Friday, March 25, 2011

Passports and Paradigm Shifts

I had a shocking and somewhat disappointing realization this week.  In the process of applying for Victoria's first passport, Patrick and I checked ours and discovered it was time to renew.  Since being issued nearly 10 years ago, Patrick has traveled to Venezuela, Honduras, Guatemala, Peru, Brazil and Columbia.  Me?  My passport was empty.  Not one entry.  I realized I haven't been out of the country since our trip to South Africa before Victoria was born.

Patrick and the two oldest kids have had the privilege of serving in those previously mentioned countries.  During those years, the younger girls were small, and it felt completely overwhelming to even consider arranging the schedule for me to leave the country.  It just seemed logical for Patrick to go and for me to stay.

Over the years there would be moments when I'd sulk over feeling like Cinderella while Patrick and the older kids were off having a ball.  But for the most part, I felt like I was doing what I was supposed to be doing.  After all these years, it's almost become a given that Patrick will go and I will hold down the fort.  But this week, after mailing off Victoria's passport application, I realized there's been a paradigm shift.  Victoria, my baby, is going overseas.  My big kids are staying home...and they don't need me with them!  I'm free to go.

I'm not sure what this new found freedom means...maybe I SHOULD think about going to Haiti with the team this summer.   Who knows?    In any case, I have realized I've just entered a new stage in in which my kids need my physical presence less, and I'm now free to get that passport stamped.

I'll be sending that old, unused passport in soon. Trading it in for a brand spankin' new one.  My goal for the next ten years is at least two from Haiti.  I want to see this country that has imprinted itself so massively on Kevin's heart.  The second stamp I'm hoping for...England.  I have a dear friend moving there...and she's going to need to show me the lay of the land.

1 comment:

  1. IS Victoria going to Haiti? How wonderful for her. If it makes you feel any better. I never get to go on any of our church's woman's mission trips, either. ): Maybe some day. Our good friends are on their way to London as I type this for Spring break. It is Haley's BFF (our neighbors), her little sis and their parents. Her little sis is a theater girl, so going to see Phatom while there..lucky them. I am dreaming about some day needing a passport, too. But for now, I just need to dig up the paperwork for your brother so he can travel to China, Taiwan and India...I need to be home to hold down the fort....that is what us Mom's do!!(<: Enjoy your trip to Haiti....