It’s My Party and I’ll Cry If I Want To

Cinnamon Rolls.

Our 27th Annual Cinnamon-Roll Baking. Christmas, 2013. Yona, Guam.

But Really, I Don’t Want To.

Unless they’re happy tears. Tomorrow I’ll have ridden this planet around the sun 55 times.

Somehow, the view never bores me. I wonder sometimes, how can that be, that everything seems fresh all the time? I treasure some traditions (like Christmas cinnamon-roll baking) and cherish the brand-new adventures (like flying to Guam. Or signing a contract with a publsher).

I’m married to a man who seems to have me confused with a princess. At least he treats me like one.

My baby girl, the one God gave me, she’ll be 32 this year. She lives far, far away now, but on our last visit I taught her how to make ricotta cheese. She introduced me to the wonders of no-boil lasagna noodles.  Sitting side by side at the nail salon, enjoying pedicures,  I looked over and realized: we’re two women, here. Mom and daughter, yes, but also, two women. It’s sweet.

She has three littles of her own. And a tall, dark and handsome husband who adores her. I never could have imagined such a tribe. My bonus kids have provided me with another six grandchildren. I never, ever would have guessed that I would get to play Lala to nine–count them, nine! beautiful grandbabies.

But I do. 

We live in a home with hot and cold running water, and all the modern appliances, and a sturdy roof. Our dogs curl at our feet at night. Our pantry is stuffed with food. We have leisure most every evening. We belong to a beautiful church, a devoted collection of imperfect people, stumbling along, serving God as best we know how.

Some folks I love a whole, whole lot have gone on to heaven (my mother, for example). But this earthly life is chockablock with people who spike my life with a supersized shot of awesome: My dad. My siblings. Cousins. Nieces. Nephews. An amazing posse of Frio Sisters® who enrich my life more than I could ever have hoped for. Great coworkers.

Yes, there’s been tragedy to salt the joy. And yes, there’s been drama to temper the wonder. And when it comes to making bad decisions, I’ve been a real overachiever.

And still, through all that, I am loved by God. The same God who carved the Grand Canyon and dreamed up the Aurora Borealis loves me. Clumsy, stubborn, self-centered me. 

Now that’s enough to make a body cry. Or sing. 

rabbit conga

9 You visit the earth and cause it to overflow;
You greatly enrich it;
The stream of God is full of water;
You prepare their grain, for thus You prepare the earth.
10 You water its furrows abundantly,
You settle its ridges,
You soften it with showers,
You bless its growth.
11 You have crowned the year with Your bounty,
And Your paths drip with fatness.
12 The pastures of the wilderness drip,
And the hills gird themselves with rejoicing.
13 The meadows are clothed with flocks
And the valleys are covered with grain;
They shout for joy, yes, they sing.

Psalm 65:9-13 (NASB)