Monday, August 1, 2011

Another side of me

I wrote a post about my Nehemiah journey, from here:

Actually just to the left, sitting in a comfy chair and typing away under this incredible view.

This is the rotunda of the Central Library in LA.
Thursday I was there.
With strep.

Right as the 5th of the 6 kids in our house was diagnosed with strep last week, I boarded a plane. Only a mom could understand that the opportunities I had in LA (even the dream of a quiet hotel room) weren't enough.  They paled in comparison to my longing to work alongside my husband to take care of our babies and our nephews and niece. Oh my, it was hard to get on that plane.

When I was in highschool I literally DREAMED of Corporate America.  It won't come as any surprise that I had a "plan" from very early on.  I chose colleges, when applying, that I thought would best catapult that start.  I didn't end up going to any of the ones at the top of my list.  A gentle nudge, back toward the balance.  When I was in college, I was determined to avoid serious relationships.  I had dreams to pursue.  But I met RRL and began dreaming in a whole new way.  Another gentle nudge.  I still had plans to go to law school, pursue my career, and WAIT to have a family.  But the moment I walked down the aisle, I knew I was MADE to raise children with the man waiting for me at the altar.  Another nudge to not give up either dream, but allow God to work in ways I couldn't imagine. 

I love being "business casual" three days out of the week.  I love wearing jeans the other 4.  I love working with people, learning, and participating in the financial life of the railroad.  I love that there are six little lives (and one handsome man) that are waiting for me when I come home.  I love the analytics of accounting and the creativity of child-rearing.  And I get to do both. 

Usually, these two sides of me work well in harmony.  Last week the two collided. The part of me that LOVES the opportunities I have working part-time, collided with the part of me that LOVES being the one to take care of my kiddos in a way that I like to believe no one else can.  I've known for several weeks that I was going to LA for just 36 hours.  It was a great opportunity.  An opportunity to use the knowledge from something I worked on for nearly 5 years.  I was excited. 

AND I'd be lying if I said I didn't enjoy it once I was there.
I stayed in downtown LA, wore my suit to work, had intellectual conversation, and loved just being the CPA side-of-me.

And I did enjoy my "spare time".  From the office I was visiting I rode Angels' Flight (the shortest railroad)

to lunch at Grand Central Market.  Full of a flurry of activity and amazing sight and smells of foods from across the world.
I ordered a Turkey Sandwich.
And sat at a table alone laughing at my own predictability.

For "dinner" I enjoyed afternoon tea at the Biltmore.  I sat for more than an hour, not sharing my treats (or thoughts) with a soul,

Followed by two hours (not nearly enough time) at this famous library.  I browsed the FLOORS of books, prayed that technology wouldn't ever completely replace books for my children, and then just sat to people watch and write...

and then went to bed early.

At some point during this day-of-fun RRL called to tell me that the "precautionary" strep test I did before I left actually did come back positive after further testing.  AWESOME.  exhaustion explained.
(here is where I insert an apology to those sitting next to me on the airplane.  I didn't know.  I promise.) 
By this point, all six kids of the house had strep. I made "victim" number 7. RRL escaped with only a stomach bug (but there was nothing "only" about it). And the momma-at-the-core side of me was longing to be home.  Even though I was far away, the feeling of the week at our house was still heavy on my shoulders. 

Somewhere in the midst of all of this I posted on facebook that we had a house full of sick kids and were just having a really rough week.  It was sort of a dramatic facebook vomit, but it turned out to be so encouraging.  So many rallied around my family in the form of prayers and encouragement and HELP.  RRL and the kids had help from family and friends, a sweet friend went to the grocery store for us as soon as I got home, and we've had many-a-meal that we did not prepare. 

Once again, in the midst of the chaos, it became CRYSTAL CLEAR...our blessings abound. 

When RRL and I finally had an opportunity to recap those few days, he asked a question that only he could have known to ask, because he knows me so thoroughly.  He asked if walking the streets of LA, getting a taste of what might have been, stirred anything in me.  He knew I would love it.  And he was right.  I did.  But I told him that I didn't pause long on the notion before I came to a resounding conclusion.  A conclusion that literally brought me to giggles as I walked along S Grand Ave.  While there are days that I could certainly do without, while it MOST DEFINITELY isn't easy right now...I LOVE MY LIFE.  all parts of it.  just the way it is.  I couldn't have planned it.  I wouldn't change it.

I continue to be thankful for the amazing way the Lord creatively knit me.  For the opportunities He has given me to live my dreams.  For the husband that encourages and supports me so completely, who helps me both mom and CPA.  AND for the community that rallies around us during the weeks of "collision".  Just like the good days are HIS and the bad days are HIS, I'm thankful that all parts of me are HIS.

Thank you for the ways each of you help me just be me.

1 comment:

Kelly said...

Wowsers, I can relate to this. I knew from day one @ ACU what my major was, what I wanted to do, which state on the East Coast I wanted to move to, and that I was not there for an MRS degree. :) Hilarious considering I was engaged by my graduation and moved to the same area I grew up. Loved my career for many years, and now I'm thankful to do part-time work from home to get to do both.

It's hard b/c our society seems to want to make you make a OR family. Not such an easy separation. Thank you for sharing. Glad you had a great trip in the midst of a hard time.