Category Archives: Blessed

A Raging River…

>>>>> Yes, this post is incredibly long…what do you expect when it’s been so long since I posted. Don’t click away. Bear with me, read it until the end. Please. <<<<<

2017 Raging River

The past few days have been quite overwhelming. Change is inevitable yet so often, difficult to accept. Loss is painful, excruciating. This sums it up…

Life.

Let’s say you’re on a journey. We each have a different path. Some have flowers and butterflies early on and some have briars and thorns. Maybe some have briars and thorns the whole way. Let’s say the briars and thorns are the hurt, pain, and trauma that stings, cuts, and scrapes like the briars. Then you make it to a river. It’s fierce. It’s scary. You know to get to the path on the other side, free from the briars and thorns, you’ve got to cross the raging waters. And let’s say therapy is the stones laid out before you. You just have to take the step. You make it to the first one, catch your balance, plan out your next step and prepare to move forward. Some stones may be slippery. You may twist your ankle. It’s not an easy crossing but you press on. You step to the next stone, getting closer and closer to the other side.

The let’s say grief gets in the way. Grief over loss, losing the stones. It stops you in your tracks. There aren’t anymore stones laid out for you to step across. All you see is raging waters. You feel the sting of cold water splashing against your scraped and scratched up legs. You feel lost and alone. You wonder if there is hope…but as you glance back at the stones you’ve crossed, you’re reminded there is hope. You found it a few stones back.

Where do you go from there?

Your journey halts. You’re stuck on that stone for who knows how long while the water crashes around you. It’s overwhelming. It’s painful. It’s scary. You beg for more stones. You cry out for stones from the deepest part of your heart. But the stones are gone. How do you get across. How do you reach the other side without drowning?

You know it will happen…you just don’t know how. You know it won’t be with those stones and that is where grief has settled in. Maybe you’ll fall a few times. Maybe you’ll get soaked but you’ve made it far enough to know the river won’t take you.

Where is your path leading you? Are you headed through flowers and butterflies or are you tangled in the briars? Are you safe on a stone or treading water just to breathe? Or have you crossed the river and reached the other side, with soft green grass, the shade and protection of a giant weeping willow tree, a cool, gentle breeze, and a place to rest, where you can look back and see just how far you’ve come?

I wrote that sometime last night. Words usually come easy for me but the ability to accurately explain my feelings, well, not so much. This seemed clear enough to create a visual of what I’ve been feeling.

Why all this? I do want to offer an explanation. I owe that to myself.

Abandonment.
Abuse.
The insecurity of home.
The lack of support, love, and nurturing.
A childhood lost.
A girl growing in a world alone, a world that has mostly been cruel.

If your own mother and father don’t love you, why would anyone else?

That is a question I’ve asked over and over again. A parent’s role in a child’s life involves love, nurturing, protection, direction, guidance, support, and so much more. Those are things that can’t be replaced by another person. It’s an ugly fact.

I’ve bounced from house to house, never really feeling home.

Abuse.
Foster care.
Grandparents.
Homeless.

I’ve been in and out of therapy since around age 11. At 15, I wanted nothing to do with the therapist the courts ordered me to see. I was stone cold hard. My walls were so high, no one could touch me. It was great. And it was lonely.

At 19, after losing the one person I knew without a doubt loved me, my Papa, a part of me died with him. He was the only person that had given me a reason to live all those years. He was the one person who taught me what real love looked like, how to be kind and respectful, and how to love others unconditionally.

At that point, life became careless. I was a firefighter. Back then, female firefighters were rare. I loved that. I loved being the tough girl. I loved the idea that I could step into a burning house, with flames all around me and knowing they couldn’t touch me. I embraced the idea that I would gladly give my life in order to save someone else. In fact, I wanted to.

“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” Isaiah 43:2

And today, twenty years later, I can say there have been many times that I ached to find home. Not a home this world can offer, but an eternal home where there is no more pain and suffering.

Admittedly, I’ve attempted to take my own life. Several times. And yet, here I am. I look around and see raging waters. But I also see the path continues. I’ve learned that somehow, I’ll find a way.

So, where I am today is in the midst of grief. They say being able to feel is a part of healing. Well, I must have done a lot of healing in the past few years because I’m definitely feeling this. It’s heavy. It feels like I’m choking. It feels like there are rocks in my lungs. It feels like I’m covered by a blanket waiting to be smothered. It’s incredible pain. I’ve never known pain like this because I was never able to feel like this.

Over the past four years, I have been seeing a therapist. She’s the last of a long list of attempts to break through my walls…and she did. No one else had been able to do that. Not because they couldn’t but because I couldn’t let them. I couldn’t trust. I could talk about my past and all the wrongs but I couldn’t feel. No one could knock down the walls that kept me safe from the pain of the world around me.

Kara did. I don’t know how she did. She says I did the work.

Therapy is an odd thing. My opinion of it has changed frequently and probably will continue to change. In many ways, it’s amazing. You have the opportunity to share anything without judgment. Without anger. Without being punished. Now, don’t get me wrong…that doesn’t come easy. It takes a long time to learn that it’s a relationship where it’s safe enough to trust. A LONG TIME! (for me anyway)

But when you find that person, the one who can really see you, the one who lets you know it’s okay to breathe, the one that reminds you, you’re not alone, the one that bears ALL your secrets, the one that has loved you in spite of all you’ve been, done, and are…when you find that one, it means the world to you.

Kara isn’t perfect. She’s not some magical creature with a wand that wipes away all the wrong of the world. Nope, she’s pretty normal. She’s just a regular human being who struggles like the rest of us but we clicked. She taught me to trust. That was something I’d never been able to do.

She taught me…

to trust – that taking the chance can be worth it.
to believe – to believe I am strong, worthy, lovable, wanted.
to seek hope – that even in the darkest moments, hope is there.
to love – to love myself, to see my worth, to know myself.
to dream – to imagine where I would be when I made it to the other side.
to embrace – to seek truth and embrace it.
to grow – that I didn’t have to be afraid of who I would become.
to change – to bring truth in to erase all the lies I’d believed.
to feel – that it would hurt like hell but it would be so worth it.

And that’s where I am. I am feeling. I am grieving. When my Papa died, back in 1997, I cried off and on for three days and didn’t speak to anyone. I felt dead inside. That was about all I could feel. I wanted to die with him. I was numb. I was lost. I was alone. I wasn’t able to grieve because I had no idea how to really feel anything other than empty.

Grief sucks! Plain and simple – it absolutely hurts like hell. Losing someone who has meant the world to you, by death or by the end of a relationship is incredibly hard.

Two days ago, Kara told me she’s leaving her position in a private counseling setting and heading into the school system. It’s what is best for her and her family. It wasn’t an easy choice, but one she had to make, none the less. I care greatly for her and want the best for her and her family…I just wish I could be a part of her best.

I was/am devastated. DEVASTATED.

This woman, the one who knocked down my walls, helped me learn to breathe, taught me to find hope, and to press on, to fight death and find life…she’s leaving me. And all I can think of is I knew this would happen. Everyone leaves.

A father who never cared enough to even meet his daughter.
A mother who chose the man who sexually abused me for years, rather than her own daughter.
Teachers who cared but couldn’t realistically move on to the next grade with you, every year.
Lawyers, advocates, foster parents, friends, houses, family, etc.
A grandma, who much like myself, bounced between emotions, never really being able to express unconditional love, but rather love based solely on conditions, and fits of rage and anger.
A Papa who meant the world to a little girl who had no one else, who had the hands of strength, the heart full of love and compassion, a presence of the only thing safe in the world.

Whether by death or by walking away, the people that have mattered most, who have cared most, who were supposed to love, protect, encourage, support, etc. – they all leave.

And that’s where I’m at.
Kara is leaving.

I know it’s not the same. I know she truly cared. She’s dedicated four years of her own life and time to helping me. She’s put in countless hours of watching me stumble over words, back track on progress, question everything she’s said, argue or debate her truths vs. my truths, and lately, she’s watched me cry.

For years, pretty much all my life, crying wasn’t an option. Crying wasn’t safe. Crying made things worse. Crying meant something was wrong. Crying meant you weren’t strong enough.

But Kara taught me it was okay to cry.
She taught me I was safe with her and it was safe to cry with her.

She never took advantage of my vulnerability and what I viewed as a weakness. She viewed it as strength. Progress, she would say.

I can’t tell you the exact day when I first cried with Kara. I can tell you it wasn’t that long ago. It’s only been within maybe the last year that I really felt like I was stepping across the stones that created a path to somewhere better. And she was walking with me. Holding my hand. Offering hugs, when I was able to ask.

You may wonder, why is it a loss? It’s not like she died and is gone forever.

But it is a loss. That’s where the ugly part of therapy comes in…

Kara always said the therapist/client relationship is like no other. It’s complicated. There are ethics and boundaries she has to adhere to for my own good, but they are incredibly difficult to accept and understand. You’d think just the fact you’ve spent so much time with one another, that would be enough, but it’s not. Ethics, boundaries and the design of the therapeutic relationship don’t leave a door open for anything when the relationship ends. It most definitely is a loss. It’s a death.

And that’s what I am grieving.

I am grieving the loss of the person who knows me better than anyone else in this world.
The person who has taught me what safe love looks like, what love really means.
Who has given up much of her own life in order to save mine.
The person I pray for and want the best for, yet ache to be a part of her best.
Like with my Papa, I am grieving the person who showed me I mattered, that I was loved, that I was wanted.

I have an amazing husband. He’s caring, patient (very, very patient), gentle, and understanding. For the most part, I’ve shut him out of my therapy life and my healing journey, mostly because I’m stubborn, and partly as some lame attempt to protect him from my own heavy baggage. It was safest for me to view the time I had with Kara, in her office, as the one place, the one person I could actually let see the real me. I treasured that time. I cherished it. And I learned over time that I didn’t have to carry it all with me when I wasn’t there. She was safe enough that I could leave it all with her and actually live life in the in between. There’s so much comfort in that.

I have three beautiful, smart, amazing kids. I adore them. They are great kids just like my husband is great. They are my biggest fans, my biggest source of support, and they are honest enough to be brutal when I wear something wacky!

As much as I love them, it’s not the same. Theirs is a relationship where they depend on me. They receive unconditional love and support from me and in return, they love me back. They look to me for comfort, protection, guidance, and so on. They need me. They come to me for hugs or to fix everything.

That’s what I’m missing. That’s what I’ve lost. There is no one on this earth that can fill that role. There is no one who has known me forever, who calls me theirs, who has done and would do anything for me, who has wiped away tears, picked me up when I fell, held my hand through the hard times, and taught me what a mother’s love is supposed to look like. Kara did that for me.

And honestly, I am so truly blessed. My home…my family…I have found in my church. It took me years to get to that point to but I believe all that time, God was preparing me, teaching me, growing me. And He’s given, and He’s taken away. I’d like to put in a direct request that He stop taking away but it seems when He takes away, He helps me find many other things/people to keep me moving forward.

I have some amazing people in my life. There are women who have walked this journey with me, who have been my allies, my support, my stones along side Kara. They’ve prayed for me. They’ve kept me accountable (sheesh!). They’ve guided me and taught me. And painfully, when I look at them, I see what wonderful mother’s they are to their children, how they pray constantly for them, how they love them with such a deep, genuine love. And I see how they have that with their own mothers, how they have those people that have always known them, always cared, and always called them theirs. I realize there is no perfect family. I realize it’s a really messed up world and every family has its issues. Still, it’s hard to be loved by these amazing ladies and know I will still never matter that much…so much that I would be first in their lives, that I would be right in line with their other children, that they have watched grow from the tiniest fingers and toes, picked up from falls, held when they were sick, ached with every ounce of their body when their children were hurting. That’s what I grieve. Even Kara couldn’t offer that.

But here I am.

The river might be raging but I can still see the other side. I’m determined to someday sit beneath that giant weeping willow tree, feel the warm sun bearing down on my face, the gentleness of the soft green grass below me, and the freedom to breathe.

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

But for a moment, let me grieve. This is healing, right?

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Beauty in the Broken…

BeautyBroken

Words … I have missed you.  Not for a lack of writing, but for a lack of sharing.

You see, I have been writing.  I’ve been writing more than I’ve written in years.  But my writing has not been for here.  It has been too deep.  Too personal to share.  It has been in my own little world.  My striped and worn journal has been the receiver of all my recent words.  Words my soul can’t bear to release, yet words I long to pour out.

The words of recent days are filled with sorrow. pain. hurt. anger. sadness. loneliness. 

Among those words are also words of … hope.

Psalm 34:18  The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

I am brokenhearted.  My spirit is crushed.  But today…

I find beauty in the broken.

Today, I realized God has been preparing me for this very day, for the past few days, weeks.

Today, I saw God’s plans playing out.

The events of the past few years were made clear to me in an instant.  What I thought was a plan for others was really His plan for me.  There’s no doubt He knew I would face emotions and pain that I can no longer bear on my own.  He knew I would need to be carried.  He’s been drawing me closer to himself and all the while, placing people in my life to walk along side me, to hold my hand, to comfort me.  He knew I would feel lonely and I would struggle to ask for help.

Today, I realized that all along, he’s been preparing me and has blessed me with a world full of love, compassion, patience and understanding.

Today, I found my strength. 

There is beauty in the broken.

Beauty surrounds me.  In His words.

Psalm 46:1  God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.

Refuge and strength.  Ever-present.

Beauty encompasses me.  Through words of hope, love, compassion, peace, understanding and patience.  From these beautiful women He has placed in my life.  At just.the.right.time.

No mistakes.  Beauty in the broken.

Proverbs 4:20-22  My child, be attentive to my words; incline your ear to my sayings. Do not let them escape from your sight; keep them within your heart. For they are life to those who find them, and healing to all their flesh.

I’m on a journey.  One I thought I had already taken, sort of.  Today, I begin to heal this broken heart.

The first step – admitting I am broken and in need, followed by working through the brokenness.  That’s not a journey I can walk alone.  So today, I praise Him for His words and for placing people in my life willing to walk beside me and lift me up when I fall.

I am blessed.  There is beauty in the broken.

Here’s a song for you…

Hyland “Beauty in the Broken”

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Hand in hand…

HandinHand

The moment she came into the world, there was a look upon his face.

Love.

Joy.

Pride.

You could see it in his eyes.  He would never be the same.

Today, she is three and three quarters.  For almost four years, she has had his heart. 

As the other woman, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

For years, I longed to see this side of him.  With our two boys, he’s been firm and rightly so.  It’s rules and sticking to them.  It’s simply less tender.  I ached to see this gentle side, one I had seen in other dads with little girls but one I had never experienced because my own father left before I was born.

She giggles.  He grins.

She tickles.  He jumps.

She dances.  He holds her hand.

She sings.  He’s her biggest fan.

She talks.  He listens.

She snuggles.  His arms embrace her.

She is safe.  She is loved.  She is his little girl.  It’s an amazing sight to see.  It melts my heart over and over again.

They have taught me so much about my own life and my walk with the Lord. 

You see, as he walks hand in hand with her, I realize, God has held my hand many times.  He has walked with me through fires.  He has been there to pick me up.  He’s wiped away my tears.  He’s carried me through the darkness.  He has given me life.

Every time I watch them walk side by side, hand in hand…
When I see him smiling down at her…
When she looks at him with awe…
When he holds her in his arms…
As he protects her and loves her…

It serves as a reminder that everything I’ll ever need in a father is right here waiting for me to reach out and grasp.  He will never let me go.

Colton Dixon “Never Gone”

Jesus never ever left you
Never ever left you, no.
He sees us, even in the darkness
Now you know you’re not alone.

I’m still standing here
No I didn’t disappear
Now the lights are on
See I was never gone
I let go of your hand
To help you understand
With you all along
Oh, I was never gone

 

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A Day Out…

This past weekend, I had the privilege of  meeting author Lysa TerKeurst.  You may have heard her mentioned on here.  She is the founder of Proverbs 31 Ministries as well as the author of a number of books, one being, Unglued, which I did the online Bible study for back in the fall.

An invitation was extended to about 50 women from all over the country to attend a luncheon with Lysa and other Proverbs 31 ladies.  It was an honor to be one of the ladies invited to join in on this special time.  Lysa discussed some things from Unglued, we played games, chatted and got to know each other.  I met many beautiful ladies, some from nearby areas of North and South Carolina and some from as far away as Texas, New Jersey and Ohio.  I am pretty sure we all walked away overjoyed and blessed.

There were so many wonderful ladies who helped to make this past weekend special for each of us.  Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers so that they in turn will feel the joy and blessings that we all felt.  

While there, Lysa told us some stories about how she handles certain situations, tough topics with her kids, and other things.  She shared some valuable tips that I am sure I will be using in the future.  I have read most of her books and the one thing I have loved most about her books is how open, honest and real she seems.  Well, I can say, after meeting her in person, she is so real.  She’s not afraid to admit she is human and has faults.  I think that shows her real strength. 

One thing I learned while there is just how much of an introvert I am.  Here I was in Charlotte, NC.  I was around a ton of sweet ladies who were all chatting it up, getting to know each other and I had every opportunity to do the same.  No one knew me and most of them would probably never see me again.  I could talk and converse and walk away without any worries but nooooo, I barely spoke! 

It wasn’t that I wasn’t enjoying myself – quite the opposite, I was very much enjoying myself.  I just can’t seem to find that comfortable place where I can just jump out of my shell and talk.  What do I say?  I don’t even know where to start.

Compared to the hubby, I’m a top rate extrovert but compared to other women, I’ll take a dark, quiet corner in the back any day!  Thankfully, a few ladies who were not so shy managed to invite me to sit at their table with them at lunch (thanks girls!), otherwise, I’d have been chewing on my own.

The difficult reality of all that is considering I feel like God is leading me to write and speak, I feel extremely inadequate for the whole speaking idea.  I sure hope God has a box of courage and confidence tucked away for me!

At the end of the luncheon, we had the opportunity to leave a video message for Proverbs 31.  Now, I just told you about the whole really quiet, dark corner, introvert girl, right?  Well, how about being blasted with bright lights, a camera guy and a gal asking questions … shew, no pressure, right?

One of the questions I was asked, was “How has Proverbs 31 Ministries impacted your life?”

I didn’t even have to think to answer.  My kids mean the world to me.  I have never been what I would consider a great mom but God blessed me with these little people who continue to love me and trust me day in and day out, even when Monster Mom makes an appearance, even when I’m wrong, even when I come unglued…they still come running to me to kiss their boo-boo’s.  They still come to me for goodnight hugs and kisses.  They still come to me for mommy snuggles.

My answer was that Proverbs 31 has impacted me, through Bible studies, through being real and honesty, with encouragement.  The women of Proverbs 31 have taken time to invest in me, in the hopes that I can grow closer to God and that my relationship with Christ will change my life.  It has changed my life and in doing so, it’s making changes in the lives of my children, which means more to me than anything.  Instead of continuing down the road of a not so great mom, I am becoming the mom they need.  I am learning to be a better mom.  I am learning new things every day that make changes in my ways and my attitude and those changes are visible to my kids. 

How can you thank someone for that?  There are not enough words to say thank you for the blessings the beautiful women of Proverbs 31 Ministries have given to me and my family.

© The Imperfect Princess at theimperfectprincess.com

Love does not envy…

1 Corinthians 13:4b
does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.


Envy?

The definition of envy is a feeling of discontented or resentful longing aroused by someone else’s possessions, qualities, or luck.

What is envy really?  It’s a sickening feeling that hits you in the pit of your stomach.  It makes you feel inadequate.  It glorifies things and people and puts them on pedestals when really, they belong right beside you.  Envy is evil.  It’s greedy.  It’s lonely.  Envy is shame and lack of confidence.  Envy is wanting something else instead of enjoying what you have or who you are.  Envy lacks confidence, assurance.  It says, “the grass is always greener on the other side” but in truth, the grass on the other side isn’t always as green as it appears.

The problem with envy is when we want to be someone else or have what they have, we fail to realize that we all have our problems.

The family with the fancy sport car that sparkles and shines.  It also has a hefty payment.  Maybe they’re in debt.  Maybe they’re about to lose it.  Maybe not.  We don’t really know.  Maybe they have a fancy car but their marriage is crumbling.  Maybe they sacrificed their mortgage to pay for the car.  Maybe they have plenty of money and a few spare dates on the side while their spouse is home with the kids.  Maybe that life we envy isn’t all sunshine and rainbows like we think.

The business woman who rises to the top, building up her bank account as she climbs the cooperate ladder.  She’s got the big house, she’s got the supportive husband.  She’s got great clothes, great looks.  She’s in shape.  Her hair looks great.  Inside, she’s crumbling.  She missed out on the opportunity to watch her kids grow.  They don’t know who she is and she doesn’t know them either.  They are angry.  Her husband feels alone.  She’s thankful for her job, but what sacrifice did she make to get there and was it all worth it.

We envy things and in reality, we just don’t know what lies behind the surface.  We want and want and want and instead, we fail to see all that we have.

It’s exhausting.  I know, I’ve been there.

As most of you know, the hubby is a firefighter.  Well, let’s just say, firefighters aren’t anywhere near the top of the pay scale.  I’ve been at home for years now, hanging with the kiddos and we all know stay-at-home mom, even as one of the hardest jobs, comes with a pretty crappy (non-existent) paycheck.

Several years ago, we were in a bind.  We needed a vehicle and had very little spare change to put towards one.  We found a deal on Craigslist and went for it.  It was a 1992 Toyota Corolla.  She came with a pretty wild story, one we enjoyed sharing with friends and shared lots of laughs over.  Perhaps I’ll tell her story at some point but … this would have been 2005, 2006 or somewhere around there.  Obviously by this point, a 1992 car was a little out of date.  We shelled out a whopping $375 and drove away, dents, scratches and all but she drove.  Inside there were mismatched door handles, worn seats and very little room for the hubby, two boys and I but we drove on anyway.

Three years later, I was still driving her.  We called her the Green Goblin.  She was green (mostly except where the cheap coat of paint was chipping away) and she certainly looked a little goblinish!  I remember day after day, picking the eldest boy, Noah, up from school and each day, I had to shout at the teachers to slam the door.  They’d look at me a little funny and then proceed to slam it.  If they didn’t, the door would practically fire back at them.  Most of them got use to seeing us and before long, they knew the procedure.

We drove the green goblin to church every Wednesday and Sunday.  We’d park her next to the Honda minivans, next to the Mercedes and BMW’s, the Toyota SUV’s, and all the other bright and shiny rides.  She sat there, small and dingy, but she was there.

After a long wait, our family was growing.  We were expecting our little girl and there was no way we could fit another person in the green goblin.

It was time to say goodbye.

This time, we managed to scrounge up enough money to pay cash for a 2001 Oldsmobile Silhouette Minivan.  I had never owned a minivan but I had been envious of all the minivan mom’s in the car rider lines and especially at church.  Now, I was a PROUD minivan owner!  Sure, the tan van wasn’t as new as most, but she was beautiful, she was mine and she was paid for!

We drove the tan van (also called the sand van – notice a spiderman theme here?  We are spiderman fans around here!) until this past October. 

She died. 

My heart broke.  I loved her.  She had been such a great companion.  We’d shared many laughs and trips.  She had beautiful leather seats, equipped with tushy warmers.  She had a nice little tv that worked for long trips.  She had a pretty decent radio with a cd player, fancy gas and mileage equipment and many more extras.  We had saved our money and paid for her upfront and never had to worry about another payment.  All of the sudden, she was gone.  She needed major repairs, repairs that just weren’t worth it.

So, that brings us to today.  Today, I have a lovely red Kia Sedona.  She’s a 2012 model.  We bought her practically brand new.  She had only 8,006 miles on her as we drove her off the lot.  We got a great deal and she comes with a generous warranty and a hefty payment plan.  We are now not so proud to have a monthly expense.  While our family needed a new van, a payment was never part of the plan.  God has worked it out so we’ll get her paid for but I can assure you, I have learned a lot through the days of the green goblin and the tan van. 

I have learned, the grass is not always greener.  Sometimes, those older models come with a little humbling and no payments while the sparkly, shiny, comes with hefty payments and a lot of finagling.  Sometimes the green goblins and the tan vans are just what we need to keep us grounded and while I will enjoy the red van, I will remember where I have been and the feelings that came along with having no payment and being humble as I drove away in my little green goblin.  I’ll remember the fun times I had in the tan van and how blessed we were to be able to pay for it in full and live without worries of car payments and due dates.

As silly as it may seem, these stories about our vehicles are great lessons on envy, boasting and being proud.  I was proud to have paid for the last two vehicles with cash but I hope I was never so proud that we made others feel inadequate for not being able to sacrifice like that.  Now that we have that shiny, sparkling vehicle, I hope that those who come along in their own green goblins and tan van’s won’t look at us with envy and if they do, they will realize this is their time of humbling and I could be envious of where they are.

Today, I do not envy, will not boast and I have nothing to be proud of, only things to be grateful and thankful for.  I do not envy the nicer cars and I do not envy the paid for cars.  I am simply blessed.  I am blessed to have a vehicle, to be able to pay for it and to be able to share my story with you.  God has brought me through many trials and along the way, he’s taught me many lessons.  He’s still teaching me and I will forever be a work in progress.

Love does not envy, it’s content.

© The Imperfect Princess at theimperfectprincess.com

Time well spent…

A perfect day? 

Is that possible?

What would yours look like?

Today, after dropping off the two boys at school, it was Mommy & Livi time.  Often, we’re both running around the house or the streets of Nowhereville joining the madness of being too busy.

Today, was different.

The princess and I curled on up the sofa together and started out our morning watching some dramas on Lifetime.  When the subjects got a little too deep, I asked Livi if she’d like to watch Disney’s Brave.  She quickly responded with a big shout, “YES!”, jumped off the sofa and within seconds, had Brave in the DVD player. (If you haven’t had the chance to see it, watch it!  It’s worth it!)

We snuggled back in close on the sofa and for the next 93 minutes, we shared giggles, grins, snuggles and tears.  It was heaven on earth.

The day outside was beautiful too.  Temperatures were in the 60’s, much different from last weeks ice, rain and freezing temperatures.  We headed out to pick up the boys and then back home.  All three kiddos road their bikes, jumped on the trampoline and enjoyed the outdoors.  Following that was a quick trip out to sign up soccer boy for the spring season, Happy Meals at McD’s and last but not least, a drop by visit to Daddy at the fire department to say goodnight.

Back home, showers, jammies and off to bed they went.

The day was pure bliss.

No drama.  Not even Mama drama.
No meltdowns.  (Well, except the little one when Livi didn’t finish supper so she has to wait until tomorrow to get her Hello Kitty toy.  Sorry sweets!)
No arguing.
No whining.
No gloomy skies.

It was a day filled with reminders.

Constant reminders that I am…

Blessed.
Loved.
Happy.
Amazed.
Proud.
Thankful.
Joyful.

Through the eyes of these little people, I saw all the many blessings in my life.  For too long, I believed none of this was possible.  Sometimes I felt unworthy.  Other times, I felt too weak.

Today, God used these little loves to reassure me just how great His love is for me.

I am blessed.

© The Imperfect Princess at theimperfectprincess.com