Yes, I know. It's been three months since the last time I opened a "peephole" into my life. Three months. A quarter of a year ... a quarter of the now one year since Tom passed into the presence of the Lord. I would look at the last post and think "I really need to post an update..." but either I couldn't think of anything to share, or there was too much to share to be able to "focus" on anything ... or I just couldn't find the wherewithal to get the job done. So, for those of you who don't have many other ways to know what has been going on with me, I'll try to give you a very brief synopsis.
JANUARY: Having gotten through Christmas, I fell into a deep pit in January. I felt that the only thing I had to look forward to after Christmas was three bleak winter months (with little snowfall to make it clean and pretty) to dwell on the fact that these same three months a year ago were the most painful, chaotic, confusing, and heartbreaking of any time in my life. I couldn't bring myself to put Christmas away, I was very stressed with helping my son through a difficult time in his life, and I began to have physical symptoms that were scary, too. Slowly I began to realize that I was in trouble. I was having panic attacks. I was unable to reason coherently. And I was no longer able to judge what was reality and what was confusion and fear. After seeking the counsel a close and trusted friend I went to see my physician. She immediately doubled my anti-depressant medication and recommended I seek counseling - something I had been avoiding and hadn't felt the need for until then. I did see a counselor for about 4 sessions, but by then the medication had stabilized me and I was feeling 100% better and able to be in control and move on. Things had begun to improve at home and as I felt better, I was able to be more of the parent and support that my sons needed as well, which helped them to be more secure and confident in their personal lives.
FEBRUARY: I felt alive again! Ready to put the past behind me and look ahead. I found a friend with accounting experience who was willing to come and help me get my bookkeeping mess cleared up and my checking account balanced for the entire year of 2010 so I'd be ready to file taxes (which I still have not done...hello, April!). That took a tremendous weight off my shoulders and lightened the load as well as giving me some precious hours of time with my friend. I "redecorated" my bedroom... well I "recolored" it, anyway, changed the color scheme, purchased new linens, new wall decorations, etc. I love my retreat now! And then, in mid-February, I began hearing the Lord calling me to join a team from my church who were going to Argentina & Chile to bring the message of the Father's Heart and the Healing of Life's Hurts to the people there. The team was to leave on the exact date of the one year anniversary of Tom's death - I just didn't think I could be gone then - and with my two boys both in school, too, but the Holy Spirit kept insisting that I was to go and reassuring me that He would work out the details, and so I committed myself to the trip and started preparing to go!
MARCH: The first 10 days of March were very busy with the end of wrestling season, shopping and packing for my trip, and trying to plan and prepare everything needed for my boys, their school needs, our home and finances, etc. On Sunday, March 11th, I went to church, packed and ready to go! The team was prayed for by the church and after church, we went straight to the airport. I had never been on a mission trip out of the country, I had never been out of the country at all (except to Canada). This was a huge stretch for me. I don't speak any Spanish, and I'm not very good in groups or new situations. Needless to say, I had to rely entirely on the Lord for the next two weeks! 12:02 AM CST, MARCH 12, 2012 - one year since Tom breathed his last labored breath - I was in the air somewhere over the Atlantic ocean and sound asleep, surrounded by my dearest friends and the peace of God! We spent 12 very busy and fruitful days ministering and praying for people in Argentina and Chile, filled with the Holy Spirit and His power to set the captives free! I returned home just in time to attend my son's wrestling banquet, have my family all over to celebrate my youngest son's 14th birthday, get back to the business of being mom, homemaker and all the other titles/tasks that fall to me alone these days, and finished off the month with a women's conference at my church last night and today! Life is full ... but it is good! Good to be alive. Good to be growing in the knowledge and love of God. Good to have hope and be looking forward to the future again!
And so, as we head into April, I continue to look ahead - toward some things out of necessity, others with anticipation and expectation. This year, Easter and my birthday fall on the same day. I feel that there is a prophetic proclamation in that convergence. As I begin my 59th year, He is indeed risen - resurrected in my heart and in my life! He makes all things new ... that is His promise to me, personally, and to each of us who will receive Him! I've been coming to a fuller understanding of that word, "receive". It is our willingness to receive what He offers, that moves the theoretical truth into experiential reality! I want to be a "receiver" of all that He has provided for me!