Everyday is an Adventure. Embrace it

Posts tagged ‘motherhood’

The Mother’s Day Thief

This Mother’s Day I really want to warn everyone about a thief running rapidly through families and obviously never satisfied with its heist. One that cannot be caught or stopped.  It snuck in so slowly, none of us noticed.  It was hidden in the normal aging process and we didn’t see it.  Shrouded in forgetfulness of the ordinary and cloaked by the everyday stresses that we thought clogged her mind.  The Alzheimer’s thief is slick, it’ll slide right by you and you don’t even see it coming.  Its cruel and unforgiving nature robs many special moments from the mind of the great.  It’s been around for a very long time, taking as it pleases and never giving back.

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It reduces the great person that was and steals their thoughts.  There is no sheriff to run it out of town nor warrant for its arrest.  There is no way to stop it!  It catches its victims off guard and like a parasite, leaches onto them and won’t let go.  It wraps its crusty hands around the mind of the unknowing gently at first – so it’s not noticeable.  Then over time, it tightens its grip until it has its grubby fingers in every crack and crevasse available.

An abomination… this disease is not satisfied with just daily forgetfulness. Oh no, it is the epitome of selfishness. It wants all memory, not just the daily or in-the-moment ones. It snatches them all until it has taken even the oldest and most dear.  It steals what we hold close to our hearts and leaves a breadcrumb of who the person once was.

I hate it.

I took my mother for granite for almost 30 years before suddenly, I understood her. We were finally able to share with each other and have conversations without argument. My heart gushed over with love for her and I began to confide in her more.  I began to trust her a way I never could as a child.  I finally understood her love for me and the reasons behind many of the things that she did.  I had to have children myself before I truly appreciated her and then suddenly – she is leaving me?  The horrible, selfish, hateful, nasty, unnecessary and under imagined disease it stealing my Momma and I feel like I just met her a few short years ago.

It’s not fair, but then….when is life fair?  I spent too much time wasted, not understanding her in this life.  I have violated my personal life motto: Everyday is an adventure. Embrace it.  I waited too long to embrace her and now she is leaving me…she is leaving daddy…she is leaving us all 😦   The last week I have spent in tears while my husband is away. I am ashamed that I am filled with so much regret that is self-inflicted by my own immature and stubborn mind of too many years.

I am glad we had the time we did get to enjoy each other. I still have Mom from time to time. She wiggles free from the grip of her oppressive thief and I suck up every available moment I can.  Every tiny moment of that time is engraved in my memory and it is wrapped in so many emotions – hopefully even if this thief comes for me, I will fight it long and hard. I hate you Alzheimer Disease! I hate you!!

Becoming a Mom

Bruner BoysThat moment you realize you are a Mom!

How to describe that moment? That moment when it hits you, when it all comes down like a ton of bricks and reality steps right in your face – You’re a Mom, a Mother, the one trusted source of information about vomit, diarrhea, diaper rash & common illnesses.

Not during pregnancy, although many women experience revelation then, but when that young one is in your arms. That’s when it’s real.  That moment when the mental connection is made. I’ve heard some say it was in the hospital it hit them, but not for me. Oh no, it was after I got home. Suddenly, I realized how helpful the hospital staff had been during the first couple of days. They didn’t come home with me. There was no help really!

Nothing prepares you for it – not books, movies, seminars, or pregnancy classes. Nope, no stories you hear or conversations will prepare you for the inevitable; that fateful moment that suddenly shakes your inner being like a banana tree.

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It can happen multiple times, through multiple ages of the child’s life, and can be as small as a thought or as profound as a huge chilling emotion sweeping over you. You know, the one that takes your breath away and leave you feeling shell-shocked? Yep, that’s the one I’m writing about.

For me, the pregnancy was not it. Not with my first-born anyway. Not carrying him, not the short easy labor, not even the nurses bringing him to me created the reality that I had entered into the everlasting realm of motherhood. Nope. I carried on as though completing a task. Like getting from point A to point B.  I marked off the mile markers as I went until one day, when he was about 3 weeks old, it hit me.

I was laying in bed with him beside me nursing. He was making little sounds. He was so relaxed. It was like he trusted me already and didn’t even know me. He looked up at me with his little eyes full of love as his little hand patted my arm.  BOOM!  Right there, right then I realized I was a Mom.  I started to cry.  Emotions swept over me like an avalanche and I was completely consumed. 20 years later I can still feel that same love & emotions sweep over me when he calls.

Chrissy +Nicky

Then a couple of years later, my life replayed the previous 2 years. I was pregnant again with another boy.  I thought man, I got this! I mean, I had already been there, done that, got the t-shirt!

Nope, it all hit me again. He was about 6 days old…my oldest was laying beside me & new baby was in my arms. We were home. I realized this was a forever gig. And I realized that although I didn’t apply for the position, I knew it was meant to be 🙂

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Here they are today. Those 2 babies grew up and they’re so much bigger than me. My biggest fear, the one I wrestled with the most with throughout their infancy & toddler years – never came true (PRAISE GOD).

My biological mother gave me away. She didn’t want me. Her biological mother gave her away. She wasn’t wanted either. All the women in my biological family seemingly did the same thing. I don’t want to be like that. Please Jesus, please don’t let me do it. No matter what comes, keep my mind strong. Keep me fiercely independent and protect my mental state. Please, please, please!!

God is merciful. I kept them…plus 2 girls and another boy God sent me. 🙂

 

100 Reasons Why You Should Call Your Mom

100 Reasons Why You Should Call Your Mom… No, really – call her!

I know the drill, I’ve done it myself.  It’s been a while since you spoke to your mom (or accepted one of her calls) so you are thinking…maybe, just maybe – you should call her? YES, you should… and here are 100 reasons why!

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    1. She is your mother for better or for worse.
    2. She did the best she could at the time and she always wished it was better.
    3. She thinks about you every time she sees someone your age.
    4. She misses you dearly
    5. She likes to see and hear about your successes.
    6. She is your biggest fan.
    7. She thinks about you every time she speaks with someone on the phone that talks the way you do.
    8. Although you are human,  you can do no wrong.
    9. She is proud of your accomplishments. Even the little ones that you don’t even remember.
    10. She loves you.
    11. You took up residence in her body for almost a year without paying rent or helping buy groceries!
    12. You were the apple of her eye.
    13. She was your primary dietician during  your formative years.
    14. She put off things she wanted to do, so she could spend time with you.
    15. She bought you that article of clothing you were dying for instead of going to the dentist to have her teeth worked on.
    16. She always fed you. Even if she was hungry after supper, she made sure you were full & happy.
    17. She cleaned up your vomit & probably didn’t complain.
    18. She held you tight when you were sick and sat up with you all night. Although she knew she would catch your illness, she did it to comfort you.
    19. She always dressed you first and didn’t take much time for herself.
    20. You were her world…and probably still are.
    21. When you broke something, she took the fall for it.
    22. She stood between you and many butt-bustings. She was your shield.
    23. Your mother is the only woman in your life that will never judge you for being you.
    24. She may be spastic at times, but she handled all your crisis Like-a-Boss.
    25. She would improvise when you ate her office work…or peed on it.
    26. Your Mother protected you from sharp objects.
    27. She cuddled and reassured you when you were sad.
    28. When you were lonely, she was your friend.
    29. She protected you from the boogie man & the zombie’s in the walls.
    30. When you are hurting, her heart is breaking.
    31. She celebrated all your tiny victories.
    32. She celebrated your big Victories
    33. Your Mom gave you breathe and you took hers away
    34. Your hopes were her aspirations for you
    35. She fixed your favorite foods often to make you happy.
    36. Your dreams were her goals
    37. She paved the way for your success.
    38. She worked to help you in school and then came home and worked there.
    39. Your mom encouraged others to see the best in you, even when you were at your worst.
    40. She may not have kept the house immaculate, but she made sure your clothes were always clean.
    41. She skipped naps while watching you sleep.
    42. Your Momma gave it everything she had!
    43. She tried to dazzle your friends to make you cool.
    44. She liked your music even when it gave her a headache.
    45. She baked your favorite sweets to make you happy.
    46. She told every teacher that doubted you where they could go!
    47. She stayed awake to make sure you were breathing.
    48. Your Mother stayed up late at night worrying about you.
    49. She called everyone she knew to track you down when you were late coming home.
    50. Moms have a special heart given by God.  Her heart misses you.
    51. She sees you with eyes of confidence.
    52. Her arms are always ready to hug you.
    53. She’s always waiting on your call.
    54. She watches he driveway…incase you might drive up.
    55. Even though she may disagree, she will take your side.
    56. She removed gum from your hair patiently.
    57. She cleaned the stains out of your underwear!
    58. She would suffer a million calamities for you.
    59. She has patience with you.
    60. Your Mother was purposely objective to your mate for your emotional safety.
    61. Your children are her crown in life.
    62. She loves your pets like your children if you do not have any.
    63. Her life was put on hold to raise you, and she never regretted it.
    64. She delights in your career and brags on you regularly to her friends.
    65. She prays for you all the time.
    66. When she shops, she thinks of things that you need or would like.
    67. She celebrates your birthday more so than you do!
    68. Your Momma remembers how tiny your hands were.
    69. She is always lighting a candle for your life.
    70. She knows your vulnerabilities and keeps them safely secret.
    71. Her hips are slightly off-center because she held you so much while you were young.
    72. A mom never forgets the time you only wanted her to comfort  you.
    73. She is a fixer – always striving to help you fix something.
    74. Mothers come in many forms – not all biological!
    75. Even if she wasn’t really your mom, but just a lady you looked to like-a-mom, she knows that and never forgot.
    76. God changes the mind of a Mother. This is why you think she is a little crazy.
    77. One day, she will not be there to answer the phone.
    78. A day may come when she doesn’t remember who you are.
    79. There may be a day that she can no longer speak verbally.
    80. She has carried the weight of every tiny thing she could have done better on her shoulders.
    81. She remembers every single mistake she made – and is hard on herself.
    82. You can release her from the Mother-Guilt she carries.
    83. She is a strong woman your mate should look up to.
    84. Every little wrinkle on her face she wears as a trophy from your childhood.
    85. Each gray hair on her head is a reminder for her of what she once was to you.
    86. She sees herself in your face.
    87. She realizes when she has gone too far.
    88. Your Mom knows when she should stay silent, but can’t help herself.
    89. She invested her entire life into you.
    90. She still dreams about when you where a toddler.
    91. Her mind races with thoughts about how you are.
    92. She still wants to help you.
    93. Her life was forever changed by you.
    94. Her thoughts were forever changed by you.
    95. You made her stronger than she thought she could be.
    96. She feeds off your energy and thriving life.
    97. Every busted vein in her legs is a sign of her love – walking the floor with you while you were a fussy baby.
    98. She never regretted you!
    99. You were not an accident.
    100. You make her the happiest woman alive when you call!!

 

Mother’s Day Gifts 2017

PhotoGrid_1493659042955You’re a mom, so what do you really want for Mother’s Day?

You know your kids (and maybe even your husband) are doing internet searches on what to get you. Will those searches return answers that really fit you?  Will they remember something you said you liked several years back? Does it even matter? Are you one of the mothers that finds delight in emotion rather than material objects?

I am one of those matronly mothers now and I don’t feel like Mother’s Day really applies to me this year.  I am still a mom, but the kids are all grown and on their own.  Sometimes I am really excited when I think about the fact that I am an “empty-nester”.  It is in these glorious years when you get your life back. You can finally cater to yourself and your spouse.  It’s the time for creating new memories and living again before your health fails or you can’t get around as well anymore.  I should be happy, right?

Mother’s Day 2017 has me thinking about how blessed I was to raise boys….a lot of them. The blessings continued with some beautiful girls the Lord allowed me to have for a bit too. Everyone is grown now though and none of them need me. Isn’t that the biggest part of being a Mom? Everyone needs you! You are the rock.

I found several great websites with many Mother’s Day gift suggestions straight from the intellectual minds of Moms. Many of them make so many wonderful suggestions, but I find myself just wishing I could be with the kids this year. I long for a day with all the kids together at one time. I wish I could hug them all at once (although my arms are way to short for that).

Anyway, please enjoy the recommended Mother’s Day gifting solution below:

Droidpile

Eid Mubarak 2017

The Spruce

A Little Bit Of CC

My Kids’ Adventures

teach junkie

mommablogsalot

SCRAP HACKER

Mom Knows Best

The Dime Store Gypsy

Mud Boots & Pearls

Cook With 5 Kids

Now 100.5

Classy Cheapskape

Lady Emila Writes

Pinot & Peep Toes

Gless House

Enjoy Flowers

Home on the Corner

Paper House

Apples to Apples

She called me the other day to tell me that she had gone to her first cousin’s nursery.  As I mentioned in a previous article she loves flowers. It’s something that gives her peace, tranquility, and gives her a productive way to pass time. She was really excited about the availability of herbs there. She exclaimed happily, “there’s Rosemary, mint of all kinds, cooking herbs like basil and Sage – bushes and trees. Your heart will be happy when you see everything.”  Before I realized it we had been talking over the phone for over 20 minutes! The best part was that she could hear me. It was a two-way conversation. 🙂 She and I have not had very many two-way conversations in the last couple years. Her hearing has been slowly leaving her for the last 15 years. And over the last couple years it’s been so bad when she calls, she just tells me something, can’t hear my response, then she’ll just hang up when she’s finished talking. 

She’s in her eighties now.  She and I had a very rocky relationship for the first 20-25 years of my life. On my side it was a love/but-don’t-want-to-be-near-you thing from time to time & on her’s it was a love/frustration thing.  I’m quickly approaching my 40th birthday in a few days & maybe this is why I’ve chosen to write about her.  It’s therapy for me. It’s an understanding of who I was as well as who I am now.  I don’t think that 40 is old, but I’ve always thought of it as a halfway point in life. Now that I’m here, I realize how awesome she is and I was never able to see that before.

Edna Hensley

Mom, me and my brother – around 1980

By age 40 she had already lived a very eventful, energetic, entertaining and absolutely amazing life.  She taught herself to play guitar when she was about 10 years old by watching the older gentleman in town play. She was fiercely independent and generally self-taught in just about everything. She had worked on the farm, went out with her sisters, was a waitress at Blue Circle, and sewed at Standard Knitting Mill. She had a couple of short-lived marriages, experienced living independently, and enjoyed attention as an entertainer. She met Dad in a club (he was the entertaining musician of the night) & joined up with his talent to hit the road as an entertainer. She recorded in Nashville and was courted there by some big-time small names.  She used her resources & connections to boost & mold Dad’s career. When she realized some of the contractual deals he had made in the music industry, she took over and became his manager of sorts. She started negotiating his deals.  With her resources, resilience, and intellect they made a lucrative living.

She married  for the rest of her life, for better or for worse, in 1968. She was 33 years old. She had always wanted children but for some reason biologically could not bear any herself. She prayed and she had almost the entire city praying with her – that she would have children. And one day, in 1976, her prayers were answered.

There was a phone call from a lady that they knew on the south side of town. This lady said if you still want a child you can have my youngest, but you have to come and get him right now.  Dad went to pick up the ugliest baby boy in the world, who would become my brother. (If you ever read this dude, you know I love your ugly face.) They had him for several weeks when they received another phone call from another lady. This lady said to them, I’ve heard that you wanted a baby and I’m on my way to the XXX Home for Children with both of mine. To make a long story short, this is where I come into the picture.  There’s an argument over whether I was two-and-a-half or three months old at the time, regardless I was a baby. I was a pretty sick baby, so she leaned toward my experienced Aunt Evlou to help for the first few nights.

At 40 years old she adopted my brother and I. At a point in her life when other people would be considering retirement, taking it easy, trying to finalize how they want to enjoy the empty nest years, she became a parent. I never gave it much thought in previous years, but now that I am approaching that very same age I realize what a heroic feat that was!

At this point in my life, I am very close to the empty nest years. I cannot image chasing a little one around and changing diapers at this age! Most of mine have moved away and I only have one teenager left at home (on a daily basis) – who will leave me soon I’m sure. I am considering the future, and how I would love to retire one day. I’m dreaming about buying an RV and traveling, or purchasing the boat my husband wants and sailing up & down the coast for a few years. I’m considering how I want to rearrange the rooms in the house and could create an office and workout/hobby room in those empty spaces. My Mom was considering how to convert a music studio into a nursery and buying formula, diapers, while seeking parental advice. I wake up in the middle of the night to text messages asking me for gas money; she woke up in the middle of the night to check on two infants breathing.

To be continued…

 

I’m not like her, am I?

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Noticing the changes that occur in all of us as we grow older is chilling. It’s a reminder that this life is not forever. It can also give a subtle reminder to enjoy each day as though it were our last.

My mother was always very happy while she was working in her flowers. My grand mother was the same. I also very much enjoy all the time I get to spend outdoors and my flowers make me happy too. Isn’t it funny how we become so much like those who raised us? Some say that they are nothing like their parental figures, but if taking an honest look, we all become like them in some ways.

There was a day when I would cringe and possibly fight someone if they said, “You sound like your mother.” I was very young then. I have a birthday fast approaching and will be nearing the mid-point in my life. These years, especially the last 4-5,  have been my pinnacle period where I have been happy, satisfied, loved, content and enjoying the day-to-day. I have also come to understand my mother in ways that I never thought possible. So now that I can see her with different eyes, I feel it a compliment if someone compares us.

Here she and dad are a few months before they adopted my brother and I

Here she and dad are a few months before they adopted my brother and I

 

 

There are stories that aren’t appropriate to hear when you are young that fall on your ears as you mature. Your parents had a life before you. Their personalities and previous life experiences might impress you if you take time to listen.

My mother was a beautiful young lady that turned heads everywhere she went. She had an appeal about her that attracted many people. She was also very forthright and spoke her mind. She was called blunt, uncaring, hard, and mean. She was a savvy business woman who knew what she wanted; this drive and desire overflowed into all she touched. She was obsessed with continued learning and was enthralled by conversion with someone well-educated. She was firm yet loving and she was stern yet compassionate. She had some less desirable traits as well, but don’t we all?

The thing I admired her most for was taking me in. She was 40 years old that year, in 1976. I was just a few months old.

To be continued….

When “Good Enough” Just Has To Do

When the kids were in school, I thought keeping the house in order and clean was pretty easy since we’ve moved back home. Then summer vacation rolled around and each of the three boys were seemingly always running in three different directions. They were not home much, thus the house keeping part of life remained pretty simple. I missed them. I wished they’d hang out at home at least a little so I could see them. The cat even missed them…until they came home & fashioned him a skirt!
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In the last couple of weeks the boys have not been running as much though, so they have been home a lot. Although I’ve been happy to share time with them, the house is a terrible mess. I continue my regimen though, trying to clean each room once a day. Not every room actually gets touched though due to the driving around errands that they, my husband, or my parents send me on.

A few days ago, I took an observatory look around to assess the status of the house and determined that something had to give.

  • The laundry room was surprisingly “good enough” but the cleaned clothes had not been folded and put away, still hanging out in club Fold Me (a basket) and the un-mated socks were laying on the folding table mocking me.
  • The living room had become the Music Den.
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Two electric guitars were propped against the big picture window, an acoustic guitar was propped by the couch (as though it was watching TV), and an amplifier had become a new type of coffee table holding a drink, book, and several picks. Head phones were strung out on the couch and the TV and DVR remotes were missing. The wah-wah pedal was strategically placed so that any unsuspecting visitor would break their neck.

  • My bathrooms shower/tub needed a super good scrubbing 😦 The toilet paper roll was missing and in its place a card board roller stared back at me as if to say “the boys have been here…drip dry lady!”
  • The boys’ bathroom had a rather large yellow puddle in the floor near the toilet and their sink was covered in toothpaste. (At least they are brushing their teeth…sigh*)
  • The kitchen…was a casualty of war. It being the most consistently frequented room had suffered the most damage. The trash can was over flowing, the floor had tea, sugar, and other unidentifiable droplets of liquid on the floor. Bread crumbs and jelly covered the table, the toaster was plugged in sitting on the table, and a phone charger dangled from the wall. The counter and both sides of the sink were full of dirty dishes and several cooking pots had a strange crusted substance clinging to them. Upon opening the microwave, I discovered splattered dry goo. Every coffee cup was dirty and the 2 loaves of bread I had bought the evening before were reduced to simply 2 end pieces that only starving people eat.
  • The front porch had become the new home of the long forgotten dirty shoes that no one wanted to clean off and the dog was strangely clinging to the door step rug.

I took a deep breath, got wound up, fussed some, yelled a bit, and scattered the kids to their room. (Their rooms are another story all together. I won’t even describe those.)

I’ve decided summer is officially canceled at this point.

Let the cleaning begin!

Mother’s Day list Success 2013

I was so bummed out yesterday thinking about how much I love my kids & husband, how special they are, & how they weren’t even thinking about Mother’s Day coming up. I knew I’d made my list & posted it everywhere I thought they may see it, but I just didn’t see that it was doing any good 😦 This bag of trash sat in a very obvious place for 16 1/2 hours as I counted 37 trips they made back & forth past it 😦

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I woke up this morning and discovered I was alone. Odd. I filled up a cup of coffee & came back to the bedroom. Shortly afterwards my husband came through the door with breakfast & a large hazelnut latte! 🙂

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Soon after I ate a few bites my husband comes in & says, “Chrissy come with me. I’m fed up with these boys. Please, just…come to the kitchen.” Sadly I followed him thinking there would be a new sticky mess somewhere. 😦
This is what I saw 🙂

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All 3 boys were standing there 🙂 I got a hug from each one!
I came back to eat my breakfast. After a few more bites Nick said to come outside…

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*Gasp* The car was clean!!!

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**Oh!!!** 🙂 🙂 I wish these were scratch-N-sniff pictures because it smells so good. You’d never know I taxi sweaty teenagers around 6 days a week!!! 🙂 🙂

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I’m in heaven!! It took him over 2 hours to clean out the car, vacuum it, & organize the trunk! He said the boys helped get their things out, but he couldn’t believe how much crap was tucked in & under places in the car. (Sounds about right!) He lectured the kids for me and definitely feels my pain.

Next, was the new flower garden 🙂 Everyone participated. They dug holes for me, helped me weed & even decorate. I’m now the proud owner of a sea shell garden only 200-250 miles away from the beach 🙂
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I’m one happy Momma!
Happy Mother’s Day everyone!!! 🙂

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