I think the hardest thing about being a parent is when we see our children sad or hurt and we can’t take the pain away. This morning I read out a post by a friend from the Barossa thinking my kids would be excited for them, but they got instantly sad, and one of my boys trying to hold back tears said “I’m sorry Mum, but I just miss my friends and going to Kids Club so much”. We are over 1500kms away and yet my brain started to think of ways to get them to Kids Club this Friday. I know, a little silly, but I wanted to ease the pain in his heart. I know that pain oh too well. It takes a while to foster a friendship and they had some lovely friends back in the Barossa. I felt guilty that we had again moved our boys on just when they were beginning to feel at home.
We were pleasantly surprised with how our boys have settled in to Alice. They seemed to not be too sad that they were gone. They talked of their soccer mates and Kids Club friends and cousins, but they said “that’s ok, we’ll visit them”. When we had left Young for the Barossa it was a different story. They had forged some extremely close friendships with some boys from there and so they found that move very hard indeed. So when we came here, we braced ourselves for the same, but it didn’t come.
I think this time, one they were older, but two there were many distractions. They came in Summer, and so we could swim every day. They met a family full of kids that they were able to hang with a bit and we were exploring.
But now… the realisation that this is not just an extended holiday, but a place that we are staying has just hit home.
I held my boy in my arms (as well as I could with how big he was getting) and told him it was ok to cry. Grief is ok, if we let it out. When we don’t let it out it becomes unhealthy and we can become irrational and not really know why.
I know to some of you this post may seem a little menial. Some of my friends are going through tough times. I can’t imagine how they are feeling as they are watching on, trying to comfort their son who is under three as he battles leukemia, and another friend whose adult son got hit whilst riding his bike and is now in critical condition. Other friends that are doing life with children with special needs and one day it’s all good and the next it feels all has been undone. Next to these things, my boy’s pain could seem a little trivial. But I know in a stress test they liken moving to being as high on the list as a death or divorce… and from personal experience I know matters of the heart can make or break someone.
So I comforted and reassured my little fella that everything would be ok and I prayed that God would heal his broken heart and bring new friends that he could do life with. And I prayed that as a parent I would know how to nurture and foster these little men as they grow.
I am a person who likes solutions. Who likes to see things fixed. Iknowthough, that some things aren’t instantaneously fixed, problems don’t always get solved and this side of heaven, things aren’t always rosy. But as Ben always used to remind me when we were walking through what felt like the valley of the shadow… “God is still on the throne”… So glad for it.