There are times in life when a person is more themselves than other times. Cryptic statement, right? I’ve been thinking about how my daughter and I act together. We are silly, teasing, bugging, cuddly at times, helpful, and basically we are ourselves.
There have been times in my life when I would not have been able to be this particular version of myself. I would not have felt comfortable play wrestling with her or giving her a dirty look that she is very secure in knowing is completely teasing. I know that I can wrestle with her and play fist fight with her without thinking that someone my criticize me for this. When she woke up from her nap yesterday, she grabbled ahold of me and told me to finish her nap with her. We cuddled for a bit and then I asked if she wanted to help me work on my furniture. She hopped out of bed like she had been hoping I would ask her to help with his for days.
I love that I can tease her and be secure that she knows I am teasing. I can argue with her and she knows that I still love her. I sometimes have to get on to her or disappoint her, but she knows that I love her. I am very pleased that I get to have such an honest and open relationship with my daughter. There were times in my life that I know that she would not know the real me. I’m glad that she does get to know the real me.
We spent a lot of time picking up and “cleaning” the house this weekend. Guiding her to be better at this than I am is difficult for me. I’m trying to turn a leaf. We’re getting ready to create my space. It will be the first time in approximately 8 years that I have had a space of my own. (hence working on furniture) I am ecstatic. It is going to be my own soothing color, organized how I like with space for ME. I’m looking forward to having space for my own stuff and having the opportunity to purge unneeded stuff and just have space for me.
I have been blessed to be loved by my family. My family is wonderful. I have come to realize, though, that I have never known real romantic love. That is okay. Not many people are that lucky. What does that kind of love look like?
Maybe that person could think of your safety and comfort.
Maybe that person wants to keep you safe.
Your happiness is more important than money or material possessions.
No matter how silly you act, you can count on that person’s love.
They don’t put the blame for disappointments at your feet.
They always see the beauty in you.
They see when you are worn out and tired and figure out a way to take some of your load and let you rest. Even if they need to do that every day.
They put the other person’s need above their own.
I truly believe that if one person shows that kind of love, the other half of that
relationship will learn and begin to do the same. Relationships are difficult… But this kind of love is well worth the work!
Count yourself BLESSED if you have ever known this kind of love!
I’m back on track. It’s been about 5 days. That discussion last week about fasting really got to me. People are only given one body in this life. I am the only one who can really take care of my body. If I don’t take care of myself, this body will fail me.
I’m constantly preaching this to my mother. But I don’t always do my best. Yes, I do feel like it is okay to indulge from time to time. Enjoy a treat. But when I’m indulging every day, that’s just too much. When I get dessert after every meal… hmmm. I was in a habit for a while of eating fast food four to five times, sometimes more… per week!
On Sunday afternoon, during a discussion about food in other countries, someone told me that in Israel, they don’t have dessert. DON’T HAVE SWEET baked goods. That is just outside of the realms of my reality. Amazing to me. Fruit is a delicacy there and is what they use for sweets. Someone else said that when you don’t have the sugar at every turn (she once gave up all sweets for a bit), fruit tastes amazingly sweet. Hmmm… wouldn’t that be nice. I take fruit for granted, that is for sure.
Besides myself, I’m also trying to add more vegetables to my daughter’s diet. She claims to not like most vegetables. There are a handful that she will eat. I just need to make them more available. I also told her that there is a new rule in my house that there will be no candy or sugary items if she doesn’t eat her vegetables. She almost came to tears on this over the weekend, but it is getting better. It’s not like I’m making her eat vegetables that she hates.
As I started to write yesterday’s post, I apparently got sidetracked with thoughts of that silly birthday cake.
The thing I actually meant to talk about was eating out! I have eaten out way too frequently in the last couple of weeks, especially since Lent. I have spent too much money at restaurants and fast food chains. So, while that is not one of the things I have given up for Lent, I’m going to work to not eat out often. Yet another way that money can be mindlessly squandered.
I also need to eat better. Eating out is definitely not the healthiest option. I’ve been going to a Lenten book study at my church, and we were talking this week about fasting. Some of the discussion really hit home with me. People, in general have many things that fill voids in our lives. TV and electronic communications, as well as video games fill up the need for friends and social interaction… as well as boredom. Food does the same, but in a different way. It also gives us a sense of control. The feeling that if we want it, we can have it. It takes a lot of discipline to eat in a healthy fashion… and I haven’t had a lot of discipline lately. I’m working on it. I’ve got a lot of work to do!
As I have gone through this first week of no shopping, I have done well. There are some slippery slopes though. Many things can be bought besides food at the grocery store and pharmacy. I have been good, but I could see the mind moving in that direction. it’s really unnecessary though. I’ve got anything that I need already.
When we were at the grocery store last Friday night, we bought a cake for my sister’s birthday dinner. Jules saw a Barbie Doll cake. Everybody’s seen those, right? The Barbie Doll is standing in the middle of the cake and the cake is what makes up her full hoop skirt. Jules decided right then and there that that was the birthday cake for her. I asked the bakery attendant how much that cake costs. $45!?!?!?! That seems an exhorbitant amount for a matter of cake and frosting… and a $5 doll.
So… I’m going to make her the cake. It’s completely do-able. I found a couple of sets of directions online for how to do it and since Sunday is the day before her birthday, I will have plenty of time to get it done. I think for part of her birthday gift, I’ll ask my mom to buy the doll so that I can get around the shopping thing.
(Is that one more slippery slope???)
Saturday morning, my daughter woke up, especially early, with a 102 degree temperature. Luckily, the pediatrician office has Saturday hours for sick kids. We got her in and she was immediately diagnosed with strep throat. Got antibiotics and feeling better by the end of the day. Moral of this story… because I’m on an anti-spending kick, spending $80+ on prescriptions (almost half of that was my prescription refill…ick) was something that was palatable. My crappy insurance has a $1500 deductible before I have to pay 20% of doctor’s visits… so it will be interesting to see what the bill looks like for that. Fortunately, Jules’ dad will help with these… but since he was out of town, the initial amount needed to come from me. I’m glad that I didn’t have to wonder if I would be able to swing it.
It’s so hard to see your child sick. The initial dose of tylenol didn’t kick the fever. so, the morning was rough. I was so glad to be able to do something about it (get her into the doctor immediately). Plus, I almost never spend time at home on the weekend. We stayed home most of Saturday and it did us good. I probably could have done more housework, but I had a really good weekend with my kiddo.
One major idea behind giving up shopping for Lent is that by giving up this “thing” (SHOPPING!), I will better be able to do something good. By not spending whatever money that isn’t already spoken for, I will be able to do better things with that money. If an opportunity comes to help someone, it will not hurt my day to day existence to hand over some money. If someone is in need, I will be able. I’m hoping to develop some much better habits.
I headed to Amazon.com this morning… looking for books. Before the page was even fully on the screen, I closed the browser. Must go to the library! Wow… becoming aware is tough!