moment. That was a special moment, indeed. My daughter and I, just sitting and enjoying each others' company.

There have been many times when I've learned a lesson from my daughter. This was one of those examples. As she sat quietly in my lap, I thought of Mary and Martha, and how our Lord valued the time Mary spent sitting at His feet more than all the efforts of Martha to get things done. I was instantly convicted. Honestly, I haven't been sitting before God like I should. It occurred to me as I sat just holding my darling daughter that God wants the same thing of me. I treasured the time with my daughter, and I need to do the same with my God.

I need to set aside my thoughts, worries, plans, and possibilities, and just learn of God. I need to be still and know that He is God. It will only be then that I can put everything in proper perspective.

I was looking for a song by Soundforth, but found these instead: 

Monday, May 6, 2013

Meltdowns turned to faith

Today, I had a huge meltdown. It was not pretty. I was sitting in my room when my mom came in and noticed multiple ants climbing on the wall and on my bed. Not cool. We began working on taking care of the problem, and I tried so hard to veil the tears in my eyes. Naturally, a mother knows, and she asked me what was wrong.

What was wrong was that I had done nothing to deserve the ants swarming my room. I hadn't eaten in there, so the ant problem was there in spite of my best efforts to maintain a bug-free room. It seems that my best efforts just don't matter. I tried to get my husband into counseling for years. Here I am facing a divorce to keep us safe. I try and try to gain weight, but just one skipped meal means my weight falls even farther. I know some of you are thinking that I'm lucky, but I assure you that I do not enjoy this weight issue. Then, on top of everything else, my student I had been tutoring cancelled because he needs to re-take kindergarten. Despite my best efforts, my world is falling apart.

My mom held me, told me the ants weren't my fault, and that she knows I've been doing my best. It felt so good to just sob in her arms. After everything was all cleaned up, and my room was fairly bug free, my mom and I went out for a very late lunch and then went grocery shopping together.

During my sobbing, I told my mom that it just wasn't fair, and I just shouldn't try any more, because it's all going to fall apart anyway. Of course, that was me giving in to the self-pity. I can only imagine how bad each of these situations could have been if I had not given my best effort.

I am now putting my best effort towards maintaining a positive attitude. I hope it works better than the other things in my life.Perhaps I should stop relying on my own strength to get things done. In fact, a couple verses come to mind. It's neat how verses like these work so well together.

Heb. 10:36: "For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise." It is incredibly difficult to have patience in these circumstances. Years ago, I was telling God that He couldn't expect me to have patience through something so difficult, yet His Word said I needed it. Immediately, another verse flooded my mind. "But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus." (Phil. 4:19)

Looking back at that difficult time, I can see that God did provide the patience I needed. He also filled every other need that I had, even some of those that I thought were insignificant. It is incredible to look back and see how God has provided. It makes it much easier to wait on the Lord. He is faithful. I should be, too.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

A home church

I mentioned a while ago that I was visiting a church. I am now officially a member. It is actually my favorite church that I have been in. Part of me wonders if it's because I'm going through such a hard time that my whole being craves the serenity, fellowship, and God-centered conversation that can be found at church.

Last week Sunday, I went to church, and got some spiritual refreshment. Things over the next few days were hard. On Monday, I found myself wishing that Sunday would come sooner to help relieve my pain, stress, and loneliness. On Tuesday, I very seriously considered driving to church and just sitting in the pew, but I thought for sure it was locked. On Wednesday, they have an evening service, but I tutor until 7, which is when the service begins. However, despite the fact that I would arrive at 7:40, I determined to go where my fellow Christians were.

It was my first time at a Wednesday night service, and I walked into the sanctuary, but all the pews were empty. The choir was seated in the front, and I sat and let their music soothe my heart. After they were done, I was told that the Wednesday night service is held in a smaller building. I've decided that even though church will be more than half way over, I need that middle of the week encouragement. I think it there were church every day, I'd be there right now.

There's something about gathering together with people who know the power of the Lord that helps to put my struggles and trials into perspective. My situation is more easily viewed in light of God's power, rather than the overwhelming circumstances and puzzles that I must push, plod, and work through throughout the week.

The really neat thing is that everyone has thrown their arms open wide, happily accepting me into the throng. I so need that! It's so good to belong somewhere right now when everything seems so transient and unstable.

I actually officially joined the church only last Sunday. On Wednesday, one of the ladies was holding my daughter, and telling me how delighted she was that I had joined the church. The whole while she was talking to me, she was making faces at my little one, causing her to smile and kick her legs with excitement. I smiled at the lady with a bit of mischief in my eyes, and accused her of being glad that I joined the church just so that my daughter would stick around. Everyone had a good laugh.

It really feels like home there, a place where I can relax, be comfortable, and let my fears and worries rest outside the doors. I cannot tell you how thrilled I am that Sunday is here again. I am so blessed to have such a wonderful church. It's home.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Variety-- More than just a spice

I find that when I do the same thing day after day, I tend to feel alone, forlorn, and saddened. I have always been one who needed variety. A little bit here and a little bit there. A change of scenery, a different sort of food, and a change in my routine. I'm not the only one.

Today, I found a toy of my daughter's that had been lost for weeks. She had been demanding my attention for hours, and I needed a break. I found that toy, and gave it to her, and she has been happily playing with it for almost an hour. None of her other toys hold her attention for more than a few minutes at a time.

I think when we have something consistently before us, we forget to appreciate them for their full value. I often wonder how many things we fail to thank God for, just because we don't think of living without them! It's the epitome of taking things for granted.

For example, I doubt many of my readers have thanked God for the ability to stand, because it's one of those amazingly natural things that you just do without thinking. I wonder how much I see before I praise God for my vision. Perhaps variety is good not just for bringing new things to us, but for making us appreciate the things that are ever before us. It is late, and my daughter is crying, so I'm cutting this one very short. Have a great day!

Thursday, May 2, 2013


There is great truth that having a root of bitterness will only cause you pain. But does forgiving mean forgetting? I definitely do not think so. In my situation, that would mean forgetting all the evil that has been done to me and walking blindly back into a dangerous situation. I believe that in order to act wisely, we must remember some things, lest we see our own history repeated again and again.

Is it possible to achieve a balance of forgiving, yet remembering? I dare say it is, though I'm still working on forgiving. Today, I quoted lots of scripture. "Charity suffereth long and is kind" was audibly repeated over and over. Then, as I began feeling that it wasn't fair that judgement wasn't meted out, I remembered this blessed truth: "Vengeance is mine, and I will repay, saith the Lord."

Then, as I went about doing this and that in charity, I would snuff out the root of bitterness with the knowledge that my God will judge as He deems fit. I hope that one day, I won't have to battle with myself to let it go. At that point, I believe I will have reached forgiveness. At that point, I will be able to make wise decisions without grudges and revenge guiding my thoughts.

It has dawned on me that just as God will judge that which has been done to me, if I do something in return, I'll be judged as well! It reminds me of two little kids fighting. We'll call them Freddy and Carl. Freddy hits Carl, and Carl hits Freddy back. Does it stop there? Not normally! They go on fighting, and it escalates until one of them has finally had enough or someone else intervenes. When an adult does get involved, they both get punished. Whereas, if Carl had just walked away, he would have been blameless.

Oh, to stand blameless before God! This is my ultimate goal, and the greatest reason I must forgive. I must rise above, rather than stooping to a lower level. I must climb ever higher, and let God fend off those who would hurt me. And that's just the point. As I do what God has told me to, He will protect me and guide me safely on. He will mete out judgement as He sees fit. I need only look to Him and press on.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Praying for the impossible

My dear readers,

Today, my heart is filled with hope in miracles, because I serve a God who cares deeply for even the smallest pieces of my life. If you have been following my blog, you know that I have Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome, or POTS. This syndrome was only discovered in the last few decades, though some speculate that it's existed for centuries. It's a dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system, or the part of the nervous system that controls all those things that you don't have to think about. The eyes adjust themselves, your heart beats without command, and you have been breathing all day, though you likely gave it little thought. The body is filled with all sorts of these automatic functions, only mine is filled with automatic dysfunctions. Because it's all supposed to work by itself, doctors and scientists really don't know how the autonomic nervous system works, leaving them with no idea what to look for where that could be causing the problems. If they don't know the cause of the problem, they can hardly hope to cure it!

This syndrome at one point had me bedridden. Any time I stood, I would pass out. God has been gracious, and you would never guess that today, but it still makes my life challenging. I have a difficult time thinking of a job that will allow for everything I would need. I have difficulty finding a home for my daughter and I that doesn't have stairs. I fear the day my health would fall apart, leaving me bedridden again. It is unpredictable and menacing. The thing I crave the most is for this to pass, and my body to be whole again. Doctors and physicians offer no hope.

The great news is that there is a Great Physician! He is able to mend that which is broken, even though we don't know what it is. He is able to heal my body forever, so that I never have a relapse! Oh, to be able to climb stairs, lift my hands above my hands, jump up and down for joy, and sing while standing!!!! Oh, to be able to walk evenly, think clearly, and know that my tomorrows are secure.

Here is my request: Pray with me! Please take this before our God and plead for my full recovery! Pray that I be fully healed, and pray that I will know it! I am asking a lot here, but pray for this every day until I post a praise that it has been done! My God is greater than these shackles I wear! He can delivery me, and He alone! Let us go to Him often, beseeching His loving kindness.

I look forward to posting that God has answered our prayers. May it be soon!