Many years ago, Joseph ran and finished (barely!) the Big Sur Marathon. One of the most grueling features of the 26.2 mile run is a 500 foot ascent in two miles to Hurricane Point.

It begins at mile marker 10 and even at it’s point of completion, you still have more than half the race to run.

Without consciously realizing it, I believe my husband drew on his experience of this particular challenge when he told me recently that we are running a marathon and we’re at about mile 10.

Here are the short answers:
1. Asher is doing well. He appears genuine in his desire to connect with our family and move towards wholeness.
2. We sold and bought a house 4 weeks ago and are still swimming in boxes.
3. In many ways, probation is harder than incarceration for us. We are expected to monitor Asher to such a degree that his alone time (and our own) is almost non-existent.
4. The isolation inherent in this season is suffocating. But there isn’t a lot we can do about it.
5. We do not have the emotional enegery to do much more than survive.
6. We have a long way to go before this race is won.

When Asher first left, it was expected by our support network that we were overwhelmed. We were brought meals, reminded to hold ourselves gently, and given room for the emotional ups and downs assumed of our situation.

But now Asher is home.

Now is a celebration.

Now it is done.

Just before the start of Hurricane Point, Big Sur Marathon

Or at least that is what so many well-meaning people believe and behave as. Asher is home. But mile 10 means reestablishing every dynamic in our home. It means getting to know a relative stranger in many ways. Now is a time for celebration. But mile 10 means celebrating the step and not the completion of a long, arduous road. It means acknowleding what was accomplished while recognizing the hard work that still lies ahead. It is done. But mile 10 means only the first 10 miles are done not the whole race. We will never again run the miles of first disclosure and initial police reports, and driving back and forth for hours for weekly visitation. Those things are done – praise God! But with 16.2 miles to go, there is a lot of ground we have not covered. And right now, every step is uphill.

So please forgive my silence. Please forgive my inability to think, let alone write, a coherent sentence. Please know that I appreciate the prayers. We all do. And please understand that I simply don’t have the energy to do much more than put one foot in front of the other. For now, that is all I can give.