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Little Miss Independent


This week we've been talking about choices at Two Shoes Tuesday, and I can't help but think about how the choices we make as young people and adults affect our ability to be independent in the years ahead.  Good choices open doors, poor choices close them and limit the opportunities we will have.

The one thing I most wanted for my children was for them both to acquire the education and life skills necessary to be able to have good careers that were not only fulfilling, but would enable them to be financially stable and never at someone else's mercy, or find themselves at fifty stuck in low-end jobs and unable to enjoy the nicer things of life because of it. 

My daughter inherited much of her mother's fiercely independent nature.  As she learned to talk she would chatter away in her room, but not have much to say in response to us.  She didn't take to instruction well, preferring to learn things on her own.  She taught herself to tie her own shoes, and she learned to swim on her own.  In Jr. High she independently decided to play the cello in her school orchestra and lugged the huge thing home on the school bus every night so she could practice.  One day while I was at work she called me up asking how many apples to buy for a pie she was going to make.  She had never baked a pie before, but like everything she has taught herself, it turned out awesome!

At the age of twelve my daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.  This is a life-long struggle I wouldn't wish on anyone.  It changes everything... it means you must spend the rest of your life being vigilant about food, insulin, rest, and your body.  There is no "forgetting about it" for the day.  Although it hasn't been easy, I can proudly say that my daughter has not let diabetes definine her.  She has gone on to become a Registered Nurse, and a good one, working long hours at a huge hospital in Nashville. 

My daughter has had to deal with some major emotional traumas in her life, the latest of which was her husband of several years suddenly deciding he liked the girl where he worked better, and pursuing a divorce.  She loved him dearly and cherished their life together; it truly shattered her heart.  She didn't think she could find the strength and courage to move on, she really didn't even want to live.  But I knew deep down that she would find a way to get thru each day on her own and move forward.  I told her that during a hunded tearful, heart-breaking phone conversations... that she was a survivor and she would be ok.  Over time she slowly began to heal and grow stronger.

A year ago I convinced her that it was time to relocate.  Living in the same city as her ex, with his new girlfriend residing with him in the house they had purchased and remodelled together, was too hard.  Every place she went held more memories of the life she once had.  So once again she summoned her courage and independent spirit, went online and researched job opportunities in cities elsewhere, and set her sights on somewhere pretty and green, with real seasons, and far away from Texas. 

She has been living in Nashville for a year now on her own, and although her brother lives less than an hour away should she need him, she handles life independently.  When her and her husband divorced she had to give up her beautiful home in a nice neighborhood and settle for apartment living, and she is again in a small apartment at the moment.  Now that she has decided she likes her new location and her job, she is hunting for just the right home to build or buy on a lot with plenty of trees, and she has her finances in order.  I have no doubt that I will be visiting her in new digs that she can proudly call her own within the next year or so. 

When we talk she tells me how hard it is being on her own, how lonely, how frustrating the dating scene is for women nearing 40, and how she wishes there were someone selecting a dream home with her.  I tell her that her knight in shining armour will come, but that first she had to come to terms with her own life and learn to survive again on her own.  Despite her unwillingness to believe in the beginning, she has survived, and she has moved forward with her life... moving all the way across country on her own, with her beloved cats in their carriers in the back seat of her car as she travelled down the road. She didn't think she could make that trip on her own either, but she did, and she got there just fine!

I continually pray that God will bless her with a man who treasures her the way she deserves to be, and that she will stay healthy, independent and strong.  My daughter is a survivor and I could not be more proud of her!  I know that no matter what other curves life throws at her, and even though she struggles with dark depression monsters from time to time, she is going to be ok.  To me, that is what being independent is all about -  not necessarily being alone, but being able to stand on your own two feet... much like her mother Josie Two Shoes has learned to do along the way. :-)
 
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Linking up with Brenda at Pondering With A Purpose
where this week's prompt is "independent"

18 comments:

  1. Good for her even though she downsizes she has upsized in life because of the Happy factor.
    ~Janice~ please stop by the new blog and follow
    lovingtheday22.blogspot.com

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    1. That's right Janice, she has taken the steps to restart her life in a new direction, it took incredible courage and I am proud of her!

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  2. I sure hope your daughter sees this wonderful tribute that you wrote! Sounds like an amazing woman - - like her mama!!

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    1. Thank you Judy! I will share it with her, and I tell her, and my son, all the time how very proud I am of the adults they've become! I am so very lucky... and blessed!

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  3. OH Josie! I had to wait to comment on this post as I have been crying. Losing everything is hard... but what you have instilled in your daughter is that with every loss comes a gain.... what a wonderful mother you are. (Wish I had you!)
    Independence comes with a price, but it sounds like your daughter is one brave and smart woman. You are a great example to her of how your life can get better.... with a role model like you, she can't go wrong.
    Thanks for pondering with me!

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    1. Being a mom, seeing your child struggle with life, is the most painful thing ever, Brenda, it makes you feel so helpless. I continue to encourage my kids to realize that they have within them the strength and courage required to adapt to whatever life brings. I know we do... so do you! :-)

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  4. Kudos to your daughter for moving on even though I am sure it was hard.

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    1. It was a very difficult time and she didn't think she'd get thru it, but I did, I believed in her, and somehow she made it!

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  5. Good for her, and it's good to hear she's doing well.

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    1. She doesn't see herself as a winner or even a survivor yet, Monkey. She sees herself as a failure at life, someone no one would want. I'm still working on that!!

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  6. Josie, you taught & instilled some important things in your daughter. She is blessed by you. And you are blessed as well. You are surely proud of each other. Beautifully done post.

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    1. We had some rough times during her high-school years, McGuffy Ann, but we are so very close now, and more alike than she'd care to admit! :-)

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  7. What an incredibly beautiful post, Josie. Your love for her is palpable, naturally. What a superb job you have done. I cannot wait to hear about her next adventures, and particularly her special romance with her soulmate when (yes when) it happens. I have found my own....after a wonky wonky path, at 48.

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    1. See Britton, you are exactly the proof I keep telling her about, in addition to my own story! Love knows it's own time and will find it's way. I am a believer that there will be someone just right for her at this stage of her life too! I am delighted you have found your soulmate! Isn't it amazing the twists and turns life takes to bring us together?! :-)

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  8. I really like the way you’ve told the story of your daughter’s choices… and her independence. Wishing her all the best. Often, a separation is for the best in the long run, especially when one of the partners feel they need someone else. I do hope that she will find a partner in life that will make her feel complete, and that together, they’ll be happy… and make a beautiful home.

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    1. Thank you Shimon! I agree, if a partner is no longer committed to the relationship, there is no point in trying to make them stay. It took a long time, but she is finally beginning to heal from that hurt and move on. I envision her in a happy loving home, and I believe that vision can be her reality. Love can be a powerful form of prayer!

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Your comments are always appreciated... they make me smile! :-)