Midnight Musings…

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1. Sometimes, it’s nothing you have or haven’t done that cause grief and heartache to enter into your life.
They just do.

2. There will always be some things in life that you will never find answers for, and you will drive yourself crazy trying to figure them out. Learn to be satisfied with not knowing everything.

3. Trying to work out the intentions and motivations behind other people’s words and actions is virtually impossible and turns out to be a massive drain on both time and energy.

4. One of the hardest things in life is pushing through depression and continuing to put one foot in front of the other when all you want to do is curl up into a tiny ball under the covers and cry.

5. You can preach autism awareness until you’re blue in the face but there will always, ALWAYS be those who will never ‘get it’ , those who REFUSE to ‘get it’ and sadly – a group of people who just don’t give a crap and you’ll never ever change them no matter what you say or do.

Making peace with this last group of people is vital for moving on and making progress. Cutting toxic people out of my life seemed harsh at first, but you can’t grow beautiful flowers in polluted, murky water.

And a bonus point:

6. Writing out my inner most thoughts at midnight may not turn out to be my best ever idea  😀

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Life Lessons from 2013

I was thinking today, that I’d like to sit down and write a little about what I’ve gained in the area of life-lessons from last year
So what did it teach me? Here are the top 3 things.Screen Shot 2014-01-24 at 2.45.44 pm

1. God is everything.

Not religion, not church, and not just “faith”. I’m not talking rules and regulations here, nor am I talking legalities and requirements to do or say anything but a personal and truthful relationship with God.

With all that has gone on in my little family, He has remained a steadfast and strong rock for me to collapse on to time and time again. And this year I have collapsed a lot. Mentally, emotionally and even physically I have been pushed past my limit many times but through all my personal trials: God has been a constant source of strength and comfort.
I’ve had far too many friendships and relationships go pear-shaped this year and I have been baffled by most of them. I have found myself treading water on many occasions, but every time, EVERY TIME He has caught me and set my feet upon solid ground.

2. I’ve learned that I am enough.

I, (like the rest of you) will probably never be able to successfully juggle three kids, special needs, keeping house, working and studying all at once, but as long as I continue to do my best in all of those areas – that is enough.

Because enough doesn’t mean that my house is always spotless. Enough doesn’t mean that I will always keep my cool and never yell at my kids.
Enough doesn’t mean that my marriage is perfect. And enough certainly doesn’t mean that I have got it all together, but enough means (by definition) “as much as required.”

 

So ‘enough’ means to me, that though there’s rarely any of me left over at the end of each day – my kids are fed, they are healthy and for the most part – they are happy. Taking on board the concept that ‘I am enough’ has brought me such freedom and peace.

3. I don’t have to be like everyone else.

This last one is similar to the above point (I am enough) but refers more to me personally. It refers to the fact that I am owning the parts of my personality and character that are unique and unusual and not following the crowd and I am starting to be ok with that. I’ve spent far too many years worrying that I am not like the rest and beating myself up for what I once considered to be character flaws.

For example: I admit that I am more emotional than your average Joe. I cry more, I take more things personally and I react to things that other people can just let slide. I take longer to get over things than most people, I get hurt more easily and I try to make everyone like me. I don’t cope when people are mean and I over-analyse EVERYTHING inside out and back to front until it turns my brain to mush and I end up in a crying soggy mess on the floor.

But on the flip side- I am extremely loyal to those whom I love to a fault. I forgive more times than people deserve it and I give second, third, fourth and so on chances when other people would have just written someone off. Even if I cut contact with someone to protect myself, I will always let them back once the dust has settled. It’s just who I am. And because of this, I will probably continue to get hurt time and time again, but this is me and this is how I’m made: and God doesn’t make junk.

I am learning to shake off what some people close to me have said and have started to see myself as God views me.

And the lastly: (3a if you like?!)

Autism is always going to be a part of my life.

It’s true – my boys won’t magically lose their diagnoses but they will continue to learn where they fit in this world. Slowly I am learning to embrace it and let it shape me. Autism can be a really huge pain in the butt, be heartbreakingly difficult and can rob my boys of so much but it is a part of who my boys are. I can dislike the difficulties that it brings them and my family but it doesn’t change my love for them at all.

Autism is no longer the big scary “A” word that it once was and for that I am grateful.

Winning The Race..

marathonI originally wrote this is a post on my Facebook Page and decided to post it here as well so that I could find it at a later date if I ever wanted to read it again .

While I was away, I spent some time with a lady who pretty much helped raise me. She is my Mum’s best friend and her husband went to school with my Dad so we all go back a VERY long way. She has known me my entire life and has always put REALLY good things into my life.

Well anyway, last week, I sat opposite her in a beautiful cafe having afternoon tea which turned into dinner, on the water one night – just the two of us – and we talked and talked and talked about EVERYTHING and nothing. We laughed, we joked and I cried.

I cried a LOT!

I sobbed about decisions that I’ve made recently, I expressed regret at pushing certain people out of my life and also lamented keeping some others in longer than I should have. I worried aloud that I was screwing my kids up and told her how much I hated myself for becoming a yelling, emotional, basket case of a mother. I told her that I didn’t know who I was anymore and wished I could go back about 12 months in time to have a do-over.

And she continued to listen without judgment and allowed me to get it all out.

I cried a LOT more still, and then after I’d sobbed my heart out to her she offered me an extremely sound piece of advice that I took away with me and have been drawing on it almost every day since.

She said:

“Fiona, we are all running our own race. Some of us cruise along at an even pace and appear to be taking everything in our stride while others, like you, feel as though they are constantly running uphill in the wrong direction all the while struggling for breath and wondering if you’ll even make it out alive. And that’s sometimes just our own perception because the reality is that everyone struggles. But sometimes your race may actually BE tougher and more gruelling than other peoples but that’s only ever going to be a seasonal thing.

But the beauty of having our own individual race is that although the finish line comes earlier for some people (we were talking about the passing of my Dad and her son), there is no-one else in YOUR race so there’s only ever going to be one winner and NO loser”.

She continued:

“The other people in your life – the ones who run alongside you – are not in the same race as you. They are running their OWN race with their own challenges and their finish line may come before or after yours but remember that you are not supposed to get the same results or finish times as those people.
Their race is not YOUR race.
You will never know when the finish line is ahead so all you can do is strap on your joggers, keep your mind and body as healthy as possible and keep running. You WILL reach the end of your race at the exact time that you’re supposed to and you will come first in your race. YOU WILL WIN because this is a race you cannot lose.”

And there you have it. Her words have helped me SO much that I just thought I’d share them here in the hope that she can touch another life like she did mine.

Chinese Whispers..

She leaned over, cupped her hand around her mouth and started to whisper into my ear, but for the fourth time in a row, my friend couldn’t get any words our due to the giggles that kept overtaking her. After taking a few deep breaths and composing herself, she tried again. “Frogs in frocks lick spoons” she whispered before exploding into even greater fits of giggles. Screen Shot 2014-01-04 at 7.46.04 pm

I looked at her and joined in the laughter realising just how stupid this game of Chinese whispers had gotten. I was last in the line and it was my job to try to figure out what the original whisperer had said. I had NO idea!

It was in the early 1990’s and I was in my early teens. I was at an Easter Camp with my church’s youth group and the idea of the game was to find a really bizzarro bible verse and whisper it along 9 or 10 people to see what we came up with at the end. The original verse here was: Proverbs 19:25 ‘Flog a mocker and the simple will learn prudence’.

As you can see – the end result wasn’t even CLOSE to the original phrase. In fact, it really no longer made any sense at all! Sure, there were parts of it that were similar to the original, and the phonetics were close but the gist couldn’t be more different. It had taken on a whole new meaning that wasn’t even related to the original phrase and it had therefore become laughable and ridiculous.

But imagine if I took that whisper as gospel, and I became convinced that the bible did in fact have a lot of verses about frogs who liked to dress up in drag and lick utensils?! Imagine if I was SO convinced that what I’d heard was correct that I started to pass that information onto other people and try to convince them that as strange as it sounded- it was correct BECAUSE I’D HEARD IT WITH MY OWN EARS!

Stupid when you put it like that isn’t it?

But that’s exactly what happens with gossip. Someone hears something, they miss maybe a few vital facts so they substitute them with a few made up ones of their own –that seem likely enough to be believable– and then relay that information to another friend. That friend then does the same thing but then adds even more information based on what someone ELSE told them –or what they have observed themselves– and pass THAT on. And so on and so on and so on.

Which brings me to my point.

Most people know by now that we have withdrawn our boys from their old school and that we have left our church. Most people have probably heard some version of the events through various sources and channels but there are only a very small amount of people who have heard any of this from us.
Yes, I told other parents in the playground that my boys weren’t coming back next year when they wished us a good holiday and said “See you next year” but there are only a select few who know the reasons behind our decisions. Other than that, we have barely spoken of these events to anyone.

Therefore, there are only a very small number of people who know the full truth and those people are friends who we know 100% that we can trust.

So it surprises me that I am still getting phone calls and text messages and emails asking us if “such and such” really happened. And it leaves me speechless when I am told “So and so said that you said this and I want to know if that’s really what happened?”

Seriously. It continues to amaze me.

The things that I have been accused of supposedly doing, and the fictitious conversations that I have been dragged into are all Chinese whispers people.

I can say without reservation that I did NOT have a screaming match with anyone. I have not gone on bitching rants running down anyone in leadership in either organisation and I definitely have not created and spread lies about either of them at all.  In fact, I don’t even have any type of conversation about the school OR the church because that’s not who we are.

Bottom line is – unless you heard it from Paul or myself- there is probably a lot of frogs in frocks licking spoons going on.

If you know what I mean 😉

I apologise if this post has come across as anything other than my original intent – to use this public platform to categorically deny any accusations against us and to request that if you know us personally and you hear something- remember that those who gossip are really telling you more about themselves than they are about the subject of their stories.

Fi x