50 degrees in mid February? Thank you Jesus! It’s so refreshing to walk outside and breath in warmer air. I know other places are enjoying 60, even 70 degree weather, but we Michiganders will take what we can get. We need this to make it through the rest of winter.
I look out the window. The once fluffy white snow melts into the ground and makes a soggy mess. The dog tracks in mud, the kids track in mud. And the picture out my window is bleak.
Meltdowns. They are welcomed…but they are never pretty!
We try to cope. Be strong. And we hold our emotions in, freeze them. But then something happens. A moment, a conversation, an event. And like the sun, it heats us up and we begin to melt. We’ve all been there, right? It can happen anywhere. We hope it happens in the comfortable safe place of home. In the shower usually. Where no one else sees our tears. And the water washes them away.
But sometimes, it happens in an airport.
Coming home is never easy. How do you live as a new person in an old place? I tried so hard not to have expectations. But I was still disappointed. In me, in others. And I was misunderstood. By me, and others.
It was a hard year. It’s not easy to consider the difficult reality of Africa while sitting comfortably in America. How do you leave the holy place where God met you?
There was grieving and venting. I needed to talk, but who will listen? Who really wants to hear? So I hold it in. I dismiss my disappointment and gather my emotions and tuck them away until I know what to do with them.
But Mark, he knows. He knows I’m trying to be strong. And he knows I’m sad. He knows I need to get away and find time alone. He buys me a plane ticket and sends me to Florida. A good man, he is.
I drive myself to the airport and of course I’m caught in terrible traffic, certain I will miss my flight. But I push through, park the car and 20 minutes until take off I am running through the airport, through security, and to the last possible gate – it’s always the last possible gate. Who gets the close ones?
I’m dragging luggage, panting, running, and wondering why one earth I thought it was possible for a mother of five to easily run away for a weekend?
In the movies, I would have made it. It would have been dramatic, even funny, but I would have made it.
In real life, I missed my plane. And the sun came out, melted my ten months of pent up tears, and in the middle of the Detroit Airport I had a meltdown.
I fell to the ground and wept long and hard. Funny thing is, no one really noticed me. Everyone just walked around and passed me. Tears at an airport aren’t unusual. But isn’t a woman, sitting in the middle of the floor sobbing slightly odd? My tears needed to come out. It wasn’t pretty, but it was welcomed.
I sat there for one hour. I sat there until I saw Chrystal Bowersox from American Idol. She in her dreadlocks, carrying her guitar. And me on the floor desperately wishing she would sing me a song. Again, in the movies, she would have. She would played me a great tune.
But in real life, she didn’t. She didn’t even notice me. But still, there was something about her that made me stand up and walk forward.
I checked myself onto the next flight to Orlando and I had a wonderfully refreshing weekend with my mother-in-law. Her instrumental music, calming presence, Asian food and wine was just what I needed to make it through that season.