[dropcap style=”font-size: 60px; color: #9b9b9b;”] Y [/dropcap]es, I did spell that correctly . . . mourning. For some odd reason, all throughout our trip abroad, I felt like part of me was in mourning. And I still can’t decipher it. Nor can I accurately tell you what it’s like to return to a country that’s full of memories. How can one express the emotions that come with visiting a country that houses half of our family? And how does one go through the repeated motions of joy at seeing a family member shortly followed by the tears of goodbye. Will we see them again? I feel like that question always haunts me.
Did we make the right decision in choosing which country to live in? Is there an in between place that would allow us to see one side more often? I always ask myself these things after we see our family.
Yet in the midst of all of that is great joy as my firstborn didn’t miss a beat in recognizing his nana and grandad. As soon as he saw his nana at the train station, he squealed with great delight. About made me cry. And he loved going to Grandad’s, jumping on his lap, playing games with him. He loved playing games with his Auntie Julie as well as she would get down on the ground and let the boys climb her and laugh with her. And seeing/meeting the big cousins brought lots and lots of joy as they delighted in their youngest cousins. Those moments brought great delight to all of us.
One night was especially joyful as Mark’s mom planned a big birthday party for Mark. She invited all of the family, which included cousins, uncles, foster siblings, etc. There were over 50 of us there to celebrate my handsome husband. We met family members that I didn’t even know existed. And my family finally met all of Mark’s family. What a completely joyous experience to look around the room and to see my family happily conversing and laughing with Mark’s family. The English, the Americans, the Irish, the Scottish, and the New Zealanders. We’re quite the international group, and it was beautiful. Ryder had the time of his life playing with all of his cousins. And for the first time ever, I realized that I could sit and fellowship and not worry about my kids as one of the family members was always keeping an eye on them. They played until they hit exhaustion and no one told them to be quiet, slow down, or calm down. They just got to play. And while they played, we got to laugh, fellowship, and love on our family. I got to have great conversations with our nephews and nieces, and Mark got to just enjoy being with his siblings. Such a sweet, sweet time.
That day is cemented on my heart, and I hope that Ryder will somehow be able to remember that day as well.
So joy does come even in the midst of what feels like mourning. And there is a blessing (or silver lining) in everything. We were so blessed to be able to have 8 days with our family. And I’m trusting God that we’ll get to do it again sooner rather than later.