I had posted before about a Medical Missions Trip that God placed in my lap back in April. On May 14, 2013, I boarded a plane for Yerevan, Armenia. I had no concept of where I was going or what I was going to be doing there, I only knew, that I was supposed to go and that it was RIGHT for me to go. It was going to be part of my healing as one doctor told me. There was nothing I could do at the scene of the wreck where my baby girl & father-in-law died BUT there were going to be children & adults that I could help & love in Armenia. And so, I went.
I could write tons about the trip and it was exactly what God wanted for me at the time. It was hard. It was sad. It was scary. It was fun. It was rewarding. It was humbling. It was beautiful & ugly at the same time. It was everything it was supposed to be until May 21, 2013 (2 days before we were to fly home, back to the good 'ol USA).
You see, I received a facebook message from brother, Brad. He said our mom, who lives in North Carolina was in critical condition, on a ventilator and sepsis had taken over her body. I was in complete shock. How could this be? What happened? WHY ARE YOU LETTING SO MUCH BAD HAPPEN TO MY FAMILY, GOD?!?!?!?!?! WHY???????? I can't take another death of someone I love so dearly. I can't make it through another tragedy......please, God....please, don't let her die too....
2 days later, I boarded a TransAtlantic Air France plane that would fly me back to the states and I had changed my final destination from Little Rock to Wilmington, NC. I prayed she would be off the vent and better by the time I got there but the last word I had gotten from my brother didn't sound very promising. And so, I wrote the following as I followed the sun back home to my mom:
Lake Sevan, Armenia
It's such a subjective thing depending on your circumstances, your place in the world. It will be specific just for you, wherever you are in life. It's a "love/hate" relationship for me.
We left Yerevan, Armenia this morning at 8:40am. We will arrive in Paris, France at 11:50am, just a 3 hour difference. However, this flight is over 5 hours long.
When we arrive in Paris, I will have an hour and a half layover until I board my transatlantic flight to Atlanta, GA. That flight will be 9 and a half hours long. A total of 16 hours travel time once I reach the US at 5pm EST.
Then I will have another 3 and a half hours of a layover until I board my flight for Wilmington, NC to see my mom. I board that flight at 8:30pm...the sun will have just set in the east.
What this all means is, I will have had 19 and a half hours of daylight. Then I don't land in Wilmington until 10pm. By midnight, my usual 24 hour day will actually be almost 30 hours.....amazing.
Even though I left on a Thursday, May 23, 2013....it was still Wednesday, May 22, 2013 in the US.
When I think about my mom and how sick she is right now, time seems to stand still. I can't get there fast enough. I wonder and worry about her perspective of time. She's been on a vent for days now and she will have no concept of what day or time it is when she is taken off the vent and wakes up.....and as horrible as it sounds....IF she can come off the vent.
I can't help but think about Maci & David.
My time with my baby girl was only 10 and half years.
My time with my wonderful father-in-law was only 2 years.
My heart still aches with a depth of pain that cannot be described. I really don't think that that feeling will ever go away, but I am handling it better at times.
What do I plan to do with the time God will allow me to have on this earth? This medical missions trip to Armenia is just a start. Honestly, I do believe my perspective on life and truly living started in February, after the wreck, when I went back to Maci's school for Valentine's Day. Giving those children their valentines from their "Angel, Maci Harris" and loving them was my first step. Then again in March for St. Patrick's Day...another step. In April when I took our family music/dance videos to show the class and also the seashells I had gotten them from the beach in NC. Now May....the morning that I was to fly out of the country on this trip, I had to stop at the school and hug those children before I left.
In the minds of children that are so young, it's distorted and very inwardly focused. Their concept of time (as I remember it as a child) is lengthy. It seems that a year is so long. It takes 'forever' for Christmas to arrive. Family trips, where every second together should be savored, are long and boring. But my goodness, how things change with age and circumstances.
I want more time with my family....with my mom, dad....with Paul, my girls, Caleb, my precious mother-in-law, with what's left of ALL my family. I NEED to spend time with them.
I wish I'd had more time with Maci.....I miss my sweet, precious daughter.
I wish I'd had more time with David.
Then at the same time, I wish God would come back and take us all home to Heaven where time will never be a thought again. We will all be together...forever...no time. What an utterly wonderful thought and hope for the future.
I am chasing the sun today, in order to get to spend some "time" with my mom. My days will go on for as long as the Lord sees fit. And during that "time", I will continue to seek out the essence of the life He has given me. I will continue to give of myself to show His never-ending, "timeless" love. That is my purpose. That is what I will do with "Time".
The good news? Mom is home. She was on the vent for 10 and a half days. On day #9, I "knew" she was dying. As she tells it now, she knew she was dying too. Even though sedated and on a vent, she was aware of 2 large "men" behind her bed. She also saw Maci, standing on a hill, waving to her. She now calls them dreams or "crazy things" because she was on so much medication. I call it, 2 angels guarding her and a granddaughter waving to her to prove that there IS life after death.
She's been very sick and even now, at the end of July, she has a lot of healing ahead of her....but she's doing so much better and I am so thankful to still have my mom. To still have the privilege to come to NC and help care for her.....Praise God for answered prayers and another chance to see the sun rise tomorrow.
Also, just this past week, the drunk driver that hit and killed my daughter, Maci & my father-in-law, David, and injured my husband, mother-in-law, sister-in-law and step-son, was finally arrested. Our prayers now turn towards justice & accountability for the actions of this man. I hope you will pray with us & for our family. Pray for the man that killed & hurt our family. Pray for his family. Pray for the prosecutors & victims advocates. Pray for God's Will to be done.