It's all about seasons in life. Naming them. Recognising lessons learnt.
These past two years have been so different to the years before. And I can gaze through the fog enough to see that the next will be vastly different again. So I thought I would reflect on each of these three years in different posts.
2010 was a season of preparation for our family. Of anticipation, as we waited to leave Australia to live in Indonesia. I feel as though Naomi Reed was with me at the time, when she wrote:
Jumping ahead of yourself to the next season, well before you actually get there, usually to the detriment of the 'now'?...my mind goes running ahead...the problem is...that the body that has been left behind fails to use all the wonderful opportunities that still surround it.My seasons included:
I held tight to the moments that would not exist in our new life. The walks to our favourite cafe, meandering through quiet streets. The ability to banish my boys to the backyard when they became noisy. Afternoons spent investing in lives, whilst boys ran wildly with their friends. Running in the dark with my gorgeous friend, no holes to fall into. The boys playing footy with their mates. The trips to wineries on a crisp Autumn afternoon. The bush walks with kangaroos bounding by (seriously). Reaching beaches with only our family's footprints on the sand, clear blue expanding beyond. Peeking beyond the now, I imagined the waters touching Indonesian shores.
Lots of it. Emotional. Physical. Spiritual. The nostalgia that came with purging our house of nearly all toys - needing only balls, lego, books and games for the next season. Not able to place an inventory value on favourite dog-eared story books and soft toys from cots gone by. Deciding how to prioritise my time to minimise regrets. Needing to 'keep calm and carry on' in terms of the administration of moving six people to a different country, whilst maximising the relationships whilst we were still present. Staring at the computer all day, willing myself to finish, knowing that until I was on that plane, I wasn't. Relying on the scripture I had been given before Tony was interviewed, knowing I did trust it to be true:
Jeremiah 24:4 Then the word of the LORD came to me: 5 “This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: ‘Like these good figs, I regard as good the exiles from Judah, whom I sent away from this place to the land of the Babylonians.6 My eyes will watch over them for their good, and I will bring them back to this land. I will build them up and not tear them down; I will plant them and not uproot them. 7 I will give them a heart to know me, that I am the LORD. They will be my people, and I will be their God, for they will return to me with all their heart.
It crept up quickly, and seemed so very surreal. I'm not sure when the farewells started in my mind, but that I tried to delay them to protect my heart. The hardest part definitely the lack of control - unsure of whether we would ever return to this ordinary house, with the extraordinary people, in a much loved city-become-home. Last BBQ's with friends. Coffees at the local cafe. Chats with 'the girls'. Gatherings with lovely neighbours. Kicking the footy and riding bikes on the street outside. It wasn't just about the people. There would be no more walking to school... speaking english with everyone... drinking tap water... cold weather... driving a car. Seeing my boys farewelling their gorgeous mates was tough. Hugs with precious friends, tears streaming, wishing for one more lazy afternoon in the sun. But after eighteen months of emotional preparation, it was done. Time to move forward and see what lay beyond.
Giving thanks (in 2012!):
- A table surrounded by friends and even more noise than usual.
- Wondering how a dragon was made with one of my boys.
- Seeing one son massage his brother, whilst both simultaneously reading books.
- Words taking shape for my youngest, as we snuggle together.
- Date loaf on a rainy afternoon, taking me back to my childhood.
- A surprise text from a friend.
- A spontaneous afternoon of bowling and fondue.
- Thinking differently.
- Being reminded I am not a mere human. One for another blog.
- Planning travel for 2012 - excited about discovering more of this world with my boys.