I am coming along.

I wake early, before the sun even rises, and I lie in my bed half trying to go back to sleep in that warm spot and half, thinking, feeling and talking to God.  I am pretty sure he woke me up, because on my own, I don’t do that well. Although, I would appreciate more sleep, my mind appreciates this time in the quiet. My soul needs it even more in this season.  

 

What I am thinking, feeling and talking to God about is my current loneliness.  I am grieving my dad, and sometimes it’s difficult to know what to do with this grief and the strong feelings.  I have desires for more community around our family,and for deeper connection to dear friends. There doesn’t have to be a multitude of people, I just need to know they have my back.  People that I can text and receive a text quickly back. People I can see regularly and maybe even weekly. I know people are busy, but why are we SO busy? I have thought about beginning some type of gathering but I have talked myself out of it.  I am praying again. But, do I start, when I don’t even know if we are going to stay here?

I acknowledge that I have had some of these same feelings before.  In the waiting season when we were not sure where we were going to live a year and a half ago.  When we lived in our first house together and walking the journey of being content with that house.  These feelings are not entirely new, but they are frustrating just the same! I do feel that we are waiting, waiting for our next right step.  There is this frustration of wondering where it will be. I am not even entirely sure that I have a hope of where I want to be.

 

What do I want?  I want to know where we will stay and set down roots.  I want solid friendships. I know now to call them hope champions,a term used from Danny Silk’s soultime app.  These are people that always speak hope to us and we get to speak hope right back to them. I want to have purpose or  a mission as a family that is clear. I want to know a house is officially ours and we have freedom to make it our own I want a wee bit of money to be able to do that!  I want to live simply, have less stuff, but have it be quality. I want, I want, I want. Perhaps, I have just caught myself being lost in discontentment. It so easily catches us right?  I have stepped away a bit from the media that feeds it, and maybe I am just seeing where I have actually been.

 

I have power to stop the cycle.  Oh, I can dream! I can hope. But, I can also, be right where I am, on this Tuesday.

 

Emily P. Freeman says in her book Simply Tuesday, “And we won’t be so naive as to try to make the hard times beautiful, but we will have faith that the hard days are making us, remaking us, and forming us into the likeness of Christ.  Let’s take back moments that are lovely even if they are imperfect, words that are powerful even if only one person hears them…”

 

I do not have to make what is hard at the moment into something beautiful.  Emily, gave me that permission. He will do that himself. He will. I can trust that right now when I don’t see it.  But, I can always search and call out what is beautiful right now. The antidote to my endless wants.

What is beautiful are my two children who are always eager to be with me, especially my little five year old shadow.  She was by my side only minutes ago. What is beautiful is that I get to teach them daily and to watch what interests them and makes them come alive.  I absolutely love this. What is a beautiful, is my husband, who supports me and does so much for me and never ever belittles me for any of my quirks. The neighborhood that is around us has such lovely tall trees and it is a great place to go for walks.  We are near so much, and we have had opportunities that I so appreciate.

 

Sometimes, we might want things that we are not yet ready for.  Can I allow myself to be prepared? Can I wait? Can I know even during this season there are good things growing within myself?  Can I believe in the unseen? Can I be imperfect, and be ok with that? I mean, I know that I am, but often, when I am honest, I want to appear perfect.  

 

The sun officially rises and Jesse and I both sneak out of our bed by 7:30.  I am going to write. Write when I have a fresh mind, instead of tired one.

 

I find that the internet actually does work in the corner of the basement.  I stop to admire the latest lego creation from my boy, that is so very detailed and of course amazing.  I give my girl a hug. I read the words from Simply Tuesday above, and I also read, “I’m exploring what it looks like to release my obsession with building a life and embrace the life Christ is building in me, one small Tuesday at a time.  I hope you’ll come along.”

 

I am coming along.

Sabbaths + Tea Parties

Soapy water ran over the plastic pink teapot.  Once it was clean, I grabbed the surprise animal crackers that were secretly hidden.  My daughter gladly took the cookies and put them on her plate and set them on her tea table.  I poured the boiling water over the mint tea bag,and then a few moments later into the teapot.  

 

Then, with dresses and scarves on, we sit down.   Addie assumed the responsibility of pouring the tea, “Would you like some tea?” she asks.   I answer yes of course. Then, I offer her a dash of milk and she continues to ask for a dash and sometimes a splash of milk throughout the rest of our tea time.  We drink tea, and nibble on cookies. Then, we refill our cups and begin again.

 

Once, when I offer her milk, I get a good glance into her eyes.  I see a new look in her eyes. It was delight. Delight, that her mother was really truly there with her.  I was present in that moment, with her.  I almost broke down crying, seeing both her pleasure, and gratefulness in that one look.

Most of the time, I am trying to do three things at once.  My most common response to my daughter when she asks me to do something is, to tell her to wait a minute or that I can when I finish “fill in the blank” task.  She is very vocal with her requests throughout the day so it can feel like I am spending a lot of time with her. But, through this encounter, I realized she has not had a lot of focused quality Mommy time recently.  I say maybe more than I say yes.

 

So, why on this day, was I able to give her focused time?  The answer is, we were practicing Sabbath. For years the idea of a Sabbath has captured my heart.  A whole day to rest? That was incredible. How to do it though, especially with kids, was a mystery.  Then, at the beginning of August I read about a family and what they did for Sabbath. It answered my questions of when to grocery shop and clean, because that is what I usually did on Saturdays, our chosen day for Sabbath.  The answer was to do them before the Sabbath, and that meant I actually scheduled to do them on Thursday and Friday respectively. With these objections out of the way, I felt encouraged to begin.

 

This morning it was our third Saturday practicing the Sabbath.  It is something we have to practice because we won’t know what will work for us until we try.  To be honest, I was not fully focused. Before this, we had had fun dancing, she was the ballet teacher and I was the student.  She often moves from one thing to the next,so we moved onto the tea party. In my mind, I wanted to do yoga after our dance session.   I had to tell myself I could wait because we did not have anywhere we needed to go. This we don’t have to rush anywhere Sabbath thing is still new to me too.  But, without a doubt, from this experience having a time during the week where we can simply be with one another with no other agenda will be amazing. I am glad to be able to tell my kids and my husband and my God that I will rest with you on our Sabbath.  

Back to the tea party.  My girl slowly ate one cookie at a time.  This is not normal. Anytime there is sugar in front of her, she eats it with abandon.  She was treasuring this time, just as I was. The gift of connection with another human being is priceless. With your mother, even more so.  Saying yes is a gift we can give to one another.