Thursday, January 22, 2009

The End from the Beginning

I decided today was as good a day as any to begin the big clear out. That is, dejunking the house in anticpation of an upcoming move. We know we will be moving somewhere, sometime, and since I've moved house more than a few times in my life I excel at the get-ready-for-it drill.

I started in my bedroom and was immediately sidetracked by two old journals I found in my nightstand, one filled with funny things my younger daughter said as a toddler. Did I mention I also excel at procrastination?? Anyway, since I'm pretty new at this empty nester thing I allowed myself to indulge in a bit of nostalgia as I sat on my bedroom floor and enjoyed the memory of daughter 2 at the tender age of 5. I can still hear her thanking God in her nighttime prayers for her 'strong healthy body...cuz without it I'd just be a head.' : ) Not exactly the point her kindergarten teacher was making in the day's lesson on good health but a point taken none the less. Of course reading the old journals led to a phone call with said daughter in the US which left me feeling all emotional and jiggly so I moved on to something physical--shredding paper.

Some of you are smiling-I know it. I don't think I'm the only one who finds something oddly satisfying in the shredding of old paperwork. I started with some bank statements from the year 2002 which for some reason were in a file in the aforementioned nightstand (it was a gold mine actually). Now why these bank statements are with us in England when all my husband's dress shoes went to the storage container six years ago is just one of life's little mysteries which I'll write about another day. Shredding paper is a pretty mindless task (unless of course you are an impatient sort when it comes to mindless tasks so you try to slide more than the maximum 6 sheets thru the machine at once and must keep stopping to de-clog the shredder). Gave me lots of time to think. Actually, as an empty nester I find I may have a little too much time to think if you know what I mean. If you have babies/toddlers at home you won't have any idea what the words 'too much time to think' mean so just keep reading : )

There are so many uncertainties in our circumstances at the moment (like the when and where but I'll try not to keep harping on that!) A move brings many things into one's life, and at the outset of the process (and the mid point and the home stretch too!) most of these things are job, new home, new friends, or even worse, no new friends!, wondering how I will ever find a hairdresser who will get the exact right color of my highlights, and on and on it goes. Since I'm definitely a glass half full kinda girl and always looking for the upside, I've learned that one of the bright spots in the dark cloud that is relocation is the opportunity to start fresh, in every sense of the word. While it's often wrenching to let go of a home I love, a neighborhood we're comfortable in, friends who are like family in this country we call home, and even the village shop whose owner knows me by name, I can also let go of the expectations and obligations that come with life in a particular place and time. Moving provides an opportunity to step back, re-evaluate my priorities, focus on what's really important. I can see where I've been, how I've spent my time, and most importantly where do I want to go from here. I gotta be honest and say that sounds a bit daunting but isn't it in the midst of life's greatest stresses (and moving/job change generally rank up there in the top 10 of life's stresses) that we hold onto our faith just a little bit tighter? I may not know exactly what the future holds or how the million little details will fall into place, but I can rest easy in the knowledge that the God who loves me does. And it is precisely because God is all about the details that I can choose to feel a sense of excitement instead of anxiety; instead of worry, I choose hope.

Cheers, Joyce

1 comment:

  1. Nice blog Joyce! I can imagine daughter 2 thanking God for a body (and not just a head) :)