Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Late July

I was just straightening up the living room and felt an odd bump under my big toe. After bending down to retrieve the mysterious object, I discovered it to be a large, shimmering green beetle leg. Yep, I had heard that Andrew's beetle lost a leg yesterday and now I've found it. Just before bed, Jacob asked me to look for his beetle and to put it in a jar with holes in the lid should I come across it. Come to think of it, I also have a large walking stick in my freezer being preserved for who knows what, and yesterday I was presented with a large insect with open wings and a missing head. They really did think I'd like it. I think it's because I had a fleeting idea a while back for the boys to make a shadow box of cool insects for the school room, and now they think large bugs are my passion.

It has been my goal to make it to the beach at least twice a week this month; we've had some lovely days there with friends, and relaxing and playful days on our own. Jon, who rarely takes a full day off, spent an entire day with the kids and me last week. It was such a fun day, an unexpected time when he was all there and not distracted with a host of ministry responsibilities. So what did we do? Well, we practiced football drills in the morning (me included), and then he took us to an awesome surfing beach in the afternoon and into the evening. Summertime at its best.

I don't know when I last blogged, but recently Jon and I had our birthdays. Our birth dates are just one week apart (plus a year), and this year they fell in the midst of very full weeks. But we celebrated, each doing for the other what we prefer our birthdays to be: His was celebrated in the company of friends, and mine was celebrated quietly here at home with him and the kids.

The day before my birthday, Jon and I had to attend a class that ran late into the evening. Since we wouldn't be able to pick up our kids from our friends' place till very late, they stayed overnight. This provided Jon and me with an unexpectedly fun evening. After our class ended we found an elegant little place in one of the beachside towns and shared a couple appetizers. We lingered late talking, and it felt good to just be his wife and his friend. For a few hours I savored feeling like a woman and not just a mom, and inwardly marveled that I get to be wife to such a handsome man.

It was well after midnight when we returned home, and as I stood at the bathroom sink pulling out some floss from the little dispenser, Jon came up behind me, wrapped his arms around me and wished me a happy birthday. "Shoot!" I exclaimed. "Now I'm 35!"

It's a silly thing, maybe even a little embarrassing to admit, but each birthday since at least my 16th brings with it a little dismay about growing older. Truthfully, I don't want to grow older, much less do I want to grow old. I don't know where my hangup stems from, or why I just can't seem to shake it. I'd like to have the wisdom without the grey hairs. I realize I need to get serious about my bad attitude regarding aging! Aging is just going to happen. In fact, it is happening.

It didn't help when my sister pointed out that I'll be 50 in fifteen years.

(Michael and the ocean. He really, really loves being out there.)

(Not having wetsuits, Jacob and Andrew couldn't tolerate the cold water as long as the other two did. They would often come out for a game of smash ball or frisbee, to roll in the warm sand, or to scale the cliffside. After the long grasses were used as spears in an Indian game --and thoroughly entertaining sunbathing ladies nearby-- Jacob lined my little spot with his reeds.)

This weekend I found exhaustion setting in. There's been a lot on my mind, we've kept a busy schedule, and perhaps anemia is setting in again. By Saturday I felt rather useless. I sat on the kitchen counter, staring off and noticing for the first time a small slice of ocean view from that space on the counter, and munching on some chips left behind by a friend. Feeling rather blank, I rebelled against my usually more controlled eating habits and continued snacking. The bag read "Late July Organic" and I thought that was rather fitting. I continued to read: "Cure for the Summertime Blues" it said. Interested at the irony of it all, I flipped the bag over to read,"Late July is the sweet spot of summer..."

And at that moment I managed to convince myself that 35 is the sweet spot of life. What more could I ask for? My life is full of good things, blessing undeserved. The Lord has given me good health and the ability to enjoy the people, places, and possessions which He also has given me. My heart overflows with thankfulness and delights in the present. It's a good spot for sure. 

(Here are some of the tomatoes you planted, Pop!)


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