summer 2011

summer 2011

Paul and I, all 16 kids and Ashley, Benjamin's wife...Christmas 2012

Paul and I, all 16 kids and Ashley, Benjamin's wife...Christmas 2012

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

not my stories to tell....

Well, have you ever heard the expression, "My business, your business, and everybody else's business..."? Well...when I sit here and write, I have to decide what is MY story, and who it would affect if I tell it. Yesterday, I sat and wrote from the heart, then realized later in the day that that isn't MY story to tell.

I have gotten, believe it or not, a few messages here and there through the years about reality t.v., and I did not respond. Can you imagine exposing your kids' lives like that? Airing your troubles and your dirty laundry, and ha, that laundry mountain that was in the laundry room doorway for years? I feel bad enough sometimes for this blog. One of my sons still simmers about an incident years ago when I described a situation wherein he needed a belt, so we bought one at the dollar store. Now personally, I see no problem with this story. But when you are a teenage boy, it can be social suicide.

So I write, and I erase, and I wonder...and sometimes I think I have no business writing about our family at all.

But this week, I am here in Boston, and oh how nice it is! When Paul suggested I come with him for one of the weeks he would be here, it was a few months back, and I didn't hesitate to accept. But as the days went by, I wondered if I were doing the right thing...a week of not being there...a week in the summertime...a week of not getting anything done around the house...a week without the puppies...

But here I am. And guess what? It's nice. Even though Paul works all day, we have our evenings, and it's fun. It's fun to just deal with US. Last evening, our plans got changed, and we ended up just by ourselves.

And home..they're fine! Joseph is there, he is 26...Kathryn is 19, and had her last day of work on Monday, because she is going to Norway for a year, next week. That's another regret for me, not to be with her for these days...but, she is doing fun things with the younger ones. And they are fine. Last evening, Sonja asked me for my vanilla cake recipe...:)

I have heard rumors that the kids LIKE when mom and dad are gone, imagine that.

Today, we have plans to go to the home of the woman who runs the factory...we are leaving early, to spend a good part of the day and evening there. Paul said we can bring our bathing suits...and I asked, "Is there a pool?" He loves when I ask smart questions. But the REAL question is this: How can I lose 50 pounds in the next three hours? Or this: Do I sweat in the 92 degree heat, and pretend like I'm fine, or do I put on the suit...and die a little? Fat-shaming...the last frontier of allowable offenses in our politically correct world. Just don't eat so much, think the skinny ones. Maybe they think perhaps we don't realize we are fat. That we're fine with it, even. Maybe they're wondering why on earth we would eat a cookie, when for crying out loud, we're fat!

Or one thinks any of this at all, and it's just my own battle.

In any case, I do not think I am ready to put on the suit, by the way, looks like a dress. One of my daughters actually said to me when I came out in it, in Florida, "Oh, nice dress, Mom!"

I haven't worn a bikini since I was a teenager. And ha, I thought I was fat then, at 125 pounds.

But anyway. Today, I am going for a walk, then coming back for a swim...poor me, all by my lonesome.

I will walk, and think about things. About being content, about not caring what people think of me. I don't really care, but then...I find that I do. I wonder why I put all this out here, for the world to read. Maybe because it's true. Maybe it will help someone else feel they're not alone.

I do know what matters in life, but that doesn't mean I magically feel no insecurity. I live to please God, and not man, yet...there is so much in me that quakes at the thought of spilling a drink down me (and shh, I dropped green stuff on my shirt at dinner the other night...) theory, who cares? In reality....I just want to stay home, ha. But out of my comfort zone is good for me.


Sandra said...

How wonderful to have "you" time! My daily challenge (at the ripe old age of 50) is to try and think less of what others think, and to think more of others... Easier said than done. Raising a daughter to not think of her body as a source of shame is not easy either.
I so enjoy what you share of your family, enjoy the rest of your week. Take care Sandy xx

Anonymous said...

Such honesty is refreshing :)
Donna, NY

Lisa said...

I, for one, read your blog and feel that I'm not alone all.the.time. I have the same thoughts and insecurities. I used to feel shame going thru the drive thru at Burger K..g when I was a teen and weighed 120 lbs...I had such a poor body image then that I thought I was fat and was sure the employees there were thinking, "Wow, I can't believe she is eating this, she's a pig!"...sigh...if only I could weigh that now, knowing what I know and being so much wiser.

I think that I don't care what others think of me, and then I'm devastated when someone who doesn't know me at all makes criticisms or judgements about me or my kids. I have adopted 6 children and 5 of the 6 come from very mentally ill families. I had no clue what I was getting into. I didn't know the odds of the kids having these same issues would be so great. Now I'm being blamed for everything they say and do as well. Geez, isn't it bad enough that I have to watch everything I do and say as it is because I chose to add to my already full family? Some days I just don't think I care anymore and it's enough of a challenge getting thru the day, without burdening myself with what others think or say. Some days as I'm scrubbing up another mess or vacuuming or folding laundry I just keep repeating, "I'm living for the Lord" to get me thru to the next thing - and it works!!

I love reading about your fun days and even your ordinary (to you anyway) days. I only have 2 (down from 10) left at home (one of which is gone alot) and I miss all the park days and running errands days we used to have together. We have a grandson visit or other little friends and it reminds me that I couldn't keep up with a house full of little ones like I used to, but I do miss it.

I understand your hesitancy about over sharing or determining what is yours to tell. Sometimes I think it's so good to vent and just lay it all out there, but our kids have other

Thank you for sharing as much as you makes me smile and lifts my spirit tremendously :)

16 blessings'mom said...

Sandra, it is a challenge. I tell my daughters how lovely they are, that they don't need make-up, that a thankful heart is more beautiful than any hair or make up products out there. But ultimately words speak louder than actions and I KNOW I have to man up and be more confident, if not for me, for them.
Donna, thank you.:)
Lisa, isn't it crazy that we thought we were fat back then? It's good to remember these things though. And I just want to say that you are amazing, you did an incredible thing in adopting your children. I'm sure had some really stressful days,(and weeks and years, ha) but you gave them a home, and you deserve a medal. It's funny because when we have little friends or grandchildren over, I wonder how in the heck I used to do it.
I am enjoying this little vacation here immensely. I hope to go back home refreshed....and able to bear what comes my way...with joy.:)