Sunday, August 26, 2007


I did something this weekend that is a very rare occurence around here...I spent the night away from home without my husband and children for my MOPS steering retreat. Going into it on Friday afternoon, I was a bit concerned only because my husband was not having a good day. He was very stressed out by work and a variety of other things...he hit an emotional wall in a way, I think. Anyway -- not exactly the time that I'd love to go jetting off for a day and a half. I would have loved to have been able to sit with him that night, give him a backrub and just be there for him. Instead, there was a semi-frantic exchange of cars and a drive through rush hour traffic for him as he was off to meet my parents for dinner and begin his solo time with the kids. I did get him a card and a little treat on my way to the hotel, but a part of my heart felt sad as he drove away because I felt like I was just adding to his stress. I said some special prayers for him as I walked back into the conference room from the parking lot because I know that when I'm at home with the kids and I'm feeling stressed, it often results in a more anxious, less patient, short-tempered Mommy and I didn't want to be setting him up for the same sort of experience.

Talk about completely underestimating my amazing husband.

I called and talked to him as he was getting the kids into for bed and he already sounded so much better. He told me that everyone had a great time at dinner and that he and Georgia even developed a new trick together, which involved him jiggling her chin around and her making silly noises. Hearing the joy in his voice was a delight for me and I knew then that everything would be fine. Breathing a sigh of relief as I heard him tell me that he loved me and to enjoy my time with "the hens," I hung up the phone with no guilt whatsoever. When I talked to him in the morning, I learned that both kids slept all night (rare these days) and that everyone woke up in a good mood. I even talked to both of them on the phone without it leading to tears about me coming home! Again, I hung up the phone and enjoyed the rest of my day without any guilt about being there.

When I got home last night, I was met by silence, which was a little scary. I will say that there was no blood, broken furniture, and no evidence of fire or flood, so I decided not to panic yet.

As I entered the living room I found my son asleep (asleep?!?!) on the couch, but no sign of my husband or Georgia. As I walked into the empty kitchen past a sleeping Mitchell, I could hear the two of them chattering over the monitor, meaning that she likely just woke up from a nap. (At 5 o'clock?!?!) I was greeted by sunscreen on the counter (a trip to the park), a new trash can (yesssss!) and a picture of the three of them posing in front of a NASCAR car (what?!). Apparently the new Best Buy opened this weekend and my NASCAR nuts got to see the sponsored car parked in front of the store. (He claims he didn't know it would be there, but I'm skeptical.) As I studied the picture of my three happy loved ones, I noticed that both kids were wearing the same clothes that I had left them in the day before. That made me laugh, and I knew that my husband would be claiming to save me from more dirty laundry. I heard Chris say "Let's go downstairs" so I went to greet them.

When my husband brought Miss G down the stairs, I could hear him say "Guess who's here" to her. As they rounded the corner on the landing and we saw each other, the sheer delight in her giggle and the smile that stretched across her entire face both wrapped themselves around my heart. She held her arms out to me and joyfully yelled "MOOOOOMMMMMMAAAAAA!!!!!" I took her from Chris and she instantly wrapped her little arms around my neck, laid her head down on my shoulder and squeezed me with the tightest hug an 18 month old is capable of.

That feeling. That one. That's one of my happy places.

After my world class hug, she immediately sat up, looked at me and in a very serious tone said "I wanna muk." My husband and I just laughed because it was Georgia's way of saying, "Okay, welcome home, yadda yadda...give up the milk, sister."

After a wonderfully comforting bear hug from my husband, he returned to making dinner (pork chops, baked potatoes and a big garden salad - huh?!) and I filled a muk order. As I was putting the milk back into the fridge, I heard Chris say "Hey, buddy -- look who's home!" I closed the door and looked into the living room to see a tousled head of hair, two big brown eyes, and a shy but undeniably joyful smile peeking up at me over the island.

Our reunion was more subdued, but his sleepy grin and gentle hugs melted my heart as I rubbed his back while he woke up and showed me his new Tony Stewart racecar that Daddy had bought for him at "Wullmert." That lasted about a minute and a half, at which point Georgia sniffed out our physical contact and came to voice her displeasure at me hugging anyone but her. My snuggle time with Mitchell turned into snuggle time with Mitchell and Georgia, leading to my husband and I exchanging glances across the room. He could see that I knew I was back where I belonged and I could see that he had been longing for that to happen all day.

Home. I love being home.


Renee said...

Sniff, sniff. You paint such a warm and cozy picture. I'm so happy to hear that everything went well while you were gone, and that things are peaceful at home. When things are right at home, there's nothing better!

I hope that your MOPS retreat was productive and refreshing for you! Love you, girl!

Anonymous said...

I know EXACTLY "that feeling." And you have "that kind" of husband. Like mine. They are the kind that makes the world go round...
congratulations on having it all.

Sarah Markley said...

What a perfect place to be. Sometimes its good for everyone to be gone (for a short time) and then come home again...I love that feeling of excitement from the kids after we've been gone from each other. I love home too.