Saturday, April 21, 2012

Where's The Roundup When You Need It?

Do you ever dwell on the relatively few negative happenings in your life until it dims the shine of all the blessings we all live with every day? I do that.We all have weeds in our garden of flowers in one way or the other. But when you look at the garden, and the weeds are all that's grabbing your attention and overwhelming you... something needs to change!  Many days I dwell on my health problems, such as my arthritis and lower back problems. It's hard not to when everything hurts and every step you take is painful. It really zaps the joy from life. The other day the idea struck me that I need to work on rising above it; see more flowers and downplay the weeds. 

My Mom used to say, that when she opened her eyes in the morning and saw the sun coming through her bedroom window she always, "thanked God for another day". She was such a lover of nature. She loved birds, flowers, beaver dams, animals...any of it. I don't do that. I just plant my stiff feet on the floor, and ooch and ouch my way to the bathroom, muttering to myself how they hurt and how disgusted  I am that I can't take any Advil or anything.

After letting my dogs out, I drink my tea, (my bright spot of every day). This is when I used to take my Advil, three of them, so I could take the edge of my arthritis and do something. Now I have to tackle everything I do with sheer will power and my poor attitude is fanning the flame of self pity.

The other day I was driving out to see Stetson and listening to Laura Story's song, Blessings. I took in the lyrics I'd heard many times before, they come from I Thessalonians 5:16-18. Later that week I heard Pastor Mark say, what ever is bothering you, whether it's something benign like arthritis or something deadly like cancer, is easier to handle if you realize that this body is not the one we're stuck with for eternity. If we believe we have everlasting life, the years we spend in our bodies here are like a blip on the radar scale...because eternity is a long time. I was happy with that news...cuz I got the short end of the stick,  when it came to a body.

So, I have been working on finding things every day that I'm thankful for. Of course there are all the huge obvious things...the ones you have ready when its your turn on Thanksgiving day to say what your thankful for. Things like God, family, friends, health, and the food in front of us.

I decided to look instead for the not so obvious, the
hidden blessings, like when you pick a shopping cart and all the wheels work! Getting a good one is a little like the lottery... it's stacked against you! You'd look pretty silly making a test run outside the store, and even if you did, once inside all the wheels would be heading in different directions clacking along from aisle to aisle anyway. I never know if I need to apologize for subjecting oncoming shoppers to the racket of my squealing cart, or the fact that I'm coming down the aisle sideways! So a good cart is a small blessing that makes your day for sure!

I have loved to go to second hand stores for many years! I used to pick a day, even when I lived in Minot, to make the rounds to the area second hand stores whose proceeds benefit people in need. In Minot, the Restore store benefits the mentally ill ( my passion), the Salvation Army (helps the poor) and also has a CEO with a regular wage rather than a six figure one, the Dakota Boys Ranch(helps young troubled boys). They are all fun places to go. Here in Arizona, I like the Goodwill stores. They are clean and in good neighborhoods over here on the East side of town. I really enjoy finding an old treasure. I collect old brooches, and I have a collection of Little Golden books, but i have caught my limit on those... as they are heavy and I had to move them once already. We have some great antique shops here in Arizona too! So Goodwill stores/antique shops are another hidden blessing for me, who likes give myself a day to wander through them, and for whom the proceeds benefit. Another blessing in my life!

My horse is a huge blessing. He has been acting up the last couple months, just being really stubborn and acting crazy. I started getting depressed and really in a funk about how old I am. I feel like an, "old lady with a young horse", and he's too much horse for me. Inside you feel the same age as you always were. The logical thing is to

                             A. Sell him, and either replace him with a deadhead that's got one foot in the grave                   
                             B. Get in better physical shape weight wise myself although the back and  arthritis is still there          
                              C. Get a rocking horse for the living room.

 I actually even showed him to some people who were interested in him. I cried all day. Syd went with to meet the prospective buyers. They wanted him, but Syd (bless her heart), ran up beside me when I was turning him out and said, "Mom your not ready to sell him, and neither am I. I don't like horses that much, but he loves you you can see that... and you love him". I decided shes right...I'm not ready to sell him, my life has a completeness to it with him in it! He's an 1100 lb small blessing, as are our chihuahuas and Bentley the human cat. Nobody is going anywhere at the moment.

I'm happy that Kerry and I have weathered the strong hurricane winds that blew through our marriage the last few years. We have both looked at the rubble around us more than once, and wondered if it was worth rebuilding, because there have always been weak spots even before the storm hit. I've never been able to see myself without him, I've loved him since I was about sixteen. Like the horse problem,  he's alot of donkey for me at times, and I have my less than stellar behavior myself too, so we keep going. Some days we fight like pitbulls and other days it's still pretty entertaining and good to have someone in you're corner and he's always been in my corner when it comes down to it.

We all have weeds in our life don't we? Weeds are resistant, hard to kill, and some of us are pretty good at over fertilizing our weed environment besides. Seems we get rid of one patch of weeds,  and another pops up! Same with problems and trials in our lives. If we look over our flowers and only see the weeds... we are missing alot of beauty. What can we do but work  at it? We must keep on picking weeds before they take over the whole garden. Pluck them from our life one by one, and and in the meantime focus on the flowers because as the song goes, "What if the trials of this life, are mercies in disguise"?