I remember when my oldest brothers passed the big one seven years ago.
I thought they were ancient!
As a rather monumental birthday loomed ahead of me, I was feeling pretty good about it.
That is until my little brother brought a couple of his college buddies for the weekend.....
Ben and Robert graciously responded "yes ma'am" to me a number of times during their stay. I was sincerely flattered and their momma's would be proud of raising such respectful guys. However, since Ive know Ben since he was 7 as the kid who was always playing under the bleachers when I played high school basketball, I assured him he really didn't need to call me "ma'am".
"Im not that much older than you" I reminded him.
"How old are you?" he naturally inquired.
"Not quite thirty," I responded (hanging onto the shred of "twenty-something" that was left)
"No way!" Ben replied; "You seem way older than that".
My brother elbowed poor Ben in the gut and told him it would be an excellent time to shut up!
Sure enough, thirty came and went and I feel way older! Im bound and determined to grow old gracefully. Id like to think that wisdom comes with age. I hope there is an ounce of the "unfading beauty" of a gentle and quite spirit that Paul talks about.
But really. Being brutally honest, no one likes to let go of 20! Its been a good decade. Married. Babies. Moves. New Countries. New language. Ministry. More babies. New friends. Burnout. Learning to love unconditionally. Learning to accept unconditional love. Redemption. Brokeness. Healing. Experiencing Gods grace in a new way. Another baby. A miracle. Another new home. Lessons in trust....... Its been a wild ride orchestrated by the One who knows exactly the path He is taking me on toward sanctification. A never-ending process. A relentless love relationship!
In commemoration of this monumental and dreaded day, C helped my sister Katherine scheme to steal me and a couple in-town girlfriends away to Charleston for the weekend.
It was just the thing I needed. Girls and gab. Martinis and mudslides. Coffee and conversation. Staying up and Sleeping in. Shopping and Starbucks. My camera and my companions! What more could a girl want?
We had blissfully long conversations uninterrupted by little people. We walked the cobblestone streets of the historic district, enjoyed the southern charms of the city and indulged my hankering for shrimp and grits!
A gorgeous rooftop inn offered a gorgeous view of the city at sunset as we enjoyed an evening overlooking the harbor. So nice to occasionally get dressed at my leisure (without someone banging on the bathroom door or a fight ensuing in the next room) and go out with the girls unaccompanied by a diaper bag and without spaghetti stains on my dress!
A very special thanks to the daddies of the 10 children between us who graciously gave us a weekend of relaxation!
And then, just when the weekend couldnt possibly get any better, my sweet, amazingly gifted, talented loving sister Katherine gave me a gift.
A painting she has labored over for months.
I opened it and sobbed. (and Im not a cry-er)........ Can you see why I did?
Im in L-O-V-E with this sweet lil' cherub!