Monday, August 22, 2011

When you’re worried and you can’t sleep…

When I was a child some of my fondest summertime memories involved me excitedly fighting sleep so I could watch the lightning bugs come out. The grass was damp and the moon would softly illuminate the yard.  I had to be patient and wait for the darkness to completely surround me so that I could detect the tiny flickers of light. One by one I’d spot them, blinking slowly in the shadowy brush behind my house. If you were loud, or hyper, or distracted by something else, you’d miss the magic.  

There are times in our lives when trials leave us with no resources left to pull from and you wonder how on earth you are going to make it through.  The darkness sets in and overwhelms us but that is when glimmers of God’s light are easiest to see.  My husband refers to them as God winks.

As you have probably been reading in my previous blog entries, money is more than tight around our household. So tight, our mortgage payment this month will be late for the first time in my homeowner history.  Mike’s parent’s birthdays are both in the same week and we had planned to have both his parent’s and mine over for a birthday brunch.  Unfortunately, the pest control bill of $125 left us without grocery money.  All we had was $5 and 13 duck eggs from Fluffy our pet Pekin.  I prayed and wondered how we could feed 7 people when the refrigerator was near empty. 

Then I got this letter in the mail from one of the insurance companies we had received a quote from for car insurance.  We decided to stay with our current company, but as a thank you the other company sent us a $15 American Express gift card.  We happily skipped to Publix and bought the eggs, bacon, juice, blueberries, and other ingredients needed for the menu I was preparing. We took the remaining $5 in cash to the vegetable stand and prayed that there would be some inexpensive salad fixings.  At times Tim has a few items selected in $1 clearance bags.  The day we went he had a full bag of 1 large cucumber, 5 radishes, & a head of lettuce for $1, 6 large ripe tomatoes for $1, and two other bags with samplings of Jenna’s favorite fruits all for a buck.  With the $1 left over we were even able to get Jenna her banana’s (she goes through a bunch every three days). 

I got home to prepare the meal and set aside 5 duck eggs for my father in law as a small birthday gift (he loves duck eggs), and then made bacon baskets which are a really great dish where you take bacon and line muffin tins with it and crack an egg into the center.  It makes the eggs have a poached like consistency. When I went to finish the blueberry boy bait (a breakfast blueberry coffee cake) I realized that I only had two eggs left.  They were Fluffy’s.  One was slightly larger than the other but the recipe called for three eggs.  We had no money left to buy more, we had already used Fluffy’s egg from that morning, and we had no gas left to pick up some more eggs from the store. I figured the recipe would have to work with just two and prayed that God would make it taste good just the same.  I cracked the first into the bowl but to my surprise when I cracked open the larger of the two eggs I looked down and realized I had three yolks in my bowl.  The large egg had twin yolks. I researched it and found out the chances of this happening are 1 in 1,000.  But it was just what I needed to make the most delicious blueberry boy bait my family has ever had.

There have been a lot of provisions happening in the midst of difficulty.  Since the wall was torn down revealing the black mold stench that has taken over our master bathroom and our bedroom the whole family has been camped out in the girls’ room. Mike had asked me last night as we were lying in bed, him on the small air mattress on the floor, me on a twin bed, how I am holding up through all of the stress. Prayer is a huge part of it.  Family support is another.  

I sat there watching my youngest, nearly three months old, sleeping so beautifully in her co-sleeper, Naomi’s tiny chest rising and falling to the sweet sounds of her cooing contentedly along with her dreams.  I leaned over the foot of my bed, Jenna stirred, sleep talking about something undecipherable from her toddler bed. Her thumb in her mouth, her arms clinging to her singing Chihuahua toy.  My heart gave a skip and I was reminded how very lucky I am to be given the gift of such a loving and wonderful family, to have two fantastic healthy girls, and that I am so very blessed to be able to be home with them for the year, for this moment and this time so precious. 

I kissed Mike goodnight and stole another one from each of my girl’s cheeks. I snuggled back in bed and as I was lying there I couldn’t help but think about a song from one of my favorite movies, White Christmas.  There is a scene when Betty (played by Rosemary Clooney) is having trouble sleeping so Bob (played by my favorite: Bing Crosby) sings her a song called Count Your Blessings. 

When I'm worried and I can't sleep
I count my blessings instead of sheep
And I fall asleep counting my blessings
When my bankroll is getting small
I think of when I had none at all
And I fall asleep counting my blessings

I think about a nursery and I picture curly heads
And one by one I count them as they slumber in their beds
If you're worried and you can't sleep
Just count your blessings instead of sheep
And you'll fall asleep counting your blessings
It's a really pretty song with a peaceful melody that tends to stay a while. I ran the lyrics over in my mind.
 I'm going to take Bing Crosby's advice and make this my new bedtime ritual, to thank God for the blessing he has given me and anticipate the winks he has for me tomorrow. 

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