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He Asked Me To Close My Eyes And Walk

Friday, January 22, 2016

The trees were bare as I stared at them out of my therapist's window. They had dropped their stunning, vivid green clothing of summer that had long since died. They stood silently with their crooked, gnarled arms reaching high toward the grey sky. Life giving water clung to the fingertip like twigs and branches. Every minute or so several drops would fall to the ground and soak into the rich soil in which held their roots tightly.

In the book of Ecclesiastes King Solomon tells us there is a season for everything. This is in no way a religious, or Biblical, post, but rather an analogy.

Ecclesiastes 3

1.There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
2.a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3.a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
4.a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5.a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
6.a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7.a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8.a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.

We've all lived these, all of us. As I watched the liquid nourishment fall to the ground in order to feed the root system of the trees, I thought of my life over the last few years. It's been a storm for all too long. While the storm that was is still surrounding me, it is calming.

The therapist startled me out of my thoughts with a request. He wanted me to close my eyes and allow him to lead me into a "meditation." Not a hypnosis type of thing, but rather a tool for letting go of hurtful memories, thoughts, and emotions. 

I closed my eyes and listened as he led me through the woods, seeing a creek, and watch autumn leaves falling to the water. He wanted me to see the leaves as the negative, hurtful, angry, thoughts, and to watch them as they floated the creek, went around the bend, and drift away. 

I did so, but being such a rebel, I didn't walk, I was on my Harley. I asked my followers of my fan page why they rode, but I never answered. I know now. I've done exactly what he led me through while on my Harley. I hear the sounds, I take in the scenery, notice things one would never notice in a car, I enjoy the smell of the fields and of the flowers. I have no thoughts during those times, I'm in the position to be stress free. 

It hit home in a big way. I spoke to my ex husband after the session regarding our son and while doing so I felt a compelling urge to tell him some things that had been holding me captive and unable to move forward in this new chapter I'm facing. 

So many things happened in 28 years, both good and bad, and I told him of some of my earlier mistakes that helped set the scene for the years to follow, he already knew of his. He had forgiven me, and yesterday I forgave him. I don't want either of us to hold on to bitterness, hurt, anger, or resentment. That will only hold us captive to the past. The past cannot be undone, but the future can be influenced by the past, and should, but I don't want it to in a negative way. He and I spoke of the things we did in anger and hurt before, during, and after, the divorce. It doesn't mean they weren't right on either side, but things where logic ends and primal nature takes over. They only caused more devastation for our entire family.

It's so very difficult to see when you're in the midst of the storm its causes. It's only afterward, in life's events, that we can look back, reflect, and put things into perspective. It's when we see why things happened, see mistakes made that turned into mountains, and an eventual landslide taking everything in its path hostage.

Was everything good in our relationship? No. Was everything bad? No. We agreed to make peace, throw the negative emotions, feelings, thoughts, and and any item that could possibly damage us as unique individuals, onto leaves in the river and watch them float around the bend of the creek, and out of our hearts, minds, and souls. Anger and bitterness won't, can't, change a thing for anyone, it prevents healing, and our entire family needs to heal. 

Forgiveness and letting go of harmful, hurtful, emotions, feelings, and thoughts, will only heal our souls, our spirits, and allow us to move into the next chapters of our lives a bit more pulled together, a bit more peaceful. Our family has experienced each of the seasons King Solomon wrote of centuries ago, and now, the war is over and it is time for peace. 

Thank you all for everything you've given me in this journey, thank you for understanding and waiting for me to see for myself, and thank you for not abandoning me during that long, long, storm. 

My family needs to heal, we need to make peace, if not for another for ourselves. We need to be healthy, happy, and let go of bitterness that will only cloud our futures and hold our hearts captive. 

Wow. I think I need a PhD. 

Sending love to you all,

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City Sidewalks

Friday, December 25, 2015

Twinkling lights, laughter, and raindrops, filled the small downtown area of the beautifully lit City of Bridges this Christmas Eve. I watched as families with shopping bags overflowing with last minute gifts smiled, puddled jumped, and danced, beneath the gigantic Christmas Tree in the town square.

Inside of my car I was insulated from it all. We drove with a purpose, slowly, block by block. Raindrops would splatter on the windshield obscuring our view, but we searched in spite of the distractions.

We drove by the homeless that were huddled together waiting for shelters to open. We studied the faces, the posture, the stance, of those we saw. None belonged to the man I was looking for. None were my son. None belonged to the boy-man with many challenges in life that led to his choice to live in the maze of pavement he now calls home. 

At one point, against advice, I jumped from the car to speak with several of the people that make the streets their home. They knew my son, most do because of his ability to befriend anyone anywhere, but they hadn't seen him in weeks. I begged them to please ask him to call his mom if they should run across him.

I kept listening to the voicemail left several days earlier, "Mom I've been in and out of the hospital for the last few weeks. I wanted to check in. I love you." He's always checked in. He might go for weeks at a time, but he's always checked in, especially for holidays, special events, and then again just to say hello.

Finally with darkness falling we left the city for the suburbs, back home. Part of me was hoping he would be there waiting, although I knew he wouldn't be, but the heart of a mom never gives up hope for her children.

When we arrived home lights were out, no one was there. My heart sank. Thoughts of him occupied my mind all last night, and then again today. I checked all of the jails, the hospitals, and, finally gathered the strength to call the coroner's office. I had to leave a message and a detailed description of the boy I carried on my back for two years as a baby, and as I described the red, heart shaped, birthmark on the back of his neck as tears rolled down my cheek.

The voicemail haunts me. He sounded so hollow, beaten down, and hopeless. It made our search all the more fervent. The more we looked the more I felt the hope drain from my spirit, and the more I felt my heart break. What scares me most is the pain he feels. He feels worthless, less than, and unwanted. I've read journals he left behind and I know he wants to leave this Earth and be free from the obstacles he faces.

We'll be out again this weekend looking for the curly headed smiling guy with the infectious laugh, and we will wait for the return call from the coroner.




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Hidden Treasures

Monday, September 21, 2015

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One never knows what they’ll find when they open an old taped up box, a stuck drawer, or even looking through thousands of pictures stored on external hard drives.

I’ve not been well recently and have been lying in bed for the majority of a couple of weeks. Most of that time sleeping, however, yesterday I only slept 13 hours so possibly things are on the upswing?

Boredom skips hand in hand with lying in bed so those are things I did, besides beginning the Sopranos again.

I opened a box filled with framed family pictures, photo books and cards. The first item I came across was a sterling silver book with pictures of my tiny angel grandson, Isaiah, when he was alive.

The invitation to his shower was in there as well as the handout for his memorial service. There are pictures of him awake and beautiful before we knew he was sick, and many, many more after we found out how sick he was.

I’d forgotten how much hair he had. He looked as if he had a black knitted cap on his tiny head, but it was beautiful baby hair, a lock of which I have with me still. He was such a gorgeous baby, and my daughter was so incredibly beautiful in the pictures staring into the eyes of her second child. It was hard to look at, but comforting all the same.

On the hard drives I found lots of photos of my mother with my grandson Jakob. She loved him so much. He had such a mischievous smile in each picture and a head full of dirty blonde curls.

I found files and files of both Karli and Michelle’s weddings. One of my favorite pictures is one with Karli sitting on a barstool watching my mom make meatballs for the wedding. We were all exhausted, but my mom kept working into the night before the wedding.

Then I came upon pictures of my mother’s funeral, my dad, my brothers, and of my last goodbyes to Mom.

Finding pictures of my mom, and of Isaiah, that I didn’t know I had, was one of the best gifts I could have received. After writing this I think I’m going to start in on the other hard drives waiting to be explored and see what hidden treasures I find. 

xoxoxo

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It May Be

Thursday, September 17, 2015

It'll probably be awhile until I'm able to write again.

I'll spare you the details, but I will say my son has been taking very good care of me in this most recent situation, and I'm sure he will continue to do so.

Be in touch when I'm able.

I love you guys,

Teri

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It Is What It Is

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

I might be gone for awhile, not really sure.

I've been pretty sick for sometime now. We've been trying to figure it out.

Too tired to get out of bed. Sleeping 18-20 hours a day is BS.

No feeling in one foot and loss of feeling in the other.

Losing weight again.

Can't think, can't pee, can't walk straight, can't breathe, my back is killing me.

They drew labs again yesterday and filled me with meds.

Next step is getting another MRI scheduled.

Kidney function isn't good and if the one is bad it has to go.

Labs from yesterday should be in tomorrow.

Labs a couple of weeks ago showed some normal readings, but some not so good. 

Tired of being sick, tired of continual labs and tests and tired or worrying what the hell is going on.

Later,

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The Wedding

Friday, September 11, 2015

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Looking back, it could have been a scene straight from the pages of a fairy tale love story.  It was a warm October evening in Texas and a gentle breeze was stirring the air as I unloaded my groceries into my car beneath a sky shimmering with stars.

I opened the hatch of the black and gold 280 ZX and was loading my groceries as I heard a car approach and a door open then shut. I turned and the man behind me was smiling. It was obvious he was a body builder. Even under the over sized flannel shirt I could see the form only seen on a man that had been lifting weights for years.

He had a beautiful smile; his skin bronzed by the Texas sun and had hair that shimmered like golden threads as the lights shone from above. His chest was broad and defined and I could see the outline of his large biceps as his baggy shirt moved with them as he finished loading my groceries into my car.

We chatted a bit and a dinner date was made for October 23, 1987, two days later. After the abusive relationships of the past, I refused to allow him to pick me up. We met at a little place called the Oyster Kracker and I left my car. He opened the door for me on his Cadillac, as any gentleman should for a woman, and we went to a steakhouse for dinner.

Conversation was easy; it flowed as if we had known each other forever. He took my guard down; I let it down. He was polite, handsome, chivalrous, and we had an incredible evening of deep, stimulating, conversation, dinner, dancing, dessert and more conversation before he dropped me off where I had left my sporty little car.

It seemed like a dream come true. He appeared to be everything I’d always wanted in a partner but could never find. We connected instantly and within six months we were married at a little white chapel in Tarrant County, Texas.  

Being on a tight budget, as well as time frame, I made my wedding dress with the help of my mother’s sister. It was flowing ivory satin with a strapless, lace, and beaded bodice. I also hand made my bridal veil, and the bouquets we carried down the aisle.

I was nervous as I waited in the bride’s room with my father. Dad was so handsome in his tux, the first one he had ever worn. He was joking around to keep me from hyperventilating. My breaths were shallow, I had never been so nervous.

As the proper song began, I looked at my Dad, took a deep breath, and out we went. I saw my soon to be husband’s eyes watching me. He was smiling as I walked down the aisle of the candle lit chapel. He was so handsome with his glistening, sun-bleached hair, his perfectly fitted, elegant tux looked amazing on him, and his radiant smile warmed my heart.

My six-year-old daughter was the flower girl, my two-year old son the ring bearer. His boys were ushers and lit the many candles whose flames danced with the music that filled the sanctuary.

My father walked me to the man I was marrying, and as Dad stood beside me, I heard something rarely, if ever, heard from my father, he was quietly crying.  Dad then placed my hands into the waiting hands of another man and went to sit next to my mother.

There came a time during the vows where the man I was marrying was supposed to speak and didn’t. His head was down. I was sure he was going to turn and leave. I felt his grip tighten on my hand, and tug it a bit. A hush fell upon the guests, not a noise could be heard. He then lifted his head, looked into my eyes, and through his tears, repeated the vows.

After the ceremony the pastor had us turn and face our guests as he introduced us as Mr. and Mrs. Both smiling, we walked through the people, giving kisses, shaking hands and exited the building to a waiting limousine.

The driver, or someone, handed us a bottle of champagne, my new husband popped the cork, bubbles overflowed and, of course, my father was first in line for a glass. Someone toasted our new marriage, my husband helped me into the limo and off we went, straight to Arby’, I hadn’t eaten all day.

As we drove from Arlington, Texas to the Adolphus Hotel in Dallas for our first night as a newly married couple, we finished the champagne. Not being a drinker it hit me hard and getting out of the limo in a long flowing dress was more than I could handle. He reached in for my hand and gently helped me out of the glossy silver limo.

As we walked into the grand lobby people turned and applauded. We got checked in and every eye in the hotel seemed fixed on the bride and groom as we headed toward our suite. 

xoxo

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Solace

Saturday, August 29, 2015


It was unusually warm in our dimly lit room room. I felt the breeze, in the late hours of the night, gently stirring the air surrounding us. I stared blankly at the solid cherry wood doors of the closet. I  focused on the crystal knobs that adorned them and wished their clarity was one in which we could live.

Sleep was elusive that evening. I was restlessly lying on my left side, the soft cotton sheets and cream and teal colored quilt were covering my hips, leaving my bare torso to be cooled by the ribbons of air wafting though the room from the opened window. The whispering air caused the drapes to lightly dance leaving their shadows on the wall.

My left arm was stretched above my head and curved back with my hand resting on my long blonde, tousled, tresses. I had my right arm wrapped gently around the goose down pillow by my side. My hand was peeking from the top of the pillow and was relaxed against my chin.

I could hear the deep breathing next to me. I felt him stir and turn toward me. Suddenly his arm engulfed me and pulled me in close. I felt the warmth of his soul touching mine. He grabbed my left arm, removed the pillow and held my bent arm tightly to my body enveloping me in his strength and protective love. 

Instantly I calmed and snuggled in as closely as was possible. I felt his heart beating on my back as he nestled his face tightly into my neck. His rhythmic breathing on my exposed skin was soothing as it gently lifted the golden locks that had fallen across my neck. 

I smiled and thoughts of solace and safety filled my mind. Within minutes I was asleep. The slumber that fell upon me was deep, and much needed, after the week we had endured.

I awoke as I sensed the sunrise. I turned and he was gone. I studied the crumpled sheets he had been under and grabbed his pillow pulling it to my face so I could take in the scent he had left behind. I smiled remembering the security and love of the night before and I knew the day to come would surpass my expectations.

xoxo 

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