Flashbacks… can be helpful…

Flashbacks – that is what a friend from out of town told me yesterday.  She is right.  I began to tell her about my PTSD and she went right into the combat scenario that I had already blogged.  She explained that our mental state was because we were having “flashbacks” to 2011.  It makes so much sense.  I don’t know that you can get to be our age without having some pretty “down days”.  Certainly she could relate to what I was experiencing.  Therefore, my friend and I were able to laugh about how it feels to stare at a mess …and care just enough to hope to have the energy necessary to step over or around it…  I love to laugh.
Beyond my bad day – it was a great reminder to me of what I know other moms are feeling right now.  The best part of getting through a trial is to be able to use your new information/experience to help people in a similar situation.

So young – so brave – such a handsome man!

I was married when I was 22 years old.  We were both full-time students and lived in a little basement apartment about a block from campus.  My sister lived in the dorms just a half-block away.  One night I sat and talked with her roommate about some sort of romantic trouble she was having.  I had been pretty good to avoid romantic drama – but I did have some experience…and my past now came in handy.  Instead of telling her to buck up, be strong, it doesn’t matter – I could relate and share with her how I had dealt with similar issues.  That night I came home and I was able to identify three different times in about a year that I had been able to talk with and help others who were struggling.   I could help them only because I had gone through something similar.  I cannot remember what the other two situations were, but I remember that there were three.  I know I had very much disliked the three events of my own past, but suddenly I was so grateful that I had gone through them.  This was the first time I had looked at a trial as a positive opportunity.  I think I may blog about that soon, but for now I just keep thinking of how we are put in the path of people who can help us and people that we can help.

Only one of those basement
window was ours

Just a couple weeks before Jackie’s surgery, a friend of mine had her beautiful, soft-spoken, 5 yr old daughter in the hospital for 12 days.  A brain tumor had been diagnosed and removed within two days and there were complications which will affect her always.  When I learned of this (the night before surgery), I could not sleep.  I didn’t sleep well for several nights as I thought of my friend and how it feels to be a mother in a medical emergency.  The day after her surgery we learned of Jackie’s diagnosis and I was rather distraught myself – I wish I had been in a position to help her more – thankfully she is in our same congregation and we have so much support.  Jackie is actually her daughter’s piano teacher, and they both have rare tumors on the same scale of occurrence.  They both were blessed to find out these tumors had been “encased” by membranes, thus strengthening their prognosis.  We have both been the recipients of many prayers and much fasting.  We have been able to visit and text and share our stories and blessings.  When Jackie was preparing for surgery on Tuesday, my friend texted that she had been anxious – thinking about what was going on.  I said, “Welcome to Moms Who Know Too Much.”   When Jackie’s rescheduled surgery was happening on Thursday, my friend shared how this time she felt calm – and I felt that we were both members of the club called Moms Who Know about the Gifts of the Holy Ghost.  So now I am thinking… if I am having a bad day, she must be having a lot of bad days – and as soon as my fog lifts, I am going to think of some sort of sunshine to send her way…

Our basement bathroom –
you could sit on the toilet,
brush your teeth, and
wash your hair –
simultaneously

I have a handful of friends whose children/family members have suffered through serious medical difficulties.  I find that we have a special connection.  I guess we build relationships when we can relate to one another.  Of course there are a lot of people in my life that have very little in common with me, but I still care about them.  We also don’t have to “relate” on a “sharing hard times” level.  I enjoy talking with mothers of large families.  I connect with people who like to travel with those large families…especially if they listen to audio books together while traveling.  I can relate to people who avoid fast food –yuck.  I have a great time laughing with couples who lived in little basement apartments as newlyweds… good times!
Life is interesting.  Our experiences are interesting.  We all have so much we can learn from one another…

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