The sandwich generation. That's what they call us, because we're sandwiched between adult children and grandchildren and aging parents, all of which may need us at any point in time. And that can prove difficult.
(Um, not for nothing, but the reason this is happening to us is that our parents are LIVING LONGER, which isn't a bad thing... )
Jessica Tandy in Fried Green Tomatoes...
What a cool lady.
It's a good thing, so now we need to buck up and figure out how to 'time-share' our lives. Tricky, but not un-doable. If you are faint of heart or weak in body (think the garden of Gethsemane, willing spirit, tired human body, oops...) then ignore the parts where I yell at you. Gently, of course, because every now and then life hands us tough times and our job is to square up those shoulders, smile and accept.
Weeping may endureth for the night,
but joy cometh in the morning.
I first read that beautiful phrase in Anne of Green Gables, when Gilbert's life hung in the balance. I think I actually prayed for a book character. I'm not even close to kidding, that's how much I wanted Gilbert to be okay and Anne to realize what a treasure he was.
I'm such a girl.
Life doesn't stop because you're a writer.
News flash: It doesn't stop if you're a teacher, doctor or lawyer, either.
Regardless of profession, life can and will hand out reality checks and smackdowns. Your job, oh fearless pliers of pen?
Adopt the Boy Scout motto: Be Prepared.
Babies are born.
Few jobs offer a total pass for any length of time. When my mother was diagnosed with lung cancer, I had six kids, the oldest was seventeen, and I was working all day with students at our local Special Education cooperative and waitressing four nights a week. Dave had lost his job two years before and his new job was at half the pay. Ouch.
But there's no staving death so we all took turns helping. Cleaning. Organizing. Whatever she wanted done, got done. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, and Dickens was right on with that. And when she downgraded into 'imminent' mode, I took the time off of both jobs, even though that pay was sorely needed as you can well imagine.
Ya do what ya' gotta do and keep God as your compass throughout.
Every ship hits rough water. Staying the course isn't easy. Click HERE (but then come back to Seekerville!) to hop over to Inkwell Inspirations and see what was going on in my house right before I got "THE CALL"...
You might want a few Kleenex for the trip. I'm just sayin'...
I've often talked about working "ahead of the curve"... I stay ahead on deadlines and timelines because with two big families and six kids of my own, crises await us. BUT....
I prepare ahead as much as possible. It's a great coping strategy. And it works. And while I appreciate that scripture tells us Mary was wise to sit at Christ's feet, my Martha spirit says things need to get done. There are times during crises when the Marys of this world could and should man up and give the Marthas a break. And if you're a Mary who wants to argue the point, really?
Don't. Because just like Christ needed and wanted his friends around him in the garden, waiting, praying, staying the course, we need to push ourselves a little higher, stronger and faster during a crisis. Especially during elongated ones like debilitating illness. I know how rough it is. I know how fragmented and emotional things can become, to have the stress of work, family, home, medical procedures, doctors' appointments, visiting nurses, hospital beds in the living room, oxygenators, catheters...
Some say why me?
Now go HERE (but then come back for cookies and Easter candy!!!) if you want to see an amazing rendition I found this morning of Carrie Underwood and Vince Gill doing "How Great Thou Art" at the "Girls Night Out" country special... In our fast paced country of instant gratification THIS WAS THE PERFORMANCE THAT WENT VIRAL THIS WEEKEND...
Over a million views and the show just aired last week. Amazing. God. Grace. Hearts. Seeking....
And that fact should give us joy and hope!
I'm blogging today because Sandra's father has hit a rough sea. He's hospitalized and she needs to be there for him. And with so many of us going through the same thing, I just wanted to take some time and offer Seeker hugs. Prayers. Thoughts.
God's people aren't immune to hardship and loss, but we are blessed with the knowledge and grace he bestows on us.
And Jeter, but that's another blog. ;)
We know that days are numbered differently for all, but we're human. We're never quite ready to say good-bye and deal with the void left by someone's passing. And some days we're just plain tired. Or sad. A little ragged around the edges. Shoot, we all get that way.
Like a vial of sweet perfumed oil, God will fill that void with his warmth. I love the image of a "God-shaped vacuum within every man"...
When times get hard, when we're weary, when we're laden...
I love Simon and Garfunkel's "Bridge over Troubled Water". That album was Dave's first gift to me. We were 16 years old and he knew that song spoke to me. I still love it, and I see God that way, bridging those gaps, laying down his life for mine, unworthy as I am.
But not in his eyes. Never in his eyes!
Please know that the Seekers pray for you. That we share those ups and downs. That you're never truly alone, not with God and his children looking out for you! We're in this together, writers and readers, friends and colleagues. Partners in Christ.
Come on inside. Set yourselves down. Pepper sent along some cookies from Granny's services yesterday, Sandra had a fresh round of chocolate velvet coffee sent in from Dad's bedside and me? Well, I'm thinkin' on what kind of flowers best suit Mom's back garden.... Grab some coffee or sweet tea and tell us what's going on. I'm giving away two promise books today, two copies of Small-Town Hearts, a charming love story of finding home in small town USA.