Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Churchy thinkings…….Intentions

I am writing this unedited, and 'unmasked'. This is one of those posts where I just write what is in my head, pretty much, just as it is. No editing.

( Excuse the poor grammar  )

I have been thinking a lot about intentions recently. 
My intentions, 
other's intentions and the good and bad they seem to do.

As a Christian I have been part of churches of many types for all of my life, and have seen lots of people hurt, upset, offended and wounded by people in churches. I am one of these slightly annoying people who always manages to see both sides to every story. I have had friends in total turmoil because another well meaning Christian has said and done things which has really hurt them.

Processing these things for me has been hard, really hard. 
How and why can one person who professes to follow Jesus, preaches that they love him and want to emulate his caring and loving characteristics  cause so much pain to another person ?

I think I have discovered that in the main, (there are exceptions to this rule) they haven't 'meant' to be hurtful, and have mostly been doing and behaving in a way they thought was 'right', and more often than not, a way they perceive the bible to tell them to act.

But this 'discovery' leaves me with a dilemma, if believing strongly in a certain ideal/rule/standard, can hurt, offend and cause loneliness and isolation to others, is that believe ever actually God intended ?

I don't know.

For example (and this is just one example of MANY I could draw on ) the whole debate about Women's role in church and Women bishops…..there are many Christians, some of whom I know well and love very much, Who would say that the bible doesn't allow Women to be in total leadership over men, and therefore would say that Women shouldn't be bishops, or overall church leaders. Now, I totally disagree with this, and this viewpoint I believe, contributes to oppression of women, and doesn't reflect God's character. But, the people who have and would again vote against this, are mostly doing so out of an intention which is to please, and be obedient to how they interpret the bible. Obedience to God - is an intention I also share.

That leaves me and the wider church I am a part of in a sticky situation………

I think what I have concluded, is that it's important to look at someone's intentions before judging them.

I have also concluded, that if my intentions are to love people, to accept them as they are RIGHT NOW…not as I think they should become, then God will not judge me as wrong for that. I too want to please God, but cannot see how suppressing any type of person is in line with that.

Call me a liberal or an unruly lefty, but I feel much happier knowing that when I meet Jesus, which I believe one day I will, I will be judged more harshly for the damage I could do in trying to get it all 'right', than loving someone with a strong and unswerving love. The kind I believe Jesus showed and have missed out a few rules here and there.

These are my thinkings so far !

For anyone reading this who isn't part of a church, I am IN NO WAY saying that direct abuse and pain is EVER justifiable in the 'name of God' or religion. I am merely talking about decisions and guidelines which church goers tend to create in order to run a church. Abuse is always wrong. ALWAYS.

Monday, 11 November 2013

Sunny days

As are most people, I am a big fan of sunshine.
What's not to love ? 
This week, instead of going to church, we went for a family stroll on the beach. 
Being outside, marvelling at all God has made was wonderful.

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Ten on Tuethursday

Ten on Tuesday

I have recently been MIA a bit round here of late. So I am popping my head above the parapit and coming out my hidey hole with a ten on....Thursday.

1. I am currently sat on my sofa fully acknowledging the fact that I have dropped a needle not too far from where my behind is placed.....awaiting the pain of being a human pincushion.

2. Public announcement - We are now a TWO car family, this fact feels very strange. In the absence of the stamina to walk very far, and with nursery drop offs added into the mix, my taxi bill had reached the scary dizzy heights of the price of running a teeny tiny car. I feel very thankful for having a car available to me during the day....... just need to control my urge to go to exciting places which I don't yet have energy for !

3. Little Tyke has started nursery. So far, she seems ok, and I think I am just about coping with the transition. 
I have had most of these feelings about this new regime.......

- Why on earth am I sending her to nursery, she really doesn't NEED to go, why make more work getting her there each day ?
- It's great for her to be at nursery, she gets to do things which I don't always have energy or inclination to do with her.
- There are soooooo many other kids there, all in a smallish room, feel like I am feeding her to the dogs !
- She likes it, it's free, it doesn't seem to be doing her any harm, so why not get three hours with just one child to care for three times a week ?

So I guess I am having all the usual parental deliberations which float about each and every choice we make for them. (Sometimes I wish I hadn't read and studied so much about childhood and education.....ignorance can be bliss !?)

4. The most junior member of our household, is shaping up to be a slightly more tricky customer than his sister when it comes to sleeping. He's not awful at it, but not great either....YAAAAAWN.

5. I have started doing a teensy bit of cooking again, it feels good, but I am also out of practise. I have made some fairly dubious meals recently.

6. Having the stamina to stand up and do a few dishes and wipe the kitchen surfaces feels good. sad, but true.

7. Anyone else finding it hard not to get into debt to facilitate buying your little ones too many presents for Christmas? 
I am determined not to, but It is much harder than I had anticipated.

8. A wave of realisation has come over me lately, that I am soon to be 33 - THIRTY THREE.....I'm sure I was only 26 a few weeks ago.

9. On bonfire night I realised we got engaged eight years ago ! Our attempts at getting out to a firework display were somewhat hindered by two tired snotty kids, and a set of parents who lacked the energy to be bothered to make it happen  - next year we WILL go........ !

10.  My two little cuties out and about enjoying life.

When your mind plays tricks on you

I have quite a few close friends in my life, you know the kind you have either known for years, or feel like you have. They have seen you at your best and worst ? Well, those are the ones I'm talking about.

One of my friends who falls firmly into this category, (I could go on and on about her, as she is pretty ace) has Bipolar. I asked her to write a bit about it for me to share with you all.

There is a wonderful trend in the blogging world at the moment to write about experiences of Mental health issues. Statistically 1 in 4 of us will encounter a mental health problem in some form or other during our life time, so talking about it is really valuable.

I will leave you with this little excerpt into my friend's experience of living with Bipolar. 

I was diagnosed with bi-polar a few years ago, but looking back I can see the sometimes wild pattern of crazy highs swinging to dismal lows has been the fabric of my life for as long as I can remember. These days I am medicated, so my symptoms aren’t so dramatic. So let me tell you about some of my pre-medicated days, as they were, I think, quite interesting…

I am talking crazy times. I wasn’t ‘crazy’ all the time – I had, and still do have, ‘episodes’. Times of mania when I temporarily lost my mind, and myself, for a while.  Here are a few examples of my crazy moments:
- Walking down the street with no trousers on.
- Deciding, in the middle of the night, that my town was a mess and so I went litter picking, on my own in the city centre.
- Knocking on my neighbours’ doors asking to borrow shampoo, wearing nothing but a towel.
- Going to the registry office to get a marriage license with a man I had just met, believing that God had sent him to be my husband.
- Visiting an armed robber in Strangeways for a cheeky snog.

During these times my symptoms vary. Sometimes my mind will race so fast I cannot keep up with it, and my speech and actions increase in tempo too. I need very little sleep and can stay awake for days at a time, being active throughout the night without requiring any rest. I get inspired by every tiny thing, enthusing about how amazing things are then later looking back and realising they are actually quite mundane. I can be ludicrously happy, drunk, out of control. It seems like my mind and mouth disconnect, I hear words coming out of me, my own voice, saying the most shocking things yet I seem to have no power to hold back. My confidence soars and I become fearless. At times I am super cranky and irritable, swearing a lot and flying off the handle at the slightest little thing. I have also, in my pre-medicated days, lost all sense of reality, I started to believe that I was magic and wore my head covered fearing that my powers would escape were I to uncover it.

My medication dampens down these symptoms and stops me from losing control, though I still have days when I know I need to stay home and not talk to anyone lest I cause trouble.

Then there are the ‘downs’. Here I am very fortunate, for my times of serious depression are few and far between. I have had really dark times when the world lost all its colour and I simply longed to be dead. But usually my down times are not so severe, and present themselves in lethargy, over-sensitivity and low self esteem. Friends have commented that my version of down ishow they function normally – so in this way I am fortunate indeed. And as the pattern of cycling continues, I always find comfort in knowing that whatever I am experiencing will in time move on to another phase.

I resisted medication for a long time, fearing that it would steal my personality. But following a particularly bad manic episode which wreaked havoc in my relationships and hurt those around me I agreed to give it a try. I have never looked back. I still feel the highs and the lows, but not in such great measure; they are dulled down, diluted. I have learnt to recognise the early warning signs and to adjust accordingly. If I feel manic  I clear the calendar and try to take it easy, be gentle with myself. I avoid people, and situations, which trigger me off, and I try to live as simple an existence as I possibly can.

When I look back on my path of life I am so grateful that I have been protected by a power infinitely greater than myself. Yes I have been in some crazy situations, some of which were hideous, but the consequences were not dire, I am still here to tell the tale. And as for today, I am smiling.

If you are interested in reading a few more things like this, here are a few I have found recently.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Week in pictures

Week or two in pictures. 

I turned an ' I don't want to walk' tantrum into a photo opportunity.

The cheesiest of grins ! 

Mid flight.....

Little charmer.....

My two little ones, the best photo I have been able to get of them both together for ages....needs work. 

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Times are a changin'

I have been wanting to write a post about my Little Tyke for a while now. She is just wonderful, and I could write about her all day, her little oddities, cute-ities, and lovely-ities.

She is mostly, (she has her off days, don't we all ?!) great company. I'm not sure if that shows how interesting she is, or how bad my social life has become, but either way. She is at the age where everything is a question, and enquiry or a request. She has even started telling jokes. 
Now, for any other parents with a child over the age of three, this isn't news to you. But it's new for me, my first baby is now three, yes THREE. 
This is her at her birthday party, making a play dough sculpture of some description.

Tomorrow she takes her first trip out of our safe, fluffy nest, into the big wide world of pre school. 
I am trying not to make it into a huge drama, projecting some angst I have about her growing up onto her, isn't gonna help anyone. So tomorrow morning will be as low key affair as I can make it. 
When I come home from dropping her off, I will be trying my best not to lament the passing of one phase, instead being excited for new times ahead.  ( time will tell if I achieve this goal  )
As I write this down, it sounds entirely ridiculous but since she was about 5 months old I have worried about how I would get her to nursery when she started. Not being able to walk far, and not having access to a car during the day, kind of makes this new phase a tricky one. But true to form, various people and situations have come together to mean it will be just fine. 

I wanted this post to be more poetically written. A lovely reflection of my girl, but I'm a bit fuzzy headed today, you can't win them all ey.

Tomorrow is the start of a new phase for my Little Tyke and I, hoping, really hoping it will be an enjoyable one.

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Church ramblings

I have been thinking a lot about Church recently, what it is, what I think about it, and what God thinks about it. I have always been a 'churchy' kind of girl, always loved going, and kind of felt at ease there. I know this is far from many people's experiences, but right now I can only really write from my own.

I have sat myself in a variety of pews, chairs, cushions on the floor, and stools. All in different 'types' of churches. Pentecostal, Baptist, Anglican, Evangelical, Methodist, Assemblies of God, Pioneer, New Fronteers, House Churches, 'We haven't quite defined ourselves yet' Churches, and all the other types in between.

I have found God in all of them, I have also found heartbreak and sin in all of them too. Cos Churches are full of people, and where people are, there is always mess.

People are messy.

But I still believe that Church is what God wants me to be part of.

Before I had CFS, being 'in' a church was mostly what I 'did'. I worked there, worshiped there, played there, and while I spent time at university too, I guess my whole time schedule revolved around 'Church'. I don't regret this, and felt at the time it was the thing I wanted to do. That was ok. But gradually having CFS has made it really hard for me to be part of the church I loved. It was too energetic, too many people all at once, too big a commitment. I found I didn't really have a place in some parts of it as I was so very unreliable. It wasn't any one's fault, just circumstances. It has taken me years to get my head around this, I kind of felt like my right arm had been chopped off. Those years were tough, really tough.

So I have had to take a step back, from 'doing' things in church, and just work out what are the most important things, for me.
Then, in time I use my small bits of energy on those.
And with the arrival of children, they have changed again too.

Conferences, I can't really 'do' conferences, they are big, and loud and exhausting, they take huge amounts of energy, emotional and spiritual. I do like christian conferences, but I also think that maybe, just maybe we all spent too much time preparing them, making them look flashy and appealing, advertising them, then being at them. When really, our energy could be spent elsewhere.
That's what I have discovered anyway.
They often seem to be filled with communicating the latest 'trend' in churches, I don't have time or energy for churchy trends.
Just keeping it plain and simple is where I am at right now.

I also like biscuits, cheap custard creams dunked in a cup of well brewed tea, this stands me in good stead to enjoying most churchy gatherings :)

In the past year we have moved to a different church, and it has been a bit like buying a new pair of Jeans. My previous Jeans were wonderful, initially fit me really well, but over time my body shape changed, and I needed a new pair, My old Jeans will always be my favourite I think, but the new Jeans enhance my shape better, and match better with the rest of my wardrobe.

................................... There is more to this post, but I have been writing it for a few weeks, so in order to ever post it, it needs to come in segments.....right now I am watching cbeebies and playing a game with my daughter - not the most conducive environment for clear writing ey !!

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Week in pictures

Most of these photos are from the past month I guess.
As you can see LT has been into lining up toys, races and 'expeditions'.

I know if I took a few minutes to edit these photos they could look really good, but if I'm being honest I just don't want to .......
I am all about doing what I enjoy at the moment, so I say PAH to editing ! 

The races are on

Beautiful 'Teal' sat obediently where she was put. I think she was in the 'audience' 

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Three little pegs....

(Well, they are actually nails, as that's what I had to hand when the urge took me to put them there )

I have always, since I can remember, wanted to be a Mum. I enjoy being around children, painting, talking about nonsense and playing. To have my own children, has always been a part of what I wanted to do with my life. I feel unbelievable pleased that it has happened, to me.

In spite of the difficulty of having CFS, most of the time, I love being a Mum. I like having a house full of toys, I like painty finger marks on the walls, I like that half of our kitchen is an art easel and a jumperoo, I like that we go to the park at the weekend, I like baking cupcakes, I like creating things out of playdough. I like choosing my kid's clothes, I like planning fun things to do together, I like playgroups, I like lying on the floor rolling around for no particular reason. I like having a bubble bath with a child in it, and lots of toys.

Now, hear me out here, if you read my blog regularly you will know, that I have my days, days of exhaustion, despair and that overwhelming urge, NOT to be the Mummy.....just for a few days. There is a very good trend at the moment in the blogging world, around writing honest posts about parenting, which is wonderful, a HUGE breath of fresh air, any war on this crazy comparison in parenting is worth fighting.

But for today, I wanted to share the things I love about it, as there are many.

The other day I knocked these three nails into the wall, and hung my kids cute things on them, in our hallway, for all to see. It makes my heart happy when I walk down the stairs and see them, hanging there, waiting patiently til they will next be required to shield a child from the rain, or make a 6 month old cosy and warm. I love having a house full of hussle and bussle and craziness, wellies strewn, ( although little tyke is learning to put her shoes on the rack pretty well these days ! ) buckets of sand in places they shouldn't really be, and sitting down to watch some tv, after the kids are asleep in a room full of toys.
Would I still enjoy this stage if I was in it for the rest of my life, probably not, but right now, I refuse to wish it away.

I am thankful for every painty hand print.

( not to mention the money to pay the cleaner to wipe them away ! )

Saturday, 14 September 2013


I haven't checked in for a while, lots of things have been whirring around my mind to write about, but as per usual, there isn't quite the time and space to put them on the page.
I have been doing a fair bit of reading other blogs, many times recently I've stumbled across a blog post which has put into words exactly what I have been thinking about. It's so often the case, we think we are the only ones mulling over an issue, only to find that actually, we aren't alone, instead across the globe we are all influenced by so many of the same issues and thinkings. 
Kind of weird, but great at the same time.

I love this lady's writing, I feel like we are on the same page. awidemercy

I have been wrangling with how much more we need to support each other as parents. Weather we push our babies, or carry them, breast or bottle feed. Seriously, life is hard enough for constant judgement. This article added to my existing thoughts about this. huff post

My Little tyke is hurtling towards being 'number 3'........ I won't say things like 'where has the time gone'.....'they grow so fast'......but yes, those things ! I am loving spending so much time with her, her personality is emerging beautifully and I love our time together. There are times where I CaNNOT wait for bedtime, to see her eyes and mouth close, silencing the constant stream of 'why' mummy, but I love a 3 year olds zest for life, and have to say, I learn so much from her questions and excitement at the simple things in life. 

The littlest Deane is getting bigger, and LOUDER. There are teeth, and there is eating. There are still night wakings, but not so many these days. 
He is scrumptious. I have considered eating him on more than one occasion.

Tuesday, 27 August 2013