Thursday, July 30, 2009

Jesus' Dragon

On my desk, waiting to be lovingly displayed on my office wall with others of a similar vein, is a picture of a dragon. The Little One is enamored with all things dragon. This one is purple (her signature color) with green eyes, horns, and talons. It is hovering in a dark sky among dark clouds and lightning bolts. Blue, orange, and yellow fire is shooting from it's mouth and nostrils.

Below Sir Dragon is a green field dotted with itty little bitty figures. Many of these figures are engulfed in flames, along with the the homes and trees nearby. Like most moms into whose hands a drawing is thrust while trying to find the car keys at the bottom of a purse, I glanced at it rather quickly. I was aghast at the violence portrayed, and I remarked to The Little One that she doesn't usually draw such angry dragons.

She patiently explained that the figures at the bottom were demons (a closer inspection indeed revealed little horns on their heads). She said the dragon was helping rid the world of evil. "It's Jesus' dragon, Momma."

You know... Jesus might could use a dragon.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

An Anniversary

There's this boy I know. He's handsome and polite and Southern, and he has this smile... I'm pretty taken with him.

Some time ago, around this time of year, we stood facing one another, and suddenly we knew. It was one of those heart-in-your-throat, butterflies-in-the-stomach, sweaty-palms moments. I don't think a single intelligible word was uttered. Nothing has been the same since that day.

We actually knew one another for a while before we became "we." Admired each other from afar, you might say. But we were each closing the door on other relationships, tying up loose ends. And we were in the throes of redefining ourselves.

Let's just say that the romance has been as imperfect as the two individuals that came crashing together that summer. At times we are intertwined, connected in a profound way. At other times we are miles apart.

You see... I'm not easy. There's this neatly manicured wall. It appears solid, and I guard it fiercely. But if you peer between the cracks you find a real mess inside. The girl within the walls is broken and jumbled from one too many shakings. There may still be some good stuff in there among the shards and the dust, and the boy is brave enough to search for it when no one else will.

I wear a ring on my third finger. I wear it always, even when things are unpleasant between us. It is constant and precious, and it symbolizes forever, and that is how I like to think of us.

I haven't spent much time with the boy lately. There is work and clients and children and church. And walls. In my heart I know that things will settle, and we will have more time for one another. But he is a stubborn boy, and I lack the confidence to encourage him.

I'm not sure this boy reads my blog anymore, but if he does I want him to know that he is my last thought when the night closes around me and my first thought when the sun rises above the horizon.

Happy anniversary, my love.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Thursday, July 2, 2009


Sometimes it seems to me that we live in a disposable society. Paper plates, Styrofoam cups, and plastic eating utensils make meals quick and easy. No one uses handkerchiefs anymore now that facial tissues are so readily available. We throw them away, and they are no longer our problem.

How simple it appears to apply that same mentality to all areas of our lives. When something (or someone) is no longer useful/attractive/clean/strong/desirable/convenient/new enough, we toss it aside. Couch looking a little worn? Get rid of it. Cat acting jealous of the new baby? Well, he's gotta go. Girlfriend didn't turn out to be as fun as you'd hoped? Dump her.

Everywhere we turn there are avenues for parting with that which no longer interests us. There are yard sales in neighborhoods every weekend. We advertise our "gently used" items on websites like Craig's List and Freecycle. When all else fails, drag it to the curb. Ever watch a toddler shove things off her plate and onto the floor because she doesn't want to eat it? It's a lot like that.

Inanimate objects don't care what happens to them after they've served their purpose. But living beings do. Kids and dogs who have become too difficult for their caregivers to handle don't enjoy bouncing from place to place, and their behavior shows it. Old senile Uncle Ezra doesn't want to leave his lifelong home and move into a nursing facility. Why do you think he refuses to get out of the car?

What we rarely stop to consider is that just because something is no longer our problem doesn't mean that no one else has to deal with it. Someone has to haul off our trash once a week. Unwanted kids and pets aren't allowed to just wander the streets. The homeless are herded around town like cattle. And that used-up girlfriend? Well, the next guy that takes her better be ready to help her with her baggage.

I don't believe anyone chooses to outlive their "usefulness." My clients who suffer from depression often express feeling as if they no longer have a purpose in life. They say that sometimes they just can't think of a reason to go on living. I can't help but wonder how many times they've found themselves sitting on the curb.