Friday morning I woke up and did not want to face the day, did not want to get out of bed. I had yet to put a foot on the floor, and I was already overwhelmed.
People were coming to see the house. I had tried to do a little spring cleaning all week, but one of the kids had been sick. Now Friday was here, and there was so much to do. My one consolation was that last week I finished my final class for my Masters degree, so there were no assignments hanging over my head.
Brandon came home from work around noon to help me clean. I could not understand why he was not as stressed out as I.
Just before the people were to arrive, we decided the house was “passable.” I stole away to the computer for a few minutes of autism research online. (Don’t want to miss anything, you know.)
My friend Carrie, who lives in PA, called. Although we talk on the phone about once a week, we have not seen each other in years. We knew each other before we had little girls with autism, and now we share an irreplaceable bond.
“Hi Carrie.Gotta go.We have these people coming to see the house.Spent all morning cleaning.They should be here any minute.Oh!There’s the doorbell.Gotta go.Call ya laita.”
Hung up the phone and rushed to the living room. Brandon was standing at the door. Carrie was standing there and another dear friend, Melissa, whom I had not seen in years, was there also, holding flowers. They had gifts for my children.
I could not believe it. Confused. Overwhelmed. So happy to see them. Angry that they had inconvenienced themselves by leaving their families and driving hours to my house.
Turns out the whole story about people coming to see the house was a falsehood. Melissa, Carrie and Brandon had been planning this for weeks. They were whisking me away for a “Girls Weekend Out.”
My friends had come to minister to me.
I said something unintelligible and then started crying like a blubbering fool. Brandon shed tears, too.
(That man. After 10 years of marriage, you think you know someone. Days later, I’m still surprised that he can lie to me with a straight face act so well. He claims making up that story was the only way he could get me to clean the house. Hhhhmmm.)
We had the best time. I cannot recall a time when I have felt so loved by friends, so favored.
We went out to a nice restaurant for dinner. We went to Barnes and Noble and they bought me books that had absolutely nothing to do with autism. (To support my addiction, I had to buy at least one book on autism).
On Saturday, we went to the Museum of Fine Art in Boston.
We laughed. We cried (well, maybe that was just me). We reminisced. We prayed together.
A whole weekend with no perseverating on autism. I mean, I often dream about autism at night. I spend hours researching about autism, reading and writing in online groups about autism. I go to autism workshops and seminars and support groups. I talk about autism endlessly (- my poor friends and family!). And now, Lord help me, I blog about autism.
But I skipped out on Rhema’s weekend therapy appointments to go to a museum. Yes, this control freak mama left the husband in charge of all that.
(I’m reminded of a post by Judith where her husband quotes Mr. Miyagi: “You remember lesson about balance? Lesson not just karate only. Lesson for whole life. Whole life have a balance. Everything be better. Understand?”)
In church on Sunday, another precious friend took care of Rhema for us in Children’s Church. It was the first Sunday in a loooooooooong time that Brandon and I actually got to sit together in church (-even other members noticed!). During worship, I cried like a blubbering fool again as we sang, “We are the broken, You are the Healer. Jesus, Redeemer, Mighty to save. You are the love song. We’ll sing forever, Bowing before You. Blessing Your name.”
I am so thankful that the Lord loves me like that.
As Melissa and Carrie drove away, Brandon and I stood on the porch. He asked me, “How do you feel?”
The only word I could think of was,