Monday, August 31, 2009


we are driving for awhile, so i figured i would blog some along the way. we passed into arkansas just a bit ago, and right near the entrance to the state, there is an "adult entertainment" venue. complete with a giant neon "XXX" perched atop its roof, it beckons to passing motorists, promising all sorts of "mature" entertainment. as we passed i just felt sick. i cant help but think of those girls in there, searching for themselves beneath neon lights and leering glances. every one of them is someones sister. someone's daughter. some are mommies. i love the kenny chesney song "dancing for the reminds me that sometimes those women are more than the shame that we attach to them.

she's thinking about what her kids are doing
Five miles away, it's almost time for bed
They're brushing teeth and hearing one more story
And in the mirror she paints her lips bright red
She wishees she could call and say she loves them
But the bossman says no calls go out or in
So she puts on a dress that might feel pretty
If she didn't have to take it off again

She's dancin' for the groceries
She's dancin' for the rent
She's dancin' for the credit card
That she's already spent
In sequins and in laces
She's dancin' for the braces
So her kids can have a perfect smile someday
Smiling while she dances
Is the price she has to pay

They tell her in this job there is no future
So get it while you can 'cause looks don't last
There's money in those pockets for the taking
And if you do it right, it makes the time go fast
The music's loud, the drinks are mostly water
What her name is tonight, she can't recall
The business men stare at the single mother
Who's smiling while she's staring at the wall

She's dancin' for the groceries
She's dancin' for the rent
She's dancin' for the credit card
That she's already spent
In sequins and in laces
She's dancin' for the braces
So her kids can have a perfect smile someday
Smiling while she dances
Is the price she has to pay

Someday she'll have a house out in the country
Someday she'll see the other side of dawn
And no one will ever know
what it was she did before

But she just heard the DJ say, 'you're on'
And the lights come up
And they play her song

She's dancin' for the groceries

sad to think about, but grateful we serve a God of redemption. i hope i can learn to love even those who perpetuate perversity like "adult entertainment", that they might begin to see a God more beautiful than the things that those neon lights can offer.

He shines brighter than any ten foot X.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

i broke a nail.

this is liviyah.

she is four. sweet. precious. she's about to become my niece, too.
liviyah can't talk. she can't understand most of what i say. see, she had a stroke in utero, leaving her with autism. often her features cloud over with confusion. i watched her for a full 6 hours before i wanted, quite honestly, to pull my hair out. in the course of six hours, she had slept, eaten, tossed food on the floor, tried to eat a fingernail (which i had to fish out of her throat), threw a small desk at my head, took off all her clothes, threw more food, and climbed on all the furniture. she had nearly reduced me to tears. me, a seasoned nanny and auntie.

i worked for two weeks this summer as a caregiver, for a woman with paraplegia. polio had left her mostly helpless, requiring the use of a lift and lever system. i went over every morning, got her up, showered, dressed and fed. she couldnt even lift her arms to shave her legs. how humbling to wash the feet of someone who couldnt do it for themselves. i get why Jesus and the disciples washed feet. theres something powerful about that act. its moving. its beautiful. and its humbling. it took three hours. every morning.

three hours.

i complain when the water is not hot enough for my lengthy shower. i complain when i run out of shampoo. then i get in my car, and i drive to the store. she couldnt drive. i had to heat her food, shampoo her hair. i bought her groceries. i realized i am a really big whiner.

because this woman always was smiling. always. like, at eight in the morning, when i was gving her a bedbath (and in my inexperience, splashing water all over the place), or when i nicked her ankle shaving her legs. or when her food was not exactly warm all the way through. she just smiled and said thank you. one morning, i left her house and got in the car only to realize one of my press-on nails had somehow pulled off during my cleaning/cooking chores. i was frustrated for about ten seconds before God gently whispered, "a nail? really?"

yea. i was complaining about a nail. sure my hands looked a little uneven, but they were hands that had always known the ability to do things for myself. and attached to a relatively healthy body that can walk and move and run. what a whiner.

and sure, liviyah was a handful. but her mommy, a single mommy who is soon to be my sister in law, gets to be with her 24/7. with no break. with no fiance even, like i had, to take the reigns when i couldnt do it anymore. there's no break for her, no respite. and i was complaining.

give me a break.

i need to whine less. because really, breaking a nail is nothin.

Monday, August 17, 2009

an update on the last month and a half.

since i have moved and been so busy, i have not been a good blogger! Chelle and Mal and I are trying to be better bloggers, but I am adopting Chelle's "monthly" blogging update style! mainly because we have had so much going on, i have not had time to stop and blog my usual stuff (though i have much to blog about), so here goes.
we started out july: where we spent the 4th at a family bbq with chris, emily, traci, bryant, parker and drew's mom and stepdad, then we drove to CLANTON, where we got to see thalon in concert, and reconnect with jer, nedra, cam, austin, wes, and jenny, then back to MONTGOMERY where we hung with the eastmont gang and shot fireworks (and drew nearly lost a limb while lighting foreworks). on the 6th, we left for NASHVILLE, which has been my dream for awhile, and we spent four amazing days touring the city, shopping, and getting engaged. we stayed with our good friend tiffany rockhold. on the 8th, drew planned an amazing day, starting with an early morning in the apple store, where he bought me an iphone 3gs! yay! then it was off to get my hair cut, then peiwei chinese food, then a trip to forever21, and then urban outfitters, finished with dinner at the spaghetti factory (where our server was a friend from MEDFORD!). when we finished, tiff and amy walked ahead to the WALKING BRIDGE, and we "stopped for ice cream". little did i know that the ice cream was a delay so that tiff could get hidden for secret engagement pics! we walked to the bridge, where emerson drive's music video for moments was filmed. when we got the top, overlooking the beautiful city, drew dropped to one knee, and pulled out my beautiful ring. i was so stunned, i couldnt even say yes! (i did, eventually ;)
when we got back, we went to BIRMINGHAM for PROM! yes, we are a little old for prom, but rush of fools had their very own prom, and it was so much fun. dancing, getting dressed up and a limo! we even had "after prom" breakfast! when prom was over, we were so blessed to share in the wedding of our dear friends Camille and Austin in their special day. Drew was an usher in their wedding. After all that travelling, it was great to kick back and relax for a little while. we have been keeping busy working, and spending time with Drew's brother, Bryant, and his girlfriend, Parker. we went and played lazertag, went to a biscuits game, and have been spending time with the eastmont group. This past weekend, Drew went on tour for the first time since i have been here, and i had to navigate bham by myself (which i did without any major accidents. thank you iPhone!). i got to stay with jer and nedra, which was really fun, and kept me distracted from missing my sweetheart! i even got to do some shopping at f21 and urban. on friday night, the fool's girls had a girls night, and it was so great to see chelle, mal, em, amelia, and jessica.

on thursday, we have ENGAGEMENT PICS with, and we will be driving to prattville to have them taken! we are pretty excited and thankful to drew's dad that we can enjoy this blessing of portraits. on FRIDAY, we will be driving up to BHAM again to spend some time with the fools girls before the festival date on saturday! we will get to see our friends from thalon and the fools as they share a tour billing. its been so fun to connect with drew's friends here, including our friends thomas and courtney, who just got engaged :)

okay, thats about it! i will try to be a better blogger when life slows down (which probably means never :)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

sometimes in the middle of an ordinary life, love gives us a fairy tale."

"i have found the one my soul loves." song of songs 3:4