Tuesday, March 2, 2010

2:: Holding them close

Warning: it's a heavy topic tonight.

Last week a 17-yr old girl disappeared after going for a run at a well-known and travelled spot.  Thousands of volunteers have been searching for clues and a few days ago an arrest was made.  The city has been holding out hope that she would be found alive and safe.  Unfortunately this afternoon a body was discovered and although it has not been officially identified the Sheriff has said there is a strong liklihood that it's her body.

One year ago, a 14-yr old girl disappeared while walking to school and there are now suspicions that the same suspect could be involved.  Her body has not been found.

Several years ago a young girl disappeared from her home and was found to have been kidnapped and murdered by her neighbor.

When I was in high school, a girl from my youth group was murdered in her home by a neighbor.

I can't bear to follow closely, but every day or two, when I see mention of Layla Grace on Twitter, I check in. 

So much grief and sadness.

It's heavy, I know.  A topic perhaps we'd like to avoid and push to the back of our mind.

But tonight, it's close to my heart.  Because close to my heart I hold three daughters.  Three beautiful, precious girls.  Who are often the target of such heinous crimes.  Three girls who could easily get sick like Layla Grace and so many other little ones, like Allie, a sweet baby just 1 month older than Miss Rose, a story I followed closely.  (Allie's mom is awesome, BTW)

I never want to let my precious girls out of my sight right now.  Miss Rose has had the privilege of riding her bike around our short block on our own.  I can't handle that idea right now.  The crimes I listed above, they occurred in "good" neighborhoods, ones even a bit more upscale than my own. 

I rushed home from work tonight to get Miss Rose to T-ball practice.  On any other day I may have been a bit impatient to get home and get dinner started and our evening routines going.  I would have a mental list going of what needed to get done and what I wished I was doing.  Tonight, I gladly watched Miss Rose practice with Lily safely in the sling and Gracie next to me.  We walked over to the playground and the little girls got to swing.

I cherished every moment.  I chose to take advantage of the opportunity I had to play with my little girls and watch my big girl learn T-ball (she's already one of the better hitters and throwers!) 

Why wish I was dealing with the responsibilities of the home--when I could just play and drink in their sweetness.

I know I can't protect them from everything.  I know above all, I have to trust God for their well-being.  But for as long as I can, I'm going to hold them close and cherish the opportunities to play, because sometimes, it doesn't last forever.

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