Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Change of, heart

Confession time. For the past few days, I have really really been hating my wound. Not that I've ever liked it, but it goes through these cycles, see, and when it gets to the point in the cycle where it is hurting me SO BAD that I want to scream...well, I just hate it. So I thought, being the clever girl that I am, that I would write a very tongue-in-cheek 'ode to my wound' right here on my blog. I had even come up with some amazing lines, and I was imagining all the people who would find it so amusing and all of that. Oh, how funny I would be!

But then I saw Pastor Will on Oprah. Sigh. He preaches in Kansas City, MO, and he has of late become super-popular with his 'Complaint-Free World' bracelet idea. And I was immediately convicted by the complaining that I do -- yes, daily -- about the pain I deal with as a result of, well, all of last summer's ordeal. Physical and emotional pain, not to mention that it's been nearly a year...see? There I go again.

Anyway, Oprah was not even done with the interview before I was at the computer ordering some of those bracelets. I ordered a lot of them, because I'm thinking some other people might want to try it out as well. Not that I'll make them do it, but I certainly need to complain less in my life!

So if you had tuned in to my blog a couple of days ago, and if I had come up with a great ending to the 'ode to my wound'...well, neither of us would have learned much, would we (except that I hate my wound, and I think we've all figured that one out)? But now I can share a pretty neat idea with you and hopefully bless my husband's life by wearing a purple bracelet for the next twenty-one days.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Ready or not...

Tonight I had such a precious moment with my little Miles. I had put him down for bed, but a few minutes later I thought I heard him crying as if he'd hurt himself. I went in to check on him, and it was just his usual complainings about having been put to bed (something he's realized is just not fun). I picked him up and held him close, rocking back and forth. For the next five minutes or so, he had his head on my chest and talked very quietly to himself, looking up every now and then. When I felt like he was calm enough, I put him back down, he snuggled up next to Winnie-the-Pooh, and I heard no more. I left with my heart aching, in a good way, and storing up that little moment among others that I will keep for the rest of my life.

It's almost here...Miles will soon be one year young (old just doesn't seem right). How do most mothers deal with this? I know how Casey is dealing with it -- he likes seeing Miles get bigger and change day by day. Not me! Okay, for the most part, I am proud to see him advancing and learning and all of that. But it is so hard to know that he is growing and won't be my little baby boy forever. Or, as is indicated in the following photo, my little 'Cheerio Chin' boy.

Miles has lately become more and more cuddly with me. He gives me daily hugs and kisses, but I get about the same amount as his two Winnie-the-Poohs, but I still feel important. Miles also loves Junebug, our resident kitty, and she is unbelievably patient with him, enduring big pats on her back and the occasional ear-tugging. And when Miles is crying...Junebug comes near, somehow sensing that there is pain and that she can help. And she does!

Last week my parents came to visit, but mostly to help out while Casey was away on a spring break mission trip to West Virginia with a few of our students. One day we headed down with some friends to the lake where there is also a man-made beach (so much fun). This was Miles' first experience with sand, so I wasn't sure how he would take to it. He loved it! Below you can see him enjoying his digging, even with sand on his face, in his mouth, and sometimes in his eyes. (That's our friend Meagan in the background.)

Miles still isn't walking, but he crawls faster than I've ever seen a baby crawl. He goes turbo-speed! He's still very good about sitting still and playing on his own now and then, and he will sometimes strike the perfect pose for my ever-present camera. Miles can now stand for seconds (sometimes up to ten!) at a time, even clapping while he is keeping his balance. He loves to clap those hands.

I know my blogs tend mostly to be about Miles, and I truly want to branch out and write about soooo many other things. Right now I am still dealing with a wound that has been open since last June (totally serious...I wouldn't joke about this), lots of irritating fatigue, and currently a perforated eardrum due to infection. Just hoping to get across how much I would like to be blogging on a more continual basis but struggle to do so. I hope that any readers left out there will stay faithful, because I will be back in full force someday, God willing!

Monday, March 05, 2007

Book Review: Confessions of an Amateur Believer

I finally made my way back to the blogging world. I am tempted to apologize, but with that comes a feeling of guilt for not posting when I 'should'...and none of us needs that. Blogging should be fun -- and for me personally, it is a creative outlet -- not some monkey on my back. I don't want to put pressure on myself or anyone else to post every single day, week, etc. That said, I will get to the review.

Confessions of an Amateur Believer
is a book I would normally have read through quickly, but ongoing health issues plus looking after a very active 10-month-old make for less available reading time. When I did make time to read, I truly enjoyed this book.

As a Christian with a certain set of beliefs, I went into this thinking that I might come across moments of disagreement with the author's own beliefs. And I did, but I was never bothered to the point of wanting to stop reading. On the contrary, I was pulled in by how open and raw Patty Kirk could be in sharing her life. There was such a rawness, in fact, that I found myself aching for her, for some of the things she has been through in her life.

"Not long after we got to California, my mom was diagnosed with a grapefruit-sized brain tumor and operated on the next day. Against all odds, she survived the operation and spent the next eleven years slowly dying. During that time, my parents divorced and my dad remarried..."

I also found it amazing that Kirk could so easily admit some of her faults, some things that a lot of us spend a lifetime trying to push under the rug whenever someone else is around.

"And so I gave up embarrassing myself for God entirely and went back to my old ways. If I had some terrible duty before me -- some kindness that I was loathe to undertake -- I would leave it to God. Do it yourself, I would tell him. Or
make me do it, if that's your will."

Patty Kirk was raised in the Catholic church and lost her faith at a young age. She spent years in other countries, in her unbelief, and later on married a Christian man and found her way back to God. Kirk has a real awareness of herself, and it seems that is also the case for both of her daughters, of whom she shares a great deal of entertaining stories.

But I think what gripped me most in the entire book were the accounts of her mother, who was looked after by Kirk's sister until she died. Nothing was glossed over, nothing was made easier to read. It was sad, purely and simply. But what made it beautiful was the way it grew her hope in her time of unbelief.

"My sister's love toward my mother spoke to me more loudly than the passages from the Bible that she and her husband made me listen to. Even after my mother was no longer aware of anything, Sharon cleaned and turned and patted and spoke to her. Sometimes she stood for a long time just holding her hand. Watching my sister from the doorway to the guestroom where our mother lay dying, part of me hoped, perhaps began to know even then, that Jesus
did love my mom, even as she had said he did."

I was saddened reading this passage, but I was also encouraged. Our actions play such a large part in influencing those around us, whether we do good or bad.

There was not a lot that I didn't like about this book. Like I said, I did come across things that I would disagree with as far as my beliefs go, but for the most part I found myself marking pages and underlining sentences and paragraphs so that I could share them with Casey that evening. I think that Confessions of an Amateur Believer speaks to many people on many different levels, and can be a real source of encouragement and enlightenment.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...