Saturday, September 23, 2006

visitation day

Tomorrow is going to be a long day. I'm sucking down the zinc cold lozenges, trying to breathe and feel better, but I don't yet know how to prepare for our visitation days, even when I do feel fine. We're getting up at 4:30 in the morning to make sure we get a round table in the day room at the prison. It's bad if you don't get a table, and you have the whole family visiting. That means side by side chairs, which is hard if you travel for hours to get there, stay for hours to visit, and then travel for hours home in the same day. I want to enjoy these visits, but after a few hours of compressed relating, I'm tired. I know it's this or nothing. I just wish that weren't the case. I probably won't sleep well tonight, much as I want to and know I need to.

I'm also afraid. Much as I hate to admit it, I'm not a good traveler. I'm on edge the whole time unless my prayers kick in and whatever makes me uneasy somehow disappears. I have trips like that, where I'm completely relaxed, but that is not often. I anticipate the visit, and then on the way home, I think about the visit and hate the fact that we have to do the whole thing again in a month. I know other people have much harder challenges dealing with family visits. We could be a missionary family with kids hundreds, if not thousands of miles away. We could be estranged from children and never hear from them. I don't like prisons no matter how accommodating they are.

Our latest step in CR dealt with insanity, defining it as doing the same things over and over expecting a different result. I know I need to approach these visits differently or the results will always be the same-exhaustion and headaches. I just don't know how right now. I know I need to give it all over completely to God no matter what, instead of "trying" to make it right and comfortable. Maybe I need to accept that it just isn't. Maybe I need to take the pressure off and let myself be ok with not liking it. Hating it sometimes in fact. I don't know. I just want to sleep tonight.


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