The woman stands in my dining room, swinging the baby cradled in her arms back and forth. Cooing at his chubby, round face, she begins to reminisce. She was too young when she had her first, she tells me—just out of high school.
She's a grandma now. Her eyes glaze over, though, as she describes the terror of telling her parents all those years ago. Run away. Change names. She would have done anything not to have to face them with the news.
It's been quite a week here at the Gemelli house. I knew the day would come, but none of us are ever completely ready for detailed anatomy questions, straight from the mouths of babes. I've spent days, DAYS, fielding questions at the most random moments. It sounds like there's a little reproductive renaissance happening over at the elementary right now. I'm going out on a limb and blaming it on the fifth graders who just went through "Growth and Changes," and their little siblings who are all too happy to play "expert" for friends.
The three of us in the car:
"Mom, what's this called, specifically?" (Points to groin)
"Mom, where does urine come from?" (Their eyebrows raise as I sigh and answer the question)
"Mom, do girls' tubes work like ours? I've never seen you in the bathroom."
Hard to believe, son, because your fingers have been sighted reaching beneath the door and shouting questions through the gap on far too many occasions.
Regardless of the repetition and discomfort, these conversations are paramount - if for no other reason than to build trust. This week we're taking a look at current trends in substance use and intimate relationships.
Do you think you have a good idea of what our kids are facing? Let's find out.
I can’t stop wiggling in my seat. Continuing education day. Facts ring in my ears and I want nothing more than to run home and hug my kids. The information just keeps coming:
"Conviction of sin is one of the rarest things that ever strikes a man. It is the threshold of an understanding of God. Jesus Christ said that when the Holy Spirit came, He would convict of sin, and when the Holy Spirit rouses the conscience and brings him into the presence of God, it is not his relationship with men that bothers him, but his relationship with God." Oswald Chambers
Note: This week's blog is a follow-up to last week's piece on public shaming. You can read that post by clicking Here.
I touched on some tender places last week, dear readers. I got a variety of responses and messages - most were positive with a few questions. Not surprisingly, there were also a couple of "hide this post" clicks for those who didn't care to engage. I wrote that piece because my heart was broken. And I wrote it because I believe that Christians are capable of talking about hard things without shutting down or losing our cool.
Are you cringing yet? I said the word, "money". Yep, right there in the title. We're going there. We're going there because I've worried about how much I've had or how little I've had and even how much other people would "assume" I had. My worry eventually got even more worried and I began to sniff out judgement before it even arrived on my doorstep. We're going there because I'd bet this very house I'm sitting in that money sometimes bothers you too.
I'm so glad you're here!
I'm honored to introduce you to Danise Jurado today. As a reminder, I'll be giving away a signed copy of her new book, Fulfilled, on August 31st to one lucky subscriber. You have until then to enter your name into the lottery. Fulfilled is available in paperback and on Amazon as of today! Share, share, share to support an awesome cause!
Postcards of bare, provocatively posed sex workers dot the sidewalks of the city. Men and women, toting children or backpacks kick them nonchalantly as they tour the streets. It's hot. 105 degrees today. The homeless tuck themselves into patches of shade, their meager belongings scattered around the concrete. Billboards flash and horns honk, no attention paid to the clock dial. To escape the heat means an immersion into the world of slot machines and shopping sprees. There are no breaks, from the sun or the noise.
The Vegas strip.
Alerts. Beeps. Instant information.
Thoughts light up like the 4th of July. Researchers have likened the effect of social media on our minds to feelings we usually associate with eating and sex. The folks at Harvard discovered that the release of good-feeling chemicals in the brain are especially potent when we share personal facts about ourselves with others.
The noise is so loud and so unrelenting that there's really nothing to do but to retreat inside myself. I can't think about what will happen if I don't, I only understand that I need to do it. The older picks on the younger. The younger is crying and he's been sick for the past week. I haven't slept in days and though it's 6pm, I'm still wearing the pajamas I woke up in this morning. I envision myself screaming unspeakable things at my kids...things I could never take back. Not acceptable; so instead, I shut down and go through the motions.
I have circled this island in my kitchen no less than fifty-two times and I swear, there is NOTHING to eat in this place. I am tired, irritated, and after having put the boys to bed, I just cleaned the "you-know-what" off of the side of the toilets and tile flooring. The stool overflowed again. Some days there just isn’t enough Clorox in the world to accomplish the super feats of “Mom”. It’s only 8:00pm. I drag like a weary, homemaking soldier headed home from the battle of mundane and want nothing more than to settle into the respite of my comfy tan couch.
Believer. Wife. Mom. Writer. Marriage and Family Therapist. Accidental Speaker. Crossfitter and Total Book Nerd.
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BECAUSE I LEARN:
BECAUSE I LAUGH:
Elizabeth Laing Thompson
Liz Curtis Higgs
BECAUSE I ADVOCATE:
Juli Slattery at Authentic Intimacy
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Inspiring Writing Groups:
Suzanne Eller's #LiveFreeThrusday
Holley Gerth's #CoffeeForYourHeart
Kelly Balarie's #RaraLinkup
Jennifer Duke Lee's #TellHisStory
Susan Mead's #DanceWithJesus