Mother’s Day is just 2 days away. Like many, Mother’s Day (in context with my mother) has never been even remotely close to a Norman Rockwell picture, so I am ready for this weekend to be over. Many have family situations much more difficult than mine (my heart goes out to you!) All this emotion is going to send me to the Funny Farm for sure.
Getting married, I got an AMAZING mother-in-love, Carolyn “Mom” Battis. She was the first Mom in my life to show me unconditional, Godly Motherly love; I truly love her and am always blessed by her. When I became a Mom myself, my whole world changed in so many ways and Mother’s Day is special for me and my boys, however…
Having been adopted (and not having much of a relationship with my adoptive mom), and now in reunion with my first mom (since July 2011) with whom I have a great relationship, this day has become somewhat tangled. My friend, Deanna, has summed it up best in her post, “Mother’s Day Weekend and What It Means to Me” . Although I don’t blog often about adoption, if you knew me well, you would see that I definitely fit several of the descriptions she uses and it seems she always has such a great way to express what is on my heart. (On a side note – Deanna & the Lost Daughters group have helped me walk through my reunion with my first family and one of the great things that have come from it has been this blog – re-creating Ree
As a kid, I would secretly pray for my first mom, somehow knowing that she HAD to think of me on Mother’s Day. As an adult, not only would I pray for all of my moms, but I would send something special to my mother-in-love (because sadly she lives so far away) and for my adopted mom, I prepared the expected celebratory dinner either Saturday or Sunday (
depending on when my sister has her because heaven forbid we all spend time together). Last year, my first year in reunion with my first mom, I sent her a card. I know, it sounds lame, but it was all I could muster in the midst of the furry with my adoptive mom’s never-ending emotions. ( Yes, I am always trying to keep everyone else happy – keeping the peace – like a good little adoptee.) Unbeknownst to just about everyone, I always seem to be in an emotional tug-of-war between an angry adoptive mom (how dare you look for your “real” parents after all we have done for you, they didn’t want you!”) who wains between not talking to me at all (currently, it’s been a month without communication) and when she will decide to fit me into her life because she needs me for something…and a thankful first mom (with whom I just took an impromptu wild road trip with through 12 states).
This year, I wanted to do more, so I took my first Mom’s offer for the trip with her and I think it turned out pretty well (
she didn’t kill me after spending 24/7 with me for 7 days, so that right there should tell you something ) Unfortunately, I had to cut my trip a little shorter than we both expected; things were getting crazy at home and I had to go back to reality. I was a bit disappointed because I was looking forward to having my very first Mother’s Day with my first Mom, and I know she was too. However, it’s probably for the best, as I would not want it at the expense of my adoptive Mom, who would sadly see all of this as a direct knife to her heart ( because my adoption is all about her). Even though I cannot get my adoptive mom to understand any of this, she is still my Mom and I love her too. Unfortunately, I am not the only adoptee that goes through this; adoptees feel like our life is like a continual white water rafting journey without a life jacket. There are many of us at this time of year (Mother’s Day and Father’s Day) that can feel like we are doing it without a paddle, either.
This year, I am jumping to shore, taking the chicken’s way out because of sheer emotional exhaustion, and allowing my boys to make Mother’s Day all about me…just call me Momma Hen.
I saw this picture on Facebook and absolutely love it so I had to share it with ya’ll! Out of all of these choices, which will you choose to start YOUR journey to genuine happiness? Mine started with “J” for Jesus and I am always incorporating the others…and don’t you know my “R” would have said “ReeCreate” :)
(Hint: I am going to print this out and put on my fridge as a reminder )
I can’t tell you how much I love this saying! Not only because some of our invisible “inner scars”…but our very visible, outer scars, disabilities, etc.
After I got all of my scars through my many surgeries in 2010 (
my torso gives Mapquest a run for it’s money), I was very self-conscious of them because they start from my neck down and are very noticeable, as is the lymphedema, a side effect of the tumors/surgeries that without God’s healing, I will have the rest of my life.
My insecurities all started after my first shopping trip and I saw the cashier staring at my chest (and she even asked me what happened to me). At first, I thought I should take the advice of many who suggested creams and lotions that would help “diminish” their appearance…and of course, no more open-neck shirts for me, no more shorts, or Heaven forbid, bathing suits. It’s one thing to be able to hide my inner scars, but now, these are right out there for everyone to see. I always wished I could wear a shirt that said “Yea, I am the only person ever that gained 100+ pounds having a body riddled with tumors and now I am left with lymphedema, so that is why I have the scars and body shape issues”. How many of us want to wear a shirt that would “explain” ourselves so that we would not have to address the ugly looks, snickers, stares and comments of strangers, even though we know that it their problem, not ours, it doesn’t always make it easy to deal with.
After a month or so, it finally dawned on me that the visible scars on my body from the surgeries should not be something of embarrassment, but an opportunity to (literally) “show off” and tell folks about how God saved my life by sharing the testimony of my tumors! I was able to share God with people in a way that I have never been able to do before and it was awesome – my own, unique witnessing tool! I truly praise God all the time for what He’s done for me, my family and others through those tumors! I no longer wanted to wear “cover up” clothing or miracle creams, etc. because I WANTED people to see them ask me about them! Actually, I am sad that many of my scars have faded, even with my light Irish skin tone, but the one that is most visible to everyone has remained the darkest, the one in this picture. I am so happy that God has allowed that scar to be so pinky/purple because I don’t want to lose my opportunity to share with others and SHOW them what He has done for me and give them hope….what tried to kill me only made me stronger and brought many blessings with it. Go figure. My hubby, Jon, said that one of the reasons that God allowed my tumor removal/healing to come through the surgeries (and not just merely a snap of His fingers or something) was because He knows what a chatty little chick I am and that I would share what He did for me to help encourage others; I have such a wise hubby.
But no worries, folks…I will still spare everyone the vision of me in a bathing suit
I am on a road trip to visit family and friends…just me and my Mom…first time ever. It’s been great until 48 hours ago when I learned that my beloved, Golden Retriever, Cody, is very, very sick…and I am 12 hours away from home at my Aunt and Uncle’s house in Georgia. My hubby and son are taking care of things at home, but my Cody is like another child to me. At 15, he has loved me, protected me (even bit a man who was trying to attack me) and has always been by my side. Many tears cried into his fur and his unconditional love and affection has always been there for me and my guys…technically, he’s my son, Richard’s dog, but yea, he’s a “Momma’s Dog”. Richard, has always teased me saying that if he believed in reincarnation that he wanted to come back as my dog. :)
Cody started getting sick almost the minute I left and right now he’s still at the vet hospital. They are still not sure what is going on but the vet has given me some peace that she has stabilized him and that there is nothing else being violently expelled from either end of his body. Peace enough that she said I didn’t have to hop on the first flight home, as was my intent. He is getting the best care my money can buy and my son and hubby are visiting with him and I am learning to be “ok” with that I am not there. My heart is still broken, but if he continues to improve, I can continue my once in a lifetime trip with my mom. I am very thankful for the support my mom, aunt and uncle have given to me and their offer to fly me home. Having supportive family is such a blessing, especially knowing that some people do not have one. The icing on the cake, so to speak, is supportive furbabies…
My aunt’s chocolate lab, DJ, is apparently very “in tune” with me and my emotions. Although Aunt Dee has 2 labs (one black, one chocolate), DJ has been snuggling with me, shadowing me, her fur has held my tears as she has been loving all over me since I got the news about my Cody and I have been upset – loving me through my pain like only a furbaby can. Nothing like having a 100 pound dog sit on your lap…now THAT is true love for you…:)
Yes…it has been a challenging week for many folks in our country…2 national tragedies that still need our prayers…for those who have lost precious loved ones…for the people who are on the front lines in search/rescue/medical personnel…and those of us who are “on the outside looking in”. While in weeks like this, we might wonder where God is in all of this…well..His heart is grieving, too, and He wants to show us His Love.
I saw this Snoopy cartoon and it reminded me of our week…but how God would love to just love on us during this time…and not just with a kiss, but with His Love, Peace, and Compassion. The question is…will you let Him?
I love this for 2 reasons…one, is because I love fruit – de-lish! The other, on a more serious note, is it reminds me that don’t we all think about ourselves this way, not realizing just how wonderful God made us – inside and out… ♥