Raising adults…

When it was my turn to ask for prayer, to share what was happening in my life, I began to cry. The pain and the fear mingled with shame and regret and threatened to overwhelm my heart. I poured out my story as tears slid off my chin. Around the room, friends nodded and offered words of encouragement. When the last amen was whispered, we gathered for snacks and a chance to catch up. This is when the miracle happened. One after another, friends pulled me close and shared their own story. My son… My daughter… I know… You are not alone… Continue reading “Raising adults…”

Gently now…

As the winds blowing through my life have calmed over the last couple of weeks, I’ve settled into some new routines. I am stunned to realize how tired, bone tired, I am. I could probably sleep for a month, but I’m of a certain age, and I don’t really sleep that well anymore… Continue reading “Gently now…”

Visitation…

The first time I sat with a Pastor in my own home, we were in our early twenties. We had just begun attending the church when the secretary called to ask us if it was okay for Pastor Ufema to come visit. Keith and I scurried around our little house on Cross Street trying to make it presentable. I made iced tea from a packet and strawberry shortcake from scratch. Continue reading “Visitation…”

Holding our own…

Weeks ago, when I decided to quit my job and follow my intuition (and a still small voice) into the unknown, I imagined that I would awake after my last day of work relieved and refreshed. Instead, I woke up feeling groggy and disoriented with 36 hours to plan and prepare for a bridal shower, three weeks to get a wedding under control, and two kids moving in and out of my house. When the phone rang, I had not yet seen the bottom of my first cup of coffee. Continue reading “Holding our own…”

A solid place to stand…

Some days it’s hard to find a solid place to stand. Winds of change and trouble blow through my life, shifting and moving even the most reliable of shelters. Relationships grow, change, wither, break. We grow and diminish and hopefully grow again in the esteem of our children. Close friends become acquaintances. Sometimes, families fracture. The landscape of my life is constantly under construction. New things erupt, old structures collapse, and I must navigate this changing landscape. Continue reading “A solid place to stand…”

Making love last…

I thought marriage would bring me happiness. Isn’t that what the movies teach us? “You complete me!” Instead, marriage has been the training ground for an other-ness I didn’t really understand. I wanted to be loved, seen, cared for, and protected. I wanted a partner to do life with. I wanted someone to meet my needs. When I met that dark-eyed boy/man, he felt like home. He seemed to be able to “handle life.” He took care of things, and he wanted to be with me.  Continue reading “Making love last…”

Observations about parenting teens…

The other night I spent some time talking with a friend. She’s raising a 14-year-old. Enough said. I was not particularly well-suited to raising kids. They are loud, opinionated, and often difficult. My three demanded all I had… and then some. We survived, but it hurt and I can still feel the bumps and bruises of the past few years. I did learn some things along the way that I am always happy to pass on. Just remember to take everything people have to say about parenting with a grain of salt. There is no simple formula for raising decent humans. We all do the best we can with what we have. In the interest of charity, here are a couple of observations… Continue reading “Observations about parenting teens…”