The Long Night – Part II

The police had come to my house and served a search warrant on my son and his friend shortly after arriving home from school. They were ordered to sit on the couch and not move, or use their phones while the police searched the house looking for more evidence.

After coming home I wanted to take my mind off things so I started cleaning the house well into the night. After picking up all the clothing that had been dumped onto the floor and putting back all the items that had been emptied out of boxes in the garage the night still dragged on.

I was desperate for information about my husband and called one of my longtime friend’s daughters that worked for the Sheriff’s Department.

My husband and I had taken her to my company picnic once when she was a small child and it was pretty embarrassing telling her my husband had been arrested. She was able to look in the system and tell me which jail he was in. She was very professional to me, and at the same time I could tell she was concerned.

I had told my father-in-law in an earlier conversation my husband better not call me from jail because I was so mad. Turns out I didn’t have to worry about it because he used his one phone call from jail to call his dad to come bail him out.

After that call my father-in-law called his siblings to see if they could help out with bail money. This ended up causing a huge division in the family. Mostly all of his siblings felt that my husband had caused this mess and he could get himself out of it.

These tensions affected almost everyone in the family down to cousins that were fighting with their own siblings. Some were of the opinion that what he had done was very wrong and still others had sympathy for him. These tensions still exist today, over 10 years later.

The next day when my husband came home from jail he walked in the house and grabbed his basketball. I said “We need to talk about what happened – I’m really upset” or something to that effect. He said “You’re upset? I just spent the night on the floor of a jail.” He took his basketball and walked out the door.

I sat in my car and cried so my kids wouldn’t see me upset. It seemed like he could care less about me, or even try to tell me what was going on. A million questions ran through my head, and I had no answers.

Sometime before I had heard of a Christian radio station and not having anyone to talk to I decided to call in. An elderly man answered and he sounded exactly like my grandpa that had just passed away the year before. He prayed for me and just like that hung up before I could say another word. His voice comforted me and his prayers strengthened me enough to face the day.

I dried my tears and walked back into the house.

Psalm 18:2 The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.

The Arrest

Part I

Ten years ago on Good Friday my ex-husband was arrested.

I never wanted to talk about it because of the shame and embarrassment it caused my children and I, plus I never felt it was my story to tell. But it affected me too, and it altered my path in life.

My ex-husband and I had spoken on my lunch hour and had made plans to go to a Good Friday service at church later that night. I had no idea that his lunch plans had been to meet up with someone (who we now know was an undercover cop) to sell painkillers.

I’ll never forget the detective calling me at work and telling me my husband at the time had been arrested for selling painkillers. I literally could not understand what he was saying. It seemed like he was speaking a foreign language. I also felt like someone had punched me in the gut. I had such a severe pain in my stomach it almost took me to my knees. My coworker had to get on the phone and take down the information the detective was giving her.

I don’t know how I made the drive home, it was a blur. I was frantically calling my dad and his parents to see if someone could find out any information on where he was, and what the details were.

I got home and I recall my oldest son running out to meet me while I was still in the car. He was frantic, “Mom, did you know dad has been arrested?”

The inside of my house looked like it has been ransacked. My clothes were dumped out of the drawers onto the floor. The ladder in the garage was open and boxes had been emptied in the garage. It took me hours to get the house back to normal.

I was in shock and numb as I went about cleaning the house. Little did I know I know just how much my life was going to change.

Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding.

End of Part I

Out With the Old

I don’t know about you, but I was happy to leave 2022 behind.

2022 was especially trying for me. Some of the things I dealt with were family members going through depression, sickness, the loss of friends through death and betrayal and good ol’ REGRET.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines REGRET as:

a: to mourn the loss or death of

b: to miss very much

2: to be very sorry for

And boy, did I have regrets. Regrets for not being a better parent, regrets for letting my anger get the best of me, regrets for not taking things seriously enough. And the list goes on.

True to 2022 my Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve ended with not being invited to a family get-together (specifically told “You are not invited”), a big argument with my ex-spouse and a broken oven.

I was exhausted and literally limping into the New Year (thanks to a knee/ankle injury).

But guess what? I woke up with a Hope and a Future on New Year’s Day. I was thankful to God that He was by my side throughout all my pains, worries and trials.

Psalm 56:8 You keep track of all my sorrows.
You have collected all my tears in your bottle.
You have recorded each one in your book.

God keeps track of all my sorrows. And yours too!

Luke 9:62 But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”

So guess what I left behind in 2022? Regrets. Regrets for past mistakes and things I cannot change. Regrets for trying to force friendships with toxic people. Regrets for caring so much what others think. Regrets for looking behind, constantly.

What did you leave behind in 2022? What is God speaking to you about in this year? What are your hopes for 2023?

At Ease, Soldier

Today I woke up thankful to be alive on this Thanksgiving Day, not in rush mode, the usual wondering how I am going to get through my day.

I grabbed some coffee and thanked The Lord for my blessings. Supportive family, (although it hasn’t always been this way), friends and good neighbors. I’m thankful my back is healed and I can get to my jazzercise class.

So although this day can bring mixed feelings look to the little things to give thanks in. And if you are not feeling it just know that things won’t always be this way, and better days are coming.

So rest today from all the battles and worldly problems, put your feet up and cherish this day.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.


Woulda Coulda Shoulda

Yeah, I had one of those days yesterday.

It all started when I went to the grocery store after getting my paycheck, spending my hard earned money on hard to find, overpriced foods.

I came home and immediately started unpacking while my kids unloaded the trunk. The next morning when I woke up one of my first thoughts was “I don’t remember seeing the meats get unloaded.” I went to my car and opened the trunk and sure enough a whole bag of refrigerated foods was sitting there, nice and warm from being in the trunk for 12 plus hours.

This started me on a downward spiral of thoughts of – why didn’t I get a better job that makes more money, why didn’t I finish my court reporting school when I was so close, why did I waste so much time being a waitress when I could have gone to school, why did I argue with my ex-husband that time and on and on and on.

I even had regrets going back to my earliest memories of being a small child. There I laid in my bed wasting a sunny Saturday crying and dredging up old memories until I finally decided to get up for dinner. Of course we didn’t end up eating until over two hours later because my garage door motor popped and smoked, but I digress.

Thankfully, today I woke up in a much better mood and repented to the Lord for blaming Him for my own decisions I made that created consequences that I am in today.

I know He doesn’t want me looking back at past mistakes, carrying shame and regret like a heavy blanket I’m way too comfortable in.

Luke 9:62 But Jesus told him, “Anyone who puts a hand to the plow and then looks back is not fit for the Kingdom of God.

So, today I do the best I can do. I try to be patient with others, help others, and be the best mom and hard working employee that I can be and pray to the Lord to help me and give me strength and wisdom to get through my days when I’m tired and in pain.

We are all carrying heavy loads these days, and everyone could use some encouragement.

So, it’s ok to cry sometimes. It’s ok to have regrets. Learn from them. What could you have done better? Then get up, wipe your tears and carry on. Get out and see the day the Lord made for you to enjoy.

Psalm 121:1-2 I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.

Guard Your Dreams

Recently I self-published a book called “Bear the Mouse with Allergies and Asthma.”

It’s been a dream of mine to write for as long as I can remember. I’ve always loved letters that make up words, word games, the library, and bookstores. I used to write stories as a child. I would proudly show them off, only to get made fun of.

In third grade my teacher asked us to write a book report about a hero. I wrote about my dad, the only hero I knew at that time.

I’ll never forget the embarrassment and confusion when I received the report back with a big “F” across the top of the page written in red pen and many exclamation points “THIS IS A COP OUT!!!!!!!!”

Being a third-grader I had no idea what a “cop out” was – I just knew it was something not good.

I remember in 10th grade English class I squeaked by with a D. Every paper I wrote was not received well.

I gave up writing after that. Although I still loved to read, and read everything I could get my hands on, I stopped writing stories. I was confused on how I could do so terribly at something I loved.

Fast forward many years later and I was sitting at a women’s conference. I heard the speaker say “Good readers make good writers.” That planted a seed in me, and I actually started to entertain the idea that I could possibly write.

After that conference I felt I was in a funk. I had no creative outlet, whatsoever. I felt frustrated and stagnant.

I decided I would do some life coaching with someone who was objective, and didn’t know me on a personal level. After asking me what I did as a child that made me happy, he suggested I start a blog. That suggestion gave me hope, and something to dream about. I decided I would start that blog.

What I learned along my journey is people will have something to say if you share your dreams with them. Even your closest friends may have something negative to say.

When I shared my book idea with some friends I had a lot of unsolicited advice. I had my own visions on how things should look, and they had theirs. Some people even made negative comments about my story.

Proverbs 18:21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.

Tell God all your dreams and ideas. He’s waiting to hear from you. After all, He is the one who put those dreams and gifts in you, and He has great wisdom.

Protect your ideas and gifts at all costs. Don’t second guess yourself. Don’t let people talk you out of your dream. What area have you struggled in, or people have come against? That may be the area you are called into.

1 Peter 4:10 As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace:

Finally, don’t wait any longer. Someone else needs what God created you to do.

New Children’s Book Out

Hi All!

My dream of writing a book finally came true!

“Bear the Mouse with Allergies and Asthma,” a children’s book is on Amazon in paperback and e-book.

It has always been a dream of mine to write a book, and I hope to write many more.

I’m so thankful to God for giving me this story, and I’m hopeful this book will bring a bit of joy to each child’s life that reads it.

Whatever your dream may be start small if it seems overwhelming, but just take the first step. Make time to do it, maybe put a Do Not Disturb sign on your door. The world needs your creative idea 💡

See you in the next post. 🐻🐭

Bear the Mouse with Allergies and Asthma: Bear the Mouse

Bear the Mouse with Allergies and Asthma

A Note to My Younger Self

With so much news going on in the world the Gabby Petito case has captured mostly everyone’s attention in the US. We will never know why Gabby chose to stay with her boyfriend, maybe she didn’t intend to. We don’t know exactly what happened yet that caused her life to end.

As I watched the Bodycam footage of the Moab City Police Officer it brought back painful memories of my teenage years.

I was in an abusive relationship from 15 to 19 years old, and on and off after that. I know, I know, I should not even have been focused on boys at that age, and I look back at regret at those years, and am thankful God brought me through those tumultuous times, and is healing me from the trauma. But as I thought about those memories, I wondered how did it start?

In my case I was raised in a home with two loving parents. Unfortunately, they did not love each other. Not with an authentic “healthy” love. Abuse and divorce go back generations in my family.

When they split up I was 10 years-old. My brother and I felt we only had each other to lean on. Their divorce was a terrible one. My brother and I went through a parental abduction, a parent being hospitalized for months, my parents dating, remarriages, and eventually separation as the judge separated my brother and I when I was 13 and he was 10. My brother went to live with my dad, and I stayed with my mom. Needless to say, there was a lot going on in my household, and I was a latchkey kid since my mom had to go back to work full time.

I suppose I was really flattered that anyone would pay attention to me, and show interest in me. It was also fun to get away from a lonely life at home. With no mentors or older siblings around to give me advice and being really immature for my age, combined with insecurity and lack of a structured home life I went down a really rough path that the Lord did not intend for me.

It was a path of self-destruction. Promiscuity, drinking, abusive behavior, and suicide attempts were all a part of my teenage years. I know God was always with me, and He knew eventually I would turn to Him crying out to Him because my very life depended on Him. He proved He cared and cares for me, even after I ignored Him year after year.

Romans 5:8

But God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

All of that to say this: If you are in an abusive relationship, leave. I know there are many reasons to stay, you would have to leave your home, what would it look like to others, how would you start over, you have no money…

This is not the path God has for you. It says in God’s word:

Galatians 5:22-23 NIV

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Looking back on my teenage self I wish I could give some advice to the younger me:

You’re beautiful, you don’t need to be in a relationship, you are worthy of love, the non-abusive kind, don’t take being cheated on, spit on, or cussed at. Don’t rush things, focus on your education and most importantly, get to know Jesus. Because if you do that the rest will fall into place at the perfect time.

Matthew 6:33 — ESV

33 But seek first the kingdom of God and righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

If you are going through physical abuse, or even verbal abuse I urge you to reach out to someone you can trust, someone who can help. You deserve better, and you don’t have to take another person’s toxic behavior.

Our days are not guaranteed. God loves you so much He sent His only son to die for you.

Psalm 109:26

Help me. Lord my God; save me according to your unfailing love.

When you are in a good place in your life and look back, you will be thankful to the Lord for what He brought you through. He is our refuge and strength. Be patient with yourself, and give yourself grace.

Oh, and one more thing I would tell my younger self?

You are stronger than you think.