Friday, April 12, 2013

An Unexpected Trip

Psalm 139 (The Message)
1 God, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. 2 I'm an open book to you; even from a distance, you know what I'm thinking. 3 You know when I leave and when I get back; I'm never out of your sight. 4 You know everything I'm going to say before I start the first sentence. 5 I look behind me and you're there, then up ahead and you're there, too - your reassuring presence, coming and going. 6 This is too much, too wonderful - I can't take it all in! 7 Is there anyplace I can go to avoid your Spirit? to be out of your sight? 8 If I climb to the sky, you're there! If I go underground, you're there! 9 If I flew on morning's wings to the far western horizon, 10 You'd find me in a minute - you're already there waiting! 11 Then I said to myself, "Oh, he even sees me in the dark! At night I'm immersed in the light!" 12 It's a fact: darkness isn't dark to you; night and day, darkness and light, they're all the same to you. 13 Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother's womb. 14 I thank you, High God - you're breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration - what a creation! 15 You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. 16 Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, The days of my life all prepared before I'd even lived one day. 17 Your thoughts - how rare, how beautiful! God, I'll never comprehend them! 18 I couldn't even begin to count them - any more than I could count the sand of the sea. Oh, let me rise in the morning and live always with you! 19 And please, God, do away with wickedness for good! And you murderers - out of here! - 20 all the men and women who belittle you, God, infatuated with cheap god-imitations. 21 See how I hate those who hate you, God, see how I loathe all this godless arrogance; 22 I hate it with pure, unadulterated hatred. Your enemies are my enemies! 23 Investigate my life, O God, find out everything about me; Cross-examine and test me, get a clear picture of what I'm about; 24 See for yourself whether I've done anything wrong - then guide me on the road to eternal life.

Dan Allender wrote a book titled, The Healing Path. I only know this because I read the Foreword by Steven Curtis Chapman in his wife's book, Choosing to SEE. A truth from Dan Allender's book is that as Christians, when we suffer tragedies or loss, sorrow and pain, we won't embrace it and go through the journey that God has entrusted us with. Instead, we often deny or sweep it under the spiritual rug of 'God's sovereignty'. I don't want to do that.
Instead, I want to travel through this journey....most of the time with the pain and heaviness and tears that invade me to my soul, then use all "this horridness" to help others see the Glory of God.....and also come out of this tragedy, somehow better. Somehow new. Somehow an inspiration and source of Hope for all those who will suffer such pain.
This is my transparent hiding it, no sweeping it under the rug, but facing it, and learning what it is that God intends for me to learn.

I happen to be on my first vacation of 2013 from the hospital. It was scheduled last year when all the nurses on my unit got to choose their weeks.
Me, being the 'low man on the totum pole' really wanted Spring Break week but it was taken and I had to choose another week.
"April", I thought. Spring. Flowers. Even though my older girls, Kelsy & Mekenna would still be in college, Kori & Maci would be home after school and we could enjoy the beginnings of all the 'new life' that we would be seeing. Maybe take afternoon walks in the wooded trails that weave through our subdivision, start a garden and plant LOTS of flowers. I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom for that week and have cookies ready for them when they got home from school and have supper together as a family every night and enjoy the laughter and silliness that has always taken place at our dinner table.

Well, obviously, things have changed.

Since the wreck, I've cooked only one time. I haven't baked any cookies either. Somedays, I've looked at the 'new life' of Spring and see the flowers blooming and trees budding and am still perplexed as to how  can the world keep going when my world has been thrown off it's axis?
Other times, I look at all those things and smile (especially when I see my favorite flower, the daffodil, blooming in my front yard, a special secret surprise that Paul & Maci planted last year for me).

~ Back to my vacation~

I had wanted to surprise my mom and make a trip to Wilmington, NC (where I hadn't visited for almost 7 years). But, my mom had said she wouldn't be there so I had settled for staying home in Little Rock and cleaning my filthy house (another thing I haven't done since before the wreck).
Much to my surprise last week, my mom called and said she would be there afterall and she wanted me to fly there on a one-way ticket because she wanted to give us her car (since we lost our vehicle in the wreck, we've been unable to purchase another one).
This new change of plans was certainly a surprise and a blessing all wrapped into one. However, it would mean I would only have one solid day in NC with my mom before I would need to drive her to Kentucky to my brother's house, see as much of my family as I could in one day there (My dad, step-mom, grandma, sister-in-laws, nieces, aunt, and friends) then start my drive from Kentucky back to Little Rock BUT, I knew that I wanted to scatter some of Maci's ashes at the beach where my mom lives. It has always been a special place for all my girls and me and I literally had to work up the "nerve" to do free or release a part of my little girl is part of my healing. And so, I did.

I left eastern Kentucky yesterday evening around 5:30pm. I passed through Lexington and went past the horse park....beautiful white fences with thoroughbreds grazing....a part of my heart lives in that part of the country and I wanted to stop so bad but I also wanted to get home to my family (I did get to stop and see my cousin, Darren...a spontaneous detour...spontaniety, a part of the 'old me' before before all this mess happened...a good thing for me, since I have felt that the spontaneous side of me had been snuffed out.
After saying goodbye to Darren, I was back on the road. The sun was setting and of course, I was driving west. But it was quiet. It was peaceful. I had time to pray and have outloud conversations with God. My goal was to make it to Union University where Kelsy & Mekenna were waiting for me but I knew it was going to be late.
Then Paul called me. Curious about where I was and concerned for my safety, he talked to me for almost 3 hours, keeping me company until I reached Jackson, TN. It was so nice to talk to my husband for that length of time, especially since it has been difficult to communicate our grief and thoughts to each other about losing his dad and Maci. This is something that I know will take time and I'm committing our relationship to Christ, trusting that we will come out on the other side of this better...closer...bonded in a way that only God can accomplish.

I did make it back home to Little Rock with Mekenna following me in her car. She has decided to move home....I cannot even express the joy that fills my heart to know that she is coming HOME. Not only that, I got an early Mother's Day gift from her.
A HUGE canvas picture that my father-in-law, David (who passed away with my baby girl, Maci) took  of our family almost 2 years ago. This is our family through His Eyes..........
I know this is a very long blog and now I am realizing how important it is to do this on a more regular basis.
God is working in our lives.
God is still good.
And I know that He loves me and my family so very much.
Pray for us as we travel this journey.