Saturday, October 3, 2009

Redeeming Time

I walked outside just now to feel the cool night air against my skin, to remember the world is big. I remembered something else, a glimpse of long ago. I wonder how long it will be before I forget the details of the life I used to have.

How much longer until I forget what tucking our children in together sounded like?

Until I forget what it felt like to have my hair brushed?

What it felt like to know I was not alone?

The season has changed here in Wisconsin. The air is crisp, the leaves are falling... and I am hurtling forward, faster than ever, to the 1 year mark. Have I come far enough?

How much longer until I forget what song was playing when I read the note X left on the kitchen table that Sunday?

Until I forget the panic that seized every fiber of my being, knowing I alone was left to explain his leaving to my children?

The feeling of suffocation those first days, weeks, that I could not breathe, because I didn't know how to be enough, be me, on my own.

There are moments, snapshots, that I concentrate on tucking away. And there are volumes I pray to burn. But each piece of the complex puzzle of my life, was laid out long before me. So on the advice of a dear friend, I am praying to redeem the date of November 1st.

Very soon after X left, my sister arrived in Minnesota to help. I will never forget the day she bought my children winter hats, boots and diapers. I was clinging to the cart to hold myself up, watching my 3 children meltdown in Target, looked at her with terror in my eyes and said, "I can't do this." And her resounding answer, "yes Carolynn, you can, you have to." She was right.

From this year I pray to remember, always, the safety in honesty.

To remember my family may not look like it did, but we are whole, and gaining ground.

What it feels like to pull my shoulders back and walk with my head up, not looking at my feet.

Most importantly, I will remember that my utter dependence on the Lord, is a daily walk. Sometimes minute by minute, but the time is always redeemed.

This week has brought blessings in such abundance, I cannot hold them. Why am I surprised? Malachi 3:10 ...see if I will not throw open the floodgates of Heaven and pour out so much blessing you will not have room for it. I had the best talk with my parents, received a box from a sister in Christ that took me to my knees... and went shopping for my children's winter gear again, this time with their grandparents. I could not only breathe, I laughed; we all did. Thank you, I praise the Lord for each of you.

Indeed, God has a sense of humor. We were approaching the dead of winter when this started. We survived it. It's coming again, I can feel it in the air, but I know we've already climbed this mountain. Having worn a path in it once, I'm confident we can do it again. What if it had been summer? The rug would be ready to be ripped from under my feet, undermining half the confidence I've built. No my friends, I already know what it takes to get 3 children up, dressed, fed and out the door before 7:00 a.m. I remember how to do it dressing 3 little bodies for the frozen tundra. I daily praise Jesus for the village that helps us. But I do not fear the task.

So yes, yes we have come far enough. The road is hard, but it's not much farther. "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." (Jeremiah 29:11-13)



Kat said...

You have come SO far. I remember the terror in your eyes in those early days. But I have always said that you don't give yourself enough credit and that you are stronger than you believe. This past year has been proof positive of that.

Did I want to tell you the God's honest truth at that very moment? No way. I wanted to wrap my arms around you and tell you that the issues you were having with X would pass and that life would eventually return to "normal". I knew I couldn't fix it and that lying to you would serve no purpose.

I knew at that very moment, that you COULD and WOULD get through it all. Not just that day or the following weeks to come, but ALL of it and you and your babes would be better for it.

Your faith is inspires me. Even at your weakest moments, when you're ready to toss in the towel, just the slightest nudge gets you back on track. That is all you my love, not someone else giving you their strength.

I love you so very much. Here's to moving forward and the adventure that it will be. :)

forever folding laundry said...

You've come a long way, my friend. Thanks for bringing us along with you. You're doing great and I'm glad that fear has left the building!


Kieliszeks said...

Continued prayers for daily assistance and praises to our father who never leaves our side.

Annette said...

Yes Carolynn, you have come far. I am so happy that you chose to let us follow you on your new path that God gave you in life. You have done an amazing job and you will keep going by His grace.

imbeingheldhostage said...

You have come so far and if you think about it, of course you're pondering these things now-- you haven't had a minute to do it until now. You are stronger, you know you are surrounded by people who love you. Peace in this reflective time, C!

Susan Berlien (warmchocmilk) said...

You have an elegant way with words. Your post was inspiring. I will follow and be looking forward to more :)

Sara said...

We just passed our annivesary of "meeting" through our blogs.
My life changed when we became blog friends and then getting to meet that October morning. You were inspiring then and you are EVEN more inspiring now. I (heart) you.

Mayhem and Moxie said...

I haven't been to your site in what feels like ages, and yet, I arrive today to what is arguably your best post ever. I am seriously crying right now, Carolynn. The journey that you have taken in the past year is simply amazing. I am thankful that you have allowed your cyber-friends this peak into your life. It is inspiring to all of us.

I am so proud of you.


Growin' with it! said...

i still remember reading that post. and look at you know. what a beautiful transformation. so looking back may not be easy, but look at what God has done. He IS faithful and true!

bluecottonmemory said...

What a beautiful post of strength, courage and faith that grew out of such loss! Your hope is so beautiful! Faith won't allow the seeds of bitterness to take root!

SuperAunt said...

I remember re-connecting after so much time had passed. No one can convince me that God didn't have a hand in it. It's all about "Who we are when no one's watching". I think of you often, knowing that you are a strong individual and that your gene pool contains a great deal strength. Remember a while back.. when I wrote to you and told you every morning and evening while brushing you hair, to recite "I am a good person deserving of love, and I am a worthwhile individual"? I meant every word of that, and now.... you are paying it forward, just like I do, to others that need to remember who they are, and rebuild their connections and commitments to themselves. I am proud of you!! You have arrived at the train station, and now are simply choosing where you want your train to go. My favorite song is "the road is long...with many a winding turn... by Simon and Garfunkel, you are still in the tunnel, but now you know the light you see isn't the train. Love you, SLC

Shannon said...

Carolynn, your words always touch me at a very deep place in my heart. Press on, sister.