Friday, May 13, 2011

Relationship Reflection

Relationships are paramount in a person's life.  We need other people in our lives to help us understand, cope, share it's ups and downs.  Relationships make it possible to view the world through different lenses. We need to be held touched, cared for and cared about and vice versa. That can only happen through  the relationships we form with others.The following people mean the world to me.
This is a picture of my daughter and my husband.  Life, for me, is so much better with them in it.  My husband, Larry, is a wonderful man.  We have been together 34 years.  We dated 6 years before we got married. We've been married 28 years.  I met him in January 1977, we went on our first date in February and on March 26, 1977, I suffered a stroke which paralyzed me on my right side.  I had only known him 3 months but he came to the hospital everyday, except one, due to his father being ill, to visit me from March until June!!! I knew then that anybody who would stay by your side at your lowest point was a keeper.  He had been in a marriage that ended badly and he was not anxious to remarry but I was patient.  I knew that with enough time and finally an ultimatime he'd come around to my way of thinking and on August 6, 1983 he did.    My daughter, Lauren, is the joy of my life.  When I gave birth to her,on March 13, 1986, I formed a relationship unlike any other I had ever known.  I'm not often at a loss for words, but only God can understand the love I have for my child.  It's unconditional, it's accepting, it's total.  I was only able to give birth to one child, but I have two children.
Julia, came in the package with my Husband and I love her too.  She had a hard time accepting me at first.  She was only 6 years old when her Daddy and I started dating.  He had custody of her and the sun rose and set on him for her.  She felt I was an interloper keeping her Mom and Dad from getting back together.  I took my time and allowed her to get to know me.  I showed her I could only add to her life, not take away from it.  She finally came around too,she is now 40years old, married and she blessed us with 2 super Grandsons, Casey and Jeffery (I would include their pictures but I don't have any recent ones of them).

This is my Pastor and his Wife.  He is not only my spiritual leader we are friends.  Knowing the both of them has helped me put who they are in proper perspective.  Many times, Pastors are placed on a pedestal and people think they can do no wrong.  My Pastor and especially his wife are "Down to Earth" people.  We go out together as couples, they come to our house for dinner, play dominoes and even partake in a little libations now and then.She is funny and he is fun and I love being around them.

These are some of the children at my church.  I am the Director of Christian Education at my church and I hold myself accountable to leading and guiding them in the way God expects.  I love being around their energy and the zest for life they all have.

This is Polo, my Westie.  He keeps me healthy because he has to have at least 2 mile long walks a day.  He makes me laugh with his antics and he accepts me no matter what I say or do.  He just loves me and I love him too.
The most important relationship I have is with my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  Without him there would be no meaning in the other relationships I have.  Knowing Him has taught me to be open to relationships.  Without Him, I would not have the child, I was told I could never have by doctors.  Without Him, showing me the man I would marry and giving me the patience to wait, I wouldn't be in a stable loving partnership.

The insights I've gained regarding challenges to developing and maintaining these relationships are that not all of them were easy to establish and it was harder than I thought to keep them viable.  It takes hard but rewarding work to keep relationships on an even keel and sometimes they waiver but they are worth the effort to keep them up.

The special characteristics of these relationships are they took time to develop, they have longevity, they mean as much to those in the relationships as they do to me and there would be a void in my life if any of them weren't there.

I know the difficulty in forming relationships and having continuity in them.  As an Early Childhood  professional I am cognizant that relationships have to be formed, for the survival of the children we all serve.  Parents need to form relationships with the caregivers of their children because they are leaving the most precious possession they have with them and a level of trust has to be established.  Caregivers need to form relationships with the Parents because they will be with the child most of the day and they have to know what is best for that child and Parents have that information.  When a Parent is asked questions and time is taken to get to know the family and address their needs, then a relationship that is hopefully mutually satisfying can happen.

Please listen to this song as a close to this post. .


  1. It was nice how you took your time with your husband's daughter to become part of her life not replace her mom, I had a step-dad who was the same way. And I like how you mention the spiritual side of our lives I forget that that is part of relationships too.

  2. Stephanie,
    What an amazing story about the relationships you have in your life. I love that you included a picture of the children you teach. I am sure they learn so much from you and you from them as well. I think if adults took more time to get to know the children in our lives we could really learn a lot from them. Thank you for sharing your relationships.

  3. Hi stephanie you have a beautiful family and I love the fact that you and your husband have been together for that long. It is so hard to find couples that are married that long. It is truly a blessing to have family, friends, church home, and little ones in your life. Take care and you and your family are blessed.