Sunday, June 15, 2008

Snoring, Chocolate, and Weeds

I'm back everybody! It was a good conference, minus a few things that I would have changed. But it's not MY conference, so I'll leave it be. I had a great time, it was especially good getting to know some of the ladies in our church. One in particular - Alistair's Mum (the baby I held last week) - was an absolute delight to spend time with. She called me her Mother's Helper (I think I was starved for something to do, so I helped a lot with Alistair).

I managed to "touch all my bases" before I left. The floor got vacuumed, Oceana went to her friend's house, I got the car in the free parking at church (it's a store front church, so there's all metered parking...), and gave my key to the church administrator so Matt could pick it up. We had a good drive up, I slept for 2 hours. I felt bad ignoring our driver, but I was shot, and running out of caffeine (only 1 cup on Friday - until 10pm! Ak!)

Friday night was good, until we got back to go to sleep. I realized around 1 or 2 that one of my roommates (8 ladies to a room) snores like a ... well ... a something. I couldn't sleep. Neither could some of the other ladies. It's all good - but it's hard enough sleeping on a strange bed, in a sleeping bag.

Saturday was great, I started out by finding Vanessa and getting Alistair. I realized the poor girl was trying to get him all settled before she went to breakfast, and I was afraid she wouldn't eat. I mean, let's be honest - we Mommy's have always done it! We make the sacrifices for things like food, because we need to get the baby fed and changed, and get ourselves packed. So anyways, I got to burp/wind Alistair (It's nice to know I haven't lost my touch).

The conference was good. The two nursing mothers who brought their babies sat in the back with their big fat strollers, and the rest of the ladies sat way up front. So opted to sit with Missy and Vanessa, because I didn't want them to feel left out. It's so easy to feel left out when you've got a newborn - I know. Life has to stop because the baby's hungry, or smelly, or wet, or has just puked through their 9th outfit for the day. And people who haven't had babies, or haven't had them in a few years don't remember the chaos. I really enjoyed being with them, it wasn't hard for me. Like I told them, I can be happy for them and their sons (even though they are both about a month younger than Joshua).

There was lots of chocolate and coffee to be consumed at this conference. Oh yay! Haha. You know you're gonna be happy when you come out into the cafe area and spot a chocolate fountain! What sort of chocoholic planned this event???

My van dropped be off late last night around 11pm, and then like the crazy person I am, I stayed up for another hour and a half. I did sleep 2 hours in the car again, but still, why did I stay up??? Oceana woke up at 5:30am this morning, and since Matt had a bit of a rough weekend with her (she didn't sleep well Friday night, and he had to wake her up from her nap on Saturday afternoon) I got up with her. I'm a bit ragged right now, but I did get a little nap (that's what happens when you lay down with a 2 year old to get them to take a sleep!)

I had a bit of a "grr" moment this afternoon. My sister is arriving (to live with us) on Thursday and I was starting to look around at the "weeds". It's the stuff that irritates me, but I don't take care of because I have a 'good excuse'. The driveway is cobblestone so there's tons of weeds in it, there's weeds on the steps, in the gardens (lots of those!), and that big beanstalk thing I complained about 2 months ago? It's still there. Well I got annoyed. This was only the 'outside' stuff that was irritating me. And in a moment of "grr" I went out and started weeding. I have no idea how long I was out there before it started raining, but I've made a dent in the front yard. I'll probably continue tomorrow. I DID get rid of the jack in the beanstalk. All it took was a few rags (it's got thorns) and a big serated bread knife to cut the roots out! Oceana kept running into when she was playing and getting pricked. (BTW, to the person who asked about how to say her name, it's "Oh", "Shee", "Ann", "Uh"). As I was out there weeding I was reminded about weeds in my life (more on this later).

This weekend was a great time, and one of the things they talked a lot about was, "What has happened to you does not determine who you are." and it got me thinking. Of course it got me thinking about Joshua, and losing him. It didn't help that there was an hour session about all the unpregnant woman who were prayed for to have children last year, who now have babies (no joke, it took an hour to talk about them all!). And I finally came to this realization. I wrote this in my journal last night, at the evening meeting:

"My circumstances do not determine Who I Am. I desperately want to be Joshua's Mum. I want to be a Mum who lives with the memory of my boy in my heart. I don't want to be the woman who is bitter, and jealous, and angry with God for taking my son. I want to be the woman who praises God for my son. I want to be the woman who uses her son's life as a catalyst to live better, and bring people into the Kingdom [of God]. I want my son's life to be a fragrant offering to God and I want my life, my way of grieving, and living in his memory to be a glory to God."

That's what was going on for me this weekend. But I was also aware that I'm neglecting a lot of stuff, not just physical things, but emotional and spiritual things as well in my life. Some of it has been out of necessity, but some of it has just been me being lazy or uninterested.

As I was weeding I felt like God spoke to me about weeding my life out. I don't think I'm too busy, but I do think I've done the "not now" too much. We've all done it - seen a cobweb and ignored it for weeks because we just don't feel like dealing with it. Well, all of us semi-crummy housekeepers have anyways. I'm so good at seeing a dish in the living room, on my way to the kitchen, and I leave it there. I see the clutter and I sit on my butt and watch TV for hours. Or I walk by the folded laundry for days because I don't want to take 10 minutes (that I DO have) to put it away. And I felt like God was showing me that I had "let the weeds grow" in my life. Not just housekeeping, although sometimes I think could be growing herbs in my house - ew ew ew)! But there are little idiosyncrasies in my life that I've left alone. It's the attitudes I live with, the "But this is the way I was raised" stuff that I know isn't right, or the way I treat people occasionally. It's the fact that I want to read my Bible, I want a relationship with God - but I very often neglect it. Like - I'll be honest - I've gone weeks without touching my Bible since we've found out about Joshua, because my heart's just not in it. Or because I don't feel like it. I often just float through life and ignore the things that are important. I float though life, rather than choose my life. There are other things, particularly with relationships that bother me, but I don't deal with them. And I feel like I'm at a turning point. I'm going to be weeding out my life out.


  1. Hi Susie, great news Elijah is doing fine. We received the package today, we were on our way to Marie's sister's baby shower when I stopped at my mom and she gave me the envelope, Marie said it couldn't of arrived on a more perfect day, just when she needed it! She will be writing to you soon. The hat is gorgeous! Thank you so much for being there for her. May the Lord repay you fully. God Bless, I'll keep you posted :) God Bless

  2. You are a gifted, beautiful young women. I have been in places in my life ( 48 years) that were so weedy, you couldn't call it weeds anymore- it turned into a field of briers. It started with weeds, I'm sure. Oh the bitter lessons I learned on hands and knees pulling up all those nasties. It is such a good thing that you are listening to God. I see that you are becoming a woman of great faith. It's lovely, and so are you-

  3. I love what you wrote in your journal. I too sometimes don't feel like picking up the Bible or praying when I know it certainly couldn't hurt...just don't feel like it. God's been revealing to me things that are attaching themselves to my grieving, like a spirit of disappointment, and the enemy making God look bad. I want to grieve with hope. A neat thing happened while I was praying yesterday morning...I was again thinking about Jeremiah 1:5, the scripture your dad quoted at Joshua's send off, and as I thought about "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you", I began to think about future grandchildren that God already knows about and said a prayer for them. Grieving with hope...

  4. Susie,

    It is so refreshing to see someone so hungry after the things of the Lord! I too have struggled with Bible Reading and in my position in the church was so ashamed! But, God says His mercies are new EVERY day! Recently God has rekindled His love in me and it is exciting! Praying for you as you, AND I, and others, as we work on those "weeds" in our life!

    A chocolate that is conference I NEED to be at! LOL!!!

    Love & Prayers in PA

  5. Susie,

    Thank you so much for this post, you have no idea...... what you wrote about how our circumstances don't define us is soooo true and although I have known this for a while I have struggled to remenber to live it. Last year after the birth of my son I was diagnosed with post-natal depression. It turned my world upside down (apparently I had it since my daughter was born 4 years ago but wasn't picked up - I just lived with it thinking this is what parenthood was like)

    I had been doing well up until recently where suddenly everything fell apart again and I was starting to allow my life to be dictated by myu circumstances, not what God had promised for me.

    Tahbnk you for the kick in the pants i needed to start looking beyond where I am and start looking to the God in my situation.


  6. Isn't it awesome how God can use something simple like weeds to show us things in our lives that need to be changed? I am so glad that you were able to spend some time away with just the girls and that you were able to refresh and renew your mind. I love how the Lord promises restoration after a time of trial.
    Thanks for your words, they were very encouraging to me.