It's a chilly evening here in Colorado...but beautiful. The snow hasn't fallen yet, the sky is golden ...casting it's bits of light on the edges of our pines and aspens. The branches are bare today...and will be for another few months. They are warm though...all bathed in light and freshness and God.
I've been slow today. Baking here a bit, washing there a bit. I've been reminiscing ... a lot...
remembering all of my babies, remembering the very real struggle of love and tiredness and growing at such a fast pace - my belly and my spirit.
I remember flowers.
Silky baby hair...warm little bodies ...always with me...
the sweet smell in my nose, the hands on my skin, the beauty of looking in their wondering eyes.
Feeling close to them...all of the time...even when my body was weary...
My heart was close to them.
It was a beautiful time of my life.
It was a time that I had always dreamed of - even with the loneliness, even with the bedbugs and the three autism diagnosis, even with the poverty level pay and the teeny tiny house.
It was beautiful because it was then...that I discovered myself.
It was slow...year after year giving up expectations..
listening to new ideas,
finding truth and sustainability and purpose.
I found love.
I met God in those years. I struggled with God in those years.
But mostly, I found Him.
Those sweet porch days.
Green bean picking days.
Bread making days.
Sleepless nights and potty training and grocery shopping with a one toddler clutching my hand
another in the cart, one on my back
and one in my belly.
One of life's greatest treasures is being able to look back at our lives...no matter our age or our "point" ~ and truly see the events, the circumstances that have made us who we are.
Looking at it from all sides...not just our own.
We can learn why it happened.
Life is a lesson...not a consequence.
We are the architects of our lives.
Many things are out of our control...
but in the end we choose if we keep building...or we adjust our plans and change our materials.
We choose if we throw our hands up, or ask for outside help...hire a new crew, find a new plot.
Some materials are garbage, we have the choice to seem them for what they are and say
"I deserve better building materials...this is crap."
Or we may find ourselves saying
"I've been blind...this whole time I've been looking at the view but ignoring the structure."
This is what I know...after building and rebuilding and storms coming and walls crashing.
This is what I know after fire, after rain.
This is what I know after climbing and clawing and crashing, then crawling on the ground defeated and torn and nothing.
I know why I am here.
It's something we all want to know...what's our purpose?
What does it all mean?
Reading the past, looking back at little blue eyes and trying my best to put light in all of them...
is my purpose.
It will always be that way.
I don't know why loving and building and growing sometimes feels so small.
My mind often says "but Alyssa, you need to do more. You need to find who you are and be important...share it with the world. Earn an income...be known."
Voices tell me that...some audibly, some not so audibly.
People, books, television, pictures in stores...
They all want me to know who I am tomorrow. Who I "could be" if I tried.
It makes my head confused.
It makes my heart sink because I wanted to be who I am being right now...
and it's not enough for them.
Then I'm quiet.
A voice says "Raise your hands."
My body feels like it's flying forward...into compassion, into security
My hands raise above my head, palms open and I sway to my heart song
He is here with me. I feel His presence. My heart is wrapped in large warm hands,
the world is glowing...and He's there.
...my mind needed You.
My heart drums...the first beat slow and I call
"if you made the heavens and the earth then surely I can trust you"
The beat fastens and I call
"If you formed my body and you love me with all of You then surely I'm worthy"
The drumming is faster and louder and I scream
"If you love them and You're in me then so can I"
The drumming is slow and all there is is peace.
Golden light filled peace all around me...because I know who I am through Him.
I look outside at the setting sun, swallows dancing and dipping in the yard - and I hear Him :
"You are who I made, and no one else's opinion matter's except Mine and yours."
Then I know...again...why I am here.
He has made it perfectly clear.
I don't have to explain my joy or my fulfillment to anyone.
My job isn't to convince.
My purpose is to live well.
My job is to nourish...myself, my babies, my partner, the strangers all around me.
My joy is to worship.
I raise my hands, face pointing towards the Sun, salty tears meeting my lips and allowing my heart to cry out
"Because of You I Am."
There is nothing small in that.
So, here I am...at the beginning of a new year...knowing exactly my aspirations.
Delighting in my purpose...not because it's easy, not because it pays well, not because it "looks good."
No, definitely not because of any of those things.
The beauty is I don't have to know why sleepless night and dirty dishes and curriculum delights my soul. I don't have to know why felted hoops and homemade laundry detergent ignite some kind of wildfire in me and I feel fuzzy with happiness.
I don't have to know why studying theology and herbs and medicine and the human brain makes me feel excited. I don't have to know any of that.
I just have to delight in it, because that's who I am.
Not an expert.
Not someone that can afford expensive toys.
Not someone that will change the world.
I have changed my life, and I pour love into my littles so that someday...
hopefully because of a bit of my influence...
they will be able to raise their palms to the sky and feel their Creator...
and be fulfilled by who they are to Him.
Happy belated New Years my friends.