Making Beautiful Day Ten {Ready}

Our house has been on the market for 43 days now. There’s a multiplicity of reasons why we are selling but the main reason is we need more walls. We have three kids ages 5, almost 3 and 1. We’ve tried a multiplicity of ways arranging the kids to make our simple but beautiful 3 bedroom home work but the personalities of our kiddos has made it a bit of a challenge.

It’s  a really interesting time to be selling a house. In our area of the globe, multiple large companies are moving their corporate offices this way making the demand for a home pretty significant. And yet, our home hasn’t been snatched up. That’s hard for anyone…add three little kids who have two-thirds of their toys in boxes in the garage, a little boy who currently sleeps on the pull out couch, and the need to keep the house pristine all. the. time. and it’s hard.

Making the decision to sell our home is one we thought and prayed a great deal about. We sought wisdom and the prayers of others and truly believe it was the right move to make. Unfortunately our timeline doesn’t appear to be a very quick timeline. We are so READY to get to a more stable place. Being totally honest here….given the current layout of our house means when the kids go to bed we are pretty much banished to our bedroom for risk of waking kids. On top of this challenge, every time there’s a house showing (we’ve had approximately 35 in 43 days) we have to leave the house. Sometimes it’s just an hour. Other times it’s the whole day! Since the weekend is the popular time to go look at homes, we haven’t had a weekend uninterrupted at home in 6 weeks. The kids are worn out. Marshall and I are worn out. The stress of keeping the house clean and being out of the house for long stretches at a time is draining.

We are ready to move on. We trust God. We thank God for a smart realtor. We hope for good news….soon.

Making Beautiful Day 7 {Love}

It’s been a rough weekend at the Parker Household.

I’ll spare you the details but lots of laundry, gatorade and cuddles are taking place as everyone except sweet little Devin has experienced food poisoning or a stomach bug or something!

Dom literally threw up on Marshall’s back. Twice.

Oops. I said I would spare you the details.

But I share this specific incidence because of what it illustrates to me. When Dom was born, we saw this beautiful human being who was absolutely perfect. 10 fingers. 10 toes. I checked at 3am the night he was born. I needed to be sure. Fast forward almost 5 years and we would not have been able to articulate how much we love that kid even when he loses his lunch all over us. Parenting can get very messy. Literally. We wouldn’t, however, change our plans to have kids based on the amount of spit up, dirty diapers, lost sleep and lost lunches we have and will continue to experience.

Love is deeper and greater than our messes. I’m thankful that God doesn’t wince when we lose our lunch on him. He takes us in his arms, cleans us up a bit and tells us that he loves us.

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Making Beautiful Day 6: Possible

My dad on my wedding day.
My dad on my wedding day.

I’m sitting here watching the most recent version of the Cinderella story. I have to say it is both beautiful and heart wrenching.

I always knew that Cinderella lost her parents. I always knew that her stepmother was mean and her stepsisters were a bit nasty but wow! This movie brings so much perspective to the reality of dear Ella’s plight as an orphaned girl left in the selfish and neglectful care of people who neither wanted her nor deserved her.

There’s a scene where she is thoroughly exhausted and broken. Tears streaming down her face, she leaves her house to ride her horse. She comes across a stag and although she is in the depths of heartache she shows great compassion. As her mother told her in her dying days: “Have courage and be kind”.

And so she finds courage despite her difficult circumstances and she shows kindness to her evil stepmother, her stepsisters, a frightened stag, even little mice. In her darkest moment, she still shows kindness to an absentminded old woman.

My dad’s birthday was Wednesday October 14th. He passed away nearly 5 years ago. In my heart I hold many memories. Some are so precious. Some are painful.

On his best days, my father knew no stranger and his deep belly laugh would turn heads.

Sadly on his darkest days, the very ones deserving of his greatest kindness were often the recipients of words and actions that cut deep leaving scars that continue to seek healing.

For me, it has been a constant battle to wade through the realities of my dad’s mental illness and the very real hurts that I experienced.

On the day my father passed away, my mom found a handwritten note posted in the bathroom with a quote from one of his favorite movies: “I choose to be pleasant”.

I may not have been able to fully experience on earth the daddy I hoped to have but I know that he wanted to be that person.

I can choose to be bitter or choose to honor the beauty that was his laugh, and hold with great fondness our mutual affection for Boston Creme Donuts and treasure his Donald Duck impression that would have kept my kids in stitches for days on end.

Life, indeed, is not always easy. And we all have a past that may not be as beautiful as we would care to admit.

The future, however, is full of promise…full of the most wonderful possibilities. I can love my children with reckless abandonment, I can join my husband on this grand adventure of marriage, I can suck the marrow out of every sunrise and sunset and have the courage to be the woman God has called me to be.

And that’s beautiful.