5 Minute Friday: In Between

It’s that time again — linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker and her incredible blogging community to write for 5 minutes, without editing. It’s always intriguing to see what comes when you let the fingers loose!

Five Minute Friday

Prompt: In Between

GO

We’re right there again, aren’t we?

In the middle, in between.

For most of our marriage, that’s where we’ve been — married younger than many of our friends, traveling far from home during our earliest years together, having children almost immediately.

We were the couple with the kids. . . all the kids . . . so close together.

And then, two decades later, we were the couple with the grandkids. And they just kept coming, didn’t they? A 20 year age span and we love ’em all.

But now. . .

. . . but now. . . we’ve got these aging mamas, both of them frail and forgetful. Confused — one combative, one paranoid — both lost to us in so many ways.

And here we are . . . in between.

In between a rock and a hard place a lot of the time and getting older by the minute our own selves. How do we wisely and compassionately divvy ourselves up? How do we best love our moms AND our grandkids? And somehow, also care for ourselves and do those things we’ve waited a lifetime to do?

Very carefully, it seems. Planning vacations long in advance, lining up family members to pay visits to 90-year-old grandmoms and great grandmoms, trying to cover every base.

And in between, saying ‘thank you, thank you, thank you’ for the riches that our ours, trying never to let discouragement win, asking for grace to find the beauty in the midst of the broken, the happy truth that we’re both still here, relatively healthy and enjoying the wherewithal to do the things we are able to do.

Even if spontaneity isn’t always easy!!

STOP

On vacation in May (and going again in July!). We’re heading into the last leg here and trying to do it well. 

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Comments

  1. “And in between, saying ‘thank you, thank you, thank you’ for the riches that our ours, trying never to let discouragement win, asking for grace to find the beauty in the midst of the broken, the happy truth that we’re both still here, relatively healthy and enjoying the wherewithal to do the things we are able to do.”

    I love how at the end you added this sentiment of gratefulness. It is so important to be thankful. I can tell that you are sincere about how much you appreciate the journey and where you currently are. Yes, never let discouragement win. That grace will always be reachable so long as you keep your heart open, as you have. I enjoyed your post and found it refreshing. 🙂

  2. God is good even in the in between, isn’t He.

  3. Diana, while I am probably a little younger than you, I get this. Time passes by so swiftly and it is hard to do all that seems required of us. But I sense that you do it very well. We didn’t meet at the Jumping Tandem Retreat, but I enjoyed your reflections…thank you.

    • Thanks so much for coming by and commenting, Mary – I’m sorry we didn’t meet at JT and I’m guessing that you’re more than just a little younger than I. :>)

  4. Diana, what a marvelous result of insomnia! I so resonate with this–‘in between’ ourselves as my husband and I are. I so enjoy what you write and your enthusiasm is an inspiration, even in the hard times of ‘divvying yourself up.’

    • Thanks so much, Jody. The only way out of the ‘stuckness’ of it all is to count the good things and be grateful. Sometimes that is as easy as pie, other times? It takes all I’ve got.

  5. Hard and sweet … this in between.

    Fondly,
    Glenda

  6. Diana, it may feel like you’ve spent much of your life in between “a rock and a hard place”, but when the Rock is Christ then the hard places give way to joy as we press through them. I love this glimpse into your life and from where I stand it looks richly blessed indeed. Your love for God, life, your family, and others rings out loud and clear in your words of wisdom and compassion. Every hard place has an area to shelter and draw breath, a Rock to lean on, a lesson to learn. Much to share to bless others with, as you already do so well. Thank you 🙂

  7. You seem always to write my heart Diana – and that is such a sweet blessing.

  8. Being ‘in between’ is never easy, but your attitude of ‘thank you, thank you, thank you’ is the best place to start! Being content in every situation because we know the one who holds each situation–that’s priceless!

  9. “asking for grace to find the beauty in the midst of the broken”

    Yes, oh yes. I’m somewhat older than you. My health, which has never been strong, is diminishing. I have much pain and weakness, and right now I have a sick kitty, plus decisions to make that I’m not qualified to make. The list of discouragements goes on and on. I don’t have either the health or the finances to do the things I dreamed of doing but never got to do. But some days I’m able to take real delight just in the act of being still, and BREATHING! I do try to find the beauty in the midst of the broken. It’s His grace that I cling to!

    God bless you and your multiple-generations.

    • Thanks so much for reading and commenting, Kingfisher. And I’m sorry for whatever health limitations you are facing into right now – but rejoice with you in the small but beautiful gifts that come with just being alive, having full cognition and the time to look around at the wonders of this planet. Blessings to you.

  10. Oh Diana, what a time to try to figure out what your in-between looks like these days. So hard to see aging taking its toll on parents, isn’t it. So thankful that you have friends and family who are willing to spend time with these beautiful women who have such stories and moments to share…I am so glad that you have the blessing of both beautiful children AND amazing grand kids. May this season of your life be filled with glory as you face many places of in-between and blessing that comes when least expected. Thank you for sharing your FMF

  11. What I find difficult is knowing that I will undoubtedly be the one, in time, that’s on the outer edge of that sandwich. Time has no standstill to it. Rejoicing as we go …

    • Indeed, Susan. That piece is always there – so wanting to do it differently so that my own kids feel less conflicted about it all! Rejoicing is a great default mode, seems to me. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

  12. I’m so glad you’re traveling. You’ll be better for the people you love.

    • Thanks, Megan. I’m glad, too – though I’m not sure I’ll actually believe it til we’re on that plane, heading out over the blue Pacific! (We used mileage and found a cheap condo in a new place and we’ll have some family around part of the time, so I’m hoping it will be exactly what we need right now.)

  13. Where are you planning on going for your next trip? You know you should come to NZ at least once in your lifetime, don’t you? 😉
    As stages go, I’m a long way from where you are in one sense, but similar in others – although it’s children and elderly parents in my case, rather than grandchildren. However, I was talking with my husband this weekend about his expectations for this stage of our life, and how different life has turned out to be from his expectations. He said that he didn’t expect it to be so complicated… I said that I didn’t think it was likely to get less complicated any time soon, and going by what you’ve written I can see that I’m probably right. Life is complicated, and the richer we are in relationships, the more complicated it often becomes!
    I love your gratitude and that you are still taking time to do the things you have always wanted to do.

    • Thanks, Donna. We do hope to travel to NZ sometime – and I guess it better be pretty soon cuz we’re sure not gettin’ any younger! I truly dread the flight, however, so we’ll have to figure out a way to get a business class ticket, I think. And no, it doesn’t get any less complicated – but it is always rich and filled with beauty as well as struggle. Thanks for reading and commenting, friend.

  14. Just want to add my thanks for a heart-touching post, and your stellar example to us all. To find joy in the midst of trial is the pinnacle of maturity in faith!

  15. It’s amazing to find yourself here, isn’t it? To see where life has brought you? What a beautiful story your life tells us, Diana. What grace you exhibit. I’ve been thinking about these things, lately. Knowing I want to end well. I want to run the race, clear through to the finish line.

    • Thank you, Deidra, for reading and for leaving such good words. Yes, I do want to run the race well. And I think that is a piece of why I connect with you so deeply – I know that you do, too.

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