This year had some pretty neat and unexpected adventures.
Pennsylvannia, New York City, Destin, West Monroe, the rodeo, concerts and… many, many trips to the farmer’s market, local dairy farm and Target. The moments that fill the very, very large gaps between those “big ones” are the real life ones. The moments that don’t own any geographic coordinates, but rather landmarks of your heart and soul. The moments of tired babies, embarrassing trips to the restaurant or shopping strip, and sleepless nights. The moments of watching your babies discover the world around them, watching your two babies connect with one another that first year together. The moments of letting go that leave your heart racing and the guilt seeping in. The moments of creating, and misfiring your creation in a way you wish it didn’t go, trying again and again and again… and finally getting that “aha” moment… and actually liking what you create. Moments of a strained relationship with husband or God, and realizing that the only thing left to do is fight for them. Over and over and over. Lots of grace. Lots of forgiveness. Lots of prayer. Lots of tears. Lots of hard heart work. Heart work is possibly harder than any other type of work there is, no? Moments of feeling like a complete failure and wanting to give up. Moments of wanting to walk away from faith because it requires the most intense vulnerability. Moments of falling in love with God all over again and realizing he’s the only chance I have in this world at peace and true happiness – and hope for my family. Moments of sadness, and longing. And moments of sitting on the edge of this cliff with timid dangling toes, anxious to dive into a new year of possibilities.
I am so thankful for the adventures that were set before me this past year. This past year was a year of letting go. I started out this year by talking about how welcoming Evelyn was like “beginning again”. And it was. It was learning to be a mom all over again. It was learning who I was all over again. This year was intense, in so many ways.
Finding grace in new places. Friends in the most unexpected places. Love in the midst of the most fragile and bittersweet time of my life. Hope under failure. And on it goes.
I suppose that is what the years do to us. They grow us in certain ways, and cut off dead wood for more growth and more light… and hopefully one day more fruit.
This coming year I have chosen my “word of the year” to be “held”. I want to remember that no matter how things pan out for my work, or how many things I get to cross off (or leave unmarked) next December, or how much I want to quit, or lose hope or get down at one time or another – that I am held by the one who holds everything in his hands. This past year has been the year that I began to trust God again, like for real. Not the makeshift trust I fabricated during my “rainbow” pregnancies to just get through them without totally losing it, but the kind of trust that finds real rest. I don’t want to forget this landmark because to be totally honest, I never thought I’d live to see this ground again.