Thursday, October 7, 2010

when my mom calls

I speak to my Mom on the phone pretty regularly.

Most of the time we talk about nothing at all. She tells me how her and my Dad are doing, I tell her how the kids are doing, when Brian's next trip out of town is, and I usually share some of my 'homemaking' struggles with her (she was a homemaker for most of my childhood, and usually understands exactly what I'm going through).

Sometimes, though, my Mom calls with 'News'.

She calls with 'News' of a new job, or 'News' of new expected baby, or 'News' of an engagement celebration. But she also has to call me with the bad 'News'. She had to call me when my uncle passed away, she has to call me when someone is diagnosed with cancer (again), she has to call me when babies are born straight into the arms of Jesus. It is not easy for her, and she will usually start crying before she can tell me everything, and I will usually cry with her.

And I fumble with words. Because I'm just heartbroken. And because I am down here.


I grew up as part of a family which meant great grandparents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins, and then this unique group of family friends. My parents had friends. These friends were like more aunts and uncles to me. They loved me, and I loved them. These friends had children that were like more cousins to me. They also loved me, and I loved them. I was so close to some of them, that it was almost like having another big brother and sister, and more little sisters.

My Mom called today to tell me 'News' that my friend, who is like a cousin, who was really like another big brother's son is sick. And I fumbled for words. And I am heartbroken. And I am praying. But I am still down here. Some 500 or so miles away, a good 9 hour drive.

And I say things like, "It doesn't really matter that I'm down here, there's not a lot I could do up there." And I think things like, "It's been so long since I have seen him anyway."

But, it doesn't change the fact that I still long to be home when there is 'News'. I long to be a present part of the large, extended family that I came from.

As my Mom and I end our phone call, we usually end up agreeing that God has placed me exactly where I am supposed to be. That I have a purpose to fulfill. And, obviously some of that purpose is to be a Military Wife. Which means I will live away from home most of my adult life. Because the place where I belong is (down) here. With my husband, who is providing for his family and serving his country. And it is a very good place to be.

But my heart will always belong in two places.