Sassafras goes to New York

Recently The Captain led a mission group from our church to work with and support a new church plant in Queens. Though we wanted soverybadly to take everyone, it simply wasn't the right time. The outreach and relational nature of the mission worked perfectly for kids, so we decided Sassafras would accompany The Captain as his First Mate. 

Here's my best, rather feeble attempt at describing the feeling of packing up my baby girl and sending her on a jet plane to New York City. The crotchety half of my brain was swimming in worries, needless doubts, and irrational fears. The enthusiastic half of my brain was pitching confetti and blowing party horns because my Sassypants and her brand new six-year-old self was heading to one of the most exciting, cultured, and diverse cities on the planet.

The still, small voice I was struggling to seize despite all that raging noise was reassuring that this won't be the last time my eldest takes off on an adventure. He's preparing us both for that. I believe it with all my heart.

They spent most of their daylight hours in parks, meeting families and sharing information about the new church and its goal in serving as a Bible-teaching, Christ-centered community (a novelty for that area). After the group's work was done for the day, they were able to do a bit of sight-seeing. For Sassafras and The Captain, that meant American Girl, "the Toy R Store," Annie on Broadway, Grand Central Station, and the 9/11 Memorial.

I can't believe he didn't take her to the New York Public Library. {sigh}


She came home tired and brimming with eager hugs and snuggles for her mama. Five days is the longest we've ever been apart, and that time seemed to sift all her (new?) mannerisms, expressions, even her physical growth to the surface. I couldn't stop looking at her, squeezing her, noticing how growny she seemed all asudden.

It can strike panic if I permit my mind to settle on just how quickly she is growing up, at just how quickly we are approaching the day when we pack those bags for good. I don't want to waste a day with her, not with any of my girls. I don't want to waste a minute of their journey to becoming who God has ordained them to be. Lord knows it takes purposeful effort in this world of distractions, but I truly do want to be here and now, with my children and with others.

It's an all-out struggle to be in the moment, as there are just so many things I want to do and experience and plan and read and write and hear and see in this life...but I'm working on it. He's working on me. God is growing me in the discipline of being fully present. 

And as for all her growing-upishness, Sassafras asking me in Costco when was she gonna get one of those shaver things (razor) of her very own...yeah, that really doesn't exactly help. Oh, honey,  I told her, you'll get one of those sooner than you think.

I draw the line, Time. I draw.the.line.