Light and Loveliness

Reflections of Emily Sue Allen

Family / Life & Faith

Driving Conversations

One sibling photo a week throughout the year. 22/52

One of my children asks me out of the blue if I already know everything there is to know about Seattle.

I am driving and trying to keep my attention on the road, and having mostly tuned out the kid-commotion, I hmm for a moment, trying to process the words slower in my mind so they make some sense. He asks again, probably because he knows very well that while mom is driving, he will have to ask his question more than once if he wants an answer. I hear the words the first time, but I don’t understand them until the repeat.

Here I am, navigating to a destination, checking mirrors and engaging blinker, pressing the gas pedal and attempting to filter out music, chatter, and my own tangled mess of thoughts so that I can wrap my mind around his words.

I can’t say I’ve thought about ‘knowing everything about Seattle’ before, but I am well-acquainted with the mysteries of God, and the ways that His words find their way to my mouth at opportune moments. I surprise myself when I blurt out, “Buddy, there is always more to learn about anything you think you already know about.”

I explain that I do know some things about Seattle, having lived here for a lot of years in two different seasons of my life. I know my way around many of the neighborhoods, landmarks, cafes, and would say I’m pretty hip to the culture here. I know a small amount of Seattle history, and a slightly larger amount of Seattle’s current scene, but really, even something as particular and defined as the city I live in is not easy to pin down. Even in my ignorance, I know that there is a rich history of Seattle that I do not know. There are people whom I have never met, whose experiences, concerns, and life’s work are completely unknown to me. There are subcultures, and nuances, and perspectives, and narratives that make this city what it is that I don’t even know that I don’t know about. While I do know some things about Seattle, there is far more that I don’t know.

We had this conversation five or six days ago, and I’m still chewing on the one-liner. I guess re-hashing it really convicts me to cultivate a teachable heart. Instead of acting like I know stuff, I recognize that there is always more to learn.

There is always more to learn.

“Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind, but associate with the lowly. Do not be wise in your own estimation.” Romans 12:16

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Update on goals for week 22:

1) Run/walk at least 10 miles per week. Week 22 ~ 11 Run/Walk miles traveled, 235mi in 2015
2) Write 10,000 words weekly. Week 22 ~ 5,800 words completed, 72,800 words in 2015

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781. squirt gun fights, 782. fun summer party/carnival with families from church, 783. “i have a cheetah on my face!” (face paint),  784. that grace is enough for all my failings, 785. sewing/applique time, 786. a nice dinner out with girlfriends, 787. uncomfortable conversations that turn out well (and the comfort that friendships can be built on total honesty), 788. a really sweet soccer goal, 789. the tender-boy’s anytime tears — he got ’em from me, 790. some potty training victories, 791. a daddy-rescues-mama-from-dinner-and-mayhem evening, 792. homeschool mom geek out: planning co-op chemistry for fall, 793. saying no to sugar when I really badly wanted to say yes, never mind the other times I said yes, 794. the freedom to re-start the washing machine (with the same load) 4 times, did it, 795. celebrating the end of someone else’s long season, even as a newcomer, 796. time on the beach with co-op friends, even if it did involve a lot of mud, 797. reminders that I am “a good mama”, and the truth of little ones, 798. meeting new friends, 799. the space and time to win the hearts of my children, 800. ice, always ready in the freezer