Sunday, May 15, 2016

Hot Mess Express

I've been trying to write the last chapter of my book for 8 months now. We are in another flipping "season" and it's got me searching for the ending.

In honor of keeping one toe on the crazy train and the other 9 firmly planted on the word of God, snippets from chapters 2-3. {I know the sweet Lord above wants both feet planted on the rock, I only speak figuratively friends. *Steps off crazy train platform wearing hot mess t-shirt and last weeks pajama pants*}

Chapter Two: Seasons

Seas-on: /noun/ each of the four divisions of the year (spring, summer, autumn, and winter) marked by particular weather patterns and daylight hours, resulting from the earth's changing position with regard to the sun.

And also: a period when a female mammal is ready to mate. There’s that.

By July 2015, I should have been familiar with *seasons*. You’d think I would have figured out a thing or two about how to just keep swimming and how to just be the vessel God called me to be.

Here’s the thing about Grace. It’s always teaching you something. It will always be teaching you something. You just have to be still long enough to hear it whispering over you.

Grace. It teaches you.

How to be a warrior. How to be strong. How to be graceful. How to appear graceful when you are falling apart. 

Undeserved, unmerited, unearned. Favor. A temporary reprieve. Grace.

We have that definition written on a chalkboard in our kitchen. I’m surprised frankly that our house even has a kitchen. We only have it because it came with the rest of the place. Lord knows it’s not because I have the first clue on how to COOK. On the surface the pretty little sign excuses me from being the domestic diva that simply does not reside in my inner soul. It excuses me when Husband comes home and dinner isn’t on the table. Or even on my mind for that matter.

Grace. We say it before we eat {Take out. From a box. Or a container. Us Davises aren’t picky when it comes to take out}. But it is SO much more than just that. It’s a way of life. It reminds me who’s I am. It reminds me that we can do hard things. It reminds me of where I came from. And where I am going.

The best thing? It reminds me that I cannot earn it. I am a Type A perfectionist kind of girl. I drive myself batty. I gaze lovingly at Type B’s, awe-inspired of their lack of Type A-ness. Then I kick my own tush. Because that’s what us Type A-ers do. We kick our own butts. I love that I cannot work my fannie off and have more Grace. Or snooze through my alarm clock and have less of it. It is mighty. It is forgiving. It carries me. 

You will find that it is easy to express outward grace and gratitude when things are going your way. When things are easy-peasy and the sun is shining on your little red wagon. What never ceases to amaze me, is people who exude these entities even in the face of adversity. I am thankful for the people in my life who, by their own spirit, remind me to be grateful. And graceful. These sweet friends remind me that nothing in this world is to be taken for granted. Nothing.

An old Chinese proverbs reminds us: "When eating bamboo sprouts, remember the man who planted them".

How often do we focus on the bamboo sprouts in our life and fail to remember the man who planted them? I believe that the man who planted the bamboo sprouts deserves our utmost. I believe that sometimes we allow ourselves to become consumed with our bamboo sprouts and fail to offer up praises of gratitude.

So in remembrance and honor of the Farmer who has blessed, and continues to bless, us each and every day, stop in your carefully planned, neatly organized Type A tracks (or your lackadaisical Type B amble, whateves) and whisper up a prayer of thankfulness.

When you are in one of those *seasons*, those moments where you feel like you are suffocating and you can’t find your way out of a shoebox, let alone out of a dark season, I urge you to cling to Grace. Call out to it. Ask it to carry you. As you cling to Grace, you will undoubtedly draw nearer to the one who gives it. The almighty sovereign God who knows each and every season of your life before you get knocked upside the head with them. Press on grace-clad warriors.

Chapter Three: Hobby Lobby

Ho-bby Lo-bby: /noun/ a place to purchase plastic Easter eggs while pushing miniature buggies and listening to instrumental hymns.

A few short months after Husband aaaaaacidentally tried to go through security at Hartsfield Jackson International Airport with a loaded handgun in his backpack while flying out of town on a business trip, I jotted down a few things.

I was eleven months pregnant. No twelve. I was actually twelve months pregnant. Only it was our first pregnancy, the one where we gazed at each other and I tee-teed on a pregnancy stick and the words “you’re pregnant” danced majestically across the sky in a dazzling display of fireworks. Our first pregnancy. The one before the cancer diagnosis. And the chemo. And the fertility nightmare where I grew 3 chin hairs and had to pluck them religiously to keep from going bat-shit crazy. That pregnancy. The first one. The one before we lost the baby girl to Turner Syndrome after not going bat-shit crazy from the fertility treatments. #winning

Nonetheless, we were in the middle of sort of what you might call a little bit of a *season*.

I made a habit that particular season of jotting down my God Wink moments. You know, those sweet, good, and wholesome moments that make up for all of the chaotic ones that try to steal your joy?

January 21, 2010

·         My belly button no longer exists.
·         If you drive too far into the garage you will, in fact, cause damage to nearby items.
·         Lawyers, like cloth diapers, are expensive.
·         Bonefish Grill makes for fabulous take-out.
·         Limiting caffeine increases hunger and ragefulness.
·         Children you once babysat will indeed grow up and go off to college one day. When that day comes, you will feel old.
·         Failing to use a level or laser light will result in crooked wall hangings. It's inevitable.
·         Husbands do not appreciate monogrammed onesies and personalized monthiversary outfits to the same degree that wives do. No amount of enthusiasm and shrieking will make up for the bewildered look they give when you confess your purchases of the day.
·         Attempting to use your bath robe belt as a rope to lift yourself from the bathtub will not prove successful. Repeated attempts will resemble the first.
·         God is capable of more than we can imagine or ask for.

My God-Wink journal sometimes had side notes.

Like the “Top 10 Reasons Why I Love Hobby Lobby”:

{I shall choose to count down because, well, that adds to the suspense and drama surrounding such an invigorating topic.}

10. Storefront located precisely 200 yards from Zaxby's drive-thru. Entirely too convenient to partake in fried pickles and sweet tea on any given excursion.
9. Aisles upon aisles of large plastic Valentines Day decor (i.e. enormous dancing winking heart) and also jumbo bags of colored plastic Easter eggs.
8. Closed on Sundays. Just as you find yourself in need of a distraction from a sudden intense Chick-fil-a craving {like when you wake up and try to get dressed for church but you can’t focus because all you can think about is how you need a Combo Number One}, you pull in the parking lot to realize craftiness must wait until Monday.
7. Cash registers circa 1978.
6. Super cute double-pack seasonal to-do list pads. A must-have on each trip regardless of how many now clutter up the junk drawer in the kitchen. One can never have too many to-do list pads.
5. Miniature buggies.
4. Weekly 40% off 
printable coupon. I refuse to go without it.
3. Craftiness implosion. Projects I never needed (or wanted) to complete are inspired by simply perusing the scrap book paper aisle.
2. Festive gift-wrapping accouterments. For example: zebra print tissue and coordinating ribbon.
1. Jazzy instrumental hymns played overhead. I am often forced to add my own lyrics as I browse the wall art.

These were the things I thought of as I ran about skipping and frolicking on my Wednesdays off back during that season. When I was eleven, no twelve, months pregnant with Cooper, our first born, buying time before the accidental gun-in-my-backpack incident went to trial. To TRIAL. *Sips sweet tea. Shudders. Finds big girl panties. Marches on.*

My routine looked something like: See private speech therapy patients from 8-12. Eat yummy lunch. Take 2 hour nap. Watch approximately 3 minutes of Oprah. Turn off TV. Drink caffeinated drink (D day as of tomorrow friends). Check mail. Fake a reason to go to Target. Cook dinner (a once a week phenomenon when you work 10 hour days the other 4 days of the week). Watch trashy TV. Cuddle with Husband. Prepare for next 10 hour day. (sigh).

Life was good back then. But not near as good as it is today. Post eleventy more *seasons*. Yes, back to the phenomenon of *seasons*. Footnote. No, sidenote. No, off-topic-but-I-need-to-get it-out-there-in-an-effort-of-full-disclosure, note. I admire folks who can maintain a topic for more than seven seconds. I, as you are quickly learning, am not one of those people. Did you see that they recently said Hobby Lobby might shut their doors? Something about the right to birth control. I digress.

Seasons. Yes. Seasons. 

Update: It has taken me approximately 5 years to write this book. In that time, it has been brought to my attention that Hobby Lobby has since updated their cash registers. Digital fancy pants itemized receipts from here on out fellow crafters. But the hymns? Still no words. Just instrumentals.