“6 THINGS I WISH I COULD UN-TELL MY CHILDREN”

I thought this was a really interesting article and found it very thought-provoking, and agreed with most of it apart from No.6 which disputes “You are special” – I tell both my son and my daughter (when I get the opportunity) that they will always be special to me and that I keep them close to my heart. x

Mother and sons looking out from hotel balcony, Fethiye, Turkey

(All credit goes to Tina Plantamura with my thanks)

My oldest son just graduated high school and is now embarking on the next leg of his journey that will bring him closer to real life. I have come to realize that there are so many things that I wish I could un-tell him.

I hope he knows that all of these empowering, yet misleading little statements that I (or others with the best intentions in mind) might have spoken into his nearly grown-up ears are not exactly true…

1. You don’t owe anyone anything.

You have one major responsibility: to be part of the positive change in this world. If you are not part of it, you are opposing it. You owe everyone (including yourself) a measure of kindness, mercy, patience, respect and empathy. Everyone is fighting some sort of battle. Everyone has a chapter in their lives that they do not want to read aloud. You might have stepped right into the middle of someone’s toughest battle, so while they are struggling to keep it together, if nothing else, all you have to do is be kind. How hard is that?

2. Respect is earned, not given freely.

This is similar to the “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” argument, but more ridiculous. Should you wait for someone to earn your respect before you respect them? Should you assume no one respects you until you have clearly earned their respect? Can you get respect without giving it? Can you give respect and just automatically assume you’ll earn it? If you don’t earn someone’s respect, should you be disrespectful to them? You are responsible for the way you conduct yourself, regardless of whether anyone else is respectful. So please, be respectful.

3. Just be yourself, and people will know how talented/qualified/desirable you are!

Too many other logical statements make this one seem absurd: Step out of your comfort zone. Make your presence known. Know when to hold ’em and know when to fold ’em. If you don’t ask, the answer will always be “no.” Persistence, humility, and deliberate effort will help you shine and move toward the direction of becoming a productive human.

Please, please do not just float around in this world and expect to get what you want by being your cute little self. Also, know that sometimes you will bust your ass and no one will notice but you. Hey, this leads us to the next one…

4. Hard work pays off.

Except when it doesn’t. Occasionally, the hardest work and the most diligent efforts yield the most dreaded result: nothing. Life is unfair sometimes. You have to work hard anyway, because no work ALWAYS yields nothing.

5. You have to pursue your dream career in order to be happy in life.

Find 15 people and ask them if they have their dream job. Then, ask them if they are happy with their lives. The answers will surprise you. Not everyone needs a wonderful, rewarding career in order to be happy in life. Some people are working in their field of choice, doing exactly what they always wanted to do, and they’re miserable. Some people merely have “a job” and still live rewarding, spectacular lives. And some love their career, but long for more in their personal lives. Do pursue your dreams, but make sustainability a priority. Working hard to support yourself can be more rewarding than being 30 years old and waiting for the perfect career while still living in your childhood bedroom. The way to prevent that from becoming your future is to make sure you are able to earn a living even if you don’t ever land your dream job.

6. You are special!

You are no better, no worse, no greater, and no less than anyone else in this world. Every person you know is better than you at something. Every person you know struggles with something that is very easy for you. Use your strengths to make this world a better, more enjoyable place (because when it’s better for others, it’s better for you, too). Ask for and accept help when you need it. Never behave as though any person, task, or circumstance is above you or beneath you.

***

I CAN’T PEOPLE TODAY

My head is completely fucked up today. I wanted to be kind today because that’s how I like to treat people and have been on the whole. I left my Carer a ‘Welcome to my humble abode’ message with a smiley face drawn on the wipe-clean noticeboard in the kitchen and then when she came I could do nothing other than make small talk. I went out this morning and smiled and said “good morning” and “have a nice day” to passers-by on my way to the shops. I decided to leave two sticky-notes saying ‘Hi! Have an awesome day! Love from a stranger xx’, one stuck on the wrapper of a loaf of bread in the supermarket round the corner and the other on a packet of babies disposable nappies in the chemist. My hope was to brighten someone’s day. Then I unintentionally held up a queue of people in a shop because I couldn’t turn my wheelchair round in the small place on the way out and then felt dreadful. I tried out a new cycle path in my wheelchair on the way back from the shops and managed to lose my way (not unusual for me). I looked around and surprisingly, I spotted my neighbours two children not far off (on their bikes) who are twelve and nine. I called out to them and said how silly I was to get lost and bless their hearts, they cycled all the way home with me so I popped out again and got them a Kit-Kat chocolate bar each to say thank you. I arrived home safe and well. I did these things because I wanted to make people happy and not because I want thanks or recognition,

And now, this evening, everything in my head has gone pear-shaped. I am full of self-hatred and anger. I ignored the telephone when it rung and pretended I wasn’t in when a salesman rang the doorbell. I hid as best I could which isn’t easy when your legs don’t work. Suddenly, I don’t want to see anyone; I don’t want to speak to anyone; I don’t want to be with anyone whereas normally I would crave these things. I’m a grumpy old cow this evening. My faith seems to have gone up in smoke. I don’t know what has happened to me today….I know that my moods alter drastically from one moment to the next sometimes and I know that can be caused by my mental health condition, Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). But, somehow today, it feels more than that. I don’t want to be; I don’t want to think; I don’t want to talk; I can, thankfully, write today (after a fashion). I just “CAN’T PEOPLE TODAY”. I just can’t do it, be it, see it, hear it, say it, feel it. I don’t want to be part of the world or part of our war-torn, desperately unfair existence, I don’t want to be on this planet or in this universe. I just don’t want to be! ‘STOP THE WORLD, I WANNA GET OFF’. Get me out of here……………

i can't people today

I’m sorry, people x  :(

FORGIVENESS – MY FATHER

Please watch this video before continuing to read (thank you):

This is a subject that includes something I haven’t talked about here for a long time now and I don’t intend to go into the details or drama of it all other than to say that, as some of you may know, my father for sexually and emotionally abused me throughout my whole childhood.  

This isn’t about anger or hatred or resentment (although it would have been a couple of years ago). It’s not a ‘poor me’ plea for sympathy either.’ far from it.

My father died a couple of years ago. I was in a dilemma – did I forgive him before he died or not? As a Christian I knew that was the right thing to do…..but I didn’t feel it in my heart in those days leading up to his death. However, I spoke at length to my Christian sister (who was not abused) and we prayed together intensely and I prayed continually, alone.

I’d held on to the anger, the hate, the pain, the shame, the bitterness and more for all of my adult life. I can honestly say it nearly killed me as I made several suicide attempts over that period of time. I thank God now that I wasn’t successful. My life isn’t all roses, far from it (as goes for the majority of the population). I have my fair share of problems, worries, bad memories, nightmares, illnesses etc, etc but I don’t feel sorry for myself (I used to) – not one bit – in fact I feel blessed to have this life despite all its difficulties. I have also had a fair amount of therapy, some very bad but now with a new therapist who is good. All of this has helped.

Back to forgiveness and this video which really touched me, bringing back memories of those days that I tortured myself trying to decide whether I could in fact forgive such a crime. But gradually it all made sense. God gave me the answers at the right time, in His timing and at the right place. I remember it very well. In the last days of my father’s life, I decided to travel the 50 miles I needed to go to be able to see him in the middle of the night as we’d been told he didn’t have much longer to live. I went to say goodbye. I was frightened at the time, of what feelings seeing him would bring up after all these years. As I reached his bedside and saw this frail, elderly, white haired man with a mask strapped to his face; as I watched his stats on the monitor rise slightly, then dip, then rise again then dip further and gradually further, I knew in my heart what to do. I’d allowed God to lead me His way, not mine.

I sat at the father’s bedside. He was unable to speak because of the oxygen being pumped into his lungs but I gently took his hand (the same hand that inflicted the pain but it didn’t matter then) but all I felt was love and compassion and great sadness for my father’s struggling and obvious discomfort although he was on constant intravenous powerful pain medication. I spoke softly to him although he wasn’t able to reply. I wanted to forgive him; I genuinely and with all my heart wanted to forgive him. I stood up, still gently holding his hand and leaned forward. I leant down and whispered in his ear, “It’s alright now, dad; I forgive you; I love you” and I gently kissed him on the forehead, and I meant it. I genuinely and wholeheartedly meant every word and action. He pulled the life-preserving mask from his face, smiled just a little and opened his eyes just a fraction and for only a moment. He was my dad and I didn’t hate him anymore. Moments later, I watched him slip away peacefully. I wept both with grief and also relief. I prayed that the Lord would take care of him and give him peace. What I didn’t expect was to feel like someone had just lifted a ton weight of books off my back. I realized that in forgiving my father, I’d also forgiven myself and as the video shows, it has been so healing, so freeing – I didn’t expect to feel this but I still do and although I get my bad days (and a fair share of them) and although I have lifelong mental health conditions, I am alive, I am here, I am relieved of my emotional pain that resulted from the terrible abuse, I am free from that. I am forgiven too. Forgiveness starts on the inside. I’ve learned that now. Christ died on the cross so that we, each one, will be forgiven for all our sins. I am God’s child and I am forever grateful and prayerful about that. We are all God’s children. Praise God. God bless you for reading this x

JAGGED ROCKS

Words. I’ve been writing most of the afternoon (I know I am blessed to be able to have the time to do so when the fancy takes me). Many don’t have this opportunity. I’ve been writing letters and emails mostly – catching up with old friends and trying to establish new affiliations with vaguely familiar acquaintances from my new church. Forming links and building bridges . But when I read over what I have written, I am dismayed to find it is mostly ‘waffle’ (but then I’ve always been a bit of a ‘waffler’ or so I’m often told). Mind you, when I am told that I am, it has the effect of making me feel that I want to slither like a snail, silently back into my shell and then crawl out of view, under the nearest and most jagged rock I can find. Such is my shame and embarrassment.

we are what our thoughts have made us

Words. I wish I could find them, or at least I wish I could find them when I am most at a loss for them. Words can be cheap, ugly and almost disposable or they can be rare, beautiful and very valuable. I just wish I could find the right ones at the right moment. Instead of which, I very often open my mouth and stick my size four foot right into it. I’ve decided that jagged rocks are quite a good find on such an occasion.

Words. I love the way that each strike of a keyboard produces a different letter. The letters of the alphabets of this world take on amazing forms, shapes and symbols, collectively producing individual words which tumble into sentences and expressions which can vary from dire to mediocre to quite stunning said at the right time at the right place.

Words. I’m reading back – I have, on reflection, achieved nothing but waffle and so will take my leave at this point and go in search of a suitably uncomfortable jagged rock. They have their uses at times.

I’M FINE!

AN OUTSIDER’S VIEW OF ‘FINE’

I’m fine….didn’t you know I was fine? No need to worry. Everything is okay. I’m happy. Didn’t I tell you earlier…..that I feel so much better? So, now you know. It’s alright. I’m doing great…..so you see…..I’m fine!

I'm fine (not) words

Do you think I’m fine?

“RIGHT SAID FRED”!

This is just a very brief post to say sorry to any of my readers who are fed up with ‘watching this space’ while I’ve been faffing about (meaning messing about) over the last few days trying to find a new personality for my page.

Well, here I am, sort of established but still having ‘issues’ with my widgets!! I think it’s taken me two days of trial and error and even now, I’m not 100% satisfied with my new image so anyone with any suggestions (preferably polite and preferably helpful) will be welcomed. I’m a bit of a novice at getting blog pages just right although I have to say WordPress do try to make it fairly simple even for a simple soul such as me, to get it even halfway right! I’m still not sure I am satisfied so you will have to forgive me the possibility of a few more days ‘faffing about’!

This short, comic and very old YouTube video just about sums up my efforts!! :D

Thank you for bearing with me to all of those who have done so. Love Ellie xxx :)

YOU RAISE ME UP

THANK YOU, MY TRUE FATHER IN HEAVEN

for getting me through the tough times.

PRAISE YOU!

I love You, Lord, from Your child, Ellie xxx

<3 <3 <3

(YouTube film taken from The Passion of the Christ)

(Also, thanks to Mj and Meghan for being there for me too, recently (you know who you are). God Bless xxx)