This year, specifically 2016, has been a year of change. I have a new boss at work, the youngest shrub had surgery (twice), graduated high school and will soon leave the nest, the oldest shrub moved back to California and is now a little over an hour from us and the middle born settled into a new career job, complete with his own (better than ours) health insurance at the ripe age of 22.
I get the whole 'change is good' thing, but God created me as a true 'creature of comfort.'
Add in everything that is changing in (and of) this world. Friends attacking friends - not in person (over a coffee or a glass of wine) like we should, but on social media and via email. All the hate...and I'm not sure why it's affecting me so deeply except for the part where I was created, like I said, as a creature of comfort...one who doesn't like confrontation.
Or maybe a better word is sad.
Then there's that guy that I like so much who has been on his every other year teaching overload semester...the one where he is spread so thin that time with him is always at a premium. And finally, it just all came to a head last week when the dishwasher broke.
I often think of strong women who have come before me and how they handled real life stuff. Eve, in the garden and watching it all fall apart. Ruth, burying a husband and then finding herself in a new land and caring for a mother-in-law. Esther, who risked her life to save her people. Mary...oh sweet Mary, who bore a baby boy and watched him crucified. My Grandmother, who left her own homeland to follow her family. My husband's grandmother, my mother-in-law, my own Mom, my girlfriends...they all have stories of their own too.
I realize it all circles back to the span of life...that when our stories are read in one quick book that it all seems more dramatic because the trials become the focus, but they all (I'm pretty sure) had a lot of ordinary days too. But I often wonder...did they crumble, say things they regret, cry and maybe slam a door or two when the dishwasher broke?
But just when I found I couldn't handle much more...that my cup runneth over, so to speak, and not in a good way but in a stain the white sofa way, God swooped in with quiet.
This long planned, we really can't afford this, trip happened.
There have been hours upon hours of quiet. We haven't turned on the television and actually have no clue as to what is happening in the world. The boys are connected to us via text message and a few 'how do I buy pizza at costco with a credit card' (which you can't...life lesson #129) phone calls.
We both needed quiet.
Every day here begins the same. We watch the sun wake up our resort after sleeping on the most heavenly bed ever created, while sipping coffee on our lanai. Around 9:00am we head to the beach, where a cute young thing gets us settled in our chairs under an umbrella and then our day officially starts.
We nap, swim, walk the beach, sip mai tai's and sigh (over and over and over) at how incredibly blessed we are to have this time.
I can't decide what is more beautiful...the beginning of the day or the sunsets. It's an even tie, I think.
We've ventured out here and there...drove the road to Hana - or being us, only halfway to Hana. We've eaten at super fancy places...Ko (at our resort) and Capische (for our anniversary...truly one of the best meals we've ever eaten) and then some not so splurgy places like Nalu (fabulous!). But for the most part we've stuck close by the beach because seriously, why would we ever want to leave?
I've written sporadically and I thought I would've worked on this silly book a whole lot more. It seems that the words come easily until some stranger gives me a deadline and then I just can't seem to figure out what to say. And then they give me ideas, bits from this place here which were never meant to be more than just a little diary for my family, and I immediately get even more of a writers block...and I've never had that problem before.
So instead, I've done what I've needed to do. Held hands with my boyfriend. Sipped mai tai's. Prayed. Sent lots of texts and posted lots on Instagram. Napped. Read a really great beach read.
It's all been good.
Tomorrow we will venture home. I'm ready...but also bracing myself. Have you ever left a houseful of boys, two cats and a dog alone for a week?
It's all good. I've missed them so much and am bringing home a really good mai tai recipe to help get me through.
Sunset. Wine. Macadamias.
Oh...and we're revamping how we do garden parties. Now all we need are some guinea pigs so we can test it out.
Acai bowls. The perfect breakfast food. They're all the rage back home too...but they just taste so much better here.
The road to Hana.
Hiked through a rain forest.
In flip flops!
And discovered paradise.
Oh...and I got a new necklace, too.
This whole 30 year business is pretty fun.
OH....and Monkeypod! We love this place...best mai tai's (I'm now an expert) and incredible food.
Come to SoCal, please.
You've been good to us.