When I brought you home from the hospital you each weighed just a smidge over 4 pounds. You came home needy. You needed to be fed every 2 hours round the clock and needed to be weighed every 24 hours. Heart monitors and home health nurses were constant companions.
The first five weeks of your life were the hardest for me. Leaving the hospital every day without you almost ripped my heart out. When you finally came home I spent the next 12 weeks of your life sleeping on the floor of the nursery with my hand on your crib.
I don't know about you, but my life feels like I just move from one crisis to the next. Oh sure, some moments would probably better be defined as irritating interruptions to my schedule than a full on crisis. But still. It. Never. Stops.
So I pray for a break. Just one week where nothing goes wrong. Just one weekend in a cabin, in the woods, alone, with no alarm clock. Just one evening where I don't have to cook dinner or drive anyone anywhere or clean up gold glitter fingernail polish off of every single surface in my bathroom (yes, I'm serious). It's always something.
We sat across the table from each other in silence; me with wounded pride, her with fear that she'd offended. In the silence I asked myself some hard questions. Questions like: is this truth or a lie? Is she saying this because she loves me or because she's irritated with me? Is she righteous and trustworthy?
The words she said to me were truth. I couldn't deny that. But they still stung. And the woman sitting across from me was a faithful, trustworthy friend. A friend who had walked dark valleys beside me and taken me to the feet of Jesus on many occasions. I knew it was the voice of kindness rebuking me.
This past weekend I had the opportunity to travel with a group of single moms to the Survive and Thrive Conference. My head is still spinning with information and encouragement and heartbreak from the weekend.
I feel like I need a week in solitude with my journal to process all that I experienced in those few days. But one thing from the weekend just won't seem to go away. It's begging to be processed first, and I think it must.
Broken Girl. It's pretty much how I've defined my life for the last several years.
I've been broken a lot longer than that, but didn't give myself the title "broken girl" until a few years ago. And it wasn't just me that I called a broken girl. Everywhere I went I was crossing paths with other broken girls. I couldn't get away from them. I knew God didn't want me to be broken, but I didn't know how to repair all of the cracked, missing places in me.
As a little girl I was scared of monsters hiding in my closet. Then I got older and learned that six eyed, clawed, sharp teethed monsters aren't real. Then life turned cruel and I learned that monsters are real, and they're deadly. Real monsters don't have sharp teeth and claws, but they do hide in closets. Not because that's their natural habitat, but because that's where we put them.At least that's where I put my monsters of shame, and anger and hurt. That's where I hid the whispering monster that said I wasn't good enough.
I don't know about you but I find it easy for me to slip into doubt. It's second nature to me. Faith, on the other hand, requires me to make an effort. I have to convince myself to believe. Don't get me wrong, once I get there faith overtakes me and carries me through the storm. But, I have to get there, and sometimes getting there is an effort. Especially when l look around and see insurmountable obstacles.Last night was one of those nights for me.
Forty years the Israelites wandered through the desert, fully dependent on God to meet their every need. Daily He sent food from heaven, water from rocks, clothes that didn't wear or tear. He guided their every step, cloud by day, pillar of fire by night. He was ever present. Ever providing.Forty long years later they entered the land of Promise. On that day the cloud disappeared, and the manna ceased. Why? Because they simply didn't need it anymore. They were no longer to wander through wilderness places; instead it was time to dwell in a land of safety.
Winter's song is stripped bare.Like when your favorite artist releases an acoustic version of your favorite song. I don't know if you're like me, but I'm not generally a fan of the acoustic version. I like my music full. Give me a full band or orchestra and I'm a happy girl. But sometimes stripped down is what I need. Sometimes the viola, while beautiful, competes with the lyrics and I wind up enjoying the music and missing the message of the song.I want more. I want more than just a piano and an unfiltered voice.
"Enoch walked faithfully with God"Genesis 5:24 Faithful. It's a word my grandparents lived. My entire life my grandparents lived in the same house. Drove the same car. Bought the same brand of bread. Listened to the same songs. Loved the same people. They paid their debts, honored their contracts, earned their thirty year pins at work.Fickle. That would be the word of my generation. We stand in line for new phones. Spend countless dollars changing our hair color. We start new careers. Move into bigger houses. Trade in our cars. Defriend those who offend.