Wednesday, January 13, 2016

My New Year's Resolution

Happy New Year!

I have been thinking about New Year's Resolutions for the last couple of weeks. First, I didn't want to be cliche even though I know I need to get in shape. I decided I would really start working out again in February after the New Year Resolution crowds die down at the gym. Then I was thinking I don't want to wait until February to do a New Year's Resolution. But, I don't want to let myself down if I can't keep it so I thought I won't do one at all.

Finally it came to me. I am going to try new things that I haven't done before or in a long time: not necessarily major ground breaking things but I am deciding to get out of my comfort zone. The first thing I did was I got red peek a boo highlights. I liked it but then a week later we went bolder with a more dramatic fashion red! Thank you Emily Peace Kelly for making my hair dreams come true!

Then we put James in a Parent's Morning Out Preschool. It is 3 hours, 2 days a week. It is a huge adjustment for him but better now than starting in Pre-K!! It is so good for him in every way! Of course my heart feels like it is breaking when I hand him off and he becomes hysterical. He calms down... Eventually. He has only gone twice so far. He'll get into the routine and before long he'll be so excited to go to his class. My mom told me one time how it was harder when my brother became independent and barely said bye as he ran off with his friends. It is going to help him in the long run by also trying new things and branching out into uncharted waters.

Then there are little choices on things like what to eat. This week I had an "ants on a log" snack- celery with peanut butter and raisins. Yesterday at Chuy's Mexican Restaurant I had authentic tortilla soup and flautas. Today I got my nails done with a red French tip manicure with sparkles.

I want this year to be special. I want to try lots of new things: big decisions and simple everyday decisions. I want to be spontaneous and really live life to the fullest.


In addition, I'd like to share about our church message last week.

Jeff Henderson, lead pastor at Gwinnett Church, did a very compelling New Year's message called "This is my Year... I promise".

He explored the Possibility standpoint:
Own a space in the land of possibility
Lease a space in the land of reality.

He asked the questions:
What do you think is possible for you in the New Year?

What does God think is possible for you?
We know what God thinks is possible.
Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Self-Control, Faithfulness,  Goodness, Gentleness

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.”
‭‭Galatians‬ ‭5:22-26‬ ‭NIV‬‬

So, in summary, we can also work on getting fruit of the Spirit which God knows is possible for us. Fruit of the Spirit will transform 2016 and make it the best year ever!!

Friday, January 1, 2016

Christmas & the New Year: Reflecting back on losing my mom this year

Doris at 4 Eagle Ranch 2014

I'd like to begin this post with an acknowledgment that I realize most of my blog posts have been about missing my mom this year. I have been inspired to write as I struggle through processing the fact that she is in Heaven and we are here without her. We all miss her but the bond I feel from being her daughter is something that was so strong. She was my best girlfriend throughout all  my years growing up. Sure we had some rough patches, but it wouldn't be a real relationship without them. Making it through tough times always brings people closer together. Setting boundaries as our relationship changed helped me become independent as a wife and then as a mother.

But through it all I am the woman I am today from listening to her wisdom, guidance and watching her be a lady. I have respect for my mom as she lived and breathed persistence and overcoming obstacles. She was resilient and I took her drive to heart. I am thankful everyday for the time we spent together 

As the New Year is here, I am reflecting on all my friends and family that were physically and spiritually here for me and my family when we lost my mom. I have the memories from the funeral when literally hundreds of people came out to support us and honor my mom in grieving her sudden passing. 

I think about people coming from hundreds and thousands of miles to be there. I remember the people standing up when my dad asked who was there supporting me. I then think about the hundreds of people who couldn't be there at the funeral but who were there in spirit, friends who personally reached out with a card, phone call, text, flowers, a meal, lunch date, and countless other ways to show they were standing with me through this heartbreaking time as I grieved. 

In all my life I have never before felt so loved in my darkest time. It's a different kind of love than at a wedding because weddings are a fun celebration. People that can be there for you then, in your darkest time, in that uncomfortable place, to show you they care and are with you... That is a special love and kindness that will always be remembered. 

When you lose a loved one there is not much you can say and nothing can bring them back. The best thing you can do is to be there with them. Sometimes you may not know what to say, and that is okay. Sometimes just saying, "I'm here for you and praying for you" is all we need. The prayers and grace from God eased the pain and brought hope and joy back to my life. 

You learn a lot about yourself through the process of losing a loved one. It is a journey and you learn to live with the pain but it will never fully go away. You have to move on and honor them and their memory. I believe a loved one in Heaven would want you to find the joy in life and celebrate their life and legacy.

So, to all my friends and loved ones that were there for me during this tough year, thank you!