Monthly Archives: November 2011

Please Recycle

Pam’s Journey – Day 49

Miles walked: 143

Miles remaining: 857

Days remaining: 316

Thursday – trash day – and I enjoyed another crisp walk with my Jesus. I’ve been noticing on trash day that maybe 2-3 out of 10 people in my neighborhood recycle. I’m sure that’s not the official statistic and there are more on some blocks than others and maybe it’s just that not everyone puts their recycle bin out every week.

No, I’m not a tree-hugger, not a green freak, not a nature activist.. I’m just an average Pam. I don’t go to any extremes (except for my job as a stalker mom) but I would like to think that I am somewhat considerate of everything on this earth that God gave us, except for wasps and mosquitoes. I tend to think a little bit outside the box, so I’m not just talking about recycling those plastic bottles and aluminum cans.  I mean, what can’t you recycle?

Recycle.. re-cy-cle / (r-skl).  Verb:

1. Convert something unwanted (waste) into reusable material. 

My cat, SlickyBoo, was adopted from Pets and People = recycled. My daughter discovered thrift stores this summer = recycled. I was so impressed with the Christian values of one thrift store, that I was introduced to, that I donated all of my post garage sale left overs to them = recycled. I recently updated my car and gave my other one to my nephew and his wife who needed a 2nd car = recycled. God made man out of dust and woman out of man = recycled! It doesn’t get any more recycled than that. (Did I just get an Amen?)

And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. ~ Genesis 2:7

I confess, I was recently inspired by my daughter to do more. I came home from work one day and she was fired up to change the world 1 person at a time! She was so sincere and passionate. She wanted to help other kids that are pressured and bullied and don’t know how to deal with it. She wanted to Do something about it and change things. All of this is still a work in progress but it has made me start thinking about things that I can change.

Most of us aren’t happy with our “world” today. We’re not happy with our lives, our  jobs, our city, our government. Yet, we don’t usually do much about it. I’m guilty of that. I don’t do anything BIG.. but I try to do the small things that people think won’t make a difference or that doesn’t matter. I try to recycle someone’s frown into a smile, someone’s fear into hope, someone’s situation into a lesson learned that makes them stronger. We all need to do more.. Do more than belong – participate. Do more than care – help. Do more than believe – practice. Do more than be fair – be kind. Do more than forgive – forget.

We all see people who need help. We know there are people who are less fortunate than we are. We’ve seen the signs. But, what do we do about it? Not too much. How about we all just do a little bit more than we’re doing now and see what kind of impact that could make.

Hold the door for a stranger.. Help someone who’s hands are full.. If someone looks lost, ask if they need directions and maybe even walk them and show them where they should be going. Give someone 2 minutes of your day. Smile… it could be the only one some people see all day.

We all contribute to the world we live in and I’ll be the first to say that I don’t like it much some days.. but obviously, it’s the only one I’ve got so I will try to make it better. Even if I only help 1 person once a day, then it’s 1 person better than it was yesterday.

I figure if I want Taelor to change the world… then I need to show her how to do it!

Oh hey, One street over, Mr. 3 dumpsters by the curb every week… I’ve never seen your blue bin out. Seriously? Recycle Dude!!! Have you seen the size of trash mountain lately?

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lead me, help me, guide me…

Pam’s Journey – Day 42

Miles walked: 123

Miles remaining: 877

Days remaining: 324

This journey is such an amazing thing. I feel truly thankful to have been invited to be a part of it. Just over a month in, barely getting started and I feel a change in me. A change for the better and a closeness with my Jesus. I admit to praying some of those same prayers that everyone prays, “lead me, help me, guide me”. As I walk with him, every day now, I’m feeling his guidance and boy do I need it.

This morning, I had one of those “parent moments” that scares the heck out of me. Everything turned out fine in the end but it’s one of those times when my teenage daughter was in full force teenage daughter mode and made some bad decisions. The test: How did I handle it?

  • Preface: My daughter is 14 and the youngest in her class. Most of her class was either held back at one time and/or went through T1, so they are 15-16. Then she has a lot of friends in upper grades so they are 16-17+. On the weekends, the kids like to hang out on 39th. When that breaks up, they go to a carwash on Council and when that ends, they head to a lot on Sara and hang out there for awhile. This is the equivalent of my cruising Van Buren and hanging out at Sonic or McDonald’s, back in the day. Most of us had something like this when we were teenagers so I try to remember that and let her go sometimes.
  • Details: Last night she asked to hang out at the lot on Sara for awhile. This isn’t far from our house so I agreed and gave her the time to be home. I knew that she would be late because I didn’t give her a lot of time, so when I woke up to find that she wasn’t home yet and it was just a little past the time I had told her, I didn’t get too worried yet. The next time I woke up was 3 hours past the time I had told her and she still wasn’t home. So, the fears set in. I start texting her, calling, texting her friends, checked her recent calls on and texted the numbers I wasn’t familiar with to see if anyone has seen her. This isn’t the first time she’s been this late but it’s not a super common occurrence so I fear the worst when it happens.

An hour after I started texting, still nothing. Her phone goes straight to voicemail so it’s either turned off or dead. No response from her close friends that should have been with her. A response from one of the recent numbers on that I didn’t know said that they didn’t know where she was. No help.

Two hours after I had started texting, nothing. Still texting her friends, nothing. Finally, I hear the door and in she comes. Let the excuses begin…. Her phone died, the police showed up at Sara and was questioning everyone (this is common to keep the kids in line), searching all the cars, and wouldn’t let anyone leave. Of course, she didn’t think to ask anyone else who had a phone if she could use it to call me.

  • The test: How to handle it. I try not to be one of those parents that scream at their kids and say hurtful things. It doesn’t help anything in the end. I’m not saying I never yell.. but my yelling voice is not a scary thing so it doesn’t have the effect that it needs. So, I take her phone because that’s always the first thing I do when I’m not able to reach her on it. I tell her she’s grounded forever and she heads to her room.

I didn’t give you the times that this was happening, but at this point it’s about 6am. I start watching the end of the OU game from last night that I fell asleep in, just to have something to do while I’m trying to figure out what to do/say to her. As I finished the game (of course, OU won!), I made my coffee and was feeling irritated that I had been up for over 3 hours now. I wanted to get out and walk my walk this morning but I like to get out around 6am and here it was after 7 now so some grumpiness was creeping up on me. Suddenly, I felt led to get up and get out there and walk my walk… with my daughter, who has been out all night! Perfect 🙂  I loudly bang on her door, tell her to get her shoes and a jacket and let’s go! She didn’t protest much.. she knew better. We walked, talked, laughed, scolded, apologized, and bonded for 3 miles.

Did I handle the situation properly? who knows. Before you shake your heads and start clicking your tongues, think back.. did you ever stay out too late? I did. Is she going to do it again? most likely.. she’s a teenager! Does she know that it was wrong? Yes. Is she still grounded? YES! Does she know that I love her? Absolutely, 100%. She has made some bad choices and she has learned from them. Every bad choice has made her who she is and gives her more confidence in who she wants to be. She is amazing.

Instead of being overly critical with our kids, I think we need to just love them up… not tear them down. Today is a new day, a new walk, and a new prayer… Lord, please Lord, I need you constantly with me. Lead me, help me, guide me… Amen.

Will she survive her teenage years? Yes.. Will I?

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13

<Note: this didn’t happen last night.. I wrote about it while it was fresh on my mind a while back. And we are both still alive and well>

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free your mind

Pam’s journey – Day 35

Miles walked: 101

Miles remaining: 899

Days remaining: 330

Remember the movie, The Matrix? Back in ’99, Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, some other people.. it was about this computer hacker, red pill/blue pill, action sci-fi battle against the mainframe stuff. Well, there’s one scene where Neo (Keanu) is attempting to fly if I remember right and he’s on top of a building. He claps his hands together, rubs them briefly and says “free your mind”, then runs and jumps off the building like a superhero. My daughter was 3 and loved that part. Luckily, she never tried jumping off a building to fly but she would do the hands clapping and rubbing part and then run away.

Anyway, I can’t get that out of my head. Mostly because my biggest hangup about this intentional walking with Jesus is that I can’t free my mind. There’s so much going on up there and I can’t turn it off! There’s the <did I lock the door, turn off the straightener, stop all the ceiling fans, get something out for dinner, did I feed SlickyBoo> stuff.. and the <Taelor needs more lunch money deposited in her account, her room is about to be condemned a disaster zone, and she missed the bus again today so I’m running late to work since I had to drive to Mustang before coming to work> stuff.. along with the <did I call that patient back again after I already talked to her 4 times today, did we get the cardiac clearance back on one of our cases tomorrow, and how many times is this patient going to tell me that she’s not receiving our statements and that’s why she hasn’t paid her bill> stuff.

I find it so distracting while I walk with Him and I’m praying about life in general, and as I think about Taelor and all of the trials she faces as a teenager and family and work and friends, I can’t help but get sidetracked on everything else going on. <Wait, did we decide what we were doing for dinner because I forgot to set something out and we finished the leftovers last night so there’s nothing….. pssshh, we have cereal.. we’re good.> Enough! Enough of the rattling in my head, We can beat this!

So, why is it so hard to focus? Because not everyone thinks that walking 1000 with Jesus is a good thing.You can bet your butt that Satan isn’t too pleased about it! He LOVES filling my head with worries and fears and anything else he can get up there so that I can’t focus on my goal. BUT, he has no hold on me.. and for the record, I am a superhero! I am a child of Christ, I’m a woman, a mother, a daughter, a friend and I am made in His image!

If you just heard that pounding noise.. it was Satan banging his head on the wall, saying “UGH! She’s figured out another one of my tricks.. that blasted woman!” Well, he may have used more colorful language but I know that’s what he’s thinking and I’m done with it. I’m done with his tricks and they are everywhere, let me tell ya. I’m done. I’ve got much more important things to do and I’ve got a Walk to walk!

*claps hands.. rubs together* Free your mind!

<disclaimer: I did NOT jump off any buildings while writing this>

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Wrong Turn… again.

Pam’s journey – Day 28

Miles walked: 73

Miles remaining: 927

Days remaining: 337

I tend to make “wrong turns” a habit. Years ago, my (now ex) husband and I were driving to Florida and I missed an exit. So, I just take the next one thinking that I’ll be able to backtrack or something to get back on the right road. We’ll just say that we experienced a scenic route of Louisiana that probably not many people have seen on purpose.
I did this in Mexico once too. My mom, daughter, an old friend and I was driving to a “new market” that I wanted to visit just over the border in Mexico. Somehow we took the wrong bridge and we were on the industrial side of Reynosa. Obviously, I should have just done a U-turn and come back over that bridge but.. no. I drove through the industrial side to find the market. Not smart and I would NOT do it again but we survived (sorry again mom)! So, wrong turns aren’t new to me. I’ve even started to embrace them from time to time for letting me see things that I normally wouldn’t have seen if I had been on the right road.

We started this walk on 10/8/11. So, I’ve been walking my neighborhood almost every day for roughly 4 weeks. I’ve lived in my neighborhood just over 4 years. It’s one of those neighborhoods that has a few main streets and then several little winding streets that curve and turn and dead end with lots of cul-de-sacs scattered everywhere. It still amazes me, how I can think I know exactly where I’m going and end up completely on the other side of my neighborhood. Cut me a little slack.. I mean, I walk at 6am, it’s dark, it’s cold, and I’ve barely had 1 cup of coffee, so it’s not so hard to make a wrong turn, right?

There really is no right or wrong route. I just walk to be walking with my Jesus. I tend to walk the same safe route over and over and over until I feel the need to be adventurous and seek out something new. It never fails that just when I think I know where I’m going… I don’t. Isn’t it just like me to keep trying these routes that apparently, He’s not ready for me to try. Why must I keep pushing His buttons and insist on trying something that He doesn’t think I’m ready for? OH, maybe because I’m a CONTROL FREAK?   Yep.. that would be it!

That’s what this walk is all about, isn’t it? Walking with Him. Getting to know Him. Spending precious time with Him. Learning to let Him guide me. Duh… so, back to me thinking that I know where I’m going. I need to accept that I don’t.. I don’t! He knows where I’m going.. I mean, He wrote my book. He knows my story and He knows how it ends so all I have to do is give it all to Him. I give Him all of my worries and troubles on those dark streets every morning and I still find myself trying to do things My way. I’ve been asking for a lot of help with that lately and He hears me. I’m sure He chuckles at me, like my Papa used to, and says “you’re so stubborn, just take My hand”.

It really is that easy.

So, I’m going to walk my walk and I’m going to stick to the safe streets until He says that I’m ready for the adventure in the back of the neighborhood. For now, I don’t need to worry that I’m taking the right turn on the right street. I just need to walk with Him. I will continue to seek Him, walk with Him giving thanks for everything that He is and does, and learn to let Him guide me, every day at 6am.

Just walk.

Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.~ Colossians 2:6-7

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