Tag Archives: junk

Feeling unbalanced? Maybe there’s too much sand.

Feeling unbalanced? Maybe you’re filling your jar with sand and there’s no room for the stones.

A professor of philosophy stood before his class. When the class began, he placed a glass gallon jar in front of his students. Without saying anything he began to fill it with large stones. He asked the students if the jar was full.

They agreed it was full.

So the professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. Together they watched as they slid into the empty spaces. The professor then asked the students again if the jar was full.

This time some said yes while others said no.

The professor picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. He lightly shook the jar and watched as the sand filled the remaining open areas of the jar. The professor asked, “Is it full?”

Together the class shouted, “No!”

“Now,” said the professor, “I want you to recognize that this jar signifies your life. The stones are the truly important things, such as family, health and relationships. If all else was lost and only the stones remained, your life would still be meaningful. The pebbles are the other things that matter in your life, such as work or school. The sand signifies the remaining “small stuff” and material possessions.

If you put sand into the jar first, there is no room for the stones or the pebbles. The same can be applied to your lives. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are truly important. This will leave you feeling unbalanced and off center. But if you prioritize your life to take care of the important things first, everything finds and settles into its place.

What are the stones in your life? Are you making the important things a priority or are you letting the less important things rule your life and dictate your time?

Make a list of the stones in your life. Prioritize them and make sure they are getting the time and energy they need. Do the same with the pebbles. You’ll want to make a list of the sand in your life – eliminate the junk that is taking your time away from the important stuff.

Live consciously. Don’t just wander and waste your precious time and throw away your important stones!

Your mind, body and soul will thank you. And so will those you love.

Finding the sweet side of crazy!

Kandy

 

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“MugShot of the Day!!!

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I google most everything. Google knows everything…all the important stuff and the junk.

April 6, 2015, five days after Mother was found dead on her couch from years of binge drinking…with trails of blood that had drained from her nose –  I googled her name. I’m not sure why.  I think I expected to see some kind of death notice. But I didn’t. There was nothing that let the world know my Mother had died a brutal slow death from her own powerless actions.  Her addiction killed her. And even though she had died just five days prior – I had lost her over 40 years ago when I was just a little girl.

I knew the obituary wouldn’t be there. That’s the family’s responsibility. My responsibility. I hadn’t written it yet. And still haven’t. I will. I’m trying to make sense of all of it. Trying to do something positive with such a tragedy. No, I knew a big fancy well written obituary outlining all of her loves and accomplishments wouldn’t be there. But I thought there would at least be something listing her name, age, city and date of death. Maybe I expected to see some kind of article about how she was found and how she lived. I’m not exactly sure what I was looking for.

But I did find something. It was such a strange feeling. It made me sad, cry and mad.  And in a very crazy way – it brought me a speckle of comfort.  It reminded me of the misery and devastating life she had been living but was now free from. It reminded me that I no longer had to worry about her.  Or that I would no longer be getting the crazy drunk phone calls…powerless to the craziness.   It was a mugshot. Mother’s mugshot. MY mother’s mugshot. The whole thing was heartbreaking really.   It was dated October 2012. The title read…”MugShot of the Day!!!” Just like that. Three exclamation marks!!! Making fun of my mother during such a heartbreaking time. It listed her full name, age, arrest date, city she was arrested in and charges. I looked at the picture. She was drunk. I could tell just by looking. She had on her glasses and the picture captured the tears that rolled down her cheek. It showed the misery her addiction had brought into her life. It made me sad. It made me cry. I sat looking at the picture of my crying sad drunk mother as the mugshot of the day.  I saw a broken, sad, hurt, out of control, devastated woman.  I cried.

Then I noticed the comments. Heartless cruel comments. People were making fun of her. The people writing those comments obviously hadn’t experienced the heartache of addiction like I had.  They hadn’t had their mother stolen from them at a very young age and watched as she spiraled out of control over and over again.  They hadn’t watched as their mother continually fell further and further into darkness.  They hadn’t tried to stop the out of control spinning only to realize the more you tried to stop it the faster things would spin and spiral further and further into ugliness.

I’m sure they had no idea her daughter would one day read those things. Especially not just after she died. Or maybe they wouldn’t care. Maybe they couldn’t understand the devastation and heartbreak addiction brings to the addict and those who love them. I don’t really know why they took the time to write ugly comments about a person who was already miserable. It made me mad. Then it just made me sad and cry some more.

People are mean. Making fun of someone when they are at their worst…when they are hurting and obviously in a very bad way is just cruel. I get it. She wasn’t there. They weren’t doing it in front of her. They were hiding behind a computer typing ugliness not facing those who were affected.

Some people still think addiction is a moral issue instead of the brain disease that it is.  They don’t realize how much power addiction has over a person.  That it devours the person as much as the person devours the alcohol or drug.  They wouldn’t make fun of someone who had another disease such as dementia, cancer, diabetes or heart disease but yet we are cruel to addicts…and their families.

I saved the picture to my phone. I knew I would need to be able to look at it in the future.

I looked past the hurt and the ugly comments. It was strange. I found comfort. When I looked at that picture…I was and I am reminded of how miserable my mother was. How miserable I was. How helpless we both were. She had been in a bad way for a very long time. I was thankful she finally had peace. Of course I would have rather she beat the disease. I would have rather had my Mother. Not like she was but like I dreamed she could have been. I would have loved for her to have known me. To have known my boys. I would have rather she would have known the simple joys in life. But the disease controlled her. She was ate up with it and had been for far too long. It had weakened her. Stolen her strength. Stolen her family. Stolen her joy. Stolen her life. The picture reminded me of how sad she had been and brought me peace knowing she was no longer living like that. Besides, what choice did I have? Be miserable and give the disease more power than it already had. Allow it to take even more from me than it already had?

It’s the younger picture of her that made me sad.  I looked at that picture, before she was controlled – all I could see was a beautiful girl who lost so much. I saw what could have been.

So tonight, as I was typing this – I googled to see what else I could find. Surprisingly, the Mugshot is gone. I looked and looked and can’t find it. I have it. I know it existed. I have proof. I looked to see what day I saved the picture – It was April 6th, 2015. Tonight when I googled her name, I found the death notice that I was originally looking for. It was posted April 6th. The very day I was originally searching for it. The day I found the mug shot instead. Strange.

It’s as if God erased that sad, heartbreaking photo where people were making fun of my mother. It made me smile.

Addiction is a devastating brain disease.  It affects not only the addict but the whole family.  It is heartbreaking and tragic.  Please be kind, empathetic and compassionate.  You never know another’s struggles.  Your kindness may be the only thing that helps someone get through the day.  Show love. Love does.

Finding the sweet side of crazy!

Kandy

 

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Say yes to the sweet stuff!

Richard Carlson quote

“The key to a good life is this: If you’re not going to talk about something during the last hour of your life, then don’t make it a top priority during your lifetime.” -Richard Carlson

Here’s the thing – time passes very quickly. Too quickly! The older I get the faster it goes. Sometimes I feel like it’s traveling at the speed of light. Especially as my boys have gotten older. Death has taken many people I love so I’m very aware… we are not guaranteed tomorrow. We have to make calculated decisions on where we invest our time and who we invest it with. So look around and assess what you are investing in.

Learn to say no but more importantly learn to say yes. Sometimes we say “yes” to things that don’t matter to us because we don’t want to disappoint people or don’t know how to say “no”. But other times we say “no” to things that are really important and really matter because we are tired and don’t feel like doing it right then. And sometimes we say no to those we love the most because we know – no matter what, they will always love us. Just like sometimes we give those we barely know the best of us and save the left overs for those we love the most. Isn’t that stupid? Can you imagine the regrets that will bring as we age or are on our death bed? Let’s not do that anymore. That’s kind of crazy and backwards.

So I challenge you – do an assessment. What are you spending your time on? Get rid of the things that don’t matter. If you aren’t going to be talking about them at the end of your life or if they aren’t creating or contributing to good – move them on down the list or get rid of them completely. And don’t be a fun hater….just going around saying no all the time. Do fun dumb stuff with those you love. I found an old video of M&M (Mason and Madden) and their friend. They took their grandmother “coning.” It is hilarious. They rolled into McDonald’s and ordered several ice cream cones. My mother-in-law was driving so when they handed her the last one, instead of her grabbing it by the cone – she grabbed it from the top – the ice cream. She acted like it was normal and drove off. It shocked the workers and everyone got a good clean laugh.  They made a great memory and we’ve laughed and laughed over coning.  Google “Coning” it’s quite funny.

These are two of my very favorite pictures. Why? Because they capture two very sweet moments for me.

This is one of my favorite pictures from last year. It was late. Way past my bedtime. Everyone who knows me knows I go to bed before most normal people. I always have even as a little girl. I like my bed.

photo 1 (1)

But this night was special! My sweet Madden asked me to go swimming and it was 10:30 at night and I was in bed! He was 15 at the time. Knowing he would soon be going to college and moments like these would be fading, I crawled out of bed and put on my swimsuit. We swam, laughed and told stories.   I love knowing what’s inside their sweet minds. What they are thinking, dreaming and hoping. What they are struggling with and what they are really enjoying. Not that they always tell me but when they do…I savor it. Madden got a little mad at me that night because I heard a noise and I screamed. I startled him. It made him mad which made me laugh and then laugh a little more.

This is the important stuff. So anytime I get an invite, I try to go. Here lately it’s been for late night ice cream runs. That hasn’t been such a great idea for my body but man do I love the time with my boys.

photo 2

This picture captures another of my most favorite moments. For several years before turning eighteen, Mason wanted a tattoo. I tried to talk him out of it because I didn’t want him to get something at eighteen that he would regret at thirty. He had his mind made up and regardless of what I wanted for him – it was his body and I knew he was going to get one. Sometimes we just have to pick our battles. For me this wasn’t one that was a huge deal to me. So instead of missing it, I chose to be a part of it. For his eighteenth birthday, his grandmother (Scott’s mom) and I spent the evening at the tattoo parlor with him as he got his first tattoo. Holy Smokes that was an adventure in and of itself! Have you ever been to a tattoo parlor on a Friday or Saturday night? I learned things I never really wanted to learn. My mother-in-law and I got sent to the liquor store for the tattoo artist because he wanted some wine and he couldn’t make it there before the store closed. So we took his money, loaded up and went to buy his wine. We laughed a lot during that night. And I love Mason’s tattoo so much. It’s meaningful and sweet. It’s a cross with our last name across the top and then mine, Scott’s and Mad’s initials. A family tattoo. I love it! If I ever get one – I’d get one just like it. Later, after the tattoo – Scott took Mason to the casino for the first time because that’s what Mason wanted to do.  So we got to be a part of his night instead of fussing and telling him not to do those things.  In the grand scheme of things – Whatever!  It’s not about the tattoo or the casino. It’s about spending time with our boys and showing love.

I LOVE my boys. I love being their mom. They are really funny. They make me laugh and smile. Sometimes they make me want to scream or pull my hair out but mainly – they make me proud and bring me great joy. I love being their mom!

When I would get the saddest about my mother – it was because I knew what she was missing and felt bad she was missing the sweet stuff.  But the truth is she really didn’t know what she was missing. How could she miss something she never really had? So I tried to take the sad I felt for her and pour it into being a better mom myself.

Life is way too short. Sometimes we make big deals out of dumb stuff. Make sure you are saying yes to the sweet stuff and no to the junk. Because life really is too short.

Finding the sweet side of crazy!

Kandy

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