This year is a big year. A really big year.
I'm turning a number that begins with a five and ends with a zero (gulp!) and in the middle are achy hips and creaky knees and three kids and a guy that I like so much and a dog and two cats and a mortgage and dinner that needs to be cooked and laundry that needs to be done.
But the thing about approaching a number is trying, hard, to not focus on just the number and focus on the gift that this life that was breathed into me long ago really is. The blessings. The good stuff. The bad stuff. The ugly stuff. The fun stuff.
And the fact that that big number is still a few months away helps...but whew, it's coming up quicker than I ever thought possible.
Last year I went 'home' for a high school reunion...back to a place and to a group of people that I hadn't seen in over 30 years. I was one of 'those' kids...the kind of kid that couldn't get out of dodge fast enough and so, on the day after that sweet little diploma was in my hands, I left town and never once looked back.
Back then you could do that because we had no cell phones and no facebook and once gone, well...I was gone. I didn't give a thought to what I was leaving behind and instead threw myself into everything that was right smack in front of me...a new husband, a move out of state, a beautiful smiley baby.
Life for me just kept moving along. I didn't forget the past but it really did become just a memory...mainly because of regular old life stuff that kept me from looking back. Seriously...how did we live life without peeking at social media every 5 minutes?
And then a few years ago, thanks to the wonders of facebook, a girlfriend from way back when 'friended' me and it all came back like a rushing stream. I had had this group of friends who I shared a history with and suddenly I knew...that history we shared was so much a part of who I had become and I never had the chance to tell them.
I just got back from going back 'home' yet again. There was laughter. There were tears. There was quiet time and loud times and lots of time just spent talking...and eating really yummy food. We talked and talked and talked and it just felt like a bunch of giddy high school girls getting together...and then reality would hit every time I had to walk, slowly, up the stairs.
As I was sharing parts of my life I realized that when said all at once over the course of a glass of wine, that things sound a lot more tragic than when they were actually lived at the time...that when you talk about events that have spanned 30 years in the matter of 3 hours, well, even I was getting depressed.
But this life of mine...and I see this the more I begin to share bits and pieces of me and who I am, is such a gift. I was a girl back then...I'm a woman now. But bigger than that...I am truly a daughter of Christ. I see His hand in every stage, every hurdle, every beautiful and tall son that I am blessed to have been given the privilege to raise.
I drove up north with a girlfriend who flew in by me and then hopped in the car and together we road tripped the 7 or so hours north. She was going to be staying longer there and I was all set to drive the long and windy (haha...it's actually straight as a board but windy sounded better!) road home and was ok with that....I've got satellite radio and planned on a BIG bag of snacks to keep me company when all of a sudden that guy that I like so much booked a flight and together, we drove home together.
Man, I like him.
We stopped half way and spent the night at an Inn on the beach and ate one of the most fabulous meals I've ever eaten at the Ocean Grill in Avila Beach. Oh my, was it fabulous. And then as we sat for hours (hours!) in a hot tub, we talked and talked and talked...I was full of stories of the past and of the present and he was full of stories of the boys and Emily while I was away.
I'm always surprised...and I'm not sure why but I am, that we still have so much to talk about. It's kinda cool...and probably annoying as all get out for him since I talk just a tad much.
It is what it is.
Oh...and we listened to the podcast of Serial. Crazy good and crazy creepy.
I came home feeling like I'd had this major vacation and came home to major chaos at work. I was quickly reminded that while all might seem calm and all might seem bright it totally hasn't been and frankly, it's been stressful and busy and overall icky. But this too shall pass and in the course of a few hours I had come up with a game plan and will continue to put one foot in front of the other like I always do.
But it's not easy right now.
This reunion had been in the works for months and while there is another one planned for July, it just went by so fast. Life feels fast lately, too. I sit down at the end of the day and can't help but think that it's all just speeding by and I want more than anything to not waste the time I've been given....and I think 'have I been a good wife today?' and 'have I been a crazy annoying mom today?' and usually I can answer those in a somewhat positive way.
But the biggest questions I find myself asking...have I been His hands? His face? Have I loved the way He loves? Have I forgiven the way He's forgiven?
And sadly, I don't always....but wow. He loves me anyway.
I'm hoping to come up for air in the next few days but until I get my feet under me at work, that will be my focus for now. The laundry is piled up higher than ever and I've thrown together meals the last few nights...we've eaten well, but I'm in need of good, home cooked meal myself.
Basically, I'm in need of wife. I asked for one for Christmas but Santa delivered a pretty necklace instead. I'm ok with that.