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Taking it how it comes…

Taking it how it comes…

Transcending

I don’t know what it feels like to fly. I can only imagine.

I don’t know why these thoughts spark at times random.

To truly be free? Right here on earth?

Then I’ll testify that when fear is cast aside and self removed from worry,

that on my own strength I won’t make it.

That when I acknowledge The Maker. And place my dreams in the hand of He who can take them.

I mean, take me higher.

Than I could ever conceive. Then I don’t dream.

I SOAR.

And know– that I know– that I know through God’s power.

Truth inspite of doubt.

Assurance of success at that which makes Him proud.

At that which shines His light

In the world.

Dissipates darkness and communes with spirit.

Better than flight.

This unnatural joy when I

Write.

 

©P.Brooks

Once Upon A Time

Once Upon A Time

It was 18 years ago, today. I was 18 years old. I wish I could say I knew then that he was the one. But when he introduced himself I was smug. Trying to pretend that I was neither affected nor concerned and that I would remain indifferent if he sat beside me or if he moved past. As I already possessed the knowledge of good and evil; garnered by chance and bad choices. But he was cunning, witty, smart –handsome. He sat down and in a sing-song voice said, “Can I tell you that, I just love you.” I had sense enough to know that this was a line. It couldn’t have been reserved for me. But the moment he said it, his hand lighted, briefly upon my knee. He was sincere; his touch correct. I was undone. We shared a Physics class and had passed each other in places. But familiar, we were not. Not even to know one another’s names. But the two hearts knew all. It was confirmed as we watched the movie together; the movie that we had not planned to see. Gritty, complicated, intense emotion splayed on the screen. Love, hate, lust, happiness and grief. At some point I tried muffling the subconscious communications with the stranger by shifting and fidgeting in my seat. But the questions were already being asked, silently. Us? It was our own indecent proposal of sorts. But the two hearts didn’t care. They mingled and brushed against each other, kissing wildly, touching, conversing…wrapping fingers in hair. Do you really want that? Can we be that to each other? Even that? On this our first meeting there was no denying the fact. I knew him and he knew me. Forever.

©P.Brooks 9/3/2011

Sho Nuff

Sho Nuff

In the middle of the day I sat down to write. Yep. I called off all the other stuff and sat there. At first my mind was blank and it was way too quiet in the house. But then it came to me and I didn’t hold it back. I wasn’t ashamed that day. So I just sat there and let my fingers put it down. I saw the hideous words going across the screen. They were old and scary things. But I kept on typing until it was out. I ended that scene with a boisterous comment. A nasty, wretched truth. But when I read it aloud it hardly hurt at all. Instead of pain I felt better. That’s when I knew I had tapped into it. I felt my voice coming out for real this time. I just let the words sit there and I didn’t erase them. I didn’t cover them up. No. I hit “save,” and put the computer to sleep. Then I grabbed my keys and went to pick the kids up from school.

Already Been To the Water

Already Been To the Water

God’s love for us is so strong. Yesterday during the invitation, five-year-old Lauren decided she wanted to be baptized. She tried to go up to the alter on a previous Sunday and I stopped her. This time she was adamant. Lainey, who just turned seven, decided to join too –way back in March 2010 during the kids’ praise service she attends while I’m in the sanctuary. Well her paperwork got lost so I used that time to see if she really meant it. Despite her and her two siblings waging all out war here at home, Lainey’s been taking communion regularly and maintains that she wants to live for God. So looks like both girls will be baptized on the third Sunday. What about the boy you say? Let us all just bow our heads right now and pray. We tried to get the preacher to lay hands on Orion, while we were there, but he wouldn’t stay still long enough. 

 I can’t say I would have wanted to commit my life at such a young age, but it definitely moves me closer to God, now, knowing that he can affect little children in this way. So I have no reason to hold out on him. I believe it’s good for them to know as much as possible about God. Sure will need him in this life. Though, a part of me wonders if this is just about their right to take communion…the kids think that wafer and grape juice are a feast for kings, if not the “born again.”

After talking to the youth pastor about this life-changing process Lauren said, “The pastor says when I come out of the water I’ll be like new. Does that mean I’m going to turn into a baby again?” This is almost the exact question asked of Jesus in the bible (John 3:1-7). I found it incredible. Yet these same children never hear us when we say pick up your toys, or go get ready for bed. Hmm… I think I will tell them that baptized children always pick up their toys or they go to the devil. Speaking of the devil, he probably played a major role in pushing them to God’s side. They watched that episode of Tom and Jerry where Tom goes down to the “red dog” for torturing Jerry all his life (my most favorite episode of all time!). Likewise, they’ve seen the shadow man in Disney’s The Princess and the Frog, get gobbled up by hideous creatures seeking payment for his bad deeds. After that they didn’t want to go to hell. God does great work through use of cartoons. I ain’t mad at him.

Back to Cash

Back to Cash

 

Mo Money

Last week I started an experiment to see if I could save more money by only using cash.  That, instead of charging everything and paying it off at the end of the month. True I collect points on my card and all…but I thought —what if I’m spending more money just to get the points? So I’ve been doing all my normal spending with a week’s worth of cash at a time. So far so good. I was able to stretch the money much farther than I imagined.

Now of course some places only take a credit card and  if I’m online, forgedaboutit!  It’s the only way I shop. In most stores I’m good with the dollars, but most cashiers struggle and curse me under their breath because they can’t count real money anymore. It’s okay. I’m patient.

Having real cash in my wallet is liberating! Nowadays I feel more responsible and richer.  In control of my destiny. Hmm. I do believe that was the whole point. Would you try using cash only for a tighter budget and potentially better savings? Hit me up.

Kids Pay for Deeds of Wild Parent

Kids Pay for Deeds of Wild Parent

I hear all sorts of complaints from my kids because they want to do whatever the other kids in the neighborhood do. Now, I’m not crazy strict, but I’m pretty strict.  The one thing I don’t compromise on is them being outside alone.  They are 3, 5, and 6 and believe they should be able to go by themselves because they want to play with the other children. I feel for my babies some days while I make dinner and listen to them whine. It brings back memories.

My grandma took care of me, my younger sister and our cousins. We spent the bulk of the day outside. Alone.  She said we could play unsupervised as long as we stayed on our block.  But staying on the block meant we could ride our bikes all the way around the whole block –where she couldn’t see.  I can’t count the number of times I was nearly hit by a car entering or leaving the gas station or the bank located behind our house.  Not only that, but I’m pretty sure we learned to cross streets by trial and error AND without permission.  We often risked our young lives to go dumpster diving at the printing company and furniture store, each prevocatively located the next street over.  Oh, and let me not forget the time we wandered a few blocks away.  Our quest landed us in a studio flat belonging to a strange young man with a guitar.  I thanked God that day after the man performed one song, then let us go unharmed.

Yeah, I have more scary scenarios to share, so it’s safe to say my kids won’t be going out alone unless it’s to our tiny fenced-in backyard. I have my own childhood to reflect on for guidance. It’s too bad, but my children must pay.

Into the Thick of It

Into the Thick of It

Fall is swiftly approaching and I can feel it in my soul. All it takes is a couple of cool days and I’m there. Drifting and dreaming about when we first met. Turning 19 and the card he gave me.

As our anniversary draws near, I wonder where the years went. Ten according to a courthouse in Raleigh. Seventeen according to my heart. Are we still happy? We seem happy, but I don’t know for sure. Why? Cause of all the laundry. It makes me want to cry. The clutter too. But the kids? Well the kids are hilarious. They really do bring joy. Otherwise right about now, we might be bored with one another. Except stealing time away from them, is exciting! Especially at night. So is kissing each other amist their wails of “No kissing!”

We talk about our babies and what havoc they’re causing in the same breath as “you know they all need new underwear.” Well I guess that’s parenting. So since we’ve survived yet another kid emergency just this week, and they are all still alive… next month I guess we’ll toast. To the fall and having a somewhat happy family. Dirty laundry included.

Are you married or in a relationship? How long has it been?

You Can Call Me Crazy

You Can Call Me Crazy

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Over the course of 20 hours I’ve managed to purchase 6 pairs of shoes for my three children. I did it. It’s done. I’m alive and so are they. Hurray! 

The first time I tried to buy shoes for all three kids I ended up calling Eric to come help me out at the store. I was in over my head. The kids all needed their feet measured and apparently they did not want to cooperate at all. At the time (about 2 years ago) I had a triple stroller, and I couldn’t get around the aisles quickly enough to get the job done and get out.  Talk about being unprepared.  After that first time I was sore from the abuse they gave and I thought I’d never do it again.

But they don’t call me Polly for nothing.  I’m forever optimistic, even when it’s a losing battle. It’s a sort of self-hazing I put myself through to enter the realm of motherhood… I guess.  Besides, who else is going to buy the shoes? Eric is their father and the vovious buyer of all clothing, even my clothes, everything —except shoes.  When he has picked up a pair of kicks, the kids weren’t with him.  I look on knowingly now, seeing how I’ve been played year in and year out. (It’s all right, he’ll hold down the fort the next time I speed away from the house in our sedan, leaving kids behind and clinging to my last piece of sanity.) Besides, I like getting this sort of  stuff done while the stores aren’t too busy.

All six pairs of shoes came in at $102. My secret? Comparison shop. I have no brand loyalty. Eric looked in Target and Walmart without the kids so I’d know whether to go there or not.  After the anwer was no, I hit up Payless Shoes in the mall and then comparison shopped some more with Penney’s and Sears just in case they had surprisingly good deals. I was able to get some swimming shoes on clearance and other bargains from the department stores. It was a little work since I ended up going out again today to search a different Payless for Orion’s dream tennis shoe, which the other store didn’t have in his size. But we struck out again so, second choice will have to cut it. 

Overall, I’m proud of myself for saving money and getting it done. Choosing things like shoe strings over velcro, clearance styles and early season shopping made all the difference.  The kids are all happy, well until that new shoe smell starts to wear off.  Then it’s back to normal!

What do you think about shoe shopping for yourself or the kids? Is it fun or too much work?