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And Then I Blinked….

I blinked…

I gasped…I wiped my eyes.

Maybe I wasn’t seeing clearly.

I blinked hard to get new clarity…I still saw the same thing, two blue lines.

I was pregnant.

I was shocked…EXCITED!!!…scared…HAPPY!!!…afraid…EXSTATIC!!!!

I was going to be a mama! Honestly, for as long as I can remember it was all I ever wanted to be was a mom. I wanted a mess o’ kids following after me, and now it seemed that the start of that dream was happening.

I blinked…

I was 38 weeks pregnant and the day had come to meet this baby, the one I was waiting for. I arrived at 7 am. They said I would probably deliver in the middle of the next night, expecting a 20 hour labor. I wasn’t waiting that long to see my little one! No way!

At 12:45 pm I was pushing.

I blinked…

He was in my arms, all wet and beautiful. My firstborn, my love, my treasure. I had never held anything that beautiful. I had never done anything that fullfilling. I was right, this mom thing was ALL I ever wanted. That first moment of holding my little one could never be measured. I didn’t want that feeling to end.

I blinked…

We were walking across The Home Depot parking lot. Our little man, just able to walk, was toddling next to us. I remember his outfit, little Levi’s, a new polar fleece hoodie, and little blue and white Nike’s. Can you say, stinkin’ cute? A woman with two teenagers was approaching us, passing the other way. She looked at my little buddy, looked at her own son, and said, “Enjoy him now. Pretty soon they grow up and turn into a pain in the #**!” Ouch! How terrible for that boy to hear that! I remember that my husband and I looked at each other with pain and determination in our eyes. An unspoken commitment…our children would be enjoyable, even as teens. We would never speak those words over them…no talk of the Terrible 2’s or the Rebellious Teens. We would expect more and we would love them deeper.

I blinked…

He was 5. Handsome. Friendly. Lovable. He called me Mama. Smart as a whip…he was reading and writing and doing school from our little dining room table. The snow started to fall. We stretched over the back of the couch and watched it accumulate outside from our bay window. He couldn’t wait to play in it! And so we stopped what we were doing and we played.

I blinked…

He’s 14. For the first time since, well, forever, he is going to school. We sit in the parking lot because we are 15 minutes early. I keep asking if he really wants to go. “Are you sure?” “You don’t have to go!” “We can just keep schooling at home.” But he was ready. The 9th grade school year would be different for him and me. But it was time. He opened the door, nervously put on his backpack, and smiled at me.

“I love you, mama,” he said.

I smiled back, told him I loved him and off he went. Then I sat in the parking lot and cried my eyeballs out, praying and hoping I wasn’t making a mistake.

But isn’t that what moms do? Don’t we fret and worry and wonder if every decision we make with our children will be a wrong one? Will be screw them up? Will they become that rebellious teen because of a decision we made that altered their course? Will they survive our raising?

I blinked…

“Mom, she said yes!” He found his first love. How do you react to that? I wondered how I would feel when this day came, when he gave his heart to someone. Would I like her? Would I approve? Is he too young? I remember how my mom loved my brother’s girlfriends and welcomed them with open arms. She made them feel safe and loved. I hope I do that. I hope I make her feel welcome. But God’s grace shines on and He shows us how to love another and our family grows.

I blinked…

The day is here and he’s leading his class down the aisle as graduates. He’s so proud. His father and I beam. He hugs me tight and says, “I love you mama!”

  I breath a sigh if relief that he made it…that we did you the right thing with his education, that we made the right choices for him. But I also knew that this day meant that soon he would be leaving. But we have the WHOLE summer, right?

I blinked…

I wake with a start. We can’t hide from the dawning of the day. The day is here and we must face it. We pack the trucks. We do the next thing. We do the next thing. We breathe. I hold my emotions in as best I can. The two-hour drive goes fast, but we have the whole day together, right?

We moved him in. We attended meetings. We toured the campus. We took a few minutes alone as a family and enjoyed the beauty of this amazing campus.

My silly boy

And then the day was gone and we were standing by the car and the moment I had been dreading was there and we couldn’t ignore it. He hugged his brother and told him he loved him. He hugged his other brother and asked him to care for his dog for him. He hugged his sister and told her how amazing she was. He hugged his dad and his dad told him how amazing he was and how proud he was. They all piled in the car and there we stood, my boy and I. He nestled in my arms and I held him tight. I tried to utter words, but instead I just tried to breathe. I told him I loved him, trusted him and was so proud.

“I love you, mama.”

He turned and headed for his dorm. In the darkness I watched his silhouette walk across the parking lot to the lighted stairwell. He headed up the steps…

I blinked…and he was gone.

I’ve done the best I know how to raise this boy into a man of God. Now it’s God’s turn to chisel.

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Angel Wing on My Goose

This isn’t a normal post you would see on my blog, but I know this will help someone.

There is a medical issue that sometimes happens in waterfowl. It is called Angel Wing or Twisted Wing. It is when the flight feathers on the wings grow rapidly and do not lay correctly under the wing, causing the wing the bow out and twist. Though this is not painful, it does deem the duck or goose flightless. It usually starts to develop around 4 weeks old.

In April of this year, I became an adoptive parent to an orphaned gosling who developed an angel wing. I knew of this condition before she showed signs of it, so as soon as I noticed it I went on a hunt to try to find info on how to help her and correct the situation. I found nothing other than explanation of why it may have happened. The only corrective story I found out there was one about a hawk or owl that was found with this issue as an adult.

This is my story of a successful repair of an angel wing. I hope that this will help others. If it does, please come back and comment and let me know.As I mentioned, in April of 2011 I was given an orphaned gosling that had been kicked out of the nest and left for dead.

Not knowing if she would even survive, I got a Ziploc bag full of food from a friend who raises ducks. In hindsite, this food had growth hormones in it which is one theory on why waterfowl develop angel wing’s. Regardless, she ate this food for one week and was thriving. I changed her food to Purina Flock Raiser which does not have growth hormones.

Somewhere around 3 or 4 weeks, I noticed that her right wing started to hang a bit. Sometimes I would tuck it into place. Within a week, I realized it was Angel Wing. This is the only pic I have of her wing. Not a very good one, but you can see the right wing falling to the side.

I immediately started researching what to do. Nothing was found other than a book that said to try plucking the feathers. Ouch! Then I found the story about the hawk, where they wrapped the wing in place and allowed it to set.

I tucked the twisted part of the wing under the main part of the wing and lightly secured it in place by wrapping it in clear surgical tape. Then I left it for a little over a week. At that point, the tape had lost most of its stickiness so I removed it and checked the wing. I planned to check it and retape it. She spent the day stretching the wing and exercising it. But from that moment on, the wing has been in perfect alignment. There was no need to retape it. She is doing excellent and should be able to use it to fly when she is old enough.

It amazes me that there are no stories out there of ducks or geese successfully being treated for this. I don’t think my goose’s story is an oddity. It seemed like the normal thing to do…stabilizing the wing and allowing it to right itself.

Like I said, I move this helps someone out there.

Signed,

Mama Goose


Almost Time To Fly

Almost Time To Fly.


The Shoes of Bravery

The Shoes of Bravery.


The Shoes of Bravery

Bravery came in the mail on Monday, plainly packaged but carefully protected. Inside the plain manilla envelope was Bravery, displayed in the form of a beautifully printed, eye-catching novel.

Why did I have this opportunity to see Bravery? Because she asked for willing readers to critique her newest, yet to be released novel and write a review. I said yes to Bravery and she chose me, a stranger.

I never really thought about it from her end. When I was chosen as a reader I considered it an incredible opportunity. But it wasn’t until I held the novel in my hands and thought of the countless hours that were spent pouring over this book did I see her true vulnerability.

This book , delivered to my doorstep, said, “Here. Take all my blood, sweat, and tears for the past few years. Take my heart, my creativity, my passion, my gifting. Read it and judge it.” She chose to be vulnerable. Bravery is her name.

I laid in my bed last night, completely immersed in her writing. No need to be afraid Bravery, it is captivating. I was smitten from the word go. Your passion for writing spills over into every chapter, every page, every character, every delectable morsel of a word, so beautifully portrayed on paper. Your art for bringing a character to life and at the same time drawing your readers into a deeper love for Jesus is beyond gifting.

I admire Bravery. I admire her willingness to hear words of criticism along with words of favor. She willingly throws her hat into the ring and invites people to either love it and wear it or do the Mexican Hat dance on it. I say hats off to Bravery.

In a month, I am meeting Bravery. On July 23rd I will sit across from Bravery and ask for her critique on my memoir. I will be brave and fearless, while I shake in my boots, as I lay my heart out in front of her and say, “Here. Take all my blood, sweat, and tears. Take my heart, my creativity, my passion, my gifting. Take my life story. Read it and judge it. Then tell me if it’s worth it.”

Bravery has big shoes to fill. For a moment, I will have a chance to see what they feel like.

Those are scary shoes.

Though I am not finished reading “The Muir house”, by Mary DeMuth, I encourage you to purchase this book and get entangled in her beautiful writing. The release date is June 27th, 2011.   


Almost Time To Fly

I didn’t ask for him, but in a matter of moments after the
reality hit that he was really coming, I started to prepare for his arrival. I
provided a bed for him and food to eat. But more than the necessities, I opened
my heart to the love that he needed.

It wasn’t hard to love him. The first time I saw his face
and heard him cry, I fell immediately in love. I was smitten from the word “go”.

Who wouldn’t? He was helpless and in need of a mama. There was a mighty big
world out there that was waiting for him, but for now, he needed a home.

And here, he found a place to settle and rest.

So for the next few days we bonded. Everywhere I went, he
went. Everything I did, he was right there with me. Through my love for him, he
not only survived, but thrived.

But life has its tragedies and its hurts. He was not immune
to either. When hurts came, I helped him.

I bandaged him and carried him.

I loved him and coddled him.

I provided a place to heal.

And when the healing started to come, I
encouraged him to walk again, even if it hurt.

He wasn’t created to be carried all
his life. God created him with big plans to fly.

But before he flew, he had to walk.

Slowly, through much struggle and perseverance, he did walk again. He triumphed over tragedy until
the wounds of life had almost disappeared.

I have raised him as best I know how. I have loved him with
every bit of who I am and then some. I get up every day knowing that he is
waiting for me to love on him. My entire heart has been poured out into him.

I have watched him mature and grow before my eyes.

The baby that I first knew is not who captures my gaze now. I see beauty and maturity. I
see strength and independence. I see someone desiring to spread their wings and
fly.

 But for now, he is with me because he chooses to stay.

For now, he is there when I wake up and there when I fall asleep.

For now, he finds safety and courage when I am close by.

But…

Someday, when the time is right, he will spread those wings
and he will fly.

He will start a life that doesn’t revolve around me.

He will soar with the wings that God gave him on top of the
wind that God uses to push him along on the path that God has planned from the
moment of his conception. He will fly…and he will fly strong.

As for me, I will watch him from the ground and cheer him as
he flies. I will clap and scream and say, “That’s my boy up there!”  I will wear a smile that he will see and
remember as he flies away. It will be a grand day.

But inside, my heart will be breaking. It will be pleading
for him to stay, just a day more.

It will break at the thought of never seeing him again or forgetting who I was to
him. But that day will not be about me. It will be his day to soar for he has
worked so hard to fly.

Funny, but if I didn’t know better, I would think this wasn’t about a goose.

Tahd on his graduation day with his siblings, Kelsey, Levi and Wyatt

Breathe Deeply

I’ve been away from writing for a while. It is as if my life has been a reality show that someone has recorded and now they are trying to
watch it on fast forward. I feel like the past two months have been on fast
forward and now I would just like to rewind and take it all in. It was a good
two months, full of joyous celebrations and lasting memories.

But I haven’t been able to relish it and take in the
memories, until now.

If there was ever a favorite place for me to be, it is here.

Lake Weiss

Here is where I find peace, at this spot where the clothing
of the day is either pajamas or a bathing suit. Where lazy is not a negative
thing. Here is where my soul rests and says, “Aaaahhhhhh….” Here my life goes
from fast forward to slow motion as if trying to catch every moment and not miss
a thing. Here I breathe deeply and love easier. Here I find peace.

But it is also here
that the Lord speaks to me in ways that I don’t hear anywhere else. Probably
because it is here that I stop and listen for Him, for He always is speaking if
I would just choose to listen.

The past few months have been so chaotic and full that I
have not had much time to sit and listen for the One I love the most to speak.
Quiet times have been at lightning speed and prayers have been more like a
quick peck on the cheek and a “Love ya. Bye!” as your man is flying out the
door for work.

But here, my soul breaths deeply, loves passionately and
listens longer than anywhere. The worship music that serenades me here is the
sound of water lapping the edge of the shore, birds chirping, the laughter of
the ones I love most, and the peeping of our feathered trio who joined us on
this trip. (See! Lots to catch up on.) Slow Mo is just right for me here. While
others play on the jet skis and race to the sand bar, I sip my coffee as I sway
back and forth on the swing. I drink my sweet tea in a rocking chair while my
babies cannonball off the dock.

No email. No meetings. No appointments. No chaos. No agenda.
Just peace.

This place, the home, this oasis is considered a gift that
the owners love to bestow on us. I am thankful for them and their generosity.
Because this sanctuary is the closest to heaven and my Lord I have ever been.

Breathe deep…aaahhh!