India

I spent the first ten minutes of this blog staring at the computer screen completely blank. At breakfast today Sam asked who wanted to write the first blog, I answered before I even thought about it. I find I do that often. Words come out as if someone else spoke them and I look around for who the noise came from. I would sound great for me to tell you that this tendency is me acting out of the unction of the Holy Spirit but I know that I am, in general, an incautious creature. If immediate retrospect is possible I am a pro.

Several times yesterday I courted the thought of “what am I doing” which instantly made me feel faithless. I said I was going to India and then I looked around for who made the noise. I know in His divinity, God wove it into His plan for me to come to India but still I doubt. Not so much Him as me. My disbelief is so much easier to entertain than His sovereignty. I am daily acquainted with my unqualified human state. We have become good friends if you define good friends by the amount of time spent with another and not necessarily by the relationship being mutually beneficial. I am little acquainted with the sovereignty of the Lord. Not because it is not everyday around me but because I do not take enough time to dwell in it, to hang out with Him, if you will. But there is hope yet for me, because whether I believe it or not God is who He says He is. And so when my what am I doings arise I am only bringing worry to myself. God is not concerned with my incapabilities. He embraces them for there He can truly be glorified. I am sure this is a lesson I have heard either at church or in some counseling session with a friend but hearing does not mean understanding. Oh, would that it were that simple.

I felt truly handicapped as I was preparing for this trip. Questions of what I had to offer to the team and to the people we will be ministering to entwined themselves around every thought I had about going to India. I even doubted whether I would actually go even up to the week before we left. I woke up early Thursday morning before we flew out of the states and spent the first few minutes lying next to my sister crying into her shoulder asking myself “what am I about to do?” We were on the plane(s) yesterday and I couldn’t keep the questions quiet. It’s amazing what thoughts roll through your head when you are barreling through the air miles above the earth, like there is anyway of getting off or going back. My ipod broke months before we left and I never brought myself to get it fixed so in substitute for not having music readily available (we are so spoiled) I believe the Lord put one song in my head that has just completely lodged itself there, If You Say Go. The lyrics are more than poignant and the Lord is slowing healing the parts of my mind that were preoccupied with the questions and my incapabilities. The chorus is “Your ways are higher than our ways, and the plans that You have laid are good and true, if You call us to the fire You will not withdraw Your hand, we will gaze into the flames and look for You.” For me the country of India is a fire and I haven’t stopped looking.

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Teeth Updates

I’ve been posting these updates on my facebook (I sound so lame right now) and several of my friends suggested I compile them together here. I am afraid this might actually dilute their individual humor as I never really intended for them to be read together. I don’t really even know why I started writing them in the first place. Coping method? There were just so many awkward and funny moments that developed from this whole incident, accident situation I had to share. Hope you smile from them.

Teeth Update for April 10th, 2008: Not in my mouth yet. Still have the “fake” ones. Oh well.
Teeth Update for April 14th, 2008:  Wednesday at 9 I am off to “The Lab” to have my teeth custom colored. Crayons may be used somewhere in the process so pray they stay in the lines. Cerulean is my favorite Crayola Crayon color, I hope they use it.
(I may be the only person who cares about/reads these updates which is so sad since I am also responsible for writing them. Sigh.)
Teeth Update for April 16th, 2008: While I was at the “Lab” I was asked if I could take off my temporary teeth. I said “No, they are glued to my face.” “Well sometimes if you just wiggle them a little they will come off.” Umm, I don’t want to think I am a few Tooth Fairy shakes away from my front teeth falling out out and if I did decide to wiggle them off, I would hate to think that at any moment they could fall out again all by themselves, if they really wanted to.
Oddly enough Robin (the dental colorist) said she would have to add blue to my teeth to give them translucence, though not cerulean. They should be ready in a couple of days but my dentist is taking a week off, so I will holding on to these temporaries for a bit longer.
Teeth Update for April 22nd, 2008: Went to the dentist today for a teeth viewing.
Waiting in the dentist office I felt like I was at a viewing for the deceased, which is confusing because I am pretty sure my teeth died a few weeks ago on the road behind McDonalds and the teeth I was about to see definitely were not those.
The dental technician brought my teeth in and everything changed. It was as if I was about to see a newborn baby. Anticipation was tumbling in my stomach. I could see my face pressed up against the windows of the room, sterile gloves and cooing. My teeth were in a small, clear plastic box line with thick blue foam. This box was carried in a large white bag with multiple pieces of paper documenting my teeth’s journey from conception, to shaping to coloring, to removing of color, and finally, to the moment of delivery. I was so nervous as she put the box in my hands. They are just lovely. Both of the teeth are fine and I am please to announce, will come home next Monday at 11.
Teeth Update for April 25th, 2008: I am trying to decide whether or not to keep my temporary teeth after they put my new ones in, if they even let me.
Hey, some people keep their casts.
Teeth Update for April 28th, 2008: Well they’re in and it’s a snug fit. No one tell my parents that this may be undoing all thecloseness that years of braces brought to my teeth. They’d be devastated. I have visions of the rest of my teeth splaying out in ridiculous directions in protest.
Here are just a few highlights from the chair:
1. They couldn’t remove my temporary teeth. They were going to have to cut them out. I said, I’d rather them punch them out, it’s not like I have anything to lose.
2. What is left of my teeth was referred to as “contacts”
3. I look awful in those stupid 90’s sunglasses they give you to wear and I had to look at myself multiple times while they were trying my teeth on. Each time it was worse. Were they trying to protect me from boys? Boys would definitely not talk to me in those.
4. I walked in on a old woman in the bathroom. She didn’t respond to my knocks nor did she lock the door. Fortunately, all I saw was her upper body folding over to sit down.
It’s all very exciting.
Teeth Update for April 29th, 2008: Did not keep the temporaries. They didn’t have to cut the out of my face (see last Teeth Update post) but they were fairly mauled by the time they came out.
The soreness is gone without any of my other teeth mutinying in my mouth. They have accepted their inorganic brothers and really the only one who seems the least bit interested in them is my tongue. It’s never been so active or had so much exercise. I keep saying ‘every day is a discovery and my tongue is like Columbus.’ I mean that in a non-creepy manner. I realize that sounds very creepy.
The teeth feel very shiny. That’s the best way I can think to describe them.
Flossed last night, per dentist instructions. It was like carnage in my mouth. I won’t go into detail, let’s just say its a wonder I didn’t pass out from blood loss. (Hmmm, that’s pleasant.)
And on that note, I’m done. Enjoy!

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Unfelt Breezes

A few years ago, while I was working at Biscottis, we had a sudden plague of fragile, pale bugs. Their physique was like mosquitoes but their presence was moth-like in its gentility. Their were millions of them, everywhere. The would swarm a bit but most of the time when you saw them they were in some catatonic trance of dying or already gone. It was bizarre and to some disgusting. They picked inconvenient places to die but other than that they were harmless.To have your entire impact on the world be your death seems a cruel fate, but then again I am probably just anthropomorphizing the insects.
I had never seen them before and haven’t since then. Curious, I researched the situation and found out that unusual wind patterns from the Atlantic carried these clouds of blind midges (which is what they are called) to where they were never supposed to be. I just thought that was crazy. Something as simple as an unseen, unusual, and to me unfelt breeze could alter a life course, could deliver something I have never encountered before right to my doorstep, literally. I don’t know why I’ve been thinking about other than it makes me wonder when the next breeze will blow.

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Accidents and Offices (1)

   Sunday morning I fell of my bike and aptly found the pavement below me, along with several buttons from my shirt and my front teeth (this is actually a lie, Sam found my buttons and only one of my teeth). This was devastating for me, as it should be for anyone who values dental well being. I am not sure what amount of time it took for me to travel from my bike to the ground but it was fast; I wasn’t even given a moment to consider what was happening. It went something like this: pedaling, smiling (which may have been to my detriment), and cool morning air on my legs, to standing, gaping, and rough gravel in my mouth. I wasn’t even allowed the pleasure of flying through the air, pity.
  
   I was certain I was exagerating the situation when I said, “my teeth are gone,” but my friend’s face was clear. His eyes darted up and down from my mouth to my eyes as my fingers felt for fugitive teeth that were hiding out on the pavement.

   “Oh my gosh, my teeth,” was all I could gasp out.

   My face contracted at the idea that I no longer had complete front teeth and then I felt the rest of my body paralyze in pain. I began to shake and couldn’t control my brain to control my body. It was like the sky before a storm and I didn’t want to be outside when it started raining. If I had to go it alone I would have knelt on the pavement and sobbed. Not forty yards from my house and I wouldn’t have made it. I wanted to sit down. I curled over; the back of my hand protecting my shattered and limp mouth. Without letting me inhale, the oxygen was punching its way out of my lungs, grasping for the surface. 

   I looked at Ben to help me and didn’t take my eyes off him.  He walked by my side to my house, silently supporting me as I muttered through the thoughts pounding my brain.

   “I need to go home… My bike… Oh my gosh, my teeth… My head is killing me.”

   His strong presence held back what was building behind my eyes. I paused at my driveway and asked him not to follow me to the door. The damn was breaking; I didn’t want him to drown.  I made it to the door but when my sister anxiously flung it aside I broke. She took me to the bathroom. The cold floor burned my victim knees and sobs squeezed at my chest.

   Alison grabbed my shoulders, “Babe, it’s gonna be okay. Hey, it’s gonna be okay.”

   It didn’t feel like me but someone wailed, “I don’t have my teeth! Oh God, I don’t have my teeth.” I don’t think it was an out-of-body experience but something in me disconnected. I was watching another movie, debuting in my head, thinking “dang, that would suck.”  

   Cue knock on door. 

   Alison shut the bathroom door behind her. I was left in the grey agony of the bathroom listening to the muffled voices outside between. 

 

(the rest later…)

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Saturday Sailing

I adore Saturdays.

It was excessively windy this past Saturday and really, what else is there to do but make use of it? Don’t stay inside. It’s a shame, Saturdays only happen once a week and windy Saturdays happen so sparingly you must use them. Why limit the feeling of the wind pressing on your body? Embrace it. Run with it, or against, just be in it.

Here is what we did:

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