Monday, March 31, 2014

The Tides,They Ebb And Flow

The Tides are here again, they ebb and flow, but they are back and bringing with a flood of sadness and a yearning that longs for more.  Not more things.  As Ann Voskamp shared today with her readers, "We don't need more things, we need more meaning".  No, this wanting of more brings with it a deep ache....in the heart.  We long with intensity to hold our family close.  There is a grieving that comes in with the Tides~ for that which we do not have, that which we miss.

None of our children, in-loves, or precious grandchildren live where we call home.  They are scattered near and far, lives full.  Unlike many of our neighbors, family, or friends, we cannot jump into the car to take in a sports event or concert.  We do not gather for Sunday dinner or birthday celebrations.  Our relationships are mainly nurtured via text, email, phone calls, or a rare "FaceTime" event on iPad. 

Our loving five families are all working at good jobs, active in community and school, have great friends and four of five are very involved in their churches.  And in all but one family the grand kids have other grandparents who are able to spend a great deal of time with them.  Having that comfortable interaction that comes with the familiar.  The "extra" is found in the ordinary, as Ann Voskamp says.

Our lives have changed a great deal lately, with the return of our health now making it possible for us to visit our family more.  Not weekly, not monthly, but being able to travel has made it possible for our once or twice a year in person connections to increase.  We are grateful.  Yet the Tides still come and we struggle with staying joyful in the loss of what we desire for what is real.  At times we are challenged to find the "extra" in the ordinary

What really stops the flow of sadness and brings the extra into the ordinary is counting it all joy.  Looking back and remembering......looking ahead and planning.....centering on the now.....and counting the many blessings with gratitude.

Giving thanks that our children are so blessed with full, healthy, vibrant lives....loving spouses, beautiful children, good jobs and nice homes.  We count it all joy that they have a strong relationship  with Jesus, their family, grandparents that are familiar, and good friends.  Full lives.

We count it all joy that technology, whether a phone or an iPad, makes it possible  for us to connect with loved ones.  And as I look over at my husband of nearly 46 years sitting in his favorite chair, I count it all joy that we have a deep and loving relationship with each other, a strong relationship with God, our health returned, and a future that raises up the opportunities for the extra in the ordinary.  Counting it all joy.   And with the counting the Tides of grief will ebb....and joy will replace the sadness.

I am linking up with Ann today....

12 comments:

elizabeth said...

So glad I popped in here from Ann's. For a season our family was spread out all around the world, literally! Now everyone is living close and I realize how blessed I am to be with my grandchildren so much. My heart aches for those, like you, who don't. God bless and comfort you and bless you with good health so you can go see those grandkids!

Debbie Huffaker said...

We are so blessed that our only daughter and her husband live only about 10 minutes drive from us....with our 4 grand's. I can't imagine not getting to see/hug/hold/kiss those sweet little faces at least 3 times a week! Prayers for you, sweet Lady!

Jennifer Dougan said...

Hi Renee,

Hopping over from Ann's link up. I imagine you miss your family, and they sounds special. May your next trip to see them come soon, and linger long. :)

Family is a treasure.
Jennifer Dougan
www.jenniferdougan.com

NanaNor's said...

Dear Renee, I love your seeking joy and contentment in your daily life. My mommas heart hurts for you-that you don't get to see your children and grands very often. I am so blessed that both daughters families live within 5 miles of us. I know you find ways to bridge the distance though. I'm praying for total healing and that you will have lots more opportunities to visit them.
I haven't been reading Ann's posts lately-so I will go back and catch up.
Hugs,
Noreen

Anita Johnson said...

I love your honesty here and I feel so similar at times. You wrote beautifully...yes, remembering these gifts and counting it all joy!

Sharon said...

Such a great post, Renee.

I'm able to see my sons, and new daughter-in-law, about once a month. It's a blessing that I don't take lightly. But still, sometimes I SO miss the days when my boys lived at home. I miss their conversation, their laughter.

Yes, the tides change. And sometimes, the low tide is there. Thank goodness that those times don't last.

I console myself sometimes by reminding myself that one day, in eternity, I'll have forever to be with all of them!!

GOD BLESS!

Renee said...

Elisabeth, thank you for coming by and for your thoughtful words......

Renee said...

Thanks Debbie for your prayers. How blessed to have your precious grands so close!

Renee said...

Thank you Jennifer.....God bless!

Renee said...

Hi Noreen
Thanks so much for your sweet words and prayers. What a blessing to have your grands so close. I expect moving from CA was head but the rewards so worth it!,

Renee said...

Thank you Anita! Sometimes I wonder if I am too transparent, but alas it is how God created me!

Renee said...

Yes, Sharon...eternity will bring all of us together! We hope to make plans to visit all families this year again. The more I see them the more I want to see them!