Thursday, October 15, 2015

Catching Up

It's amazing to me that it's been three months since I last posted a blog. In a way it seems like it has been much longer. Someone please explain to me how it is possible that in less than a month we will be celebrating our THIRD wedding anniversary and in a little over a month our Charlotte will be ONE year old!

The last three months have been a wonderful season of getting back into life where home has always been. It took two months to get used to not having to pack to go back "home" every couple of days! I love being able to spend so much time with my family. I don't take it for granted.

Charlotte has grown so very quickly. She was eight months old when we moved here and now she is almost 11 months old! She has a lot of new tricks up her sleeve and can walk and communicate well through her babble. Her six teeth give her a whole new look. We are still waiting on hair. What she has is so blond, it is almost impossible to see. I can't say she is a "laid back baby." Being held for about 10 seconds is way too long for her.... She has an incredibly strong personality and I can't wait to see how God will use her as she grows. It will take her kind of determination to do great things in the world. I love her more everyday.



Josh has a part-time job and is expecting it to become a full-time position soon. He enjoys working for Wilkes Communications here in Wilkesboro, NC and though he misses life of a Marine many days, I know he is happy to be here and moving ahead with God's plan for our lives. Unfortunately, part of the nature of leaving the military is starting back at "square one" with your career. Going from a Sergeant in the USMC to a having to find his place again is hard, but Josh has handled it so well. Over the last few months I have realized, there were a lot of hard things about being a Marine Wife, but in the end I couldn't be prouder of all Josh accomplished. Sometimes I pick up his uniforms that have been folded and put away for three months and actually.... miss it. I know I'll always look back and remember all the lessons I learned those four years and be grateful the military is a part of our story.

With all the joys of being home, there have been some hard places to walk through as well... things we didn't expect and burdens we didn't know we would have to carry, but God has been faithful and we know He will be, always. We look forward to building our house as we plan to start next month! We have land beside my parents and know we won't have to miss them too much when we are "on our own" again. They have been so generous to let us live in their finished basement for now. They are taking full advantage of Charlotte's company!

I continue to be amazed at God's goodness and faithfulness. I really can't say it enough, "It's good to be back."



Thursday, July 16, 2015

Home!

A week ago today I said goodbye to my home of two and a half years. Josh and I had made it a home since November 2012. We had been married only five days when we entered it for the first time. We prayed as we held hands in the living room that cold fall day that God would bless that house. He answered that prayer.

We cried there and laughed there. I cooked countless suppers in that kitchen as the late afternoon sun streamed through the living room window. We prayed diligently for a baby there. I wrote my book at the desk in that house and the books were later delivered to that door. I went into labor in our bedroom and brought Charlotte home there. We grew and learned and lived in that house.

I can't say I "loved" the house for what it was. It was nothing more than a townhouse built exactly like the dozens around it and only meant to be lived in temporarily. Yet, a part of my life sunk into that place and something about walking out that door for the last time hurt a bit. That morning Kandace (who had come to help us pack and get everything ready to move), Josh and I rushed around like mad men wiping down everything, sweeping and moping one last time for the inspection. I watched all our worldly possessions hoisted up into the U-Haul by Josh. Then there was the inspection and our keys were handed over and it was... over.





That night, we stayed in a hotel across the road from our old house and Friday morning Josh went on base and received his final papers from the USMC. Let me tell you, Sergeant Isaacs was and is an incredible Marine. Those he worked with were sad to see him go. There are many things about the Marine Corps I could've lived without, but I will miss Josh coming home each day in his uniform, the way he rolled his sleeves each night, pining his ribbons... the honor and pride I saw on his face at the Marine Balls as the Marine Corps Hymn was played, I'll miss that too. I was proud when he brought home his Navy Achievement Medal he had worked for for so long. I couldn't be more proud. He served well.

We made the five hour drive home. I could hardly wrap my mind around the fact that we wouldn't have to make that trip again in a few days. I had waited so long and it was finally happening. The tiny town of Havelock disappeared behind me.

Once home we unloaded everything into my parent's finished basement and settled in. The excitement was contagious and Charlotte basked it the attention with her giddy laughs.

There are many unknowns ahead, but I'm so happy to be where my heart is. It makes me think, if it can be so good to move home where I've looked forward to being for only a couple years, imagine the excitement we will feel when we are finally in our final Home, the one we've waited for for a lifetime.... The joy we shall feel if we know Jesus as Savior and Lord... But for now, the journey here continues. 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Right Where He Placed Me

It's been awhile. I have missed this place. I think about writing often, but life sometimes doesn't permit it. There is a season for everything.

In fact, I was sitting on the couch last night folding clothes when I had the thought, "Tomorrow is Saturday. I can't wait to sleep in and relax." Then I remembered that I am a mother of a six-month old. This precious, lively, blue-eyed and way too cute six-month-old who simply doesn't need sleep... apparently. She hardly naps at all and wakes up frequently each night to just look at me and smile. This darling child. But her mama loves her some good sleep... she hasn't gotten it in ole about six months and really seven and a half if you count that last month and a half of pregnancy. I can't complain because this is exactly what I prayed for. Yesterday while running around trying to clean up around the house during the fifteen minute nap Rosebud was taking after getting a text that Josh would be working late... again, I just felt down. That's when it dawned on me that I was doing something that was bringing me down. I was expecting myself to do everything and do it all perfectly. I don't know how many times I've thought, "How can I keep a house clean with several children if I can't with one baby?!" I just kept telling myself to work harder. Beating myself and then scolding myself for beating myself up. Can you say "vicious cycle?!" One thing after another. Just not good enough. 

That's the lie we often believe, isn't it? 

Is my life as fun as so-and-so's appears to be on social media? 

Do I make enough money? 

Do I have nice enough hair? 

Do people think I work out enough or keep my kids well clothed?  

Enough. Enough. Enough. 

This isn't one of those blog posts where you're going to get told it's okay to not try to be good and you're "free" to be "whatever" you want to be because you're saved and sanctified.... No, there isn't an excuse for sin and we do need to strive to be like Jesus in all we do. Grace isn't a soft, fluffy pillow that we can lay on while we sin. But what I am saying is: don't sweat the small things of life... and small things are usually material things. 

It sounds so simple, but it's hard to apply to life. So. Here I am admitting that maybe I can't make baby food all natural and do cloth diapers and cook and clean, pack to move home and a million other things and then wonder why there isn't time to just sit beside the hubby on the couch or maybe write once in a blue moon or even touch that keyboard I haven't hardly glanced at in months. Just maybe life is going to pass me by and what will I be able to say? Boy, I sure got all those clothes washed and look how much money we saved making baby food? None of that will matter. Time. Time will matter and what I did with it. Did I make a difference? And I used to think only "differences" could be made on extravagant mission trips or on big stages.... Ahh, that was a foolish thing to think. The biggest differences are made not from podiums or classrooms. They are made right at home. 

So here I sit in my little home (only to be home for two more months) and savor each moment for what it is: a precious gift only given once. That is precisely why I shall stay home with my Rosebud as she grows never to leave her, for she is my legacy and a legacy can only be made with a whole lotta time, effort and love. I may not be good at this mommy thing all the time, but it's right where God placed me and that helps me know... He thinks I'm good enough for the job. 

Friday, February 6, 2015

When I Meet the Girl in My Shoes

I guess it goes without saying that I have learned a lot the last 2 months and 2 weeks. Ever since Charlotte Rose Isaacs entered the world I have learned more than I thought possible. I suppose that is how most new mothers feel. Yes, I have learned how to not stress every time she cries, sleep while she sleeps instead of scurrying around the house tidying up, multitask and everything else new moms learn. But I have learned other things too, maybe because I live far from home these lessons are even clearer. Though they are sometimes painful to live through, I'm glad I'm learning.

I've learned that I want to be different from the norm. In this way: In ten, twenty, forty years I want to be the woman that 20 year olds like me come to and trust for help and for support. If I meet a young lady far from her home one day when I have a few kids of my own, a few years under my belt and tricks up my sleeve, I pray with all my heart that God will open my eyes to her desperate need for support. Because if you've read my book, you know how much I prayed to be here... when I say "here" I mean with a baby. Charlotte is a gift and one we waited for longer than I had planned, but now that I have her I am more thankful for her than I ever could have been if she had come to us easily. Yet, even though I have my miracle, I won't lie, I still live beside of a dirty, gray marine base with the loudest planes flying over our house 24/7 waking my baby, I am still a marine wife... a dependent of a US marine and linked to a military that is sometimes thoughtless, I still go weeks and months not seeing my precious family, I am doing this alone. There aren't babysitters or opportunities for Josh and me to ever get some time alone. Do I have any friends here in Havelock? No. And it isn't because I haven't tried. I had one and she moved to California with her marine husband. Church is the only place we go. Josh and I do everything for ourselves and by ourselves. It's the life we live right now.

So my point? I am living the life of a young wife and mother trying so hard to do this thing right. My house is a mess and I'm wearing spit up. But this is what I prayed for and I am so happy in a tired sort of messy way. :) But here is what I've learned: If I ever see someone who is in the shoes I'm wearing now, I pray I will be there for them in a big way.

Our Christian culture is self-centered. We don't show hospitality and we don't encourage the young man who's family is lost. That young man? He was my husband and if it hadn't been for my family supporting him, we wouldn't be married. If we only had the slightest idea the impact we could have on those who are lonely, lost, searching, hoping... whatever they may be. We could change their lives forever. I know we are all busy, but when are these people going to be worth our time and effort? I take back what I said about waiting until I'm older, I am ready to be a blessing now. Behind those smiles may be tears. If we would only stop to find out.