Six things on Sunday
As I sit down to update you on all that is going on in our corner of the world, I hardly know where to start!
1. Scott and Lisa (Josh's mom and dad) sold their house of 20+ years, a three story historic home in the center of town that served as a gathering place and party spot for all of us as we grew up. Robin and Adam each spent some time renting a room there. Josh proposed to me on the front porch. It is a huge blessing that they sold it. It's also the end of an era, and a transition for all of us. Scott and Lisa are now in their RV for a few months while they wait for just the right house. Currently they are in a local RV park, and they plan to visit family out west later this spring. RV living is totally exotic to the kids. Sam loves to talk about how "Gwama, Pagwa, stay in da campah."
2. My parents' new house is coming along. They hope to move in the first of May. (Speaking of moving, can I just tell you that EVERY MEMBER of our families (BOTH) is moving this year, except us? What is up with that!? As if we don't have enough going on!) I got to help Daddy out on the land this week and it was so peaceful there. Wide open sky, grass, the sounds of birds and water and cows. I helped my dad put in some pipe around the foundation of the house to help with drainage. (My dad has PTSD from the house we lived in with a basement that kept flooding. He takes drainage very seriously.) We talked about all sorts of stuff, and a lot about Adam. He told me some of the things he planned to do on the land. As we worked, I thought about how he and my mom are working hard towards new things, still carrying great pain from past and current wounds. They are treating "hope" as a verb, and I just love that. My parents are so brave.
3. Andrew, Anna, and Sam have transitioned to this cool place where they are a group of kids instead of two kids and a baby. They can do things like get dressed, eat breakfast, read books, and play outside, if not together than in proximity to each other. From a parenting perspective, it's fun for us to watch their relationships develop and helps us remember why we had all these kids in the first place: we value our siblings so highly, and we want our kids to have the same opportunity for brothers and sisters to turn into friends. Practically, it means I have as many as 10 minutes together to unload the dishwasher or switch the laundry before I am needed to settle an argument or help locate a toy/sock/book, and that we all eat breakfast and lunch at the same time. This is no small thing. All the moms say "Amen".
4. Josh has a new job! He's been working for several years at a Ford dealership in Canton. In February he transitioned to a Ford dealership in Hendersonville. It is a fantastic career opportunity for him and he is enjoying the work and his co-workers. It is more of a commute, for sure, which means changes to our daily rhythms at home, but we are working it out. We are so proud of Dad. He is so awesome!
5. I started taking medicine to help with anxiety and depression that has surfaced during my grief journey since Adam died. I wondered about whether it was appropriate to share that here, but I think there is an unhelpful stigma about the steps we take to manage our own mental health. Everyone has their own junk, and it's my wish that everyone have the resources they need to manage it in a healthy way. For me that now includes taking an antidepressant. It has been a great tool to help me take advantage of my other tools: an excellent support system and regular counseling being the most important. As Mr. Fred Rogers would say, our feelings are "mentionable and manageable," so I will mention and manage mine proudly. I am getting a lot of help, and I am managing this thing.
6. Adoption! We start the paperwork marathon again this summer. We are excited to feel like we are doing something again. We are doing one major fundraiser this summer called the Both Hands Project. We will gather a team of 10-20 people to help us serve a widow in our community by doing work on her house for a day. Those 10-20 people will help us raise money by getting sponsors, like you would for a walk-a-thon.
What?? You'd like to be part of that team?? FANTASTIC!! We are currently making our list of people who might like to help us with this! This is a great opportunity for teenagers to help us (we know a lot of awesome teens), or for families to serve together. Email me, or let us know in the comments of this blog or on the Facebook link that you are interested and we will get the info to you!
Thank you so much for walking this road with us, friends. You matter so much to us.
Josh and Emily
We hope that by sharing our steps, challenges, and milestones of our adoption, you will see yourself as part of the community we hope to build around our child as she grows up.