July 27, 2010

Life on a Horse Farm: The New Normal

Lest it should seem that this blog has recently transformed itself into a venue for depressing and distressing news, I would like to actively work against this tendency by continuing to post for the purposes that we were originally using. In one sense I feel as though the blog has lost its interesting background in Beijing, but if we look realistically at it I suppose we would see that the stories being told in the past were fairly ordinary. What we have now is just a new normal.

For the last week and the next week, "normal" is living on an acreage on the Canadian prairies. My sister and her husband have extremely kindly vacated their home for us. They live as caretakers for an equine park. So what this means is that a hundred yards from the windows of the house we have this view.
There are several dozen horses being boarded on this farm. For miles in every direction we have nothing but tall, sweet, prairie grasses, horses running around and being exercised and solitude. Its pretty much perfect for the family that has been through our last few weeks. I can't describe how soothing it has been for me to fall asleep with the smells of sweet clover from the fields, the sounds of crickets and birds from my childhood and the cool breeze coming in the window. Last night James and I lay our bed and just listened to the sound of the house being buffeted by strong winds and rain. I have forgotten how ferocious the wind sounds as it whips around uninhibited in a good storm. It used to scare me, but last night I loved it.
This housing has been perfect for us. Close enough to people to have contact, but isolated enough that I don't need to interact with too many people.
Another strange feature is that we also have our old cat around again. This cat lived with us for almost four years before we left for China (my sister took him then) and it is amazing how strange it is to have the boys playing with him again. We are talking about the "world's most laid back" cat, who lets Jude truck him around by one rib (bent in hairpin shape).
There are other aspects to my new norm that I have a harder time getting used to. One is that I am almost constantly in a dazey dreamlike state. I can fall asleep at the drop of a hat and when I do, I dream strange jerky dreams where I am completely unaware. It is a bit unnerving and makes me feel very vulnerable when I wake up from one of these episodes. But I am learning how to read and calculate myself even in this new state.
Before I leave off, I have to state again (just in case I haven't said it recently enough) that James is God's greatest blessing to me and to our boys. What an amazing husband. For better or worse he is here, and I love him very, very much.


Tim & Joyce said...

Jessica you are an amazing women,you put so many of us to shame.Keep smiling & I Love you a whole bunch :)

Inkspot said...

I agree with Joyce. Jessica, your candor and your contentment are gifts to the rest of us. Being able to accept reality and choosing to embrace what God gives you is a tribute to God's grace and to your courage. Both inspire me. Pat

Edith said...

Jessica we have had a few good prayer sessions with the ladies here in Kitchener.
God has filled you with grace and peace that passes all understanding. You are an inspiration to all.

佩劉俊宇劉璇 said...