By: Ms. O
Hindsight is always 20/20. That is solid truth. I used to think that “saying” was dumb…until I lived life a few years…then my vantage point changed.
Growing up with two parents…two sisters…two brothers….and two dogs…in a house that seemed a big at the time…did not seem that noteworthy. I knew my dad worked…a lot. I knew my mom kept busy. Looking back I did not realize the toll it took on the both of them to make ends meet….to make the money stretch as long as the month lasted. It took a long time for me to “see” that my dad was not home a lot for a reason…he worked more than one job….to feed and house his rather large family. My mom was a wizard…pretty much producing magic at the way she stretched a pound of hamburger….or two Cornish game hens…or one can of Spam…to feed us all. It was not until I was a parent myself, that it all seemed a little clearer.
When I was in high school I had a very difficult teacher….add to the fact that she taught government…and you can see that it was not my favorite class……too much controversy. Her favorite class exercise was debate…really? I never was good at standing my ground…especially after I moved to a brand new part of the world…okay, it was from Delaware to Texas…but it still felt like that…and I did not want to do a lot to call attention to myself. As I think back now, I realize that her technique had some rough edges…but her desire was for us to take a stand. I think she enjoyed it most…when I disagreed with her view point…because then I would be passionate about it….not willing to let someone…even my teacher…sway my belief.
I always heard the whole song and dance about “having kids changes everything”. Sure…perhaps for some of you…but maybe they are being a little dramatic in voicing their woes. What could one 8 1/2 pound…and then another three years later…do to my neat little schedule…my daily routine? I have to laugh at this one because it not only changed my life…but more so turned into survival mode. You don’t see it coming. I look at pictures and see the tired look in my eyes from the lack of sleep. Any fashion sense I had went out the window in favor of a shirt with no spit up on the neck line…..or the shoulders…or down the back. You trade your purse in for a diaper bag that you hope you remembered to throw your wallet into….among the snot rags…and pacifiers…and cheerios. Looking back I see me…as a young girl…scared out of my mind…but going into autopilot…because that’s just what you did.
I used to fantasize what it would be like to have that 20/20 looking forward in time….and I realize how dangerous that would be. If I had known how strapped my parents were raising this corral full of kids, I would have spent each day worrying…like I am sure they did. If I had known there was a point to what my teacher was trying to do, then perhaps I would not have fought so hard…to make my stand…I would have realized she was basically tricking me. And having kids…I don’t think all the “knowledge” in the world prepares you for hands-on learning….and if you did know…then our population might be drastically lower…which would be a very sad thing.
There came a point in my life when I “saw” God…realized my need for Him…and turned my life over to His care. I used to think that was “our beginning”…how silly am I? No…He knew me before I was born…and had this life laid out for me…set out to weave His way into the threads of it…until I took notice. It is so very clear to me looking back…the people He put in my path…that would model for me…Him.
“I will praise the Lord, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me. I have set the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest secure, because you will not abandon me to the grave, nor will you let your Holy One see decay. You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”
I praise the God who wooed me…who shadowed my steps…set markers in front of me…that I would not see until much later. God, you are so good at what you do.(did you know my government teacher?) You work much like that…..allowing me to grab on…and stand firm…to my belief…so that I make it mine. But in doing so, I come to realize that it also means letting go…to the notion that I HAVE to know everything….ugh. What I need to know is….YOU…and trust that You have never abandoned me…and that you have some pretty amazing things still ahead. I will always look over my shoulder and laugh…at my own silly notions….as I look forward with joy and anticipation at what you have yet to teach me. Forward…march. Amen.