Bits and Pieces7:30 AM
One day you look up and discover that your world is put together by the lives of so many different people you love.
I always thought of myself as independent. Strong. Convicted. Influential. A world shaper, not shaped by the world. Untouched by the whims, opinions and lives of others.
Boy, was I wrong. I look at myself and see the fragments of hundreds of lives building up the core of who I am. I can look up and face the broad open sky because I'm standing on the shoulders of those who put me before themselves. Every single thing I accomplish I accomplished in the strength of those who loved me.
My mother, whose presence and prayers shaped my life's course. My sister, who is the bedrock of my self-esteem. (Thanks, Floppeth.) My family as a whole - our unique circumstances, our little inside jokes, our times spent around the living room laughing until our sides split.
My best friends, who sat through hours of brokenness and grumping and who stuck by me through it all. My acquaintances - public schooled, non-Christian, different beliefs, different backgrounds - who threw off all preconceptions and forced me to explore worldviews personally.
I realize now how much I think and lean upon and care about every single family member and friend. Their wounds become my wounds...their joys, my joys. They shape me. I find myself dwelling on something a friend told me, challenging me, changing me. I feel that impatience bubbling up inside me when tomorrow is a trip out shopping with a girlfriend or my day with the kindergartners - or Sunday (translation: one hundred million hugs squeezed into fifteen minute fragments between Sunday school and service).
It hit me one day, as I lay dreaming and planning, that so much of my future depends on what I have seen. Broken marriages, relationships sharred by anger and pride, bratty kids run amuck - real-life happily ever afters, best friends, the next generation of homeschoolers fighting for truth...they file themselves away in my mind and work themselves into how I plan to live life as a bride and mother and daughter and friend. As a person. As a Christian.
"Independent" isn't the word that comes to mind. Sometimes, when it's negative, "peer dependent" does. Sometimes, when it's neutral, "gregarious." Sometimes, when it's positive beyond imagination, "blessed."