from Free Vector
I started writing this in Portland OR. USA before Christmas, while we were packing for our trip to Natal.
Finished it in January 2016 in Natal, RN, Brazil.
That word “home” is spoken every day, even as it is used with hundreds – perhaps thousands – of connotations. I can take countless adjectives, from the lowest negative to the highest of good – spread those adjectives out on tables for people to choose. At the end, there would be no adjectives left, as people picked them up and carried them away in their hearts as a description of “home.”
For me, the word “home” is bittersweet, as myriads of memories pour into my mind. Childhood on the farm. My teen years in a small city. All those years with loving parents. I am one of the fortunate adults with memories of love at “home.” When life in the world outside was lonely and hurtful, I still had my refuge at home. As a child, that gave me a security in my relationship with God, for I knew He was there!
Then marriage, children, “home” in continuously changing places, as my young husband searched for a meaningful and fulfilling occupation. Now it is my turn, to try to create an atmosphere of “home” for my children, a refuge for them to come back to when the world outside becomes too stressful and heavy.
Since I first married in 1950, I’ve lived in more than 50 houses or apartments, moving into each place with the goal of creating a “home”.
I learned to hate moving, tearing up a physical home, packing it and moving it. However, I find joy in unpacking and the challenge of creating “home” once again.
I believe that some physical houses try to dissuade one from creating that place called “home.” Other places invite one with open arms, and it is a joy to create beauty.
At times, life shreds our hearts and our homes with unexpected griefs. At other times, joy and contentment fill our hearts and homes.
This year, instead of Christmas decorations, our apartment here in Portland is filled with suitcases – including on our bed! Tonight, we are sleeping on our recliner sofa. The 23rd will be filled with all of the endless small details that are waiting to finish
We are preparing to leave this apartment in Portland, Oregon, on Dec. 24th to travel together to a very small apartment in Natal, RN, Brazil where, in 2012, I created another “nest” for us to live, at the time when Joe had to return to the states in Oct 2011 because of health challenges.
Now we return together to Natal, to our “home nest” for a few months: at this moment we are unsure for how long.
Preparing for this trip isn’t easy… you’d chuckle if you could see all the different ways we get things done, as we once again discover that 83 year old bodies don’t necessarily cooperate with the commands our brains give them.
Right now, my body is telling me I need to sleep some more before I tackle this day.
My brain and heart want to finish and share this with you. If you see this, you’ll know who won. (12.28/2015 I was unable to finish this before leaving the states, so I am here in Natal editing it before I post it on my blog.— My computer gave me serious problems: still is, but now, 1.19.2016, I hope to succeed.)
On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day we will be on planes, heading for “home”, celebrating in our hearts the miracle of the birth of our Lord. On the day after Christmas (the 26th), the Lord willing, we will be arriving at our “nest” in Natal. (We did! Tired, but we made it!)
I’ll be sharing more with you from there.
7 The Lord will keep you from all harm —
he will watch over your life;
8 the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.
I wonder how many of you identify with some thought I’ve written here?
Life is interesting - and can be challenging. Voni shares with you her experiences