There hasn't been a new post here for several months...I've been blogging our family's adventures on our son's new (old) farm over at a blogspot dedicated to it (find it HERE). But I thought I'd share a quick summary on what we're up to these days.
First of all, I am beyond tired. Physically, emotionally, I am often spent. While I have for years dreamed of a life in the country, and am now basically living it, it isn't exactly what I was dreaming about. Not that I over-romanticized the amount of work that it would be...I didn't. But the life I dreamed of was mine...it was ours (mine and my dh's). The life that I live now, on the other hand, is one of service, and of sacrifice. The farm isn't mine. It's my son's. And it is, simply put, too much for a "green" 21 year old to do all on his own. So, until he and the Lord decide otherwise, I need to be there to help.
This means that I cannot be at my own home, which dh and I would desperately like to sell, but cannot, as it needs much time and attention and work before it would be ready...and I am not here to do what needs doing, and my dh is working so much that he's not able to, either.
It means that my dh has to be a "bachelor" of sorts. I come back once a week, for a brief 24 stay. He seldom has time to come up to the farm because of work, and other obligations here at home. It is hard. And I'm growing weary. But this is a time of service, of giving, and of sacrifice, praying that the Lord will continue to guide and direct our steps as He has over these many years of preparation for just this very time. We have times of fun and joy, and as many times of discouragement and downcast spirits. We see the Lord's hand of provision in so many ways, and yet I still, at times, wonder how He's going to pull this off. Notice that I lay this burden upon Him...I am beyond my strength. I do what I do for Christ. I don't do it for me, I don't do it for my son. I do it for my Lord, because He has told me to.
Just this last week-and-a-half, during the coldest days of winter this area has seen in decades, we were blessed to take our last "full family" vacation with our farmer son joining us. Once the livestock joins the farm this spring and fall, he will no longer travel with us. We had a beautiful and mostly sunny and warm vacation to the Bahamas and then Florida. On the days that were too cold and windy to swim in the ocean or the pool, I thanked God every hour that I was enjoying 60 degree temperatures along with the wind and rain, while it was 80 degrees colder in Illinois and Wisconsin! The vacation was a wonderful time to reconnect with my full family, and to slow down and savor a two week time of rest in the middle of this year of sacrifice. Our second day in Florida was 80 degrees with a chilly but not impossible-to-stand ocean. We spent the day on the beach basking in the sun and enjoying the rough surf. I watched a number of "silver heads" strolling the beach together. They looked to be 10 to 15 years ahead of me and my dh. I pray that in 10 to 15 years he and I will be in a place to be able to come back to this our favorite little spot in Florida and stroll the beach together...just the two of us. For now, we are still in the incredibly stretching and emotionally exhausting years of launching young adults. So our life is not our own, and seems to be turned on its head. It is difficult to be so scattered, and tomorrow we will begin to scatter again as our youngest heads back to university. I will carry my warm memories with me throughout the rest of this winter apart.
From the cruise, it was on to our beloved Vero Beach...
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