Tonight I got a phone call. I recognized the ringtone “Centerfield.” It was my youngest son calling. Ahhhhh, I was so thirsty to hear his voice.
We’ve got a close family, Josh and I are talkers. Robin, Jake and Shara are generalnot more reserved.. Shara and Robin usually hold tears back, I’m a sobber, Josh can be both and Jake is a sobber like daddy but wants to hold it together like mommy. Nobody wants to be the blubbering guy. I think that’s why my Jake avoids blubbering-potential topics and situations.
People who hold things in can be really tough to read. I mean are they really “fine” when you have that feeling they aren’t fine at all? We all process things differently.
I’ve had some transplanted friends tell me people they love disappear, others have acted angrily (especially teens when we mess up their world) and others have become suffocating with their care.
In my family, I hear from my mom and dad, my sisters, my niece Steph, my nephew Jamie and Josh most every day. I get texts from my daughter now and then but am super blessed because she lives close enough to pop in for visits.Those visits renew my soul and give me energy. Her husband even checks in and we have text chats fairly often. I hear from my niece Becca 2 or 3 times a week and then have my online family posting on my wall. Not that I am so lame that I’m keeping score or anything…
I don’t hear from my youngest very often. I have been praying trying to understand. Is it that he’s 20? Is he freaked out by the thought that something could go wrong and I could die? Denial? Is that Culinary school so demanding that he isn’t able to text? He has frequent dead batteries and misplaced chargers … but the cellphone bill shows that he texts an average of 1500 a month.
I love my children more than life itself. I want to be part of their lives not as a controlling parent but as a coach, mentor or listening ear. Robin and I raised them to be adults at 18. Their decisions are their own. Sure, we still medel and urge, but we cannot prohibit or force. If I could force them, I’d just tell them their needy daddy demands three contacts a week or they will be grounded! Ha ha
Anyway, I get thirsty for connections with my kids. Josh has been helping me understand and said. “I knew he’d call eventually.”
I guess I knew it too. I texted back, “But in the meantime, I felt like a guy crossing the desert needing a drink. I knew where the well was and I knew I’d eventually get that drink but knowing had no impact on my thirst.”
I’ve got three awesome kids who I would literally die for. I am so proud of each of them.
Jake is driving home this weekend and I plan to do a lot of drinking …and maybe some father/son blubbering. (Can I force him not to be 20 and ditch us for friends, movies, hot wings? Haha)
If you’re chronically ill, you may well be thirsting for connections with close people who have withdrawn. We can’t take it as a sign that they don’t care. The may not even know we miss them. Be brave enough to tell them you love and miss them and are thirsty for contact with them. And then if they give no response,relax and pray that the Lord will take away their anger and make them thirsty too.
They will drink eventually. May God allow you to keep your spirit up while you wait and continue to show them love. I like humorous, slightly inappropriate greeting cards that say “miss you” or “thinking of you.”