Hello, friends! I’m back! I haven’t written anything since August and it feels good to sit in my writing spot this morning with my favorite coffee mug, reflecting on the past few months.
A quick recap: During the summer I accepted the position to coach the girls’ cross country team this fall. In addition to a full teaching load, I knew that my blog writing would need to sit for awhile. Hence, the silence for the most part. (Thanks, Lindsey, for your post.) Last Saturday found me in Queensbury, New York, cheering and coaching my lady runners in their final meet of the season. It was a perfect cross country day—a fast course, a cold morning, and lots of crazy spectators who love running. Among those fans were my parents who drove to Queensbury to watch Jacob and Anna run. Pulling back into school around 8:30 pm Saturday night, it felt surreal to realize the season was over. My afternoons would suddenly be free.
So it seems fitting to entitle this piece “the end of a run.” Some days felt like a marathon; others felt like a sprint. How does one express the essence of this season? Primarily, it was a season of work. And I don’t mean this in a negative sense entirely. From lesson planning to grading, from planning workouts to attending meets, from doing laundry to buying groceries, the hours of the day entailed work. In Colossians 3:17, Paul writes, “whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.” This includes our work. Ann Voskamp, the author of One Thousand Gifts, expresses a similar notion. She says, “Our work is worship.” Believe me, this is easier to write, harder to actually do. Some days the whining and complaining lurked just below the surface. The phrase, “All I do is work,” rested on the tip of my tongue ready to fill the ears of whomever would listen.
In mid-October, I found myself having conversations with my bathroom and its desperate need to be cleaned. Looking at the ring in my toilet bowl and the splatters of toothpaste in the sink, I found myself saying, “I see you. I’ll get you one of these days.” And that was true. Eventually I did clean my bathroom and received immense satisfaction from scrubbing the toilet and cleaning the sink.
But, this season wasn’t all work and no play. The “play” may not have come as frequently or lasted as long as I would have liked, but it was there. For instance, Thursday night dates with Brad, watching Heartland on Netflix, spending a day in New York City with the family, making a pecan pie and sharing it with a friend, reading Sons of Fortune by Jeffrey Archer (not high quality literature, but an enjoyable read nonetheless), and moments of quiet and strong coffee in the morning.
Today will be a day of fun as well. It seems fitting that my birthday falls on my first truly “free” Saturday. Later today Brad and I plan to wander through Ikea (looking for a new couch?) and also spend some time wandering through TJMaxx—my favorite. I haven’t decided on where I want to go for dinner…perhaps The Tavern or Raga or a new place altogether. Regardless, it will be a day of fun and celebration.