Today was a pleasant, putter-y sort of day. Dropped kids at school, staying to volunteer for a while in Sofia's classroom. Home to pay bills and work around the house. Parent Teacher conference this afternoon at Caleb's school. Cozy supper of grilled cheese and a quiet evening with the kids. They are in bed, and I am on my way.
The clock on our stove reads NZ time now... so my heart and mind have wandered to that side of the globe not infrequently, but also not unpleasantly. I was a little more on alert during the hour that I knew would be 'touch-down'. I was so relieved to see an email from Anna to Caleb, and then to get one for myself from Marc.
The last time Marc and I were apart for such an extended amount of time was before Caleb was born. Four weeks apart. I was in Calcutta. It was a splurge to send him a fax the three or four times that I did during that trip. I never expected to get one in return. My luggage consisted of letters from family and friends that they had written beforehand - one for each day that I would be there.
And just a few weeks ago I was chatting real-time with my friend in Ethiopia. I am getting instant emails from my family 18 hours away. Bizarre.
One of my hopes during my NZ adventure is to take some sort of personal assessment each day. Spiritual Gifts, personality, enneagram, sorts of things. I hate these things. Marc loves them and is usually the one that is doing or pushing them. I'm not sure if I'm doing them in hopes of discovering something new, rediscovering something forgotten, or just to affirm that I exist as an individual with a unique contribution and calling. But what started as an idea a couple weeks ago has become an important discipline during this adventure.
Today I took a spiritual gifts test at buildingchurch.net. The wording was familiar, the test felt familiar, the results were mostly what I expected. Here are my top five: giving, healing, administration, apostle, leadership. When we took a similar assessment last fall with our church my top two were healing and knowledge. I think I will take that one again, as well.
I found myself wondering why it is I am so much more able to stay even-keeled when I am in tougher situations. Often, by 4pm, I am ready - READY for Marc to be home and help with the parenting - or to take over altogether while I hide under the bed. I know I'm pulling on deep reserves, am also in a Grace Cloud surrounded by prayers of the saints I call friends... But I think that even in normal circumstances both of those exist still and I just don't put my reliance there. This will also be interesting to watch play out over the next couple weeks.