Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Lakehouse Reflections

Every once in a while I'm compelled to just write.  Nothing DIY-ish, just life. La vie. Today is one of those days.
I haven't been blogging lately. It seems as though if inspiration isn't coming, there's no reason to force it. That's my blogging rule. We've been in the process of trying to buy a house for about a year so that we can move forward with our dream of ADOPTION and foster care. Hopefully (prayerfully) that day is coming, as we have a closing on a home scheduled and have been moving steadily towards that day. But the in-between has been really difficult, and I haven't felt inspired to create at all. Thankfully, I can feel the inspiration finally coming back, and it started over the weekend.
This past weekend we went to visit my family cottage "up north" (ahhh, Michigan). It's always a very inspiring place, but it's becoming more so each year. The cottage was built by my great-grandparents and passed down to their three daughters. Eventually my grandma bought her sisters out and it belonged to our family. Now that both of my grandparents have passed away, the question of how much longer we will keep the cottage becomes stronger and harder to ignore each passing year. Yesterday, it was extremely difficult to tear myself from the lake when it was time to leave. My brain was full of thoughts and memories and history.
My favorite book, 'Le Petit Prince' kept coming to mind. It really is one of the most beautifully written pieces of literature and can be found in English (The Little Prince) or German (Der Kleine Prinz)  or basically any language you may read. While the book was in theory written for children, there is so much application intended for adults. One of the major reoccurring themes is about the sacred ordinary. He speaks about various persons, places and things which would seem standard and completely usual to a stranger, but are special because of some not readily seen element. Something hidden inside. Something a passerby couldn't expect. "L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux" he says (the essential is invisible for the eyes). There's an old house, a nothing exciting house... but rumors swirl around that it contains hidden treasure. There's a dirty, dusty, plain desert- but deep within that desert is a delicious well of water. I can't even speak of the rose- you'll have to read about her- but she is unlike any other rose as well. They all may seem typical and humdrum- but they are far from it. That's how I feel about our little cottage and the lake it sits on.
It's just a very small lake (in Michigan, where lakes are plentiful) in a very small village (the population is less than my graduating class!)... and the actual cottage is quite tiny and old. I can't imagine that it would seem very special to an outsider.
But to me? It is so, so lovely. The clearest, freshest lake. The most charming, ivy-riddled cottage.
Because it holds so many secrets.
The cottage is home to four generations of family memories. My family. Our history.
And the lake? My grandfather lost his wedding ring at the bottom of that lake as a newly-wed. He never replaced it. Somewhere, in the center of that lake... my grandpa's wedding ring is hiding. And that makes it so much more special in my heart than I could ever convey with words.
With each generation coming and going, knowing that we have shared that lake, that cottage, those rooms, that water- it makes me feel like we are all still tied together. It is tangible heritage.
I don't know how much longer our time with this cottage will last. Maybe there will be one more summer of remembrance, perhaps another decade. But I'm really grateful. I'm grateful for those who have gone before me, and those who are coming alongside and afterwards. I'm grateful to be surrounded by so much sacred ordinary. I'm grateful for the invisible essential.

1 comment:

  1. I hope you'll be able to keep the cottage in your family. Positive thoughts your way on the house and may it be filled with the laughter of children. Pat S


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