The last 36 hours have been filled with ups, downs, and sideways.
And to be quite honest, I'm emotionally and physically exhausted.
The joy paired with the sadness—necessary, cathartic, and priceless.
My middle brother and I—both in our forties—played with bubbles, took long walks, built waffle-block towers, colored, and read heavy board books. There was an adorable 19-month-old baby girl involved, so it wasn't weird at all.
I read half a book to my niece and she giggled.
I laughed with my sister-in-law as her husband whipped up a gourmet fare I couldn't begin to produce in my microwave, air-fryer, and crock pot culinary existence. Seriously, bro, that couscous—amazing.
We sat around their table, shared a home-cooked meal, and laughed.
The little girl who dreamt of story-telling sat in a chair in the middle of her hometown while people asked questions about her books. Some even bought them. What?!?
I hugged the necks of old (over 25 years, y'all) classmates, dear friends, and new acquaintances.
I visited love personified.
Then, I drove out to my youngest brother's grave, rubbed my palm over the concrete slab, traced his name with my finger, and shed some much-needed tears. The peacefulness of the moment—overwhelming.
I-75 flew by until I finally walked back in the door of our home and caught hugs from my not-so-little babies who had been lovingly cared for by my beloved mother-in-law.
My husband, traveling, called or texted a half dozen times to tell me he loved me. Just because.
The Dawgs won!
And I introduced the story of Mary Poppins to my daughter.
Somewhere in there I slept, ingested caffeine, and ate food not so good for me as I listened to podcasts about everything under the sun.
I don't have much tonight, but a few songs speak the words I hold in my heart.
Amanda Williams is a forty-year old wife and mother of two who can still swing her pony tail and display just a tad of sass. She is also a Jesus loving girl who realizes she is nothing without the One who saved her. Amanda has two degrees specializing in serving students with special needs and is currently working in the field of Leadership Development. She is a Christian author, speaker, blogger, and publisher who loves serving beside her husband at her local place of worship, First Baptist Church of Ocala.