• sarah@healingeyes.org

Author Archives: Healing Eyes

So many kids

First day of school at the Lighthouse Mission. It was a nice break from the Boys and Girls Club since I only had 12 kids to attend to. However, I missed my kids at the other club and wished I could be in both places at the same time. Too many kids and not enough of me. Readers you will notice when I am too tired to write a brilliant blog entry:)  Letting kids pull at your heart is more exhausting than one might think, especially for a woman who closed the door to children a long time ago. Now I have too many kids that I love and not letting them wear me out is the new challenge. Each child has the same problem it seems, reading comprehension is just not there, it’s frustrating to see them struggle with words their age should know. I worry for their future and it makes my heart cry. We need more teachers or volunteers to mentor these children…there has to be more that can be done so each child doesn’t get overlooked. The kids at the Boys and Girls club are literally screaming for attention and the staff is doing it’s best to help but they are understaffed and need more teachers. The kids that misbehave get more attention while the quiet ones get left behind. Somehow there has to be a way to change it…there has to be a reason why I am here other than to feel inadequate in helping sooo many little hearts.

Positive moment though was when the Lighthouse kids all said my name really loud because they remembered me. It’s nice to be remembered. One of the girls hugged me and did all her homework today. Another girl was sassy and loud as usual but stood up for me in class, I love that young lady.

Goodnight everyone…I am at my end for the day and will pass out soon

Healing Eyes

Sometimes photos are enough

 

 

 

 

 

Healing Eyes

Abundance with little

I am truly blessed! Living an abundant life of simplicity. I just finished a delicious dinner of chicken and mac & cheese with a corn on the cob, I totally splurged! After a few hours at the Boys and Girls Club I needed it though. Today I was with 7th and 8th graders trying to teach them about computers for the Digital Literacy Program. Exhausting and rewarding. At one point while on my knees talking to one of the boys and going through his answers on the computer. The talk turned from computers to a pep talk about believing in himself. He kept saying ‘I’m dumb, I am stupid’. I told him if he keeps saying that it will become true and he needs to say ‘I am smart’ over and over again.  He basically was a disruption the entire time by goofing off but I am not giving up on him yet.

Before class started I pulled my ukulele out. I debated heavily on if I should bring it or not but I gave into my potential embarrassment and brought it anyways. A little girl was playing outside by herself and so I asked God that if he wanted me to show it to her that he make the first move. Soooo he did… the girl came over to me and asked me if she could play on the computers and I said no.. but I have something cool to show you. It turned out her dad has musical tendency and she likes the guitar so I showed her some chords on the uke and she was doing C and A chords in no time. Then other girls started to show up and I taught them a bit while talking about life and how my husband died and that I don’t have kids (yes the girls started that conversation with their questions).


 

This week I chose to start reprogramming how I think. When I start to feel insecure I remember this:

“Now you are my friend, since I have told you everything the Father told me.  You didn’t choose me, I chose you.”
John 15:15-16

When I start to doubt and think what I am doing is crazy I remember this:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take. Prov 3:5-8

And when I am clouded by my own problems and end up blind to what’s around me, I think of this:

Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you.  Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that is where the action is.  See things from His perspective. Col 3:2 

Enough Scripture talk! I have ran 3 times this week and I got free French Toast twice! What more do I need?! Free breakfast, good conversation, and exercise to clear my thoughts.

Healing Eyes

Registration for kids program filled up fast

Registration for the After school program at the Lighthouse. I am in charge of the 3-6th graders and it filled up fast! Most are returning kids from last year. We were up to 9 yesterday with 1 spot left and I was praying it would be filled by one very special girl! Her mom showed up today and took the spot, yay!!! Then I gave in to one more returning kid so I’m a bit over capacity but it’s ok…it’s nothing like the Boys and Girls club of 15 + kids in a small hot room.

Next week Tuesday Miss Sarah’s class starts and we shall see who really teaches who over the next months.

As always I need prayer for strength and perseverance. Between two clubs my week will be quite exhausting but I can handle it, the business world of politics and drama prepared me for this (kinda). Screaming kids compared to screaming coworkers hmmm…ya no worries:)

I am so thankful for the donations I have received to help with my mission. I almost have enough collected to pay for my October rent and I know God will somehow provide the rest.

You can Join my supporters mailing list here if you want to join.

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Healing Eyes

Empty and numb

For the first time I have no desire to blog…to share anything…to even go on with this stupid journey. How ludicrous to move to an island where all it does is isolate you more. People come and go and then there is no one…it gets dark early and the electricity is too pricey to use. So I sit in darkness, the light reflects off the walls at least on a full moon. I have one stuffed animal, Olaf, to hold me back at night. No arms to hold me…they were taken away. God’s arms seem so invisible that I can’t even feel them. Break me no more dark grief. Break me no more broken world. 

Others have opinions on how to cope.

Yet I still remain alone. You appreciate what you have when it’s gone. I even miss those damn chemotherapy visits and pointless doctor appointments. The midnight runs to the Emergency room. The lack of affection from Andy when I lost him before he died. I would take anything if only to see him again, to talk to him!

All is meaningless under the sun.

Even the serving at the Boys and Girls Club today felt empty. The kids kept fighting my authority, all of them yell and misbehave, there is no structure or respect for authority there. The kids that need the attention sit quietly but the misbehaving ones steal it all away. The older kids disrupt the classes and its understaffed. The only positive was the meeting I pulled together with the Director on ideas to reign in the chaos. I again am placed in a ‘mediator’ role and at least in that I feel some of my old self coming back. I know I can at least give the ‘soft spoken’ and stern approach to leading. If one of God’s gift to me is Leadership than I’ll take it. Through my quiet spirit God will use me but it is draining. So many emotions pulling at me right now and in the midst I have grief and loss. I don’t want to be a victim but its easy to feel sorry for myself.

I am angry! Damn it! and I miss Andy’s cooking ha!

 

IMG_1525.JPG

IMG_1529.JPG

IMG_1530.JPG

IMG_1526.JPG

Healing Eyes

Fog

I awake from a fog of loss. Last week a storm blew through and now a light mist lingers over the dew of morning. Seeing for the first time the depth of damage done in the wake of a great storm. Lives touched by the loss of Andy, loss of family, loss of fuzzy kids, loss of self, and loss of dreams.

Each wave that crashes shakes free another memory thought long gone. In those days after Andy died I dived deep in the pain felt from losing part of yourself. Feeling hopeless in knowing he’s gone but I remain, as if his life was more important than mine.

Now as the fog lifts I see my chance to view life differently. Andy was taken from me tragically but I blame no one. For this loss I don’t blame God, I don’t blame myself, death just happens. I am thankful for knowing Andy and loving him but now I am thankful for a second life.

Thank you for the rain and thunder of the waves.

Thank you for the clash of thunder and lightning.

Thank you for taking everything away to set me free.

 

Timeline for newbies:

Valentine’s gift from Andy

Cancer Sucks

42 Days 

It has begun..now what

Healing Eyes

Choices in grief

Life is full of choices and decisions to live. Those who have experienced great loss can choose to live in that past or be bound by the chains of grief. There are times when those chains serve a purpose, forcing us to face the evil face of grief and cry those tears loss. Then there are times to accept what loss has done to us and be strong. When our strength fails it’s time to rely on other people, let go of our pride and humble ourselves before others and show our vulnerabilities.

Today I experienced all of those feelings and by the end I went so dark into the pit of despair that I feared I would suffocate. But then I took the life line God was throwing at me, he forced me to see my weakness and do something I stubbornly fight against. I reached out to other people for help, I cried out in my pain for a ear to listen to the guilt I carry. God knew my burden was too much for this frail heart to take and he sent me angels today. So many voices today gave me hope and insight into the web of guilt I have choked on. I have learned that in my solitude I am twisting my thoughts into a tiny little prison of guilt. For a moment I broke free in talking to others and seeking help from my therapist. I am weak, I know many think I am strong for flipping my life upside down but I am so frail.

My most precious moment today was when on my second day helping at the Boys and Girls club I saw this look in the kids eyes as they opened up to me. It was madness all around, me and 15 kids with severe A.D.D., and I was teaching them. ‘Miss Sarah, Miss Sarah, help me with this or can I go to the bathroom, I’m thirsty, help me next, help me’. It’s hot and the mosquitos are hungry and I have these 3rd and 4th graders looking to me for guidance. At that moment I wished I could clone myself because I am darting here and there trying to help each kid, frustrated when I had to leave the behaved ones to read on their own. One boy who was working so hard on his homework, quietly, comes to me for help a couple times but each time another kid interrupts. My heart! My heart aches! Why for so many years did Andy and me hide from children, why did we harden our hearts? Kids surrounded me today and I saw how hungry they were for knowledge. They are so far behind in comprehending words and I am just making up ideas on the fly to reach them. The staff today even saw me use discipline and assertiveness to keep the kids attention, I got a thumbs up from one of the teachers. I got on bended knee with one boy in the library and explained how important it is to understand what he reads and not just race through a book. He looked at me, he looked at me with an eagerness to try!

Assembly at Boys and Girls Club

Assembly at Boys and Girls Club

I think of Andy and I smile because he has to be laughing his ass off at this. Me of all people, working with children and adults, instead of hiding behind a computer in an office. Oh Andy, I wish you were here to change with me, that your heart could be healed like this. Andy you would have made a great father. Perhaps you got your wish and are in heaven taking care of little Hope.

Angel Fruit Cake, Andy's Favorite

Angel Fruit Cake, Andy’s Favorite

Healing Eyes

Blessings

God has told me THREE things I am sure of!

Live on the island to take time to heal
Help Kids to heal my wounds
Write a Book about my experience

In the midst of this he wants me to share how he works his magic for willing participants, such as I. Mini recap of my blog…my husband died from cancer and I then moved to an island to be a entrepreneur missionary or whatever label I end up using…

Today I prayed the prayer I only use cautiously because each time I say it something happens. “Bless me and expand my territory”. Now it seems to work when I really mean it so I am very very careful because he doesn’t hold back when I invite him in. 

I went to a new church today on the island that I kept hearing about. Of all days I go it was the day the kids run the show. Neat theory, sometimes they let the entire youth run the service. I’ll break down the blessings the best I can…it really is an organic experience that God weaves when he acts on a request.

  1. Small boy named Andy did a little standup comedy. Reminded me of my Andy the goof ball.
  2. Request for volunteers to help with the pre-school kids and they did it to the tune of ‘Let it Go’ from Frozen which I am learning on my Ukelele. Sometimes God is blatant in his signs. So yes I signed up to volunteer the first day I visit a church. The lady that runs the kids program I met the previous day on the beach too.
  3. Ran into another lady I met earlier on island and she opened up to be about there kids program where they tutor children one on one. I had been wanting to hear more about it before but she never opened up…this time she did. Obviously God nudged her.
  4. Got a free ride out to Buck island by the family that runs the kids programs, that I met yesterday at the beach, and that i talked to at church about volunteering. Coincidence? ha!  It’s hard to get rides out to Buck island so that was a nice little blessing from God.
  5. While on Buck island got to share my story about Andy and his illness. Which coincided with the fact that this family was going through some illness too. Coincidence? No.
  6. The Biggest blessing was this same lady knows a counselor and wait for it….she’s going to introduce me and I don’t have to worry about the cost. So when I was in Michigan the other week I was told to find a counselor on island and what happens? God weaves his way in and most likely has found one for me. I didn’t even have to do anything but WAIT on him. Sometimes I hate it when I am proven wrong and God shows off like this. Plus its so nice talking about Andy! Standing in the sun and water talking about my soulmate is so therapeutic.

So main theme! Be careful when you ask for something from God… he might throw a lot at you in one day! I’m sure I missed something but part of my deal with God is that when he does something I have to share it on my blog…even if I think no one cares or reads this. He gives and then I give back, I wonder if he’s my employer now? I worry about money and tomorrow but it’s kinda stupid to do since he is one step ahead of me….ugh how quickly I forget that. There is one thing he hasn’t broken my stubbornness on yet…if the day comes that he gets me waving my hands in the air during church you will know I am done for.

Note: today I woke up thinking I was going to a different beach but after church the beach got super sized by getting the free boat ride (normally its $75 to get out there). I set my expectations low and he delivered Abundance instead. Dang! Is this what an abundant life is like? Sure would be nice if it had cheaper food and long john donuts again but I’ll settle for a nice beach day.

Healing Eyes

Re-learning what I forgot

It’s becoming ever clear that each morning I have to RE-LEARN how to live without my husband. For instance, 13 years of my life I had legs but one day they started to decay from disease and then the doctors amputated them. I wake up in a dark place and with shock therapy am being told to learn to walk on prosthetics.

God is teaching me quite painfully how to re-learn everything I once did with Andy. Even breakfast is an opportunity to miss my legs.

I had eggs in the fridge but NO bread. A simple solution is to buy bread but it’s sooo far away and I have no motivation to get it. But I did it anyways and bought some carrots and bananas. So $16 later I can have an egg sandwich and some snacks for the week.
Lesson of the morning it’s easy to make an egg sandwich but it’s not easy to repeat it each morning. Just like it seems easy to walk around on your legs, you might take for granted, but when you have them but cut them off see how you approach each morning.

Last night I chose to fall asleep naturally (which took a long time) and my reward was dreams of Andy. Now that isn’t really a good thing since when you wake you realize, Damn I’m on an island still and Andy isn’t here. Then later in the night I hear him calling my name over and over, “Sarah, Sarah, Sarah”. It sounded so real that I tried to look around my room for him but he wasn’t there. A cold chill went through my heart since I again realized I am an amputee.

So now I have to learn to make it through another day and tonight the dreams will creep back in and taunt me with memories long gone. In the morning I’ll have to decide again whether it’s worth it to try and wobble around or dive back down to the darkness of grief, waiting to see what person wakes up.

photo 2 (4)

Cranberries, carrots, bananas Yay

photo 1 (5)

12 Grain Bread! Yes Healthier

Healing Eyes

Discovering a new way to write online through ‘Medium’. Another way to expand to other writers out there I suppose, but it means maybe double posts.

It wasn’t supposed to be like this…

Healing Eyes