I use my hands, when I talk, I talk a lot to get a point across, my voice can get serious and intense. Truth be told, I am not mad (even if I am perceived as that by my children.) BUT, I can get really frustrated if things don't go as planned or as they are supposed to when others don't do their part.
I WANT to be a calm person, and I worked really hard at it for some time but then I was asked by a friend, "who are you trying to be? That is not who God made you to be- calm and serene. Just be you."
The real me wants to laugh, goof off, not correct others, not repeat myself 300 TIMES! Have fun and NOT SEE EVERY THING THAT HAS TO BE DONE around here! I get tired quiet often but there is no time to stop, I am a night owl and love the serene quiet at night when everyone is in bed. I can think uninterrupted thoughts. I can enjoy the stillness. Our family is my normal, no changing that. Everyday is stress - full!
Being honest here. I day dream. I sometimes wonder what it would be like to NOT have a zillion children. What would life be like with only 1 child being a 1st born instead of 6 of them? What would it be like even to have children who are related with similar personalities? But let's get real! My kids are from different cultures, all want to boss the other around, take delight in another's demise and most are still living in survival mode because of their lack of family at an early age. And an emotional emergency could rear its head at any moment in our daily life. What would my ideal life be like? I could think of all kinds of scenarios that would be dreamy and boring but in reality, my life would be unfulfilled as well.
Just for the record, Yes, there are plenty of days that I do have major self control when I just want to go off the deep end at people (aka family members) after I have asked CALMLY several times to take care of an issue. Or After I have said no for the 1000th time to a movie or video game OR when one child just won't stop talking and picking fights with others. When teenage boys back talk Mama, or treat me as if I am dumb. :)
But I am thankful for those days- most of them really- that GRACE is issued to me from Heaven by the dump truck load. I'm serious. I think would go off the handle a lot more if Jesus wasn't nearby! I sense his Presence daily as he quietly nudges me to stay on track.
Why Am I spilling my guts to you on this worldwide Blog? Because, I am not perfect and my deepest desire is be a person and a mom remembered for her furious caring and love. Maybe there is another foster or adoptive mom who is learning to ask for GRACE when there is a great need.
Which brings me to Easter 2015. It did NOT go as planned.
Today actually didn't start out to be a rough day. It began quiet well. I got up early, got the Ham in the oven, made the bread dough for rolls and made the potato salad and prepped other things for lunch. We had an Easter Egg hunt planned and the kids had dyed the eggs the day before.
With 20 minutes left to get ready for church, I had already warned the kids to be on time, because with Easter, everyone comes to church and we wanted to get a seat and get the littles checked in. Duane was headed to the office as it was his call day, so church isn't an option for him and anytime I go to church without him, it is a little more hectic. Soooo, I'm done and am rushing kids out the door to get in the van. As I walk outside, one younger kid is screaming at an older child and chasing him down the driveway, holding his back in pain. Come to find out this older child, forcefully took a ball away, and the younger child got mad and lashed out, then the older child hit the younger one in the back. Let's just say that that did not make this mama happy at all. So older child got a lashing from me. (A portion of self- control lost) but only after 14 year old gets cocky in my face.
So after this, We only had 10 minutes to get to church. On EASTER SUNDAY! I screeched out of the driveway in our 15 passenger van when intense anger just engulfed me. NOT GOOD. NOPE. NOT GOOD AT ALL. It was like a tidal wave of yuck just washed over me. What was I angry at? Lots of things. Older kids bullying much younger kids. Really wanting to go to church and having a great Sunday. Me. Not staying calm. Soooooo, I screeched right around into our second driveway and parked the van. ( No worries, I was aware of their safety) No sense in going to church this late. I ordered everyone into the living room and here it came. All the rolled eyes and sighs.
The dreaded family meeting.
But it had to be done. I sat on the couch and just announced. "I AM ANGRY. I'm just letting you know. " The kids agreed that they had figured that out.
So I sat on the couch, silent, letting God get my anger under control, so I could talk rationally. He did. And then I began expressing my concerns. Forgiveness was spoken about, some expectations were laid out, and misunderstandings were cleared up and each person listed 1-2 things they would work on about themselves to contribute to the family and honor others. The meeting ended in everyone goofing off and laughing. Then my 18 year old put on some fun music to dance to and a dance party broke out for about 15 minutes.
I continued cooking lunch with my two littles and Duane came home from rounds at the hospital just about the time that Ben called saying they were releasing him from the hospital. Sigh!
Timing was not good. Duane can't go get him because he can only be within a certain distance from the hospital in Red Bluff when on call. Ben's hospital is in Redding. After digging for info, I find out Ben is not quite ready, so I tell him that I will call after lunch to check on him to see about when to come get him.
We finished Easter Dinner and I called Ben. He assured me he was ready to go as soon as I got there also reminding me what this room number was. (Well, since I've been there several times, I should know. ) LOL! - Never mind.
I headed out the door with half of my kids screaming, " I want to go!" I left them behind and took Allenni, because she is the most sane at that moment in time and I needed some sanity for the 8 minute drive to the hospital. :)
We arrived to Ben's room only to find NO Ben! A nurse from across the hall who was chit chatting with a patient, yelled across the hall, and asked us if we needed help. He informed us that Ben went to take a shower down the hall. Grrr...... So we wait on him for about 15 minutes. I'm anxious to get home because the littles want to do an Easter egg hunt.
Finally, we get going and get to my car where Ben tells me we have to go to a certain pharmacy to get his meds and he also has to go to his apt. to get his dirty clothes to be washed etc.... Grrrrr. I DO NOT remain calm. I am frustrated. But GRACE enters in and I shift.
The pharmacy lets us know that it is going to be 15 minutes so I head to Ben's apt. and he has to make 3 trips before he remembers what he needs to get to stay at our house. I offer to help, but he doesn't want me coming up to his apt. (good thing as he lives with 2 other guys. ) I wasn't really interested anyway. :)
Done, we headed back to the pharmacy and Ben informs me we made it in 14 minutes. (Welcome to living in the world of OCD, where everything is timed. ) So we sit at drivethru for 1 minute before I push the call button. ( Not really, I actually did not realize I needed to do that, until no one showed up for a few minutes and I saw the Huge Yellow CALL button that said push for service. )
My son tells me his medicine is for free so he shouldnt have to pay for anything since it was what they were giving him in the hospital and it is all covered from there and he had a paper proving it.
I was a little suspicious and after reading his " paper," I disagreed with him. He had to pay alright. The pharmacy applied a discount but his meds were still quite high even after that. I guess you had to be there, to feel that stress. :) LOL!
We headed home to find my lavender oil on a chair on the carport, and Isaiah with blood on his shirt and Violetti and Isaiah excitingly telling me this story that I can't quite grasp the understanding of that included licking toes and scissors and a cut tongue. Needless to say, one child aggravated another, the other had no patience and nipped the tongue with scissors. YES, this is my loving family!
Of course, all was forgiven when after realizing what was done, the scissor offender grabbed the Lavender essential oil and applied it to the tongue (all in my absence) and the bleeding stopped and the tongue actually looked rather nice like nothing had happened by the time I got to see it. I talked to the them both about the seriousness of what happened and that licking toes is unappreciated and how snipping someone's tongue does not help anything.
I was thankful that I did not have to return to the hospital again! AGAIN, I did not remain calm. I was intense. Not loud. Just intense. I was also thanking God for the MANY angels he has around here and that it was only a pinch on the child's tongue.
Both kids were sent to time alone for 10 minutes, more for me to gather myself, while the 4 older children were found to be in their room engaged in video war with each other, totally unaware of what had happened with the littles while I was gone. SIGH.
After all this, No one knew that dad had returned home from his rounds at the hospital, but as I walked in, He was headed out to go see a baby at the hospital.
There went the Easter Egg Hunt! I am in no state of mind to do it alone, which sends at least one kid into wailing mode. After promising him to do it another day, he quietens down and is happy after I offered him a movie on the ipad.
I sat down to check email, even though I wanted to watch a movie on my computer to chill out for awhile but I ended up writing this blog instead. :)
I may be throwing myself under the bus with this blog, but hey in reality, life gets hectic when you have a bunch of kids from various backgrounds with deep emotional wounds and a mom who wants a happily ever after deal. LOL!
It is not always a pretty picture as much as I would love it to be. I am actually an idealist, which may be part of my problem of wanting things to work out beautifully. I am an introvert, which may also contribute to be part of my problem as I refill with solitude and quiet. But on this journey of life, I learn (almost every day) that messes can be beautiful when God is around. I love my kids and I know they are learning to love themselves. They are learning what it is like to transition from an orphan mindset to a son/daughter mindset. It is not easy. It's messy, but it is beautiful. It is what Jesus' death and resurrection are about really. Jesus betrayal, death and resurrection were dreadfully messy but in the end everlastingly beautiful. I'll take my "normal" life.
|After the Family Meeting- Everyone was smiles again|
|They wanted to do a crazy pic|