Saturday, April 22, 2017

Goodbye Memaw

I honestly don't know how to begin. How do you put into words a person, a person in the past, yet has always been there... and now isn't?  Something you've said goodbye too... yet never did? How do you explain nothing... then sink under it?

How do I explain this week...

Wednesday, I was informed that my last surviving biological Great-grandparent died; Memaw. She's been drifting for forever, and it was as if... well look back a year, and no, there's no difference, look back ten and yes there is... that type of thing.

I never knew her in her prime. She's my great grandmother after all... that didn't mean I didn't get to know her. I'm probably the youngest who actually had memories of spending time with her. And my memories are numerous since we went over there a lot.

The last ten years though, it's been a long, slow, steady decline as alshimers, and strokes slowly took her away more and more. Until the past year; she's been a mere shell.

The shell... It was just a body at that point. Sometimes she'd talk about a flower or something, but in choppy one word, two word sentences. Nothing more. It was just a shell... Memaw was gone.

So when I was informed of her death, I... to be honest, it was more a. "Oh great, this week is booked! Not this too!" reaction... dull annoyance if I felt anything at all. Honest, I don't think I did feel anything. It was simply yet another piece of data I needed to file away.

But I didn't sleep, and I've not slept since I got given the news. I can't sleep, and I don't know why. I've just... not slept. So I guess it's impacted me deeper than I thought it did.

My mind goes back to when I was young to what I can remember. Back to where my memories really kind of start. Not that it was the beginning of my life, but the beginning of what I can remember. Memaw was probably the only one of my great-grandparents I got to really get to know. The rest died years ago, either right before, or when I was young enough that it had no impact.

Memaw, she was different. She was still very much up and kicking. Wild ol' fisty thing. Full of stories, and ready to sell her cooking, or talk sense into you. The clearer memories were of her yelling down her husband after he did, or said something that she considered dumb.

I remember going to her house that always stank, and climbing up into her lap and doing puzzles with her. I remember the strawberries, and the peach pie.

I remember that swing in the back that was my favorite place. And when she finally got it fixed up for me taking me back there and giving me a good push to get me started on it.

I remember the living room with the TV up too high. And my shoebox of coloring books and crayons.

I remember the garden that I wasn't ever allowed to go in... and the fence that was rumored to be but a few trees away from church. I couldn't see it, but I was told that if I took off running, I'd end up in the church's backyard.

I remember the time Memaw traded me 5 dolls for one, ridiculous doll that cried nonstop! I HATED that doll, but she adored it.

I remember... I remember the best the memorial day that she loaded us up in her large van  and took us around to all the family graves as we put out flowers. And she'd tell us story after story after story as we walked through about each family member.

(I remember the bug on my car seat that she dealt with after we were finished probably better)

I remember itching to go to Ryans because I knew we'd run into them... and how devastated I felt when the restaurant closed down.

I remembered the noise... and the people that seemed to always be there. All of them family.... or somehow related... you were never completely sure. Sometimes it was a step-cousin, of a brother of a spouse... or just as likely the kid next door. But walking into a hoard wasn't uncommon. And all of these people would be talking at once. the noise volume... if you couldn't handle the noise, don't come visit. Also... juggling every single conversation in the room. Somehow you just did it. Somehow... you just learned to talk to nine different people on a hundred different subjects all at the same time.

I remember my boat out back where we used to go on long 'adventures' and see the world... and pray nobody actually caught us playing in it.

My last memory... fond memory was two years ago, when while singing, and coloring with her, her eyes suddenly cleared, she looked up at me and said. "You are Vannah!" And then was gone again... but to be honest, that's when I feel like I said goodbye to her.... and she to me. That last, instant of a glimpse of the old nanny who just owned everyone.

A lot of my mindset when it comes to people I got from her. Even though I know I could never be her. I'm too timid. But no belly goes hungry, and every ear deserves a story. And she'll talk you straight if you think you can walk all over her.

Memaw = childhood.

Memaw to me was yes, a person, but... she was lost to us by the time my life started going a bit sour. So to me, she was always part of 'that' time in my life. I have song I like to listen to, a line in it goes. "I mean you had it all when you were just a kid. Do you even remember who you were back then?" For the most part, no, I don't remember who I was back then. But in her eyes, in her presence... I always did. I always could go back to those wild, free, insane times when I was just a kid, and thought I understood the world... Back when I was free, and wild... life wasn't perfect, but I was innocent.

Memaw = family.

If you liked them, or hated them. You were family, they were family, so deal with it.

Memaw = Love

Memaw= Struggle

Memaw= Strength.

Memaw = Refusing to give up...

Memaw was Memaw... was... Memaw.

I could think of a hundred ways to describe her. Bring up characters in books... We did things, because that would make her happy.

Easter happened for her.

Thanksgiving happened for her.

And she never missed a birthday.

We got together because she would be upset, and of course, never hear the end of it... if we didn't.

And... she's gone.

How- how do you even describe that.

I didn't think I'd cry, but I nearly melted. I didn't want to go... And I still can't settle. I'm drop dead exhausted at this point... but numb... completely numb. It's not real. And yet... it's a reality that's been for so long I can't even remember it's beginning.

Loosing Memaw is a new form of pain. As I sat there in the funeral, it was like a wave of sorrow crashed down over me, and I sunk. The turmoil of emotions was like an ocean current tossing me around... and I couldn't get free.

I still don't know how to feel about this. And I doubt I ever will know. So much has happened this year... it's pure insanity. Pure, complete, total insanity.

And that funeral... it was Memaw's house all over again. The noise, the laughter... the nobody wants to leave because we are talking at a scream.

The past 10 years have been long, and with her passing, a door has been closed that can never be re-opened. We still have Papaw... but Papaw without Memaw is like Jelly without Peanutbutter. You CAN have it, but it's just not right.

So we pass on, and I miss her, horribly miss Memaw.. but I'm also relieved. Relieved she never has to suffer anymore. And her life at this point was beyond pitiful. She was beyond ill...

I miss her, I miss her deeply... but we will continue on.

Cowgirl Out.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Topic Study on Anger

It was an evening like any other as I peeked into some of my social networks to check in on a few things. As I opened a book reviewing group that I was a part of, I managed to stumble right in upon a political argument between a liberal... and a poor young Conservative who managed to say the wrong thing.

As I sat there and listened to the argument, I was struck not by what was being said, but how it was being said. The liberal in question was an individual that as a reviewer, I'd come to respect. But in the moment of great furry, it was like a bull in a China shop. And it was in this moment, I lost almost all respect I had for the individual, replacing that with pity that one could be gripped by such an evil task master as anger.

Anger; a monster that is planted in our heart like a seed, but if not dealt with can become a dragon that can take over one's life, relationships, and overall health.

I can't say I've been immune. While anger is one of those sins that gets under my skin faster than anything, being a more timid individual, it's also something that I can't say I've not let loose and ended up hurting someone I really care about. In fact, most of my worse injuries have come at the hands of my anger when I've let it go unchecked.

Proverbs 12:16 KJVA fool's wrath is presently known: but a prudent man covereth shame.

Psalm 37:8 KJVCease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil.

Anger is an emotion like any other. Like a hammer, it's a tool God's given us. Jesus got angry, and ended up tossing a bunch of merchants out of the temple's yard. But that being said, it's also one of the most warned against things in the Bible.

Eph 4:26
Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:

Happy people make the world betterBitter people make the world worse. (PreggerU)

In Church we've been studying Ephesians chapter four. And today we finished it up. And with the political situation... and some of the things I've seen, I thought I'd share what I've been learning.

Don't let the sun go down on your anger. Don't let it get a foothold... Why?

27Neither give place to the devil.

Becuase uncontrolled anger is a tool of the Devil. As a Christian, I need to be removing these thorns, not watering them. Allowing thorns to grow will destroy you.

If you are led by the spirit, you will not walk in the ways of the flesh. 

29Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.

I think it's a universal thing; if someone is angry, they are far more likly to swear. In my area, it's far more common to hear people talk REALLY SLOW when they are upset, but I think that's because we are trying to not say something we regret. When you are angry, you say things you would otherwise regret.

30And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.

If you are a Christian, then... you are not your own! If you would not say it to God's face, then don't say it. If you don't' want your mom to find out, don't do it. If you wouldn't bring your bible to the place, Don't go. Because YOU are the temple of God. He LIVES inside you. Don't greave him. Let him work through, and in you.

Has anyone ever grieved you as much as you have done to God? How many times have they done it?

For as much as God has forgiven us, so we should also forgive one another. There is a curse that is attached to not forgiving.

Forgive as you have been forgiven.

31Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:

Bitterness: resentful or cynical
Wrath: strong, stern, or fierce anger; deeply resentful indignation; ire.
Anger: a strong feeling of displeasure and belligerence aroused by a wrong; wrath; ire.
Clamor: a vehement expression of desire or dissatisfaction:
Evil Speaking: Saying things that are wrong, hurtful, and wicked. Often in scripture such speaking is directed at a person with the specific intent to cause pain.
Malace: Revenge; the desire to get back at another person. 

But instead

32And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.

Don't forget, you too have grieved God, you have grieved your parents... it's a tall order, but in the long run, keeping a cool head will save you many grievances down the road.

Grace= Unworthy Favor, Pardon, a gift without earning it. 

Are you saved?

Then are you letting Anger rule, or have you put it away from you?

Are you grieving God?

Are you bitter?

Are indulging the flesh?

Or are you living in Faith?

If you are part of the light, then why do you live like the darkness? Why are you allowing the flesh to rule over you?

VK Out.

(PS: I apologize for the lack of refinement.)

Monday, January 16, 2017

Christmas: Round Last

Howdy Folks, So... technically Christmas ended a week ago... but... due to the fact I won a game... and then my health went on the fritz... I've only just now gotten to this. So without further Adu. Thank You Guys for the fun Christmas, it wasn't 'normal'... but I can't say it was horrible. 

This actually covers two parties. For the first: Mom's Side of the Family. 

From Papa! Money. (Which believe it or not, after two weeks I've not spent) 
From the "Breakable" Cousins. 

From Shi Thanks Cuz. You see that necklace! IT"S A HORSESHOE!

Next Party, which happened last Sunday. Christmas with family C. 

This actually covers all but 2 of the final items on my top ten wishlist. 

That Snowflake crossstitch is from my BFF. That mug was TWICE the size I was expecting. 

An internal speaker for my computer. And then earrings with V and K on them so I can wear VK during the summer months. 

Cranberry Fudge!... Oh and I got PJ's as well. Now if only it'll get cold so I can wear them.  

And From my editor "Teddy" 

This is one of my characters. It was awesome to finally have her drawn. It was done by my favorite artist: Foxenia Streams Here.

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