Sometimes people disappoint us. They fall short of our expectations. In these moments I am learning to examine my expectations first instead of looking to blame someone for falling short. Regularly checking my expectations has been teaching me so much. Ultimately, I want to love people better, I want to succeed at my job, and make a positive impact on this world and the people around me, to God's glory. When my expectations are off I fail to see the bigger perspective, it narrows my vision and prevents me from doing any of the above things well.
Thursday, May 25th was the day of Ascension, a public holiday in France. We had the day off, then the school system took off the Friday as well to make a long weekend. It's called le pont – the bridge. This was such a jam-packed, joy-filled four days of utter exhaustion and bliss I thought I would share the stories and photos with you.
I knew it was coming. I had a feeling it would come up, and it made me uneasy to think about tackling it. I guessed it was a question we needed to talk about. It's an issue that lurks at the back of my mind and subconsciously holds me captive in my parenting...I don't think I'm alone. This comment after my last post reminded me of that.
In the early 1970's, I remember driving around in my VW Beetle listening to a song by Johnny Cash in which were the words "I see men as trees walking." This song told the story of the encounter of a blind man with Jesus in Mark 8:22-25. This passage relates how Jesus spit on the man's eyes, put his hands on him and asked him what he saw. The man said," I see people, they look like trees walking." Jesus touched the man a second time and the man saw clearly.
Carnivore. Vegetarian. Vegan. Gluten free. Dairy free. Organic. Eating for our blood type. So many "eating" options are before us, at least in the land where I live. We give great attention to our food intake, knowing it affects our physical health.
I don't know about you, but I don't like to struggle myself, and I hate watching my kids struggle. I don't think I'm alone. Yet none of us will be free from experiencing trials and difficulties at some point in our lives. What will we do in the dark times? Who will we become as a result of them? Will we resist the pain and refuse to grow? Or will we lean into those hard time and embrace the lessons God is hoping to teach us?
So let's talk preschoolers.
They're delightful one minute, demonic the next. One moment their mantra is "By Myself"; the next they are the helpless baby again. One of the most important things we have to do for our two-, three-, and four-year-olds is help them develop emotional self-control. They have to learn to handle disappointment, frustration, and delayed gratification—all of the feelings—without flipping out (ahem, screaming, kicking, hitting, falling on the floor in a writhing heap).
It seemed a good idea at the time. It began late one night as I changed the bed sheets while watching an episode of "The Dick Van Dyke Show." It was a funny episode. Somewhere between the twisting and tugging of sheets and my laughter during the show—I pulled one of my ribs out of place. I've done this before so am familiar with the pain. I knew right away what had happened.
I've spent the last three weeks without my computer. The first week was okay, even though I had nothing to do besides watch TV. The second week I started to become anxious and depressed because I didn't have what I consider to be my lifeline. My laptop is the only way I can read the Bible, write my blog, and communicate with people through email, texting and phone calls.
Kati was diagnosed with Lyme disease in early June 2012, just weeks before she moved to Philadelphia. It was good to get answers and know why she was feeling lousy, but it was rather unfortunate timing from my mom point of view. Right when she was set to leave and take care of herself, I felt a deep calling to hold her close and protect her. Kati was ready to go, and honestly, before her diagnosis, I had come to believe it was best. As close as we are, it was clear that we could only handle one woman in the house - especially in the kitchen.