Monday, September 26, 2011

A Week Worth Living

Last week was noteworthy (or blogworthy).
I got on a plane.
I worried about said plane crashing and leaving my children behind.
I settled in to my book on that same plane.
I experienced the kindness of strangers (willing to swap seats so I could sit with my wife).
I visited a town and state I've never been to before (Springfield, MO).
I anticipated great things.
I experienced God as He closed a door we weren't supposed to walk through.
I was affirmed in my ministry and calling.
I was un-friended on facebook.
I met some great people and made some new friends.
I was grateful, so very grateful, for the souls who offered to watch our kids while we were gone.
I slept in one morning ('til 10:30 Springfield time. It was glorious).
I was in a "Minute to Win It" competition and won an iPod (we can officially have Christmas now!).
I called an old friend from my hometown and reconnected just because.
I dined with people ready to pray at the drop of a hat (and we did).
I was reminded by a beautiful painting that some day Jesus will come back and take us home.
I witnessed my wife's compassion in action.
I took a swim.
I sat in a hot tub.
I finished all my homework assignments on time even while traveling for nine days.
I laughed.
I made people laugh.
I cried.
I bought a used book from a seminary library.
I journaled (it had been a while).
I missed my parents.
I missed my kids.
I talked to my kids everyday on the phone.
I heard my middle daughter say "I miss you" unsolicited... twice!
I watched some favorite TV shows.
I was commissioned as a US missionary with the Assemblies of God.
I celebrated my wife's birthday.
I approached a "stranger" in the airport because I had a feeling it was Thomas Trask (former General Superintendent for my denomination).
I got on a plane.
I worried about said plane crashing and leaving my children behind.
I settled into my book on that same plane.
I watched my kids run to us at the airport because they were ready for their parents to be home.
I hugged said kids.
I lived life last week. And here's another week worth living...

This pic was sent to me while we were gone. Apparently, my kids were living life, too.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Tooth be Told

     The Five Couch's went to the dentist today. Since we were new to this office, we experienced a different way of taking x-rays (now digital) and some other technology that not only had my mouth wide open, but also my eyes. They stuck a camera in my mouth, and instead of just hearing a description of what is going on inside my dark pie hole, they showed me... and it was not pretty. It had been a year and a half since I had been to the dentist, and it showed. I saw for myself the tartar that was settling in like a retired couple in Florida. They pointed out my 20 year old fillings and how those will have to be taken care of someday soon. There were hairline cracks in some teeth, and the "F" on every dentist patient's report card... cavities! By the way, here's the score: Couch kids number of cavities - 0, Mom and Dad, two each! As mentioned, it was a mouth and eye-opening experience! Of course the assistant hygienist asked if I flossed every day and I brushed her lecture off with a "I know, I know." I think she actually thought to herself, "Brush off my lecture, eh? Just wait till I stick this camera in your mouth!" Needless to say, Marty and I were brushing and flossing and Listerine-ing our brains out tonight.
     I must admit, I felt a little shame around the whole experience. The results I saw in my mouth today were preventable. I told myself  when our insurance changed and we wouldn't have dental for a while that I needed to take care of my teeth diligently. But time passed, and I got typical. I'll admit, I even got lazy. When my bedtime hits, my eyes are drooping, so many a night I would walk right past the toothbrush, not to mention the dental floss, and just go right to sleep. I would brush in the morning, and everything looked okay in my bathroom lighting, but in the dentist's chair, the lights and camera showed the action that was really going on.
     It's a wake up call to take better care of myself and not just in the oral hygiene department. What else should I be doing that I know I should but I'm not? Am I resting properly? Do I spend time with friends that enrich my life? How am I doing spiritually? It's amazing to think that I knock myself out making sure my kids are taken care of, but I don't expend the same energy making sure I'm running okay. I know it's because I love them to death, but I need to learn to love myself a little bit more as well. After all, I'm the one with the cavities.