Monday, May 13, 2013

My children

Our last day spent in Europe was walking the streets of Paris.
{Charlotte, Mr. Nielson and I August 2012 * photo by Justin Hackworth}

I enjoyed all the food Europe had to offer, but our last day I thought 
                            I was going to die without some Mexican food.                                                           

We found a small little restaurant in the Latin district that satisfied my craving just fine.               After, we found the oldest bakery in Paris and bought some macaroons for dessert.
One the way back Mr. Nielson and I sat in the metro while in the background a man played a sad tune on his accordion.  I sat across from a man who couldn’t keep his eyes off of me- 
and not in the sense that sounds nice.  He continually stared and whispered to his buddies smiling and snickering.  I was this close to slapping his face.  Seriously.
This type of behavior had gone on my whole trip, and I was SO sick of it.   
It’s so humiliating and exhausting.  I get so tired of the gawkers; one guy getting a look at me, and then tapping his friend to show him and then they point, and then come the laughs-or the words. 
 I was so tired of feeling ugly.
At first I put up with it.  I’d smile and act confident, then after that, I’d try and pretend I didn’t know people were looking at me.  When that didn’t work I became hard and rude deciding to stare right back at them and once I even asked a couple of teenagers what they were looking at.   
Mr. Nielson was shocked at my act, but I was furious and something inside me snapped. 
With tears dripping down on Mr. Nielson's jacket that night I realized that when I am with my children I feel most strong and secure, and I feel brave.
So on that train, I sobbed for my babies who give me that confidence.   
I sobbed for home where I feel comfortable.  I am so thankful for the opportunity I had traveling with family and my husband, swimming the Baltic, and touching the same churches that ancestors touched and attended.
But I was never happier when I saw the faces of my children smiling and excited to see me- their mommy with scars {which I think, they don’t even see anymore}.   
You should have seen Charlotte when her eyes connected with mine after 12 looong days. 
It was the most beautiful thing I saw that entire trip.
 Nothing NOTHING could compare to that.