This practice is really showing me how fast a Monday comes. Just when I feel like I've finished posting some of our thanks from our journal I'm right back here, looking through another whole week of reminders.
I pray that this week we return to prayer. That our hearts will long to be in Your presence. That we make hard stops leading to soft hearts and know just how to guide Zeek to You in his trials and triumphs. Bring peace, wellness, worship, and prayer, Lord.
Two, because as much as this is my place it is also my son's "baby book".
Three, because I don't know what these relationships will look like in ten, fifteen, twenty years.
And lastly, because there is a lot of heart break involved... heart break that can not be denied as I look through the beautiful photographs of what very little time we had in NC with my Dad and his wife/my mom/Louise/a friend and host who is very much falling in love with a grandchild while my Dad and I sludge the long journey of trying to salvage what's left of us in the aftermath of my parents' divorce.
My heart wants to soar over how much fun we had.
Over the smiles and making known the new wrinkles and patterns of skins we once viewed daily changes in.
Over silly tinfoil man and duck taped shoe and how closely my Dad and I resemble one another on the inside.
Over incidentally happening upon "hide the mom" in the face of a snake. And how the authenticity shook me.
My heart wants to soar that I might have said "yes" to the cost of accepting her invitation back to their hotel
for whatever further face-tracing we could each muster.
But I couldn't, and I didn't. Instead I cordially spoke daggers into a void I couldn't stare at any longer, and we spent our last few minutes on top of the world (or at least the parking garage) silently crying out all that we've lost and fear that we'll never have back.
Hot tears brimmed my eyes, but my heart and body were worn and despondent.
And I became painfully aware that my brother's coined phrase is spot on:
it was not supposed to be this way.
I watched my baby take a back seat to caution and worry.
I watched him follow behind, seeking his place
only to walk into a cinderblock pillar much the way his mom has done for years.
I watched him waiting expectantly, anticipating the uncertain.
And I watched as it arrived...
then passed him by.
I rubbed my own calluses.
He wanted in, but none of us were willing to put him through it.
And it was in that moment that I think I understood something I've struggled with for the past couple of years;
there are pieces of us that are stuck at the scene of our family's highway collision site,
and my Dad does not want his grandson anywhere near such a place of wreckage.
It may have been years ago, but it put out the lights. And we were left broken in the dark street like crashed cars with pieces laying crumpled and hanging off by a wire. Some things survived. Some things were towed away. Insurance covered the hard work of repair. And some things just died there. sacred or not.
I realize now that everything logical beacons, let what is gone be gone. it's unsalvageable, totaled, irreparable. But I just couldn't help revisiting the site over and over, to commit to such a lingering, shifting through rubble, honoring and fighting with hope for the dead, fearing the stage that followed acceptance.
I was terrified of who I might blame. Petrified that anything else should be taken away by the street sweepers. But all that is lost is gone and there is no one left to blame. And the living, impaired as we might be, are still here.
For a long long time I have stood, fists clenched, screaming at the top of my lungs "THIS IS MINE AND YOU CAN'T TAKE IT". Like the girl who turns into a blueberry. I wanted to keep what my Dad and I earned for ourselves in growing up together. I thought my Daddy was my birthright.
But in the definition of divorce it reads, "a separation between things that were or ought to be connected." And that's our casualty count. Like my brother's hope and heart for love, my Dad and I shattered at the impact of this collision.
I've visited the scene for the last time. I've torn my clothes and whispered through tears, Father God, rescue me. My hand stretches out to His Merciful Touch. I receive His Gift of Healing Grace.
We are home and overwhelmed with gratefulness. As we have come away from our blessings and routines at Gra and Pepere's, we are gently falling into our own again.
This Monday I am going to list the things that I am grateful for having had during the past two weeks in NC, followed by the things that are standing out to me as huge blessings and light in my own life at home, today.
Being face to face with my Mom for 11 days.
My dad/rick's smiles, stories, jokes and graces.
A fun filled day with my Dad and Louise.
The porch rocking chairs.
The half circle, moss filled, brick stairs where our bare feet have stood, photos taken of, summer dresses grazed, where my baby has pilled rock sculptures, dripped bubbles, sprayed with the hose, stubbed his dirty toes.
The humming birds and bird garden.
All diets seized.
Angus beef burgers, cold pasta salads, Hellofagood Cheese, my Mom's cookies, Over the Boarder's Big Boarderito.
Reading while floating in the "queens chair".
My Mom's kitchen.
Mornings with Jesus, A Holy Experience, tears and prayers in my seat at the kitchen table.
The hot deck.
The screen porch.
Our guest room.
Ice water in giant mason jar cups.
Sleeping next to my little baby every night.
Watching my Mom and dad/Rick sparkle loving my son.
Home vacuuming and pool cleaning robots to go with a wonderful cleaning lady.
Cicadas, frogs, and night time swimming.
Peace and rest.
Home again blessings:
Catching up on our shows and giggling through forbidden night time snacks together; ripples and french onion dip, skittles and cherry pop, boston cream pie yogurt, frosted animal cookies with sprinkles...
My little boy in complete joy wrapped around his Daddy, again.
Our town, our people, and how close and connected I feel. My heart jumps to smile at, walk near, pray for, and love the people who live in this place that I've recently questioned and now know I've always belonged.
My puppy, who's turned out to be areal Mama's girl.
The tight fresh landscaping of our front yard that I seemed to have forgotten feels so good.
The cleared empty straight lines of our beautiful quiet home.
The space calling us to live in it and fill it with us.
A man who knows how to keep his house spotless while his wife and child are away. :)
The table and chairs calling me from the newly treated expanse of deck out the back windows.
His presence in this place.
The green, green, green cover.
Zeek moving steady from one missed room, toy, activity, pet... to the next. Playing and printing, running and crawling, scripting adventures in shouts and whispers, writing and sealing, delivering and looking wildly in his excitement as he takes it all back in.
Accounting "I really like this place, Mom."
Me too. I really, really do like it here.
The color on that wall that I never see anywhere else but here.
Writing lists on chalkboards.
The families God has blessed us with outside of our real ones.
My "little lambs" mamas, who I've miss desperately.
Cool enough to have a fire and roast our favorite lunch and snack on our first day back.
Stemmed glasses, even just for water.
Getting back to Homeschool dreams and plans for fall.
Soaking in Love & Logic CDs
Knowing when and where and how.
Returning to our own routines.
Reminded fully that we have them in NC;
loving and safety tucked in our back pockets, pouring out how blessed we are with this and that to have and to hold.