Friday, August 5, 2016

Harris Family Reunion

I still have a proper post about my dad’s death just sitting inside of me. Scrambled and unwritten, but asking to be written. My own inner self I suppose – afraid of forgetting. Afraid of not ever fully processing or making sense of it all. And that is one of the things that has worried me – perhaps unnecessarily: that there has been no real time to truly sit and mourn and turn everything over in my mind until I’ve seen every angle, fully swum through each emotion and allowed the situation to become . . . learned from and properly understood. Instead I go about thinking all is fine and then weeping over various nonsense things. (One morning found me literally curled up in a ball – sobbing to Mike that I can never get out and run regularly. Haha. I like to think I’m too self aware for silly things like displaced emotions, but . . . I’m proving myself otherwise.)

At the same time, maybe coping and learning also occurs simply by . . . moving along through life’s demands and routines and joys; taking care of kids, folding piles of laundry, carrying on with adventures, trusting that the proper insights and growth will find ways to sneak into life’s demands. I don’t know this, really. I just hope.

In any case, as I mentioned in the last post, there has hardly been time for five minutes of thinking! For good or ill, life has been a whirlwind of activity since my dad’s passing.

First off was a reunion up at Bear Lake with Mike’s family.

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This year was extra wild for me. Two babies needing naps and whose tantruming demands begged early bedtimes meant I snuck back to our own cabin fairly regularly so that Mike and my older kids could more easily be a part of cousin activities.

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While I was a bit hyper-aware (particularly after just having announced another baby coming) of how frazzled we must have seemed; and while I would have truly loved having been able to more easily enjoy conversation and time with Mike’s siblings, their spouses and kids (I truly did get incredibly lucky in the in-law department! It hardly seems fair after already having come to such an amazing family of my own!); I was quite content to be at our own little cabin with things a little more quiet and calm there than they usually are.

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And, particularly after having abandoned my little family throughout much of the month prior, it gave me great happiness to have them enjoying themselves so much. I liked Mike being able to stay late at the bigger lodge to visit with his siblings. I liked my kids getting to spend full days playing and laughing with cousins. And they had so much fun! Beyond the usual – good food, pool games (as in with pool table and pool balls), movies, talent shows, crafts, etc. – Mike rented a wave runner one day, and, another day, Mike’s older brother paid for a lot of the older cousins (Abe and Daisy included) to try some hydro-flight adventure where they got to be pulled behind a boat while having water shoot them up into the air from some magical boots they were wearing. They had the best time!

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Lots of memories for all of us this summer!

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7 comments:

Marilyn said...

You and Mike are so cute. And I love that warm flare of sun just out of view in these pictures. Like something good is watching over you, barely out of sight. Maybe that's your dad. :)

I always feel like people must be thinking, "why did they have so many kids when they can't even handle them?" But they probably aren't thinking that ALL the time, and if they are…why should I care? The chaos is beautiful, in its way. And how can anyone help but like your family? I can feel their happiness and exuberance even in these pictures. Still, it's always good to be home in a quiet(er) house. And a blessing, I guess, that having some percentage of the kids instead of ALL of them even FEELS like a quiet house. :)

Marilyn said...

Oh! And this: "At the same time, maybe coping and learning also occurs simply by . . . moving along through life’s demands and routines and joys; taking care of kids, folding piles of laundry, carrying on with adventures, trusting that the proper insights and growth will find ways to sneak into life’s demands. I don’t know this, really. I just hope."

I hope so too! This really brought me some hope yesterday, as I was despairing about how I could ever have time for revelation and pondering and answers where there is so much…life to take care of. I try to close my door and meditate, and all I get is a bunch of yelling and knocking and crying and then it's lunchtime and then someone is throwing up, and how can I ever learn or know anything without a second to think?? Even writing this comment I had to stop three times to deal with kids fighting…I hate it!

But I hope you're right. That somehow, God will make it possible for the things I need to somehow…get through the fog. :)

Beautify Pacify said...

Oh Nancy, I'm so sorry to hear about your dad! There are no words for that, are there? I can just send you my deepest sympathy. So many things have happened and are happening to you!! And I think MY life is hectic! But there sure is this stillness you mentionned a few posts earlier,peace and light right there in your life and in your mind and soul, and so much love to carry you through.
On a lighter note, you know I absolutely love your photos...but these pics of you and your husband: how absolutely stunning you look, they are my favourite!!
Sending you lots of love, may this whirlwind of contrasted and intense emotions lead to more peaceful moments! Val

Nancy said...

I do think so, Marilyn. Not that we don't have to spend time pondering and studying and praying, but o think I've written you about a few times in the past while where I had the right things to say or do happen amidst the chaos of very mundane business and me feeling as uninspired as anyone could feel and then shocked that good and insight still found its way in!

Nancy said...

That was the very perfect thing to read and be reminded of -- centering and looking at that stillness and light and peace amidst all this whirlwind. Thank you Val.

Andrea said...

What stands out to me in this are all the smiles and real sense of fun and joy.
I can relate to the emotion playing out over the nonsensical things in life. That's how it seems to work. I have not mourned a father so I can't imagine how that must feel. I've done my small fall apart over moving away from home and family. It seems to spill out in odd ways over silly things (like the car dying the day it was supposed to move- I really cried over that even though it had nothing to do with the car) And yet the days to day business of getting things done and living life with kids has kept me from totally melting down, and maybe that's part of the way it goes. I don't know. Your words resonated with me in this time of big life changes. Reading this felt like being heard.

Nancy said...

Yes, Andrea! And it feels sometimes like such a contradiction almost -- the day to day demands and taking care of kids seems to, in some ways, make me feel I can never properly deal with whatever the real issues and emotions are; but, at the same time, as you said, it also seems to provide a buffer that saves us from totally melting down. I'd like to feel like all the emotion from these big things is a set amount -- contained in one tidy bucket inside of us-- and that all these little spill outs over cars dying or not being able to run -- can empty the emotion out in a nicely dealt with manner! :) Haha. Who knows. Maybe it can. But man life is complex, isn't it! Thanks for commenting and for understanding!

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