Some Room to Breathe

Welcome to my new home. Please pardon the dust and mess. Just like when I've moved into a new house, it's going to take awhile to get settled. Unpack all the boxes, do a bit of painting and figure out window treatments (not my strong suit). But the main thing that makes a house feel like home is having people over. I'm banking that people don't really care about the mess. (They usually have their own...)

So I'm opening the doors, hoping you'll feel welcome, and come on in.

My past few years, writing-wise, have been spent Numbering Our Days. But lately I've been doing a different kind of counting - more of a count down to when will this year END? 2015  has 81 days left, and that's too long to wait for another New Year's, with fresh resolutions. Do overs.

I need one now, today. Since I can't do it yesterday, which would be even better.

There have been a lot of moments, these past six months, when I've been ready to just pack it in. But God, funny, faith-stretching, you-get-a-redo-of-this-lesson-til-you-get-it-right God, has had a different plan for me this year.  One full of stretching and lessons and throwing out whatever plans I had. I've done my share of whining and complaining, but it did little to change circumstances that often felt like they were swallowing me up.

It started back in late January, when all those resolutions I made were still shiny and new.  My brother died. Completely unexpected, although we should have seen it coming. Then our family realized our mother was in free-fall; every day she continued to live alone was more dangerous than the one before. We spent the summer, over the phone and the internet, getting her moved into memory care, but it honestly just about did me in. I'm a get-r-done kind of girl, but I barely held on - mentally and physically - while we figured it out.

Back home in Texas, after putting 7500 miles on the car, I had my cornea transplant. It's been almost two weeks since then, and I'll be back to tell you more about that in a bit. For now, I'll just say I'm beyond grateful.

Two days after my cornea transplant our grown son unexpectedly got sick, and ended up scary sick, in the hospital sick, and again - we're on the backside of that, and he's mending - but we've been shaken and reminded that we take so much for granted, and we shouldn't. It felt like God was saying, 'okay, you don't take your sight for granted anymore. How about your kids?' Right God, you're absolutely right.

Really, though, it's bigger than what's been going on this year. I've been saying for the past five years that something has to change. I have to change. I am desperately in need of some room to breathe. White pages in my calendar, margin. There's a deep need to become more of a human being than human doing.

Since I'm nothing out of the ordinary, I'm betting you just might feel the same. You haven't had the same year, or five years, that I've had, but I'll bet you've had your share of challenges, struggles, and days when you feel like you're just face flat on the ground, struggling to get up.
There's no good reason to wait another 81 days to start making changes. The kids are back in school, so I'm going back with them. It's time to learn new ways of doing things, new ways of living, maybe learn a new rhythm for living.

My plan for this new place is that it will be a place to come and take a deep breath (or two), to laugh, to learn, to share, and mostly to feel like that great definition of a friend:
Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: What! You too? I thought I was the only one.   C. S. Lewis
I'm still big on realizing what a gift every day is, but I maybe need to spend some of those days doing nothing. Or wake up with no plan. Maybe, just maybe I need to lighten up, take myself and everyone else a little less seriously.

So the goal is to do that. Try to shift into a mode more like a sailboat than a motor boat. I love to talk about most things domestic, family affairs, things going on in the world (except I'm a bit allergic to politics), my faith, living with a spirit of celebration, and our time on the road, whether it's in our minivan or Steve (our recently purchased vintage (code for old) vamper). I've got plans to share the sweaters I'm knitting, the peanut butter cookies I'm baking, how Miss Lily made me laugh today, what all our Littles are up to; how we are celebrating the holidays, how my faith is being stretched and tested (hopefully a break on that for awhile!), and maybe, once in awhile, what I think about why we, as a society, care a whit what Justin Bieber is wearing, or not.

Thanks for taking the time to pop in, and I so hope you'll come back soon.


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