Is it ridiculous to admit the first time the word wayfinding entered my consciousness was from a Disney movie? See: Moana (n) who consequently is not a Disney princess with an animal sidekick, but rather the daughter of a Polynesian chief.
Wayfinding encompasses all of the ways in which people orient themselves in physical space and navigate from place to place.
Finding my way.
Seeking joy, practicing gratitude.
Yes, I’ve been attempting that.
Leanna Tankersley says, “We never get over being human. We don’t arrive. We don’t reach mastery. We don’t graduate in any way. We show up and participate day after day. Re-turning. Re-praying. Re-creating. Re-loving. Re-celebrating. Re-listening. Re-forgiving. Re-resting. Re-abstaining. Re-grieving. Re-breathing.”
I would add Re-finding and Re-orienting.
When so many of life’s great milestones involve some sort of end of the line tangibility: a degree, a promotion, a win, a title, a ring, parenting so often does not. We quickly learn the hard never fully dissipates, it only morph’s into a new hard. The worry may wax and wane, but it will never go away completely.
Once a child is born we really do go through life as Elizabeth Stone said, with “our heart walking around outside our body.” She forgot to mention that with each child, even though your heart grows larger, it nevertheless requires further division to properly devote itself both to this new soul and the rest of your tribe.
Is it any wonder we become disoriented and lose our way?
The blessings and hardships of parenting occur hand in hand. Together, they keep us buoyed, but knocked down. We’re like those inflatable dancing promotional men that fill up with air and deflate, then fill up with air and deflate. We wrestle with the struggle that occurs right next to the blessing. We feel ungrateful if we grumble in the hard and discouraged if we worry in the joy.
We lose the simple navigation of our own emotions and become lost in the navigation of everyone else’s. Our child is sad, we are sad. Our husband is tired, we feel tired.
It’s a daunting labyrinth to wayfind through. And, it’s the surest path to angst and anxiety I’ve found. It’s careful placement of all your happiness eggs in other people’s baskets.
It’s smiling and saying it’s fine, when sometimes it’s not fine.
I only know one way through though.
If my wayfinding leads me back to the Waymaker, I have a fixed point in a spinning world. I have a lamp for my feet, and a light for my path (Psalm 119:105).
I can be distracted and pacified by a million little things, little things that bring little joys. But, when the hard comes, when I can’t turn away or bury my head in the sand, Jesus is the only way through.
He is the Waymaker. And I keep finding and re-finding my way back to Him.
Here is our 2018 in pictures. Precious little pieces of my heart, walking around outside my body.
Blessings to you and your family for a healthy and happy 2019.