My Life is {Not} Glamorous

Thunderstorm coming!

Sometimes I think the angle I choose to view my life from (and thus often the picture I portray on this blog) comes across as a bit glamorous.

“She travels the country in a big RV, schooling her children and eating real food while seeing the world alongside her wonderful husband.”

Um, yeah. Sounds glamorous to me, too. But here’s a little slice of reality…

We have left all that is familiar and moved to the deep south in the middle of one of our country’s hottest summers and are living in a converted bus between two vacant homes in the middle of a trailer park that owns the reputation of a slum.Thunderstorm coming!

As an artist, I particularly feel the absence of beauty in my new surroundings, all though the grass in my lot does look better after I spent every morning last week picking bag-fulls of broken toys, crushed beer bottles, game pieces, stuffing, empty medicine tubes, and crumbled Styrofoam—shards of a discarded life—left by evicted tenants.

The first time I watched as my husband mediated a dispute between tenants, my stomach churned and my throat grew tight. It was uncomfortable to see the depravity of a life without God or boundaries or grace–live, right before my eyes. The park is full of children of detached or entirely absent parents, victims of recession, and people who have never been given the chance to live for anyone but themselves.

And life on the bus. As much as I love it, it has its drawbacks. My hips are covered with bruises from navigating small children through bathroom routines in a bathroom made for one, waif-like person at a time (Waif-like I am not). I must be as tidy as a Dutch women or we won’t be able to navigate to the door, and the sugar ants will take over if I leave one crumb of food out after a meal.

I realize this post may have begun to sound like a rant (which I try to only do in person, pardon me) but I really just wanted to set the stage for this testimony:

I am content. In fact, I’m as happy as a stray dog in a trailer park. (oh, man, I can’t believe I just allowed that analogy). The Lord has given me incredible grace this summer to see this interruption of regularly scheduled programing as an exciting, life-changing adventure.

When beauty-starved, forced to look deeper to feed our souls, it’s amazing what comes to light. (<—Tweet this!)

I love the thunderstorms we get nearly every evening. I’ve  taken time to notice the textured painting of raindrops on a puddle for the first time in years. I gasp at vivid colors on a beetle’s back. I’m embracing this season sans-distractions to invest deeply in my children and delight in their youth.

It’s all a matter of perspective. My life is not glamorous, and yet, when I look at from just the right angle, I see a glint of diamonds.

Do you see your life as glamorous? Would someone in a third-world country view it as such? When’s the last time you viewed your life from an angle that shows off its bright spots?

11 responses to “My Life is {Not} Glamorous”

  1. Stephanie Avatar

    Oh Trina, how I have missed reading your blogs and keeping up with you. The last months have been such a whirwind that just keeping up with emails and facebook is all that I have done. So now I am going back through your blogs. So glad you were able to continue blogging in the midst of all of this. 🙂

    1. Trina Avatar

      Steph! glad your back! You HAVE had an exciting summer! Can’t wait till we can catch up…

  2. Annie Avatar

    Loved this post! God has definitely been dealing with me over the years about perspective!

  3. Tereasa Avatar

    Glamorous or not, it sounds like heaven to me. Absolutely, hands down, the best two weeks we ever spent as a family were in our mini-van with a pop-up trailer in tow. I think our determination to relax and “get there when we get there” made it work. I long to do it again… someday. Was it perfect? Nope, but I loved it.

  4. Chantel Avatar

    Yes, oh yes! This is my life passion: finding the glimmer of beauty in the most ordinary and un-beautiful places. Because it is always there. 🙂

    Enjoy the thunderstorms, the beetles and look for a red clay road to walk on. 🙂

  5. Natasha Avatar

    Love this. Also? My parents lived in a trailer park for a summer when I was about six. They told us kids we were missionaries. It had a profound effect on me. (and helped bring me to the place that I can live anywhere at anytime and learn to love it.)

  6. kateri Avatar

    “I’ve taken time to notice the textured painting of raindrops on a puddle for the first time in years. I gasp at vivid colors on a beetle’s back.”

    “..and yet, when I look at it from just the right angle, I see a glint of diamonds.’

    And that is exactly how I chose to live my life. I often think my life is pretty boring, and is so easy to focus on the dreary side of life (chronic fatigue, a job with long hours, a house that is almost always a mess, etc, etc), but when I open my eyes to the beauty around me–even if it just a single rain drop, or the shimmering silver green of a sea of soybeans, or a tumbled down barn silhouetted against the sky, or the golden texture of a newly harvested wheat field–then I know I have an amazing life. No matter where you are there is beauty and something worth seeing–even if it is very small.
    And honestly,if I stop and think about it, I’ve lived a pretty interesting life–even it felt anything but glamorous or interesting at the time. (Most of the time I feel like I am just barely hanging on by my fingernails.) But I am learning that life is what you make it. You definitely have a sense of adventure (more so than me–I think!) and I think that is half battle in living a life of wonder and adventure.

  7. Gretchen Louise Avatar

    Love this, friend. So, so true. It’s all in perspective.

  8. Heather Manley Avatar
    Heather Manley

    Trina, OK…thats TWICE today you have made me cry…STOP it!! LOL… have such an amazing way of sharing your heart. I am *SO* thankful for you! Enjoy your adventure, isnt God AWESOME??!!

  9. babz Avatar

    i am often proud to be the small part of your life i am . i wonder if you feel it when i beam at you across miles and years?love, babz

    1. Trina Avatar

      And I am equally proud and blessed to call you a part of my life, Babz. Wow. yeah, I feel the love and you made me cry and–thanks. 🙂

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