FLIES, FLIES, FLIES

Last night I came in from work and I was exhausted. When I walked into my kitchen I saw a very disturbing sight. It seemed as if someone had called for a family reunion of flies to convene one my kitchen blinds. I swear there were like fifty flies on one of my blinds.

I hurried to get my fly swatter and I started swatting. I swatted left and right, up and down and thought I got most of them.

So today I came home from another very full day. The flies were getting smart. They were not all on the outside of my blind but about twenty of them were lined up to the side of my blind where I had to cock my head a bit to see them.

I started swatting again. I heard a plaintive yell from my daughter’s bedroom upstairs. She begged me to stop making that noise because she had a quiz to take for college. So I stopped and pondered a moment…

Not to be outdone by flies I looked in my garage for a spray which could kill flies. I found none. All of my sprays were for roaches and ants. I have never had a roach in my house so I don’t know what possessed me to buy four whole cans that were specifically designed to kill roaches and ants. Nonetheless I grabbed one and started to spray the flies, making sure that no cat food was in the line of spray.

I must have killed close to one hundred flies and while I was doing that I realized that this may be a great opportunity for me to wash those windows. Boy did they look beautiful when I was done.

I have never had fly problems to this extent before and I think it may be because my screen door has a hole in the screen, so I put the glass window down on that to close up the hole. This still has me concerned though.

Is anyone else having problems with flies? Does anyone know if this is a sign of a hard winter coming up?

This summer while I was at my parents home in Nebraska I kept getting bitten by flies when I was working outside. My mother said that they bite when it is fixing to rain. I was just thinking if they do that when it rains maybe they were coming into my house because it was going to be a hard and cold winter.

I was wondering if there was some natural and organic way to dissuade them from coming inside also. I really hate using those sprays around my home and the fly swatter seems so primitive.

So I am asking for help people. If anyone has any info on flies please leave a comment. Thanks!

I just killed another one on my desk with my cell phone. The one good thing about flies are that at this time of year they are all extremely slow, so basically you can kill them with whatever you have nearby.

THE ROOT OF INSECURITY

I have talked at great length with one of my friends about insecurity in others. It is a drain to be with someone who is insecure.

I have been insecure in many relationships and I am still constantly looking inward to find that demon. As I search for that evil within me I examine each and every act I have done with those whom I say I love.

If you are loved by someone who is insecure you are not truly loved, because insecurity is rooted in fear. In 1 John 4:18 the Bible says that “perfect love expels all fear.”

So when someone “loves” you out of a root of insecurity there is manipulation and fear entangled in the emotion. They are constantly looking to be affirmed and encouraged, expecting you to rid them of their demons.

To love someone such as this is a futile venture, for they must take responsibility to deal with their own demons.

As I examine my own actions I became powerfully aware that I had used manipulation just recently. I had portrayed it as an act of love but because it was based in a root of fear it could not be love.

After that manipulation I had someone reenter my life whom I had previously cared for. I had the opportunity to sin based on my fear. This time I did the right thing, I turned and walked away from sin.

That decision was not only because I cared for someone but it was also because I cared for myself. I was being true to myself when I said “no” to the temptation. It felt so good.

Somehow it seems to me that to walk in righteousness is the only way to truly clean my heart of insecurity. To do what is right according to God allows me walk in confidence.


MANIPULATION

I think everyone manipulates others to an extent. Whether for control of others or for professional gain we are all guilty. I have had my share of people who have tried to manipulate me.

As I have matured I have learned not to play their game.

My ex-husband’s third wife thought that if she was nasty enough to me that I would believe her lies and do what she wanted. I didn’t buckle under. I remember one night when she sent me one text message after another that were cruel and hateful. I merely told her that I was deleting the messages and if she continued I would block her number. She is a real piece of work to say the least.

There have been people who have tried to manipulate me by buying things for me or by giving me money. I appreciate people who are generous with me. That does not mean I am owned by them though. There is a difference.

Lately I have learned a very cunning reponse to those who manipulate. I don’t respond immediately. I wait and think clearly about my response, making sure I am not in “Flight or Fight” mode and then I respond with intelligence.

Those who are intelligent respond appropriately and even though I believe the intent was to manipulate, the manipulation loses all of its power because it was met with wisdom.

Sometimes I have mistaken someone’s intent and after some reflection I have come to an unlikely conclusion. They never intended to manipulate, so the discourse turns out quite positive.

The most important part of my response is prayer. I take my response to God before I react. I ask Him to temper my anger if I am offended and to search my heart for any offense before I respond. Then I usually have the response I need. One which will shred to pieces any attempt to manipulate me.

If God is in control of my life, I need not suffer those who attempt to manipulate me, for manipulation is rooted in control.

I think of all of the things which I have accomplished in life, learning how to trump manipulative people is one which may not only benefit me but also them. For if they are unsuccessful with manipulating me they may be forced to not only be honest with me but with themselves also.

A GIFT FOR EVERYONE

I was talking with one of my patients last night on the phone. He has transitioned from being a patient to one who is now a friend. He told me last night what a wonderful person I was. ( I was thinking, “I had to wait till I am 51 years old for someone to finally notice this?!!) lol

The aspect that I think he deems as being the most wonderful about me is that I bring the gift of laughter with me when I go on my visits. Growing up in a home where my mother was chronically depressed and bitter, my parents were not schooled in the school of positive parenting. If I didn’t know how to be joyous, I would have gone insane.

The other day I had one of my little ladies who I go visit busting out in giggles. I may not be able to perform heart surgery, or excise a tumor from a brain, but what I can do is bring joy with me as I go to work every day. Somehow I think that may be why so few of my patients go on to heaven, because when I make them laugh they experience a touch of heaven here on earth.

Sometimes it is just a smile which someone needs. People usually break into smiles when they see me. I have never understood how I do that but even when I am not smiling everyone else is.

The last thing that someone needs is for me to go on and on about how difficult my life is. My life is not easy but if someone would observe me they would never suspect that because I try, most times, to focus on the rays of joy instead of the clouds of despair. The clouds of despair have been blinding at times in my life but I am thankful for the friends who have lifted my despair and have forced me to see the sunshine again.

If you know someone who is homebound and is in need of some cheering up, go visit them and see if you can make them a gift of a giggle. Giggling is like a hug to the heart and it can warm a soul.


A CHANGE OF DRESS

I used to be lectured about how I dress from my mother, my sister and several of my bosses. I always thought it was because their bodies were frump factories and mine was curvaceous in all of the right places.

To date only one of my friends who was beautiful had told me very kindly to not wear a bikini. I still did though.

That was until I asked God to go shopping with me. I wrote about that day in an earlier post. God didn’t put me down, nor did he make me think He was just insecure. What He did do was show me some clothes which showed off my long legs but didn’t exposse my cleavage.

After that shopping trip I started to reevaluate my wardrobe. This summer I was in quite a fix. I had some stunning maxi dresses but they were very low cut. I didn’t want to show that much cleavage so I looked through my closet and found some tank tops which had a higher neck line and layered them under the maxi dresses. One of the tank tops matched so well it looked as if it was part of the dress.

My patients always love the way I dress up for them. I like the fact that the sweet old ladies rave about how pretty I am. I always tell one of them “when you are visiting a queen it is important to look like a princess.” She always breaks into a smile when I say this.

It is more than this though. When I used to dress with a seductive intent I was dressing to bring attention to myself. I got way too much attention and all the wrong kind of attention. Now I dress to please others, not me and it is twice as much fun.

I have learned that how I dress can be a distraction to the message I am to bring to others about Christ. It is important that I dress not only to please others but most importantly to please Him.

SECOND CHANCES

The times I have given second chances to someone have been few. There has always been a common thread among those second chances and that common thread is that they are never successful.

Recently I gave someone a second chance in my life. This person is a wonderful person whom I had dated for over four years and he was still crazy about me.

He had connected with God in a very special way after I had broken up with him. I thought that there would have been more changes.

There was a change but it wasn’t him who changed. It was me.

I was able to look at the relationship with honesty and realized that he loved me more than I could ever love him. I loved him enough to realize that and forced him to let go. He deserves someone who loves him as much as he loves them.

This time when I broke up there was sadness and grief. The first time I broke up there was anger and bitterness. I had broken up with him the first time because he had lied to me on two different occasions and that deceit had continued for four years.

This time he was truthful but I also had to be truthful. My love was insufficient for him. He also loved me in a way which caused me stress and anxiety. I felt like I was walking back into a cage and love should not make you feel like that.

Yesterday I volunteered at my church for their membership class and they talked about how my pastor had left another church to start the church I go to. He left with no hard feelings.

I am leaving this relationship with no anger or bitterness, just the realization that I need to move on. I also know I am leaving this relationship at the urging of the Holy Spirit.

It will not be easy but instead of feeding my anger with bitter memories, I will pray for God to bless this man with a wife who can please him. I know now that woman is not me.

HATERS

Haters is a term used for those who attack others which have gained some notoriety in a particular venture. I am considered a very successful blogger and writer so I am hated by some. I kind of consider it an achievement. If no one hates you, you haven’t done much in this life.

I have had more than a couple of “haters” who have left comments on my blog. Two of the haters I had to block and the other one asked me to take him off of my subscription list. I didn’t do that because anyone who is stupid enough not to know how to unsubscribe from my blog isn’t smart enough to understand me.

The first hater I had slyly came in as a friend. He accused his ex of being a narcissist. I can relate to that.

I sensed a danger though, when I read his comments. When he told me to pull one of my blog posts I went on the attack, making clear to him that he was not the administrator of my blog and had no editorial powers. He backed down and apologized.

He apparently lived in my area which was another concern for me. I write under a pen name to protect my ex. Although I don’t love him anymore I certainly don’t ever want to cause him any harm. I also write under a pen name for my own safety.

Then he located my profile on a dating site. He said I was “smoking hot”. I pulled all of my profiles down from the dating sites after that. (Haven’t missed them one bit either)

He told me which church he went to suggesting that I attend that church. I marked that down as one church I would never set foot in.

When I launched my advertising plan requesting companies to sponsor ad pages he crossed a line. He gave me unneeded business advice. I have several friends who are very successful business men and multimillionaires. I informed him that I already had acquaintances which could give me sound business advice and I didn’t need his. Then he flipped out and became verbally abusive. I blocked his IP address.

The other IP address I blocked I had tracked to see where it was located. It was clearly located at my ex-husband’s address. This entity had placed vile comments on my blog and I knew it was probably his third wife, who is to be pitied.

The other “hater” I remain grateful for. He has caused me to become a better writer. He pointed out that if I wrote in generalizations; instead of attacking specific people, who I thought had fallen off of the deep end, that I would have more power as a writer.

I am grateful to him even though he was the one who was so ignorant he could not figure out how to unsubscribe. I hope he hasn’t figure it out yet because I have learned how to write better do to his criticism and I am so grateful for his comment.

I grew up in a home where criticism was served as a meal every day with snacks of rejection in between meals. I learned to be defensive as a mode of self protection. It was a survival mechanism.

As I have become more confident in God I have been able to peel the layers off of criticism as one peels an onion and examine if there is any truth at the core. If I find truth it is no longer considered criticism but wisdom and I try always to learn from wisdom, even if it comes from a hater.

QUESTIONS ABOUT LOVE

When you say you love me…

Do you love me for who I am now or what you think you can force me to become?

Do you really even care about what I want to achieve in this life, if it does not revolve around you?

Do you realize that loyalty and commitment can not be forced upon anyone? They must be earned, just like trust.

Do you realize I may have opposite opinions and viewpoints than you?

If you love me that should not bother you. I am entitled to my own opinion.

If you buy me something that does not mean you own me. It merely means you spent money trying to win my love.

When you constantly state how much money you spent on me I want to throw everything you ever gave me back in your face.

I didn’t need most of the things you bought. You bought them for yourself, not me, so that you could feel as if you added something to my already full life.

How come every time I talk with one of my male friends you assume that they want to sleep with me? Is it because you think they are hunks? Or is it because you view me as a sex object and because you don’t respect me, you assume they won’t?

How come every time I am not totally enmeshed with you, you freak out and get angry? Is my playing Words with Friends on my cell phone with my sister such a horrible thing to do?

How come you get angry every time we are together over some little thing or another but when I get angry you are always concerned that I don’t offend the person I am angry at?

I guess it doesn’t matter if I am offended by your anger does it? Because according to you, you get angry because I am not being loving enough to you. I guess the only thing that matters is whether or not you feel loved.

Do you realize that if you really love someone you don’t have to spend every waking moment thinking about them or being with them? You don’t even need to see them once a month.

I have friends I don’t see more than a couple of times a year. Some of them are men and we say we love each other when we see each other. They have been there for me when I am down and I have done the same for them. These relationships have been platonic and Christ has been the bond between us.

You say that you think God wants us to be together. I wonder why God would want me to be with someone who puts so much stress on me that I can not fulfill His purpose for my life?

You say you don’t think I love you and I agree because trying to love you requires too much.

It requires that I stop loving me.


LOVING YOURSELF

In the Bible it says you should love others as much as you love yourself.

Sometimes verses in the Bible can be weighted with hidden treasures and this one certainly is a treasure. The hidden treasure is that God assumes that we will love ourselves first.

I think loving yourself can sometimes be the most difficult goal to achieve in life. For we know all that is bad, indifferent and unfinished in our lives, don’t we?

I find that I can forgive others much more easily than I can forgive myself.

When I look at some of the narcissistic personalities I have encountered in my life I realize that they are to be pitied. There is a void within them which preys upon the weakness of others.

They are constantly looking for approval from others and many times achieve this by gaining material possessions. They are cunning in business and sly in getting others to do their bidding.

They may have a lot of friends or not many at all. It depends on whether or not the friends support them or honestly confront them.

They can be quite the martyrs also. They will buy items for those that they supposedly love only to manipulate and control them. They will also do many things for those which they “love” to try and entrap them in a relationship.

They are masters at playing the “guilt” card. If you don’t call them every night or attend the events which they want you to attend, they will guilt you into thinking that you are doing something wrong. They may even accuse you of immorality to get their claws of control embedded in your heart.

They can be such victims, buying you things which you don’t even need, and doing without themselves. That is sweet but if it was really a gift from the heart, you wouldn’t know that they were doing without to give to you.

The other trait of those that can not love themselves is that they often have a simmering pot of anger which can erupt at the slightest provocation. They will attack until you attack back and then expertly switch to the role of a victim.

The most frustrating aspect of a narcissistic personality is the bottomless pit within their heart which draws from others to try and feel loved. Whatever you do for them it is never enough to make them feel loved. It becomes exhausting and an effort in futility to make them feel as if you love them.

I have found so much truth in the Bible that I value it above all other books, movies, or wisdom I have gained from others.

In this verse is hidden one of the greatest truths. That being; if you do not love yourself first, you will be unable to love others as God intends you to.

The other danger in loving someone who does not love themselves is that their real goal is to make you into an extension of them, eliminating the vibrant person you once were.

So how do you break free from someone who is a vacuum which sucks all of the love out of you?

Embrace yourself and take joy in the unique person God created you to be. Engage in activities which cause you to be at peace.

Break free of those who want to control you for their own benefit.

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.

God has given us free will to choose to obey Him. How dare a mere human try to steal that and mischaracterize it as love.

SUBMITTING TO ABUSE

I first wrote about Ray Rice in my post on ESPN. http://www.spotublog.com/espn/ ‎

There has been a lot of talk about how his wife is supporting him. There may be some people who think that is so sweet that she is standing up for her man.

But is it the right thing to do? I mean, if you support someone doesn’t that mean that you are in favor of what they have done?

Furthermore if what they have done is wrong, then are you not enabling them to do more wrong?

I dated a man in college who was abusive and I almost lost my life to his insanity. My ex-husband was also abusive. He choked me several times and one time slapped me so hard when I was pregnant that I did actually see stars.

The college boyfriend I broke up with after he threatened my life at gun point. My abusive ex I stayed with for twelve years.

Looking back on my marriage I have realized why I stayed in a clearly abusive relationship for so long. I made the mistake of thinking that his abuse was my fault. I kept thinking if I just changed into the kind of person he wanted,the abuse would stop. Meanwhile I lost sight of who I was and what made me happy.

In listening to interviews with Janay Rice I have heard her say that “she needs to take responsibility for what she did wrong in the confrontation that night.”

She’s got that wrong, under no circumstances should a woman ever get slapped, hit or choked. It is never the responsibility of a victim to assume ownership of an abuser’s act of violence. If you do, you are actually making them weaker and allowing them to continue in their weakness.

It is important to disengage from relationships which are abusive or even have the potential for abuse. If you do so, you may actually be helping the abuser face the reality of his abuse with truth, instead of lies.

If they are man enough they will admit their abuse and seek counseling to reform. If they aren’t, at least you will still be alive.