Thursday, February 28, 2008

Ruby Bridges: Through My Eyes (Documentary Film Preview)

In honor of Black History Month.

This Season of My Life

First off, I just want to explain that this post is being written under the influence of 103* temperature - so, if it doesn't make sense or if I get kind of loopy, you will understand.  I have been suffering with the flu bug since Monday.  I rarely get the flu, and I am grateful for that, because this stuff is horrible.  You can't even imagine the amount of fluids I have been drinking!  And now, it's to the point where it hurts to breathe and my cough sounds like a very loud and deep fog-horn.  I think the thing I hate the most is not having the energy to do things which need to be done.  Last night, I started feeling a little better so I cleaned my small bathroom, but immediately afterwards, my fever spiked and I got chills.  So, today I am pretty much going to stay in bed and rest and try to get rid  of this stuff.  I can see why it has the potential to kill people who are elderly or who have weakened immune systems!

I have been debating about which direction to take my blog.  I know I still want to keep going with it, but I have wondered if I should focus less on my relationship with my kids and more on my faith journey.  Or, perhaps I could combine the two.  This season of my life has proved to be more challenging than I ever dreamed possible.  It's difficult being a parent to teenage girls in this day and age, what with all of the crap that's going on in the world - all the fake promises that this culture makes to these young ladies.  You know what I mean.  To try to keep them on the faithful path is daunting - especially when, at times, I am having my own personal struggles with faith.  Don't get me wrong - I still believe - it's just that my burdens have made me weary and sometimes I feel like giving up.    I also have been praying for discernment as to where God is leading me for the rest of my life.  So, as you can tell, a lot has been on my mind and in my heart.

My youngest, DQ, is still dealing with the effects of what happened to her in 7th and 8th grade at a different parochial school.  She is wondering where God was when all that was happening to her, and it has really caused a crisis in her faith.  She's also very angry at me - for many reasons.  She thinks I should have prepared her better for that kind of behavior, she thinks I should have done more to stop it from happening.  So, not only does she feel abandoned by God during that time, she feels abandoned by me.  We are taking steps right now to get some resolution to this matter, so please say a few prayers.  But, in the meantime, I have a very fragile young lady on my hands.  In other areas, she is doing well - she has some truly great friends, and she has a close relationship with her dad.  I tend to be the "whipping post", and get the brunt of her anger and frustration - but  I understand where she is coming from, and we have had many good talks recently which are pointing us in the direction of healing and understanding.  

TP is completing her first semester at her new college, and guess what????? She's on the Dean's list!  She has all A's!  What a difference a year makes!  We are very proud of her over this accomplishment.  She has a couple of jobs with autistic kids - and one in particular is very challenging and yet rewarding for her.  She is an ABA instructor for him, and she spends Saturdays and Sundays and Wednesday evenings with him.  She also waitresses on Saturday nights, and sometimes brings home $150.00 worth in tips - which goes a long way in helping her with her gas expenses (she drives daily to college, which is approximately 30 miles away) and her other living expenses.  The money she makes from her job with Autistic kids goes directly into the bank to help pay for college costs.  She's maturing on many different levels, and I enjoy watching her learn so many new things, not just with school but with life, in general.  I do  have the usual motherly concerns about her, and I  just pray that she makes wise decisions for her future which are reflective of God's will and not just her own.  I also pray that she will open up to new friendships as she continues her schooling - both female and male - and that she opens herself up to new possibilities so that she's not held back in experiencing all that life has to offer her.   We seem to have grown closer over the past few months, and she has opened up about her "rebellion" and has even apologized for it.  I think she has learned many valuable lessons from those mistakes - and how those mistakes cost her and us so much (financially and emotionally and spiritually).  

So, where do I go from here with this blog?  Any suggestions?  I do know I have been experiencing a writer's block so severe that I wasn't even able to write anything for the March issue of the Christian Women Online e-zine.  Darlene was very gracious and understanding, and I truly appreciated that.  But, I'll be back there for the April issue. 

In conclusion, I'm at the crossroads of my life and for my blog.  Trying to decide which directions to take for each of them.  I would welcome any comments or thoughts from you, my one or two faithful readers who have stuck with me through thick and thin over the past few years -  (all right, I may have a few more than that - just kidding).  

Hope all is well with all of you!  God bless. . . 

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Happy Birthday to My Baby

My youngest turned 17 yesterday. She is blossoming into such a beautiful young woman. She has been through so much, and yet she is so strong and loving. I pray that she stays safe in God's graces throughout this next year of her life, as she faces many changes in her life. As is our custom, we say "thank you" to her birth mom, whose unselfish gift of life has brought incredible joy not only to our family, but to everyone whose life DQ touches.

Happy Birthday, DQ. May you have many, many more. I love you so much, and I will hold you forever in my heart.

Friday, February 15, 2008


Here is a song which I would like to dedicate to Kathryn Faughey's memory (see next post). It is the kind of legacy I hope to leave as well.

A Vulnerable Position

Most of you are aware by now of the brutal killing of psychotherapist Kathryn Faughey, 56, of New York. More and more details are starting to come out, but for now, the killer remains at large.

This struck home for me because I, too, am a psychotherapist. I have my own private office. I have, for the most part, always felt safe in the three offices I have rented since going into private practice.

I've had a couple of instances where I did feel extremely uncomfortable - such as the time a man took out a pen knife and twirled it around his lengthy moustache as I was gathering information about his family life so that I could write recommendations to Juvenile Court about the placement of his son. Or the time when a man used his arm stub to put it up next to my cheek as he was yelling at me about my sessions with his daughter who was being extremely emotionally abused by him.

One thing that is taught in grad school is to NEVER see a new patient when totally alone in a building. During the initial interview, a skilled therapist can usually assess whether or not a client is violent. Another way to protect oneself is to always sit next to the door - never, ever have allow a client sit closest to the door.
Always, always have an alarm system of some sort in your office, or have some way to alert the authorities when you are in trouble.

From what I've read about Kathryn, she was very well-respected and knowledgeable in her field. I feel a kinship with her because we are close in age and have been in the field for the same amount of time. I even went so far as to think, "there, but for the grace of God, go I. . . "

So, even though I've always been pretty cautious, I suppose I will need to be even more so, because you just never know.

I wonder what will happen to her clients. Will they find another therapist? Certainly, the vulnerable clients will need to see somebody as soon as possible, but they are also the ones who will be the most resistant to a new therapist because of the trust factor.

My heartfelt sympathies and prayers go out to her family and friends and clients. May she rest in peace with the risen Lord.

Please take a moment to listen to the song "Legacy" by Nichole Nordeman, which I have posted above. It says it all.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Christian Women Online

February's edition of CWO can be found at This month's theme is, appropriately, LOVE. It's a beautiful edition, full of wonderful stories, so please take a few minutes and head on over there. My column this month has to do with the love of an adoptive mother for her children, and the process of letting them go as they face decisions about meeting their birth moms. Let me know what you think, OK?