Sometimes I blog for everyone else. Today it’s more for me, but you’re invited.
It’s Father’s Day, and I will spend it as I have since I was twelve: without my daddy. I am grateful to have had Steve’s dad (my Papa) in my life since I was 15, and glad that he’s here still at 80 years young. I have much to thank God for, and some pretty special dads in my life. There aren’t any words to describe Steve’s presence in my life, or the blessing of the way he has loved and nurtured and provided our children and me. Three of our sons are dads who make us wildly proud. Rosie took Steve out for a daddy-daughter brunch, and we’re having a cookout this afternoon with the family all gathered together to celebrate the dads.
I’m trying not to allow my blogging to be controlled by how creative I feel, or how relevant I think my thoughts will be to the world. It’s hard to think inward and just write for me. Actually, it’s nearly impossible, but I’m trying. My words come out sounding dry and pointless in my own ears, and that doesn’t exactly inspire creative expression. It leaves me feeling like I really don’t have anything to say. It’s just so dry. But I write on, trooper that I am, and I unwrap a Hershey caramel kiss to make the whole process a little less painful.
My math study sheets glare at me from my desktop, algebraic expressions taunting me with reminders of my upcoming certification test. I really wish math and I were better friends. We’re more amicable than we were, but we still have a long road ahead of us if we’re going to go into teaching together with a good measure of success. And I do intend to be a spectacular teacher, so I’m willing to put in the work.
There’s a lot going on socially and politically right now, and sometimes it’s too much for my empathetic mind to take in without becoming overwhelmed. I trimmed my friends list down considerably, then scaled my news feed back even more, and the next step will be pulling all but one or two major news sources. I prefer to be informed about what is going on in the world, but sometimes I feel like I’m going to crushed by the weight of it all at once. Most of it I can’t even write about. The world is one big offense waiting to happen, and I don’t want to feed the ugly monster.
I burned my hand pretty badly this morning making baked beans for the cookout. I forgot bacon drippings could splash that high. The two blistered spots have had pain shooting up my arm for the past hour or so, but it’s starting to be a little more bearable.
While I sit here under the ceiling fan sipping coffee, I should probably be unloading the dishwasher and getting ready to grab a shower. I wonder if it’s possible to keep the warm water off my right hand. It hurts to think about it.
I heard somebody say that faith is fluid. I have a slightly different take: I see faith as formative. We’re always growing in it in some fashion, whether it looks like growth to others or not. That doesn’t excuse everything, but maybe it does understand it. Thinking of faith as formative means it’s always being built. Fluid, to me, sounds weak and unintentional and random. Formative means purposeful, trying and failing and rising and falling but growing roots that push deeper, as painful as that can be. And God, how it can be.
Posted to my Facebook this morning:
Our cracked places can become windows where God’s light breaks through. The decision to shatter or shine comes with how we allow Him to purpose the pain in our breaking. Our wounds, like His, can be the currency for a depth of life we would not otherwise have known. We cannot always see how God is redeeming what we’ve lost, but we can always trust that He will.
I think I need to read that every morning just to remind myself that these days, these experiences aren’t going to kill me.
Also: Parents hurt when their kids hurt, even long after the kids stop being kids. Just thought I’d mention that, because we weren’t prepared for this. You’re welcome.
I made President’s Honor List again. Go me.
My coffee is cold.