Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Yesterday began as a fine day. It really did. I haven't been feeling well, but I had to leave my house to pick up our holiday cards, and so I decided to run a few errands. My mother left me several messages over the weekend, so thinking that she just wanted to "chat" I decided that I would return her call on my way home. Big mistake. BIG MISTAKE! In the twenty minutes that it took for me to drive home, she never once even took a breath. She was having a tirade about my step-brother and his wife, and since I am her daughter, she is supposed to be able to vent to me(at least that is what she says). Now, my illness is exasperated terribly by stress, so I really try to avoid it. My mother knows this, because my husband has told her many times, but she does not want to get it. I won't go into what her tear was about, but it was childish, ridiculous, and mean-spirited. When I pulled up to my home, my 17 year old daughter was sitting on the front steps. She was on the phone dealing with her own teenage angst, and she hung up when she saw me. She came over to the garage and I rolled my eyes at her in disgust. She asked me who was on the phone, and since my mother still had not taken a breath to see if I was still there, I handed the phone to my daughter. She listened for a few moments, and then without saying a word, she hung up the phone. Yes, she just pressed the off button, and handed the phone back to me! In disbelief, I asked her what she had just done. She told me to just tell my mother that I got disconnected. Are you nuts? You just hung up the phone on your grandmother! Honestly, it felt really, really good. I had listened to my mother go on and on for over twenty minutes, and now, it was over, just like that. Until...my daughter began to complain to me about her father, and how he would not allow her to go someplace. OY! That is when I realized that I wanted to escape from my life for a while. I told my husband that Mexico is only a couple of hours away, and that I could call him when I got there. That is when I decided that I needed to go upstairs to my bed, to crawl under the covers.

This morning when I woke up, I found something sticking through the crack in my door that made me remember why I would never run away. Something that made me realize that although I do not have the kind of relationship with my mother that I have always craved, I AM creating that relationship with my angels. As my heart melted(and I unpacked my bags for that trip to Mexico), here is what I found. A note from my youngest angel. Please allow me to share.

Dear Sunshine. Dear Mommy,

I know this time of year for you is very crazy. You and dad work so hard to get us our presents and make sure we're happy with what we get. But this year, I'm realizing how much effort & work you really do put into making us happy. With whatever gifts I get, I am going to appreciate every little part of it. Thinking of how much I ask for and how much I get, in a way upsets me because thinking of all of the kids who can't ask for anything and don't get anything. I have been feeling so so close to you the past couple of years, not saying that we weren't always close, but you understand me and I feel that I can talk to you about a lot more stuff. I love you beyond the moon and back.

Love always and forever,
Your Sunshine

Through the words of my thirteen year old angel, my heart was instantly mended. I was reminded right then and there, that the promise that I made to myself at around her age, to never be the kind of person that my mother was(is), was definitely not made in vain. I am not a perfect mother, but I am a good mother. That is something that is reflected back to me through the words, actions, and compassionate hearts of my daughters. I thank God that He provided me with a strong enough spirit to keep the promise that I made to myself all those years ago.

Sometimes, we have to be the change that we wish to have in our own lives. Like the great leader Ghandi once said, "We must be the change that we wish to see in the world." We might not have been born into the perfect families, have found the perfect mates or friends, or have the ideal lives that we had longed for. It is our job to improve upon the things that we are not satisfied with. It is our responsibility to be the change that we wish to have in our own lives. We have to begin someplace. Our own worlds are the only places to start, because once we begin there, the goodness tends to radiate outwards, like the ripples in a pond.

The photo at the top of this page shows the feet of my daughter. The one who wrote me this note. She was having a very bad day, and I found her buried underneath her covers, with the blanket covering her head. She does not have many bad days, but being her mom, I had to seize the opportunity to take a picture of her cute, little, albeit upset feet. She was less than amused, but I made her laugh, and she recovered fairly quickly. I am glad that I can make my angels laugh. I sometimes act like the world's biggest dork, just to get them to laugh at me. It makes me feel good that I can bring smiles to their faces at times when they really need it. It makes me grateful that they can do the same for me.

And so, as I contemplate what it is that I would wish for you, what comes to mind is something or someone who can reflect back to you validation. Validation that you are accomplishing the things that you set out to do within your own life. Validation that you CAN be the change, and validation that you are responsible for many, many smiles. May you be reminded of how truly important you are in this world, and may the feeling which that reminder generates, ripple outwards to remind others of the same thing.


Wonderful World of Weiners said...

You just make me smile. Thanks for that. :-)


Humble Origins said...

...Debra, that is an amazing post. I've created a link to it and if you don't mind I would like to post it later today on my own blog - let me know if that is alright... :o)

...It is so odd that you have this here today as I am going thru the same exact thing with my sister. I sometimes feel as if I were born just to be here for my sister...even at my own weakest moments I am still her rock, confidant, therapist and all around general-pick-me-upper. Dear Lord I love her but sometimes I just get so weary...

...Your daughter is following a fine example - you! By the way, if ever you get tired of being a Momma to four Angels, could I adopt one of them? lol... Gosh, not only are you blessed - you are a blessing... ;o)

...Thank you for the wonderful story... :o)

Humble Origins said...

...P.S.~And such perfect lil' feet too! lol... ;o)

Debra w said...


Thank you for the sweet note. You make me smile, too.


I am sorry that you are going through the same thing with your sister. This is just not the way that things are supposed to be.

It would be my honor if you shared my post on your blog. You have such a beautiful, inspirational site, and I love being there.

You are truly an angel!


Melissa @ The Inspired Room said...

Your posts are so thought provoking, I really enjoy them. I love how you look at life, your illness and at your daughters. Inspiring! And loved the letter your daughter wrote you, what a sweetheart.

Thanks so much for sharing!

And thanks for your visit to my blog and kind words, so glad to be getting to know you!


SusieQ said...

I have a relative that I wish I had the nerve to "disconnect" sometimes. Good for your daughter! What a sweet note she wrote to you.

KellyJean said...

Awwwwww... your post made me laugh! I gasped out loud when your 17 yod hung up on your mother. I just couldn't believe it but could see something like that happening here. That had to be a bit freeing. The fact that she started complaining just cracked me up! I could also see that happening here!

My youngest drives me crazy but he also has a very sweet and tender side... in spite of what his sisters think! He doesn't like me to kiss or hug him much anymore but he still sometimes kisses me when I drop him off at school... of course, there is a quick look around to see if there are any teammates lurking about... but he touches my cheek with his hand when I am driving. He told me awhile back that when he does that it is a secret kiss. Awwww... I think I'm gonna go touch his cheek!

Debra w said...


Thank you so much for stopping by. It is always such a pleasure to visit your blog. I find it very relaxing. When I open up your page, I take a deep breath and enjoy!


I am with you about needing to disconnect from certain family members. It is such a difficult thing to do, but sometimes, we must take a break from them. That is what I have to do at times. I step back, and give myself a bit of space until I have the energy to deal with them again. Yes, my daughter knows better than I do, at times!


Oh my gosh, I LOVE that your son touches your cheek as a kind of "secret" kiss! That almost made me cry when I read that! Thank you for sharing that. Every time I think about it, I will remember how much boys love their mommies.(even if they do become too "cool" to show it in public!)

Hugs to all of you! You are all such special women.

Patriot said...

What beautiful relationships you have with your children - you are doing a great job!

Thanks so much for coming by and entering the giveaway - and for your nice comment! Have a great weekend!!

Alison said...

thank you so much for your comment on my blog...it led me here to your beautiful post about your daughter..I needed to read that!!

Chrys said...

::looks around:: WE could be sisters. I think we share the same mother! What a sweet daughter you have. I have a 13 yr. old daughter and she has her angel moments too. Thanks for sharing a beautiful post. Loved it!

Chrys said...

BTW, she has some nice looking feet. She doesn't go barefoot much does she? I am just used to seeing large polynesian boats around here.

Kidlicious said...

Thank you for coming to my site and leaving a comment. Yours is the first comment I've gotten from someone other than my family! :-) That feels good.

I've read some of your posts and I love your beautiful family. I'm new to this blog and commenting thing, so thanks for bringing me in!

Ness said...

Hi, I'm Ness. I wanted to say that I so appreciated your blog today and sorely needed to hear it. I have some of those same hurtful people in my life and with my fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome and thyroid cancer, sometimes the moments get to be too much. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I have a blog(at least for the moment--not sure I'm the blogging type-at www.dachshundstrong.blogspot.com. Feel free to stop by.

Debra w said...


I am so glad that you stopped by. It looks like your blog about American-made products is receiving more attention, so good for you! You are doing a great thing!

Alison, Kidlicious(cute name!), and Ness,

Thank you all for saying hello! It is really nice to meet you all. I do hope that you will stop by again.


Your comment about coming from the same mother really cracked me up! You could be right! Thanks for coming by.

Hugs to all. I really appreciate all of the comments and visits from everyone.


Lynne's Somewhat Invented Life said...

I laughed right out loud when I read your daughter hung up on your mom.

Thanks for the thoughtful post. I loved the note from your daughter. I know you will keep it forever.

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