What did I do with all that time? Did I get to busy with life that I missed the living?
The Words "Be Still" carry a whole new meaning for me now than they ever did before. Life goes by so fast, like a whirlwind. You look away for a moment and you've missed so much. I've always worked hard to help provide for my family. My home has always been clean. My kids clean and fed. After all that's what we are supposed to do, right. It's called being responsible. Yet, today I feel a longing for, well I don't know, I guess time.
Days gone by have now turned into years. They were good years but still in the back if my mind there is a longing for the things I didn't do, or maybe just a desire for things I might've done differently. All those days, hectic with my mind always racing into the future addressing things to come rather than enjoying the moment I was living.
I feel a warm breeze on my cheek. I turn to see the sun setting in the distant sky. It is so beautiful and the warmth of it's glow is so soothing. What magnificent beauty to behold. Oh, what a beautiful moment to share with my husband. I must find him before the sun is totally gone for the day.
"Bob? Bob honey where are you?" Hmmm, I don't recall him going anywhere. Maybe tomorrow we can share the sunset. I watch the sun slowly disappear on the horizon. With the sun gone the warm breeze turns cool in the night air and brings with it a slight chill. I wrap my arms around myself and decide it's time to go inside and get the kids tucked into bed. I slowly make my way back into my home. My refuge, my fortress, my safe place.
I slowly ascend the stairs to the second floor landing. I stop at the top and listen to see if I hear the kids in their bedrooms or if they are in our bedroom as they are so many nights. They love to curl up on our bed and watch TV while waiting for mom and dad to shoo them off to bed. I don't hear anything, anything, it's so quiet. Could they have fallen asleep while I was outside? It was so peaceful that I guess I did loose track of the time. I'll check our bedroom first.
I walk quietly down the short hallway to our bedroom and slowly open the door only to find our bed empty. I glance at the clock on Bob's bedside table. It's only 8 o'clock, still early. Oh, well I guess they must have given up on me to come inside and went to their rooms. The house is too quiet. Those kids are up to something.
I make my to Abby's room, my oldest, my drama queen. Carefully open her door so as not to wake her if she's sleeping. Abby is 8 going on 18. Her room is empty and the bed is still made. She must be in Brandi's room, her 5 year old sister. Sometimes the girls like to sleep together. Oh well, at least they're being quiet tonight, that's unusual. Hmmm, something about Abby's room feels different tonight. I guess I'm just feeling a little off tonight. I just feel a little strange, I guess I'm a little more tired than usual.
At Brandi's door I listen for giggling before I open the door a say "gotcha!" Just like I always do and the girls run and giggle louder. Those two are a pair, my little monsters. I hope they don't want to play for to long tonight, I'm too tired for a long struggle to get them to go to sleep. I slowly and quietly open the door to check on the girls. "What the hell? What's going on? Girls where are you. I mean it, answer mom right now!" Nothing, not a sound. "Ok girls, this is not funny anymore. You answer mommy right now or you're both in big trouble!" Still only silence meets my ears.
Ok now I'm just mad. This is so not funny. They better not wake the baby up by being in his room.
I just can't deal with anymore crying right now. I'm just to tired for this crap tonight. I knew those peaceful minutes outside would not last, that feeling was just to good. And with this thought I stomp off down the hall to the baby's room.
Again, I slowly open the door. No sound. I tiptoe to the baby's crib. "What?" Bob! Bob! Bob the kids, Bob do you have the kids!" Now I'm panicking. Breath, breath I tell myself. Ok, Ok, everything's ok, Bob just has the kids outside maybe. Then I remember Bob's not home. Bob's not home! Where are my kids! Where is Bob!
No, no! "Kids where are you! Answer mommy! I'm not mad anymore. Mommy is just scared. Please answer Mommy...." I manage with a squeaky terror filled voice. Nothing, not the slightest noise. The silence is deafening! "Help me, somebody please help me!"
I run through the house, nothing, no one. My house is empty. The only sounds are my cries of terror. "My kids, Bob, please somebody help me. They're all gone. Please.......! I don't understand, where is everyone, where is my baby? "I need my baby, Jacob, Jacob, honey where are you? Jacob, please cry so mommy can find you, please cry, please cry baby!!!. Please......". But the only cries are my own. "Oh God, what's going on? Where are they! Please help me!"
My legs grow shaky, I collapse onto the floor, sobbing like a hurt animal. My tears are hot against my face. Those terrible sounds of anguish are coming from me. It's me! "What's happening!"
As I lay in a crumpled heap, sobbing uncontrollably I feel a gentle hand touch my hair. Then I hear a voice say, "It's okay child. You are safe. Be still child." The words were so gentle and low that at first I though I had imagined it. Then the touch of the wonderful hand rubbing my hair, it's Bob, Bob is here, it's Bob. I must be dreaming. Bob is here and the kids are alright. I'm ok, it's just a dream. I manage to raise my head only to realize that it's not Bob.
"Get away from me! Who are you? Where is my family? What did you do to my family?!"
"They're all gone child. You've grown old and Bob passed away 10 years ago. Your children are all grown and live scattered around the world. You're all alone child. "
"No, no, that's ridiculous. I'm not old and Bob isn't dead. What have you done to him! Where are my kids! Bob, Bob, help me!!!!!!!" Not a sound to be heard. "You're crazy, I'm not old and my kids should be in their beds! Look at me, do I look old to you?" I put out my hands to show him how young they look. Oh my God, my hands, what's wrong with my hands? They are old and wrinkled and old. I'm old? How? When? I was young this morning? My kids were here this morning? Bob was here? I worked late today? Right?
He reaches out his hand. "You are alone child. Hear the quiet. The house is quiet and peaceful. There's no crying baby, no screaming, fighting girls. Bob isn't going to fuss at you over dinner being late nor tell you again about how bad his day was. You can sit and have your coffee in quiet now.
It's what you always wished for child. You now have your wish granted. You can do anything you want with your time now"
"No, no! That's not what I wanted. I want my family back. I want to hold my baby, I want to hear Jacob cry for his mommy. I want to hear my girls giggling again. I want Bob to hold me. Please, this is not what I wanted. Please, please.... this is not what I wanted. Please.......". My sobs again are deafening in the silence that surrounds me. I'm in a heap on the floor again. I just want to die. What did I do. What did I do. I didn't mean it! I want my family. I'll make time. I'll enjoy my time with them more. I'm so sorry, I love you all so much. Please forgive me. Please forgive me. I want my time back. I'm so sorry.
Then, nothing. Only silence. Terrible, awful silence. ..............
"Angel, Angel. Honey are you ok? Angel?"
My mind feels foggy. I feel dazed. Bob? It's Bob. "Bob?"
"Yes, honey it's me. Are you ok? Why are you on the floor? What's the matter? Why are you crying? Angel, what's wrong honey?"
"Bob! Bob you're here! It's you, you're here and you're alive! Bob, you're here!" I say as I throw my arms around his neck and kiss his entire face. "You're here! Bob I love you, you know that right? I'm sorry I was cranky earlier. I'm sorry Bob. Please forgive me. Don't ever leave me Bob. Promise you will never leave me." my tears are flowing again as the words tumble from my quivering lips.
"Angel, what are you talking about. I'm never leaving you. I love you, you know that. I'm not going anywhere. Are you sure you're ok?"
"Bob, the kids! Oh God, Bob the kids. The kids are gone Bob, the kids are gone!" comes these painful panicked words from my mouth. Bob, where are the kids? The kids, Bob, the kids are gone! The kids are gone!"
"Angel the kids are fine. They are all in their beds sound asleep. I just checked on all three of them. They are sleeping like little angels tonight. They went straight to sleep while you were outside. No argument whatsoever. They must have sensed you needed a little time alone."
"Time? Alone? No, oh no. I don't ever want that much time alone. NEVER AGAIN."
"Honey, you're not making much sense but let's get you upstairs and you can lay down and you'll feel better. You'll be ok in the morning. You've been really stressed lately. I'm sure you'll be fine tomorrow."
We walk to our bedroom and checked each child's bedroom on the way to ours. All my kids are safe and warm in their beds. The wonderful sounds of their breathing is like music to my ears. When safe in our bedroom. I look at Bob and say, "Bob, honey will you pray with me tonight. Will you pray beside me?" Bob takes my hand in his and we kneel together beside our bed. Words will not come for me only tears of joy and thankfulness. Tears that I'm sure God understands. And in the midst of my tears, I once again hear, "Be still child". I can't wait until tomorrow. A new day, a day I can start over again, a day with no mistakes in it. Fresh, new and for me to find my peace and for now I can Be Still.