Monday, January 11, 2010

We're still alive!

Hello, my dear blogging friends...Thank you, thank you, thank you, so very much for all your wonderful comments and emails of well wishes...hearing from you is just what the doctor ordered! There is such great comfort in knowing that people care about you. I only feel bad because I haven't been around to visit all of you and do the same...we all need to know that we are missed and that someone enjoys hearing from us...I really, really enjoy hearing from you!

I'm just taking a few minutes to let you know that we are doing much better, and my husband is just finishing his second round of antibiotics for pneumonia, and seems to be beating it this time. My daughter has escaped any illness...Praise God! Needless to say, I am exhausted, drained, pooped, and tired. The christmas tree is down, but everything is still up, and I have no energy to tackle it. Neighbors and friends have been wonderful about bringing food, and making sure we aren't starving...not that missing a few meals would hurt us!

I feel a very strong calling to get my house in order...since last September, when I had to go to emergency and then to urgent care two times, I've realized that I must get my head out of the sand and deal with important issues...one of which is to get a living trust and will prepared so my daughter will be provided for. I think 've lived in denial for years, but the thought occured to me, "What if I don't come home from the hospital...what will happen to my daughter?" I also need to take a serious look at all my "stuff", as my husband is having a difficult time finding things, or he's running into things, or he's breaking things. The cabinets need to be reorganized and everything has to be put in a certain place so he can find it...same thing with the refrigerator. Its easy for me to forget that he can't see like I do, and I just put things wherever there's a spot, but that doesn't work for him...I will find him standing in front of the fridge or the cupboard, searching for whatever, and I realize that it has to change...and I have to change it. I have to consider packing things up and storing them, or getting rid of them altogether. That will be difficult for me...I love my "stuff"...having pretty things around me, dishes and teacups, all those breakable things!...but they are in his way, so it will take some real creative planning to display them without having them out and in the path of destruction! Perhaps it is time to let go and feel the freedom...I'm ready for the "less is more" lifestyle...gaining freedom from the cares of the world is something that has been on my mind for a very long time!

There is a place in my heart that is not right about all this...perhaps I am on the pity-pot and a little resentful that my life isn't like that of my friends. I don't have the freedoms that most women my age have, and there are times the load seems too difficult for me to carry. BUT...I KNOW that isn't true...I am able bodied, I have sooooooo much to be grateful for...I want for nothing, and God has been so good to me, how can I complain? Yet I find that I do, and it has to stop. I have to stand back and take a hard look at my attitude and also my habits...lack of good organization can take me to the heights of irritation and depression...my daughter has a paper fettish, so I'm constantly removing papers from her grasp, and sometimes forget where I've stashed them...spending hours looking for a paper is frustrating.

Its time for some true new year's resolutions. I have to be careful not to get sidetracked and let the Tyranny of the Urgent control me. Have any of you read that marvelous little book? It is quite tiny, but is packed with important truths that can change lives. There is also a workbook, but I don't have it...perhaps its time.

Anyway, this year I will be 65, and I've decided that there is a fork in my road...I will either get healthier, both in mind and body, or I will slide into neglect and deterioration...its my choice. This takes much thought and even more prayer, because I don't have the knowledge or wisdom to get me through, but the Lord does, and my dependence is on Him. One thing I know...I must listen to the still, quiet voice of God, and immediately carry out His directions. With my family circumstances as they are, my future is truly in His hands, and that scares me, because I don't know what His plans are. I can't control any of it...I can't heal my daughter's brain or my husband's eyes, and I can't guarantee that I will outlive them...if I could outlive them, I could make sure they were taken care of...I could control it...but I can't, so my faith must be strong.

And so my blogging may be on hold for another week, or perhaps two, or maybe even three, but I do want to come back with a sense of peace and clarity, and with happy things to talk about. I will visit and post as often as I can, as I do miss all of you so very much. I want to tell you what is happening in my heart as well as sharing tea things and decorating with you. I so enjoy all of the beautiful stories and photos that you all share with me, and they lift my spirits so very much...I want to do the same for you...i want to re-do my blog background, create better photos, etc....for now, though, I'm just not there.

God bless you all...my prayers are with each and every one of you.



  1. Continuing to pray for you.
    Blessings, andrea

  2. Thoughts and prayers are with you, Mary!

  3. Hi Mary. So good to hear from you and it looks like you have been doing alot of thinking. Try not to get overwhelmed by these things. Take one thing at a time. I learned long ago that everyone has problems, but sometimes it does not look they do. Years ago I had a friend. It look like they had everything that money could by and it seem like we are always just getting by week by week. I can say that they did have money and things, but they had alot of health problems. Our family was healthy, but had little money. Some of our friends had money and good health, but they ended up getting a divorce and their kids were rebelling on them.

    So Please just take one day at a time. When my Mother died it gave us a wakeup call to make our wills made out so our kids would not have to go to alot of trouble if something happen to both of us at the same time. A will and a living will is a great idea at any age.


  4. I can relate to this post. I know we need to get rid of a lot of stuff. Like you I really like my stuff even though I know eventually it will all have to go. I hope you continue to feel better and will soon be able to do the things you want to do. Just take one day at a time.
    Blessings my friend,

  5. Oh Mary it is so good to hear from you. I've wondered what had happened. I hope that your hubby will soon be well. I look forward to your posts once again. Decluttering in such a heavy issue, and I like you enjoy my pretty things. Take care.

  6. Mary, I've missed you in bloggy land. I hadn't realized you've all been so sick. As far as the decluttering issue, I'm in the middle of that right now. We are going to be downsizing significantly. So, I am throwing away so much stuff I've accumulated. With the internet, I've decided to scan in certain papers and get rid of so many files. Now I just have to make sure I back up my computer.

    It's always wise to be prepared though with wills and all of that. You look so much younger than your age though. But it's always a good time to take inventory of what's really important.

    Love you,

  7. You are very brave, and creating a plan, including a living trust and will, and organizing your treasures.
    How kind your neighbors are to bring your family food.
    "He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy." Job 8:21
    You have a great attitude.

  8. Hope you are both regaining your health. Getting all these things in order must be difficult, but I know you have the faith to get through it.

    Sending you love and prayers.


  9. Mary you are in my thoughts and prayers.I feel sure you will figure out how you are to deal with all these issues in good time.
    Sounds like you are forming a plan so this is good. Just go day by day doing your best. We have all the legal stuff done but do need to get on with sorting through things still in storage! I hope to have a couple good porch sales this year.
    Take care.

  10. Dear Mary, my goodness, your post is so honest and heartfelt. I can almost feel the 'weight' on your shoulders.

    Take each day as it comes....God gives us grace for a 24 hour period and then He will give us grace for tomorrow. I know that isn't easy, is it? Just constantly take your cares to Him. We ALL have to remember this.

    I think you are pretty special and I know so many of the other bloggers feel the same way. Please know that you and your family are in my prayers. My heart goes out to you.

    God bless you greatly!
    Love, Barb

  11. Mary, you are not alone! So many caregivers have the same feelings. EVERY thing you said touched upon somthing I felt today. Not all days are this bad but today was definately one of those days. I was frustrated and worried and had my own little pity party. I finally shook it off after catching Oprah with Peter Walsh talking about stuff and personal connections.

    Email me whenever you get time, we can compare notes and lift each other up with God's help. I'm sure there's a safe place for a tea cup or two in both our homes! After all, if we don't take care of our own needs we can't meet the needs of others!

    When you get a chance, check out a blog called My Five Men. Betsy lives with her husband, and four boys, three of whom are triplets with autism, yet her blog is the most calm, inspiriational "place" I've ever been: http://myfivemen.blogspot.com/

  12. Mary, take all the time you need! Take months if need be!
    And I know how hard it will be to let go of things that are treasured, but I think once it is finally all said and done, you will be the richer for it. And you are doing it for such a wonderful, selfless reason. Mary, it is The Lord's work you will be doing, and He will reward you a hundred-fold.

    And you are not having a pity party! You are one of the most selfless people I've encountered. It's only natural to want to hang on to the familiar, it's our security. But I think once you start you may find yourself a new sense of freedom. Don't start big if you feel overwhelmed, start with a kitchen drawer and move on. A drawer a day, or a drawer a week. A box to go through, just one little project at a time, and soon you will see progress. Don't overwhelm yourself.
    I am rooting for you. We all are. And most of all, God Is Rooting for you!
    And through it all, don't forget to take good care of yourself. Pamper yourself once in awhile.
    And if you ever need to vent, please blog, or email me, or do whatever you need to do to get yourself to a good place.
    Keep in touch and let us know how you are doing.

    You have touched so many lives in such a positive way. Now, go take care of you, and concentrate on doing some things positive for yourself and your family.
    God Bless you, Mary.
    Love and Prayers,

  13. Mary,
    so good to hear from you again.Getting a little worried about the sickness in your home.
    I'm glad you are all on the mend.
    I understand what you are saying. There are (were) 6 in my house (Justin is with the Marines now) and four of those beings were GUYS! They do NOT care about all this pretty, feathering the nest, cute little cottagey, country, decorating, expressing myself in the articles I place in our home.
    There was a point where I, too had to step back away from the blogs of beautiful homes and cottages that were filled to the brim with pretties and dainties and lovelies, and say ...This is not MY home. This is OUR home. These other people live here, breathe here, eat here, sleep here too. It is their home too.
    Why should I make them have to live with MY idea of what is a lovely home? I want my guys and my daughter to be happy at home. I want them to LOVE coming home every day, and not be sighing with discontent or frustration about all the STUFF they deem unneccessary for them to survive. you know...most guys would be happy... happy in a cave with a frig full of food and their favorite beverage and a BIG tv with a sports channel and a lot of guy fun action computer games. No yard work, trimming, weeding spraying fixin' up/tearing down/ redoing, renovating, etc etc etc. Why not just LEAVE IT AS IT IS? If it ain't broke don't fix it. IT LOOKS FINE!!!!!! :-) Does that resonate with anybody else out there concerning males and their reaction to how their beloved other halves want to always be fluffing, feathering, fixing????? So I am trying to stay on a path of this mindset this year!! This is OUR house. This is OUR life. This is OUR haven. ...not just mine. Don't be self-ish... For example, NO pink in our master. Kurt doesn't want to sleep in a room that is so feminine and frilly and pinky.. (even though he never has said this) I just know... that would be a "girl" room. IT is OUR bedchamber. So , that is one way I am thinking. The kitchen is utilitarian for a guy. Storage, cooking, eating.... "don't put so many containers, pictures, figurines, candles, cloches, shelfy things out that I don't even have a place to lay my bread and just make a simple sandwich..."
    So thanks Barb for your post. I am with you.
    THIS year, I am also going to declutter, sort through, simplify... HAVE A YARD SALE!!, keep the "keepers", the things I really really love, and totally get RID of the rest, let someone else have them and enjoy them. I want to be happy and filled with joy over the people and animals in my life, hearing laughter of family, having less to dust and clean and manage...and more time to talk and play games and do puzzles.. Thanks for the reminder to stick to this mindset. Sorry this is probably LONG!!! but I got it out!! :-)
    SO glad you are back!!!!!!
    God wants us to be consumed with life and living it to the fullest...NOT things. amen.
    Have a Great day, and saying a prayer you continue to mend and get those goals accomplished.

  14. Mary,

    Glad to hear that you are feeling better. You don't sound selfish at all. I too, am feeling somewhat overwhemed with "stuff". I love my "stuff", but each day I am putting away, re-arranging, deciding I no longer want this or that, and it becomes overwheming at times. Just take one day at a time. Be well, dear blog friend, and we will be here waiting for you.


  15. Hi Mary.....Thank you so much for always taking the time to check on me and my life. You have a lot on your plate, I know, but being the kind of person that you are...caring, compassionate and kind you will get through all this and everything in your life will fall into place. I have confidence in you, my friend! Big Hugs~Patti

  16. Hi Mary,
    Stuff is fun. I like to go with the idea that while here on earth I am "renting" all my stuff. I get to use it while I am here, enjoy it, treasure it, and be a good steward with it while it is in my possession. But I can also pass it on pretty easily. I like to sing when things get rough, I think singing and praying are both very good ways of escape. Get better soon! Happy Wednesday Mary!

  17. Hi Mary

    May God be with you to help guide you through this transitional time.

    Take Care

  18. Hi Ms. Mary: I just linked to your blog from another and read your post and am in tears. We always take things for granted don't we. I know at times I have. I've never met you or seen your blog before, but what you've said is so true. What it boils down to is one of the most important things in life is family. That should be a very strong unit. Helping each other both physically and spiritually.
    I hope you all get well soon!

  19. Hi Mary,

    I hope you are all continuing to feel better. I just wanted to share with you a book that helped me when I moved cross country from my 2000 sq. ft. home into my husband's already furnished 1300 sq ft home: "Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui" by Karen Kingston. Feng Shui is "an ancient Chinese system of aesthetics believed to use the laws of both Heaven (astronomy) and Earth (geography) to help one improve life positively." (It is not a religious idea as some people might think.) I bought the book because it just gave me the ideas I needed to decide what to keep and what to pass on! She has some really good suggestions (and some that you may find silly as I did, but still worth the read). I was a high school administrator at the time and when I finished with the book and told a few people about it, my staff started passing it around and loved it too! I'd say the majority of us could benefit from clearing out our clutter. It just so easily creeps up on us! :) My husband and I have moved into a much bigger space now, but work really hard at not letting things accumulate. However, my office is a magnet, I'm sure, as that is where the clutter goes! Once I settled into my office in our new home, a rather small space, but so happy to have it, and for the first year had my desk facing the window, but my back was to the door and while nice to see out the window, I didn't like having my back to the door. I remembered the Feng Shui and googled office spaces and found suggestions, and strangely enough, just moving my desk around and reorganizing the space geographywise, it "feels" 100% better!

    It's hard to let go of our "things," but that's really all they are and though I will every now and then think "I wish I still had..." I can't tell you what a freeing feeling it was to be free of so much STUFF! Hope this helps! Good luck! I know how hard the task is to face!

    My prayers go out to you and your family!

    Take care!

  20. Dear Mary, what a heart-felt post, thank you for sharing this with us. I'm having a 'cull' too. It's not fun, but it's necessary. I think to myself, 'What if there my house burns down or there is a terrible earthquake?' That will be the end of my things. Things will get better, my dear friend...keep trusting in the Lord.

    Big hugs

  21. My dear blogging friend, I'm glad that your health is better, I will continue to pray for your husband.Your heart is in the right place with your family. I use to blog and visit everyone~~everyday, but I just can't do that anymore. My house was a mess, I gained weight, and my husband missed me. I never watched TV with him I was always here on my computer.Your background is beautiful and your pitchers are pretty, so please don't feel bad that your taking this time to do what you need to do. You and your family will be in my prayers.
    God Bless,

  22. Hi Mary, So great to see you posted, I so needed to read this today!
    I too will be 65 this year, and I need to reevaluate my health too, as last year was not a good year in the health dept. for me.
    I hope your husband will be well soon.I will be praying.
    Thank you for sharing your heart. I am so looking forward to many more inspiring posts.

  23. I thought I would just breeze by and see that you were talking about teacups and such and smile and keep going. Not so! So here I am reading, thinking and praying. I don't want to see you so frustrated--bothered maybe, but not frustrated. You have analyzed the situation, now release it to the Lord. I know, I know, it sounds easy but it wouldn't if I was wearing your shoes. I usually do not read posts as long as this one. But I did today. As a result I am praying for you and believe me I don't count that as a little thing. God may bring about changes in your life just because of my prayers even if there wasn't anybody else praying at all. And we know there are dozens of people praying for you. God bless you Mary. If we bloggers love you and pray for you can you even imagine what God is working out for your good?

  24. Sweet Mary, thank you for sharing your heart with your blogging friends, this transparency is what we should all do - remove the masks and speak what's on our hearts. This honesty shows us how to pray for our friends.

    I have missed you and wondered what was going on. We too have had a family situation, including the death of my husband's sister. We were very busy running back and forth to GA to be with her.

    I'm sorry you are feeling so overwhelmed. With all the prayers going up for you I'm sure you will feel some relief soon. I pray so!

    I want to encourage you not to get rid of some of your favorite things. If you have to move them out, then pack them up and store them. I don't want you to regret tossing things out. I regret letting a lot of my favorite things go several years ago. I, too, was feeling like the less is more, at least that is what I let some people talk me into! I'm sorry I let the things go now.

    For me blogging is good therapy, a little escape, a way to touch base with people who have things in common with me. I seem to connect with mostly Christians, I feel the Lord brought them into my life! I choose my computer time carefully, I'm a night owl and stay up late while my husband is sleeping (he goes to bed early!) I make sure we have spent quality time together daily (we're retired and have lots of time together.)

    One thing about organizing that I have been doing lately is this: Ask myself "do I love it?" I heard on one of those organizer shows that "if you don't love it, get rid of it!!" Maybe that's a way to weed out some things, I've been doing this a lot lately.

    I listen to some of those people on TV talking about organizing and throwing things out, but I don't do everything they say. Remember, they do not have the same personality we have - we love pretties, romantic, nostalgic things - they don't! God gave us these personalities and we need to go with what He gave us!!

    I'm praying for you!


    P.S. - In May I will be five years older than you!! ;-)

  25. Hello Mary, I just wanted to stop by and say hello. I hope that your having a good day. I miss seeing you on Spiritual Sunday I'm looking forward to having you back soon.

  26. Hi Mary,
    I just got back from spending sixteen wonderful days with my son and his family out in British Columbia. So sorry to hear you have not been well. I pray you are on the mend soon. I do a lot of pondering myself about certain things. I will pray for you and hopefully, before you know it, you will be singing songs of praise and sipping tea from your favourite teacup. God bless you and your hubby!

    Blessings and hugs,

  27. Hi Mary,
    Hope all is continuing to get better at your place. January will soon be over and we'll be that much closer to spring, hang on!

  28. Praying for you, your husband and family dear Mary. May the healing power of the LORD wash over all of you in Jesus Name.

    Hugs and love.

  29. I'm glad to hear things are okayand my heart goes out to you and your family. Hang on and things will get better.

    Take care,


  30. Hello Mary, Just a small note to say hello and to let you know you know I think of you often. I pray that your family is well and that your getting the rest that you need.
    God Bless,

  31. Just stopping by to check on you and see if you are back yet.

    Miss you! I hope all is well.

    Love and prayers,