Sometimes Weeks Go By

Y’all, I don’t even know.

Fall is always busy. Every single year. But this year it’s been a whole different deal. For a while there we weren’t getting home until around 6 every evening, and then there was supper, and then there was homework, and then there was some writing stuff I’ve been working on when I should really be sleeping or at the very least dedicating my energies to a TV show. But now we’re at the end of 7th grade football (which is bittersweet for sure – it was such a great season), and it feels like fall outside (nothing to do with time, I know, but always a plus), and I’m hopeful that there’s a wee bit of margin on the horizon. Or maybe it just means that I’ll have a few more hours to actually fold the laundry after I dry it. No promises on putting it away, though.

And now I’m going to backtrack and see if I can remember what all has been going on here.

7th Grade Football – I may have mentioned it. What a great group of kids and parents and coaches. Really, I don’t know when we’ve enjoyed a team more. The 7th grade team actually went undefeated, which was all manner of awesomeness. Big thumbs up for the 2016 season.

Mississippi State Football – Oh, mercy. It has not been our finest year. I want to hug all of the players and tell them that it’ll all be okay. Also, please beat Samford.

Dallas Cowboys Football – Y’all know that I have never in my whole life cheered for a pro football team, but I have two words for you: DAK PRESCOTT. It has been the biggest blast to watch him play on Sunday afternoons. In fact, one reason I am writing this post is because the Cowboys have a bye week and what in the world did I used to do on Sunday afternoons? I HAVE NO RECOLLECTION. I’m hoping that Sister and I can make a pilgrimage to Frisco later this year / early next year and see Dak play in person, but we’ve got to find a weekend that works for both of us first. Also, I’m still enjoying my Cowboys t-shirt. LET’S GO #4.

dotMOM 2016 – This year’s dotMOM weekend was lots of fun. It was also the first year that Melanie and I didn’t emcee together, so I missed her a bunch, but fortunately I saw her the day before I went to Nashville. As always I loved being with the LifeWay team and so enjoyed getting to learn from some incredible speakers. What caught me off-guard was that all the talk of mamas and motherhood and etc. very much made the loss of my own mama rise to the surface of my head and my heart. It made me very grateful for Mama’s legacy, for sure, but the emotional ka-pow of all that required a few days of recovery.

Blogging – Obviously the blogging has been a struggle. Several of y’all have been kind enough to email and check on me, and that really is the sweetest thing. I’ve been working to finish up a writing project, and since the only time I have to work on it is at night (and on the weekends), that’s pretty much cut into all of my blogging time. If I had about four more hours in a day, the blog would be spinning like a top, I tell you. But as it stands, the writing stuff is gonna be my priority for a few more weeks.

Stomach Virus – I know. Weird thing to talk about, right? But last weekend I came down with a stomach virus, and y’all, I think it was the best thing that’s happened to me in a couple of months. I was so tired the week before it hit – like the kind of tired where I was driving back to Birmingham from Starkville and had to pull over at a gas station and lock my doors and take a nap – and that stomach virus forced me to sleep for about three days. IT WAS GLORIOUS. I mean, it was horrible, but I slept like a champion. My FitBit pretty much patted me on the back for all the hours I slept over those three days (it really did give me stars). AND SPEAKING OF…

FitBit – So David and Alex gave me a FitBit for my birthday. I’d mentioned several times that I thought I might enjoy one, and they gave me the Charge 2. I LOVE IT.


I haven’t worn a watch in years, but this is so much more. Plus, I am surprisingly geeky about checking up on my sleeping and my daily average heart rate. Also, I really enjoy being able to read texts on the FitBit (if I’m near my phone) and see how many steps I’ve traveled in a given day. And yes, I know, the fact that I’m just now jumping on the FitBit train is sort of like WELCOME TO 2013, but my goodness it is a handy little gadget.

Amy Grant’s New Christmas Album – I know. It’s just October.


But it’s Amy. And there’s actually a new version of “Tennessee Christmas” on this album, so that alone is worth the download. Everything else is new and as wonderful as you’d expect.

Cows See Grass for the First Time in Six Months – This video showed up on my FB or Twitter feed this past week, and it made me smile so big.

And I don’t know? Maybe it’s not the grass? Maybe they’re just happy to be outside? Ultimately it doesn’t matter, I guess; I just like to watch them prance.

Hamilton Documentary on PBS – I think I’ve mentioned that I was supposed to fly to NYC to see Hamilton the day Mama died. Obviously we cancelled my flight, and a friend of ours bought my ticket to the show. But the weird thing was that after months of listening to the cast recording every single day, I couldn’t listen to Hamilton after Mama died. It lost all appeal, probably because there were just way too many emotions mixed up with it.

Well, over the last month or so I’ve been really excited about the Hamilton documentary on PBS, and Friday night after we got home from a high school football game, I decided I was going to watch. I’ll have you know that I made it five whole minutes before I bawled my eyes out. Just cried and cried. I was a little fascinated by my reaction, honestly, because grief is so weird. I mean, why should that be the thing that makes me cry? Anyway, I turned off the TV, and a couple of hours later I tried again. The second go-’round was much more successful.

I finally finished watching late this afternoon, and y’all, it’s so good. It does a beautiful job of synthesizing the story of Alexander Hamilton’s life with the behind-the-scenes of the play, and I think everyone should watch it.

Hazel – Hazel is as co-dependent as she’s ever been. She was super happy about my stomach virus last week because it meant that she got to stay glued to my side for several days in a row. She is actually a little extra anxious right now because FALLING LEAVES, so we spend lots of time assuring her that she is safe and that we wouldn’t mind it if she managed to stop it with the barking. She is a character.


Real Life – Just to shoot really straight: the last four months have been the strangest of my adult life. I told David the other day that normally the summers are when I hit “reset” for my brain, but things didn’t work out that way this past summer. Giddy Up, Eunice came out at the first of June, and then 2 1/2 weeks later, we were in ICU with Mama. She died three days later, and some days I don’t feel like my brain has stopped spinning since. It was such a gift to be able to be home for a month or so after Mama died – I just wanted to be quiet, and being at home enabled me to do that – but since school started, we’ve had a lot of non-negotiables on the calendar: school, work, football practice, writing deadline, speaking stuff, family commitments. I think I’ve let the blog slide off the to-do list because it is one of the few things that could slide off the to-do list pretty easily. But no joke: my brain is so tired, y’all. I tend to err on the side of super practical and get ‘er done and just keep swimming and all that. But if I could press “pause” right now and run away (with my people, of course) to a large body of water for an extended period of time? YES, PLEASE. THAT WOULD BE SO DELIGHTFUL.

So all that to say: in the middle of all this very real (sometimes weird), very hectic life, things really are good in this neck of the woods. Thanks for bearing with me during the blogging drought. Thanks for your emails (speaking of things I’ve let slide off the to-do list – let’s talk for a second about all the emails I’ve saved so I could respond later and now I’m so behind I’ll never catch up). Thanks for your prayers. I should be wrapping up the writing stuff I’m working on pretty soon, and then we’ll be gearing up for Thanksgiving. I hope y’all are doing great – and I promise that Mel and I are going to record a podcast soon. We just have to convince our schedules to cooperate.

Hope your Sunday has been delightful.


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  1. Jennifer S. says:

    Good to hear from you, you’ve been in my thoughts.

  2. Sallie Baker says:

    Yes, good to hear from you, although you know everyone understands. This is just a tough year…and will continue to be. Lots of ” firsts” still to conquer. Love and prayers.

  3. Oh, Sophie, I’m so glad to hear you are alright. Take all the time in the world that you need to grieve, and just know that those of us in your “fan club” are praying for your heart to be healed and for God to restore your energy and your joy. Blessings from Idaho.

  4. been missing you!!!

  5. Listen, I’m so with you on the weirdness of grief. My dad died in May and this summer has been strange, to say the least. So, as much as I’ve missed you and the blog, every time I thought, “Gee I wish Sophie would post a blog about …,” I thought, no, she needs space. She needs to process this stuff. When she’s ready, she’ll post. I’ve posted exactly one blog since my dad died. I have a lot to say, but too much to think about right now to say it.

    All that to say, Welcome Back! I know you’re going to find your legs pretty soon and the stuff will all work out. That’s what I’m planning, anyway!

  6. Glad to see this post and hope you are well! I know all about being “brain-tired!” One note: I am a Kentucky Wildcats fan, so . . . sorry about last night. But my friends and I agree: we NEVER win these games! We’re ALWAYS on the losing side of a game like that. So it was a bit refreshing for us, but I figured you didn’t enjoy it!

  7. Good to “hear” from you. It’s been a rough summer for so may if us. I keep saying my brain is tired and I’m convinced a beach would be a reset for me. Big hugs and we will be here when you’re rested!

  8. Loved the blog! Thank you for sharing your heart with all of your readers. Many prayers continuing your way!

  9. Sophie, I have thought of you so often and I really have been praying for you. I think of you especially when I visit my son and his family in Birmingham.
    I just marvel over God’s mercy and grace when I think of how He is so kind even in terrible situations. I am so thankful you had your great trial AFTER Eunice was out, and after school was out, and you had even been to the beach with your family. God was giving you rest right before you were going to need your strength the most. And how kind of Him to give you some weeks of summer vacation to be at home and quiet. I am also praying for your sweet Daddy as he adjusts to his life alone. My aunt and uncle have been married 62 years. My uncle is in declining health. She said the most touching thing about their long life together. “I have been with him so long, I don’t know where I stop and he begins.” Such sweetness.
    So glad to read your words again. We will be here whenever you are able to write again. xo

  10. Dear Sophie, you just take as much time as you need and know that we all love you and understand that this will be a hard year. And so what if it’s longer? Grief works in funny ways, those of us who know it, get it. Be good to yourself and thanks for the video of those sweet girls prancing in the grass!

  11. After my husband’s death five and half years ago, a counselor told me that the only predictable thing about grief is its unpredictability. I find the absolute strangest things will trigger a great uprising of all. the. feels. You are doing the right thing, giving yourself permission to do or NOT do whatever is necesarry to walk forward. All that you are experiencing seems very normal to me after what you have been through. And I can tell you from experience, it will get better. Things will aways be a bit different, but the brain fog and fatigue will resolve and you will eventually feel more like yourself again.

    Know that you are loved and lifted up in prayer to the One who loves you with an everlasting love. He is faithful!

  12. I’ve missed you! I “check” on you everyday hoping you have posted.💕

  13. We watched the Hamilton documentary last night and I couldn’t have enjoyed it more. Funny enough, I thought of you while we were watching because I assumed you missed going this summer when your Mama passed away. I recently entered a contest to win tickets and told my mom if I won the 2 tickets I would seriously email you and ask if you wanted 1 because I felt so terribly about you not being able to go when you’d looked forward to it for so long. So here’s hoping you get to see the show soon and here’s a big virtual hug from me just because. I am just so sorry for your loss.

  14. i’ve been checking on you everyday and so glad you surfaced to give us an update. So sorry its been such a tough time for you but so glad you have your people close by!
    Enjoy the beautiful Fall weather.
    Much love to you and your family.

  15. I loved meeting you (again) at dotMom – and I’m currently reading your new book when I’m on the treadmill. Once again a book of yours is GREAT! Really enjoying it!

    We watched the PBS Hamilton documentary as well – yes, they did do a really nice job with telling the story of the play and real life. Everyone SHOULD watch it!

    Grief is a crazy and weird thing….just go with the tears when they appear…hugs!

  16. Bless you, Sophie! I hope you don’t have any guilt about taking a pause from the blog. While you are most certainly missed, all of us gals get it! Life is busy, our heads get full, and our emotions can drain us. I hope that you can take the break you need. And that when you’re good and ready, and your family is good and ready you can blog regularly and enjoy it, and not be stressed by it. It’s 110% ok to take a break!! Enjoy your family, your friends, your fur baby (oh, Hazel…the leaves! LOL), and know that you are being prayed for. It’s a different season, and that’s ok, because one consistent is God is on His throne, in control and head over heels for you sweet Sophie. Take care of you, and enjoy your days! XOXO from Dallas!

  17. Welcome back friend. Even if for a short while. And yeah, I emailed you but it was totally legit. I mean, NEEDTOBREATHE.

    And yeah, football. I think I enjoy watching on Sundays more now than Saturdays. And I’m with you. I’ve NEVER been one to watch NFL (or any pro sporting teams for that matter, they get paid WAY too much money) but since Dak is playing so well, I’m giddy! I even bought a shirt (for me and the 9 year old) that says, “From Cowbells to Cowboys.” That is soooo out of my comfort zone but I’m SOOOO excited about it.

    Take some time to BREATHE. We miss your blogging but we care more about your well being. Go to LA (Lower Alabama) and enjoy some sunsets.

  18. Lisa Boyle says:

    Hello Sophie,
    I have missed (you) so! I have been praying for you because the loss of a mother is so profound, and grief is a long mysterious process. Know that there is someone in Florida who cares about you – even though you have never met. Your words lift me up. I hope that knowing that so many people wish you well lifts you up a little.
    Hang in there!

  19. I feel you. My dad died in May (to Brenda above, I’m so sorry about your loss) and it’s just been weird. Strange things affect me, and the thought of being the “adult” in the family has thrown me off. I’m drifting. And goodness, I don’t see how you have done all that you have done. Take care, we’ll see ya when we see ya!

    And some SEC wins would have to help the situation…woo pig…sigh…

  20. I have been thinking about you and missing your blog posts. I know you miss your Mama. I wish I could give you a big hug. Thanks for thinking of us and checking in. You are loved.

  21. Oh Sophie – so glad to hear from you today. You have been in my thoughts and prayers.

  22. Yolanda McLean says:

    so glad to have this catch up with you today. I think of you often and understand that life gets crazy and sometimes busy feels better than not busy. So many prayers and love for you.

  23. I enjoy your blog so much! I miss it when you aren’t able to write. Welcome back!

  24. So good to know you are getting through the days – they keep coming whether we are ready or not! Take care of your people – that’s your priority. Glad you gave us a shout out!
    Love the podcasts, you always make me smile and laugh til i cry!

  25. Jeannette says:

    So thankful you were able to write this post. I have been praying for you. And checking the blog to see if you have written anything. I almost sent Mel a message to check on you and let us know how you were doing.
    When I watch A&M and Miss. State I wonder what you and Mel are doing. I know I was screaming at the t.v. after the intentional targeting that was not called this past weekend in Alabama. Poor Mel must have been all kinds of crazy during the first half. I know I was.

    Praying that you enjoy this season in your family’s life. Football, leaves falling and cuddled up on the couch quietness. Sometimes time has to move at the speed of molasses. And even then it is to fast.

  26. i’ve missed your posts! i’m glad that all is well and i hope you’re able to find some margin sooner than later. fall is always bananas for my husband & i and somehow we seem to forget that every year. weeks ago i wrote on the calendar for saturday the 29th: stay in pjs all day. i hope it comes true! :)

  27. Dear Sophie it is so good to hear from you. Take all the time you need and know that we are thinking of you. Sending you love, prayers and cyber (((hugs))) 😊

  28. I’ve missed hearing from you…but take all the time you need. And might I suggest a nice trip to the Gulf Coast. It is definitely the place that restores my soul, and I know you love it too. Maybe you can work in a trip. Enjoyed reading this today, and praying that you will find some of that margin soon. Take care!

  29. Sophie ~ thinking of you. You are very loved and appreciated in the blog world and you are missed when life gets too busy to blog. But every single one of us has those seasons in life where you feel overwhelmed or distracted or almost too busy to breathe. Take all the time you need to take care of yourself. xoxo

  30. Sarah Moseley says:

    I’m so happy to get an update. I can’t imagine losing your mom. That’s one of my greatest fears in life, and you have so much else going on at the same time. Thanks for filling us in, and know that you are loved from afar!

  31. We are so happy to hear from you! I have to tell you that I SO understand the grief Thing. My daddy passed in December 2013. Of course life went on with my family, work etc and I remember waking up in April 2014 and had a distinct feeling that Hey, I’m Back! I felt like I woke up! I never knew I had been gone emotionally, mentally or whatever it was but I Knew I was Back! Of course there were still days after that were tough, still are but I could clearly say that the fog of loss had lifted. Strange but true.
    Wishing you the best in each day!!

  32. Refreshing and honest. Love it!! Get your rest girlfriend. Lord knows you have needed it. We will be here when you are ready!

  33. So happy to hear from you, Sophie. This will be a year of firsts for you and your family. But you will survive. I just have one question about the cows. Why had they not seen grass for six months? If they were that happy to be outside, it seems really cruel that they had been deprived of that.

  34. So glad you’re back-ish!

  35. Marsha Stephens says:

    I have so wanted to let you know that I bought your new book right after it came out to take on an Alaska Cruise – I had just started reading it when I heard the news about your mom. It was just so ironic reading the book with all the stories of your mom when you were going through the pain of losing her – prayers that God continues to lead you through this grieving process – mom would want you to take care of yourself and so do I – Love and prayers

  36. Martha Roberts says:

    Oh, Sophie!! So good to hear from you. We have missed you but we all understand the mental and physical exhaustion that grief brings. I bought Giddy Up, Eunice and read it cover to cover one weekend. Then I saw it was on hoopla and listened to the audio version. I LOVE to listen to your voice read your words. Take care of yourself and we love you so much. Looking forward to the next big and boo podcast. And what a gift–a new Christmas CD from Amy!! Woo Hoo😙

  37. Wow! I almost never check your blog anymore and on a whim I checked, and lo and behold a post! Yea! Glad you are doing well and hope you get that restorative vaca you and your fam so desperately need.

  38. Been thinking of you, Sophie! It’s so weird…I, too, have fallen off the blog wagon for quite a few weeks.. it’s been a busy and strange fall for me, too. Praying you will feel refreshed & comforted by our good, good Father as this has been such a difficult season for you. Hugs from Iowa!

  39. Kathy Wilshire says:

    Just FYI on coming to see Dak play: the Cowboys practice at their new practice facility The Star in Frisco; their games are at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.

  40. Brittney K says:

    Missed you! I’m a Texan and I thought about you every time the Cowboys played and Dak has been such a bright light in all the Romo drama!! Glad you and your family are well!

  41. No worries… we’re still here… Gentle hugs to you and yours.

  42. Glad things are settling down some. Grief is a weird thing. Don’t let anyone tell you it has been long enough to get over it. You never get over it. Mama died 17 years ago and I found a sweater in a drawer last Friday that still smelled like her perfume. I could not wash it. Tears a little. Hugs to you.

  43. I was so glad to see a new blog post this morning. I’ve missed you. I wondered if you went to see Hamilton. Well take care of yourself and write when you can. Here’s a hug

  44. I have missed you and am glad to hear from you again. Thanks for being genuine.

  45. Life sure does go by in a hurry! You have been through a lot lately and just trying to do the day to day things in life can just be draining. We understand! I have read your blog for years now and look forward to seeing what you have to share, but you taking care of you is more important. God Bless.

  46. So glad y’all are doing well! Way to go Alex on football!

    It sounds like you are doing exactly what you need to be doing: living. Enjoying your people. Making the most of your time!

    I agree, grief is so weird. Monday was my Granny’s first birthday in Heaven (she would have been 90), and it was a rough day for me. I have found I can be absolutely grateful and happy and comforted, but still be just so very sad at the same time. Grief is weird, but I think to love deep is to hurt deep when they are gone, and what we had with Granny was worth it hurting like this. Heaven is going to be so sweet, I can’t wait to be with the Lord and all who have gone before us!

    Thanks so much for the update, I am STILL thinking about the women in Giddy Up, Eunice, and what they meant to each other. Such a blessing. Have a great week!

  47. Grief is a funny thing. You never know when it will hit you and you never know what will trigger it. Next week will be one year since I lost my dad. If there ever was a daddy’s girl, well that was me. Some days my heart just gets so tired. I read some where not long ago about a daughter who lost a parent and how she had finally gotten to the place where she no longer cried when she thought of or saw pictures the parent she lost. But she smiled at the reminder of the amount of love they shared. Oh how I long for that day.

  48. I reacted to that Hamilton documentary the same way those cows reacted to that grass. :)

  49. Hey, Boomama! I saw, last night, where your Mississippi Bulldogs won!!! I’m excited for you—–no doubt, there was a lot of hollaring, stomping, and cowbell ringing going on!!!

  50. I bought Giddy Up, Eunice on Saturday, read it in one day, then passed it on immediately to a co-worker because we also work with teenagers in a Christian school. I adored you immediately. Thank you for sharing your gifts with the world!

  51. Tamra Smith says:

    It’s funny the things we take away from the blogs we follow. I don’t know you yet I grieved with you in the loss of your mother. Common ground, I suppose, having lost my own mother a few years ago. And then to find this wonderful musical, “Hamilton.” I just knew it wasn’t something I would like. I’m not (or wasn’t) the biggest fan of rap so I didn’t bother to look at it. BUT … you kept talking about how great it was so I decided to listen. Well now I think I’m just as obsessed with it as you are. I listen to it ALL. THE. TIME. I watched the PBS show but when you mentioned it here I had to watch it again … even before I finished reading your post! It truly is a work of art and story telling. Thank you for bringing to us what speaks to you – what you are passionate about. I’m one of many who really listens to what you have to say – here, in your books, in your podcasts, etc – and my world continues to expand. Thank you, Sophie.