No ruby slippers involved, but I am home. I woke up in my own bed this morning, next to my loving husband. I love to travel, but I also love coming home.
Eva has horrible phone etiquette. She was too busy playing with her step-sister to talk to me on the phone. That’s a good sign, though, that she is doing great 1500 miles away from me. I heard her for myself say that she was busy with her game.
It’s reassuring that she doesn’t want to talk to me, that she isn’t making my phone call a priority. It makes me feel like I did the right thing. She has adjusted quickly and life goes on in her new location.
As the plane was taking off out of LAX yesterday, the tears began falling. That was it. I was leaving her behind in California. Luckily, I don’t think the people around me noticed. Even if the nice lady next to me noticed, I knew she would understand. She was the mother of two little girls Eva had played with at the airport in St. Louis on our way out to California.
Having this lady next to me reminds me of all my chance meetings over the weekend. I felt like God was putting people in my path to reassure me this weekend that Eva needed to do this.
There was a lady at the beach with two of her sons and her husband that we got to know a little. Eva told her we were here for her to see her dad. After Eva walked away to go play in the water some more, this lady began telling me her story.
Her son’s father, her ex husband, left her while she was in the hospital having their son via cesarean section. My mind stuttered a bit at that. She stated it as a simple fact, not the heart-wrenching event it surely was, and continued her story. That was seven years ago, and until this year he hadn’t seen his children once. No letters, and no phone calls either.
She said that he got in touch with her earlier this year and said he wanted to see the boys. I paused her for a moment and inserted my own outrage, and I asked her how she managed to not strangle him. She responded so openly, I wanted to give her a hug.
“Yeah, strangle him, punch him, hug him…they all sounded good,” she had said.
She said that the meeting was something her youngest son had needed. Her husband that was there with her had been the only dad her boys had ever really known, but they still needed to meet their father and get to know what kind of person he is, for good or bad.
This lady shared these things with me, a complete stranger, on the day that I needed to hear them the most. I hope she knows that I really appreciated her.
A young man at our hotel had asked us if we were just vacationing or what, so Eva had provided the same response she was happily giving anyone who would listen. He responded with a story of his own of fun summers spent traveling and swimming with his father. Eva was enthralled by him and his story. He gave me some reassurance, too, that he was always glad he got the chance to know his dad.
So today is a new day, with a new countdown. Today is July 1st, and Eva will be home in twenty-five more days.