Thursday, August 30, 2007

Finding Home -

Within each and every one of us, there lies a place called “Home”. It may look and feel different at various points in our lives. There are times, perhaps long ones, in which Home seems to be absent. Did it move away and forget to tell us, or did we wander off from it? It is there none the less and if we are not presently aware of living in it, we are necessarily engaged in the search for it. Home is that place where we feel the greatest inner warmth, where we can go to be ourselves, and it is where we must go if we are to fulfill our purpose in the world.
Home is an inner place, not an outer one. It is important for us to know that, and to know it for sure. Numerous people and influences in our lives will merrily assure us that Home is somewhere on the outside. People spend lifetimes, fortunes and much, much energy trying to find it or create it outside of themselves. But until Home is found on the inside, all our best efforts to build it on the outside eventually come to naught.
Contrary to appearances and to common belief, Home is not something that can be lost. Certainly, there are times in life when we feel rootless, Homeless, sitting among the ruins of shattered lives and broken dreams. In those times, everything in our experience tells us that all is lost, that we are lost. The truth goes otherwise. No matter how discombobulated our lives seem to be, there is still that inward place to which we may turn for solace.
The illusion that we have nowhere to turn, that we might lose our Home, is the basis of fear. When someone or something threatens to take away our security, our life, our domicile, our means of support, or people that we love, we become afraid and often panic. The basis of that fear is our belief that our very roots can be taken away. Our enemies will have us believe that they have the ability to destroy us. All their power over us lies in their assuring us of the truth of that belief. No matter how sever, or sudden or unforeseen something is it cannot destroy the foundations of Home.
Home is where we know we were always meant to be. It is an inner experience of belonging, but belonging not to something outside of ourselves, but rather of belonging within ourselves.
Because Home has only to do with having a certain job, or a certain amount of money or a certain type of friends or furniture, good luck or even an unblemished moral record. Being Home has only to do with being Home. The door is always open!
Father Paul Keenan – Beyond the Blue Snow

When we have no words of our own – sometimes we can find comfort in the words of others.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

I don't want to be alone when I die!

I don’t want to be alone when I die. That thought hit me very hard this morning. I would say I don’t know why but I do. It is that whole birthday thing for one and the fact that Billy will be leaving Saturday. Why would this cause me to contemplate my death you ask? Well, the birthday thing should be self explanatory – I ain’t getting any younger. I have already lived more years than I have left to live. Something tells me I want make it to 120! Billy leaving is for some reason is making me feel abandoned. I use “abandoned” because I cannot find the right word. No, Billy will not stop being my son, but he will not be able to be my “go to person”. I have always tried hard not to “intrude” in Billy’s life – well not since he got married – before that he was fair game. I know from experience that having your own “life” – work and family – is hard enough without having a Mother that has to give you her opinion on everything you do. So, I have tried hard to let Billy and Mont live their life BUT I always knew that Billy was only a phone call away if I needed help with anything from moving furniture to answering a computer problem question or just talking to me about how much we both miss my Dad. But what I counted on him and Mont for most was something I have never had to ask them to do. I always knew that if something ever happened to Tom they would be there to help me hold it together. No, I don’t think anything bad is going to happen to Tom – but we both spend a lot of time on the expressway. The last thing I say to Tom every morning is “Drive careful”. So, this thought is on my mind. I guess you could say I have always counted on them to be my “back up”.
I know that I kid and say I don’t care if Mont and Billy leave as long as they leave Hunter but this statement is far from the truth. First of all there is no way I could keep up with kid for more than a couple of days. And since I am not real good at making him toe the line he would be as mean as a stripped leg snake in a few weeks – when people would see us coming they would lock the doors because “here comes that bad kid”.
I am very proud of Billy; he has accomplished something very few people do. Billy set a goal for himself and his family and he worked hard to achieve it. I know that Billy accepting a position with the FBI will be a great adventure for him, Mont and Hunter. It will make their future brighter! I am excited and happy for them and if they were not “my” kids I would be ecstatic!
Oh, I know there are phones and planes and we have a new car, heck I have a computer with a camera on it! So, we will be in touch. And I am sure when Billy gets through the academy he will have time to answer a few of my calls. Mont and Hunter will come home to visit often and the 3 years that they are gone will pass quickly. I know that Tom and I will be fine and don’t need a back plan – we got each other. If I get really bad off and need a kid fix Julie will let me barrow Calla. These are all thing that my rational mind knows ------
Right now my rational mind is in my back pocket and my heart is in the driver’s seat --------
So, forgive me this weekend if I sit and contemplate death and cry from time to time. Because on Friday I will be a year older and Saturday the most precious gift God has ever given me – my son – will leave the nest.

Monday, August 27, 2007

You can't be stupid all your life - or can you?

As you know we live on the outskirts of Atlanta so you cannot turn on the TV or radio without hearing about Michael Vick. I try and avoid this discussion at all cost but I have decided to go on record or blog I guess I should say.

HOW STUPID CAN YOU BE? I do not even know where to start! How could someone with such a bright future ahead of them do something so stupid? Setting aside for a moment (I will get to it later) the horrific inhuman acts that he was involved in. Why would Vic not want to do everything within his power to live up to the “reputation” that had been created for him? Vic’s reputation was created by the Falcon’s Organization, Nike, Rebook and numerous other companies that signed him to advance their products. Vic was and is a good athlete, I do not disagree. BUT these companies turned a virtually unknown college football player into the quarterback that every kid wants to be.
Every kid in Atlanta wanted a pair of Vic Nick’s. Vic had made it! And so could they. I feel sorry that yet another “role model” has toppled from the pedestal these kids placed him on.

Now, to how I feel about his involvement in the “sport” of dog fighting. HOW STUPIED CAN YOU BE!
While using animal fights for entertainment has been around since Biblical times, heck they feed Christians to the lions, it did not then and does not now make it acceptable. Yes, I realize that animals do not have souls and I have no problem making the distinction between humans and animals. I still feel a responsibility to take care of God’s smaller creatures. I have 3 dogs –Max has ADD, Honey is a paranoid skio and Toby has no idea he is a dog. I cannot imagine how anyone could derive pleasure from watching any animal kill another one. As I have mentioned many times I was raised in the country on a farm and my Dad taught me a healthy respect for animals. Yes, some were raised specifically for food but they were always well taken care of. Dad believed that if you had an animal it was your responsibility to take care of it.
Guess I need to tell you a funny story about the farm. There were no vet’s down at the mall to take care of your animals, unless you had a sick cow or horse. Then you could give the vet a call and they would come out. Other than that the role of vet fell to the farmer. My Dad was pretty dang good! He could give our animals all the shots they needed and sew them up when need be. Well, one of the horses got caught in the bob wire fence and cut his forehead pretty badly. Dad got the necessary items to stitch the horse up – needle, fishing line and a large shot of Novocain. It was Charles’s (one of the cousins I refer to as my brother) job to hold the horse’s head still. Charles wrapped his arms around the horses head and set his feet to brace himself. Dad took aim and drove the shot of Novocain home – problem was the horse jerked his head up and Dad hit Charles in the side of the face with the needle. In the excitement Dad delivered almost a full does of Novocain into Charles face. Charles dropped to the ground, rolling around holding his face and swearing like a sailor (this is who I learned to cuss and spit from, and he was good at both). Charles was sure that Dad had numbed his brain and he would die at any moment. Charles was not the best of guys so I am sure he was thinking he needed a bit more time to make amends! My Aunt found lipstick on Charles socks once and when she questioned him about it he told her he had been to a “foot washing”. At last it was not Charles time to meet his maker and in a couple of hours he was fine.
I am glad that Vic has got “jail house religion” before he has served any time. The Lord is the only one that can truly know Vic’s heart and pass judgment on him. I am glad I was not placed on earth to judge anyone because I am afraid I would judge Vic very harshly. I do not understand people that visit harm on animals or humans.
You cannot be stupid all your life but Vic is off to a good start!