"I don't want you to go," one said. The other stood silent with fussy bottom lip protruding from a mournful face that shot daggers into my heart.
I smiled sadly and replied, "I know. But you will have the best time and then I'll be back, better than before."
They didn't believe me. But I know it's true.
Because I know they need a rested mama. I know Mr. Fantastic and I need to give each other the best of who we are for a few days. Parenting can chew you up a bit, and love does not grow properly on table scraps.
We need time together to thrive.
In my suitcase was a silly satin jacket alá the Pink Ladies in Grease, and I was less excited about the costume party than any other part of our getaway.
I've never really liked costumes. Too much social discomfort and pressure to be what I'm not, I guess. I prefer to blend into the crowd and just be.
But last night we put on our 50s attire and headed to the party. There was a basketball and football competition and I happily sent Mr. Fantastic over to win for us.
But then things went a little crazy and he nudged me over. One thing led to another and I won that football thing. It's ridiculous, but true. I never would have even signed up if he hadn't talked me into it.
We celebrated over hot fudge sundaes.
Several hours later, we sat in comfy sweats playing cards. Just the two of us.
"It's the same story again and again," he beamed at me. "You don't think that you can or that you should, but I know it's true: you are meant to shine."
I sat and let the blessing of this man I married seep into my pores and asked God to help me remember his love. I thought of all my single friends and prayed they would find spouses who see more in them than they may see in themselves.
There are times that putting on what is uncomfortable and unfamiliar brings out who we are truly meant to be. Ministry, marriage, motherhood, they have all been hard to wear at times. And yet, they make me better and more radiant.
That's why I decided to organize a class for moms at our church. The world needs women who will shine brightly as moms, so Radiant Moms begins in August. Moms of all ages and stages are welcome. You can click here for more information.
Tomorrow I will pack up my suitcase and return to those little faces that long for me in such a precious way. When I hug their necks, I will shine over them with a well-rested heart.
Because it's true, I am meant to shine. We all are. It's time to become more radiant.