Monday, July 4, 2011


Hello Ladies,

I am a big believer that our most defining moments are the quiet ones that go unnoticed. I also believe that these quiet, defining moments are the legacy that we will leave our children.  As you might have guessed this blog is somewhat autobiographical. I don't want to be just another 'mommy blog' but I cannot help but be affected by what goes on around me. 

As I have mentioned in earlier posts an elder of our family has been causing a great deal of suffering because of her addiction. Her sons don't talk to each other or to her. Her poison has spread to aunts and uncles and ever her grandchildren. If this were not bad enough, her addiction has been slowly killing her for years. At this point she literally cannot think clearly. Her body is shutting down. And her family? They are still dealing with the lies and venom that she has been spewing for years. If you were to ask her years ago if this was the legacy that she would like to leave for her children she would be horrified. Now she couldn't stop herself is she tried. And she hates herself for it. She really does.

After much prayer and reflection I think part of the problem is that, for years, she has been chasing after things that she believed that she 'deserved'. She deserved to be right, to be vindicated. She deserved to have nice things ("luxury"). She deserved that cottage by the lake. The house with the pool. And yes, even her addiction. She saw friends, family, even her own children, as things to manipulate. And? And now it is almost over for her. She has few friends and her family is justifiably afraid of her. She still has all of her possessions but they cost money and she can't care for them.

What do we think that we deserve? Ladies, if we follow what society tells us we are going to go crazy. We might not be able to go out to get our coffee a day (that's my big thing). We might not get the career we want. Or the car. We might not even get the children we want (or get them to behave as we would want). We might have to give up a lot of things that have been important to us in the past.

Does this mean that what we want doesn't matter? NO! It matters. WE matter. But it means that we must take care to want what God wants for us. Because, Ladies, God does not want us to die with self-hatred and a family that has been disintegrating for years. He also doesn't want us to stay inside all day taking care of others while giving up our hopes and dreams. We must be creative in our wants just as God is creative. 

What is so wrong with being humble? These days the word 'humility' is associated with being a weak victim whose dreams are dead. In reality, humility is a strength. It allows us to give up our impulsive wants and be guided by wisdom. Think about it. God is not simply something that set up a religious construct that we must mindlessly obey. God dreamed us into being. God formed us in our mothers' wombs. God knows how many hairs are on our heads. When we die, God will call us home by name. Doesn't this sound like someone we should go to for advice? Because, Ladies, no matter how far we think we can go in life God knows that we can go further, be greater, be stronger. 

If we feel that we are overwhelmed maybe it's because we are focusing on the wrong things. If we feel like failures maybe it is because we are listening to the wrong people. So often when we think we don't get what we 'deserve' it is because we are rejecting the grace of God's love. 

We deserve respect as human beings, as women, as mothers, as daughters of God.

I invite you to ask yourself every evening what legacy you are leaving for your children. Some days you must stand up and fight. Some days you must let things go. We make mistakes. We learn. We move on. But we should always invite God help us along the way. We ask for forgiveness, for comfort, for strength, for wisdom. We help each other. But if we do not know our own minds then we cannot know God. And God knows our minds best of all.

Just the other day I asked the son of this bitter woman if he was going to call her on her birthday. He said no because he can't bring her any joy, anyway. And he was right. What sort of legacy is that?

May God heal this family!

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