Thursday, July 28, 2016

When Your Kiddos Teach You

me and my kids

Becoming a mother is one of the most special gifts I've ever received. Everything about motherhood is hard. Everything about motherhood is easy. Take one glance at the human you grew, all the ugliness blurs. You become a yellow smiley emoticon with hearts for eyes! When you are gifted a grand, it feels like a fairy God father granted you a wish to "get it right" this time. Practice all the stuff you learned raising your own. The easy overwhelms the hard.

I enjoy my children. Laughing with them. Crying with them. Guiding them. Riding with them, not so much. Traveling with them. Making memories with them. Sharing milestones and successes. Supporting them through trials and defeat. Simply, loving them.

Everyone has special qualities that belong inherently to them; Godly gifts. I learn from these in my daughters. The special way Sydnee is the most patient individual I know. She's the one who don't know how to be mean and it's funny watching her try. She's the one that nurtures creativity in her husband and daughter when I would have never allowed it in the first place. She's the one I prayed hardest for me to accept her non-competitive, easy-going, unstructured style. She taught me how to surrender. Her patience influences me in a powerful way. It makes me proud of her.  Finishing second is winning, because, hello, you finished!

Then there's the special way Sloane is the most diplomatic person I know. She cares about everyone's feelings, even animals! She's the one who won't make anyone mad (unless it's me or her sister). She's the one that worries dogs will freeze to death although Google says it's impossible. She's the one that makes herself sick wringing her hands with a flushed face if she feels she said the wrong thing. She's the one always buying gifts, sending thank you cards and making sure to include everyone or exclude everyone mutually. She taught me how to be considerate. Her people skills continually amaze and humble me. I ;love the way people love Sloane!

Then, there's my grand, Lisette. Everything about her is special. She is honestly the most caring individual I know. She's the one that says "Granmom, you be careful" if I'm doing something that concerns her. She's the one that includes me in her prayers every night. She's the one who makes me tear up when she looks at me with pure innocence.. She's the one I want Jesus to call to when it's time. How she loves me right now is like running water without a cutoff switch. Oh how I want to nurture that love!  I never thought it possible but she has taught me to love more deeply than ever before.. 

To my girls.
Proverbs 31:29 
Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
All my love, Mom

Thankful for my girls 365,

I'd love to hear what your kids have taught you. Share with me in a comment...

Friday, July 8, 2016

Free Hugs

beautiful flowers

Victoria, British Columbia, Canada 2016. You simply MUST go! The city is magnificent. The people are super nice. The weather is gorgeous. The food is delicious. The flowers are everywhere. I could go on and on. Victoria was one of the best city visits I've ever experienced. God has blessed me to travel to 45 states including Alaska and Hawaii and seven different countries. 

I learn something from every adventure. I learned something extra special on this outing, from this woman...

This lady has been standing on this corner at various times for the past seven years giving free hugs. Sloane spotted her first and said "Let's get a free hug!". I was apprehensive. I can hug. I like to hug but it's not a common practice for me with total strangers. Also, short in stature does not a good hugger make. You can get a little more insight into short hugger thoughts here.  Since I'm always willing to experience something new and different, I hugged her.

She may be the reason my trip to Victoria was so overwhelming? Her hug was the sweetest, most exhilarating, non-invasive hug ever! She cooed to me in a bird-like song as our arms met and embraced thanking me for stopping to hug her telling me "You're such a good hugger" and "Bless you". Uh, no, Free Hug Lady, thank you!  The experience of that hug still lingers in my heart.

Yesterday, God used that experience in a way I didn't see coming. Steve and I were at Emory for his checkup. A young woman in a wheelchair with oxygen was leaving the office when the doctor came out and whispered something to her. A few minutes later, I saw this same lady wiping tears from her face as she and her male companion waited for the elevator. I wondered if the doctor had told her bad news about her health. In the same instance, Godly compassion filled my heart and I began to pray for her lifting her needs to our Heavenly Father.

Can you guess what happened next? That's right. God nudged me to hug her. I gave him all the reasons why I couldn't. She's a stranger. She's black. She don't want no white girl getting in her face. There's eight people waiting in this tiny area for an elevator! My heart started POUNDING! Just as her friend was moving her toward the elevator, I did it! I asked if I could hug her, she nodded and I did it. It wasn't awkward or strange in any way. It felt good to extend the love of the Father to a fellow being. I saw her again in the lab. She looked at me and smiled. Her entire countenance had changed. She seemed more peaceful, more content. 

You may hug strangers all the time, but I usually don't. God showed me that to experience him, you must seek that which is alive. I loved the beautiful scenery in Victoria. The flowers are alive now but will soon die. People are alive now but will soon die but their souls are alive forever.  I Corinthians 15:22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. God's love is alive! Share the love whenever and wherever you get the opportunity... especially to strangers.

Sharing the love,
The Happy Handicap

Feel free to leave a comment with hugging tips or experiences.