This afternoon Mr. C got a phonecall asking him to help move a family from our church - they needed to get out of their house TONIGHT, and apparently lived just down the road from us. He had to assemble at 6pm, which gave him less than an hour after arriving home to eat dinner, change and spend time with Button... it also meant I have had an evening of solo-parenting.
So I have fed, bathed and bedded the baby - after having spent all day with her also. She barely saw her father, and was looking for him when I took her to bed; they have a little ritual they go through as we head upstairs and she was obviously missing him... thankfully for me, she went to sleep quickly and easily like usual, with no dramas.
But I don't like this solo-parenting lark... after having put her to bed, I still had to tidy the bathroom, tidy the living areas and clean the kitchen. I then had to sort my own dinner out, sort out the load of dry washing and do a number of other small jobs before I could sit and relax. Mr. C had planned on being out only an hour or so, as he wanted to do a few things this evening - but I got a phonecall from him just after Button went to bed to say it'll be a long evening, as there was a LOT to do. He also said the family had little ones, and I think that is what has kept him there... he is a big softie!
So as I was tidying and cleaning I was grumbling away to myself, but God had a few little reminders for me:
1) We have a home, a roof over our heads, a house - a place to call our own. Despite the fact we rent, I know our landlords aren't going to ask us to pack up and leave suddenly... I don't know the future, we may not be here as long as we'd like to be - but we won't be kicked out on the street and left depending on the charity of strangers to help us move.
2) We don't know the situation, and we're not to judge... our job is to be Jesus to them, and if this means me giving up an evening with my husband and doing a little bit more around our place - then so be it!
3) My daughter has gone to sleep in her own bedroom, and in her own bed tonight... and we're not expecting there to be any issues. I understand this family have little children - so I suspect they won't be getting much sleep tonight. By the time they move, unpack and set up beds etc, they'll then need to try and settle little bodies into a strange house, strange bedrooms and possibly strange beds (maybe just a mattress on the floor tonight until everything is in and sorted). I can't imagine children finding that a very easy transition - I can't see parents getting much sleep tonight.
4) Our house is warm - not only because it is insulated, but because we live in it; there are warm bodies in here... They will be moving into an empty house, which will be cold :-(. Not a pleasant night, let alone trying to move in it - it is windy, wet and cold... thankfully the rain isn't heavy, and the wind isn't as bad as it has been; but it's still not pleasant out there.
While I haven't really enjoyed this evening, or my lark with solo-parenting... it has been well worth remembering all the good things I do have in this life. A roof over my head, a warm home, a wonderful husband who goes out of his way to help complete strangers, a gorgeous daughter who is tucked up warmly in her own bed, food in the cupboards, and in the not to distant future - a comfy bed to go and crash in for the night!
Please note though - all this is conjecture, I don't know the family hubby is helping; or anything about their situation... this has just been an exercise in gratefulness for me!