Tuesday, April 13, 2010


I spent my early teen years consuming Robin Jones Gunn novels, in which events would happen not to make the novel realistic, but keep the reader's attention. I used to pine for occurrences like the ones in RJG books to happen in my own life. Rereading them as an adult, I would find one of my eyes squinting beneath furrowed eyebrows as I tell the pages, "That would never happen."

This year has proved that opinion very wrong. So many things that have happened in the last 12 months might be considered unbelievable and unrealistic, but I look over my shoulder at them and know that they happened. I have their lessons tucked in my pockets or sprinkled across my heart, some like scars and some merely freckles or pleasantly-colored berry stains. And I know it isn't over. If my story were to end right now, it would look something like this:

"And she graduated single, grateful for all that had come to pass, sad to leave the Kentucky grass she'd walked barefoot in for four years with those she most loved, but hopeful that the Lord would provide for her the way He had so faithfully through the past."

But it doesn't end here. I don't have to end hopeful. Like Abraham who "did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised" (Romans 4:20-21). I know He will provide for me. I know He will give me what I need, even when I don't know I need it. He's done it over the past 12 months. He will continue to do it. Hope does not disappoint (Romans 5:5), because the Lord will fulfill His purpose for me! (Proverbs 13:12)

I think He waits in expectation for certain parts of His plot to be revealed on my journey, like when the author watches a reader get to a certain part in the novel to see his reaction. I know it has not been all sunbeams and yellow butterflies, and will not always be, but I have received so much unexpected goodness out of the unexpected badness that started as unexpected goodness. I'm grateful for the unexpected! I'm grateful for what has been given me that I never could have planned for myself. And it makes me wonder, what if what is unbelievably improbable is the kind of normalcy God wants us to live in? What if "coincidences" are more reality than when life is predictable or even just...believable?

The God I serve is more creative than a cheesy Christian fiction writer. Why shouldn't real life be unrealistic?
Thursday, April 1, 2010

my journals remember summer, '07

3/27/07, I have some kind of cyst on my lip that I'm afraid I'll need oral surgery on. :s <-- That's my lip quivering with tears. Pitiful, isn't it.

5/14/07, Tomorrow I have a dentist appointment to get this dumb CYST (cannibalistic yoke of stupid tyranny) off my lip. Oh, I hope they can.

5/15/07, If I were to wish death upon one thing right now, it would be mucoceles, which apparently is what I have on my lip. And after passing the 2-month mark we celebrate our time together by waiting two more months. Two more months with a pea lodged between my gum and lip, because it'll "resolve on its own." Right, and I' am a cow, I love chewing grass, and milking is my FAVORITE time of day, moo.
When the dentist told me to wait 2 more months I almost cried. Maybe I should name it so it'll be easier to bear. Like children. Mucocele, thy name is...Adolf. Because I want it removed from the office of my mouth.

5/16/07, This is me a.) with my new haircut and b.) with Adolf on my lip. My lower lip is being pulled down, you see, so that Adolf is in full view.

6/3/07, Adolf ceased to show for a while after I chewed on him till he was a gaping hole. I had hope he shot himself in the bunker and wouldn't be returning...but alas, he began growing again today. It was pleasant, those few days without him. That's probably how the Jews felt, too.

6/21/07, R.I.P Adolf
March 11 - June 21, 2007
The oral surgeon's words were, "I'm pretty sure it won't come back....." Uh, "pretty sure"? "Yes you have cancer but I'm pretty sure you won't die." Thanks, doc.
I was almost positive he wasn't going to do anything about Adolf today, so when the nurse (?) gave me the glasses and the surgeon fired up his laser, I was surprised. He numbed my lip and I swallowed the bitter-tasting stuff and wondered if my throat would go numb and close up and I'd die. To my knowledge it hasn't.
Then he started cutting into my lip. I felt nothing, but smelled the burning. It was disturbing, knowing they were lasering my lip and it was smoking. A nurse (assistant?) had to stand there with suction so I wouldn't be exfixiated by the scent of my own burning flesh.
Afterward (it only took about 15 min.) Mom took me to the used bookstore downtown and I bought 3 (count 'em: THREE!) Daphne [du Maurier] books for $9. So pleased, despite the gauze puffing out my lower lip and the swollen numbness that made half my lip turn white. (I wondered if the circulation had been cut off and my lip would rot and fall off. To my knowledge it hasn't.)
I regained feeling around 2 and it doesn't hurt very much; only when I move it a lot. It's a black hole and looks a little gross. I prefer not to feel it with my tongue 'cause it grosses me out.

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