The Return to Normal


The Return to Normal

These months have been emotionally difficult. My husband is working from his tractor and I am blessed to be working from home.

I’m thankful, but just like so many of you, the situation isn’t easy.

I get up early, make coffee, and get dressed, including makeup. This keeps routine and accountability to my day, but let’s be honest with ourselves: doing your makeup for a virtual meeting is just not the same as doing it to go out in public! Can I get an Amen?

This evening, enjoying some time rocking on our front porch, my husband commented on my eyebrows. I know. It sounds a little strange, but eyebrow compliments are one of my love languages! Lame as it may seem, the notice of my freshly done brows, made me think about life returning to normal. You see, in the midst of the anxiety and crisis mode, we found new schedules and habits. Some good ones…some not so much, but there will now be a readjustment period back to a more normal routine.

I’ll miss my current 10-minute makeup routine, but I will welcome the confidence of walking out of the house feeling professional and composed. Being a presence and participating in my kids’ lessons has been incredibly inspiring! Watching how they learn and experiencing their remarkable teachers in action has forever blessed me. Full disclosure: it’s no secret that it will be a glorious day when they can rejoin their school in the brick and mortar classrooms…as I peel out of the parking lot!

I have enjoyed staying home without the guilt of deciding which activity to attend, but I am looking forward to watching my son play summer and fall baseball, rather than finding him in the bathroom sink giving himself a bath because he said he was still stinky. Seriously, that’s a true story.

I am excited about the return of friends’ visits and dinner dates, but afraid of getting caught up again and forgetting to be intentional about time allotted for building forts, swinging, walks exploring our property and just talking around the fire.

Our dinners have been completely unstructured and essentially a buffet of random choices. Last night, one kid ate an entire can of pinto beans and the other a turkey sandwich. I have admitted defeat and waived my white flag, but taking away the food obstacles and pressure has opened up conversations about friends, Jesus, likes and dislikes, and what they are most excited about in our lives.

I’ve watched them grow spiritually and emotionally. They have become more compassionate as we dropped notes and gifts to friends we miss, and meals to those in need or who are unable to get out. So often these trips were their idea and I hope this desire to shine light doesn’t fade as the hustle and bustle kicks back in.

When normalcy returns, I pray that I am able to intertwine the new traditions like barefoot backyard play with the friends we have so missed. All the while remembering the spiritual steps taken during this down time to love each other well.

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Erin Martin
Hello! Erin here! I was born and practically raised in Chattanooga, minus a few years as an Army brat. I graduated from Bryan College with a degree in Accounting/Business and currently work as corporate accountant. My husband, Michael and I live in Ooltewah and have been married 8 years. During this time, we have had some serious fun, hard discussions and added two pretty spectacular kids to the mix, Charlotte (5) and Jack (3). I love Jesus, books (so.many.books), coffee, coffee (not a duplicate) and TN Vols football! As a family, we love animals; farms, fishing, aquariums, zoos. If it’s got animals, we are there! Charlotte and I are travelers, but we are slowly getting the boys on board. We camp with friends and family (full disclosure: in a camper!), and I have been known to encourage dancing in the rain and splashing in mud. It’s good for the soul! Happy reading, friends!


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