I was sitting on the porch holding my great niece. She is six months old and pure joy. She is one of the happiest babies I have ever met. She is doing this delightful thing of clapping the bottoms of her feet together when she lays on her back playing and laughing. While I was holding her, I was suddenly overcome with the notion that I have to love her and her sister enough to make up for the ones missing. They should have my mother and father still here. There are other family members whose health and other factors reduce the time and attention available to spend with them. I want them to feel the love I felt from my grandparents and my parents. A love that flows through time and space to them. So much love and delight from generation to generation.
I have to talk about him for a moment. He cooked us the best ribs and chicken for dinner today. He is so wonderful to take time to cook something special. Everything he cooks turns out perfect every time. I fixed some green beans with browned butter and almonds as well as herbed corn on the cob. I had picked up some Hawaiian rolls to go along. For a light dessert, we had pineapple angel food cake. . My niece and her family were here. My angel daughter was here. We visited and cooked and ate and played with the girls. I don’t think my niece and her honey ate any cake. They had to get loaded and on the road to get home.
The porch is quiet now. I am savoring the memories freshly made. I sting in my eyes, though. Missing my son and his bride. They would have been here today, too, had they been in Texas.
On Friday, he and I went to Lockhart. On the way, we stopped to see my cousin and her husband. She is one of my anchors. She remembers so much of the old ways and the ancestors from years past. She is actually my mother’s first cousin and so of that generation. Being with her always helps me feel better about life.
We went on to our destination and had time to visit with friends from Oregon. My young friend is a delight to be around. Her father is a good friend to us. She keeps telling me she wants to come to Texas to go to college. I have reassured her father I will keep up with her. She is a senior in high school and Oregon is a long way from her Daddy, the rest of her family, and her friends. The reality may be less appealing than the dream for her. I am here for her if she needs me. I remember her coming to the kitchen at the sale barn maybe 3 years old in her cowboy boots. Enough love for her, too.
He raises longhorns. I am on the paperwork, too. But, he does the real business. Sometimes I help by standing in the way to hopefully keep a cow going the right direction. Maybe open or close a gate or pick up feed at the feed store. Not much real help. But, I love the cows. We brought home a very nice cow to add to our herd. We got her at the Butler Sale in Lockhart. She was bred and branded by the previously mentioned cousins. Longhorns are more than cattle to me. They are living history. They are part of my history. As a Texan and an American, I understand the difference they made in making our nation what it has become. Enough love for him to help out. Enough love for history to appreciate what we have.
I have a cousin struggling with illness and her mother doing all she can to help her. I have a friend dealing with a very ill mother and personal struggles as well. I have another friend recently dealt a hard blow in her life trying to get her feet under her and regroup. I don’t know what to do sometimes except go sit with them, call or text them, pray with and for them. Enough love for them.
The wonderful thing about love is that there is always enough. Loves brings love. Genuine love. The kind of love that needs nothing in return. Unconditional. The love needed comes from His Love. He is Love. God is Love. Letting go and letting Him use me to love others. That is what I want. That is what He wants for me, too. He wrote it clearly in His Book. Enough love. Always enough.
Labor Day. Summer’s End. A final fling. Fall’s Beginning. Another season. Always turning and returning seasons. As life has its seasons, love has its seasons. The labor of love is no real labor. Enough love from Him, for Him, from him, for him. Enough love from the ancestors to the descendants. This is my season for loving. The grandparents’ season has passed. The parents’ season has passed. This is my season. My season to do the labor of love. I pray I do it as well as they did. Enough love to sustain through the seasons to come. Enough love.