Mother of Pearl

Poor the earth remains at her loss
Even as others mourn
A moment in my memory stands
Real to me as this point in time
Life and love shared in equal measure

A wonderful woman has passed this day. A woman who gave love to all within her reach, whether they were deserving of it or not. In her eyes, all deserved love and care.

She was not mine, but that didn’t stop her from loving me all the same.

She had known pain and sorrow and instead of letting it destroy her, she let it polish that which was good within her.

Receive

God’s love is there for you whether or not you deserve it. It is simply always there.

-President Thomas S. Monson

Don’t fall into the trap
Even as you mourn
Seek to help others
Especially when feeling shorn
Reality is seen as harsh
Vote to be more than you were born
Even as you stumble, help others as been shown

I read once that we were born to learn what love was and to learn to love what comes after. I have to respectfully disagree.

This life does not prepare us to love what comes after. We enter this world with that love already. We knew it before we were born, but we did not understand it.

That is what this life does. It teaches us to understand love. To understand that we aren’t always deserving of love, but that it is there even, no, especially when we do not deserve it. And to teach us to love others no matter whether they deserve it or not.

A Moment’s Thought

Low though I find myself
Only thinking with my rage
Various moments in mind’s eye
Even now, stealing wisdom sage

Letting myself get caught up
Into pain and hurt so bright
Keeping myself lost in a daze
Eve’s coming on such a sight

I spent many years being angry, so very angry to learn the lesson that you can love someone and not like them at all. I forgot the whole point of said lesson. Loving someone is about the person. Liking someone is about their actions.

Big Brother – Thankful Thursday

So, I mentioned that we got a new kitten (Locutis) and that he weighed less than our, at the time, 3-week old kittens. (He weighs more now, which is good and can eat more.)

What I haven’t mentioned is that a few days after we got Locutis, the tiny kittens’ mother went missing. Freya (mama cat) went out hunting, as she did at least three times a day now that the kittens didn’t need to eat every hour on the hour.

She did not come back and we haven’t seen her for two weeks and counting now. She was a very attentive mother and has never run away before. We do live out in cattle country and there have been problems with raccoons, skunks, foxes, and coyotes in our valley.

It has also happened in the past that some cats get picked up by this lovely lady who takes them to get fixed and then tries to find them homes. Freya liked people and other animals and is a good size for people who want a cat, but not a big cat. We’re hoping that this is what happened to her, but the point is, she is gone and not likely to come home. (Doesn’t mean we aren’t keeping an eye out for her…)

Locutis has decided that the kittens that are much younger than him are his. He taught them how to drink our goat milk. He’s teaching them how to use the litter box. He taught them how to eat the kitten food we got for them all. He plays with them. He even pins them and cleans them. I got to watch him do all of this today while I was getting ready for my day.

I am grateful for this little orange tabby that decided he liked our little kittens and that they were his. I’m not entirely sure what my days would be like without him.

Check out the original Thankful Thursday.

Tough Morning – Thankful Thursday

This morning was really hard for me. My sister woke me up before she had to leave to take her kids to school and then head to work to let me know that one of our goats had died in the night.

One of the baby goats, the little bucklings that were born in August and were still small enough to pick up and hold.

We didn’t really know why he had died.

I went through my morning chores: laundry, dishes, checking on the animals and their waters. (Everything freezes over multiple times throughout the day because the temperature is always below the freezing point of water right now.)

I did all of this while crying, because I am a crier, but still able to work even when doing so.

I felt the need to call a friend who also has goats (and has kind of been our go-to person whenever we have goat issues that crop up.) She came right over and listened to me before checking on the only little goatling we have left. She let me know that in the cold weather, most goats’ digestive track slows incredibly fast and it’s very easy for them to become bloated and if they are headbutted (which is how goats play) and it hits them just wrong (which is a worry mostly for the smaller ones that aren’t quite 5 or 6 months old yet, which our two youngest goatlings turn 5 months around Christmas) they can rupture something and die. Being bloated also makes it harder for them to keep warm because it hurts to cuddle up with others if you are too bloated.

My friend was actually surprised that the smaller of the two goatlings had survived the last few nights with how small he is and how bloated he was.

“Those other buckling must really like this one, the only way he could have survived the last few nights was if he was cuddled up with them even when he didn’t want to be.” she told me.

I thought back on it and I did recall that Cowboy and Ventus (our next two youngest after the little ones, but they are closer to 7 months old) do like the little tri-colored goatling that survived.

My friend showed me how to hold the little goatling and pat at his stomach to help him burp out all of the gas that was keeping him bloated. She also showed me how to use a pinch of baking soda every couple of hours to help him to burp without me. (It works kind of like Alka-Seltzer for a goat.) She also told me that just a milliliter and a half of regular human yogurt can help to encourage the good bacteria that’s in his digestive track to start working more, helping him to digest his food better and not end up with all of that gas in him.

She’s also going to come back in a few hours and have a look at my little goatling to make sure he’s doing okay.

That was a really long way to come to, to find what I was grateful for today.

What I’m grateful for was my friend who was willing to come down and help me even when she didn’t know what was wrong. Because I was still crying too much to explain beyond the fact that we had lost a goat in the night. She made sure I was all right and then immediately checked my other goats (while showing me how to do so as well) to make sure they were okay and when she found one that needed care and attention she showed me how to do it and then stayed with me for a bit longer to make sure I not only knew how to do it, but that I wasn’t alone.

I am very blessed to have such a friend.

Check out the original Thankful Thursday.

Golden Rainfall of Memory – Thankful Thursday

I know I’ve said it often that I am grateful for my family, for my parents and my siblings, my in-laws and my nieces and nephews, but I really am.

My parents for teaching me things that I have really needed as an adult.

(How to sew and care for a yard, how to love someone even when you’re anry with them and how to care for them even or especially when you just want to smack them in the face with a pillow.)

My siblings for too many things to name.

(Games played with as children, complicated knots used to keep you in your bedroom by tying the doors shut and so teaching you how to unknot even the most complicated of strings in your shoelaces as a result, how to accept help when you don’t think you need it, how to give help and love when it is not wanted.)

My in-law siblings.

(How to step back from people and rearrange priorities to knew ones that are more important, how to help and coordinate so that blessed events can come to pass years in advance than originally thought possible (like a much desired wedding) and how to wear yourself out with a smile.)

My nieces and nephews.

(How to stay up late and still be able to go to school in the morning, how to sing different songs when needed at different times of day, how to adapt stories on the fly for a smile or a goodnight, how to braid hair in new ways, and how to bake cookies that you’ve never even heard of before.)

I’m grateful for my family and for every frustrating moment and laugh and tear that they have wrung from me because through them I have come to realize that the world is more than just what I can see.

Make sure to check out the original Thankful Thursday as well this week. (If the link takes you to a list of thankful Thursday posts, then I have not been able to update it to this week’s post yet for any number of reasons, in which case, enjoy them all!)

Once and Again

Because hate is easier than hope, and anger is easier than faith… –blackkat, fanfic author

 

Alex had given up once.

Once.

And though that once had lasted several decades before he’d take up his life to actually live rather than survive didn’t mean that he didn’t remember the bitter taste of hatred guiding his actions and anger clouding every thought that he had.. So yes, he’d given up once and it had destroyed who he was and what he could have become.

But then hope appeared before him and faith invaded his life once more and he had learned to live again.

So he kept those memories of bitter despair and unforgiving defeat always in his mind to remind himself of what the other option in his life was. He wasn’t about to go back to that existence no matter what the payoff appeared to be at the time.

He had a lot to live for even if it was only one small person who was held safely in his arms.

“You’ll be a good uncle, Alex.” Mary looked exhausted though it had been several weeks since she had given birth and been released from the hospital, but a new baby, even with the help of her husband, is still a lot of work.

Especially for someone who had long since given up on the thought of ever getting to hold a newborn in her arms in the middle of the night, night after night and knowing that this tiny life was hers.

“How can you be sure of that, sister, you know what I am.” He whispers quietly.

It had taken him almost an hour to get his little nephew to go to sleep and he’d only offered and kept to it because Mary looked like she was going to break into hysterical tears as Terry continued to cry and Warren couldn’t take any more time off of work or he’d lose his job. (It wouldn’t be lost for long, but Warren and Mary were proud and didn’t want to accept a job from Alex that they felt hadn’t been earned and Warren’s supervisor was a jerk.)

Mary just sighed, sounding even more tired and Alex absolutely did not cringe. Outwardly.

“You are an idiot, brother mine.”

Her voice is so very tired that he finally does cringe.

“Alex, it’s all right for me to have faith in you. There’s nothing wrong with that and I’m going to continue to teach Terry that you are a good person no matter what you think about yourself. If I can’t change your mind, then I’m certain that my son can do it for me.”

Nothing else was said as she finally gave in to the call of her pillow and passed out, leaving Alex to hold his still sleeping nephew.

Well, nothing said other than the murmur of Alex’s voice as he speaks to his little nephew about this or that which happens to cross his mind. Words of science and mathematics a soothing lullaby for the sleeping child.

“Even if I can’t have faith in myself, little one, I can trust in the faith your mother has.” He whispers into the down hair, “She has seen me at my worst and still loved me enough to stay when others, friends and family, have left me in the dust. Too much of a monster for them to try and coax me back.”

Love of a Nephew – Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for this little plush Enderman that my eldest nephew loaned me forever ago because I love it so. Whenever I feel horrible (like today, roaming migraines are not nice things) he pulls it down from where I have it propped on the window sill by my bed and fiddles with it for a bit before handing it over to me to cuddle with. It always makes me feel better.

He got it for his birthday last year and he does play with it whenever he wants to, but he always brings it back to me whenever he’s done. It’s his toy and I know he loves it just as much as I do, but it makes me feel better when I have my migraines and so he leaves it in my room for surprise migraines. So really, it’s not that I’m thankful for the toy, I’m thankful for what it’s come to mean to me in regards to the love of my nephew.

Check out the original Thankful Thursday. (Will update link when able.)