Raising Magnolias

Because it's never too late for happily ever after…

A Season of Exhale

The back of our new home is all windows. I love my windows. Cleaning up for supper last night, I could watch coulter and Emma Claire play. I had promised to join in, but for a few minutes I stood and watched.

Mesmerized.

ParAlyized.

Coulter was teaching Emma Claire how to break free from a tackle. I saw her spin out and stiff arm and she would run and run and yell touchdown and he—-

Was teaching her.

Later I joined in and spent 10 minutes trying to explain why he can’t tackle me.

It’s a conversation that probably bears repeating.

He played in his first game on Sunday. And I’m just gonna tell you, it is full-on crazy fun.

They call your name on the loud speaker! As in, tackle on the play by #75, Coulter fritz!

And there were moms with blinged out football t-shirts and running late from church,I was wearing a pencil skirt and 3 inch strappy sandals. My friend Amy offered to order us Team shirts for the next game. I can’t imagine why she thought I needed help. Ya know, with my heels and all.

But we cheered for the boys and we roasted in the late summer sun and it.

Was.

Fun.

Red-faced and playing on the bleachers with her new “brown friend”, Bella, Emma Claire comes snapping over.

Looking for snacks.

I don’t know if anyone else notices it.

But she learned to snap this week.

Snap.

Snap.

Snap.

And sometime she adds a little hip action with her snaps and she talks.

Non-stop.

She talks about the naughty kids and the mean girls and her new sight words and the letter F.

We read a prayer last night. Each line started with “For”.

As in, “for the beauty of the earth.”

We give thanks.

For the ground beneath our feet.

We give thanks.

But instead of praying, we counted F’s.

And “for’s”.

And we looked for “the’s”

And we snapped.

Then, her eyes nearly drooping, I knocked her water off the table. I tried to ignore it.

Drip drip drip.

She held it in as long as possible before she erupted into giggles.

“How can I sleep when it sounds like someone’s going potty!”

And so we laugh.

And we count.

And we snap.

And Coulter’s waiting patiently in his man-cave bedroom to read with mom and when I finally get there he talks once again about how much better he sleeps with his new NFL bedding and all of a sudden he asks me to give him a back rub and it reminds me of the very night when he was 3 that he asked me to quit rubbing and start scratching and last night we did both and we prayed and we sang—

“Praise God from whom all blessings flow.”

And I thought back to the weekend. Crazy full. Crazy busy.

Crazy.

Blessed.

My friends came and gathered and helped celebrate our new home. And we sat around tables and we talked and we giggled and we listened to men—husbands and friends—yell at the tv.

Men.

Watching football in my house. A party.

And I loved it.

I loved the sounds and the food and the hugs and I loved hearing laughter in my home.

And I love the football and the snapping and the reading and back-scratching and I can’t remember who said it, but this—

For me.

Is a season of exhale.

I feel lighter.

And I can breathe.

And I’ve just written a blog about nothing and you might be wondering, “where is she going with this?”

What’s her point?

The point is nothing!

The point is that for the first time in years, I can write about nothing.

Which is everything.

There are hard things.

Always.

I’m overwhelmed with paperwork and insurance and name changes and have you done this and have you done that and I spent an hour looking for my keys today because I was distracted when I walked I inside and I’m teaching more than ever and I’m training more than ever and I am burdened and ever-aware that i have sweet friends who are hurting and reeling from loss and this is not their season of exhale.

My mom reminded me of a verse today in Ezekiel. “I will bless them and the places surrounding my hill. I will send down showers in season; there will be showers of blessings.”

I love that—

In season.

And having walked through the fire, I am ever grateful for a season of exhale.

A season of showers.

A season to stand beside and offer back to others what was so freely given to me.

Prayers.

Encouragement.

Arms.

Tissues.

Shoulders.

A season to write about nothing.

Which—

As it turns out—

Is everything!

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