Pardon me while I wax nostalgic…
June 16, 2014 | My Jottings
Sometimes I step back and take a look at the way things are, the way I am, the things that are happening to my husband, and I don’t recognize us. We had a couple of days recently that were so grim and ugly, I kept asking the Lord, what happened? how did I get like this? what in the world is going on here? and other possibly-not-productive questions.
I hesitate to come to this blog and write about negative things, but I’ve never tried to pretend that I have it all together here so I guess I won’t start now. I want to make my husband Michael feel like caring for him is the biggest blessing in my life. And deep down, I know there are hidden blessings to all difficult things the Lord allows which we entrust to Him. But the blessings in this case are hidden deeply. Buried down toward the core of the earth, I think. I’ve had a hard time finding them sometimes, even though I know they’re there. I feel tired, and old, and selfish.
Our youngest daughter Sara was looking through an old scrapbook over the weekend and when she was done I decided to page through as well. I came across this picture and stared at it for a while.
In case you don’t recognize her, I almost didn’t either. It’s me, almost exactly 33 years ago, when I was 23 years old. It was early June of 1981 and some dear friends threw a surprise wedding shower/going away party for me. I showed up at a friend’s house thinking I was invited there for something else, and was so moved that they did this for me.
I noticed my Birkenstocks — they were my first pair. Navy blue suede and I wore them every day. I noticed that my jeans were pressed. All I have to say about that is hahahaha.
And I noticed of course that I was laughing. Hard. I can’t remember when I last had a good laugh like that, or had a merry heart.
I was so happy in this picture. I had met Michael only one time and was engaged to marry him in just a couple of weeks. If you’re new to this little blog and don’t know the story of how we were engaged before we ever met, you can read a short poetic version of what happened here.
I had given notice at my good job in Anaheim, California, and was getting ready to pack my things and move to Northeastern Minnesota with my two little girls, who were then four, and two and a half years old. I looked forward to the future with such gladness. I knew I was marrying someone special, and these three decades have done nothing but confirm that over and over and over. Michael is one of the most kind, forgiving, generous people I’ve ever known. In a world of rampant narcissism, selfies, self-promotion and entitlement, he stands out in the most beautiful ways. (He’s not perfect–I’m not saying that. Even now this disease has changed things in his personality that are so sad.)
I’m not the same person I was all those years ago either. But I keep reminding myself that I have the same God. He hasn’t changed, His love for us hasn’t changed, and He is not daunted by what has happened with us. I’ve said this until I sound like a broken record — how grateful I am that His mercies are new every morning.
“…even to your old age I am He,
and to gray hairs I will carry you.
I have made, and I will bear;
I will carry and will save.”
* * * * * *
I feel like I need to be carried, yes. And saved, day in and day out. I give thanks today that the Lord says He will carry me and save me.
Are you thankful that the Lord is carrying and saving you too?