I feel like a lot has happened since I last wrote anything down. I know it’s been a while.
As life becomes more settled here, I find myself overwhelmed with guilt. The more at home I feel, the further from home I feel. And I don’t like it. Let me give you a few examples.
Last week Paul registered our car here in Texas and went ahead and got his Texas license. Something so ridiculously necessary made me sad. It was as though those Texas plates were what solidified my move, like all this time, that’s what really made it a reality for me. Prior to that, did I think I was on some sort of extended vacation? (With all the kids? Yea right!) Regardless of the futility of my reasons, I was sad. I still get a little sad when I walk out of the house and see those plates attached to my very New York car. The car is very New York because I am very New York and I feel guilty for leaving my New York-ness behind. I really am though. I feel myself starting to speak a little differently and I’ve even started to get used to the much slower pace. I haven’t felt rushed in a long time and its really nice. All that said, and I still do have my New York drivers license. Ha! Who the heck wants to drag the kids to do that!? Seriously though, you have no idea how many hours Paul was out of the house doing all that. It was hours and hours! It probably equated to a full work day. That truly is part of the reason. It has to be done though. I have about 20 more days before I’m breaking the law so I’ll wait until day 19 in true procrastinator fashion. I mean, I could use a new license photo though…
Okay, all the technicalities of moving aside, making friends is also causing me guilt! I feel like I’m starting to replace my people. And that’s reeeeeaaaaally hard. Really hard. Over the last few weeks I’ve made genuine connections with people. Great people, awesome people even. In doing so, I realized that I’d kind of been happily avoiding genuine human contact. If I form new friendships, that says something about my old ones. It says, that they’re old. It says, that I need to fill in the gaps in our relationships that have been left by the move. Obviously I still have these old friends. But everything is different now. There are no more impromptu lunch hour dates, no more late night coffee chats, no more summer beach trips, no more play dates that existed solely so our children would occupy each other while us mommas caught up, no more. The whole togetherness part of these relationships can’t exist anymore. We have to learn to be together very differently, and we will. But I still need the person to person connection with a community of women! So I feel guilt as I find it.
I don’t even think I realized how much I was hurting over the whole thing until I started the “Connect Class” at my church 2 weeks ago. It’s a class that once a week for 6 weeks, takes you through what community/friendship looks like biblically. Then by the end, you’re grouped off into a Missional Community of men and women you’re supposed to grow in Jesus with, using all of the biblical tools that you learn. Well, during these classes, much of the discussion centers around past experiences with community. I don’t even participate in the responses to those questions. I physically can not. Because I would sob. And who wants to be friends with the girl who sobbed at connect class? Not me. I’d avoid that person. It’s been hard going through these classes, knowing that I had exactly what we’re learning about. This kind of biblical community, where you love each others souls more that you love the friendship, that’s what I had back in New York. I had women who loved me right to Jesus over and over, women who preached the Gospel to me when I couldn’t preach it to myself, women who made me a better wife and mother because they weren’t afraid to challenge me! These ladies have been the iron to my iron! Aaaaaaand now I’m crying. Ugh!
I mean to be fair, they should be all bent out of shape over this too. I’ve been told I’m a pretty awesome friend, so losing me is probably just as tough for them as this whole thing is for me. Also, you should applaud my humility. It’s a gift.
Paul is taking this connect class with me because he’s a trooper and he loves me very much. He also knows how important it is that we’re part of a community together. That being said, It’s definitely not been easy for him to sit through either because when they’re asking a question like, “How has your relationship with Jesus shaped the way you are a friend to others?,” he doesn’t really know how to respond. Should he say that he’s not a believer? Should he be so blunt as to say that he doesn’t have a relationship with Jesus? Does he get to take a pass? Luckily, we ran out of time before it was his turn to share a response. And luckily, Christianity isn’t a prerequisite to being able to have or be a friend, so he was able to talk through a lot of the other questions. If he were a different man, or loved his wife less, he might have decided never to go back. I mean, I’m saying this, but he might still decide he doesn’t want to go back. And obviously if he did make such a decision, it wouldn’t mean he loved me less or was less of a man ha! I’m fairly outgoing and it’s been pretty uncomfortable for me, so I would imagine its far more uncomfortable for him. Not only because he doesn’t share our beliefs but also because he’s such an introverted person to begin with.
I just want us both to have friends. Good friends. Paul has one friend and he is a good friend. But like me, he’s gonna have to find a friend to fill in the gaps that this move created. He’s a dude, so I don’t know that he’s feeling it quite the same as I am but we need friendships. We do. It’s just how we were created. Slowly but surely, God is gifting me with some and I want Paul to have that too. Maybe I’m being ridiculous and I shouldn’t be so concerned with it, but even so, I am concerned.
In other news, we haven’t had a day cooler than 94 degrees in weeks and I love it, I’m so behind on folding laundry, I drink my coffee black now (woohoo!), I’m still sleeping on the couch downstairs with the dog and this summer I’m reading through 1st and 2nd Corinthians, so be prepared for lots of entries about that.
Till next time, I’ll be over here, gettin all Texan and running on Jesus and (black) coffee y’all!