Psalm 23

” The Lord is my Shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lay down in green pastures, He leads me by quiet waters, He refreshes my soul, He guides me along the right path for his name sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil because you are with me, your rod and your staff they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of thy enemies. You anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows. Surely to goodness your love will follow me, all the days of my life. And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”

At church yesterday we talked about the Psalms which ones had meaning to us. I love the psalms a lot. I find it relaxing and a great comfort. Psalm 23 is a psalm I’ve used a lot when I was discouraged or depressed or just having a hard time. When life really kicks you down it’s a great comfort to know that I’m led to quiet waters and He refreshes my soul. My soul often needs to be refreshed to help me continue on the journey the Lord has provided. My body gets tired. He guides me on the right path that’s great. For a long time I traveled the hard road not always the right one. I made bad choices and decisions, but no matter what I chose God always brought me back to His path.

God has given me so much in my life. I would not be here today if it was not for Him. Even as a child when I cried out to Him, He was always there. He protected me from death many times. God’s faithfulness leads us through the dark valleys while He watches over us. His love is abounding for us and I know the Lord is always there no matter what. When I feel alone I cry out to the Lord and He sets me back on my path. He loves us all so much ❤️no matter where we have come from, no matter what we have done. Reach out to Him today, He is waiting for you to tell Him your needs and wants.

Don’t ever take life for granted

My heart is really heavy lately. Heavy from people I know who right now that are battling cancer. We all have seen cancer for a long time is taken many people I knew and loved. I’ve also seen a lot of amazing things with people in remission. It seems like lately that people are diagnosed with aggressive cancer. Cancer comes in all shapes and forms but no matter what form it comes in it is hard.

Recently one of my core friends got diagnosed with breast cancer and it rocked us. We are four friends who hang out together lots we go on road trips and before covid we celebrated everyone’s birthdays with parties. What is tough is one day you’re well and the next you find out you have cancer.

She’s an amazing woman who is wanting others to know what her journey is like. She found one Christian person online who went through this so she’s wanting other Christians to know what this experience will be like. Praise God she’s had lots of tests to see if the cancer is anywhere else and it’s just in the one area.

As her friends we will stand by her for whatever she needs to get through this journey. On Wednesday she starts her chemo once a week for 4 months. As you read this please can you pray for her she will need all the prayers. Thanks.

As this changes her life for now we pray the chemo shrinks the lump and that with the surgery the cancer will be gone. As her friends I pray we can be an awesome encouragement for her. Besides our friends I heard this week a mom of some other good friends her cancer is back and this time it’s untreatable. Lord please be with Patti at this time and her family. Be with them as they have just learned this news about their mom. Also Lord pray for Trisha as she also is going through breast cancer at this time. Lord be there for her and her family.

Life is so precious don’t ever take it for granted. For me I do the best I can with what God has given me. I’m a big prayer warrior and I Believe that God can heal. So I’m praying for healing for each of these woman. When I think I may want to complain about an ache I stop and don’t because life is way to short for that.

My unhealthy relationship with food

Addiction has been part of my life on and off. I struggled with alcohol until God freed me of that. Then God gave me freedom in sexual addiction. I’m coming up to 3 years with that. When I went through my season of grief I found I used comfort often through food. I was aware of it and then I hurt myself my SI joint and then covid came so in six months I gained an extra 10lbs. During that time I also broke my finger. Two days before my birthday I decided that something needed to change in my life. I could keep going the way I was going and continually hurt myself from being so overweight or I could put in the hard work and do something different.

I joined a kickboxing place that was doing a 6 week challenge. It focused on nutrition, exercise and accountability. The exercises are high impact and then the kickboxing. It’s a tough workout but on one of my days I told my coach to remind me how I got into this mess of overeating and lack of exercise. It took me a long time to advise my body so it will take a while to get it into shape. I love kickboxing for me it gave me self confidence that I don’t think I’ve ever had. It’s very Empowering to do this sport. I’ve lost 12lbs already and I finally feel really happy in my life. This has been a long time coming.

I love my new eating habits and no longer use food for comfort. I use God, prayers and connect with friends. My blood sugars are amazing and don’t have those crashes. I feel so good and actually feel lighter. I walked up a whole ton of steps last weekend without being winded. I’m getting there. I’m wanting to lose 30 more pounds. I can do this and I will.

My word for the beginning of the year was preservance and that I have needed this whole year. Without it I would not be as far along as I am. ❤️

Voices in Motion: a joyful choir for those with dementia and their loved ones

https://cheknews.ca/voices-in-motion-a-joyful-choir-for-those-with-dementia-and-their-loved-ones-631922/

I’m sitting here this morning thinking about my weekend and have much tears. I spent the weekend with my dad. He was dementia. My mom needed a rest this weekend. I went from not seeing much of what goes on to really seeing what my mom goes through everyday. I see the grief my mom feels and sees but I also saw the joy. Dementia is hard on everybody especially the person going through it. My dad shared with me his frustrations of how he’s done things especially driving for 60 years so why can’t he drive now. He’s lost that freedom and it’s hard. He was the most independent person the brains of our family.

It’s hard to watch him struggle but he’s still got his sense of humor and the memories of his life growing up is amazing. I shared some incredible moments with him. Yesterday morning after breakfast he put on really beautiful music. He told me he his mom and dad used to listen to music every Sunday morning. I posted the video above my mom and dad both are in this choir and how much it’s helped both of them. My dad whistles and hums and when he’s anxious or unsure he goes to the music. He never was a singer but I see how much confidence music has given him. For my mom she loves singing but also she gets support from others whose spouses have dementia.

On Saturday I sat in on a zoom interview with Erica and Rick about how she got into directing this Choir and how much she’s loving this project.

I posted photos of the beach because this is my dad’s favorite walk. He knows every square inch of this beach and it’s so familiar to him. He told me it’s peaceful out there and I experienced this as well. He collects rocks that stand to him and I have a bunch of them at my house. I’m so glad I got to spend this special time with him this weekend. Time is so precious and I’m going to make the most of what I have. I feel so blessed today to have had this opportunity. ❤️

Wings on Eagle’s……

But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
Isaiah 40:31

This is one of my favorite scriptures. God has given me eagles as a witness sign for Him. I only see them occasionally when I’m looking for confirmation He’s there. The other day I was totally memorized it was Monday morning and I was heading to the gym. I turned into the busy street I have to drive on to get there and I see this large bird. What caught my attention was it’s very large legs. It was chasing something. The bird it was chasing dipped onto the street right in front of me. The eagle almost landed on the street as well and the smaller bird took off and up soared the eagle after it into the bushes on the side of the street. Holy cow I was stunned because every bald eagle I’ve seen usually is soaring up in the sky. It took my breath away.

It’s been a hard couple of weeks for my friend she’s wrestling with health issues. It’s been hard on her core friends as well but praying lots for her. I’ve been dealing with some deep personal issues that sometimes leave me breathless. To me this is a sign from the Lord that there is strength and freedom. It also means change is coming. Eagles for me bring Hope and Encouragement that no matter what we go through in life, God is always with us.

Last year for my 50th birthday I was taken by a couple of my friends to Sparks Lake in Oregon to kayak on this lake. The lake is formed from the water that runs off the mountains that surround it. As we paddled down the lake the scenery of broken top in front of us was so beautiful and breathtaking. Down near one part of the lake we saw a bald eagle. It was flying towards one of the trees. Another bird had caught a fish out of the lake and the eagle had spotted it and as the bird was flying away to eat his catch. The eagle swooped in and took the fish from the bird and then flew off into the tree. It was the most amazing sight I had ever seen. The feathers were each given to me by my two friends and I found the last one floating in the lake.

Leadership qualities of an eagle are they have powerful vision, they are fearless and tenacious and they fly really high and protect their young. I love that God does all these things that eagles do and more. He also protects us from everything.

Thank you Lord for sending me signs from above. No matter what we go through in our lives you will always be there for us guiding and protecting us. No matter what we go through in our lives we must trust Him.

Friendship

Friends come and go over the years. In school you can have best friends and when school ends for me so did most of my relationships. I do have one I was friends with in high school that when we meet we can pick up where we left off. I like that it could be years past. I have a core of friends that we hung out in our 20’s and went on such awesome adventures. We always had the best adventures. Jesus Northwest in Washington, dune bugging on the Coast in Oregon. Camping trips to Tofino which were amazing. We all did everything together. Those were fun times when most of us were single.

Marriages and children came and times changed and we still hung out but didn’t do our crazy trips as much. As the years went on some of those people 3 in fact got cancer and died and it rocked us all. We had no idea what cancer was and it devestated us all. The core of people I hung out with I ended up having a falling out with 3 of my best friends. It devestated me to the core of my soul. As years went on I reconnected with one of them. We had in common breeding rabbits and going to shows. The other friend moved away but the falling out took a toll on our friendship. Decisions in my life made them distance from me. Then two of the three came back and one of my friends said in time she will come back as well. Ten years past and I had an opportunity to hang out with some of my friends and this women who I was a astrained from. Slowly we hung out in groups and slower I was allowed to come back in. It’s been four years since that happened and it seems like God has bound all of us so much more. I even got a new friend out of it all.

Friends to me are so important especially now as we get older. I love and appreciate what I have. God uses them and their circumstances for His glory. Recently again one of those special friendships I have is being threatened by life and what it brings. I have shed many tears and I wish bad things didn’t happen to those you love but that is life. God has given me the gift of prayer and I know a whole bunch of Amazing prayer warriors. God has this situation. He will use it for His glory. I don’t understand it but I trust God with all of my heart. For now I wrap myself around my peeps and pray for them. I love the heart God has given me over these people. We will get through this together. ❤️

Coping with pain……

We all cope with pain in different ways. Some are healthy some not. After spending a lot of time in addiction, I now Choose healthy outlets of dealing with pain. Writing to me has become such a positive way to express what I’m feeling. My brother was visiting on the weekend and he was asking my mom questions about the past. I asked him why he wanted to know what he’d asked. He told me just like your outlet is writing, mine is painting. He’s an amazing artist and I know for him it’s very therapeutic. Everyone who knows me, knows I can’t draw much of anything.

I often think I have some sort of artist block. My family is filled with really good artists on both sides of my family. I’m artsy in other ways but not drawing or painting. My mom, aunts, grandparents, great grandparents, my brother and my dad all very good. I’m lucky if I can draw stick men. We play a game with my friends called telestrations and well to put it nicely nobody wants to sit near me. It’s a game you have to draw and guess what others have drawn. It’s very comical when I’m there.

I love that my brother has found an outlet to his pain. That pain I would not wish on anyone. I love that he can draw things that are hard to remember. Finding that outlet is very therapeutic. I used to struggle with writing in school and my step dad used to help me write my English papers. I’ve always written in a journal, but journals and blogs are very different.

I’ve been wanting to write a book but can’t quite get it where I need it to be so I decided blogging is good and I can write about whatever I want. A young girl I know she’s 9 just started blogging Recently. I told her that she’s chosen a great passion and to keep writing. Her mom says she’s crazy about writing like I am. That makes my heart soar.

As you cope with pain what are ways that work for you. I would love to hear about it. I also pray a lot and listen so worship Music very loudly. Praying grounds me and gives me peace. In times of pain I love to read the psalms they bring me great comfort. As I get older I find I have less anxiety and fear in my life. I’m so grateful for that.

What God is teaching me through my grief

God is teaching me so many good things while I’m in the season of grief. Some lessons are a bit harder then others but it all ends up being used for God’s glory. My biggest challenge has been patience. It’s funny I’m so laid back and patient at school but have a really hard time with that concept outside work. I’m impatient and want results fast. God only works on His timing and that’s a much slower pace then what we might like. God’s word says “patience is a virtue.” Galatians 5:22-23
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”

I see how God is using all His Fruits of the Spirit in this grieving season I’m in. Love is hard when my emotions go from sad to angry quickly but God reminds us to love. Grieving is easier as time goes on you feel less and less emotions but occasionally it hits you hard. I feel more joy now then I have had in a long time. I feel joy from knowing that God has me right in His hands and that He’s got me no matter what comes my way. I feel joy in little things, joy in watching flowers and plants grow, joy in training my dog, joy in a simple friendship, joy watching baby rabbits grow up or just laughing with a friend. I’m now joyful that I can hang out with 6 of my friends. We will social distance but that I can enjoy that on my birthday.

Peace has been there for a long time with me. I often feel God’s peace in my life. Even in the midst of chaos. Throughout this season I feel that peace. When I don’t feel it I just stop and pray and then it always comes back. When I’m doing what I feel God wants me to do that feeling of peace washes over me and transcends through me. I no longer feel that anxiety or fear of what will happen. God has provided for me in so many ways and continues to.

My faith has grown so much during this season. My heart soars when I spend time with God. I get excited and love to pray and read God’s word. I’m excited about what God is showing me and how He is and has been preparing me to do what He wants for me. I love that. I feel like am excited child waiting for a surprise. There is so much goodness in this season. God is moving and I’m so willing to see what He has in store for me.

Speaking out……

Why is it so hard to speak out when things are not ok in your home. It’s funny because I’m the first one to speak out about child abuse or neglect. I’ve had to make hard decisions in my career. It’s never popular with anyone but something I promised myself years ago to do. Speak out for those who cannot speak for themselves.

Well I have to tell you it’s way harder to the same thing when you are in a Marriage or a relationship. Speaking out is not as easy. Why do people close themselves off to the world and mull through the situation on their own. For years I felt trapped unable to speak out or speak up for what was truth. In my childhood I had to just go on with life in not sure anyone would Believe the horror my brother and I endured. I didn’t trust people at all the few odd person I could trust. I remained silent in my life. I was scared to speak out. Back then I was in survival mode.

I hate to admit this but many physiologists will tell you or I’ve read it that you tend to marry people similar to people in your life growing up. Your desperately trying to find that father figure that you never had in your life. For me that’s what I basically did. I married a man who I admired and respected. I was to naive to know the difference. This man was really nice to me and he basically looked after me. Nobody had done that before or very few people. I fell in love with this man. He treated me well or as well as he could. I only saw what I wanted to see. It’s taken me years later to see a lot of what was going on in my home. I knew I was loved but it always came at a high cost and because I did not want to make waves. I just went along with it. Inside my soul I hated it so much. When I felt powerless I used addiction to numb that pain. That pain was to great to fight. It wasn’t all bad that’s not what I’m saying I’m just saying that I felt I could not make the decisions I wanted to.

To make things worse the decisions made were not from my husband but apparently from God. That made no sense to me often because the God I knew would not make some of those decisions. I would have to lie and figure out ways to survive. As a young child I had to lie to survive now as an adult I found myself in survival mode lying to protect myself.

A lot of my marriage I suffered through addiction, depression, anxiety, fear and really low self esteem. I know people who left similar situations and took their child with them. I admire those who left. Some left with the clothes on their back them and their child’s. Slowly I’m gaining back my self esteem and no longer feel shame from decisions I have made.

If you or anyone you know is in a relationship that is one sided or based on lies there are people out there you can talk to. I do understand it’s hard really hard. I’m here for you. Speaking out puts it into the light and nothing to be ashamed of. ❤️

Not taking things for granted

I’m learning as I get older in life not to take things for granted. Life is so precious. Today I hung out with my dad. I was unsure what my dad would be like but I had forgotten how much I love to hang out with this guy. He’s the one who stayed up late to help me write my essays on high school. He helped me write a lot of them. I told him all that writing now has helped give me my love for writing today. I get excited about words.

This is the guy who taught me so much growing up. He’s a wealth of information. Today he taught me what words meant and showed me around his neighbourhood. He showed me what was important to him. I listened and we shared good laughs together. We read and talkef about the Magazine he loves about history and Canada.

I love this man so much and I’m at thankful and grateful for all he has taught me growing up and what he still teaches me today. We chatted today about things I Remember with him the boats and fifth wheels he owned and all the adventures he’s been on. This man has been the father I never had. He taught me so much and I’m blessed to have him in my life. Just because he’s losing his short term memory doesn’t mean I can’t still learn from him.

Today made me realize that. It was fun hanging out with you. I’m looking forward to our next time and our next adventure. That’s why life is so precious and we must never take it for granted.