Oct 28, 2017

Sebastian

By Andrea Tadpole-Broussard

I have an orange, tiger cat named Sebastian. I succumbed to the pleadings of my granddaughter Destiny one day about 8 years ago and adopted him from our local Petsmart. At the time, I really did not want another cat but I could not say no to my granddaughter's big brown eyes. Sebastian should have been named Garfield because he is natured alot like that cartoon character. Everything is done on his terms and in his own time most days. He is however very attentive to me if I am sick or heartbroken. In times of trouble he never leaves my side. But, like I said on most normal days he is independent. He comes up for a pet one minute and turns surrly the next. He and I have a love-hate relationship the majority of the time.

Before I go any further I must explain that I believe animals have spirits and God puts them in our lives for a reason. I have had dogs, cats and birds who taught me lessons over the years when I slowed down and paid attention. Sebastian is no exception to this.

Sebastian has always had one ritual with me. I take a bath almost every night. He has to be in the bathroom with me when I bathe and often pushes his way in. I have learned to accept this as part of my bedtime ritual. Every night, there I am in the bathroom doing my stuff with Sebastian staring intently at me. I often wonder he is thinking but I guess it is better I do not know.

Tonight was nothing different. I went in to brush my teeth and run my bath water. I looked over and there was Sebastian straddling the open toilet about to fall in the water. He looked like he was hanging on for dear life. I reached over to help and he hissed at me as if he did not want or need my help. Just as he was about to fall in the water I grabbed him real fast, closed the lid and sat him back down. I finished brushing my teeth and got in the tub. He calmed down and just sat there staring at me like he always does.

While I was soaking I started thinking about how similar I am to Sebastian. I pray for God's help every day, but live my life as if I do not need Him. Even when He is there trying to tell me that I am going to fall in the water and help me, I push Him away like a stubborn old cat. Yet, He is always there to grab me before I fall in. If I would just trust Him in the first place I would save myself alot of heartache most of the time. Still, here I am a "Doubting Thomas" even though the touch of His hand is so apparent in my life.

I am so grateful that God never gives up on me and always finds ways to get my attention. He even uses a cat I never wanted, but really secretly love to teach me spiritual lessons. His grace and mercy is undeserved yet absolutely beautiful to me. I am once again in awe of my Creator.

Oct 19, 2017

Prayer for My Children

I always worry that people will think I'm a religious nut if they know how I pray but tonight I don't care. My family is under attack and so this is my war room prayer right now...

Prayer for My Children

By Andrea Tadpole-Broussard

Father God, I come to you tonight and I ask you to wrap Alicia up in your arms and give her rest and peace. I pray that you touch her and heal her from top of her head to the soles of her feet. I rebuke this sickness that is plaguing her and I plead the blood of Jesus over her. I speak complete healing into her body right now. I command, in your name that her kidneys and heart and whatever else is wrong line up with your word that says by your stripes she is healed.

Lord, I lift Sedrick and Victioria up to you. Lord, I know their hearts are aching and mine aches for them. Father God, I know how much they long for a child and I know losing these 3 pregnancies has crushed them. Father, I don't have the answers as to why this is happening. All I know is you are faithful to us all and our hope is in you. I ask you Lord to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning and garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. Lord, please quiet their minds and give them peace in the midst of their grief. Please continue to carry Victoria during the physical loss she is going through right now. Please give her peace and strength. God I know their babies are in Heaven with you. It's just so hard when Heaven so close yet so far away.

Lord, I bring Sedrick to you and I speak healing and peace into his tired body. Lord, please give him strength. I rebuke this anxiety and insomnia that tortures him in the name of Jesus. I speak calm and rest into his spirit and mind. Show him that you are there and have him and his family in the palm of your hands. Give him faith and serenity in the middle of the storm. Light the Holy Ghost fire in him again and give him more songs to sing for you.

Father God I rebuke the spirit of fear that seems to plague us all. I pray that you would give us stability and security that comes from knowing that you'll never leave us or forsake us. Lord, I ask you to shut the mouths of those who would speak negativity into our lives and try to tear us down. Remove the bullies from our lives. Bring us all the agape love you taught us while here on earth even though we don't deserve it. Help us to treat others with that same love too.

Father God, I believe and know that my prayers go on for eternity. They don't just hit the ceiling and bounce back. The prayers my grandmother prayed for me so many years ago got me sober and keep me sober today. So, I pray in faith now for my children and grandchildren and generations to come. I call down a legion of angels to surround and guard and protect my children, their children and those to come. I rebuke the evil one who is trying to destroy them in the name of Jesus. I pray that the Holy Spirit will reach out and touch my children and give them discernment so they know which way to go in life.

Lord, I have faith in you and know you hear the prayers of this lowly mother who loves her children with all that I am. I know you answer prayers because I'm living proof. Please, protect and bless my children, grandchildren and those to come. Give them peace, health and prosperity. Make a way when it looks like there is none. Guide them and shelter them all the days of their lives, long after I'm gone.

I pray this in the holy, blessed name of my savior and brother and your son Jesus.

Amen

Oct 11, 2017

God's Love

By Andrea Tadpole-Broussard

The first morning after my granddaughter Destiny was born I picked her up to put a clean diaper on her naked butt. She peed and pooped all over my lap and puked in my face. I looked at her and said, "So this is how its going to be huh?" I swear, she gave me the orneriest grin. I have been in love with her ever since. I believe a mother's love and a grandmother's love for her children is the closest one ever gets to the unconditional love God has for us. It barely scratches the surface of the immense love He has for us. No matter what messes we make in life, no matter how horrible we are to God, He is always there and loves us no matter what. The minute we run back to Him He is there to clean us up and change our clothes. What a beautiful love!

Sep 24, 2017

My Dreams

My husband Andre texted this to me today 9/24/17 and I don't want to lose it so I'm posting it to my blog. His words are precious to me!!!! ❤❤😍😍😍

My Dreams

By Andre Broussard

Sometimes I don't tell you about all my dreams. Well every night I used to have the same one.They stopped a few years ago. I used to wake up all upset because it was just that, a dream. My life was all about going to sleep to dream those dreams. Again and again I would just wake up to the dream. Not long ago while asleep I realized those dreams was long gone. It's hard for me to see and say how I feel at times. But the easy part is looking at dreams and reality. I realize now looking at reality you was many dreams come true! I would do anything to make this dream last the rest of my life. Each day I realize I don't miss those dreams. I live with it while I am awake. No longer is it a dream, it is the love of my life!!! I Love You So MUCH MORE!

Sep 17, 2017

Worth Sharing Again

I wrote this on 9/17/16 so its been 5 years now. It's worth sharing again...

For My Sweet Andre

By Andrea Tadpole Broussard

It's11:51pm on September 16th, 2016. Before the clock strikes midnight I want to say that 4 years ago today I met my sweet Andre. He is the most loving and caring man. I am truly blessed to call him my husband today. He and I have a good life together.

We both have gone through hell in the past and by God's grace come out the other side. We understand that about each other. Life isn't always a nice pretty picture. Quite often it's a big mess. Yet, even in the hardest times Andre and I have always ended the day together in each other's arms. He's not perfect and neither am I. Yet, we are perfectly imperfect together.

Andre is my gentle giant, my soft landing when the hard, old world knocks me down. He's my safe place where I feel loved and protected. He has renewed in me the belief that there is still good in the world. He has done this by the way he treats people. He's the most kind hearted man one could ever meet. He's always willing to help out a friend. He takes care of his family and now mine too in different ways that most people never hear about.

Andre has learned to live with my hearing impairment and always supports me in dealing with it. He never has belittled me when he has to repeat something for the fifth or sixth time. He just deals with it. This may not mean much to those of you who can hear, but to me it means the world. I trust him with my life.

Andre is a good man. He makes me want to be a better person. I am blessed to have him by my side and honored to be his wife. I love you more my sweet Andre! <3

Sep 15, 2017

5 Years Ago Today

5 Years Ago Today

By Andrea Tadpole Broussard

I wrote this for my husband Andre today, 9/16/17

Andre,

I was going to buy you a card but I decided since you keep texts and emails maybe you'd read it this way more. So, I sent it to both.

5 years ago today on 9/16/12 you messaged me on OKCupid and I met you face to face on 9/17/12. So began our journey through life together. You are the most awesome man in the world and you have made me the proudest woman in the world. Life is not perfect and we have had our share of struggles. Yet, our love for eachother has carried us through...the greatest of these is love.

The day I met you, you captivated me with your smile. I saw your heart in your eyes and I fell in love with you. I have been head or heels for you ever since.

Like you said in your vows to me the day you gave me the sacred honor of being your wife..."We aren’t promised tomorrow but I have the joy of loving you today.”

I love you MORE my sweet Andre and I always will.

❤❤❤ Andrea ❤❤❤

P.S. This is my favorite recent picture of us because we made an awesome memory together that day. May we make many more!! 😍😍😍

Aug 14, 2017

A Lesson In Faith

By Andrea Tadpole Broussard

August 14, 2017

I have been meaning to share this story for the past few days. I just now have taken the time to do it.

I have a friend who is on my Facebook. Over the past couple years she has been caring for her sister who had some major health issues happen that left her an invalid with a feeding tube, unable to move, etc. My friend has done nothing but work and care for her sister, all while dealing with heart problems herself. She has a pacemaker and defibrillator.

About a month ago I shared a link to her Gofundme because she is on the verge of losing everything. Right after I posted the link a friend in Florida messaged me and asked if she could send something to me for her. I said sure and forgot about it.

About a week later my friend had issues with her heart and her doctor pulled her off work until two days ago. This sent her into an even worse financial tail spin and last week her sister's insurance was cancelled unexpectedly. 

My friend got on Facebook over the past few weeks and posted about it all. She was of course in a huge panic. All along I have been praying. This past Friday she posted that another friend who knew someone somehow got her sister's insurance reinstated, the errors corrected and paid in full. She also said that she could start back to work Saturday but did not know what she was going to do about gas money to get through the next two weeks.

Saturday, a check for $100 came in the mail from my friend in Florida. I had forgotten all about our conversation a month ago and she is not friends with my other friend on Facebook so had no idea what had been going on. I was able to meet my friend at her work Saturday and give her the money and tell her this story. 

I was blown away. Here God was working on my friend's behalf a month ago to help her now! I always tell people God will make a way but sometimes I do not really believe it for myself. Life drives us all crazy at times. There are so many unknowns and curveballs thrown at us. Here I am, the epitomy of Doubting Thomas having to poke my finger in the Lord's side every day to make sure He is still real. He understands that about me and still lets me poke His side every day.

He allowed me to learn this lesson in faith to remind me that He is always working on a plan, even in advance, to take care of us in spite of our humaness and doubt. I am forever grateful.

Jul 5, 2017

31 Years Sober

I wrote this last year when I had 30 years sober. Today is my 31st sober birthday. These words still ring true today. I could not make it without the love and grace of God and my friends and family, especially my husband Andre, my dad and mom, my children and grandchildren. I love you all!!

30 Years

By Andrea Tadpole-Broussard

As I sit here watching the fireworks go off above our nation's capitol on TV, tears well up in my eyes. Thoughts of many July 4ths gone by flood my mind. I think of July 4, 1986 when I was in the grips of alcoholism and addiction. I think of that lost, young woman who had no hope. Then the hand of God, through angels here on earth showed me a path to get well and my life has never been the same.

I am humbled that through all the good, bad and ugly of life I have stayed clean and sober. I have not worked a perfect program but I have kept my faith in God despite how things looked.

I have been given the gift of raising my children when I should have been dead. I have seen them grow to adulthood and they are my pride and joy. I have 4 beautiful granddaughters who are the lights of my life.

God has restored my relationship with my parents. They have stood by me through it all and loved me even when I was unlovable. I am so blessed to have them.

I have had many friends along the way. Some have stayed and some have moved on. Others have come back. A few phenomenal women have been my mentor, sponser and friend too. They have talked me off the ledge many times over the years. I owe them my life.

A few years ago God blessed me with an awesome man, now my husband, André. He always keeps me grounded and reminds that world is not a horrible place. He makes me feel special and brings me joy. I prayed for a man like him and gave up finding him a long time ago. God has a sense of humor. When I quit looking, there he was. What a beautiful gift he is!

Today I sit here at peace and happy. If you knew me 30 years ago, you understand what a miracle I am. I am not bragging, just letting you know God is awesome.

Assuming I make to midnight tonight and the calendar flips to July 5, 2016, I will celebrate 30 years of sobriety. I am so completely blown away by that thought. I am not a guru. I do not have a secret potion. I just was blessed with awesome friends who I met through Bill W. They taught me a way of life through the 12 steps. You all know who you are and I am forever grateful to you for giving your recovery to me.

Most of all I thank my Higher Power, who I choose to call God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Without my God I would have died long ago. His grace and mercy amazing. I continue to stand in awe of Him.

Jun 14, 2017

My Thoughts on the Virginia Shooting at Baseball Practice on 6/14/17

Today's tragedy in Virginia is heartbreaking to me. This is an outward manifestation of the horrible division in our great nation today. I have friends and family of all political beliefs and some with none. I have friends and family of all races, creeds, religions, sexualities, etc. I love these people despite the fact that we might not see things the same way and even disagree at times. We ALL have one thing in common...WE ARE AMERICANS. It is time for the vicious hatred and division in our nation to stop. We have got to unify and remember it's okay to agree to disagree without turning to hateful rhetoric, character assassination and other mean spirited things. All of these kind of actions serve no good, certainly provide no solutions,  continue to fuel the fire of anger in our country and result in sickening days like today. Please stop the hatred and division in your own lives as I am in mine. If we each do this we will find peace and unity again.

If anyone turns my posted into a venue for more political crap to be spewed your comments will be deleted.

PLEASE PRAY WITH ME FOR PEACE AND UNITY IN OUR NATION.

This song is appropriate today...
https://youtu.be/A29S6cn0nig

Apr 16, 2017

Easter 2017

By Andrea Tadpole-Broussard

Please understand, my comments are not directed at anyone in particular, just what I have seen in my life. If church works for you, go for it. I am just sharing my thoughts.

I have never been one to celebrate Easter very much. By that I mean that I have never cared for the commercialized version of Easter bunnies, eggs, baskets, etc. I did do the obligatory Easter baskets, eggs and hunts with the kids when they were growing up. I just never cared for the hoopla that surrounds it.

I find it repulsive that many people go to church every Sunday and praise God. They put on nice clothes and act the part during the service only to go home and back to the lies they live. Most would spit on a homeless person before they would help them. They will tell someone who is going through a hard time personally or financially to "hang in there I am praying for you" yet offer no real help. Most churches will not open up their doors to the hopeless unless it looks good publicly for them. Most pastors care more about those that tithe the most than helping those that really need it. I know that every church is not this way but sadly, the majority are. Churches for the most part have become a social club where people compare their net worth, homes and cars and Jesus is a pesky side item. This is why I do not go to church very often.

I have never been one who can act fake and my life has fallen apart more than it has been together. So, I never did fit in with the white washed tombs seated in the pews. I know if Jesus were walking the earth today He would turn tables in most places we call church. The churches have lost sight of who they supposedly worship. I quit church in order to hang on to my relationship with Jesus. Sorry if it does not make sense to anyone but it does to me.

See, Jesus is not about a bunch of rules and regulations.  He does not care where I live, what car I drive, how much money I make, who I hang out with, whether I cuss in traffic, or any of that kind of stuff. He loves me unconditionally. He loved me just as much when I was face down in my puke drunk as He does today with over 30 years of sobriety. Jesus loves me because of who He is, not because of how good I can get. That is His amazing grace.

Jesus is simply love, unconditional love. If it were not for His unconditional love I would have died many years ago. I would have missed the life I have lived and have now. It has not been perfect but even in the midst of my deepest sorrows I have seen His hand working and felt His touch. It came from angels in disguise around me.

So, I am pausing for a moment today to acknowledge that Jesus, the One I found on my knees at foot of my bed on the most terrifying night of my life over 30 years ago, is still alive. He's alive in my heart and ever present in the angels in disguise around me. This is what Easter is to me.

Mar 22, 2017

More Thoughts On Prayer

By Andrea Tadpole-Broussard

I believe that all the prayers my loved ones have said, all the ones I have said and still say are still going and never stop. They continue forever. Same energy that is in the universe...from our lips to God's ears.

Insomnia

Written in 2010

by Andrea Tadpole

Late at night
Trying to sleep
Mind running crazy

Too many worries
Too much to remember
Too much to forget

Feel so overwhelmed
Feel so alone
When will the hard times end

Happiness eludes me
Sorrow engulfs me
Too much loss
Too much pain

Is God real or is it all a sham

Don't know
Don't care

Just wanna sleep

Prayer

by Andrea Tadpole-Broussard

I wrote this today in response to a discussion about prayer and whether it works or not. Don't want to lose it so I'm posting it here:

I can waste my life mind f#cking myself over which came first, the chicken or the egg and miss out on the beauty in life. That's not to say that life is always easy. Frankly, most of the time life is a shit sandwich that I have to choke down and the good stuff makes it worth it. For years before I got sober my grandmother, Mary...may she RIP always told me, "Andi I'm praying for you and some day you're going to get help!" Every time she said that I cringed because I wanted to die. I hated life and everyone in it. On 7/5/86 I got sober. I look back and can see the hand of God was working all the way through to make me willing to get help. I know without a shadow of a doubt that my grandmother's prayers kept me alive and got me sober. So, I'm not going to waste my life over analyzing God and spiritual things. I just accept it and believe. Thank God for my grandmother!

Feb 7, 2017

The Roller Coaster

Today, February 14, 2017 my husband Andre and I are celebrating our second wedding anniversary. Andre wrote this for me on February 7, 2017. I did not want to lose it so I am posting it here. I feel so blessed to have this man in my life. <3

The Roller Coaster

By Andre Broussard

Life is a roller coaster. We all have our ups and downs. We all HOPE someday to make it to the top of this roller coaster. At the top comes nothing but the same each day that goes away. It's always good. But FAITH is something that happens in the middle of this roller coaster. We go from good to bad with each day. At times even seem we are on top. Then other times it feels we are at the very bottom. It's then we see the very bad in life. Nothing around us is good. We see all the ugly. Then comes LOVE. Love is giving and receiving. It comes from GOD through others. The people we love and support. This part of the roller coaster is the strongest. Nothing bad can overcome us when we are this strong. At the  top we are very scared, at the bottom we feel very feel safe.Why put love on the bottom? The answer is easy, it is strong enough to carry us to the top again. In life we all have choices Hope, Faith and Love. With all that said my choice with everything is to love and support you until I die. I think this is where GOD put me. I am so sorry we are on this roller coaster. But I'm so very happy that I'm on it with you.

Sep 17, 2016

Four Years Ago

By Andrea Broussard

It's11:51pm on September 16th, 2016. Before the clock strikes midnight I want to say that 4 years ago today I met my sweet Andre. He is the most loving and caring man. I am truly blessed to call him my husband today. He and I have a good life together.

We both have gone through hell in the past and by God's grace come out the other side. We understand that about each other. Life isn't always a nice pretty picture. Quite often it's a big mess. Yet, even in the hardest times Andre and I have always ended the day together in each other's arms. He's not perfect and neither am I. Yet, we are perfectly imperfect together.

Andre is my gentle giant, my soft landing when the hard, old world knocks me down. He's my safe place where I feel loved and protected. He has renewed in me the belief that there is still good in the world. He has done this by the way he treats people. He's the most kind hearted man one could ever meet. He's always willing to help out a friend. He takes care of his family and now mine too in different ways that most people never hear about.

Andre has learned to live with my hearing impairment and always supports me in dealing with it. He never has belittled me when he has to repeat something for the fifth or sixth time. He just deals with it. This may not mean much to those of you who can hear, but to me it means the world. I trust him with my life.

Andre is a good man. He makes me want to be a better person. I am blessed to have him by my side and honored to be his wife. I love you more my sweet Andre! <3

Aug 8, 2016

Words for My Son on 7/9/14

I wrote this to my son on 7/9/14 in response to something he posted on Facebook. Times have changed and they keep getting better. Love you Sedrick!

From one broken hearted retread to another...stop over thinking things ;-) oh and if your so called husband or wife turns out to be a lying cheating whore (yes men are whores too) I don't think God expects us to stay with them. I get so dam sick and tired of the white washed tomb know it all "Christians" in this world telling everyone else how to live. Take the telephone pole out of your own eye before you point out the splinter in someone else's.

It's more important to love and seek GOD not church. If God is first and we take care of ourselves and stop trying to fill the void with a mate then the right one comes along. It took me 3 divorces and too many years living with another guy to figure that out. Relationships take lots of work on BOTH sides even when they're good. But when two people who have never taken the time to be alone and have a life and heal old wounds before jumping to another one its bound to end in heartache and its a recipe for failure.

Sedrick Zelsnack you're an awesome man. Take time to take care of you. Be kind and gentle to yourself. Seek God. Enjoy life. Get to know yourself and what you really like and dislike. When you do that it won't matter if your in a relationship or not. It won't matter if your two exes are the biggest bitches in the world. You'll be able to let roll off you because you'll understand finally that it's not about you at all. It's about them. They are being bitches because they realized what dumbasses they are. They had it made with you and tore it all down on themselves. Their loss.

Then, finally when you least expect it God will bring the one for you when you're not looking anymore. He did for me and I honestly thought I would never be with anyone again.

My comment has nothing to do with anything posted before me. Just sharing my heart with you son. I love you!

Jul 15, 2016

Posted 3 Years Ago on Facebook

I'm sitting here at Cecil's Tire waiting to get a flat fixed. I stumbled on this memory on Facebook. I still am deeply, madly in love with this man who I now call my husband  <3

Posted on 7/15/13 on Facebook

Andre and I have been together for 10 months now. He is the kind of man I always dreamed of but feared I'd never find. He's not perfect and neither am I. I don't think either of us were looking for perfection. We were looking for the kind of love that stands the test of time. The kind of love that's built on mutual trust and respect with that special "chemistry" and passion that keeps life fun even in hard times. I waited to announce our relationship on Facebook until we were both sure about us and where we are going. Andre and I went to Florida for vacation together last month and we both agree that this trip is what sealed the deal for us. Andre and I "officially" moved in together last week. I'm the happiest woman in the world!

Andre, I love you with all my heart! I wrote this for you:

My Man
by Andrea Tadpole

My man
Found me
Deep in the night
Like an angel
Brought me
Back to life

When we met
His eyes twinkled
With pure delight
His smile
Illuminated me
At first sight

I fell fast and hard
From the very start
Yet he was there
To catch me
He captured
My heart

Dark brown skin
Smooth as silk
Honey sweet kisses
That make me melt
He has a way of
Touching me
In places
No one else
Has ever felt

Strong and protective
Yet soft and tender
Its finally safe
I can surrender
To the love
We share
To this man
My man
Now
Forever

Jul 5, 2016

My Wonderful Husband

Moments like this make me proud to be Andre's wife. He is mowing the yard for neighbor whose husband died a couple of days ago. Such a beautiful act of kindness. He said the last thing they need to worry about is the yard. I'm so blessed to call this man, whose heart is so beautiful, my husband. <3

Jul 4, 2016

Thirty Years

As I sit here watching the fireworks go off above our nation's capitol on TV, tears well up in my eyes. Thoughts of many July 4ths gone by flood my mind. I think of July 4, 1986 when I was in the grips of alcoholism and addiction. I think of that lost, young woman who had no hope. Then the hand of God, through angels here on earth showed me a path to get well and my life has never been the same.

I am humbled that through all the good, bad and ugly of life I have stayed clean and sober. I have not worked a perfect program but I have kept my faith in God despite how things looked.

I have been given the gift of raising my children when I should have been dead. I have seen them grow to adulthood and they are my pride and joy. I have 4 beautiful granddaughters who are the lights of my life.

God has restored my relationship with my parents. They have stood by me through it all and loved me even when I was unlovable. I am so blessed to have them.

I have had many friends along the way. Some have stayed and some have moved on. Others have come back. A few phenomenal women have been my mentor, sponser and friend too. They have talked me off the ledge many times over the years. I owe them my life.

A few years ago God blessed me with an awesome man, now my husband, André. He always keeps me grounded and reminds that world is not a horrible place. He makes me feel special and brings me joy. I prayed for a man like him and gave up finding him a long time ago. God has a sense of humor. When I quit looking, there he was. What a beautiful gift he is!

Today I sit here at peace and happy. If you knew me 30 years ago, you understand what a miracle I am. I am not bragging, just letting you know God is awesome.

Assuming I make to midnight tonight and the calendar flips to July 5, 2016, I will celebrate 30 years of sobriety. I am so completely blown away by that thought. I am not a guru. I do not have a secret potion. I just was blessed with awesome friends who I met through Bill W. They taught me a way of life through the 12 steps. You all know who you are and I am forever grateful to you for giving your recovery to me.

Most of all I thank my Higher Power, who I choose to call God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Without my God I would have died long ago. His grace and mercy amazing. I continue to stand in awe of Him.

Jul 3, 2016

Today 7/3/16

Today 7/3/16

Over the past few months several people I know have lost loved ones. Two of them were women whose husbands died unexpectedly. Today, I found out that my next door neighbor's husband dropped dead yesterday playing basketball, from most likely a heart attack.

These couples are close in age to me and Andre. This wasn't supposed to happen, yet it did. I have watched two of these women walk day-by-day through grief. They have shown such grace in such devastating times.

With this going on around me it reminds me to cherish my family and friends even more. I'm so blessed with the people I have in my life. My son and his wife, my daughter, my grandchildren, my parents and the few people I call friends mean the world to me.

Then there is my husband Andre who walks through life with me every day. He is my rock and the greatest joy of my life. I could not imagine life without him. He wrote in his wedding vows to me: "I am not promised tomorrow, but thank God I have you today."  Those words ring loud and clear to me tonight.

Make sure and take the time to show the ones you love how much you care. You never know when you won't have the chance again.

RIP Jim Conley :'(

Jun 13, 2016

My Angel Gail

Written on June 12, 2015

There are times in my life when doors get slammed in my face one right after the other and I don't understand why. Its during those times that I feel like God is a million miles away. I have been going through one of those times lately. Those of you who are in my inner circle know what I'm talking about so I won't give all the details here. There also stolen moments when I say little, silent prayers or thoughts to God that no one ever knows about but me and Him. Most of the time I move on and I don't think about the prayers much because the clamor of the world distracts me; but these are the deepest, secret desires in my heart that seem like the most impossible to ever attain.

My Higher Power tends to have a sense of humor in my life and He confuses the hell out of me with His timing. It seems He's very, very slow yet always on time. He never ceases to amaze me, usually at the worst of times, to remind me that He's still there. A couple of days ago was one of those times.

One of my deepest, dearest friends is Gail. She has been my sponser, mentor, confidante, friend and cheerleader for 17 years. We met through our mutual friend Bill W. She has been the voice on the other end of the phone and literally saved my life the night my grandson died. We used to go every week or two and have a cup of coffee and talk about everything and nothing all at once. We have ridden the storms of life out together. She has loved me unconditionally and given me hope when I had none. She was the one that inspired me to follow my dreams of a degree in art. To say that I love her is a huge understatement. I owe her my life and I will be forever grateful that God made our paths meet.

Her husband Ken, whom I loved dearly too, died several years ago and she moved to another state to be closer to her daughter and grandchildren. We have talked on the phone ever since. One of those little, silent prayers that I said to God was that I would get to see her face to face again because I miss her so much.

So, here I am tripping through my life getting doors slammed in my face, not knowing which way to turn and thinking God has forgotten me. Then, earlier this week Gail called and said, "I'm in Oklahoma City do you want to come and go to the art museum with me?" Of course I did that's a no brainer! So we met up the next day at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. She's an artist just like me and neither of us could rush through any piece of artwork. I had the most wonderful time I've had in a very long time. We each talked about the images before us and talked about life and talked about nothing all at the same time again. There was one moment during our tour that I was watching her when she wasn't watching me and I was reminded of my little, silent prayer to God. What a holy, sacred moment that was. Here at one of the scariest, most difficult times in my life God brought me an angel in the flesh.

I am so grateful for those moments when God blows my mind and gives unmerited grace. I am even more grateful for the people like Gail that He puts in my life. They are my precious treasures in the world.

I love you Gail and I'm so blessed to have had a day with you. Thank you for giving that to me!!

May 18, 2016

Remembrance

Today Andre and I took the afternoon and went to some of the graves of our loved ones. One of the things I love most about Andre is that he understands the importance of remembrance...remembering those who have gone on before us.

It was a beautiful day. We first went to his sister Carolyn's grave in Beggs. Years ago Andre planted a tree for her right behind her headstone. We were blown away at how tall it is now. What a beautiful testament to a brother's love for his sister. I'm so blessed and proud to be this man's wife. <3

Next we went Floral Haven to visit the graves of my grandchildren, Zoey and Mikey. Oh, how I wish I could have traded places with them so they could live, yet God had other plans. As I watch my other grandchildren grow I think of Zoey and Mikey and how beautiful they must be. They are forever in my heart and I know I see them someday when I cross the great divide.

Going to my grandparent's graves in Locust Grove was I very hard for me because I miss them so much. It's been many, many years since they died but grief doesn't have a timeline. They are etched in my heart forever.

I stood at my grandma's grave with tears rolling down my face because I'm so grateful. She was not a perfect woman, she had her demons she fought but she always loved me and my family. So did my grandpa. They gave all they had to us even though they possessed very little materialistically. They were my safe place. I miss the more now than ever before.

I drove off wishing I could have them back. As we were exiting the cemetery a cardinal flew ahead of us and darted off into the trees as we pulled onto the road. I know it was my grandma's spirit telling me she's with me and all is and will be well.

Feb 22, 2016

Two Feathers

Today I went to the one place in the world that I feel the deepest spiritual connection, the boardwalk at Indialantic, Florida. As I was walking on the beach I found two feathers. They made me think of my friend Melody, who recently lost her husband, Mike unexpectedly. She had posted something on Facebook about feathers a few days. So, I picked up the feathers.

When I was leaving a lady saw me carrying the feathers. She told me I must have had an angel by me because I found the feathers. I told her about my friend Melody and her husband Mike. She said he must be trying to say hello to Melody. I believe that is true. I also think it's a sign from others I've lost along the way.

As I sat holding the feathers and watching the waves roll in I thought about what the lady said to me and about those I've lost, and about Melody, Mike and others. I thought about all the people who have crossed my path over the years, the angels in my midst. They are like these feathers. They are not perfect. The weather of life has beat up their outsides and they have the dirt and dust of defeat on them. Yet, in spite of it all they all have beautiful spirits that shine brighter than the sun.

I find the way God speaks to me to be amazing. He uses every day things to teach me lessons and get my attention if I will only listen. So, to Melody, Mike, my grandbabies, and other unsung heroes in my life thanks for being the angels in disguise.

Jan 30, 2016

Remembering Mikey Today

Today my little grandson Mikey aka Michael Aydan Jude Zelsnack would have been 8 years old. He was stillborn. A day does not go by that I don't think about him. Everytime I see a little boy his age I wonder what he'd be like. I love you Mikey you're always in my heart and never forgotten... Fly with the Angels my sweet little grandson!!

I wrote this for him a long time ago:

Ode to Mikey

by Andrea Tadpole

Born on a stormy sea of silence
His tiny life beyond my grasp
His spirit carried away on angel's wings
With all my hopes and dreams

I never got to see him smile
I never saw his eyes
I never felt his tender touch
Or listened to his cries

Waves of sorrow pulled me down
To horrid depths of grief
I feared I'd never reach the top
Breathe free or find relief

What was his purpose
Why was he here
Why was he meant to be
There had to be a lesson
If I could only see

Then I heard him in the silence
Calling out my name
Rise up, go home and live your life
Walk on amidst the pain

Take care of those I've left behind
Never let them go
Forgive them even if it hurts
And when your pride says no

Hold tight to God
Keep the faith
And then you'll see
That I am always with you
I am happy
I am free

Jan 26, 2016

Fwd: Writing for Zoey

I found this today....Zoey 

-------- Original message --------
From: Andrea Tadpole <atadpole@sbcglobal.net>
Date: 24/12/2006 4:09 PM (GMT-06:00)
To: seddysbride@aol.com, Elmer Tadpole <elmer.tadpole@nielsenmedia.com>, Elmer Tadpole <tadpolesplace@cox.net>, Bubba Tadpole <etadpole@cox.net>, Valeri Honafius <itsbreezyintexas@yahoo.com>, vtarrant@sbcglobal.net
Subject: Writing for Zoey

Hi All:
Apparently there was technical difficulties in the album I sent for Zoey. Here is the message I wrote to go with it. The album link was sent separate:
 
This last album contains pictures of the life of my beautiful granddaughter Zoey Ellen Zelsnack. She was born on 2/28/06 and lived for 11 minutes. Please use caution in opening this album around little ones as some of the photos are graphic in nature.
 
I would like to share my thoughts on Zoey so please indulge me for a moment – its my way of grieving:
 
At Thanksgiving dinner in 2005 Kiley and Sedrick announced to us all that they were pregnant. Over the course of the next few months our excitement grew. We were not only expecting Sedrick and Kiley's new baby, but Alicia was pregnant too. I was the proudest grandma you would know. Kiley sent me ultrasound pics as she got them and every day at work I would look at the latest one on my computer monitor. I imagined how the baby would look and was so excited, we all were. I prayed for what I called "my little peanut" and my other grandchildren every day as I always do.
 
Looking back, the day before Zoey was born was rather surreal. Kiley hung out with me all day, which was unusual, but I was thrilled since I love Kiley like my own. I remember I kept looking at Kiley and thinking how beautiful she was and how blessed Sedrick was to have her. What an exciting time this was going to be in our lives! Two newborns in our lives at once! We talked about the upcoming baby showers and planned and dreamed that day. Little did we know what was about to transpire.
 
The next morning I got the call to rush to the hospital. This day is now known to me as "the most horribly beautiful day of my life (I'll explain why I call it this eventually). As the day wore on family began to arrive and we embarked on this journey. We all prayed that God would intervene and save our little baby. I know that Kiley was terrified. Sedrick was such a wonderful, tender loving man with Kiley all the way through. He never left her side. Held her, whispered words of encouragement to her, cried with her, wiped her tears. I was in total awe of the love between the two of them, love that I rarely see these days. Love that I know will last forever.
 
Time seemed to stand still. The night seemed to last 100 years. We all held out hope that things would change.  Then God sent an angel in the form of a nurse to give Kiley the devastating news. Her baby would be coming and to prepare for the worst. I call this nurse an angel because she handled Kiley and all of us in an honest yet loving way. She has walked this road many years ago and knew exactly the words to say to Kiley and Sedrick. The kids asked me to takes the pictures when Zoey was born. Even though I knew what a daunting task this was, I considered it an honor to do so. I also know that it was God who took the pictures because I could barely see through all the tears.
 
I personally see these pictures as a celebration of the life of the tiniest little Angel I have ever known who etched her spirit in my heart forever. When she was born, the doctors stood there in amazement that she was even alive when she came out. The images are forever seared in my mind's eye. Her heartbeat was so strong and I know if she could have, she would have stayed here with us. Yet, that was not in God's plan. These photographs also represent the love of a family and its ability to pull together and hold each other up when a tragedy such as this strikes. So, please know that these photos were taken out of desperate love for Zoey so her memory would survive.
 
I am humbled by the memories I have of the two strongest and most beautiful young adults I have ever know....Sedrick and Kiley. The loss they have endured has been worse that any nightmare I have ever had, yet I have watched them keep trudging forward, sometimes gracefully and sometimes screaming and crying all the way. That's okay with me. Who wouldn't be devastated? No one ever said you had to live gracefully through tragedy; you just have to live in spite of it.
 
My favorite photos are two....one is of Kiley and Sedrick singing Jesus Loves Me to Zoey at her last moment of life. The other is of Zoey grabbing her mommy's finger with her little hand. Tell me there is no life at conception?? I am not buying it. The most beautiful picture of love was given to me in that moment. Someday when my heart can bare it I will paint this picture. For now, the tears are too heavy to even try.
 
The saddest thing for me this Christmas is not being able to hold Zoey. I miss her more than I know how to say. I can only imagine how Kiley and Sedrick must feel. If I could I would switch places with Zoey so they wouldn't hurt. We all grieve in our own way, and mine has been in silence with a void deeper than the Grand Canyon. I do not have the ability to "suck it up and move on" nor do I ever desire to be that callous. One cannot walk through this kind of event without being forever changed. I say this because I beg you all to please just love Kiley and Sedrick where they are at and help them ride the waves of emotion when they hit. If we keep pulling together and grieve together, the load we have to bare won't be as heavy.
 
I myself believe that I will never "get over" Zoey, nor do I want to. In her brief moments Zoey taught me about the most important things in life…..love and family. Zoey declared her love for us all by reaching out and grabbing Kiley's finger; by hearing her daddy sing and by fighting to live 11 minutes. This little teeny tiny girl manages to make us all stop our chaotic lives and gather together in a hospital room to witness the miracle that she was. Zoey taught me not to take people for granted and to cherish each moment because we don't know when it will be my last. I believe that Zoey is still among us in Spirit. She shows herself to me in the twinkle in Bella's eye, in Kaylee's infectious laughter and in Destiny's tenderness.
 
As I said before, the day Zoey was born was the most horribly beautiful day of my life. Horrible because I could not fix it, I could not switch places and give her life. Horrible because of the sorrow and pain I have seen Kiley and Sedrick walk through. Beautiful because I have watched a family lift each other up and weather this storm together. Beautiful because I was blessed to know Zoey and see her mighty spirit in that hospital room that day. Beautiful because Zoey will be in our hearts forever.
 
GeGe will never forget you Zoey. I will always love you until the end of time.
 
So, thanks for hearing me out and Merry Christmas everyone.
 
Love,
 
Andrea
 
P.S. Kiley, please forward to everyone you want and Sedrick's new email address as well...I don' know it.

Jan 11, 2016

Death

by Andrea Tadpole Broussard

Please indulge while I pour my heart out in words. It seems that's the only way I know how to release my emotions.

Today is January 11, 2016. January is a happy - sad month for me. Happy because my son's birthday is the 6th and one of my granddaughter's is the 23rd. Sad because my grandson Mikey died January 30th, he would've been 8 this year. My sister-in-law Rhonda died January 9th, 2 years ago. This year is even more sad because my ex father-in-law Mike Zelsnack whom I dearly loved died on January 7th and I just found out another friend in my recovery life died unexpectedly today. He was my age. I am stunned.

As I sit here I wipe the tears so I can see to write. My mind flips through all the family and friends who have made their transition to Gloryland. There's Dewina, Stella, Mike Z, Gina, my 2 grandbabies, my grandparents, George Gibbs, Harold Inman, today Mike B....the list goes on and on.

Mike B was a friend who I always saw at meetings. I remember his first meeting when his dad Delbert introduced us. I got the rare opportunity to watch the metamorphosis of recovery happen in him over the years. What a beautiful gift! He was a kind man with a gentle spirit who loved his wife Melody truly, madly and deeply. My life was blessed for knowing him. He will be greatly missed.

It's times like this that Heaven feels a million light years away. Yet, I know when I sit real still in the quiet I get a glimpse of Heaven in my midst and I realize it's only a breath away. Once in a while I feel the presence of a loved one who has gone on before me and I know they are okay. Then I can breathe and keep living for today.

I'm not a religious nut but I do read and know the Bible. When I heard of Mike B's passing today this scripture popped in my mind and I was reminded that my hope lies in Jesus:

1 Corinthians 15: 50-58
I declare to you, brothers and sisters, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed - in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true:

“Death has been swallowed up in victory. Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?”

The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

To Mike B, his family, to all my family who have lost loved ones, to our loved ones in Heaven...my prayers are with you all. Death is not the end, it's a transition. Those who've gone on are the truly blessed ones because they're at God's throne. May they dance at God's feet until we meet again.

Jan 9, 2016

Tired of Being Belittled for Hearing Loss

Today I had to go meet a friend of ours at the local AT&T store to switch out a phone number for my husband. I arrived about 10 minutes before them. It wasn't too busy. I got signed in and the door greeter directed me to another young man at the counter on the other side of the store. The music was blaring really loud, so loud that I couldn't hear myself talk. So, I smiled and told the young man that I was sorry, I'm hearing impaired and I wear hearing aids. I pulled my hair away and pointed to them. I told him that I knew that the tone of my voice was off and I was probably talking too loud and that I was sorry but I couldn't hear myself talk over the music. He rolled his eyes at me and started trying to conduct business with me anyway. I again explained that the music was drowning my ability to communicate with him out and I kindly asked if he'd turn it down so I could hear myself talk. Again I reminded him that I knew my voice was off because I couldn't hear myself talk. He got angry with me and started yelling real loud at me that I didn't have to be rude. By then other customers were  watching this. I stood there embarrassed and fighting back tears. About that time a manager came out of the back and turned off the music and apologized. I asked if someone else could help me instead of the young man who had just publically humiliated me. He agreed and another young man came over. I observed the manager making the one that was so mean to me leave the sales floor altogether. All of this happened in a span of 5 minutes. I pulled myself together before my husband's friend got there so I didn't embarass him and we were able to get the business done.

No problem, right? After all I was able to get on with my task at hand. WRONG. I should be use to this and just shake it off, right? WRONG. I know I deal with things like this every day. People treat me horrible and are quick to ridicule and humiliate me all the time. They treat me like I'm stupid. All because they can hear and do not care about understanding hearing loss. Most days I do shake it off but today I don't have it in me.

For most people with hearing loss there is no one that understands at home to turn to. Most loved ones can hear and just don't understand why these types of things upset us. They think we should just cow tow and take this kind of treatment from people. It's that way for me too. I live in a hearing world and everyone thinks I'm the one that should adjust my behavior and just take it and be polite. Well, today I did do that and my heart is broke but there's nowhere to turn that someone just says I understand and it's ok.

I don't need to be told what I should've done or what I didn't do right or how it was my fault. I just need someone to hold me and let me cry because it's a selfish cruel world out there.

Rant over :'(

Jan 3, 2016

New Years Thoughts - Jan 1, 2016

by Andrea Tadpole Broussard

WARNING: Do not read this wrong, I'm NOT suicidal. I am very happy with my life in spite of the daily struggles of life. Having said that, sometimes when I think about all the loved ones I have in Heaven I often think that they are the lucky ones. They are at God's throne with no cares or worries. Sickness and sorrow is gone for them. Yet, I'm still here in the crazy messed up world trying to eek out a living and hang on to whatever job I currently have, deal with physical problems with me and family still living, whatever life throws at me, etc ad nauseum. I get all wrapped up in focusing on all the problems and lose my focus. When I get like this I have to make myself stop and breathe. I have to force myself to focus on the small joys (which are actually huge ones) like my grandchildren and their laughter, the unconditional love of my dog and cat, the awesome man I call my husband, the fact that I'm one day at a time headed to 30 years sober this summer, coffee with a good friend, and the list goes on in my mind. When I shift my focus to this I start to remember that God is still here and taking care of me and my loved ones. Even in spite of a more often than not cruel world God has and still does carry us all through.

As my sponsor and dear friend Gail Langston always tells me, "Turn the magnifying glass around and magnify God instead of the problem. Make God one inch bigger than your problem." I struggle to do this daily but when I do I get glimpse of Heaven right before me in the eyes of angels who appear out of nowhere to help. I always say that God is so slow yet somehow always right on time. I just have to trust Him and never stop praying.

I have family and friends who are dealing with heavy issues and problems right now. These things are out of my control. They weigh heavy on my mind and heart. All I can do is pray, the reality is that prayer is the best thing I can do. Believe me when I tell you I'm praying...I AM PRAYING. It's not just a nice post, I mean it. So, I've rambled here in this post but I hope those in my inner circle understand that I have not forgotten you. I'm still praying. God has not forgotten you. Magnify Him and not the problem. Trust Him. I love you guys!!

Dec 10, 2015

Fifty-Three

53...WOW!!! I never thought I'd live past 23 and here I am 30 years later. What a wild ride it has been. My sweet friend and confidante Gail Langston always tells me to let the path unfold before me and trust God. Today I'm doing better at that and I am grateful more than anyone knows for the life I have. There have been good days, downright horrible gut-wrenching days and everything in between. Through it all God has continued to love me in spite of my craziness. He has blessed me with an incredible husband whom I love with all my heart. I have 2 awesome kids and 4 granddaughters who are the lights of my life. God restored my relationship with my parents years ago and my father is my rock. I have good friends, old and new who are my treasures. Life is good. :-)

Dec 2, 2015

Married or Not You Should Read This

I stumbled on this story online. I did not write it. I didn't want to lose it so I'm posting it on my blog. Such an important story....

Here's the story:

When I got home that night as my wife served dinner, I held her hand and said, I’ve got something to tell you. She sat down and ate quietly. Again I observed the hurt in her eyes.

Suddenly I didn’t know how to open my mouth. But I had to let her know what I was thinking. I want a divorce. I raised the topic calmly. She didn’t seem to be annoyed by my words, instead she asked me softly, why?

I avoided her question. This made her angry. She threw away the chopsticks and shouted at me, you are not a man! That night, we didn’t talk to each other. She was weeping. I knew she wanted to find out what had happened to our marriage. But I could hardly give her a satisfactory answer; she had lost my heart to Jane. I didn’t love her anymore. I just pitied her!

With a deep sense of guilt, I drafted a divorce agreement which stated that she could own our house, our car, and 30% stake of my company. She glanced at it and then tore it into pieces. The woman who had spent ten years of her life with me had become a stranger. I felt sorry for her wasted time, resources and energy but I could not take back what I had said for I loved Jane so dearly. Finally she cried loudly in front of me, which was what I had expected to see. To me her cry was actually a kind of release. The idea of divorce which had obsessed me for several weeks seemed to be firmer and clearer now.

The next day, I came back home very late and found her writing something at the table. I didn’t have supper but went straight to sleep and fell asleep very fast because I was tired after an eventful day with Jane. When I woke up, she was still there at the table writing. I just did not care so I turned over and was asleep again.

In the morning she presented her divorce conditions: she didn’t want anything from me, but needed a month’s notice before the divorce. She requested that in that one month we both struggle to live as normal a life as possible. Her reasons were simple: our son had his exams in a month’s time and she didn’t want to disrupt him with our broken marriage.

This was agreeable to me. But she had something more, she asked me to recall how I had carried her into our bridal room on our wedding day. She requested that every day for the month’s duration I carry her out of our bedroom to the front door every morning. I thought she was going crazy. Just to make our last days together bearable I accepted her odd request.

I told Jane about my wife’s divorce conditions. She laughed loudly and thought it was absurd. No matter what tricks she applies, she has to face the divorce, she said scornfully.

My wife and I hadn’t had any body contact since my divorce intention was explicitly expressed. So when I carried her out on the first day, we both appeared clumsy. Our son clapped behind us, daddy is holding mommy in his arms. His words brought me a sense of pain. From the bedroom to the sitting room, then to the door, I walked over ten meters with her in my arms. She closed her eyes and said softly; don’t tell our son about the divorce. I nodded, feeling somewhat upset. I put her down outside the door. She went to wait for the bus to work. I drove alone to the office.

On the second day, both of us acted much more easily. She leaned on my chest. I could smell the fragrance of her blouse. I realized that I hadn’t looked at this woman carefully for a long time. I realized she was not young any more. There were fine wrinkles on her face, her hair was graying! Our marriage had taken its toll on her. For a minute I wondered what I had done to her.

On the fourth day, when I lifted her up, I felt a sense of intimacy returning. This was the woman who had given ten years of her life to me. On the fifth and sixth day, I realized that our sense of intimacy was growing again. I didn’t tell Jane about this. It became easier to carry her as the month slipped by. Perhaps the everyday workout made me stronger.

She was choosing what to wear one morning. She tried on quite a few dresses but could not find a suitable one. Then she sighed, all my dresses have grown bigger. I suddenly realized that she had grown so thin, that was the reason why I could carry her more easily.

Suddenly it hit me… she had buried so much pain and bitterness in her heart. Subconsciously I reached out and touched her head.

Our son came in at the moment and said, Dad, it’s time to carry mom out. To him, seeing his father carrying his mother out had become an essential part of his life. My wife gestured to our son to come closer and hugged him tightly. I turned my face away because I was afraid I might change my mind at this last minute. I then held her in my arms, walking from the bedroom, through the sitting room, to the hallway. Her hand surrounded my neck softly and naturally. I held her body tightly; it was just like our wedding day.

But her much lighter weight made me sad. On the last day, when I held her in my arms I could hardly move a step. Our son had gone to school. I held her tightly and said, I hadn’t noticed that our life lacked intimacy. I drove to office…. jumped out of the car swiftly without locking the door. I was afraid any delay would make me change my mind…I walked upstairs. Jane opened the door and I said to her, Sorry, Jane, I do not want the divorce anymore.

She looked at me, astonished, and then touched my forehead. Do you have a fever? She said. I moved her hand off my head. Sorry, Jane, I said, I won’t divorce. My marriage life was boring probably because she and I didn’t value the details of our lives, not because we didn’t love each other anymore. Now I realize that since I carried her into my home on our wedding day I am supposed to hold her until death do us apart. Jane seemed to suddenly wake up. She gave me a loud slap and then slammed the door and burst into tears. I walked downstairs and drove away. At the floral shop on the way, I ordered a bouquet of flowers for my wife. The salesgirl asked me what to write on the card. I smiled and wrote, I’ll carry you out every morning until death do us apart.

That evening I arrived home, flowers in my hands, a smile on my face, I run up stairs, only to find my wife in the bed -dead. My wife had been fighting CANCER for months and I was so busy with Jane to even notice. She knew that she would die soon and she wanted to save me from the whatever negative reaction from our son, in case we push through with the divorce.— At least, in the eyes of our son—- I’m a loving husband….

The small details of your lives are what really matter in a relationship. It is not the mansion, the car, property, the money in the bank. These create an environment conducive for happiness but cannot give happiness in themselves.

So find time to be your spouse’s friend and do those little things for each other that build intimacy. Do have a real happy marriage!

If you don’t share this, nothing will happen to you.

If you do, you just might save a marriage. Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up…..

Nov 30, 2015

Harold & George

Written 11/30/2013

by Andrea Tadpole

Gratitude Day 30: Wow!! This is the first year I've made it through the whole month of November doing the daily gratitude. So, I was thinking about something today that I'm grateful for. I included this in a post in a group I'm a part of. It's a story about 2 people God blessed me with in my life years ago. Gratitude isn't a big enough word for them. Here goes:

When I got sober I was 23 years old. I was stuck most of the time going to meetings with what I called old farts. You know 50 to 70 year old men who sat around and shot the shit about the old days and tried to one up each other on their war stories. They would tell me that I was too young, that I had not had enough to drink and to get back out there and do some more and come back in a few years. Then maybe I'd be ready to stay sober. They didn't think my bottom was low enough. But they did not understand one thing about me. I was convinced like I am today that if I took another drink I would surely die. I also knew that if I could not find recovery in AA I would commit suicide or relapse and be a walking dead person for many years till alcoholism killed me. AA was the only option I had left.

Just about the time that I was fed up with these old men who mouthed off at me all the time and I was ready to quit AA, God put two angels into my life. One was a big tall white guy named Harold. He was probably in his 60's and he had been through hell and back. He'd been to prison and all kinds of things I could never imagine. The other was a little black man named George. He was about the same age as Harold. He'd never been to prison, owned his own company and worked hard all his life. Harold and George had been friends for many years in the program. For some reason they sat one on each side of me at meetings. They would lean over and whisper in my ear and tell me not to listen to those idiots. That everyone has to hit their own bottom. That just because one person's bottom "looks" lower doesn't mean it is. They told me the only requirement is the desire to stay sober. They said alcoholism is no respector of age, race, gender, social or economic status. The most important thing they told me is no one can take my seat in AA but me. I owe my life and much of my sobriety to these two old men. They are dead now but what I wouldn't give to sit in a meeting with them today.

Nov 21, 2015

Gratitude Day 21

Gratitude Day 21

November 21, 2015

Today I am grateful my husband Andre. He takes good care of me. He does things for me that no one else notices. He is one hell of a good cook...me not so much. He always keeps me from falling into the bah humbug mood during the holidays by insisting on decorating. He has learned to live with my hearing loss and is so sweet and patient with me about it. Every night he holds me. That may seem silly to some people but for me it's the glue that holds me together in this crazy world. He tolerates my weirdness and believe me it takes a special person to do that. I am one blessed woman!!!