Saturday, October 29, 2005

The Truth Shall Set You Free

One of the things I learned the last time I was at my Lay Formation Weekend was that God's revelation is personal - revealed to the person for the person. I've been thinking lately about how it is that one person reads a book and finds it life changing and the next person reads it and is bored out of their skull. The first person desperately wants the revelation to be for them both. Finding kindred spirits in our life changing moments can feel like a bit of heaven on earth. So what I am going to share in this post may not make one whiff of difference to anyone who reads it but I cannot contain the "wow" factor for me. It may be too much information. But it begs to be shared even though it is on the fringe of my comfort zone. Okay it is way out of my comfort zone. But it is oh, so cool.

A few days ago I spent some time at the little church in my community where I go to Mass every Sunday. It's a tiny bit of a building where, on a good Sunday, we have 10 people, including kids, gathered together. When it doesn't freeze too hard at night, the furnace is shut off until Saturday night and then turned on in time so that Sunday the building is comfortably warm. I've entertained the idea of going there during the week to pray - the quiet of the building and the presence of Jesus in the tabernacle beckon me.

As I have been working on my step four (made a searching and fearless moral inventory of myself) I have felt the need to go there to pray and write. Thursday I loaded up a quilt, my big (AA) book and papers and off I went. Picture me climbing over the wooden church fence with a quilt over my shoulder and book bag on my arm and just know I was praying no one would drive by in that moment! I visualized some farmer coming along and wondering if I was breaking into the church and planning on staying a while. "No, sir, I'm just going to cozy up to Jesus for a bit, okay?"

I wrote and prayed until the chill started to permeate my bones and then I soaked up the sunshine on the front steps while singing a few of my favourite songs. Being there hadn't made any difference. None. No relief from the burdens on my shoulders. I felt like I had made no headway in my writing and was on the verge of indifference. Let's just rip up my papers and forget about my inventory. That's how I felt. I stood to go and said outloud to Christ, "I am so tired of dealing with this same stuff over and over again. I feel like a little girl in a grown woman's body. I want to move forward but I don't know how. Help." And with that I dipped my fingers in the font, reminded myself that my sins were forgiven in baptism, slung the quilt over my shoulder and made my way back out to the gravel road and the van. I felt like God had let me down and that I would be carrying these burdens on my back forever. Oh sure, I know all about confessing your sins and being forgiven....1 John 1:9 right? But there is nothing worse than wanting to crawl out of your own skin because you want to forget just what it is you are capable of.

One of the other things we have been learning at the Lay Formation program is how to pray the Liturgy of The Hours. It is a discipline that appeals to me. I'm still new to all things liturgical. I've spent many years convinced that what I saw as rote prayer had no value at all - and if I ever did that (like only every time I prayed but of course that isn't rote prayer cause I made it up!)I would never tell anyone lest they think I had joined a cult. But the morning after I had been at church I picked up my book of prayers for comfort. This is in part what the morning Psalm read:

Psalm 51

Have mercy on me, God, in your kindness.
In your compassion blot out my offense.
O wash me more and more from my guilt
And cleanse me from my sin.

My offenses truly I know them;
my sin is always before me.
Against you, you alone, have I sinned;
what is evil in your sight I have done.

and a bit further down this:

O rescue me, God, my helper,
and my tongue shall ring out your goodness.
O Lord,, open my lips
and my mouth shall declare your praise.

Instant tears on my part as the sins I have been confessing as part of my step four include things that weigh heavy on my heart, stuff that keeps sticking to me like a burr on a pant leg. This psalm was the unspoken cry of my heart.

That evening I was sharing with my husband some of my inventory - wondering outloud why I feel like I do - why was there so much guilt and shame surrounding my s*xual issues. Why did I struggle with the same sins in these areas ad nauseum? I wondered outloud why I felt cheap and ashamed whenever I had s*xual desires and why was that anyway? Having been violated at a young age and then again as a teen I knew my thinking when it came to sex was plain (pardon the choice of words) screwed up. I asked why was it easier for me to feel sleazy/bad when I was horny than anything else? God was just plain merciful to me in that moment of thinking outloud.

I looked at my husband and said, "I feel sleazy because I think if I want sex then that means I am going to use you for my pleasure." Oh. My. God. Ding,ding, ding....the bells went off in my head. Wow. What a lie I have believed about myself all these years. Of course I would think like that. My first s*xual experiences were of being used by men who were horny - who used me for their pleasure.

The next revelation was this.....there have been more times than I can count in my 24 year marriage where I have accused my husband of using me for his pleasure. He has always replied that he would sooner never touch me again than have me perceive his advances that way. When I realized I thought I had been using him I saw clearly.... I mean clearly that he had never used me. I had only projected onto him the lies I believed about myself.

I looked at him and said, "I know in my heart that you have never used me." Then I whispered, "I know that now." And then I told him that knowing that in my heart meant that I was now free to trust him. In that instant the walls of self protection came crashing down around me. You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.

My husband is a toucher by nature. He craves it. I have often misinterpreted his touch to mean something s*xual. My internal dialogue would go something like this: "You touch me that means you want s*x. You want s*x means you are going to use me. Fuck off." "Geez - anyone know the number of the closest shrink?"

I have prayed so much that I would learn to touch him with the touch that nourishes his soul. My hands have felt mechanical.

That night as I caressed his back I said...."Wow - your skin feels different...the invisible wall that was between my fingertips and your skin is gone. Does it feel different to you?" He told me gently that it was my story to tell.

That night's Psalm said this:

Psalm 116

I love the Lord for he has heard
the cry of my appeal;
for he turned his ear to me
in the day when I called him.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Swaying In The Wind

This morning I sat in my chair and watched the tall poplar trees sway in the wind. Invisible hoola hoops swung around their nonexistent hips as their tops circled in the sky. I envied their freedom to sway in rhythm with their Creator. I so want to know what that kind of freedom feels like.

I found myself doing anything but face writing out my step 4 today. Restless and in avoidance mode I worked hard to keep from sitting back down in my chair and doing the serious work of looking inward and exposing my demons. After a nap and a shower I finally settled down to write. The worst of me made its way onto the page first. Like a little kid playing hopscotch I made my way from one end of myself to another. It didn't take long until a theme popped up. All my defects of character kept pointing to just one thing. The motivation behind my behaviour is to feel safe at all costs. Fear and the need to be in control rule my life. They are my own invisible hoola hoops I keep swaying in the air. The energy it takes to keep them afloat affects every relationship I have. I was so tempted to start writing over and make myself look better. Praying for the courage to be honest I continued on. I know, I just know that there is another invisible hoola hoop circling me. It's called Love. God keeps it in the air with no help from me but desires for me to embrace its healing rhythm so that the hoops of my own making can fall away and be stilled.

Back Already

Our last day of summer like weather today. A balmy 22C (71F). Many years we have permanent snow already so this beautiful day feels like winning the lottery. I worked outside for a bit and gave many thanks for the warmth of the sunshine on my face.

So much for taking a mini sabatical. I never have been able to keep my mouth shut very long. But even this short break from blogging has been good. What I really needed was a break from feeling like I had to post something in order to have people read my blog. Pressure I put on myself. That self centered "pick me" feeling. I hate it when I see it rear its ugly head but in all honesty it looks over my shoulder every time I post.

I'm struggling with behaviours that I resort to in order to comfort myself. Self defeating behaviours. Stuff that numbs my feelings. This morning I told God that I didn't know how one could desire to learn how to feel and yet simultaneously be working overtime to numb their feelings. Make up your mind already I tell myself.

I am working on a step 4(made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves) from AA. It's been years since I have done one and I already committed to the step 5(admit to God, to ourselves, and another human being the exact nature of our wrongs) when I see Father Charlie next week. Scary stuff. But I have commented one too many times to him lately that a drink would be so much easier than facing what I must in order to heal. I counted today and I have 6503 days of sobriety behind me. I am not willing to surrender that struggle in order to veer away from the struggles I am facing now. Sometimes I think it is only my pride that keeps me sober. I'm not sure that is a good or bad thing but it is the closest to the truth that I can discern. Father Charlie told me that facing the stuff is about having a pile of puzzle pieces and giving myself permission to sort through them. I feel like it is dumpster diving and am covered in shit up to my eyeballs. I do know that any other time I have done a step 4 and 5 I have come to a peace like no other. This will be the first time I will be doing a step 5 with someone who knows me and who will continue to see me after they know the whole dirt on me. The other times I picked an anonymous woman minister out of the yellow pages. The shame was so great at what I was confessing that I couldn't handle talking to a person who might reject me in the end. It's a huge step to be doing this one with someone who I trust will continue to accept me as I am.

It was Deb's Post over at Abiding that was the catapult that has me writing my step four. That post was a wake up call for me to do something about how I am (not)coping with life these days.

I have come across several quotes today that have encouraged me. I hope they encourage you too.

"The next time you are tempted to swallow your truth, speak it instead. Everything you are afraid of will happen, but you will eventually fall in love with the sound of your own integrity." - via Christy

"If you desire intimate union with God you must be willing to pay the price for it. We find it difficult to give up our desire for things that can never satisfy us in order to purchase the One Good in Whom is all our joy!" --Thomas Merton, from What is Contemplation - via A.

"This prayer is kind of a modern version of the Anima Christi.

Jesus, may all that is you flow into me.

May your body and blood be my food and drink.
May your passion and death be my strength and life.

Jesus, with you by my side enough has been given.
May the shelter I seek be the shadow of your cross.

Let me not run from your love which you offer,
But hold me safe from the forces of evil.

On each of my dyings shed your light and your love.

Keep calling to me until that day comes,
When with your saints, I may praise you forever.

via CowPi Journal

Friday, October 21, 2005

Looking The Other Way

I'm going to be on a blog holiday until the first of November. I've thought about taking time off the blog before but then this panic seizes me that I'll get forgotten in a blink of an eye and that nixes any plans I've had of looking the other way so to speak. Ah, so human and so needy. I'll be back on All Saint's Day.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Normal Anyone?

Debra over at As I See It Now has a wonderful post about Loving Normal.

I have to agree that I love normal too.

There have been several factors in my life in the past few years that have cemented my love of normal. The first was the time we spent living on welfare and using the food bank. There is nothing like not eating a balanced diet for a prolonged period of time, to make a person forever grateful for the taste of a piece of fresh fruit. For some reason I have been thinking lately of one doctor's appointment I had during this time. I sat there with teary eyes and told his nurse that I just couldn't handle my kids not eating vegetables and fruit. Carbs, carbs and more carbs were our mainstay during that time. I swear that not eating properly messes with a person's head. It was much harder to have hope when my body was lacking proper nutrition. I learned that it was instinctual to make sure my kids got fed first before me. It was awful, truly awful to spend all my energy trying to figure out how I was going to put a meal on the table. We got so that we joked about the wild meat I was cooking every night for supper. "101 Ways To Prepare Elk" is a cook book I could write with my eyes closed. Fifteen months post-welfare I still have times when I get giddy about what a privilege it is to buy all the fresh produce I want!

Another factor has been my ongoing health issues. I live with a new normal now. I still have times of intense longing for my old normal. Longing for the days when I could go from morning until night and have that blessed tiredness of body that meant I put in a good day's work and that sleep would be such a welcome rest. Days when I use up a spoon now just having my morning shower can be a bit hard to welcome.

But the reality is that this new normal is permanent. I can't say I love this new normal but I'm learning to see the good things about it. Yesterday, as my husband went outside to the storage shed for the umpteenth time, I told him I envied his ability to just up and go out there as many times a day as he wanted to. Depending on my spoon supply my normal varies day by day. I have days I've nicknamed "pajama days". Those days all I have the energy to do is sit in my chair in the livingroom in my pjs. "Pj days" are an opportunity to learn how to be truly present in the moment. I've sent up so many thank yous for the warmth of the sunshine on my face on those days. Learning how to manage my spoon supply has its own blessings too.

I once read a t-shirt that said "Stress: When your head says 'no' and your mouth says 'yes'. Who can't relate to that definition? I would often be left with anger issues mistakenly directed towards those people who I said yes to when it was my head and mouth in disagreement. Having a limited spoon supply means that my head and mouth match now.

Sometimes I get sidetracked by wanting someone else's normal instead of my own. Those are the days when I get the words normal and perfect mixed up. I think their normal is perfect. Hah. What a challenge it can be to settle for a perfectly normal day.

But you know what? I'll take it.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Tears on the Keyboard

I don't know about you but some days I do more praying while sitting in front of the computer screen than I do elsewhere. Sometimes as I drift off to sleep at night people in blogland will come to my mind and I will lift them up to God and pray for them.

I don't know how I came across Amanda's blog but I did. I am asking that you will go and read it and lift her and her family up in prayer. I don't know what makes a person cry when they start to pray but sometimes that happens to me. I lift up my hands and try to pray and tears flow before the words are even out of my mouth. That's what happened when I started to pray for Amanda and her husband.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Revelation and Faith

Monday night. Time for sleep soon. I was away all weekend at a Lay Formation Program that I am taking through our diocese. The professor this past weekend was a scripture scholar from a university 4 hours away. Wow...what a lot a person can learn from just three verses of the bible. He spoke on revelation and faith. We looked at verses where the senses of sight and hearing were what God used to get someone's attention and then God revealed His mission to that person.

At one point on the weekend I got pretty teary and the professor looked at me and said, "Enough revelation for one weekend?" and I said, "Yes." His teachings brought me to places inside where I was pondering my own times of God's revelation in my life and how it always calls me to some kind of action. This weekend I just thought I didn't want anymore revelation right now, thank you very much. And I was also a bit humbled that God ever reveals himself to me.

It is a wonderful group of people I am taking the course with. Everyone from a local farm woman to the superintendent of the Catholic school system. Everyone has some wisdom to impart. As a group there is a good spirit among us. I think most of us are chomping at the bit to have more time for discussion with the teacher. This past weekend the professor was intent on his agenda and there wasn't time. That was a disappointment.

I came home to a son with a black eye he got at a youth group event. It was best I wasn't home as I tend to be a bit reactionary to stuff like that. Couple that with learning that my other son has recently tried smoking pot and only daughter letting me know she won't be in contact as much as she finds her own way through the path called being-her-own-person-separate-from-her-mother and well, it's been an intense few days. And to top it all off, I am finding I can be fine in spite of it all. That's still cool to me. It doesn't mean I like all these happenings but I can sit here and realize it doesn't have to be my undoing....I don't have to all of a sudden be "not fine" because of it. I get to choose how I am in spite of circumstances. It also means I could be doing crappy because of them or I could be doing fine. I'm learning. And that's cool too. I just may get to truly be a grown up one day!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Dreaming Clearly

Two nights ago I had this dream. In it, Father Charlie was setting up the sanctuary for a Mass. There was lots of activity with many of us helping get it ready. There was the expectation in the air that company was coming and we were getting prepared. The place was light and open and good. My part of the activity was setting up these small, clear jars in a neat and orderly pattern. As I was doing it I asked Father Charlie what he thought and he said, "You are trying to arrange things perfectly but you aren't inviting God to be in the middle of it with you." In the dream I was amazed that he saw the inner me so clearly.

Today - in the here and now - it was no different. He saw me clearly. The inner me. Such a scary thought. I've worked so hard to keep that inner person hidden and safe. I am trying to learn what is is to recognize my feelings. Somewhere in the past I must have been able to do it. Somewhere before I learned that feelings were scary and got you in trouble and it was better to stuff them down deep. Something as simple as being asked, "How are you?" throws me into a panic. I don't know how I am. How do you tell how you are? I have often puzzled over what criteria people use in order to be able to reply "I'm good, thank you." Father Charlie told me today that each person makes up their own criteria. You're kidding? I thought. He said it could be as simple as waking up in the morning and being thankful to be alive that could be the criteria for someone deciding they were good. He said being comfortable in my own skin, regardless of what I was dealing with, could be enough to be able to say "I'm good,thank you." Typing all that makes me feel giddy with relief. I realized that I had always been equating perfection with being able to answer I was good. How much I have struggled with feeling like I am lying if I tell people I am good when obviously things are less than perfect in my life.

As my dream progressed it turned out we were preparing for the people who I used to fellowship with at my former church. Father Charlie was going to answer any questions they had about Catholicism. At one pointin the dream, a woman beside me turned to me and was so, so angry when she said, "He's answering all our questions from Scripture." So many times today Father Charlie spoke the words of Jesus to me and said, "The truth will set you free."

He said that I could leave our session and decide it was good or bad. Those were feelings. I got to change the rules that dictated my childhood. Give myself the freedom of the 600 mile distance between me and my parents and change the rules forever. I had no idea they still had such a grip on me. I told him that I lived through my childhood always looking over my shoulder, waiting for the other shoe to fall. Is it no wonder that these past few weeks I have been dealing with a chronic flare up of pain in my neck and shoulder? Pain that makes looking over my shoulder too painful to do? I told Father Charlie how I had asked the chiropractor yesterday if it was possible I was guarding my neck and if that was causing muscles to be so tight. Father Charlie looked at me and said, "How many times during our session have your feelings tried to come from your heart and connect with your head and you've let them go only so far and then pushed them down?" He put his hand at the place where his neck and head met - showing me where I let the feelings go before I shoved them down. We both knew I had continually been teary but unable to let go and just cry that cry from the depths. The gut wrenching cry that was trying to come to the surface. I told him to cry that cry in front of him was too scary and vulnerable a feeling.

I shared how I was so disapppointed to be back in that place I have so often been in my journey. "Oh," he said, "But you aren't." He talked of a mountain road and how it twists and turns. How we can look back at some point and see where we were before and say, "I was there, now I am here." He encouraged me that all I had to do was be where I was on the journey and that I am on a journey.

I hate being needy. Acknowledging it feels like failure. I told him how I had sifted through his reaction to me on Sunday at Mass when I asked if I could see him before our monthly meeting. How I was watching to see if I could discern at all that I was being a nuisance to him. Then yesterday when I phoned to make the appointment how I sifted through his words to see if there was any "rolling of the eyes, this woman is so needy" response in the inflection of his words.

Today before I left he asked me how I was. I told him I was more at peace than I had been for a long time. Then he told me that if I needed to talk before our next appointment to call him. Instant tears for me. I told him people got tired of people being needy. He just looked at me. It took a few moments before I could just say, "Yes, I will call if I need to." The truth is I get tired of feeling needy. I go through this cycle where I feel like I am falling apart. I stay there until it is too painful then I shove everything down until it tries to surface again. I am hopeful that this time I can stay in the feelings while I learn it's okay to be in my own skin and actually feel life, all of it. I do know that based on my very own criteria that today I am good. It's the truth. Isn't that too cool?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005


I made an appointment to see Father Charlie tomorrow. I told him at Mass on Sunday that last week's appointment left me unsettled and I didn't want to wait a month to deal with it. There were things he shared with me in that appointment that left me with more questions than answers. I am hoping to be able to sort them out tomorrow. Thanks for all your comments and prayers. I appreciate them.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

One potato, Two potato...

The smell of the turkey roasting is a nice background to have while I write. It is Thanksgiving Sunday here in Canada. The potatoes are peeled and ready to be cooked. The cranberry sauce is cooling in the fridge. When I bought the pumpkin pie I didn't notice the expiry date was yesterday so we ate the pumpkin pie already.

With the time I have to spare right now I could either blog or phone my mom. I'll let you in on why I picked to be here.

I saw my spiritual director this past week. My emotions are still raw from that encounter. Some day I hope to stop stumbling over the fact that following Jesus is so friggin hard and then maybe I won't be shocked by what God is asking of me and how unwilling I can be to do it.

I brought Father Charlie the Full Monty post. I was reminded of being in grade 12 Enlgish class with everyone reading the same poem and the teacher expecting us to all come to the same conclusion without regard to how our life experience affects how we interpret what we read. What Father Charlie picked out to talk about from my post was so far from what I expected.

He started with my sentence that read, "...I think I was born mean. I'm not kidding. He talked about how we are always in the process of change and conversion. How we don't stay where we started from. The conversation took its twists and turns and at one point I told him how I've come to realize I can, and often do, make every conversation I have all about me. No wonder I like to blog. What is blogging if not a conversation all about me? And some days I sit here and wonder if you are as sick of hearing about me as I am.

We delved deep into underlying issues surrounding this part of me. How scared I am of being invisible to others. How much I doubt that I count in other people's lives. How surprised I often am when others remember me. "What didn't you receive from your mom that you really wished for," he asked. I started to say love and then acceptance but I realized what I really wished for was nurturing. We talked about how she couldn't give what she hadn't received herself. The most ugly bit of our conversation was when he asked if I could be a vehicle of God's love and grace to her. No way. Wasn't interested. I told him that she could go get it for herself where I got it from. I didn't want to be a part of it. I didn't even know those thoughts were in me. I was shocked when they came out of my mouth. In that moment I wanted to scream and rail and cry. And run far, far away. Oh Jesus, I'm not really capable of those thoughts am I? I thought of all the times I have sat in church and looked at the statue of the sacred heart of Jesus. How often I have felt He has asked me to lay bare my heart and let his heart touch mine and change me. I was so numbed in that moment of conversation with Father Charlie that it wasn't even on my radar screen that I didn't get to the grace and love of Jesus on my own. There were flesh and blood people involved. Bless his heart that he didn't remind me of that. He simply let my words hang in the air and have their own effect.

I had no idea I still have such issues with my mom. We talk regularly on the phone. We talk around certain issues to be sure. But I love her and pray for her healing. I just don't want to be a part of it. I don't. I had told Father Chalrie this day about how she had set me up as a youth to be preyed upon by a man in our community who she knew had a thing for young girls. That had brought up all kinds of feelings I didn't realize were still needing to be dealt with.

He had asked me earlier if I could tell her I loved her every time I called her. Nope, I said. Too hard. I thought of all the times when my kids were little and of when they fought - I made them say sorry even when they weren't. How they had to do the right thing even if their heart said differently. How they went along with it just to get me to shut up and off their case. He didn't push it. He let it be. He could see that it had to come from my heart. I have never thought of how telling my mom I love her could be anything to do with God. I've just thought of it being my own thing on my own time. The picture that has come to my mind is of me standing at my mom's door and telling her I love her and with me in the doorway is Jesus. My arms are outstretched for her as are His.

But in this moment I feel jittery. Today at Mass I sat there and told Jesus I wouldn't be faced with such choices if it wasn't for Him. Yes, I was a bit pissed for a bit with the reality that laying bare my soul to Him means never going back to not knowing the truth when I hear it. For He is the one who opens my ears.

There is no pretty package to wrap up this post with. I just am where I am. It's the hardest place to be. But conversion is an ongoing process. Of that I am sure. Thanks be to God. There is still hope. Plenty of it.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Stuffing My Feelings

I am out of control. Feeding my feelings has been a habit I've cultivated as long as I can remember. I know all the right things to do that will bring it to a halt. Or at least make it go on vacation. I couldn't care less about doing them these days. This kind of behaviour makes my self loathing go right off the scale. It also makes me avoid blogging because it is so wretchedly human that it ranks up there with things you leave in the closet.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Palmer's Journal

I've been reading Palmer's journal for a while now. His latest entry as of today is something I printed out. He uses the word hope so many times. I am taking it to heart. What a testimony to God and His grace.

Here is an excerpt:

"I guess what I really want to say is just this: be hopeul. Don't stop fighting. On some level this thing is bigger than all of us. It's not about having a wife die of cancer at 26, and then 2 years later getting the same terminal illness. It's not about me and how I fight this disease or how our little family walks through it. The bigger picture is the battle against sickness and death that we all face because we live in a broken world. But it's even more about the Kingdom that has broken in and offers us a chance at relief from that disease. It offers health and victory where before there was none. There is hope in the midst of hopelessness. Death is not where we lose; the onset of hopelessness is the great defeater. So allow hope to rise up within you. And when it seems that hopefulness is the least appropriate response in this situation, let is rise up even more. Whisper your hope when you lie down at night; scream your hope when you wake in the morning. Live your hope as if it is the one and only thing that sustains you in this ravaged world. You will not be disappointed."

Read the rest here.

The Wisdom Of The Fifth Sentence

I've seen this on several blogs and decided to check my own out. (Curiousity)

It reminds me that I need to look at all areas instead of fixating only on one like I often do.

The rules:

1. Go into your archive.
2. Find your 23rd post.
3. Find the fifth sentence (or closest to).
4. Post the text of the sentence in your blog along with these instructions.
5. Tag five other people to do the same.

Still fixating here. And that was a post from January. Progress not perfection is my mantra once again.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Scrambling For Safety

We didn't get the snow they forecast last night. That is good news. This morning I did wake up though to a mouse in the water pitcher. Poor little thing had been in there for a while - it looked up at me while frantically trying to climb the sides of the pitcher. Sides that must have seemed like Mount Everest. I took pity on it and poured the water and mouse over the edge of the deck then threw the pitcher away.

The mouse was only trying to crawl its way to safety. It mistakenly thought a warm house would be safe. He never saw the water pitcher coming. Crawled right across the microwave and next thing he knows he's in the water pitcher scrambling for safety that will never be his unless someone helps him.

I'm sitting here tonight feeling a kinship with that poor mouse. Manouevering my way verbally to a safe place has been my coping mechanism of choice for more years than I can remember. With all the changes going on in those dearest to me there is no safe place to manouever myself to verbally now except one. "Oh Lord, to Thee do we cry...."