Is it Failure or Part of the Journey? His Plan?

On the Road

The last two years I have spent learning.

Not listening. Learning.

I was taking an opportunity put in front of me to educate myself for a new career path.

When I was laid off from my job (what a humbling experience that is), I decided it would be a great time to explore other career opportunities.

I took a medical terminology class for starters. I did well in the class–received an A. I also received some knowledge about what I didn’t want to do with my life. I explored being an Occupational Therapist and an Ultra Sound Technician but I discovered that my stomach wouldn’t be able to take those jobs. I interviewed workers in these fields. The Occupational Therapist told me some patients are not able to control their bodily functions. The Ultra Sound Technician informed me it isn’t just about the pregnant moms, you can be put in the Emergency Room where someone comes in all cut up. Enough said here, I barely could clean up my own kids bodily functions when they were little. No way that I can be around a strangers! Bless you Ultra Sound Technicians and Occupational Therapist. Bless you for being able to do that job!

I then stumbled upon an Internet Marketing Class at University of San Francisco. This sounded interesting. I didn’t know much about the computer then. I did not understand what the whole Internet Marketing business was at the time…but it sounded interesting. I decided to take one class and I was hooked. I could not believe what I was learning. It was very interesting.

One class led to another and before you knew it I had a Master Certificate in Internet Marketing.

A Certificate in Internet Marketing…now what?

I felt like I needed to know more about web design and programming to really be able to do an Internet Marketing job well. I need to know how to blog and write HTML code and CSS.

I decided I would go back and take…more classes! I signed up for a web design and programming program. I loved that program! The classes were self-paced and I completed each course faster than anyone had done before me. Wow! I am on to something! This is going to be great! I received my certificate in web design and programming.

I started building my own websites. Oh, my goodness! Buildiing websites are a lot harder when you don’t have a lesson plan and an instructor to call upon every time you get stuck.

This is really hard…this web design business.

I volunteered to help many companies with their websites/blogs. I added SEO and got many of them within the first page for their keywords.

During this volunteer web design position, I discovered something about myself.

I need people!

I need people to intereact with.

I need people to talk to.

I need people…not a machine.

I don’t like having a relationship with my computer.
I don’t like being alone with my computer.
I don’t want to do web design and programming for a living.

But wait! I have just spent the last two years developing these skills (and confidence) for this new career.

If I quit now, I am a failure. A failure!Cattle Ranch Gal stuck in the mud.
I have never looked at any bump in the road or detour as a failure.

I have looked at all these twist and turns and bumps and detours as part of His plan.

His plan! Not my plan! His plan!

His plan of teaching me lessons in order to help others in the future.

Now I can choose to look at my situation as a failure or I can choose to look at it as part of His plan.

Maybe I needed to go through these classes to learn skills for something bigger and better.

Everything is always bigger and better when you Believe. When you have Faith. When you walk His way.

So as I decide today that I am no longer going to pursue a career in web design and programming, I AM going to pursue a life and career that follows His journey for me. His road. His dream for me. I will be the facilitator. I will let his words flow through me. I will listen. I will trust. I will have faith. Without any of that….I am alone.
 
 

Was it the Song?

Was it the song?
Was it the music?
Was it the thinking about all the memories of past churches?

I started thinking about the Presbyterian Church I attended in Long Beach when my kids were young….and all the memories there.

All the love.

All the wonderful people I meant there and I am still friends with.

Welllll….I recently reconnected with most of these people on facebook but I know that when we meet again in person, that love and friendship will be as strong as the last time I saw them. That is the way Christian love and friendship is….
365 Day Project: Presbyterian Church Pews--Filling My Gratitude Bucket | 2/365
I thought about where I was standing here at this church.
In this Presbyterian church with the pews and stained glass.

I was standing on the right side about six rows back; the same location I always stood at when I attended my old church in Long Beach.

I was thinking about the Sunday after my brother was killed and what I felt like…I felt like I was standing in that church all alone.

Well not alone,
I was with Him.
I was trying to understand why this had happened.
I was crying tears of grief knowing that my brothers life was taken for a reason.
It would be for me to discover that reason as life went on.
I would understood that reason as I am later able to relate with others who will loose a mother, father, sibling or a loved one.

I was standing there on the right side, six rows back at this new church listening to the music.
piano key pad

Knowing I had just put the largest plea…I mean prayer…out there.
Knowing I needed to be there at this church at this time.
Knowing I had to give all my faith to Him and He would lead me.
Knowing I would have to trust in the answers and the doors that He is about to put in front of me.

I could feel the tears start to gather.
This has happened before during singing (the tears)….no problem!
They will go away…those tears.
I will just stand here and not sing the words for a few minutes and the tears will go away.

I stood there…listening to the words in the songs.
The tears didn’t stop.
My vision became blurry.

Oh, my!

No tissue! No Sweatshirt!

My bottom lip began to tremble.
This is not going to be good!
These tears are going to flow no matter how hard I try to suppress them.

What should I do?
It is going to be very obvious if I leave but the tears are developing fast!

Quick! Grab your stuff and make a b-line for the side door!
Don’t look around!
Don’t make eye contact!
Just grab your stuff, hold back those tears and get out quick!

I got out of there!
I had my phone in hand ready to call Sissy (I needed to talk to someone) but hung up before I could press send. Sissy is a married woman now. It is Sunday, a day for her and new hubby to spend together. They don’t need a middle aged empty nest mom calling them. I started calling another friend but then…

“Hello? Are you ok?”, she said.

I was caught!
I didn’t escape unnoticed.

I clicked my phone off and relunctantly turned around.

Here came this lady waving a tissue.
She was waving a tissue!!!

“Are you ok?” she proceeded to say.

“Yep, I am fine!”

Now what? What do I do?
Do I keep walking?
I answered her question so I wouldn’t be rude if I kept walking.

That tissue. I could really, really use that tissue! I knew I didn’t have any tissue in my new car yet. Ok, I will stop for a second and grab the tissue and say thank you then be on my way.

So I thought!!!

She wasn’t going to let me just go.
Well she wasn’t holding me down so I could have just left.

She asked me again, “Are you ok?”

“I am fine,” I said.
“Just a few little life changes going on,” I proceeded to tell her.
“Nothing much!” I said, “the songs just touched me a little.” (Good answer, Pam, blame it on the songs!)

She asked me if she could pray with me.

Sure. Anytime someone wants to pray with me or for me I will take it!

I really don’t know what she prayed about because my mind wondered. I just know that during that time of her holding my hands and praying with me I once again felt His presence as I had so many times before. I felt that presence that I had been missing the last few years. I felt that presence that would reasure me that I would be ok.

I knew at that moment that He was back working with me.

Or is it that I finally was allowing Him back trusting in Him and having faith in Him?

The tissue lady continued to talk to me.
She did not seemed hurried to get back into the service.
She was there to listen to me if I wanted to share.
She was there to pray with me if I wanted to pray.
She was there to invite me into their church home baggage and all.
She was there to offer me friendship.
Doors- St Helena Church
The last thing she said, ” I will pray for you. I will pray that the biggest brightest door will open for you soon!” She said, “Please, please come back and please come join one of our ladies groups. No one should be on their own without a church family.”

I do believe I may be making a new step soon on this journey.
This journey of life.
Sure glad I am letting Him lead the way.
I don’t like leading by myself…that’s another lesson I have learned.

Have I found home again?
Is home wherever I am with Him?

Sidenote: The name of the new church I visited is Journey Presbyterian Church. Their tagline on their website is “Faith is a journey…not a destination!”

Glad I am not on this journey by myself! I have Him and all my wonderful loving friends and family! Thanks for being in my life! Thanks for being a part of my journey! Thank you to the tissue lady for reaching out!

Hello Up There!

Hello???

Hey, You up there!!!

Have you forgotten about me???

I thought when you pray that you are suppose to get answers?

Hello??? Are you listening to me???

I have been talking to you for a long time! I have even raised my voice a few times at you hoping you would listen.

Hellllllloooooooooo???
Old Rugged Door
I am ready for the next door. Why aren’t you opening it? Haven’t I learned enough lessons? What more do you have to teach me at this stop on my journey? Do I still have more lessons to learn here at this place? Can you please just teach them to me so we can move on, please? Pretty please with sugar on top?

I want the next door to open. Every door I have tried to open in the last two years won’t open.
Doors with Ristas
Why is that? I am not choosing the correct door? Ok, I am not getting it! I am not seeing the door you want opened. I need a hint. No, I need you to put it directly smack in front of my face so I see it. So I see it so clearly that it will be impossible to miss.
Old Red Door
Yes, I know, I like doors but only pictures of doors …not figuratively to keep trying to open for my life path.

They say when one door closes another opens. I believe that has always been the case in my lifetime. The door has always opened immediately. What are we waiting for this time? In my eyes, it is taking way too long to get the next door open.
Doors- Santa Rosa, NM Church
Wait! I think I might get it now…

In the past when one door closed another opened almost immediately because I had faith! I had faith that you were in charge and had a plan for me. I believed that when something bad happened that it gave me strength and wisdom to help others in the future that may be going through the same situation that I had gone through. I had faith that you would take care of me and help me make the best decision possible.

We had a strong relationship. I shared your love. I had trust. I had faith. I believed.

Is the lesson that you have been trying to teach me over the last couple of years that I can’t move forward without that love, trust, faith and belief? Is that the lesson? Is that what you have been waiting for in order to allow me to move forward to the next place on this journey?
Santa Fe Courtyard Door
Ok. I got it now.

Ok. I will admit it here for the world to know.

I LOST MY FAITH!

It is not that I really LOST it. It is that I just put it way back on the back burner and forgot about it. I forgot to live by it every day. I got lost.

Lost in the poor me.

Lost in the what now?

Lost in the I can’t believe this happened to me.

Lost in the what was I thinking?

Lost in the why did I do that?

Lost, lost, lost, lost, LOST!

But the great thing is, I am no longer lost any more…

Well, I kind of sort of am! But now I am working on my faith again. Thanks to “My One Word” blog I have chosen my word for the year…faith. I have put the word in bold as my screensaver so every time I sit down at my computer I see it. (I also included the words joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, and compassion.)
Doors- St Helena Church
I have gone back to church.

Hello, up there! Can we please have a truce? I am admitting to you now that I have forgotten to have you in my life through my faith and trust in you. I am admitting to you that I have not been worshipping with others in your house. I am admitting to you that I will trust. I will believe.

What I want to say here “It is time for that door to open!” but I know what I need to say is “I am ready for that door to open when you think it is time.” That is hard to say and believe.

I have faith that the door will open when you are ready for it to open.

Thank you for your love, support, trust, guidance, compassion, generosity, hope, kindness, empathy, humility, and compassion.
my-word-faith
This is my new screensaver!

Are you struggling with doors not opening?

He Gives Us Learning Experiences

I obviously haven’t learned what he wants to teach me yet.

He always has something to teach me. I have always been a good student. My belief is:

Through any turmoil that happens in my life, there is a lesson to learn. With that new lesson, there will be a time in the future that I will be able to help someone else that is going through a similar turmoil.

For example: When I got pregnant the first time. I was so excited to be having a baby. Everything in my life to that point was peachy king! All the pieces of my life just fell into place. I had a good job, a good husband, a nice house…
Cinderella

Then three months along, they told me the baby was dead inside me. I remember hearing those words over the telephone from the doctor. I still see the telephone on the wall in my little kitchen of my first house and picture myself as I heard those words. I slithered down the wall until I was lying on the floor in a pool of tears. I was devastated. My perfect world now wasn’t so perfect. I encountered my first road block to my Cinderella fairy tale.

Now what was I going to do?

I remember the first words that came into my head after the doctor’s news and my realization that it isn’t a Cinderella world.

“Pam, you will learn from this experience. You will take this experience into the future to help relate with many women who will loose babies. It is through your experience of loosing a pregnancy that you will be able to have empathy for others.

Ok!

Wait!!!

Hold on!!!

Stop Everything!!!

Where did those words come from?

Hello???

I know now where they came from. I didn’t know then.

After that experience, I started going to church with my husband and his family.

The loss of that baby was not only a lesson in you can’t have everything when you want it or you will be able to help other women in the future in a similar situation.

NOPE this was something bigger, this was a turning point in my life to really focus on God and Christian value.

Looking back at that moment, I know that God had and HAS a lot to teach me!

 
 

Grown-Up Mom(me)

Ok. It is almost official. I will have the title “Grown-Up Mom”.

You asked why is it almost? I don’t believe it is official until all the kids are graduated from college.

College Boy is really, really close. He will probably graduate in May.

graduation

My handsome College Boy.

 

That is why I am almost a “Grown-Up Mom”.

Grown up Mom!

Yep! That’s me!

Now what?

Now WHAT?

NOW what?

I have it figured out now—the “mom thing”!

Can we roll back the tapes and start over? There are a few things I would like to change along the way.

kellie little girl with hat

Isn’t she cute?! My baby girl!

Now what?

Wait to be a grandparent?

Now what?

Travel the world?

Now what?

Start a new career? Go back to school? Loose that Ten Pounds? (There is that Ten Pounds again!)

Now what?

scale

Enjoy more girlfriend time and really treasure the friendships.

Now what?

Give back. Teach Sunday School classes to pay back all the hours my kids were enriched in Sunday School awhile I enjoyed my peaceful time sitting in the pews at church.

Now what?

Take up a new hobby. Write a blog?!!

Now what?

They say the sky is the limit. They say this can be the best years of my life. They say you have done your job raising your kids. Who in the heck is THEY SAY?!

I say, “I LOVED BEING A MOM.”

I say, “I LOVED LEARNING AND GROWING AND SHARING WITH MY CHILDREN.”

I say being a Mom is the best feeling; the feeling of being needed; the feeling of being wanted; the feeling of knowing that the outcome of the day with the family all depends on MOM!

I say being a Mom has been the best years of my life!

I say I am not sure I am going to embrace the title “Grown-Up Mom” easily. It is going to take some adjusting. For now, I am going to do all the kicking and screaming. I am going to hold on to that Mom title as long as I can.

Reality is that kicking and screaming won’t get me anywhere….

So I move on in life….

Blogging….

Searching…

Looking for the next door(s)…

Embracing life…

Thankful for all the years I got to wear the Mom title.

Moving on to the next chapter titled “Grown-Up Mom”.

I will do my best to embrace it! I will! (Pout! Pout!)

My Best,

Loving Mom(me)

I want my MOM title back! Sissy get the stack of books! College Boy get the boxes of Brio trains….

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