Thursday, June 14, 2012


i know, i know...twice in one day.

the previous post was a my kids sort of deal.  see how much they've grown.  it was shocking to me in some ways.  i've gone back and reread some of my blog.  it's fun.  i have changed so much and so little.  reminds me of the indigo girls line "every five years or so i look back on my life and i have a good start at the top, go full circle round, catch a breeze, take a spin...ending up where i started again makes me want to stand still."  A.M.E.N.  i have spent the last two years trying to stand still.  and it doesn't work.  things still move.  if i could get the whole world on board to stand, it'd be so boring.  oh well.

so speaking of trying to stand still for two years...  my oldest left wednesday morning for a mission trip.  he's made some decisions in the last year that seriously made me wonder about his character.  which might sound kind of superior of me, but i'm pretty sure he's had some serious doubts about his character as well.  he's in such a state of that he's gone over to the dark side, made some serious mistakes, looked some serious issues in the face (with his parents right next to him because much to his horror AND his's funny like that...we're just that kind of family), realized he is not perfect, is capable of great selfishness and deception, he has to find his balance.  his happy place where he can be happy AND feel good about himself.  judging by his mom, it'll take him at least another twenty years before he even begins to buy into the truth that happiness and feeling good about himself are the same thing.  but i digress...

my oldest was gone for all of fourteen hours when i was driving my other kids around, and my youngest son, who's eight and the most honest person i know, who also has a question for any quiet moment, asked me, "mama, was there ever a time when you were as busy as daddy?"  now.  there are so many responses i'm sure this could conjure up in a person.  my twelve year old immediately began the line of defense about how i'm so busy with all of them, taking care of them, etc.  (God love the twelve year old, he is one loyal guy)  and i probably would've felt pretty defensive, pretty oldest had been gone for fourteen hours.  i had taken him to his school at 5:45 that morning, watched his luggage that he'd set on the grass get soaked when the sprinklers suddenly came on, seen that "that kid" that i don't really like was going on the trip as well, helped everyone pack the van, talked with some parents, and prayed with the priest who came to bless the kids that the trip would be a success and they'd be God's light and return safely.  traveling mercies....

and on the way home, i'd thought about the last trip he'd been on...and the horrible choices he'd made...and the slow weeks that the full ramifications of those choices played out...all the way to the end of the imminent consequences...where we'd all felt like we'd dodged a bullet but realized we were still left with a lot of rebuilding now that the universe had decided we could carry on as usual and our lessons would be our own to learn and make a study group to figure out.  and, not surprisingly, this filled me with so much anxiety, i considered turning my truck around and picking him back up, telling him i'd made a terrible mistake in letting him go, that i didn't know if he was ready, but that i realized i wasn't.  then i remembered that he is seventeen.  and will be a senior in high school next year.  and was on a trip to repair houses for impoverished people in the rio grande valley...and do arts and crafts with their children...and play his guitar and sing jesus music with the kids...and to be the hands of God in reminding the people that they are loved...that well-to-do kids who could spend their week playing video games and watching movies wanted to ride eight hours to do these things with them and for them because God loves all of them, and it's in the doing that we realize this most fully.  how much trouble could he get into doing that?  how much room could there really be for him to fall into horrible choices?  ok, so the answer is, as we've all learned, that possibility is ALWAYS there.  so i prayed he'd make good choices.  for himself.  because i want him to realize he's a good guy.  i want him to feel like one of the good guys.  i don't want him to hide himself because he has so much to share.  and so i prayed, because really, that's about all i can do.  i prayed he'd feel the love of God and share the love of God and that those two things would be enough for him.

but back to my eight year old who thinks i'm lazy...  just joking.  i don't think he thinks i'm lazy.  and with my oldest son off fighting his own internal battles, i didn't have to fight his judgment of me (which is something he does to distract himself from working on his own shit).  i was able to talk to my kids about how mommies are tired when babies are mommies' bodies are working to make milk and feed babies at night when no one sees them being busy.  but then i acknowledged that my energy has not been what it was.  and that i was hoping it would get better.  and everyone seemed concerned and contented and relieved that we didn't have to worry about mommy feeling like she'd just been accused of being a lazy especially.

it has been a very different time for me.  of course, i read this blog and realize i've always struggled.  but i definitely see that i used to be a much quicker rebounder than i am now.  and the things i know will help me feel better?  i just don't always do them.  i'm tired.  i'm tired of working so hard to feel better just to get knocked down again.  now, i know things are probably going to stay pretty even for awhile.  and we're getting ready to move into this house that i really think will change things up quite a bit for us.  but i am still struggling.  it's been a rough journey...medical school with four kids...having a fifth child during a husband working as an ob/gyn...with a high school senior and a high school freshman...and a toddler...people die...people move on...parents fighting...balancing money...these are real challenges.  i give myself credit for that.  i know i'm not making this stuff up.  i struggle between trying to control it all and surrendering.  it's like pulling on the rope with all of your might and then letting it go.  i get nowhere.  yet i'm still exhausted and my head pounds.  i know i'll get through this.  but i think it might be time to call in the cavalry.  i'm not exactly sure who the cavalry is, but i suppose if i put out the call, whoever shows up is the cavalry. 

i appreciate this time with my younger guys.  they are not in such flux and my relationship with them is so different.  they're not the first...the one i over-identified they do not convict me at all.  well, if they do, it's so little i don't even notice.  i don't blame my oldest for the way things are.  i hope he's enjoying himself these days he's on his trip.  i hope he is lifted up by who he sees he can be...who he is.  i know my time with my younger guys has already done that, at least a little, for me.  and i'm grateful.


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