♫ This boot ain’t made for walkin’..♫

I’m wearing a boot.  A blasted black walking boot.  Stepping into a hole off my back porch, a week and a half ago, I thought I just had a bad sprain.  After several days of swelling and pain, I gave in and went to the doctor.  A hairline fracture of the fibula, right above my right ankle bone, is the diagnosis.  It doesn’t really hurt, just aches some, but I will be a good girl and a good patient and wear the boot.  Hopefully it will be healed 100% in a few weeks so I can start my running routine again.

I’ve slowed down considerably, even though I have a list of projects to work on.  Friends tell me the ankle is God’s way of saying “slow down!”, and I tend to agree.  Even though physically I’ve slowed, mentally, I’m going 100 miles per hour.  Last night long after boys were asleep, I could just not shut down my brain.  I was awake well past 2 a.m., making “to do ” lists for here and for Kansas. 

We’ve begun the slow detailed process of separating the boys into their own bedrooms.  Since 1992, our spare bedroom closet has housed miscellaneous stuff.  Anything that didn’t really have a home anywhere else found a cozy one in that closet.  Only problem? That closet must be emptied.  I have an eager 10 year old ready to fill it with his clothes, sports equipment, and games. 

I opened that closet door yesterday.  I kid you not, it was piled eye-level high full.  How in the name of heaven can a family acquire so much “stuff”?   I have no linen closet, so sheets have always been stored there.  Mark had a box of nostalgic things to go through (most of which I saved for the boys).  Winter coats?  All stored there (also no hall closet in this house!).  Gift wrapping supplies?  I got lots of ’em.  Christmas dishes?  Yep, they’re there, too.  Air mattresses (deflated), spare blankets, hunting equipment, Hot Wheels tracks, a box of baby clothes, a sack of antique plastic army men, cowboys, indians, and horses, etc. etc. 

As I began to drag things out, the sheer volume of my “stuff” overwhelmed me.  No one should have this much crap to deal with.  I filled three trashbags for Goodwill.  I filled my trash in the garage. 

I look around at what Mark has left behind.  He was very sentimental, and kept many things.  But the Hot Wheels tracks were deemed trash.  The army men, cowboys, and indians made the cut and will be saved.  So will the adorably-small Bullpups Little League cap & matching small ball glove 🙂  I love them. 

I found newspapers for both boys, saved for the dates of their births–Dec 26, 2001 and June 24, 2003–I just wish he could be the one to give the papers to his sons one day.  I know he’d say, “Son, here’s what was happening in the world, and in Wichita Falls, TX, the day you were born.” 

We’ve rearranged furniture.  We’re tackling one room at a time, designating items to one of 5 boxes:  1) put away (for things not where they belong), 2) throw away, 3) donate to Goodwill, 4) keep, and 5) nostalgia (keep because it has some special meaning to a family member).  So far, it’s working well.  The good thing is that I can sort while the stupid black boot is on…sitting on the floor, it doesn’t feel like it weighs 10 lbs 🙂

I feel God, even as I’m sorting through my possessions.  Mark’s possessions, all left behind whenever he went in that great whirlwind up to heaven last year, are many.  But the ones he cherished?  They are sitting on either side of me as we go through these boxes.  His boys…that’s what matters.  That’s what I’ll nurture.  They are what I would give my life for. 

Thank you God for my two important possessions, my gifts of Andrew and Ben.  As long as I have them, along with You, your Holy Spirit, and your Son, I can get by just fine.  Even if I am clunking around with a heavy, ugly boot that scares my cat 🙂