I found myself in a self-imposed time out on my back porch step this morning. With my 'eyes leaking', I heard Rupert Everett's voice from 'My Best Friend's Wedding' in my head saying, "Yes, but who's chasing you?" In the movie he asks Julia Roberts that amidst her 'tail spinning', chasing here and there, and he aims to puts pause in her with that question. She's moving so fast in a seemingly forward direction that she doesn't even look back to see that no one else is running the same race.
My morning thus far had left me sulking with that line ringing in my ear. There's no need to be long and drawn out, because it really happens more hard and fast all before 7:30am in our house. Our newest addition to the fam (10 week old Amos) has us stirring before the alarm even gets to finish it's ringing. Bubba's school starts earlier than Lucy's, so he has to be up and at 'em, which his being like cold molasses makes challenging. Lucy, though she doesn't have to be up, manages to need to be gotten up amidst the hurry of getting molasses, I mean Bubba, and Deddy out the door. Her wake up call is a louder-than-needed, "DAAAAAADDDDDYYYYYY" (repeat 12 times, louder each one) ringing through the monitor. Yes, at 3.5, she's still in a cage, I mean crib, because we're not ready for her to have those reigns just yet! She wakes up with worries of "I have nothing I like" to wear and already arguing for tights and long sleeves on what's likely to be an 80 degree day. My flat 'no' should mean this is not negotiable, but it apparently falls on deaf ears as she stands on the landing a short time later with her tights firmly on. I digress…
Well before the tights are on, I'm trying to get lunches together (still a small task although sandwiches are made the night before), bubba's breakfast eaten (deddy fixes his own, thankfully), hair combed, shoes put on (amidst Amos dragging them away fast as he can), hopping outside to cut 'blooming branches' off our maple for spring-themed show & share, interjecting 'no's, 'leave-it's, and 'move faster's (at kids and dog interchangeably). I'm making sure husband's lunch is on the table so he doesn't forget it again, give him packages to mail, get questioned about a ship time I quoted a customer (thinking, I don't want to discuss it or be told I'm wrong - just follow the attached sticky note). Get book bag, packages, dog and self out to wait in the garage where it's cool and refreshing as I'm sure I feel my blood pressure rising. During the exchange of 'good-byes-have-a-good-day-i-love-yous', I get a disapproving reprimand from husband about how I'm 'talking' to everyone and how frustrated I sound and I smugly say, 'I'll try to do better'.
After the garage door closes and 2 of 3 are headed to their needed daily destination, I carry Amos inside and he promptly poops in the foyer. As I'm cleaning that and resuming my 'discussion' with Lucy on attire for the day, this is when I see the tights and that blood pressure pops right back up. Once poop is flushed and floor is again clean, I march (I mean to walk, but it's definitely a march) up the stairs to confront the pauper princess. By this time the tights are shed (maybe they fell off in the tremble of my march) and I pull open her draw to illustrate the vast short-sleeve options. She shuts me down with 'I don't like any of those'. It's a little fuzzy now, but what happened next was something akin to a sweeping armful of those unsuitable shirts, a trash bag retrieved, a threat of 'well, let's just give them ALL AWAY", ending with a heap of shirts on the floor and an untriumphant march back down the stairs (definitely a march this time) and a bee-line out the back door.
As I plop down on the top step, that's when I hear Rupert and his "…who's chasing you?" and all I can do is cry at my morning defeat. I started my day 'chasing' everyone and their needs and to-do's, yet no one was 'chasing' (i.e. listening, caring, understanding, appreciating) me. I was running my race fast but no one was racing with me. After sulking in this a bit, I pull it together, blow my nose, find Lucy smiling and dressed back inside - shirts back in the drawer, her resilience (water off duck's back-ness) still ever-amazing. I then pour my coffee and head to sunnier places on the front porch for my morning devotion. The sun, steaming coffee and scripture bring the needed solace. I'm reminded how my small-ness, my less-thanness, even my pouting - it's consumed by His grace. I backed up a couple verses from my devotion scripture to read/remind myself of previously bracketed text surrounding -
'Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what it seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal' 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
With those assurances, I can't not be consumed - my inadequacies are swallowed, my measure of it all - realigned. Be my troubles small, mundane, daily rigamarole or mountains in front of me - it's not in vain and God is there. I imagine it sometimes like a hand, gently lifting my chin, drawing me out of whatever is bringing me down. Tilting my face towards the sun, 'fixing' my eyes on the better beyond the present circumstance. It's also a little elbow in my side, a nudge of sorts, that this is all part of it. Life's railroad, the joys, the sorrows and the day-to-day tracks between - it's all part of it and it's ok. So, when I hear the defeating question, "Yes, but who's chasing you" - I can know it's those truths and promises. They may not be thundering footsteps on my tail, but they're quiet assurances running alongside - helping me run my race and not lose heart. He knows my needs and He's meeting me there ♥