New Traditions

I grew up in a family of mismatched people and no traditional celebrations other than birthdays.  We were different from most families, but we were the “fun” family.  People always wanted to hang out with us at our house.  I suppose that could be considered a tradition in itself.  No matter where we lived, it was always a given that the place to hang out was at my house.

When I was young I longed to have the traditional family.  The gatherings, the long lost cousins coming to visit once a year on Thanksgiving or Christmas.  We didn’t have extended family.  There was no one to come.  I promised myself when I grew up and had my own family, I would ALWAYS have a traditional get together on the holidays, inviting many friends and family to feel the love I wanted to share.

Welcome to reality.  By the time I was married and had a child, it was too late to start these traditions I wanted to share.  My mom had passed, my then husband’s family had their own celebrations in another state and were too old to travel, and basically, he never allowed me to invite people over.  I was forbidden to ever have a dinner party or gathering.  If I did, he would always find a way to ruin it, or make me “pay” in some verbal or mental way.  So, I avoided it, just to keep the peace.

Finally divorced the man that caused so much anguish for me for over 13 years.  I was finally free to start new traditions with my little girl.  But wait, she is only with me on even years as per the divorce.  So much for the traditional celebrations, again.

Imagine how excited I was when I fell in love just before Valentine’s day 2011.  I’d NEVER had a Valentine.  Then we celebrated 4th of July together.  Oh boy.  Next up, Thanksgiving.  Plans were made, time off from work scheduled.  Heart break 3 weeks before the turkey was to be cooked up and served with love and tradition in a mountain community surrounded by a family I had fallen in love with.  So, my friend lovingly invited me to her home, with her family in from California, to celebrate with them.  It was wonderful to be among the love and noise of this family.  However, it wasn’t mine.

How blessed I was to fall in love again just before Valentine’s day, 2012!  As we cautiously nurtured this relationship, we spent time together, Memorial day, a birthday, vacation time, even flew out of state for a concert.  I was hopeful for the start of a new tradition with my new love.  Possible Thanksgiving with him or he with us.  Life is so cruel sometimes.  Heartbreak again.  A month before the warm roasted turkey would be served with savory stuffing and warm pies from the oven.  Now it felt like I would just die, a nice bologny sandwich would suffice at this point.  Who needs tradition?  Not me.  I never had it, why start now?

Another loving invite from the same friend who took me in last year.  Then it dawned on me.  I do have a new tradition.  I have a friend who treats me better than my family ever did, than any man ever has, and that means a heck of a lot more than any heartbreak just before a holiday.

New  traditions?  Definitely.  May not have been the way I saw them in my “visions and fantasies”, but God knew exactly what he was doing when he gave me Angela Staples and her loving family as my earthly angels.  My traditions may not be a set table in my own home with my significant other and our children.  My traditions may not be with my blood kin.  Apparently, my traditions are just like they were when I was growing up.  Mine.  My traditions.  Eclectic.  Spur of the moment.  The place that love built.  In my heart my traditions will always be, and I will always and forever be grateful for loving friends that seem to always be there for me at the exact time I need them.

Funny isn’t it?  How God has TRADITIONally provided exactly what I need, at exactly the right time?

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To Facebook or Not to Facebook

Have you ever had a love/hate relationship with something?  Something that can be fun, give you joy, make you laugh, help you make friends, share scriptures, bible studies, meet the love of your life?  That same “something” that can also cause chaos such as gossip, hostility, jealousy, senseless lashing out, uncalled for comments, anger, tears, and break-ups……

Hence my questions of the day….. to Facebook or Not to Facebook.

As of right now, I have 504 friends on my Facebook list.  Most of these people I actually do know…. probably around 150 are people I have met online through Christian dating sites, both men and women.  One of the 504 is the love of my life.  One is my daughter.  My best friends are there.  My church family.  My Girl Scout Troop group page.  Bible studies.  GAMES!!!  I love my social media, I am addicted to social media.  I share my loves and my hates on Facebook.  I share my joys, triumphs, losses, and doldrums.

It was through Facebook I got to know the man of dreams.  It is also the place where I may have caused the loss of that very man I thought God showed me was “The One”.

So, was it my addiction to social media attention that caused me to forget my “above reproach” Christian stance?  Was it because of my insecurities I was seeking attention?  What on earth would allow me to “forget” temporarily that to say certain suggestive comments in a mixed thread was okay?  I am not a psychologist, so I can’t answer this question with a resounding YES or NO.  All I can do is humbly and respectfully say I am so sorry to the one person I wanted to always be above reproach.  He is the one I hurt the most.  He is the one that should not have even been concerned with an action such as this from me, the person that loves him so much more than words can express.

What causes people to be so hungry for attention now a days?  What is it with the instant gratification of a hearty laugh that you caused with a quick witty barb or banter?  What is the draw?  Is life so terribly boring and unattractive that one has to sit for hours at the computer typing to people they most likely have never met before?  Is it loneliness?  Again, I am not a specialist, just a woman who is very busy and active, but also finds herself to be lonely.  Life as a single parent in your 40’s is not appealing.  So for me, it was about the interaction with people my own age, in similar situations, and having a big ole party….. did that honor God?

Let’s take a look.  If you watch and see what is really going on in these settings such as dating sites, and groups on Facebook, there is a lot of silliness passing for Christians hanging out with each other, and it was displeasing to see people I thought were my friends acting in this manner.  There are a lot of desperate people out there, and I know that feeling, but not at the sacrifice of my dignity, which many of these people are doing.  Sure, I made some really great friends, some I think I will have for the rest of my life.  I also believe I met “The One” however, this “silliness” may have cost me the most amazing man I have ever known.

So for me, right now, today, at midnight, to Facebook or not to Facebook will be answered.  My Facebook page will go dark.  For how long, I don’t know, but for now, I need to revisit a place where my Abba Daddy can hold me tight, give me the wisdom and words to try and become the real Christian I am meant to be.

In all things I do, I need to remember, if Jesus was standing there right in front of me, would I still do it?

Good grief! What am I doing?

So many people have said to me, “you should start a blog”…. and I just smile and say, yeah sure, in my spare time, and seriously, who really CARES what I have to say, what I’m thinking, or what I’m feeling? So much of the world is caught up in their own “me-isms”…. not enough compassion left over from their own selves to even blink an eyelash at anything any one else may have to say?  Perhaps just too busy with “life stuff”?  After all….. I get a tad distracted myself at times.

So, here I am, attempting to be a writer of my very first blog. Who knows what will come out of my fingertips as I punch the keys on my MAC. All I can do is pray I sound halfway intelligent, not ramble and muse too much, and hopefully keep the drivel to a minimum as to not bore anyone to tears…. well, if anyone else even reads what is posted here.

I’m going to give this blog thingy a chance, and see what comes of it…. don’t expect any professional writing finesse-a-bilities, and definitely expect to laugh a lot, cry some, and perhaps even reminisce a bit……. if anything, maybe it will help me to get my own randomness into some sort of order…. bwahahahahahahaha, yeah right, as much as I love to laugh and have fun, randomness is way more my style….. so here we go………