Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The High Price of Peace

I am going to tell you something, something I wouldn't normally share. (And, if you know me at all, you know how true that is)

I have failed.

Well, OK. I have failed a LOT over the years, I'm human, flesh and blood, and it happens.

But, that's not what I am referring to.

I failed at something that I had dreamed of since I was a young girl and old enough to weave dreams about my future.

I failed at my marriage.

There are so many people who will sit back and say those famous words, "It's not my fault."

I am here to say it WAS my fault. I cannot take complete blame because there were two people involved. But, I take complete blame for my own actions or lack of action.

It is strange how wars are fought throughout history just to gain peace. Hundreds, thousands of lives are lost, governments are overthrown, towns destroyed.....all in the name of peace.Why are we fighting this war? Why? To gain peace, of course. That sounds like the biggest contradiction that has ever existed.

I had a lot to learn when I got married. In all honesty, I was nothing but a little girl. A little girl who had her head in the clouds and thought that love fixed everything. A little girl who found out it didn't. And, as the years passed that little girl grew into a young woman who learned how to have what she thought was "peace" in her home only to wake up and realize that peace was an illusion.

With that knowledge, this woman, older now,  decided that if there was no peace in the way she was doing things, it was probably time she did things another way. So, she put up her emotional fists and began to fight a war against what she identified as the enemy.

And fought she did.

Tonight, peace prevails. But, at a very high cost.

If I could go back in time, would I do things differently? Absolutely! There are many things I would that I could change. The whole dynamics of a family was altered forever because of the war. And, because my little girl dream included the *Happily Ever After* and because growing up, all I thought I wanted to be a wife and mother, I would never have chosen this outcome.

There were great casualties. I see it in my children. I see it in the eyes of my friends, and those that were my friends. I hear it in the voices of my family and those that I hold dear. I see it in the mirror daily. War always changes the landscape to some extent, it changes the "view."

I have been very careful with what I say and do because things happen in battle that should die on the battlefield if you are to move on and rebuild something from the rubble. And, I realize that people studying the battle from the outside will draw their own conclusions. That is the way of war.

The ones who lost the most were the ones who didn't deserve it. I told my daughter over the weekend that I have gotten over a lot of hurt. But, one thing I will never get over is being their mother. And, one thing I never want is to see them hurt. No child deserves that, no matter how old they are.

That brings me to today. I am battle weary. Yet, I am walking among the rubble of my failings and I can feel the breeze on my face, hear the birds singing, smell the blossom of spring in the air. So, I have rolled up my sleeves and begun the process of making something of the mess, as I look toward tomorrow with hope.

There are many lessons learned in battle, especially when it is carried out at great cost. You learn new strategies, new ways to negotiate for peace in the future to avoid the battles completely.

And, you also learn to see yourself and the scars you earned with forgiveness. I have buried that little girl who lived with her head in the clouds and I have come to understand the young woman who did the best she knew how to do. But, most importantly, I have embraced the woman who has left her youth behind, the woman who finally stood up straight and tall and paid the price. Oh, was it a high price. Higher than she ever imagined it could be, leaving her life with a huge deficit.

But, also giving her something she longed for.....peace. Peace with who she is. Peace with the decisions she has made. Peace with the rubble around her.

From the outside looking in, it is hard to judge the price that was paid. Unless you are able to see the "books" and see every transaction you will never fully understand. The important thing is, I do know. I know the price, because I paid it. And, so did my family.

(Please understand, I am speaking only of my own failings here. I can't speak for anyone else. This is Sheri 101. I implore you not to read your own *facts* into these musing as that would cause unnecessary hurt to those that have already been hurt. I feel the need to stress here that I am speaking of an emotional war within myself )

Friday, May 17, 2013


There was a promise in my heart
There was a dream I carried
There was a hope that lived here

Years have a way of passing by
Taking what you wanted to find
And leaving you empty and void

If you will but hold on with eyes open
New promises will replace the broken
And happiness can come to you

It is not the pain of your promised past
That decides your hope for tomorrow
It is your faith that love can last

I dare to dream of days to come
When my heart will find it all
And be finally filled with a love that comes

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Twists and Turns

For some reason tonight I am assaulted by a strange melancholy. I don't particularly know why. But, life has a way of surprising you. Tonight I am feeling especially surprised.

I have trouble understanding some things. I suppose there are things I am really not meant to understand. I like to understand things, though. This is always hard for me.

When I have a decision to make I pick it completely apart. I have looked at every angle and every avenue. I have prayed and sought the answer. I have planned and replanned. That is just the way I am. I like to know what's coming.

Now, I like to be spontaneous, too. I just take comfort in having an idea what is coming down the road.

With my old job I traveled quite a bit around the state of Georgia. I took many back roads and saw some beautiful sights. I also suffer from what I lovingly refer to as road rage. It never fails to happen; I am on a back road, trying to make it somewhere, and I get behind a tractor, a peanut truck, a pawpaw.....well, you get the picture.

Because I may not be familiar with the road I am on, I am reluctant to pass whatever vehicle in front of me is causing said rage. If I do pass, I floor it. Someone sweetly reminded me just this week that even when you are passing, the speed limit is still the speed limit. I appreciate that reminder (yes, that is sarcasm, although they reminded me out of love).

You just never know what lies ahead.

Many years ago, in the early years of my marriage to Bobby, he was working out of town and called to tell me he was coming home. I was pregnant with Denise, and it was late so naturally I fell asleep while waiting. Sometime in the middle of the night he called to say he had driven into the ditch and needed me to go get him.

I threw on some clothes and took off. I was traveling fairly fast trying to get to him when suddenly I smelled cow manure. That made me remember that cows usually were across the road ahead and I slowed down just as I was rounding a very sharp curve.

Sure enough, there were cows across the road that I would not have been able to see until it was too late.

I have found recently in my life that the road is full of twists and turns. As much as I long to plan how fast I will reach my destination and which roads I will take, it has proven to be impossible. I can't see down the road, I have no idea what lies ahead. Nothing on this path looks familiar. Everything feels strange.

So, I guess I will take it slow. There is a funny smell in the air and I don't want to round the next curve only to be blindsided by something waiting there. I have downshifted and will just enjoy the scenery until I get on the straight away again.

I cannot anticipate how this trip will turn out, but I have met some good people along the journey. And, I am hopeful that the rest of the way will bring me to the destination I have longed for.....happiness.

Night, friends.