This evening I went over to Corey and Carrie's house, and the Welchs came over too. Carrie needed someone to help finish off all the finger food from her party the other night, and Corey certainly wasn't interested in things like spinach dip and cheese log.
I spend almost all of my time, now that Andy is gone, with women. I hadn't realized until I was sitting there, listening to the bantering back and forth between the guys, that I miss men.
Of course, I miss Andy specifically - we are all aware of that - but just in general I miss the strange sense of humor and different way of looking at the world and slightly less refined something that makes a man, well, a man.
My dad works all day, and besides, he isn't a "typical" guy. He would never, NEVER burp out loud at the table, or talk about the latest ball game, or laugh uproariously over my child's inability to pronounce a word correctly. (What does it sound like when Zion tries to say his stuffed dog's name... anyone know what I am talking about here?)
Men are just different then women. God made us that way. It is a beautiful thing, the way he puts us together as teams. Each of us with our strengths, so that we can support each other in the areas where we are not as strong.
I think that having a husband who is often gone has required me to develop strength in areas that perhaps I would not have automatically developed if it had been left up to me. That is what makes it beautiful. God knew that I had the ability - the physical, mental and emotional strength to be who I am. I was not aware of who I could be until I was stretched.
Sometimes I don't like the stretching, but I am always happy with the end result. God is making me into the Bethany I am called to be.
At one point in time tonight, I almost had to leave. Two really happy couples, who practically glow in their love for each other was almost overwhelming for a few minutes. And I could not bear to spoil their happiness. Just because I miss my love doesn't mean I don't want them to be happy. Perhaps that is why I don't like to write negative thoughts on here either - I would hate for it to come across incorrectly. But honestly and openness has been encouraged, and the feelings are flowing tonight - so here it comes.
After we ate, when I didn't know what we were planning to do next, the thought of sitting there and just hanging out, talking, with two happy couples was so completely unbearable that I was literally standing at their kitchen sink gasping for breath, and trying to figure out if any of the kids were still on the back porch of if I could sneak out there and hyperventilate in peace. And I was praying, "Lord, please don't let me ruin this happy evening".
Then, out of the blue, Corey asked me some random question about Andy and suddenly I had a focus again and I was okay. I think that if Corey had asked me if I wanted a glass of tea at that moment I might have burst into tears, but asking about Andy was exactly perfect. In a small way, it brought him to the party too. It included him. It made me part of a happy couple, and I needed that. Just one moment of being a happy couple.
But enough about that.
Let me show you what we did, once the party really got started...
First, we let the kids have a turn...
This is not a very good picture, but it is the only one I got of Zion participating!
Let me just tell you, that girl knows how to play with enthusiasm!
Then we put a movie on for them...
and got down to the real fun!
Adults, playing video games - Oh yeah!!
Jason, jamming a solo.
Carrie and PJ, rocking out!
Me, laughing so hard that there is no way I could be playing!
Corey actually plays the guitar fabulously in real life, so we kept kicking him off the guitar and making him do the drums or sing... it is more fun to play when you make a fool of yourself!
Last, but not least, the guitar.
I tried singing, drums, and guitar, all with enthusiasm - let me just tell you I was not afraid to make a fool of myself.
As I left tonight, I glanced over and saw Corey and Carrie's hands linked together on the couch. For a split second, of course, pain comes with that sight. But stronger, and longer, and more importantly, comes an amazingly RIGHT feeling of happiness. I am so happy to have friends who love each other, and who love me, and Andy and Jesus.
I cannot, except for a split second, begrudge them their hand holding happiness.
Rather, I will soak it up and let it hold me over. Sharing their joy makes mine seem closer and somehow more real.
Thank you my friends, for sharing.