Faith, Fun, Fashion, & Family

Faith, Fun, Fashion, & Family

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Diary of a Young Widow...

I am a young widowed woman, artist, mother, and daughter of Christ...
I usually blog about my art and how each creation fits into something I am going through in my walk of faith... I have done some since my wonderful husband, Shannon, left us. But, I do not feel like that is what the Lord wants me to do in my current mourning state. Although I do need to get things out of me that are sitting inside. I thougth this may be a good time to begin documenting my roller-coaster days of mourning. Some days I feel close to Christ... then other days I am in the pit of loneliness...
But, here is where I am going to let it all out for me, or you, or whoever may need it.

Just in case you are reading this and have no idea who I am or who my husband was, this is a blog I created in his memory.
How this works...
click on the links to view these VLOGS (video blogs)
from out YouTube account...
Dedicated to My Best Friend...

Before Shannon passed, I taught my girls to take pictures with their hearts to hold forever. I am so glad I did this before he left. Because we are relying on a lot of memories to keep our spirits up.
This video was created before our mourning;
Photos of the Heart...

This was my first Vlog I created a little shy about doing so. It felt strange and like untouched territory of my heart... but here it is.
When we are falling and hit rock bottom,
He is there waiting. He is our rock...

I went through a confusing time of loneliness. I wanted things but knew I didn't need them. I do not want to be a fool that listens to her heart, but more a heart that listens to her Father. I want His will, not my own. Jeremiah 17:9-10 says, "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings." We cannot trust our own hearts. If we follow them, they will lead us to a destructive place. We have to ask God to look inside them and deroot all the things that He does not want... and on a DAILY BASIS!
 Having passionate feelings
but not knowing if they are His will...

When all I want to do is cry and fall down... I cannot because my little girls are there to pick me up and wipe all my tears away like a game of catch. They are amazingly strong. My littlest one goes around singing, "Day by Day" from the Godspell Musical all the time. She also sings "Jesus loves Me" randomly through the day and just at the right times. My eldest daughter singe "Somewhere over the Rainbow" to me when I cry... she likes the verse, "where troubles melt like lemon drops, oh way above the chimney tops, that's where you'll find DAD (changing the words)." I am NOT a singer, but here is an attempt at us making a trio happen with the song "Day by Day"...
Holding the family together is a day by day process...

Phones ringing, bills in the mail, people knocking, they mean well. I know they want to show me they care. And I would do the same thing for anyone in my spot... but sometimes I just want to be alone...
When you want to be alone, but need to be wanted...

4 weeks have passed, finding it hard to sleep with my brain going over the speed limit. Sleeping in a room that had plans, left unfinished...
Bedroom redecorate, left undone

Finally got some alone time with no time limit. Off to nature with my drawing bag and an open heart. Started a picture at the Nature Preserve, but the camera battery dies. That's ok, it gave me more time to really just concentrate on my Creator's glory around me. I got so into my groove, the sun started going down and wolves were howling (not kidding). Moon started rising and sun definitely was gone. I heard them getting closer so ran to the truck much earlier than my heart wanted to...

See video here...
Creating for my creator- Part 1
FYI, this video just stops in the middle because God wanted me to shut up and spend time with him... not my IPAD. That is why there is a part 2.

The basic line drawing traced...
As a mom with a career, I have to work in spurts. I hunger to work, so any spare moment of free time is a blessing for me; naps, car rides, teacher meetings (shhhhhhh!), or anywhere. I prefer to work outside or by a window, listening to Christian music, and being alone. 
But, those are special and rare blessings of intimate time with my Creator... Oh so treasured. That is when His voice is clear and my mind is unleashed with my heart unchained!
So, another day on my porch I wanted to share more about my alone time with my Creator in my "secret place" in hopes of inspiring you to do it too...

Creating for my Creator- part 2

Lord Lay My Bricks... and HURRY!
This video is in reference to my yellow brick road theory and artwork
which is a previous blog post...
Feeling now that my yellow brick road cannot be put down fast enough!
God is probably giggling at my giddyness to GO!
I am ready for what he has planned for me and my family.
I just want it now!
Hopefully I won't land down the "bad egg"shoot with Veronica Salt...
But I am trusting the Lord in His Brick laying process and speed.
Feeling all dressed up and nowhere to go.

See Vlog here on YOUTUBE link...

The Lord is our Compass
discovering the way through new places by using His direction.

Read more about being forced into single parenting... and finding your way through.


 Finally some alone time with my man JC at out in Creation. I usually go to draw whatever it is that my heart is inspired to create... but His voice is calling me to do something different. Those nature trails have been whispering to me, "come, see what we have down deep here... run down us and set yourself freeeeeeeee." Every time I go to the Mineola Nature Preserve, I just want to run or ride down it's mysterious paths. Without a bike, I have no choice but to foot it. Here I go.. am I brave enough?
See video here..

3 months plus into the grieving process.
Finally clearing my heart of all the foolish clutter that has been keeping me from getting to the heart of the matter... the loss of my husband. It is true that there is no "proper" way tor grieve. I have been pushing away even thinking about my husband, numbing myself to it all by finding ways to fill the hole he left. I found things I wanted that were not God's will and planted them in that hole and just let them grow up into weeds that eventually were strangling out all life that God had planted there. For weeks, God had been telling me to still my mind, "Be still and know that I am God". I even made a picture to illustrate it.
Read more about it here...

But it still took time to soak in. It is easy to tell yourself what needs to happen, but harder to actually let it happen. So, here I am, weed free
(not the marajana kind, but I am free of that too, not free like I once was not free, I have actually never done, it,... ok, now I am rambling, sorry)
 and facing the truth.
My... Husband... Is... GONE! I... am... all... ALONE!

Read more about drawing here...
 So, here is the part where I mope around, wear no makeup, cry at work, feel pathetic, feel like a limp noodle, want to lock myself away from the world, crawl in a ball, and just BALL MY EYES OUT!!!
So, I did that for a couple days... then faithful friends swooped in to save me.
I am blessed to have a weekend night alone to get my thoughts together... I did some thrifting therapy and disappeared into the piney woods of the Mineola Nature Preserve once again.
THis time I planned on taking my bike! I got the bike holder on my car, I was pumped, so were the tires (ha ha ah), and read to go. But, i could not figure out how to get my bike on the rack after many many tries. So, I just put on my red ruby walking shoes and went for a hike on foot. That is what GOd wanted, you will see.
Watch the video(s) here...
Part One

got embarrased by a man on a bike, so I had to stop and continue
here is Part Two...

I wanted to make it a bike ride... didn't work.
That's ok.. I was going to go further than last time. I was going to be brave.
This was my destination... I was so excited to go down the
"wobbly bridge" that I have heard of from other people.
I wanted to have this adventure!
I got there... and I find this! WHAT!?
God laughs at our plans sometimes...

The earth seems so big here at the preserve..
makes me feel small in His Mighty Creation.
So humbling.

I can't wear my ruby red slippers down this trail,
but I can wear the ruby red sneakers!
Follow that yellow brick road Dorthy...
I mean... follow that dirt trail Tabby!

Looking off to my side of the trail hovering over the swamp,
I see some GIANT sticker burrs. God's voice was finally putting things together for me.
Stay on the trail I lay for you, if you go off it, it will lead you to valley of  pity, plateau of pride, and both ways are filled with prickly pain.
But if you do go there, I will wait here for you patiently till you realize I am the only way.
When you return. I will not condemn you but will love you.
(John 3:17)
NOt too high, not too low, just the right height to see eternity and His face.
This is BALANCE!

The swamp around the prickly sticker burrs.
A sign warned me not to feed the alligator...
feed him and he will never leave you alone.
Kinda like selfish sin, feed it and it will bite your leg, or eat you for dinner.

Look at this windmill! There are signs all around.
The wind is invisible but can give us so much power!
Faith is believing in what you cannot see...

despite the circumstance...
These girls like to dance and sing for Jesus even though we are in a storm. 
Check out how we show Him Love!

Dancing to Jamie Grace's Beautiful Day
and Jamie Grace's God GIrls

 Beginning a New Year of Hope
and Leaving an Old Year of Loss...
New Year's Eve 2013, getting through the holidays without the one you love is the hardest. 
Here are some things that helped my through my first 5 months of widowhood...
See my YouTube Videos 
Widow's Survival Tips 
(part one and two)

more to come...

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