Intimacy

April 5, 2017

I turned my phone over on the table and sniffled. My eyes burned. Everything was too bright. The student union lights put me on display, the pink in my boyfriend’s shirt was blushing, and I was red hot. My cousin Garrett offered me some Takis, flames of orange dust meddling with his sympathy. Mitch wrapped an arm around me, taking the Takis from Garrett’s fingertips.

“What’d she say?” 19 years of having my mother as his aunt meant he knew exactly who I had been texting.

“We’re taking the twins,” I said, and then I cried.


I don’t know when it began, really. I just know that it only took two weeks. My mom’s friend was given a horribly bleak cancer diagnosis, and by Easter, her children were moving in with my family. During finals week, we were making funeral arrangements. img_7208

When I was a little younger, their father was my dad’s best friend. He was killed in an four-wheeling accident when I was a freshman in high school. l’m just finishing my freshman year of college.

It was so difficult to come home after school ended last semester. There were boxes in my room from my dorm and from the twin’s house. I had pictures from the twin’s old home in boxes on my floor, along with some of their mother’s belongings she wanted them to keep. We set up a room for them and everything has a new place in their room, but I sleep in the guest bedroom now.

I’ve had to redefine my definition of comfort. My home isn’t this house I’ve lived in forever – it’s these people. And ever-present grace.

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Tomorrow, my parents will sign papers for full legal guardianship of the twins. I imagine I’ll be home, babysitting, and Mom will text me to tell me how it went. I imagine I’ll cry.

Anyone who has been following my blog for a while now will remember all the posts I’ve written about my family, my brothers especially. I’m in love with them. They are the best people I know. It’s hard to think about how I’ll love this new family. How will I write about them? Who will they become? Who have they been all this time they’ve been without us?img_7209

My life is different. It’s laughable, honestly. I feel like the main character of a Nicholas Sparks novel. Tragic and changed.img_7210

My boyfriend and I talked at length about grace the other night. We spend entire phone calls discussing this new life of mine, which is something I appreciate with all of my heart. I’m both tired of talking about it and yet, I can’t stop finding new reasons to bring up the subject because, ultimately, I have no idea who these kids are. They don’t even know where all the light switches are in our house yet.

Grace is a word that I’ve always thought to be synonymous with mercy. I’ve been angry for a while; I haven’t felt like I’m back at home yet. I’ve wished for guidance so many times, but there aren’t any Chicken Soup for the Girls Soul articles on how to handle this kind of structural change. Mostly, I have spent too much time frustrated with how poorly I’ve handled the adjustment. Instead of being merciful, I am working on being graceful (to honor with courteous goodwill).

img_7214img_7216I know everyone is this family is just as terrified as I am. I liked how things were before, but I love how things are now. I have two more people in my family who are on my side. Bountiful love.

Psalm 94:19  (NKJV)

19 In the multitude of my anxieties within me, Your comforts delight my soul.

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6 thoughts on “Intimacy

  1. New experiences in life can be scary and may leave you feeling lost among all the events that surround us at the time, but as time moves on we once again find our moarings in life once more. With time you will come to love the twins as you love Grant and Gage. Just think of how you think of Little Misty and Nikki.

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  2. Emily,
    This is so touching, yet sad and happy at the same time. We all knew this was going to be difficult . But it’s pretty obvious that you have the maturity and Grace at the same time to make it through this. We never know when life is going to take us down the road less traveled and therefore don’t prepare for this properly. Just remember, there are many of us who love you and your family and are there for you when you need us. God’s grace will be beside you on this road . I love you, Jane

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  3. Your heart is so large and full of love, I know you will be the best big sister the twins could ever have. Everyone will find his or her place in this new adventure. Time take care of a lot…and God’s love❤️

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