Wednesday, November 14, 2012

New Day

Well, I made it.  Another day.  Today I got several calls about or for Molly.  One was from a doctor I didn't know.  Wonder if it was for prescriptions?  Don't guess I'll find out.  Another one was a complaint about some of her behavior.

Husband is not handling all this well, and I don't know how to help him.  I wish I did.  I'll keep working on that. 

Hope you all had a wonderful day.  I went to Bible Study tonight.  I'm thinking about looking for a new congregation. 


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

I've Gotta Live the Life I Have

Some of you may have noticed I haven't been here in a few weeks.  I guess if you have prodigals in your life, or uncontrollable elements that you deal with, you might understand where I've been the last couple of weeks.  I have been wallowing.  In the past.  Wishing and remembering that past life, and trying to figure out how to get back there.  What could I do to make things like they were. 

Finally I realized that is unlikely.  Of course, many things can't "go back".  Kids grow and age.  Things change.  But even the things that could change are unlikely. 

Courtney seems to be doing better.  She was told by the doctor out there that her arm would be healed in about two more weeks.  I'm please that she is better.  Also she sounds better in other ways as well.  Today she called to tell me she will be home for Christmas.  A friend is driving her here.  The friend will stay for about two weeks, then Courtney and her friend will head back, unless Courtney changes her mind and stays.  So we will see.  That is a good thing to look forward to.

Our daughter Molly has "divorced" us.  She is angry at us for everything in her life.  She trashes us all over town.  She calls herself by a different last name.  She talks about us to people we do business with, and posts stuff on the internet about us.  I never thought I would reach a point in my life where my daughter would act like this, and I would say nothing.  Not defend myself, not discuss it, etc.  I don't know if people think I'm crazy or she is.  I don't know if they wonder if we know, or wonder why we don't respond.  It is a hard time around here.  People I don't even know call to tell me things about her, what she has said, etc.  Sometimes people hint around, wanting to see if I will respond, try to get me to discuss her.  The last think I want to do is "air my laundry in public".  She is doing enough of that for all of us.  Molly is making bad choices all around, about a lot of things.  I'm afraid the day is going to come when her choices will be gone.

This week I saw a clip art that said, "Well Hello There!  You look like a bad decision.  Come on over here!"  I feel like I have seen that one up close and personal.  More than once.

So I have been wondering how I can fix everything.  How I can make this all better for my family.  And I felt God say to me that I needed to live the life I have now.  I can pray that things get better.  Pray that our daughters make better lives for themselves.  And I do feel that Courtney is trying at the moment.  But regardless, I have to let go of how things were, and concentrate on what I can do now, to make things better in my home for my household.  I know that doesn't mean I won't think of my daughters and pray for them each day.  It just means that I need to make new priorities.  Priorities I have better control over.

God takes care of the birds.  He will take care of my daughters.  He knows what is best for them.  I will continue to pray.  But I am going to TRY to step back, and get out of God's way.  I know He loves them, too.  I'm going to let Him do his work.  And I'm going to pray.

In this way I can be a better wife to my husband, mother to my at-home daughter, and grandmother to my grandchild.  At least I can try.

Stop back by to see me tomorrow.  I'm going to try hard to be here!  I hope all of you are having a better week than we are.  See you tomorrow.


Monday, October 29, 2012

Day 29 of 31 Days of Prayers for My Prodigals

A recent comment to my blog:

ctober 26, 2012 2:51 PM
I re-read this today and gave it some thought. Perhaps one reason you've not been able to build a community is because you're so closed off. There is no picture in your "About Me" section. We don't know your name, or where you live. It makes it much more difficult to connect if the other person holds others at arms' length.
Hello friends,
I received this comment a few days ago.  When it showed up on my cell phone as comments do, it was stunning.  The reason was because I knew she was right.  I have often thought the same thing about this blog myself.  The reason I hold people at arm's length is because a part of me still hopes and prays that one day my girls will come to their senses.  They will wake up and realize what a mess they have made of their lives, and they will decide to change.  And when that happens, I would rather them have the opportunity to do so without everyone else knowing all the mistakes they have made.  I know some people know.  Because they tell us lots of things.  But no one knows everything they do.  Even I don't know everything.  And I hope one day they will deserve a second chance and be able to start a new life.  I realize that I don't have a lot of followers here.  But people do stop by and read what is going on here. Sometimes I'm amazed at the views a day has.  I wonder about it.  Do the viewers also have children they don't know what to do with?  Or are they just checking in to see when I will come to my senses, or lose my mind.  When I don't show up for a few days, do they wonder if I ran away?  I know I worry sometimes about the bloggers I read about, if they are missing for a while.

So anyway, I hope to become closer to the people who visit here.  I feel I am drifting closer to the place where I will be less concerned about being anonymous, and more concerned about being able to help others who may feel they are in a similar situation as I am.

Thank you for all the comments, and especially for the one above.  I appreciate you taking time to share with me your thoughts.  And for taking time to think of my family.  By the way, my name is Dawn, and I live somewhere in the South. 

Please every one be safe during this terrible hurricane.  I have already received prayer requests from some groups I am affiliated with or lead.  I pray you all are safe.

Dear Lord,

Thank you so much for this wonderful day.  Thank you for your son, Jesus, who died so we all could have eternal life.  Thank you, Lord, for the readers who encourage me so often.  Please bless them, Lord.

Lord, I know you know that Courtney seems to be doing better lately.  Every time I hear from her she seems happy and more like her old self.  Lord, stay with her, and guide her to the place you have chosen for her.  She has started daily study in your word.  She is also sharing her faith with others.  Lord, help her to continue to grow in her relationship with you.

Lord, Molly is stumbling.  I know so many things that I can't share.  I pray that you will keep your arms around Molly.  Lord help her to see that the ones she thinks are her friends, are not.  They just want what ever she has to give.  Please let her keep herself safe and apart from the ones she calls her friends.  I pray, Lord, that she will not get in trouble with the law, because of the ones she is running around with.  But if that has to happen Lord, to pull her back to us, then I know you will keep her safe.

Guide, guard, and direct us, Lord.  Amen

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Day 23 of 31 Days of Prayers for my Prodigals

Hello friends,  So sorry that I have been missing for the last 5 days.  Computer problems, family problems.  But I am glad to be here today. 

Molly called me this week and asked me who I thought had called her.  I had no idea.  She told me that she got a call from a jail in another state.  Someone she dated a while ago called her.  They spoke several times that day, but she thought she was going to have to block his calls.  I asked what he was in jail for, and she said drugs.  I told her I was very sorry to hear that.  And I am.

That got me thinking.  So many people we know have children who are involved with drugs.  Several people we know have lost a child to drugs.  I can think of three without trying.  Such a sad time.  And another trend that is a sign of the times are people raising their grandchildren.  Either officially, or unofficially.  I have been asked several times why we do this.  Why don't we make our child raise her own child?  I say, "Because the child is a baby, and he can't help it".  Everyone wants their life to be the way it should be.  Sometimes that doesn't happen, and we don't know why.  I can honestly say I don't have a clue why two of my children have chosen lives different than the ones they were raised to live.  I don't know how we got on this road.  I just hope we don't stay here forever.

Courtney moved a few months ago out of state.  The state is very liberal and has a lot of welfare type programs.  She has applied for food stamps (which have a cash side available to them) and Medicaid.  There is also a possibility she can go to college free because she has no income.  I think if she gets these programs in place, she probably will stay there forever.

Dear Lord,

I have heard you speaking to me this week.  Thank you so much for the calmness you have brought to my life.  I have finally come to terms with the fact that I need to let go, and let you take care of my daughters.  I realize that I will always love them, worry about them, pray for them.  But I have to move aside and  let you work in their lives.

Even thought Courtney was in an accident this past week, thank you for letting her be safe.  Stay with her Lord, and make your presence known to her.  She says she is going to church.  I hope she is.

Please, Lord, keep all the prodigal children safe.  Bless them and their families.  Amen

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Day 18 of 31 Days of Prayers for my Prodigals

God, I've been thinking a lot today.  I know that my two prodigal daughters are adults.  It has to be their choice to pursue a relationship with you.  I understand that.  I hope they return to the path you have planned for them, soon.  But Lord, I just feel like there is something else you want me to do.  I feel there should be a way for me to help other prodigal kids and their families.  Maybe there is a kid out there who is ready to change.  If I can help, Lord, put me in that child's path.  Show me the one.  Here I am Lord, send me.

I've tried to do this before.  Tried to build a group of parents to pray together, support each other and our kids.  But it has not worked out.  If this is something you want me to do Lord, tell me.  And I will try again.  And with your help and guidance, I know I will succeed.  "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me".  Phil. 4:13.

If you just want me to pray for these children, I can do that, Lord.  But if there is more you have planned for me, let me know and I will do my best. 

Today our daughter, Molly, told us she was going to marry her meth-cooker boyfriend.  Lord, some would feel what I am going to ask you is wrong.  But I am her Mama, and this breaks my heart.  Please Lord, step in front of her and keep her from this.  Lord, I pray a hedge of protection around my daughter, Molly.  Lord, lead her away from the situation that she has allowed herself to be in.  Open her eyes, and let her see the Truth.  Let her see that the Devil is at work in her life, enticing her to stray.  I know that sin is fun Lord.  But let her see that she needs to change.

Thank you so much for all the ways you bless my family.  Thank you Lord for letting us all be safe today.  In all things I know we are to give thanks. 

In Jesus' name I pray, Amen

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Day 17 of 31 Days of Prayers for My Prodigals

Today I was thinking about how many young people I know who are struggling with alcohol or drugs.  Several parents our age in our community have lost a child to a drug overdose or alcohol.  I wish there were a way we could all work together to turn our children around.  The problem with that idea is that I don't think everyone wants to stop this culture.  To some people it is a way of life, and they live it WITH their kids.  No wonder this lifestyle looks so appealing. 

A young man our daughters went to school with started a blog about his struggle with drugs.  This was a wonderful family, went to a church similar to ours.  But he seems to have turned away from that lifestyle now.  Great for he and his family.  You know, the Bible says "Train up a child in the way he should go, and we he is old he will not depart from it" (Proverbs 22:6).  I know a couple who said until the day they passed away, that they had not lived long enough to see this promise fulfilled in their family.  I hope I live long enough. 

Dear God,

Thank you so much for all the blessings you send for my family.  Thank you for letting Courtney call and sound better today.  I pray you will continue to surround her with Believing people who will tell her the truth.  Lord, let her see that she needs to come home.  I understand that non one wants to keep her up because they aren't her family.  Let her come home before someone hurts her, Lord.

Guide, guard, and direct us, Lord.  Amen

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Day 16 of 31 Days of Prayer for my Prodigals

"Be joyful always,
pray continually;
give thanks in all circumstances,
for this is God's will
for you in Christ Jesus."
1 Thess. 5: 16 - 18

Courtney called this afternoon and said she needed some money to get her pain medication filled.  The prices ranged from $45 to $178.  I sent her the money by Western Union.

Dear Lord,

Thank you so much for watching over Courtney, and for keeping her safe.

Let her break get better soon, and let it be as good as new.  Amen

Monday, October 15, 2012

Day 15 of 31 Days of Prayers for My Prodigals

Today we heard from Courtney.  Her sister sent me a photo of her, and she appears to have lost a lot of weight.  She is very small and petite, but now she is just thin.

She called me back tonight about 9:00 our time.  She was on her way to the hospital because she said she broke her arm skateboarding.  A man got on the phone and asked if she had insurance.  I told him "no".  She told me that they didn't want to take her to the hospital because she didn't have any money, but she yelled at them, "They have to see me!".  From the hospital, she called again.  She said it was obvious that her arm was broken and they were sending her to Xray.  She said they acted as if they didn't believe she broke it skateboarding.  So I don't know what that means.  She is suppose to call back when she leaves.  Her father and I told her she needs to make plans to come home because if her arm is broken, she can't get a job.  She doesn't want to come.  We'll see.

Dear Lord,  Please watch over Courtney and keep her safe.  Thank you, Lord, for not letting anything serious happen to her today.  Please give her comfort and strength to get through the next few days.  Let her see that she needs to come home.  Please let her arm heal correctly so it will be strong.  Please keep showing Yourself to Courtney.  Let her continue to grow closer to You.  Amen

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Day 14 of 31 Days of Prayers for My Prodigals

Got some texts from Courtney today.  She said she and her friend were going to church this afternoon.  She said she would let me know how it went.  I hope she follows through and goes. 

Dear Lord, Thank you for letting Courtney reach out to you.  Help her to draw closer to you Lord.  Let her see that the strength she needs is in You.  Watch over her this week, Lord, and keep her safe.  Amen

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Day 13 of 31 Days of Prayers for My Prodigals

Our Daughter called today.  She sounded good, but homesick.  She asked me to look up churches in the new town where she has been staying this week.  I emailed her a list, and made a suggestion of one she might try.  She said she was considering coming home, but she also talked about the possibility of going to college there, and getting to go free.  So I don't know, we will see.

Courtney said she had met another Christian, a believer.  She seemed to find comfort in talking to an lady older that she is, who believed and talked about God with her.  I have been praying that God would bring believers into her life, so that announcement seemed to speak to my heart.

Dear Lord,

Thank you so much for allowing us to hear from Courtney.  Thank you for letting her sound so good this evening.  Even thought she was sad, I don't think she had been drinking.  Please, Lord, keep her safe.  Continue to let her be introduced to good, believing people who will encourage her to follow You.  Lord, if it is your will, let her reach the decision that she should come home.  If it is your plan that she stay there, please guide her to see the path you have chosen for her.  Lord, watch over her and keep her safe.  Amen

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Day 12 of 31 Days for Prayers for my Prodigals

No news today.  Thank you for your prayers. 

Dear Lord,  I know that "no news is good news".  I thank you Lord, for keeping Courtney in your hands, under your wing, and safe from the enemy. 

Lord, I thank you for the peace I am feeling today, because I know it must come from You.  Lord, Husband is having chest pain today, but won't go to the doctor.  I pray that this is just stress, and that you will lay your healing powers on him and restore his health.  I pray You will give us all strength and courage during this difficult time.

Watch over my whole family, please Lord.  In Jesus name, Amen

Day 11 of 31 Days of Prayer for my Prodigals

Courtney tried to call my daughter, but the daughter couldn't hear her.  She will try to call again today.  I told the daughter here to ask her why doesn't she come home, and try to talk her in to that plan.  So we will see.  Right now I guess we will keep praying.

Dear Lord,  I come to you again on behalf of my daughter.  Lord, please keep her safe.  Lord, make this lifestyle she has chosen distasteful.  Let her lose the desire to live the life she is in, and let her want to come home.  We just want her home, Lord, so we can help her get back to who she used to be.

In Jesus' name I pray, Amen

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Day 10 of 31 Days of Prayer for my Prodigals

Today we got bad news about our daughter, Courtney.  One of our daughters heard that Courtney is using Meth.  This is just a rumor.  A second hand comment.  But it most likely is true.  It is very discouraging, and painful for our family.  No one has talked to Courtney since Sunday.  Her phone has been off today.  One of our daughters wants us to go to the place Courtney moved to and "get her" and bring her back here.  We tried to explain to her that Courtney is an adult, and we can't make her come back here.  That would be kidnapping.  I feel badly that our daughter doesn't think we are doing enough.  I plan to talk to her this week, to try to make her understand a little better what we can and can't do.  What our plans are, and our hopes for the future.

Dear Lord,

Today I am sad, but I know that "all things work for good", Lord.  I pray that Courtney will be drawn to you, Lord, and away from the evil that is attracting her.  I pray that tomorrow she will have no desire for the lifestyle she is currently living.  I pray she will wake up and see how she is wasting her life.  She has so much promise and talent, Lord.  She is such a smart girl, and I don't know how to save her. 

Lord, I pray you will place a thorny hedge of protection around Courtney. I pray that she will remain safe.  I pray that you will remove the people from her life who are enabling her to use drugs.  I pray you will place believing  people in her path, who will lead her back to you.  I pray that Satan and his angels will be under Courtney's feet, and will allow her to break free from their power over her.

I pray that people will stop giving her money, so she will realize that she has no choice but to come home, and we will have the opportunity to help her.  I pray that you will remove the desire for drugs and alcohol from her heart.

I pray for her sisters, Lord.  That they will understand our reactions, and help us to help Courtney.  And I pray that they will learn from this pain that they never want to go down this road themselves.

I pray for guidance for myself and my husband.  I pray your hand will be on us as we make decisions that influence our family.

I pray all this in your name, Jesus.  Amen

Monday, October 8, 2012

Day 9 of 31 Days of Prayers for my Prodigals

No word from Courtney.  Again.  But I did get a call from her sister.  The sister said she hated to tell me this, but a friend called and said she tried to reach Courtney on the phone that she no longer has.  The phone was answered, and she was told that Courtney was a druggy and a thief.  And not to call that number again.  I told her sister not to send Courtney any money.  Courtney needs to realize that she doesn't need to stay there without any support, job, home, family, etc.

This is very sad for all of us.  I'm now starting to think about what I'm going to do when we get a call that Courtney has been arrested, or she's in the hospital. 

Dear Lord,

Please keep your eyes on Courtney.  Please, Lord, surround her with a hedge of protection.  Keep her safe from herself as well as the people she runs around with.  Lord, I pray that something will happen in her life that will make her turn to you.  I want her to realize that she can't live this life forever.  That she needs to turn away from the life she is living and trust in You, Lord.  She needs to run far from the friends that are enabling her to live this lifestyle. Please watch over her Lord, and keep her safe.  Amen

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Day 8 of 31 Days of Prayers for My Prodigals

No word from Courtney in the last 24 hours. 

Dear Lord.  Thank you for keeping Courtney safe.  Please continue to do so.  Please push her To draw closer to you.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Day 7 of 31 Days of Prayers for my Prodigals

Nothing much new has happened today.  She has called twice today, for just a second, says she'll call back, and doesn't say much.

Dear Lord,

I pray that you will show Courtney that you have a great life planned for her.  I read a sign today that said, "God feeds the birds, but He doesn't throw it in their nest".  I pray that she will see that she has to make an honest effort to start at the bottom and make a life for herself.  To work her way up.  That is the way we did it, and that is the way she will have to do it, too.

I pray that she will turn to You, Lord, during this time.  That she will reach out to You.  I pray you will guide her Lord and keep her safe.  Amen

The second time she called tonight she was at a ballgame with two male friends.  I know this is all fun, but it will come to an end one day when she runs out of friends who will support her financially.  And when that happens, she is so far from us and from home.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Day 6 of 31 Days of Prayers for my Prodigals

Lord, I heard from Courtney again today.  It was sad, and I'm not sure I did the right thing.  She called and asked for money.  $1,000 to rent an apartment.  I told her that I can't send her money and keep her up half way across the country.  I told her that if she wanted to come  home we would work that out and get her home, but I can't financially support her there.  She told me she was doing well there.  I can't see that she's done anything really since she's been gone almost two months.  She did get a job, but the next day she had to leave the place she was staying, so she can't walk to work there anymore.  She did quit smoking, and I thought she had quit drinking, but the other night she called drunk. 

I told Courtney that as long as I'm alive, if she comes home she will always have something to eat and always have a place to sleep.  But I can't send her money out there.  She told me there were ways to make money quickly if I wouldn't send it to her. But she was going to stay there because she felt it was best for her.  I told her I knew about those ways to make money.  And it was her decision because she is an adult. 

I wonder if there is another Mother out there who feels like I do.  I feel like I'm standing outside my body watching a movie.  You know the kind you watch through your fingers when your hands are over your eyes.  I don't know how we got to this place.  I feel like other parents would do things completely different.  But I can't.  I just feel like I can't give in. 

Lord, I pray that You will make Your presence known to Courtney this weekend.  I pray you will do this in a way that she will not be able to deny.  I pray that she will open her eyes and see the truth.  Open her heart and hear the things You want to tell her.  I pray, Lord, that she will know the plans You have for her.  I believe they must be great plans.  She is such a special girl.  I am trying not to worry about her Lord, because I know You have her in Your hands.  I hope she puts this foolish idea behind her and comes home before she gets hurt.  Amen

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Day 5 of 31 Days of Prayers for my Prodigals

Dear Lord, 

Thank you so much for the beautiful day today.  Thank you for the blessings you send for my family each and every day. 

Lord, thank you for letting me hear from Courtney today.  When I got up today I saw that she called at 3:00 am  from her old phone she had at home.  I knew that somehow she must have gotten a friend to put money on it for her.  Courney called tonight and said that a friend had turned on her phone.  So we can at least talk to her and know she is OK.

I told people at church last night that Courtney would be traveling home this weekend.  But now I need to tell them that won't happen.  Courtney has decided to stay where she is.  A new friend of hers has a family member that will be gone for a couple of weeks.  Courtney and her friend are going to ask if Courtney can house sit during that time.  She will try one more time to find a job.  Then she plans to look for a situation where she can be a roommate.  She is an adult, Lord, and there is nothing I can say or do to stop her.  Even when I believe she is making poor choices.

I have decided to try not to worry about it.  To leave everything alone till she decides to make changes and come home.  There really is no other way.  When she asks me to bring her home, I will start to plan.  Until then, I feel like she is having a ball, on her extended vacation.  She doesn't understand how quickly a situation can turn bad.

Lord, I'm thankful that she is healthy, and that she is safe.  I'm thankful she seems happy.  I don't agree with her choices, but for these things I am thankful.

Lord, I pray you would bring good Christian, believing people into her life.  I pray she will be surrounded with these good people who will lead her to a good life.  I pray she finds a church and becomes active.  I pray for people who will influence her for your Glory.  With all this free time Courtney has, I pray she will pick up your word, and place it in her heart.

I used to think it would kill me if one of my children moved away.  Now, Lord, I believe that I will be fine with her living away, as long as Courtney returns to the path you have chosen for her.  And as long as she learns how to be happy.

Please keep your arms around her, Lord,  Hold her close.  Amen

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Day 4 of 31 Days of Prayers for my Prodigals

Courtney is suppose to call tonight so we can decide what she will do and how she will get home.  If she doesn't call, I will probably call the police at some point, because we have no way to get in touch with her.  We are praying that all goes smoothly and this comes together.  Please pray with us.

Dear Lord,  Thank you for letting us hear from Courtney.  Lord, I pray that you will be with her each and every minute until she is back home.  I pray that you will continue to lead and guide her.  Help her think about what she needs to do when she get home, so she can get on her feet.  Show her the path and plan you have for her, Lord.  Lord, we know that "all things work for good" (Rom. 8:28) and that you have a plan Lord.  I pray that Courtney will study and pay attention, and see the plan You have for her that is better than anything she could come up with herself.  Help Courtney to put this time behind her, and put her eyes on You.  Amen

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Day 3 of 31 Days of Prayers for my Prodigals

Today we had bad news.  Courtney called from the state she is living in.  She is currently about 30 hours from home.  Her friend who asked her to move there, had told her that she (Courtney) had to pack her stuff and get out.  She took Courtney's phone and told her she wasn't helping her get home, as she had promised she would.  So Courtney called from another friend's phone, and she was crying. 

We talked for a while and made a plan.  Courtney will think and make a list tonight of ideas she has.  She will call me by 6:00 tomorrow night.  Then we will decide what is the best thing for her to do.  I told her if she doesn't call, I'm going to contact the police.  There is a potential here that she could be alone, far from home, with no support, or money, and no way for us to contact her.

Please pray with us that the Lord guides Courtney to make wise choices and keeps her safe.

Dear Lord,

Please keep your arms around Courtney, and don't leave her side.  Guide her Lord as she makes plans for her future.  Please Lord, let her see that the best plan is to come home.  Show her the way home, Lord.  Please keep her safe tonight and tomorrow.  Amen

Day 2 - 31 Days of Prayers for My Prodigals

Day 2.  Dear friends.  Thanks so much for stopping by today.  Courtney called last night.  She needs about $50 to get her restaurant license, TB test, and buy pants and shoes so she can start her job.  I will try to send her some money today. 

Dear Lord,  It was so nice to hear from Courtney last night.  The first time she called.  But then she called again.  And she was drunk.  It is hard to worry about someone and not be able to get to them or help them.  I pray that she found a way to go to the Health Department to get her paperwork done for her job.  I am really happy that she has a job now.  Thank you, Jesus!

Lord, please take care of Courtney and Molly tonight.  Please keep your arms around them.  Help them think before they jump into something without checking it out!  Help them to find other Christian friends who will help lead them to You.


Sunday, September 30, 2012

Day 1 - 31 Days of Prayer for My Prodigals

Day 1.  Yes, I know.  I haven't been here in a while.  So much has been going on.  Life continues, and takes a lot of time, doesn't it?  As you may know, the last time I was here, one of our daughters was home.  Helping her get settled, and get on her feet, took a lot of time.  Not to mention that there were still developments with our other prodigal.  Life just keeps going, and we try to stay caught up.  But I have missed being here.  I didn't feel like I was making any progress.  I wanted this blog to be an encouragement to others who may be living this same life.  But I didn't get feed back that I was helping.  I knew people were coming by to peer and ponder, but was it the "car wreck" kind of thing?  I didn't know.  Well, I have been away for about five months.  A lot has changed, and things are better for my girls in some regards.  But I did get a few emails from some of you.  I thought they were comments, and I had planned to answer them when I returned.  Well, I apologise that I didn't look closer and get back with you immediately.  I am thankful that you took the time to reach out to me.

I will fill you all in on some of what has been going on.  But now for the Day 1 Prayer.

Day 1 - Prayer for my Prodigals.

Dear Lord,

As I do every day, I pray your thorny hedge of protection around my daughters.  All three of them.  I pray that Courtney will be safe in her new home in a state so far from us.  I thank you Lord, for helping her find a job, Friday.  Six weeks is a long time to be dependent on others.  I know your timing is always perfect, and it was this time as well.  The person who helped her move so far from us, had told her that if she didn't have a job in a week, she would have to leave.  So now she just has to get transportation to get her health stuff done so she can begin working in the restaurant and training for a management position.  God, please continue to walk with Courtney daily.  Help her get her life together one step at a time.  Keep your arms around her tight, Lord.  Keep Satan and his angels away from her.  Help her to avoid the temptations that have troubled her in the past.  Help Courtney find believing people who will help her stay on Your path.  Help Courtney grow her faith, Lord, and be the woman of God that you would have her to be.  Please keep her healthy and safe.  Take the desire to hurt herself away, Lord.  We know that desire is of the Devil, Lord, and doesn't come from you.  Let Courtney feel Your presence when she needs comfort.  Let Courtney be brave for you.  She says she hasnt met any Christians there, Lord.  That no one knows you.  Help her find believers, and let Courtney be a light for you.

Lord, I also pray for Molly.  She is being led down the wrong path.  I realize that young girls think that the world is such a fun place.  Much more fun than their mothers are.  I pray Lord, that you will keep your hand on Molly's shoulder.  Take the "friends" who are leading her to the Devil, out of her life.  Remove them.  Help her to find friends that will lead her to you.  Just two weeks ago, as I sat in church, she texted me and said she wanted to find a church.  A church that she liked, that would help her to find a new life.  Please Lord, make that happen.  I pray Lord, that you will show her the man that you have chosen for her, that she can have a good life with.  I pray that you will take the bad men away from her.  Let them lose interest in her.  Let them find new women and take their drugs and alcohol with them.  And let the bad men leave my daughter and my family alone.

Let Molly develop such a desire for You that all else pales in her life.  That she will not desire the bad things anymore.

I pray this all in Jesus' name.  Amen.

NOTE:  A new post will be added each day the for next 30 days.  To view the newest post go to the bottom of the page and click on "older" or look to the right and click on the next day's post.  Thanks for stopping by! 

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Progress from Here! One of Our Prodigals is Home.

A lot has happened in our home in the last month, but mostly in the last week!  My husand and I both said our last week had been unbelievable.  Our prodigal daughter, Courtney, is home.  She came home Friday.  She called me friday at work and wanted to talk, but that is hard to do when you are on the clock.  So I had to keep hanging up, and telling her I would "call back". 

The other female who was living in the apartment my daughter was in, left town.  She told my daughter she needed to leave too, but Courtney didn't listen to her.  Well, Thursday night something happened.  I'm not sure what, but her boyfriend became dangerous and my daughter was fearful for her life.  It was either call me, or her sister, and she called her sister at 2:00 friday morning.  Somehow things settled down, but my daughter knew that she needed to make other arrangements.  There were three men living in the apartment, and her. 

She called a friend to help her pack, because she was afraid to be alone there.  The friend came, and Courtney put all her worldly belongings in her car, and left.  She had wrecked her car a week before, and had only been driving it about a mile down the road to work and back.  But she drove to our home about 30 miles away and made it!  We are trying to sort everything out, but she is here and safe.

Courtney has lost about 18 pounds in the 12 or so weeks she has been gone.  She says she is moving  out of state when this semester is over in June.  So I guess we will see.  I'm glad she is safe.

Our other daughter Molly has had some developments in her life this week, too.  But that will wait for another day.  I can't believe how much has happend for us this week.

I have been praying so long, and it is startling when it all comes together!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Tough Week

This has been a tough week.  We have not heard from Courtney since Tuesday.  I thought she might come to church today, but she did not, and I still haven't heard from her.  Since Thursday she has been living alone in an apartment with two men.  The other female roommate went out of town, and told Courtney she should find somewhere else to stay.  She shouldn't be alone there.  But Courtney didn't listen.

Our other daughter, Molly, was been on a roller coaster.  One minute she is through with her boyfriend, the next she thinks they will get back together.  She spend all week here until last night.  The she called at about 11:00 and said she was coming down because she didn't feel good.  She and the baby came.  Today, she has been with the boyfriend all day, and says he is moving back in.  All I can do is pray.  I'm praying a lot.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Once again

OK.  Let's just cut to the chase.  Courtney is not coming home.  She was suppose to talk to her Dad and I this afternoon, and move home.  She is off Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, and she would have had plenty of time to do this.  Today she texted me and said she wasn't ready to leave her boyfriend yet, and until she was it wouldn't work.  He had told her he is ready for this to be over.  In the ten weeks or so she has been gone, she had pawned her car, taken out a signature loan, and given these people every penny she has.  The other girl living in the apartment is leaving thursday night to go out of town, and told our daughter she should leave and go home.  The girl plans to move out of state in August, and that will leave Courtney alone in the apartment with two men.  I know this is not going to end well, but there is nothing I can do because she is of age.

Many people she respects are trying to tell her this is a mistake and she needs to leave the apartment and the people she is with.  Courtney also asked me to text her some photos from last year when she was beaten up and I had to take her to the hospital.  She couldn't remember what happened, but we always felt her boyfriend did it.  So maybe this means she is thinking about what she needs to do.   I don't know if she will or not.  I just don't know.

On a better note, our other daughter drove up this afternoon with a car full of her's and our grandchild's belongings.  She told her boyfriend to leave and he refused.  So she will stay here until he is gone.  This was a welcome surprise, but I don't know how long it will last, either. 

Praying that our youngest remains strong, and that our other daughter realizes she needs to respect herself!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Maybe Tomorrow

A lot of things have been happening in the last few weeks.  We have been in touch with Courtney.  She has visited several times, and has been in church with us the last two weeks. 

She called me today and asked if we could meet to talk.  I met her at a restaurant, we talked.  She cried almost the whole time we were there.  She said she has lost 15 lbs, is tired of being depressed, and wants to come home.  She is coming over tomorrow to talk with us.  So we will see if we work something out.  She said it will be hard to leave someone she loves, even if he is mean to her.  I said that it is never wise to let your heart rule your life.  She didn't like that too much and just believes I am wrong.

The people at her new job are encouraging her to move home and start over.  We will see where this goes. 

Monday, April 2, 2012

April is Here

Well, I'm sure you all realized that April is here.  Last month was such a busy month for many reasons.  Our daughter, Courtney didn't move home.  She asked to.  Told us she was going to.  Told us the day and time.  Then, at the last minute she decided that she would tell her boyfriend.  He told here he didn't want her to leave.  After being "mean" to her all month, per her sisters.  She told him she had devoted too much time into a relationship that was never going to change.  That she wanted a different life than the one they were living.  He told her he wanted a new life too.  He wanted to change.  Courtney told me he must mean it, otherwise why say it?  I told her he said it because it was what she wanted to hear.  Now that she got a job and is working 50 hours a week, he finds it a lot nicer to have her and her paycheck around. 

So things around here continue as they are.  We do know where Courtney is working, and I can contact her if I need to.  Her boss at work told her to tell her Mom that she, Courtney, is the "prodigal child" and wants to come home.  This kinda threw me for a loop, for a minute.  Then Courtney said, "My boss said you would know what that meant, and who that was".  I told her that I did know what that meant."  I went by her work one day, and met her boss and co-workers.  They all seemed very nice, Christian people.  I have been praying that believing Christian people would be in her life each day, and encourage her to change her life.  It looks like that is coming to pass. 

After I left, Courtney's boss asked if she was moving home.  Courtney said," probably, but I'm not sure yet".  Her boss told her they would talk later, but she really needs to make this change.

Sunday at church we had an egg hunt and lunch.  All my family was there.  All my daughters, and my husband, as well as myself and my grandchild.  It was wonderful for us all to be together. 

Tomorrow I will tell you about the call I got from a church elder this week.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Didn't See Her

She didn't come.  Courtney called and said that all her room mates were sick, and she didn't want to give us anything.  Said she would call later in the week.  Both of her sisters asked this morning where Courtney was, why she didn't show up.  So something was going on, but I guess it changed.  I don't know what is going on now.  I guess we'll see. 

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Birthday Celebration and other stuff

Yesterday was Courtney's birthday.  Actually she is a twin and it was their birthday.  We planned a small family celebration, and she told her sisters she was coming.  Then she didnt' know if she was coming.  She did come, but she was late, and she brought another girl with her.  One of the girls she is living with.  They sat in chairs side by side, and didn't say much.  She ate, and opened her gifts.  She left early. 

She had been gone about 20 minutes when I got a call from her.  She had left her purse, and was at the gas station and needed someone to bring her purse.  Someone from the party was going that way, and took it to her. 

Today after church, she called again.  I could tell she was crying but she acted like she wasn't, so I didn't say anything.  She asked if she could stay here tonight because she missed us.  I told her she could, so she said she would be here about midnight.  She had to work till 10:00, then had to clean up the restaurant.  She would go by to get her books and computer, and then be out.  So I made her bed, and will wait and see if she shows up.

She called again, still crying.  She asked if I would be able to cash a check she got for her birthday, so she could get to work Monday.  I told her I could.  Last year, the night of her birthday, her birthday cash was stolen and she was beaten up, by the man she lives with now (we believe).  So this year no one gave her money, that I know of. 

One of her sisters told me the man she is staying with was being mean to her this week.  I think he was disappointed today that she didn't get any money from us.  Her sister said they (she lives in an apartment with several people) were asking her to leave, and the guy told her he didn't want to "be with her" any more.

Last night she asked me if I knew why the man from church called her.  She said they are going to lunch Friday.  I told her I didn't, that he called and asked for her number and where she was staying.  She seemed worried.

Maybe things are coming together for her some what.  Not coming together successfully, but coming out so she will see this life is not that great, and she can do better.  She deserves better.  Maybe she will realize this lifestyle is wrong for her.  I hope this is not just a stopping place until she can find somewhere else to stay.

Pray for us.  I'll keep you posted.

Friday, March 16, 2012

This Has Been A Really Strange Month

This has been a really strange month for me.  You know, I told you it started out with a tornado.  We didn't have utilities and couldn't leave our home for four days.  The day of the tornado, in the middle of sirens going off and being in the storm shelter, our daughter Courtney called.  That was nice, that she thought of us and wanted to check on us.  But I haven't heard from her since. 

After that, another daughter decided to breakup with her boyfriend and that he should move.  He was not open to this idea.  She stayed here a few nights.  Her son stayed here several nights.  One night she changed the locks, and the police were called.  I was called and asked to come get the child.  Lots of drama this month.

So I thought that maybe, since I wasn't hearing from Courtney, and she wasn't asking for money, maybe she was doing OK.  Maybe she was getting on her feet and could take care of herself.  Maybe she just didn't want to be around us.  Not everyone lives the same way, and even though it is hard, if she made the choice to live a different life than I would want for her, I could live with that.  If she could take care of  herself and she was happy and healthy.  I would live with her choice, and let her be.

But today I got a phone message.  Some one who knows us well, from church and business, called.  He wanted to know if I knew where Courtney was staying, and did I have a number for her.  He wanted to go see her.

I mentioned this to my husband.  I thought it was odd, knew it meant something.  But I honestly didn't want to know what.  My husband asked if I had asked any questions.  He seemed surprised that I said, "No".  My husband told me that he had heard from two different sources that Courtney is trading "things" for drugs. 

So, I guess life isn't going so good for her.  As much as I'd hoped otherwise.  This man would have had a reason to hear this and be concerned for her.  He has cared for our daughter her whole life, and even baptised her when she was nine years old.

I've had a few people tell me to just "love her".  I've never stopped loving her.  I could never stop loving her.  But when I see her I feel such sorrow.  So I guess we just keep going.  Day to day, living our lives.  Hoping and praying that she will wake up and realize what she is losing, before something bad happens to her. 

I told a relative that if I just knew that in the end, everything would be fine and she would be safe and healthy, I could live with this.  I could get through this.  But the "not knowing", will kill you. 

Tomorrow is her birthday.  She says she will be by.  Last year, on the 18th, she called me when she woke up.  She had been beaten up, and her money stolen. I took her to the hospital and waited with her while they fixed her up.  We'll see how this year goes.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Sorry I've Been Gone

It's been a wild two weeks here since I visited last.  March 2, we had a tornado.  Our family is safe, and our home is fine.  But our community had a lot of damage.  I had to leave my car and walk home abut a mile because of downed power lines and trees.  We were really blessed.

Courtney called during the second tornado, to see if we were OK.  We were in the shelter, so I wasn't able to talk long.  She said she was calling from her job.  I told her we were safe and thanked her for calling.  I told her I loved her and she said the same.  That's it.  I haven't heard from her since.  She told her sisters she tries to call me everyday.  But that is not true.  Her birthday is soon, and I think she plans to come by.  We will see.  At least we know she is safe.

Thanks so much for all your prayers and comments.  I will answer them all soon.  But I wanted you to know how much they mean to me. 

Hope you all have a blessed week. 

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Hardest Parts of Being a Prodigal Mom

The hardest parts of being the prodigals' mom change from day to day.  But today, these are the hardest things to me.

1.  Each morning when I wake up, I check my cell phone to see if there are any missed calls or texts from Courtney.  I check to see if maybe she emailed me.  Usually the only thing I see is a automatic tweet she scheduled  months ago.  Then I pray that God will put his arms around her and keep her safe all day.

2.  When we sit down for dinner, I wonder what Courtney had to eat that day.  When I'm at the grocery store, my eyes still notice and hesitate over her favorite foods.  But I don't buy them because we have plenty of ramen noodles and cottage cheese now that no one eats them. 

3.  Sometimes if our family doesn't hear from Courtney for a few days, I look on line at the county jail website to see if she has been incarcerated.

4.  The last time Courtney was gone from home, I would ask the police to do a Wellness check if we didn't hear from her in a week.  They would go to where she stayed and make sure she was OK.  This time we don't know where she is staying.  Maybe she hasn't told any of us on purpose.  Or maybe she was trying to live a "normal life" before.  I'm not sure that is still the case.

5.  It is hard to sit in church on Sunday morning and look down our pew to see Courtney's empty seat.

6.  I pray each day more than once, that Christian, believing, good and kind people will be in contact with Courtney.  I pray that her heart will be soft, and she will turn around her life and get on her feet.

7.  I remember when Courtney spoke out in a Sunday afternoon church service a few months before she left again.  With tears in her eyes, she said she and her friend were struggling with alcohol and "other things", and were trying to get their lives right but were struggling to find their way.  No one there contacted either of them after that service.  No one.  No one sent a card or note, and phoned to offer word of encouragement.  And now she is gone again.  It's not their fault, I know.  But I wonder if maybe someone had shown some concern,...

8.  I think about how Courtney told me she lost her faith when she was 18.  I don't know why I can't find a way to help her.

9.  Courtney struggles with depression quite a bit, and cries a lot.  My heart hurts for her, but somehow I couldn't find a way to make a difference for her.

10.  The hardest thing of all is thinking back to when we had three beautiful little girls who were best friends and loved God.  I wish somehow I could go back to that time and try something different so we wouldn't be on this prodigal path.  I wish we'd never learned about this way of life.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Daughter May Be Moving

Tuesday our youngest daughter told me that Courtney may be moving to California.  She has a female friend in the Marines who said she would buy her a ticket to come there.  Courtney is fighting with the people she lives with.  It is getting close to time to pay the rent, and since Courtney is not working, they are ready for her to get out.  Molly told her sister that she just needs to come home.  But Courtney said no, she would not be coming home.  The guy in the house she is suppose to be a "couple" with, told her he doesn't want to be with her anymore and she needs to go.  I don't know what she is going to do.  The friend in California may not realize that Courtney plans to stay indefinitely, or that she may have problems the friend isn't aware of.  I guess we'll see how this goes.

Someone emailed me and asked why I just don't talk to Courtney.  I think they thought I was shunning her.  She doesn't want to talk to us.  She left home, and didn't tell us she was leaving.  She hasn't given me her phone number.  She only texts me from other peoples' phones.  I guess she wants to prove she is right, but it isn't working out that way.

I read something tonight that made a lot of sense.  It said that many things can contribute to the way a child turns out, but in the end, it is their choice.  It also said that we can't let the devil tear apart what we have worked so hard for in our family.  That is so true.  Hard, but true.

It is hard for me to let go and take a chance on losing her.  But I just have to remember that the Lord loves Courtney more than I do, and He takes care of His children.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I Joined the Wrong Groups

I heard back from some more of the groups I joined yesterday.  I must have really been distracted when I did this.  I don't think I could read the whole descriptions until I joined.  So I was searching for key words.  Like prodigal, lost child, etc. Well, today I heard from two more.  One is for LDS, and one is for parents of gay children.  Neither of those categories match me.  I guess I am the only mother in the country just worried about the adult daughter living a bad life and probably being on drugs.

I came to a conclusion today.  I decided that I can't trust God to handle this situation, and struggle with it at the same time.  So I need to give my daughter to God, daily.  And I need to let Him take care of it.  I don't know where she is.  I could call a cell phone number she called me from, but I haven't because I feel like she is playing games.  She has not talk to me in several weeks.  She is punishing me for not letting her live the life she wants, in my home where it would all be easier.  I can't support her in this lifestyle mistake she has chosen for herself.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Trying Some Internet Support Groups

Well, our daughter, Courtney has been gone over a month now.  Previous times when she has left, we knew where she was staying.  This time we do not.  I asked her youngest sister today if she knew where Courtney was staying.  She said no.  I told her that someone needs to find out where she is staying so if something happens to her, we know where to look for her.  Courtney speaks to her sisters on the phone, I think.  But she is not speaking to us.  The last time she left, she acted like it was normal that she left, and she was living a normal life.  We were just strange because we didn't like her friends.  This time I don't think she cares what we think.

I have been reading a lot.  I am currently reading "When Your Child Breaks Your Heart" by Barbara Johnson.  I love to read her books.  I can really relate to the way Barbara feels.  Her child was a homosexual (he has since left that lifestyle).  This is not the problem with our daughter, but I can relate to Barbara's feelings of loss when her son leaves home and she doesn't know where he is.  Of her wanting to find another mother to talk to, who has lived through this and can explain it to her.  I feel exactly the same way.   I just want to meet someone who's child has come back to everyday normal life.  I want them to tell me that everything will be fine, and how I can fix this.  So far that is not happening.

Another thing I have done this week is to join some Internet support groups.  Once again, I don't seem to find anyone whose situation is like mine.  One group is for mothers of incarcerated adult children.  That is not my situation, but I found them because their title is about prodigals.  They have been very welcoming to me and seem to be kind, caring women. 
I feel God pulling me to do something here.  I really believe there are other mothers like me somewhere, who need support and answers.  I just can't seem to find them.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

No News This Week

I don't really have any news this week.  I don't believe I've heard from Courtney.  She was planning to come by the house last Thursday, but that didn't happen.  I texted her that some of us had been sick and she probably shouldn't come.  She has a tendency to get things that turn into pneumonia, and she doesn't have insurance.  She texted her dad on his birthday.  She said Happy Birthday and she loved him.  She emailed me, and asked me to email her resume to her.

So that about covers updates about here.  No progress has been made.  I have contacted some prodigal parent groups on the Internet, to see how they operate and check out their resources.  I just want to know that in the end, it will all be OK.  I hope one day I feel comfortable believing that.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

You just don't know until you've lived it!

Other parents don't understand, I don't think.  And I believe maybe we'd feel and act differently is our daughter was a boy.  People don't understand why we want her to come home.  I feel like they think we should "divorce" her.  We don't approve of her lifestyle choices.  They break our heart.  Even family doesn't understand.  My parents think we shouldn't let her come back, because she will never change if she can come back any time she wants, "if that door always swings open".  Our siblings think that she is "mean" to us when she is here.  We want to take her out of the "danger" that is her everyday life.  We want to save her before it is too late.  Isn't that what all parents want?  We never thought this would happen to us.

There are so many things that can happen to her in the life she is living.  She could overdose.  Someone could give her drugs she is not aware of.  She could be raped, mugged, killed.  She could be beat up, shot in a drug incident as an "Innocent" bystander.  So many things that we can't even think of them all.  We really don't want to thing of them.  She could turn to prostitution and living on the street.  These are very real possibilities.

We have to do something to get her off these drugs, if we get the opportunity again.  She has to make a complete break from these people she is attracted to.

Just two months ago, she was talking about going in the military and leaving in February.  That would have been the best thing for her.  She said, in the end, that she was afraid of being homesick, and couldn't go. 

Shortly after Christmas, Courtney called me from Walmart.  She was being held with some friends, for shoplifting.  She was the only person that had not been shoplifting.  She said she didn't know they were doing this.  My husband said she was the lookout.  She may not have understood that was a crime, but I'm certain she knew it was wrong.  Since she was the only person not concealing, she was not arrested.  Walmart had every right to arrest her, and she could have gone to jail.  But we know a lot of people, and she was let go to our care.  That was the beginning of the trip back down old paths.  Or at least our realization of the trip.

That night she was told by the police to come home in lieu of going to jail.  She was not going to come home.  She finally came home, but did not want to stay.  We told her if she left she needed to make other arrangements of where to stay.  We told her that was not making wise choices, and she needed to think about this.  She was ruining her plans to go into a law career, by her choice of friends.  She was going to lose her chance to go into the military if she got arrested again.  She would not listen, and left.  She stayed gone about two weeks, and asked if she could return home. 

She was home this time, about six weeks, and just didn't come home one night.  Things were getting bad in her life, she had made wrong choices that were catching up with her.  I tried to tell her that God had a plan, and she needed to open her heart and wait to see what God's plan was.  She was in a dead end job.  She was running out of money to stay in school this semester.  She needed another car, or a lot of work done on the one she was driving.  She wanted to make her own rules.  That in itself was the biggest problem.  And I guess she has a bigger drug problem than I ever dreamed.

She said we were not treating her like an adult.  I said we were treating her like an adult who lives in our house.  She has to follow our rules.  She does not pay rent, utilities, buy groceries, etc.  There are a lot of perks for following a few rules.  Instead, she decided she knew best.

She has been gone now over three weeks.  She is having second thoughts about being gone, and the people she is keeping company with.  I told her they were just interested in what she had to offer.  She doesn't have a good job and doesn't make much money.  So the main attraction of having Courtney in their world is that she has a car.  No one else does.  She asked her sister if we would let her come back.  We sent word to her that she needed to come talk to us.  She hasn't done that yet.  So here we are.  Living our lives with one daughter missing.

Since she has been gone, we have found drugs in her room.  We have discovered a great deal of money missing in our home.  I'm afraid to look too closely at my jewelry and such, afraid something might be missing.  It appears our house was searched recently.  My husband discovered the money missing last night, and then I realized our room had been gone through.  Our office had been searched  I thought the baby moved some things but that was not the case.  Could have been someone else other than Courtney, I guess.  But I doubt it.

I'm just going to pray for all of us.  For God to lead my husband as he decides how we should handle this if the opportunity arises.  For us to make the best choices for everyone.  And that we will be able to save our daughter.  That God will touch her heart, and remind her of the life she has left behind.  That she will remember that unlike the people she is with now, that most people are good and will help her.  That God will show her the path He has chosen for her.  That there will be good Christian believing people in her day to day life that will help her find her way back.  That Angels will protect her from Satan and this evil life that she has involved herself in.  That her sisters will understand when we let her come back, and will be understanding and supportive of her being here.  A lot of things to pray for.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

I've Been Thinking

I've been thinking a lot since I saw Courtney.  I wish I had hugged her and told her I love her.  I just didn't want to upset her any more than she already was.  Last night I saw the biggest Bama moon!  As big as a plate or something.  I wondered if my little girl was seeing the same moon, wherever she was.

Today her sister told me that Courtney got a new phone number.  I figured it was one of her friend's phones, that she had used on another occasion.  I guess she doesn't want to talk to us.  Her dad said he didn't have anything to say to her.  I don't know how we got to this stage in our life.

Today she texted me and said she needed her last-year's-tax-return so she could take off her school expenses.  She knows that we intend to take her off our taxes as a dependent because she lived here last year.  I don't know.  I felt sick all day.  Don't know if it is nerves, worry, or something left over from my gall bladder surgery a couple of months ago.  I didn't answer her text because I didn't feel like arguing with her, and if she wanted to talk she could call.  She is just avoiding me. 

I don't know if she will ever get on her feet, and cling to God.

I know two years ago, I thought the worst thing in the world was that she was dating a Mormon.  And a year ago, she was dating a guy that was a member of the same church we are, but he was an alcoholic and had two DUIs.  Her Dad thought it would drag Courtney down, to be with someone like that when she was trying to get her own life straightened out.  The guy told Courtney, "I always said I would know when I met the right girl, when I thought she would help me get to heaven".  I told her that was the sweetest thing I'd ever heard.  She just smirked, and said that they were just friends.  I told her HE wasn't just her friend.  He came to church with us for the longest, and sat on our pew.  He was a nice guy, who had a problem.  So now she is with people who don't care about her, and she doesn't care about us.  I wish things were so different.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Friday - I Asked Her to Leave

Courtney came to my office Friday.  I work in a two-person office.  My boss, the owner, was at lunch.  I heard her car drive up and knew it was her.  She got out and came inside.  She looked awful.  Her hair was randomly pinned up on her head.  Her clothes, sweat pants, a long sleeve t-shirt, and a cardigan, did not match.  She had no makeup on.  She never looked me in the eyes the whole time she was there.  She asked me if she could borrow $20.  I could have given it to her, but I knew I didn't need to.  I really thought she was hungry, but that was not what this was about.  

I told Courtney that I had not gotten paid yet, which was true.  I asked her what she needed, already planning to tell her to wait for me at the McDonalds around the corner, and I would buy her something to eat and listen to what she had to say.  Instead, she told me that her "boyfriend" was mean to her.  She said that everyone (in the apartment where she is currently staying) got mad at her because she was $20 short on her part of the rent.  Everyone had to pay $120 and she only had $100.  She said I knew she didn't make much money, and they knew that.  She told me that every other night they get in a fight, and he is rude and talks about her and yells at her in front of everyone.  I told her that was because that was his culture and he doesn't respect her.  She said I was being racist.  I said if I had been racist, I would have mentioned his race or color, but I didn't do that.  She cried and carried on the whole time she was in my office.

She told me that nothing was working out for her.  She said they had replaced her at the dry cleaners, and she was waiting to start a new job.  I told her that when she lived at home she had food to eat, a place to sleep, insurance on her car, a cell phone, and other things.  She said that living at home was no better than living with her friends.  I told her that she needed to keep "living that good life"  then.  

I finally told her that my boss would be back in five minutes, and she would have to leave.  She looked at me, and walked out the door.  She sat in the parking lot for a while, and finally left.  I have not heard from her since.  My husband said he was very proud of me for not giving her money, and that I was the only person who can save her.  She has always been especially close to me.  We both feel she is back on drugs.  This weekend we found strattera in her room.  In a baggie with $10 written on it.  I'm afraid we are going to lose her.  I'm afraid some one is going to hurt her, or she will be involved in a drug shooting, or she will kill herself.  I need to figure out what I should do.  I've never been in this position before.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Update - Things Aren't Getting Any Better Here

A lot has happened here.  Nothing seems to be getting any better.  I'll try to fill you in. 

Last Tuesday, I got a call while I was at work, from Courtney.  I knew before she ever said a word, that she was crying, because I could hear the tears.  She said she might get fired from her job, and should she just go ahead and quit?  I asked her what had happened.  She has been at this job about a year.  She said she didn't show up for her shift at work Saturday because her friend took her car because the friend didn't think Courtney had to work Saturday.  Courtney didn't have a phone, so she couldn't call in to work.  She was a "no-show".

She said when she got to work, they took her keys.  She said the other girls were giggling and snickering.  Courtney has always been an assistant manager. I told here that is how people are, they don't want you to do better than they do, and they were glad she was getting knocked a step.  Courtney asked me is she should go ahead and quit.  I asked her what she would do if she quit, and she said she could get a job at Cracker Barrel.

Courtney said she didn't know why all this was happening.  I said it was because she wasn't living right.  She wasn't walking in the light, on the path God has chosen for her.  She got mad, and said she thought she could get some support from her mother, but she should have known better.  I told her that I had been supporting her for for 23 years.  She hung up, and I didn't talk to her again for several days.  I realized if she left the cleaners, we would have no way to get in touch with her.  I really doubted she still had a job.  I'm afraid for her.

More to come.

Monday, January 30, 2012

No, She Didn't Come

My Daughter, Lucy and I, went to the concert Friday night.  We were suppose to meet my sister there.  Courtney was also suppose to come.  The concert started at 7:30.  We were there about 7:00.  I was standing in the lobby, trying to stand where I could watch all the doors to see when Courtney arrived.  I knew she would not have any money, and I had a $10 bill in my hand to pay her way in.  At about 7:15 I noticed people were starting to congregate outside.  Suddenly I had a horrible feeling.  I turned to Lucy and and said, "Go to the money collectors and ask if they've stopped letting people in."  Lucy said that it wasn't time to start yet, they probably needed change.  I was pretty sure this was not the case, and went to ask myself.  Sure enough, the fire marshall had shut everything down.  Not one other person could come into the facility.  There were 5,500 people inside, and an additional 1,500 outside.  I was so sad.  I couldn't believe that we were separated from the ones we were waiting for.  About that time my sister called, and said the wouldn't let her in.  But we already knew that.  I don't know if Courtney came or not, because she doesn't have a phone.  And I have not heard from her since.

I was pretty sad about Courtney not being there.  But I didn't want to act like I was, because I didn't want Lucy to think I was disappointed and not glad to spend time with her.  When we went into the arena to find seats, the announcer was saying that if you were holding seats, to give them up.  No one else was getting in, and they had to get everyone seated before the show could begin.  So we found seats, and the lights went down.  I know I had tears the first couple of songs, but I didn't want my other daughter to see.  The show was great, and I'm glad we went.

There is no excuse for Courtney to not call since Thursday.  She is angry at me, I guess, and wants to be sure we know it.  Lucy is pretty sure she has access to a phone, because she believes Molly is talking to her.  Pretty childish behaviour.  The last time she was gone, her dad told Courtney that if she didn't check in with me once a week, we would have the police to go do a wellness check to see if she was OK.  We can't do that this time, because we don't know where she is staying.  Talk to you again soon!

28 Days to Hope for Your Home

28 Days to Hope for Your Home

Are you overwhelmed by the mess in your home?

Have you ever wondered if there’s no hope for you?
I know that feeling.  I’ve experienced it too. I’m so glad that now I can say . . .
There is hope!
For anyone!

28 Days to Hope for  Your Home

{not for the mildly disorganized}

Develop four habits over four weeks.

Discover hope for real change in your home.

The above information is from A Slob Comes Clean!  I'm so happy to introduce you to her new ebook.  I'm (I'm sad to say) someone who needs this book!  I now have my copy, and I can't wait to get started reading it and putting it to good use!  I'll keep you posted on my progress.  Why don't you join me?  You can purchase your own copy at a special reduced rate here:  <a href="" target="ejejcsingle">Click here to view more details</a>

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Concert tomorrow. Will she come?

I called Courtney's work today (she works at a dry cleaners) and left a message.  I said that we were still going to the Christian concert tomorrow night, and if she wanted to go, we would see her there.  The lady said she would give Courtney the message.  Well, the lady knew Courtney had left home.  She just left a phone message for Courtney saying that her Mom had called.  Courtney called back, sounding excited that I had called her.  I told her why I called, and she said, "Oh.  OK".  So I don't know what she thought I was going to say.  I don't know if she will come tomorrow night or not.  She needs to.  Maybe something said there would touch her heart.  My mother told me that as long as we kept letting her come home, she would never change.  My parents are not practicing Christians.  What does that statement mean, exactly?  Does it mean that I should let her be homeless?  Because last time she came home she had nowhere else to go.  I will be so thankful one day, when all this is behind us.  And I know my family is safe.  This is the hardest thing I have ever done.

It's getting late, so I guess I will be back tomorrow.  I hope you will be, too.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

No Word From Daughter

As I stated the other day, our daughter chose to move out of our home (again) Sunday.  Today is Wednesday.  None of us have heard from her, not even her sisters, that I'm aware of.  I guess she is where she wants to be. 

This week I was reading Ann Voskamp's blog, A Holy Experience.  The title of the post that day was "What to Cling to on the Days You Are Drowning".  I don't feel like I'm drowning, but I am very distracted and overwhelmed.  But I was glad to read the article, and it made me stop and think about how I need to let this situation affect me.   I need to react by pulling closer to God. 

A year ago, I was at a seminar.  There, a pastor was speaking, and had some books for sale.  I asked him if he had any books about parenting prodigal children.  He did not, but we continued to talk for a while.  He told me that so much of this type of thing is going on now in the Christian world.  He said "good girls" are attracted to "bad boys".  This even has a name, "Missionary Dating".  The girls date the bad guys, with the idea that they can save them, and change them.  Hasn't that thought been around since the beginning of time?  It's not working.  I don't think it ever did.

I told the pastor that I was looking for someone to pray with me for my children.  He proceeded to tell me what I needed to do.  He told me to pray that God would make Himself know in Courtney's life this week.  To pray this out loud, and pray saying her name.  He said for me to pray that God would show Himself to Courtney in a way that she would know it was Him, and that she would  be unable to deny it.  He told me to pray this for both of my wayward children.  And I did.  I prayed this prayer separately for each daughter, once for Courtney, and once for Molly.  Nothing seemed to happen.  So I prayed this prayer daily for a week.  At the end of the week, Molly was mad at me, and had taken my name off the daycare pick up list for our grandchild.  She said we would not see either of them again.  Courtney called me and had been beat up and asked me to take her to the hospital.  So both of these prayer sessions ended in a big way, that I had not anticipated! 

I relayed this story to my sister, and she said, "Don't you know you never pray prayers like that?  I prayed once that God would change my life, and I ended up getting a divorce".  Well, I didn't know, no one told me!

So I took Courtney to the hospital.  She woke up beaten up, and couldn't remember what had happened.  It was the morning after her birthday.  We believe her boy friend beat her up, and wasn't sure if she remembered or not.  There was blood in the parking lot next to her car, and her money was gone.  I took her to the hospital, and got her medications and brought her some food.  I begged her to stay with us, but she insisted on going to her apartment.  When she woke up 24 hours later, her pain medication was gone, and she finally came to our home.  So this is the situation she has gone back to.  The person she would rather live with than us.

Around this same time, We had plans to go to a Christian concert.  My sister and I, and my three daughters.  Well, Molly didn't want to go, and didn't come at all.  Lucy (Courtney's twin) came.  We got to the door, and there were no ticket sales.  You just threw your money in a bucket and headed inside.  I tried to find Courtney, because I knew she would not have any money.   I waited but she didn't come.  I was so sad, but I didn't know what to do.  There was no ticket window to leave her a ticket.  So we went inside the concert and found seats.

Courtney arrived late, but didn't have $10 to get in.  She stood at the door, and anytime someone came in with a cell phone that was visible, she asked if she could call her Mom to come out and pay her entry fee.
I didn't take my cell phone in, cause mine rings all the time.  So I didn't hear her.  Finally, there was only one person working the door,  When no one was looking her grabbed Courtney by the arm and shoved her inside.  He whispered to her that when she found her Mom she could put money in the collection plate at intermission to cover her fee.

She went to the concession stand and called her sister, who had her phone.  Lucy went to the concession stand to pick up her sis and show her where we were sitting.  The first thing Courtney did was ask me for $10 to go pay the man who let her in.  She did go pay him, and asked him if he would tell the other door workers that she had paid and gone inside.  He said he would.  We had a wonderful evening, but at the end, we went home, and Courtney went where ever she stayed that night.

The next day, I got a text from the man who had been working the door at the concert.  Courtney had used his phone and my number was still in his phone.  He said, "Hello Courtney's mom.  I'm the doorman, and I'm glad she finally found you.  Hope you enjoyed the show".  I replied, "Thanks so much for being nice to her.  Please pray with us that Courtney will come home".  He answered, "I had no idea.  She seems like a nice girl, and the Lord takes care of His children.  I will pray".

Now it is a year later.  That same concert is here again, and we all had plans to go again this Friday.  I don't know if Courtney will go or not now.  I thought we had come so far, but here we go down that same path again.

I worry about Courtney.  But there is literally nothing I can do.  Part of me feels like Courtney is just trying to control us, and hoping we will give her money.  The other part of me fears she is suffering from depression again, and I worry that something could happen to her.  I guess I just have to pray God's protection over her, and tell the devil to stay away.  I have to give Courtney to God.  Put her on His alter, and see where He leads her.  I know God has his "own time".  I just wish I could see ahead to how this ends out for her.  Other adults tell me this is just a phase and she'll outgrow it.  What if she doesn't.  What if she gets killed.  It's hard to think about.

Monday, January 23, 2012

How Do We End Up on This "Prodigal Road"?

How do we end up on this road of prodigal parenting?  Seems I've been on this road a while.  I just wish I knew how I got here, and had the opportunity to go back and change whatever directed our path.  My husband and I have been married almost 30 years.  We have three daughters.  We have twins who will be 23 in the spring, and another daughter who will be 22 shortly after her sisters' birthday.  For the last two years, I've called myself the prodigals' mom.  I contacted all kinds of support groups, and searched on line.  There were no church or support groups for parents of prodigals in my area.  Groups in other areas did not want to email or copy me their minutes or newsletters because the information they shared with their groups was "private" and "confidential".  I really didn't care about those peoples names and such.  I just wanted the chance to learn how to save my own children.

I guess I'm a little ahead of myself.  We are a Christian family.  My husband is a retired police officer and I owned a child care center for many years.  We've worked with troubled kids our whole careers.  When our children were small, people used to come to us and ask for advise on how to parent their own children.  Still to this day, friends say to us that our children were always perfect.  They didn't think we'd ever have problems with our kids.  They can't believe how our lives have turned out.  And neither can we.

Two of our children have been on and off this prodigal road.  They are not living the lives God has chosen.  They are not walking in the light, seeking God's will for their lives.  It's so hard as a mother to wonder what you did, or didn't do, that lead your children to this path. 

I know my own children are adults and legally can make their own choices and lead their own lives.  I just wish I understood why they are making the choices they are.  One of our daughters has settled down some, and seems to be trying more than she has recently.  She is still in a bad relationship, living with a convicted felon.  But I have heard her say more than once in the last week, that this relationship is about over and he is about to be out the door.  I don't comment.  I just leave her be, and pray that this time she will follow through and get that baggage out of her life.  I'm sure I will tell you more about all this later.  This is just an introduction, right?

But our other prodigal daughter is my main concern in the last 24 hours.  Ten months ago, she was living in an apartment in a neighboring city, with a man who does not care about her, or respect her.  He is a good deal older than she is.  He waits tables nights, and shoots pool and drinks and does drugs.  He has no ambition.  At one point in this relationship, daughter pawned her car to get him out of jail.  I don't understand why my daughters are attracted to such losers.  It breaks my heart.

So, Easter Sunday, almost a year ago, our daughter asked her cop father and another cop friend-of-the-family to go with her to get her things.  They went with her to tell the guy she was leaving, and waited while she packed her stuff.  It was one of the happiest days of my life.  We told her that if she moved home, in a year she wouldn't recognize her life.  She was about to be evicted, and would have been homeless.  I got her back in school, and she resumed her studies in Criminal Justice.  She made wonderful grades, and worked very hard at her schooling.  She has struggled with finding a good job, but is employed.  She has dated a couple of nice guys, and once we thought she was serious.  But suddenly she broke it off, and resumed being alone.  She is depressed a lot.  She doesn't seem able to follow through with the plans she makes.  I don't know.

Well, here we are a year later.  She was doing real well, but still struggling in some areas.  Then last Thursday night, she didn't come home.  She called Friday to see if I realized she didn't come home.  When I said something about it, she told me she was at work, and she would call me back.  I never heard from her again.  She didn't come home Friday or Saturday.  Sunday I had her phone cut off.  That was part of our agreement.  If she moved home, I would give her a phone on my plan and put her on my car insurance.  If she moved, she had to take care of those things herself.  When she came home 10 months ago, she had warrants for not having insurance, and had to be arrested to clear them up.  So yesterday her dad sent word to her through her sister that she must have decided not to live here anymore, so she needed to come get her things. 

She came to get her stuff.  She has gone back to the bad man she was living with previously, who beat her up so bad I had to take her to the hospital, then he stole her money and pain pills.  I guess that means she has decided to return to other bad habits as well. 

I will continue to share here as I work my way through all this.  I know I have come to a point in my life where I have to let go of my daughter, and give her to God.  Pray that He protects her, and that one day she will look up and see the life she can have if she leaves her "friends" that don't want her, only what she can provide.

I have tried to start parenting support groups locally.  To talk about problems, resources, and pray together for our children.  I've put ads in the classifieds and on the internet.  I get encouragement emails from strangers, but no one who needs support like I do or want to meet.  Am I the only parent of mixed up, lost children?  Or do other parents just do a better job of ignoring what their adult kids do?  I don't have a clue.

I made an appointment to talk to my preacher.  I shared about our children with him, and a spacific problem that I wished for him to pray over with me.  My preacher then informed me that "he didn't pray those kinds of prayers anymore"!?  He thinks a person's faith should be strong enough that they can pray for themselves, and that God doesn't want us to pray for someone else "against their will".  I can't pray my daughters will change and follow God's path, etc, etc, because if God listened to my prayer he would be a respecter of persons and everyone has free will.  This is per my preacher.  That would be true MAYBE if my daughters were praying, but I don't think they are.  I have always believed that we are told to pray for each other. 

In James 5:16, we are told:  "Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. "  Does this mean we only pray for each other after we confess faults or sins?  Our prayers are only for healing?  Surely that can't be?

What about a prayer of agreement?  In Matthew 18:19, the writer says, "Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven."  Isn't that what I wanted my preacher to do?  Pray for me for my daughter to be saved from her sins, to leave the life she is involved in, and for God to open her eyes so she can escape the grasp of Satan?  I don't think my praying for my daughter is a violation of her free will.  If I could violate her free will, I already would have.  I just have to pray and trust God.  I believe it will work, even if others don't.  I have to pray for my daughter.

Others tell me that this is just a season.  That my daughter will mature and return to the life she was led to lead.  Don't other parents believe that, and it never happens?  What if my daughter gets so lost in this lifestyle that she can't get away?  What if she takes too many drugs, or someone gives her something she is not aware of?  What if she gets arrested and her whole future is changed from the dreams she once had?

Maybe someone will read this and have some advise to share. 

The Prodigals' Mom