If you know me, you know I post a lot on social media. Primarily Facebook, sometimes Twitter. But always something. Sometimes it’s deep. Sometimes it’s venting something. Other times it’s witty. Sometimes it’s just a photo because that’s all. But last week some one hijacked my Facebook and posted the following:
“It has truly been an honor to host my sister in our apartment for the past month! She has taught me and my husband so much about life, love and the meaning of happiness. More people should strive to be like her. Honestly, the apartment is going to be a much quieter, lonely place without her in it! Thankfully, she will be JUST DOWN THE STREET!!!”
Beautifully written right? Well the truth is, Shannon posted it. You see a lot has happened in the last month. Shannon moved up to Omaha (from Memphis) for a job as a co-manager at Express. She found an apartment but it wasn’t available until September 8th. That’s where Scott and I came in. She lived in our second bedroom for 5 weeks.
I’ll be honest when I say all of us were nervous about this endeavour. For starters, Scott and I are newly weds. We’re just getting used to each other and the habits we have. To throw a “roommate” into that mix would be a challenge no doubt. Secondly, Shannon and I have not lived together (in the same city) since she was in middle school and I was in high school. Thirdly, we’ve never been that close. We are four years apart and have always been at different stages of our lives.
That being said, family is family and we embraced her with open arms.
The ironic thing about it all…is that God had a bigger plan. You see, one week into Shannon living with us we got a call from my parents. My dad had a heart test and it didn’t turn out like they’d hoped. He would likely need surgery. And we’d likely be heading down to Memphis for the surgery. Fortunately we (Shannon, Scott and I) were all together at the time of the news and we helped each other get through it. We came to terms with it, talked about the realities of it and discussed how we’d get through it.
For a month we’d all come home from work, talk about our days, digress and swap stories and advice. I began to see just how talented Shannon is at what she does. And I think she began to see what I do as well. We both started gaining more respect for each other. And God bless Scott for helping facilitate and put up with both of us for a month. But seriously, Shannon reminded us that sometimes we need to stop worrying so much and planning so much. Maybe it’s okay to be impulsive and take chances. And of course she reminded us to laugh. We laughed a lot. Sometimes for no other reason then to get our minds off the seriousness of things. But we laughed a lot.
And to think how differently things would have been if my dad got his news just a week earlier. Shannon would have likely not come to Omaha. Scott and I would have processed all of the news by ourselves, hundreds of miles away from my family. And we probably wouldn’t have learned so much about each other. God works in mysterious ways.
So when I read Shannon’s hijacked Facebook post, I didn’t change it, or delete it. I thought about it and realized there is some truth to it. The lessons we can learn from each other. The power of life changes and the opportunity we have everyday to embrace situations for the better. When it comes to life, family it the one thing that we can’t change. And the one thing that’s constantly there (next to God of course). In that last month I’ve gotten a lot of perspective on life and what matters. It’s been a good reminder…that I’m not entirely in control…God is. And if we remain faithful to his promise and invest in relationships, he will show us possibilities we’ve never imagined.
So…in my own words:
“It has truly been an honor to host my sister in our apartment for the past month! She has taught me and my husband so much about life, patience and understanding. We’ve grown closer and we are starting to see how lucky we are. AND HONESTLY…the apartment is going to be a MUCH quieter place without her. Thankfully, she will be close enough to spend time and far enough away that she can truly begin HER life in Omaha.”