Treading water

We’re taking our house off the market.  Sigh…
Around here, the market is TOUGH!!!  There are a couple factors completely out of our control making the selling even harder.  And we are burned out.  Tired of living in a house we are not really living in.  I want to put my family pictures back up and decorate my gorgeous mantel again and leave a mess overnight if I want to.  I want people to quit driving down our driveway for a while.
So we are taking a break for the winter, starting now.

We have some big plans up our sleeve while we wait these few months.  Those will be revealed when the time is right, and then when spring comes we will begin again.

Besides, there is a baby about to be born into this family and that deserves some serious attention!

You all know by now how much I love Lake Michigan.  If you’ve read my summer blog posts at all, you know that there is nowhere on this earth that I would rather be than at my beach, swimming in the lake.  Thanks to this lack of a home sale, I had a delightful summer here.  Well, other than that month of cold that deprived me.

me and my beach 2Two days ago, I found myself alone, happily tucked up in the beach grass, just me and God.  I had sun time and water time.  Best day kinda stuff. Image

As I was going out into the chilly water, I was thinking of the different approaches my family has to getting in.  With the water temp usually hovering between 67 and 70 (occasionally climbing up to a sweltering 72), it takes some courage to go in.  And it’s not like a pool where you can just jump!  You have to walk out and try to acclimate with waves that splash higher into dry, still-warm regions of your body, and it can take some fortitude, let me tell ya!
My husband has what I call the “Lake Michigan Walk.”  Oh, how I wish I could show you.  It makes me laugh out loud every single time I see it.  His arms are lifted at the shoulders, his elbows held up by two invisible strings, and his whole body goes up and then down again with each rise and fall of the water.  It’s fantastic.  And it never fails.
My oldest and youngest always blaze on in at full speed.  When they get to a depth of about three feet, they dive under.  And they do this in May or June when the water may be a balmy 60 degrees.  Not kidding.  Then, my youngest will turn around and start the badgering of Momma.  “Come on, Mom!  Go under!  Aren’t you gonna swim, mom?  C’mon!  Get all the way wet!”
Because there I am up to my waist, happily standing in the sun, half-refreshed, half-warm.  So Happy.  Very Content.  Except this niggling need I have to go deeper.  This little voice in my brain that says, “There’s more, and you don’t want to miss it!  What if you don’t surrender to this and you go home and for the next month, Michigan is 60 and rainy and you will have missed it!”

So, here’s my strategy.  For anywhere from 5-20 minutes (depending on how cold I am), I think about it.  I stand there and wait until the time is just right.  And then I get to the best, bravest part.
I pick my wave and jump.  Head first, headlong into the cold.  Deep into the water that mutes the rest of the world.  I swim suspended in a place where no one else can be. And I come up refreshed and so happy.

There are days like yesterday, however, where there are no real waves.  I stand there and can’t figure out if I want to just stay warm where I am or go all the way under, and there’s no defined wave to spur me on.  No clearly defined moment telling me which way to go.

Kinda like our life right now.  There is no clear answer.  Obviously, the timing isn’t quite right for us to move.  The right family who needs this house isn’t quite ready for it.  Perhaps there are some things being worked out in the six of us before we are ready for the next step.
But this time, we don’t get to pick our wave and jump.  It’s not about being afraid to go all the way in, it’s about surrender to a bigger plan.
It’s completely out of our control.  That’s an interesting place to find yourself, let me tell ya.  You either surrender to it or you rail against it.  I’ve done a bit of each, honestly.  From a place of frustration and regrouping to a place of relative peace.  Again, You-Who-knows-best,  I say that I trust you.  Here’s where the water meets the sand, so to speak.

So, we’re gonna tread water for now.  Not all the way wet, not all the way dry.  Just chillin’ here waiting for the chance to dive.
In the meantime, enjoying the view…

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