Tuesday, January 1, 2013


this new year has begun with that drizzly kind of rain that bears more resemblance to a cloud of gnats than the satisfying swoosh and fall of thunderstorms that i grew up with in texas. rain in texas, like all things texan some might say, is gloriously big and bold. it shouts and hollars and drops like all the heavens are descending, sometimes without warning. in constrast, the wet perspiration of these misting showers creeps up and clings to the neck, gathering under the nose and on the backs of eyelids like a faintly unwelcome memory. it is like the insides of me a year ago and the year before and a few more years before.

maybe i'm just remembering through my nostalgic-me glasses, but it seems like they just do rain better over there in the land of wide open spaces. in fact, it often seems like they do a lot of things better over there. i can't believe it's been three whole years since we packed up all our stuff into a moving van and drove it out here to the south. loverboy says it seems like we've been here longer, but to me, three years sounds real long. one of loverboy's three favorite sentences to say to me goes like this: did you ever think you would...(often followed by, "be married to such a cool guy?" or something along those lines—and no, i really didn't;) i also really didn't ever see myself living in the south. for those of you from the south, Texas is not The South. Texas is Texas. and i've kind of been missing it lately. maybe not just it, although i do miss austin with its manageable city size, informal people, amazing tacos, real coffee places, town lake that's really a river, and rain that falls with purpose...

[long post disclaimer: feel free to skip to the end]

recently i realized—as i started sobbing on the way to the mall—that what i really miss is people. i miss family. i miss friends. i miss the community i had for so long that was mine and was comfortable. i miss having family that i felt close to (geographically and otherwise). and i miss the communal, group-centric life i had during college and especially while spending two years at bible school after college. it was a constant hum of people and togetherness. and actually, i fought it in a way, at the time, because i was emotionally hobbled from various experiences and was mostly unable to just enjoy it. i was closed off and inaccessible, even to myself. still, so many people came through the cracks in my shell, even if they didn't realize it. even if i didn't dare venture out to theirs. and when six years ago i graduated and came home from school, and life changed in an instant, it seemed like i also slowly lost that community. friends got married, moved away, left bible school to go back to their own home towns. it felt like everyone was moving on except me. i may have moved on outwardly, getting married and moving. but inwardly, i felt like i was standing still, alone.

loneliness has been my shadow, an ever-present companion even on the most promising of days for what now feels like both forever and no time at all. i guess six years is pretty long. but during most of those six years it felt like no time was passing at all. as if those years never existed—and yet continue to exist. i know it doesn't make sense. there are still days when i'm in that vortex of bleak and tormenting confusion over how i ever got here in what feels like a stranger's life.

i used to think that i would one day wake up and things would return to how they were before. maybe they wouldn't outwardly be the way they were before. but i, at least, would be the same me i was before. i would be the me i recognized. i would be the same kind of happy that i was and the same kind of hopeful. and maybe i wished and hoped that a lot of my life would look similar to how it was before. of course that's impossible. but my struggle to accept that has been long and slow and disorienting. it felt like life itself had become alien to me. it is a thin feeling. a feeling of having lost myself. of being a ghost in my own life. i was constantly treading unfamiliar territory without even the cognizance that that was what i was doing. so surprised was i to even be this person i was with this life i had, that i wasn't really able to even recognize that things were unfamiliar. it was like being reborn. like i appeared out of non-existence, with no past experience of life to draw from—as if i'd sprung fully formed into the world—and discovered that i was alive and an adult woman to boot, but without the truth that i hadn't been this person before. because i was still me, just a me i didn't recognize.

but i guess what i'm trying to say is that i'm starting to recognize it, to recognize the deep longing i have within to be with family, friends. and also the need to accept and embrace the me i've become.

the truth is, i've experienced a huge amount of healing, a regaining of family and friends, here in the south. as much as i yearn for texas, most of the people i miss aren't there anymore. season by season, and with great strides within the last year, i've begun to climb out of that intense well of loneliness. happiness is something which i've begun to feel again in these last three years, since moving here. and i have to cling to that, to acknowledge it and bookmark it for all those many moments when i feel like i'm not really here.

but today, even though it is dripping like my nose outside, i am reminded that things are very, very good, here and now. i'm so thankful that we're going to be a family of three. and i'm thankful for the families and couples and friends we've gotten close to here in atlanta. i'm thankful for our friday night small group gatherings. i'm thankful for friends who get to visit from other states from time to time.

i'm thankful for 2012, even though parts of it have been the hardest in the last six. although i didn't really do a very good job of documenting most of it, 2012 was a big year for us:

first, we went on a special new year's eve adventure. then, we had a fun, frozen, long weekend in nyc. i had a miscarriage and spiraled into a scary place of fear and desperate sadness. i got braces (and never smiled in a photo again). we attended my sister in law's beautiful wedding (and three other weddings in three other states that same spring!). i dreamed of tacos and rambled my way through my last quarter as a grad student. i finished my mfa in writing at scad which i didn't post about because i was really going through too much to talk about anything. we visited the most beautiful beach in isla mujeres, mexico for our fourth anniversary and thought that was the end. i started to recognize myself again. we watched some fireworks on the fourth of july. i went to london to pass out free bibles during the summer olympics. i spent the rest of the summer sitting on the couch in nauseous misery but i couldn't talk about it because it was the most wonderful, mindblowingly awesome secret! but before you knew about that, i got a job and then turned the big 3-0, while apple picking which is not the worst way to head into a new decade. we also visited family in raleigh for thanksgiving and demonstrated how to (not) babymoon in the north carolina mountains. and finally, we celebrate the second anniversary of fĂȘte.

it didn't always feel like much was happening (especially last night while i was sick and we continued our tradition of not really being prepared for celebrations). but really it was a lot for one year. i'm thankful for it, but i'm so ready for 2013!

happy new year!

we are party decoration challenged:/ we know. we're working on it...


B, loverboy, lars & baby


  1. You are such a gifted writer! Truly, this is beautifully written. I'm so sorry for all of the pain in 2012, but am exceedingly happy that it's ended on a high note, with so much to be hopeful about and so much to look forward to. I have a feeling that 2013 is really going to be your year!

  2. This post made me cry. You have become a strong, lovely and beautiful woman through all the suffering. May this year be filled with so much joy and happiness! I can't wait to see your new addition and read about all the things that bring you happiness. You will be amazed at what a little person can do in your life. Hugs!

  3. While not having the same experiences as you, I really can relate to your feelings of wondering who you are and how you ended up where you are. I also have had countless longings for past years when I knew more firmly who I was and what it meant to be happy. I very much appreciated reading this post as it helped me to find words for some of my own feelings and experiences. And it makes me so happy to know that you are beginning to come out of the hole. Congratulations on your little-one-to-be! Hopefully I'll be seeing you three in May! I guess we'll sort of be related in a distant kind of way. :)

  4. thank you so much for posting this becca. I really did enjoy reading about how you've been feeling.
    I read a lot about how when you become pregnant, you naturally are drawn back to your family (It's probably something deeply ingrained in us as humans, to keep our offspring safe and alive or something). But, I noticed when I was pregnant, I definitely pulled away from certain people and gravitated back to those who knew and loved me most.

    I also think having a baby is very healing. A few other new moms and I have often sat around and discussed how much past pain, we thought we had buried deep enough came up during pregnancy. I think there must be come kind of subconscious thing in us, that knows in order to be good parents we must deal with all our old garbage.

    annnyways, redding is crying and pawing at the computer, so i must stop this long comment.... but thanks again for the post! I am so excited for your 2013!!!

  5. How so many of us feel and just don't know how to express the way you have... This was painful to read, and painful to feel, and I relate in a very raw and achy way. Solidarity, sister. I hope this new year brings an even bigger amount of joy than you could possibly anticipate (and judging by the personal experience of child-bearing, I think it will!).

  6. Thank you for posting! I love your writing voice... (and your real voice too of course!). I'm glad the Lord has plopped us in the same place for this window of time :)

  7. thank you, thank you for all your kind comments, friends! it means the world to me that you read my blog! and i can't wait to see some of you in austin with our baby this spring! :)