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Monday, December 28, 2015

.It's Time.

We lived in a teeny apartment on the second floor. I had painted the miniature kitchen sunshine yellow. Her bedroom was soft green with cream pinstripes that my mom had surprised us with. I was a few weeks into this journey of motherhood. Everything had been planned, as it always was back then. We became parents when we decided to - not before, not after. We were blissfully naive and self-assured, and we were young, so young. A decade has risen and fallen since that moment in the teeny apartment, when my fingers first danced over a keyboard and created a space on the web for my words. It was at the dawning of social media; I had not yet succumbed to Facebook, but the blog world beckoned me. While everything had been carefully orchestrated, her birth was a startling jolt into reality, as nothing about it went according to plan. Almost losing my firstborn in her first moments on earth, lit something inside of me that may not have ever been otherwise ignited. Every breath, every cry every hiccup and milestone was a gift that, had those first moments gone slightly differently, I might never have known. I embraced motherhood with an intensity that I had never known. That made me not want to miss a thing and to take joy in the small things. Looking back, it really was a rather exquisite way to enter motherhood. So that first little blog was almost all about her, my Cadence. I weaved stories and photos together about those first years, and then we chose to birth another, and soon after, I needed to expand my blog to include him and our changing family. And I landed right here. Almost seven years have past right here.

But I am not the same person who launched a blog, with her infant daughter, in a bouncy seat at her feet, in that teeny apartment once upon a time.

I have been thinking a lot about writing lately. I miss the way that I used to work through thoughts as my fingers flew over letters. I miss capturing moments, and finding the extraordinary right inside the ordinary. I want to get back to that, but I have been hesitant. In some ways I don't know how to start again. When I go through the catalogue of old blog posts here, I cringe. Some part of me wants to delete them all away and forget how self-righteous and bitter I became in my journey. There is an arrogance that I read into those words from my younger self, a surety; one that I no longer feel. There is passion and fire, and there is icy coldness. I voiced a tiny bit of this feeling to Jim today. I told him that I wanted to start all over again, in a new space, because the truth is, I was born to write, but this space doesn't seem to fit me anymore. He urged me to stay and to pick back up my writing. As I have thought about it, I realized that while I have gone through a metamorphosis of sorts, it's all a part of my story. Even those embarrassing posts, where my passion was most definitely misguided, has shaped the woman who sits on the other side of this screen today. I cannot delete my story. I can only do better when I know better.

So much has changed inside of me. I have been bruised and battered. I am more courageous and more fearful. I am louder and quieter. I am determined and unsure. I am growing older, time is passing me by, my children are no longer babies. I have spent a year on the mission field in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and stripped of all that was familiar, I understand who I am better than ever before. But I am also still discovering me, and who God desires me to be. I am not yet old, but I am no longer young. Friendships are more important to me than maybe ever before, but this year I experienced the ugly side of a fraudulent one that makes me cower from women and put up thick, heavy walls. I am guarded, and I am wary, and I need God to show me something different. It also made me seek out grace and forgiveness with an old friendship that I had single-handedly damaged in the past. But some things don't change - my desire to follow Jesus - even though that desire surely manifests itself in new, different ways, my love for my husband who gets me on a level that nobody else could, my absolute joy in being a mom and raising these children, and my penchant for writing, cooking, wearing gobs of mascara, and drinking coffee. All of those parts of me remain intact.

So I am tentatively trying again. It's kind of scary to open up my life and heart once more in this space that holds so much, but there is just so much to share. There is still story to be told. Someone might connect with my story and find solidarity here in these words. So, I will write again, because the truth is that I love to write. There will always be better writers, but I am done struggling with that, because nobody else can tell my story. There is space for me, even if I am not the best. My grammar will drive grammarians crazy, because although I am a perfectionist, I am also a creative - especially when it comes to writing. I want to fall back in love with writing. I have never stopped writing, but the story has been muted here, it has stayed in my head or in my journals, but it never, ever stopped. I am proud of that, but now it is time....

It's time to let the story back out.

There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you. Maya Angelou

A few of my favorite characters in this story.


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