Well, STILL on the waiting list. Was supposed to be in the apartment by now. One of the ways we comfort ourselves around here is to remind ourselves that God has lessons we can [continue to] learn at the shelter. I’m willing to learn, but I wish the class would finish up for the semester!! The Lord understands… Another saying is that what doesn’t kill us, strengthens us: if this “exercise” (being homeless) is meant to STRENGTHEN me, just what is the Lord planning for me that needs that much extra strength?? Yikes!! I’m not doubting the Lord here, and I’m not being disrespectful (and the Lord knows that, even if some my readers don’t know me enough to realize that): I’m just tired and frustrated, and sometimes quite angry. My Tourette’s medicine even stopped working for me, and that had to get adjusted…. not that there’s any STRESS HERE that could set off my tics <caution: dripping sarcasm>. The doctors have found medicines that work much better, though. I’m VERY grateful to the Lord for that (and grateful to the doctors too). My Dad used to say that if I’m angry with God, I might has well tell God: the Lord will know it anyway, and can easily handle it, and God wants me to get it out of my system. One of the reasons I was angry about still being here, after being told that I’m on the top of the waiting list, is that I desperately wanted to be out of the shelter before the worst of summer. We have to walk to get breakfast and lunch, and to wait at bus stops to get to libraries or stores (etc.). I can’t handle waiting out in the heat and humidity; my body can’t stand the heat. It’s the number one reason why I left Florida: it’s not that it doesn’t get as hot as Florida (- it sure can), it’s just that the intense heat only lasts about 4 months at the most. In Florida, the summer basically lasts nine to 10 months: and that was the NORTHERN part of Florida. The other main reason I didn’t want to be in the shelter in the summer – esp. not in August. – is because it’s an emotional draining time for me (when I’m already physically drained by the heat and sun). Four years ago at this time, especially during this part of August, Mom was entering the final phase of the pancreatic cancer. I wanted to be in an apartment by now, so that I’d have a place to rest and to have some privacy for grieving. The grieving process is on-going. I miss her. Terribly. I won’t wish her back to suffer more (!!), but I miss her terribly. Mark, Paul, and I were blessed to have a loving mother who loved us for who we were, and who always wanted the best for us. Mom and we didn’t always agree on what “the best” looked like for each of us, but we knew she loved us each deeply. I have met too many people at the shelter, and in the homeless community at large, who have NO idea what it’s like to have a loving mother who cares for them. In some ways, I am glad that I am here. There are people here, half my age, who can use a mothering (NOT Smothering) figure to care about them, and to let them know that there are people who treasure them as they are. So I guess the Lord does have lessons for me to learn: and have lessons in love that I can teach others. My parents may not have been perfect (no humans are), but they were they best parents that one could possibly have. It’s the fourth anniversary of being privileged to give back to Mom just some of the love that she gave to me.
A note about the image I used. There were a number of choices, but the Rose grabbed my attention: it reminded me of Mom. Mom’s middle name was Rose, and mine is too. She was named for her beloved father’s mother, who died just a few months before she was born. Her grandmother Rose Ruhl must have been incredible woman, because her daughter-in-law (Mom’s mom, and my beloved grandmother) adored her. My mom was given her mom’s name for her first name, and Rose for the middle name. When I was born, apparently, there was no question that my middle name was going to be Rose. To this day, I frequently request people to call me Donna Rose, and not just Donna. If I had married and had had a daughter, that little one would have also had the middle name of Rose — or maybe I would have given it to her as her first name instead. I find the flower to be a very resilient flower & a beautiful one. The Lord knows that I have learned to let Him teach me to be resilient, and I’m told at the shelter that I have an inner (and <surprise to me> an outer) beauty that I don’t give myself credit for. Mom, you would be having fits and more fits about me being in a homeless shelter, but I promise you that the Lord has a purpose in this and, despite my occasional anger and frustration, I am grateful for what the Lord is teaching me, and for how He is using me in this situation. The Lord is pulling me through this, and is strengthening me for more work.