It happens to all of us. We're driving along, then there's a slow down. You wait and wait, only to find that your waiting wasn't a problem at all. The real problems lay in those flying away from twisted metal and glass shards.
We are, for a moment, horrified. But by the time we reach our destination, we've pretty much forgotten what we saw.
There is a family of four tonight who is happy to be alive.
This time, forgetting isn't happening. This time, our hearts are broken with them for the months of recuperating and long days and nights in the hospital, waiting to go home.
This time, we're rejoicing with them for the Lord's protection.
This time, we're standing in the hospital room scrambling for words while at the same time praying that we won't say anything stupid.
All the kids love their girls. Richie and Maelynn and I were able to talk about getting to see their friend today as they went to bed. Richie didn't have as much to say, or any real questions other than when they can go to her house. Maelynn chattered on at length about this and that about the girls and their parents, all four part of their lives as close family friends. Fellow band directors and their kids are family around here.
Ryan? He simply said, "You want B and L?"
He wants them. That's his way of saying that he wants to see them too, and to make sure they're okay by laying his own eyes on his friends. As the rest of us scramble for words and try to time visits to not be too obnoxious and keep up without being too pushy or nosy... he states so simply, so eloquently that he wants them. He wants his friends to be as they were.
He doesn't clamber to the door when they get here, and he doesn't cry when they leave. While they're here to play or hang out while their parents are out, he doesn't really seek to interact with them that much. They try to interact with him, they have learned a lot about him over the last few years and work to help integrate him and keep him safe while being their kid-selves when we're together, wherever.
The other two love the girls to pieces. They are the ones who cry when the girls have to head home in the times they're here. And I know they hurt for them too.
None of us know what to say or do, other than offer our love and help and show our faces every now and again. We trip over our tongues and fumbling hands as we reach in a desperate attempt to help carry even a shard of the burden.
And we pray that our clumsy attempts to hug them with our hearts will be felt, even for a moment.
At the same time, we thank our God for holding them tight and protecting them from the worst, blessing us with them still. We pray for their healing in every way they'll need it.
C, K, B, and L, we love you and we're praying for all of you.
Thanks be to God for protecting that sweet mom and dad, and those precious girls.