By some curious principle of mathematics the sum of the equation three children multiplied by eight days of sickness equals seventeen children. (Move over, Michelle Duggar.) It’s been a week of alarming fevers and crusted snot on my clothes (not mine) and bellows in the night. Perhaps not my favorite week so far in 2014 (in fact, an onion of a week), but there have been bright spots. Like the moment when I walked in my daughters’ room and found this:
(When I questioned Harriet, she explained that she thought Norah could slide down “the pole” if she needed to exit the top bunk in a hurry. She wanted to demonstrate this idea but I told her I could visualize.)
Speaking of plungers, with the formal educational steps completed (and our learning just beginning!), we have plunged into preparation to be cross-cultural Christian workers. If two things have surprised me about this process they are that there is so very much to it and how full of joy it is. There are difficulties as well, I won’t bore you with them but I am not denying their existence, only saying that those, at least, I was expecting. But in the midst of the details and the challenges I have an increasing sense of privilege that this is my life. I also have an increasing sense that I am not in charge–an “I’m-not-driving-this-boat-but-I’m-sure-glad-I’m-on-it” kind of feeling.
One example: a new friend just happens to be a doctor who has worked overseas and now works for an international health company that assists ex-pats around the world with medical problems. He is able to advise and educate us how to prepare well for life in southeast Asia. “Isn’t it amazing that he just happens to be here?” I said to Alex. Who then said, “Yes, it’s almost like it was meant or something.” It’s almost like my “Father knows what [I] need before [I] ask him” (Matthew 6:8). In fact, that’s it exactly.
That’s a comforting thought in a sick week in January (wait, is it February?) when the to-do list is longer than our days. I keep trying to outgrow them, but to-do lists and calendars hold me together. There are lists everywhere and a weekly calendar of meals and events posted in the kitchen. Today the doctor’s office called to remind me to bring a urine sample to a child’s check-up early Wednesday morning. I of course wrote it on the calendar, not realizing until later that Wednesday’s breakfast now reads: “URINE SAMPLE Cream of Wheat, Fruit.”
One of the things on the bottom of the lists has been this blog. Being forced at last by WordPress, which entity wants me to either renew my space upgrade or forswear new posts, I must now decide about this blog. I’ve been procrastinatively postponing this decision (productively, I hope) for months. I’ve enjoyed this, friends. Whether it fits in to the new life or remains only a part of the old, I’m glad you’ve joined me in this space all these years.