Before I post about the LCMS installation service on September 11, I thought I better explain how our vacation went from our house to Fort Wayne to Saint Louis all in the same week.
We hadn't been to Fort Wayne to my parent's house since June 2008. Lamb 3 was a few months old when we went last time. My parents had come to visit us, but we hadn't been there. I was getting homesick for Fort Wayne and our friends there. I can handle living 16 hours away from my parents if I get home every year or two. We planned to make sure to see a few family and friends plus go to the used bookstore there. We planned a trip in the fall to Fort Wayne, but hadn't set a date.
My sister was getting ready to go to South Korea for a year and she will be unable to come back to the USA for that whole year. We wanted to time our trip that we could visit with her before she left but not be in the way while she was packing and doing her final tasks.
Ram didn't have a lot of vacation time because we had already spent a week in CA in May with his family. The tri-parish understands if he has to miss a Sunday, but it is really hard to find a substitute because he does 3 services each Sunday morning. We really try to time vacations to miss one or no Sundays in a year. Add to this that he was a Synodical Convention delegate. That wasn't vacation, but he did miss two Sundays this year for that.
We were trying to figure out if Ram would fly one way and I would drive the Lambs one way where he should fly to. Should he fly to Indianapolis and make a day of it and see my friend Kristy and go to the Children's Museum there? Or fly to Fort Wayne but that is more expensive? About the same time we heard that everyone was invited to the installation service. My dad really wanted to go to the service and process in as a pastor. Rev. Harrison was my former pastor at Fort Wayne so I really wanted to go to the service too. I got the idea that we could drive to Fort Wayne first, then drive to Saint Louis and attend the installation service, and Ram could fly home from Saint Louis. A ticket from Saint Louis was about half the price of a ticket from Indy or Fort Wayne. There actually was a flight in the afternoon that he could take home from Saint Louis and then drive back to our house and be back to do church on Sunday morning. This was my idea and I'm the one that really wanted to do all this in one week and Ram agreed to it.
So we bought a ticket and did that. We drove to Minneapolis in two cars the first Sunday and left his car at the airport. We drove our minivan to Fort Wayne on Monday. We drove to Saint Louis on Friday. We went to the installation service and then dropped off Ram at the airport. My dad and I drove back to Fort Wayne with the Lambs for a few more days of vacation. Then I drove the Lambs home stopping to see friends on the way home.
The crazy part about this was at the time we thought Ram had a rare anemia and thought he would be exhausted with this schedule for a vacation. Because of this, I did more driving than I usually do on vacations even while he was with us. We did this vacation and then he took a nap on Sunday afternoon and slept in on Monday morning and he was ready to go back to work as a pastor. Later that week that he came back from vacation he had the CT Scan where they found the tumor on his kidney. We are so thankful that he came back before us and had that scan which started the process towards going to Mayo for his surgery.
Were we tired after this vacation? Yes. Was it worth being tired? Yes.
We didn't know that Ram would need surgery when we went on our vacation. I am so thankful that we went on our vacation when we did. We were able to spend a week with my sister before she left. If we would have waited until later in the fall then Ram would be recovering and we would be unable to go. Perhaps we would feel like we couldn't afford a trip after medical bills or afford more time away from the church. But I REALLY needed a vacation "home". We had a great time as a family even though it was a busy week and we did so much during the week. Sometimes pastors and their families just have to get away. Helping Ram and being a single parent while he recovers has been easier since I had my vacation. Plus I'm really glad we were there for the installation service. I'll post about the installation soon.