This past year was eye-opening for me. Loss of friends. Moving locations. Making new friends. And pushing through difficult messiness of life.
Last fall, I happened on a story written by a woman who has lupus, among several other conditions, that describes my life pretty well. I have adopted her theme of “spoons” as a way of explaining the choices I make on a daily basis. And some people get it. Others seemingly understand, yet walk away. And several people just walk away.
The “spoon theory”, as the author named it, explains the choices I make (and really anyone with a chronic condition) affect my energy level for that day, as well as the days to come depending on how big the decision is. For instance, if I have 12 spoons for a day, and take 3 of them for simply getting dressed in the morning, and 3 more for preparing breakfast for the girls and me, that leaves me with 6 for the rest of the day. Which includes lunch and dinner preparations and clean up, any errands for the day, teaching school, and chasing after Izzy.
Take some time to read the theory. When Benjamin read it, he had tears because he knew it was my life. When I read it, I had tears because I knew it was my life.
God has used some interesting things over the last year to teach me. And He is continuing to teach me. After several weeks of prayer, I made the decision to stop going to a Bible Study 35 minutes from here (without morning Atlanta traffic) and signed up for a different class that is only 12 minutes from my house. And except for 2 school zones I will pass through, I expect no traffic issues. It took me sitting in traffic for almost 90 minutes trying to get to that Bible study for me to make that decision.
We made the decision to homeschool year-round to ease the tension of re-teaching for the first several months at the beginning of a new year. Hopefully my spoons will allow me to get focused on beginning school this week …
My hope is to blog more, but only if my spoons allow it.
We went to a small group leader training several months ago and heard from the small groups director at National Community Church in DC. She talked about the messiness of life … and because small groups are made of people who are messy, small groups become messy. And as we looked at our own life, and our own small group, we saw the messiness oozing out. And we opted to walk away. Why? Because some messes are too big, too heavy, and too deep.
August and September will begin another year of rebuilding for us. New small group. New Bible study. I began praying for the relationships we would encounter months ago. I am praying for open hearts … for ours to be open to their stories and for their hearts to be open to our stories. I am praying for families who would partner with us in raising our girls, for our girls to find life-long friendships that would withstand the trials ahead. I am praying for friendships that would sharpen each other, knowing that messiness is a phase, committing to getting through the messiness instead of putting up walls around it.
That’s my story for now … stay tuned for more.