Sunday, May 26, 2013

Eyes Wide Open

This phrase "Eyes Wide Open," keeps going through my mind the past couple of weeks. I realized Tuesday the Holy Spirit was speaking to me. The Holy Spirit is sharing a Word of Wisdom with me.

We learn from the Bible there will be times that a word of knowledge will not be enough to solve a problem. This is where we need a word of wisdom. A word of wisdom will give us the ability to be able to apply the knowledge that we already have on a particular issue.

I know from the medical knowledge my Mama is in a serious situation. She has Congestive Heart Failure, (CHF),  Coronary Artery Disease, (CAD) diabetes, and edema which in her case is caused by heart failure.

She had been improving and doing great. The phrase "eyes wide open" kept going through my mind. I finally realized what the Holy Sprite was trying to prepare me to be realistic she is in heart failure. Her
heart can not pump enough blood to meet her body's needs. Her heart's weaken pumping ability causes the buildup of fluid (edema) in the legs, ankles, and feet. She has also had a problem with a build up of fluid in the lungs. She has experienced extreme tiredness and shortness of breath.

I need to be realistic instead of optimist. I need to keep in mind the prognosis is not good. I need to keep my eyes wide open and see the real world instead of what I want the world to be.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Mother's Day well spent

Last Saturday around noon my son returned from work sick. He had chest and sinus congestion. He went to bed. He continued to get worse Saturday into Sunday. He had a fever, plus other symptoms.

Sunday was a busy day. I went up and down the stairs to check on my son numerous times. I did laundry. When down stairs my son would ask for this and that, he has his own apartment downstairs. It was not the quite day my husband had planned for Mother's Day. 

I wanted and needed to go to the Nursing Home to see Mama. The day was flying by hour after hour. My Mama used my brother cell phone and called around 6:00 pm. I told her I would be there in about 30 minutes. I finally got to the nursing home around 7:40 pm. We had a nice visit.

Mama is suppose to return home next Monday if she continues to improve with her physical therapy. I got a call from my son around 8:50 pm.  I helped my Mama to bed around 9:30 pm. Due to the overworked, and under staffed nursing home,  I put the adult brief on my Mama. We talked, laughed, and shared a nice time.

It was 11:00 pm and she needed to be changed. I needed to leave, remember I have a sick child at home.  He was home with his Dad and girlfriend. His girlfriend is wonderful. 

I pressed the call button. My Mama said it would be awhile before any one came. I went into the hall not a call light was on and all the rooms we quite. It was shift changing time. I decided to just change my Mama myself. We said our good-nights and I started home.

I arrived home to find my sons fever 102.9 F. I preceded to treat the fever with ibuprofen and a sponge bath. I used a few drops of Melaleuca Oil on the cloth. He started to feel better in a few minutes. I went to bed around 3:00 AM.

I was happy and content with the day. I felt satisfied with how the day had gone. I had taken care of my love ones. A very nice customer on Monday morning ask about my Mother's Day. I did a re-cap of my day. He felt sorry for me. There had not been any me time. I reassured the customer I was satisfied with how the day had went. 

I love my son with my heart and soul, and taking care of my sick child is what a Mama does. It is my nature, my instinct, I would not have chosen to do anything else. As far as my Mama goes, I figure it was fitting that I changed her adult brief, since she changed my diapers when I was a baby.

My son is felling better, and my Mama has continued to improve.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Be Thankful For What You Have

Psalm 95:2
"Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms."

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Thoughts for the Day

Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
18 For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.

Leaning on God's Help With Sugar & Carb Cravings

Do you reach out to God for help with your everyday struggles in life? Boy, I sure do. This is one of those times. I need and can only do this with God's help. This reminds me of an old hymn,
"Leaning on the Everlasting Arms".

"What a fellowship, what a joy divine, 
Leaning on the everlasting arms; 
What a blessedness, what a peace is mine,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
Leaning, leaning, safe and secure from all alarms;
Leaning, leaning, leaning on the everlasting arms
Oh, how sweet to walk in this pilgrim way,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
Oh, how bright the path grows from day to day,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
What have I to dread, what have I to fear,
Leaning on the everlasting arms?
I have blessed peace with my Lord so near,
Leaning on the everlasting arms."

The following scripture Deuteronomy 33:27 (KJV) gives me great comfort.
Deuteronomy 33:27 (KJV) "The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy them."

I want to start eating sugar free and low carbohydrate meals tomorrow. (I have been eating sugar and carbohydrates lately.) Sugar makes me feel bad after about 5-6 weeks, slow, joints ache, just plain old icky. It will take 4-6 days to get the sugar out of my system. The next few days will be sheer torture.

The first week after being sugar free is a time of my body getting Acclimated to no sugar and low carbohydrates. It is trying. It is hard. It is miserable. The second week and beyond I feel better. I have more energy. I actually need less sleep.

The past 33 days have been extremely stressful with my Mama's health crisis. I have eaten out more the past 32 days than I have the past two years. I am convinced eating out can be extremely unhealthy. I now have a new craving real hamburgers with real hamburger meat, onions, chill, lite mayo, hamburger buns. I need to get myself off the high carbohydrate foods.

Some people can gradually cut back on their sugar intake. I am not one of those kind of people.  I think sugar cravings are best tackled cold turkey. I find that after four to six days of no sugar, the cravings stop completely. If you are going to try a sugar free diet be careful of hidden sources of sugar in foods such as, sauces, salad dressings, cereal, tomato sauce, and non-dairy milks.

Don’t make the mistake of swapping one poison for another. Artificial sweeteners such as Splenda and Aspartame can create sugar cravings. Stevia is naturally sweet. I use Stevia in my hot tea. Stevia seems to be one of the few natural sweeteners that does not trigger sugar cravings for me.

Monday, May 6, 2013


I ponder at the biological response to external situation know as stress. What is stress? Life can present situations or stressors that are perceived as a threat to one’s well being. The challenge of dealing with stressors which exceeds the person’s resources. This triggers the body's stress response which is to fight or flight. This is when we experience stress. We all have stress in our lives for example a traffic jams can causes us to be late. This can led to a stressful situation.

Stress is a part of life. We have to learn to cope with stress. This usually involves adjusting to events while attempting to maintain emotional balance. Life is an evolving process with constant changes. Our coping to life occurs as life changes, these changes are perceived as stressful. Changes are stressful because changes require us to adapt, to adjust. The change does not always have to be negative to cause stress, positive changes such as getting married or having a baby can be stressful.

We get into trouble when we encounter a number of changes within a short amount of  time. This usually  creates a feeling that we are not in control of events in our life. This feeling can lead to low self-esteem and may even contribute to the development of anxiety and depression.

Many individuals often experience illnesses in response to stress. The stress can also cause an illness to rear its head. Stress may also complicate an illness.  The effect of stressors that happens within a brief period of time may be cumulative and lead to serious problems. For example, when an individual experiences the death of a parent, get divorced, and lose their job within a brief period of time, they can be struggling to adjust to life events. This individual can experience a physical illness in response to the situation they are going through.

So how do we make the best of life? We learn to cope with life and stress. There are many easy and common coping strategies. I personally think this is a time in our life when we should reach out to God. This is an excellent time to grow in our relationship with God. We can reach out to our friends and work on maintaining emotionally supportive relationships we already have. Do not shut out your friends and family, this is often a response of some individuals. Some times we need to swallow our pride and ask others to help us.

Other coping mechanisms include lowering our expectation, life is not perfect. We need to be flexible in coping. Sometimes taking responsibility for the situation empowers us and helps lower our stress level. We can also work to resolve the situation. Many work toward resolve the situation by trying to change the source of stress. Other individuals deal with stress by putting distance between themselves and the source of stress. We often use several of the above coping strategies in order to cope with stressful events. Our individual personalities come into play with the differ styles and strategies of coping with stress. This can often complicate the situation. 

How can we cope with stress? Personally one of the most important thing we can do is to reach out to God, and friends. Friends can be a big help by listening to your situation. It helps to vent. It can lower your stress level. One can participate in other stress reducing activities which can be an excellent overall approach to coping with stressors which leads to stress. These stress reducing techniques involve taking care of your body by sleeping 8 to 10 hours.

Exercise is an excellent way to reduce stress. We need to pay special attention to our diet. This is where I mess up and eat a diet high in carbohydrates. I also crave salt and sugar when I am stressed.

Other ways to cope with stress include taking short breaks or a short nap less than 30 minutes, this helps lower your stress level. Self medicating with drugs and alcohol only make the situation worse. It also helps to avoid caffeine and nicotine.

While we all agree stress is a part of life, it takes its toll on all of us in varying degrees. How we deal with stress depends in large part on who we are. There are times Christians become stressed because they don’t trust God to provide the basic necessities of life.

Matthew 6:24-30 (KJV)
"24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?
26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?
27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?
28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:
29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?"

I think this maybe the key to why we get stressed in the first place. We worry!!! We worry about about everything. We worry about providing for ourselves and families. We stress over material things and money.  Many worry about making ends meet since many often live paycheck to paycheck. Other individuals become consumed by "things". They worry about maintaining their lifestyle also know as," keeping up with the Jones." God will provide your needs maybe not your wants, but definitely your needs.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

I feel overwhelmed!

So much to do, and so little time to accomplish the things I need to do. I feel overwhelmed. I wonder do I manage my time wisely?

That said, I am always hearing people remark time is flying by as the older they get. I pondered this idea does time feel as though it is going faster as we age? In fact, it depends on the time-frame you are considering. Adults in mid-life report that the hours and days pass at what feels like a normal speed. It is the years they say pass faster.

So how do we slow down the pace of life? New and unique experiences seem to slow down time, we pay more attention to details. It is when we go to the same places and do the same things, we don't make distinct memories and time seems to fly by. I suggest you try to live more in the present. Try something new, first time or new experiences seem to slow down time. Being positive about the future helps to be more in the moment, just imagine a future full of hope and optimism.             

I personally approach every day as a new opportunity to achieve my goals. I have always had an optimistic disposition. Every day gives you a new chance, a new opportunity. Every day we are alive is a gift from God so go and make the best of it.  
Mark Twain

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The Journey Home

It was determined by Mama's doctors she needed to go to a rehabilitation facility to recover from her illness. Mama was moved via ambulance from the hospital in Charlotte to her hometown. She is in rehabilitation. We pray she regains her strength and is able to return home.  

Her journey home got me thinking about people that have a desire to visit their childhood home or hometown. These individuals are lead by a desire to connect with their past. They visit their childhood homes, schools and playgrounds. It seems to help them make the link between the child they were and the person they are today.

I have noticed when people lose a parent, grandparent, sibling, or go through a divorce, many desire to get in touch with the values they were taught as children. I think this gives people warm fuzzy feelings they had as a child. Often this trip home tends to help people get their lives back on track.

It may not always be pleasant memories. This often can bring up psychological wounds left over from sad or traumatic childhoods. Often adults have the maturity to deal with memories which can be unpleasant. This is why visiting childhood memories can often be a satisfying and therapeutic experience.

This got me to thinking about coming home to God and the warm fuzzy feelings this gives us. This can help us grow and mature as a person and Christian.

"Come, let us return to the LORD. He has torn us to
pieces but he will heal us; he has injured us but
he will bind up our wounds. (2) After two days he will
revive us; on the third day he will restore us
that we may live in his presence."
Hosea 6:1-6 and Acts 2:1-4

"Return to thine own house, and shew how great things God hath done unto thee. And he went his way, and published throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done unto him." KJV Luke 8:39