Tuesday, December 6, 2011

a time to embrace

It was just over 2 years ago that I separated from my husband. It was almost another year before I realized that our marriage was broken in a way that it would not be fixed. Since then, I have stumbled and tripped and baby stepped my way back into the work force. I accepted my new title as single mother and vowed to find a good balance of work, budget and quality time with my kids. I haven't done it successfully. But, I've done it in the only way I have been able to. I was completely unprepared for the emotional toll it would take on my heart to go back to work and leave my children in the care of others.

Thankfully, the Lord is patient and kind toward me. He has allowed me to take baby steps. Sometimes forward, sometimes backward, but continuously moving. I took a step today to move back into a career. It is time to stop doing jobs and re-establish my career. This will open up doors and opportunities to allow me to seek more stable employment. I hope to be able to secure a position with benefits for my family. Hopefully I can attain a position that my schedule can be more suited to Alivia's. I sat in the parking lot this morning wondering, why have I waited so long to pursue this? (I know some of you have been asking yourself the same question.)

The answer is complicated, as all matters of the heart are. But, the simplified version is this: In taking these new steps, I must let go of a dream, a dream I didn't realize I was still clinging to. I must release the dream of my past so my hands are free to reach toward a new dream.

The Lord was so gracious to show me this morning that it is time. It is time to embrace this new life that I live. The life of a single working mother. It is time for me to stop living in transition.

I am a single working mother. I am a divorced woman with 2 beautiful children to raise. I am financially responsible to support our family. I am responsible and accountable for the spiritual teaching of my children and their character development. (Do not misunderstand, I think their father has responsibilities to them as well. But, as the sole leader of our individual homes, I believe we bear these responsibilities fully, as individuals.)

Even as I type that, even as I have been living it, the words seem foreign. Foreign in ways that I can not seem to put into words. I keep thinking back to a poem, Welcome to Holland. (This poem is written about the journey of parenting a child with special needs. But, it expresses my feelings so well.)

I do not pity my new role. I have a happy and healthy family. My life is blessed and full of love. But, the truth is, it is just not the way I expected it to look. I thought it would look like Italy. It, in fact, looks like Holland. Holland is beautiful.


Sunday, December 4, 2011


12 years ago, we were just kids. We thought we were grown up, very mature and could conquer anything. Chris couldn't even manage to remember our marriage license, and I couldn't manage to realize that it's better to style dirty hair.

The days leading up to our wedding were hard. My grandpa had a massive heart attack while working graveyard at the post office. My dad quickly left and headed up to the Northwest to be with him. We questioned whether to postpone the wedding. We decided to go ahead, Grandpa would want us to. Looking back, that decision was probably more rooted in selfish desires than out of thought that that was what my Grandpa would want.

Tension between my mom and I was at an all time high. While she loved Chris, I'm sure this wedding was a harsh reminder that her daughter chose what seemed to be a different faith. She insisted on decorating and creating and I was too terrified to speak what I wanted. I don't think I even knew what I wanted - except to marry Chris.

But at 10:30 on December 4th, I looked down the aisle, my dad speaking softly to me after flying the redeye in to make it. I saw my Christopher, our friends and family around us, and I breathed deeply. I stood face to face with Chris, and we made a covenant with our God.

In 12 years, we have loved one another, we have hurt one another. We have made good decisions and poor decisions. We have laughed, and we have cried. We have worshiped alongside one another, and we have wrestled with God both individually and as a family. Even today, I am wrestling. In 12 years, we each have been unworthy of the covenant we have with our God. And in 12 years, our God has been Faithful. He has covered our lack, He has graced our failures, and He has loved us deeply and blessed us richly.

And I will cherish this covenant for as many years as the Lord allows it to stand.

Happy Anniversary to you, Christopher.


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Memories in the making

We took the freak show to get their pictures taken this morning. Basically, we three moms went in hoping for one shot with all 6 kids in it.
Mission Accomplished :)

Here were some of the other highlights:

*Koleson cried and didn't want to get in any of the pictures. It took bribes of candy to even get him to sit near the others.

*Hudson dropped his pajama jeans while Addy tried to get him to smils.

*Alivia criss crossed her scarf and tied it around her back.

*Brody was temporarily unaccounted for.

Obviously, it was a great day with lots of memories made. I can't wait to get the pictures back!

Merry Christmas, from the Freak Show.