Thursday, December 15, 2016

Frontyard Miracles

A miracle happens every day in front of my home. I mean it's routine, on time, scheduled down to the minute, but it is extraordinary all the same. It doesn't come in with whistles or streamers or any other indication of its wonder, so it would be easy to miss. It's big and yellow, so it's hard not to see it, but a person could miss the miracle if they weren't tuned it. It just pulls up in front of my house and delivers my dreams come true every day. I'm doing my best to pay better attention to throw the confetti in my mind and remember how I dreamt about this for years and wondered if it would ever happen. I prayed and asked God for it and invited him to take the dream if it wouldn't reflect his glory. But in his infinite mercy, he let me have it. My dream came true, which absolutely reflects his glory even when I don't notice it. But I am reminded of it every day with the sight of the big yellow school bus.

It's not so much the bus that's miraculous, although door-to-door service is surely worth celebrating. It's who gets off the bus each day and runs up our brick path and into my arms. Two enchanting girls of our own. They're their own people now. Children yes, but individual, capable, opinionated people walk into our house every afternoon.
I'm privileged to be the first to hear their stories about the playground and lunch: the canvas on which their childhood is painted. So much of everything tender about school happens in one of these places and I'm entrusted with their stories.

It's as though my appreciation of them has come into crisper focus lately. As though the lens has been turned such that everything about them is sharper and clearer. I see it –  the miracle of their lives. Sometimes my breath gets caught in my throat when one of them excitedly tells me a story about how hilarious it was when her friend's milk cascaded off the cafeteria table and how she laughed so hard she had to cross her legs. Words are coming out of her mouth, sound is filling the room but all I see are crimson lips against milky skin crystal blue eyes framed in long lashes, auburn hair and deep set dimples. Miracles. Dreams come true.

Doctors sat in front of me and Dirk and told us we had a zero chance of conceiving a child. Zero. But they're here. They're right in front of us. Sometimes it's just too much to take and I have to scoop them up in my arms and before I can say a word, they say in exasperation, "I know, I know, you love us soooo much." And they can groan until forever and I'll never stop saying it, never stop appreciating the miracle of the breath in their lungs.

But the truth is, I do forget sometimes. The witching hour after school rolls in and tired groans over improper fractions or branches of government make me want to turn and run away...alone. Sometimes we argue about whether or not they have to brush their hair. It doesn't feel miraculous and extraordinary. It feels like a tremendous amount of work and I feel bad about how much I want to escape it. But I get it now. In order to appreciate the glitter of silver linings, you have to have clouds. I don't think I fully got that before, but now I do. We appreciate the summit because we remember the climb in the rain and the times we fell and slammed our knees on the rock face. But at the top of the mountain, everything is  clearer, we can see for miles, and our perspective is changed.

So yellow school buses, improper fractions, and scuffles about hygiene, I see you and I'm so glad you're here.

15 Comments so far - Add yours!

  1. So beautiful, my sweet friend. You're a "noticer" for sure. Grateful for your two sweet miracles, and grateful they have you and Dirk. - Scott

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    1. Such precious encouragement to me, dear friend. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment so beautifully.

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  2. As the mother of two daughters who also had issues with infertility and then received their miracles, I am forever grateful. I'm sure my girls understand and appreciate your thoughts and feelings. "Be thankful for the hard days; without them, we wouldn't notice the good days." The silver linings have a little more glitter because of the clouds. Enjoy this Christmas Season with those precious girls! Debbie Messmer

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    1. Oh, Debbie, I'm sorry your girls know this pain, but I'm so glad they have their sweet babies now. I love seeing the pictures of those little cherubs! Much love to you and yours!

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  3. I love this Melinda!!! So thrilled for you and Dirk to have your girls - you both are made to be parents. PS - we have the same battle about brushing hair in our house too.

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  5. So beautiful - thank you for sharing. I would say the blessing is full circle...not only for you and Dirk, but that your girls have you as parents. Being a "noticer" truly is one of the most important, yet overlooked, opportunities in this life. Can't wait to meet Dirk and see you and girls in a couple of weeks.

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    1. Thank you, sweet Tracy! I have no idea why brushing hair is considered such torture. Teeth brushing is not far behind. The humanity!!!

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    2. I love how you and Scott both introduced the characteristic of "noticer," something you both do so well. I agree it is one of the most important opportunities of this life. I cannot even wait to see you and for all of us to be together in a few weeks!

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  6. I just loved this! Thank you, for helping me start off my day with gratitude for the ones I have prayed to hold!

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    1. Thank *you* for taking the time to read and leading such an encouraging comment. <3

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  7. So beautiful! Thank you for sharing your miracles with us. I can very much appreciate your mountain top view.

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  8. Melinda, I love this piece. That witching hour that you described...those hours are my biggest struggle. And it tends to make me feel awful. This is a good reminder that I am lucky to have those hours with my girls. Thanks, friend.

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    1. And your girls are lucky to have you, sweet Amanda. Thank you for taking the time to read and to comment with such encouragement.

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