It was never the plan to move forty-seven times after I left home, traveling from coast to coast and back again in an old Ford van named Hamlet that carried everything we owned, including a Siamese cat. We were pursuing careers in the theatre, Justin, my ex, and I.
After four years of marriage, without a penny to our names, our son Charlie came along and made his début with us at the age of two (on the same stage he later performed and met the woman he married) because we couldn’t afford a babysitter. We settled in Chapel Hill, North Carolina when he started kindergarten.
Then, with sixteen years of marriage behind us, mountains of highs and lows and a lot of drama not on the stage, we divorced. That wasn’t the plan.
After five years of rebuilding my life, self-esteem and bank account, I re-met my big brother’s best friend from high school. Todd and I fell in love, eloped on Pawley’s Island and eventually bought the house he hung out at in high school–the one I grew up in.
My son and his wife had a small, stunning wedding in the Mountains of West Virginia and here we all are: Charlie with his bride and her family, and Todd, Justin, Charlie’s friend J.D. and me representing his.
It’s taken me a while to figure out what this blog is about. It began as a memoir of sorts as I was working on my dad’s but when I lost the courage to tell my own story, I started writing about daily observations and reflections on my faith which is the thread that’s beginning to tie this all together. Right, God’s plan, not mine.
I like cooking and a good bottle of wine, think popcorn is a perfect food and am executive director of a nonprofit called Danceworks.
After twenty-five years away from my hometown, it was great to move back when Todd and I got married and be near my family again. My mom had cancer and the time together was precious. She passed away in 2011 and my dad in 2016 but not before I recorded his stories.
Along the way, I discovered that God uses our fears and failures so that we can look in wonder at the exquisite patchwork quilt called life, that only He could create out of our fragmented lives. A teacher once told me that what is not remembered in love is forgotten. My heartbreaks and disappointments are less recognizable in His artwork as Love threads it all together.
So, after decades of God’s work, I wrap His quilt around me and feel its warmth. As I glance over it to take in the beauty of its colors and textures, my memories wash over me and begin to flow through me with a new sense of freedom. If I can find the courage, maybe it’s freedom gained to help free another.
Safe inside the quilt of God’s Love, I realize things may not have gone according to my plan but eventually they did go according to God’s. I keep rediscovering that God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28). If he can make my mess into something good, He can do it for you, if He hasn’t already.