My life this summer was illuminated by smiles. This year, I was blessed with Cae, a friend whose difficult challenges with fibromyalgia, divorce, and single life with three children does not keep her from smiling or sharing love.
My daughter's smile is worth more than millions in the bank or a thousand sunny days.
My husband smiles often and thus I never need to take a prescription antidepressant.
There is a light within that cannot be photographed, but something I feel every day.
Sunday, August 29, 2010
Saturday, August 21, 2010
Friday, August 13, 2010
Have you ever noticed that challenging, unexpected, costly and unpleasant events seem to occur in multiples? Hence the cliche' "one thing after another?" July and August have been that way for my family. Place over those events a feeling of cabin fever since it's unbearably humid. This is a recipe for tension in relationships and sometimes, tears.
I had my first good cry in a long time yesterday. It actually felt good. My teen was the first to come in my room with a big hug and consoling words. Afterwards, we made an evening snack run for popcorn and lemon tea. It felt good being in the car while my 16 year old drove, windows down, radio up and a smile on her face. The truth is that when you've helped someone by showing concern for their issues and emotions, you are lifted up. In that moment I saw her strength and kindness and it felt incredibly good to be her mom.
So what that the computer crashed, the water pump broke (no water for a week), the dishwasher blew a line and flooded our floor (we didn't know this was happening and now the floor is being ripped up and replaced), my son's filling broke, creating an infection which has caused him weeks of pain (the dentist has perscribed antibiotics for the second time to no avail and is passing us on to a specialist...ka-ching!), all of this while the patent deadline continues to approach.
I am drowning in a feeling of uselessness....sometimes no matter how many proactive moves one makes to balance their life and move through it with grace, events beyond our control continue to occur. In succession, these impact our equilibrium and stride. Looking back, I remember times when I was working toward a goal while life changing events hammered like linebackers in rapid succession, making me realize that I'm actually living a football game. There is no straight line to the end zone. It's all about regrouping, strategizing, dashing in short bursts while being knocked down again and again. I keep asking God to help me make it to the end zone, one more time.
Thursday, August 5, 2010
It's hot. We were bored. On a whim, we crammed everything needed for a three day reconnaissance mission to the nearest campground with swimming access. I'm still covered in strange bug bites but this trip to the mountains was much less stressful. Of course this is because we didn't see a single black bear. (Although my son overheard a conversation in the visitor's center that hinted of their presence in the area.) What we did find was a stray kitten. I didn't take a picture of it, but now wish I had. Each day came with the sounds of loud meowing. On the day before we had to leave, the little buff colored kitten summoned the courage to enter our camp and take gulps of some milk and hot dogs we had placed near our picnic table. On closer inspection, we realized that he was severely malnourished, full of worms and fleas. Our six year old son fell instantly in love with him. We decided that since the campground officials knew he was there but chose to ignore him that we would try to find him a proper home.
How many people take a weekend camping trip and end up bathing a stray cat? This is exactly what we did. I filled a dish pan with warm soapy water while hubs firmly held the furry bag of bones. We scrubbed, drowned as many fleas as possible, cleaned out the ear mites and applied antiseptic to the raw areas where the fleas had done the most damage. Finally, we were blessed with the peace and quiet that comes with a satisfied baby. He spent the rest of the afternoon and evening on a towel in our son's lap.
Sadly, on the morning we were scheduled to leave, it rained. Having left the poor thing to sleep outside of the tent (we were still worried about the tiniest flea), he left to find a safe sleeping spot somewhere in the woods. In vain, our heartbroken son called to him in the morning downpour. We all secretly hoped that the kitten would show up just before we were driving away. But it was not meant to be. We left with heavy hearts but hopeful that the next camper would find it. I wasn't so sure. People are afraid of things like the idea of rabies and other diseases that stray animals carry.
This was not a feral cat; someone had simply dropped him off to survive in the wild. We are left with not knowing the rest of his survival story.