One less – bell to answer. One less – egg to fry. One less man – to pick-up after. I should be happy … but all I do is cry …
Over the past week the words to this 70’s Marilyn McCoo song kept playing, over and over in my mind. There’s one less of us in this busy house. Why should this bother me?
Because I keep seeing this chubby little boy run through the house with a cowboy hat on, toting a rifle (that outweighs him) and a smile that will melt anyone’s heart. Flashbacks – they appear like a mirage at the strangest times. I remember driving home from the hospital and watching him in the car-seat – the wonder of knowing this little man, so handsome, so earnest and precious to us all. In case you’re wondering, I don’t have my tenses mixed up. I’m just able to relive the past like it’s present day life – I’m a mom.
Our son, Levi moved out today. He’s finishing up college at the university. This has been a long-time-coming and he’s ready to pursue his dreams at The Meadows School of Art. He’s been working for a couple of years in anticipation. The Lord has given him so much favor and clear direction. It’s all good. Tim and I are so pleased with him. Our hearts are full.
He was loading the truck with all of his earthly possessions – one trip did it. We held the morning long. Tim made his famous homemade biscuit breakfast for us all. I brewed some strong coffee to savor together. One last trip – I ran to Kroger to get Levi living supplies that guys just don’t keep on hand. He eats oatmeal for breakfast (his roommates will laugh), I snagged his favorite coffee, some toothpaste for when he runs out, canned soup – the good kind and essentials that he doesn’t know are essential – yet. Just about to check-out, I was taking stock of my loaded cart when I paused … a familiar sound. The words came out of my mouth in tune with the grocery store piped-in music. It wasn’t Marilyn McCoo – but a new, modern version of the old, familiar song One Less Bell to Answer . Time stood still. I just stood there in the middle of the isle until the song was over.
There has never been a young man that is more loved. Even in a big family or especially in a big family – everyone matters. No one wants his room – yet. On the way home from church, to break the silence, Joel suggested we use all the money we’ll be saving on groceries to take the family out for dinner – to his favorite burger spot, of course. We all smiled.
The next time someone asks me, ‘how many kids do you have left at home?’ – I’ll just say … ‘one less’.