AFVM: December Already?

This post is part of a series I like to call “A Visit From Mom.”  These posts are written by, well…my mom. I think she kind of rocks! My mom and her mother were the primary inspirations for me to starting writing way back as a little girl.  Now, I share my blog with my mom cause I think she has some things to say that you might really love.

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It is December already!

I always struggle with this season of the year—torn between the joy and excitement of yet another Christmas against the dark skies and cold and deep-seeded feeling of financial distress.  Writing out our tithe check this morning, there is the temptation to count those contributions to the Salvation Army bucket and the Angel tree and the food depot and all the other organizations that come alive at Christmas. . . more pressure.

I just learned that my father, who has worked hard all his life, has been released from his job and the hospital which employed my stepmother, a nurse for 50 years, just closed.  She is now unemployed.  They are both well into their seventies and should be secure.  They just declared bankruptcy.

After the past few years of economic loss, I have watched old friends try to reinvent themselves in what should be their golden years.  I have a credible fear that my job will be in jeopardy in a few years.    I will be 63—not old enough to retire, not young enough to be employable.  We are not alone in this.  Millions of people, who have followed “the rules” all their lives,  are finding themselves under financial stress at their most vulnerable point.

In my world, I take care of seniors.  It is a mission, it is a passion, and it is a gift from God to be blessed with this journey.  If, on occasion, I wake up in the middle of the night, panicking at the thought of what I will do 5 years from now or how I will support my infirm parents, Dear Lord, forgive me for my momentary lapse.  I am well aware that I cannot control the behavior of my fellow children of God.  I can control how I treat those children of God and I can control my trust in You. . .

I can once again read the Beatitudes and realize that You value what we do here.  I will tithe my usual, knowing that for all the times I give freely and with love, You, Heavenly Father,  have given to me a thousandfold,  freely and with love.

Blessings,

Carlene Welch is the General Manager at Home Instead Senior Care of Northwest Arkansas, and avid writer and poet, and my mom. She serves as a Stephen’s Minister at her church and is one of the wisest women I know. She writes custom poetry and prose for cards and gifts. For more information, contact us at stringsattachedministries@gmail.com.

AFVM: The Forgotten Ones

This post is part of a series I like to call “A Visit From Mom.”  These posts are written by, well…my mom. I think she kind of rocks! My mom and her mother were the primary inspirations for me to starting writing way back as a little girl.  Now, I share my blog with my mom cause I think she has some things to say that you might really love.

I recently found my senior high school annual, showing pictures of classmates to one of my daughters who asked what my high school years were like.  Reminiscing, I read some of the little notes old “friends” had to say about me. . .  “stay as sweet as you are”, “ you are the smartest, sweetest person I know”, “ you are always so reliable”, “ you are the brightest of all of us”, . . .

I remember vividly taking that annual home from school and sobbing because not a single one said I was their best friend, or didn’t we have fun, or wish we had another year—all any of those people could say about me was that I was sweet, smart and reliable.  This year was our fortieth class reunion, and I still could not bring myself to go back there.

The pain of never quite belonging is a formidable obstacle to overcome.  To this day, there are many moments when I would just like for someone to choose me as their companion for something fun.  It seems my husband is the only person in this world who has ever seen or appreciated that side of me.
I am the “go-to” person when someone is feeling uncertain about their life, when they feel a little depressed about their situation, when the world has battered them about just a little too much.  I am the chosen companion when a grandchild needs a hug and a soft place to lay a little head.  I am the one who can reassure my employers about their business decisions even when those decisions have only their best interests at heart.  I am the listener who makes every attempt to be empathetic and enabling to those I contact each day.

I am the forgotten one.  I am a lighthouse, praised for its light during the storm, and forgotten in the midst of the sunshine.  After all these years, I am still sweet, smart, and oh-so-reliable.  I am these things because they are traits which God knew I would use with care.  What gifts they truly are!  To be relied upon in time of need is high praise.  To enable and empower another child of God to continue his journey is an amazing blessing.

We each touch a number of people on any given day.  We won’t all hold a microphone, or write the great novel, or sing the number one song.  We won’t all get awards or even acknowledgement for the things we do.  But we all are blessed with gifts from God to share with others in His Name.  How wonderful is that?!

Blessings,

 

Carlene Welch is the General Manager at Home Instead Senior Care of Northwest Arkansas, and avid writer and poet, and my mom. She serves as a Stephen’s Minister at her church and is one of the wisest women I know. She writes custom poetry and prose for cards and gifts. For more information, contact us at stringsattachedministries@gmail.com.