It's amazing how one little word can take me back to a memory so painful, so deep, and yet so misunderstood that I can't think about anything else.
I took my three children to the Nashville zoo on a beautiful Sunday afternoon in 2010. I was single mom then and doing anything successfully with a 13 month old, 2.5 year old, and 5 year old was a great accomplishment for me.
As I pushed the double stroller filled with sippy cups, diapers, wet wipes, Gerber puffs, fruit, and of course my kids, I noticed something.
There were so many FAMILIES all around us. Men and women with small children and big children. Holding hands, laughing, showing one another the animals, and just enjoying their time together. Grandparents with grandkids buying ice cream and stuffed animals, people gathering on the grassy hill to picnic, and kids playing chase around the laid-out blankets.
My mind began to race as I felt inadequate to care for these children in front of me. We weren't there with anyone but ourselves. Jonah (my youngest) began to cry, then Shelby (my middle) started kicking the foot her seat, and Gabe (my oldest) let go of the stroller and threw a full-on, ugly cry temper tantrum.
I was able to calm them all down and we went home shortly after this.
Looking back, I felt like I didn't belong anywhere. I wasn't a wife, our family wasn't complete, and my children were missing an integral part of their childhood: their father.
Now I view that day as a life lesson.
Instead of feeling outside the box, I know I was smack dab in the middle.
I belonged with my children and I was right where God wanted me.
Linking up with Lisa Jo Baker and Simply Helping Him