I’m a single parent until Thursday, and although I’m not fighting back tears right now, it will probably happen some time in the next few days.
For those of you leaping to conclusions right about now, our marriage is strong. No lawyers are being contacted. Instead, Nina had a wonderful opportunity to attend this year’s Women of Compassion conference in Lisbon. Hopefully when she returns she can post at least once about her experience at the WOC. If she was really coaxed into it by a bunch of comments, she might even post from the event?! But so you have an idea, the About Us page on their website states:
Women of Compassion exists to support and encourage North American women who are working cross-culturally in international settings in a variety of roles, such as economic development, health care and training, education and leadership training, agricultural development, etc. Many individuals who commit their lives to working towards providing holistic care to one another often encounter a multitude of challenges in their profession – loneliness, isolation, depression, cultural adjustment, language and translation problems, etc. Many challenges that are faced in their home countries are magnified when living in another culture.
By providing times of refreshment and encouragement, we seek to equip these women to continue working in their various professions around the world. Our retreats offer women in cross-cultural professions an opportunity to get away from their work environments and be holistically restored. We bring a team of volunteers with us to provide haircuts, pedicures, massages, and color analysis for some fun external pampering. We also bring counselors, mentors, nutritionists, and trained health care providers to provide care for more personal and internal needs.
What that means is that this week she gets to be treated like the queen she is while our kids suffer through bad suppers, plain hairdos and the general weird stuff that Dad does.
Mom gets pampered. Kids suffer. Dad gets even more bald.
Nanny and Mimi can relax just a little bit because the dishwashing, ironing and general meal cleanup are all done by the girls with a little help and annoyance from the little brother. Yes, I’ve still got to do the laundry – I hope I remember how to start the washing machine. I’ll cook…something, and do my best to juggle all the different schedules. Oh yeah, and there’s that pastor/missionary thing too.
Try imagining a poor man’s version of Cheaper by the Dozen.
But, this may be a better comparison for the week. “Dad is great! Give us chocolate cake!”
Not that I’m complaining, I’m capable of wearing a few different hats for a week or so.
Yet, one thing is for certain. Trips like this make me appreciate my bride and all that she does. My greatest fear is being a widower, young or old. She’s in the Lord’s hands, and I trust Him.
So, where do you come in? Well, besides sharing the post with all of the missionary women and families working cross-culturally that you know, I’d like ask you for a few suggestions:
Meal ideas, parenting tips, and well wishes for the unfortunate 5 that will be with me all week. Go ahead, chime in, please.