December 3, 2015

I'll be here.

Friends have been emailing and texting the last few weeks, worried that something was terribly wrong with me, or with us...
Please be assured that everything is wonderful around here.
I've gathered the concerns stem from the absence of my presence on social media lately. Once I explain that we are fine, and nothing is wrong, and we are doing well, everyone wants to know why. So...here you go. I'll tell you.
It wasn't a spontaneous decision. It was made over time, after some discontentment, followed by some introspection and prayer.
1. I erroneously believed that to be a good friend, I had to stay updated on all social media. And then I realized I was spending entirely too much of my time on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Scrolling through social media was the first thing I did when my alarm went off in the mornings, and my last activity before drifting off to sleep at night. But it wasn't making me a better friend. I didn't realize when my real-life friend was going through a rough time at work, or our friends' marriage was falling apart, but I knew that a girl I played soccer with thirty years ago spent her days at work watching youtube videos of cats dancing in tutus. It was a waste of my time and brain energy. I realized there would be days when I hadn't read a page or written a paragraph, but I kept up with what some girl from my Bible study ten years ago had for breakfast. You know, the girl I'm praying doesn't see me shopping on the next aisle at Whole Foods. It was just too much.
2. I was tired of people not being real. Like the guy from my 8th grade history class who liked to post pictures of "sunset dinners with his beautiful wife." Oh yeah, the girl he hooked up with on an overseas business trip, and then abandoned his wife and four kids for. Or the guy from French class at A&M, who seems like a super fun guy that everyone likes to hang out with, but in reality, he lives at home with his mom and he can't drive because he's gotten so many DUIs. I want the truth. I like you more when you are real. I want to know when your kids are being obnoxious, or you're still in your PJs at pickup time, or sometimes that marriage just sucks but it's still worth it. Real life is not always lunch time cocktails at Gloria's and shopping trips to Northpark. There's got to be more to life than the perfect shade of blonde hair or the latest spa treatments.
3. Sometimes people seem surprised because I can, at times, be friendly and outgoing, but I am greatly introverted. I don't need very much interaction with other people to feel satisfied and content. And I realized that online connections do not substitute for real community! Since I have stopped using social media, I've been spending real life with real people to fulfill my desire for interaction. I feel like I am a better wife, a better mama, and a better friend.
4. Self promotion! The teenage selfies are bothersome, but I really just feel sorry for those kids. They are obviously needing attention or validation. I remember being a teenager, and I am thanking the Lord there was no social media back then. I wasn't getting any attention or love at home, so I am sure I would have looked for it online. But the 40 year old women selfies are so much worse! ugh. I believe there are only a few occasions that call for selfies and they are all accompanied by "delete as soon as you see this" texts. Tragically cutting your own bangs, new bald spots from alopecia, evidently waxing your eyebrows with your head crooked...all ok when sent to your sister-in-law. When you don't get to watch the last episode of Parenthood with your best friend, sending her a pic of your teary face = perfect. And I'm all about the sexy pics if you are sending them TO YOUR HUSBAND. I am amazed by women who share really inappropriate photos with the whole world. I don't know how to react to that. There's also a very real fear of missing out, but I truly believe people aren't upset when they miss out on an activity...I think they just feel it's "bad advertising" when they miss out on the photo op. How will the world know how great their lives are if every step isn't documented? It's taken away the real joy and beauty of life and experiences and travel and love.
5. "Friends" can be so mean on social media. In the name of tolerance, people are hateful to anyone with conservative beliefs. I've been made to feel ignorant and uneducated because our family believes and trusts in a Heavenly Father, because we vote against abortion, because we believe in capitalism, because we approve of drug tests for welfare recipients or IDs for registered voters, and because we own guns and we hunt. I try to never get involved in an online political discussion, and honestly, I don't know that anyone truly knew my political stance until reading it just now. The one time I did have an opinion, it was not received well, and I felt reprimanded by friends who stand on the opposite end of the political spectrum. But in my defense, it was a baseball game, and baseball's our thing, and the president wore mom jeans and threw like a girl. I don't care what political party you belong to; just put on a pair of man jeans and throw a strike. It would make me feel more secure in your role as the leader of our country. It goes both ways, though. Friends, you are not winning any souls to Jesus when you are treating other people with condemnation. LET ALL THAT YOU DO BE DONE IN LOVE. 1 Corinthians 16:14. Love people.
6. I realized I didn't feel safe and secure with our life "out there" on social media. I had a dead bolt on my childhood bedroom door because one of my brothers was so physically, emotionally and verbally abusive to me. The other brother, in a drug-induced psychosis seven years ago, vowed to kill the boys and me, so we "wouldn't have to suffer in this world anymore." We have had a visit from a bounty hunter looking for one of them, and we receive arrest warrants in the mail and phone calls from bill collectors, even though we have no relationship with anyone in my family. Not being on social media helps me feel a little hidden.
I loved staying in contact with family and friends who live far away. I loved keeping up with friends from high school and college. I loved celebrating your child's accomplishments and seeing your vacation pictures, and it was an honor to approach the throne of God with your prayer requests. I'll still keep in touch...just email or text me. I'll be here.

October 27, 2015

that's important to me...

I am nothing if I am not the queen of awkward conversations. I helped out at school pick-up one day, and a recently divorced dad drove up in a bright orange sports car. "Mid-life crisis," he shrugged. Did he sense a look of judgement on my face?  I was really just trying to figure out how to open the car door. "Oh, it's so great!" I said. "I bet the guys really like it. Oh, wait, I mean...I know my boys must think it is awesome...I'm sure girls really like it too." I wasn't trying to insinuate, well, anything...but I'm pretty sure you don't buy that kind of car if your target audience is {your age} 40-year-old women. 

Chip, if you're reading: if/when you have a mid-life crisis, please come home with a jacked-up 4x4, not a Lamborghini. Oh, and in all honesty, I just had to spell check Lamborghini.   

Awkward situations. In seventh grade, I wrote a four page {really lame} poem to ask a boy to the Sadie Hawkins Valentine's Day dance. I stuffed it in his locker and he reluctantly said yes, and then spent the whole night in the bathroom pretending to be sick. Evidently, having all of Forest Meadow Junior High think you're puking is a far better fate than holding me in your arms and swaying back and forth to Bon Jovi's "Never Say Goodbye." {Funny side note: I haven't seen that kid since we moved here over the summer after 7th grade, but when I was taking golf lessons last year, the instructor videoed my swing for analysis. Since we have the same initials, the guy's name was right below mine in the computer program. It really made me giggle}

I was voted "Most Likely to Succeed" at my fifth grade graduation. The students in my fifth grade magnet program were crazy smart. And they thought I was most likely to succeed. The students in that class have gone on to amazing careers...writers, producers, pilots. And then there's me. Have I really succeeded? Well, the boys have clean uniforms to wear and clean sheets on their beds, and I've convinced Colt that kale chips and homemade gummies are the perfect afternoon snack. But successful? Really? That is debatable. 

Lately I feel like I'm struggling with determining who I truly am and what I was created for. As the boys get older, they need me less and less. Sure, sometimes I am the only one who can find baseball socks {in the laundry room} or find the scissors {in the scissor box in the study} but they don't really *need* me. They always need their daddy. To go throw and hit and lift, to help explain math or chemistry, to figure out a guitar chord, or to take them hunting. I am one thousand percent happy that they want him {maybe that's why they don't ask me for math help} but sometimes I feel left out. I've been the cuddler and the wake up caller and the driver...but Cade will be driving in a few months and then off to college in a couple of years. No one needs cuddles like they used to, and they always hate waking up in the mornings anyway...  

As a little girl, I dreamed of becoming a librarian or owning a book store. I loved books and the escape that they provided. From my little bedroom in our nine different houses, I could go anywhere and be anyone. I found comfort there. I didn't have to be the nerdy, uncoordinated one...I could be an adventurer, an explorer, or a pioneer. As I grew older, I felt the Lord calling me to be a stay at home mom and I am so thankful. Thankful for this life. Thankful that Chip's job affords us the ability for me to stay home. Thankful that I have precious boys and a {super hot} husband to take care of. I pray they feel loved with each meal I prepare or load of laundry that gets washed and folded. I feel, though, like I need to have a five year plan in the works. In five years Cade will be turning twenty-one...Colt will be sixteen. I don't want to be sitting on the couch all day, just waiting around for one of them to walk in the door. Trying to figure everything out, but all the while listening to one of my favorite songs about what really matters...

"That's Important to Me" by Joey + Rory  

Not planning our day around a TV set
Paying our bills and staying out of debt
That's important to me
That's important to me
Opening the windows and letting in air
Holding hands when we're saying a prayer
That's important to me
Yeah, that's important to me
Having somebody to share my life
Loving my husband and being a wife
And the very best mother I can be
That's important to me
Telling the truth and being real
Feeding my family a home cooked meal
That's important to me
That's important to me
Planting a garden and watching it grow
Keeping it country on the radio
That's important to me
Yeah, that's important to me
Always having you to hold
Being beside you when we grow old
And they plant us 'neath that big old tree
Believing our dreams will take us somewhere
Still being ourselves if we ever get there
That's important to me
That's important to me
Yeah, that's important to me
That's important to me

August 4, 2015

conflict resolution...

It grieves me to hear of more divorce. So many marriages are ending. I just want it to stop.
I've been pondering some words today... 

Irreconcilable: representing findings or points of view that are so different from each other that they cannot be made compatible.


Compatible: able to exist or occur together without conflict.

Yet another divorce filing because of "irreconcilable differences." (Or in every day terms: because of conflict.) Well, I'm here to tell you, conflict is part of marriage. Since we are redefining marriage lately, why don't we add to the definition, "marriage: a lesson in conflict resolution." There WILL be conflict in your marriage. Two people, with different upbringings, different personalities, different attitudes, and different dreams WILL NOT always think alike. 

My friends and I don't think alike. One of my best friends hates the movies that I love. (How can she not just laugh and laugh during The Waterboy or Malibu's Most Wanted?) Most of my friends don't share my affection for country music or dark beer or going to bed early. But these differences don't offend me. I'm glad we are different. I don't want to be friends with myself. That would be boring!

So why does it drive me so crazy when my husband thinks differently than me? And he does. Like all the time. I've actually told him before, if you are trying to guess what I think, decide what you think it is that I think and then go for the complete opposite of whatever you just decided. We disagree. Often. We've been working through a major disagreement that might have exploded at dinner with friends over the weekend. A huge disagreement, in which this girl said some things that she shouldn't have said, over a situation that may or may not even ever happen. 

Realization #1: maybe we should wait to disagree until the situation actually happens. Things may change...my heart will change...his heart will change...and we may not even disagree at all by then. 

Realization #2: I can be really disrespectful when I am promoting my beliefs and opinions and negating my husband's beliefs and opinions. I'm very self-centered and self-absorbed if I think my way is the only or best way. 

Today (after some thinking and some praying) I texted him at work to apologize for being disrespectful. Want to know what he said? "The reality is that what makes us better as a couple than as individuals is that we can see things from more angles than we can alone. Plus we can have more solutions! It's a resource not a road block." Wow. How blessed am I to have this guy?

Matthew 5:9 says, "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God." Not peacekeepers. Peacemakers. There will always be conflict. Conflict doesn't call for you to quit. It's a work in progress. I'm pretty sure that in 40 years, we will still be disagreeing...but by then, it will be over which golf club I should've used or where to go for our early bird dinner. I'm hard-headed...thankful for this time to figure me out and figure him out and figure us out. You can do it, too.

September 12, 2014

enough is enough...

My heart is breaking.  It seems like almost weekly now, we learn of another couple calling it quits.  15 years ago, our friends were getting engaged.  10 years ago, announcing their pregnancies.  And now, it's husbands and wives just giving up. It doesn't matter your upbringing, your religion, your socio-economic status.  Across the board, the norm is DIVORCE.  And it sucks.

Why? What we can we do to safeguard our marriages?

Many marriages aren't ending because of momentous events, at least not in our circles.  It's men and women simply growing tired of being together.  Well...one of my favorite baseball quotes, "Baseball isn't boring - you are" can apply here.  If your marriage is boring, it's because YOU are boring. Got it? And if you're ending your marriage because you're bored, then you're a jerk and I want to come punch you in your face. Life isn't always exciting or fun.  Marriage isn't always exciting or fun.  We all remember the first few months of courtship with our spouses.  Not being able to sleep, counting down the seconds until we can be together again.  If you are leaving your husband or wife because you don't have that feeling of excitement and anticipation anymore, just know, the person you are looking for, to have those feelings with again, will one day not be exciting or fun to you either.  

Let me tell you some ways to add some excitement and fun to your marriage:

Say YES. If he wants to go for a bike ride after work, but you think you should be making dinner or helping your kids with homework, say yes anyway.  Go have fun.  The kids won't mind eating frozen waffles and they'll be forever grateful that their parents make the effort to enjoy each other.  It's a heavy responsibility to model marriage for your children.  What they see now will become their definition of marriage.  Show them the right way to do it! Say yes to an evening on the back porch or a midnight swim.  It's so easy, at the end of the day, to not be engaged with your spouse.  You're exhausted, you're tired of talking/listening, or you just want to lose yourself in Friends reruns. (My fave: They don't know that we know that they know!) Say yes anyway!  PSA: Maybe don't let your kids hang game cameras to figure out what is eating all the duck eggs out back.  They keep asking, "Where's the memory card?" ;)  

Say NO.  Be protective of your time together.  For us, at least, it means no weekly girls' nights or boys' nights.  Special occasions, sure...a concert or Mavs playoff games, we're in.  We just don't make a habit of spending time away from each other, socially. Say no to your kids sometimes.  They need to realize that your relationship comes first.  We are going to still be together long after the boys have left the house. (9 more years. Tears.)

Another thing that has helped our marriage: I have (finally) learned to not treat him like a child.  Sometimes, I just get stuck in mommy-mode, and don't remember that he's 39 and doesn't need me to tell him that it's getting late or his shorts are wrinkled or does he really need another cup of coffee? I need to be his lover, not his mother.  

Don't watch/read porn.  You can have sex in real life.  It's way better than that other stuff.  For some reason, sex is an unapproachable topic for no one, except married people.  It was for us that sex was created.  Enjoy it.  Instead of spoiling your relationship with porn, make a top 5 list of your hottest moments.  It's way sexier!

Surround yourselves with couples who value marriage as much as you do. There is nothing we love more than sitting around the fire pit, with wine and good conversation.  We feel loved, and valued, and accepted, no matter what.  We can discuss relationships and marriages and pray together...it's so much harder to quit something when you have a whole team cheering for you.  It was on one of these nights, when a dear friend gave me something to ponder.  We were discussing when we knew we were meant to be.  He said, for him, it wasn't a feeling, it was a decision.  He's exactly right.  Loving your spouse isn't a feeling.  It's an action.  Right now, we need to DECIDE to love. Feelings are fickle and unreliable.  Make the decision to love, and you will love.  It's that simple.

Be committed. It's crazy how a guy can be committed to his favorite football team...when they've only won one playoff game since 1996...and they're owned by a jackass and will never have success again in our lifetime...but you can't stay committed to your wife and children. <--- If you read that, and think, "I wonder if she's talking to me," then maybe I am!  ;)

Our marriage, after almost 17 years, is stronger now than ever before.  Praying it just keeps getting better.  Praying for yours, too.  

  

August 4, 2014

well, yeah. he is.

August 4. It's been on my calendar for months. We have been counting down the days with excitement. It's the first day of high school football practice and our boy is ready. Ever since October 1999, when the sonogram technician announced, "It's a boy," we've been looking forward to the night Cade would take his place on the field under the Friday night lights. This summer, though, I've been thinking a lot about it. Mostly because of THE question. It's not been, "Is Cade going to play football?" (So many friends have asked.) It's always worded, "You're not going to let Cade play football, are you?" 

As if I would be the one making that decision anyway...not only am I called to submit to my husband, but I am the only girl in this house of boys. I wondered if I had somehow gotten the overprotective mom rep. I know I am cautious when it comes to girls/social interactions but as far as adventure, sports, hunting...anything that builds my boys into men, I'm all for it. 


Then I realized...my friends are asking because I have voluntarily signed up my son to play the sport that has an ambulance waiting ready at the gate for every play. We've seen Jason Street lying motionless on the football field, probably a hundred times. I was in the stands at Pennington Field in 1990 when a player from Trinity High School made a tackle and didn't get up. It was the quietest quiet I have ever experienced. But Chip broke both his arms at the same time playing basketball, and he tore the ligament in his elbow playing baseball. A few broken ribs from football were the least of his injuries.  


Thankfully, yesterday's sermon was over Matthew 6:25-34. DO NOT WORRY! What perfect timing to hear from our Heavenly Father. I learned that worrying skews my perspective, wastes my time and energy, and weakens my confidence in God. To overcome my anxiety over this season, I will pray, worship, focus on God's promises, and keep Him first. 


I AM looking forward to football season. We are building a man and we only have four years left. Outside of serving in the military (which I hope he does too!) I believe football will prepare him most for his role in life as a man, a father, a husband, and a leader. 


It is my prayer, that over the next four years, he learns and knows and lives out:

TEAMWORK
DISCIPLINE
RESPECT for referees, coaches and teammates
PERSEVERANCE
CONFIDENCE in himself and his team

I believe that the busy-ness of football season will help him organize his schoolwork and his life. I'm excited about spending every Friday night in the stands with our friends and family, cheering for our guys. I'm thankful for the coaches who will be teaching, coaching, and leading by example and I'm looking forward to seeing our boys transformed into men. GO COUGARS!

January 16, 2013

not anymore...

"You have alopecia areata," the doctor said.  "I'll get you a pamphlet on that." And that was that.

I spent my childhood with a brother who told me how ugly and stupid I was all the time.  It wasn't easy to recover from that.  I've never really felt pretty, but at least I've always had good hair.  It's thick, I can bleach it blonde or dye it really dark, it holds a curl, and it's easily straightened.  I usually wear it short, because I like feeling cute and perky.  Whether I discovered a new wrinkle or gained a few pounds, my hair was always faithful.  


Not anymore.  I have a huge bald spot on the back on my head.  My hairdresser noticed it last month.  I convinced myself that it was a curling iron burn or an allergic reaction to a new hair product, but I made an appointment with the dermatologist anyway.  The doctor examined my scalp for half of a split second, and just said, matter-of-factly, "You have alopecia areata."  It is an auto-immune disease (with no cure) that affects 2% of the population.  Oh, goodness, aren't I special?  ;)  My body is attacking my hair follicles, as if I am allergic to them.  The condition presents itself most often in people with allergies and eczema, and the dermatologist said it can be triggered by stress.  Hello!  All three...that's me!  20% of patients will end up completely bald.  Thankfully, this bald spot is hidden underneath my other layers, but I am checking the shower, my pillow, and my brush for more hair loss every day.  The treatment is steroid shots in the scalp to encourage regrowth.  Ouch.  I'll return to the dermatologist every month to check for more bald spots and get more shots.


My first thought was, "Well, crap...I need a beer."  But, it was 11:00 on Monday, so I just came home and cried.  After a few hours of a pity party, I realized I had tons to be thankful for.  I'm thankful I don't have cancer.  We lost a dear friend last year; another friend is in remission.  They both heard infinitely worse diagnoses from the doctor.  This is not a terminal disease.  Other than appearance sake, my life will not change.  I'm not going to miss seeing the ducks fly across the pond at school because I will still be able to see.  I won't miss singing along with ZBB because I will still be able to hear.  


I've talked with the boys about my hair loss.  I explained to them there may be genetic factors, and it's something they will possibly have to face in the future.  They were both nonchalant, and said, "Mom, it's no big deal. We may have shaved heads anyway."  I talked to them about the possibility of me going bald, or needing to wear a wig.  Cade said, "Don't worry, Mom.  It will be OK."  Colt just requested, "Can you please wear an afro wig?"  :)


My friend Beth posted this on Facebook on Monday morning.  I read it before I went to my doctor's appointment and have found such comfort in it since then.  It's from her Life Application Study Bible notes on 1 Samuel 16:7.  "Fortunately, God judges by faith and character, not appearances.  And because only God can see on the inside, only he can accurately judge people.  Most people spend several hours each week maintaining their outward appearance; they should do even more to develop their inner character.  While everyone can see your face, only you and God know what your heart really looks like.  What steps are you taking to improve your heart's attitude?"


I am a control freak and a planner.  I think that's the hardest part.  I can't plan.  I don't know if, or when, my hair will fall out more or completely.  Chip's been incredibly supportive.  He has spent our life together loving me unconditionally and is continuing to do so.  I'm so thankful for that.  No matter what, his love doesn't waver.  Looking on the bright side, if I do have to start wearing a wig, I will be able to get ready way faster and I can change my hairstyle whenever I want.  Maybe I'll even have a special wig that I only wear late at night.  ;) ;)


April 18, 2012

real life...

I recently read this article...and it made me laugh, but really got me thinking, too.  I don't want to be that girl...just sharing happy moments.  I want to be real.  So, in an effort of full disclosure, here's what my life is really like.

We have been living in our barn since December.  One room.  360 square feet.  The boys practice dribbling.  Like all the time.  In the barn.  The only time they aren't dribbling is when they are playing wall ball.  Or taking BP.  In the barn.  It's way worse than my paradiddles ever were.  Constant noise all the time, usually set to the background chatter of the MLB network.

I sleep in the top bunk.  It's handy because it's near the thermostat, and being the control freak I am, that works for me.  Sometimes, though, I don't quite know where I am when I wake up, and it freaks me out that the ceiling is right there. And, I have an old lady bladder, so climbing up and down the ladder in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom isn't really my idea of a good time.  It's crazy hard for us to have alone time.  No candles, music, seduction...we just send the boys out to play football in the yard and lock the door.  I miss romance.

I don't have a relationship with anyone in my family.  My dad died when I was a teenager.  I haven't seen my mom in years.  My brothers are in and out of prison.  We just got a warrant in the mail from the city of Arlington for my brother.  It really upset me.  I don't have my maiden name on anything because of them, but somehow I am still associated with them.  Several years ago a bounty hunter showed up at our old house looking for one of them.  Of course the boys thought it was super cool...he had guns and a dog and everything.  The last time we saw my brother, he said he wanted to make it so the boys and I "don't have to suffer in this world anymore."  I felt really threatened, and we stayed in a different hotel every night until he was picked up on a mental health warrant. I live each day scared when they are out of prison.  I hate that.

I am a homebody.  I deem my day successful if I don't have to see or talk to anyone until the boys get in the car at 3:00.  I've been trying to become more social, but I am inept at small talk and would rather just hide behind a ball cap and ray-bans.

My seven year old knows all the words to Everybody by the Backstreet Boys.  Not the words I want to hear from his sweet little voice.  And it's totally my fault.

I have good intentions to do my Bible study daily.  Sometimes it doesn't get done because I need a nap or Us Weekly came in the mail or I want to catch up on Modern Family on the DVR.  I am praying through this.

Sometimes I talk to myself, but it's not always just in my head.  Today was leg day at the gym.  I was planning to do squats and lunges on the Smith machine and then do the leg press.  Well, this guy was "using" both of them, even though he wasn't on either one of them, and told me he had one set left.  It really frustrated me.  Dude, I have school pickup in 70 minutes. I don't have time to stand around and wait on you.  And, I don't need you to take off the weight.  I may be fat, but it's strong fat.  (This was all the conversation in my head)  However, I might have accidentally muttered "you spritely midget jackwagon."  Oops.  I really need to keep my lips sealed.  I also found myself whispering, "oh, please fall" to the lady at the grocery store who was stumbling around in 6-inch wedges.  Why can't I keep my thoughts to myself?  And not think mean thoughts in the first place?

I hold grudges.  For stupid stuff.  I want to hate the injustices of the world, not still hate the girl who stole my acid wash Guess jean jacket in 9th grade.  I am praying about that, too. 


I am so thankful that God's not finished with me yet.  Praying He'll fill me with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.             

January 5, 2010

It's been forever...

I just realized I missed all of 2009.

So many things I never wrote about.

One day I will.

Jeremiah 29:11-13
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart."

Isaiah 43:18-19
Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.

Romans 8:28
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

December 2, 2008

Celebrating Chip...

in honor of his birthday, 34 reasons why I love him!
1. He's an amazing father. He's patient, fun, encouraging, loving...all the things I longed for in a dad. I think our boys will be good fathers because of Chip's illustration of what a father should be like.
2. He's quite handsome...
3. and funny...
4. and smart...
5. and he loves football and baseball even more than me! (or is that a reason why he drives me crazy sometimes?!)
6. I love his kisses. They are perfect!
7. He works hard to provide for our family.
8. He loves the Lord...and he excels at leading our family to grow in our relationships with God.
9. He is passionate about our boys' education and their school.
10. He is passionate about the boys learning and growing as baseball players, basketball players and football players.
11. He is a caring and loving son to his parents...and a terrific brother to his brothers and sisters.
12. He makes me laugh.
13. He holds me when I cry.
14. He's always up for anything. (well, except for things like the ballet, musicals, museums...but I don't want to do that stuff either. He is perfect!)
15. He makes really yummy margaritas...
16. and he can always be talked into Mexican food.
17. He is a good friend.
18. He is considerate of others.
19. He takes excellent care of my teeth!
20. He never tells me "I told you so" even though he could...alot.
21. He's a kind boss. I think the girls truly enjoy working for him.
22. He will always clean muddy shoes...
23. and take the garbage out.
24. He for real wants me to play golf with him! :)
25. He likes my cooking.
26. He took Civil War with me in college so we could be together...'cause I sure couldn't hang in one of his science classes.
27. He encouraged (insisted?!) that I graduate.
28. He always drives when we're together.
29. He loves his big black truck.
30. He keeps a stash of Benadryl around for when we visit his family. allergic to cats not them
31. He takes me to Cowboys games...and Rangers games...and Mavericks games.
32. He still rocks the boys to sleep when they need rockin'.
33. He takes care of me.

34. He completes me. :)

October 29, 2008

I'm sad...

My heart is sad.

Our friends are getting divorced. We've known people, of course, who have ended their marriages...but this just feels different. We were there, when they stood in front of their friends and family and vowed to love each other. Forever. Through the good times and the bad...blah, blah, blah.

It just seems so...real. and final.

You don't have to tell me marriage is hard. Believe me, we know. We've lived it. Right after we were married, one of Chip's teammates came to live with us...so they could throw and lift and run together to get ready for baseball season. Not only did I have to get used to living with a boy and all the weird, yucky stuff that accompanied it...but then, all of a sudden, there were two of them. It probably wasn't the best idea we've ever had.

That spring, Chip got traded...and then was accepted into dental school...so 5 months after our wedding, we moved to San Antonio. Away from all our friends. To a place where we knew no one. Our relationship was awful. He was in class all day and studied all night. I was working two jobs and finishing my last three classes so I could finally graduate. He smelled like gross anatomy all the time. It just wasn't a good time for us...and then I got pregnant. Quite unexpected by us, but totally and perfectly planned by our heavenly father. It changed everything.

It changed our focus...our goals...our desires.

We've still had some rough patches...mostly stemming from my depression...but we know how to work through it...in the words of Jimmy V, "Don't give up. Don't ever give up."

But now, our friends are. They're done. I feel responsible. We weren't the friends we should've been to them. I wonder...if we would have been there...would things be turning out differently? If we'd just spent more time together, maybe they'd still be loving each other. It's harder to quit when you've got people supporting you. We had no idea what was going on. We should've been praying for them. Hanging out with them. Encouraging them. We let them down. :(

I don't understand...at what point is marriage and kids and family just not worth fighting for anymore? How does it get to where it's easier to just end it?

I am sad...but now, more than ever, I'm going to work at making our marriage amazing.