It's time for Amy's Neighborhood Fridays. Today's beautiful and haunting post comes from the talented Stacia at Fluffy Bunnies. If you aren't reading her blog, I can't describe what you're missing out on. Here's a sample:
Choose My Own Adventure: The Prologue
In three weeks, my husband will board a plane and fly to Romania. He'll work there for two months. While he's gone, he'll find us a house and a car. He'll figure out where to buy groceries and how to get peanut butter. He'll shop around for preschools and pediatricians. He'll also celebrate his birthday. Our anniversary. Our baby's first birthday.
I'll celebrate, too. Here. With our three kids. Without him. We'll Skype, we'll chat, and we'll e-mail. It won't be quite the same, but it's only temporary.
Because in May, we'll join him. For a year.
I keep having this dream.
I'm with my children. At the circus, at a concert, at an amusement park. We're laughing and soaking it all in. Then, one of my kids is gone. Gone. Just like that.
I look everywhere. I am frantic. I scream. I beg people to help me.
Eventually, I find my child. He got distracted. Or she got carried away with the crowd. They are fine. I hug them and vow to never let go again. Only then do I let myself cry.
I wake up. And I'm really crying. Real tears, real fear, real relief. It all floods over me as I stare at the green light on the baby monitor or listen to the wind chimes tinkling on the porch.
I realize it's a dream. I know my children are cozied up in their beds with their favorite frazzled blankets and worn stuffed animals. I know they'll be knocking on my bedroom door in a few short hours, asking for bananas and Sesame Street.
I know everything is the same as it was before the dream. But I'm not.
How long is a year?
I keep asking myself, trying to assess how much to pack, what to leave behind, what we can live without and what we can't. I make and remake lists. I pack and unpack boxes. I send e-mails, ask questions, and search Google.
But I know I'm the only one who can answer that question: How long is a year?
It's 18 toothbrushes, 60 gallons of milk, and 26 boxes of waffles. It's 2 bottles of Children's Tylenol. It's 8 sets of sheets, 3 jackets each, and 32 haircuts. It's 12 glue sticks and 4 packs of crayons. It's 1,095 bedtime stories.
It's a visit from Mos Craciun instead of Santa Claus. It's weekend trips to Kiev and Warsaw and Dracula's Castle. It's sitting down to a dinner table piled high with sarmale and schnitzel and raising our glass of palinca with a hearty "Noroc!" It's a family vacation to Euro Disney.
And it's countless internal battles between my brave spirit and my anxious mind -- 365 exhilarating days waging war against 365 nightmarish nights. Which will prevail?
That's my adventure to choose.
How do you balance adventure and anxiety? What's your family's grandest adventure so far? And how did it show up in your dreams?