I actually feel like a cheeseball using the word affliction for my broken ankle. It feels over dramatic. But to me, it has been one of the tougher things I have had happen to me recently, in this life of mine.
I think of it a lot, that my Annoyance has an end to it. A time when I can go back to normal. Really I guess, in some minds, I am blessed.
Back in those first few days after I broke it, when I was trying to get to the bathroom and care for my children, I really pictured myself as Joni Tada. What was her life like in the beginning? What did she feel like? How would I be handling it, if I was in her shoes?
From the very beginning, when I wanted to scream and cry and pity myself: “NO. Just no, God. I DO NOT have time for a broken limb!” My husband has been very firm with me that I:
A) Do as much for myself as I can. B) Do not pity myself. C) Remain grateful. I will admit there were days that I did not enjoy hearing his words of advice. Sometimes “advice” is so annoying. But, I know it (and now I feel overly dramatic again– but it is real to me) was his wise words (my husband is so wise) that kept me sane.
I have been thinking on this this morning and felt compelled to share and remember (for myself) some of the hard things I KNOW God is teaching me in these grindingly annoying 4 weeks. (My cast comes off in 2 weeks– I am halfway!)
Here is what comes to mind…
~ I had control issues that were getting out of hand. I liked my agenda! I liked my house clean! I liked to have things I deemed important, done! I liked my children to act the way I wanted them to act! It wasn’t until I was laid-up and Galen was there sweeping, by my chair, that we both realized that I was wound a little tight, and not fun to work for, at all. Yup, we bickered a fair amount those 1st couple days. I saw what I thought needed a kick in the rear: baths, lunches packed, homework done, dishwasher loaded, floor wiped up, table wiped up… and I was sure hoping he would decide to do those things, when and HOW, I liked them done. Sheesh, lady!
~When you let people help you, that release of PRIDE and the embracing of humility, can really be a conduit for a deeper friendship. I have not had one day so far without visitors, and I have made a lot of “new” friends through all this. It’s crazy really. I had someone say, “It’s so nice to know I can sit here with you and we can talk and I know you aren’t thinking ‘I need to go’, because I know you can’t.”
~ I had shut down my home. I wasn’t letting people in. It wasn’t that I didn’t like people, it was just that my house was not “ready” yet. I have had so many people in the last 2 weeks– see me unshowered, and walk out the door with crusties on their feet. Then, I realized, no. one. really. cares. No one does. It was only me that hated to hang out in a dirty, messy place. People only see a chance to connect! And connecting, meets a soul-need like little else.
~ It’s funny how much less money I spend when I can’t get out to spend it. Aside from a few birthdays that came up, I really didn’t need a whole lot either. We lived with SO much less. Ok, I did buy shoes for the girls and I online this morning– but for the most part, we had enough. (This is not counting groceries, obviously.)
~ I am happier when I live minimalistically. That is a long word, for something that means “simple”. Really, if a word wants to be a true minimalistic, it should spell itself with 2 letters MAX. I have shipped more stuff out the door and into the trash, since I have been way less able to control it all. It made me see SO clearly, how all I choose to own, is really controlling me. “The more you have, the more you have to have, to take care of the things you have.” – Jungle Jam quote
~ Hard times, are always great for someone. The person that benefitted in my situation, was Sterling. He has loved having hours and hours on end, of mommy time. I think back to right before I broke my foot, how much he would sit on the floor, and cry for me. While I was mopping and making supper and stuff. I loved him and yes, I held him, what I thought was a lot. But now I see, I should have played with and held him MORE. He was asking me too. “Spend half as much money on your child, and spend twice as much time with them.” – Loosely quoted from Pinterest.
~ Oh, how I wish I would have chucked the chores more, led a looser agenda, and been outside more. We live close to a bike trail, the library, a park, a pretty town. Yet, somehow I never had a lot of time to take my children there. After my cast is off, I want to leave the house for more last minute plans. I want to watch them, look into their faces, smile at them.
~ God longs for more time and a deeper relationship with us. He can be really creative with how He orchestrates this. I have felt Him calling me and speaking to me so much more, I think.
~ I wish I had been more thoughtful. I cannot tell you how even the smallest things done or given to me, with a loving heart, spoke so many volumes. These things really DO bring comfort. They really DO make my day. I feel sadness for the times when I knew of someone that was hurting, and I just thought, “Someone else will minister to them” or “I’m too busy” or “I don’t know what I would have to offer.” People have went SO far above and beyond for me… really humbling is the only word I can use. I hate that feeling when you can’t pay someone back, and I have had to be ok with the fact that right now, I can’t. Well, that is me right now.
~ Family will always be there for you. I have always loved both my and Galen’s family, respectively. But I feel like I have just had a lot of special times with family because of me needing them more. Things like: My mother-in-law paying a huge chunker postage bill, to send us the heavy granola we crave, and treats for the children. Sweet notes from my sister in laws. My mom and Jacinta, who checked in with me every single day, to see what I needed. My sister Jacinta, was born when I was 22, so I didn’t live with her like I did my other sisters. I have gotten to know her as a young lady, instead of the baby. We both like to clean, be creative, and pin stuff from eachother’s Pinterest boards. My new sister in law (Kendra), and 2 sisters, Joy and Julana, who have made Tuesdays a day to get together and eat and do stuff for me this month. We have made sweet memories that I will cherish forever. And gasp! We made them, while I (the host) sat on my tush, and they managed my dust bunnies. May I pay it forward.
~ Lastly, I learned, life goes on. We may have corners in our house that have been gross for awhile, but no one cares. Galen and I have sat with our children in the living room and laughed, barked at our occasionally messy kids, and all kissed each other. (Other stuff happened too, but those are the high points.) When I get ahold of the beauty of life, and what really matters, I feel a release from striving, and a call to not take myself so seriously. SERIOUSLY.
~ I want to read more! When I was 12, I was the biggest bookworm there was. For some reason, once I hit the cool teen years and after that, the married years, and after that, the raising children years– I stopped reading. What a tragedy. Sitting a lot has gotten me back to reading. I used to think I did not have time. Now I realize, there is no greater soothing… than to sit with a good book, a cup of something hot, and a lap blanket. Actually, throw a fall candle, a clean house, and kids who are drawing happily in there– and you may have perfection. Stay at home moms need brain stimulation besides the normal social medias. I don’t want to sound rude. I am just saying what I learned for myself. One of my favorite things this month, was someone who sent me a book in the mail. It was such a good book too.
Okay, well, enough talking from me. I feel like I set the bar pretty high for my future endeavors. We will see how much of these aspirations I still have in a year. But oh well– you can’t kick a girl down for aspiring to grow as a human being.
If I ever stop being willing to grow– please shoot me. Or, it might be less messy to just tell me. And kick me now, for my blind spot areas of non-growth!
An adult with no ability to be a life-learner, is one of the most pitiful things on earth. But that is a rant for another day.
A few pictures of life lately from my junky, non-smart phone.
On my mom’s porch.
Lunch break with Jordan, my brother.
Girls loving the leaves.
Fancy “night in” made my my friend, Shelly.