Sunday, September 30, 2007

It's All in the Emotions (Sunday Scribblings)

I am not powerful. In fact, I feel exceedingly powerless most of the time.

I do not exert great power or force.
I am not physically strong beyond the ordinary.
I do not feel like I have the uncanny ability to move people with the power of my voice, speech, written word, or logic.
And I certainly don’t feel like I have great authority or influence.

However, I have powerful, strong emotions.

When I am hurt, I hurt deeply.
When I am in love, I love passionately.
When I am angry, I am completely angry.
When I am sad, I am inconsolable.
When I am afraid, I am profoundly afraid.
When I am content, I am genuinely satisfied.
This week's topic, Powerful, was very difficult for me. I'm not entirely sure why, but it took me over a day of thinking to decide what to write, and when I did, the thoughts did not pour from me as they often do. There must be something about this word that strikes dischord in my mind, but I can't verbalize what it is. Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Thankful Thursday

Ephesians 2:8 (King James Version)
8For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Lest any man should boast.

I have a desire to relect on this Bible verse. It is one I have remembered since I was a young girl. At the time, it meant little to me. I couldn't comprehend its power. But as I grew older, I came to view this verse as a lifeline for all of us. We try every day to do what is right. We have faith, we love our spouses, we try to keep His commandments, we give to the needy and the poor, we pray, we raise our children in His word, and we love our fellow man. God wants us to do these things. But it is not enough to make God love us. He loves us anyway. Jesus shed his blood so that we may have GRACE. We have God's unconditional love as long as we are willing to accept it and accept Him. It is not the great and noble causes we fight for. It is not how many people we help. It isn't even keeping his commandments. It is God's GRACE. Without it, none of us would measure to God's standards. With it, we are all forgiven, we are all loved, and the price for our sins has been paid. It is like a mother who loves her child no matter what he does, but far more powerful. I am thankful for this.

Lord, Thank you for the gift of GRACE. Thank you for your almighty love, acceptance. We want to praise you and lift your name in joy. We want to be shining examples of Your love and GRACE so that others might find this same gift. Thank you for Jesus Christ and Your Holy Spirit which guides us each day. In Your Son's Precious Name I pray. Amen.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

"Hi, my name is..." (For Sunday Scribblings)

(This is a work of fiction, based on some personal experience)
“Hi. My name is Talbot, and I’m an alcoholic. I have been sober for three months this time around. It’s the longest length of time I have remained sober. My wife and kids are only a part of why I am here today. My wife… she has put up with my drinking binges for far too long. And the kids… they don’t need to live life in the company of a man who gets drunk every weekend (or more) and can’t remember what happened after the fifth or sixth drink. But most of all, I am here because I know that I have a problem that I cannot control on my own. I’ve tried. I am weak, and I can’t get sober without help.

I am not a loud drunk, a rowdy drunk, or a mean drunk. I am just a drunk. My definition of getting drunk means releasing tension from whatever is going on at work or at home. It means gaining a different perspective on problems I am having trouble sorting out sober.

I like to hang out on the back porch by myself and drink and think, though I would really prefer my wife to get drunk with me. She won’t. And the problem is that when I drink, I can’t stop. I drink, and drink, and drink some more. I turn the I-pod on and listen to music, and I’m having so much fun and so much time to think in my own little world that I continue to drink. Pretty soon, I’m howling at the moon, um, er, singing to the music... loudly. Trouble is, that wakes my wife who is already upstairs sleeping, and I happen to be right below her window.

Another trouble is that I drink until I pass out, whether it’s on the back porch in a lawn chair or on the couch with a beer in my hand. Thankfully, I gave up the hard stuff, Jack Daniels, a few years ago, and thankfully, I don’t smoke anymore, because I would pass out with a lit cigarette and burn myself, my shirt, or my blanket, depending on where I was.

Another problem is that if I run out of something to drink, I want to drive to the liquor store or gas station for more. It doesn’t matter what time it is. My wife has to take the keys away from me. She has actually driven me there before, rather than let me drive and get in a wreck, and rather than fight me over the keys. But she usually manages to get them from me, and I am always glad for that the next day. She shouldn’t have to do that, though.

In my mind, I rationalize things. It’s only beer. Or, it’s only wine. Doesn’t matter, though, does it? It’s alcohol, and it’s an addictive poison. I can convince myself that I deserve that drink. I convince myself that it helps me problem-solve. I convince myself I’m not hurting anyone. I convince myself that there is nothing I can do about it. I convince myself that the drinking helps my stomach problems. I can convince myself that it’s someone else’s fault. In short, I lie to myself.

I know that I am irresponsible and selfish. I know that I have put my wife through hell. I know that one day she will get tired of it and leave me. I know she’ll take the kids to keep them from witnessing their dad drunk. And I wouldn’t blame her for that, but I don’t want that to happen. And I know that with my own power, sobriety will not come. I submit this to you, God. Give me the strength that I need to change what I can change. Thank you.”

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Collecting (for Sunday Scribblings)

A few of my Dreamsicles

Some women collect teapots
Other people collect rocks
Some men compare their belts
To see who has a notch.

Some like collecting pennies
Instead of giving them to the poor
Folks also collect spoons and stamps
While others think that’s a bore.

Me? I am a collector.
I have a cabinet-full
Of haloed-angel-babies
That are so meaningful.

Dreamsicles, they are
And I have had them for years.
Each one means something different
Some even bring on tears.

There’s soccer, rainbows, gymnasts,
Friends and family, too.
Membership only figurines,
Having just one won’t do.

The ones that are most cherished
Are the ones about my twins
They remind me every day that
Children are where my life begins.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

On Writing (Sunday Scribblings)

Sunday Scribblings prompt - Writing - how apropos!

I am a writing teacher, albeit of 11 and 12 year old students. But my goal is to teach them to write: to communicate a thought in their most authentic, creative, yet organized manner. I prepare them for a state writing test, but more than that, I want them to understand that writers write, and writers read. That's where we get our guidance. If we like what we read, we can imitate it until we achieve a style of our own . Everyone has a story to tell. Everyone. And for me personally, it's not only telling my story, but getting my thoughts and feeling on paper allows me to process what's going on in my life.

Ironically, although I teach writing, I have not fulfilled my own writing goals. From the time I was a little girl, I enjoyed writing. I seem to communicate more easily in writing than I do verbally, although no one would ever accuse me of being at a loss for words. Most of the time, it is easier for me to put my thoughts and feelings into written words than it is for me to say them outloud. Even in dinosaur days when there was no delete button, writing things down was always more natural for me than speaking, especially if the subject was delicate. Writing is an outlet, both emotional and creative.

As a young girl, I wanted to write a novel. A story. A screenplay. Something the masses would enjoy. (Fragments used for effect.) I have authored newsletters and lesson plans, but nothing has been published professionally, a childhood dream of mine. It's not that I don't know how. I know what makes a good piece of writing. The ideas are both universal and orginal at the same time. It is organized but not formulaic. The word choice is precise and varied, yet it doesn't come across as arrogant. It is personal and has personality. There is so much more to good writing, and I recognize it well.

What is it that keeps me from pursuing professional writing? Fear, for one thing. Fear of rejection. Fear of writer's block. Fear in general.

I love to write. I am so thankful that we have this great, big universe called the Internet in which we can write what we feel, and others will read, and many will enjoy, and some will critique, but no matter what, we are FREE to write! And a huge shout-out to Sunday Scribblings for prompting us and encouraging us to practice and develop our talent!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

The End

The End…
The curtain falls…
Silence for a moment,
And then applause.
A feeling of sadness mixed with satisfaction.
Momentary awe,
Then back to reality, real life.
Moving on,
Going separate ways,
A short, shared experience;
A multitude of differing paths may never converge again.


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