Saturday, September 29, 2007

A Train Ride To Love

The houses where I stay during the week are very close to each other. Directly outside my bedroom window lives the perfect family, a mother, daughter, son and father.

Most nights I hear them getting ready for bed because they tend to put their young children (7 and 3) to bed at 10pm on school nights. The interesting thing about that is that the children wake up early too. But it works for them.

One night this week I overheard the father preparing the kids for bedtime. He was louder than usual. It went something like this:

DAD: "ALL ABOARD" "ALL ABOARD" "COME ON, GET ON THE TRAIN, IT'S LEAVING THE STATION"

DAUGHTER: "WAIT FOR ME"

SON: "ME TOO"

DAD: "CHUGGA CHUGGA CHUGGA CHUGGA, NEXT STOP MERCURY" "THERE'S THE SUN" "COME ON GET BACK ON, NEXT STOP MARS, ALL ABOARD. "ALL ABOARD".

WIFE: "WAIT FOR ME"

There was lots of laughter going on in their house.

I surmised that the father must have been teaching the children about the solar system.

This went on for about 30 minutes and ended at 10pm.

It's been a long time since I had a good cry, but I cried that night.

And I'm still not sure why it all hit me like that.

Maybe because of the loss of my children's youth. Maybe because there never was a father for my children. Maybe because it was such a perfect example of a whole family interacting with each other in a fun and educational way....something I've never experienced.

Whatever the reason, I am going to treasure that glimpse into my neighbor's lives for a long time.

4 comments:

Yellow Mama said...

Wow...you just about had me crying too. This just came into my head...something my Mom did for me when I was in my 20's. It was a little book...not too many pages...she put together about our conversations we had together...how she called me her Samuel because she wanted a girl (I have 3 older brothers)...well, I pulled that out the other night...Mom has been gone for a long time, but her words were as fresh as the day she wrote them. Perhaps you can reclaim some of those moments...write them in a book for your children (I need to take the same council)There are lessons you learned together, moments of laughter, ordinary days which were extraordinary in you mind like when your child leaned over to give you a kiss on the cheek...one you didn't ask for.

You still have that ability to love and some day there will be another generation to love and care for. Your humor and honesty creates tears and laughter as you post to those who might read your thoughts. You are a blessing, and you did more than survive, you overcame obsticles...perhaps it is time to pass those lessons on to others.

Blessings my friend!

Looney Mom said...

That is precious. That is the way it should be but not always the way it is.

The good thing is that God our Father in Heaven is a father to the fatherless and a defender of widows. You and your children were never really alone.

Just look at what your children have become. They are wonderful, precious people now. That's says a lot about a mother's love - YOUR love! You did good Sister!

Laura said...

Wow. I have to tell you that this touched my heart. I grew up with an abusive father. He drank from sun up to sun down. I remember being very young and longing with all my heart for a real family. Just the kind you described. I was never satisfied with where I was....until 5 years ago when I gave my heart to Jesus.

I grew up and married a drug addict. I had two kids and got divorced. I didn't raise my kids in the church and boy do I regret that!

I now have a 23 year old daughter who has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and I am raising her 4 year old and 9 month old. I don't understand why everything has happened this way but I trust God to get me through each day.

Maybe you just needed that cry to let go of some tension. I'm sure your children see things in an entirely different light and can tell stories of how you sacrificed and showed them love.

Monica said...

Too sweet. Too sweet. Me? I'm chasing kids back and forth from bedroom to the other.
"Brush your teeth! Read your book! Get to bead!"
"No, no, no! No more playing now! It's late!"
"No, Daughter I can't sleep with you."
"Son, stop being nosy and get to sleep."

So I should chill and do something to make bedtime something to look forward too. Dang! I don't know if I have the energy. But thank God for families like that. Proof that marriage, family and all that can work. Good to see in a society as jaded as ours.