Monday, September 10, 2012

Happy Enkutatash!

                                               Happy New Year! AKA Happy Enkutatash!

No, I am not loosing my mind (which is debatable lately), September 11th is the Ethiopian New years (according to the Gregorian calendar, which is the western calendar we go by, Sept 1 if you are going by the Ethiopian calendar. FYI I plan on doing a post on Ethiopian's calendar soon). Ethiopian New years falls at the end of the rainy season and is called Enkutatash. Enkutatash is not only a religious holiday (September 1rst is celebrated to mark the commemoration of Saint John the Baptist) but also a day of celebration and for singing and dancing. The Ethiopian rainy season typically lasts three months, from June thru August, and Ethiopia almost completely shuts down during this time. It is said that at the start of September, "the sun comes out and creates a beautiful clear, fresh atmosphere, where the highland fields turn to gold and the Meskal daisies begin to flower" (as you can see by this beauty's handpicked lovelies). 

Legend has it that when Makeda, the Queen of Sheba, returned to Ethiopia after her famous visit with King Soloman, her chiefs welcomed her home by giving her “gifts of jewels” or Enkutatash in literal translation. Meskerem (September) is thought of as the month of transition, from the old into the new; much like our January is to us. It is a time to express hopes and dreams for the New Year ahead, as well as for the future, and truly is a reason for celebration as well as reflection.

With this in mind, and in anticipation of learning and celebrating new holidays with our son, I thought I would take a moment to reflect on our “new year” ahead. This year will begin to mark one of the last  that Jay and I are just “us”.  We will soon be entering into the most exciting, crazy, and truly terrifying time of our lives…parenthood. As we approach that time with anticipation and longing, we also are making a clear point to enjoy the quiet that comes from just two people living in a big ol’ house, alone. We love making dinner together, cuddling on the couch, sometimes taking each other on in two man euchre or rummy. We love having Saturday “staying IN” nights; opening a glass of wine, popping in a movie, and relaxing. We love volunteering with our middle school kiddos, taking them golfing, to lunch, shopping, and watching them start to live out their faith. We love cuddling with our fat fur ball Martin. Ladies and gentleman, that is 21 pounds of pure, squeezable love right there!

He loves being the center of our attention, and most of the time, our bed as well.
But, he is about to have to make some big changes when our little guy comes home, we all are. Jay travels a lot currently with his job, and while he loves the freedom of not having an office and desk he is tied to daily, he will have to make adjustments when he takes on fatherhood. As for me,  I love to sleep and nap, and wake up when I am ready. I know these moments will soon be fleeting and trust me, I am attempting to soak in every last Saturday morning sleep in. We love being able to jump in the car and travel anywhere we want without thinking twice about it. And if our friends call us up last minute for a volleyball or football game, we jump right into competitive mode and head out the door. We love our lives together, but we are in LOVE with this little boy we have never even met or laid eyes on. While we love our freedom, we would throw it away tomorrow to bring home little Ethiopian Reichert.  It is truly amazing how love works, how God works. He laid something heavy on our hearts, and when we said yes, he turned that heavy “Do this for me” feeling into a love and longing like we have never felt. I see that feeling in our family too. They are pulling together to get this tike home and it is mind blowing to me, what can happen when just one (or two) people say “yes” to God. Love ripples through everyone and everything around.

We are excited for the “new year”. We have a lot of fun “just the two of us” to be had, road trips and cheap dates to go on, and quiet, peaceful moments to relish in this year.
Jay and I love being “us”, but when the time is right, we are more than willing to trade that in for him. Here's to the New Year and to future!

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