{Unedited} Let a Body Bleed

9019e0e84f69bff347087b8262a571faI felt my body weep.

A long twelve hours, 689 miles that had been repeated for the seventh time in six weeks.  Sitting at the end of the bed I share with my husband, in the tiny room of our new home.

A temporary home.  Not intended for comfort but the practicality of circumstance.  Exhausted.

Exhausted and angry and forgetting.

I felt the world tilt.

I let him tend me.  Behave appropriately grateful.  Rubbing my tender muscles and speaking the words he knew would heal.

I let him hold ground.

Waiting patiently for me to rest and awake.

Bearing the brunt of my quiet frustration.

I gave way to an immaturity that I thought had burned clean some time ago.  Annoyed with any burden still waiting for my effort.  Self talk seeping into my joy.  The love being seen..  Being wanted.  Being home.

I let him feel guilt for my fragile condition.  Circumstances that he didn’t control.  Circumstances I have chosen.

I held no ground.

Laying down gratitude for the greed of resentment.

And that is its own pain, the forgetting.

In 2015 I will have traveled ten thousand pressured miles to be home.  To bring my family home.  To make a space home.

I will have worked strained hours to tend opportunity.  Carrying the weight of a family nearly grown, so that they can grow together.  I will have stood still, coiling silently waiting for the mark.  I will have pulled in the traces, uncomfortable with the pace.  Worn by direction.

In 2015 I will have spent my strength and reserve and abundance moving between future and now.

I will have felt the loss and weighed the balance of a body as it bleeds.

I will have fallen.

I will get up.

Knowing, I will take back the ground and remember with gratitude the road that brought us here.

When my children were young, far from grown, I was given more.

Roots in tilled soil.

Standing at the edge of the life I share with my husband, sustained by youth and polarized by fear, I begged for a world made level.

I let him tend me.  Behave appropriately grateful for the gift my body had given.

Children.

Bloodline and bond.

I let him break ground.  Coiling tightly waiting for the mark.  Diligent in his promise of time.  Stretching to offer the four walls of a home.  Missing moments, and letting his body bleed.  He traveled.

72.4 miles in dark mornings.  869 miles in the six days before rest.

45, 177 miles to earn a wage.  180, 710.4 to make a living.

3,577 hrs and 6 minutes, assuming no delay.

Time.

Given for my peace and rest.  To carry the weight of a family beginning to grow, so that they could grow together.  For the comfort of love.

I suppose there is balance in what I’ve done.  What he gave.  The we.

I suppose there is a lesson in the knowing.

We’ve felt our body weep.

Missing moments, and letting a body bleed.  Given for peace and rest.

So that they could grow together.  For the comfort of love.

{Unedited} The Character of Choice

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We fought through a history of co-dependence. Of family overreach and lack of self to instill in our children that they get to not only choose who they want to be as they grow but they get to choose the people they allow to influence their lives.
The voices that speak into it.
I have been proud, and grateful to watch them one by one choose kindness, compassion and a growing respect for those around them.  The kind of respect that is given first from a place in their own character regardless of capacity or differences, and then continued as a testament to their value of another as they come to better understand the character of those receiving.
Both are important in a healthy life.  Both are important in a healthy community.
We want them to think.  To educate themselves and come to an understanding outside of our own opinion.
We want them to make choices that they feel solidly in their heart, and we want them to do that at their own pace.
It can be an uncomfortable thing, this leaving them to their own understanding while they grow.  We don’t always agree, and when this happens we’ve worked hard to teach the respect that comes with a grateful heart and a sound mind.  Both our and theirs.
We challenge them to see others as the individuals we hope that they each have the courage to be.  To be comfortable with the differences they might represent and see the value such relationships can bring to their life.   And then we hope, with all that we are, that we have taught them each how to voice their own differences.  The disagreements within perspective that ring true at their core.  Truths that are sometimes lonely.  We hope that we have taught them to raise their words not their voice.  The clarity of their argument, not their defenses.
We hope, that in a world of offense and passive aggression we have taught them how to speak clearly, with kindness and accept the response that is returned with compassion.

Compassion for each other.  Compassion for their neighbor.  Compassion for themselves.
Tonight I  witnessed the reward of parenting by faith as I sat and listened to my children express their concern for those who have long been the voices in their life.  Tonight I saw the uncontrolled authenticity of teaching my children to listen with an open heart and reason with a fierce mind.  A mind filled with the understanding of Grace and what that looks like in practice.  Tonight my children taught me when they kindly asked my opinion on how to let go of comfortable influence that no longer taught or grew.  In a country where bitterness is reigning my children, these tender and firm individuals who I love and support as the adults they are striving to become, taught me about boundaries.  About the way love looks when someone you love is causing harm.  Tonight my children taught me saying no is sometimes still saying yes.  Yes to a right mind and a loving heart.  Yes to freedom and the truth of belief.

Tonight my children taught me about the grief of differences and the acceptance in letting go.

I accept your right to believe the way you do.  I accept my right to not make your words a part of my life.

In our damaged and angry world it is easy to fight for ourselves.  To argue and strike at those around us, those away from us, with bitter words and defiance. Indignant over the injustice of our own space.

In our damaged world we seem to be at war.  As a nation.  As a tribe.  As a people.

Sitting in the quiet moment of truth stretched by earnest words and the clarity of a well-grown youth, my children taught me that I can be at peace.  The battle is already won.  In their struggle.  In their understanding.  In their boundaries.  In their incredible capacity to walk in the Grace that has spent a lifetime being worn.  A Grace that offers power.  A Grace that offers freedom.  A Grace that reminds us of right mind and the gift of compassion.  Of letting go because I AM, and Love.

{Unedited} More

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I was recently taken to task for carrying too much weight in my marriage.
It’s not an uncommon conversation. Our life is unique.
By choice, we carry a heavy load. Not because there is something to prove, but because we are not built to do differently.

Less doesn’t bring peace. Drive is wired that way.

Ours will always be a life of more.
More work.
More reach.
More growth.
More reward.

Our portion always 100 percent.
100 percent of him. 100 percent of me. 100 percent of everything there is to invest without concern for what comes next. We rest deeply in the knowledge that we can.

Fall in, let go, be still.

For some that is…unreasoned.
It is uncomfortable.
Often discomfort is interpreted as something to be changed, when in reality our discomfort is simply the exercise of a pliable body and a willing mind.

It is conditioning.
Strength being formed.

A learning curve that requires stamina. Stamina developed in the exhausted moments.
It is practicality that requires stewardship. Stewardship developed in the midst of strain, knowing what seems important changes when there is no energy left.

Clarity.

A learning curve of self care and accountability.
Body as tool. Mind as resource. Emotion to be decided.
Not for a delayed tomorrow, but for a fully lived today.
There is no 50/50. No your turn and then mine. There is only all.
For better or worse. In sickness and in health.
All.
‘Til death do us part.
One-hundred percent.