Words to live by:

"With man this is impossible, but with God ALL things are possible." Matthew 19:26

Saturday, February 5, 2011

I'm An Artist...and I love it!!!!!!!!!!

I've had some requests to put my artwork on my blog...so here goes.
I've been an "artist" for roughly 20 years. I love to create things by way of painting, drawing, printmaking and photography. I love to capture "the moment and emotion, both inward and outward"...my personal artwork is an expression of my inner thoughts onto a 2 dimensional medium. I love abundant COLOR or just Black and White. It all depends on my mood. I've been called weird...and I take that as a compliment.
The dictionary describes weird as:


involving or suggesting the supernatural; unearthly or uncanny:
fantastic; bizarre

concerned with fate or destiny.
So I think weird is pretty cool.
I have done many commisioned artworks for organizations as well as private commissions. I have taught and sometimes still currently teach, calligraphy and painting classes.
I have published a line of pen and ink drawings into notecards and bookmarks.
I have 2 limited edition prints.
I have won several purchase awards as well as Best of Show awards in the past years.
I believe I am one of the lucky ones that has learned how to not only produce art but market it and sell it. I have learned how to take constructive criticism lightly and I have learned that not everyone will "like" my work. But to this point, I have grown a very nice following of friends and family that do respect my work.
Below are a few examples of my work:

Is it Fair??? Well, of course not!

Someone asked if I would write a blog that pertains to children that have to grow up in an unfair world...
After thinking about this for a few days, I believe this pertains to all of us: don't you agree?

We need to start at the beginning.
Why are we here?
Well...it's really simple.
I am going to tell you exactly why we were created: some of you may not agree and I would like to say, "well, that's o.k." but it's really not...because I want you to get this! I study my rulebook for life, the Bible, and this is where I go for answers. GOd's word is undeniable truth...simple as that. I don't try to mince the words around in it, I don't try to fit it into my own way of life, I don't pick out only the parts that are comfortable...it's just the way it is and I accept it, knowing that it will not EVER fail me.
You NEED to get this in order to live the best life you possibly can!

We were created by GOD, soley to glorify him.
1 Corinthians 10:31 we read, "So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God."
We are to glorify (lift up, make proud, exhault, please) God in everything we DO and SAY! Everything!

So now that you know "why"... we can on to it...
I have 2 children, one is almost grown at 19, and the other at age 11, is growing up way to fast. There's really no choice in this world, but to grow up fast. The days of skipping stones, building forts, walking to the corner store are almost extinct.
To me, this is terribly sad.
This was a time of innocence, safety and helping one another. Parents actually taught their children how to have respect for authority, manners out in public, and take responsibility for their actions.
The truth of the matter, is now....we live in a world that, for the most part...lacks ANY respect for authority, manners are too much trouble to teach, and the children are not required to be responsible (not "my" kid syndrome). 

We can blame it on the fast-paced world---"i'm always busy"..."i've got to get to work"..."i'm exhausted". But think about it, here we go again...not taking responsibility. I know we're tired...believe me! I know! But as parents, we are the ONES that are RESPONSIBLE for teaching our children. Not anyone else!
No matter how tired, no matter how busy, no matter.

I believe that we need to change our ways of thinking...
think of each precious moment with our children, whether its at a ballgame, school activity, church, or yes, teaching them...as a gift. Because that IS what it IS...a gift. Every second that ticks by, is another opportunity missed, or it's just another second closer to the end. Spend this time wisely.
It's not all about the money...the TIME you spend as oppossed to the dollars, just may come in handy one day...you can count on it.

SO, as far as living in an unfair world...for that, I'm sorry. We just do.
It's a fact and it's not going to change anytime soon.
I teach my children that no matter what the circumstance, we are to act GODLY. And to know how to do that we must LEARN what God expects of us. There is no other way.
In doing this, when you turn your back and walk away, you can KNOW that you are the WINNER. Yes, sometimes it's incredibly hard to do this...yes, sometimes it won't be FAIR...yes, they may "think" they won. But if you truly did it God's way, you will ALWAYS be the winner!
It's between you and God right?
Walk away and know that you did things the right way.
You don't NEED to get the last word, be careful what you say...or do.
Never go to bed with a guilty conscience.
Sometimes there will be tears and heartache...but I promise, this is the way to get through this unfair world.
You need a peaceful heart...don't hold resentment...let it go.
Don't seek revenge or "payback". Let it go.
Know that it's just not going to always be fair...that means sometimes we just have to "suck it up" and go to the next thing...yes, knowing that it wasn't right or fair.
I'm sorry. I've been through it a million times in my own life and in the lives of BOTH of my children. But I can also testify that in the end they have come out ahead. On their own...not with MY help.
I've told this story a lot of times:
my daughter, Anna Lee, had some very hard years...she wasn't like the rest of her class. She was a christian first and foremost. A lot of times (in fact, most times) she didn't get invited to parties or to spend the night or whatever...she was left out...she was alone. But I always told her to stand firm in her beliefs, stand strong, never let em' see you sweat, and be KIND to everyone---no matter what. There were some years that there were alot of tears...but in in the end, she was voted Class favorite, Miss Alexandria, Miss AHS, Friendliest,Top Ten etc.   She did all of this on her own. I did not do it for her...there were times, that I made her do a lot of things she did not want to, hold her head up and move forward...it was hard. I cried, she cried...but she did it. She is a much better person to this very day. She stands as a leader and respected by her peers as well as by me.
I am not boasting about my child, I am simply trying explain that if done with a pure and honest heart, God will always prevail.

I do need to add: there is a very fine line that you DO need to stand up for yourself or your child. You don't have to aloow people to "bully" or make your life miserable. But just find this line, for children and for parents. But always know that the "unfair" monster is going to appear from time to time...so be ready.

This world is not fair. And at times, I also want to go screaming out into the street. I WANT to have the last word, to make them understand...but there will always be a next time. ANd it will always start all over again...so I will just stick to what I know will ALWAYS work: glorifying my God.

And with that : To God be the Glory! He has never let me down! He has a plan for your life, let him be your guide...
and for now:
These are my Thoughts.

Friday, February 4, 2011


I have one more story about choice.
I want to preface it by saying...
Choose your battles wisely.
Know that each minute counts.
Love your children.

I don't know if it can help anyone or exactly how, but I'm sure there is a purpose, as it has been on my mind heavily this week.

It was April, 1997.
My precious daughter, Anna Lee, was 5 years old. She was a beautiful, spunky, unique, joyful, pride and joy, little girl. It was one night around 9:00 when her life, our lives, things would change.
She was playing around as usual, bouncing, singing, being a normal little 5 year old.Her father and I were nestled into a movie... I can still remember the chill in the air that night. It was only a week after Easter, Spring was on the horizon but the night air still left a hint of winter not so far away in the recent past.
As we were watching our movie, Anna Lee was getting more and more, I guess you could say, mischievious. Things had gotten a little out of hand, so she was sent to her room for some "quiet time". I write those words with much hesitation.
It had been a few minutes, and she called out, "Can I come out now?" I replied, with total innocence of what the next words would bring, "No, you have 5 more minutes."  God has a plan each and every day for all of us, the next minutes, were in HIS plan, but certainly not in mine.
I heard her say, "Fine then! I'm just gonna read a..." and then I heard the loudest crash of breaking, shattering glass I had ever heard. If you've ever had children, you can understand the piercing stab in your heart when you KNOW something terrible has happened. It's a part of you that goes numb, your heart beats out of your chest, but something unexplainable takes control and somehow, you keep moving. Chris (her father) and myself jumped out of our comfy seats and darted down the hall toward her room. I really don't think each of us took more than 2 steps to get there. He got there first. I knew in my heart that something was wrong...because it was unpeacefully quiet.
I stood in the door to her room and all I could see was him hovering over. My little girl was underneath a china cabinet; all I could see was her feet sticking out from the bottom. Chris, lifted it off, while I stood in the doorway, not able to breathe. The drawer must have jammed..she wanted to read a book that was in that stupid drawer...
He leaned down to pick her up, but hesitated. He looked back at me and said, "hand me a towel and call 9-1-1."
As I write this my arms are numb...the feeling of hearing those words will always haunt my mind.
I had NEVER called this number, and certainly didn't want to!
I grabbed a towel and then grabbed the phone.
I pushed...9---1---1. For MY daughter.
What had just happened?!?! She was only in her room for a minute, and only for 5 MORE MINUTES! She was fine, everything was fine...and then in a SECOND, it all changed!!! Please God! NO!
I told the operator what had happened and the ambulance was on it's way. We lived 30 minutes from the hospital at the time...and the wait for the ambulance seemd like eternity.
As I hung up the phone, I saw that Chris and Anna Lee weren't in her room anymore. I looked around and saw him sitting on the couch, holding her in his arms---a towel over her face. My eyes met his, and my eyes spoke the words, "Is she ok?" He just looked at me...and I knew what he meant.
I could see the blood leaving his face.
Lord, Chris, you've got to hang on! We need you now!
I ran outside to look for the ambulance...it had seemed like forever since I had made that call!---Nowhere in sight.
I went back inside. Chris was still holding our daughter. I went over to them and gently paced around...Anna Lee had been so quiet throughout the last minutes. No words, no sounds. And she looked at me..."What did I do mama? What's wrong?" she said.  Oh my dear, sweet baby... tears rolled down my face. Then she said words I will never, ever forget..."mama, please don't cry...when you cry it makes me cry." That was it! My strong baby had not shed a tear! She was looking at me for guidance, I had to be stronger! She was being so strong.
I cleared up my tears and smiled...I replied, "Oh Anna Lee, I know...it's going to be ok."
I was startled when I heard the knock on the door. Finally!
The paramedics came in and did the usual questions, etc. I saw one of them go over to Chris and lift the towel from her face. He put it back on. That was it. He didn't say anything about it. Then it was just hurrying and getting some clothes for...the hospital. My Lord in heaven I thought, and I heard the movie still playing in the distance.
We headed for the ambulance, but on the way out the door I noticed something...it was "big Baby". This was Anna Lee's most prized possesion...this big baby doll, with no clothes on, just laying there, I knew it would comfort her, and I grabbed her. I also grabbed my keys and headed to the car. Chris was getting Anna Lee into the ambulance. I just stared, blankly.  He came out of the back of the ambulance and said. "I'll drive, you ride with her..." He knew I was in no position to drive...he knew. As he was climbing out of the back, he took my hand...he looked deeply into me eyes, and said, "mom, be strong." I knew what he meant. And I knew what to do...I squeezed his hand and climbed in.
That drive was the longest drive I had ever been on. I held our angel. I sang songs to her, we sang Jesus Loves Me . She began drifiting off to sleep. I held her tight. I looked to the paramedic sitting with us and he looked at me and just quietly smiled. I didnt' know what that meant. What DID that mean???
We pulled into the hospital and was greeted at the ER door by family members with fear in their eyes. I stayed within an inch of my daughter as we were wheeled down the hall toward a room. I sat in that room holding Anna Lee, not crying. She just looked at me, dreary eyed, but NOT crying.
Nurses came in one by one and pulled the towel back to see underneath, and they looked at me one by one...some patting my leg, some smiling, some just leaving the room. Then one nurse came in and raised the towel. The towel fell. I had not seen what was unerneath until this point. My little angelic face.
My heart stopped beating, or maybe it was just beating so fast, that I couldnt' feel it.
Her face had been severed by the glass of the cabinet.
Chris later told me that there was a large peice of glass in her face when he pulled the cabinet off of her. When he pulled the glass out of her face, her face fell open.
The laceration started under her eye, I mean right up to the bottom of her eye without touching her actual eye. It was as if, God himself had put his hand down and said, "that's enough."And it extended down her face and through her top lip. Her face was hanging open straight to the bone.
I couldn't breathe.
I asked a family member to take her for a minute, and I got down from the bed. I told her I would be right back...I left the room quietly. But the minute I stepped into the hall, I broke into a million pieces!
What had happened? Why!
If only...IF ONLY!!!! If only, I had let her come out when she asked...what did those 5 more minutes really mean!!!!
I went back to the room, but held back the tears. I took her in my arms.
The nurse said, "it'll only be a few more minutes until surgery..." WHAT???? What are you saying! Surgery! Just sew her up...and we'll go home.
The doctor came into the room and took me and my husband out in the hall. He told us that it would take more than stitches for this...she was cut 'through and through', to the bone. They prepped my angel for surgery and we walked with them as they wheeled her to the double doors of the surgical unit. I watched as they wheeled her out of sight.
Please, let me take her back home and start over!
Just give me those five minutes back!
The doors closed and I fell into my husbands arms.
Yes, I was crying.
It was almost 3 hours later when the waiting room phone rang. It was ok to come back to see her now. I ran down the hall and over to her bedside. She looked good. Better. Her face was sewn and stapled but it looked clean. There was a tiny "v" shaped cut underneath her eye and then a straight long cut down her face. She had multiple smaller cuts around her hairline and forehead. She was asleep...and I was holding her hand, quietly letting the tears roll of my cheeks.
There was a series of tests, cat scans, MRI's, etc. to make sure there was no further internal damage from the heavy fall. Thank you God, there was not.
The next few days were heart-wrenching. Although we were out of immediate danger, it was still a road that I never wanted to be on. The morning after surgery, I had fallen asleep in a chair next to my daughter's bed, and I was awakened by a mumbling sound. I jumped up when I realized it was Anna Lee...trying to speak. Her face was completely swollen. The surgery and the lacreation itself ahd caused her face to swell to the point she couldn't speak or see out of her left eye. She didn'tknow what had happened or why she was like this. She was simply trying to tell me she needed to go to the bathroom. I helped her up.

Friends and family flooded in to see our angel. We were so thankful. This helped the time pass by and warmed our hearts. Anna Lee had been in the hospital for 3 days, she had gone through surgery, test, swolleness, so much for a young five year old. She simply laid in her bed, she didn't move much and she couldn't speak. I really don't know why...my once, energetic, lively, spry, little girl was very different. It was hard to see this change in her.
My brother walked into the room that afternoon, carrying a card and a silly little bear that played a funky tune when you mashed its hand. He handed it to her, their eyes met. He squeezed its hand and the tune started to play. SHe looked at him and began to wiggle her shoulders as if to dance a childlike little dance. We all looked in shock at this display. My brother squeezed the hand again, they danced together.
She was back.
We all looked at each other without speaking a word.
My brother stepped out of the room. I followed him. I found him in the next empty room just staring out the window. My strong brother that never cried---a tear rolled off his cheek. I hugged him but didn't say a word...none was needed.
We both knew. It was a tear of sorrow but also of joy.
We returned home, with our precious daughter. There were cards waiting for us in the mailbox, from friends, family and strangers. These helped. There was a time of recovery. My daughter had a scar on her face. For that I was terribly sad, but so very thankful that I could still hold her, even with that scar.
I could hold her.
I went to her room to pick up what we had left in such a hurry. To clean up the memory of that night.
 It had been cleaned.
My brother and future wife had cleaned it up for us...thank the Lord.
It was an eerie feeling when we stpeed in that room. The cabinet pulled to the side and the belongings laid inside. I looked at it, just standing there, thinking. And them I saw something. Through the many treasures that had fallen onto the floor that night,smothered underneath the cabinet with my Anna Lee, was her precious little bible. It was a gift at her birth; covered in white eyelet cloth. I noticed that the pure white cloth had blood on it---From the night of the accident.
This was the only item that had any blood on it. The only one.
I took it in my hand and held it. Just like the purest child ever sent to Earth, Jesus...He had once been covered in blood...this little white (pure) bible was covered in blood.
"Just 5 more minutes"...is that what God had wanted? Had he wanted just 5 more minutes of his only son? What does just 5 minutes mean????
It could mean---a lifetime---an ETERNITY.
"For God so loved the world, that HE gave his only SON, that whoever believes in him, shall NOT PERISH, but...have everlasting life." John 3:16

Wow...what a message.

My daughter, Anna Lee is 19 years old. (I attached 3 pictures of her at the beginning of this post: #1-Easter, one week before #2-the day we came home from the hospital #3-age 18 her Senior year of high school.) You can barely see the scar that was left on her face. The doctor had talked of further reconstructive surgery on her face and such...but throught the years, she was healed---almost.
There is still a scar.
But she is here. And she is still beautiful...her face is unique, a memory of a time where we all learned, every minute counts-choose wisely...

Isaiah 53:5
But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his WOUNDS WE ARE HEALED."

for now, These are My Thoughts.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


I've heard from so many people about my recent posts on CHOICE. My prayer was that it would touch someone enough to give them incentive to make a CHANGE...and from what I've heard, I believe it has. To God be the Glory...I prayed as I wrote, that he would give me the right words, the words that would reach someone's heart!!!!

I'd like to share something with you:
I say something almost daily to someone, and I'd like to pass it on...
"With NO CHANGE, there will be NO CHANGE."
     If you want something different in your life, you will need to take the steps to make this happen. Take each day one day at a time...set one goal per day to accomplish and go for it...but only for ONE DAY. Be proud of yourself when you get to the end of THAT day and have succeeded. And then go to day two...small steps...and before you know it, you will be a different person, and you will be PROUD!

     The blogs about choice were intended to simply inspire som; but for those that really need this in their lives, I pray that you will use the words God gave me and make that change in your life today!
     There were several areas that were covered within the words written:
    FORGIVENESS: On your knees, before and only TO GOD. Forgiveness is for YOU! It is to clear YOUR heart! It's not to do someone else a favor...not to get approval...not to get forgiven in return...not to be rewarded for good behavior...not expecting an instant miracle change in someone that has wronged you. It's to REMOVE that harbored anger, or hate, or pain...You will always have the memory, but it's time to move on, move forward, to get busy doing the things that you can't do without FORGIVING! Don't look back...just let it go.
Remember: as a child of God, YOU are FORGIVEN! We ALL deserve the same. Just forgive.
     CHOICES: Just choose to do what is pleasing to God. Think before you act...think of the long term affect. Think about who it will help or who it will hurt. Act responsibile. Talk to God .
Of all things: don't make the mistake of "acting now----and asking forgiveness later"...this doesnt work!  Read the word of God to see what is expected of you...and try HARD to do it.
Take yourself out of it...it's not ALWAYS about you!
Be unselfish. For real.

There are a lot of hurting people...and it breaks my heart.
Don't give up...God still works miracles.
I promise!
God is blessing me so abundantly it's is unbelievable. No it's not necessarily money or THINGS...it's through the good stuff: compassion, hugs, tears, joy, empathy, friendships, support, LOVE!  WOW! I am telling you--- these things warm my heart a lot more than a BRAND NEW, STYLIN, COAT!!!! (although a coat would be great about right now---it's really cold:)

It has been a good day.
I see that there is still hope...people are hurting, but willing to make a change.
My prayer today is for all of you.

One last thought:
remember to Praise God, even through the storms. Don't make a habit of only talking to him when you need something. He wants your praise and love. Just reach out to him...He will reach back. Know that even when we think life is raging, that the storm is too heavy...he may in fact be protecting you from something even worse, or simply preparing you for the future.
Have a peaceful heart.
Have faith.
He promises to take care of us...he P-R-O-M-I-S-E-S this. and He is God...believe in HIM.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

A story about CHOICE ... part 2...A TURNING POINT

I've thought about how to write this post for 2 days. My only intention is to use my own obstacles to simply save some steps for someone else. I am careful what I write: I have 2 children, a family, and friends, among many others that I would never want to hurt in any way. So with that, I pray that my experiences will HELP and never HINDER.

Here's a story about CHOICE...yes, again...and this one's THE turning point in my life.

I was married on June 17th, 1989.
My father had died 3 years before...you all know the heartache I shared with you about that most unfortunate choice...
On my wedding day, I missed him. Terribly. There were so many things he would have said. I know He would have, I can almost hear him now...his voice, his strong voice that would send even the most confident into trembles if he roared. I wanted to take his arm down the aisle, but he was not there.
I walked the aisle alone.
It sounds lonely...but it was a simple gesture---no one could take his place...and hence the empty space.
The wedding day was filled with a typical "wedding day" scenario. Food, gifts, friends, family, beautiful gown, magnolias, fresh flowers, taffeta dresses, music, birdseed...
                                                           what was I missing?
Oh yes...well, I'll let you ponder on that one...
I had been with my future husband for one year... I don't know what it should have been like because I'd never done it before (the dating process before marriage)...but I don't think it was done the right way. Way too much grief, no plans of the future, a kind of fly by the seat of your pants ride, wreckless, serious anger,  more than heated arguements (almost daily), a lot of red flags...
On my wedding day, someone asked me if I was sure I was doing the right thing...
oh LORD!
Surely you're not wanting ME to be truthful! I've got 200 guests waiting for me to walk down the aisle, don't you know??? A glowing bride! Radiant! Happy! Confident!...
and then I said:
"No... but it's too late now."
What just came out of my mouth??? or did it come from...my heart.?
I didn't know what to d, so I just proceeded to do the one thing I do best...keep going.
I was married 1 hour later. For better or worse, til death do us part???
I knew it wasn't right, but I could "change him", I could make it work for both of us, I could manage through it, I couldn't fail---me? fail?...what is wrong with this picture?

This is the one time in life when it shouldn't be just "I"...it should've been ..."WE". But it wasn't, it never was...and...well...
For the next 14 years I made an attempt at a marriage. We had some happy times of course, some laughter in the midst of the storm, but the bad FAR outweighed the good. It was a life full of shattered dreams, barely getting by, unspeakable grief, and total sadness. For both of us really...
There were things and situations that I cannot believe ever happened...unspeakable things. A life of abuse, ridicule, loathing, mockery, and even hate. Was this really my life??? Was this the way it was intended? Was this a marriage? What brought us together???
That's the question for the ages!!!!...            WHAT brought us together?
      One CHOICE...a mountain of Choices... but there was something missing from each and every choice...     JESUS.
The relationship was never built...listen girls...B-U-I-L-T...on things like: Trust, Compassion, Support, Empathy, Joy, Standards, Morals, FAITH...LOVE...GOD...GOD'S LOVE...GODLY LOVE.
What I didn't know, or at least care to think about, was that it couldn't ever work until we had these things FIRST.
I had heard all these things...all my life...and KNEW this!  But for some reason, at this time in my life, I made a CHOICE to not care...do it "MY" way, I made a CHOICE not to put GOD in my relationship...and I sit in this place today...
Without the dreams I had for my family, without a hand to hold, without a shoulder to lean on, without...just without.
It was a choice.
I just dove in head first. It was all based on immature, childish, unresponsible choices...WITHOUT seeking the WILL OF GOD.
It didn't work.
It couldn't...for WITHOUT HIM. this is not possible...but WITH Him all things are possible. (Matthew 19:26)
My married life was a train wreck. I tried so hard to make it work...But still, it wouldn't, couldn't work...WITHOUT...Him. There was no peace, no contentment, it was truly an empty place.
It------marriage---is a union, a bond, a relationship between 2 people put together by GOD...in order to build a life together based on Godly principles and standards...to pray together, love together, cry together, support one another, hold each other,...love each other.
WIthout God's love, how can we even know what LOVE truly is? We cannot do it on our own.

I've learned many lessons throughout the last 7 years being divorced. I'm one of the lucky ones...I am sitting here writing this as someone who has actually "LEARNED" from mistakes. I've worked incredibly hard to build my life back the way God intended.
He is first in every step I take...he leads the way, I FOLLOW!
I am a leader, but HE is "THE" leader!!!
I have taken all the wrong choices and tried hard to turn them into something positive, I have indeed struggled, but I am proud of what God has put in front of me.
I have learned that with God first, all things are possible...I have learned that true LOVE, only comes from the creator of it.
He teaches us HOW to love...it's a process.
It's a relationship---a daily experience---supprt for one another---patience---kindness---LOVE.

I write this with a heavy heart.
I've left a mountain of things and situations out of this story. The details are not important...it's not about those things. It's about Choices...Godly choices.
Choose your steps carefully, for one wrong step will send you into possibly a lifetime of trying to get back on track.
CHOICE----so powerful.

I am divorced, not what I intended for my life, my future...but God has given me the power of forgiveness. Someone asked me once, how can you give him (my ex-husband) a hug, or even talk to him?..,
I replied: "What good would the alternative do? Satisfy "me"??? For what? The choice was mine. I can't go any further in this life, with harbored hate in my heart...I can't do the things God has planned for me if I can't LOVE like he has taught me."
I forgave my husband...on my knees, before an ALMIGHTY GOD. And when I got up, it was over...forever...never to look back, never to want revenge or satisfaction for the things that he did to me...it was finished.
This is the day my life turned around. Yes, I was "done wrong", I was hurt, I was abused (physically and emotionally),
Who am I----- to not at least give this gift to someone who needs it as much as I do.
I have a peaceful heart. and God is pleased with me.

Chris and I are friends, forever. We have two most beautiful children...we made them, together. We love them with every breath that "WE" take...that is our common bond, forever. We'll never have that picture perfect family...and for this my heart breaks.
But God is working..
not "ON US"...but "THROUGH" ...our choices.
                                 CHOICE---a power that can change your life forever.

I need to add one last thing: Marriages CAN be miraculously healed through the power of our LIVING CHRIST! I do not believe divorce is a cure for unhappiness.  Both should seek God's abundant GRACE and forgiveness through salvation and then work on restoring the sanctity that HE intended. Marriage is a SACRED bond. Divorce is rarely a good thing...it hurts ALL people involved. And even worse, it does not please God.
As for me, my regret is one of a family bond broken, lives changed forever, and mostly...breaking the heart of the one who loves me the most...my Jesus.

And for now..., whew!!!!!
These are My Thoughts.

Sunday, January 30, 2011


I talked with a friend today who asked me to write my thoughts down based on the theme:
Choices and their Consequences.
She wanted stories that could be used to HELP people realize that their Choices always come with consequences...good or bad. Although the basis of this theme will eventually be about relationships, mine needs to begin with a preface...that story will come later. But for now, I need to share the beginning...

I've thought a lot about this subject today. 
Here's my story of one CHOICE.

It was December 23rd, 1986. My dad, only 48 years old, left us. Alone. We were just going through life---things were hectic for a family of 3 kids...but just riding through, things were progressing somewhat normally. My dad had already had 2 heart attacks by this time (the 1st one at 41) and so we were accustomed to heart disease. ...Then we noticed a growth, he turned yellowish grey in color and lost weight. In November of 1986, he was diagnosed with colon cancer. I remember our last outing before his hospital stay (surgery to romove the cancer)...he took me to Bermans Clothing Store to purcahse a winter coat. It was a full length blue, wool coat. It was the last check he ever wrote.
     The next day, he was admitted to the hospital. He needed surgery to remove the cancer. They opened him... and closed him. They said on a scale of A-D, he was a D-...the worst. He was to be sent home, I guess to die.
     It was December 23rd when I left to go to work around 11:30am. I walked past his recliner and toward the door...I looked back at his chair and thought, "When I get home tonight, he'll be back home, sitting in his chair". He was always sitting in that chair.
I can still hear Johnny Carson or John Wayne on T.V., watching my dad scarf down cream horns and circus peanuts. The CHristmas Tree was lit and I had put HIS 2 special presents under it, waiting for his return just in time for Christmas Eve.
     I left for work, I didn't go see him that day in the hospital...or the day before. I don't know, it had been several days, maybe even a week since I had seen him... He was coming home, and I would see him then.
I got to work and had been there an hour when I got a call. I answered and I heard my mother's weary voice, "Dara, this is your mother..." , like I didn't know my own mothers voice...I knew something was wrong. "Come to the hospital, it's your dad... his heart...come now." I left instantly.
     When I arrived into the parking lot, i drove in at the same time as my brother coming from the other direction...odd, the same exact time, my mom must have called him too, this time it must be bad. I got off the elevator on the 9th floor. His room was the first one you could see. It had a blue flag on the door...what did that mean? My heart was racing, I felt like I would throw up. Someone ushered me to a waiting room. I walked in...my mother, my dad's sister, and my dads best friend were waiting. I heard Arlon (his best friend) say..."we just need to see him being wheeled down to ICU"...what did that mean??? Oh, I get it...he would still be...alive? Good Lord! This was insane...he was coming home today...in just a few minutes. My mom was there to get his things together. He had cancer--it couldn't be his heart... Doctors!!!what do they know??? He was coming home for CHristmas, probably his last. Just let us have this time together!
     The doctor came in..."I'm sorry, I tried everything I could", the doctor was crying. He was a friend of my dad's.
"He died of a myocardial infarction...a heart attack." I heard him say...he sounded so far away. My ears were ringing, all I could hear plainly was my heartbeat. It was so loud.
     I screamed outloud...so loud. My brother just stared, quietly, at me. My mom dropped her head. My aunt, his sister, screamed with me. His best friend left the room.
My dad was coming home today!!! Didn't you know that??? What's wrong here?!
He has CANCER! He's supposed to come home, to have our last days together...to spend TIME together! He's only been sick for 6 weeks for goodness sake!
It's Christmas! It's December 23rd...I don't want this!  He wouldn't want this!

The doctor interrupted my thoughts..."do you want to see him?"
We went to see my dad... yep it was him. Just laying there...but HE was gone...forever.
My dad...my 6' 4" strong, grey headed, deep voiced, athletic, wise, successful, head of the hosuehold, held us together, father! Was gone! I wanted to lay over him, but I was scared. I was 21 years old and wanted my dad! I wanted him to see his Christmas presents...I picked them out and he would love them! Dad?! I got you a carved statue of a sailor--because you love the story "The Old Man and the Sea", and a silly little framed poem about "The Greatest Dad"!!! I want YOU to open them---not ME! I want to talk to him...please!!! Say something!!!!!

Why didn't I come to see him...before...if only I had known!!!!   
    THERE IT WAS>>>the guilt! The why, the big question. I've asked that question for 24 years...what if, why didn't I, if only I had known.
 But the truth?
 It was... a CHOICE.
 I was running late. I didn't have time. It was my CHOICE.
 That's all...simple as that...myCHOICE.
 A CHOICE I've lived with for a long time and will always live with.

     It took many years to overcome the guilt. But I learned to cope, not to accept, but just to cope. I miss my dad. Yes, he was young...and yes, I unwrapped his presents, without him that Christmas. We buried him the day after. He was a man that taught me many things but not near enough. I loved him.

That is my first story...
A regret? Yes.
Hard to live with? Yes.
Did I learn from it? Yes.
Would I do it differently IF I had a second chance?          

CHOICES...Choose wisely.
For now...These are MY THoughts.