Each morning, just as I start to become aware that sleep is over, right before the day’s plans and opportunities rush into my awareness, I feel a little confused. Foggy, we call it. It is during that moment that I’m usually back in Texas. Another life ago, but it’s still there, right under the surface…still roaming the subconscious terrain.
I fight it, because I absolutely love Oregon. I love Creswell. I win the battle, except in that one moment between sleep and awake. Oregon is my home, beautiful trees, fantastic weather, country living, well water, traffic jams of 3 cars, someone to pump my fuel, friends bringing produce, genuine new friendships. Wonderful!
When I think about it later, frustration and pleasure both are present. It bothers me that I cannot help but allow my life before Creswell, to still live in me. Pleasure is definitely there because, well, Texas fit for so many years. It got comfortable, frayed in all the right places. Oregon has that newness that is good, yet rubs an occasional blister on my experience.
In Texas, my shower stall had its own area code. Here, I can’t turn around in my claw-foot tub/shower with plastic surround without rubbing the soap off on the curtain. My fiber optic internet service in Texas was instantaneous. Here, lets just say I can get a second cup of coffee while I wait on the next page to crawl onto my computer screen. Blisters.
If I’m not careful I’ll remember those old comforts and take for granted my new challenges and opportunities without even noticing the small ways I’m being changed into an Oregonian. I may not notice the amazing experience of watching a black-tailed doe walk into the yard and lie down under a rhododendron. I may even take the rhododendron for granted. None of those in my old life. I could miss the awe of watching the fog bank roll in off the Pacific coast, or the beauty of watching God water our valley with small cloudy watering jugs that move as if by their own volition. I may miss the wonder of newness in the eyes of my grandchildren as they experience each of the peculiar joys of Oregon.
Heavenly Father, please forgive me when I allow myself to live in yesterday instead of today. Help me to never take for granted what you show me here. Thank you for giving me new friends that are already feeling like comfortable sweaters. Thank you for each morning with my wife. Thank you for your patience.
I choose to not take my life for granted.
Today is good.