Monday, August 16, 2010

Thirty-third Monday

This is a week of leavings and good-byes.  I could feel sad, and I do at one level.  I always feel the hole left in our family life when someone leaves, and I long for a hug, the sight of a young man walking in the door from work, a face to face conversation .  I miss my children terribly when they leave.

We've now tipped the scale more on the side of having children out of the home than in the home.  There have been many partings.  Growing ones getting on airplanes or pulling out of the driveway for drives to far away places.  We are a far flung family - rural NY state, Denver, Brussels, and soon to be, Minneapolis. I feel the space and distance.  I grieve the absences.

Far bigger than the grief of good-byes, though, is incredible gratitude.  I have been given the gift of six children.  Marriage has added two, soon to be three, more.  In spite of my many failings as a mother, my children - in what feels like a stunning gift of grace - still love me. They say so and they show it in innumerable ways.  Somehow, through hard times, thoughtlessness on my part and theirs, misunderstandings and miscommunications, disagreements, and even angry silences,  love wins.

Wendell Berry wrote,
"Grief is not a force and has no power to hold.  You only bear it.  Love is what carries you, for it is always there... shining out at times like gold stitches in a piece of embroidery."

On this quiet morning with no one else at home, having said one good-bye and facing another parting later in the week, I'm carried in the shining gold stitches of love and thankfulness to God for...

 Erin, Luke, and Clara,

 Jonathan and Kandyce,

Thomas and Kay,



 and Joel.

Surely, the Lord has been good to me.

#'s 1207-1218


Annesta said...

Reaching for the tissue box right now! What a beautiful post and a lovely quote! Thank you for sharing. I too feel the sting of grief as youngest daughter was married a week ago. Good byes are hard and gratitude helps us keep things in perspective.
I am so glad I found your sight today. I will lift you up in prayer.
grace and peace to you

Sara said...

Surely He has ...As always a joy to splash around in thankfulness. Your blog, simply delightful.


Laura A said...

This has been the week that all my favorite blogs have a going away post for someone. So poignant!

But so worth it. What a lovely family! I can only imagine the future cousin gatherings ;-).

The Unsell Family said...

The Lord is good indeed! What beautiful pictures of your beautiful family, Beth!