“Whole world could change in a minute…” a country song warbles. How true this is. I am astonished in the changes that have occurred in my life in the last year. I finished planning my Wedding, got married, found out I was pregnant, and had a baby. All wonderful blessings, I would not deny that New Year’s also found me praying that 2010 would be a calmer year. That my husband and I could enjoy our new life together at home. Together. At Home.
Then, God decided.
We made the reservations on Christmas Eve. I couldn’t wait. My grandparents weren’t able to come to my Wedding, due to my grandmother’s current battle with breast cancer. I haven’t seen them in six years. We’ve kept in touch letter-writing since I was in the fourth grade. They, more than anyone in my whole life had known my hopes, dreams, fears, and worries. They knew my friends names through school, my drive to do well in everything especially academics, and my ultimate dream of becoming a writer. When I met my husband, he became a frequent topic in our letters and I strongly wished that they all would someday meet.
I had spent the previous nights packing for the three of us and on the phone with relatives, describing our excitement and reviewing plans for then ensuing vacation.We drove to Austin the night before our flight to Georgia and spent the night with friends. At 8:30 that night, our whole world changed, in one minute. The Colonel called. We had to turn back and go home; Richard was on the preliminary list for deploying to Haiti, possibly within a week and a half. We cancelled our flight, woke up early the next morning and hit the road.
I drove so he could field phone calls from soldiers and commanders. He had his blackberry on speaker as they called the names and socials of soldiers who were pulled from the possible list to the definite list. “Captain. Stravitsch, Richard…” While my back stiffened, my heart sank. He was going.
Since then, life has been a whirlwind of planning, preparing, and packing at work and home. The last two days I have been running around town getting items for Richard. A four-way Cross, postcard already stamped. A journal. Today, snacks. Lots of them. He’s been at work for hours every night. Last night, he came home at 9:30, after Elizabeth was asleep, and spent the rest of the evening showing little household things I’d always depended on him to finish.
Questions race through my mind. Who’s going to empty the trash can in the Nursery while I am going crazy with the baby? Richard’s always done that, without ever having to be asked. Who will remind me to water the plants and then chuckle when I’ve forgotten for the third time that week? Who will help me with Elizabeth in the evenings when I’ve had a really rough day with her? Who will remind me to turn off the her swing when I take her out? Who will laugh with me and help me in my tears?
I am scared. I have a nine week old baby and will be running a household alone. He will be in a country far away, helping souls devastated by tragedy. For at least a few weeks, we possibly may not even be able to communicate.
In one year. Life changes within minutes, seconds. I don’t know what the next six months will bring. I do know, however, that I am suddenly aware of what a weak, faulted human being I am. I will learn much. To depend on myself. That I am a strong woman. Capable. And I will learn humility. “Please help me” will probably continue to fall from my lips, just as I learned this after childbirth.
I pray for prayers. I hope for hope. I worry for Richard. God, though, will keep His mighty hand over my little family, spread over the globe. He never gives us more than we can handle. I keep telling myself that. Hopefully, I can remember to do the same after next week.