46 / 52 – The New Normal
Hey Everyone, so the blog is being kind of weird and not letting me upload any pictures :/ I’m getting it figured out (hopefully), but for now, I’ll try to post them on Facebook with the update links.
So this last week was really good. After more than a month of moving and transitioning and a lot of big things to get settled (not that we’re completely settled yet 🙂 we finally started doing more “normal” things. Our boxes of books and curriculum finally arrived the week before and I was able to lesson plan for this school year (I know, so late!) So we did actually start school! I have to say, I was REALLY surprised and encouraged by how things went! Historically (at least in this house) the first couple of weeks are kind of a nightmare – lots of tears, patience being tested, just long, hard days trying to get back in the groove of things. Last week though, went incredibly well!
I’m so proud of the boys in this season. We definitely have our days where we just feel run down, like we’ve been climbing uphill carrying weights, but for the most part, they have been incredible. Even when I’m bracing myself for difficulty (like with school), they’ve surprised me, taking ownership or showing initiative to be kind or meet new people. I knew the Lord would take care of us, that where leaving what we knew would be hard, He would sustain us. I don’t think I quite expected to see our boys transition this well or even flourish so quickly. Only the Lord can take credit for that, and I’m so thankful!
The other thing that started last week was Branden beginning to work at the church. He’s been cleaning out a space for an office, organizing ministry things (most of which arrived with our school stuff), and starting to prepare curriculum for children’s ministry.
It feels great to finally start carving out a routine. Honestly though, when I think about it, it’s kind of strange and incredible to be here, figuring out the new “normal.”
What’s incredible is that Ireland feels normal, like it’s perfectly natural to live in this country, to be with these new families and kids and church. It feels like we’d been waiting for months, even years to be here, and now we are, and it feels…normal. It’s like when you’re on a really long road trip, driving and seeing things, and you finally get to your destination. The getting there might have been great, but you were on your way somewhere else.
Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”
Everyday we are finding new things that are not the same as in the States. There are different phrases, some phrases I’m used to saying that don’t make sense to anyone here 🙂 We drive on the other side of the road here, with the steering wheel on the right side instead of the left and almost no one drives an automatic (by the way, I haven’t driven since we left Denver!) The food is different and there are things that were so easy to get before that don’t really exist in Ireland. The culture is different in so many ways; the pace of life is slower, people as a whole seem more relational. In a way, it seems like really everything is different. My family is far away and I have these moments of realizing how much I miss them. So much. But it also completely feels like this is exactly where we’re supposed to be. Like the Lord, when creating us, had Ireland and Calvary Cork and these precious families in mind. He meant us for this place, in this time and now we’re here.
I’m so very thankful.