I got a little bit of a frantic voicemail from my mom a couple of weeks back. She had seen a status update I'd posted on Facebook and was concerned that I wasn't okay. The quote was as follows:
"God's answers to our prayers do not always come immediately--sometimes they appear to not come at all.... Assuredly, one day we will see more clearly; and on that day we will recognize the goodness and generosity of heaven." -Dieter F. Uchtdorf
My mom thought I was feeling discouraged. I wasn't. I was feeling blessed, looking back on the last 6 years of my life and seeing the goodness and generosity of heaven.
I don't blog as often as I did when it felt like none of our family dreams were coming true. I wanted to share my struggle. I knew that others could relate to lost opportunities and heartbreaking grief. Rather than pulling inward, I reached outward. It felt good to be open, vulnerable.
Here I am, 2 years into the "dream" of Tyler getting into medical school. Claira is 17 months old, with lunch on her face and light in her eyes. We are expecting another baby boy in December, one that we will get to raise in the flesh. We have the dreams we prayed for, cried for, fought like lions for.
Ain't it crazy how quickly new challenges arise and new struggles come to replace the old ones. My prayers have been answered. I feel firm in my commitment to be at home with my children because I once thought I wouldn't get that opportunity. With that opportunity comes pretty much poverty, no car to drive, and day after day of changing Claira's...shoes (you were expecting diapers, right? No prob. Diapers are simple. That girl is in love with all shoes--hers, mine, Ty's, strangers--). I changed Claira's shoes 17 times yesterday.
Claira's shoes are her freedom. She knows that to go outside, on a walk, on any adventure, she needs her shoes. She refuses to take them off for naps, and this morning I discovered that she slept in her shoes all night. She is a fierce protector of her freedom.
Our car was my freedom before Tyler's 3rd year of school started. For the last 6 years, in this one car family, I had the car. Tyler was so good to always take public transportation. I enjoyed drop-offs, pick-ups, and going everywhere together at the same time. It felt so noble to me that we could "do it all" with one car.
Since June, when T's rotations started, I have been car-less. Granted, I have a fantastic friend who is gracious to pick me up and take me anywhere, a cousin close by, and countless people from church who have offered rides AND their cars. Still, I am dependent. My freedom is limited.
Today I was determined to get Claira a new pair of...shoes :). She only has three pair that barely fit, so athletic shoes have been on my mind. I google mapped Burlington Coat Factory and discovered it was only a 15 minutes walk. But 15 minutes over a freeway. A freeway with construction on a busy, busy road. But like I said, I was determined. And so was Claira.
I prayed on the way there for safety. While I still felt nervous and the noise was deafening, we made it to the store, FOUND SHOES!! (I have been looking for awhile now in our price range), and started back home.
As I neared the scariest part of the trip, where the cars are turning right onto the freeway with all the construction lanes blocked off, I plowed forward with the stroller, praying again. A man in construction gear with a stop sign approached me (he hadn't been there before) and directed me to wait while he stopped the cars that were ignoring my "okay to walk" sign.
He stepped out into oncoming traffic and the cars stopped. I burst into tears.Yes, I am pregnant; tears are a given daily. But it was another moment when I know that my prayers are answered. I may feel alone and scared, but God answers prayers and He knows where I'm at. Every day. When I see clearly, the generosity and goodness of heaven take my breath away. We'll manage with one car, one pair of shoes, one chance at living with joy daily.