|(This was the view of the interstate. I could take this picture because we were not moving)|
Actually, it was supposed to be a trip to help out and support family. My nephew had surgery and my mother had complications with a surgery. It ended up that my mother was fine when we got there and my nephew sailed through his procedure with only one night in the hospital. Praise God for those blessings but I think we brought more work than relief. Fail!
Besides traveling through a whole state full of ice and snow, one of the challenges was feeding my daughter who is still on the grain-free, dairy-free, sugar-free, fruit-free, yeast-free diet. If you have ever traveled through Iowa, you know the challenges of just finding food period so the only option was to pack all her food.
|(Rest stop? Gas station? Anything?)|
One little gem we did find was Chipolte, which is like a Subway only with burritos and tacos. They let you custom order bowls without the tortillas and they use lots of organic, fresh ingredients. It was a nice respite to leave the house without packing a bag of food, wishing we had one here. At the hospital it was necessary to bring food because oddly, hospitals are not very accommodating to food allergies if you are not a patient.
We found a cafe that made breakfast sandwiches and they agreed to just sell us the microwaved egg sans bread, cheese, and meat. Yum! Sadly, my daughter confused packets of sugar for salt and ruined most of the egg. Needless to say, this diet did not successfully travel with us and she had a few slumpy days. The sugar exposure also caused her to have intense cravings for junk food which have not been a problem. One time she grabbed me and said, "I just want ice cream." The intensity of her desire was a little frightening for both of us. We laugh about it after the fact.
Now, we are back home to Spring! My nephew is recovering beautifully, we are eating right again, and back to working on the relationship with our foster daughter. She was fine on the trip and has been pretty even-keeled since she has heard from her mom and other family. So much exists that is praiseworthy.
We had some obstacles but it was mostly with how she and I connect. This is still a struggle for me and I shamefully admit it to you. She makes sure to dredge up my every flaw (I have lots, too) and I shrink back. It is a game and I pull away even more, resenting that I can be manipulated.
Ah, pride. It is an evil, quick-rooting seed and it is horrible. It has stirred up such doubt in me that I have questioned if I should keep myself certified as a foster parent. At this point I have cycled through being hurt, protecting myself, feeling guilty, and now I am at depression. I am hoping the next part of the cycle is overflowing joy. Is God even able to use me in this???? I don't know but He'll give me an answer.
More than anything I would love to see God do a work in this child's life in spite of the chaos and turmoil of her past and my sinful heart.
Next time, I promise to post a recipe and a much more encouraging message.