Leap Year Day

So today (Leap Year Day) comes every four years… I feel a bit beside myself, as I often do when trying to comprehend things like ‘death’ or ‘eternity.’ I think God created Leap Year to keep us vulnerable; to remind us that life does exist beyond the borders of ‘time’ as we know it. Because really, today can’t exist. It’s like extra minutes in a day, when the sun stands still. Today is a miracle — an extra 24 hours with which to use our lives wisely, carefully, creatively…

Last night I watched ‘You’ve Got Mail’ with Mom. We’ve been doing the Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan marathon (which consists of three movies :)). Before we settled down with our tea and our cookies to laugh and cry with our favorite characters, however, I interviewed Mom.

I pulled out my blue mP3 player, pressed the record button, and asked her to tell me about her life as a child growing up in Britain. And as she slowly and deliberately began to recall life in Ashford, Middlesex, as a shy girl with overly-strict parents, I became lost in her British accent and the gentle blue of her eyes remembering days of old, and I wondered “Why haven’t I asked her these things before?”

In other words, why does it always take selfishness on my part? (I was interviewing her in order to start my new book, based on her life — I plan to entitle it “Mere”.)

Well, as some say, better late than never. Happy Leap Year Day everyone 🙂 Here’s to taking advantage of extra time!

Advertisements

transparent wings

Time is flying by on transparent wings.

My husband and I have both been very sick, yet continue to plod along. Last week the entire family was up from Ottawa; it was good to play games and make fun of each other.

Some days it feels like I am constantly being tested: which I probably am. I’ve realized life isn’t about the results, but about the process. God cares what my response is to the problem; he can easily provide the solution. Too often I explode in the face of uncertainty, when I should simply embrace it and move on.

Right now we’re praying about the future. Trent’s father is very sick, and may need to give up farming altogether. Trent has never wanted to farm, but feels he should help his Dad – at least for awhile. It wouldn’t be for a couple of years (after all, Trent has a dream job right now, and I’ve just accepted a position at The Record), but still — every day I battle my desire to just take off and see the world and not worry about family anymore. Every day I wonder, is today the day my mother will get better? Is today the day she’ll die? And with my father in law also being sick, our prayer times are chock-full of “Lord, please heal, heal, heal…”

Deep down I know I’m happiest when I’m watching a movie with my mother or helping her wash her hair. I’m happiest when I’m around those I love.

It’s just that sometimes ‘self’ kicks in. I crave traveling. It’s something which bubbles up inside of me, like the need to paint or write. I think about it constantly.

Yet as I explained to my sister in law the other day, I’m becoming more and more convinced that life isn’t about what we ‘want.’ After all, we don’t even know what we truly want. It’s about doing what we ought, and trusting God to give us the desires of our hearts in the process.

When we honor Him, He blesses us.  It’s not the other way ’round. This world is about pleasing self; I’m realizing that’s a big lie. Daily I find joy in simple things: in typing away on my computer, in painting, in reading a good book — things which can be done anywhere. And when I worry, I pray. I pray “Lord, you know I want to travel. Please open a door for me to do so. If you don’t want me to, take that desire away.”

Amen. and Amen.

Happy Belated Hallmark Day

Not only was yesterday ‘Hallmark Day’ as my husband and I so lovingly call it; it was the day I found out I’d be working for The Presbyterian Record as staff reporter, starting May 5th. Trent and I took care of six rambunctious children from Tuesday until Thursday, while their parents went on a retreat; after packing them off to school yesterday, I drove three hours to Toronto to meet with The Record‘s staff, then three hours home through a blizzard. It was a tiring yet fruitful day! Tonight Trent’s bringing home Chinese food and a movie; time to wine and dine! (We celebrate V-day on the 15th, fighting the corporate hand in our own little rebellious way) Mom and Dad have headed off to the Bahamas for a few days; Mom has always wanted to go there, so Dad ordered up a cruise for her birthday this year. I hope she’s able to remember it all.

waiting…

this whole concept of waiting baffles, eludes and delights me.

the Bible says “good things come to those that wait”…

initially, for me, the concept of waiting means resting on one’s laurels. being slothful. what exactly is the line between sloth and patience? or better yet, between apathy and patience?

i feel like i’m in a constant state of ‘wait’…

i’m waiting to find out about a potential job opportunity. i’m also waiting to find out if a certain agent will accept the task of finding a publisher for both of my books, or even just one of them. i’m waiting to find out whether or not my mother will ever get better, or what will happen to my father in law’s farm.

perhaps ‘wait’ is not an action, but a noun. it’s a thing to be abided, and it’s what we DO while we wait which matters. if i choose to keep acting in faith while sitting in ‘waitedness’ surely this is honorable? while some days i want to scream and pound at the air and demand to know answers, the answer lies in my response… my response to this very moment. right now. how am i responding in this instant to all of the ‘what ifs’ that lie out there?

after all, i may not live to find out any of those answers. i could die tomorrow. and then, what would the purpose of my waiting have been? well, it would have served as a chance for me to once again prove faithful in the small things, in the moment by moment happenings, which will ultimately answer the one big question we all have: where will i spend eternity?

daily life as of late

We did it. We ordered the kit from http://www.greasecar.com, which will convert our car from a diesel-guzzling tank to a used-veggie-oil tank. 🙂 We’ll be doing the conversion over March Break. I’m excited and petrified. 🙂

I have been working out a lot lately, as I’m training for Ottawa’s half-marathon in May. It’s incredibly hard… so many times I just want to step off that treadmill and call it a day, but the longer I stick with it, the better I feel in the long run. (ha ha — get it? Long run? Sigh…)

Mom has been doing very well; she’s been very alert and ‘with it.’ I love having her, my dad and my sister over for supper. I thoroughly enjoy cooking. That being said, I’m grateful for times when my hubby cooks. Like on snow days (which have been occurring a lot lately); since he’s a math teacher, he spends those days tip-toeing around home trying not to disturb me (which is hard since we have such a small house :))

We went snowboarding last weekend; it was marvelous, albeit disappointing compared to the Rocky Mountains we’re used to. I caught myself becoming ‘perfectionistic’ on the slopes. Why do I need to excel? Why can I not just enjoy the moment? Ironically, it wasn’t until I had consigned myself to the fact that I wasn’t perfect that I began to do better. Life is funny that way.