The transition into real life is going better than I expected. It seems kind of surreal to be home. I didn’t realize how stir crazy I had become in that little apartment in Houston until I got home to some space. I am often brought to my knees in gratitude and tears as I consider what God is doing and has done through this time. He is such a good God.
On the way to the airport in Houston we Ubered. We Uber quite a bit, and I love the service because we get to meet such interesting people. I say this because my last ride was not a typical ride. As my husband is famous for saying, “I thought we were going to die in a fiery crash.” Our driver drove from New York to Houston to drive for the Super Bowl. So on the day of our exit (3 weeks later) he was still in Houston driving. He liked to go 80 in a 60 in heavy traffic. I was working to not be scared. And as God does, he used this time to assure me (and keep us alive). His music selection was Reggae, specifically Great is Thy Faithfulness and Jesus Loves Me in Reggae. As I mouthed the words to the songs on the radio as God’s promise that if he can kill cancer, he can keep me alive in Houston rush hour with a New York cabbie, I was overcome with the emotions of gratitude in his provision for this time. (And traffic came to a screeching halt, I told the cabbie he may want to slow down because I just finished chemo and I might puke in his car -a slight but true exaggeration- and he found an alternate, slow back route to the airport.)
And Great is thy Faithfulness has been running through my head ever since. Why? Because it is so true. God prepared us, me specifically, for this time. In fact, he told me to get quite and still a couple of years ago. Last January I felt like I needed to get in shape. At the time, I wasn’t sure why, buy my 40th year seemed like a good enough reason. He brought a special 20 something woman into my life who was just right to encourage me in this way & who had just met Jesus & was in love with him for all the right reasons. And I needed a reminder of what that puppy love looks like, because my love was getting stale and comfortable. Her passion inspires my heart every time we talk. So, I started an exercise class. I spent a good portion of three weeks panting on the floor while Jess, my instructor, encouraged me, and the rest of the class did their cute little moves. After a few weeks, I started to keep up better & eventually learned to beat myself instead of focusing on how others were better at this than me. Then my opportunity to walk the Camino came. I thought this was clearly why I was getting in shape. But after my Camino, I felt God saying something else was coming. And it did, the doctor visit, the MRI, THE PHONE CALL, the move to Houston, proton therapy, the people met, losing 15 pounds. They all came, and they have all past, and every day I’m a little bit better. I’m napping or resting hours a day, and walking through the book of Hebrews at a snails pace (which is the perfect pace to let it saturate my heart and mind). So it is a surreal experience to be home. I cannot do the busyness that has been my life for the last 15 years, so I am doing all the other things. I am watching TV on the couch with my kid, and doing spelling homework. I can’t really eat much yet, so my mother and mother-in-law are keeping my family fed, and I am adding a new food a day (yesterday I ate a whole roll) to my stomach.
Upon reentry I am still outside my life a bit, and I am thankful to be here because I feel like I can see better from here. My 17 year old doesn’t need the mom who worked to make him better with self improvement speeches any more. He needs an encourager who will speak life and hope over him as he test drives life. It’s his turn to be the pilot. He is going to have success and failure, just like to rest of us, and my job is to believe in him and to remind him that God’s plan for his life is too big to be imagined, so he should pray and obey. Pray for me that I will “know my role” and that my mouth will keep up with this new plan.
My daughter is a beautiful woman inside and out. Fourteen is not a child any more, it is WAY more grown up than I thought. I keep reminding myself that girls this age used to get married and run households, successfully. This particular kid could run a bank. She took on a lot of responsibility in our absence, and she was trustworthy with a lot of freedom, so not taking that back because I can, and still setting appropriate moral limits is going to be a challenge for a couple of years. God is at work in this child, and I need more time listening in prayer and less time intervening.
The baby. Well, he’s just that, he’s 8. And spoiled. And our work isn’t wrapping up like it is with the other two. It’s not time to let go. It’s time to cultivate a person. He’s the youngest by a lot, and I have appeased him because it made my life easier than doing the work. So, we are doing the hard things (like cursive homework 😣😵😩). He is a comedian, and uses his wit to distract me. I’m beginning to think he’s the most like his dad & so dad can raise him! (Just kidding. I don’t want to miss any more time.) The trick is going to be living this life and still seeing things from the outside.
So much good has already come from this time away. I was great at trying to make everyone happy that I got in the way or other relationships. Because we were gone, my kids have deeper relationships with all of their grandparents, more authentic. They have also gained weight and loved eating home cooked meals (they will have to get over that.). Because we were gone, Cary and I love each other even more, I’m head over heals for Jesus again, and I know more of the Greatness of his Faithfulness. Our story is nowhere near complete. There is still more Faithfulness to be told, but I’m getting tired of writing, so you will have to get the rest of the story later.
Listen to Great is thy Faithfulness https://youtu.be/v92I3GYL55g