Monday, September 14, 2009

Looking Back, Looking Forward

This last week or so has been a huge week for this momma. It's been a week where I feel as if my head is on a swivel, the eyes of my heart darting back and then forward. Remembering and anticipating. Honoring and hoping. As I've said many, many times before, my happiest moments are when I'm with my family and this past week has afforded some of the sweetest times that I know I will hold in my heart for many years to come.

Of course, the first day of school is always bittersweet for me. My older boys are fully engaged in their new cyber-school, with Li'l Empress pulling up in her little chair to pound away on the kiddie laptop. It's adorable and the absence of LadyBug and Baby BlueEyes is eased by the chattering of the little queen as she rules over her loyal subjects! It reminds me of the days when I home-schooled the older two boys and had my two little ones happily engaged with Little People toys in the next room, chattering away all morning long. I do miss them, but I know that for this season of my life (and theirs) that having all five kids home at once would be more than I can handle. I'm praying and seeking what the next season will hold for us. Looking back, looking forward.

And then it was September 11th. Remembering with the whole nation where I was that day. Thinking about the quiet, numb hush that blanketed the land. I was due any day with Baby BlueEyes and while I mourned with the rest of the world that day, I was also filled with an anticipation of the hope that new life would bring. A strong sense filled my heart that this baby was being born "for such a time as this . . ."; almost a feeling of coming revolution in the spirit. We had tossed a lot of boy names around, never really settling on one that pleased us both. But on the evening of 9/11, both The Boss and I agreed that the name he now bears was just the right one for this time - a strong, deep and intentional name that bears the legacy of one of the names of Jesus. Before, it always felt a little "in your face." On that day, it felt fitting. Looking back. Looking forward.

This week we as a family also marked another Sept. 11: one year since the day we left for China. It was hard to leave the country on that day, watching all the remembrances on the monitors in the airports and on the newspaper covers we passed. But the anticipation of finally meeting our Li'l Empress and expanding our family was equally overwhelming. Looking back, looking forward.

I spent this past weekend at a family wedding. My youngest cousin on my mom's side married his college sweetheart. I spent time watching them, reminiscing about the sweet little toddler that was glued to my side at every family gathering. I could see his sweet little baby face lit up with glee when I would sit and watch Sesame Street with him on the couch. That joyful smile is now full of love for his bride. Remembering my grandfather and my aunts and uncles who could not be there or are no longer with us. Sharing stories and reveling in the sweetness of those memories. Catching glimpses of my grandfather in my cousins, my aunts, and my mom. Knowing that his legacy lives in us. Will live in my kids. Looking back, looking forward.

As weddings will often do, I was also thinking back on the day that The Boss and I pledged ourselves to God and each other. We were so young, so full of hope and promise. As our family has grown over the years, the hope has remained, the promises are being fulfilled. It's exciting to think about what is coming for us next. New promises, new directions, new callings - born out of the path walked in faithfulness to the foundations of our Hope in Christ and the early building blocks of our marriage. Looking back, looking forward.

Finally, I got to celebrate with my sister and her family in the dedication of their fifth child. Remembering the day my dad dedicated my oldest to the Lord some 15 years ago. Looking forward to the gifts and callings that we will get to see grow in this new nephew. Remembering the joy of starting off the next generation on my side of the family with all the excitement of new parents. Wondering at the grace of the Lord that has kept that joy fresh and new, no matter that this new grandchild is the 14th. It just never gets old for me. Feeling such a rush of emotion at the obvious pride and joy my parents experienced when standing before my brother-in-law's congregation to present the family and their newest gift. Humbled and awed by the graciousness of my Savior that we all are grafted in, believers committed to the same Gospel. Such hopefulness at what wonders this generation of grandchildren might accomplish for His Kingdom. The fifteen grandkids come from strong, godly roots on all sides of their families. Looking back, looking forward.

It's been a full week. We are a blessed people. My heart is brimming. My mind is swirling. The eyes of my heart are wide open, most of the time awash with tears! I don't know how else to sum it all up, except to say: Looking back. Looking forward.

God has been good to us. And I know He will continue to be so.


TCKK said...

Excellent post. It's good to look back and look forward. It's good to remember how good God was, is, and always will be.

Classic MaMa said...

Wonderful post! My eyes were welling up thinking about my own little toddler and the beautiful path set before him. sigh. There I go again. I need another tissue...

Beverly said...

What a great post and a tribute to some really great milestones in your life.

Love ya girlie!!
Your Southern Twin!

Kimberly said...

A beautiful post! I feel very, very blessed myself as I remember day by day our trip last year...