Sending Off a Piece of My Heart and My Haven


I sit under the stars and feel life swirling around me at a maddening speed. Cars rush by two streets over. An email pops up on my phone—the crazy wedding schedule about to descend on my house. It’s from my sister—she’s sending it from my basement, where she lives, for a while longer. I sigh, smile, and lean back on the deck chair in the dark. God, don’t let me leave this haven.

//This little quiet space we’ve fashioned on our patio, a white cushioned corner and an awning to refresh us from the heat. A table where we can eat and breathe and laugh together at day’s end and feel Him surround us in the cool air.IMG_20160530_190700 (2)

Everything is about to change—my sister is getting married in two weeks. Our house will be a flurry of guests and gifts, of bustles and shiny shoes. My sis, who has lived in our home for a year and a half will marry her love and they will begin lives.

“Are you sad she is leaving?” friends ask. Yes, and no. I’m eager for her to make a place to belong with the one she loves. She’s wanted it since forever. But I fear in all the planning we miss the breadth of what’s to come.

How we’ll part ways and my house will no longer ring with her laughter or her commands for the setter (who leaps for joy when she puts on her running shoes) to let her alone, already. I’ll miss trying to avoid hitting her red car in the driveway when I back out. Not to mention, whose chocolate truffles will I steal? Whose closet raid will I raid when I need to dress up?IMG_20151116_212119

The truth is I invited her to live with us because I was lost last year. I needed her presence and stability. She is the closest thing I have to mother, father, and nuclear family here in this town I am just now learning to really make home. //

When she came, she transformed our basement into a home decor catalog. That is her knack. I call it a spiritual gift. A few of her items will stay: her bed, a wall of white IKEA shelves, and curtains. They will remind me of the comfort she has been to me—when I was lost, her presence, a safe harbor.

Our family isn’t the best at saying how we feel in the moment. I feel like she and I are changing that. So I stop to tell her here that I send her off into the light with her boxes and dreams and hopes. I remember how she has been a companion and a light.

This newly fashioned spot on our patio is a respite in the transition. I sit here under dark night and feel it all.

My sister, you are a haven. Go make yours beautiful. You always do.

Your Turn

Who has been a haven for you?

Every Friday I write with Kate Motaung’s Five Minute Friday community on a one-word prompt. Today’s word was haven.

(// indicates the beginning and end of five minutes.)

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June 3, 2016