As I look at this makeup-less pic, I am struck by how very much I resemble both Mama and Daddy. Very rarely do my lips look this full in a picture, but that is my dad’s mouth for sure. Also, the girl version of his eyebrows, which look amazingly like Aunt Lady’s. The eyes are definitely like Mama’s in color. Or Daddy’s depending on who you knew 🙂
Funny that this picture looks so much like them both because just this week, I rode around town telling stories of my young life to Country and Diva and a high school friend. One of the things that so thrills me about being with people my own age is that it causes my memories to come forth from whatever place they are hiding. One leads to another, and the story of my life unfolds in front of me again. It’s a very powerful thing. Drive me past my old house. Ok, let me show you mine. My dog Laddie is buried in that backyard. My best friend lived right there. By the way, I was wrong on the dates, because tonight I remember crying because I would not be riding on the school bus with her for first grade. Look, I got my foot stuck there in that grate, and I could not get it out. If you think I am tiny now, you should have seen me then. And there, my cat ran away into the swamp. And here were the geese of hatefulness. And yes, children, there really was a van worthy road where you saw only grass, just like I said. That’s where my stuff was burned. And this scar on my knee, I got it right there, falling on my bike.
You know, some people wish they could write themselves a letter from now back in time. Sometimes, living like this, when the memories come, it is like getting term life advice from my young self, if only because I begin to understand what made into the woman I am today.
Other times….well, there’s just no feeling quite like trying to share yourself with your teens and getting the groaning eyeroll for your efforts. How will they ever understand why I do what I do, the parenting decisions I make, if they refuse to know me at all? And is that really my problem if I am trying to share and they refuse to listen?
This week also brought the grand adventure of a water leak that led to significant damage in my kitchen. It’s not much to the naked eye, but the walls, insulation and floor are wet and must be torn out and replaced. It ought to be a whole lot of fun to try to care for and feed this many folks without major appliances on a rotating basis. Hopefully we won’t lose the stove and the washer on the same day.
I also registered my kids for public school this week. Five are going for the very first time. They are excited, but I wonder if they are ready. I wonder if I am ready.
This year, I have had most of the labels I wore stripped off: youth minister, worship team member, wife, homeschooling mom. It’s a strange new world I now inhabit. I am not sure whether I am shrinking or growing to fill it. I guess I won’t know for a while. I don’t feel less, though, only different.