Feeling a bit raw and teary these last couple of days. I’m wanting to make peace with all my emotions surrounding this huge transition and allow myself the space to just let it unfold as it will. But it’s hard to do that sometimes, isn’t it.

It’s hard to feel vulnerable, like I’m just learning how to ride a bike for the first time . . . again.

I hate it when life lacks ease. I just hate it. I’d like to be sweeping around this desert island in my effortless caftan and loose curls. Today is not that day, by any stretch.

I shared in my last post that I have just finished Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. In addition to the need for moments of centering solitude in each day, I finished the book with one other profound concept that keeps coming back to me:

She says, “Every stage of a relationship is valid.”

She’s speaking of marriage in this particular context – how we often long to recapture the honeymoon bliss of early marriage but how we might be better served to embrace each stage of a maturing and developing relationship as a way that it deepens and endures. Even the fighting. Even the struggle. Even the less-than-blissful seasons. Perhaps, especially these times.

I have been thinking about this concept in the context of my move and of my new life here in Bahrain. Every stage of this relationship – my new, refound relationship with Bahrain – is valid. The agitation of starting over. The feeling of displacement. The in-between of being here but still not having any of our stuff — living on borrowed furniture, eating off borrowed plates, not feeling “at home” yet. The inspiring discoveries of myself and this place. The new, slower pace. The loss and the gain. It’s all valid.

What if I allowed myself to validate the inevitable mess of change instead of denying it or hurrying it or wishing it away? When I try to move things along in a disingenuous way, because that would help me feel more in control, I find the toxic voices start howling. And the next thing I know, my soul is absolutely skewered with shame that I’m not more or different or better.

So I’m trying to be true to the process, as awkward and unattractive as that is some days.

A couple of weeks ago, our landlord called and said someone was going to come look at our house – a temporary place we are staying until our stuff arrives and we move into our permanent house – because they were interested in moving into the villa when we move out.

Could I show them around? Sure.

So I showed this woman the house. We realize, after some conversation, that our husbands work at the exact same command and that one of her children is very close in age to L&L.

She liked the house and wanted to bring her husband back to show him. She came back with him and their three kids. And, after some negotiating and decision making, she lets me know that they’re going to move into our place.

During all the back and forth, she and I talk more and I take a chance, risk appearing needy and glommy, and ask her if she’d like to get our kids together for a play date sometime. They’re new here and we’re new here, and I figured we could all use some friends.

So we’ve had a play date and it was great and in the course of the afternoon together we realized some other things we have in common, and I felt this little glimmer of thankfulness in my spirit.

Last night, while I was making dinner, I said a quick “thank you” to God. “Thanks for bringing a friend right to my doorstep.”

I felt like God was sending me a wink and letting me know, “I see you.”

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