Saturday, December 13, 2014

A Letter to My Unborn Son

I am so honored to be your mom. I already look forward to you moving in my belly everyday - I need to feel that. When I think about you, I get so emotional. I can not wait to meet you.

I will aggravate you, I'm sure. I will clean you and smell your sweet baby smell as much as I can. You will get tired of seeing my face so close to yours, admiring the miracle that you are.

As your mom, I have a lot of promises for you:

I promise to love you unconditionally, forever.

I promise to protect you in every way I possibly can.

I promise to pray for you daily.

I promise to sing to you.

I promise to try to make you smile as often as I can.

I promise to teach you.

I promise to learn from you.

I promise that we will argue. Tempers will rise. Tears will fall.

I promise to apologize.

I promise you will too.

I promise to teach you right from wrong.

I promise to teach you responsibility and humility.

I promise I won't hand you everything you ever want.

I promise you will learn to work for what you want.

I promise to always be proud of you, whether you work at McDonald's or as a NASA scientist.

I promise to show you love.

I promise to show you how to love - truthfully and wholly.

I promise, I love you so much.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

To Everything There Is A Season - No Matter How I Feel About It

These last few months have been hectic to say the least!

I have driven more miles in the past few months than I did last year alone (it could be true). From Mississippi to Louisiana, now I could drive it blind folded.

Earlier this year my grandfather had a terrible sick spell. 3 years ago he was diagnosed with cancer. They gave him 6 months to live. Well, he was so hard headed that he lived 2 1/2 more than they gave him. For that I am extremely grateful for his stubborn-ness. But this year his health started getting worse as the cancer spread. I went to see him as often as I could, every couple of weekends until the very end.

Hospice called in the family one Wednesday. We loaded up and headed back to his house. I had never seen anyone look so close to death. And I hope I never have to see that again.

It was a terrible weekend full of crying and grieving and last goodbyes. But his thick-headedness kept him with us even longer. Again, so thankful for that! He got a little better, was able to communicate and by the time I got the call, I was convinced he'd outlive me altogether! I had just told my husband, "I think Papaw might outlive us babe."

And then I got the call. My sister called. Mom was in the hospital due to her crohn's disease, Papaw was gone, and she didn't know how to tell Mom.

To make matters worse, the town where they were, the hospital they were in, was a small one. The only coroner had not yet been in for Papaw. And the hospital admitted mom in the room next to his body. He was there for a few hours. I'm glad though, my sister told mom and they got to say goodbye to him one more time with no one else around telling them to be strong.

It was and still is, quite honestly, one of the hardest things I've had to make it through.

I was almost 18 when my other grandfather died. I didn't handle that too well either. I still think of him singing to me or telling me jokes to make me laugh when I was little. I guess I know it gets easier, I just don't remember how long until "easier" get here.

My sister is a couple of weeks from being 18. It's all just too much for me emotionally. I'm having a hard time saying goodbye, to Papaw and now to my sister's childhood. She's growing up entirely too fast for me. Every time I think of it, I cry and she isn't even my child! How emotional will I be if I ever have children when they turn 18??

I know she is happy and excited. And I'm happy for her....mostly. I really wanted her to stay 4 forever, but she just won't let that happen!

I guess I'm feeling as though I'm losing a lot in a short amount of time. And I'm just very cry-baby about it.

I'm so thankful for my grandpa and everything he did for me and taught me. Without him, I wouldn't know how to be financially responsible. Without him, I wouldn't have learned to drive when I did (with Grandma in the back seat praying....every Sunday, without fail). Without him, I wouldn't be who I am today. Because everyone in our lives and everything we go through makes us who we are, right?

For my sister, I am thankful for the opportunity to see her grow in to this beautiful, caring young lady. And I can't wait to see how amazing she is in another 18 years!! I think about her when she was little and how we could make her laugh so easily. And I hope that she never loses that. And I hope one day she knows just how happy she has made others' lives.

To everything there is a season.

Friday, April 25, 2014

On Star Wars Day

We are coming up on our 1 year wedding anniversary! I'm so happy! I still feel like a newly wed. And when I think about our wedding and our journey to get to it, I could cry with how happy I am.

There were so many times in my life when I wanted to be alone. I did not want to go through a heart break and I thought the easiest way to keep that from happening was to just forever be alone.

A few years ago, that changed. I couldn't stand the thought of not sharing my life with someone. I have watched my brother be alone, not having anyone to talk to, to trust, or to love. It makes me very sad. And I thought about my grandpa that passed away when I was 18. He had to be so lonely at the end. My brother and I had gotten to be teenagers with "better things to do" than visit with him. My mom had a toddler with barely any time for anything but her. So we all failed him his last few years. And I can't image his loneliness.

One night I thought about all the bad parts of my life and I thought about all the good parts. The good parts always included sharing it with someone. And the bad parts were usually when I was (or felt) completely alone. And I prayed to God to send me someone who I could share my life with - the good and the bad.

And one day, I saw his face. Now I know everyone does not believe in love at first sight and neither did I until this day.

I knew from the moment I saw him, I was gonna marry this boy. My heart felt so full that I thought I must just pass out from joy. I know it is corny and sounds kind of crazy, but it is the God's honest truth.

I can not imagine a day with out Jeremy by my side. I love his sweet smile and his good heart. I love his sweet eyes and how he always tries to make me laugh. I love that when I need to cry, he will hold me and tell me he loves me and everything will be ok because I have him. He tells me how lucky he is to have me as his wife. I love the way he dances with me; he says Baptist don't dance, but he dances with me all the time. And that is love.

Of course we don't always get along, we argue like any other couple. But we forgive and let go because neither of us wants to be unhappy or without the other.

When I think about our wedding day, I cry. I cried that day! But there is so much I wanted to say in front of our family and friends and I got overwhelmed with the love I felt. (I know cornball again!) But y'all it is the truth.

We may have had a Star Wars themed wedding, and some people will think it's silly, but I don't care. We had the wedding we wanted and could not be happier with how it all turned out! We had a blast and we will always remember having a fun wedding. And most importantly, since it was on Star Wars day, he will NEVER forget our wedding date!! Can I get an Amen?!

So as we say: May the Fourth Be With You!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

The Fear of Flying

Anyone who knows me, knows I hate to fly. It isn't natural. I wish it were illegal. I'm that afraid. 

Last weekend my husband was in his friends wedding. It was a full weekend of rehearsal and getting ready. We stayed at a lodge in a lovely little town not too far from where we live. It was really nice!

Well Friday night after the rehearsal and dinner, everyone came back to the lodge main house for a little party. I met some very interesting characters to say the least. I thought my husband and I were these big nerds. We've got nothing on some of these folks! Ha! But all in all, everyone was super nice and fun to be around. 

One of the grooms men's sisters came out and I found out she is a flight attendant. I immediately had to ask her what should I do? I'm SO afraid of flying. She said, "Well, I don't know if this will help. But remember that planes are not made to fly, they're made to crash safely." 

Um, what?! This chic just told me planes are made to crash?! Ok, I needed a drink. 

It gets better...she then tells me that if the planes goes down, I'm likely to die of a heart attack or because we've crashed. But the plane will most likely be fine. 

Let's just take a moment and thank the good Lord above that this girl is not like a cancer doctor or anything!!

Did any of that information help me stop fearing flying? 

What do you think?!

As I'm reading this to my husband, he's laughing at me. This is real life! This really happened y'all! 

And now I'm also afraid of strangers at parties. 

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Habitual Haircuts

Every month about the same time, my brother asks if he can get a haircut. Every. Month. Same. Time. Now I know that this should not be a little annoying, but let me tell ya - it is.

I'm sorry. I know the boy wants a haircut. He does not have to ask me about it every single month. But, he does. Bless his heart, I know. But come on kid! You barely have any hair. And one of these days, when you tell the girl how short you want it, she is going to tell you that very thing. If you keep trimming what's barely there, do you think it's going to keep growing?

I wonder, has heard the thing about shaving (like face or legs) making hair come back thicker? Because if that's what he is thinking, I guess I better have a talk with him.

He's about to be bald. Which is probably about right. My mother's father was mostly hairless at a rather young age.

He was also grey headed and I mean like white/ silver. And if he were still alive, I'd be pickin bones with him over that! I may not have gotten much from him, but that I did. Thanks a lot Papaw Alvie Lee! (I hope you know I'm kidding. I loved this man and miss him all the time)

So last night while we were waiting on dinner to arrive (that fancy pizza delivery) he asked, "Hey Sis, can I get my hair cut tomorrow?" And I know, I know, it shouldn't make me cringe! But y'all it does. I can't help it.

I said, "We'll have to see Bub. It all depends on if I have to work late. We'll see".

And then, when I look at him, he looks like his 8 year old self. And I feel like an ass. Because I feel like I told him no (even though I did not) and like I broke his heart.

The boy doesn't have much. I need to let him get his habitual haircuts.

I'm gonna. I'm gonna just let him cut his hair until he's got nothing left but peach fuzz.

Monday, March 3, 2014

OCD Takeover

My husband left for a business trip on Saturday. I knew I'd be bored and lonely, so I made plans. Because that's what I do, I plan.

I plan dinner for week nights, weekend activities, cleaning and washing days; I even plan what I'm going to wear everyday. It's the side effects of being OCD. It's not that bad, I've been doing it so long, it could just be habit now.

So, of course, when we found out my husband would be gone for 2 weeks, I planned. I planned different things to do each night so I wouldn't be bored and miss him too much.

Yea, things don't always work out the way you plan them.

He left Saturday morning. I took him to the airport and drove all the way back home. Then decided to take a nap while he was flying so I wouldn't worry. That didn't work out so well - I had nightmares! So I decide to go for a run while the weather was nice. That took about 30 minutes. Even after showering and getting ready, he still hadn't landed.

I took my brother for dinner and by this time, my husband had landed, thank God! I could at least not worry about the flight anymore. After dinner, I caught up on TV shows and videos I'd been wanting to watch. And finally went to (a lonely and restless) sleep.

Sundays plans were to sleep in, workout, and take my brother to IHop for breakfast. Again, things not working out as planned - I woke up with the sunrise, worked out and he was up before me and had already eaten breakfast!

Even after trying my best to take my time getting things done - like grocery shopping, checking out an estate sale and cleaning - I was still most of the way through my list by Sunday night!

This is what happens when someone with my condition has too much time on her hands. I can't be trusted with checklists.

So now, Monday afternoon, only 2 days into the 2 weeks, all I have left to do are some crafts. And I don't want to do them too soon so I decided this morning I'd also spring clean our house...

I'll bet you ten bucks it's all done before I go to sleep tonight.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A Melody Brings Back A Memory

I have so many, very good memories from when I was a child. Sometimes I let my self think back to when I was very young and my parents were together. And my brother was my protector from frogs and big dogs (at the time that's all I was afraid of. Not now! I'm afraid of everything.) Reminiscing makes me happy, most of the time.

My mom used to tell me that when I was a baby, my brother (who is 2 years older than me) would pull me around and tell everyone that I was his baby. Is that not the sweetest thing?!

I remember always looking up to my brother. And I listened to everything he said to me. His words were absolute truth to me. Of course, as I got older he used that to his advantage. I remember, one day during the summer, and mom was at work, him asking me to make him a sandwich. I told him I wouldn't do it, so he held his breath and made his face red. I thought he was going to die without air! So I ran to the kitchen and made him a sandwich. Now I know he was just puffing his cheeks out and still breathing from his nose. I was 6, okay?

Anyway, I have all these good and funny memories. And when I ask him now, "Hey, do you remember that time.....?" he always says, "Nah, I don't guess I remember that." Sometimes he will laugh about what I tell him. As if to say that's funny, I wish I did remember, but other times he'll just look away as if I'm telling him someone else's stories.

It's frustrating. And it's heartbreaking. My brother, who I spent all of my life with, doesn't remember the things that made us who we are. Whether good or bad, we went through them together, and now it feels like I went through it alone. He doesn't remember the things that happened or the outcomes.

And how sad is it for him? To not remember playing little league baseball or going to a party as a teenager? Or planning for all the kids in the neighborhood to sneak out and meet in the woods, only to fall asleep? (Yes, he actually did this and we looked for him all night long....while he slept!)

I just have to wonder: is it his illness? Or has he chosen to forget everything because it all led up to him having an illness? Or as we get older, do memories fail us?

I've heard that a melody brings back a memory. If that's true, I sure wish I knew what songs we heard during those really good days.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Staring is Still Rude

Sunday night I wanted to eat Mexican for dinner. My husband and I had been in New Orleans all weekend and I'd had all the Cajun food I could handle. I love Mexican food and everyone agreed it would be good. So we set out to our favorite Mexican restaurant. It's a little further from our house but the food is worth the extra drive.

We pull into the parking lot and I tell my husband they look closed. I'm so confused because I'm sure we've eaten here on Sundays in the past. Once we pull a little closer to the building we see it is completely empty! I mean no tables, no seats, no cash register, nada.

So, I pull as close to the door as I can and my husband gets out to read a tiny paper sign that is taped to the door. It reads: Do to circumstances beyond our control, we are closed for business.

What?! NOOO!! Aw man, we loved that place. So many dates in the beginning of our relationship were at this very place. Total sad face.

Well, we're resilient creatures. We decide to go to another Mexican restaurant, even further from the house.

We get there and guess what...they're closed! Not for good, only for Sunday, but still. We're starting to think we'd better go get some frozen burritos from Winn Dixie and head to the house!

Well, we try one more place (which is my favorite) and alas! They're open!! Now here is where I should've said "I told ya" to my husband but I'm starving and I'm not as quick as normal.

We go in and order, eat some chips, and realize it is taking a very long time to get our food. Finally it comes out and I'm so full of chips and salsa that I haven't any room for the fajita taco salad I wanted so badly at the beginning of our quest.

So, we get to-go boxes and wait on the check. And wait. And wait. Finally, my brother and I decided to go outside while my husband waits. I wanted to smoke and he wanted to dip. (I know, nasty habits!) I get done smoking and start the truck so it will warm up. My brother is standing at the front of my truck dipping.

A young man gets out of his truck to the left of me and meets a young lady that parked to the right of me. As he walks, he is staring at my brother. Like, really staring with a strange look on his face. He keeps walking forward but continues to turn around and look at my brother. He sees me in my truck and tells the young lady something, then she turns around and stares at my brother.

All this time, I'm watching from my truck, wondering what they are looking at. Why are they staring at my brother and what was so odd about it that he mentioned it to the girl? I almost get out and ask if there is a problem but they walk inside.

I don't know what happened. I don't think my brother was mumbling to himself, it didn't look like it to me. I don't think he said anything to them, he was really looking at another truck that had pulled in the lot. He told me when he got in the truck that it was really nice.

So, I'd like to ask you, if you see something strange or different, is it ok to stare? When we were young, that's one of the first things our parents taught us - don't stare, it's rude. Staring is rude. It was 33 years ago and it still is today.

I was so upset about the staring and whispering that I almost forgot about my husband inside waiting for the check! The rest of the night it just bothered me so bad that these people who know nothing about us looked at us as if we were about to rob a bank or didn't belong at that restaurant.

Maybe I was just being especially emotional. Or maybe they are just rude. I guess we'll never know.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Cabin Fever....It's For Real

I live in south Mississippi. It's hot! Like all the time - HOT. I hate it but I've pretty much always lived in the south and I have no one to blame but myself. I keep trying to convince my husband and brother to move to Alaska with me, but they're not having it.

We normally have mild winters, not really even a winter. Usually we all wear shorts through November and December. And if we're lucky, it gets cold in January. In December, we had a tacky sweater party at our house and it was so hot and humid that we ran the AC so no one would sweat.

So, that's the south; the real south. It aggravates the mess outta me when someone from North or South Carolina say they are from the south, to me they are northerners. You can tell by their accents - freakin' Yankees! (LOL! I'm not prejudiced, just get real y'all)

Ok, so the local weather started calling for a "winter storm". They had us all excited that we would get some snow. Snow I like, ice I do not. And guess what we got?! Ice, lots and lots of ice.

Tuesday morning I get up as usual, get ready for work and head that way. About 30 minutes after I get here I email my boss. I told him, he really did not need to drive all the way from MS/ AL state line today because it will be too bad. It was already very cold and sleeting. He texts me and tells me to get home before it gets too bad to go. So I leave, but before I do, every guy that lives locally called in - "I can't make it, I can't drive in this." For real? I did. But I'm going home by now, so I don't care too much.

I make it home and my brother says it's snowing! I look outside and it looks like snow. I walk outside and I hear it. Yea, you shouldn't be able to hear snow. It sleet! Freaking sleet! And it keeps up until about 6 o'clock that evening.

My boss texts me and says not to worry about going to work on Wednesday either. But I'm stubborn see? So yep, I got up at my normal time and got ready to go to work. My husband tells me to check the driveway before I try driving out. And sure enough, it's about 3 inches of nothing but ice. I'm not going anywhere. I worked from home again. And haven't been anywhere since the morning before. I'm not a happy camper!

Finally, after my husband and a neighbor chop and shovel all the ice away from the drive, I tell him I can't stand it one more minute. I gotta get outta here!

I had just finished a book series with the worst imaginable, saddest ending ever. So at this point, I'm depressed and feeling closed in! No, we better go somewhere. Well, the roads are all blocked but I went around a few (safely) and went to buy a few groceries. Now I hate buying groceries! My husband is like, "You want to go to the grocery store?" And I'm like, "No but I don't want to stay here any longer, so let's go!"

I do not know how my brother does it. He stays at the house all day everyday. And then a lot of times, when we ask him to go somewhere with us after we get off work, he doesn't want to go. I worry about him, but he says he's fine. I don't know.....

A few more hours in that house and I might would've started a fire just to get out of there! I'm serious, a lot of not-so-sane things were going through my mind. It's kinda scary. But I didn't do anything and we made it safely out and back home again!

I was so happy to be out of the house yesterday (Thursday) when my boss told me to go home early because it was my birthday,  I told him "nuh-uh!".

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Stop the Microwave Madness

As I've mentioned before (I'm sure), I have OCD. Things have to be just right in my little world or I can't sleep at night.

My #1 pet peeve is a dirty microwave. It's gross and completely unnecessary. Just clean it when it looks dirty. I don't understand why you wouldn't.

My #2 pet peeve is microwave clocks that aren't set. Again, completely unnecessary. You get a new microwave, set the clock. You move into a new house with a microwave, set the clock (if the previous owners did not). It's very simple and it is a time saver. Say you're getting your first cup of coffee in the morning. You forgot to use deodorant, you need to know how much time you've got before you're running late. Check the microwave (because who wears a watch every day?). Boom, you've got a few minutes to run back into the bathroom, put the stick or spray can under your arm and save us all from an embarrassing conversation later this afternoon. *If you live in the south, like I do, you need your deodorant every day, no matter what, because there's a good chance it will be 85 degrees by 3 p.m.*

On any given day, if I walk into my kitchen and look at the microwave clock, it reads: READY or END. This means that one of the males I live with nuked something but didn't care to hit the STOP/CLEAR button after they pulled their dish or beverage from the microwave.

Do you have any idea how annoying this is?!


So last night I'm cooking dinner and using the nifty microwave timer (it can be used even while microwaving something). My dish needs to cook 45 minutes in the oven. My brother recently decided he doesn't eat anything that has chicken in it. And of course, this pan in the oven does. So I tell him to just warm up his left overs from the night before and he can have that for dinner.

He does this and a few minutes later I go look at the microwave to see how much longer before my dinner is ready. The clock reads: 5:25P, which means it's 5:25 in the evening. Where the heck is my timer?! I asked him, "What did you hit when your food was finished warming?" "Um, the CLEAR button, I think", he says. "OH, the CLEAR button?! The button that you forever forget exists?! Suddenly it means something to you? And you choose the very day that I'm counting on my timer, to use this button that has magically appeared in your line of sight after a year of never seeing or using it?!" Are you kidding me?

I am almost certain my and my husbands dinner was completely cooked before we ate it. We didn't turn green with food poisoning, but it could happen people.

Stop the microwave madness! Use your microwave buttons appropriately, please!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Living By Words

I watched a video on YouTube (because I'm addicted!) last week on a channel called For Human Peoples; see them here: I don't remember how I got to it but there was a video: Giving Care Packs to the Homeless. If you have a few minutes, please go check it out.

And it got me thinking. A lot. About a lot of different things. But mostly about how much we have as individuals, as a nation, and as a world. We've got more than enough to go around, don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

We have enough food on this planet right now, that not one man, woman, or child should go to bed hungry. We have enough buildings all over the world that not one person should have to sleep outside unless they want to go camping. We have enough!

I don't know why, but it makes me most sad when I see homeless people asking for food. We have enough to take  care of both of these things in just a few minutes.

Now, I'm not naïve, I know there are people who aren't really homeless or starving, sitting by a red light, just trying to see how much they can get. I know this, but I also know that I have looked into the watery eyes of a young man who had nothing and no where to go. And I did nothing.

This is a new year and I have decided to do more. I took a queue from that video I mentioned and I found an old backpack. Then I went to Wal-Mart and bought trial size toiletries, a $10 restaurant gift card, a note pad and pen, and some thick socks to fill the backpack. Now, this is by no means going to solve all the problems of the world, but it's a start. The next time I see a homeless person, I will happily give them this bag (I keep it in my truck) and pray he or she has a better day. Even if this person is not really homeless, aren't I doing the right thing? Helping someone I think is in need? Yes, I believe that if I'm doing it from the right places in my heart, it will make a difference.

I had another idea - I could go buy several $10 food gift cards and deliver them to the local homeless shelter. Maybe they could hand them out. I could do this weekly or monthly, or even a few times a year. Like I said before, this isn't going to solve everything at once, but it is a start at helping others.

I guess another reason I have a desire to help others is because by nature (or genetics), I consider myself a selfish person. And I hate it! I have people in my life who live to get pity. They don't care about anyone but themselves. They want everyone to feel sorry for them and give them whatever they want. Don't smile at them or tell them to have a good day! You'll get a pitiful reply about how no day is ever good. And these people I'm talking about have so much to be thankful for! They do not live on the streets - they have a pretty decent house, they have a refrigerator full of food, clean clothes, and family. But you wouldn't know it just by listening to them. And my greatest fear is to become like them. I can't. I just can't be that kind of person. I can't go through life living in such darkness. God gave us so much to enjoy! And this life is way too short to sit in a dark room and sleep it away or never laugh or smile or never love and let someone love us back.

So, I'm working on being the best person I can be. And these are the words I'm trying to live by:

"When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, "I used everything you gave me"."-- Erma Bombeck