Phil-ism Friday #3

“Phil-ism”…something said or done by The Younger Boy that incites laughter, bewilderment, or joy.

Today’s “Phil-isms” are brought to you by Ibuprofen…my drug of choice when dealing with Philip induced headaches.


“Mom, your scarf smells like you when you leave church.” –Philip, age 6
“Ummmm…ok.  What do I smell like when I leave church?” –Me
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What I Owe To The Special Olympics…Part 2

From yesterday:  What I Owe to The Special Olympics…Part 1

So, what did the Special Olympics give to me?

In a word, growth.  In that one day, in those few hours, I grew in my humanity.  I could talk all day about how the Special Olympics changed me, but I’ll just highlight the most important points.  I’ll try not to bore you…you’re welcome.

The first thing I noticed at last year’s Special Olympics track meet was the vast amount of non-Olympians.  There were many families, like our own, who were there in support of their loved one.  This was not just an event for Mom and Dad; there were siblings, grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins, friends.  Some children had their own cheering sections.  It was crazy!  (In a good way, of course.)

There were special education teachers, teachers’ aids, and health care providers everywhere.  I have the utmost respect for these professionals.  They face challenges like no other.  Their work is not glamorous, they are often under-appreciated, and because some kids don’t progress, they don’t often see the fruits of their labor.  Yet, they continue to forge ahead, pushing their own limits, putting the good of the students first. Continue reading

What I Owe To The Special Olympics…Part 1

I’ve mentioned before that The Older Boy is mentally challenged.  And, although he has many struggles, he is high functioning.  There are many things he can do for himself–he can communicate his needs and wants, he can show emotion, and he can develop relationships with others.  I have high hopes for him; I want him to be an independent adult.  It will be a long road, but I think that’s an obtainable goal.

Because of this, I’ve always walked a fine line in regards to whom he is exposed and what activities he is involved in.  One fear is that if he is constantly surrounded by severely handicapped children, he will see himself that way.  Once we begin to internally see ourselves in a certain light, that image becomes our identity. Continue reading

Schooled By A Six-Year-Old

The Younger Boy’s relationship with God is one that amazes and mystifies me.  His faith is ever-present, and he has a strong love for God.  He will often tell me that he loves God more than anything and everything, from ice cream and television to me and The Husband.  God is more than Philip’s Father and Creator, He is his best friend.

I am thrilled that this child knows God.  I am ecstatic that He is first in The Younger Boy’s life.  I am joyful that He is The Younger Boy’s best friend.  But, I am also bewildered.  The Younger Boy seems to have a very casual relationship with God, and I’m not quite sure how to feel about this.  Sometimes, his words and actions seem irreverent, but I know his heart belongs to Jesus.  I know, in his heart, he is not being disrespectful.  He is treating God as his friend.

Last night, we went to a church event, and as usual, The Younger Boy wanted to sit in the first pew.  As it is, we sit in the front of church, and I would have no problem sitting in the first pew if I knew the boys could behave themselves.  But, they don’t behave.  They wiggle, whisper, fidget, wave to their friends, and whine about being “boooored.”   Continue reading

But I Don’t Wanna!

“Jesus shows us that there is one area where no compromise should be accepted: God’s will.  No matter what the cost, no matter what we may have to lose or give up, nothing should stand in the way of what the Father asks of us.”  –from ‘The Sacred Heart for Lent’

Since starting my spiritual journey, I’ve prayed for God’s will to be done in my life, for me to be open to whatever His will may be, and for me to follow that will wholeheartedly. But, I didn’t mean it.  Not really.  I’ve wanted to serve God, but I wanted to do it my way.  Because, after all, I know better.  Excuse me, miss…your arrogance is showing.  Yes, I know.  I’m afraid pride will be the downfall of me.

About a year ago, I started to have a strong feeling that God was indeed calling me.  I had an anxiousness that just would not go away.  I was restless. Continue reading

Finding My First Love

I’m always looking for a good book.  I have a reading wish-list that’s 3 pages long, I have loads of books that I’ve purchased and haven’t read yet, and every time I get a coupon from our local bookstores, I feel the need to make a trip “just to look,” of course.  I won’t deny it; I’m a book hoarder.  The problem is, I don’t really have a lot of time to read.  So my collection grows.  And grows.  And grows.  And grows…dusty.  In spite of this, I’ve actually finished a really great book, “The Return of the Prodigal Son” by Henri Nouwen.  This book is not new, it was first published in 1992, but it was new to me.

Rembrandt, The Return of the Prodigal Son, 166...

Rembrandt, The Return of the Prodigal Son, 1662–1669 (Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Paraphrasing from the back cover…This is a tale of one man’s spiritual adventure that “led him to discover the place within where God has chosen to dwell…The themes of homecoming, affirmation, and reconciliation [based on the parable of the prodigal son and the Rembrandt painting of the same name] will be newly discovered by all who have known loneliness, dejection, jealousy, or anger.”

Ever been called out by a book?  There were many times when I felt like the author was talking directly to me, and I didn’t like it.  Struggling with my own personal loneliness and feelings of unworthiness, I often didn’t want to hear Nouwen talk about unconditional love.  There were times, when in a childish fit, I’d toss the book aside and say, “Well!  That’s not me!”

“The lady doth protest too much, methinks.”  Ummm…yeah…she doth. Continue reading