Sunday, June 6

A Life in Transition, Post #1


As I was walked through Michaels a couple of week ago I passed a display of cute farmhouse d├ęcor—it reminded me of the Pioneer Lady stuff, with whimsically painted flowers in reds, yellows and turquoise, framed in rustic wooden and metal frames. I picked up a sign that said “Kitchen” and another that said “Home Sweet Home”, realizing that I didn’t really need either, but was enjoying the browsing anyways.  

That’s when my moment of browsing led to a moment of panic…Wait, I can’t buy this stuff. We’re moving out of our house, to another state, and are going to be homeless in a couple of weeks!!!

It might be slightly melodramatic to say we’re going to be homeless, but we did just sell our house and we don’t technically have another one yet (small details, right?!). It’s the home we’ve been in for 12 years, and I’m feeling ALL.THE.THINGS about this transition. I vacillate between peace and curious excitement about the adventure and panic about the unknowns. 



Unknowns like not having a house or knowing where my kiddos are going to school yet next year. Just small details, right?

It feels a little crazy, but it’s something we’ve been talking about for years and so we’re giving it a try, but that doesn’t necessarily make it easy, and as a matter of fact, now that it is upon us it all feels a little surreal.  

Am I ok with moving out of the house we’ve been in for 12 years? 

Well…

It’s the house we moved into when Ava was 2 and Ella was 6 months old. 

The one where Ella’s chubby little baby legs crawled up and down the stairs and where all three girls learned to swing on swings on the swing set we bought a year after we moved in. 

Where we planted 10 vegetable gardens and I watched the girls pick and eat cherry tomatoes with reckless abandon every summer. 

The house where we’ve had 12 Christmases—the magical ones where the girls were little and believed in Santa, and we sprinkled reindeer dust on the back patio before going to bed. 

Where I walked up and down the street, over and over again, with wagons and tricycles, bikes with training wheels and scooters. Where they all eventually graduated to bikes without training wheels and now take bike rides together with each other. 

 The sentimental part of me wants to sit in this place, physically and emotionally, and make sure I do an accurate job of recounting every little thing that has happened in this house before I leave: Every memory, moment and million bits of family-life-mayhem that has happened under this roof over the last 12 years. 

I contemplated getting out one of my journals or a brand new legal pad and walking through the house room by room and creating a bulleted list of every memory that comes to mind as I sit in each room—I know. I know. But, this is how I process life—in my head, or on paper. On paper tends to be better for me, because it makes me feel less crazy. 

 This season that we’ve lived here- it’s a season of life that has gone by in a blink of an eye. We’ve all changed in this house, matured in this house. Heck mine and Scott have both started turning gray in this house (aka: we're getting old!).  

This is the house where I have spent one of the most formative decades of my adult life, and as a matter of fact I realized the other day that I’ve lived in this house longer than any other house in my 42 years of life. Yet, while I’ve lived in this house longer than any other address in my entire life, it’s the season of life that has gone the fastest…like sand through an hourglass. 

This is the house I lived in during that season of motherhood when I was too tired and weary to believe the sweet older ladies who proclaimed things to me like, “The time goes by so fast. Enjoy the moments,” or  “I know the days feel long (like really, REALLY long!), but the years are so short.” 

And all I wanted to say to them was, “If you really know do ya wanna come over and babysit this afternoon, because I’m really tired!” 

Turns out they were right after all. 

Here I am  packing up our house realizing how very fast the years have gone. I’m not completely sure I’m ready to return to the toddler days—I feel like every momma should get some sort of medal for surviving that season, but I am feeling a little nostalgic and sad about the baby clothes I just sent to the Goodwill, and the princess dresses that might still be in a bin in my basement because I didn’t have the heart to get rid of them all. 

 I know in my heart that this move and transition is the right thing for us right now, but it certainly doesn’t make it easy. It’s the proverbial ‘when one chapter ends, another begins’, except this feels a lot bigger than a chapter…maybe it’s a volume that is ending and another is beginning. Maybe. 

I’m planning to post here weekly over the next few months as we move- I’m going to call the series of posts “A Life in Transition” and label them by number so that if you want to follow along in chronological order you can. 

The why and how of this move are another story all together.  I’ll share all about that in more detail in my next post, but the gist of our life right now is that we’re moving to Charlotte, N.C. in a few short weeks and it’s crazy, and wild, and bittersweet and all sorts of things I both expected and didn’t expect it to be.

The good news is that I have faith in a God that is in the expected and the unexpected details of our lives and that none of it is a surprise to Him. I’ve been holding fast to that truth and will continue to do so over the next several months. 

Stop back next Monday to read the story behind how and why we decided to relocate right now, and how important prayer has been every step of the way. 


P.S. Moving With a Family, Tip #1: My sister gave me this incredibly helpful tip about taking photos of our house when we were getting ready to put it on the market. Take pictures of your house one room at a time, over the course of several weeks because if you're anything like me, trying to get the entire house clean on one day and stage is for photos is virtually impossible. 

Here is a sneak peak of the day I took pictures of my office, which is generally scattered with all manner of books, papers, homework, permission slips, binders and any other type of paper clutter you can think of! 

                                               To capture this "clean" photo...


                                                       This is what my hallway looked like! 



Tuesday, March 30

A Family Update From a Season of Waiting




Our family is in a waiting season right now. We're waiting for wisdom about some big decisions, waiting for answers about some confusing (though not especially serious) health questions, waiting to figure out if and when we're moving out of the house we have been in for 11 years. 

It's a lot of unanswered questions all up in the air. 

I'm realizing I don't particularly like unanswered questions all up in the air. 

This particular season of waiting is making me antsy and restless and a wee bit confused sometimes. I've joked with friends that I must seem bi-polar in my story of what we're doing next, swinging from one side of the story to the other, like a pendulum back and forth, back and forth. 

I can feel that swing too- in my heart and soul, in my answers to our kiddos who want to know what we're doing next, in my approach to my daily work and what needs to be done at any given moment. 

Are we staying or going? Is there a job opening up or is there not? Is God calling us to stay here in Buffalo or to a somewhat unpredictable adventure out of state, at least for the time being? 

Depending on the perceived answers to these questions on any given day the thoughts and feelings that accompany each side of the answer are complex, nuanced and multi-dimensional. 

I'm realizing that waiting on God for an answer, and/or an open door, often requires an incredible amount of faith- more faith than I expected it would require. Faith that I thought I possessed, but that has been put to the test as the wait goes on longer and longer than expected, and as life circumstances have made it more challenging than expected. 

I'm not going to beat around the proverbial bush, this has been a l-o-n-g season for Scott and I. A long and weary season in many ways. 

I won't retell the entire story that I shared in my last blog post, you can read that here if you want, but this season of long and weary, this season of requiring deep levels patience and surrender started last August for us. It started with my health taking a sudden and unpredictable turn towards chaos. It started with doctors appointments and heart palpitations, trips to the ER, severe fatigue,  and a variety of other mysterious symptoms that led to many long and confusing days. Days that left me in bed and Scott taking care of the cooking, the homework, and the bazillion details that family life requires. It started first with us waiting for me to hopefully feel better, or at least find answers. 

It continued into October when, while I was in the middle of these health struggles, the announcement was made that Mass Mutual (Scott's company) was selling their sales division to a competitor, and that they would be more than likely laying off the majority of their sales force in the process. The guys being let go would all have jobs for three more months, until the end of December. One of those guys was Scott. 

It continued on into November and December when our kids were in and out of school due to Covid tests, and suspected cases in their classrooms, culminating in Ava getting Covid in early December and the kids all being sent home to quarantine until after Christmas break.  I mustered some semblance of energy to buy Christmas presents and try to make Christmas feel as "normal" as possible given so much uncertainty with my health, Scott's job and what our next steps should be. And we all breathed a little bit of a sigh of relief to make it to the end of December, the end of 2020, one of the most unpredictably hard years for people globally. 

 "Yay!!" we thought! "We made it! Maybe life will start to return to some new semblance of normal!" 

And then, on January 6th, 2021, I got COVID and my slightly improving health situation was wrecked by a really bad case of the virus that left me in bed for 14 days straight. Literally, on my back, in bed 24/7. 

I have never, ever felt so sick as I did this past January. I was so ill that I couldn't tolerate watching television or reading books- many days I just laid in bed, sometimes trying to listen to music or podcasts, sometimes coloring for short spurts, but mostly just sleeping and passing time while feeling miserable.  I had severe headaches and body aches, a low grade fever, literally zero energy, some difficulty breathing, and on several days I experienced the heaviest sense of darkness and depression I've ever felt in my life (making me think the virus had a neurological component to it). It was awful and scary and I would not have wished that period of illness on anyone. 

In the middle of it all, my kids weren't allowed to attend school because they were potential carriers, so while Scott was trying to take care of me, he was also trying to manage their school work, which was feeling increasingly tedious from home. Ava was allowed to go to school because she had had COVID in December, but Ella and Aubrey were both required to stay home for my entire 12 day quarantine and than 12 days afterwards (so just about 3 weeks total) in case they caught the virus at the end of my quarantine. 

Fortunately, in late January, I started to slowly recover and the girls were all allowed to go back to school, finally reinstating some sense of "normal" in our otherwise not-so-normal season. 

Listen, I'm sorry to be dragging ya'll through the mud here. I planned to mostly write about the waiting and transition we've been walking through,  but in order to give you a better understanding for our season of waiting I wanted to give you some context,  which includes all of the above nitty gritty life stuff. 

I eventually got back on my feet, though my post-Covid healing was long and slow. It took weeks before I could have a conversation with someone again without feeling short of breath, and even now I'm still dealing with the ripple effects of my health issues this past fall combined with  the Covid in January.  My symptoms currently tend to come and go- I'll feel good for a few days, and then really crappy for a bunch of days, but there is no rhyme or reason to any of it--my symptoms include abnormal levels of fatigue, heart palpitations, stomach issues, some occasional breathing issues, spaciness after too much exertion, and mild flu like symptoms and body aches.  We still have questions- is there some sort of underlying autoimmune condition going on? Is there a thyroid or hormonal issue? Is there a neurological issue? A sudden onset of chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia? 

I have visited multiple doctors and local (and out of state) naturopaths- we're trying to figure it all out, but such is the case with chronic illness, hormone issues and/or undiagnosed autoimmune conditions-- there is a lot of mystery and confusion before there are ever really answers, and then sometimes the answers are ambiguous at best. I'm a fighter and I'm also a huge health advocate, so I've been researching the ever living daylights out of these conditions in an attempt to get to the root cause of what is going on. I drive myself and my family nuts at times with all of my research, but when you walk these backroads of ambiguous health condtiions your choice is to give in and just hope things get better or to try to get to the bottom of it all. 

I'm a get to the bottom of it all kind of girl, and will keep digging until I do. 

And so that brings us to today-- this breezy, unseasonably warm sunny day at the end of of March in Buffalo, NY. My symptoms have flared up again this week, which for me means a lot of fatigue, unexpected achiness, and some on and off nausea. I'm pushing through with walks, stretching, deep breathing, lots of water, smoothies, bone broth and the cleanest diet I can eat on a day to day basis while trying to keep the kids happy with foods they will actually eat as well (if you're a mom, you know how challenging that can be!). 

Scott is still navigating what his next steps will be- he knows a ton of people in his industry, and has had a lot of great conversations, which is exciting. He has had multiple job offers in Buffalo, but we're looking at the possibility of moving to North Carolina (Charlotte, in particular), which is a whole other story entirely. 

And so we wait...we are praying and waiting. Waiting and praying. Praying and waiting some more. For answers, for clarity, for wisdom and open doors. 

We have come to the conclusion that in many ways it would require as much faith to go as it would to stay, but we are seeking deeply God's wisdom in all of this and have faith that He will provide. We are believing James 1:5, "If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault and it will be given to you." 

I plan to post here regularly for the month of April- daily life at the Littlewoods kind of stuff. I'm not going to promise a particular number of posts, just that I will post as often as possible. 

It's going to be some old-school blogging- just some random meandering through our questions, thoughts and daily life as we continue to declutter our house (and maybe my mind?!), make decisions about whether we should stay or go, try to figure out this health stuff, and respond to the ebb and flow of the daily shenanigans that tends to be the fabric of our family life.

Stop by if you want to come along for the ride (: 



Thursday, November 19

Making Sense of 2020: Reflections on Learning Deeper Levels of Trust in God

Hello Again. 

I felt like I needed to say that seeing as it’s been 125 days since the last time I posted here. 

It is 2020 after all, a year when 125 days may have felt like an eternity or the blink of an eye depending on what has happened within them for you. 

Many of you have lost jobs, had to close businesses, are currently either home-schooling for the first time or managing a chaotic distance-learning schedule. Most of us are living quite differently than we’ve ever had to live before—wearing masks in public, hand sanitizing at every turn, trying to figure out church, ministry and business schedules in the context and confines of new and often changing state regulations. As I write this we were just told that all schools in our county are going remote on Monday, so my own girls will be coming back home to do school again. 

Add to all of this the landscape of a tumultuous election that still feels confusing, conflicting and unsettled. 

On one hand I remember the “normalcy” of life in January and February like it was yesterday.  On the other hand, when I think about the roller coaster ride that this year has been, with school closing and wondering if it would re-open, trying to discern which school option would be best for the fall, navigating summer vacation with cancelled camps and travel plans, planning birthday parties with sensitivities towards COVID and discerning what was “right” or “wrong”—when I think about all of that, it feels like this one year has been the length of 5 years, with a gazillion decisions, questions, confusions and uncertainties all packed into it.

Our year as a family has been full of plenty of love, joy and laughter, but it has also held a lot of unexpected surprises and challenges—things we could not have anticipated in January, when people were glibly chiding that this was going to be the “year of 2020 vision”—the time to go after goals and clarify intentions and vision for our lives. 

Honestly, that sounded fantastic way back then—this idea of renewing my vision, and really focusing in on some short and long term goals. As a family we were having discussions about moving to a new house, perhaps even to a new state. I was just starting to re-invest in my writing goals given that all three girls were now settled in school—after 12 years of committing to being home with the girls I had some more flexibility in my schedule and I was excited to see what God might have in store. 


Photo by Denise Karis on Unsplash
I had bought a new planner, and joined Flourish Writers for their yearlong writing academy. With the Flourish Writer tools in hand I was practicing setting 90-day goals and had a book I was going to finish by the end of this year. A book I had been thinking about writing for many, many years—2020 vision baby! This was going to be the year to write it! 

And then…

 The surprise of schools closing in March, turned into perpetual home schooling in April, May and June, which was all kind of fun at first.

We were thrilled to trade in the rush-rush of typical school mornings for leisurely breakfasts and schoolwork done in pajamas. We bought a new family computer so that everyone would have the appropriate work space for online assignments and zoom calls. We traveled by car to visit friends in Charlotte, N.C. on the whim of our own schedule, taking our work with us (fleeing the snow that was still falling in Buffalo in May!). 

When school was over, we made the most of unstructured summer days, like an unintentional throwback to summers of long ago that were filled with bike rides, roller skating, swimming in friend’s pools, long walks and bonfires in the backyard. I was honestly content with the slower pace of life for a time—I think many of us were—this forced nudge towards not needing to run around all the time…it seems that in some ways it was good for our souls. 

And it was. We did puzzles we wouldn’t have done, cooked meals we wouldn’t have cooked—Scott bought a smoker and has been smoking all manner of meat with all sorts of rubs and spices and sauces that he may not have had the time to focus on if he wasn’t working from home. 

I count all of those things as gifts…blessings…from this crazy year of 2020. 

But the year also handed us some unexpected challenges—this fall, October in particular, was an especially difficult month. I won’t get into all of the details here, but my grandmother passed away, which in and of itself was not unexpected—she was 91 and her health and been declining for some time, but her passing led to some difficult family dynamics that needed to be sorted through. 

Then, Scott found out that his company was being bought out and that his entire sales team (close to 100 guys across the country) will be laid off at the end of the year. 

In the middle of it all my health took a major chaotic turn in August—a situation that I’m just slowly healing from and coming out of now. The short story is that after a relatively slow withdrawal from a teeny tiny dose of an anti-depressant (such a small dose that every doctor I’ve talked to has said it couldn’t have even been effective) my body went into a total tailspin. 

I have filled an entire sheet of notebook paper with the symptoms I’ve experienced over the last three months: everything from frightening heart palpitations, to shortness of breath and nausea, muscle cramps, daily brain fog and spaciness that made it almost impossible to drive or leave the house at times (imagine how you might feel if you took 4 Sudafed), hypersensitivity to lights and noise, insomnia, internal shaking, fatigue, hypersensitivity to caffeine and supplements (I had to give up coffee!!!! Bah!), muscle weakness, itchy skin, tingles up and down my neck, and just generally ill feelings that kept me in bed. I had 4 EKG’s, 1 echocardiogram, close to a dozen doctor’s appointments, and 1 trip to the ER (and several more drives to the ER where I decided not to go in at the last minute) and dozens of blood tests done all to determine that there was nothing physically wrong with my body that was at least medically obvious. 

Yet, despite all of the "normal" test results, my sensitivity and fatigue were so bad that I was unable to watch movies with my kiddos for a time (because of the light and noise), had to leave several family gatherings early, couldn’t tolerate going to church on Sundays (again, the lights and the noise), and could hardly run errands, make meals, or do laundry on many days. 

I don’t say any of this for sympathy—honestly, I’d rather just keep it quiet and move on like everything has been completely fine. But, the reality is that it wasn’t fine for a few months and in that space of not fine so many of our friends and family members stopped up to offer support and prayed for me in ways I’ve never needed prayer before. At one point, when a friend from church asked what I needed, my heart, body and soul had just one answer—prayer. Prayer for wisdom, for healing, and for answers. 

I just want to say that I have felt those prayers profoundly, and have been incredibly grateful for everyone who has been praying for me. Those prayers and your heartfelt words of encouragement have been another gift of 2020 that I wouldn’t have experienced if not for the struggle and hardship that they came out of. 

I am thankful for the night my small group gathered around me in my friend Sarah’s living room to pray. The texts that came from friends and family to tell me that people were praying throughout the day. The morning that my friend Jodi invited me over to her house and we prayed prayers out loud from the book The Power of a Praying Woman—prayers over my body, mind and spirit. For the nights when I was in bed before Aubrey and she came in to pray over me, and the mornings when Scott called all the girls together to pray for me before they left for school. 

I will also never forget the prayer walks I took on days I felt strong enough to walk through our neighborhood—the same route I had been running for years and years, but suddenly didn’t have the strength to run (and many days I couldn't even walk half an hour without being out of breath or feeling weak). In retrospect I believe God allowed me to be slowed down, from running to slow walking- literally- to help me to see things I hadn't seen before. In that space of walking I listened to sermons and worship music and sometimes just praised God for the beauty that surrounded me in the glorious landscape that I was so used to running right by. 

Every prayer was a blessing and I believe they were essential to the amount of improvement I’m finally feeling. I'm still having some odd symptoms and some days are tougher than others, but our bodies are resilient and God is healing mine bit by bit. 

Here's the funny thing,  last December and into early January, when I was praying about a word for the year—a word to help guide and direct my thoughts and prayers, a word to help set my intentions and directions for 2020…the word I felt in my spirit over and over was…Renew. 

I was praying for renewal in my body and soul this year. Even though I wasn’t struggling with acute health issues at the time, I was feeling a general sense of fatigue. A weariness. A sense that I didn’t have the energy, physically or emotionally that I once had, or that I longed for in order to vibrantly take care of my family and pursue whatever else God has in store for me. I longed for God to renew that strength and vitality in my body and soul and I was ready to do whatever it took for that to happen. 

I’m not fully sure how I expected “renewal” to come about, but my expectations might have included hot cups of tea, long walks in the woods, quiet prayer times, baths, reading books and poetry I had been longing to read, spending more time with friends—you know, those nice self-care sorts of things that us moms can tend to not prioritize in our lives. 

That’s not exactly how the story has unfolded…

And yet…I believe, in that still small part of my soul where God speaks to me, that He is somehow bringing renewal through this upheaval. That through a set of circumstances I could not have expected, and through physical issues I would not have signed up for, that He is restoring and renewing me from the inside out. 

I plan to write more about my experience in upcoming blog posts—I have come to realize (through some online resources and Facebook groups) that there are thousands of people across the country struggling with the side effects and severe withdrawal symptoms of psychiatric medications. It is literally a silent epidemic that no one is talking about. 

I also plan to write more about the anxiety issues that prompted me to try the medication in the first place, and what I am learning about managing and dealing with the root causes of that anxiety. I’ve been silent about these things for a long time—I suppose because I was managing life for the most part and I didn’t want to make other people uncomfortable by talking about it. But, the reality is, millions of people across the country are suffering and struggling from varying levels of anxiety and depression and not talking about it doesn’t help anyone to move towards deeper places of freedom. So, I promise I’ll tell you my stories. 

In the meantime, I would encourage you to keep taking one step and one day at a time—if 2020 has taught me one thing it is that God provides for our needs, but that we need to rely on Him on a daily basis. Personally, I  thought I knew that already—that I was living in a way of trusting God fully in each and every day-- and then 2020 happened. A year when everything truly seemed to change DAILY: school, jobs, health, family dynamics—a year where there were strings of weeks when I had to learn to not even have expectations, but to fully surrender all circumstances, expected and unexpected to God, as things kept changing and unfolding. 

It's how we're supposed to be living all the time, right? But we (I) can tend to get into comfortable rhythms and routines and in that comfort we don't always rely on God the way we should. 

So if I had to pick just one thing that 2020 has taught me it’s that I need to FULLY SURRENDER EVERYTHING on a daily basis—in all of the ways that I am aware of and then pray that God reveals the many other ways that I’m so often not aware of. 

How about you? What has 2020 taught you? What have been the biggest gifts and most difficult challenges? What gifts have you discovered in the midst of your challenges? 

Apple Picking in October

Leave a comment below or on my Facebook page- I’d love to hear from you and other people would love to hear what you’ve learned as well. 

I promise to start writing here again and to share some honest life stories in the months to come. 


Friday, July 24

A Life on Pause, Full Speed Ahead


These are strange times, aren’t they friends? 
It's times like these that I'm grateful I left most of my Type A, need-to-get-things-done attitude at the door years ago when things like major diaper blowouts would happen on a regular basis just about the time we were all ready to leave for church, or a family gathering, or even just to the grocery store,  and next thing I knew my outfit smelled like poop, the baby’s outfit was covered in poop and we were all late. Again. 
And, guess what?  There wasn’t a thing we could do about it. 
Kind of like there's not much we can do about the state of the world right now, and all of the chaos and uncertainty unfolding. 
We all had plans for our year, but metaphorically speaking there was a major blowout on the way out the door and there isn’t much we can do  about it except embrace what is, continue taking one day at a time, and trust that God is in control (and we most certainly are not!).  
We’re late for some things this year (figuratively and metaphorically), had to let go of others, and are still not sure what each day is going to look like or how the news might change at any given moment.
Which is why I titled this post "A Life on Pause, Full Speed Ahead", because that is what life has felt like for the last 4 months-- so many things have been cancelled, paused and temporarily suspended and yet, especially for us moms, we are still busy and moving through very full days of housekeeping, meal-making, child-rearing and memory building. 
If I'm honest, the ambiguity of it all is hard for me some days-- especially the uncertainty of what school will look like come September.  
This will be the 9th year I’ve had children in school (our girls are going into 8th,  6th and  2nd grade this year) and the first time I honestly have no idea what that is going to look like. 
Should we homeschool all 3 of them? We've asked this question a lot. Not out of fear, but out of logical concern for what our options and the school environment will look like come September. 
Should we send two of them back to their smaller private Christian school, which we LOVE, but are anxious to commit to (in terms of paying tuition) when everyone could very well be sent home again this fall for an undetermined amount of time and I will essentially be homeschooling anyways? 
Do I want to send Aubrey (my youngest) into a public school setting where the desks are spaced apart, limited movement is allowed in the hallways, no one is allowed on the playground or the cafeteria, masks may be required, and gym and music classes are not going to feel "normal" because kids must be spaced 12 feet apart? 
I know that our amazing teachers will do their best given the circumstances, but lets be honest, this isn't ideal for anyone. 
It makes me sad, honestly.  The loss of innocence. The loss of familiarity. The loss of carefree childhood experiences where kids smear paint around construction paper grouped together at a table in an art room without masks on their face. 
But, I'm learning that I can't stay there long...in the space of discouragement about the current environment. As a mom, I have to pull up my proverbial bootstraps and keep on walkin'. I need to get my butt into my prayer chair in the morning and pray big prayers with full expectation that God will continue to offer wisdom. 
That's what we do when big parts of life are on pause, but our very full parenting days are still moving full speed ahead. When we need to make decisions about the Fall that impact our children’s education and well being, even while life feels like a multiple choice test where the best choices have been deleted.  We learn to live more fully, as our faith deepens.  

"Don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today's trouble is enough for today." Matthew 6:34

God gives us manna for each day. He offers daily bread. He tells us not to spin and worry, because just like the sparrow or the grass in the field, our needs will be accounted for. 
Lately I'm laughing at the irony that for all of the “be-in-the-moment” messages surrounding us, most of us struggle to be in the moment and take things one day at a time-- at least I do. 

This space of uncertainty that we are living in has certainly forced me to learn how to live in the moment, to live one day at at time, at a far deeper level than ever before. It's been a hard lesson.  Harder than I would have thought because I would have told you, pre-pandemic, that I was already living this way. That I was trusting God, and did have faith, and that I was doing my best to be in the daily moments. 
God always takes us deeper, doesn't He? 
With school, and many other things right now, I'm learning what it really means to trust God daily. What it means to surrender my anxiety and questions to Him. To walk in faith, confident that He is working all things out. 
If I'm honest, there are times this all feels like we’re on a family road trip driving with the car packed to the gills--we're stopping for bathroom breaks, eating lots of snacks, singing loud songs and driving each other all a little crazy—yet when the girls ask, “Are we there yet?” I have to respond with, “I don't know. I'm not sure where “there” is right now.” 
But in lieu of being “there”, we can learn to live right here. Loving, trusting and finding manna for today. We can choose joy, live our lives with gratitude, and learn to love others well. We can breathe deep, accept what is, and realize there can be contentment in all circumstances-- while life is on pause and moving full speed ahead.