Monday, October 8, 2007

The Fam @ Sunset Beach, Oahu July '07

To know or to really know

... when does knowledge become nagging? Or should that be KNAGGING in order to keep with the silent K mode. If one says, "I know" but really only means that one has the knowledge of that, does it really imply that you "know" in the true, experiential way? Well, of course not! Any mother knows that! So, when I suggest (which is really a self-serving word that interpreted by my daughters would be...tell, nag, expect) that certain things be done in a certain way, is it because I "know" it or because they don't "know"it because they haven't experienced it? Clearly my experience alone in all these 28 years should make me a professional. Why in the REAL WORLD, 25+ years of service & experience in any field would make you eligible for retirement privileges, as well as the ability to receive inflated hourly fees for consulting in that particular field. Guess what? Mothers have gone through just about everything & anything, so that definitely makes them experts! And all we want in return is a "Wow, Mom. You know so much!"
But then as mothers we are to exercise caution, patience, enduring compassion, and that all-so-elusive quality of wisdom that is only recognized when you have a slew of grandkids who actually will listen to your stories & sit on your lap eating those yummy cookies that no one cares if they are made with white sugar & white flour. Ah! That day will come. That is what I hope for. Meanwhile, I will allow the Great One to make me humble, keep a closer watch on my mouth, & allow my children to grow on their own as He has ordained.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

When really is menopause?

Ok, so not everyone wants to hear about this. I don't think I do either. But let's look at this. The truth of it is that a woman is either premenopausal, perimenopausal, menopausal, or postmenopausal. That's a lot of pausing if you ask me. I never really thought about any of this until I hit the mid-40's. I guess that's when I officially became "pre-m" as it were. Because I could go into detail about what that means to me & perhaps freak out too many people, let's just suffice it to say that every month there are days that I just didn't feel like going out much. OK, so that has now blurred into that phase of not DARING to go out. Even opportunities to attend certain functions, visit family in another town, or participate in worthy ministry trips have been avoided because of those pre/peri-m symptoms.

So, this is what I was thinking. Just what are the lines between each of those phases? I ask because they have become utterly blurred for me & I'm ready to move onto the next phase...the big M or even the post-M. And just when I think I can't do this anymore, the next few months find me not experiencing all those aforementioned unmentionable symptoms. AHA! I've passed over! What joy! What release! What relief! OOPS! I have become elated too soon. Those few months were merely teasers; what I COULD eventually look forward to. But obviously not just yet.

Of course, there are other fears involved in this "phase" of life, like: Will I be one of those women who suffers grossly from hot flashes? Oh, come on. I live in the hottest part of the west coast. How can you accurately distinguish a hot flash from the normal summer heat? I guess I'll wait until the dead of winter before I'll really know that answer. And, what about those mood swings? Mmmmm. I've sorta had mood swings my whole life. This could really be a bad spot in the road for my marriage. You know, the rantings, the ravings, the "Why can't you read my mind? I've always been this way! How come you don't know what I'm trying to say?" Wait a minute. I'm pretty sure those are all the things that I already struggle with. Great! This means all those areas of my life that I constantly battle with just increase to gargantuan size. I'm thinking right about now that I should ask my son-in-law to help my husband pad a room just for me, just for those certain outbursts. It would need to have a really good fan, a few pillows, maybe a crossword puzzle book, and absolutely nothing sharp in it (see photo at top). I should get bonus points for thinking ahead & thinking about others. I wonder if those points are cumulative.

So, I'll just have to ride this thing out. Maybe it will pass much easier than I have anticipated. In any case, I know that I'm not alone. I have a host of women who have gone on before me who have come out on the other side whole and intact. And I have a Sovereign who has promised to walk with me the entire journey. Eventually I will be post-M.

about wedding rings...

The truth of it is I don't wear jewelry too often. I got my ears pierced when I was about 30 so I usually have something stuck in those holes. But, other than a watch, I usually am un-bedazzled. Well, except for my wedding rings. This is our 30th year so those rings have really been a part of almost my entire adult life. Now, I have an anniversary ring.

So, the problem has been this: where do you wear that kind of a ring? I was willing to forgo the wedding rings since 2 days before our anniversary the diamond fell out of my engagement ring. And, yes, over the years for some reason that ring just doesn't slide off my finger like it used to. I credit it to the beginnings of arthritis, but it might be due to that middle-age spread that seems to be creeping in all over my body. In any case I knew that after I pulled off the wedding rings it would be near impossible to get them back on. No problem! E said he would have the diamond put back in & have the ring sized. Well, I guess it's about time since my daughters are afraid I will lose my left ring finger due to the occlusion of the blood flow. So that problem could be solved. But after 30 years can your wedding ring be replaced? I mean really?

Enter the night of our 30th. We go out to dinner just the 2 of us leaving my folks at home to re-heat leftovers. E brings out a card. OH, GREAT! With the distractions from the last few days including a rotten cold, menopause, & trying to keep myself & my ancient parents cool in the house, I totally realize that I have NOT taken the time to get an anniversary card that indicates only a small part of my love & devotion to my husband. Way to go! But after he pulls out the card he brings out a small box. Of course I realize it's going to be a ring. But, wait a minute!! My rings are still at home on the dresser waiting to go to the jeweler. My eyes well up with tears as I open that little felt box & see a beautiful anniversary ring with the shiny diamonds set into the thin band. OH, MY! He did get me another ring! We had started talking about a band with some diamonds in it over 20 years ago because my job & house work often made me get my ring stuck in a bed sheet or towel or whatever. And, now, here was that gorgeous ring!

So, now, here is the dilemma. I tried for several days wearing the anniversary ring with my wedding rings. Which by the way, E had the diamond re-set & the rings sized so that I can actually wear them comfortably. But as of last night, I think I will put the anniversary ring on my right ring finger & keep my left one as before...wearing that same ring that was given to me as a commitment of my husband's love & dedication to me. The inscription is still there from over 30 years ago. I know because when I got the ring back from the jeweler's I checked to see if he rubbed out the words. But, there it is..."KEEPER OF MY HEART 7-16-77" The same as it has been for all these years. And I pray for many years to come.