Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Feeling Blessed

In the Spring of 2000 I was free. Totally free to move where ever I wanted. Our mega crib had sold, Mark was planning a future with Sherry, and I knew that Billie’s Country’s days were numbered, so I could choose to live anywhere. Anywhere! I narrowed it down to 4 areas; Walnut Grove, Murrayville, Cloverdale, or Fraser Heights.
I chose Fraser Heights as the place to begin my “new” life. I would be safe there… close to friends, the church, my parents, my brother; everything I would need would be right there in my little community. I assumed the kids would eventually switch schools once we got to know our neighbours, we’d shop for groceries at Giant Foods, I’d work in the church office a couple of days a week, we’d have potluck dinners with our friends… it would be like Walton’s Mountain. Good night John-boy.

Six weeks after I moved in, our church closed down. Most of the potluck dinner friends moved away months later. We didn’t get to know our neighbours, as 80% of them were Asians, living in grow ops. And the kids definitely did not want to change schools.
My dream of living in a community that would meet all our needs was never realized.

Which was such a good thing, it must have been a God thing. ‘Tsall I can figger.

By the fall of 2002, I had no church, no job, no husband, no dream. (And because I had just sold it, I also had no home.) I had dashed expectations, another broken heart and a daily commute that was mind numbing.
“Well, God, I hope you’re behind all of this. Hope You’ve got some sort of plan in mind. I’m fresh outa ideas. I thought that having a nice cozy life in Fraser Heights had, like, Your divine stamp of approval on it. Did I screw up somewhere?.”

My hands were empty. So I held them up. “OK. Whadda ya got in mind? Do I have to be a missionary in Africa? Or live in a trailer park? Work at McDonald’s? What? What’s the plan?”

It’s two years later.
I still don’t know the plan. He may have told me, but I don’t get it. I’m handicapped that way.
But He’s filled my empty hands; I seem to have a keyboard or camera in them at all times. I have a blog. Who woulda thought? I started writing in ’02 and haven’t stopped. Sorta like Forrest Gump; didn’t he start walking and just kept on going? Yeah, like that.

I now have friends who write. How cool is that? You have no idea…
I hang out with people who read. And want to talk about it. Shivers. You have no idea…
I met a group of folks who endure 100 degree weather and porta potty facilities in order to rock their socks off at Creation. It’s so much better when you camp with a crowd. You can’t imagine…
I’m going to take a photography class with friends. You wouldn’t believe how much this makes me smile.
Am I the biggest nerd on the planet? Quite possibly. But, man, it feels great.
I love my neighbourhood. Everyone here has boys.
I am meeting the coolest people in our new church. “Hey, come over for supper tomorrow. We want to get to know you better…”
And, how geeky is this; I have crafting buddies. We make cards. And hang out supply stores. And think we are more creative than Martha.
Plus, I’m going to Europe. And I like everyone else that is going. (Well, almost everyone. One of the guys is a bit persnickety. Shudder. But everyone else is awesome…)

The best part of all? The Fraser Heights years were not in vain. I didn’t leave there with empty hands after all. The important stuff stuck with us. Stuff like friends.

Me and my unrealistic expectations. Thinking all my needs could be met in one tiny community with only a handful of relationships. Sad sad puppy I was.

No wonder Mark left. I must’ve been strangling him with my ‘needs’. Oy. How embarrassing. What a claustrophobic existence.

I hope I learned my lesson. Or at least, I hope I learned that lesson. No doubt I’ve got a ton more to tackle.
I’m guessing the next area to get shaken up will be job related. What am I holding onto with a clenched fist? Is He gently trying to pry my fingers open so that I let it go? What? What expectation do I have that needs adjusting? Part time vs Full time? Management vs Menial? Employed vs Self-employed?


If it wasn’t so scary it might be exciting.
Life’s like that sometimes.

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