Tuesday, October 30, 2007

What a close call that was!

This evening I had two friends whom I grew up with at the house for a visit. We all attend the same church and have pretty near the same religious values but maybe a little different in some areas. We gathered this evening to do a bit of scrapbooking. Two of us love crafts and even though the third person of our little group is not quite into the crafts, we were able to enjoy the evening as our conversations went from one subject to another, all topics relating to faith and the love and trust of God.

The conversation went from our childhood and an amusing story of how one of the girls, S, and her sister lived down the street from us and on every Christmas morning, they would come to our house and see what we got and show us what they got. Sometime before the morning was over, S would manage to break one of my dolls or one of my brother's toys. Since we have gotten older, we have had a big joke about that. She always claims she was a scientist and was curious as to how the doll's eyes would open and shut, then she says in an amusing manner "why take the head off of my own doll to experiment?" You would actually have to hear us joke about it to really gain the amusment of the story. Actually I brought it up because I wanted to tell her how my seven month old grandson is already turning over his toys as if to investigate how they are made.

We touched on our Seventh Day Sabbath keeping, as we are Seventh-Day Adventists, then went on to how Spirituality has been taken out of the schools and yet, Halloween, an annual activity that is supposed to be of Satan, is allowed and no one says anything about it. The conversation then turned to the war and the United States, Iran, Iraq, Kwait, and how all of this relates to prophecy. We drifted on to talking about various evangelists on TBN and that conversation went on for a good season.

Then somehow while discussing things that bring on fear to each of us, I shared that one of our students at the school where I'm employed brought a snake in after having a walk with the class, and started to pull it out of her slieve to show it to me. I am highly frightened to snakes and exclaimed to her not to show it to me, and when she went to another room, I left the building and went to another building of our organization to finish out the day. This lead the conversation to the other two girls expressing their fear of bugs and mice, etc. One of my friends shared a story of how she would react if she went to a person's house to witness about the Bible and discovered mice. My other friend began to share her fear of mice and how she never wants to run into any at a friend's house or anywhere else. S. noticed that my eyes got big and said she thought I was reacting to their mouse tales but little did they both know that because I live in a wooded area and since we have been getting colder weather, I saw a mouse going across the floor one night last week. It startled me because I too am scared of them. I moved and it ran so that told me they are as afraid of me as I am of them. Several times since, I have prayed that there aren't any mice in my house, and all the while we were having our conversations of fear, I was praying to God that he would not allow a mouse to run across the floor. God heard my prayer and the girls were able to go home after enjoying a nice visit with me and without my critter imposing himself upon us while we visited.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

My Mother--A Strong Woman

During the floods of 93, my house was pretty damaged by all the rain. The grounds where I live shift, and as a result my basement walls shift also; therefore, causing large cracks in my basement which is made of cement blocks. At that time the basement began to cave causing the basement to look as though the walls were going to simply cave in. Therefore, I had to apply to FEMA for the funds to fix the damages done by the excess rains. Because my house appeared to be dangerous, I had to reside with my parents for approximately a year or so.

My mother suffered from diabetes and occasionally had shortness of breath so bad that she had to use an oxygen tank that my dad bought for her. Since she was so ill and I was having anxiety because I began to fear we were going to loose her; I began seeking professional help. Many times I would just break out crying as she had the terrible pain of gout, and her medicine would make her sick to the stomach and she would endure the pain of gout when not on the medication and when she took it, she became sick to the stomach. Because I was so close to her throughout my life, it became almost unbearable to think about being here without her. Since my dad worked at nights, I would climb in bed with my mother, perhaps trying to hold on to her as long as I could.

At that time, I didn’t realize she was having shortness of breath at night and needed to use her oxygen tank to get her breath. She would ask to use my asthma inhaler to get her breath. Because she didn’t want to stress me out, she would not use her oxygen tank and perhaps suffered it out throughout the night. To show you how God works, one night I told myself that I needed to stop climbing in bed with my mom and sleep in the other bedroom, and this was because I felt I was really too old to be sleeping beside my mother.

Many nights, I would wake up to the sound of my mother using her oxygen tank; trying to get her breath. She was unaware that I could hear her. I realized at that point that it was a good thing that I decided to move to another room because now when she woke up in the middle of the night, she could use her oxygen tank without the fear of stressing me out. I always knew that she was the kind of person who would suffer through illnesses rather than to let on to us that she was ill.

I always marveled as to how, even though she was ill, she would single handedly fix a large Thanksgiving dinner for the whole family so we could all enjoy a wonderful meal together. Cooking was also one of her strong points. She made the best corn-bread dressing ever. Now when Thanksgiving comes around, I am the one who fixes the meal when I'm not invited somewhere else. It is not an easy task and I am fairly healthy, thank God. Throughout her life, my mother endured many hardships from contacting TB of the bone, a “wicked step-mother,” an unfaithful husband who remained unfaithful throughout the marriage and who was abusive during the beginning of their marriage. Although my dad was all of that, he was a good dad, who took very good care of us, and somehow managed to raise us in a Spiritual setting. We (my brother and I) never knew how hurt, unhappy and how much she suffered mentally and physically because she was so strong and because of her love for us, she was able to keep us from seeing how badly she was hurting/suffering.

On June 18, 1995, my worse fear came to light. My parents had gone to a church camp in Kansas City, Mo. After a week or so of Spiritual blessings, they started to return home. They were driving a truck and pulling a trailer. Just 40 miles out of our city, something happened and the truck and trailer turned over and because my parents did not have on their seatbelts, they both went through the window and somehow the truck killed my mother. At times, I can still hear those words as my son told them to me. “We lost grandma on the highway today.” She was the best mom God could give you as we always knew how much she loved us and took much time with us and taught us a lot about life in general and along with my dad, she gave us the love of God. That’s one of the many reasons why I was so close to her.