“Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work in us.” Ephesians 3:20
It has been a week of animals.
And I am not talking about the kids.
It started with tadpoles.
Two baby tadpoles scooped from their little pond into a child’s water bottle only to be emptied into a bowl. I can only imagine what the little tadpole thought.
Well, Gracelyn’s did not have much time to think. It lasted a couple days and then floated to the top. Garrett so kindly gave his to her and we spent the next week watching it sprout arms and legs. Fascinating. Gracelyn asked me to put a lid on the bowl in case he would jump out. I assured her there was no need, his little legs simply too new.
I found him still on the ground a day later when she was out with her dad.
I decided I would rather have her mad at me then find out he died, so I flushed him and planned to tell her he indeed had hopped out. Preparing myself for her backlash, I took a deep breath and told her the news when she returned home. Thankfully, my sweet husband had already planned to take her out to get a pet fish to help with the blow of the news. I was so relieved since I had been coping for days with a pinched nerve in my neck and was feeling rather weary.
And of course, when Garrett heard the news, he desired a pet fish as well.
Later that day Gracelyn had a beta fish just like the one she had left behind in Florida. And Garrett, well he figured out he could have 4 fish for the price of one beta. So we went from two tadpoles, to one, to 5 fish.
I would also like to add that they caught the tadpoles against my will. But much like those tadpoles being scooped up and dropped in a foreign environment, our kiddos have experienced a lot of change since moving to India. Since planning to move here we have always kept their ability to thrive at the forefront. So if a pet fish helps, so be it. It is a tricky job however. One person’s ability to thrive may depend on a different environment than another.
For example, the first tadpole was placed in filtered water and died. The tadpole that lived was placed in tap water. This outcome was opposite of what I would have guessed.
At this point you must be thinking, is she really still talking about tadpoles? I feel like the comedian Jim Gaffigan in his skit when he got stuck on the topic of bacon.
But to the point, we each have different needs in order to thrive. We are discovering what those are weekly here in India. The kids need friends or a pet. Adam needs purpose and fitness. I need time alone, in silence. You know, the little things. Ha.ha.ha.
Well. The Beta fish is doing great! Except for the fact that after Gracelyn caught a lizard, the beta got kicked out of his tank so the lizard could have it and is now in a plastic tub. And Garrett’s fish, well, one by one they each caught a ride down the porcelain express.
Like the beta, I sometimes feel like I was taken out of my choice tank and placed in a plastic tub. My life and my environment has drastically changed.
But there are many aspects of my new home that take my breath away.
Finding 8 monkeys outside my porch in the morning.
Watching an elephant walk down the road in the middle of traffic.
Seeing our children genuinely getting along.
Open air tuk tuk rides.
Hearing Jackson’s speech increase and our ability to speak in Hindi improve!
India’s incredible artistry surrounding us in handcrafted bedspreads, table runners and kurtas that have been designed with the most beautiful colors and fabrics!
Finding the familiar in an unfamiliar place. Like an instant pot, wine, swiss cake rolls and dominos pizza!
And also having new experiences like enjoying a home-cooked meal at a new friend’s home.
An experience which not only included chai, cold drink, fry-ems, curd, dahl, roti, and paneer, but also pet bunnies!!
The bunnies topped off our week of animals and I was convinced by the end of the weekend Gracelyn would have begged us to get her one what with her pet obsession. That is, until the bunny pooped and then she realized she would have to clean that up herself!
Alas, after 100 days, we are still The Braucher five, living in India with the addition of a fish, a lizard, some neighborly monkeys, potentially a bunny, a new sense of adventure, a new sense of taste and a continued desire to adapt and thrive in our new environment.
Grateful for HE who enables us to do abundantly more than we ever could have imagined.