For a few very hard years this word was my mantra.
The word means
-undismayed; not discouraged; not forced to abandon purpose or effort
-undiminished in courage or valor; not giving way to fear
But the truth is, I was often dismayed by everything that had taken place, and I did battle discouragement. I battled fear and doubts. I hurt and was angry, and sometimes "undaunted" sounded more like a mockery than a mantra, and I was determined to be real about all of it in these posts, thus the name, Undaunted Reality. More than that, though, I was determined to live undaunted, not because I'm so great or strong, but because my God is, and no matter what this world looks like, He is the only reality that matters.
I pray I live the reality of Him beautifully undaunted.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

All New...All Different...All Good

I rolled over and looked at the clock. 7:30 am.

Four hours for the turkey to cook.

Sigh. I had time. In fact, I had time to cook the turkey, cook the cornbread and biscuits, crumble them up, and cook the dressing, fix potatoes, AND make the ham...provided I could borrow someone's oven for a bit.

Did I want to?

Words from Leslie's* text came to mind:
"Well, it's all new really, isn't it? New to being a fabulous single mom. New to being the matriarch of the family. New to having a sister."
It's all new really, isn't it?

All new...

Not all over...or all broken...or all...horribly sad...

...but all new...

All full of promise...all full of potential...

Yeah, I wanted to make turkey. I wanted to make the ham and potatoes and dressing and rolls. I wanted to make the day great for my family...because that is who I am...a fabulous single mom...the matriarch of the family who sets the tone...who dishes out dinner and dreams and trust that new isn't bad...just different...and it's good.

Yes, that is what I wanted...even if I had to borrow someone else's oven to have everything ready to feed my family...

It really is all new, isn't it? 

Yes, it's all new...all different...and it's all good.

The Dressing
The hardest part of this Thanksgiving for me was Mom's dressing.
She would walk in door, and the smell of sage and onions would
fill the house. She would sit the pan down and dole out big hugs.
I miss her...the dressing...and the hugs.
Time to step with presence, the food, and the love.
I can do this.

Wonder Boy drooling over the "traditional" Thanksgiving meal of
ham, turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, rolls, and cranberry sauce.

Rob joined the children and me for dinner.
We ate too much, watched Thanksgiving football, and played family games.
This morning Anna crawled in bed with me and said joyfully,
"Mom, this is going to be the best day ever."
How did she know?

*Leslie is one of my mom's "adopted" daughters. She worked with Mom at H&R Block. They were very close. I had heard about her for a long time. Mom thought the world of her. However, I had never met her. When Mom found out she had cancer, she said, "You need to get to know Leslie. You'll need her. You'll need each other." Mom knew. I'm thankful she did...and I'm so thankful for my new sister, Leslie.


  1. As I read the words you wrote, I had to stop several times to wipe the tears from my eyes. They were not tears of saddness. They were tears of gladness, tears of joy, tears of gratitude.

    I am glad to have known & loved "our" mom Gayle. I'm thankful to have known her and loved her, and her love & care about me. We've shared many many conversations about family. She so loved her family.

    I am over-joyed to watch you come through this grief process a stronger woman. I am over-joyed that "our" mom left me a present that was so near and dear to her heart...YOU!

    I am grateful that "our" mom was such a wonderful part of my life. What a wonderful gift from God she was to have in myt life after my own mother passed. She filled a huge void that was in my heart. The same void that you now fill since her passing.

    Enjoy and be the best "new" you that you can be! I love you Sissy. I really truely do. :)