Day 30: Arrington, Tennessee.
If you were to look in the album “Beautiful Things” on my phone, you’d take a peek into a special heart-space of stories. The images aren’t the most beautifully composed or perfectly focused, but each one takes me to a specific place and time – the first time my grandson saw snow, the delicate pink powder blush I take with me everywhere I go to brighten faces after tears have fallen, the stranger on the plane who now wears my Giving Key, the Christmas Eve in London I saw Santa take communion. Every photo is an Ebenezer of sorts – a moment of bravery, of bold dreams, of big steps.
And of breathing room.
September 4, 2009. It was our first Labor Day visit to friends in Tennessee – friends that had only been business acquaintances a year before. So much had happened in those twelve months. I discovered what it felt like to be deemed unnecessary as part of a downsizing plan at a global nonprofit. Brad and I learned what it meant to serve – without agenda or plan or caring calendar – when a family we had just met lost an incredible husband and dad to cancer. There was my own health scare and emergency surgery to remove part of my thyroid, mounting pressure at my husband’s company as it continued to be acquired and spun, the joy of having our son and daughter-in-love in the same city as us for the first time in years, and the unlikely celebration of things like tattoos on my “50 before 50” list.
And this picnic made a toast to it all – and to the God-crafted friendship born from it.
Five years later. So very much more has happened in those months. We’re still toasting that friendship. And it still gives me breathing room.
Where do you find breathing room? What would be found in your “Beautiful Things” folder?
Well, tomorrow is the last day of the #31days project – thank you for journeying with me. The season has been healing for me. I’ve prayed for the stories that were stolen to return, and the list is growing slowly. And new stories have emerged – I am ready to let them be revealed in words and images. I’d love to stay in touch with you and tell you about those stories. Be sure to subscribe to my blog. I’ll share some fun news with you soon!