Hugs and Tears
I swallowed the lump in my throat and did my best to smile. It was Saturday, our day to Skype with the family. I love seeing the sweet faces of my grandkids, but this time it brought on a severe case of homesickness. Daughter Beth and her family will be moving to Washington before we get back to Oklahoma. While we knew life was changing for our family, the reality hit full force that morning.
The faint feeling of sadness followed me the rest of the day as we shopped (we bought motorcycle helmets!), ran errands, and took care of business in town.
Paul left his computer on, playing his music and cycling through his pictures while he and Bro. Anond drove back into town that evening to pick up pizzas for a special pizza party for the kids. The music sounded sad to me and the pictures on the screensaver of the grandkids when they were babies made me feel even weepier.
While the two were gone to pick up the pizza, Sarah and Ma Li came to get the games I keep here in my room. They saw the screen saver on Paul’s computer rotating through his photographs, and forgot about the games as they sat enraptured, watching the pictures. When they saw an old pic of Paul with his mustache, they cracked up laughing, putting their fingers under their noses to show me what they thought was so funny. Impossible to feel too depressed with laughing children in your room!
I went down with them to the dining hall where all the kids were gathered awaiting the arrival of the pizza. The occasion? Five of our elementary school children won medals at the area-wide sports day. They were winners at their school last month and went on to take first place medals in the contest among eleven elementary schools on Friday. Next stop — national competition at Bangkok!
This was quite an achievement, and we decided a party was in order. Beverly Manor Baptist Church in Illinois had sent money for the kids to have a treat, and this looked like the perfect occasion for it.
It took a long time for the guys to get back with the pizza, because frugal Anond had a buy-one-get-one-free coupon. There was a limit on how many free pizzas you could get in one place, so they went to four pizza places in order to get the maximum number of free ones. The kids didn’t complain, though, and were delighted when the food finally arrived.
We took pictures and honored the winners, who were obviously pleased with the attention. Then we said goodnight to the kids, and were mobbed with precious children wanting hugs.
Still feeling a bit sad and missing my own special kids, but I for sure won’t be suffering from empty arms!
*Bro. Anond has come down with laryngitis. Since he is our only translator, this could put a serious crimp in plans for next week. Please pray for him.
*We haven’t heard from Se Bat. Please continue to pray that this situation would be ironed out, or that the Lord will send another set of houseparents.
*Monday and the ladies’ Bible study is coming up. Please pray with me that the Lord will bless and make the lesson clear.
Blessings from Thailand,