Wednesday, December 29, 2010

I Choose . . .

This past year has brought a lot of new challenges to my life. I don't, as a usual thing, do well with change. But I'm learning that a lot of coping has to do with attitude. Sadly, mine too often stinks! Just to prove that miracles still happen, I'm finding myself doing a bit of changing.

I choose:

To deal with life on a daily basis instead of trying to look far down the road. (Anyway, when I look too far ahead, it scares me!)

To find as much to laugh about as possible - even if others think my laughter borders on inappropriate.

To love Don and our families and to affirm that love as often as possible, both verbally and with my actions.

To not sweat the small stuff. After all, poop is just a bodily function, and I can deal with it (without gagging, hopefully!).

To remember that I can control my mood by controlling my attitude.

To quit kicking myself for being inconsiderate or selfish for saying "no" when the circumstance warrants it. I cannot be all things to all people.

To live my life with a "God focus" that will determine my actions and reactions.

I'm sure I choose many more things and will continue to add to the list as the years flash by. But, as we're approaching January 1, 2011 (that doesn't even sound possible), I want to be better, braver, and sweeter. Think one or two out of three would cut it??? ;-)

Sunday, December 26, 2010

As the Curtain Closes . . .

Since holidays are not generally the easiest of times for me, I'm a bit relieved to see this year's holiday season coming to and end. However, I will be the first to admit that it was a good time. Crowds are often my undoing, but it's so much easier when you know you're loved and (at least somewhat) understood.

I'm convinced that Don and I must surely have two of the finest families anywhere in the world. They've proven their care and concern time and time again this past year. Most often, needs were met before I even had the chance to voice them.

During Christmas at my sis's house, I watched the interchange between siblings, cousins, parents and children. I think we honestly LIKE each other. Isn't that a blessing? How many families do you know that can barely stand to be in the same room together? That's just not the way it is - on my side or Don's.

Christmas Day, we had our own children and grandchildren here. What a delightful crew they are. Our son and daughter could hardly be more different, but they're both so uniquely talented and gifted. Don and I are proud of who they've become. And our son's choice for a wife could not have suited him better. Surely God had a hand in that decision!

Our older grandson is now 21, and he is everything a parent or grandparent could want their child to be. He's a bright, loving young man. Knowing the physical problems he dealt with early in his life, we're thankful that he shows no evidence of ever having had a sick day in his life. His future, I'm sure, holds bright fulfilling things.

The girls, now 12, are turning into delightful young ladies. So different. Each carving her own niche in our heart. One bold. One experimental and creative. One compassionate. All wonderful. And all loving their parents and extended family.

Our baby (I doubt that he really appreciates my calling him that at the ripe old age of 10) is one of the most sensitive, caring children I've ever met. I would say that he is unusually close to his Pa, and that warms a Granny's heart. He's showing a gifting for music, and that thrills us.

So, as the holiday season comes to an end, I'm thankful to have survived - and that with finesse. Friends and family do make the days, both good and bad, easier.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Laugh a Little, Love a Lot

As a disclaimer to those of you who read my blog - none of you are my "superlative relative." She is still wallowing in her misery after the WORST illness she thinks she's ever had!

Thanksgiving has come and gone, but the thankfulness continues. This time of year is, by my own admission, very difficult for me. During my several years of deep depression, the holidays were almost unbearable. I'm better now, but still not completely past the apprehension I feel in crowds (even family), and the discomfort of stepping outside my comfort zone. Don's illness has taught me to be less uptight. Oddly enough, part of the time at least, he's been more apprehensive and tightly wound than I. That's a change. He knows and understands my problems with crowds and holidays, so he tries to be especially low-keyed during this time. That makes me love him more.

He also makes me laugh on a daily basis. He can be so sweetly silly - espcially when he doesn't mean to be.

On Sunday night, I let him out of the van, and I stayed behind to put the ramp back up and lock everything up. When I got in, he was just getting his coat off. He glanced at me as I took his coat and said, "Hi! How ya doin'?" I thought it was kind of an odd remark for him to make, and then I saw the color come creeping up his neck and face. He hadn't looked at me closely and thought I was one of our friends from church (don't know if the friend would be flattered about that). Thus the goofy remark. He was genuinely embarrassed. As a side note: his eyes have not been good since he had shingles in his left eye and lost the ability to focus it for a while. Whatever. Every time I thought about it during church, I got the giggles. (One of the things I used to scold my children for!) Then, when we got in bed that night, I would still giggle when I'd think about his red face when he realized it was his own wife he was talking to.

I'm thankful for the ability to laugh at life - even at my own expense. It's even more fun when it's at someone else's expense!