I have wanted to write my whole life. Growing up, anytime I was asked what I wanted to do with my life the answer was simple. I wanted to be a writer. As life went on, I got married, had two wonderful boys, and my dream got pushed further and further away. There were bills to pay and ‘real life’ got in the way. But always, in the deepest part of my soul, I wanted to write.
As I started to seriously think about writing again, I thought about what I wanted to accomplish with my writing. First and foremost, I am a Christian and my writing had to reflect that. So I decided to research that genre and see what was out there. I got my hands on every Christian author I could and I read. A lot. Now I am ready to add my voice to them. I hope you will join me on this journey I am about to embark on. I look forward to sharing my journey with each and everyone of you.
I’ve added a rug on the floor of my newly painted office. It’s a multi color shag of greens, white, and grey. It has enough of the green from the walls to make it feel warm and homey. I’ve already spent hours in here, getting inspired and excited to write again. Turning this room into my office is something I had always planned on doing but I didn’t imagine it would be this soon or under these conditions.
Dementia is an unforgiving disease. I’ve watched my mom and seen how this disease has bit by bit taken her away. After a while, I started to let fear gnaw at me to the point of obsession. I didn’t want to put my own family through this. The thought that one day, I would have this disease was so terrifying that I was consumed with the need to find out if I had the gene so I could start meds early that would hold it off. The thought of having Dementia or Alzheimers scared me so that I couldn’t think of anything else.
Then it hit me. I was letting this fear consume me. I was wasting valuable time worrying. The Lord knows every hair on my head (Matthew 10:30). Only He knows when and how I will go home to Him. I needed to trust Him. Worrying was not going to solve anything. So I gave all my fear and worry over to the Lord and let it go.
Two months ago, I also let go that I was responsible for being the one taking care of mom through this. I was so intent on keeping my promise, a promise I made before mom’s dementia, that it was affecting my health and mental well being. It finally hit me that I didn’t have to bear that burden alone. It would be okay to let mom go to an assisted living place where there were caregivers trained to help with this disease. A place that was closer to family, where she would have more visitors. Once we got her settled into an assisted living home, I was able to sit back and take a breath and give myself permission to move on too.
It took me time to get over the feeling of guilt, to take the steps to start making this Bob’s and my home. I can finally take a breath and feel at peace. Painting this room was a big step. Even walking into this room the first time after it was emptied was surreal but I feel God’s peace in all of this. When I stop by to visit mom now, I get a big smile and a big hug. Mom is settled and happy. It feels so good to just be her ‘daughter’ again.
I started painting the room that is to become my office. It used to be my mom’s bedroom. A month ago, she moved into an assisted living facility. Now, with each brush stroke, I’m turning it into my writing space. My haven.
Over the weekend, I’ve gotten two coats of the dark turquoise on the rough stucco walls. Today I’m painting the trim, determined not to get any of the sand colored paint on the darker walls.
I’ve always enjoyed doing the trim. Probably because I’m a detail oriented person and find this part calming.
However, as hard as I try, inevitably I get trim color on the wall. I grit my teeth when it happens and continue on. I’ll go back and touch it up with the turquoise after I’m done with the trim I tell myself, annoyed that it’s happened. Again.
I have the single window in the small room open. A warm summer breeze flows over me. Michael W Smith’s familiar voice fills the room through my Alexa Dot that I have perched on the windowsill.
I continue my job, determined to be finished with it today. As I paint, I think about my need for perfection. I’ve always had it.
When I was going to school in my mid-forties to become an Echocardiogram Tech, I had an instructor refer to me as a Type A personality. She was being kind. My hubby tells me quite often that I’m OCD. I bristle at that. I’d retort back that it’s the way the Lord made me.
I muse on that as I dip my brush into the can of trim paint. Is that really how the Lord made me? Wiping off the excess paint on the edge of the can, I brush the rest of the sand color on the wide trim board in a sweeping motion, back and forth.
I blow out a breath as thoughts bounce around my head. No matter where I’ve been on my journey, He’s been with me. He’s never left my side. Deep down, I know this.
It was never His desire that I stress and worry about things I have no control over. He loves me as I am. Broken, imperfect, unworthy.
I feel a tug on my heart that has been pulling at me for awhile. A desire to be closer with Him, to accept that He loves me as I am.
I pause and look around at the work I’ve done and a calmness fills me. I realize that even if I don’t have a perfect paint job, it’ll be okay.
I have always enjoyed stories that have characters that are like me…but with more spunk. A character that can not only stand up for herself but is not afraid to also stand for what she believes. Someone who has hit such lows in her life that the only way to lift herself up is by God’s grace.
I live through these women and I cheer for them and cry with them. I understand their battles and difficulties that life throws at them and I smile as they conquer their demons and find victory, even a small one.
I wish my own life were like that and some days it is but more often than not, it isn’t. That’s why I love to create strong women who really aren’t that strong, at least not on their own. They find their strength in their walk with the Lord and I find that comforting and encouraging as I hope you do to.