The long trip home has begun. Saying goodbye doesn’t get any easier just because I saw them in January, and will most likely see them again in August. My heart aches every time. I think I really identify with Sam in “Sleepless in Seattle” when asked what he is going to do [as he grieves the loss of his wife]: Well, I’m gonna get out of bed every morning… breathe in and out all day long. Then, after a while I won’t have to remind myself to get out of bed every morning and breathe in and out…
I know it sounds silly, but the heartache is a bit like that. Leaving them is so very hard, knowing how much Titus will change, even before August; how much of Arulai’s daily life I will miss; how many times Emily and I love to talk, even though we disagree occasionally, and how difficult it is to do that over the phone; how much joy I receive just by Nathanael walking in the door in the mornings or evenings. That boy has the ability of making everyone feel absolutely special!
I guess most of my tears were cried last night after saying goodbye to Bo. I hated to say goodbye to him – we didn’t see him as much as we did the rest of the family. He had to work many days we were there, and he also had to be at work at 6:45 this morning.
We had hoped to leave around that time, but it was obvious pretty quickly that our departure was going to be much later!! The wonderful thing about our morning was the time spent with the babies. Arulai thinks Nonnie, Papa, and Nee Nee are wonderful, and though Titus isn’t sure what to think about us, he did favor me with lots of smiles this morning. He is the cutest thing!
Arulai and I were able to get in a quick game of croquet this morning. Dan took some pictures for me, but it will be a day or two before I get them up. She doesn’t know how to play yet, but that’s okay – I’ve forgotten how to play myself!! After lots of hugs and kisses, we said our final goodbyes and hit the road for home. We did make a quick stop to say goodbye to Emily’s precious family – we love them so much! – as well as a stop for a non-teary hug for Nathanael at his workplace.
We are now in Iowa, looking out at the beautiful farmland, taking pictures out the window, and listening to Bill’s MP3 playlist. Dan is reading, and I am trying to get my brain in gear for life back home. We will arrive sometime tomorrow evening if all goes well. I have missed Mama and Daddy, worried about Gen, and I think part of me will be glad to get back into my familiar routine. There is something comfortable about familiarity, even if the familiar is difficult!
I think I will leave you with some photos of our day at the Como Park Zoo. The ones I picked were of us on the beautiful carousel there, and a few others. I didn’t upload any of just the animals because Arulai is more adorable than even the mustached monkeys we saw!! There will be plenty of Titus soon, so no worries about favoritism here. Titus just sleeps more than A.J. does!
We are getting ready to stop for the night, just south of Kansas City. God has kept us safe on our travels thus far, and we are ready for some rest. Tomorrow is a bit longer drive, and none of us are looking forward to that part of it; but now that we’re this far, we are all ready to be home! I hope your evening is a pleasant one!
God bless your day!