Thursday, January 13, 2011

One Little Word ~ 2011


I've been meaning to post about my One Little Word for 2011. Last year, I chose the word 'diligence' at the first of January. I was determined to conquer.... something. I was going to be amazing. And in control. And consistent. And astonishingly productive.

And just weeks into the new year, I found out I was pregnant.

2010 became the year of letting go of all control and preconceived notions about what *I* was going to accomplish. Instead, God turned unexpected....well, labor pains.... into unexpected blessings.

After almost a year of physical (and emotional) weariness, God gave me the most beautiful and wonderful baby girl. She has been a joy beyond what I could have ever imagined. I can't even begin to describe what a blessing she has been in my life. God knows. I can tell you that I feel invigorated and cheerful and strong.

Two weeks after Lola Colette was born, Russ lost his job. Under normal circumstances, this would have consumed me with trepidation or hopelessness. But, by some miracle, I have had no capacity to stress out about it. We are in a much better place than most unemployed families, as Russ is also semi-self-employed. So he has been working on multiple projects for personal clients while searching for a new job. I know God will continue to provide for our family. (Maybe you could add that to your prayer list if you are so inclined?)

In the meantime, I am abundantly thankful for the unexpected blessing of having Russ home and available to his family in the first months of Lola's life. He has been able to hang out with the boys, spend time with Lola, and be exceedingly helpful to me. We have been given the gift of time together, and that is priceless.

(Incidentally, I was thinking about the year I was pregnant with Leif. Russ worked some obscene hours that year which was really tough. I sprained my ankle when I was 8 months pregnant in the middle of a very hot summer (and Levi and Luke were 4 and 2), then Leif was a very needy baby, and we unexpectedly bought a house and moved at the end of the year. It was frustrating to have Russ gone so much, but when I look back at our income that year I realize that God was providing for us in a miraculous way. He made it possible for us to purchase and move into our little house in the country.)

All of this to say that I have been hesitant to choose a word for 2011. BLESSING was my first thought, but then I decided that was more appropriate for 2010.

Instead I've chosen LIFE, because I choose to embrace it, with all its ups and downs, detours and scenic routes, disappointments and possibilities, noise, chaos, and little quiet moments.

Be glad of life because it gives you the chance to love and to work and to play and to look up at the stars.

~Henry Van Dyke

To live is so startling it leaves little time for anything else.

~Emily Dickinson

Listen, are you breathing just a little and calling it a life?

~Mary Oliver

I don't want to get to the end of my life and find that I lived just the length of it. I want to have lived the width of it as well.

~Diane Ackerman

I like living. I have sometimes been wildly, despairingly, acutely miserable, racked with sorrow, but through it all I still know quite certainly that just to be alive is a grand thing.

~Agatha Christie

Life loves to be taken by the lapel and told: "I am with you kid. Let's go."

~Maya Angelou

Look, I don't want to wax philosophic, but I will say that if you're alive you've got to flap your arms and legs, you've got to jump around a lot, for life is the very opposite of death, and therefore you must at very least think noisy and colorfully, or you're not alive.

~Mel Brooks


Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

I had my third baby this year --a boy after two girls, who are 18 months apart in age and 6 and 5 years old. I feel the same way about him that you feel about your sweet girl.

I enjoy your blog so much!

Unknown said...

Love this post!!!!! The photo is delightful!

I hope to do a post similar to this! Thanks for the idea! I love having words for the year! I'm not exactly sure what mine is for this year yet. Last year was 'simplify'. It was such a blessing to have that as a guide to fall back on!

Thanks for the encouraging post and food for you perspective on how we have a plan but God always knows best! :)

Skeller said...

perfect picture for the perfect word ... for a year that's sure to be full of life! God is good.

I'll continue to pray that God provides the perfect work at the perfect time for Russ ...

Timi said...

"I was young and now I am old , yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread." :o))
Psalm 37:25

Anonymous said...

Let's see....


I see a trend here,

Christina D.

Dy said...

Praying. :-)

And, I'm so enjoying your sweet photos!

Here's to seeing what God will do this year!