Well, Christmas is over for another year. I hope everyone had a very peaceful and joyous time with your family, and I hope you took some time to reflect on the true meaning.
Our Christmas was absolutely fantastic! I had 5 wonderful days off with my precious baby boy! I sure do miss him today! I can't wait to get home and see him! Better yet, I only have to work one more day and I am off 4 more!!! Yay!!
This year, same as last, we will all be spending New Year's Eve in our church with our church family. What better way, pray the new year in! Have you ever heard the saying "the way you start the new year off is the way you finish the year out?" Well, for many years, that has held true for us! We start it off praying, and we finish it out praying, and start the new year praying. It is awesome!
I do not make "new year's resolutions." This is for many reasons, I tended to always fall short, which in turn disappointed the people around me, and most of all I disappointed myself. One thing I have learned to do is totally remove myself from things that set me up for disappointment. You would not believe how much better life is if you do that!
Since I do not make these empty promises to myself, what I plan to do is reflect on the things I did in 2007 -- the things that worked, the things I liked, the things that bombed, and the things I need to work on. Then, I am going to add these to my prayer list - to enjoy the things that worked, to surround myself more with my Christian brothers and sisters, to read my Bible more, to better the things in my life that need work. God is so much better than a resolution. God never fails! He will never fail me, like I fail me. That is such a powerful truth! Wow!
Everyone needs to reflect every once in a while. Have you made empty promises to yourself or to people that you come in contact with? If someone tries to reach out and help you, do you promise them something, and then fail them? If God sends angels to assist you, do you immediately accept their help, and then turn your back with excuses? Why? Do you think these false promises and excuses will work to get into Heaven? I don't think so. Do you think God will keep blessing you if you do nothing for Him in return? I am not going to answer that one, just think about it.
Let God be your pilot, NOT your CO-PILOT! Let Him be in full control. He will always be there for you if you let Him.
My baby boy calls him Hoo Hoo, so that is who he is this year. I am getting more and more excited about next week! This year, we stuck to gifts for Stephen that he will actually use, and we did not go overboard, either! Last year, we went a little overboard, but I also picked things out that were a bit too old for him. Needless to say, a lot of wasted money! So, this year, he is getting lots of crayons, pads of paper, chalk, creative stuff! If he has a pen, crayon, pencil in his hand (along with his "dinky" in the other hand of course), he is perfectly happy!
I don't see the big deal about letting children "believe" in Santa for the brief years that they can. It is all so magical and exciting, and can be taught along with "Santa is bringing this for you, but it is provided, along with everything else in your life, by our Saviour, Jesus Christ." That is what we tell Stephen. Jesus provides it all, and Santa just happens to be the delivery man. Stephen will always know that Jesus gives us everything. And, we will also have a birthday cupcake or cookie for Jesus. Because afterall, IT'S HIS BIRTHDAY! How can we not celebrate it appropriately?
Unfortunately, we do not have a lot of traditions yet in our home, but this will always be a constant. We will praise and celebrate our Lord and King through this wonderful holiday, and we will have fun. Santa will be welcome in our home for as long as Stephen will allow, but he will never overshadow Jesus!
Guess what I am doing tonight??? I am getting my hair whacked off -- for a very good cause. I decided about a year ago to let my hair grow out, I mean really out. Through much patience and determination, it has finally reached the required minimum length that Locks of Love http://locksoflove.org/ requires! Yay!!!
There it is, way too much hair for any one person to have! The required minimum length is 10", so needless to say, my new "do" will be pretty short, but hey, it will grow back! I will post another picture tomorrow of me, probably 10 lbs. lighter.
I am extremely happy to be doing this! For years, I have hated the fact that my hair is so extremely thick! I can never get it to lay just perfect like these wonderful styles that I long for, but I have always tried, failing miserably! God gave me all this hair for a reason, and maybe this is it!
God has definitely blessed me with "the hair," so I decided to share it. If you visit Locks of Love's website, you will see why. If you ever consider getting a major part of your hair cut off, and meet the minimum requirements (10"), please consider doing the same thing. This organization is such a wonderful thing!
All my life, I always wanted to be a mother. All of my married life, I tried and tried and tried, but failed and failed and failed. Realizing now that it was simply because God wasn't ready (as I think I talked about in a previous blog). But, He blessed Todd and me with a normal pregnancy (even though I was a horrible pregnant woman -- thanks everybody for putting up with me!). Most mothers imagine giving birth to an absolutely perfect child, and most do. Well, in my eyes, as I am sure in every other mother's eyes, my child is perfect! Yes, he is a little on the rambunctious side, a little temperamental, and a little s-p-o-i-l-e-d, but he is 2!
What I am trying to get at is the fact that he is speech delayed. I feel like an alcoholic or druggie that is in the first stages of their healing process -- DENIAL! When I finally accepted the fact, I instantly felt like a total failure! I felt as if I had been a horrible mother and failed Stephen. All the while wondering how could this be...he was supposed to be the smartest, most beautiful thing in the world. He seems SO incredibly intelligent, but no words were being spoken in that sweet voice of his other than the usual "momma," "mommaw," and an occasional "dada," "duck," and some other small things. What was I doing wrong? Maybe it was easier to put the blame on myself than to actually think something could actually be "wrong" with him!
During his 2 year checkup, the physician's assistant suggested that we contact WV Birth to Three, which is an organization that works with children and families with delays to help them transition into the school system. Early intervention. I immediately contacted them, but was still very sick to my stomach about the whole thing.
That has been about three months ago. We had our initial meetings to evaluate Stephen's situation. His developmental milestone all passed the bar, but his speech failed. Although he had an expressive vocabulary of about 20 words, he was sufficiently lacking. So, we chose our team of therapists which we thought would fit us and Stephen best, and scheduled some appointments. We decided to stick with a developmental specialist even though Stephen didn't really need developmental therapy, because Stephen loved her, and she is very fluent in sign language. She is working with him with sign to help him express himself until he can actually "tell" us what he wants or needs. We are a little disappointed with the speech therapist right now because she has only worked with him ONE time through all of this! I have found already that if there is no consistency, this is not going to work. And now, we have added an occupational therapist because they have discovered that Stephen has oral sensory issues, which could be causing this entire problem. This lady is great! She is very intelligent and has already been to see him and work with him.
Something remarkable happened over the weekend. Stephen gave me something I longed for for a very long time, he actually nodded his head yes when I asked him a question, and then followed suit with what he agreed to do. When I realized what had happened, I wanted to cry! Of course tears of joy! Wow! We actually communicated for the very first time! (Other than him asking for a "gunk" which we know as "drink"). Praise God!
I have noticed a huge improvement over the past month with both his expressive language and his cognitive vocabulary. This leads me to yet another question...is this program working that fast (even though there has been no real consistency), or, as a "mother," were my expectations for Stephen too high too early?? I mean come on, like I said, he is only 2! I have almost convinced myself that I put too much pressure on myself! I mean, I know he does have some sensory issues because he still drools excessively, but we will work through that. He will talk when he is ready, it is definitely not something you can MAKE anyone do!
But hey, he is making PROGRESS!!!!! :)
Another thing I have noticed, which I spoke about in church this past weekend, was the fact that I have never taken this problem to God. I struggle trying to figure out just why that is, but I cannot come up with anything. Am I afraid of praying for myself, or my family? Do I feel selfish because there are so many other things I pray about that really need prayer, or do I think that we can handle things? Because if that is the case, boy have I got a problem! Stephen does need prayer for this! I NEED PRAYER FOR THIS! Because it is difficult on both of us not being able to communicate! Both of our frustration levels get to the max sometimes! So, I am asking you, my friends and family, please pray for us! I vowed in church that I was starting to pray for the situation, but I also ask you all to accompany me in prayer.
OK, I admit it, I have always been sort of a scrooge. I just feel like Christmas has become way to commercialized! What happened to family just spending lots of time together around a beautifully decorated Christmas tree and around a table totally covered with delicious food? And giving thanks to God for sending His only Son to this earth with one reason, and one reason only -- to die for OUR sins! Oh no, we are all way too busy and preoccupied to sit down and relax and really enjoy this season. It's all about "what am I getting for Christmas" - "what am I buying such and such" - "don't say 'Merry Christmas' because it offends people (yet they never fail to put up a tree, or observe the day off)."
The fact is, we have the holiday (holy day) to symbolize the birth of our Saviour Jesus Christ! If you celebrate this holiday, you need to realize that if it weren't for our Lord, there would be no Christmas!
People used to tell me that when I had a child, I would love Christmas. Well, it hasn't really helped so far. Maybe he is still too young to realize the "magic" of the season. Yes, he will have the fun of fantasizing about Santa (I mean "hoohoo" as of right now), but he will also be taught that everything we have in this life is a gift from God! Without Him, we would be nothing!
I love Christmas for the real meaning, but it still doesn't make me want to throw my tree up and sing Jingle Bells. I would rather go to church, spend time with family, and sing good Christmas carols that reflect the birth of Jesus. So, if that makes me a scrooge, then BAH HUMBUG! But, to each his own. I just hope that this year, and from years on out, everyone takes the time to observe the true meaning of Christmas! Yes, it is fun, and "magical," but it is that way because of that little baby that was born a little over 2000 years ago.
I hope everyone has a wonderfully blessed CHRISTmas! Robin
This weekend was filled with every emotion I think my body could muster! I was happy, sad, energetic, worn completely out, excited, angry, overwhelmed to the point I felt like I was going to burst, and nervous! That is a lot to handle in two days.
It amazes me how words can hurt to the point where you are scarred. Even if you are hit with a big stick, or give birth, the bruises go away, and thank God, he made our body's so that they could forget what the actual pain felt like. But words are so different!
I was told over the weekend that my child is a little wild. Well, OK, I know it is the truth, but hey, he is a boy for starters, and HE IS TWO YEARS OLD! Trust me, it is certainly not from a lack of discipline like so many people tend to think. Those who have been blessed with little angels need to realize that they have been blessed. And they also should not sit in judgment when they see other children who act up! It does not always mean that their parents are not doing the best that they can. Trust me, this comes from a lot of experience, and certainly a lot of tears!
But, what upset me so much was that for the first time, someone had the nerve to stop my mother from doing something because Stephen is a little on the wild side. I hate the thought of my mom not being able to do something because of my child. It really put into perspective for me that Stephen does get out of control sometimes. But once again, I am doing all I know to do, other than beating him black and blue :) He is just a free spirit that does not like to be held captive. I guess you could say I had a little reality check over the weekend.
And now, I have to give God glory! I decided (or thought I decided) that I needed to leave our church and find a church that offered a classroom for children Stephen's age, because I truly feel like I have exhausted all other aspects. Well, we all know what happens when we try to "do things" on our own without consulting God -- big mistake! God saw this coming and arranged for our church to find a minister to lead our church like we have never been led before. At least five people called me yesterday after Sunday School to give me encouragement. They all said the very same things - and offered to help me with Stephen at church. How awesome! My God has a way of dealing with my heart. I love our church, and I am so blessed to have such a wonderful church family!
Then, we go to church last night, the service started great, what a sweet spirit was there. And then my dear friend, the one that I took out my anger on, was very burdened, and tried to sing a song because that is what God told her to do. God told me to go up there with her and apologize. People gathered around the alter to pray for strength for her, and I finished the song with her. What a feeling came over me! What a peace I felt. The spirit of the Lord was certainly at work! God is good...ALL the time!
Our pastor said something to me that really sunk in yesterday, and then something different, but the same last night. He said (paraphrasing) ...if you leave a church and start visiting other churches because that is what you want to do, you will never feel at home. And then last night, to go along with that, he said that we need to let Satan know that we are at our church to stay no matter what, and when we do that, great things will start happening. I believe it! And I can't wait!
A. Because I absolutely love to write, I have since I was a child. I got excited about Timmy's blog, and thought this would be the perfect way to keep in touch with family that live far away.
Q. How do you comment/write on my blog?
A. After each post that I write, the word "comment" is at the bottom. Just click that word, and it will take you to where you can either just read the comments that are already left for me, or you can type one yourself. You have to sign in, though.
Q. Can you start your own blog?
A. Absolutely! Once you sign up for a google account and post a comment to me (or anyone else), revisit your comment and click on your name. This will take you to a profile page. You can "create" a blog from there. (I know there is probably an easier way to do this, but this is just how I got started.)
If you have any other questions, please let me know. I will be glad to try to answer them.
First, I have to PRAISE GOD! yet again!!! My counsin had her twin babies yesterday. Wow! And they are absolutely beautiful! Mommy is doing great, and the babies are too! Of course they are, God has again provided His precious touch to protect them. This was a very rocky pregnancy for my cousin, but she is a fighter, and evidentally, so are those precious little girls! I want to give God all of the glory! I also want to thank everyone for praying her through this! She is going to make a fantastic mommy! Congratulations mommy and daddy!!!
And I promise, Stephen will be the best big cousin ever!