My kids ran everywhere. Racing the shoreline and dipping their toes in the shallow pools that collected when the tide went out. Sun, hot and foreign to the Oregon coast danced on my bare shoulders.
Our coast is a fickle mistress, quick to turn frigid in wind and wave. So when she beckoned at 80 degrees with full sun I scoured the internet for a rental house and last-minute deals. We packed for the trip at 9pm as the kids skipped along happily, the four and eight year old lugging their suitcases up from the garage and neatly folding too many of the wrong things.
We had no agenda. No lines to stand in or tickets to buy. No events or places to go. No internet or television. Just the comfort of an old beach house and the slow roll of days in the sunshine.
And I breathed deep salt air and my legs burned red in the icy waves as we plucked sand dollars from the incoming waves, stacking them high like pancakes on an overturned frisbee. And we made sand cars and mermaid friends. Carving out features with our imaginations, finding seaweed hair and mollusk necklaces. Josh took Judah out on boogie boards and they could be seen bobbing up and down on the horizon.
And each of my family needed me to be there.
I wish I was different. I wish my capacity was larger, my mind less fragile. But that is like wishing I were someone else. I don’t even know who I would be without the ebb and flow of depression, the pain and the empathy I feel when I am at my weakest.
I cannot imagine I would be able to say “me too” and “I know”, had I not scraped along the ruts in that road. I cannot imagine I would know and long for God the way I do had I not feared I would never feel him again.
I know that I can’t do as much as some, maybe even as much as many.
I realized something on this trip. I am afforded small grace. Just enough for the moment and often nothing more. And sometimes that means my path may be different.
I may be scraping by on knees, my blog silent as a grave, but I am holding my children to me. Breathing in the honey haired scent of my girl, reaching arms to catch my son as he launches himself towards me, boundless energy and charisma, or leaning into my oldest boy, wiping s’mores off his chin now speckled with downy hair.
My house may be a wreck with a maze of piles and things I am planning to get to but the words are flowing. I may be flushed red at the stove, pans simmering and lids clanging happily as my feet track across crumbs and feel the sticky spot where orange juice didn’t get wiped up properly. And I never get it all done. Never.
I am afforded small grace. I find comfort in knowing there is always enough. My portion for the day.
And sometimes I need to remember to sink down in the sand. To purge the voices that tell me I have to do this or that to get there. It is all in His hands. Every word and post, every small obedience measured in eternity and sometimes all I can do is show up and take my portion.
I’ve missed you all. My five minute Friday friends. In the words of Monty Python, “I’m not dead yet.” even though my blog might be. If you’ve never played along it’s easy. Just set the timer for 5 minutes, the word this week is : Comfort
No editing, not over thinking, no making it all perfect. Just write.
Then link back up with Lisa Jo and the Five Minute Friday gang, and join in the community.