I’m taking back my house. Oh yeah! And I’m loving every stinkin’ minute of it. My house is far from perfect but still…these past few months have seriously pushed the limits. I have no idea how people manage to work full time, care for their kids, put heals on the table and keep their house clean. I never succeeded. Throughout each week my house has ranged from messy to unbearable and back again. But I never had time to really clean it the way I wanted to – and how I used to when I was home. So now that school is out I have been taking back my home, one room at a time, and I gotta tell you…it feels good! I’m loving being able to walk through my home and have things neat, clean and organized. We even tackled the kids rooms. Uh huh. Things are looking good! Now if we can just get some much needed summer heat, my carpets will get cleaned. I am really loving being home.
I was talking with a friend this morning when she asked me how my Mother’s Day was. My response? ”It was great…we started the day with a big fight…” She burst out laughing. I wouldn’t tell that to most people (well, unless you’re on here reading my blog ) but I knew she would get it. We talked about how some people we know have proudly stated that they and their spouse have never argued…ever. They wear it like a badge of honor but I don’t think it’s healthy. No two people are exactly the same and if you never have an argument, someone is getting run over. My friend shared how her relationship with her ex-husband fell apart when they stopped fighting. Why? Because they were no longer talking about what was important to each of them. The relationship became one sided and unhealthy. Stuff was walled up and not dealt with, left to fester and grow.
It made me think back over our years of marriage. We have certainly had our share of arguments…and not always calm, quiet ones either. I don’t mind them because they always draw us closer in the end because stuff gets aired out and dealt with. We work through it. We no longer let it sit like we did in the early days of our marriage when we didn’t know what to do with our hurt feelings and different opinions. Now we talk it through. We take the time needed to calm down if we’re really upset and then we come back and talk it through. We listen to each other and let each other know we care and want to understand their side as well as share our own.
Communication is so important in a relationship. I know everyone says that, but it really is true. Jonathan and I both come from families that don’t communicate well so we’ve had to really work at it. It’s so worth it though. He said to me recently “I really like that we’re talking more now” and it’s true. We’ve fought for what we have. We’ve put a lot of sweat, tears and prayers into our relationship and it’s paid off.
And as he said tonight “It’s always better afterwards, have you noticed that?” It’s true. We are peaceful, happy and in love. Nothing has been left to wound and fester. We have each been heard, understood, affirmed and valued. We love and are loved in return. I wouldn’t trade that for anything.
As I shared in a previous post, I think we may have found a church. This has become more and more clear over the past couple of weeks. Jonathan recently went to a men’s conference with a bunch of guys from the church and came home excited and refreshed. He got to spend most of the ride talking with the pastor and shared some of our painful journey with him. The pastor told him “You now have a place to rest” and “I’m glad you are here. I don’t know how long you will stay with us, but for however long that is, we are glad to have you here.” I’ve got to tell you, it feels good. And he’s right. We feel like we can relax and rest there. It’s peaceful.
This past week as the weekend drew near I began to realize that I was eagerly waiting for Sunday to arrive. I was actually excited about going to church! It has been so long since I have felt like that that I had begun to despair of ever enjoying it again. Even the children are beginning to get excited again. And after church I found myself listening to some teachings online while Jonathan read his Bible. I feel like we’re getting hungry again, hungry for God, and it makes me so happy.
I know, sounds funny huh? But I say it to myself a lot these days. With all the changes we are making in our life we have groups of friends and family who think we’ve gone off the deep end and probably committed the unpardonable sin a few times. :- I feel like no matter what we do we are offending a large number of people. I grew up as a sabbath keeper. Now we are going to a Sunday church and I have to watch what I post on facebook on Sabbaths so as not to set anyone off. Several of our friends believe that if you don’t keep a Saturday sabbath than you aren’t going to Heaven so we’ll be doomed in their eyes once they find out what we’re doing. Then you have the homeschooling-is-the-only-option-for-loving-parents kind of friends. First I sent my children to private school…and start working outside the home. That was a big no no for a large group of friends. Now we’ve decided to send them to the public school. That’s an even bigger no no for a much larger group of friends. Sigh. Why is it friendships are based on such crazy things? Can’t we be friends and be different? I wish I could be different and live my life differently without constantly offending large chunks of people. I think I need some new friends. Ones who can except me the way I am. But then I fear I will find a group of friends who are like me, so they won’t be offended by me, and I’ll change again…and lose the new friends because I’m no longer like them. Sigh.
I know I’ve been quiet on here but life has been anything but quiet these past couple of weeks. We did end up making a decision regarding school for next year. We did a bunch of research and talked to friends who have children in our local school and decided it was time. We registered all of our children for next year and I gave my notice at school. We have peace that we’re doing what’s best for all of us and we’re excited about it. Our children got a tour of the school and got to see their classrooms. That was exciting! And they’re thrilled about riding the bus next year. One of our sons has been going to the school every week for a month or so now for some testing and I have been really amazed at how different it is from what I was taught growing up. The teachers are nice and really care about the children. And after being taught that their primary purpose is to take the rights away from parents I was shocked when I went for a meeting about my son and they told me that it was my right to decide if I wanted him going through testing or not and that my opinion was the only one they cared about so I shouldn’t feel pressured one way or another. I had so much support from them. Absolutely amazing. We are looking forward to next year!
We are home today…on vacation for Good Friday and I find myself once again conflicted. I love being home. I love having the time to make it nice. I’m so torn sometimes. I work full time right now in order to send our children to a private school. I enjoy my work there most of the time and I love most of the teachers. But life is so much harder with me working full time and I miss being home. By the end of the week my house looks like a cyclone went through it and I spend most of my weekend putting it back together again and catching up on laundry. I don’t have time to cook the things I used to make so we eat a lot of quick meals these days. If I want to work out it has to be done in the evening, but that’s the only time I have with my family and there’s homework, of course, to do then as well. And shopping…well that gets squeezed in wherever I can fit it…sometimes just a few groceries at a time until I can get it all done. Is it worth it? Sometimes I’m really tempted to just send them to public school and stay home. Then I’d have time to clean the house, work on projects around our home that need to be done, make nice healthy meals and snacks for my family, plenty of time to exercise and be free to spend my evening with my children and husband. Or would I find myself missing work after a few weeks of being home? I’m not sure. And what if it didn’t work out at the public school? If I gave up my job I wouldn’t be able to get it back and it’s the perfect situation right now (working at the school my children go to in exchange for their tuition) if I were to need to work. So it’s not like I can just try it and change back if it doesn’t work out. And I know the younger ones are getting a great education in the private school they are going to…by the time they finish k5 they are reading! So there’s that too. I’m really conflicted in this. Our oldest son needs to go to the public school this year anyways because we’ve had some issues this year that have led to us choosing not to send him back there. But what about the others? Should I just continue what we’ve been doing for now with the others…at least until we see how it works out for our oldest being in public school? I don’t know.
We are in this weird place right now…a place that today only emphasized. See we used to be sabbath and holy day keepers. A couple of months ago we left our sabbath keeping church and started searching for a new church home, among non-sabbath keeping ones (story to come later). So we’ve been going to church on Sundays lately. Then along comes Passover. Do we keep it or no? We decided we would so I bought the stuff for the meal, removed the yeast from our home and let the teachers at school know that the children and I would not be in that day. Last night we had our Passover meal. Today I stayed home with the children so we wouldn’t be “working” and Jonathan went to work. Yeah that felt odd. So are we keeping it or not keeping it or sorta keeping it? No, we don’t know…sorta keeping it for now, I guess? We’re in this weird place of trying to figure out where we go from here. Feels totally weird, but hey it’s where we’re at…