Two weeks ago, I went back to work at a hospital for the first time in over two years. Life away from nursing hasn't been idle... I've sewn a lot of bags, given birth to two beautiful babies, and moved across the country. For me to go back to work as a nurse was a decision bathed in prayer and affirmed by our closest family and friends. It's an exciting opportunity, incredibly helpful to our family's financial future, and one we've waited for until just the right time. Still, it's been a more difficult transition than I anticipated (at least for me). I'm currently orienting to my unit at full-time hours, so it feels like I'm away more than I'm home. Soon, though, I'll be working part-time and getting back to our normal routine with a few long afternoons at the hospital thrown in.
Eight years ago, when Shawn and I had only been dating for a week, we traveled to opposite sides of the globe. I went to Viet Nam; he went to the Pacific Northwest. After a long day of teaching English, I journaled, "I don't think I've ever truly missed someone until now." Dramatic? Maybe. But it felt so true. I thought about how long it would take to get back to him... all the hours in the sky traversing the Pacific. All the buses, planes, and trains it would take to see his face. After two weeks with very little communication, we both landed in Chicago and found our relationship to be a little different than before. The missing had made it deeper, sweeter, something we didn't take for granted.
The missing I feel at work has made me feel the same about these two. As I'm sitting at the desk charting assessments or helping a patient back into bed, I'm missing my Liam and my Lanie. Wondering if Liam said, "Sweep so good!" after getting up from his nap. Hoping Lanie gave her dad a break for a couple hours while Liam napped. Thinking of the little moments that create big love in my heart. Waiting until the clock turns to 8 and I hear, "Mooommmmmy!!!" as I walk through the door.