This weekend turned out to be something of an emotional rollercoaster ride for me. It started with a low-key Papa Murphy's pizza dinner on Friday and ended with a labor-intensive surprise dinner from Neal on Sunday, but it was everything in between.
Saturday: every weekend we try to find one day that we can lounge in bed, watch CNN, surf the internet and read the Kindle until about 2. We know that once the kids start coming these lazy days will be just a memory...so we're taking advantage of them now. Usually it's a Sunday, but we didn't have anywhere to be until 2 on Saturday, so Saturday was bedroom bliss. Our only obligation Saturday was to assemble care packages for Military Missions, a Lexington-based, faith-based, non-profit organization that primarily focuses on care package donations, assembly, and shipment. I stumbled across the website and the woman in charge on the LexGo calendar of events and well, as they say, one thing led to another. We began exchanging long emails about what our previous experience with military support had been, she as a Marine's mother and I as an Army wife. We started seeing that our goals were very similar and that there was an opportunity for us to partner for the greater good. Beth had divided this assembly up into 3 days so there was only about an hour's worth of work to do on Saturday. The group is extremely organized, very friendly and very military-oriented. It was a comfort and a blessing and I only regret not stumbling across them 13 months ago. They have branched out somewhat into other ventures besides care package assembly. Yard Work for the Military has volunteers that go to the spouse's home during deployment and help with yard work or, in our case, fallen branches during ice storms. And Beth's ultimate goal is to develop a network of volunteers who either donate their time and expertise or offer it at a discounted rate, such as computer assistance or plumbing repair. This has been a goal of mine all along and I'm surprised to find that someone else has seen the importance and is moving in the same direction!
Saturday night: We watched Hotel Rwanda. All I can say about this movie is that I was too stunned to cry. In 1994, when the genocide began, I was a sophomore in high school. I was on the verge of 16, anxious to go to college, and eager to assert my independence all over everyone. I think maybe somewhere I heard about it, but it was just a news clip, a blip on my radar. Perhaps not even a blip. But now, almost exactly 15 years later, I think about all of those 15 year-olds right now who are actively seeking help for the victims of Darfur, who want to feed all the children of Africa. And I think: how do I raise that child? How do I raise a child that wants to think of more than just what is in their closet or on their plate; that not only catches a glimpse of the world from time to time, but researches and responds? I wish now that I had been that child. My heart is heavy for the people of Rwanda, for the people of Darfur, for the children of Africa, for the innocent in Pakistan, and the battered North Koreans. I wish for relief at the Mexican border and peace in the Middle East. We do what we know - write the congressmen, donate the money, and pray for a better time. It doesn't seem like enough. I need to find a high schooler with a dream and a desire to make it better.
Sunday: I attended the baby shower of a lesbian couple. God answered their prayers by blessing one of them with a baby. She is a beautiful mommy - glowing from the inside, out and her partner is so supportive and loving. As the KY legislators call an end to the session and with it, the temporary death of SB 68, forbidding same-sex couples to adopt children, I think what a fitting end to the bill, and to the weekend. I've been around enough couples to see what happens when the father is too busy at work, too involved with other thoughts, to be a presence in the children's lives. My friends will never raise an unloved child. He or she will be well-rounded, thoughtful, and purposeful. He or she will never judge as it will most likely be judged. This child may grow up to be the sophomore in high school who develops a plan to save Darfur or finds a way to finally end SB 68. Until then, children in foster care wait for that same chance that this child has been given - to be loved unconditionally by 2 parents, regardless of whether those 2 parents fit the, unfortunately, socially acceptable role of mommy and daddy. God bless your baby and your loving home.
And then it was Monday.