Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The blog behind the blog

So sometimes it’s easier to just abandon my blog for a month or two, instead of spending the emotional energy to sit down and write about what’s “really” going on, you know, the blog behind the blog. Today I just wanted to post more pictures of my nesting endeavors and spare any explanations, but I had a change of heart because I want to be authentic and transparent for the first time in a while. And I think that I‘m resurfacing mainly because I am coming out of the fog of life’s happenings.

First of all, we moved into a new apartment about a month and a half ago. I was six + months pregnant and unable to move and lift and rearrange whatever I wanted to. I felt like a caged tiger (which at one point landed my tush in labor & delivery with contractions/false labor, but that's for another day). Anyway. I really was a happy tiger and so relieved because it’s been a year and a half since we’ve had our own space. You see, we moved in with my in-laws for what we thought would be three months, while we closed on a house, and then Stephen was laid off. Three months turned into 18. This was one of the hardest times of my life. I didn’t have the know-how to blog or write about it at all. It was hard for several reasons. Firstly, I am the domestic-artsy-homemaker type and pretty much always have been. Living in some else’s home (who doesn’t share my taste or my way of doing life) was really hard, it forced me to let go of my preferences (which I didn’t always do graciously) and it felt impossible at moments. But more than wallpaper or frozen dinners being an adjustment, watching my mother-in-law’s health rapidly decline and my father-in-law come to a place of utter ruin was the most difficult part of living with them. My mother-in-law, Linda, was diagnosed with PSP (Progressive Supra Nuclear Palsy) about four years ago and her brain has been shrinking gradually since her diagnosis. With this particular condition she loses daily life skills every few months. She has now reached a place where she cannot feed, bathe or walk herself. She also cannot open her eyes in a way that’s natural or communicate with ease. And my father-in-law, Jerry, is losing his right arm. They’ve been married for 43 years. They had a little JOP wedding as soon as Jerry returned from Vietnam and haven't been separated for more than a few days since. After we moved out Jerry realized that he didn’t have what it took to care for her by himself and he had a real breakdown. We have since stepped in and today is the day we are placing Linda into a skilled nursing facility. This was a hard decision for all us to come to, but it was time and it is what’s best for Linda and everyone else. And this entire process has reminded us that heaven is our reward, the real gold at the end of this rainbow, and our life on earth is but a vapor. And yet even in the midst of it all, life is something we are celebrating, as we are all eager to meet our little Gideon.

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart.
The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.”
Job 1:21

So while there isn’t garland and stockings hanging from my mantle this year, there is a new life being formed in my belly and this is the silver lining. God chose to juxtapose the loss of one life with the beginning of another. That’s amazing to me. And today we’re focusing on what we’re grateful for and the fact that we do still have Linda and her mind is still present and we have a little happy, healthy baby boy on the way. And life and death is something only God can begin and end and we trust His timing and His goodness.


Kirsten Smith said...

((hugs)) I *so* wish that I could give you a big squeeze right now. Praying for you and your family this very moment.

Rhonda said...

This is beautiful Crystal. Praying for your sweet family.
Love you girl!
Merry Christmas!!!

Amy said...

Sweetie thanks for the "real life" update. I'm sorry it's been so tough for all of you the last couple of years. Here's to a new season with a new baby almost here! We will be praying for you guys and your in-laws as well--for God's grace to be with you. xoxo

Christy said...

Ahh friend, what a great post. Thank you for sharing. For reminding me how life here is only for a season and in heaven we will be all new and healed and whole. I was choked up reading this. Such a good reminder that here is for just a blink of an eye.

Jolene Grace said...

My beautiful friend, I have no words. Thank you for sharing your heart, as it is a witness to what God is doing and how we can pray for you. We will be praying for Linda, and for Gideon. HUGS.

Glitterdoll said...

Crystal, I think these last few years have been tough for many of us. You are a wonderful woman and your strong faith has made a path for you. I love reading your blog. XO

Eileen said...

Sweet friend, thank you for your transparency. My heart is with you always! E-e