My family and I will be embarking on our next family vacation on Friday, driving through the highways that sneak their ways all the way to Norfolk Virginia to meet our new nephew Eli Wilson Hodges. When we decided that flying was too expensive we then chose to drive the 1,400 or so miles to visit our new family member and just get away.
But I became afraid, because that long of a trip meant many hours of successive days in the car with two 6 year old boys, their Nintendo DS’s, movies and endless ways to get annoyed, frustrated and disappointed in each other and ourselves. I remembered a blog that I had read not long before from Jonathan Acuff when he mentioned that previous to hopping into the car for that long awaited family vacation, he and his wife would say a quick prayer not only for safety but to remind themselves of the love that started the family that surrounded them.
It hit home with me, as we’ve had this trip planned as soon as we found out they were pregnant. So, here is the poem that has danced in my head when I consider the challenging and exciting trip we have before us:
The school year is looming near,
and so the time has come
to board the dog and load the car
for our next family vacation.
The bags are packed, the car’s gassed up,
the boys are snug in their seats.
But before we sit and start counting the miles,
I pledge this too we will defeat.
I pledged to you the day we wed that I would love, honor and protect.
So now I say our mantra can state
I’ll love you even at the end of this day.
We’ve been through rougher, tougher times
than 1,400 long and excruciating miles.
God gave us a challenge, we were ready then,
we’re ready now too with blessings from Him.
So when the kids are yelling in back,
I’ll still love that you’ve beside me stayed.
And when I’m snoring and losing track,
I’ll still be sure of the choices we’ve made.
Marriott, Fairfield or Holiday Inn,
my rest is found where I can lay my head
near your pillow and the familiar warmth
of a day well worth any little struggle before.
The kids, years from now, will reminisce,
poke fun and leaf through memory’s pictures.
And we can see the happiness we shared
without them having to say a single word.
So once the trip has reached its end,
the car is cleared out, the dog’s in her bed.
I will love you then as I love you now,
forever and always because God’s love abounds!