Friday, December 2, 2011

Ch-ch-ch-changes

Even though I still have 27 days left before I leave my job I packed up my office today, managing to fit all the items neatly into an Office Depot paper box. I sat and stared at that box for quite some time wondering where 23 years had gone. There was the autographed picture of Patrick Rafter that my boss had so generously given to me one Christmas, proud that he had won the bid on eBay; family photos; a ceramic heart my daughter made for me; a Wimbledon teddy bear also from my daughter that she had brought all the way from England; a Norwegian vase from my boss' wife; a wooden cross from Israel. All these treasures will now call another place home.

When I returned to my desk my computer had fallen asleep and was scrolling the words I'LL BE BACK. It seemed wrong to leave it that way, so I changed the marquee to LAISSEZ LE BON TEMPS ROULER! (Let the good times roll!), leaving a little piece of my Cajun personality behind, I suppose.

Other than antsy-ness I am feeling so relaxed about things, concerned that I'm a little too relaxed. This is so unlike me, worrier extraordinaire that I am. I'm also famous (or infamous) for being high-strung, emotional. I feel none of that. What is happening? Can it be that God has answered my prayers for peace and to "know" when the time is right to make a move? Yes, that is my belief and I am sticking with it. So, 'thank you, God'.

I've been looking online at smaller, older homes in my mother's neighborhood. The area is very woodsy and settled and conveniently located to everything we might need. I was happy to see that many homes in our price point have wood or laminate flooring. That is a must-have, especially with three dogs. The lots are much larger than the little postage stamp lots in Dallas. With trees. Lots and lots of trees and tropical plants. I am going to be able to breathe for the first time in a long time and not have neighbors right on top of me.


In other news boy-wonder became part of the Occupy L.A. movement (to my dismay) and is now incarcerated. His phone has been disconnected for a couple of weeks now (for failure to pay, I'm assuming). He did not call me or my parents or his dad with his one phone call. We found his booking information online. I'm not surprised by any of it to be honest. My most recent prayers have been for him to have shelter and food and safety. Well, he has that in jail, so in a way my prayers are being answered.

If I sound rather detached, it's because I am--but only by necessity. I haven't stopped loving him and my heart is heavy, but I have stopped enabling, stopped letting every destructive decision he makes bring me down. It took me a long time to get here, to realize that HE is making these decisions and that I cannot rescue him anymore. At 31 years old it's way past time for him to straighten up and fly right.

A heart can only sustain so many traumas, so many cracks, so many aches, then it starts to toughen up or risk dying. Besides, I have my mother and her needs to think about now. Here she is battling a disease that she did not choose. It's right and fitting to suffer for your own poor choices, but quite the opposite when you are a victim of something you did nothing to bring on yourself. My greatest desire is to make my mom's last years as comfortable as possible. Pouring my efforts into this scenario is much better use of my time and talents. Can I get an amen? :)


P.S. This is Patrick Rafter, former #1 tennis player (be still my heart!).

33 comments:

Pieces of Sunshine said...

Good fro you Gail. Lots of changes and you seem all ok with it. Wonderful I so love that you are prepared to care for your mother like this. May God bless you in many ways as you walk this path.

TexWisGirl said...

a big amen. although i've never raised children, right now your mother needs you. you're changing your life. you deserve to concentrate on YOUR changes and HER needs right now. he's old enough to work thru his stuff...

Pearl said...

You've got a lot going on in your life. I suggest you take a good long look at that photo of the tennis player and then move on with the good you are doing. :-)

Pearl

Ghost Writer said...

I can almost visualize seeing you just sitting there in your office, just staring at that box. I know that you have made the right decision, but you will be missed.

You will be so blessed by this decision. I just know it.

Good luck.

GW

Evelyn S. said...

Amen! You are stronger than I ...but I agree with your position. 31 is certainly old enough to take responsibility for his own actions ...and I hope and pray that his eyes are opened to that fact, so you don't have that additional heaviness on your heart.

Nancy @ A Rural Journal said...

Gail -- I totally support your decisions about your son. My sister has been dealing with an identical situation with her son since he was in high school and he's now 30 and living in her home. It's a terrible situation that she has not yet come to grips with. I hope she adopts your survival instinct before it's too late. xoxo

Hilary said...

This is quite the transitional time for you and at such a stressful time of year. I'd admire your strength and calmness. You can only change what you're responsible for and that often takes people a lifetime (if ever) to recognize. You're effecting those changes which you can and not stressing over the rest. I'm sorry about your son but you're so right about having to detach somewhat. Hard as that may be. Keep on moving forward, Gail. Hugs to you.

ladyfi said...

You're amazingly brave at such a difficult time.

As for Rafter - yum!

missing moments said...

I give you a dozen "amens" ... you are so doing the right thing and putting your energies to the best use. Wonderfully written from the hear today ... somehow, these lost kids, do find their way eventually. Hopefully, with little damage to their souls.

hootnonny said...

I'm so looking forward to making this move with you! Am glad you are at peace with your reality and have such a loving and supportive DD.

At 30 it's time that your son learns the lessons from his actions. Glad you are at peace with this too. May have mentioned this before - one of my favorite books is Boundaries by Dr. McCloud and Townsend, written from a Christian perspective. Wholehearted recommend it.

Kittie Howard said...

I am going to be able to breathe for the first time in a long time and not have neighbors right on top of me.

The Good Lord works in strange and mysterious ways. .. time to go home, Gail.

(I think your post brought LSU back into the game - Mathieu just made his run-back. Geaux Tigers!)

Pat said...

Amen! It sounds like this will be a positive change for you.

Linda R. said...

AMEN!!! Well to me it definitely sounds like GOD is doing some awesome work in your life. It is so hard sometimes to let our children live there own life's.. But it is what is best. That is just my opinion!
Not the easiest thing to do! That is for sure!! I will keep you in my prayers my friend..

Hugs, Linda

BTW - I used to Love to watch Rafter play.. I was on a tennis league for over 15 years.. I just loved it!!

Sandy aka Scarlett said...

Yessss.. you get an Amen from me as well Gail!! On all counts!

Tough Love is what the counselors advised me to do with my daughter years ago.. and now with my granddaughter - it was the hardest thing I ever did in my life.. to let her be responsible for her own actions, and to clean up her own messes, rather than me jumping in and trying to make everything better.. they have to want it! and make the changes themselves.. hard lessons in life..

That sense of peace you have is such a good thing, it lets you know that all is right in the world with the decisions you've made - let the stresses go.. they're behind you.. you have a whole new chapter that you're going to absolutely love .. being close to your mom is such a huge comfort for both of you, and finding a house with TREES!! and space.. breathing room!! Think of the flowers you'll plant, the birds that will come to visit, the photo ops you'll get right in your own backyard! :)

I hope you have a great rest of your weekend Gail!!

LAISSEZ LE BON TEMPS ROULER!!
P.S. that Patrick Rafter is one goodlookin' young man.. :)

Kathy said...

It's a big change. Just know that every day will not be wonderful and take life easy! Because the good days will make up for the ones that are lacking!

Starla said...

I'm glad you are at peace with all the changes coming your way! That is a sure sign that it is RIGHT.

I can only imagine how hard it is to watch your son make poor choices. But since my oldest is only 14, I'm at a little different place!! I commend you for not continuing to enable. It's hard to cut those strings, but so important for sanity. Good for you!

Shug said...

Hey girl...you have been on my mind all day today...I know that you have so much going on right now and that your mind is in the overwhelm mode, but I do want you to know that I am thinking of you and that you do have people praying for you and your family...I just want to stretch my arms a hundred miles and give you a big ol' hug right now!!
Thanks for sharing and for giving me the opportunity to pray for you...
hugs
shug

Tricia said...

You sound quite at peace with all the different things that are happening in your life right now, Gail. The time must be right. I can't imagine how hard the situation with your son must be. Hopefully, he'll figure things out sooner rather than later. Best wishes ♥

justine said...

It sounds like you are having a very tough time but you are still remaining strong, I hope you are ok!

Autumn said...

I'm proud to have a mother who is strong, graceful, wise and humble! You are definitely on the right path, and I think you'll be happy living life at a slightly slower pace in BR. :) Think of all the cardinals that will visit your backyard! The romantic Spanish moss hanging from the trees! The beautiful old homes! I can't WAIT to see your photography blossom even more in our gorgeous home state. And I definitely can't wait to visit y'all once you're settled. Love you!

Henrietta said...

Yes please to Patrick Rafter, yam my:)
I don't know what to say about your life, it sound hard and I can't do anything to help you but I'm so glad you have found your peace with your adult boy. what ever he is doing it is him not you and so great you understand that even it is hard.
I hope you find a great house.

Rosie said...

Yes, you can: Amen ;-)
You are an amazing woman, Gail, and I absolutely admire you! I'm so happy for you with all the changes that seem to be really good for you. I love your attitude! Yes, also concerning boy-wonder ;-) Have a wonderful time, Gail! My thoughts are with you!

lisa said...

At the risk of not being family-friendly here, may I just say HOT???? Tennis never looked so good!

On a more serious note, I am so happy to hear that you are where you are with what is going on. You're a very brave, strong, and kind person, and it is for sure that God is in your corner. I wish you continued strength, and do keep that wonderful spirit.

xo.

Barbara said...

I was thinking 'Amen' when I scrolled down to that photo... It became 'AMEN!' Whoa, thank you!
But seriously, you are so right when you say "A heart can only sustain so many traumas, so many cracks, so many aches, then it starts to toughen up or risk dying." I do believe God has his hand on you and you're doing the right thing, remaining detached about your son's decisions. It might be the best thing for him, who knows. I'm glad you have such peace on this move you're making and especially glad you'll be able to find a sweet little home near your mom. I can't wait to see those photos! Praying for strength and peace for you! Thank you for always inspiring me!

Butterbean Row said...

Gail,
I applaud you for your new found strength that is from God, surely. I am glad that you have the peace for all the situations that you are facing with your mother, and your son. You are one cool woman!
thank you for your sweet comments on my blog today. They are special to me.

♥Charlotte

Tricia @ Bluff Area Daily said...

AMEN, GAIL, & a Hallelujah, too! I'm so sorry about your son, but I'm also glad that God has answered your prayers & given you peace about moving... that stress can cause terrible problems, so it's good that you're calm & it's going to be peaceful! God bless you & hubby for making the move to take care of her... =)

Nadine, Chewy and Lilibell said...

AMEN Gail!!! I am sure that at one point my mother had the same thoughts about me (I was very wayward and not too responsible, I think I just grew up later than most people), but I did turn my life around and I know now that my mom is very proud of me! So, there is hope for your son, one can only pray that he will turn his life around, one of these days.

Georgianna said...

Hi Gail, I'm very happy to hear you are able to face all the changes with such a peaceful outlook. And so wonderful you are able to be with your mother at this time. Nothing is more important.

Wishing you all the best over the coming days and months. – g

beth said...

here's an enormous AMEN !!!!

and your outlook on everything....the good, the bad and the ugly, is amazing !!!

xoxo

septembermom said...

You are a strong amazing woman with so much to give. I feel in my heart that this change is good.for you. Sending hugs...

Laura Delegal - Leroy Photography said...

Oh goodness, Gail. My heart breaks for you and I understand much of what you say. We have a 21 year old and have been praying that God will direct him or "hedge him in from in front and behind" (ha ha) and make him go the right direction. I know your heart and understand the acceptance ... praying for your wanderer--and you. God bless.

Laura Delegal - Leroy Photography said...

I know you're terribly busy, Gail, but I wanted to stop back by and wish you and your family a blessed Christmas and healthy new year. Hope you find time to relax.

Michelle said...

Gail, I'm glad you're feeling God's peace with this move. And that your husband is so supportive of your mother's needs. It's great when your husband is good to you, but when he's good to your parents... well that's priceless. I sometimes feel anxiety about helping my grandparents - will I be capable, will I make the right decisions, etc- but when it comes time to do something I am impressed by the peace I feel. It's like I know if I love them so much how much more God loves them and my willingness to help them. I can feel confident that He'll bless me with the strength and wisdom that I need. And I know the He's doing the same thing for you.