Running Away from Home


Okay, so here's my question, Did you ever try to run away from home when you were little? I can't remember ever literally trying to run away from home. I remember writing my Aunt Stacey and begging her to come and get me. I remember once, in high school, being so upset about whatever drama was in my life that I sat alone on the floor in my bedroom and just listened to the Schindler's List soundtrack--hoping someone would notice my deep, dark, teenage depression. Then I remember my mom yelling for me to come help with dinner. The Schindler's List music didn't register with her about my state of mind.

Anyway, so I came home from work today, starving for lunch and trying to decide what sounded good to me. I ended up eating cheese and two kinds of crackers and peanut butter right out of the jar (hello, I'm pregnant, people!). I turned on the TV and that new Ramona and Beezus movie was on, which I haven't seen. I tuned in right in time to see Ramona packing to run away (with her mom's help). Her mom helps her pack this enormous suitcase and then sends her on her way. While Ramona's sitting in despair at the bus stop, she hears her mom's voice through the baby monitor packed in the suitcase. Then you see her family drive up and her mom run and pick her up.

Suddenly there I am at my kitchen table, crying. Thinking to myself how absolutely everyone can relate to feeling lost like that. And how there's nothing like a mother's unconditional love to help make things better. So have you ever run away from home before? Or wanted to? Do you know that experience of feeling so lost and despairing? Young or old, I think most of us can relate. It makes me think of Anne of Green Gables, saying to Marilla, "Haven't you ever been in the depths of despair?"

With this second pregnancy, I think I've been more emotional than with the first. Maybe not, but it feels that way. I've had lots of weepy moments. I know this is normal, but knowing that doesn't always help my weepiness. What does help? (Besides peanut butter? :) ) For one thing, Jeff's support and encouragement. Sometimes you just need someone to hold your hand and sympathize. I remember not too long ago, I was in Virginia (the time before last) and about to be getting on another flight by myself with Ashtyn. Trust me, traveling alone with a toddler is enough of a reason for a mom to have a meltdown. I was feeling overwhelmed and not that great, and I had a crying meltdown in the car with my family. My dad put the car in park and reached over and held me until I stopped crying. It didn't matter at all that I'm over thirty. I was crying and he held me.

Last night, Ashtyn had a bad dream or something and started crying in her bed. Jeff and I were watching a movie, but he jumped up and went and got her and brought her downstairs, where she fell back asleep in his arms in about two seconds. He just kept holding her as she slept. And I kept thinking what a sweet father he is. Watching Ramona's mother run and pick her up just warmed my heart. And I was reminded that we need each other. Even when we feel like running away--it's usually just a sign that we need someone to really show us they care. I know I need the care and support of people around me, and I want to be that person who recognizes that need in others. Because feeling like you want to run away can happen at any age for all of us.

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