I expected this past weekend to be long, but I had no idea it would be like a piece of taffy being stretched, and stretched and s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d. It just wore me out.
We had 2 weddings to attend, each in different towns. “OK,” I told myself, “You can do this, you just have to be prepared.” I got the clothes ready in advance and made sure the car was gassed up and cleaned out. Meals ready – check. Plans for the kids that need rides – check. Hard working husband taken care of – check. (he couldn’t go to any weddings because he’s a CPA and it was tax season weekend)
My 5 youngest kids and I headed early Saturday morning to Austin (2.5 hours away) for the wedding of one of my son Jacob’s best friends. This is a precious family and I was looking forward to what I knew would be a Christ-centered ceremony. It was absolutely lovely and I was glad we went. But as an introvert, I find those things hard, mainly the reception. I didn’t really know anyone and wasn’t likely to start up a new relationship, so I sat there at my table being mostly anti-social. I did chat with a few people here and there, but overall I kind of felt out of place. I wondered as I looked around the room if that happens to everyone or if I am the only person who often feels like a bird in the wrong cage. What do you do in those situations? Do you just walk up and talk to people? Do you pretend to be busy feeding your kids? Do you sit like a wallflower not talking? I don’t expect answers to these questions. I’m just pondering out loud. Introvert problems.
We left the reception and headed to have dinner with my daughter who lives in the same town. We had a nice time with her and just as we were wrapping up and getting ready to drive the 2.5 hours home I got a call. My oldest son Jacob (who had taken his own car to the wedding and stayed after to hang out with his friends) had been in an accident. He wasn’t hurt and the woman in the other car was fine, but his vehicle was not drivable.
Now, this kind of thing shakes a mama to the core. I had that angry/terrified/panic/relief feeling that sends adrenaline through your system and turns you into a mother bear. “Get in the car kids…drop the burger and let’s go!! Jacob needs us!” We left the restaurant, dropped my daughter off at her apartment and headed back to the area where the accident had taken place (near the wedding venue).
When I saw my son I may have hugged him a little too hard and hung on too long.
Once I saw that he was OK I felt a little better. We said our goodbyes (again) to the wedding party and made the long drive home in the dark, trying to forget the traumatic end to what was otherwise a lovely day. We made it home and I was so tired, but still pretty wired from the excitement, so it took me a couple of hours to fall asleep. If not for my oils I probably would have been awake all night.
Then it was Sunday and another wedding. This time it was the son of one my MY best friends and in the opposite direction of the Saturday wedding. We all decided earlier in the week that only two of us would go, the younger kids really don’t know this family well and we knew we would be wiped out from the day before. My daughter and I would attend alone and enjoy some togetherness. We ran a few errands in the city then headed to the wedding venue in the late afternoon, which was a bit out in the country. We got about 6 miles away when it started to rain. Hard. Like, I can’t see the road at all kind of rain.
I slowed to about 20 mph and inched my way to the location. Each time we contemplated just pulling over and waiting it out the rain would let up enough that we could see a little better. Finally, after a few scary low water crossings we made it. Whew! Next problem: we had to park about 50 yards from the building and we had no umbrella. We sat in the car trying to decide what to do. Do we sit and hope it lets up or do we make a run for it? We ran.
And I am not kidding you, we may as well have jumped in the river. We were soaked down to our panties, hair was stuck to our heads, my makeup was smearing all down my face. Have you ever been to a wedding with no eyebrows? ‘Cuz I have and it’s not pretty.
I want to say here that earlier in the day when it was time to get ready to go I started to blow my hair dry and had a sense not to, so I left it curly and more natural. I am taking this as a sign that I really do hear God’s voice…..I just wish I’d been listening when He was telling me to make sure we had an umbrella in the car.
Wedding #2 was gorgeous, even the rain pounding on the roof as they said their vows made it seem a little magical. What wasn’t magical was the sound of my dress dripping on the floor beneath my seat. I was still soaking wet 3 hours later when we got back to our house. The drive home was no picnic either….hail and storms pounding on my car in the dark. My knuckles are still white.
Even though it was sweet and scary and sometimes humiliating, nothing that happened this weekend was really about me. I was simply an observer in all of it, which was nice. I got to just smile and sit and drip quietly. Everyone else that attended these weddings also has their own story and this is only mine. I like to remind myself of that when I lose perspective and feel like complaining about not knowing anyone or looking like a drowned cat.
This next week it’s predicted to keep raining and I think I will just stay inside and recover from my harrowing wedding weekend. And maybe hug all my kids a little extra hard, just to be on the safe side.
Have a good one!