"Nearly 80 years ago young Ernest Hemingway went trout fishing on a remote Michigan river. The fishing was good, the inspiration priceless: From that trip flowed the classic short story titled 'Big Two-Hearted River.' His story actually describes the Fox, which remains, as Hemingway called it, 'the good place.'"
—From "Hemingway's Many Hearted Fox River," June 1997, National Geographic magazine
Favorite place of all...
South Manistique Lake from the front yard of my parents' house
JP had yesterday off and requested I not make any plans so we could spend the evening together. He cleaned the house (even swept and vacuumed), put away all the dishes, started the dishwasher and made curry lentil soup -- one of my favorites. It looked and smelled so nice when I walked through the door. He was waiting impatiently for me and as soon as I dropped my school stuff we headed for Big Lots. It was kinda funny. We loaded a handbasket with small items then decided we didn't need any of it, so we left without buying anything. Next we went to Jo-Ann Fabrics - he said he wanted to paint, but he had an ulterior motive - which was to find a project for me. He decided he wanted a copy of Monet's Poppy Field at Argenteuil painted for the wall in his computer room. We bought a 30" x 40" canvas, I picked up a few new paintbrushes of varying sizes and stiffness and we drove to the dorm so I could pick up my paints from storage. I haven't painted in ages. I don't know how this will go. I have to be in the mood so we'll see. Right now my easel is set up in a corner of the dining room but it takes up a lot of space so I may need to start converting the extra bedroom into my art space - if this bug really bites. Here's the actual version:
I'll post pictures of my version as it progresses. Right now I just have faint tracings to give perspective before I start putting down base paint. We shall see. Monet was an Impressionist which means I have freedom to paint my impression, right?
Yesterday when I was testing the absorbency level of WA mom's shirt, she was trying to listen and trying to honor my request to not speak certain thoughts. I could tell this was taking a great deal of self-discipline on her part. Every fiber of her being wanted to refute what I was saying. She managed to do quite well although she did slip in one thing (and a half) before I cut her off. She said, "As much as anyone loves you, the Lord loves you more. It doesn't matter what you feel, this is true." The next words, that I so politely ended, I think were going to suggest I read, recite and remind myself of God's promises even if I don't believe them or they aren't ringing true. I told her no before she could finish but even as she said it I was thinking of the verse in Romans that tells us the words were written for our learning, so that through the comfort of the Scriptures we might have hope. It actually says "through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures..." I think I'll have to study that a little bit to figure out what it means...that is, when I decide to study anything again. So, anyway, that's something that is rattling around in my head.
I don't remember where I read it, but somewhere I ran across tips for getting through tough days. They included -- keep lists, cry, laugh, pray. My list looked like this:
1. Get up
2. Brush teeth
3. Change underwear
5. Brush hair if absolutely necessary
6. Pray for the day to end
8. Get up
9. Drink Mountain Dew
13. Get up
14. Tell mom work was fine when she calls (even if I didn't go to work)
16. Drink Mountain Dew; eat popcorn if someone else makes it
17. Pray for the day to end
18. Turn off phone at 8 p.m.
19. Take off clothes; throw in a pile
20. Go to bed
The only thing missing from my list was laughter. They say when you can laugh, you know you'll survive. Well, yesterday I had laughter - even if it was dark humor. I'm not going to write what struck me as funny - but I returned to it several times throughout the evening and each time it made me smile. Humans are dumb sometimes. Our logic is faulty.
So those are my rambling thoughts. No conclusions. No tidy wrap-ups. Still angry. Still have a lot of unspoken, unexpressed feelings but today I'm at work so it wouldn't really behoove me to nap and cry all day. The kids might think I've lost my mind. BTW, I love the word behoove.
I don't have a lot to write about at the moment -- well, that's not true. I have a LOT to write about but not enough clarity to write anything that is coherent. I'm reminded of a blog I posted last June:
Let Me prepare you for the life that stretches out before you. I know exactly what it will contain, whereas you have only vague ideas about it. You would like to see a map, showing all the twists and turns of your journey. You'd feel more prepared if you could somehow visualize what is on the road ahead. However, there is a better way to be prepared for whatever you will encounter: Spend quality time with Me.
I do want to know what's ahead of me. I want to know exactly so I can begin to prepare. I want a map that shows where I'm going with a big X that marks the spot. I also want the following verse to mean exactly what it says without exception...today.
If you remain in me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish and it will be done for you.
In the meantime, I guess I'll try to wait patiently and see how everything plays out.