Beginning Thoughts, by Jennifer Armstrong
Posted By: Me Ra
I still have their empty Dr. Pepper bottles sitting on the table.
That is teeter-tottering on freakishly weird. I am well aware. But Y’ALL, the bottles from which they drank are proof that Me Ra was at our home with Brian to tell me some of the most fantastic things I have ever heard. I have done nothing but float through the past few days; pinching does not help, ergo, Dr. Pepper.
I was looking at Me Ra’s beautiful, accomplished face against the backdrop of the Texas sky. Such a contrast. Certainly not that Texas or our little town are not beautiful, nor places of accomplishment. Just that I was seeing two different worlds. As if, my right eye saw one world (my home), my left eye saw another (this amazing woman who has been to places I’ve never been), and no matter how I focused, I couldn’t make the two worlds match. I was completely, utterly, stunned as she stood before me, pink box in hand. Every part of my brain shut down except the exhilarated, dancing, joyful places.
And now? A few days after the announcement? Other parts of my brain are starting to wake up. My children have seen to that. I am starting to be able to form intelligible sentences. And that helps, especially at the pharmacy. But the best part that has woken up is the part that remembers some of the hard, not-so-exciting things that have happened in the past year or two or three. I am deeply grateful for the hard, not-so-exciting things. I genuinely am. I love Jesus and those things have brought me closer to Him in every way. His love, in the hard parts of life, is the sweetest, most beautiful resting place. And His love in the good times? Well, I’ve got to be honest…this is just darn fun! He is using this to show me another facet of His love.
We all have a story. We are all working on something. Or lots of somethings, ahem. And while my news is wonderful, it has not always been and won’t always be. But that’s what makes life beautiful and isn’t “life” what makes pictures beautiful? We’re captivated by photos because they’re real. Like the Dr. Pepper bottles, they are proof that we really experienced the emotions we remember, be they good or bad. I am thrilled that I am going to be learning how to better record those pictures through this SOAR! experience.
So let’s talk about SOAR! First of all, how in the world do I write on the SOAR! page on twitter??!! And why can’t I figure it out? I have been trying to say hi and thank you to all of you but I am having some serious twitter challenges. Maybe twitter tutorials will be part of the scholarship? Mercy!
But really, I have so many emotions right now. Sometimes my stomach is just in knots, sometimes I feel ready to conquer the world, and lots of the time, I feel small. Not a bad small, but the kind of small you feel when you look up at the stars (in small town in Texas-with no city light in competition). I have so much to learn and am so anxious to begin! My brain is running with questions…Will the companies who’ve given so many things feel like I am worthy? When I share my thoughts on this blog, will I sound silly? What will I name my business? Will I ever not have a child in diapers? Wait…diapers…what?!
I also ache for the sadness that you might be feeling. Y’all if there is one thing I can say and you believe, it’s this. As I write, people are reading who did not get to experience this amazing gift. And there is disappointment. Please know, these emotions are not lost on me. Not one inch of them. A great deal of my shock in winning stems from the fact that I watched your videos. I have seen what amazing women entered. In fact, after my first run at making my video, I told my mother-in-law basically, “I give up. There are just too many great videos.” That’s why I cannot say enough (nor loudly enough, nor sufficiently enough, nor deeply enough, nor…) that I have unutterable gratitude for what has just happened, for many reasons, but also because it happened in the company of such talented, capable women. And I will not take this position lightly. I am humbled to be doing this with you. I am scared. I am moved. I am loving this. And I am thankful. Oh am I thankful.
And I want to say one last thing in front of everyone. It’s to Me Ra and Brian. While we met for only one short part of a morning, your genuine love of others is evident. You are not just words on a blog, you are love in action. You are reinvesting all that you’ve been given. What an amazing team. What an amazing gift.
Alright SOAR! sistahs. We have lots of work ahead. I need to learn about, well, everything. I am so looking forward to it. Let’s do this y’all!