Twilight has long been my favourite time of day.
When my husband and I were dating, we used to go for long walks around the neighbourhood on warm summer evenings, after the sun had set but the light still lingered. We would just talk and hold hands and explore.
Now, twilight is often my time for gathering things back together. It might be when B has the kids in the bath and I’ve put the baby to bed. Or sometimes after all the kids have been tucked in for an early night.
I wander around the house picking up the toys, sweeping up the crumbs, wiping up the messes and scraping off the plates. The slow and steady work of bringing order to the chaos.
The next day always seems to start off more smoothly when I take this time to wrap up one day’s activities and prepare for the next.
And so here we are now, in the twilight of the year.
The sun has set on 2016, but the light lingers for a few more weeks.
I look back on all that has happened this year – all the messes we made, and the fun that was had, and the moments I wasn’t sure how I would make it out alive – and I just want to spend some time now, carefully gathering my thoughts and putting everything back in order.
I want to take the time to properly reflect on 2016 so that I’m ready for 2017.
Definitely the birth of our third child! It’s always amazing welcoming a new little person into the family, and watching everyone grow and shift and adjust until you suddenly can’t remember what the family was like without them.
A bit of family trivia for you – we’ve now had a baby in each house we’ve lived in since being married!
For sure the hardest part of this year was those 3 or so winter months where at least one of us was sick at all times, and when baby T’s feeding issues had come to a head.
He was feeding every hour or so throughout the day and yet his weight gain was slowing. I started working with a lactation consultant who diagnosed him with tongue and upper lip tie. We had those cut, but things didn’t immediately improve. In fact, because of all the problems and a drop in hormones, my milk supply took a hit. So I had to go on medication for that and then I started him on solids when he was 4.5 months.
We persisted and our family eventually got healthy again and here we are, with a happy little 8 month old boy who brings immense joy to our family! (But if I never go through another period like that, I will be glad! And yet… )
Where did I grow the most?
Through everything that has happened this year, my faith in God has grown so much.
And I really resonate with this verse:
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8-9
I know without a doubt that the faith I have (and had this year) in God – the way that I was able to trust Him even when things were hard – was totally not from myself. It was truly a gift from God that I was able to keep believing in Him through all the pain and stress.
Where do I need to improve?
I really need to grow in patience. I find myself getting frustrated with the kids (and even my husband) rather easily lately.
This is one area in my heart that the Lord really needs to take the pruning shears to.
If you’ve read my blog for long, you’ll know I’m pretty big on planning and lists and the like.
So the interesting thing to me, as I look back on this year is that none of the “big things” were things I had planned or foreseen.
I’m not going to stop planning, but for me it is a helpful reminder that I am not in control, and that God has a plan for my life beyond what I can see.
How about you – do you like to reflect on the year that has been? What thoughts and events are you gathering back together in the twilight of this year?