Waxing Gibbous

“Mom, every night at 9:00 pm, no matter where you are in the world, I want you to look up at the moon and think of me.”  Isabel said.

For science, Isabel is studying the moon for the next 30 days. The other night we were sitting outside looking at the sky, she was snuggled close, and together we admired the beauty of the moon as it peaked out behind the moving clouds.

“Mom, tonight the moon is a waxing gibbous.  This is when the moon isn’t quite full and it’s shiny on one side, like someone had waxed it, but they didn’t quite get the entire thing.”

Today, as I walked out of the house to leave for my first of many trips, Isabel handed me a sheet of paper that she had created with the cycle of the moon on it. With pictures, it detailed out the various stages of the moon.  “Here Mom, take this with you so you can know what kind of moon it is when you see it at night.”

I folded it up neatly and placed it carefully in my backpack and I gave Isabel a big hug.

When I am traveling, right around the time that I would usually be home to tuck in my kids, I start to ache.  I remember one night, when I was in the Amazon, stepping outside and looking up at the night sky and being overwhelmed with the shear beauty. The sounds of the jungle sung into the night, the stars brilliantly covered the sky, and the moon hovered low, lighting up the jungle floor and reflected off the river.  I also remember having a terrible ache for home being in a place without Internet in a remote part of the world, missing my family and feeling lonely.  I was seeing something so beautiful, but not able to share it with the ones I love the most.   I called home that night, and we all shared our feelings of missing one another.  Hanging up was hard, and I wanted to cry.  But I remember looking up at the sky again, and being reminded of God’s presence.  He reminded me that for ages the stars in the sky have navigated the traveler home. Luckily, I don’t have to depend on the stars to find my way home, thanks to airplanes.   Needless to say, He came near that night and brought me peace.

It was hard saying good-bye to my kids today.  Stephen is in Brazil and the girls are at their grandma’s for a couple of days. I have some big adventurous travel happening over the next few weeks. This week, I am in Colorado.

So, for the next 30 days, at 9 pm, whether I am home or traveling, I will be going outside to look up. Possibly the sky will be filled with clouds hiding the stars and the moon, or maybe I will see something beautiful.  Whatever the sky, it will be the time of day that I am reminded that there is a young lady at home who loves me enough to prepare a piece of paper with pictures of the moon. I will think of my family.  As the moon changes, I will know that time is passing, leading me closer to home. My adventures may be great, but home is love. And when my heart aches while I am away, God is near and he will be my constant companion.

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One Comment on “Waxing Gibbous

  1. Great thoughts!
    It’s weird–people always ask if we enjoy all the travel. For me, the answer is that I am grateful for the opportunity but always am thinking, ” I wish my family was here”. I hope you have a great trip or trips and I pray that God holds you close and your family closer. Congrats on your new job and blessings and safe travel to you. Scott

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Sandra Jones Counseling

Specializing in Marriage and Family Therapy

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