Monday, June 13, 2011

Five Years

"There will be an agreement in whatever variety of actions, so they be each honest and natural in their hour."
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Day 8 Assignment by Corbett Barr
What would you say to the person you were five years ago? What will you say to the person you’ll be in five years?

I debated over whether or not to post this on my blog. It is deeply personal and, in fact, this is an edited version of the original. But, I committed to this project, and this is one of the assignments. I was honestly surprised at what came out. This was an incredibly powerful and healing experience. Anyway, here goes... 

Five years ago... it was 2006. I had been in Arkansas for almost 2 years. My life had been radically changing. I had been thrust into the "head of the family" position really before we left California. I had managed to pay off Momma's debts. Momma still had some of her whits about her, but she was failing and had been since before the move. That was why I really didn't want to leave her behind in California. Of course, I had no clue what I was getting myself into...

That was the Summer that Pam, Ray and Mike moved out here. They spent 3 months living with us before they found a place of their own in Pottsville. Pam had moved out here to help me with Mom and Tina because she didn't think I should have to bear that burden all by myself. The original plan was that they would live close by and Mom and Tina would spend some afternoons at her house and we could have family dinners together on my way home from work. She would take Mom and Tina to church on Saturdays so that Nick and I could go back to our Saturday morning hiking adventures.

The best laid plans of mice and men...

So, what would I tell the me of five years ago? 

I would tell myself to make church a family event. Instead of Mom and Tina having their church on Saturday and me having mine on Sunday, I would have taken them with me.

I would tell myself to study up on Alzheimer's disease, because I didn't have a clue how bad it would get by the end.

I would tell myself to not get into the animal rescue business, or at least not to the extent that I did. I was spread far too thin by adding that into my life.

I would tell myself to make sure I had Mom's affairs in order instead of letting her put it off because she didn't want to deal with it, because the day came when she no longer could.

I would tell myself to prepare to be patient and loving and to enjoy every moment possible with Mom while she still somewhat knew who I was and who she was.

I'll never forget the day I was working on the driveway and Momma was taking a walk. She told me I was a hard worker. I told her she raised me that way. She said, "What?" I told her I was her daughter, Cheree. She said "You are?" My life was never the same after that moment. Things where Momma was concerned seemed to just spiral downhill and out of control after that.

The night wandering; the sleep deprivation; and then, of course, the day I found her dead... Some things you wish you could forget...

I would tell that Cheree of five years ago to prepare herself for the biggest challenge of her life, to build herself up in the Spirit, to simplify her life so that she could get through it and to the other side with grace and peace.

So, what will I say to the person I will become in 5 years?

I will say that it's okay. I will tell that Cheree that she did the best she could under the circumstances. I will tell the Cheree of five years from now to take the lessons learned, to never forget them, and to pass them on to Nick and any grandchild/children that may come along.

I will tell that Cheree that if God has forgiven me, and sent His son to die for me so that my sins could be forgiven--could be as far as the East is from the West--that it would be not only foolish, but an insult to my Creator to not forgive myself. Did Jesus die in vain?

I will tell myself to live the rest of my life in simplicity, faith, joy and peace. 

#Trust30 Day Eight


I would love to hear your thoughts... please share.