Tuesday, April 19, 2011

I am thinking/hoping what I am going through is normal.

What it is like looking in on your kids without a dad.

Most days there is something that happens that I think “Wow, I really need to write something and post it on my blog.”  Reality sets in, days, weeks, go by, and before I know it I am receiving emails asking…Hello?? Where are you?? When are you going to post again??  So, I sort through the last couple of weeks and try to pick out the most significant things I can think of.  The basic premises of this blog was following Tami’s suggestion to tell my story.  Once again, I don’t really know that I have a story to tell.  Getting from point A to point B, but more of just writing about stories is what I hope to accomplish.  Tonight’s entry is a story. 

I find so much of my mental time (the time when I think about the kids, how they are feeling, are they happy?  Are they doing OK?  Will what I am doing now make them love me or hate me when I am older?)  I have a vision of all my children looking forward to either coming to my home with all their children or me going to their home with all their children on every holiday.  (side note…I am assuming all my kids will marry orphans so the only option is Mom Campbell on holidays.)  Seriously though, my children’s happiness is my main concern in most everything I do. 

If there is one thing, one project that I love about 6th grade it is the project “About Me” that the kids need to do this time every year.  When Brennen and Logan did it, I found it amazing.  I didn’t help either kid with the project.  I wanted to see what they came up with and what stuck out most in their minds from the last seven years of their life and schooling at St. John Bosco.  After reading Olivia’s story I was moved beyond words.  I thought..wow…something I am saying, something I am doing, is getting through.  Her story was the first I read without a dad in her life.  Things change for a kid without a dad.  As the surviving parent you hope that all you do can fill the holes of what is obviously missing in their life.  The frustrating part is that you never know for sure.  Is what is happening now going on because they are teenagers, pre-teens, normal every day stuff or is there something else going on?  I continuously find myself asking this question.  Is this normal or is this because they are dealing with other outside circumstances that, thankfully, most kids don’t have to deal with?  I don’t know for sure and probably never will.  However, Olivia’s story, from her point of view, made me feel that, even on my saddest days, I am doing something right and she is going to be ok.

Olivia’s story from her point of view…
Be content with what you have, because God has said
“Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
So we say with confidence,
“ The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid.
What can man do to me?”
                                                                        Hebrews 13:  5,6

             In this bible passage it is saying don’t be greedy. Be thankful what you have. You could have nothing. God will never leave you or forsake you. He is our helper and we should not be afraid.
            I love my life. I like this passage because I don’t take my life for granted. I think that God gives troubles to those who can handle it. That’s what my mom always said when we have had something bad happen to our lives. I love my life because of what God has given me. I am thankful, thankful for my family, my life and others. I am thankful for the troubles I have had.
            Some important lessons I learned throughout my life so far are always wear a helmet, and don’t put anything or throw anything into an electrical outlet. Also mistakes are what get you through life. This means every mistake I made during my life made my life a lot more interesting.
            My life philosophy is Live Love Laugh. The word live means is that go outside live your life. Be yourself, don’t be who people want you to be. The word love means is love yourself others and God. Don’t love yourself less because you made a mistake love yourself even more. The word laugh means is laugh in your life. I laugh every day.  Laugh at your mistakes.
            Some of my current goals are to get in a cake decorating class so in ten years maybe I could become a cake decorator. I love to decorate things. I love working with food. My brother and I both want to become chefs. I also want to become a dancer. I love to dance. I live to dance.
            The most important thing to me is my family, my life, and others. I think my family and others are what gives me tomorrow to live my life. Don’t put off what you can do today. I always try to get as much done today so tomorrow I can live my life more. My family is important to me because they love me and I love them. My friends are important to me because they make me laugh. They make me smile.
A message I want to leave with those who read my life story is be thankful.

WOW… as her mom, I am proud.  People say that what you put out on social media is forever out there.  I hope that when O finds this years later, when she is out on her own, living her own life, she will stumble across this and know how much I love her and how much her words have inspired me.  From the mouth of babes...may we all be able to pause and reflect on the wonder of life.  What is given, what is taken away, and what is yet to come.  We may not not know the reason why so why not take what is given and let it unfold in front of us.  Embrace Life and all it has to offer.  I love the statement "For this too shall pass."  It not only helps us get through the tough times but also reminds us that....that this too shall pass...cat's in the cradle (thank you Ron) and all those other easier said than done statements.  Live today.  Worry about the laundry tomorrow.

Friday, April 8, 2011


I came across this poem in the April addition of Oprah magazine.  I read it once and then read it again three more times over.  For some reason it really struck me and I couldn’t stop reading the words over and over.  I ripped out the page from the magazine, re-wrote the poem in my journal and re-wrote it in an email so I could share it.  I then stuck the page in my journal so I could keep reading it over and over. 

By Naomi Shihab Nye

Before you know what kindness really is
you must lose things,
feel the future dissolve in a moment
like salt in a weakened broth.
What you held in your hand,
what you counted and carefully saved,
all this must go so you know
how desolate the landscape can be
between the regions of kindness.
How you ride and ride
thinking the bus will never stop,
the passengers eating maize and chicken
will stare out the window forever.

Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness,
You must travel where the Indian in a white poncho
lies dead by the side of the road.
You must see how this could be you,
how he too was someone
who journeyed through the night with plans
and the simple breath that kept him alive.

Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside,
you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing.
You must wake up with sorrow.
You must speak to it till your voice
catches the thread of all sorrows
and you see the size of the cloth.

Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore,
only kindness that ties your shoes
and sends you out into the day to mail letters and purchase bread,
only kindness that raises its head
from the crowd of the world to say
It is I you have been looking for,
and then goes with you everywhere
like a shadow or a friend.