I dug out a Rich Mullins Greatest Hits CD yesterday and popped it into the CD player on my way to my mom's house with the kids. I had the same feeling I get when I take the kids to the dentist or to the health nurse for a needle; that I had to fill the gap with enough excitement for all of us about the upcoming separation from each other. I knew my kids were struggling with the idea of being apart, and I was too.
Why is it that as the date of the kid-free time approaches, the kids are better behaved and so sweet and you begin to talk yourself out of time away? I know it's important to invest this short time in my marriage, separate from my kids. It is good for us as a family. The kids need a break from me and they will have so much fun with their Gran and cousin when they go camping.
All of these things are true, but the emotions always hit hard when it comes time for that last hug and kiss and goodbye. Ava cried, William cried, and I cried. We talked about how hard it is to leave each other, but how connected we are in our hearts by the love we share. I got them to bed, and stayed playing tile rummy with my mom until they were both sleeping. I know they will be fine and will have many new adventures to share with us on Wednesday when we pick them up.
As I drove home, watching the sun set through a few of my mom tears, one of my favourite Rich Mullins songs came on. It's called "If I Stand", and the chorus says "If I stand, let me stand on the promise that you will pull me through/and if I can't let me fall on the grace that first brought me to you." I found these words to be a balm on my bruised and fearful heart. To say I trust God in the easy times doesn't really cost me anything, but to walk through my fears and trust him to take care of me in the hard times is where I really learn that he loves me and can provide for me and my family.
My pessimist nature gets in the way here. Instead of banking on the fact that I will have a wonderful time away, and really looking forward to the break, I see the possible disasters that could occur. I have to change my thinking, to force it to obey me instead of being at the whim of my imagination. People travel safely every day. Thinking about the worst case scenario is not helpful for me, or for anyone.
We will have internet access where we are, with friends for a couple of days and then in San Francisco at one of our time share locations, but some of my posts may be late based on the schedule of events from now until Wednesday. As always, I appreciate you reading. Whether we stand or fall, there is grace for all of us, if we will reach out our hands and accept it.