Our Girlie was 3-1/2... and life was hard...
Major things were shifting...
everything that we thought
was a solid foundation
was beginning to crumble
and we needed to get out of dodge.
As in N-E-E-D-E-D...
Things that we thought we knew for sure
were becoming less black and white,
and while I wouldn't call it a crisis of faith
- we were in search of some assurances just the same!
Assurances in what counted most
and that we were hearing and listening
and communicating well
- with God, with each other, with ourselves...
Our precious girlie, at less than 4, decided it was a good time to go through those Terrible Twos and she could sense the tension in the air. We had lived our life on purpose and cultivated an atmosphere of peace and love and honor, but when stress and uncertainties came rushing in... it was just too much for all of us.
Now - I will say - my hubby was looking over this post and he got as far as the second line when he asked - "What was goin' on then? I don't remember things falling apart?"
Bless his heart.
And they weren't really... not literally - but there were long moments and sleepless nights where it sure FELT like it was all unraveling on us. It wasn't. It didn't.
But part of why I believe it didn't is because we saw the danger
and knew we needed a change of scenery - some fresh air - and just TIME.
Time to breathe in deeply... hold on, and slowly exhale.
We needed time to reconnect not as Mommy and Daddy
- but as friends and lovers,
and we needed to walk hand in hand somewhere where no one knew us,
and we needed to sleep in and drive for long stretches at a time
and listen to James Taylor and feel the wind in our hair
and Just. Breath. Already.
Somehow (-God!) things all fell into place and we had friends and family in town who were more than willing to take shifts in keeping our girlie... she was excited because it meant endless sleep overs and staying at Grandma's and who can know how many fun things... her excitement made it easier to go, for sure - but either way - it was what all three of us needed!
As I packed up our suitcases, I wrote out little notes - with a little gift or snack or something small that she could open each day so she would know that we were thinking of her... praying for her... thankful FOR her... We weren't even sure why we needed to get out of town - but we knew this without hesitation! We rented an amazing car (thanks to a mistake on their part, we got a sweet free upgrade) and we headed out for Highway 101...
Somewhere along Highway 101 - with the gorgeous Pacific Ocean on my right, and my Honey to my left... I found what I was looking for! A restoration of Peace... of Trust... of Knowing that He was in control even when it may look or feel like that is the farthest thing from the truth!
For me - when I go to the beach - there is something Holy there. It is a meeting place where He lovingly reminds me - He visually reminds me - that He's got this... whatever 'this' may be! I cannot be on the shoreline, waves lapping at my ankles, that I don't think of the Scripture in Job that says, "Thus far you shall come, and no farther. And here shall your proud waves stop" (Job 38:11)
Driving through the Red Wood Forest and over the Golden Gate Bridge... stopping off in Laguna Beach, and at Dana Point, and walking the grounds of the Basilica of San Carlos Borromo de Carmelo Mission - the history there, the creation that is simply just showing off and over the top... the loving reminder that God commands the wind and the waves... it brought me back to center!
When we relaxed in San Clemente, toes in sand, strolling the pier, and we enjoyed a slow Italian dinner, romance was restored... not that it was gone completely - but there is something vital about MAKING time and planning it out and keeping it a priority. It's all good in theory when you have a toddler - but it's not always feasible. Date Nights sounded good - and they got easier... but in that season - with all that was coming at us - we had hunkered in as a family and God knew we needed a Second Honeymoon of sorts!
We attended a conference that poured faith right back into us... we connected with family and got to see things this small-town, desert dweller had only read about and I loved every single minute of it! (Well - except the panic attack going over the bridge into San Francisco... and the time I asked Dave to literally just punch me in the face when we were caught in rush hour traffic outside of L.A. - He graciously said no.)
We dropped off the car at the airport (again - thanks to a 'mistake' - we didn't have to pay that crazy drop off fee!) and we boarded a plane - my first ever! - and we flew back to Seattle... and headed for home - and for our precious baby girl.
We returned home... and learned how to hold on to Home
everywhere we went from then on out!
What about you? Do you take trips without the kids? Do you plan Date Nights or Wknd Escapes from time to time? Sometimes, it's just as easy as a (slow) walk around the block together to reconnect... it can make ALL the difference!
Speak Life. Be Love. Shine On.~Karrilee~
All photographs copyrighted by Karrilee @ Blessed Memories
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each post is linked at the bottom!