Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Random Shuffle

My sisters are eight and ten years older than me.  They were walking past the yard ( the home is no longer there) where we grew up.  My older sister Mamie said to my younger sister Macy ( names have been changed) that our mother used to carry me outside to one of them who would sit on the porch swing and swing me to sleep for my nap. 

I had forgotten that.  But, I found it quite interesting.  To this day, I need to be outdoors.  If I sit on my porch in the evenings and first thing in the morning ( my usual) then I sleep peacefully and soundly, if I don't, then sleep is restless.   

When she reminded me of those stories, it all made sense.  It seems important somehow.  It's a conformation of who I really am and where I came from. 

The Son is on his own again.  We've entrusted him to God....again.  I keep reminding myself that he is exactly where God wants him.  I am at peace today.

I love to play Solitaire.  I play and play.  Sometimes winning.  Sometimes losing.  But, I keep shuffling and trying again.  It occurred to me that as simple as that sounds, that is what we are doing as his parents.  We just keep shuffling.  We don't give up.  And, I think that if I stop looking at all of the variables of this disease and simply rely on God instead of looking at each thing as an indicator of good or bad, I will find peace. 

Prayers for each of you. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

What Is....

As the parents of an alcoholic and addict, we have found ourselves back at the place of letting go.

We have had suspicions.  We have worried.  We have tried our best at loving it out of him. 

We have examined ourselves to discover that it was our guilt and shame over doing so many wrong things that caused us to try to fix it/him.  It was for our benefit of feeling better about ourselves and not his benefit.  We didn't trust that God would do it our way.  We didn't trust that God knew better.  We didn't accept that God loves him most....no matter the outcome.

But, now we find ourselves in the quiet of acceptance.  He is not doing well.  We cannot change it.  Only our higher power can. And, we are finally....finally willing to quietly whisper, " Please Lord, heal our son.  We will get out of your way."

There are times of panic and fear that wash in and paralyze us.  There are times of humble hope of healing.  It really can go either way.  But, regardless:  1.  I am powerless over the health and sobriety of my son.  2.  God can restore me to sanity.  3.  I will let Him.

That's where we are today.  Trying to return to prayer ....with every decision...every day....


Tuesday, July 15, 2014


I've been volunteering at the jail for almost four years now.  My church wanted some involvement so we are starting a new program to connect newly released inmates with jobs and housing and twelve step programs.  We are also offering mentors to those who wish to have one.

I offered to mentor a young girl who was just released.  She has a child and an opiate addiction.  No housing.  No job.  No license.  No car.  No family support.  I went to some friends and asked for donations and got her first and last week paid for in a recovery house.  I got clothes and food donated.  I picked her up from jail and delivered her directly to the recovery house.  Three days later, she packed up and moved out.

At first, I was angry.  Then I started to wonder if I had the right intentions.  Did I help her for my ego?  Was I helping according to God's will or Hattie's?  But, then I thought that maybe God was giving me the opportunity to learn to love without condition.  I called a couple of folks that she might be in contact with and said, " Please tell her that if she still wants a mentor, to give me a call.  No judgment."

I may never hear from her again.  She might call.  Who knows.  "It takes what it takes" as they say in Al Anon.  Maybe God placed her in my path to help me.  I have been so arrogant to think that I could save her when maybe she is saving my relationship with my own son by teaching me that you love someone mistakes and all.  You love someone who is not doing it your way.  You love someone enough to offer support even when they are doing it on their time and their way.

I look back at how I grew up.  My parents loved me.  But, their fears affected the way that they showed love.  If they were afraid, they might hold back approval or acceptance until I changed my behavior. That is much the way that I have parented all of these years.  But, I am learning.  I am learning more from those that I would least expect to learn from.

Healing started for me when I was able to get truthful....mainly with myself about all that was wrong.  Saying out loud what the problems were took a lot.  Now I realize that we all have problems.  We all have done things that we are not proud of.  All of us carry shame and guilt.

Shame wants us to keep quiet and stay sick.  And, I am over it.  I am a mess.  I just learned a very valuable lesson from a young girl who is a drug addict with the kindest heart and broken spirit and a smile that lights up a room.  So I am opening up about this ugly pride that makes me think that I can fix her and save the world. 

Funny how God works.  She might just be saving me.  Praying for us all.


Saturday, July 5, 2014


In the happy wagging tail of one long backed Lucy.
In the evening summer sounds of crickets and frogs.
In the sudden direction previously not seen.
In the despair at starting over.
In the prayers said by family members.

God is Present.

For healing and growth in our family.
For help when I cry out.
For strength when weary.
For a way, when none is seen.
For acceptance.
For Love.

I am grateful to God.

Quiet Acceptance.

The feelings God gives me today.

Heavenly Father,

Please empty me of all that is not from you.  Fill me with strength, direction and love.  Give me the wisdom to see and hear your will for me this day and give me what I need to carry that out.

In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.  Amen


The possibilities are endless if only I listen to the desires that God has placed within me.  There is hope in tomorrow.  There is love waiting tomorrow.

This is an example of a five step Examen used in Ignatian Spirituality.  Our wonderful Pope Francis is a Jesuit (the group who follows the example of St. Ignatius).

Ignatian Spirituality is about developing a better relationship with God through converser (Prayer).  This is a helpful link on his ideas about prayer.


Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Run Run Runaway.....

I've been doing a lot of volunteer work at the jail.  It's something that is both wildly rewarding and quite depressing all at the same time. 

I constantly have this inner turmoil about what my motives are.  Do I think that I am all of that and a bag of chips?  Is that why I am here?  Do I think that I can save them? 

Then I swing to the self deprecating "you are in over your head and a big fool to think that you will make any difference."

There are days when I just want to walk away.

Why can't I just learn to play golf or knit?  Why can't I just find a bungalow out there in some beach town and hide out there for a while.  No phones.  No television.  No interruptions.  Just solitude. 

That is my secret desire.  Perhaps that is running away and not a desire.  Or perhaps my desire is to run away.  I'm good at that.  I've been running from the chaos of addiction for most of my life. 

Praying for all of you and hoping to find the center.....again.