Wednesday, November 12, 2014

My Soul Mate

According to Plato, humans began with four legs, four arms and one head with two faces. To punish us for our pride, Zeus took a lightening bolt and divided man in two, causing us to mourn and walk the Earth in misery, longing for the other half of our soul.  According to the legend, when we find our soul mate, we will know the moment our eyes meet.  We will have a total and complete understanding of each other and when we come together, we will know no greater love or joy.
I have always hoped that every person had a soul mate - but realized years ago, that when we marry for eternity, we MAKE that person our soul mate.  It can be no other way.
A soul mate gets romanticized in the movies, in books , on the radio and on the internet.  There are even articles and people who teach you how to find your soul mate and how to recognize them when you see them.  Sounds simple, right?  Just take a class, read a book, do the assignments and voila...he will appear.?
Do I believe in a soul mate?  In my younger and more romantic phase of life (age 14-22), yes, I think I believed in a soul mate...until my heart was broken....But when I fell in love with Del, I didn't actually FEEL he was my soul mate.  I never even thought of him that way.  I thought of him as a man I loved and loved me - that I was happy with and could make a family with.
It hasn't been until over the 32 years of marriage, that I have realized Del and I have BECOME soul mates.  We are NOW, the other half of each other - in the eternal sense of I cannot be exalted without him, and he cannot without me.  I am complete without a human - in that I have my own thoughts, my own dreams and my own goals -as does he.  Some of them overlap his - but some of them do not.  We are each individuals,with characteristics unique to ourselves.  We each bring something to the table - we each contribute to become more than just ourselves.
Our spirits are now one - .  I love that Del is my soul mate now.  I love that I have grown to unite my desires with his, my goals with his and that we have learned to take enough of what each of us has to offer, and joined those for our mutual benefit.  We haven't eliminate our individual selves, but brought the best of each of us, to the table.
I love him.  I really do love him.

We All Have Our Peeps

The other morning, on my way to work, I was listening to a radio station that I tune in to on occasion.  Listeners were given the 'heads up' that the following segment was going to be a 'mascara alert' story, but one that would be well worth the tears.  I was anxious to see if the reader would be able to bring me to tears and was pleasantly surprised to see how quickly the tears came.
I cried, realizing I both NEED and NEED to be 'people'...
Here it is....

We all have our people, the tribe of folks providing a safety net of security so that we can take courageous leaps that would otherwise paralyze us in fear. These are the same faces that breathe encouragement into us when we are broken and joyously with us celebrate in our highs.
We can live life more fully because of the support of our people.
This weekend I had the opportunity of attending the Allume writer’s conference in South Carolina. On my way home, I stopped through Atlanta for a night with my sister’s family.
As I waited at the Marta station this morning to take a train to the airport, I noticed an elderly woman standing uncomfortably, hunched over, clutching her bag as if somebody were going to grab it and run. Her acute self-awareness clearly communicated this was her first and last Marta trip to the airport.Story of people coming together on the Marta
In an effort to put her at ease, I engaged in small talk about my three children. Her flight was not for another 6 hours, but she worried about this trip to the airport, a ride her children had assured her was a simple process.
The direct train to the airport never arrived. I explained that we needed to hop on a different line and switch trains, but not to worry because we were going to do this together. This overwhelmed her. She did not yet trust me, but realized what we both knew…I was her best option. She had no people.
We rolled our bags onto the train to get situated. As the train jerked into gear, the next few minutes felt like slow motion. My new friend had such a death grip on her bags, she had forgotten to hold on. Her 78-year-old self went flying through the cabin. Several of us attempted to break her fall but failed. She went down…hard. She yelled in panic. Bags scattered. We all jumped to her aid.
A homeless, toothless man locked eyes with me before speaking,
“Ma’am, I may be dirty, but I’m honest. I’ll get your bags, and you help her. She don’t want me touching her.”
I saw straight into his kind heart wishing for a different conversation I knew we had no time to have.
A teenage punk previously entranced by the music on his headphones turned out to be a medic-in-training and assessed her for injuries before two construction workers lifted her to a seat.
As the homeless man gathered our bags and purses, he guarded them with great pride. A sweaty runner who had just finished a 5k offered up her water as I rubbed our shaken friend’s back.
Hips were thankfully not broken, but her spirit was. Embarrassment now trumped her trepidation over this adventure. We surrounded her with reassurance and comfort, little of which was received. The construction workers made some cute jokes to ease her tension before everybody went back to their seats.
I sat in the next row offering her enough space to recover alone, but close enough to jump to any need.
As her head leaned onto the train window, her eyes shut. I quietly prayed. When her eyes opened, tears poured down from underneath her wire-rimmed glasses falling onto the gray shawl draped across her shoulders. Her pale skin was still void of any color. Her hands shook. I understood the recovery was temporary. I asked,
“Is there anybody I can call for you?” 
She responded in a whisper.

“They said this would be easy. But it’s not. Unexpected things happen that change everything. This is too hard for me.”

In that moment, my eyes filled with tears. I understood exactly how she felt. She’s right. It’s hard. All of it. So many times when it’s supposed to be easy…it isn’t.
Just before exiting the train, a businessman sensitive to her embarrassment gave her a wink.
I didn’t see a thing, Beautiful.”
A little color reappeared in her cheeks. Each person in our group spoke to her before exiting, and with each comment her breathing deepened and confidence reestablished. But it was the homeless man at the second to last stop that got me. He looked at her and simply said, “Ma’am” and then gave her a nod.
With tremendous grace and gentleness she uttered,
Thank you Sir for helping me with my bags today.”
And she offered him her hand. He looked at me as if for permission to accept, and I smiled. He shook her hand, a physical touch meaning more to him than she understood. As he turned to leave, he stood taller…exiting the train with a greater sense of dignity than when he arrived.
Seven people entered a train this morning from very different walks of life and in a matter of moments became a team with one purpose, to support a 78-year-old woman we had never met. We became her people, even if just for a train ride.
Sometimes our people look different than we imagine.
Sometimes they are only in our life for a train ride.
But we need them to get us through the unexpected.
Today I am grateful for my people, both the ones that support me in my daily walk and the ones God provides simply for those unexpected moments when it’s just too difficult to stand on my own.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Sassy Girl

She will turn two next month...and she plays every bit, the part.
And I adore her.
Sassy little thing?  Oh yeah.  Personality plus - stubborn little girl?  Oh yeah.  And all girl, including mood swings, pretty nails and dresses, little swagger in her walk and sass in her smile.
This is her in her new boots she got today.  Kylie says she's just as proud as can be about her new boots and sweater and legging jeans.  Quite the little Diva too.
And I adore her...Just look at that face....angel face - but she has me.

Ch Ch Ch Changes....

Jordan and Lexi are moving this week to Frisco - to an apartment.  They have lived with us for just over a year and now they're leaving.  This change will be difficult for us.  I have loved having them here - loved watching them grow as a family, watched Emerson be born and grow into this sweet little baby boy - yes, this move will be very difficult.
Alana was released as 2nd counselor in the Relief Society and a new counselor was called three weeks ago.  This change is for Alana - she was needing to be with her children during this very difficult time, but the change has been a little difficult for me to adjust to.  I miss her.
Byleigh quit at work and we hired a new receptionist named Mary.  We are also expanding from only two chairs to four chairs and have hired another assistant named Blanca.  She starts in two weeks.  In the meantime, we have had several different temps in the office and over 20 people coming in for interviews.  The changes are leaving me a little unsettled, like we're starting over in the office.  But I'm confident we will do okay.
We had a garage sale this past weekend - I sold a lot of things that we have had for like 30 years, including some of our knick knacks and our furniture because this week, we have new furniture arriving. I have redone most of the rooms in the house, and after Jordan's move this weekend, I will finish the two rooms they are occupying and the living room.
A final change. - We will then be empty nestor's with all new things and my house finally decorated and finished the way I have been hoping for years to have.
That will be enough changes for awhile.
Then I will hope to have things become a new normal for us...settled.
No more ch ch ch changes.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Eight Months Old

He's beautiful....I just can't express how in love with him I am.
He looks just like Jordan did.
Almost exactly.

Making Himself at Home

Emerson is mobile - he has been for a little over a month - Crawls around like a little spider.  And he's fast!!  He feels such liberties now as he goes from room to room and follows everyone around the house.  The cutest is when he crawls under the kitchen table and through the chairs and underneath the end tables.  He loves to crawl to Papa's office just to see who might be in there.
But his most recent favorite spot is...the kitchen.  I showed him the tupperware cupboard where a whole new world has opened up to him.  He loves being able to pull things out and toss them all over the place.  He especially loves when I put everything back so that he can do it all over again - and again and again.  Love his little face when he checks to see if it's okay that he is emptying out the cupboard.
He's now just short of 9 months old.  He should be walking soon since he's already attempting to stand by himself.  He has three teeth now - and is trying to talk.  He wants to say words so badly - And his giggle?  Kills me - he also has this little husky laugh thing he does. - Kind of a deep Santa Claus chuckle - and he can do it on cue at my request.  LOVE it.  Needless to say, we are going to miss him terribly when he moves next weekend.

Adding Some 'Shabby Chic' to My Life

Jordan and Lexi will be moving out next weekend.  It has been just a few months in the making, but I knew that this day would be coming.  I have been wanting to decorate my home since the moment we got it over two years ago - but we've always had someone living with us to inhibit me from completing things.  But Jordan and Lexi will be the last to go.  So I have been redecorating a room at a time - starting 5 months ago with my little office off my bedroom.
After I got it all finished in how I liked it, I asked someone who I showed it to, what my style was.  I have never known what 'contemporary' or 'modern' or'classic' or all the other names, have ever meant.
I just put together what I like.  So when the words 'shabby chic' came out of her mouth, I asked her to define what that was...She pointed to the room and said 'THIS".
Shabby Chic.  After she told me what it was, I tried to describe it to Del - he didn't get it AT all.  In fact, he cannot comprehend why anyone would want to take a piece of furniture, beautifully made and crafted, and then distress it and make it look old and shabby - it just about sends him over the edge.
My little office was the first thing I finished.  Since then, I have been collecting items and having quilts made for my guest bedroom; or what is currently Emerson's nursery.  But nothing can be done until they are gone - so I started on the laundry room.  It's cute - I finished it last weekend, with Del's help. He cut up our old oak entertainment center and made a shorter table for me - then he made a shelf to hang clothes on from the dryer - pedestals for the washer and dryer and then I have cute things for the wall.  I like the whole affect.
The two pieces of furniture about, both used to be solid dark brown.  Lexi chalk painted them for me - one for the kitchen and one for the guest bedroom.  Del and I have purchased new furniture (couch and a love seat) for the living room, and they should be delivered next week also.  The last thing will be the kitchen table.  I have asked Del to make me a farm table - very country - very fun.  With one side having chairs, and the other side with a bench.  He about rolled his eyes out of their sockets when I first asked him.  He was hoping for a more formal dining set - something would really show off his furniture making skills - but I'm asking for a farm table.  Poor Del.
Without too much more detail...the house should be done by the end of November.  And I couldn't be happier.  And Del and I will be?  Empty Nesters.  Dare I say that outloud???  Could I hope any harder for it to be true??  Let me be the first to say though, we have LOVED having Jordan and Lexi live with us and watching our sweet grandson, Emerson, grow up right before our eyes.  But they are ready - and we are ready for life to move on.  They need their own place - we need our own place.
More pictures will follow as I start to finish the other rooms and everything gets put in it's place -
Can't wait.