Nov 4, 2012

November Memories

 Growing up, my memories of November blowing in harsh, a message... reminding us the time had come to dig out the wool scarves and mittens. The skies turned gray, casting aside the gentle blue of summer.
The winds would rise up, leaves falling from trembling trees, encouraged by either a cold rain or an early snow.
Yet.. I could feel the excitement come alive in me. 
The shift in temperatures, from shorts to sweaters, almost overnight. 
The dark sky by dinnertime. 
The smell of the fireplace my dad would burn most nights.

The fall brought birthdays. 
First my sweet grandfathers on the first day of that favorite month. Always, we would gather together and celebrate his.. and also mine, 2 days later. 
This ushered in Thanksgiving, Christmas... family moments etched in my mind.
These are the memories of my youth. Thankfulness, joy, surprises, love.
The house would fill many evenings with friends.
Laughter was the sound I remember most.
Yes, I know I was fortunate. 
I understand that better now.
Yes, I assumed everyone had this idealic of a childhood.
Now I know better...

November arrived this year and I was far from the state of my youth... in many ways.
 The warm sun, blue sky, leaves still falling... but there was no smell of a fireplace burning. 
My father is gone.. the first birthday without him. 
The sweet grandfather many years before.
Time moves on...

I shared time with my sweet children, grown up yet still... my sweet ones.
Now I celebrate my daughters day of birth, 5 days after mine. 
Yes, I adore that we are close in this way too.
I drove home to my kind husband in another state.
Fifteen hundred miles I logged in 4 days. 
Blessed I am....
The day was eighty degrees as I traveled the road home.
Where is home?
Not a place I can find on a map...
but a place where my heart is secure.
Where the lovelies are.
 Home changes, moves on, looks different.

We hang on to the memories. Some say don't look back. 
The past reminds me, encourages me. 
My journey includes joy and pain, both molding and growing me.

November is still my favorite month. 
My memories no doubt play a large role and yet....
 as the joys have continued, there have also been deep, bottomless moments of heartache.
 I cling to hope, in the God of my days, my months, my years.
 be kind to us this season as we remember to give thanks for all that we have.

Is there a month that brings you joy, pain, memories of how God is growing you?

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