I turned into a princess last week and even lost my shoe along the way. Let me tell you the tale…
Earlier this week, some of my good friends invited me to a get together at a workshop that was supposed to be about public speaking and poise. It sounded like fun, but I didn’t know if I would be able to go.
I texted my friends, “I’ll see if I can. I’ll have the kids that day, but if I can get a ride – and a babysitter for my kids, and a dress I can wear… basically if my fairy godmother appears, I can for sure go!”
Immediately one of my friends texted me that she could give me a ride. Another told me about a dress I could wear. My daughter was willing to babysit and it seemed like somebody up above loved me.
We were told to dress fancy and that there would be lots of pictures taken. I don’t usually ever dress up, but I was excited to pull out a dress I’d kept in my closet for the last 5 years, waiting to be worn. It still even had the tag on.
My daughter drove me to Walmart, and I bought the fanciest fake necklace they had – for $5. They didn’t have any high heeled shoes that I liked, but I purchased a pair of black shoes and figured they would have to do.
That afternoon I dressed up as fancy as I could and was excited for the opportunity to be with friends and learn more about public speaking. I put a notebook in my purse and headed out the door.
When we arrived, we were surprised to find there were only seven of us there. Three of the girls were wearing pageant gowns. We were encouraged to change out of our dresses and to change into pageant gowns ourselves. There were several to choose from. The gowns were amazing. I felt like a princess and I was even given a crown to wear as well!
I felt bad that my shoes didn’t work well with the gown, but that was fixed when my friend wanted to switch me shoes. My black shoes went well with her dress and her gorgeous, sparkly gold high-heeled shoes went perfect with mine. It was a dream come true!
The workshop ended up being very hands-on. We each had the opportunity to present ourselves as a “titled” lady. I was given the title ‘Ms. South Jordan’. I tried to come up with a platform I could speak about, but it was a little bit of a struggle. Since then, I’ve thought about what I could speak passionately about. I have some ideas that I’ll have to talk more about in the future.
After spending some time in the gardens, we went to the high school where we could practice presenting ourselves on the stage. We were again crowned and given flowers. There was a photographer taking our picture. It truly was a magical, unexpected experience.
Near the end, I finally noticed the time. The event was supposed to be over at 4, but it was fifteen minutes to 5! The friend who let us borrow the dresses, told us just to keep them and to return them later. We switched back our shoes and tried to dash in our gowns back to the car.
The shoes I had purchased were too big for me and kept slipping off as I ran. I couldn’t help laughing at my fairy tale ending.
I barely made it back in time for my company that came at 5. Everything at home had gone well and the only part of the story I was missing was Prince Charming. I guess that will have to wait for another day!
Today I was cutting back my grapes. I had branches running up the side of my house and extending all over the walls. I couldn’t believe they had thrived so much after being cut back so severely earlier in the year. It was only a couple branches that I had to redirect, but I knew next year I would have fruit like crazy and it would all be perfectly centered all over my grape arbor, where it had been a problem before.
I only cut one growing clump of grapes. Other than that, I really didn’t even hurt the growing plant. Next year it would thrive. I couldn’t help but see the analogy in how much God has been doing something similar with me.
These last two years or so have been pretty hard. It’s felt like I’ve been cut back hard – too hard. How was a stay-at-home mother of 7 children all of the sudden expected to be able to provide and support her family, take care of her children, the house and everything else on a minuscule allowance that was making it impossible to be home with her children? It didn’t seem possible.
I still don’t know how everything will work out, but I know that God has been redirecting branches, making room for fruit, and figuring out ways I can thrive. He really hasn’t cut off too many pieces of growing fruit. It’s all still there for growing when I finally have some time and a place. I’m looking forward to that day and time.
Divorce isn’t easy. Being a single parent is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I have empathy now that I never could have understood before. I’m grateful for the learning that has come because of this. Hopefully, even though I’ll probably have to move soon, I’ll be able to enjoy the fruit that comes later on from efforts and labors. Have you ever been cut back, but then were able to thrive? I’d love to hear your story.
Do you remember those choose your own adventure novels where you got to pick what happened and still things surprised you?
I loved those books. My kids and I want to make some videos where you can pick what happens and they get to act out all the different possibilities for you to choose between. I think it will be fun. The kids went back to their dad’s house today for another week. I already miss them, and I’m glad that we have a project we can work on even while they are away. It’s hard to be away from them for so long. It seems wrong. It was never something I asked for or wanted.
I had to go to court for another hearing today. Our divorce is finalized but nothing else really is. I’m grateful I had a lawyer today. With my brain still recovering from the seizure I had a week ago, I’m still not thinking really well. For awhile, I didn’t have a lawyer and I was totally on my own going pro se. It was another adventurous chapter I had chosen. Some chapters I’m glad are over, some chapters, I still feel like I’m still wondering what’s going to happen.
Because of the seizure I can’t drive again for another 3 months at the very earliest, as long as I don’t have any more seizures. You can’t imagine how much you take your ability to drive for granted, and how often you do it. I was grateful for a willing and wonderful visiting teacher who was wiling to drive me to the court house today. Later tonight, I wanted to go to a mid-singles adult family home evening activity. I had just started attending the activities and I thought it would be fun to go. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get a ride. I think people couldn’t figure out “why” I could possibly need a ride. Maybe they thought I was fishing for a date??
Oh-well, I don’t know that I’m ready to start dating again anyway. My ex-husband is already married again, and so is the only other guy that I was even slightly interested in. My ‘”Choose your own adventure story” feels like it’s just getting started. I have no idea where it’s going. I’d sure love to hear some ideas of where you think it might lead me.