"I went to the woods because I wanted to live deliberately. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life;
to put to rout all that was not life and not when I had come to die, discover that I had not lived." ~Henry David Thoreau

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Tears & Kickball- Day 5

 Thursday.  Beautiful skies, no wind, bliss.  The storm from earlier in the week had given the skies a makeover and it was a nice relief from all the wind we'd been having for two weeks.  Paul said he hadn't had McDonalds at all since getting here so he requested that for lunch.  I personally think it's nasty, but that's insulting Paul's livelihood because that's where he works part time back home!  Again, I got bonus points as his host mum.  It's probably silly that I document what I feed the kid, but food really was a huge part of his stay here!

While kids were at camp, I was going around the house cleaning things up.  Paul's glasses were sitting on the counter.  His laundry was in a basket downstairs.  Little things like that seemed normal, seeing as how we have five kids of our own and crap is strewn about all the time.  And at one point I was cleaning up something of his and it hit me that none of this would be here come Saturday.  And that was really, really sad to think about.   And then I got kind of angry thinking about how life had been only a week before- busy and stressful.  It was still busy and stressful, but now Paul was part of the mix.  This stinkin' dirty Tig came in an made us all fall in love with him!  It was like it came out of left field- blindsided us, but now what?  He was going to move on come Saturday and we would probably never see him again.  And he would likely forget about us in a month.

When I was about 12 years old, we had a good friend named Danna.  Her parents were divorced and she lived with her mom in Kentucky.  Sometimes she lived in Houston with her dad, and that's when we met her.  She became like part of our family and we loved her like a sister.  Eventually her dad and stepmom moved out of state, so she had no home base in Houston anymore.  One summer my parents flew her down to stay with us for a couple of weeks.  It's been more than 20 years, but I remember those two weeks very well.  And I remember taking her to the airport when it was all over, crying at the gate as we said goodbye, and crying for days after.  She was actually my older sister's best friend, but she was like my own big sister.  The funny thing is that of all the crying that was done when she left, my mom possibly cried the most.  And I remember thinking "Why is she so sad?  Danna wasn't even HER friend!!"

And all these years later, I get it.  I know why my mom cried.  Because she felt like part of her heart was getting on that plane to fly to Kentucky, and she didn't know what would happen when Danna left.  Would she be safe?  Would she be happy?  Would she make good choices in her life?  I walked through the house and saw all the evidence of Paul being there- and I thought of how it would feel when it was all gone in two days.  How could he have done this to us in such a short amount of time?!

*  * * * * *
Paul's nice cleats ripped after he left Belfast, so it was high time he got a new pair for coaching in.  Ethan needed a new pair of cleats and shinguards, so we hit the soccer store right after camp.  Watching Paul in there was entertaining.  He was like a kid in a candy store, or an addict in a crack house.  It was nice because he was able to give me some pointers on things for Ethan, like the difference in shinguards (oh my gosh, there are so many styles!!)  I got Devin a new pair, and Paul needed some for the game on Friday so I insisted on getting him a pair with USA on them.  Ethan ended up getting the same ones.  Yay for twinners!

After the soccer store, we hit the pizza place to get a couple of pizzas for dinner at the park.  On the way there, he turned up the radio and started singing along and then realized what he was doing and said "I can't believe I'm singing like this in front of my host mum!  And I don't even feel embarrassed!"  While we waited on them to make the pizza, we got to talking out in the car.  I swear, at times I felt like Paul was my son, other times like he was my much younger brother.  Either way, it felt like I had never NOT known him.  I said "Can I tell you a secret?"  I felt like I wanted him to know about my meltdown that afternoon, but I felt like a psycho telling him because REALLY?!  Am I THAT crazy lady?!  Yes.  I didn't tell him about all the crying and cursing, but I told him how sad I felt about him leaving on Saturday.  I said it would leave a hole in our family, which was crazy because we didn't even know there was a hole waiting to be filled until he showed up.  I then decided it was best to stop talking about it because we still had a full day to have fun before he left. 

Jessica had babysat the little boys while we went shopping, and when we came home LORDY had
 those boys run miles around her.  Garrett ripped the door right out of the hinges of the crawl space for starters.  It's a wonder how I keep my sanity day in and day out with those boys!!  We had plans to have dinner at the park with some friends and because of all the commotion from Garrett and Devin, we were horribly late getting to the park.  We did a "carb load" dinner and decided that if we paired that with a game of kickball, then we wouldn't feel guilty.  Lasagna, pizza, cheesy French bread, homemade mac 'n cheese.  Good God'amighty.  So good, and so bad for you.  Paul was blown away that there were 14 kids among the three families.  It was so much fun!!  He got a couple really good kicks in and kept catching balls, getting people out.  After the game, we did sparklers until the mosquitoes had almost sucked the blood out of all of us. 

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