shifting sand


I've just been re-reading all of the comments that you have left for me in recent months, and I have to say - thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I'm so warmed by ALL of the sincere thoughts that you send my way and am encouraged to keep writing and sharing.

I'm at Starbucks right now, indulging in some personal time with a cup of hot tea and a thick slice of coffee cake. The past couple of weeks have been emotionally exhausting. We traveled to California for my Haraboji's (Korean for "grandfather") funeral; my father, his oldest son, gave an incredibly beautiful unscripted eulogy that moved me to tears and has lingered sweetly in my heart ever since.

When we got back, my husband finished up the last few days at his job. Even though we knew about the layoff ahead of time, when it finally happened there was still a heavy sense of loss. This was the company that gave him his start in Arizona when he first moved here six years ago, when he had nothing but a couple suitcases and a few hundred dollars to his name. It’s been a good place for him, personally and professionally.

We have some plans. On Monday we're going to sit down and map out a routine. Even though my first instinct is to be scared, the truth is that I’m pretty excited. Now is the time for boldness, I think. Time to fling our arms wide, wrap them around the new normal and tread the unfamiliar ground with confidence.

[Photo of Aaron + Isaac, by me. While in California, we took Isaac to the beach so that he could feel the sand between his toes and hear the roar of the ocean for the first time. He absolutely loved it!]


  1. I know how scary that can be. After my husband got laid off, there was a lot of discussion and we decided it was time to take the leap and now hubby works for himself, and we are loving it. Hope all of your new plans and "normal" go really well for you. Adorable picture, hoping to get to the ocean next summer, been far too long.

  2. Jennifer, thanks for the encouragement! I really needed to hear that right now. :D

  3. The picture is perfect. Best of luck with the plans! One of my favourite quotes for rough times is Churchill (who spat in the face of hard times and then twisted their arm behind their back until they said God save the King....) : "If you're going through hell, keep going." :-)

    You have a beautiful family, a beautiful attitude and many many gifts. The rest will work itself out. Take care!

  4. sometimes the most difficult things in our lives are blessings in disguise! keep your attitude positive and continuing being open! God will bless your faithfulness!

    love the picture!

  5. Transition is such an uncomfortable place to be. I love that you said you were going to map out a routine...that searching for a predictable pace within the transition is so needed! My husband has been unemployed off and on for the past year and a half, it took a while but we have found a good pace with it, it has opened us up to "possibility" so much, not only finding the pace within a day but also within our selves and family. It has been wonderful for our children to see him so much that we are now considering home schooling plus it has really helped him grow in his identity and artist's skills outside of work (I think that men are traditionally so defined by work that often it can be hard for them to approach themselves outside of it).
    I am sure that with the way that it sounds like you are both facing this, that it will grow you as people and as a marriage.
    So sorry to hear about your grandfather.

  6. Anonymous said...

    The new normal is now Ramen, salad, and water! ;)

    Thank you for the quiet confidence that you have displayed through out all of this, even if you just want to throw your hands in the air and run around the room screaming oh no, oh no, oh no! (I know I do!) Its because of that and the other million or so amazing qualities that you have that already puts us ahead of the "game". So here's to taking the road less traveled!
    your now graying/balding/sleepless husband.

  7. Glad to see you are back. I love your writing. Wishing you the very best in this season of your life.

  8. Routine is so important. Dave and I are terrible at keeping them, but we aspire to daily. To quote a line from "Almost Famous" (one of my favorite movies) which quotes from Basil King, although misquoting it from Goethe: "Be bold and mighty forces will come to your aid."

    It's times like these when we could all use a little boldness.

  9. you're smart. and it sounds like you and your husband make the perfect team.

    I think my life has taught me lately that things don't really happen for a reason. bad (bad) things never have a place in good lives. But I think we can be guided in how we respond. Those moments- the coping and problem solving- have the potential to leave their mark in ways we (without the conflict) couldn't.

    good luck with it all!

  10. I'm totally coming into the game late, but I just wanted to say that I hope everything is going well for your little family...that you've been able to find that boldness and embrace the changes. I adore the way you expressed yourself in this post...and wish I could channel a sliver of your confidence, faith and boldness in my own life. You are truly an amazing woman! :)

    Prayers and hopes and wishes that this holiday seasons brings you what you need most: faith, hope and love :)

  11. Marisa, cheers for visiting my blog! Sorry I haven't dropped by sooner - I'm a very unreliable blogger of late.

    Your blog is just lovely - a great mix of engaging posts.

  12. I'm so sorry for your loss and the layoff, but you have an incredible outlook on it! And that photo...beyond precious!