I dreamed last night, without going into weird detail (it was a dream, after all), that I was being condemned to death for no other reason than being viewed as an excess individual. In one horrible moment, I was being escorted out of a room, away from my husband (who was being allowed to live) and without a chance to see my children or even tell them good-bye.
Yes, it was tremendously sad, though I was filled with a strange sense of peace.
What I was most grateful for in the dream was a set of circumstances which allowed me to write a letter to my husband and children filled with all the final words I wanted them to have from me before I was gone from this earth.
Of course, when I awoke I was extremely relieved to find it was nothing more than a dream, but it left me with the sense that, though the circumstances of this particular vision are beyond-extremely unlikely, the certainty of my next breath is non-existent. And, in the real world, I may not get that chance to leave my final words.
So, I decided to write a little something here, hoping I'll get to read them to my kids myself when I'm at a ripe old age, but also recognizing none of us knows when our last day has come.
These are the words I would say,
"To my Beautiful Family -
I love you all more than words could express. You each have taught me so much about myself and have made my life worth getting up for every morning (even when it felt too early).
You are everything I ever needed but many things I never knew I wanted. God is so good to know me better than I know myself. You are a capable man who is able to do so much more than you give yourself credit for. You are compassionate and playful - qualities that make you an excellent father to our children (and have allowed you to put up with me longer than should have been possible). I know God is at work in your heart and is continually shaping you into a man after His will. Continue in His way and He will always bring you through.
My first born - you were the first little being I felt squirming inside me. You are precious in every way. Please forgive me for the times I have been too hard on you. The truth is, I see in you almost every part of me - the good and the bad. And, sometimes, as though I were disciplining myself, I push too much and expect more than is fair. I am sorry. But I love who you are. I love the way you love your brothers, encouraging them, helping them and enjoying them. You have a beautiful heart. You, my little spit-fire, are so independent. Don't lose that. But also remember it's ok to share the load. And, in trusting others to help you along the way, remember that just because someone does something differently than you would prefer does not mean it is wrong. Our differences are what make us stronger as a people. I also want you to know, there is only one Man who will ever complete you and His name is Jesus. Another may come along and try to steal your heart, but tell him He has to go through the Father first - you are worth the effort.
You have one of the most sensitive hearts I have ever met. I love the way you look after the needs of others and are willing to accept what is given to you with a joyful heart, even while others are demanding more. Your life verse (Proverbs 3:3-4) talks of wearing kindness and truth all the days of your life and I wish that for you. These two qualities will take you far (to the point of finding success in the eyes of God); never let them be far from you. Your inner strength and your desire to stand up for what is right are the qualities I most admire in you. I know you are capable of great things, but remember that nothing of lasting value can happen apart from God. Hide His Word in your heart and follow after Him.
Mister, Mister, I sure do love your smile. So young and I can already tell you have a determined spirit. You let nothing stand in the way when you have your mind set on a task. Let that fierceness drive you to stand up for what is right and be a trailblazer in the name of the Lord. You have what it takes to cause others to follow after you; make sure you know where you're headed first. God will never let you down and if you trust in His name you will not be mis-led. Take care of your brother and sister the way they so lovingly look after you. Be compassionate always and lift up the hurting. Allow God to do His amazing work in you.
To all of you, remember this world is only temporary, let us trust in that which will never fade and never falter. I love you all."
785. Breath in my lungs
786. Her swallowed up by a t-shirt too big
787. Carrying a little girl in my arms that will soon be too big for such things
788. Drying her tears
789. Righting my wrong
790. A day without fits
791. His little squeal
792. My littlest man, army crawling already
Whole 30 -
Day 14 -
Breakfast - Eggs, Banana
Lunch - Chicken Carnitas, Lettuce, Salsa
Snack - 1/2 Carrot Cake Larabar
Dinner - Sexy Shrimp Scampi (lol, gotta love a name like that - and, oh my, sexy I'm not sure, but delicious, yes sir!), Broccoli
Day 15 -
Breakfast - Eggs, Banana
Snack - Strawberries, Blueberries, Oranges, Grapes
Lunch - Turkey Burger with Guacamole, Sliced Tomato, Plantain Chips
Dinner - Chili
Worst Part of these Days: Twice a week I cook dinner for another family as well, usually doubling whatever I make for ourselves. Twice this week I have made for them pasta when pasta is not our menu (because I thought they might actually appreciate the spaghetti in their spaghetti and meatballs). It wasn't until after I sent their meal off last night and I was cleaning up the stray strands of linguini for their scampi that I realized two nights in a row I had eaten a piece of pasta, per my method for testing done-ness. Darn it. I messed up and it was entirely unintentional (believe me, if I had meant to slip, it would have been with a little bit of Micaiah's pizza this evening, not two innocent pieces of plain pasta). Please forgive me. Also a bad moment - chili without cheese or fritos or crackers - who does that?!
Best Part of these Days: That Shrimp Scampi. Ooooh, yum! Also, we've made it past the hump! Onto the second half of our journey!