It’s that time of year, :'( …..the time when as the primary custodial parent I must bid my son adieu for the summer visitation with his biological father. I know I’m not the only one losing my baby for the summer, but the normalcy of the situation doesn’t remove my concerns, fears and tears.
Ideally, this would be a time of awesome father and son bonding that is usually relegated to the weekends. The idea sound great, but that also assumes Lil’ Lizards biological father intends to take responsibility, create connections and pour into his son’s life. I pray for my son’s sake that this summer is different, and the described intentions are the case this year. For that opportunity, I am thankful.
Divorce simply isn’t the way God designed families to work…so when a parent is missing, to say it’s tough on kids is a gross understatement. In an effort to find a balance, the state looks for a custody arrangement. While I conceptually support parental rights independent of marital status, I absolutely hate the court ordered time my baby spends away from his home. I can’t imagine any other condition, barring a medical emergency or some catastrophe, where a 7-year-old would be sent away from his mother for a month with no contact. My poor fella first had to do this as a 4-year-old 🙁 I recognize that many mothers (or primary care giving fathers) have to deal with harsher custody arrangements, or non at all for that matter, and my heart goes out to them.
“Wait a minute,” you may be thinking “I thought it was THANKFUL THURSDAY, not venting-bitter-saddness day.” You’re absolutely right, and if writing these posts each week have reminded me of anything….it’s that God asks to trust Him and be praise Him in ALL things….even when it’s difficult. Does this mean we sugar coat things and put on a superficial face when we are heart-broken? No. Does this mean we wallow in our grief and sink into depression? Certainly not. Often we tend to bury things because they are too difficult to process. Yet when we take the time to unpack them in the presence of our Savior, THAT’S where the healing and restoration transpires. For me, I find it begins with the simple act of thanks.
Despite the emotional turmoil, I thank God for the time I DO have my son….the fact that I was ever able to bear him, and that he is still alive. I choose to praise God, the Most High and Sovereign Authority over all, even July visitation. When concerns about my son’s physical safety or possible destructive influences arise, I choose to recall that my Lil’ Lizard is nestled safely in the palm of His hand, and under His wings at all times, not just in my home. How much more does the Father love him than I?
So thank You God, thank You for all You do, and thank You for Your word, hymns and the Holy Spirit You’ve sent to comfort me and my son in this time. Thank You for revealing the blessings this season affords and the work You would have me do. I give You all the Glory, and all the Honor and all the Praise, Forever and Forever, Amen!
Thankfully God is bigger than divorce, it’s aftermath, the effects it has and heartaches it causes for my family today. So despite this heart wrenching time away from my darling Lil’ Lizard, I choose to turn my eyes upon Jesus, and His work on the cross.
What about you? How have you coped with difficult times? What things have you found to help you cultivate a thankful heart in the midst of sadness? Maybe you’ve got some praise reports to share. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments 🙂