Last fall I woke up one morning and it hurt like heck to walk.  What in the world had I done to my right foot?!  I mentally went through my previous day..... but, as usual, my memory is terrible and couldn't remember doing anything to it.  I figured I must have turned it on a curb or something.  I, being the internet-educated medical wanna-be professional that I am,  diagnosed myself with a slightly sprained ankle.  Wrong.

A month went by of me walking with pain before I wised up and went to the doctor.  After some testing the real professional diagnosed me with a torn tendon in my foot.

Really?!  Are you kidding me?  Ugh.  Eye roll.

Deep sigh.

What good can come from this?!


So after almost 5 months of walking in a big, ugly gray boot I had surgery to repair the tendon.

What was ahead?  Crutches, a roller aid cart called Nellie (as in "Whoooaaa Nellie!), medications, pillows for elevating and my tuckus on the couch almost constantly.

Lost freedom.  Inside my house.  Always.  Totally cooped up.

More deep {aggravated} sighs.


Chicken coops are a necessary thing.  They normally have an enclosed space for protection from storms, heat and rain.  They also have an area that is covered by wire fencing so that the chickens can get outside and strut and feel the sunshine.  Inside that enclosed space they have perches where the lady chick can sit on the hay, rest and lay her eggs.

Chicken coops are also a maddening punishment.  These birds don't want to be closed in.  They don't want to feel trapped.  They want to fly.  Things must seem right outside of their reach.

I have been in a bit of a chicken coop for the awhile.  Physically...and mentally.

I have sat on my "perch", the loveseat, in our family room, with my foot elevated on pillows for what seems like FOREVER.  I can't bear weight on my foot so any movement in the house is done on Nellie or crutches.  I can't drive since this is my right foot.  I have been going stir crazy.  Life seemed to have been just outside of my reach. be honest... I have felt pretty stinkin' down.

What good can come from this?!


Let me switch channels for a moment.........

Yesterday, there was a knock on my door.  It was my sweet next door neighbor.  She came over to tell me that her son, Eli, had asked if I could come out to see him fly his kite.  Ok, melt my heart, right?!?  Eli is 4 and has a very sly, up-to-something grin that makes me giggle every time I see it.  How sweet of him to want me to come out!  So, I crutched out onto my front porch and watched from the porch perch as he and his mom flew his kite. 

She would hold it up for him.  They would wait for a gust of wind.  Then she would say "GO!" and Eli would start running.  Up went the kite.  He kept running, looking ahead of him and his was like an explosion of joy on his face!

But when he was looking forward he didn't see that the kite had fallen to the ground.  He didn't notice that he was dragging it.  He didn't notice that the kite was about to break.  The thought of that made the smile go away... for a moment. 

Luckily his mom saw and told him "Stop Eli.  Stop running.  Sometimes it is best to stand still once the kite is up in the sky.  Let the wind hold it up.  Watch the kite."

He was running so fast that he missed seeing the beauty of the kite flying in the sunny sky.


What good can come from this?


If I can't learn a lesson from things in life then I am my own worst enemy.  I have been looking for the lesson that I think God is teaching me in this chicken coop phase....and I think Eli helped me see exactly what it is.

I have been running very fast.

I have been looking ahead.

I have not stood still.

I have not stopped to let the wind carry me.

I have not watched the kite fly. 

Life has been wonderful with the advent of Cellar Designs.  It has been exciting, renewing, creative, overwhelming and satisfying.  But it has its drawbacks too.  I haven't been as focused on my marriage, my family and myself as I had been in the past.  I was trying, but probably not doing a bang up job, of balancing my new business and the most important things in my life.

So, with new eyes, I am looking at the the time in the chicken coop.

Here are some of the things I see today:

A husband who is incredibly kind & loving.  A man who props up my foot, gets drugs for me, helps me to wrap my foot for my first shower on one leg, does the dishes, drives the boys to their activities, worries about me, listens to me.... and loves me.

A mom who spent every day for several weeks helping me.  Talk about role reversal.  It should be me taking care of her one day!  She did our laundry, cleaned, cooked, watched Downton Abbey with me, worked crosswords with me on the perch, sprung me from the coop for a lunch outing, drove me to my doctor's appt, picked up kids from school, laughed with me.... and loves me.

A daughter who helps out more than most 17 year olds ever would.  Taylor comes home during a lunch hour from school and watches Smash with me, teases me about my short eyelashes, helps with her younger brothers, sticks her cold toes under my perched tuckus to warm them, tries to rub the knots out of my neck that have come from turning my neck to watch HGTV all day, talks about college decisions with me in my coop, giggles with me.... and loves me.

Three sons who are incredibly sweet to their momma.  They all have been so good to me.  Noah snuggles with me on the perch, shares his highs and lows of his day with me after school, brings me things from the kitchen ...and loves me "mosterest".  Luke watches Sportcenter with me, makes sure my towels and stool is set in the shower for me before he heads to school, is careful of my foot hanging off the back of Nellie when zooming around the kitchen island, smiles with his eyes..... and loves me.  Zack is concerned from afar as a college guy, brings me some goodies, drives me to a parent teacher conference, shares life stuff with me.... and loves me.

Amazing friends & family who care about me.  They bring me meals, flowers, stay to chat, send notes, take me out of the house, call to check on me, come to play cards, pray for me.... and love me.

A church community that in unbelieveabely inspiring.  It leaders teach me, the fellow leaders encourage me with their selfless service, the youth constantly impress me with their ideas and care for others.  My church love me...but...more importantly, loves others more.

My God is overwhelmingly loving and full of grace.  He holds up my kite and says "GO!".  He provides the wind that keeps my kite afloat.   He nudges me to stand still even when I don't listen.  He takes the ability for me to run (by way of a torn tendon) so I would not allow my kite to break on the ground.  He provides a perch for me to sit up on so that my view is on what is close up and right in front of me.   And....He LOVES me.

He found a way to teach this stubborn Irish gal a lesson.  I see that.  I am grateful.

I need to stop running with my eyes fixed forward, smiling but not seeing that the kite might have started to drag and break.

Instead, I need to see the kite flying up in the beautiful, sun-drenched sky from this view and thoroughly enjoy it and realize its beauty.

What good can come from this?!

Plenty.  An abundance.  Oodles.


Deep {happy} sigh.


May you stand still.

May you let the wind sail your kite.

May you keep your eyes focused on the beauty of that kite soaring.

May you learn to love the chicken coop and savor the kite flying.


April 05, 2013 — Sarah Stevens

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