When I finished my last “bucket list” activity for the year, I wondered what to look forward to next. With my oldest son’s wedding fast approaching, and my youngest son leaving in 2 weeks to live in Chicago, “what next?” seems to be a common question that comes to mind when I have some peace, quiet, and time to think……
So….. What next?
Well, I was thinking about that for a long time this morning. It’s August 1st. Everything is happening so, so fast.
Another bucket list ? Nah.
Pick up another job? Hah. No way.
Go back to school? NO THANKS!
Start dating? (Rolling on the floor laughing my butt off)
So I hit my knees, and brought it to the Lord in prayer.
Twenty-one years of single parenting – 365 days a year, 7 days a week, ALL weekends, ALL holidays. (Please know, I am NOT whining – NOR am I “tooting my horn.”) I’m just saying, “I’m TIRED!” And I’ve just about crossed the finish line………… I hope to exhale soon……
In 1993, I came home from Germany pregnant with an almost 2-year-old, lived 5 months with my parents, moved into a mobile home where we stayed for 5 years. During that time, I waitressed my way through school, and spent the next decade plus doing medical transcription from home 7 days a week, often 12-14 hours a day. I saved and saved during that time, and finally moved out of the mobile home after 5 years, and purchased a condo where we have now been for 15 years. I raised my boys here. I took them to and from school, brought them “mystery lunches” every week, and never had to send them to day care because of the blessing of being able to work from home all that time. When they grew up, I returned to school for my nursing degree. Now, I get to be reminded of how much I love them in the middle of my work days, when they show up to transport patients on my floor. That’s a big joy to me in the middle of some really difficult days some times. When I get to look up and see either of my sons – who by the way, are my 2 favorite people on planet earth……… It reminds me of how faithful God is. He got me through these years. He sustained me. Never did we go without food or shelter. There was always plenty. Every single bit of that was from HIM, and so is the fact that my boys are now good men….
But seriously – NOW WHAT????
And then I went to the bank. I’m one of those nerdy people who still walks in the bank. I know all the women who work there by name, and they know my name too! We know about each other’s children, and one of the women there I sometimes exchange books to read with. You know – there’s nothing like face-to-face relationships. Sure does beat social media if you ask me!
“Whatcha reading nowadays?” I asked. And she handed me a book. “If I Had My Life To Live Over, I’d Pick More Daisies” by Sandra Martz. She let me flip through some of the pages. Wisdom. Wisdom on every page. And I got to thinking….. I get frustrated when my boys are not interested in what wisdom I think I have to offer. Maybe I’m in need of some “older women wisdom” myself………. Maybe I need to start “picking daisies” sooner, rather than later?
So I prayed again when I got to the car. “Lord, are you telling me to relax and pick some daisies?” Could this be a new season?? “Confirmation, please, Lord?”
And off I went to Meijers grocery shopping. Standing at the checkout, I run into a neighbor, who’s got her driver friend with her. We exchange hello’s, and she then says to me, “Yup, I’m spending today helping Stella run errands! That’s right! It’s a Driving Miss Daisy kind of day!”
Then when I get home, I get an email from someone, and the subject is “Stopping to smell the flowers”…………
Sometimes, I can’t help but laugh with the Lord, his sense of timing, his humor, and his way of communicating so intimately with us. I am going to get through these next 6 weeks preparing for my son’s wedding and taking my other son to college. And I’m going to anticipate opportunities to enjoy new meaningful things in life. I don’t know what that is going to look like, but I have a feeling it is going to involve gleaning wisdom from those who have walked these paths I’m on before me. I’m excited. I’m even already exhaling a bit, and I’m looking forward to picking more daisies and smelling every flower I pass.
It’s just a brand new season, and THAT’s exciting!