Dad

Jeff

I have never forgotten how smart my husband was or the things he was capable of. He was a jack of all trades and rarely asked anyone for help. He was the family hero. I’m sure those were difficult and hard boots to fill, but now that I look back, he never complained of anything that needed done, or about anyone that needed helped. He was always there for anyone in need. He was always telling jokes and was ALWAYS available.

He cut dinner off one night to find a friend lost in the woods, crawled under countless homes to change our stoves or pull out dangerous animals. He protected us in the middle of the night. I will never forget this image of him in the yard or the sound of his feet… in his underwear, with a pistol in hand. The kids and I were laughing at how ridiculous he looked. I will never forget the days of him on black pavement in hundred degree weather changing my tire, soaking in sweat, never complaining even though I knew the sweat was burning his eyes and his back was hurting. There are a million more memories I hold close to my heart. No matter how busy he was helping so many, he always had time for the woods, the water, and his family.

I ran across an article that reminded me of his many characters he played as father, husband, son, and friend. Thank you Todd for reminding me of things I had forgotten, as there are so many to remember. I love your list. Beautiful! Dad.

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Asking All Veterans

I started my first day of the year, pondering who needs help and how.  So many came to mind, but one stuck. Our courageous soldiers, who have been home for a while and the ones just arriving.

Some soldiers adjust fairly well at home and there are those who do not.  They struggle daily to hold it together.

It doesn’t matter when they step off the battlefield, there are many moments when they can still smell, still hear, still see the horrific events they try so hard to forget. They want to remember the names and ranks of their comrades, the special moments they shared, the bravery, the good they fought for, the ones they saved, the things they learned, the beautiful landscapes, the new discoveries. They beg to forget things we never knew they experienced.

We assume they will arrive home and function as they used to, in the comfort and security of family. We assume they remember how to sleep at night with both eyes closed. We assume they remember how to walk through a crowded store without scanning the entire crowd. We assume they are comfortable viewing and listening to the firework show on holidays. How about when they shower and hear the children bouncing around in the next room? What about the random plane flying over their home or the neighbor’s dog barking in the middle of the night or the cat hair that stands on end, the phone ringing or the knock at the door? We will never truly know how many times a day, they are put on edge, at alert, after returning home.

This can be frustrating and should be addressed to lessen the effects over time. I feel it is our responsibility to show our soldiers and their families and friends how to comfort and relax when this happens. All veterans experience the ability to still feel, when the moment no longer exists.

How Do You Comfort Yourself Or Your Soldier At Home When The Moment Strikes?

What do you do to snap out of it or how do you help your soldier snap out of it, in the heat of the moment?

How do you calm yourself or your soldier during a flashback?

How did you transition from the battlefield to the security of home?

Please tell the next soldier…

Read full article and take part in new forum

Would You Allow A Teacher To Harm Your Child?

Christopher Baker is 9 years old and has autism. His mother walked into his school, Mercer County Intermediate School in Harrodsburg, Kentucky on December 14th, to find him sitting with a bag over his head and tied shut. He was asking aloud, “Who is there?”

The school aide had a hard time untying the bag after the mother questioned them in shock. They stated they were punishing him for acting out. Once the bag was removed, he was sweaty and scared. They were not fired on the spot and they stated they have done it in the past and would resort to it again in the future. They should be court ordered to never work around children again. It makes you wonder what they are doing to their own children at home.

Please sign their online petition at  http://www.change.org/petitions/end-abuse-of-autistic-students-in-mercer-county-kentucky

Would You Benefit From An Organ Transplant?

 

Follow along on the journey of a heart transplant recipient. Miracles do exist!

 

…First, and most importantly is the person I will never be able to thank for saving my life. The donor. Not a day goes by without thinking of and thanking this individual.

Second, my family ……. They were there for me, every step of the way. They literally cried for weeks, they never gave up. Without them, I would be nothing…

Full article http://my2ndheartbeat.wordpress.com/my2ndheartbeat-my-story/

Why Do Bullies Bully?

…It is not easy watching our children sulk or cry after school. It is not easy watching their self-esteem slip. It is not easy watching our child become mean as a result of being bullied. We need to teach our children when they are bullied, it has absolutely nothing to do with them, none whatsoever. This is the first and most important aspect of it all. The children being bullied need to know this to keep their sanity and their self-esteem in check.

The second thing they need to know can help serve as a two-fold and create compassion in your child. Bullies are usually having a hard time with something, whether they realize it or not…

A Dad by Definition . . .

A Great Article For Widows, Widowers, Or Anyone Else …What Defines You?   Great Advice For Teens In Relationships

You see, our definitions change.  If I’m defined only by being Dad, what does that say to my kids?  Parenting is the greatest, most noble and wonderful thing I do.  I do it alone because it’s worth it! But it’s not all I do, and I want my kids to know they are the sum-total of what they become, not the singular things they do.  If I was only Andrea’s husband, my life would be over, the kids would suffer, and I’d either have died from the wound in my heart that is still bleeding or I’d wish for the end to come.  There are days I’m there, but most days I see those four amazing kids and I strive to be better in everything else…   

To read the rest of the article, visit  A Dad by Definition . . ..

To The Pranksters Who Claimed Jon Bon Jovi Died

Last night, you claimed Jon Bon Jovi died and you made it similar in fashion to Michael Jackson’s death. Why would you cause pain on their families and friends? Have you not lost a loved one or experienced the pain and trauma it brings? Have you experienced the shock or had years of sleepless nights or the nightmares after loosing a parent, spouse, or child?

Next time you consider playing a joke on someone, please put yourself in their shoes first. Ask yourself, who will you hurt. Please spend your time finding someone who needs help and focus on being a light for them. We all have the responsibility to make our world a better place. There are hurting people all around you. If you are the one hurting, you can discover that helping others will ease your pain.

Fortunately, Bon Jovi took it with a grain of salt and laughed it off. This shows his true character. What is your character? How do you contribute to society? Do you help others or do you hurt them? You have a chance to change how you relate to people, every morning when you wake up.

It could be your child running in the door one day, screaming and crying after hearing of your death. Is that how you want your loved ones to feel? What if the rumor is a hoax, how would you handle your child who is crying frantically and not able to be calmed by your presence? How would you feel? Would you want your child to start living with the fear of loosing you? Think about how Jon Bon Jovi’s family now feels. Although he laughed it off, did they?

A Message For All Widows: Need Your Help

Becoming a widow can make you feel as if you are going insane and it can make you feel as if you are the only sane person you know.

The emotions we face can be unbearable, they can make us weak and they can make us strong. It is frustrating to feel a hundred different emotions and then again feel a completely new emotion years later. People think we aren’t healing fast enough, they think we should already be operating again as we once were. This can frustrate us even more. We go to bed with plans of tackling certain things the next day and we wake up feeling great. Then out of nowhere something someone says or does takes us completely off track and the thought of picking up our to-do list seems unbearable. We start feeling heavy and spend our day trying to shake it off. It is bedtime and another day was wasted. We try again. We never stop trying and never stop believing that one day the heaviness will be gone. Our minds are motivated and want desperately to clean the house or start that project we need to finish but our bodies just won’t let us. We function and we accomplish things, just in smaller steps than what we are used to.

Other than the fact of not having our loved one here with us, not being our usual superwoman self is the hardest part to deal with. Some mornings, we can barely drag ourselves out of bed just to get the children off to school. The children can barely get out of bed. We do what must be done and are completely worn out just trying to get dressed but we never give up. We fight everyday to regain our strength, our energy, our memory, our old selves. We constantly wonder if we will grow old like this. We have our good days and we feel like a new person when they suddenly appear. We pray the bad days never come back and they always come back. We wake up wondering why we feel so bad. It is a roller coaster that you just want to stop. You cannot bear the thought of reliving it again. Have you ever wondered how lost love can drain you of so much? Ending a relationship hurts and causes pain, but you can still function. Becoming a widow stops you in your tracks. It cements your feet in time.

The anger, the confusion, the short-term memory loss, the shock, the crying, the questions, the wondering, the forgetfulness, the emptiness, the pain, the aches, the heartache, the sleepless years, the empty stomach, the clenching of the jaw and teeth, the numbness, the depression, anxiety, uncontrolled crying, memories, pictures, their clothes, their toothbrush sitting dry, the not focusing, the racing heartbeat, the longing, the begging, the grasping for anything to do with them. It may all seem like nothing to people who have never lost a husband, wife, or child, but to us, it is our way of life, our every breath we take, our every step. We no longer take the small stuff for granted and the big things seem irrelevant most days.

I would never wish this pain on my worst enemy and I pray for God to spare others the mind-numbing and heart breaking emotions we feel all in one day. It makes me angry that someone would cause this pain on another human being  but yet I pray for my husband’s killer. I forgive but I do not forget. I still want justice and I will always search for it.

I keep running into people who are not hurting a little, I run into people who are broken beyond repair. It is as if God is putting people in my path to help. My friends are now referring to them as my angels. They are people who are lost and I have walked in their shoes, as an adult and as a child. I can relate to them and God is using me to help them. I know when they see us healing, they see it is possible. I have a message to all of you hurting and lost. Find someone who is hurting. Show them how far you have come. We will never be one hundred percent healed. When we go to our death-bed, we will still have sorrows and regrets. Every day that you wake up, you ARE healing. You may not feel it but you are and you have to trust that you are. You will not wake up one day healed. Healing is a journey, it is learning to cope, learning to find ways to comfort yourself and others. This is healing. Healing is knowing that you are even if you do not feel it all the time. We have our good days and our bad days.

I was shocked to find so many people suffering from losing a loved one. Everywhere I turn, I am finding people from all walks of life that are begging for someone to talk to and receive reassurance that they are experiencing normal symptoms. I always recovered from losing a loved one and never knew this pain existed. Sure, I dealt with issues of losing my father and other loved ones but I could still function. It wasn’t until I lost my husband that I learned the seriousness of it. We will never reach all the widows or parents or children throughout the world who are silently suffering. With that being sad, we need to search for them and show them they are not alone. You know yourself, when surrounded by many loved ones, you can feel completely alone. Children who were abandoned and are now orphans feel the pain we feel. Can you imagine a child feeling this pain? They are everywhere, in every city. It even makes you slow down long enough to realize the emotions animals feel. They feel afraid, happiness, loneliness, and I cannot even stomach thinking of the ones who are tortured. You suddenly realize how many of us feel real pain.

Please pay it forward and find others to comfort. Ease their suffering just by showing them they are not alone. When you show them how you are healing, you will also be healing yourself. It puts experience under your belt and it puts your focus on others instead of your pain. It gives you something to look forward to. If you are unsure of where to start, ask God to start putting people in your path to help and then start taking notice. It may be a little boy standing by a coke machine, or the stranger sitting next to you, or someone you have emailed for a while and never knew their story. You will know when to speak. Listen to your gut and follow your instincts. If you ask, He will deliver, you just have to be watching and listening. You will be shocked at how many are silently suffering and can live a better life just because you were in their path. You will be their light in their worst darkness just by listening and sharing your story.

You can send them or enter them (and yourself) on an online prayer request at http://TheLifeAtHome.webs.com for other viewers to pray for. A place to tell your story was just added this week and so many will be lifted from hearing our stories.

May God Bless You on your journey of rediscovering who you are and who you were. Keep their memories alive and talk about them. Honor them and share their life with us. Always hold onto the fact that they love you and are waiting on you on the other side. Until then, please be a light to others who are living with the hundred emotions we feel on a daily basis and do not know how to process it all. I hope to hear back from you and all the good things you are doing to improve your life and the life of others.

One of my favorite quotes:

You never know how strong you are

until strength is all you have left.

-author unknown

To All Women Worldwide

I found another great source of inspiration today and I want to share it with you. Natalie Francisco is helping women worldwide overcome the challenges we face in life. She has a lot  of inspirational messages on her site as well as a class she offers. I love the Pearl of Wisdom she features at the bottom of her site. If you are interested in rebuilding your character and overcoming whatever it is in life you are facing, visit Natalie at http://www.nataliefrancisco.com/wowwi/   for messages that will no doubt remind you of your values and goals, and reinforce the message of believing. She teaches you to avoid the negativity that life sometimes brings.

Garfield Uses The Toilet

This is a random post and is irrelevant to my site. Just wanted to bring a smile. An abandoned cat that we fell in love with was already toilet trained. My daughter loves to video the animals playing and wrestling and was following Garfield through the house one day. He went into the bathroom and she thought he was just going to try to drink out of the toilet. Her expression was funnier than the cat, she sounded so country! The video is on the top right of this page.

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