Friday, June 8, 2012

on substitutes for life

First of all let me just disclaimer that this is not my normal style of writing and blogging. 

But at this point of my summer if I don't start throwing something up here, there won't be any blog left. 

It's a good thing, I think, this whole blogging/internet connectivity.  There is no longer the feeling of "I'm the only one" because with the vast resources made available by search engines, you can find someone else who shares your joy, your sorrow, your unique circumstances.

This is wonderful when looking for help and answers to needs.

This is not wonderful when you need a hug.

There's no substitute for real life friends.

There are no substitutes for living life. 

For actually licking the ice cream cone.

Catching the lightening bug.

Having friends over to swim.

Kissing newborn fuzzy hair.

Oh but there are substitutes.  I know.  I do the substitutes.  And they're flat.  So much less joy than the hard work of the real thing.

Taking pictures of the kids with their cones. (missing actually eating with them)

Getting the video camera for the first lightning bugs. (missing sharing the joy)

Letting the kids call their friends. (missing the building of a real life relationship)

Scrolling through facebook pictures of the new baby. (missing the  skin, the smell, the drinking it all in)

I don't want to live in the substitute world. 

So we've been pretty busy living in the real one.

It has

messy relationships


friends with endless therapy and Children's Hospital trips

hard work

small groups

van problems

fights about the van problems

spontaneous pizza ordering

park trips

fishing trips

meeting people where they are at


reading Old Yeller aloud

wonky sleep schedules for the kids = zero sleep for me (okay, I lied.)

(no, I didn't lie.  it FEELS like zero sleep)

Yesterday I carried a scratch piece of paper from my Bible study book over to the trash and scanned as I tossed it; my eyes fell on this line. . . hug your children as often as you feed them, their souls grow on love.

I turned around and immediately met Cambria who was coming to me with some complaint.  I ignored it and picked her up.  She threw her arms around my neck and buried her face in my shoulder.  I was shocked at the urgency and receptivity to my offered hug. *whispers* Mom, I need to spend time with you.

I want to feed their souls.  Not just write about feeding their souls.

In my mind there is this big teeter totter with writing about life on one side and living life on the other.  In my quest for balance, I continue to write because my own need for closure, for sanity, for an outlet drives me on. 

But even as I post this little picture of Jacob's first meal. . . I am mindful of the fact that there was just no substitute for being there.

Five hours of food prep. (whew.  I had no idea it would take him so long.  he meticulously prepared each item.)

That's some strawberry cheesecake mousse that he's preparing. 

Rushing around all flushed and sweaty; everyone shows up at the table.  "You guys are all here already?!" 

two hundred flies that suddenly decided to decsend

goblet shattering at the table

oh but it was real!

Happy Friday to you. . .

Enjoy some real life this weekend!


  1. LOVED this post! You are absolutely correct - no substitutes for the real thing....the reason that I temporarily suspended my blog.

    Thanks for the reminder!

    You have such a lovely family! So soon they grow up!

  2. You're very right; there are no substitutes for the real thing. It's so important to me to spend more time with my family and friends than I do online. Online can be so shallow sometimes... and my "real" life can suffer from it as I have seen happen before to me and others.

    Hugs, communication, showing our love... so important in life!

  3. So true. You are right on. I go for the substitutes far too often myself… Somehow it's like grasping for some kind of sanity, when really I just need to live. :)

    Love that photo of you all eating out doors. Sweetness.

  4. I've read your blog for awhile now and since you were at my classmate's wedding (curt) somehow I feel like we have a connection :)

    Thanks for writing and writing...its a wonderful blessing from God