The Mammogram Blues

Suspended animation:  what women feel the week before, and every moment leading up to-the dreaded annual mammogram.  My Lord!  I’d like to meet the son of a bitch who invented these machines-not that I’m not thankful for early detection.  Here’s my question to the AMA:  why must a woman go through this unholy torture chamber each and every year, when we know DAMN well you have a thing called ultrasounds?

Who the fuck are you and what have you done with my tits?

I am in no way trying to frighten anyone out of getting this procedure.  Some women feel nothing at all, but then we have the group of flat chesters like myself.  Mother of God it hurts.  It is the equivalent of trying to squeeze more juice from the lemon you threw out last week.  And the bitch maneuvering the equipment always finds a reason to squish my breasts to smithereens.

“Oh, honey, we didn’t get enough last time, let me just adjust your breast, whoops!  Just pushed your mammary glands up through your anal cavity!  Lololol”

Excuse me, but why is this even a “thing?”

I was wondering what would happen if I went postal on this hooligan, like, what could they do to me, right?  Some women faint, others scream at the top of their lungs (really, totally uncalled for ladies) and some women beat the living shit out of the radiographers.

Simple, really.

 

Next Stop Eden

I just listened to this whilst showering, and I have to say that it was probably the most important forty minutes of my life. For months I have known in my spirit, in my heart of hearts that Jesus is coming. It was as if I was floating around, thrilling at each and every blessing God sent my way. And then I began doubting myself. Mysteries were solved, questions were answered and to be perfectly honest? I began to doubt myself.

When you doubt yourself you are doubting God.

The Holy Spirit has led me on a journey that few experience, in my estimation. Not saying I’m special, just saying it wasn’t me leading the way, that’s for sure. Aside from the times I went against my intuition? I have been led to the truth for three years. I am incredibly grateful for the time He spent grooming me; and every time I took a pill, or had a temper tantrum the pull of Jesus put me back on track.

Three years ago I hiked the property by the lake at Middlecreek Wildlife Sactuary in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. You may have heard of the area as the migration of snow geese can be seen in the form of hundreds of thousands of birds who nest for two weeks every February/March. Brings people from Japan, Canada and all over the world, actually.

As I came to a well known fishing hole, I noticed a pair of boys underwear by a maple tree. Something Wicked This Way Comes, the Holy Spirit roared within me.

At the time, I could have chalked it up to a small child swimming and leaving his skivvies behind. No. I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that there was evil in the air. Putrid, sickening and so very dark. Two weeks later I found yet another pair on the same bank. This time I bagged the evidence, using a stick as to not put my fingerprints on the evidence. Once home I donned gloves and opened the bag.

“Lebanon Police,” a thick voice on the other end.

I went on to explain myself.

Are there any markings?”

Yes, I said. The material is blue, and I see what appears to be semen stains.

Sorry, doesn’t sound like anything. Just throw the bag away.

And that my friends, was the beginning of the end of me.

Adrift

In your darkest hours, in your finest grief-this is where Jesus does His absolute bestest ever work.  Of course, when you are adrift in a sea of confusion, rage and betrayal?  You don’t want to think about how strong or wise or ethereal His love-you are way too busy crying, railing or even vicariously throwing inanimate objects at the wall.  Your heart hurts so bad you swear it will break, the tears so salty dehydration sets in.

The lights are out.  There is nothing of comfort, you can’t see your way through the pain.  But here’s the rub:  the only way around the feels is through the feels.  In other words, to quote Richard Gannon, “you gots to feel the feels.”

As I hike the Spicebush trail, I wonder at the miracle that God still loves me, despite my Irish sighing and in spite of my ineptitude. I am an Israelite, awash in the desert of my own making-complaining about this or that.  I catch myself, and ask forgiveness of Him.  I have always had exactly what I needed at every turn of the page.  In recent times, God has blessed us beyond measure-my husband’s new job, my Social Security disability granted, and, more importantly?  We are in love and, for the most part, healthy.

I always turn to Jesus, eventually.  I have struggled with depression and anxiety my entire life.  I wish I had learned to practice this habit much earlier in life.  Perhaps it may have spared me the alcoholism, drug addiction and suicidal ideation.

I wanted to end my life because I thought myself a loser.  A miscreant.  A nobody.

I couldn’t keep a friend, let alone a job.  I knew I was different, that I didn’t fit in, and that for the most part I wouldn’t be missed.  The emotional abuse endured at the hands of the people I loved and trusted the most would prove to be a deal breaker.

I broke, into a millions little pieces not unlike the mess you leave when you break a Christmas ornament.

Shattered.

woman holding broken mirror
I lost my friendships, my family, my identity in Christ.

I thought I was coming out of the woods, and I convinced myself that nothing bad would ever happen to me again because I was a child of God and I figured He’s seen me through the worst of it.

I was dreadfully wrong,

With the help of a mighty God I made it through each and every hairpin turn, but just as I was getting my bearings-another tragedy, another slip into isolation and chaos.  I noticed this, yes, but I also paid mind to the fact that with each and every arrow flung in my direction (the persecution comes from Satan, but God has the control) the more courageous I became.

One evening I called out His name, I couldn’t take another self sabotaging thought-my depression had resurfaced.

Please, Psalm 91…the arrows that fly by night…all that sort of thing.  HELP ME JESUS!!!!

And just as if I were taking out the trash, my body arched-my head flew back.  I had momentarily thought of that lion, the one who roars at the enemy-

I.  Am.  The.  Storm!!!

I.   Am.   The.   Storm.

I roared quietly, then not so quietly.

Together, Jesus and I are building my life back up-brick by brick.  He sustains me by the Living Waters and wipes the tears from my furrowed brows.

And then…I rally my senses, join forces with my soul and pick of my cross.

For I am His and for that?  Oh for that I am well pleased.

You Talking to Me?

Nothing like having your smile ripped right off of your lips.

There is nothing in this life that irritates me more than labels. People simply cannot be defined by one trait, be it color of skin or disability-we are multi faceted, and extremely complicated creatures.

And then there’s husbands.

I put them in a category by themselves, as often is the case that I find myself absolutely flabbergasted that I have not, indeed, murdered my life partner and then, as an afterthought? Cut him into pieces.

Sure, it’s funny NOW.

Before you think me full blown mental, please listen to my side of the story. My husband is, shall we say, extremely sensitive. 24/7. This used to drive me to the point of calling my shrink, hysterical because I thought I had done something to displease him. And, back then, I was in recovery from my demons, but also extremely codependent on Dwain.

I let alot slide, trust me. And I only now realize how very blessed I am that he didn’t leave my drunken Irish ass. HOWEVER, there are power struggles each and every day-and it can and does get fugly.

When I’m sick, I don’t get depressed like some-I become hair triggered temper itself, and even my pets walk on eggshells during “my time of the month.” My mother was a screamer, and as embarrassing as it is to admit? Due to extreme duress under which most would be institutionalized -I tend to rant and rave. I am prone to punching the living shit out of inanimate objects, or, say, threaten my cats-in a nice way, of course.

It does take quite a bit to blow my fuse (God has changed my heart as well as my impatience) but every so often the conditions present themselves to be nothing less than a perfect storm. That’s when all bets are off.

True story.

Getting back to the subject of labeling others. I have been emotionally manipulated by the people I love most for a lifetime. My mother excelled in this department, and to this day it rattles my cage-no, sends me into orbit, when my husband practices this malignant behavior. I am much wiser for the years, however it hurts me to the core when he belittles me by categorizing the reasons for treating me like crap. There. I said it.

“Oh, well, you’re stoned so…….”

“Obviously, you’re in a mood, so I’ll just….”

“Never mind.” As if I would break out the machete had he uttered word one.

I admit there was a time when I would beg him to love me, or at least treat me with some modicum of respect. Our faith has transformed our weaknesses, mostly, into strengths and given us compassion for those that struggle with disharmony on a day to day basis. We get it. We do.

Back to what happens after Dwain says something incredibly stupid: I almost always laugh, at first. I laugh because I can’t believe he’s being serious, and because I know it will be my last laugh for days, in some cases -weeks. Case in point: it is 3:30 in the afternoon. He enters the living room and sees that I am content to be writing, even have a smile on my face.

“I want to pack all that shit up, and I’m not waiting until the end of the day to do it.”

He has leverage because my computer took a crap two weeks ago, immediately after my blog about Ms. Belenoff. I do not like being indebted to anyone, especially my husband. Does he really need to pack his computer now? My guess is no, and here we go again.

And here’s the rub-I have a zero tolerance for bullshit of any kind. I absolutely refuse to let things of this nature slide, no one gets away with belittling or manipulating this girl, sorry. This drives him to frustration, at which point I grab my things and isolate myself for the duration.

I know, I know-the bible tells us not to go to bed angry. These words are in my VOWS people. In the 28 years of my marriage I have yet to practice this rule. Stubborn yes, a doormat? Nope.

A few weeks ago our pastor brought this subject up. He preached a lovely sermon about the subject, and the importance of forgiveness.

I can’t tell you I’ll never go to bed angry again, but my God forgave me-He made me as white as snow.

Thing is, same goes for my thug of a husband.

Always, always forgive. Even if it’s a major pain in the anal cavity, forgive.

Adrift

In your darkest hours, in your finest grief-this is where Jesus does His absolute bestest ever work.  Of course, when you are adrift in a sea of confusion, rage and betrayal?  You don’t want to think about how strong or wise or ethereal His love-you are way too busy crying, railing or even vicariously throwing inanimate objects at the wall.  Your heart hurts so bad you swear it will break, the tears so salty dehydration sets in.

The lights are out.  There is nothing of comfort, you can’t see your way through the pain.  But here’s the rub:  the only way around the feels is through the feels.  In other words, to quote Richard Gannon, “you gots to feel the feels.”

As I hike the Spicebush trail, I wonder at the miracle that God still loves me, despite my Irish sighing and in spite of my ineptitude. I am an Israelite, awash in the desert of my own making-complaining about this or that.  I catch myself, and ask forgiveness of Him.  I have always had exactly what I needed at every turn of the page.  In recent times, God has blessed us beyond measure-my husband’s new job, my Social Security disability granted, and, more importantly?  We are in love and, for the most part, healthy.

I always turn to Jesus, eventually.  I have struggled with depression and anxiety my entire life.  I wish I had learned to practice this habit much earlier in life.  Perhaps it may have spared me the alcoholism, drug addiction and suicidal ideation.

I wanted to end my life because I thought myself a loser.  A miscreant.  A nobody.

I couldn’t keep a friend, let alone a job.  I knew I was different, that I didn’t fit in, and that for the most part I wouldn’t be missed.  The emotional abuse endured at the hands of the people I loved and trusted the most would prove to be a deal breaker.

I broke, into a millions little pieces not unlike the mess you leave when you break a Christmas ornament.

Shattered.

woman holding broken mirror
I lost my friendships, my family, my identity in Christ.

I thought I was coming out of the woods, and I convinced myself that nothing bad would ever happen to me again because I was a child of God and I figured He’s seen me through the worst of it.

I was dreadfully wrong,

With the help of a mighty God I made it through each and every hairpin turn, but just as I was getting my bearings-another tragedy, another slip into isolation and chaos.  I noticed this, yes, but I also paid mind to the fact that with each and every arrow flung in my direction (the persecution comes from Satan, but God has the control) the more courageous I became.

One evening I called out His name, I couldn’t take another self sabotaging thought-my depression had resurfaced.

Please, Psalm 91…the arrows that fly by night…all that sort of thing.  HELP ME JESUS!!!!

And just as if I were taking out the trash, my body arched-my head flew back.  I had momentarily thought of that lion, the one who roars at the enemy-

I.  Am.  The.  Storm!!!

I.   Am.   The.   Storm.

I roared quietly, then not so quietly.

Together, Jesus and I are building my life back up-brick by brick.  He sustains me by the Living Waters and wipes the tears from my furrowed brows.

And then…I rally my senses, join forces with my soul and pick of my cross.

For I am His and for that?  Oh for that I am well pleased.

Diamond in the Rough

The Hippy Chic

Somewhere in the mix, every responsible adult in my childhood neglected the red flags: my clumsiness, lack of social interaction and apparent “indifference” to my authority figures. By High School, my grades had improved-yet I was thought of as arrogant, snooty if you will. And by the age of 26, I was firmly enmeshed in alcoholism, abusive relationships and chaos.

I remember certain situations, and the light goes on in my thought cloud. My absolute need to be plastered if there were to be any social interaction. I don’t mean grocery shopping, I mean Villanova-where I am sure I stuck out like a sore thumb. I invented an entire new story, that I was the Jontue model in a recent perfume ad. My father, who made a modest income, became a wealthy businessman travelling the world-a sailing expert, like myself. I can tell you that there was more than one…

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For Those Who Find Holidays Hell

I wasn’t sure if this was the version of the song that I wanted, but man am I glad I thought it through.  Miss K.D. Lang hits ever note, and then some.  I love her range, her twang-she’s chicken soup for the soul music.

Speaking of souls.

Mother of God this was a rough one-and I didn’t see it coming, to be frank.  Giving God alone the glory, I have managed to raise my head above the raging river that is my life.  Mercy me, shook me right out of my loafers.

I want this blog to offer hope to those who are suffering this season; I want to pick and choose each word, so I know that the love of Jesus that flows into me will then trickle on to you, beloved.

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I lay in bed, for five straight days.  Not so sure, but pretty sure it was the flu: I haven’t felt like this since, well since last year’s flu season.  I won’t even whisper about getting a flu shot, and would advise all mothers to educate themselves on the horror of what they are injecting into our children.  I pray with each passing day that Donald J. Trump will make headway in the battle against evil, transhumanism and genocidal ideations-you get my drift?

Sorry, I get worked up about it.  Anyway, my husband and I did not attend my mother in law’s Thanksgiving.  In an effort to end the abuse, I have gone no contact and have felt much better ever since.  My husband appeared to be supportive, but the day came and he was forlorn.  Still angry about a miscommunication between us, he let me have it the other day.  Twisted every word I said, and slew nomenclatures I would prefer not to share-making turkey day the winner of the most God awful holiday ever award.

B-rutal.

My husband doesn’t do sick.  He says that seeing me sick makes him think of my mother in the final days of her life.  I mean, I was dehydrated and depressed, wrapped up in a ball of wet sheets-nothing to eat for three days, nightmare.

And then I felt well enough to open my King James bible.  I sought solace, comfort and wisdom.  Yet because of the trauma inflicted?  I felt as if God were angry with me, that Jesus didn’t love me anymore.  I am just now shaking that notion out of my head, as satan  is the father of all lies-and this was persecution in the form of spiritual warfare I have not experienced thus far.  It was if there was a struggle for my soul.  I fought back like the tigress God taught me to be.  I asked for prayer, I actually told my loved ones that I was struggling-and I never do that.  I don’t trust people, but let’s just say that Jesus showed me that the beloveds in my life are real and true and precious.

the-thin-crows

One evening, I stared at the ceiling and thought about what Jesus went through on that cross, even hours before.  Jesus was persecuted for the very same reasons that His believers are persecuted.  Immediately, I thought of the martyrs-the people all around this world who are suffering in the name of Jesus Christ.

In the year 1948, on a Sunday while I went to church I was kidnapped by the Communists.  I knew that even in the van of the secret police, I am in the hands of the Almighty God, and this gave quiet to  my heart.                                                                                                                        – Richard Wurmbrand, Voice of the Martyrs

For three years, Richard Wurmbrand sat alone in his prison cell set 30 feet below the ground.  Aside from short interactions with his guards, he saw and heard no one.  Yet in that dank and dark cell, he cried out to God and dreamt of beginning a new ministry that would serve Christians in Communist countries.  Within days of his release, he wrote his best selling memoir, Tortured For Christ.  Not long after he founded a mission called Jesus to the Communist World, which eventually turned into the organization Voice of the Martyrs.

I needed to pick up my cross, no matter the shape I was in.

I am reaching my arms out to father Abba, and He will catch me, this I know.