When I was in middle school, the bus would drop me off about six blocks from home. I loved being outside and I remember walking down the street, often whistling, trying to mimic the bird’s songs. The road we lived on was long as it left the city limits, where our house was, and became a dirt road that trailed off into the county as far as you could see. I don’t know why, but I always imagined that there was a beautiful country cottage somewhere on that road where I would live with my future family. It was a happy thought and I had every reason to be optimistic about growing up and living a bright future.
Fast forward 35 years. If I were to start at the old bus stop and begin walking toward my parent’s house, I would be able to see that just beyond their house, on the other side of the small Christmas tree farm of my dad’s, there stands a beautiful, country, more-than-a-cottage home where the pictures of my children and grandchildren hang on the walls. Where our chickens scratch in the backyard and our chocolate lab stands watch. It is a happy, learning place where people come and go and where we have done a lot of living.
Considering those intervening 35 years, and the amount of change that started with my parent’s divorce the year after I used to walk home from that bus stop, and led to many different houses and schools and situations, sometimes I think that this house standing here is nothing short of a miracle.
So many times I was so focused on making it through the day or the class or the new situation at home, I couldn’t remotely see what the future would hold. I didn’t walk down that street anymore and in all the change I forgot about that house, actually, until we began to build it. And I remembered the daydream of my youth.
But, If I were to have the luxury of speaking to that young middle school girl, I would assure her that even though she would face difficulties and uncertainty, she need not worry. Even though she would wonder if her heart would ever mend, if she would ever feel relaxed and safe and comfortable in her own skin again, “Yes,” I’d say, “you will.”
I would tell her to keep seeing that house! To keep feeling the warmth and comfort and security of it! To keep walking forward and on and on until she can see it and touch it and know that it was meant for her.
Most importantly I would tell her that she has what it takes to get through hard times and that there would be a lot of good times mixed in, so don’t let those go unnoticed! If my present self could have had ten minutes to share these thoughts with my young self (and she had paid attention), what would I have done differently as I came through the process of becoming my present self? Would I have let fewer things bother me? Felt less angst and overwhelm over the unknown? Most likely. And would I possibly be ahead of where I am today…maybe?
As it is, I have to trust that my winding journey has taken me to the place God intended me to be.
And I trust that He is taking you to your intended destination too.
So, Little Sister, I say to you, keep seeing your “dream house,” your future, whatever that means for you. Keep feeling the comfort and warmth and security of it. Keep walking forward and on and on until you see it and touch it and know it was meant for you.
You will get there, one baby step at a time. Please don’t worry, just believe.