From Darkness to Light (Part Two)

 

part two

{Read Part One: Entering the Darkness}

The Darkness Grows Deeper (Part Two)

I thought the drinking was bad, but the financial hit we took because of the loss of his business was much worse. Maybe he could have rebuilt the business, but all this took place just a few months before the housing market crash. He was losing his business either way. 

Of course, his drinking  kept him from finding another job. He still wouldn’t openly admit the he had a drinking problem, but deep down inside he knew. He knew no one would hire him. The only one that did was his little brother to help with the chicken houses. That wasn’t full time work and he wasn’t making much. 

I had gone back to substitute teaching. Again, not much pay. My certification to teach had just run out and we didn’t have the money for me to get recertified. That meant I couldn’t get a good paying job.

On the day of the twins Junior prom, my husband was pulled over for his second DUI. It was 8:15 in the morning. That was his wake-up call. I had asked him once before why he didn’t feel he was an alcoholic. He said it was because he wasn’t drunk first thing in the morning. His blood work showed he was almost twice the legal limit and he hadn’t even had time to drink much.  Six months later he was in front of the judge and given the choice of jail or rehab. He chose rehab. My darkest days were just beginning. 

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From Darkness to Light

FDTL Part one

This is not an easy post for me to write. There is a lot of ugliness in it. Yet, out of that ugliness God has made such beauty. I would like to say that this is my testimony, but really it is His. It is a story of His redeeming grace and undeserved mercy. 

I write this because I know that there are others out there who need to hear it. They need to know they are not the only ones who are going through what they are going through. They need to know that there is “light at the end of the tunnel” and that light is Jesus Christ. Without Him this story would not be what it is today. 

This story, like so many others, takes place over several years. Sometime, years are what are needed to complete the story, although this story is never truly complete. 

Because of the length of this story, I will be doing it in parts. I do pray that you will find the hope you may need. 

                                                        Entering the Darkness  (Part One)                                                                                                            

I’m not good with remembering years. I remember when things happened by what grade my children were in. Let me begin when it first became known to me, when the twins were in third grade. 

My oldest had been visiting his cousin and were doing exactly what his mom and aunts had done when we were children. He was riding down a hill in a wagon. Unfortunately, he lost control and crashed, skinning his legs all up. A couple of weeks later, he was home and not feeling well. We were leaving in the next couple of days for a camping vacation, so I took him to the doctor. The doctor noticed his scars from the his wreck and that they were purple. That meant infection. Nothing serious. He prescribed some medicine and jokingly told my son not to drink too much while taking this medicine. My son’s response, “Not like my daddy does.” You could have knocked me over with a feather.

I told my husband about this and asked him to stop drinking. He agreed and nothing more was said. 

Jump to three years later. My husband was coming home from work staggering as he walked to the door and talking with slurred speech. Friends are telling me how often they see him “at the store” walking out with a big brown paper bag. Others are asking me about him and if everything is alright. I realize that in the past three years he has not stopped drinking, he was just trying to hide it from me and everyone else. He was hiding it from no one. 

Over the next couple of years, his drinking only got worse. People tried to help him. They would talk to him. One offered to go with him to AA meetings. I would give him numbers to counselors and he would go one time then say we didn’t have the money for counseling. I had friends who had already been through this come talk to him. I did the only thing I knew would really help and that was pray for him. But even that didn’t seem to be helping. He only got worse. 

I had resolved that divorce was not an option. I had made a vow to love him during sickness and in health, richer or poorer, better or worse. Trust me when I say we were experiencing the sicker, poorer and worse parts all at once. Trust me when I say it didn’t feel much like love. 

The drinking wasn’t the hard part for my kids. The hard part was having to deal with my temper. I wasn’t angry everyday, but when I was, even Satan stayed away. I was trying so hard to be gracious and supportive towards my husband. I was trying not to nag him. (That didn’t work too well.) I was trying not to be angry with him. At least not in front of him. I was trying to do all this on my own. 

Being a stay at home mom meant I had all day, by myself to ponder and think about his drinking and what it was doing to our family. I had time to stir up anger and resentment. I have to admit, there were days I would just yell at him and give him a piece of my mind, but he wasn’t here to hear it. I thought I was getting all my frustrations out while no one was here so, I would be able to handle things when everyone was home. Some days,  when everyone was home, thoughts would be going through my head and one of my poor children would say something that would just hit me the wrong way and I would just explode! (I want you to know I never hit my kids in anger. I just yelled at them.) Most of the time, they knew when I was mad, because I inherited my mother’s angry eyebrow. It rises high on my brow when I am angry. One look and you know to walk away. Many times they just walked away. 

When the twins were in ninth grade, my husband’s business partner split from the business. I couldn’t blame him. I wanted to split myself. In their tenth grade year, my husband was so drunk one day and I was at my wit’s end (again) that I asked him to leave. It was late in the evening so he spent the night in his office. (A small building that is to the side of our house.) At about 11 that night, he stepped out of the office, onto the steps of his office and the step gave way and my husband’s ankle twisted and broke. He didn’t call me on his cell to tell me. I only discovered it the next morning at 8 o’clock when his old partner called the house and I took the phone to him. He had to have five pins and a plate to fix his ankle. Since he couldn’t walk on his foot for six months, and land surveying requires much walking while carrying a heavy transit, he lost his business. 

The darkness was beginning to get darker. 

(It is hard to see the light when you are in the middle of the darkness, but know that it is there. Do not try to handle your spouses drug or alcohol addiction on your own. Seek help from a pastor or a group like Al-Anon.)

 {Read Part Two The Darkness Grows Deeper}

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This Transforms How I See Easter

 

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My blogging friend, Jennifer, at Jottings from Jennifer, had a really good post I would like to share with you. Here is just a tease…

“While hanging on the cross, undergoing excruciating agony, Jesus started the first line of a chapter. Educated Hebrew audiences of his day would have instantly recognized the words, and known the reference. They would have been able to recite the next words and lines, as easily as many of us know pop songs. Jesus’ gasped sentence on the cross would have set in motion for them the rest of the chapter.”

Want to know the rest? You can check it out here. 

Happy Easter to you all! 

Jayne

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Starting on the Guest Bathroom

I have no idea what I was thinking when I painted the kids bathroom like this. Actually, I do, but I never finished it. 

IMG_0291All the white you see on the walls is repair work from taking down the wallpaper the used to be up and not repairing before I painted it again. 

Whew! Much better!

IMG_0569I still have much to do in here. 

I’m going to have My Man make a frame to go around the mirror.

IMG_0572And I’m going to paint this light black.

IMG_0575A new rug is being bought today!

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The cabinets are getting painted next week. All the kids are coming home this weekend, so I will just have to wait to get that done.

The stuff for here is being bought today.

IMG_0576I will also be on the look out for what I can put on this wall.

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I have seriously considered painting this on that wall, but…

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The funny thing about that…MM has shot two deer out of this bathroom’s window!

I’m thinking a galvanized bucket would make a good trashcan.

IMG_0577I’m also thinking blue gingham curtains would be cute in the window.

My first decorations for this room. 

IMG_0570Yes, that is paint you see on the window. We forgot to scrape it off the last time we painted the house and it probably isn’t going to get scraped because it’s on the second floor, we’re kind of used to looking at it and we need to replace it anyway. 

I am going to have MM build this for me. 

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It’s a work in progress. Like me. God is constantly at work on me. Scraping, patching up holes, repainting my heart, building my character. 

Do you have any projects you are working on?  

Next week, I am going to be sharing something very personal with you. It turned out to be rather long, so I broke it into five parts. How about that, one for each day. I hope you enjoy it and I ask that you be in prayer for those who may need to read it. Pray that God would somehow let them find my little blog so that He can speak to them. 

Thanks,

Jayne

 

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DiY Reading Lights

Remember my inspiration for my boys bedroom? 

boys room Juxtapost

One thing that caught my eye was the reading lights above the beds. One home improvement store wanted $40 for one light! I was not about to spend $80 on lights so, I got to work finding a way to make the lights. 

Here is the inspiration I found for the lights. 

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Here is what we came up with. 

IMG_0551Not the same as the inspirational picture, but closer to the ones I liked in the bedroom inspirational picture. Are you following me? 

Let me show it to you in its parts. 

IMG_0564My Man and I spent some time at Lowe’s (not paid to say that). We saw some wooden corner braces, like the ones used on porches, but they were still a bit pricey for me. MM thought of a plant hanger. There were fancier ones, but I just liked the clean line of this one. $5. 95 each.

IMG_0560The “shade” was the next problem. We looked and looked for something that would work. We looked so long, I was tired and just ready to go. A couple of days later, I walk into a local hardware store to get the paint for the room and lo and behold if these weren’t just staring me in the face.  

IMG_0343The hardware man said he had bought several of these during the winter storm we had so people could use them to keep their wells from freezing.  It’s a country thing. Anyway, he didn’t sell as many as he had hoped and since I was buying paint and two lamps, he gave me a ten percent discount on all of it! $6.99 each.

I spray painted them black and voila! (paint $3.97, but still have plenty left over so probably only 50 cents at best)

IMG_0561The third problem became the pulley. New pulleys are way expensive! Antique pulleys are even more expensive. MM bought two pieces of cheap wood and built me some. $5 for wood.  I’ll try to attempt to tell you how he did it. 

First, he got really accurate with the measurements for the circles and traced a roll of masking tape for the two outer sides of the pulley. Then he traced the lid to my salt shaker for the inner circle. Here’s a better picture for that.

IMG_0559The cord is wrapped around the inner circle. He just glued these three pieces together. 

Next, he drew the part that is stained. He free-handed it. Sorry, he does that a lot. He glued those pieces together, using the “pulley” part as a spacer so it wouldn’t collapse on itself. After it had dried, he nailed the top stained part to the pulley.  Last, he added a hook to hang it by. 

We ran into the problem of the cord not hanging right. MM drilled a hole on the top of the pulley, beside the hook, that the cord could go through. 

We weaved the cord through a rusted chain link. $0

IMG_0563Trust me when I say you need to make sure the electric wire is straight. Oh yea! You have to take the wire off of the light socket to wave it through the chain and wrap it around the pulley. Then attach the wire back to the socket. 

Next, we hot glued the wire to the bottom of the plant hanger. Hot glue really doesn’t hold it that well. We wrapped one piece of black electrical tape towards the back of the plant hanger (near the wall) so the weight of the cord wouldn’t pull it off the hanger. So far it is working. 

We did buy 9 foot extension cords ($1.98 each) and  replaced the cords that came with the lamps. The original cords were not long enough. MM just cut off the female end and striped the wires to attached them to the sockets. 

I know, not the best directions. I would have loved to have taken pictures of each step, but all four hands were needed. 

What do you think?

IMG_0550I need to clean and hang the mirror. The table is one Will brought home when they redecorated the apartments he lives in. I can’t wait to put something else there.  You can see a reflection of the lamp in the mirror because I have the bathroom mirror in their room so I can paint the wall behind where it goes. (I think that was a run-on sentence. Oh well!)

Our next project for this room are headboards. We are in search for some old, weathered wood. MM surveyed for someone and they have an old barn on the land they are going to tear down. MM is going to get some of that wood for the headboards. We’re just waiting for the barn to come down. Until then, I’m working on the kids bathroom. Which is really now the guest bathroom. 

One project down and so many more to go! What projects are you working on? 

Hope you have a great week!

Jayne

Oh yea! Total cost…$15.44 for each lamp! 

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