Mostly moms is the reality

raising aloneTimes are tough. There are many children who are being brought up by single moms. Most of the work hard and do their best for their children. Still, being without a spouse is doubly hard. I think it takes two parents. The stress on one parent is horrendous. We all need help and in the case of raising children it is critical.

Regardless of who is doing the raising having more than one person to be looked up to and hopefully emulated is so necessary. It is helpful if boys have some male in their life and a female for girls. This is not always possible but hopefully some other family member is able to step up and help.

raising alone 2When we grew up in small towns there were many others to help. It really does “take a village” to raise a child. The more adults loving and molding growing up the better. Many of the children I am seeing now have only one parent and it is most frequently the mother. We need to grow the organizations “big brothers” and “big sisters” to fill in the gaps. children who are mentored do so much better. If not they seek affirmation from all the wrong people.

We must care for our youth

Powerful help

sleepy dogToday I hit the wall. I am so sleepy that I could just drop off writing this. I think the things I have been doing have finally relaxed some of the tension and I am wiped out. It is a wonderful feeling except I have things I have to do so I’ll just keep going until bedtime. Sure hope I don’t end up wide eyed awake then.

Ironically there are still storms floating around in the Atlantic but so far it seems they are little threat. I hope it stays that way. I guess with climate change happening we will have to cope with this or move.

Yesterday was another Community Conference. Again I saw the power of this program as it saved another youth from being caught up in the court system. It is a powerful feeling to think that I was able to help. I hope this child now understands the chance that has been given and it able to move forward with a positive attitude toward a productive life. I think, in this case, that will happen. It also help an adult to see that not all youth should be written off without knowing more than the surface information.

TeenDisappointment

I am blessed to be able to help with this program.

Sunflowers seek light. Do we?

The other day I read…I don’t remember where…that sunflowers, if they can’t turn to the sun, will turn to each other. There is a real story in that. It seems that is something we do as humans. If we can’t turn to our important source of light (people) we turn somewhere else to seek comfort. We have to lean somewhere.

sunflowers

Applying that thought is up to us. It can be applied to God or another source of strength. Maybe we turn inward and if we don’t find what we seek there we may be lost. We each need somewhere to find solace and will seek it out. We are like the sunflowers.

Absorb and take time

It is a beautiful day. That frequently happens after a storm. The air is clear and everything seems so much brighter. The yard is clean. I am tired but I am brighter too. It was hard just sitting and waiting for a storm that was determined to stay in place for so long. My heart cries for those who have been so hurt by the storm.

strong but tired

I think I am physically and emotionally drained. It is actually not a bad feeling but I know I need rest and time to refocus. Some time spent in silence and meditation will do me a world of good.

 

It is so important to allow ourselves time to regroup. Too often we leap into the next thing without time spent in absorbing what has happened. In this case nothing really happened and that is the odd part. How does one absorb nothing? Maybe by understanding that much emotional energy was spent waiting for nothing. And so, there was something after all. The emotional battle of waiting takes it’s own toll. Just because it was intangible doesn’t mean it didn’t matter.

take time to heal

 

We often think that we don’t have to restore ourselves when it it important to do so. Take time to understand before again taking on everything else.

What can we do?

The storm has passed us by. Yesterday the winds were high. We had moved all the porch furniture against the wall, brought in all plants and cushions and just watched to see what would happen.

hurricane-dorian-exlarge-169

Watching the wind whipping around the trees and pushing the tide water in making waves was eerie. We watched until it got dark. We were blessed that we had power. Very unusual for here. Usually the slightest storm will knock out the power but it never went out. We did everything that we could to prepare for the storm and finally went to bed listening to the wind.

Surprisingly, I slept until about five. It was still dark and the wind had lessened some. I checked things and all was well. When daylight came we had very little to tell what had happened. We only got the edge of the storm.

bahamas

I can’t imagine what it had to be like to have been in the Bahamas. Having that storm sitting in place for so long with winds that will lift you up and blow you away outside….seeing the water rising abound you and unable to do anything to save yourself or your loved ones. The horror of that time….hours and hours of fear and horror….I can’t even imagine it.

Those of us who have not had to experience this kind of catastrophe have been spared. I don’t know how much we are responsible for this increase in the size and number of storms. It is possible that we are more than partly to blame. I hope we can do what we can to help the environment and change things.

Small steps = big changes

change will happen

When I began this blog I was in a very dark hole. I was struggling to find my way and a purpose for my time. I am happy to say that in the last two years I have come a long way. I do have meaningful purpose in my volunteer work with the Mediation Center. It has even grown more powerful recently in my shift to doing Community Conferencing. (the program that helps keep teens from the court system)

 

I have developed some habits that make my life so much better and let go of some that were pulling me down. I still have a way to go but being able to see progress is so wonderful.

Keep-going

 

Whatever you are facing in your life it is possible to make changes. We get bogged down because moving forward seems so slow. Don’t let that get to you. Just one step each day…one positive step will make change happen. We all backslide from time to time but keeping on is the key. Trying to learn to let each day be the focus is hard and I’m still learning but things are better. They can be for you too.

Volunteering with program to divert children from the Court System

Today I finished cleaning out the bathroom that is to be renovated. It will be nice to be able to shower in the middle of the shower instead of standing against the wall. The shower has leaked through the door in spite of our many efforts to stop it.

Tomorrow we have the workmen coming in and will live in the other bath until it is done. No leak and some other needed fixes will be wonderful.

custody-feature-e1509580471769

I have begun using my volunteer time to do Community Conferencing. The program hopes to keep children out of the Juvenile Court system by having all parties to a problem sit down and find a solution themselves. If we can divert even one child from exposure to consequences that may bring drastic life changes it will be worth the time.

I hope that through the process the children are also able to learn that actions come with consequences. It is something that should be learned early on to keep the consequences from being life altering.

It’s not nice to mess with Mother Nature

Recently I have been thinking a lot about the earth and how it works. It seems that each time mankind reaches a level of uncaring about life around them the earth fights back. Just one example is the Black Plague which wiped out so much of Europe in the 1300’s.

I have wondered if the earth has had enough and is now fighting back again. I know the things that are showing up due to global warming and these may be related but (as far as I know) haven’t been linked yet.

poor mother nature

The green tide that seems to be in both fresh and salt water and is killing dogs (and maybe other animals). I have not heard of this happening before. Has mother earth had enough?

How about flesh eating bacteria (necrotizing fasciitis) which is now being seen in so many places that seem unlikely? Who ever heard of that being in salt water? If it was it certainly wasn’t frequent enough to cause the shut down of beaches.

Is this all due to global warming? Maybe. Regardless mother nature is fighting back. Besides epic storms and weather patterns I wonder what we will see next?

 

Perspective

 

Often I think that perspective is everything. How we view things is our reality. This is hard to learn and to realize that the world functions that way. One of the most difficult things to do is to change someone’s perspective. Our prejudices and our beliefs come from there. They are so ingrained that I don’t think we even know what is creating our world view.

The dictionary says perspective is:

a particular attitude toward or way of regarding something; a point of view.
“most guidebook history is written from the editor’s perspective”
synonyms: outlookviewviewpointpoint of viewstandpointpositionstandstance,  angleslantattitude, frame of mind, frame of referenceapproach, way of looking/thinking, vantage point, interpretation

When you read the synonyms you can see the far reaching effects of this. Sometimes it is worth our while to made changes to our perspective. If we see everything from a negative point of view then life will be negative.

boat-land

“We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.” Abraham Lincoln

Perspective can change your life.

“AHA” a new tool for me

I didn’t write yesterday as I came home exhausted from taking a class on Community Conferencing. This is a program that works with the school, courts, police, to deflect teens with offences to a resolution process instead of getting them into the system. The trainers told us that where they are teens who have been through this process are 60% less likely to re-offend. I will see how this works for me.

One of the people who was also training told us about a way she looks at people’s differences and how they live. She broke it down into this.

Tolerance: She is tolerant of how others live and their opinions.

Acceptance: She will accept that the way may not be her way.

Approval: This is where she steps back and feels she doesn’t have to approve.

The-aha-moment

 

This makes so much sense to me. I may not agree with you but I can be tolerant about your life and your opinions and accept that you want to live that way but I don’t have to approve of it.

This is a way to break it down into pieces and be a tolerant and accepting person without agreeing with what it is. There are people who I love but cannot approve of their lifestyle. For me, it is usually when I see it as hurtful to them or others.

This may not work or help some people but for me It was sort of an “aha” moment. Another tool to put in my toolbox and help me understand and move on.

With thanks to Yolandra for this insight!