Wednesday, March 7, 2018


He's at that point in his life. It's a developmental milestone! He's learning to stand up. I definitely don't want to miss watching his attempts because he's very proud of his efforts. He's loving the whole new view of the world as he plays in cabinets, finds objects on top of coffee tables, and follows others up the stairs.  

This standing up stage doesn't come without some precarious moments. There's his constant wavering effort to gain the muscle needed to hold still without tumbling. This standing life feels like a balancing act, but the view from the top is exhilarating enough to secure the climb. 

Success in this climb to stand requires a focused, teetering wire act.  It won't come without some bruises and noggin bumps. 

And from his smiling, straight leg stand, the view down appears tumultuous. As if it's an afterthought, he realizes that what stands up must find a smooth landing as his legs begin to feel weak. 

Contemplating his decent is frightening, so he thankfully relies on engrained skills of reaching, grasping, and clinging to dig in to his standing position and then release himself to trust for a gentle decent. Occasional falls find him catching himself with outstretched hands and looking around for assurance on nearby faces that all will be okay.

Lots of vocal encouragement  comes, and still it's going to require quite a bit more support, balancing, and confidence to not just stand but to take those steps to walk alone without familiar fingers holding him tight. Sweet encouraging words, hand claps, reassuring smiles bolden him to gain the ground he seeks without bended knee failure. But when the failure comes, he will rise in strong arms to soothe his aches and softly pat his bottom to move on to another venture. 

Watching my grandson in this stage of his young life, reminded me of our younger generation currently embarking on the stage today. The parallels of the stages are remarkable.

So, I also wish all this support, encouragement, smiles, and hand claps for this young generation as they begin this developmental milestone of trying to stand up. Muscling to stand up strong for principles they believe in.  Trying to grasp to ideals with confidence while teetering on new legs, balancing the juggling act of approval and criticism.

It's the stage every citizen should hope for---when their younger generation uses the skills they have been given to stand up on the tumultuous stage of public opinion and let their voices be heard.

As they gain view of the world, let us give them the confidence to walk in these new steps even when the landing may not be smooth.  Let us provide the outstretched hands and reassurance when they feel like their teetering And most of all, let us teach them that the strong arms of the Father will hold them up and soothe their heartaches and pat their soul onward for future ventures.

Monday, February 5, 2018


Silent chaos captures my heart,
Keeping tears from spilling becomes an art.
How can I change our "divided we"
Right from that shotgun seat?
No way words would speak 
The wishes, no magic was going to complete.

Those final moments sitting on the leather
Trying to make moments spent together
Seem like a new normal, 
But they feel like a wrinkled formal,
Before the long sidewalk walk 
To drop off for front-door talk.

Tennis shoe rubber marks the short path
Every single day since he went away.
Wondering if tomorrow 
Could turn back to bygone yesterdays.
His strong hand caressing my head
Leads me to the life I live instead.

The low hum of his car baits 
My faint heart begins to hate
The return of his grip on the wheel.
Wishing the car from which he'll 
Lean, wave, and drive away 
Will soon come home to stay.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018


Let's Make It Slow, Fast

I'm feeling the winds of time speeding up,
Blurring my eyes to the road we paved to
Build our place in this space.

Seems like I just opened the front door,
But now I'm looking at closing the back door,
And I'm not even finished with all within these walls.

The clock on the mantel ticks steady in my ear
And the hands keep windmill spinning
Collecting the moments we've been spending.

Let's make this life slow, fast. 
Slow the sunsets down. 
Find reasons to dance all around. 
Make it more a lean and stare.

Yellowed letters piled in buckets
Are traces of two hearts that tell the story
Of years finding our place together in this time.

It's like a whisper that fades into distraction,
Senses searching to make sense of
What was lost before it was found.

Driving the winding country roads, 
Blurred by the dust in the rear view mirror,
We know the past hangs close to us here.

Let's make this life slow, fast.
Slow the sunsets down. 
Find reasons to dance all around.
Make it more a lean and stare.

When we look out the window of this speeding train,
I can't hold my eye on one place.
Mountaintops and ocean skies keep flowing by.

We can't turn the clock back
Any more than we can keep stars from shining,
But we can keep after what we were getting.

It's not the destination we're after,
But rather the journey to hereafter,
One mission to hold this life longer--Together

Let's make this life slow, fast. 
Slow the sunsets down. 
Find reasons to dance all around. 
Make it more a lean and stare.

Monday, January 22, 2018


This is not a warning.  It's not a prescription.  These are sincere thoughts from the heart of a mom who watched her boy become a man seemingly before her very eyes. This is the boy I nurtured to the man that you want to share memories with or even maybe someday make a life with. 

First of all, I don't make his dating rules.  While he has been working hard to get where he hopes to be in life, he's been watching and hearing what a gentleman entails and how to attract the woman for him.  The truth is that we may never meet you because he may decide not to bring you home to hang with his clan, but while you are saying yes to hanging out, going for coffee, sharing dinner, and cheering together at games, I sure hope you think of the man he is trying to be for you. 

It's not easy being a man in today's world.  Seems like that definition keeps changing.  It's not easy as a mom, either, watching the world condemn the nature of men, especially when we know we have raised good ones.  The toxic fallout has affected all men and breaks the heart of moms and wives.

I'm not trying to discourage you, but I  ask you to look hard at him before you say yes to dating him.  In case you didn't know, there's a great deal of vulnerability for a man to risk the rejection of a "No." Saying "No" to him is certainly okay, but mean what you say and say what you mean. If he asked you out, he doesn't just want to be your friend. He doesn't need you to string him along to cradle his feelings. When he extends his hand, it's a vein away from his heart.
Naturally, he's going to wonder and adjust to what you need or want him to be. There's wisdom and truth in doing some of that. He knows he isn't one of those TV superheroes, but he may just secretly want to feel like you might depend on him to be yours. Let him be super for you sometimes.  Independence in women is a respectful goal, but no one can do everything all alone. Does your self-sufficiency clash with his need to be a champion and protector? Sometimes, he's going to want to be yours.  Here's the catch, I know.  He also wants it to be okay to fail sometimes while he's trying to wear his superhero cape.  Be gentle with his failure while he's trying his capes on for size. I can attest to the fact that he hasn't gotten everything right his whole life, but I'm guessing you haven't either.

You will see his swashbuckling bravado.  Yes, you will find these stubborn streak areas sooner or later. Those tough streams can be softened. Just don't be the reason he becomes tough. He appreciates being molded by a soft, sincere heart. Bravo to you as you figure this is the fastest route to figuring him out!

If he could do one thing, making you smile might be it. So, look for those simple things he's doing and acknowledge your appreciation for the effort he's making to see your smile. 

He doesn't need someone he has to perform for all the time.  The world keeps telling him he has to be somebody and performance is the game he is used to playing.  Be comfortable with him in his own skin.
And while he may deny he needs this, flatter him sometimes.  He will pull out his charm and humor to sweeten up to you cause those are the tools he has in his toolbox.  Just remember, uhmmm, work at grabbing his heart, not only his chest, when you flatter him. 

You might not walk down the road with him that ends up with a ring that promises he will stand by your side for the rest of your life's journey, but these are a few insights from his mom if you are wanting to date my son.

Friday, January 19, 2018

I’ve Sung that Song a Time or Two

Rollin down a two-lane highway
Not much needing to say
Hidden under a red moon sky
Listening to the radioman sigh.  

Oh, I’ve sung that song a time or two
Looking straight at you.
Hoping you’d dance to the beat
Me and you right here in our seats.

Let’s slide into a one-way trip
Rocking to the sway of our hips
Underneath the moon’s eclipse
To the song rolling off our lips.

Let the racing beat of our hearts
Rise to the squeal of that guitar.
Your crooked smile glance my way
Leaves me breathless for what to say.

Oh, I’ve sung this song a time or two
Looking straight at you.
Hoping you’d dance to the beat.
Me and you right here in our seats.

I pause to find the words to say
Before this cruising tune fades away.
Let’s keep rolling through life,
Me and you as husband and wife.

I don’t want this song to come to an end.
This time’s slow fading that we spend.
I want to dance through life this way.
Our moments taking my breathe away.

Oh, I’ve sung this song a time or two
Looking straight at you.
Hoping you’d dance to the beat
Me and you right here in our seats.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

THIS IS US--- an apology and affirmation to my kids

My daughter and my husband and I have been watching the sitcom This Is Us since the beginning of the Pearsons' existence. This imaginary family has pierced through our emotions and motivations.

My family doesn't live their imaginary life. However, like them, not all has come to what my husband and I had imagined at the outset.  We recall those moments we looked into one another's eyes at each of our three babies' arrivals and quietly resolved to be the parent we knew they would need.  We pledged deep in our hearts to cradle, to protect, to teach, to serve, and to love in our hearts.  We ventured forth through each fast paced day toward making a family life  and making life changing decisions with our words and actions, not always aware how each would mark the heart of each of our kids.

With a teacher and a policeman for parents, you have the makings of a life needing some structure and sanity. But some days, some moments, some decisions just seemed to go awry. Oh my, grace is needed for us parents from the three who were along for our ride.

We don't have the same Pearson drama, but we've still lived a life together and shaped one another. And as I've joked through some moments, "The drama of it all!"

No one parent gets it right all the time.  I know I thought I got it right at times, but now looking back, it wasn't right for perhaps everyone.  I know what looked to be wrong, at times, turned right for some, but not each one.

The raw pain and sorrow and intense emotions that flung open our hearts from the Pearsons' screenplay certainly broke open the thoughts and heart of this mom. I'm glad there is a sea of forgetfulness, but in the cases where memories echo in the hearts of kids, I am glad I have this moment to apologize for the mistakes I've made, the ones I know and don't know about.

So I ask my kids to hear my heart when I offer these words:

 My parenting must come with my disclaimer to you. If I have done things that have hurt you, I am sorry.  I have a reel of those rolling through my mind's eye. If I hurt you and didn't realize it, I am sorry.  I know that saying to a powerless kid, "I tried my best" seems to fall short at mending a sad heart.  I know that I was selfish at times.  I know that some days I gave in to the tired and weary.  I know sometimes I took the easy way out with the angry.  I know maybe I didn't always try as hard as I should have. I know I didn't always see all your needs, especially those that a kid would beg for a parent to see without having to speak them and maybe not even knowing how to express them.  I know I  wasn't a perfect parent.

I'm sure even the best intentioned mother or father can slideshow through the film of their parenting and see clips of episodes that they would beg a retake for, maybe even a second, third, or fourth retake. I know I didn't always get what I intended when I did try to be better. In fact, I know I missed areas I needed to change because my perspective just wasn't clear at the time. 

Then that's when looking back the shame can creep and sorrow seep into the picture.

I know, too, that an apology doesn't make everything picture perfect, but if moments can be reconciled for good and emotions saddled into deepened relationships, then an apology is needed. After all, this is us.

I don't want my adult kids to just memorize the lines on my growing old face but rather the lines from my mouth that speak the truth of knowing I didn't always get it right, but I'm still here listening cause I'm not here to defend my actions but defend their hearts because this is the us.

I want my adult kids to know that I'm not here to recreate a picture from my perspective, but rather I'm here to own the life we lived together, so they know that in the life we are still creating together they feel safe and comforted and not alone. This is the us.

Since we have grown older together and know our less than perfect togetherness, we find compassion for one another. We know we have been blessed beyond measure to be your parents and create a shared life with you. The love we have for one another knows that we can never hold one another to perfection, but we will promise to always hold one another in grace because, after all, this is us, and we own it!

Friday, January 5, 2018


Let's face it. I don't normally win accolades. I'm not famous for the many awards I've won.

I have never even been nominated for an award the likes of a Grammy. Nominated? Did I say nominated? Gracious me, I've never even been asked to sing anywhere besides church (and now that I think of it, not even there in a very long time...hmmm).

Except thinking back, by the way I sang my babies to sleep, I may have been nominated for a People's Choice Award if they could have been on that committee. And my dance moves while I sing along with Keith Urban to "Fighter" should earn this 52 year old music dancing fool an American Dance Award, even if my husband says so himself. 

I'm realizing that I might just have more in common with Faith Hill, well besides my obvious golden locks and great voice (choke).  I hear tell her three girls didn't realize how many prestigious awards their parents had won. Looking back into my closet of awards, mine may not be on such grand display either.    

Yet, it's a slow subtle smile that slings itself across my heart when I stare back in time and dust off the memories of those award winning moments. 

Reading the labels on my awards, they certainly were given for the lesser known categories:  

If you sit down and listen to the stories, you'd know I can make a room laugh just from laughing at my own jokes.  That's pure genius.   

I can settle a trio of kids at night (and throughout my life an entire classroom) with my voice as it makes words on the page come alive. 

I can make sense out of the storyline our lives are taking in a two hour or less phone call. 

I can bring peace and comfort to your heart because there's nothing mine would rather do. (For my grandkids, it's sometimes just a needed hold, hug, or booboo kiss.)

I can create a moment in time or painting on a page of words. I can help you do it, too, even though you didn't believe you could until we talked it out.

I can read your body language and your lips, but not your mind.  But I earnestly want to know and understand what's in it more than all that weather talk.

I can create a masterpiece salad for dinner that makes the stress of a long day seem to slide away.

I can hold my hands up in prayer for you as long as you need because I also have an army of warrior friends I'll text who will hold you, too.  

I can find the beach and walk with you to stop the anxious life from stirring too long. 

I can't paint it, act it, or write a song about it (well except that one called "Country Song" I wrote for my husband), but I have captured a lifetime of awe deep in my heart at the beauty I see in people, places, and moments.

At my acceptance speech for these awards (of which there is a blue carpet because I look better standing on that color), I  feel like I will mimic many of the other acceptance speakers that I've heard throughout the years. They felt humbled by the family, friends, opportunities, and experiences life presented them. They didn't feel they were exceptional among men or women, but for that moment they were revered as such.  

So, when in great company at my award show (That's the Average Joe Awards among which you are one of the nominees),  I'll bow and mimic at my acceptance speech, "It's just an honor to even be nominated." 

At this point in my speech, I expect there could be audience eye rolls. We have lived long enough to know there will always be critics who will wonder how in the world any performance of mine or yours is deserving of the slightest award. But who really is the critic here and whose choice is it to give an award?

So, my speech will end with acknowledgments to my family and the friends I've journeyed life with who supported me to this point, it really is an honor.