The Beautiful Mess in Hopes Deferred

Last weekend I completely reworked and purged my "wing" of our attic. Yes, I have my own section. The only things I didn't budge were the bin of my great-grandmother's china dinner service and my Christmas china. Here's the majority of the damage on my side of the room:

I didn't even open my hopechest that day. Meant to go through that and reorganize, but it'll keep. I condensed three boxes of cards and letters from birthdays and graduations past to one box, as well as packed up a huge box of books to give away. Have I mentioned I'm really, really grateful this job I took upon myself was one I'm glad I did alone? The purging was cathartic, though there's residual mess in my bookshelf to reorganize...but I'm blogging instead. *smile*

Two dear, well-meaning friends jokingly said I'd have to get an apartment soon if I get much more stuff for a future home. Have to admit, the thought's crossed my mind. But for the foreseeable future, I'm home due to finances and my hip dysplasia. And that is truly fine and dandy by me. Besides, in an apartment it's not like I could display half my pretty things.

All the boxes of mixing bowls, spring-form pans, a punch bowl set, vintage housekeeping books, photo albums that are endearingly embarrassing to look at now...I truly did recognize how blessed I am to have so many things to one day fill a home. So many memories too, preserved and kept together. But I sat there in that huge beautiful mess and felt a loss as tears welled. As an aside--I am so done with apologizing or rationalizing away tears. I'm a sensitive soul who is trying to find strength in transparency with myself, and most importantly with my Lord and Savior and He doesn't mind my tears.

I remember asking for all these books and home-goods from about my fourteenth birthday, on. Surely if I were this well-prepared I'd garner a husband right out of high school. Two friends who did exactly that didn't exactly help that way of thinking even as I found I was really grateful I did not get married at the young age of eighteen as my little girl romantic's heart had once dreamt. Before ya'll think me naive or pathetic, I know I have to put myself out there and be in God's will--not cloistered away at home--in order for the guy God has for me to be able to find me when the time's right.

This past winter, and moments now, I've really wrestled with questions and resentment. That ugly struggle is fading, by God's grace...but there've been hard moments for me. Not gonna lie. Now they aren't every day by a long shot, but the ache of hopes deferred but for now ebbs and flows. This weekend was a tough one, to be frank. Seeing all my girlhood hopes and dreams in so many things that will one day fade away, that truly don't mean much...but they're mine. And they're packed away in a dusty attic in cardboard boxes, waiting to be used. The sixth box I repacked and trucked back into the attic, I shoved it against the wall too hard and just lost it. Will I ever get to unpack these in my own home, with my husband doing the heavy labor and gently teasing me for how many books I own?

Returning to my room--thankfully right off the walk-in attic--I surveyed the rest of the mess of all my things. All these things that my sister teases me about because she's just happy she won't need to throw me a bridal shower someday because I already have so much. I'm no longer ashamed of pouring my heart out to God--even the hurt. It's when I internalize, though He knows all, that I rail at Him and grow angry and resentful. If I literally cry out to him and curl up at the Cross with my tired, weepy heart--He meets me. And carries me.

And He reminds me that even in the midst of trying to thrive in the present, with huge hopes deferred only temporarily, it's a beautiful mess. It's a beautiful mess of lessons I had to learn. Of fun memories antiquing and birthdays and time with friends where I found so much of myself and much of what's packed away in the attic now. 

Words, history, and grace color my days here in The Burgh where I seek out the perfect coffee and red lipstick.

1 comment:

Pull up a chair, grab a cup of something hot or cold to drink, and enjoy. I love making new friends!