My Unrecognizable Life
My husband is upstairs taking a nap.
This, after much coaxing on my part that Sunday afternoon naps are part of our spiritual growth. I mean it’s no coincidence that Sabbath and nap rhyme.
Ok they don’t rhyme.
Yes, my husband is napping. Our boys are playing mini-hoops in the front hall, and every once in a while I hear the jingle of the chandelier crystal. I should probably tell them they can’t play there, but I wanna be the cool mom, so I’ll just let them play and if they break something, I’ll act totally surprised as if I had no idea they were playing there.
Our girls (Emma Claire and Elena) haven’t been seen since just after lunch. I’m thinking they are here somewhere.
Ok, so A friend mentioned this morning that I hadn’t been writing.
I’m stuck, I told her.
Every time I sit down, I stop.
I must have 35 drafts since the wedding.
I went through this time when I absolutely didn’t care if I made anyone mad and I suppose it’s a healthy progression that I started caring again.
Coulter and Emma Claire’s dad has known me for 20 years. Even if I do make him mad, he knows my humor, he knows my heart. My older son’s mother doesn’t have that history with me. She doesn’t know my humor, she doesn’t know my heart and so I get stuck.
Can I tell the story about how our oldest sometimes (always) has a stomachache on Sunday mornings. Could I tell the story that a couple of weeks ago, Mike and I were united. We were finally all in town, there was no snow, there was no cold, there was nothing stopping us, so I gave a 10 minute pep talk about how, no matter what, we would be in church and how even with headaches and even with stomachaches and while I’m carrying on, there’s a knock at the door and I say just a minute.
And I finish. I do not care about stomachaches.
And then I go to the door and it’s Emma Claire. She’s throwing up.
And I would tell this story, not to tease our boys, but to totally throw myself under the bus. I make a declaration that I don’t care about tummies and my baby girl is at that very moment getting sick.
But I don’t know. I haven’t figured out if I can share that?
How do I share my stories now that they’re all blended with the stories of not only my “own” children but my covenant children and ex-wife-in-laws and ex-husband-in-laws and all of a sudden I find myself caring what other people think.
And I hate that word—blended—but I gotta tell you that somedays it’s the only word I can think of.
Like someone threw us all in a blender and took the top off before pushing stop and we’re all just spinning and splattering and some days it’s just a big ol mess.
Our pastor may have mentioned that this would be hard. My mom may have mentioned that this would be hard.
So many times those two have been right and it’s actually pretty annoying. 🙂
Today is March 1st and it’s the first Sunday since we were married 2 months ago that we’ve all been in church. Sometimes, something as simple as getting to church.
I thought there might be a honeymoon of sorts before hard surfaced, but in fact it had showed it’s ugly side before we ever got home from the ceremony. I remember saying to my husband, “Oh my gosh. We have made a terrible mistake. Like, really. What have we done?!”
And I say it at least 2 or 3 times a day.
And he smiles gentle and he lets me have my “holy” vent and he reassures me that I’m wrong, which means we were right and when I close my eyes at night and give thanks to the Lord for a “life that is completely unrecognizable”, I know that he is right.
There have been terrible mistakes but “I do” to this beautiful mess was not one of them.
So how do I write and respect and protect?
I’ll continue to use Coulter and Emma Claire’s name because you know them.
And you love them.
Mike’s youngest is now the oldest son in our home and so that is how I will refer to him. Although I’ve also told Coulter that just because we have an older brother, he’s still a “first born” and a leader and I expect his accomplishments to reflect that. 🙂 Our oldest is a terrific kid who loves sports, hates homework and occasionally gets mad at me but pretends like he’s not mad at me. Often he’ll laugh at me (or stare wide-eyed and I know he’s thinking, “Oh my gosh. Who is this woman that my dad has married?”).
We are slowly figuring this out.
We are slowly finding our way.
Mike’s youngest. I mention youngest because we have 3 adult children that I’m pretty certain have earned the right not to be subjects in my blog. So. No stories about them.
Elena and Emma Claire have emerged, as has my napping husband. The boys are still playing mini-hoops. The chandelier still standing.
And here I am, snuggled up on my couch, enjoying the view of a home that I cannot believe is my own, listening for the voice of God and knowing that my life is a walking, talking, breathing billboard of God’s faithful love.
His redeeming grace.
God keeps His promises, and I have the unrecognizable life to prove it.