BITTERSWEET HOMECOMING

As always, all good things must come to an end.  Tuesday morning was wet and rainy, which matched my mood when I awoke and realized this would be my last chance to be with the Baileys’ for who knows how long.  My children and I are usually not “morning people” per se, but we quickly got ready so we could spend a precious few minutes together before they departed.  My sister Cathy was going to get Joel & Chad off to school for me while I drove the Baileys to the airport.  We almost had a repeat of being lost when we set out with the backroads directions from MapQuest, but Jim saved the day with an alternate route.  I tried my best to delay the inevitable, but we did arrive at the airport in plenty of time, and after one last round of hugs and well wishes we parted.

It wasn’t until I was retracing my route along those quiet, wet, dreary back roads that the silence hit me.  There would be no more pitter-patter, chattering or belly laughs.  I had so enjoyed the time I spent not only with all of them, but it was a chance to recall how much I miss my boys being that age.  It is a rare  opportunity that you get a second chance, and this was close as I could get to “relive” some of those moments.  I can see so much of my of not only my boys, but some mannerisms of my nieces and the cute things they all would do when small.  I know Brian and Marti enjoy and love Natalie and Julian very much.  I can see they live for the moments they snatch over the course of a busy day for a cuddle, kiss or romp.  They are truly blessed.  Thanks for sharing your gifts with those around you, and especially us.

When I got home from the airport, Cathy and I talked about how well we thought the visit had gone.  I told her I would like to plan a trip to Tennessee maybe one year for Natalie & Julian’s birthday, because it is near our spring vacation.  She said she would love to see them again, and if all my family couldn’t go, she would accompany me.  She was sad to see them leave, for she really had enjoyed spending time with them all.  After she left, I was getting Chad ready for school when he burst into tears, crying how he “missed the Baileys so much.”  I told him we all did, and that was a good thing, because it meant we had had a wonderful time together and it is OK to be sad when it ends.

As I begin the process of putting my house back in order, I am reminded of different parts of our trip and smile.  As I folded the Pack & Plays, I remembered walking down the hall in the morning and seeing one or both of the twins either asleep or waiting for someone to get them.  As I switch our “old towels” for the “new towels”, I remember the bathtimes that Chad, Natalie & Julian shared.  They loved to help each other “wash” their hair.  Over the next couple of days as we slip back into our normal routine, something will make me think of this weekend and I’ll smile.

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