I had a major melt-down last night after I went to bed. A pillow-soaking, body quaking, my poor husband had to listen melt-down. I woke this morning with one eye almost swollen shut from sleeping on that side after all the eye-gushing that went on before I finally fell asleep. I keep a stack of tissues on the shelf by my side of the bed for such nights, and as needed, I sit up in bed, blow my nose and toss the tissue toward the bathroom, then lie back down. That way, I don’t have to get up! My hubby called me today on his way to a job-site and informed me that it took him a minute or so to pick up all the wadded up tissues on his way to the bathroom this morning. What a precious man God has blessed me with.
It is as though my grief bucket has been emptied after a night like last night. It continually fills back up, it seems. But today I feel light and free and loved and almost secure. It is a very wonderful feeling.
It is the end of June here in Kansas, which usually means the temperature is in the upper 80’s to low 90’s with about 80% humidity, meaning the AC is always on, the windows are shut, and we are usually in the house. I am very thankful for AC, but I really hate being inside with the windows shut all the time.
This week the temperature has been more like the end of September or beginning of October, with temps in the low 70’s and low humidity. So the windows have been open all day, the sun is shining, and my heart is happy. I was working here in my office earlier, sitting by my open window and listening to the light breeze blow through our Pin Oak trees when I had the most delicious deja’vu. I was back at our home we built out in the country. All 5 of my kids were home, safe and sound, and we were beginning a new school year. Ah, those were the days. The happy, carefree days.
I sat for a minute, basking in that beautiful memory of days gone by. Those were sometimes very challenging days. But I loved having, raising, and homeschooling the 5 most precious blessings God bestowed upon me. And I am thankful for the memory of one of those days God brought to my mind today. I haven’t been able to focus on very many happy memories for the past 2+ years. But today I could, and I loved it.
After the feeling of the beginning of the school year passed, the most prominent memory that was prompted by the feel, sound and aroma of the air today, was of one particular spring semester when my boys – and my girls, now that I think about it! – were about to go batty because they were inside studying when the sun had finally come out, the temperature had risen and everything was in bloom outside. So, I decided that science would be best studied – and retained – if we took our schoolroom out the back door. At this time in our lives, I had several fruit trees I had planted that were about ready to produce fruit for the first time. So I assigned each child a fruit tree to study. They had notebooks and drawing books with which to document the changes in the trees that came about as spring progressed. Of course, this wasn’t all they did for science, as they managed to look around at everything in the yard and daydream about playing hooky after just a few minutes outside. Nevertheless, it was a fun few weeks, it got us outside during school hours and we learned a little about the growth of fruit trees.
Nothing compares to those days. To me, anyway. I always wanted to be a teacher and a mother, so I was my most fulfilled, happy and satisfied during those sweet days of raising my children.
I’m very thankful for so many things – for Jesus, my best friend in heaven; for my husband, my best friend on earth; for the precious blessing of having five beautiful children; for the wonderful people God has put in my children’s lives; for those amazingly awesome grandchildren God has given us; for all the family and friends who have walked this road called life with us over the years; and for all those who continue to walk with us through the painful days of grieving the loss of one of our most precious blessings.
After a day like today, maybe it will take a bit longer for my grief bucket to begin to fill up again. Or, even better, maybe I will be able to focus on the good longer than I have been able to, and I’ll have a few more good days than I’ve been having.
This verse, like a favorite old song, has been playing through my thoughts lately:
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me – put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4:8-9
I’m thankful for this pleasant day!