My mom and sister both took holidays last week, which meant they took the kids and I for a few tours of the local area. We shopped at the "Friff Store" and at the best bookstore in the world... it took us an hour to go through that tiny shop. I love it. We went to see WALL-E. Went for not one but two tours of a gorgeous little piece of land. Went grocery shopping with Mom and didn't freak out. Went out for lunch.
We celebrated my cousin's wedding. I didn't dance at all because I was so busy catching up with my cousins and aunts and uncles.
We rode our horses every day. I'll write more about that later!
The kids divided their time between the tree and the 4 wheeler. In the house they got away with watching way more TV than at home. Ironically, out in the country there are more channels than we get in town. That's only because our TV is in the basement and I'm too cheap to get cable! My son is now heavily into watching The News.
Also, he learned how to drive this week. Just a few days before his 12th birthday, meaning that he's in line with the majority of the family. And darnit, the kid's pretty good! He drove that van up the back lane and then reversed down the hill over and over.
We visited some friends who are dairy farmers and small breeders (pun intended) of mini horses. They have six of them, a stallion, three mares, and two foals. Holy cute! Plus their dog recently had a litter of TWELVE puppies! Being Golden Retrievers, they are almost the size of my Pug. That was funny!
On top of that, I managed to borrow my Mom's car to drive to the next biggest city and visit my bestest. All of her kids were home too. Imagine three small dogs ripping around the house... actually, two small dogs and one fretful tiny dog who wasn't sure if she should be joining them or giving them heck. Then we ended up with baby bunnies in our hands. Mercy.
By Thursday, it occurred to me... that I was feeling... really, really good. Quite great, actually. I went through the list. Chest pain? Not really. Breathing? Easily. Appetite? Not great, but functioning. Weight? Not losing any more. Teeth grinding? Don't think so. Irritating repetitive thoughts? Strangely, blissfully, absent!!!!
Oh relief. What caused this turn? The pills started working? Horse time? Mom's cooking? The hills and trees and fields outside the windows? Dad's freshly painted John Deere 430? That long philosophical talk with my sister?
Does it matter WHY I feel better? Don't analyze: enjoy!
I will share this: My sister is brilliant. I don't write about her much because she is a very private person and doesn't like the idea of being read about. But I have to share this.
She's gotten through an extremely difficult year by learning all over again how to pray. She doesn't close her eyes at night and make up a task list for God to fulfill.
I told her that my prayers lately have been a mess of help-me-help-me-I'm-desperate-help-me.
She starts off by listing what she's thankful for.
Well if you start that, even if your life is a total wreck and you think you've got nothing to be thankful for, you can start at the very most basic thing... YOU ARE STILL BREATHING.
Doesn't this match up with my whole new thing about the Tiny Steps?
So I tried it. The bedroom window was open, with the crickets cricketing and the big trucks swishing down the highway outside. I had a choice. Feel disgruntled by the lumpy old mattress or focus on being there, in the country, in my childhood home. It turns out that my thankfulness list was pretty darn long.
Sweetie came up with that all on her own. She is a genius.
I went to sleep with visions of farmhouses and barns and hay fields and barn cats and saddle racks in my head. I can't say I slept well, but judging by my shift of mood, it's okay. Yep. It's okay, and I'll take it.
I also got a few more paragraphs done in my next epic novel. I squeezed that in between dishes and laundry. Look at me go, eh? I can't do everything but I can do some things!
Stay tuned... I'll be back here and there without warning. I'm just full of surprises...