Today, was the first day of school for the kids at home. All 8 of the kids were up by 4:30am, most were excited and nervous for the new school year to begin. Six of them leave on the bus by 7:30 am if all goes well. Aaron and Kenna leave by 6:20am and the other 4 follow quickly after that. That means six children who all have no concept of time...including three that are competely dependent on an adult to get them ready to go out the door. Isaac and Maisy still need attention...including oxygen support until a nurse arrives on most days. By 9am at our house, it feels like half the day is over. But, if all goes well and the majority of them make it out the door in one piece, the feeling of relieve and accomplishment is a good one.
And for the next several months, Lord willing, Mark will be doing this routine by himself. It's grueling. I know he would like to be with Elijah at the hospital and I know I am missing the moments that seems to usually have such meaning to me a Mom...milestones that mark the passing of time. The first day of school -the pictures of the kids with their new shoes and their new backpacks all headed out to the bus. It is hard to let go of such rites of passage. All is well on the first day of school from the reports I have been getting from home.
It is one of those days when I find myelf on the verge of tears all day. I don't know if it is the sheer weight of holding it together for the seven weeks of this hospitalization..or if it is watching my little boy hurting and not being able to do anything about it....or if it is the loss I feel not being able to be in two places at once for my kids..
There isn't just one answer..it is all of those things combined. And if it wasn't for Mark and his positive attitude and servants heart, I think this day of emotion would have come far sooner. His strong and gentle presence, even if it is by phone, helps to remind me that we can do this. He reminds me that God hears the cries of our hearts and that He knew this was a part of His plan long before we ever knew that He was calling us to this life.
I am blessed. I know the kids left today on the bus feeling loved, feeling secure and feeling supported by their father. I am not sure they had all their supplies or their emergency forms filled out and signed, but those things don't matter much at all. They are loved by a daddy who loves to be with his kids. They are loved by a daddy who loves Jesus and has one goal for his children...they they grow to love and serve the Lord with all their hearts and minds...no matter what.