His biggest fan

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As I lovingly watched my husband playing catch in the floor with our granddaughter last night, it was like Déjà vu.  Wasn’t it just yesterday, instead of over 20 years ago that he sat doing the same thing with her mother?  One of my favorite things about my husband is unconditional the love he has always shown to his girls; daughters and granddaughters.

Today we celebrate 23 years as one and although we have been through many things, they have only served to strengthen us.  It isn’t really what you go through though, that will ultimately either make you or break you; it’s how you handle what you go through.  As you “partner” through things, making sure to communicate, you find your love and respect for each other grows.

As life happens, we are often tempted to take one of several different roles.  At times we put on our long black robe and become judge, doling out opinions of guilt or innocence, and deciding what sentence we will impose.  At other times we wear the disguise of investigator, seeking and searching for clues and facts to settle our rabid curiosity or to put our insecurities to rest.

We all think we are attorneys sometimes and we take much pride and care in arguing our case, we dwell on the offense and prepare exhaustively to defend ourselves.  It’s not always worth it; pick your battles.

Maybe (usually in our younger years) we put on a warden or police uniform and make sure everyone is where they are supposed to be at all times, dogging our charges to ensure their behavior meets our expectations, enforcing our rules.  We all like to play comedian at times and tease each other but don’t demean each other in front of others.  You shouldn’t do it anyway, but in front of people is especially cruel.  What begins as teasing or joking can become a habit of insulting and degrading each other.  Shelter each other as best you can and keep your problems to yourself within reason.  Build each other up, don’t tear down.

None of the aforementioned roles serve to strengthen when played out in a marriage; as a matter of fact they tear down and destroy.

On the positive side, we can be teachers, learning from and sharing with each other along the way.   We can put on a white coat as we nurture one another back to health.   Some of us don’t mind at all donning our waitress uniform and apron as we dazzle our beloved with delicious dishes.   Our male counterparts seem to enjoy the greasy old mechanics uniform as they try to “fix” everything, when sometimes we don’t need to be fixed, just heard (but hey, as least they are trying).

I find I am happiest when I am just intent on being his best friend, his lover and his biggest fan, praising his accomplishments and forgiving his failures.  There is a lot to be said about that old saying, “if you treat him like a king, he’ll treat you like a queen.”  Are there exceptions?  Do some marriages fail no matter what you do?  Yes and yes.

Am I saying things are always perfect?  Absolutely not, and they won’t be this side of heaven. Do I have it all figured out?  Nope, but I’m working towards it.  I do know from years of experience if I keep my focus on God and practice the kind of love He has shown to me; He will keep me in perfect peace.

 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.  Love never fails.  1 Corinthians 13:4-8

A year of blogging

what lies behind you

Happy Anniversary to me!  Today is November 21, 2013 and it was exactly one year ago today on an evening much like this one after church that I started my blog.  It read:

I’ve been contemplating starting a blog for a very long time.  It’s been easy to put it off because I lead a busy life, but today I decided it’s now or never.  Procrastination isn’t going to win the battle this time.  The hardest part is deciding the “one” thing I’m most interested in, or what genre my blogging will represent.  I can’t do that.  So, I decided that this will be a mixture of interests, a conglomeration if you will.

Since this is my first ever entry, I will strive to keep it short and sweet and then let my eldest daughter know it’s done, so I can quickly obtain my first follower.

Something is changing and it isn’t just the weather.  My interests are and somewhat dramatically at that!  Whereas I used to loathe all things crafty, I found myself in Michael’s on Saturday searching for felt, buttons and ric rac.  My mantra was always, “Why make it when you can buy it?”  But now, laid out on my dining table in all it’s glory are the materials for my newest project; making these cute little felt owl ornaments I found on Pinterest.

Stroll a few feet further and you will find the kitchen.  This used to be a place I barely tolerated.  The greatest thing about it was that it housed my coffeepot and that of course is essential.  Now, I have recipes galore, new ingredients in my pantry that I’ve only just learned existed and I have a desire for new cookware, bake-ware and am seriously contemplating buying one of those expensive mixers.

My hope is that this journey deep into the heart of middle age (or am I already there?) will prove enlightening at the very least.  Hope you will join me!

My hope was to bring encouragement, smiles and yes, even the occasional tear to the eyes of my followers.  You see, if I could accomplish this, it would prove to me that my writing could move people.

My eldest daughter has been brutally honest with me.  If a post was lacking in emotion, content, creativity or purpose, I have been able to count on her to tell me.  Thank you Ashley!

I’ve met new friends and gained much insight from fellow bloggers.  They have been very helpful and willing to share knowledge of writing, technology or whatever assistance I needed.

For those of you who read or share my posts, visit my facebook page regularly and shower me with input and encouragement, I am sincerely thankful.

I look forward to continuing on this journey and hopefully make strides in my goal to write that book and be published!

Thank you and God Bless!

Lisa

Fishing with Mr. Patience

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I am just sitting here on this rainy night, contemplating our upcoming anniversary outing this weekend.  We will probably drive a few hours just to “get away” and go fishing, something we both enjoy and I don’t have the pleasure of doing very often.

I felt the corners of my mouth turn upward into a smile as I recalled a day of fishing with my husband when we were first married.

We were fishing one afternoon and although I enjoy it when the fish are biting and I’m catching, I’m not such a die-hard that I won’t put my pole down for a while and lay in the sun with a book for a while, (which may exceed fishing as far as the relaxation factor goes).

We were way up some creek and the bugs were buzzing, gators were cruising and the occasional fish jumped near the boat.  It was getting late, so we were hoping to catch dinner soon.  Suddenly my husband had something on, and it wasn’t giving up easily.  This motivated me so I jumped up and grabbed my pole and casted, sinking my bait right where I wanted it.

In the meantime, my husband had pulled his beautiful fish in and was anxiously awaiting my turn.  He didn’t have to wait long until I also had a bite and then he began coaching me, like he always does.  This annoys me, but he can’t help it so I just deal with it.  In my humble opinion, I did everything right.  But something went wrong, and I lost the fish and it was a big one.  Not your ordinary big one, mind you, but a monster.  My fairly new (at the time) husband lost his patience with me and proceeded to explain in a somewhat aggravated tone, that if I’d done as I was told, we would have a fat fish in the boat.

I did what I always did back then, long before I was blessed with age and wisdom and the ability to admit that I am wrong and laugh about it.  I threw my pole down, stomped to the back of the boat and sat down sulkily, book in hand, anxiously awaiting the expected apology.

He got the poles situated, grumbled for a minute and then looked back and me and smiled.  I was much too stubborn at this point (and age) to smile back so I feigned extreme interest in my book and ignored him.  A minute later, he made his way to my side and hugged me and told me he was sorry for over-reacting and within seconds, all was forgiven.  My world was righted again.

I smile now because I think of all of our absurd little arguments and how so much anxiety could have been avoided if I’d only known then what I know now.  Surely others learn more quickly than I did, certainly we don’t have to be briskly approaching fifty to begin to see things from a broader perspective.

However, watching the younger ones, I see the same silly mistakes, the same ridiculous arguments and I realize we truly do live and learn and that living out these things is sometimes the only way we can learn.  Besides, some of the arguments that seemed to be such a big deal at the time are the ones I look back and laugh about now and actually remember fondly, because of the apologies and the way love has grown through all of this.  We have lots of stories to tell our grandchildren!

So, in a day or two, we will be alone, fishing again and I will have a book and he might lose his patience, but at the end of the day, we will still have each other.  And hopefully, enough fish for dinner.

Me with a nice red

Me with a nice red

The Two Anniversaries

This week holds two special days for me; one is the anniversary of my marriage, which symbolizes a beautiful beginning and the other is the anniversary of the death of my mother which epitomizes an agonizing final chapter in the book of my life.

Since 1996, I have endeavored to honor both dates with all of the respect and enthusiasm I could muster.  The first few years after mom died, it was especially difficult to enjoy my anniversary.  There was that “other” day coming on its heels, the one where the sky always looks the same as it did on that fateful day and details that would be better off forgotten gallop through my thoughts.

As I have grown older and realize the brevity of life and the importance of enjoying it, I often think of how my mom embraced life.

She was a dreamer, a romantic, intelligent and funny.  She lived through some tough things; she lost her mom, her dad, her grandmother and a brother.  She went through a heart-wrenching divorce.

However, if you were to inquire of anyone in my family as to who absolutely lit up a room when they entered; they would tell you quickly that it was my mother.  She is often remembered for her smile, even when in the midst of adversity.

I will never forget the first time she met my husband and how much she adored him.  She said, ‘he’s a keeper”.  I reminisce on the first (sometimes bumpy) years of marriage when I dialed her number seeking solace and more importantly someone willing to blindly take my side.  Although I’m still not sure exactly how she pulled it off, my outlook was often altered by the time I hung up the phone.  She would cause me to look inward, and sometimes identify (much to my chagrin!) when I was the problem.

So, in a strange, somewhat enchanted way, the two days are combined into the fond memories of my mother, the wonderful times we had together; and the beautiful memories of my marriage and the hopes and dreams of many years to come.

There is also the knowledge that she would want me to give my anniversary the recognition it deserves and celebrate it to the fullest.  She would flash that big ole’ smile and give us her blessings all over again if she could.

Once again, my memories, which threatened to take on a life of melancholy this afternoon, have only catapulted me to a happiness that comes from knowing that I have been and continue to be loved and nurtured by some of the best!  I’m sitting here with your smile, mom and happy tears.

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