Whether Black Sheep or Wandering Sheep


Tomorrow is Thanksgiving

So, I’ve read several posts in the last two days about family rejection and/or being made the black sheep of the family, and how hard it is during the holidays and special occasions. Listen, I’ve been there, and with more than one side of the “family.” I’ve also been hundreds and hundreds of miles away from loving family for many years (“wandering sheep”) and unable to spend time with the ones who love me back. It can feel hard, especially if it’s a new situation. But it doesn’t have to remain hard or sad. 

Don’t be a victim. Find other like-minded, loving “sheep” and keep it moving. Live YOUR life. Find YOUR tribe (or herd, I guess). Help grow a new group of humans that are there just to love on each other and understand.

Thankful and Grateful

There are no words to express just how thankful I am for the loving folks in my family that know and care about my heart, that aren’t feeding from the drama well, and have no other agenda for me except to love me as I am.  I am eternally grateful for those of you who took the kids and me in at holidays when my family was so far away. Those are forever treasured memories and times — and I would be remiss if I didn’t recall that a few of you were in the same position. (Look up “Misfit Thanksgiving” inside our collective memories. LOL)

Thinkful and Greatful – What It Is and What It Isn’t

By the way, this isn’t about giving those that you need to be away from or who are pushing you away the proverbial or literal middle finger. (Though I acknowledge how tempting it might be!)  It’s not even the opposite of that.  It’s something completely offline from that altogether. This is ALL about and ONLY about loving yourself more than your perceived need to make a point, prove how right or worthy you are, or to linger in abuse.

Just like we push ourselves away from the table when we’ve had enough to eat, sometimes we have to do the same with those that try to force feed us a bunch of malarkey! Choose healthy options and portions! Spend your energy and mind on making memories that feel good, and excuse yourself from the ones that hurt.  You’re the only one that can do this for you.

Happy Thanksgiving, from my herd to yours!


(For the record, if you know you really are a trifling problem in your family, or you have been treating someone bad, this post is NOT for you.  This is not for you to justify staying away or being asked to due to your poor or abusive behavior.  Be honest. Go get yourself straight and make amends.)



My Mama, Gram, and me – Thanksgiving 2013
We always had the best time.

Audio File/Slideshow


An Open Letter to Other Healthy People

Be careful who you judge.  Be careful how you judge.  Tides always turn.

Dear Other Healthy People,

I live with a mixed bag of autoimmune diseases, and have for many decades.  They are what we “spoonies” call “invisible illnesses.”  In other words, most often we look just fine on the outside, but we feel like holy hell most of the time.  Because of this, people like me are misunderstood a lot.  We lose relationships because of it even.  We are thought to be lazy, disingenuous, feigning, or just outright lying about our symptoms and how shitty we feel.  We are thought to “use” our diagnoses to get out of social situations or work and chores. It’s hard to even get physicians and other healthcare personnel to take us seriously, and more often than not, it takes many years to even get a diagnosis because of it.  So the lack of understanding, empathy, knowledge, and just general trust from loved ones and healthcare personnel is not only extremely frustrating, it’s also dangerous.
Please don’t tell me you understand when you clearly do not, and let’s be honest, cannot. If you think it makes you mad when I tell you not to say this, imagine how angry it make ME when YOU say it!  There isn’t much more aggravating than someone who tells me they understand, then turns around and is a perfect example of someone who clearly does not.  Just don’t say it.  If you feel like you need to say something, search your heart first, or just don’t say anything at all.  
If you love someone with an invisible illness, then love them just as they are.  It isn’t going to change.  It isn’t going to go away.  This is what you have.  This is what we have.  We may have good days, and we may be fortunate enough to go even very long periods feeling great!  But don’t be a toxic cloud when we don’t feel good and we aren’t able to accomplish all that we’d like, or maybe even all that we’d promised. We are already tired of feeling guilty about what we have no control over.  Believe me, no one — NO ONE — beats themselves up more about not being able to do all that they want to do more than we do.  NO ONE!  So we surely don’t need you spreading your nasty little comments and attitude around as well.  That serves nothing but your own ego about how much greater you must be, and how angry you obviously are that things are the way they are.  Thanks for absolutely nothing.
Have you ever thought about how hard it is to be a healthy, active, strong person one day, and then not be able to move the next, be in constant pain, and then have that rarely ever change?  In our heads, we are still those healthy, vibrant people — just dying to get out and be who we really are.  It’s a cruel joke.  It’s physically and emotionally painful.  So take your disdainful looks, your snide comments, and your whispers behind our backs, and shove ’em! And now pray that you don’t end up like this, because God knows that many of us have prayed for you to end up just like this so you can know, if even for a day, what this is like — to be stuck in a body that refuses to cooperate, that is at war with itself, that inflicts constant pain and confusion, organ failures, threatened with early demise, and refuses to ever be replenished by any amount of rest and sleep.  I won’t even get into the horrible medications and treatments we must face.  
None of this is to have anyone feel sorry for me or the rest of us.  It’s simply to say, “Get a grip!” to the rest of you.  Either be all in with us, or get the hell out.  Seriously.  This is exactly how I feel.  We have enough to deal with to try to stay above ground and have a smile every day without having to deal with people that don’t even deserve to be in our lives in the first place. So now you can’t say you don’t know.
If you have a relationship with me, the truth is you don’t know what you’re going to get from day to day, and even hour to hour.  I’m sorry, and I mean that.  It’s hard, and I know it.  I also know I’m worth it, and so are the few who have stuck with me.  
Oh… I almost forgot.  We don’t expect you to understand it all.  Just believe us and love us anyway.
Yours with Tenacity,
A Spoony named Debora Lynn