Adventures in Marty! 10

waitingroom simon plelow flickr

by Simon Plelow on flickr.com

Huddled together in the waiting room, everyone had the same words in their eyes. They took Leelee into a room, told the family to wait outside. Fear has a horrible taste. Seems to get into the bloodstream. It infects every system the body uses to function. In moments like these even the indomitable human spirit can acquiesce to perceived terror.

Both mothers are utilizing their nurturing skills. Alex is being showered with affection. In rapid fire succession, words of encouragement, are aimed and released at Alex. John sits in silence. Makes eye contact with his son in-law on occasion. Doesn’t say anything. That’s his little girl in there. His concern is written all over his face. John is a devoted father. Adored by his family. He loves his daughter.

Grace worked in the medical field before she retired. She explained that nearly a third of pregnant women experience some bleeding during the first twelves weeks. It often doesn’t mean anything serious. The odds are in our favor. All bleeding is scary. But we have every right to hope for the best. Let’s stay positive. I think everything is going to be fine. She offered a warm smile to the others. It brought a sense of calm.

Alex had been pacing back and forth. He sat next to his mother. She understood his unspoken request. She gladly put her arm around him. Brought his head into her chest. Comforted her son. The circumstances creating this opportunity for affection are uninvited. She is thankful that her man-child is in her arms. She longed. Almost begged. For Leelee not to miscarry. Her  desire to be close to her son, her only child, is penetrating.

Hospitals have a feel. A smell. A reputation beyond their medical services. They are gathering places for people in need. Anxiety permeates the air supply. Pain congregates in designated waiting areas. In just a couple of hours it’s possible to witness every emotion known to man. People accept the best and worst news from people in white coats. Or scrubs. Sometimes strangers tell you the last thing you want to hear about your loved one.

sadness en.wikipedia.org

c/o en.wikipedia.org

Alex spoke. His words pierced the silence that had formed an invisible structure around the four of them. Leelee and I have been talking about God. A lot. I’m exploring. Asking questions. You all know I believe in God. But I have had a problem with the way some things happened in my life. I blamed God for my pain. If He is so loving, why would He allow bad things to happen? Especially to innocent children. They couldn’t take their eyes off Alex. Mesmerized at his openness. They didn’t dare speak. They were hungry for Alex to keep talking.

I buried some difficult things. Stuffed them deep down inside me. I never wanted to talk about them. His mother didn’t know how much Alex is going to reveal. She had done some stuffing of her own. She loved her son as much as any mother could. Her reservations about what Alex would talk about were met with an invitation to get it all out. She wanted a healthy relationship with her son. They were good with each other. She knew it could be much better.

Alex continued. I’ve had some sort of breakthrough. The news of Leelee being with child caused something to release inside of me. The past few weeks have been like nothing I’ve ever experienced before. I’m changing in ways I didn’t think were possible. I’ve reached out to God. I want to understand. I want to know Him. I would like to have my questions answered. We can’t lose this baby. Why would God let us lose this baby?

John’s voice was clear and authoritative. Both women started to speak at the same time. Wanting to steer Alex in the right direction. They willingly gave John the floor. Listen to me son, he said. No matter what happens here tonight you are not alone. You have family. People that care about you. God is always with you. He’s with all of us. God isn’t a pill you take to prevent anything bad from happening. He’s the ever-present help in times of trouble. Life is a journey with hills and valleys. Many ups and downs take place over the course of a lifetime. Part of maturing, understanding, and growing involves knowing God is with you no matter what.

femaledr walt stoneburner flickr

by Walt Stoneburner at flickr.com

I hear what you’re saying, John. I still have lots of questions. John replies, that’s good. Don’t pressure yourself to answer all of them tonight, Alex. We are here in this moment together. Our love and faith is interwoven. We are strong together. Whatever we have to face we will face together. As Alex started to respond to John the door opened. The doctor came directly to them. Her facial expressions announced good news before she spoke a word.

Leelee is fine. The baby is fine. Nothing to worry about. The doctor explained why bleeding sometimes occurs and reassured them, all is well. We want to keep her for a few hours more just to observe her. We want to let her finish receiving the fluids from her IV bag. I expect she can go home by early afternoon. Any questions? she asked. Can we see her? Yes. Please don’t wake her. Let her sleep as long as she can.

They squeeze around the door to her room. Leelee looks beautiful. Peaceful. Restful.

Every eye in the unseen world takes note of the All-Powerful at work.

Marty will return next Friday!

 

 

 

5 Ways to Become a Better Thinker

Today I’m re-posting an article I read on LinkedIn.

I’m always on the lookout for sound, practical advice, to incorporate into my daily practices. I found this interesting. Maybe you will too, Rick Amitin.

 

Colleges and universities don’t offer courses in thinking, although it is arguably the most valuable skill anyone can master. When people try to improve mentally, they might aim at increasing their IQ or gain a larger vocabulary. It’s disputed whether anyone’s intelligence can be meaningfully increased, but there is so much else that can be improved if you stand back and approach thinking per se as a skill.

 

Here are five tips that will improve almost anyone’s ability not simply to think but to think effectively in any situation.

 

  1. Use your brain efficiently.

Although thinking is mental, it is intimately connected to the brain, which has its own specific physiology. As a physical organ, the first thing the brain needs is adequate sleep every night. Medical science still considers why we need sleep a mystery, but there’s no doubt that we do. Insomnia needs to be overcome, if at all possible, without sleep aids, because even over-the-counter remedies leave most people feeling groggy and dull the next day.

 

It’s also extremely beneficial to vary the brain’s activity by giving it some down time during the day, which can amount to sitting alone quietly with eyes shut for 10 minutes every six hours or so. Standing up and moving around once an hour refreshes the body as a whole. Using caffeine or sugar to stimulate a fatigued brain is nowhere near as effective as adopting the practice of meditation, which is the best brain “reset” ever discovered, along with a host of other benefits.

 

  1. Check in on your state of mind.

The psychology of thinking is just as important as the physiology of thinking. It begins with knowing what your general mood is. We tend to approach thinking a purely rational and logical at its best, but this conception is not entirely adequate. A bad mood can distort anyone’s judgment and decision-making abilities. Various psychological studies have found that the same is true when we’re in a good mood–people tend to pay too much for things if their mood is either good or bad. Don’t deny to yourself that you happen to be in a certain mood. Only if you recognize your mental state can you deal with it and take it into account.

 

  1. Don’t separate reason from emotion.

Psychology research has found that it is impossible to separate out rationality as a pure trait untouched by emotion. All thinking is colored by emotions, which is especially true with decision-making. People who believe that they are cold-blooded rationalists whose decisions contain no personal element are fooling themselves, which makes their decisions not only suspect but blinkered. Since emotions are always part of the equation, be aware of them; don’t push them away. By the same token, if you see that you are anxious, depressed, hostile, envious, or otherwise affected by negative emotions, don’t make important decisions–or even mundane ones–until you have calmed down.

 

  1. Recognize bad thinking when it occurs.

Although the human mind will never be as mechanically precise as a computer’s calculations–and shouldn’t aspire to be–there are definite flaws that can be improved upon. Bad thinking comes in several major categories, and it’s good to know what they are so that you can avoid them in yourself and others.

  • Conflicted thinking occurs when you aren’t clear about what the topic is and how to clearly define the major terms.
  • Wishy-washy thinking comes from the refusal to commit to a position.
  • Arbitrary thinking is a stab in the dark after a reasonable way to reach a conclusion has failed.
  • Hidebound thinking resorts to old, familiar prejudices, biases, and viewpoints that refuse to change in the present circumstances.
  • Blinkered thinking comes from the habit of not looking at things that make you uncomfortable; you blind yourself either on purpose or unconsciously.

Look at yourself in the mirror and be honest about whether these flaws have crept into your thinking process.  They too easily become ingrained and repetitive if you aren’t watching out. Any or all of them can be labeled irrational thinking, but that’s too vague a term. See the next point below for why so-called irrational thinking or illogical thinking is quite often beneficial.

 

  1. Develop a strong intuition.

Most people discount intuition and its power to improve their thinking. For decades intuition was called “feminine” as a means of disparaging or discounting it, yet almost all creativity is based on intuition. So are “aha” moments that deliver insights and unexpected solutions. Without intuition the mind plods and becomes routine. It can be argued that the deepest source of the mind is totally intuitive, as validated by centuries of meditative and contemplative practices. The validation consists of discovering things in ourselves that became the basis for art, philosophy, spirituality, morality, and the whole concept of truth itself. Labeling these vast accomplishments of the human mind irrational makes no sense, even if it has become a trend today, when computers are held up as an ideal of pure logic. Your thinking will become infinitely richer a/s you welcome intuition and learn to develop it.

 

All of these points are valuable if you want to improve your thinking, but the last point, about developing intuition, is important enough that we’ll discuss it in detail in the next post.

Deepak Chopra MD, FACP, founder of The Chopra Foundation and co-founder of The Chopra Center for Wellbeing, is a world-renowned pioneer in integrative medicine and personal transformation, and is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, Endocrinology and Metabolism.  He is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and a member of the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists. Chopra is the author of more than 80 books translated into over 43 languages, including numerous New York Times bestsellers. His latest books are Super Genes co-authored with Rudolph Tanzi, PhD  and Quantum Healing (Revised and Updated): Exploring the Frontiers of Mind/Body Medicine.  www.deepakchopra.com

Adventures in Marty! 9

The last few weeks included Alex asking questions he’d never asked before. Never allowed himself to ask. With an attitude toward God he avoided looking into faith. He blamed God for his plight. Without understanding he surmised that God could prevent bad things from happening. A just God should keep innocent people from harm’s way. He was beginning to perceive the ways of the world. And the role God plays in everyday life.

pregant

c/o pixabay

Since the medical test confirmed, Leelee is pregnant, they’ve been living in a higher orbit. It’s too early for her to be showing. Alex insisted he could see her belly getting bigger. Everyday he had to inspect her stomach. Neither of them anticipated the joy they are sharing. She couldn’t be happier about how excited Alex is. Things are great. Just great!

Alex didn’t want to engage in deep conversations about his personal pain. He did drop comments and reveal more insights. Leelee strung together every statement like a necklace. One pearl at a time. She carefully took note of each word. Hanging them around her heart. They’d been together since Junior High School. Only being apart during some college terms. She is learning about the man she loves. The man she thought she knew. She knows now, more than ever, she made the right choice.

Alex isn’t comfortable. He can’t talk freely about his early years. He’s methodically sharing everything he’d kept buried for so long. He senses the deeper connection with Leelee his openness is causing. Her responses have made him feel safe. His fears of rejection and abandonment fad as he experiences her commitment to him. This is the love he hoped to find. He thought he’d found it in Leelee. Now he knows. Every time he exposes his secrets she embraces him as a man. Husband. And soon to be father.

From the way he treats her you’d think she was due any day. He makes over her like she’s breakable. She goes along. Humored for the most part. Irritated at times. Not willing to change a thing. He messages her feet every evening. Rubs her belly every morning and night. Talks to the baby growing inside of her. He’s sure it’s a boy. She wisely cautions him,,,  it could be a girl. He ignores her. Insisting its a son. She suspects he longs for the father/son relationship he never had. He says he will be just as happy with a girl. She knows his heart is set on a boy.

Alex interrogates Leelee about her faith. Wanting to know everything she believes. He doesn’t always agree with her positions. He still isn’t ready to jump on the church thing. They agreed to read the bible together. She routinely prays every morning. Usually after Alex leaves for work. He knew that. He questioned her about prayer. He doesn’t say anything about it but he began to pray on his drive to work every day.

He had avoided politics and religion in the work place. He now found subtle ways to inquire about the beliefs of some of his coworkers. He would bring the different positions home to discuss with Leelee. He respects her views but still has doubts. He didn’t know precisely what he was searching for. He decided; there is something to this God thing.

Life has changed in drastic ways. He’s no longer afraid of failing as a dad. He’s determined to prepare for fatherhood. He made a sacred contract with himself. He will resolve his issues. He will find a way to heal. He will be a whole person. He will not let his child down. Alex is growing up!

shopping pixabay

c/o pixabay

Leelee spoke to her mom often. Now they speak every day. Her mom is thrilled to be a grandmother. Leelee has lots of questions for her mom. They would sometimes spend hours on the phone. No one doubted Leelee would be a fantastic mother. At six weeks, Leelee has purchased just about everything she could ever need for the baby. How could life be any better? The pregnancy is going well. Alex is excited. They are growing in their faith. The peace of mind and joy she feels is over-the-top.

Alex continues to work hard. Putting in long hours. It’s obvious he has a new priority. He doesn’t bring work home with him anymore. He comes through the door every night bent on tending to Leelee. Taking care of needs she doesn’t have. She considered telling him it’s not necessary. She didn’t want to deflate him. Besides, the attention is kind of nice. She wouldn’t want to interrupt how spectacular things are.

Leelee woke in the middle of the night. She glanced at the clock. It’s 3:05. She wants to go to the restroom but feels too weak to get up. She wakes Alex. Startled he asks, what’s wrong? I don’t feel right, Alex. Can you get me some water? He springs out of bed. Turns on the lamp. Rushes to get a glass of water. She takes a sip. I need to go to the restroom, she states. He throws the covers back. There is blood on the sheets. He murmurs, Leelee, you’re bleeding. She looks. In shock she cries out, Oh, God! What do I do? Alex pleads.

Call my mom, she says. In his hast he calls his mom instead. She knew about the pregnancy but she doesn’t know about everything going on in their lives. Alex loves his mother. Very much. He just doesn’t involve her in his everyday life. She’s aware of the distance between them. None of that matters now. He told her Leelee was bleeding. He’s in a panic. He blurts out, I’m going to take her to the emergency room. No, his mom exclaimed. Call an ambulance. Let the paramedics treat her before you move here.

8576195628_0df9f2a68e_z

c/o flickr.com

Okay. Okay, he shouts. Hanging up without saying good bye. Alex dials 911. An ambulance is on the way. He gets a cold wash cloth to put on Leelee’s face. She is pale. Frightened. Call my mom, Alex. He dials the phone. Her dad answers. John, it’s Alex. Leelee is bleeding. I’ve called for an ambulance. He could hear Grace in the background asking, whats wrong? John tells Grace, Leelee is bleeding. He’s called for an ambulance. She gets on the phone. What hospital are you taking her too? she asks. We will meet you there, she says. Let me talk to Leelee.

She tells Leelee not to worry. This sometimes happens. Let’s not think the worst. Leelee is crying. She manages a faint okay, mom. I’m so scarred, moans Leelee I know, Honey. We will meet you at the hospital. Alex sees the lights from the ambulance. Rushing down the stairs he opens the door in consternation. Guiding the EMT’S upstairs, they spring into action. They take her vital signs. Start and IV. They offer words of encouragement. Try to calm her. They load her on the gurney and head to the hospital. Alex follows in his car.

Pantokrater hovers! Marty is present. Unseen hands are at work.

Marty will return next Friday!

 

Adventures in Marty! 6

Alex, please listen to what I have to say before you react. Your facial expressions and your tone from our last conversation are fresh in my mind. So please, think before you respond. Alex shifts a little in his chair. He doesn’t know where this is going. He’s uncomfortable. She begins. You know I haven’t been feeling well. I’ve thrown up several times. Usually in the morning. I checked the calendar. I’m late. I might be pregnant, Alex. 

serioustalk by frederic soulacroix

by frederic soulacroix, c/o en.m.wikipedia

He starts to speak. Pauses. Asks, how could this be? Did you forget your birth control? No, Alex. I haven’t missed taking my pill once. Well, what do we do now? he asks. We need to know for sure. So, I made a doctors appointment. We’ll know next week. What if I am pregnant? Alex gets up from his chair. Kneels in front of Leelee. Takes her face in his hands and says, we’ll deal with it.

I’m afraid, Alex. About what? That you wont be happy. That you’ll feel forced. You were so firm about waiting. Leelee, can you give me a few minutes to process what I’m feeling? I want to take some time to think this through. I wasn’t expecting this today. Sure, Alex. That’s a good idea. Great. I’m going to take a shower.

As he heads upstairs Leelee has a chance to think too. She wants to be pregnant. Wants a baby. But doesn’t want a baby that isn’t wanted by their father. She knows enough to know, a baby can feel that. She doesn’t want her marriage to go off the rails. She squirms in her seat. Can’t relax. Realistic possibilities stab at her imagination. She hoped for a different posture from Alex. Struggling with the unknown she decides to have a cup of tea.

Settling into a chair at the table, she clutches her cup. Hearing the shower tun off she stares into space. I need wisdom she says in silence. I’ve always wanted the news of being pregnant to be the best news of my life. A strange feeling of calm envelopes her. She shivers. Checks her arms for chill-bumps. Peaceful tears fill her eyes. She hears something gentle. Like some sort of whisper. She had never called on God out of desperation. Her heart is yearning. Without knowing how, God is with her in a different way.

babyinmirror by noirta tsu

by noirta tsu c/o deviantart

Alex dries off. Puts on his pj bottoms. Stands in front of the mirror and reaches for the comb. Strokes through his hair once. Drops his arms. Looking deep into his reflection he begins to cry with no restraint. He would later talk about the weird experience he had. As if someone or something was in the bathroom with him. I wasn’t afraid, he claimed, but I’ve never felt anything like it before. He wrestles his shirt on. Sits on the edge of the bed sobbing.

He stepped into the shower with near anger. Moments later he’s here with confusion. Acceptance is penetrating. A sensation of turning is so strong inside of him he stiffens to control it. Shattering memories of an absent father flood his mind. He held a seat for his dad at so many events. A seat his father never filled. Alex is afraid. Fearful that he doesn’t know how to be a dad. Alex is mad at his father for what he did to him. He’s also angry at God for letting it happen. Alex is melting. Dissolving into something he can’t recognize. Shaking his head as if to throw off his emotions he stops before he loses what’s going on.

Leelee’s in a state. Her peace isn’t rational. She crosses her arms in an unconscious self-hug. With too many ideas to choose from she leaves them scattered. There is a boom sound from above. Like something fell. She gets up to go and see what the noise was. Alex slid off the bed. His knees hit hard on the floor. He hears Leelee’s footsteps. Jumps up before she can get there. Rushes toward the door. They meet in the hallway. He takes her into his arms. Startled by his weeping she releases her own tears.

Offering comfort she says, it’s okay, Alex. What’s going on? I don’t know what just happened. I want us to have this baby. I want to be the father I never had. I said it was money. The truth is, I’m scared. What are you afraid of, Alex. I don’t know how to be a father. I feel messed up about that. I thought more time would give me a chance to fix myself. What do you mean? fix yourself. There are things I’ve never told you. Things I’ve never talked about. Alex, you know you can talk to me about anything. It’s not you, Leelee. It’s me.

couplehug by groverflanagan.blogspot

by grover flanagan at blogspot

As they stand there, clinging to each other, they both knew their love just went to a new place. I know everything is going to be alright, Leelee. I’ll have to find the courage to share things I’ve buried. Deep things I didn’t want to ever talk about. I trust you more than any person on earth. All I want right now is to hold onto you forever.

Marty rests. This day couldn’t have gone any better. He wallows in Pantokrater’s pleasure.

Marty will return next Friday!

 

Who do you THINK you are?

The search for meaning is universal. Astrology, philosophy, theology, and many other avenues are readily available for exploration. Finding yourself can be a lifelong occupation. Discovering who you are before you expire is admirable. But, if you don’t have enough time left to build a life on what you learn, what’s the point?

Don’t give up – get focused!

epidemic en.wikipedia.org

c/o en.wikipedia.org

A number of years ago (no need to get specific here) it was very popular to ask people, what’s your sign? When it comes to romance, the notion that the stars could align to provide a soulmate, is intoxicating. Wait a minute. In 2011 major news outlets reported that the Earth’s rotation changed the zodiac signs. Does that mean I’m not who I think I am? Is there an impending identity crisis being thrust upon mankind? No worries, mate. You can’t release an epidemic on an already infected population.

Cultural trends have a shelf life. A fad alters things in the moment. Things like clothing styles and music tastes change. Often. Even the arts have to remain fluid to hold our interest. For something to last, it has to extend from our desires, that don’t change. You can be insanely popular today and a distant memory tomorrow. I think what comes and goes reflects our willingness for distractions. What endures reveals what’s important to us.

When Mark Zukerberg launched “The facebook” in 2004 he tapped into our abiding passion for connection. From zero, to over one and a half billion users, Facebook continues to grow. As with anything this large it points-out strengths and weaknesses. It show-cases what’s real and what’s not. Bringing out the best and worst in it’s subscribers. It does provide an opportunity, for people to declare, who they think they are.

horseandcar by lowrider-girl

by Lowrider-girl

From a single horse drawn carriage to a 280 horse-powered car, we’ve advanced our inclinations, to go places. In just a few hours in a plane we can cross the country. A few more hours and we can travel the globe. The potential of human beings is experienced with every achievement. From building massive cruise ships, to landing on the moon, our capabilities find expression. These things tell us what we can do – not who we are!

Taking notice of Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, it’s clear, we are all just one idea away from the next big thing. We can record a hit song. Write a best seller. Paint a masterpiece. Develop new technologies. Make millions of dollars. But, who are we? With all of our advancements the world stays it’s course of disrupted harmony. Lacking in peace, we carry the ills of our shared community. What we do isn’t as important as why we do it.

awake by johnhain

by johnhain

I wouldn’t want to be in a world where I couldn’t be touched by the talents of fellow sojourners. I have so many moments to reflect on when my heart was lifted by another human being. Celebrating life is grand. When I think about the insurmountable suffering I have neighboring my delight, it gives me pause. If I let it become depressing I won’t have a response. But if it awakens me I will find a place of impact. If I become desensitized-I become cynical.

My life review includes disappointments. My own mostly. I’ve also experienced sponsors of terror. Willing contributors to my anxiety. How people see themselves dictate relationships. In a fast moving world, it can be tough, to find a place to rest. Providing the ability to redefine priorities.

I have accomplishments. I want more. I’ve figured out if I only want to achieve heights, for self-aggrandizement, it leaves fulfillment wanting. My greatest times of satisfaction come when I’m being to someone else, what they cannot be to themselves, in that moment. My best thrills haven’t come from a stage of applause. Which can disappear in a nanosecond. No. It’s been from the life-changing look in the eyes of the thankful. Who didn’t have the words to express that defining moment in their life. When I supplied a hug. A listening ear. A meal. Encouragement. A pair of shoes for a little boy. Sharing tears without judgement.  Who knows? what it means to them! The effect it has on me is priceless.

How many of us laughed hysterically at Bill Engvall’s, Here’s your sign? I won’t expound on the jokes themselves. They’re easily found online. But the premise fits my subject. Are there signs available to help find one’s self? Your talent may not be your gatekeeper. What makes you tick? (the thing or things that get you excited) What ticks you off? (the thing or things that make you hopping mad) These are signs to who you are. Read them and respond from the heart. Feeling the way you do offers an introduction to your destiny. Solving problems, for ourselves and for others, leads to significance.

mahatma_gandhi_by_sheepdog319-d9j43na

by sheepdog319

Perhaps Gandhi said it best; “Be the change you want to see in the world.” 

With all the talent running loose it hasn’t eliminated chaos. Relieved our pain. Or made us better. A personal definition of success is what instructs the individual. What I think, commands my energy. I question any stage that doesn’t lift its audience.

I ask myself;  Who do you THINK you are?

 

 

 

Adventures in Marty! 5

Leelee says, I’m going to grill you a steak and make a tossed salad. Do you want a vegetable? No, says Alex. But do we have any baked beans? She replies, I think so, as she gets up to look. He continues with more details of his day. I want to hear all about it, Alex. Give me a minute to start the grill. He keeps talking even when she goes outside. He’s more keyed-up than he realizes.

table for two by pixabay

by pixabay

She sets the table. Throws the salad together and checks on the steaks. Come to the table, Alex. He hasn’t stopped talking. In between his sentences she calculates how to talk about her day. Sliding his steak in front of him he proclaims, that looks great, Honey. I’m starving. As Leelee sits down, he continues his discourse. She encourages him to talk privately with the guy that let him down. Maybe you just need to clear the air, she offers. He’s disappointed. It’s not about you.

Marty understands the value of life. How precious it is. How fragile it can be. The challenges is poses. And the rewards it offers. Leelee is a bit tense. Her nap helped. But her stress level about Alex is rising. They’ve been able to communicate about most things gracefully. Alex can be competitive. High strung. And he can come off as forceful. She has no problem declaring her feelings. This is different. This isn’t style or color preferences. A baby will change their lives forever.

As Marty comforts the developing life he whispers to Leelee and Alex. They don’t see the big picture. They think the decision to have a baby starts with them. He will expose them to the deeper meaning of life.

Alex was raised by a single mother. A fabulous lady. Devoted to her only child. His father had walked out on them when he was young. Leaving for another woman. He doesn’t have a relationship with his dad. He adores his mom. But he has many questions about his father. His mom worked hard to stabilize his life but his masculinity can be volatile. Alex was taught to believe in God without any participation in organized religion.

Leelee was brought up with both parents. Her home was solid. Full of love. She’s close to her parents and siblings. She doesn’t have questions about being wanted. Or where she belongs. She was groomed for a good life. Mentored on how to get it. Her family went to church and believes life is spiritual. When she went to college her involvement with her church waned. But her beliefs remain strong.

After marriage Leelee expected they would get involved in a church. She’s a Methodist. Alex doesn’t claim any religion for his own. She’s disappointed with his lack of interest. He doesn’t want to be a regular attendee. She has gone without him but doesn’t like it. He often suggests they do other things on Sundays. While they haven’t fought about it, there is concern, especially for Leelee.

spiritual intamacy youtube

c/o YouTube.com

For now, Marty is the major influence for the baby to be.  This bundle of joy will soon be subjected to every kind of thinking there is. Everything in the world operates through thought processes. Attitudes dictate actions. Beliefs decide family dynamics, political structures, and religious persuasion. There’s a short space of time to establish the best directives. After those virtuous moments pass it’s all about correcting the errors. Marty labors to prepare the baby, the parents, and the environment.

Alex slows his semi pleasant diatribe during dinner. By the time the meal is over he ended his story-telling. Rising from the table he kisses Leelee on the cheek. That was a wonderful meal, Babe. You’re welcome, she counters. He heads back to his chair as Leelee cleans up. Her thoughts take her to a place of solitude. She barely notices that Alex dozes off to sleep. Finishing her after dinner chores she retreats to the living room. She’s decided how she’ll open the conversation.

inrecliner by michael styne

by Michael Styne

Sitting on the couch she watches Alex in his peaceful slumber. His focus on his work project had him intense for the past couple of weeks. The positive outcome is an obvious relief to him. She loves Alex. Deeply. She’s certain about how he feels about her. Alex turns to get more comfortable and wakes himself up. Noticing Leelee watching him, he apologizes, and sits up. I haven’t even asked you about your day, Honey.

I do have something I want to talk to you about, Alex. Sure, Babe. What’s going on? You were very firm about waiting to have a baby. I didn’t agree. It upset me. But I’ve decided to go along with you. It’s true, we don’t have to rush. Oh, that’s great, Leelee. He’s thrilled. Maybe a little too much. I do want to have kids. You know I do. Just not now. Hang on a minute, Alex. Let me finish.

Marty will return next Friday!

 

Adventures in Marty! 4

enlighten by ironsoundman

by ironsoundman

Marty caresses the beautiful idea as it materializes. There will never be a more gentle touch. This is as good as it gets on Earth. True innocence! Unmolested. No trace of devaluation. Identity intact. Without questions. No concerns about being loved. Where do I belong? What is my purpose? Why am I here? Just the unfurling of the sail, as the wind blows all around.  Time and space are filled with, I want you! 

Leelee is getting concerned. Every morning she doesn’t feel well. She gets better as the day goes on but the mornings are rough. She’s yet to consider being pregnant. With Alex gone to work already, she thinks of several things she needs to do. Hesitant to leave the couch she sits idol. The phone rings. She’s glad she brought the phone with her to the couch. Not knowing if she can talk, she hesitates to answer. Caller ID shows it’s her mom calling. Hi, mom. Hi, Leelee. How are you? I don’t feel well, again. Mom says, Honey, do you think you might be pregnant?

Leelee is silent. After a few moments her mom says, Leelee, are you there? What if I am pregnant, mom? Don’t you want to be? Mom doesn’t know Alex isn’t ready to have a baby. Yes, I do. But Alex wants to wait! Well, he might not have a choice, mom retorts. I’m going to be sick, mom. I’ll call you back. With a toss of the phone, Leelee rushes to the bathroom.

morning sickness by emergency brake

by Emergency Brake c/o flickr.com

She regurgitates. Her whole body is involved. Marty whispers instructions. It’s okay. Everything is fine. Knowing this is the first experience of turbulence he reassures the new forming life. You’re being announced, that’s all. Your mama is now aware that you’re here. Peace, Little One, peace! Still wrapped around the commode, she rests her head on her arm. She waits for her body to tell her she can get up. She also wants to savor the moment. She’s now certain, this is morning sickness. She’s ecstatic. Her minds spins to how Alex will react.

Things aren’t going well at work. Alex is young and ambitious. He’d been hired into a position that someone thought they should have been given. Alex’s first key assignment is being threatened with failure. The man he was promoted over is on his team. He just informed Alex he would not complete his task on time. Alex had been given sixty days to prepare his presentation. He’s down to six hours. Just yesterday he verified that everything is on track. He wonders if he is being sabotaged.

Leelee goes into the office to grab the calendar. Counting the days she realizes the possibility makes sense. She picks up the phone and calls her mother. Mom! Mom! I’m late. I think I might be, pregnant. It’s music to mom’s ears. She’s looking forward to being a grandmother. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves, she cautions Leelee. Make a doctors appointment and find out for sure. I will, mom.

daughter on phone by Lyle Vincent

by Lyle Vincent

mom on phone by Bill Branson

by Bill Branson

Concerned about what Leelee said about Alex, mom asks, can you tell me what Alex said about waiting? I’m so afraid Alex is going to be upset, mom. He feels like we need time, to get our finances in better shape, before we start a family. Did he say anything else? Do you think he’s ready to be a father? I’m not sure about that. We have always said we want kids. Well, money is going to be a concern no matter when you have children. Give Alex a chance to respond to the news without deciding his reaction. Okay, mom. I will do that. He might surprise you, Leelee. Thanks, mom. I’ll talk to you later.

So much of the future is predetermined during Zygote. Genes make us unique. From eye color to hair texture. To skin tone and length of fingers. What diseases we will be vulnerable to. And character traits. Whether we will be stubborn, intelligent, a thrill seeker, or good at music. The exact course of every life will be affected by family, friends, and environment. Marty won’t stop talking. His voice is a constant whisper. But all of creation can hear him, if tuned in.

I am forever with you. You are not alone. You are never alone. I’m a piece of something much bigger than myself. And you are too. It is your source that makes you real, complete, and whole. Your source is above you, below you, and in you. He is all about you. You can’t go where your source isn’t there. Know my voice. I guide you, help you, and reveal you. Learn from me. My thoughts are good. I will do you no harm. I’m your reminder of how you came to be!

Leelee isn’t prone to naps, but of late, she has rested in the afternoons. She often doesn’t go to sleep. Today she has wearied herself with the events of the day. She made a doctors appointment. Her joy is offset as she ponders Alex. What if he is adamant? Doesn’t want a baby just yet? He was so firm during their last conversation. She can’t get his tone and expressions out of her mind. Will he face the inevitable with a new found sense of gratitude? As her thoughts race to the far reaches of her mind, she drifts off to sleep.

garage door by en.wikipedia.org

by en.wikipedia.org

Alex sat at his desk with his head in his hands. Strained to come up with a last minute solution he springs into action. He outlines an alternate plan. Tells his team he’s counting on them. With only minutes to spare he sets up his presentation. His boss stops by to ask if he’s ready. Alex says, yes sir, I’m ready to go. It was nothing short of a miracle. But he pulls it off. The client desires a few changes but likes what he sees. Alex returns to his office. Moments later his boss sticks his head in the doorway and says, great job, Alex. You did fantastic!

Alex pulls in the driveway. The sound of the garage door stirs Leelee awake. She can’t believe she slept for over two hours. She hasn’t even started dinner. She wonders; what kind of mood will Alex be in? She throws water on her face, dries it fast, and walks to the kitchen as Alex comes through the door. Without delay she asks him how his important presentation went. He said it was close to a disaster. But I pulled it off at the last minute. He begins to explain the day. He will include every detail.

He heads straight to his easy chair, snatches a drink from the refrigerator, on his way. Leelee joins him in the living room. Alex remained solemn on his drive home. He couldn’t help but ponder if he had a problem with the man on his team that let him down. Now, he can’t stop his talking. He became excited when he spoke about his boss being so pleased with his work.

After twenty minutes of self-adulation, he asks, what’s for dinner?

Marty will return next Friday!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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