It has been a crazy and hellish few weeks, and we aren’t done quite yet. Our family is going through a lot of upheaval and unknown, living in “the meantime”.
We’re trying to sell our house, after having a contingent offer accepted on one that would greatly meet our needs. We are blessed to have a house at all, so I really can’t complain. Our house, location and neighbors are wonderful, but a different and larger layout would make parenting two active, independent and strong willed children a lot easier. Not to mention allow the kids to have their own rooms, mom and dad their own space, and room to host more of our out-of-town relatives.
We had been waiting on news if I had gotten the “perfect job” that I was/am a “perfect fit” for, and when the news came, it was a major disappointment. A close 2nd is just the first looser…and learning I didn’t get it was difficult. Once again, I can’t really complain, as my husband makes enough for us to live comfortably while working in an industry he was made for. Yet, we have sacrificed a lot for me to pursue ordained ministry, and when the dream job comes up, and you don’t get it…let’s just say a lot of tears were shed. Our daughter was amazing, bringing me all her favorite stuffed animals to make me happy. I don’t know if and when there will be another similar opportunity, as I’m limited geographically and by family needs. I have been told by reliable sources that when God shows you the “dream” and then you don’t get it, it just means there is something even better waiting for you. (I’m avoiding theological reflection for the time being….)
And finally, but most importantly, we are in the midst of another stage of evaluations for our son. It’s always hard to figure out how much is appropriate to share online, especially when he can’t really consent. Yet, this experience isn’t just about him either, but about our whole family. We are waiting “patiently” for another meeting with yet another doctor, to determine the next step. I’ll just say that my heart is constantly aching for our wonderful son who just happens to have issues that he – and we – can’t control.
So as we live in the meantime, getting our house ready for showings, trying to parent effectively, and now re-evaluating my professional life…
In the midst of it all, there are joys.
Our daughter’s birthday was a dream come true. Our little princess has been wanting a real princess to come over and play with her. So how could I not make it happen? With a store-bought Halloween costume and a beautiful high school girl, Queen Elsa made a life-long impression on our daughter – and whole family. Dreams do come true!
(And no, the little princess does not plan to be one among the millions of little Elsas on Halloween – she favors Sheriff Callie as the strong-willed sheriff always saves the day in a pair of pink cowgirl boots!)
Then again this weekend the Blessing House was once again a place for God to work in my life. In Winter 2013 I saw an article on this retreat center only 10 minutes away, and always thinking how wonderful it would be to run one, I went for a visit and have been involved ever since. Coordinating speakers and classes (and running a few myself) has been a wonderful way to meet amazing people. The house and grounds themselves refresh my soul. So this weekend I had two events planned, a writing class led by Susan Thurston and our monthly 1st Sunday writing retreat. Susan is always a blessing, as she exudes peace, creativity, and encouragement. She lifted my spirits and helped me get back to writing.
Near the end of the class, a participant from another group meeting at the Blessing House (BH) asked, “Can I come here to write?” This simple question led to one of my prayers being answered. Like many others on there first visit to the BH, Haley Snyder, a writer and mental health advocate, found herself a new “home”. God brought Haley to the Blessing House, as a place for her to be blessed and to bless others. One of my prayers has been for God to bring someone to the BH that would help me host a mental health awareness conference for pastors and others in ministry. And God brought us Haley!!! Just the thought of having someone to talk about the idea with, and hopefully, put it in place, is amazing. Thank you God!
But meeting Haley on Saturday was just a precursor for Sunday. Our monthly writing retreat forces us to set aside time to write. Open to everyone and anyone with an interest in writing, we allow the Spirit to work in us and with us. No agenda, just time to write, share, and be inspired. I never know who is going to show-up, except for one amazing 16-year old who someday will be on the New York Times best seller’s list. This Sunday’s session was particularly powerful, and we all left inspired. I admit I wasn’t at my best with my mental capacity on low, but we all left changed for the better. I gained an additional friend, added to my growing memoir on parenting a child with Sensory Processing Disorder, received my own revelation through the process of writing, and felt blessed to be able to host an event that brought others peace and spiritual direction.
So, here I am.
I start another week, actually writing. I’m not sure what will happen next. I’m putting next steps into place, letting ideas simmer, and getting through the day.
But all along I know that God will see us through this, and on that, I rely.
Have you been through disappointments and difficult transitions? What got you through? What blessings came afterward?