Where to begin?

About a month ago I asked Christopher if I could document his teen years on my blog. I said, “The good, the bad, and the ugly will be on my blog. Is that okay?” He looks at me and asks if it will embarrass him. Yes, of course. He says, “Oh, I don’t care, go ahead.”  I can’t do it. I didn’t know that I would actually have something happening that I didn’t want to share with the world. He is great. I love him with everything that is in me, but there are times when my heart aches for his. I miss the part of him that showed that he needs me and loves me. It disappeared for awhile. It’s starting to emerge again. We stopped laughing together. He started sleeping a lot. I thought it was because he is 13 and growing. Then he tells me he hasn’t been eating very much and I realized that yeah, he wasn’t eating much at all. So, he sleeps a lot, spends a lot of time in his room, hides his heart from me, and doesn’t eat much. I almost vomited with the realization that his heart is hurting. I know he is  a young man and every young man pulls away from his mother, but this is different. So, we had a talk and I changed a few things. I tried being silly with him again. The day he laid on my bed and laughed uncontrollably with me was such a healing moment. I wanted to cry, but laughing was more fun. We are beginning to have more fun together. He has been a great help to me in the recent days. His attitude has greatly improved. I still pray for his heart to be healed. I pray he seeks the Father. My heart hurts for his. For the young boy who suddenly had to share his parents with 3 emotionally damaged children. For the boy who was pushed aside just so his mother could survive with the other 3. The boy who had to grow up a bit faster. For the boy whose daddy no longer lives here. For the rejection, abandonment, and hurt he feels. My boy doesn’t talk much about his heart with me anymore.

My boy likes girls and they like him. I prefer this arrangement. I’m just at a loss on how to teach him to deal with all these new feelings and hormones.

I won’t share all of the good, bad, and ugly. I will protect him.

Lately I’ve been wondering if I’m enough. I’ve had to go back to work. Work as in a real job with a boss, a time card, and co-workers. I have a schedule. I have to find someone to come be with my kids while I work. My hours are 10pm-6am, 4 days a week. I LOVE my job. [More about it a bit later.] But I have to ask myself, how will I be a good employee for 32-40 hours a week, succeed in my college courses, and meet all the needs of my children. Do I love them enough? Do I spend enough time with them? Do they know I’m working because I love them and want to be able to provide for them?

I work then I come home to sleep. I find Ireland in my bed every morning when I come home. Christopher gets up with the kids and keeps things in order until I get up. I had a rough night last night at work. My body was aching. I twisted my right ankle, the one I always twist. It just gets stupid sometimes. Christopher tries to keep Ireland away from me so I can sleep. She is quick and sneaky. She always asks me 1. Can I watch a movie? 2. Can I play on the computer? 3. Can I have chips? That girl could live on chips alone! He also tries to keep them quiet, but the younger 3 have never learned how to be quiet. They’re pretty much the loudest kids I’ve ever met.  What’s up with that, anyway? I can hear them through a shut door, a fan, and my ear plugs. All in all, Christopher has done a great job of making it easier for me to sleep.

My job. I love my job. I’m a caregiver in a memory care unit at an assisted living facility. My heart swells for the residents there.

I cried as I held the hand of a woman with Parkinson’s. She was uncomfortable, lonely, and crying. A man told me he loves to read the Bible and asked if we should form an evangelistic team and evangelize the world. I’ve only known these people about a week and they’ve found themselves a home in my heart. I don’t get frustrated with them. I have been exasperated, but not upset. I  mostly wonder about who these people were before their bodies and minds began breaking down. You can catch the humor in some of them sometimes. One man was eating his chocolate ice cream bar and I said, “You sure like chocolate, don’t you?” He smiled and replied with a chuckle, “Oooh, I looooove chocolate!” I told him he’s a man after my own heart. He laughed at that.

I enjoy my night shift co-workers. I hope they enjoy me, too. I worry most about what people say about me after I’ve left work in the morning. I know, it’s quite silly of me, but I’ve always been like that. In drama I would be the last one to leave practice for that very reason.

I should be sleeping, but my mind is full of thoughts. I bet that if I would just lie down that I’d fall asleep so quickly. I think I’ll make my to-do list before I sleep.

My iPhone is busted. It won’t sync and it won’t restore. Christopher’s phone, which was my very old phone, is also not working well. I really don’t want to spend my first check on phones. It’s ridiculous.

I have a lot of laundry to do. I spend my work nights sweeping, mopping, cleaning bathrooms, and folding laundry. That’s exactly what I need to accomplish tomorrow…among a few other things.

I am tired, but this has to be done. The realization that I am a single mother hits me afresh every day. I must toughen up. I must work. I must go to school. I must do what I can do to be part of the healing of my children’s hearts. I may end up not actually having any friends since I’ll be so busy. There is so much to accomplish. I will have to learn to work harder than I ever have before. Can I do it? Am I strong enough, smart enough, tough enough? Some say that  yes I am, as long as I have God or He has me. Some just say that yes, I am a strong woman and that of course I can do it? Where do they get their information? I am not strong? I’ve never been strong? Well, I did do that biggest loser contest and boot camp at the gym. I was stronger, but not strong. I have so far to go.

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