May 11, 2008

My Random Ramblings....

Happy Mother's Day!
Just wanted to wish all of the Moms out there a Happy Mother's Day. Also, I am sorry I've not posted anything in a long time. It's a very busy season in our lives with Haley's impending wedding... So I probably won't be doing a lot of blogging until after July. However, stay tuned and I might surprise ya'll (and myself)...

But while I'm here- a quick update... I've been doing a Beth Moore Bible Study every Thursday morning called "Believing God" which is seriously changing my life. I didn't realize how little I believed. It's not a condemning revelation but an encouragment. I am beginning to believe God for things I never have dared to before. It's exciting and kind of scary!

We just returned from our hometown for Keith's mom's birthday and also for Mother's Day. We left there this morning so part of the day could be spent here in Baton Rouge at our home... It was overall a nice visit, but I felt emotional. Have been fighting the tears all weekend long and I'm not sure why. Probably a combination of: realizing this is my last Mother's Day with Haley, feeling sorry for myself having to spend most of Mother's Day on the road (yeah, I know, I'm a big baby), hormones, watching "Father of The Bride" (dumb move when you're hormonal and sentimental), trying to lose weight to fit into my mother-of-the-bride dress but really craving cake, and just feeling hit with all of the changes life brings and wanting things to stay the same. Sigh.

About that- Keith's parents just moved into a brand new house they built in a new subdivision. They've only been in it a few short weeks. There's only two houses inhabited in the subdivision right now and lots of construction and empty dirt lots. But their charming little house sits in the middle of the vacant construction site on an island of green with blooming landscaping. For as long as I can remember, they have lived in the same white house on the outskirts of our hometown, on a tree covered hill. The house was built over 30 years ago, so it's a bit dated and not with the most fluid floor plan (houses of that era were very compartmentalized; not open and airy like houses are built today). But it's been really hard for us to accept their move to town. I'm a country girl so I just can't understand why anyone would choose to leave the homey, privacy of a tree covered hill for an impersonal subdivision. But I think our reservations run deeper. Perhaps our unreasonably strong feelings are because of Keith's years in the Navy. There was something special about leaving a foreign duty station and heading to that particular rural address that represented to us that four letter word "home". We moved every three years. We knew when we arrived at a new duty station to hold everything loosely- don't get too attached or put your roots down too deep. Despite this, we made some lasting friendships and got plugged into some incredible churches during each short three year duty station. But we always knew at each place, that our time was short. Not everyone understands this lifestyle, but it was normal for us and our children for 20 years. It probably has a lot to do with why we are so close as a family. I'm thankful for it and wouldn't trade it for anything in the world. But despite the many blessings of this life we led, I'm now realizing that we lacked something that most people take for granted- a permanent geographical location called... "home". We made the most of it and home became where we were, but when people asked- "where's home for you?" We never hesitated to point to that white house on Farmerville Highway as the place where we belonged.... When I first heard they were thinking of moving, something like panic hit me. I thought- what are they thinking? They can't do this to us! Selfish- I know.

Now that Keith is retired, we live only four hours away from our old hometown. Keith's parents and siblings live there and so does my Dad and stepmom. Keith has many great memories of our hometown. I don't have as many. It was, for me. during my regret-filled younger years, the geographical location of where I experienced my deepest wounds, worst bondages and furthermost strayings. God's done a lot in me, but often, this place has been a painful reminder of what was, and yet also a gratitude-filled reminder of what IS. (praise God!) Yet despite my frequent lack of warm fuzzies about our hometown, it's more often than not, the place we run to. I was actually surprised at my strong negative reaction to their moving from the white house. Why should I care? But I reasoned- Where would the kids play? It was grandchild paradise, with trees to climb, forts to build, and woods to explore... There were so many good memories of our children there. They too, had called it "home". What would they do now? But it's done. The white house is still in the family and it's been beautifully remodeled... but it's not home anymore. Plus our kids are getting older and are now more interested in Xbox than treehouses. So I suppose it makes some sort of sense. And the new house is beautiful- open and tastefully decorated. It sits on a small lot- no woods to explore or trees to climb, the house is smaller than the white house, yet it is laid out well so it doesn't seem crowded... But it is very nice. And most important- Grandmom and Grandad are there. They are so happy and proud of it. They are getting older and didn't want to have to keep up the older house and huge yard. I do understand that. We come only a few times a year and they live there every day. So they ought to know more than me, where they are better off living. But I admit, it just seems weird... However, life moves on. I guess I'm just not one of those who handles it's changes that well. But in this unstable life, it's just been nice while it lasted, to have had that one little place on earth where time seemed to stand still. But it'd be selfish for me to want sameness for my own temporal security, sentimentality and comfort and to deny them this joy. I guess I'll sort it out and move on as I always do. But bottom line- this leads me back to my Bible study on faith- where does my security lie? In a white house on a hill and all it represents? Does my security lie in people who change, leave or die? Or does it lie in my immoveable God who never changes or leaves? He is truly that one secure unchanging place to run to. There is no other.

I guess maybe normally it wouldn't be such a big deal except that so much in my life is about to change and I'm desperately clinging to all sense of sameness- My firstborn is about to leave our nest forever when she gets married in about 8 weeks. She can't wait and I completely understand this. It's right and the way life progresses. Seems like yesterday that I remember her crying in her room, worried that in so many years she'd be twenty and she never wanted to grow up. :^) Life comes at you fast, doesn't it? My sister keeps telling me 'Kayla, it hasn't hit you yet that she's getting married." She's right. Maybe these little emotional bursts I am having are like a smoldering volcano letting off little spurts of steam to relieve the pressure before it blows. Heavens I hope not! I don't want to blow! Especially during the wedding! (I can see you all at the wedding, staring at me worriedly whispering- Is she about to blow? Should we clear the church exits? :^) Heaven knows, this is taking enough planning and finances... I don't want to wig out on her special day (pray that I don't, please!!!!!!!!) I have no clue how I'll handle the big reveal... When I finally "get it" that... Haley's not here anymore... Stay tuned. Your guess is as good as mine when it will hit me and how I'll handle it! Keep me in prayer. I've never had to deal with this sort of thing before.... So I have no blueprint to follow. But I know change is part of the circle of life. I have got to stop desiring the wheel to halt and stay at a certain place. That's not normal or healthy. I have to afford her the same pleasure that I was given when I left home, became a wife, a mother, and an adult (still working on that last one).To deny her these joys would be wrong... and selfish. Hmmm. There that word is again! Selfish... There's more to this that I need to explore.

Okay, so this ended up not being the quick update I envisioned afterall! I guess I needed to vent. Perhaps this will help some of the steam escape and keep this volcano 'dormant' and not 'active'. Whatever works!

If anybody still checks this thing, I'm sure you were tired of seeing Oprah's blurry face from my last blog....Hope this helped wipe that image from your mind.

I'm not sure when I'll blog again... but since this was so "therapetic" (to quote Barney Fife) I may do this again soon.... Anyway, once more- Happy Mother's Day and let me hear from you... God bless. And thanks for listening! Kayla