What I Learned Summer 2020

What I Learned Summer 2020

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I feel like I’ve been stuck in this weird universe where weeks fly by, but days go slowly. In particular, this season was more bizarre than even spring was with its pandemics and new schedules. Perhaps I’ve gotten too used to not having anything to do quickly or seeing tomorrow as a good a day as today to do something. Maybe some would call that laziness, and I’m not going to shy away from that truth. There have also been hard things to deal with that I’ve been working through, but quietly. I haven’t been not writing, although keeping up with my journal has been hard lately, I’ve been writing words that can’t be published. To me, that’s okay. I hope it is okay with you, as well.

I’m sitting here in my study watching the rain drip off the…window roof? (I’m sure there’s a name for what I’m looking at, but my brain is still foggy from these weeks of migraines and adjustments to new medicines, which is a story for another day.) Today, I am here to write about what I have learned this summer, and to be honest, I’m winging it here. I didn’t realize it was the end of the season until it was the end of the season, and I’ve been left sitting here asking, “How?”.

So, join me as I search through my pictures, notes, and posts to see what I learned this summer…

1. I learned I am really great at saving writing prompts and not doing anything with them. Or, starting them and not finishing them. Raquel Franco had a fantastic list of writing prompts for August that was accompanied by a playlist. I started it, and then August became too much, and I’m still hoping to finish it eventually. Maybe at a slower pace, though. Here is one that I did write for it!

After the line “if you feel insignificant, you better think again” from Bigger by Beyoncé

2. Walking with girls from my church, I learned they see me as the person who is always wearing a dress and a cardigan. I am okay with that. I got myself two new cardigans from Kohl’s last month, and I am in love. I’ve been wearing my favorite gray and tan ones for four years already somehow, and I keep waiting until they go on clearance to buy new ones…and then there are none. This year, I bought them as soon as I saw them, and I am so happy I did.

And cardigans make me want to sing songs from Taylor Swift’s new album folklore.

3. I learned it’s okay to stay home and celebrate quietly. Our second anniversary has somehow come and gone already. We planned to go away the weekend after it but decided to stay home because it’s less stressful. So, we ate in an actual restaurant, picked up drinks and donuts at Annie’s Ice Cream & Donuts, went where we got married, and quietly watched the sunset. Eventually, we were the last ones at the park (except the person hiding in the dance hall we didn’t see) and danced together to Perfect, our first dance song. And it was perfect.

4. I learned elephants are the cutest things to make as baby gifts. I stretched my knitting knowledge to create objects I would have thought were too complicated before. If you take things stitch by stitch, eventually you achieve a lot of cuteness. (I would share pictures, but I haven’t given the gifts yet and would prefer them to be a surprise to the ones receiving them!)

5. I learned it’s okay to grieve things that haven’t come to fruition, and sometimes the show can’t go on without you…and that’s okay. That doesn’t mean you should keep going to keep everyone else happy. Jesus doesn’t ask us to hold in our emotions and be fake; He calls us to come to him for our rest and rely on His strength. And even Jesus wept.

6. Getting an industrial refrigerator to fit in a pedestrian door is more complicated than it should be. My brother-in-law, Will, and Andrew learned this the hard way, causing Will to make some beautiful memes.

7. I re-learned the beauty of fiction and fantasy writing, and the joy of reading The Chronicles of Narnia while hidden away in nature.

8. I learned that a simple coat of paint can literally change a room, and while I love having my own study, somehow, it still doesn’t magically make words appear on a page, and I’m confused about that. However, migraines also do not help the writing process, so I have some things to work through, I guess.

9. I’m currently a part of three (yes, three!) book launches and have yet to get my head in the game. The one coming out soonest is a devotional series by Elisabeth Bennett that are for each enneagram type! I know I’ve written a little about the enneagram on here, but not much, and not enough to really explain it because I am still figuring it out myself. (For those familiar with it, I am a 9, and so far I am thinking I may have balanced wings. My favorite assessment can be found here for those unfamiliar, but just because your results say you’re a certain number doesn’t mean you are. I always encourage people to read the description of that number and decide if it feels true to them or if one of the other numbers sounds more like you. I took at least three tests until I figured out what I am!) This release of books is for enneagram types 24, and 9! I can’t wait to get my 9 book in the mail, and I’m already planning to get the 2 book for Andrew (I might read it first, though. Shhh, don’t tell him!) and others I know who are those three types should guess what they’re getting for Christmas! (Heh, this is number 9 on the list, and I did not even almost plan that. So proud of myself!)

10. I learned you can make plans and have great intentions, but the work doesn’t get done if you don’t follow through with them. But sometimes, you just can’t. And that means I’m learning a lot about grace right now. Thank you, and amen.

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