The Other Side of Pain

Will I ever be normal? I wonder. I sit at this table across from three young families as I listen to them talk of old bills and new boats and bunko. I watch them. Leaving to change diapers and cutting up chicken strips. I wonder. Will I?

I am planning the next trip over to Africa in my head. Finalizing new partnerships with orphanages who hold the world's most traumatized children. Dreaming of ways to lend the ear of the right politicians to pass a bill that would call our nation to accountability with dismantling the LRA........an army whose crimes are simply unmentionable to the average person. Even the stories can cause nightmares. I know this. I sit at this table, drinking my hot tea with my cream, typing my words from my heart, with a soul overflowing tonight. I will be blogging late into the moon. It is one of those evenings. I like these evenings.

Looking across the table, over the candlelight, amidst the lights of the boats on the dock - I look at them at how sheltered their life really is. Do they really know heartache? Do they really understand life? Real life? How judgmental I can be. I was forced to make a call yesterday morning from the beachside pool to the Department of Children's Services. A father sexually abusing his three year old son. I seem to rarely be able to get away from it, but the hope is so much brighter. Life. Hardship. Heartache. Pain. Evil. Darkness. Do they know? How sheltered they are?

They are finished with their meal. Ordering dessert - their little ones are excused to run around the table a bit. Him in his precious plaid shorts. She in her precious patching plaid dress. They come over to me to bring me the ice that they have gathered out of their glasses. I smile and reach down to take it from her. Our eyes meet. She has Downs Syndrome. Do they know? Heartache?

Indeed.

I am learning Lord. Teach me. Teach me well.

You see pain can come in all kinds of shapes and sizes. Squares. Circles. Rebel army groups. Lost loved ones. Children with genetic disorders. Broken friendships. Broken vows.

Broken Hearts. Hearts in different shapes. Wounds in different sizes. Healing by the same Lord.

They are leaving now. The table says goodbye to me, as does Larsen. She is blowing me kisses from the door. I am blowing them back. My heart beams. Will I ever be normal? Lord, I hope not.

For the innocence of a child. May I keep that. Somewhere scattered among the residue of pain that surrounds me - keep me simple and blind and un-knowing.................of anything but what's on the other side of pain. Of anything other than you. Of You. In You. Through You.

I am delighted to be,

Yours. b