Friday, July 03, 2009


Well, we're back. As evidence, it's 5:30 in the morning, and despite an exhausting day yesterday, I've been wide awake for hours. It's interesting how two days ago, if you had asked me where I was from, I would have said "Lyon," yet today it's "Illinois." How quickly our definition of "home" can change!

Our trip home was, well, unique. To describe it, I think I'll share what I wrote in my personal journal yesterday morning at 6:00 am, while the girls were still sleeping.

I’m writing from Paris right now, mentally preparing myself to catch a shuttle in less than an hour and hopefully arrive in the States this evening. Wow. Already the past ten months are starting to feel so unreal—as if they never happened. And yet, as long as we were in Lyon, it felt like our entire world—where we had always been (sort of) and where we would yet remain.

All in all, the trip has gone remarkably smoothly so far. I’ve done so little with this move that I feel almost guilty about it. While I did a lot of advance organizing...

I was then interrupted by the sound of Talia wretching. She woke up, vomited violently, and I knew it was going to be a long day. By the time Jason got back from a morning walk, Brooklyn was awake and moaning on the toilet about how her "poo poos were gross." Jason began to give the girls blessings, but was interrupted by Talia tossing her cookies again. At this point, I knew we'd all be skipping the free continental breakfast...

With family waiting for us on the other side of the ocean (and some extremely expensive airfares purchased), we prayed and felt like we should start on our journey nevertheless and stop as soon as it became unmanageable. We loaded our eight big suitcases on a couple of luggage carts to wait for the hotel shuttle outside. While we were waiting, Brooklyn puked on the grass. She threw up again on the bus, although I was well-prepared and caught it all. While I don't usually endorse the use of such language, I thought Brooklyn had it just about right when she said afterwards, "Today is a stupid day."

Check-in went quite smoothly, although Talia did throw up once more (water only by this point) while waiting to board the first plane.

And then, nothing. Despite the unlikely probability, both of the girls traveled quite comfortably for both legs of the trip. They even managed to keep down some lunch and dinner. With an extreme amount of faith and prayer, we all made it--tired, but safe.

All in all, this was not the trip home we envisioned. I think the airport hotel restaurant that gave our children mild food poisoning right before our departure should be sued for sabotage. Yet I am still grateful for the blessings. When we finally made it to the other side of the big "puddle," we were greeted with loving arms and fun balloons.

Ah, it feels good to be home.


makinzee said...

Welcome home, despite leaving your "cookies" in France!

Mom L said...

Hooray!!!! We're so glad you made it back safe. What an experience you've had. And with small children, all experiences seem to be multiplied triple fold.

Tanja said...

I am so glad you made it!

Jackie said...

I am SO SORRY! Was it just food poisoning or what? We're glad we have you back in Illinois though!

candice said...

wow, what a trip. i'm glad it all worked out once you were on the plane. your poor girls!

glad you are 'home', welcome back :)

Summer said...

I can't find your email address so I'm going to make this very public...we will be in Champaign the 17th thru the 19th. We thought it would be fun to get together at the park or to have ice cream or something. Let me know.