Yesterday Husband and I woke up at the ass-crack of dawn to drive across Texas to pick up Leah. And for those of you not sure of what ass-crack of dawn is, it’s 5am – roughly five hours earlier than my vital signs show up.
We drove three hours in the wee morning on some very small and boring roads to head to Bruceville, TX. It is a long drive and I am here to tell you that Husband and I have very different music tastes which sometimes (cough) makes the three hours seem like 9 hours, but it was very, very worth it because when we got there, parked and walked down to the cabins we got to see this running towards us.
And that right there made it all worth it. Okay that and these.
Leah had a great time these past 25 days. She grew physically and personally and is already talking about going back next year. She loved learning guitar for the first time and discovered that archery makes your arms hurt, but strong, and that 9 girls can have a giggly, silly time together and miss each other when they leave.
She also learned that when you are somewhere for 25 days it becomes your home – and sometimes coming back to your “real” home is hard. You are stuck between what you knew, what you learned to know and what you want to combine between the two.
Last night, for the first time in close to a month, we were all together to say prayers before bedtime. In the weeks that Leah was gone Benjamin had asked if HIS name could go first in prayers and we agreed thinking we’d probably just end up switching off back and forth as to whose name went first. Leah giggled at this idea at first and wanted to hear how it sounded with Benjamin’s name first.
“G-d bless Benjamin and Leah…”
And in a fit of exhaustion and emotional re-entry turmoil she burst into tears and said she wanted it to go back to how it was. “I just want everything back to normal again.”
Bless her little heart.
The other best part of yesterday was the reunion of Leah and Benjamin. We surprised him at swimming lessons and I swear it is a moment I will never forget. The smile on their faces and the sheer glee of him yelling, “Leah! I MISSED YOU!” was beyond priceless. He kept hugging and kissing her and they both erupted in fits of giggles.
There are days where these two kids can drive me completely batshit insane. Honestly, I don’t know how parents of more than two kids do it. THEY’RE outnumbered. But then there are days like yesterday – where I get to see how siblings really do mean something. Man I hope it’s always like that.
Welcome home, Swimmy. We’ve all been waiting for you.