The last day of summer has arrived. Sneakily arrived, I might add, without a whole lot of fanfare or excitement. It’s the last day to wake up late (which I don’t do anyway). Last day to act in my right to ignore the responsibility of lesson planning, decorating a classroom, and falling in love with an entirely new group of students. Last day to find solace in a cup of coffee and fluffy robe at a time of morning when I will soon be reciting pledges and praying with my first period class.
Bittersweet at best is this last morning.
Yet, I long for something more out of this upcoming school year. In my first years of teaching, I poured my heart and soul into my students, my classroom activities, and my intertwined personal and professional life. Then, though I didn’t love less, I had less to give…health issues raised their ugly heads, a best friend was raped, a beloved grandfather suddenly died, full-time graduate work consumed waking and even sleeping moments, my husband contemplated a career change that would mean my income would need to support us for the next three years, I was told that I might never have children naturally…Needless to say, the last couple of years have created the recipe for a miracle.
And, a miracle is just what God had in mind.
No, my health issues are not resolved. Matter of fact, if possible, they may be worse. Several times in the upcoming school year, I will most likely be flying to Houston to see one of the best specialist in the country for medical treatments. That’s not daunting as a 24-year-old, who until recently would have been characterized as fit, active, and healthy. Oy vey.
No, a full-time scholarship or a huge salary increase was not in the cards for David and me. We will be living on my puny teaching salary and our savings for the next three years while he returns to school for his engineering degree.
But, a miracle nevertheless has been wrought.
The specialist in Houston has agreed to treat me at very little relative cost as a personal favor to my grandfather, a retired doctor who gave his practice to this younger specialist.
David’s parents graciously allowed us to live in their spacious retirement home for the next several years for a rental amount that cuts apartment living costs by at least 50%.
Somehow, someway, I graduated with my Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction, maintaining a 4.0 GPA.
Somehow, someway, God brought me to today, this morning, this last day of summer with enough strength to press on, hold on, keep believing.
That in and of itself is a miracle.
Have you ever been in a season where all you could manage was to focus on taking the next breathe, inhaling the last tiny bit of oxygen available before drowning seemed inevitable? I’ve been there. Might still be there. But, God keeps supplying oxygen. I’m not drowning. If you examine your own life closely, neither are you.
Miraculous. Bittersweet. What could even be considered sweet if we took a minute to ponder.
Life. Not on our terms. Not how we would have asked for it. Not like this. But, life nonetheless. Each day we are the making of a miracle.
Teaching could be sweet this year. A taste of grace. Sustained by faith. Bolstered by the lifeline Christ provides every time I doubt and take my eyes off Him. I’ve never once drowned.
I’m afraid, but yet I know that it is going to be okay. Frightening me most is the possibility of long-term infertility while doctors continue to guess at what is going on in my body. Also scaring me is the vulnerability I must have to welcome another group of students into my heart. Still deeper, I believe I am haunted by the fear of wasting my life by not grabbing hold of the moment with both hands and relishing the joys of right now. Today
This last day of summer. This making of a miracle.