Oh, July. What a roller coaster of life-changing events, milestones and hard goodbyes you’ve been. Given all this talk of a blue moon, it sounds like you’ll go out with much fanfare. My mother says this is a month I’ll always remember. I do believe she’s right.
This month I learned:
- Birthday phone calls, thoughtful gifts and scrumptious treats are both delightful markers of one’s special day and tangible reminders of the unique relationships God has added to my life.
- Sending your first born to middle school isn’t the disaster I anticipated. He handled the transition with a level head and a positive attitude, for which we are grateful. Also, I only cried once.
- This month we also entered a new phase of parenting called ‘all the kids in school’ … or something like that. Our youngest started Kindergarten. Cue the happy dance! Even after two weeks, it still hasn’t sunk in. The house sure is quiet. The ability to run multiple errands alone sure is nice. He’s declared Kindergarten to be an awesome experience, so I guess we’re golden.
- Dreaming up a novel, pitching it to a publisher, and then writing 60,000 words all in a span of five months just about did me in. But I did it. Not without much prayer, encouragement and a very supportive family.
- Life pitched us a major curveball this month, not one I’d care to elaborate on publicly. As I lamented our dilemma and pitched a little pity party in the midst of our family’s beach vacation, I felt a prompting from that still, small voice I’ve come to recognize as the Holy Spirit. “Do you honestly want an easy life?” Well, yes. I do. But I’m also learning (slowly, with repeated opportunities for growth) that the circumstances I see as major catastrophes in this very comfortable life of mine, the Lord often uses for good and ultimately for His glory. That’s why I’ve posted this Anne Morrow Lindbergh quote from her book Gifts from the Sea. I have learned that courage, strength, a sense of humor (and I would add ‘prayer’) are essential in this life.
- Lastly, we learned it is extremely painful to say goodbye to a beloved family pet. Our sweet Jake has been a part of us almost since we became an ‘us’. Only eight or nine months into marriage, we adopted him from the Portland Humane Society twelve years ago. What a treasure. A little quirky…some might say high-maintenance, but adored nonetheless. His time had come and though anticipated, walking through the process with our three boys was excruciating. Mourning the loss of a pet is part of life. I get it. But, man, it totally stinks.
I’m linking up with Emily P. Freeman and her monthly ‘Share What You’ve Learned’ blog post. Feel free to join us and share what July has taught you. If Instagram’s your thing, Emily has started a fun hashtag #itssimpytuesday as part of the promo for her upcoming book release called, you guessed it, Simply Tuesday. Follow that hashtag for some really clever photos of people capturing small, everyday moments in their lives.
Your turn: what have you learned in July?