It’s a Gift

Life is such a beautiful gift. This week has been a roller coaster of emotions for me. Today, my sister gave birth to the most precious baby girl, Avery. I am so overwhelmed with happiness for her. Being a mother is such a wonderfully, scary, rewarding, awkward, breathtaking, heart stopping, and glorious thing. I am so excited to watch my sister as she travels down this new path in life.
I am also very sad at the same time that the distance between us has prevented me from being able to hold my new niece or give my sister a hug. I know I will meet her soon enough, but I still just wish I could have been there to see the amazing bond that was instantly formed between them.
This range of emotions is such a high compared to the feelings I was having the two days before. On Monday, the tornadoes hit Oklahoma, where my husband has been working the last year. He does a lot of driving throughout each day. Most of his travels take him as far north as Oklahoma City and sometimes east, west and south of OKC, depending on the day. The travel trailer is parked in Ardmore which is about an hour north of the Texas line on I35.
Monday, I was at work. I had just returned to the office from getting an advertising picture. I got a text from my husband that read, “Tornadoes hitting the ground. Pray for us.” I panicked. I immediately began to sweat. He kept me updated the best he could, but he had plenty of guys working out on right-of-ways that he was trying to check on and continue to watch the path of the tornado. Soon enough, reports started popping up about the tornado in Moore. I watched live video that was streaming from the computer. I felt my body go into panic mode. I was drenched in sweat and my stomach was in knots. I received another text that said they had left the office because one was located 1.8 miles south of the office. That was at 3:36 p.m. At 4:08 p.m., he wrote back and let me know that he was safe. At 5:40 p.m. he was in Norman. He waited out the remainder of the storms there. All the while he was very concerned about his guys out in the field. At one point, his boss called from Denver and asked him to get in contact with everyone working for them and make sure they were all accounted for. There was no phone service, he could only send and receive texts. After rounding up a response from everyone, including one that took an hour to answer, he could breath a little easier. This was great news!
8 hours after I received the first text, I finally heard my husband’s voice. He finally had phone service at 1:00 a.m. as he was driving back south toward his trailer in Ardmore. I think the events of the day really began to sink in at that point. All he talked about were his two kids. He was exhausted emotionally and physically. I sat there on the other end of the phone. It was quiet. I could hear the sadness in his voice. I could hear the quiet calmness of the night air. Just like everyone else, I can’t comprehend the loss of life. I can’t watch the news without crying. I can’t keep myself from reading and watching the stories good and bad. I want that constant flow of information. I want that spark of hope.
This week, I was reminded how precious life is and how truly blessed I have been. I will continue to pray for the families in Oklahoma. I will continue to worry too much and sleep too little. And I will praise The Lord for my sister’s new gift of life. Don’t take any second of life for granted. It’s a gift. It’s a beautiful gift.



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