We leave something of ourselves behind when we leave a place, we stay there, even though we go away. And there are things in us that we can find again only by going back there.” ― Pascal Mercier
Today was my day to go home, leave Chicago and go back to McKinney. But, which one is really home. Like the quote says, “We leave something of ourselves behind when we leave a place.” It was sad to leave my mother, sister, sons, family, and friends. That’s home, or back home, but that’s not where I live.
An early morning start, with Mom waking me at 5:15 to ask if I needed to get up. I told her not till 6, but then couldn’t go back to sleep. Then she teased me with a big smile and outstretched arms and said, “Don’t go!” My sister came at 6:30 am to pick me up for a ride to the airport, but I wasn’t quite all packed. O’Hare is a zoo, so we left plenty early so I had more then enough time to allow for traffic and for security. Everything went smoothly and on time.
O’Hare is a nice airport, but it’s crazy huge, chaotic, and more like a small city surrounded by planes. I had over two hours before boarding, so I made some calls, wrote a little and read. When I got to my seat, 22E, the overhead was empty and I was even able to lift my heavy suitcase up there without male assistance. I was so proud. When the next two passengers arrived, it turned out to be a mother and daughter. One had the window, and the other had the aisle, with me in the middle. The mom offered me her aisle seat. Wow! Glad I didn’t pay the extra $55 for an aisle seat. Got it for free. My lucky day.
The plane was packed, but it was a smooth ride, no delays, and on time back to DFW. My friend Zelda came to pick me up and arrived just as I was walking out to the curb. Perfect timing. Then to make it even “perfecter,” (I like to make up words) we stopped for lunch, had a big salad, then stopped for ice cream. YES! The diet starts tomorrow! (Maybe )
By the time I got home, it was almost 4. The first thing I did was crank up the air, turn on the ceiling fan and lay my head on my very own pillow. But then…I felt guilty. I didn’t go to Mass. I was traveling all day. But, St. Gabriel’s has a 5:30 Sunday evening Mass. So, I got my sorry…self up, and changed my clothes and went to Mass. Of course, to feel back into the swing of things, I went early and greeted at the door, saying “Good evening,” instead of my usual morning greeting. I missed my usual morning ministry, so it was great to see the smiles and hear the return greetings. It was a nice service with lots of singing, a wonderful singing group with guitars and a young woman with the voice of an angel. Sometimes change is good.
The Gospel was the one where Jesus tells some of His followers that difficult choices and sacrifices must be made to follow Him. My take on it…pretty much the same as Father Mike’s, the visiting priest from Oklahoma. Being good, doing good, and following the word of Jesus is not always easy, but the reward is everlasting.
Gospel. Luke 9:51-62
To him Jesus said, “No one who sets a hand to the plowand looks to what was left behind is fit for the kingdom of God.”
So which place did I leave behind something of myself? Where is home? I guess it can be both.
We leave something of ourselves behind when we leave a place, we stay there, even though we go away. And there are things in us that we can find again only by going back there.”
― Pascal Mercier