Time to Take a Crazy Drive:
I recently went on a spur of the moment road trip to see my family. This is not something that I do. EVER! My Dad called up and said he had the coming week off, and that we should drive down. I hadn’t seen my Dad in about 4 ½ years, and he hadn’t even met my youngest daughter.
At first, I considered tossing the idea away as it couldn’t be more than a pipe dream and far from reality, one of my Dad’s hopeful thoughts. Considering it is a two-day drive to their house!!! It is 24 hours according to mapquest, but that is non-stop driving (which is not gonna happen with 2 little kiddos).
My husband, Jared, had the days off already since we normally go camping at this time of year for his birthday and my parents paid for the gas for us to drive down and a hotel stay on the way. Even the packing seemed easy peasy.
Everything just worked! We left the following day. It was beyond crazy, but I was oh so at peace about it.
Time to Remember and Reflect:
The trip, for me, was about more than just seeing my family, though that part was wonderful. The drive there and back brought me closure on a time in my life that caused me great pain, but also changed the very direction of my life. Driving that road took me back to those places of hurt, and healed them in a way that only retracing those steps could.
To summarize the chain of events in my life that tried to break me it went a little like this:
- Miscarriage of my first baby.
- Moving from my hometown to a bigger city and thriving in my job, but doing life my own way and ignoring God’s warnings.
- Finding out I was pregnant on 4th of July weekend.
- Losing my job the following Monday.
- Selling everything by August and leaving with our two vehicles our two cats and a small uhaul to move ½ way across the country to live with my parents.
- Breaking down FOR A WEEK on the way there.
- Nothing really working there as far as starting anew. I was basically on bed rest. Had to have shots in my back every week . Through it all drawing near to God in a way I never had. Giving in to His plans. Mine had completely imploded.
- We ended up moving back to our hometown. It was still difficult from then on, but God has done amazing things in my family’s life. I still struggle so much with everything from my battle with Lyme to all of the rough terrain that can go with being a mom. God is teaching me through it all to continue to trust Him. Beauty will rise from the ashes.
Time to Go Home with Head Held High:
On our way home from our trip to see my parents, we drove the road I had taken the day I lost my job so many years back. That was the day when the total destruction had begun. I remembered pulling over to the side of the road and tears exploding from my face. I had felt the weight of failure and disappointment like I had never experienced.
It had just gotten worse from there. On our cross-country move, we had broken down for a whole week in the middle of nowhere with nothing. I had such fear I would miscarry again from all of the stress. We didn’t know each day if we would have a place to sleep or a meal to eat. Current day, when we drove to my parent’s house on this vacation, I sort of held my breath as we drove through there. I did not want to ever think of that place again when I left it the first time. On the way home from our trip, I saw it in a different light. The town was right on the river and there were some beautiful bridges. I saw such a beauty driving through there that I hadn’t remembered at all from my memories of that place.
I held my head high this time. I thought about the person I was back then – young and a bit naïve. I thought I knew pain, but I had no clue of what was to come in my life. I feel like a warrior re-visiting the scenes of my first battles. Looking at my scars, I felt a bit of sadness and pride. Never had the saying “this too shall pass” given me more comfort. It did pass. Life continued on. My world crashed completely down and God rebuilt it better than I ever could have.
The song “Landslide” by Stevie Nicks played on the radio on our trip home. My parents had always played it when I was a child, and I had always loved it, but never really understood the lyrics. For the first time listening to it, I connected. It clicked. I thought about time passing and just that moment of reflection hit me. I felt the shift of my life. Like a chapter in a book closing and a fresh one being written.
Just now, as I read through explanations of the song’s lyrics from Stevie herself and other people, I am even more struck with the deeper meaning and how it is meant for me at this very moment. First of all, after traveling for days on flat, flat land, I have never missed the snow covered hills (mountains) of my home more (even though they do not have snow on them right now). The majestic beauty of my home constantly confirms to me that I made the right decision when we returned to live here.
When reading through the lyric explanations, I read one woman’s description of how she sees her children growing up before her eyes and soon they will be gone. I struggle constantly with being a mom. It is one of my greatest challenges in life. I have chosen to focus on it as my priority right now and I know in my deepest soul that being with them, in each moment, is precious.
The other thing the same lady spoke about was seeing her Mom’s reflection in the hills. My Mom and I have been through a lot, and we haven’t always agreed. The older I get, I see her more and more in the mirror. This trip was momentous between us because this time it was different. I don’t have it all together, but I am grown. I have a family of my own. I am happy. I think she sees that and there is an unspoken truce between us, a new understanding of one another. I certainly see the sacrifices she has made for me. The struggle in her life is real to me. The mountains she has climbed are reflected in my eyes.
The Landslide Brought Me Down – No, It was the Grace of God:
Time has brought it all down. It always has and it always will. They say “Time Heals.” I think Time Loves. God is the beginning and end. He is the fabric of time, and I believe He is the resolution for it all.
Thinking back to the first time I took that drive, my painful walk of shame, it was almost 7 years ago, exactly. How much I have changed in those 7 years. I have overcome so much. “I climbed a mountain, and I turned around.”
I wonder about the journey ahead. What will I see when I look back 7 years from now? What will I see that I conquered? Will it be Lyme disease or my personal fears? I don’t know. I am still a work in progress. “Can I handle the seasons of my life?” I hope the next one is one filled with wonder and beauty. I hope that I can start to release the songs in my heart. Maybe someday someone will read or hear something I’ve written and see their life through eyes of beauty and reflection.
Thank you Mom and Dad for such a wonderful trip. Thank you, Jared, for being my husband and my strong tower through it all. Thank you God for showing me “what is Love.” I know more now than ever, and I hope to experience it more and more on every road I travel. Thanks Stevie Nicks for capturing a moment in your life that translates perfectly to this moment in mine. You are ALL beautiful and wonderful to me.
Stephaney - Me Flying Free
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