Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Year of the Affair

I turn 40 in a couple of weeks.  I’ve decided my forties are going to be the best years of my life.  Why?  Because I’m going to make sure that they are!  In the last three years I’ve gone through a separation, divorce, gone back to school, become a single parent, and waded into the waters of dating in my late thirties after having been married for 18 years.  I'm ready for a new chapter in my Book of Life.  Some of last year's chapter headings could have included:

Did I Really Have to Be So Stupid?
You  Did What?
Hell Hath No Fury.......
Can I Fast Forward Through This Part?
No Really, I Dare You To Do That Again
He Was How Young?

Next year's chapter heading might read:

You Go Girl!
You Did What?  Awesome!
Can I Slow This Part Down and Enjoy It A Little Bit Longer?
The Amazing Accomplishments. No, Really.
Can You Do That Again?

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Black Friday in Stepford County

 I had an interesting experience on Black Friday (I'll get to that in a bit).   I went "The Morning After Thanksgiving Shopping" in the Orem/Provo area with my cute little sis.  Somehow, I always manage to let her talk me into it but I'm always glad I went.

So on Thanksgiving night I couldn't go to sleep.  I obviously hadn't eaten enough Thanksgiving dinner to put me into a turkey/mashed potato induced stupor for the rest of the day. This created some anxiety.  Why?  Because I knew I was getting up at the butt crack of dawn to go gallivanting around the mall at a time I should have just been hitting my REM cycle and dreaming of........well, never mind. the time two in the morning rolled around I knew I was going to be dragging myself out of bed just in time to plop in my sister's car and continue snoring (in a very ladylike manner) on the way to the mall.  So I re-set my alarm to give me just enough time to do that.

RING!!!!  A-haaa, uhhh.....uggg.......bleh.......I stumble out of bed, plop my contacts in my eyes that feel like sand paper, throw on clothes and a hat, and and away we go!!!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Grateful Heart and the Friends Who Fill It Up

It’s taken me the entire month to sit down and write a blog to celebrate the season of Thanksgiving.  It’s not because I don’t have blessings to be grateful for, for there are many and I recognize and have a grateful heart for all of them.  

Sometimes I’d sit down and start to write and ten minutes later realized I was still staring at a blank screen because I didn’t seem to have anything to say.  Other times I would sit down to write and I would have a hard time pulling up the feelings of gratitude that I knew were there but seemed to be playing a game of hide and seek in my heart.  Sometimes I was ready to write but had too much homework and had to play at being responsible.

I am blessed.  I am blessed to be a mother, a daughter, a sister, and a friend.  I am blessed to be able to go to school.  I am blessed to have three beautiful children who grew under my heart in love.  I am blessed to be able to live in country where I enjoy the freedoms that I do.  I am blessed with good health and I am blessed with the knowledge that there is a God in the heavens and that He knows and loves me.

So, where are my thoughts most wandering off to right now?  I am feeling overwhelming gratitude for my friends.

I’m a bit of a contrast.  On one hand, I can be the life of the party when I am comfortable with people I know.  On the other hand, it takes me some time to develop close, intimate friendships.  When I do however, they mean a great deal to me and there is almost nothing I wouldn’t do for those I love and care about. 

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Suitcase

Throughout our lives we all pick up baggage at one point or another. It’s inevitable. We take our experiences with us, sometimes they even influence who we become and how we act and how we see the world and ourselves. Some of us don’t even know we are carrying baggage. Or some may see it and try to act like it’s not there. Some people don’t know what to do with it and so they do nothing and it becomes their constant companion. Others try to drop it off somewhere along the way but get either get sidetracked or find that they have grown comfortable with it and choose to keep it with them…they have gotten so used to carrying their luggage around that for better or for worse they can’t imagine life without it. They have become attached to it even if it is heavy and burdensome.

I have been unpacking my suitcase for the last couple of years. Every so often I would reach in and find something I no longer needed and toss it off to the side. I threw away pain, anger, sadness over a lost marriage, bitterness, disappointment. All of it served a purpose for a time for there is a cycle to grief but I knew those things were not something that I wanted to be part of my life. I found my suitcase getting lighter over time and it felt so good I would want to get rid of more items…..sometimes I was tossing things right and left and at other times certain things were harder to get rid of. But I kept working at it, kept unpacking and before I knew it, time had gone by and I could see the bottom of my suitcase and then I thought it was empty.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Junk In My Trunk

So who's got a little extra junk in their trunk?

I know, I know. You thought you were going to get a blog about my posterior region.  As much as I'd like to wax poetic or philosophical about my bootie, I will do my best to contain myself. So sorry to disappoint.

I have junk in my other trunk!  Let's get one thing straight. I was mislead when I purchased my vehicle. There was no sticker on it that informed me about the problem I am now facing with it. The salesman assured me I had received an excellent deal (that should have been my first red flag) and he was smiling and waving at me as I drove out of the parking lot.  If I could have read his thoughts at the time it probably would have sounded something like this. "So long, sucker."

There should have been a disclaimer in the agreement when I purchased the car that said, "Anything left in the car overnight, will thereby multiply itself or reinvent itself into another object which will then spawn other objects.  Some of these objects will be recognizable and others will look as if someone broke into your car while you were sleeping and dumped their assorted unwanted objects and lame wedding reception gifts into your car."

Here is my own DISCLAIMER:  if you are one of those people who always have a spotless car then continue reading with caution. The following material may bring on nauseousness, heart palpitations and cause you to break out in hives.

Friday, October 1, 2010

The Wall Chronicles

So let’s talk walls. Have you really ever thought about how many different kinds of walls there are? No? Then it’s your lucky day! The next time you’re out having dinner with friends and someone starts talking about walls, as they usually do in dinner conversations, then you can share all of the vast knowledge you will be gaining from this post. Trust me. Nothing says “I’m an intelligent, well rounded person,” more so than talking about walls. In my next couple of posts I will be talking about walls.

So, what does a wall do? Well, it creates a boundary or a barrier. Walls keep things in but they also keep things out. They make us feel safe, or protected. Sometimes they do just that and sometimes that safety is an illusion. Sometimes we “hit walls.” Sometimes we’re thrown against walls. Sometimes, no matter how hard we try, we can’t seem to climb over it to the other side. Sometimes we smarten up, find a ladder, and climb over that wall to the other side. 

Walls serve a purpose sometimes. When our heart has taken too many beatings we will start building a wall around it. Someone said something unkind that hurt you. Hey, here’s a brick. Someone you love made a choice that brought you pain. Have some mortar to lay that brick with. You dared to let yourself dream that you could be happy and have the life you desire. Wait, hold steady while I hand you a few more bricks. You lost someone close to you and can’t go through that kind of pain again. And so the building of the wall begins. 

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Midnight Drooling, Snoring and Flatulence (no, not me!) No Particular Order

     Okay, something’s going on. I know what it is. The problem is how to get a handle on it. Maybe the problem is not a handle but a doorknob. Let’s not stop at just any old doorknob. Let’s make it a bedroom doorknob. My bedroom doorknob. On the other side of that doorknob is a bed. My bed. I’m not in it.
Why not? Where am I? I’m sitting on my living room floor in a late night semi-trance as I watch an ant trying valiantly to haul off the remnants of some food item that one of my kids left behind. Why do you ask, would I rather be watching an ant at one thirty in the morning with drool starting to run down my chin, eyes glazing over, than in my soft, comfy bed that I have all to myself. Hmm……..all to myself. Maybe that is the problem?
     No, I don’t need a pity party. I've gotten rather used to sleeping by myself. I even have a list of perks that only come from sleeping by oneself. How does one sleep by oneself anyway?? Unless you divide like an amoeba in the middle of the night....... Oh sorry, getting off track......Anyway I've got it really good. I don’t have to listen to anyone snoring, mumbling or flatulating  in their sleep. I get to hog all the covers and put my cold feet anywhere I want. I get to wake up with my eyebrows shooting off in all directions like my Uncle Stanley with no one there to notice. I don’t have to wake up to someone's morning breath. Now come on, is this not the life or what?

     I won’t say what I do miss about having someone else in my bed. This is a PG rated family-type blog and if anyone has to think too hard about that than, well…………geez there’s nothing I even can say! And's not all about the "S" word. You know.....snoring :) And yes, I can say sex. Just did!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Card Carrying Estrogen Member

So we all know we do it. It's a hormonal thing. We often times divide and conquer obligations in our relationships by our estrogen and testosterone levels. It's true that there is more cross over now when it comes to the "standard" responsibilities of the sexes. I've discovered there are men who love to cook and many of them are much better at it than I am! I've also discovered that I am even more capable than I previously realized of taking care of the more testosterone loaded responsibilities around the house. However, there are inherent things we tend to do as males and females that are generally unique to our genders.

Part of the requirement of being an estrogen card carrying member was that it was mandated that I, just by having sole ownership of that card, frequent Bath and Body. On a somewhat regular basis. Any estrogen card holder knows this experience comes with ownership privilege. I would come home with an assortment of products for the sole purpose of taking baths with bubbles that called themselves Coconut Lime Verbena or Amber Woods, and body creams that smoothed and softened my dry Utah desert skin.

At the end of a long day (which was generally most days) I would get the kids to bed, run a hot tub filled with sweet smelling bubbles in my lovely garden tub, take a book, and ah....................I would soak the cares of the day away.

Fast forward a couple of years and one of my favorite past times has been severely inhibited. I walk in my little closet....oh sorry, I mean my bathroom. I look at the tub and longingly remembered the days where I could soak in the tub without my knees being pushed up to my chin. I look down at my reading material for the evening and sigh. The History of Islam would generally not be my first choice but I have a paper to write. I look around for all of my female bath paraphernalia and see my bottle of bubbles lying on the floor of the tub, emptying its last couple of teaspoons down the drain. Someone knocked it over and didn't pick it up.....again.

I notice I'm out of sugar scrub and wonder if I can make some. Surely I could! So I do. I really feel like pampering myself tonight so I go to scrounge up some candles. The only ones I could find were a half a dozen tea lights, but hey, in a pinch those will do! So I take my text book, light the candles, turn out the bathroom light and sink into the tub. All six inches of it. I lay there wondering if I could have a better experience if I bought a kiddie pool for the backyard, let the water warm in the sun all day, and run a little toy boat around in it when I take a bath so that it will create some bubbles.

I try the sugar scrub. Something was wrong with my sugar oil ratio and I'm left with sugar hardening on some parts of my body while other parts are streaked with oil that I just can't seem to get off....maybe the water wasn't hot enough? So, I try to read while I pretend my sugar scrub is an all over body mask. Hey, I couldn't have gotten the same treatment at the spa for 75 cents! I had just gotten to the most engrossing chapter on Islamic law when the air conditioner turned on and whooshed out my little teeny tiny tea lights.

So there I am. Laying in six inches of now cooling water in the dark; trying to dangle my now stiff from under my chin legs over the side of the tub so I don't stay in a permanent Quasimodo position. I am crusted (or would that be encrusted?) and oiled over at the same time. Yes, I have special talents. And I am thinking to myself. "Self. One day you will laugh about this. One day you may have a bath big enough to soak in without having to become a contortionist. One day, you may actually remember why you used to have normal size candles in your bath and bedroom. One day you will have a tub to take a bubble bath in that holds more than six inches of water at a time."

In the meantime, my estrogen card is going in the time out corner.


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Nest Will Empty


It’s a given. You know from the moment you see a little face change color and scream, that God has let you borrow a child. We call them our own, raise them as best we know how - but in the end they leave you to live their own lives. It’s a moment we live for, threaten to celebrate, hope comes sooner than later, then the day comes when you’re cleaning up after them for the last time and find water leaking down your face.

I look around the room - the rooms, he called his own and move the scattered piles of memories folded or piled in heaps and see in them his life as I knew it.
A dozen and a half years ago he came to me, welled up into this world out of an incision and became a part of my world. Nine years later he was mine and mine alone forsaking and forsaken by his mother.

Sitting in his room(s,) surrounded by all the years’ accumulation of clothing, gear, cards and pictures, I feel like a part of me has gone out and left there now, is an empty hole that is sucking the energy out of me. I know he’s not gone, as all the world knows gone, dead and gone. He’ll be back, but when he returns he’ll be a man - not my little boy who needed me.

Eight years. Eight years of holding everything together, being the pillar of strength for this little family. Eight years of being the Father, the Mother, the maid, the laundry girl and every other thing, teacher, counselor, chauffer and mechanic. I can’t say never, but rarely did I let the teardrops fall - and my boys didn’t see them on my face.

The problem, as I see it, with raising children, is that if you do it right there is no need for them to come back to the nest and ask for your help. Four sons I’ve raised from childhood to fathers themselves. The oldest have their lives, their children and their wives. They are making it in the world and sometimes come by to visit. But none really need me to hold their hand as they go on in the world. Yes I’ll pat myself on the back, there is no one else in this empty house to do it for me.

So I’ll pack up the house. The children's home for their entire lives, mine after the divorce, but theirs since their inception. I’ll pack up their lives and move some of it into storage, send some to good will, haul much of it to the dump, and pack me up to another life somewhere down the road. I know that life is more than the stuff we gather to ourselves. That beyond this life are riches beyond measure. But being a Dad, and living just to be a Dad for all those years…

I sit in his room, surrounded by the scattered remnants of memories lived and discarded as a boy traveled the road to manhood.

And I cry.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Embrace The Journey

So I picked up a new bracelet yesterday. I had decided it was time to treat myself. If I was going to spend the money then I wanted get something that I not only really liked, but that had some kind of meaning to me as well. I looked at and tried on dozens of bracelets, and while all of them were beautiful in their own way, nothing was jumping out at me saying, "pick me, pick me!"

I spent a good amount of time looking around and getting a little frustrated at not finding what I wanted. I was getting ready to leave when I ran across some bracelets that had sayings on them such as, "Mother, Love, Dare to Dream" and one other that caught my eye immediately. Inscribed on the bracelet were the words "Embrace the Journey." It was mine. It was meant for me. It had "pick me" just radiating from it! I had some rather vague thoughts in my mind at the time as to why those words resonated with me so strongly. I knew why, but I was fighting against those very thoughts at the same time.

I have not just been trying to "put up with" or "grin and bear" my divorced and single status and role as a single mother, but have been making a conscious effort to find joy and happiness with where I am at. Makes sense, right? Feels good for extended periods of time? No.

So the question has been tripping around in my head the last 24 hours or so as to if I could actually "embrace" my life as it is right now. I've tried to find joy in my journey, but can I actually embrace it? To hold it to me; to clasp it as if it is something precious and desirable? I think I have come to the conclusion that I am already doing this to some degree. I am trying. Some days I do more embracing than others. Most days, I feel strong and capable. Some days I feel the burden of loneliness.

The journey will continue on no matter how I feel about it. To be able to "Embrace" it will determine to no small end how my journey looks, feels, and where it will ultimately take me.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Like the North Star

So I went for a late night bike ride last night. I’ve done that a lot this summer. These are some of my favorite times to commune with the heavens. I had been struggling with some questions and frustrations on a spiritual level. I didn’t feel I was understanding what God has been trying to tell me and that I could not trust myself to “get it right” and/or trust that God would keep his promises. So....I stopped asking.

There was no moon last night and as there is an observatory where I live, we are not allowed to have street lights. So obviously it was really dark out. I was half waiting to ride into a pothole and end up sprawled on the ground tangled up in my bike wondering what my name was!! Maybe it’s not the smartest thing to do but I enjoy my bike rides in the dark. As I was riding and thinking I looked up and saw the Big Dipper and the North Star. Here I was riding through the dark, much the same as I’d been wandering in the dark in regards to the spiritual things that had been on my mind. As I was riding and praying I glanced up and saw the North Star, which as we all know gives direction to those who may be lost or need to stay on course. It was one of those moments where God puts something in our path, or our mind, and allows us to “see” and recognize that we are not alone, and that He is guiding us through the darkness in the direction He most needs us to go.

There are potholes and obstacles along the way that may trip us up and leave us sprawled out on the ground feeling wounded and hurt, but we don’t need to wander (or ride) around in darkness, losing our hope and faith in ourselves, in others, and in God. Just like the North Star, God is constant. He is always the way.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Grab Life and Run With it My Sweet Children

Why is it that I have tears in my eyes just from typing the title to this particular blog? As I sit here and think about it I realize it is not from sadness, but it comes from an overwhelming love for my children. As a parent, I couldn't ask for anything more out of life than to see my kids doing well and being happy.

After blubbering through our "last" family prayer before Jessica took off for school, I've become settled with the reality that my oldest has left the nest and is flying off to create a life for herself. She's been looking forward to this moment for some time and she's prepared herself well. I have no doubts that she'll be successful and grab life and run with it.

I went on a bike ride with Ashtyn and Ethan tonight as the sun was going down......yes, I am still putting my bike to good use. Still finding those pockets of joy. I am blessed, my children are blessed. We know, and have love. We have each other. We are family. Our bonds are eternal.

I always say the days go by slowly but the years really do fly by. Children are born and we are blessed with their beautiful spirits in our home for such a short time. Mothers and Fathers, never wish this time away with your children. You will have time to do "other things," for there is a time and a season to life. Nothing is more important than being a parent to your children. Diapers, snotty noses, sleepless nights, temper tantrums, teenagers, heartaches, laughs, and all. This is the best part of life. This is called raising children. JOY.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Learning to Transition

I'll admit it. While I have a healthy sense of adventure, I also have my comfort zones. When you're thrown out of the zone and into a different playing field it's not always a comfortable feeling. Despite the changes in my life over the last few years I think I have done better than I thought I could. I have discovered I am a very resilient person. Some days I'd like to stay knocked off my feet so I don't have to get up and try again, but I get bored down there on the ground and I don't like being stepped on.

It's easier to handle transitions when they come in waves and ebb and flow. This gives you time to walk along the shore of your life and adjust to the changes as they swirl and wash over your feet. It's another thing to try to handle them when you're still dealing with one wave and another comes in, and then another, and before you know it you're caught up in the tide, wondering when it got so deep. This is the hard part. This is the part of life called "Sink or Swim."

One of my girls posted a comment on her fb page today before she left to go back to her dad's for the rest of the said, "going home today. It's weird, that I consider Uintah home. Hm." I will admit that at first glance I felt a little pang when I read that. I wanted to say, "This is home. Here. With me. Where I am." When that feeling passed and I was able to look at the big picture this is what I commented......" If you have two places that feel like home and you are loved and cared for in both then it is good. I love you and will miss you at this home." In truth, how could I want her to feel any differently?

I always said from the onset of my divorce that when it came to my kids that it wasn't their job to take care of my feelings. That is my job. I haven't always done the best I wanted to in that regard, but I do try. My greatest effort has gone into trying to make sure their lives have been stable and happy. They were and still are my biggest concern. It appears as if my children are learning to transition as well. My oldest is transitioning out of the home on her way to college. My second is making a comfortable transition between her two "homes." My sweet boy is transitioning from a boy into a young man soon and I hope and pray he continues to do well and is happy.

I have transitioned from a wife and homemaker into a full time college student and single mother. Friendships and relationships have come and while some have stayed, others are now gone. I have had to learn to transition in my faith as this new life feels so foreign to me sometimes. I'm still working on that one. I love this quote by Victor Frankl. "When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves." Arrghh......I pout over that a bit but it is true.

I am trying to not look at these situations as losses but as changes.....transitions. Something that moves me from one place to the next. The trick is how to try to see them as positive transitions. I think I will be learning the same trick day in and day out for some time to come. Sometimes I'm a slow learner.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

On Days You Can't Make Lemonade

Some days you can't make lemonade. Or some weeks. There are times you are feeling less than your best self.

I told myself that while my kids are at their dad's most of the summer that maybe it would be good for me. I came up with some pretty convincing reasons.....positive thinking and all that, you know. The reality is that it has been hard at times. My oldest is going to college next month, and with my two youngest gone right now I have looked around me in the empty house and said, "What has happened to my family? This isn't what it was supposed to look like. No one is here to make home made ice cream and play games and watch movies with me. I'm not planning picnics and taking kids to the pool. No one is ever in one place at the same time anymore."

I've had to make a new normal for myself but I don't know that it will ever feel "normal." After a few years I've gotten used to life post-divorce, but many of the things that come with it will never feel right. We just do the best we can.

This week I wondered if I walked under a ladder, or didn't see the black cat run in front of me or maybe I was the Murphy Law candidate of the week! Sometimes you are just tired, sick with a cough that keeps you up half the night (yes, that was me this entire week), trying to get signed up for fall classes and having complications, find out you have to get hearing aids at age 39, and missing kids. Sometimes all of these things put you in emotional upheaval and you wish you could have do-overs in conversations, in actions, and circumstances in general. Right now, I am reminding myself to be myself. Sometimes we fall short, even in the best of circumstances and it's still going to be okay.

So as I cough myself to sleep I will remind myself of my blessings. They are my three children who grew under my heart. They are my friends who keep me going and make me laugh. It is the roof over my head and the air conditioning running while I sleep. It is family. It is.....L O V E

As for the lemonade? It's in the fridge. On days you can't make it, you buy it.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Let Freedom Ring

I love the 4th of July. Just like Christmas is a time to remember the birth of The Christ Child, the 4th of July is a time to remember the birth of our country, The United States of America.

John Adams, the second president of our country and signer of The Declaration of Independence wrote his wife and told her his feelings as to how the that day should be remembered. "I believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival... it ought to be celebrated by pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other..." And it is.

Starting on July 8, 1776, The Declaration of Independence used to be read publicly and people would shout and cheer in the streets when they heard it. How I wish that was a tradition that would have carried on with the pomp and circumstance of the holiday.

I had to ask myself if my children know that every time I hear the National anthem played that I get tears in my eyes. Do they know that the same things happens whenever I see a large group of military members in uniform? Do they know and understand that these brave men and women live and die so they can be free? Do my children understand that behind the squabbling doors of politicians and backbiting and sometimes condemnation from the rest of the world, that they are blessed more than they ever could imagine to have been born in this great country. Most importantly, do they know their rights and obligations as a citizen of this country to help it remain a country of principles and freedoms?

I think as a mom I need to step it up in this area. For as Thomas Paine,one of the Founding Fathers said.....

"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom, must, like men, undergo the fatigues of supporting it."

Thomas Paine, The American Crisis, No. 4, September 11, 1777

As citizens of this great and blessed country may we never grow tired or complacent in the cause of freedom, and do our part to keep the light of freedom burning bright.

God Bless America

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Jam and Bread

I know that everyone does not grow up in a family with really good parents. I was blessed to be able to. I have friends who grew up in less than ideal circumstances that are wonderful parents and I admire them so much.

Today while I was putting those extra strawberries in the fridge to good use by making some jam, my thoughts turned to my mom. How come it is that we don't know how wonderful our parents are until we are parents ourselves? Even then, it sometimes takes years of parenting to really appreciate the sacrifices and the effort that went into getting us out of the house in one piece. Well, maybe pieces!

My mom made the best jam and the best bread. When we (meaning all six of her children) needed to raise money for our various activities she would go downstairs and grind some wheat. It was a crazy loud wheat grinder, but when we heard it going we always knew that there was going to be a treat in store. She would then spend the afternoon making mini loaves of whole wheat bread that we would take around the neighborhood in our little wagon and sell for a couple of dollars a loaf.

Because I grew up with home made bread, it's something I bake every now and then. I'm trying to think of how long it's been since I made bread from scratch? Okay, banana bread doesn't count. It's been awhile. I have this love hate relationship with yeast. I don't think baking bread or making jam will ever go out of style, but I do think it's becoming a "lost art" in our culture. There is nothing that smells more like home than the smell of fresh bread or rolls baking in the oven.

Well, for now I will continue to be a big supporter of Rhodes rolls....but, I will at least have a big dollop of homemade strawberry jam to put on top of it. Maybe someday my kids will reminisce about that. And mom? Thanks.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Letting Go and Enjoying Those Pockets of Joy

So I got myself a bike...finally! It's a cute, retro, beach cruising kind of bike. I even got a wicker basket to make it look "official." Last night I went for a bike ride with my girls. Fifteen minutes with one, and fifteen minutes with the other. It was an absolute joy. Why, I wondered, did I not do this years ago? And since I try not to live by hindsight I just gave myself a swift kick in the butt and told myself there is a lesson to be learned from this.

I learned that my girls actually talk to me on bike rides! Breeze blowing through our hair, mosquitos biting our butts through our clothes, making sure we close our mouths when we hit a bug swarm, no t.v., no computer, no i-pods.

I was divorced two years ago when my kids were 15, 13, and 9. In some ways....well many actually....I feel cheated with the time and attention it took away from my kids as I tried to find my footing as a single parent, learning to be alone (which you never get used to) and went back to college after 18 years away. My oldest is off to college this year. She has learned to be independent, is a hard working student, and a wonderful girl all around. I look back at the last couple of years and the reality is that as a single mother I'm not always the parent I imagined myself being and am sad as she's leaving that we didn't have enough times like this.

In the meantime, I take these pockets of joy when they come, recognize them for what they are, and hold them close to my heart.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

When Life Hands you Lemons.....or Throws Them at You

You've all heard the phrase, "When Life hands you lemons, make lemonade." What do you do when you're handed a lemon? Or an orchard full of lemons trees that bear lemons on a regular basis? I can think of a few choice things I'd like to do:
  • Sometimes I'd like to hand it right back where it came from.
  • Sometimes I'd like to chop down the whole orchard
  • Sometimes, I'd like to take a lemon and squirt someone in the eye
  • And sometimes when we are too tired, frustrated, lonely and don't know how we're going to do this, we hand our lemons over to our Father in Heaven. He knows what to do with them when we don't have the strength. is full of lemons. Like the lemons, we either get soured and bitter by our experiences in life, or......we do our best, even when it's the hardest, to make some lemonade.

This blog is the story and musings of my life as a divorced, single mother of three wonderful, amazing children. We are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and my blogs will reflect my deep love and faith for the gospel, and the challenges we face as Single Saints and Parents.

It is important to know that we are not alone, that others face the same challenges we do, and that there is strength to be gained in feeling validated and understood as we strive to make our lives sweet and fulfilling for ourselves, our children, and those around us. That is my desire and purpose for this blog.

The Lemonade Girl