I was on call last night. The “trauma gods” were in my favor and I found about 3 hours to rest, in between pages. My husband, Scott, called me around 11am this morning and asked, “So when are you going home?” I thought for a moment, and even though I knew I could have cashed it in then, I said, “Oh, I’ll stick around for a while. I mean…I don’t even have internet at the carriage house (aka, my temporary housing)”. At least if I stay at the office, there is FaceBook and hot coffee…and people. You see, right now, he is there, with the kids, and I am here, because I had to go ahead and start my new job. And that leaves me, the post-call mom, without any kids. It’s quiet. And peaceful…and lonely.
Eventually, I left the office and stopped at the local natural foods market I have been wanting to check out (and it did not disappoint!!). I got back to the carriage house and decided to prepare some food for the rest of the week. My favorites! Chopped vegetables for salads; stewed vegetables for soup/salad; guacamole; roasted root vegetables; and pre-packaged fruit and veggies for snacks. I chopped and cut and diced and stewed and roasted and packaged that produce for almost two hours. Alone. In the quiet…ok, Chip and Joanna were on in the background. But it was a serene and pensive moment for me, ok? While I’ve gone ALL IN with Clean Eating the rest of the family isn’t quite so on board (and, honestly, I don’t blame them. Dude. Pizza tastes better than carrot sticks. Every. Single. Day.) There is a running joke about me buying free-range, vegan, gluten-free spinach (think about it…). So, when I am cooking at home, there is some compromise involved. Or, more likely…there is their dinner, and my dinner. And I miss that “food fight”….today, and every day.
Tonight, there was loneliness and heartache and some self-pity behind the tears shed with the onion chopping. I miss my kids. [onions for the stewed veggies] I feel guilty for leaving behind my incredible husband to play single dad while I am here as the lone advance party on our new family adventure. [serrano peppers for guacamole. Pro-tip: package guacamole in an air tight container with plastic wrap covering ALL surfaces of guac…notice I chose to store it in a baggie…won’t turn brown. You’re welcome.] I’m bored, yet anxious. [turnips and parsnip and pre-cut crinkle sweet potato fries for roasted vegetables]. And then…between episodes of Tiny House Hunters and Listed Sisters…I heard a little voice saying, “Embrace the sadness. Embrace the pity and the guilt. Embrace the loneliness. This is My moment. The moment I created for you. The moment you need to feel. To accept. To live deeply in, so that you may feel the the joy of the family reunion. The chaos after the calm. The laughter after the silence.” You see, you can’t really feel the highs unless you are willing to feel the lows. You can’t love the way the kids bicker…if you never experience quiet. You can’t appreciate togetherness…if you never know the feeling of being apart. God made this moment for me. To be awash in silence. Which I hate! He made this moment for me to pause. Which I never do! And, in fact, He made this moment for me to rest. To sleep when I can. To eat what I want. To read as I wish. It’s easy for me to feel guilty for these “selfish” moments. But, if I understand that these moments, for the next few weeks, are not really my moments, but sacred moments…to Reflect. To Restore. To Rest. To get ready to be the very best mom and wife that I can be… Then there will be a purpose to these moments. To not embrace the sacred moment is to tell God, “I don’t like your moment. Can you give me a different one?” If my response to a sacred moment is guilt or self-pity, then I will miss the chance for the sacred moment to be the powerful moment that God planned for it to be in my life.
Disclaimer: My viewpoints are not necessarily reflective of my employer, or any local, regional or national organization that I belong to. As a matter of fact, I pretty much just speak for myself. Please keep that in mind.