Friday, May 27, 2005

for the love of ... Bob and Debbie

Home for me is walking out of baggage claim, seeing my father rush toward me with a bouquet of daisies, and giving into his warm bear hug. Home for me is strolling down the street with my mother with our little fingers linked. While I may have an enormously independent spirit, Bob and Debbie are always worth coming home to.

Upon arriving in Hannover airport, I passed over baggage claim and customs altogether and headed straight to the Lufthansa counter. Experience has taught me that it’s a fat chance that my luggage will show up the same time I do. So why not save a few moments and start filling out the paper work while others are still waiting for men to unload the plane’s cargo?

While Madeline (the Lufthansa representative) was attempting to find where in the world my luggage was (which was made infinitely more difficult by my having flown standby), I turned around and saw that my dad had discovered a coffee machine in the corner of the office and had made himself extremely comfortable with a little plate of cookies and his cup of joe. He looked as relaxed as could be. My mother was on the side of the room idly looking at the posters on the wall. I had to smile. They were as accustomed to this as I was.

Hmm, have I mentioned how much I love my parents?!

Ha! One of the moments that I love, is our mock conversations. These usually occur when there’s not much to talk about ... so, we’ll make up a random topic, something we know nothing about, and we’ll each pretend to be experts on the subject. There have been occasions when these “conversations” have turned into “arguments.” I remember once when my father and I were really going at it in the living room ... our voices were raised and everything. At one point, I heard my mother’s footsteps rushing down the stairs, she opened the door and the concern on her face was heartbreaking.

“Please ... please, stop arguing. Remember, you love each other!”

Poor, dear! She hadn’t actually heard what we were arguing about. She was so torn apart because we never argue in our family.

At that moment, my father and I looked at each other. That all too familiar mischievous twinkle sparkled in both our eyes. Together we began to “float” toward my mother (which involved us moving in slow motion as the astronauts do) and embraced this dear, concerned little woman and told her to “lighten up.” Only then, did she know that it had all been in jest.

One of my favorite memories with my mother, was actually a time when she scolded me this past Christmas. We were walking hand-in-hand downtown from our home across the river and I was bearing my heart to her about a situation that I found myself in. Someone had guessed at my secret. Confiding in her as girls do to their best friends, I was looking to her to soothe and comfort me, assuring me that I had done the right thing. Instead, I was completely surprised. She told me that by suppressing my passions, I was not living. This idea was so foreign to me. While shock still enveloped me, she proceeded to explain that our passions are given to us by God, to suppress those passions is to suppress the life God has intended for me.

Tonight we engaged in a family tradition. We sat together on the sofa and watched a movie. I enjoy it so much when all three of us squish together on the sofa. My father’s hand planted on my knee and my mother’s arm and fingers entwined with my own. I am home.

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