Birthdays, besties & Bigmama

I have needed to write this post for over a month but just hard to put into words. Its actually been nearly six weeks since I celebrated my birthday (as my mom pointed out while I have been writing thank you notes this weekend..hey I may be getting a divorce but I still write thank you notes..what better time actually!)

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I don’t want to gush and glorify divorce or myself and my friends or my party and make it all look perfect.  But God showed up at my birthday party just like he has shown up for me throughout this hard season.  So I do want to glorify him.  For the way He loves me directly and the way He loves me through my friends. Some of my friends are super busy, just like I am and I don’t want to go down that glorification of busy road but it’s true.  They have small kids and businesses, Maifest and Round Top prep was in full swing, and we don’t all live in the same town.  But on March 15th, they made time and come out and supported me.  And I didn’t know I was going to go around the circle and bawl and tell what each person meant to me but I did and I was a little nervous the next day about what I actually said, because I was drunk on love.  And I wish I had a recording of what some of them said.  Giving words and time are powerful y’all.

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{That’s right I threw my own party yes I did}

So there you go…I sent this invite out so I couldn’t cancel the little event…and I did want to cancel as it got closer to the day. Just seems a weird time to have a party but I didn’t want to be gloomy and sad on my 40th birthday so I took the plunge, sent the invites.  And if you are my friend and didn’t get an invite its because I thought you were too busy or too far or it’s been too long.  But know I thought about  you because I did.  My fear or insecurity held me back or lack of convenience (you live too far away) is all that kept me from inviting you. Believe that.

So Holly Kuhn is a client that has become a friend and she owns the Old Glory Antiques shop in Colorado and Burton, Texas.  You may remember her home was in Country Living in the fall. I posted about it here. Holly allowed a few of my friends and I that don’t live local (and some that do) to bunk there on birthday weekend. Her Burton house isn’t a functioning B&B, it was at one point for now it’s not, so I really appreciate you opening it for us Holly.  Truly you and Brian are the best!

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So Camille came early from Abilene and we spent the Saturday before my birthday just hanging out and getting provisions for the OG (wine and chocolate and chicken salad) and I thought it was good to be with just her that day before and rehash all that is going on and get all of my tears out. Because who wants to “ugly cry” at their birthday party, but it didn’t work.  I still ugly cried at the party..and its Okay.

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{Before we put scissors to my bangs}

So Sunday morning we went to church and ate cake pops for breakfast and had a slow day as guests trickled in..like Becki and Jenny and my mama. And then Camille cut my bangs, important girl stuff like that…It was so fun to see my longtime friend hit it off with my newer friends and my mama just soak it all up.  But I am not surprised at all that they bonded instantly.

I love these faces below. I wish I had a photo of everyone that came so glad we at least got these in the entryway of Old Glory.

{Me after we put scissors to my bangs, proof that a little snip can be as good as highlights}

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{Becki is so good at the selfie, and Jenny you drove from Shreveport and didn’t even go see your parents, that is love}

And then that evening we gathered at Royer’s Pie Haven because well it’s magical there…both the pies and atmosphere. Tara lit candles and had it even more special than usual.  I knew it would be the perfect place to just hang out and be with people I love and it was.  Of course I didn’t talk to each person as much as I wanted or get very many photos.  But that is okay.  It is etched in my mind and on my heart that I am loved. And friends matter. And I need to pour into my friendships more, water more. Do more than text. But also be grateful for the people you can text or email months between visits and it still be the same.  That is grace and real friendship.  To be able to pick up anywhere.

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So thank you Tara for opening your haven to me and for being a wonderful friend. And to everyone else both old friends and new that took time out of their lives and schedule to be with me.  It meant more than you know. I so so so wish we had gotten more pictures of the evening but I guess if its such a sweet time you forget photos that is a good thing.

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That being said, I just wish Bigmama’s book had released a little bit earlier so I could have given each person a copy.

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Just like Oprah!

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Because so much of what Melanie says in this book rings true for what my friends mean to me…really all of it! And its good to say it and remember it.

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There is no one cuter than you my friends.

No one more loyal, more wise, more creative, more kind. MORE FUNNY

Larry Hagman knows its true.

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Arnold knows it.  Even Mary & Edith agree;

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Lol. I love these popping up on social media Melanie and I love your words.

That’s all I got y’all. Water your faith. Water your marriage and family.  But water your friends too. They matter.

And thank you again to my friends for the gifts and words and love and tears and miles traveled. I love you.

A really hard post

I once wrote a post here about our miscarriage.  That was hard.  I think this is harder.  I don’t want to over-dramatize or over-spiritualize, the world has enough of that.  But I do want to be honest.  Authentic my friend Whitney calls it.

I started this blog as a young mom over ten years ago and it grew into a business.  I was thirty and had a new baby (finally) and was excited about homemaking and our growing family. My passion for decorating flourished.  My husband was very supportive. Our home was my lab. Over the years I have blogged about our family and home and later my clients and work as my business has grown.  I have tried to keep Christ at the center all of all I do and acknowledge the holy beauty in design and in building a home.  Truly building a home not just literally. Like it says in Proverbs you know, about a wise woman building not tearing down. So this is hard.

      A wise woman builds a house strong and doesn’t tear it down with her own hands ~Proverbs 14

To me a home is a nest for a family. A harbor.  A place to live out your story.  That is what is important.  The setting is just the background. Forgive me Lord (and y’all) if I have ever made stuff or decorating the home more important than the people that live in the walls.  Never my goal. My belief is a family and preservation of the family is the most important part of the home, more than wallpaper or paint, more than even fabric and slipcovers (bad joke).  THE FAMILY IS THE HOME.

So, it is with a heavy heart I tell you that my family is going through a hard transition, a divorce. (deep breath)

Just typing that word is hard, but not as hard as hearing it come out of my 5 year old’s sweet little mouth. I never thought this would happen to us even though my parents and grandparents are divorced.  I thought my husband and I weren’t perfect but were doing things different, better.  That at the core we were solid and could prevail any storm. Turns out I was wrong.  I don’t think it is wise to share details because of my children and just because of the intimate nature of this entire process.  You understand. Many of you know how grueling, how totally paralyzing and grief-filled this can be BUT I want to say a few things:

  • I know God hates divorce
  • I know children are scarred and hurt by divorce no matter how amicable or how loving parents can be, this saddens me and no doubt God to no end.  I hate that we are hurting them.
  • I know there are women in worse situations
  • I know we should do counseling
  • I know God is still God and He hasn’t abandoned me or my children or my husband
  • I know this world is broken and full of free will which causes bad decisions and pain
  • This is not my choice or decision
  • I don’t know everything

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I don’t totally understand why or even see how this will work or play out but its happening and I wanted to be honest. I am obviously not perfect, I don’t think I have ever portrayed that but I have shown our pretty new house and smiling photos of my family, a cute curtains, on and on over the years.  Those were real and true.  But so is this separation and I need to just tell you. My readers.  People say “you know have no obligation, that is private” and they are right in a sense but many of you have come here to read about home and design for TEN YEARS, I think you deserve to know.

  MY HOME IS HURTING, this is going on. Details don’t matter.

Speaking of our home, as you know we moved into our new old home last summer, its beautiful, a dream home to me, but it can’t save a marriage and it means NOTHING, doesn’t even hold beauty hardly for me if we aren’t enjoying it as a family.  So the house is for sale. It just doesn’t even matter.  I never believed that a new house could make us happy (though excited and happy by it I admit) and I know as smart women you know and believe it too but let me just reiterate y’all:

    A house can’t make you happy.

Write it in cursive and pin it. There is nothing more true we must get into our decorating loving hearts. I would give it all up and live in a travel trailer if it could restore our family. I mean that (and not a cute airstream one with vintage decor, a nasty one). But my husband is ready to divorce. And the children and I are likely moving closer to their school and our support system. Please don’t mourn for me about the house.  It’s just a house. HOUSES DO NOT MATTER. But please do pray for my boys, and my mother and my in-laws and my husband. I know that slowly God will heal me and I will begin to see that the home can be more than just our nuclear family.  He will make beauty from ashes and give the boys and I a new sense of home and family. A “new normal” people call it.  My soul has screamed out at that idea but acceptance of a situation has to come. And a mama has to get back to work.  As many of you know it’s hard to be creative when you are hurting.  But the Lord and my clients have been gentle with me.  He truly is near the brokenhearted and crushed. And that is one reason I needed to write this post.  Because I need to get back to work.  Round Top is coming, Spring is coming,  projects need wrapping up. And it has seemed somewhat false to me to blog about the latest fabric at minted or ideas of a manly study, with this elephant in the room.  So truth and honesty.  And when you see me having a party or making something pretty please don’t judge.  It’s not easy to move on but it’s my talent and gift and what I need to do and what I want to do. I have to keep swimming. I hope to keep at Holly Mathis Interiors full time if possible.

So thank you to my friends and clients that have been supportive and encouraging on the hard days. Lots of love and grace. I haven’t been at my best and I own that and apologize for some business mistakes. But there has been grace. Bearing one another’s burdens has new meaning to me.  Do you know it truly physically feels better to tell others your hurt and pain and let them take some of the burden.  It feels a bit selfish sometimes but people who really love you want to do that. It’s empathy not sympathy. And the Bible tells us to do it.  My family and friends have been the hands and feet of Christ. Truly the Church.  (Even though going to church is hard right now, saving that for another post, they have been great too)  And God himself truly truly is close to the brokenhearted y’all.  He is. I want to leave you with this video from Brene Brown.  My friend Jill showed this too me I think the week before my world began to fall apart..So timely and so true. Hard things like this are sacred spaces. Thank you for not offering sandwiches.

scripture artwork by Society6

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