Debbie Williamson

Out of the Abundance of the Heart

Thursday

12

October 2017

12

COMMENTS

Is Ignorance Bliss?

Written by , Posted in Alzheimer's, Family, General

Today, Oct. 12, 2017, was the day we were moving our mom into a perfect for her assisted living facility in Santa Rosa, California. Sadly, though, we didn’t. It burned to the ground on Monday in what is fast becoming the most deadly fire in California history.

This is one of many things that have unfolded in my life over the year that I never, ever thought would be true . . .

My mom was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.
My dad died.
My husband has been unemployed for 7 months.
My mom evacuated from her home. We’re praying it doesn’t burn down.
And this is when I know that I really don’t want to know the future.

This is when I embrace the mystery of God’s perfect plan and purpose. (I don’t like it, but I embrace it.)

This is when my life of faith makes all the difference.

I’m reposting one of my all time favorite posts. The bandwidth of my brain is so full of sadness and uncertainty that I’m pretty unable to be creative, or even be very nice to 6th graders. So I thought this would be great to repost, to reread, since this speaks deeply to me about how ignorance can be bliss.

Sunday

1

October 2017

10

COMMENTS

Hate the Glitches!

Written by , Posted in Family, General

Since February, my email subscriber service has been glitchy. That means if your email for my blog is in the bottom half of the alphabet, you’ve not been getting any alerts that I’ve been writing. And I have been! Such a bummer. But my genius tech guy did some sleuthing and figured it all out. All emails are ready to be alerted next time I post.

So in order to catch half of you up, I’m going to repost the latest one I wrote about things I’ve learned since my dad died. It’s a good one and something we all need to be more aware of. I know I needed it! If you’ve already read it, so sorry that it’s coming again. But maybe it’s important enough to reread.

Happy October, email friends. Thanks for being a part of this blogging journey of mine. I appreciate your comments and encouragement and private messages of support and love. It’s been a wild and crazy and grief-filled year, but there’s always light, right? The darkness never, never overcomes the light. And that’s a good thing. It keeps me hoping. It keeps me keeping on.

Monday

4

September 2017

6

COMMENTS

The 2 Lessons I’ve Learned Since My Dad Died

Written by , Posted in Family, General

It’s been 37 days since my dad stopped breathing that July night in the ICU.

(I had to clarify with the night nurse who’d called us that “stopped breathing” wasn’t a euphemism for anything other than dead. Right, I asked him? My dad’s dead? Yes, he said, and he was so sorry for our loss. Ranks as weirdest phone conversation ever.)

Since then it’s been non-stop action — Planning the memorial service and the spreading of his ashes. Calling the realtor and beginning the painful, laborious process of getting the house ready to sell. Finding just the perfect place for my mom to be as the Alzheimer’s slowly and methodically tangles her brain. Keeping the meals and the visits organized and coming. Going through the house room by room, desk by desk, closet by closet, file cabinet by file cabinet and deciding what to do with everything. Every.single.thing. Every dish, towel, painting, sheet, bed, chair, rug, patio furniture, candle, pillow, picture, rake, shovel, bags of potting mix, windmill on the hill in the backyard. EVERYTHING.

So the grieving process gets interrupted by all the busyness.

But every so often it crashes in in a wave.

Monday

14

August 2017

9

COMMENTS

Monday

10

July 2017

1

COMMENTS

Our Trip Down The 395

Written by , Posted in Family, General

Driving away in our car that overheated twice on the road into Tahoe, we decided no air conditioning. Google maps said we were 8 hours and 3 minutes from home. That won’t be so bad. No air. We can do that.

Uh huh.

And we were off down the 395, along the eastern side of the Sierra Nevadas. Up and down, in and around, through towns and spaces we hadn’t seen before. Snow covered mountains, Mono Lake, Independence, Lone Pine, the road to Mammoth, Bishop, Bridgeport, Tom’s Place . . .

And it got hotter and hotter.

Finally, about two hours from home, we relented and turned the air on low. Anxious that we would overheat so so close, I kept an eagle-eye on the thermometer, praying the needle to stay put.

It did and we made it.

Tuesday

20

June 2017

1

COMMENTS

Last Year Changed Everything

Written by , Posted in General

I’m a 1 on the Enneagram. I like to be accurate, thorough, fair and objective. On good days I’m rational, orderly, principled. I have a strong internal critic that reminds me of what I should and shouldn’t do because I need to know what is expected of me so I can act accordingly and excel. Oh, and maybe I’m a tad perfectionistic.

Also as a 1, I have an almost compulsory¬†habit of telling other people what I think is right — helping them avoid mistakes, right? (Not exactly how my husband sees that . . .)

Then¬†I read in John 11, “But oddly, Jesus stayed where He was for two more days after He heard that Lazarus was sick . . .”

But oddly . . .

I don’t like that. I’m not a fan of things being odd. I don’t want Jesus doing odd things. I like orderly. I like rational. I like clear expectations. I like avoiding mistakes. I like people showing up on time.

NO ODDNESS.

Unfortunately, there’s been lots of oddness in my life lately.

Wednesday

14

June 2017

8

COMMENTS

In the Shadow of Haystack Rock

Written by , Posted in General

We started our walk each morning a mile and a half from Cannon Beach’s famous Haystack Rock. It was a small rise in the distance.

The clouds crowded, and the wind blew and the dogs and children raced and chased.

We chatted and drank our coffee and got closer to the rock. And it got bigger, of course.

We stepped over small pools left behind by the retreating tide and tried not to get sand in our shoes.

The seagulls keened and screeched as they circled around the homes they’d made in the grass on the rock. (Grass on a rock, right?)

And still it got bigger.

Eventually, we stood at the base amidst the tide pools and tourists. So much life in the shadow of Haystack Rock. The grown-ups with cameras, the children with sticks, the dogs and the birds, the anemones and starfish.

Life teeming at the rock on the Oregon coast.

Wednesday

7

June 2017

2

COMMENTS

Martha’s Second Act

Written by , Posted in General

We sat on her condo porch pointing out how beautiful the egret was as he poked around in the mud.

Same place, different time, we were stunned into silence by the way the sun cut streaky shards of light through the pine trees.

And the crocuses coming up through the spring snow all new and purplely and alive.

And the fog as it hugs the hills, and the pink morning clouds, and the CUTEST PUPPY EVER!

Don’t we comment all the time on the beauty of animals, trees, flowers, nature? Why? What are they doing special? Nothing. NOTHING! They are doing nothing special.

But they are being what God created them to be. Doing what He created them to do.

The egret on Hood Canal.

The sun blazing through a pine tree.

A grove of Aspens shaking and shimmering in the wind.

Animals at the zoo.

The beach. Anytime. Anywhere. Always.

What’s the big deal?

This is the big deal — they’re being what God created them to be. That’s it. Nothing more. Nothing less. Doing what God created them to do. And we marvel. And we take pictures.

We sit in beach chairs all day watching waves do their thing. Be waves. Crash. Crash. Crash. And dolphins showing off. And sand crabs scuttling and hurrying to burrow into the wet sand.

And we cannot get enough.

Friday

28

April 2017

4

COMMENTS

A Crisis of Church

Written by , Posted in General

I’m having a crisis.

A crisis of Church.

Not of faith, of Church.

It began in the fall when I was trying to recover from some bad behavior inflicted on me by others. It was hard. I was wanting to forgive and forget and move on, but it was hard. Too hard, I discovered, so I told Bill about my crisis of Church and my decision to take a break from going. He was awesome. He got it. He supported my decision.

But as the fall went on, my crisis became his crisis as the hot spots that had created my angst were morphing into something bigger, more dangerous.

Rumors spread. Misunderstandings increased, more people got involved. Suddenly, people were leaving because of stuff they were mad and unhappy about.

The months went on, the craziness grew until the Friday in March when he and I decided we’d had enough. He resigned his position as senior pastor of the church he began. I’ve never been back.

Monday

17

April 2017

4

COMMENTS

The Story Only God Knows

Written by , Posted in General

He is risen!

He is risen indeed!

Hallelujah.

But for many of us, the reality of the resurrection competes with the reality that we still stand in the middle of a plain of dry bones (Ezekiel 37), looking over a wasteland of hopelessness, despair, chaos.