What a strange and amazing week. Probably the best I can do is record some highlights and maybe offer a reflection or two.
The strangest: At 9:06 a.m. Wednesday, while standing in the bathroom using the curling iron on my hair, I heard what sounded like just a loud truck rumbling on the busy street behind the house. But then I realized that not only were the windows rattling, but the walls were moving -- rocking. Could this be an earthquake? It turned out that, yes, it was an earthquake. I think they finally decided it was a 4.7, with its epicenter east of Norman. In the news, there was a discussion of which is scarier, an earthquake or a tornado. Are you kidding me? If we're talking about Oklahoma, a tornado is scarier, hands-down. I'd say earthquakes aren't as scary when you don't have so many multistory buildings and complex transportation systems. Now, if they're talking about tornadoes in Oklahoma vs. earthquakes in California, that might be different. Then I'd probably take my chances with an Oklahoma tornado.
The best: Continued progress of my 84-year-old dad after surgery to remove part of his lung. I'm still amazed beyond expression when I think of how this has gone so far. Yes, it was painful, and healing and rehab are slow processes. But the starting point was so far ahead of anything I could have imagined, and really things seem to continue to go more smoothly than I could have hoped each step of the way. I just praise God continually for this and seek to know how to respond to His glory.
Some of the rest:
-- While I watched with Dad at the hospital, the Texas Rangers baseball team could not get a win in front of their home fans, blowing what looked like a sure-fire, feel-good win last Saturday and barely even showing up Sunday, forcing a Game 5 on the road in the American League Division Series against Tampa Bay. Sure, the Rangers had Cliff Lee pitching. But no team had ever won a series without winning at home. (I think that's the stat.) And the Rangers had never won a postseason series. Well, the Rangers managed to do it. And now this weekend, after blowing a 5-1 lead in the eighth inning at home last night and surely dooming themselves to futility against their postseason nemesis, the New York Yankees, today they did hold on to a similar lead, ending the Yankees streak and getting their first-ever home win in the postseason. It's a best of seven, and I have to believe that anything is possible. And today's win proves they belong in the postseason, no matter what happens the rest of the way. What fun!
-- On another hand, I can't even think of what to write about the Texas Aggies and Dallas Cowboys football teams. I'll say I'm still a fan, but whatever happens the rest of the way this season (short of a Super Bowl for the Cowboys), the teams are disappointing. It's one thing to lose some games, but it's really frustrating when teams are so mistake prone playing on college and professional levels. (Watching the Aggies this season and also following the Kansas Jayhawks reminds me again how glad I am that the four years my nephew played for Kansas included a magical 11-1 season. So many things have to go right for that to happen. It seemed magical at the time, and seeing how things have played out since then make it continue to seem so.)
--Aware that spending extra time visiting my parents in Texas while Dad was in the hospital and now rehab and trying to help Mom out some has kept me from doing much with my husband or around our house, I tried to give more attention to these areas this week. I didn't have much success, but I'll keep trying. (I hope it doesn't take the Rangers bowing out of the playoffs for me to free up some time; I'm trying not to let games distract me. I'm trying ......)
--When he asked me to help him paint the house trim this weekend, I knew I wanted to (even though I knew it would mean not giving full attention to some ball games today!). I'm constantly amazed at just how clueless I am when it comes to knowing what to do on such projects. I have to be guided in every task, and most things seem harder or more awkward than I think they should. But I tried to persevere. And Gene did seem to appreciate the effort and whatever small help it amounted to. Unfortunately, I also caused a great deal more work, because of my blunder that involved driving into the garage when I came home after taking a break to go to a meeting. As I drove into the garage, I was deep in thought -- possibly even prayer -- about how I could be a good worker and how Gene and I could be a good team this afternoon. And the next thing I knew, I heard something my front bumper pushing something. What was that? I backed up and saw through my sunglasses that I had run into paint buckets, knocking over one and dumping paint on the garage floor! What a mess! I screamed for Gene, and he came running. Poor man. He was already tired from working all morning, including while I was gone, and then he had to guide in cleaning up this mess. But you know, he did it, telling me how he needed me to do things to be helpful. We got it cleaned up and then returned to the trim. Without a doubt, Gene does most of the work on such projects. I mainly held the ladder, rolled some of the paint and cleaned up trash. We still have a little to finish. But it's looking great. And I'm strangely grateful that Gene didn't just tell me to go into the house and quit trying to help after my big mess. I guess hope springs eternal for him, too, that someday I will be an efficient and effective helper.
There's more that I could write, but this has gotten longer than I wanted it to be, so I'm going to stop. This is clearly one of those times that the only reason I'm writing right now is to meet that self-imposed deadline of posting something to my blog at least once each week. Somehow it still seems better for me to do it than not to do it. And it was fun to record those thoughts. Maybe someday I'll know why.