Home. The comfort, the familiar, the coziness and personal. Home is lovely. Home is ours. Home sweet home. So much about home is good and wonderful. So much about home right now is, I can't say wrong, I do not think that is the right word, but it isn't right. I feel slightly out of place, out of practice, like the girl who went far away for college and has come back for a break and the whole time is spent packed full of family visits, eating out, catching up, laundry and then packing to leave again. Home doesn't really feel like home. Neither does Ft. Worth. I suppose you could say, "home is where the heart is", and if that is true, that is why my heart feels torn in two. Parts of my heart are 6 hours away, two different places, no matter where I am, my heart is not whole. It hurts a lot. I love my home. I love cooking in my home, lounging around, playing with my daughter. I love knowing where I am going without looking it up first(which I am getting much better at in DFW by the way), but I like the smallness of this silly, flat, somewhat smelly town. I love running into people I know and "catching up". Especially now, since I am generally a stranger in DFW. Now, I can exchange conversation, a hug and a huge blessing by seeing someone I've known for so long and being able to just be known, be loved on, be encouraged....it's nice to know people. I know that if for some reason we ended up moving, we would adjust, meet people, get settled in, and make a life wherever God put us. I know we would, but he hasn't and this is still home and our life is still here and we have placed roots here, next to the ones that were placed here for us. So, as I sit here this morning, in the quiet (Ava is at her nana's, Nick is snoozing)I can't help but feel like there is a big void everywhere I go. I know this home has never met Noah, it's never heard his cry, it's never had him play on it's floors, take a bath in it's sink, watched me rock him in the wee hours of the morning and fall asleep in the chair with him. This house has a void and so when I'm in it, I feel it. Heavily. When we are out running errands and I find something for Ava, I automatically look for something for her Bubby, but it goes in a bag, to be packed up tomorrow. "maybe Bubby will wear this before it's too big, I tell Ava." "I'll be sure and bring it with me to the hospital and hopefully he'll get to wear clothes again soon." Ava just smiles and nods, assured by my words that she doesn't entirely understand yet. This house, the routine here, the daily life doesn't have Noah in it and so when I'm here I just feel awkward.
Yet, when I am in Ft. Worth with Noah, it's not home at all, it is lonely, it is a place I would like to just visit, not live. I could adjust to any place if I needed to, as I have while being there, but it's not mine. The sunsets aren't as pretty, the traffic is crazy (but Amarillo still has worse drivers haha), I don't get to cook, be creative, play with my daughter, do all I wish I could do for my family.... I won't lie, sometimes it is nice to just be responsible for only yourself and no one else. There are days I stay in my comfy clothes and journal, study and read all day in between times of holding Noah's hand and just staring at him when he sleeps. Hospital life has its pros and cons. It does. I always try to find the pros. The cons are just obvious. Staying in the Ronald McDonald house is a blessing and my 45 days are up Monday, so I have to check out and I very thankful to have family to stay with so I don't have to get a hotel or anything expensive like that. The RMH is as close to home as I get when I'm down there. The space is personal and when Nick and Ava are down it is as close to alone family time that we get. Now that Noah is back in the picu Ava can go back and see him. She loves him so. The constant battle of packing, not being settled anywhere for very long, eating out all the time (except for meals at the rmh, which are sweet homemade meals most of the time, by groups and volunteers)that is a whole other blog in itself. Again, I am so thankful for family and even sweet friends in the dfw area who take such great care of us. But, there's no place like home and right now, home doesn't even feel home.
As I have struggled with this "home thing" for months now I was reminded in the gospels by how much Christ was homeless. He did not have a "home". He did not have a lawn to mow, a kitchen to keep clean, a washer/dryer to use, a bed to call his, where he made a dent in it because he had it for so long. He didn't have a closet full of clothes or a couch with his name on it. He didn't have a Sunday afternoon nap recliner or a big tv to watch the game. He did have The Father. He did not cling to all the stuff, He clung to the creator. He was ok with "not belonging". He knew he was passing through. So, I can find rest in the fact that Christ knows what I feel, but to an even more drastic place. He knows deeper than I, how it feels to be unsettled, wandering from place to place, alone and out of place. He knows. I can rely on that, trust that and feel better knowing that he had to say "see ya later" a lot, he knows how unsettled feels and what the long road between places feels like, yet his feet touched all 6 hours of that pavement....I only have to sit comfortably in my jeep as the rubber meets the road and does all the work. This is a season and Jesus was a wanderer for a season as well. He went home, and has settled in there nicely, as well as prepared a place for me there. (and you if you choose) I know that here on earth, this is a season for our family as well. I know God desires us to be together, in our home. In his time.
Jesus knows. Whatever you are dealing with.....he knows. I didn't think there was much to compare to my situation in the Bible, besides, a boy who needs healing....but, when you ask him to show you, he does. Be willing to listen and seek out his answers yourself, in His word. They're there.
I realized as I was driving in to Amarillo Wednesday evening that, no matter how long I've been away, I don't need to look up where I am going when I hit I-40. (well, I don't need to look up any of the way, it's basically a straight line from here to the hospital) haha. My point is, I don't need to look up how to get home. I know it by heart. I know how to get there and I know which is the best way. I didn't forget just because I haven't been here but once in 5 months. If you've been away from "home" for any amount of time. If you've known Christ and wandered off....you already know your way back. It's just a matter of turning the right direction. You don't have to "find your way back", you can just turn around and go home. It, He is right where you left him.
update: Noah has been enjoying his Mimi and Tpop a lot this weekend. They are so good to us to go down there and stay with Noah while I come home for a few days. We are so blessed that Dad is retired and mom has an incredible amount of days she can use to do just this. So very very thankful. He has and is having a slow time with feedings again, post op. His body just takes a slow time to heal. I expected this as we went into surgery again, but it is hard, even when your mind knows it can happen a certain way. So, we are having to continue to be patient with that. He is doing all he can to heal and get better. He is such a fighter. He is being weaned on his oxygen today, his incision looks great and wound vac is off. He is resting well at night and awake and happy during the day. He has some coughing, normal. He has less spit ups so far today and we are thankful. He is doing well and I am so thankful for the progress he is making daily, even if it is slow. :) I am so thankful for the PICU and the staff in the Cardiac ICU wing. God is heavy there and I am so thankful for a handful of Christian doctors and nurses who love my baby boy.
thank you for praying. always. I cannot express enough how thankful we are. The prayers of thousands are being heard and answered in God's timing.
I love you all, deeply.