Recently my family, my mother's eldest daughter, found herself stranded. That mother's daughter was me. Now before you begin feeling sorry for me, hear me out. I was with my family in none other than Hawaii during a school break. I felt compelled to provide this with full disclosure because I realize I can count on one hand children I know who have been to Hawaii.
Now to the point? My family has traveled the world. My children have stepped foot on every continent except Antarctica. I made sure of it. They understand and appreciate the multifaceted complexity of this diverse world we live in. They are used to new discovery. They have experienced their parent's trying to order food from pictures on a menu because they did not understand the native language. They have been knee deep in mud trouncing through the Amazon, swatting flies and stepping over ants the size of their thumbs. They have climbed ice glaciers in New Zealand and felt its country's earthquake.
But ..... to be at the airport in Hawaii, missing a return flight home knowing your luggage was on that flight. You on the other hand were not going to be on any flight for at least two more days proved TRAGIC. And that outcome is completely MY FAULT. It is my fault because I forgot to teach them NOT TO SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF. I failed to instill in them that big stuff is clean smelling clothes with enough laundry detergent, enough milk for cereal and two slices of bread needed to make a real school lunch sandwich. I forgot or neglected to teach them to recognize that feeling in the belly of truly being without. So in that moment I made a profound decision. I would give them a glimpse of what it feels like to not know what is ahead. The true vulnerability of "loss". Our first stop was KMART shopping for the four days of essentials we would need and ONLY the essentials. I was about to create a teachable moment for my children. Next stop, the cemetery.