This was gonna be an instagram post but it started to get too long.
Now that it’s gonna be a blog post, it’s gonna be even longer.
I joked on Twitter:
I feel like there’s a wall in my way; like something’s just blocking my path.
I also feel like the more I hit my head against the wall, it’ll eventually crumble.
Except it’s not.
And I’m left with a sore head.
This too will pass.
Hopefully sooner than later.
I can’t imagine how stressed other people are.
At the time of writing this, my wife is on her overnight shift at the hospital (she’s a resident chaplain).
That’s a whole level of stress that I’m grateful to not be burdened with.
What a stupid timeline we are living in.
In the middle of procrastinating, I remembered that I never sent my parents the family photos we took before we moved out of Santa Barbara.
As I was going through the photos to see which ones to email them, I came across this one:
March 4, 2016. That was when this picture was taken by our photographer Teresa Piestch.
Nathanael was 5.
By then, the decision to move to Texas had been made. Just where exactly in Texas we’d be was still up in the air — and according to my journal, I flew into Houston for interviews on March 7 (No, I didn’t just spend 25 minutes looking for the moleskine journal that covered December 14, 2014 to September 20, 2017 and then flipped through pages looking for when I moved to Houston but also taking time to read (… oh this is already parenthetical [and cringe] other entries in that said moleskine. I do wish I can go back and smack myself and say “get a grip, man.” I’m not procrastinating. At all.)
However, our adoption hadn’t been finalized. The court date kept getting pushed back.
There were so many loose ends that first quarter of 2016.
Were we gonna move to Texas or not?
Were we gonna be able to finalize adoption before moving — if we were to move to Texas?
But we wanted to take advantage to beautiful Santa Barbara and take family photos.
That beach. Goleta Beach.
It will always hold a special place in my heart.
That’s the beach/pier we went fishing with my family from the ages of 12-16 — which happened to be the hardest years of my parents’s lives.
I got to take Nathanael on that same pier to watch other people fish (too young to fish then).
That was the beach I sat on wondering why I have to do a capital campaign within like the first 6 months of my appointment.
That was the beach I sat on wondering if adopting Nathanael was the right thing to do.
That was the beach I sat on wondering if Texas was really where I was being led to.
Funnily enough. I never went swimming in that beach as an adult.
I like the idea of the beach and I like being near the beach. But I don’t need to go in the water. Plus, the Pacific Ocean that touches the coast of CA — it’s fricking FUH-REEZING. And, in Goleta, you always walk leave that beach with little clumps of oil stuck to your feet.
And that was the beach where we took our family photos knowing that we came into Santa Barbara as two and we’d be leaving Santa Barbara as three.
We’ve come a long way since then.
We still got long ways to go.
I’ve grown quite a bit since March 4 in the year of our Lord 2016.
But not nearly enough.
I’m always mesmerized by the sheer joy that takes over his whole being.
And regret that I can’t find the same joy — or more accurately remember to be joy filled. It’s difficult when there are so many things to complain about. I’m saving this for another post, but it’s been a month since we’ve had no AC or heat. And at the time of writing this, tonight it’s only gonna get low as 60 degrees, where as last night and the night before it went down to 33. Lots of blankets and layers and electric blankets/warmers. The parts will arrive soon, I keep saying… for the past 2 weeks…
The point of this rambling post that is NOT me procrastinating: seeing that picture of him smile puts me at rest.
How can you not smile seeing his face?
It reminds me that while things might not be where I want them to be… my heart is full.
And inspires me to continue to do whatever I can to make sure that Nathanael inherits a world (and a legacy) that matches his smile and joy and beauty.
Friends. Good. Night.
(PS. I didn’t even bother to check my grammar. Apologies, hopefully it made enough sense for you to know what I was trying to say)