He has made me glad

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I had someone recently tell me they were looking for a sign from God.  I told them that He is always faithful and will give them exactly what they need -in His perfect timing!

I know this because He has been so faithful to me.

With no stream in sight, lately I’ve felt like I am walking through a desert.  As someone who wears her heart on her sleeve at all times, I’ve cried more in the last week than I have in ages.  I HATE to cry.  Especially in front of people.  It is humiliating, embarrassing, and makes me feel weak. But sometimes I just can’t stop the tears from flowing, and I have stopped fighting it.

I arrived at church Sunday morning, and was sitting at the piano- praying and getting ready to begin our worship practice.  As I sat there, I got a text from a friend saying they were praying for me.  I responded, letting them know how much their prayers meant to me and to share with them that I had been feeling very “down” this past week.

As soon as did I hit “send” on my response, I saw someone enter the sanctuary- all smiles, and holding a flower.  I got up from the piano as she came to the stage.

“God told me to give this to you today!”  She had cut the bloom from her yard that morning.

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I cried- yes, again, lol–  but this time they were tears of joy!  It was a gladiola bloom.

“He has made me GLAD,” I said as I hugged her, and in that instant the joy of the Lord flooded my heart.

He is with us, and He shows up in the most wonderful ways!

And always right on time.

For You, Lord, have made me glad through Your work;
I will triumph in the works of Your hands.  Psalm 92:4 

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Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.  1 Peter 5:6-7

 

 

I’m not a pirate, but I do wear a patch

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My girls and I… 7 years ago 

I dreamed the other night that I had another baby. It was one of those dreams that seemed so real. I was sitting in a nursery rocking a baby girl. The colors were muted gray- like I was in a still-frame picture. In the dream, I knew this was my third baby- a surprise.  I felt a flood of emotions- exactly how I felt all those years ago when I held my first baby.  A hormonal mess… and yet everything was perfect.

When I woke up, it hit me that I am no longer that same woman I was then.  I had a hysterectomy 2 years ago. After struggling for years with pain, unexplained bleeding, and extreme PMS- I tried everything I could to alleviate my growing list of symptoms.  What was once a week of misery slowly turned into non-stop discomfort.   After exhausting all other options, the only thing left was a hysterectomy.

We had decided years ago that we were finished having children.  Both of my pregnancies were difficult- both emotionally and physically.  I had unexplained bleeding throughout both pregnancies- leaving me in a state of constant worry and fear.  Pregnancy- the thing I dreamed of for so long- was not at all the joyful experience I had hoped for.  After being blessed with two healthy girls, we knew that our family was complete.

As strong as my desire was to have a baby all those years ago-I prayed for God to take away my desire to ever have a third one.  I knew I didn’t want to go through the stress of being pregnant again, and we felt that our family was complete.

So when my doctor approached me about having a hysterectomy, I prayed about it.  And one morning, I heard Him tell me “it’s time”…it was time for a fresh start.  It had gotten so bad that I had a hard time getting out of bed most days.  Pain, PMS, and an onslaught of other symptoms continued to snowball out of control.

The surgery was a success.  I was in some mild pain for a few weeks, but nothing I couldn’t manage. I also had my ovaries removed due to severe PMS, so I wear an estrogen patch.

The patch definitely has it’s downfalls. I am supposed to change it every 3rd and 4th day, wreaking havoc on my (already) forgetful brain.  If I am a day late changing my patch, I experience the same hormonal shifts that I did pre-surgery.  I have also noticed a difference between generic and name brand patches.  I have had to try a few in order to find one that worked for me.

I am 100%  happy with my decision to have had the surgery- even though I have some minimal challenges with using a patch.  It was definitely the best decision for me.

But for some reason, after having that dream the other night- it hit me that I will never again feel those flutters in my belly… that I will never again nurse a baby… and after mourning the loss of something I had long ago made final in my heart and mind- I finally felt closure on that chapter in my life.

A simple dream awakened within me all the lovely things I had forgotten about my babies, allowing me to finally come to terms with a new stage in my momma journey-

the TEEN years!

My oldest will be 13 in a couple of weeks, and I’m buckling up for this bumpy new ride!

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my soon-to-be teenager!

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and my youngest 🙂 

Children are a gift from the Lord;
    they are a reward from him.  

Psalm 127:3

 

Just one more day

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My oldest daughter and I

 Just one more day

to snuggle up close

just one more day

with those I love most

Just one more day

to savor the season

Just one more day

to remember the reason

Just one more day

to take it slow

Just one more day

to bask in the glow

Just one more day

ok- maybe two...

who says the “holiday”

season is through?!

How many times have you wished that something could last just one more day?

I confess that I get the “Christmas blues” after the holidays end. Just a few weeks ago, my mom called me and said “You remember how you used to cry every Christmas?”  Yep.  Sure do.  Thanks for the reminder, Mom!

I remember many Christmas mornings when I was a child,  we’d open presents and there would be one last gift to open… and then the floodgates would come.  So much build up to this one morning- and then it was over before we knew it.

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My youngest daughter… all smiles!

But the saddest day ever for me was New Year’s Day.  This was the day we always took down our tree and put the house back in order.  When I think about New Years’s Day, the sound of the vacuum cleaner comes to mind.  And tears- lots of them.  Mainly because I didn’t want to go back to school the next day.

So I always wait to take the tree down until after the girls go back to school.  In fact, I managed to leave it up until the middle of January last year.  Today was going to be the day… until both girls were feeling under the weather and ended up staying home from school.

It was like a mini extension of the Christmas break!  Since the girls were not feeling well, they were so sweet to one another. But imagine my surprise when my youngest came to me in tears this afternoon-

“Momma- what if I missed something special today?  I miss my friends. I really wish I could go to school.”  She cried earnest tears and wanted nothing more than to be with all her friends.

And then my oldest says, “Oh, and by the way, Mom- it’s time.”

“Time for what?” I asked her.

“Umm… the tree, Momma.  You said you were going to take it down today.”

“Well, that’s because I thought you girls were going to be in school.  I am waiting to do it until you all are back in school.”

Our conversation this afternoon reminded me how much my own childhood plays a part in everything I do- or don’t do- with my children.  All this time I have felt like I was “saving” them from the sadness of getting everything back to normal… and here they are begging for it to happen.

So, my “one more day” of having the decorations up seems to have had nothing to do with the girls at all. It’s all about me – not wanting to hear that vacuum running. It’s about me not wanting to go back to school- which I absolutely dreaded with every fiber of my being. I would have done anything to have stayed home just one more day.

I am thankful for God’s grace that allows those memories to soften through the years, and that thankfully, my girls don’t have the same hang-ups that I did as a kid. And hearing my girls’ affirmations that they are ready to get back in the swing of things helps me to see that moving on and letting my past be in the past is a good thing.

But maybe I’ll leave my tree up-

just one more day.