Friday, March 13, 2009

Friendship, Health, and Changes

Life seems to throw just as many curve balls as it can at me. It has just always seemed to be that way. I used to think it was normal. It seems to me now that it is just my normal. I used to long for a more laid back life, but I do not believe that is what God has intended for me, at least not right now. Sometimes I wonder just what it is that He is training me to be prepared for. I often feel that it must be big. I have gotten to a point where there really isn't anything that phases me anymore. How could it?

It would seem that, if nothing else, I have learned how to take things in stride. This does not mean, however, that I do not get overwhelmed or worn out at times. Trust me. I do, and I am teetering on the brink right now. Honestly, I am just so stinkin' tired. I feel like I need a vacation; big time!

We always seem to spend our time transitioning from one thing, or two or three, to another. It has gotten to a point that weekends are not even a refuge or place of relaxation. Sabbath just isn't long enough for me to recuperate. I honestly need a couple weeks of doing nothing to heal. That will come, but not soon enough.

My plate is very full, and some of the things going on right now are emotionally draining. We were just coming to terms with the fact that our pastor and his wife, whom we consider friends, will be moving to Lansing to work at the Conference Office when we learned that "Mrs. Pastor" has been diagnosed with leukemia. She is now in Texas receiving the best care in the nation, praise God!

We are also making an effort and commitment to changing things in our relationship in connection with our relationship to each other, God, and our children. This is a big undertaking that we seem to have to fight for. With demands on each of us so taxing and time consuming the undertaking seems impossible. It is not enough to make the commitment. It is not enough to have the desire. It is not enough to talk about and plan for it. We actually have to fight to make it happen. A month's time has now passed since the boys and I committed fully to the keeping of the Sabbath together. Every Sabbath something has interfered on some level with our intention and plans. In the same way, my husband and I came back from the marriage commitment weekend with desires and ambitions for change. Not one has happened. The enemy is strong and works hard to trip us up. We have to be stronger and fight harder to make any progress at all. It is SO challenging.

Another really emotionally taxing thing has been the challenges of raising and relating to my 15 year old. Anyone that has been 15, has a 15 year old, or has had a 15 year old can surely relate. This is such a tough age. So much is happening. We are a child and a young adult all at the same time. We long for independence and guidance both at the same time. Our emotions and hormones are completely out of whack. Life is confusing, challenging, interesting, and frustrating on many levels. It is tough to be 15, and it is tough to peacefully parent a 15 year old.

Then there is the growth rate of our family. I often feel that there is just not enough of me to go around. Our grandchildren are coming at me the same way that our children did, all at once! There is barely time to get to know one, and then there is another, or two, or three. I so want to be a part of the lives of all of our grandchildren. I am uncertain as to how to successfully manage being a Nana and a mom to teens at the same time. If we were not homeschooling this would likely be a little less challenging, but challenging nonetheless.

My health is also a small factor. Yesterday, I went for a biopsy on my right breast. I discovered a tumor there last year. They believe it to be benign, but due to my family and personal history they wanted to play it safe and just make sure there is nothing to be concerned with. It was an interesting and taxing experience. There is now a tiny, titanium, breast cancer ribbon implanted in my breast to mark the tumor letting them know in future exams that that particular tumor has already been biopsied. I also participated in a study that is very interesting. They are doing research on a technique that would take the place of the mammogram. It is awesome, and I hope it is available as an option in the future.

I am also thankful for the friendships that I am forming. I have met some wonderful women over the past few years. The friendships have developed slowly over time, and are now starting to bloom. It is a wonderful gift to have one good friend, and I have had one for over 25 years. She is a sister to me, and I thank God for her frequently. What a special treat it is to make new friends and learn how to be a friend. That can be a challenge for some of us. There are trust issues, time constraints, and other factors.

Life is full of challenges, surprises, and adventurers. What a huge lot this is. Thanks be to God for His presence in my life. I cannot imagine managing any of this without Him. I would surely be lost.

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