Those three words sum up the weekend. First: I am in helicopter hell. Those fun little brown “helicopters” that I loved so much as a child are now my biggest nemesis. Hours of beautifying our yard were ruined by these pesky little fluttering seedpods. When I say our yard and pool were covered, I’m talking layers, and I might add that they have not all fallen yet!
Hmm, do I want to talk about reunions or war next? I think I’ll go a bit serious and then end on a lighter note. And you thought the serious topic would be war. Think again. The “reunion” topic is the heavy one. So here it goes… a couple years ago, our family (meaning Bret and I along with our boys, by default) decided to cut ties with a relative. This was not some sort of punishment, nor did we see it as a forever sever. After some counsel and prayer and self-discovery, we decided to write this person a letter and let them know that we would not be visting, nor inviting this person over to our home, nor writing, calling, or generally communicating in any way for the time being. It was not an easy decision but one we felt was necessary for the health of our family. At first it was like we were finished with the business of broken-heartedness concerning this person. Like out of sight, out of mind. But we soon learned that cutting ties didn’t mean that the person’s affect on us just vanished. The wounds ran deep. And they were real. Yet with the help of many friends and a lot of prayer, we are moving out of the brokenness, and are learning how to be in a healthy relationship with this individual.
So this weekend, we had a reunion. Not “the” reunion necessarily. I’m not sure either of us were ready yet, but it happened anyway. It took place at another relatives birthday party, to which we were both invited. And because the birthday person is important to each of us, we put all differences aside to celebrate a milestone. It was strange walking into the room with this person sitting there. But not as strange as I thought it might be. In fact, it was so normal that I think the normalcy is what made it weird. Nothing was different. Nothing, that is, except for the God has been working in me and in Bret regarding this person. As for the “estranged” person, I have no idea. All we can do is work on ourselves. We long for this person to seek help, but we know now that we can’t force that any more than we can force the neighbor’s cat to join us for a swim in our pool. So we do what we can. We don’t give up our power. We set boundaries. And we live and let live. All of this sounds so easy, but it’s been a long road of tears and discovery. When I asked Bret how he felt about the reunion, he said, “It was the right thing – to go there.” I agree. And while we weren’t all frolicking in a field of poppies, it felt okay to be together. And feeling okay felt good.
On to war… Conner Prairie settlement has a weekend called, “Civil War Days,” where the entire place is transformed into the era of the Union versus Confederates, Abe Lincoln, “Dixieland”, and kettle corn. (Not so sure that last one has a thing to do with the Civil War but if not, that’s their loss and our gain.)
Our fam was planning on going with a couple of my friends and their kids. We were then going to meet another family. Somehow in the mix of things, MeMyselfandI ended up taking six boys to the event. I met the other family there – briefly – but with the boys, ages 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, and 5, it was next to impossible to stick together. So off I went with my crew, looking for the ideal place to view the Civil War battle re-enactment. I tried to shake the irritation that my other friends – and my husband – had all bailed. In the midst of these woe-is-me thoughts, I looked up the hill and caught this picture of the boys running in the wind on a sunny, spring day and all the irritation melted away. This is one of those photos that captures a moment that, camera or no camera, the picture would be etched in my memory forever. It is that beautiful to me! Six healthy boys, laughing and… just living!
– the Confederate Calvary starts to advance. They won the battle. Poor Union soldiers were outnumbered. One soldier acted out his death process so elaborately with convulsions and thrashing about that I think my youngest may need therapy! He even stuck his thumb in his mouth and he doesn’t even suck his thumb. At least not until today!