Tuesday, July 8, 2014

coming up for air

Summer break? No.  Summer vacation? Nope.  I know these are the references for this time of year, but they are not working for me here.  While we do not have the same demands of school schedules, this summer has just been a different variety of busy!  It's not bad, just different.
Before I get started on the happenings, I want to share that me & my guy started this summer off with the celebration of 21 years together!!  Just recently, our pastor posed the question, "What is key to a successful marriage?"  I was assuming that faith was the given #1, so I really pondered what it takes.  It takes a lot of things, but what I came up with was stubborn commitment.
Stubborn:  having or showing dogged determination not to change one's attitude or position on something, especially in spite of good arguments or reasons to do so.
Yes, after reading the definition of 'stubborn', this is what I have come up with...stubborn commitment.  I am thankful every day to be married to a man that is stubbornly committed to this marriage with me.  There is a sense of comfort & strength in knowing that we are walking this life together constantly spurring one another along the path, regardless of whether we are enjoying the scenery or just trying to stumble through a rough patch.
Thanks to Kameryn, we got to go out to dinner for our anniversary!
I am sooooo happy to report that the full draft of Joe's doctoral dissertation has been turned in!!!  Aside from some minor edits and giving his oral defense, he.is.DONE!!!!  This has consumed much of our time over the last several, well years, but intensely so over the last several weeks.  He had a deadline to meet, so we found ourselves pouring over edits & double checking citations until 2 in the morning last weekend & then up again at 5:30 a.m. to give it one more look.  I'm not gonna lie...when it was finally submitted, I think I just walked around the house in circles while still in my pajamas at one in the afternoon in a bit of a daze, almost unsure of what to even do or think.  I know that sounds dumb, but you really don't realize how much of your mind can be consumed by something!  I finally decided to just sit back & enjoy watching some of my favorite little people having fun.
Speaking of being consumed, I mentioned awhile back that I was giving myself "freedom" by getting off facebook for awhile.  That break has been a very, very good thing for me.  Sometimes, distance gives perspective.  Temptation is everywhere, but I have determined that there are areas where I can have some control over its presence.  Gossip, judgment, & nasty battles purposely instigated with passive-aggressive posts in reference to controversial topics are just not edifying.  So, that being said, I also realized that I was missing some of the wonderful friends that make me smile with their sweet pictures/updates, challenge me with links to interesting posts, & allow me the privilege of praying for things going on in their lives.  Balance, balance, balance.  That's really key, isn't it?  In Proverbs 4:23, it says I am to guard my heart because it is the wellspring of life.  Empowerment:  FB is an extension of my heart & house, so I am no victim here.  I don't have to remain in certain groups or keep subjecting myself to repeated instances of drama.  I also need to make sure it doesn't become a tool of distraction from the times that life is hard. :)
As for being focused, I am very blessed by a surprise that showed up from a special friend via the UPS man:
I am a couple weeks into this, & it has been wonderful.  Most every day, this is the first thing I do.  It almost feels like cleaning off and adjusting my lens for the day.  I also find myself more "in tune", if that makes sense.  I look for Him in the details, & pause to seek Him when one of the kids is pressing every one of my buttons things frustrate me.  I am a work in progress.  I hope to continue growing in my thoughts, attitudes, actions, & reactions to what life brings my way.
The other day on my way into the house, this brought me much hope.  My favorite yellow day lilies began blooming.  My poor stone somehow broke, but I just couldn't get rid of it.  It struck me as I was standing there that even in brokenness, the Truth is still there.  With God, all things are possible.