Tuesday, August 2, 2011

A Day Of Rest?

I came to the conclusion a long time ago that pastors and their families do not get that day of rest that God promised us a long, long time ago. Pastors, especially those who are bi-vocational like my hubby, do not have weekends and therefore their families do not have them either. After working at a secular job all week long, they must cram their work around the house, prepare for the next day's sermon, and visit the sick and needy into a very crowded Saturday, often working into the wee hours of Sunday morning. Church takes up nearly half the day on Sunday and if he is lucky, a short nap while dinner is being prepared, then some have to get ready for an evening service. Sometimes more home visits are squeezed in or some concerned church member will call to remind him of some upcoming event he needs to push or, most likely, to complain about something he said in the message or how someone else hurt their feelings that morning and needs to be chastized.

Last Sunday hubby and I drove nearly a hundred miles to visit a member who is ill and facing very serious surgery. In the past their have been trips out of state to visit members or their relatives, dead, dying, in need of salvation, marrying, incarcerated, or some other various reason.

This past Sunday was even busier than usual.  A dinner after church, visiting family afterwards, church that evening, sad news regarding a marriage in trouble, people sick, family sick, well you get the picture.   Yesterday the work week started over, tomorrow evening Bible Study.  How I envy (I know, we aren't supposed to do that) those people who can leave their jobs at the office, have days they can sleep in, and are able to not answer their phone if they don't want to.  Ah, to be a farmer's wife - no, maybe not.  How about a coal miner's wife - no, not that either.  Well, maybe I will just ponder this a bit more.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Very Blah Day

Things have been going very well for quite awhile now and I have had no need to blog and vent my frustrations about my husband. In fact, I am seriously thinking of giving up this blog, no one reads it anyway. However I am still being ignored and still feel invisible. It is very easy to read my husband when I talk to  him, his eyes are somewhere else and his mind is obviously on other things.

Tomorrow I will be leaving for a few days. Nothing special, just a weekend trip with our daughter and her family to the lake. I am sure I will enjoy it and need the rest, but what I would really like is for my husband to at least remember that I am going away. He has not even mentioned it since he told our daughter that he would leave work early tomorrow so he will be home before we leave - we'll see.  He has not asked if I need anything, if I have money, or even a hint that he might miss me.

But anyway, I have always written funny, humorous stories and would really like to do that again.  So maybe I will begin a new blog and leave this one for those occasional times when I just can't stand it any longer - even though no one responds.  So I guess I write this blog because I am invisible to my husband to a group of readers that consider me invisible too. 

Sorry, it is just a very blah day.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

When You Have Done Everything Else Together

We're getting older. We have been together a very long time. We've laughed together, played together, prayed together, created children together, even cried, screamed, ranted, and raved at each other. Yet the other day, we did something that most couples never have an opportunity to do together.

When hubby got home that evening we shared a light supper, then slowly began to drink what appeared to be something like a koolaide cocktail. No, it's not what you think, we weren't trying to do ourselves in - although it might have felt like it at times.

Next morning we awoke early, showered (alas not together), dressed and were out the door by 6 am. It was an hour's drive and we passed the time in silence, each lost in our own thoughts and apprehensions. Yet before we knew it we were at the door. We stopped, hugged each other, squared our shoulders and went in.

The receptionist met us and asked for our paperwork - and money, somewhat over five hundred dollars. I remember thinking that was more than we paid for our first car. Anyway, after that process was completed we took our seats and began staring at the Today Show but not really seeing what was going on. Pretty soon our youngest daughter arrived, a little later her older sister arrived - necessities in getting us home later.

After awhile hubby's name was called and he disappeared behind a set of ominous looking doors. Soon they were calling for me. I felt like a prisoner walking to the gas chamber. A nurse touched my arm and said not to worry, all would be well.

A well worn gown was given to me with instructions to remove all my clothes except my black knee high socks, don the gown, climb into bed, and wait. Hubby, I was assured was safe in another cubicle and, I assume, participating in the same ritual as I. Once I was settled, the same nurse returned with a mile long list of questions I had to answer and a IV bottle and foot long needle to be inserted into my dehydrated little vein.

Eventually youngest daughter was allowed to sit with me. She said her daddy was just fine, and our older daughter was sitting with him to assure he did not grab his clothes and run.

So by now you will have deduced that we were sharing outpatient surgery - matching colonocopies to be exact. We told the nurses we gave them to each other for Valentine's Day. They thought that was very romantic. I thought of all the things I might ask for on Valentine's Day - a colonocopy was not one of them.

Few people, I am sure, ever get a chance to see inside there colons - why would they want to - but I woke up during mine and watched the monitor as the scope traveled slowed inside of me (not as gross as one might think thanks to the koolaide cocktail the day before). Then I was being awakened again and wheeled into the recovery room right next to hubby who was having a really good time laughing and joking with the nurses and our two daughters. There we were even given pictures that were taken during the procedures - we're thinking of framing them and hanging them in the hallway.

After a few mintues our clothes were returned to us and we dressed and made our way to the cars. Youngest daughter, who just happens to be a nurse, drove her daddy home - his request because he wanted the best medical care with him. Older daughter, while not medically trained but much more sympathetic, drove our car, which is more comfortable anyway. We made our way home stopping only to eat since the previous day's food was in liquid form. Hubby, who we thought would be such a baby over this, ate a ten course meal. I ate scrambled eggs. At home hubby became a ball of energy and worked around the house all day. I went to bed and slept for twelve hours.

So all-in-all, this was not a bad experience, not one I would want to do everyday but to tell you the truth, it was almost (almost) fun, and I would certainly recommend that couples do this together. I wonder if Hallmark will ever print a card that says "The couple who..." well, you can fill in the rest.

Saturday, February 12, 2011


Do you ever have those days when everything is just blah - or am I the only one in this entire world who does. This is one of those days. It wasn't even that bad outside. It is warming up, the sun was fairly bright, and it is Saturday and I didn't have too much to do.

I could not sleep last night. Too much caffeine and I don't even drink coffee. I didn't go to bed until two, tossed and turned until after 4, and then that lovely lady from the last post called at 9am and woke me up. Now I am walking around in a fog, did not shower until after noon, did not get dressed until after three. I fixed breakfast, again it was after noon, and I have done a few loads of laundry. I have dough rising in the bread machine, dishes rinsing in the dishwasher, and I am complaining to a not so very vast audience of blog readers while watching The Lake House for the umpteenth time.

I am angry with my husband and he hasn't done anything wrong - no more than normal anyway. I am angry with my grandchildren who live here and they too have not done anything to warrant it. I am angry with my daughter, my daughter-in-law, and about ninety percent of the people I go to church with. I am even angry with the dog and she has stayed out of my way all day and as far as I know, not left me any surprises anywhere.

So what is wrong with me. I am tired, I am moody, my sock keeps getting bunched up at my sore toe, and I got a letter today from the local sheriff telling me I have to report for jury duty. I don't have my lesson ready for the kids tomorrow, I don't have my Sunday School lesson read for the adult class, and I just found out I don't have any boneless chicken for the alfredo I was going to make for dinner to go with the aforementioned dough rising in the bread machine. I would like a glass of wine and I don't even drink.

It is Valentine's weekend. I have ordered a book for hubby that I know he wanted. I am waiting to see if hubby remembers and gives me something too. What I would really like are the things I asked him for at Christmas; a bottle of sparkling cider, a night of passion, and a new mop. These things costs less than $10, cheap date, right? And surprisingly enough he remembered what I asked for this year. The unopened bottle of sparkling cider is still in the pantry, and I found the mop outside my bedroom door one morning a few days after Christmas. All that is left is the night of passion so he wouldn't have to buy me anything at all. But then why be disappointed for the second time.

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Church Member Who Cried Wolf

We have a really irksome woman who attends our church. Surprise, bet you don't have one of those! Anyway, she calls us constantly wanting us to pray for this person or that person, for this illness, that catastrophe, this broken relationship, that lost dog. You get the picture. I am not saying that she shouldn't, this is the pastor's job isn't it. However, when she calls it is mostly about how these requests affect her. "I just don't know how I can stand anything more." "My plate is full enough." "I don't think I can help anymore." "Well, I have something more I have to deal with." Sometimes I just want to ask her if she thinks these things are hard on her, how does she think the person who is going through them feels? Yesterday she called four times with requests; a friend's daughter who was taken, seriously ill, to the hospital (I just can't loose her, she is like a daughter to both of us) - however, no one accompanied the "daughter" to the hospital. The daughter was admitted but walked out because she did not like the roommate.

Did we know anybody who would like a dog - kennel and carrier included (I won't be able to sleep until I find this dog a home). Did I know the name of that church that so-and-so came from (I just have to find my friend a new church - I know the friend and she is quite capable of finding her own church and most likely just wants to find one where they will cater to her and she will treat anyone who befriends her as her own personal servant). Please remember the woman I work with who is so sick (I just don't know how she will be able to deliver all those papers today and there is nothing I can do except sit here and worry about her and make myself sick).

In most cases the requests are things she has heard about - not directly involved in - so she really has nothing to do with it nor does she know that much about it. She just thinks she has to be in charge, she is the only one who can get anything done, or she is the only one who know how to do anything, the doctors can't do anything without her to show them how. I am sure the hosptials are ready to throw her out by the time the patient is cured.

Granted, prayer for anybody never hurts and I am happy to do that, so is my pastor hubby, but she makes them into a life or death situation and wants us to stop everything and call everybody we know to pray and chances are the dying person is on their way home (their earthly home not the Heavenly one) before we finish the calls. Like the woman who was being rushed to the hospital with either a heart attack or a stroke - to a hospital 75 miles away. Now there are three hospitals nearby and about a dozen between us the hospital 75 miles away and if she needed to be rushed, wouldn't they take her to a hospital nearby. The woman was not even admitted.

These calls always come with a lot of sighing, and urgency, and sobbing, and stress, and I am sure wringing of hands and pacing the floor. She called me one day and asked what I was doing and before I could think I told her I was just doing the laundry (which I was). She then proceeded to tell me about a man in my town who had severely hurt his leg and needed a ride to the hospital. She sounded so hysterical I asked for his name and address and told her to tell him I would be right there. She then told me he couldn't leave just yet as his wife had a doctor's appointment and he had to take her because she didn't drive. I think I muttered something about letting me know when he was ready to go, which he did not as I think it must have dawned on him that if he could drive his wife to the doctor, maybe he could swing by the hospital on his way home.

Once she called and told us her favorite cousin had died - one she had not seen in many years who lived about ten miles away. She wanted hubby to come to the viewing that night to comfort the family and so she could show him off as "her Pastor". The cousin had his own church and pastor who would be there and he had been "her Pastor" at one time but she just didn't like him anymore.

I don't mean to sound callous about this and I believe whole-heartedly in prayer and helping others but one day she will call, her request will be real, she will need "her Pastor" to help her through it, prayers will be needed, and we will be hardened, we won't really hear what she is saying.

Friday, January 21, 2011


I think I remember that grass is green, flowers bloom, and little birdies sing outside my window. However, those memories are beginning to fade. There is snow on the ground here in beautiful downtown Ohio, about six inches now. I know that may not seem very much to some folks, but we have had snow almost since the first of December. We got more snow in December than we have ever had. I think the same maybe true for January. I like snow - don't like to drive in it - but it is pretty, almost serene.

It is also cold, may get down to zero tonight. I have not been warm since, again the first of December. I have cabin fever - cause, after all, who wants to go out in this mess.

We have a really good snow cleaning crew in our town. They start about 3:00 am to clean the roads. They start with our road, the one about ten feet from our second floor bedroom window. They make a second run about 3:15 am. Again at 3:30 am. By 6:00 am, when hubby gets up to go to work, they have been past about seven times and hubby has had about four hours of sound sleep.

Hubby likes to shovel the snow, why I am not sure. He is the oldest man on our street and the only one who cleans his walk. Last night he brought home a new curved handle snow shovel, to replace the one he has already worn out this winter. He has two small snow blowers in the back, but does not use them, they do not clean well enough.

In general, winter is not my thing. I do not enjoy being out in the cold. I do not build snowmen. I don't throw snowballs. The crunch of walking in snow reminds me of crunching bones. There is about three feet of shoveled snow in my small flower bed - no tulips, no iris, no roses, just snow, lots and lots of snow.

So for now I will sit inside by the fire, wrapped in my favorite blanket, write silly blogs on my laptop, and wait for Spring - glorious Spring.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Never Having To Say A Word

Hubby and I had breakfast yesterday with my sister, brother-in-law, and uncle. It is quickly obvious that hubby and I are unnecessary to the conversation, we are just there as filler. Although we live closer to my uncle, we rarely see him and his wife (who was absent from yesterday's meeting) unless we have been invited by my sister to tag along.

My uncle (my late father's oldest sibling) is 89 years old. He still drives, has a enormous circle of friends, and holds down a full-time job. My sister is also the oldest in our family, drives the sick and needy to appointments, has an enormous circle of friends, and, though retired, still does consulting work. They are the most educated members of our very large, extended family. Uncle is short twelve hours of having his doctorate. I do not know when his finished his college education but I would assume it was somewhere just past WWII, which he served in, because he says Uncle Sam paid for his education. My sister, who does have a doctorate, mentioned that she could teach him the classes necessary for those twelve hours.

Breakfast, at a local restaurant, lasted about two hours. It was two hours of an "I can top that" kind of conversation between uncle, sister, and brother-in-law. Hubby and I just sat back, ate, and did our "filler" job as best we could since we are not college educated, well-traveled, nor do we have an enormous circle of friends (and certainly none we could name drop). It was two hours of "I had dinner last night with my friend, who is a relative of Woody Hayes"; "at a party for my son-in-law, who is retiring from the military as a Colonel"; "as I said to Rudy Giuliani"; "on my last trip to Hawaii"; "when I was in Russia"; "my grandson's college graduation"; "I was seated next to Menachem Begin"; "I had just built a million dollar building when I sold the business"; "I'm having trouble finding the part I need for my antique car". Getting the picture?

I love my sister, and I love my uncle, but I am not a competitive person. I have accomplishments too - maybe none they would think worthy of entering into their conversations - but certainly monumental to me. I travel, on weekend getaways with hubby, vacations with family and friends, hospital visits to the sick and dying. I've even been to Hawaii, where I visited with a foreign ambassador and his family in their home. I have grandchildren in college. I have a granddaughter in high school taking college classes. I have two grandchildren in junior high taking high school classes. I have grandchildren in the honor society. I have grandchildren in the gifted and talented program. I have a grandson just out of the Army - not an officer, just a wounded and decorated corporal, who woke up one night with an Iraqi soldier standing over him ready to plunge a knife into him, who was shot seven times, who had three separate head wounds from mortar attacks. I also have a grandson who is a lost soul, with brain trauma from too many diabetic seizures, who will never be a rocket scientist, who will probably never hold a decent job, but a soul we are grateful to still have with us. I also have a granddaughter who probably will be a rocket scientist someday. I have a daughter who is a nurse, caring and delightful to be around. I have a son who has built homes for the poor and needy. I have a daughter who takes beautiful pictures, and another one who bakes pretty cakes for weddings and birthday parties. I have a husband who preaches wonderful sermons, performs weddings, and will probably preach the funeral of this very same uncle - someday.

So, while my life may not seem interesting to them, I am accomplished in a way that is more than satisfying to me. I do not have to announce my triumphs to the world - or to my family, I think they already know.