About a week ago, I walked outside…and what I saw made the tears drip almost immediately.
At the beginning of the summer, my dear friend had given me some day lilies to replant in our yard. Being the awesome, motivated, person I am, they sat in a wagon for two days before I got around to actually putting them in the ground.
And for several weeks…I wondered. Watched them turn brown-ish. And figured they were probably beyond hope.
But when I walked out and looked at them on that Friday afternoon…
HOPE. In the form of beautiful, orange blossoms. And I knew God had sent me a little hug, a reminder…that He can always bring beauty, even on the days we feel like we’re dying.
And that’s where I am right now…in that place of waiting on Hope. Of trying to live even though, honestly, some days it feels like the life is being sucked out.
And writing…well it’s such a huge part of how I live. And so there are days, like today, when I just pound out the words and hope they mean something in the end. 😉
And? It’s Monday. Oh, Monday. How I looooove thee.
Can you just hear the sarcasm dripping? In fact, I think it’s dripping right into my coffee… 😉
What is it about Mondays? Seriously. Even as a stay-at-home mom, I don’t generally embrace them happily. Or, even embrace them at all.
But the fact that they can come with coffee, so long as I can find my way to the kitchen to actually make it…well, that might make them look just a little better.
So let’s have a coffee chat, since it’s waaaaay early on Monday and there is coffee in my mug. Thank you, Jesus, for that.
I was telling my hubby that time feels like it’s crawling right now. It’s been such a long two weeks.
In some ways that’s good. I mean, I’ve said often how bittersweet it is to watch my girlie growing up so quickly. The years are FLY. ING. And, yet, somehow, the days that have made up life since July 22nd…well, they’ve been plenty long.
The truth is that the ache is an ever-present thing. I’ve had to find distractions, sometimes purposely creating them. Loads of laundry that aren’t quite full yet might just get washed anyway to fill some minutes. Cleaning underneath the couch, (oy…) yeah, maybe that happened, too. Sort of. And I don’t forget to water my plants and flowers anymore, either. 😉
I find myself desperate to make the days go by.
Maybe that’s normal?
But by Friday night, I was so ready for something to be different. I’d been out one other night that week for the every-28-days haircut/color. (Totally serious.) But I needed…to think. To just be. In a quiet place where talking didn’t need to happen unless I felt like it. So I called my favorite nail salon and made a pedi appointment. Of course, I arrived and the place was busier than I’d ever seen it. Goodbye quiet and hello, woman next to me loudly proclaiming her joy that her friend was pregnant.
I went home that night, cute mint green toenails and all, and cried. Probably more than I’d cried yet.
And so on Saturday, we ventured A.W.A.Y. Downtown away, via Portillo’s because Chocolate Cake Shake. Enough said. 😉 And then we sat in traffic for a small forever and found the zoo. A fun day for Mae because she needed it…and she declared it the Best. Day. Ever. We were glad for her, even if we might not have shared her sentiments. 😉 Seeing her excited was fun, though. We needed fun, and we needed to smile. Even laugh, especially when she announced to several people that the wild hog was “SO cute.” Golly, I love her.
And yesterday. Let’s just say it’s not how I imagined we’d ring in 12 years of wedded, up-and-down, bliss. We’d had plans to go downtown overnight but decided not to leave for that long and had even debated whether to really celebrate…that word just doesn’t work right now. But our sweet, amazing friends had offered to take Mae to church and hang with her for the afternoon, and…who turns that down?
So we bummed around an area about 30 minutes from us. Drank some really bad coffee. (Seriously. I think this former-barista girl should’ve gone back behind the bar to teach them how to Make. A. Latte.) Walked and wandered a lot. Ended up at a really fun flea market and bought a bookshelf and two trinkets for the porch wall.
That might have been what made me cry for the first time that day…and in front of a complete stranger, too. But sometimes…yeah.
And we found a pizza place for an appetizer and a water (because I’m boring when I drink liquid) and played cribbage and talked about life. About how we’ll never forget the crazy trip to South Africa or the Thailand adventures. About parenting and how it’s filled us and left a huge hole all at the same time. About a little girl who has brought so much joy to our days, a kind of joy for which we will be eternally grateful.
And we talked about our sweet baby, the one who has been gone just shy of two weeks and it feels like two years. The one we named Carly Kristine…and we talk about her in our house, and it just feels right even though it makes us cry.
And I was reminded again that even in the ups and downs, there’s no other person I’d rather walk this journey with. Happy anniversary, Tobin…I. Love. You.
And I thought a little, too, about how writing is how I cope right now. It’s how I process life, and I don’t worry so much about how or what I write but more about where my heart is when I write the words.
And it goes back to my Father. Because He knows and He loves…and though there are times I have to remind myself of His love, it’s always there.
And maybe in all of these words and stories, I’m just trying to survive. And He’s giving me a way to survive. To live. It’s important.
And some days we just breathe…and figure it out as we go.
Thank you to all of you who have been praying…you need to know that your prayers mean the world to us. And that we’re ok…because He’s holding us.
To Monday, a new week…and the adventures that are waiting.