This week my daughter came home from Germany and my brother and niece came out from California for a few days. I had all 3 of my girls in ONE room. My son and his daughter were the only things missing. Lots of people in my in my little house. Lots of wonderful, chaotic, messy, absolutely lovely people……in my house…..GRIN
We laughed and yapped and ate and drank copious amounts of coffee and possibly some beer. Kids ran and screamed and fought and played.
We talked until 2 in the morning the first night which gave me a migraine the next day. That is a beautiful reason for a migraine.
From my earliest memories i remember only a fractured life. There are snippets of happiness, but not many. Most of the few memories I do possess are of broken hopes, dreams and hearts. I have spent my entire adult life feverishly trying to put those fractured things back together, to fix them, to erase them.
I have pressured and pressed my family. Putting unfair expectations on them to be the kind of family that I never had because if I can do that, if I can make this family whole and healthy, if I can make this family what I need them to be it can change my past. Kinda crazy.
Like every poor kid who grows up watching others have more, better, bigger, brighter and shinier toys and clothes, homes and families and dads who care I have disdained my life. Always trying to acquire the things that are symbols to me of a life I missed out on.
Matching dishes is my number one. We ate out of margarine bowls and broken and chipped hand me down plates. For whatever reason mixing bowls ( matched sets ) makes my world go round. I have too many. Coffee mugs? I have those too. Two large shelves in my cabinets are dedicated to my mugs. Jewelry and expensive things? I could care less. What I wanted and needed were the things that made me feel like I had a real home. See? my dishes match, I can offer coffee to thirty people without having to wash and reuse one mug. I can mix 9 thousand things in my bowls and still use the nice ones to set food on the table. See that? I have the HOME I never knew.
But those things didn’t fix everything so I went to work on myself so that I could finally be someone of worth and value to my family. From there I started in on them.
How selfish is it to try and create my perfect family to ease my pain? Ouch. Not all of my motivations have been solely about me, but even so, I have tried to do most of it in my own power and my own strength making even the purest of motivations a selfish endeavor.
But God is good and He is kind to me and most importantly He is patient as I stumble and fall when my family act like real people, not Stepford families.
I was talking with my big brother about broken relationships and I said to him “you can’t fix the past but you can make a new future”………..wait………what?…………..
The irony was not lost on me when I said that too him. The one thing that I have been trying to do is fix my past. To fix my life. To void out the things that happened to me. I have been seeing the future only from the point of view of using it to change my past…………….And I think that God might have grinned at me a little when I said that. And I think He might have said to me that He has been trying to tell me that for a very long time.
I think maybe that He asks for my past as well as my future. I think He says, let me worry about healing your past, and let me worry about giving you a new life. Let Me be the one to change you and let Me be the one to plan your future. And I think maybe He understands my pain which is why He has been so patient with me.
And this scripture comes to mind Isaiah 43:18-19
18 “Remember not the former things,
nor consider the things of old.
19 Behold, I am doing a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
and rivers in the desert.
This week was wonderful and tiring and beautiful, It was what this heart has been working for. But I know that it was a gift from God, not by the works of my hands and heart. It is as if I have been working on a junky car for the last 30 years, never quite getting it running, or if I did it was only for a short time. Jerry rigging every wire and part in the car. Spending my whole life on this car that never quite works. Then God comes along and GIVES me a perfectly shiny and new car and everything works and it runs. Because just like I said to my brother…..I simply cannot fix my past, I can only let God give me a new future.