I have loved and laughed and cried and been inspired. I have breathed in the smell of newborns, revelled in the love of young children, enjoyed deep, satisfying conversations with long time friends, wrestled with my own fears and insecurities, and in the end found new motivation.
I can honestly say that at the start of this adventure, my "sandbox," as my mother refers to my understanding of the world, was quite small. Clearly, it had atrophied over the last 8 years, without my even perceiving it. But, thanks to this time, my eyes have been open to new possibilities.
My sandbox has grown and, towel in hand, I'm heading for the beach.
Not that the transition will be easy or certain. Sadly, I'm realizing that more than finances and emotional health have deteriorated over the years. But, I have a firm grip on reality -- and I am confident in the faithfulness of God. I am sure that He will make my paths straight.
I am deeply grateful for the friends who have opened their homes to me, shared their lives with me -- and been kind enough to allow me to indulge in this soul-searching adventure. Their graciousness is evidence of God's unending love.