This week, something has been strange around the Hicks House. I couldn't put my finger on what was wrong - well, I wouldn't exactly call it wrong - just different. It was QUIET. I'm not acquainted with quiet, and it seemed very strange to me.
Sure, I still had the normal hectic mornings - girls up, showers, breakfast, hurry, hurry out the door. And work was hectic. We lost two employees in the foodservice department and I filled in where I could. Meetings, reports due, planning sessions, phone calls - heck, its' even budget season. Evenings have been full of PTSA meetings, church meetings, work to do, dinner to put on the table. But something was different - really it was. It was quiet.
And then I figured it out....Avery was not here! Avery, our energetic 14 year old ball-of-energy left on Sunday afternoon for TSA State Finals. Now getting her ready to go, that was a different story altogether. Saturday night she was at middle school until 11:00 p.m. preparing for finals. Sunday morning was the usual drama. Hectic morning, in a rush, 'don't have time to get my clothes out to wash Mom.' After the final 'amen' at church, she and I rushed out the door to beat everyone out - so we could drive home on two wheels and get her clothes washed. Okay, clothes washed in record time, pot roast on the table, Avery fed. "oh my gosh I forgot to wash my shorts Mom" and we washed shorts in record time. Okay, everything washed and dried, folded and ready to be packed. "Where's the suitcase Mom?" she yells from her room. OH NO. Oldest daughter, Austin has them ALL at her house! "Ricky, can you run over to Austin's and get a suitcase honey?" Okay, suitcase back, packing, packing, packing. Argument ensues between Olivia and Avery over which flat iron was staying and which one was going to TSA. Argument settled. Uh oh. Argument #2 - but I can't recall if #2 was over makeup or shoes or hair dryer. No. Makeup was #4 and hairdryer was #3. Or was it....oh well. Then, I hear a blood-curdling yell from her room, "MOM, I have to GO! I am going to be late." In her rush to get in the car, we somehow failed to get all her bags. Halfway to their destination Dad had to turn around and get her bookbag that held everything for Finals. Oh my!!
So, if that gives you any indication of what life is like with Avery, then you understand why it is strangely quiet around the Hicks House this week....at least until Wednesday night....when she returns. And I, for one, will be oh-so-glad to have her back. Our family isn't complete without her around here! Even though she is hard to live with, a drama queen most of the time, the kid that is never wrong, deeply convicted about political views, and may someday (truly) run the world, I miss her when she's not here.
So I look forward to Wednesday night when that door swings wide open, when all those bags and shoes and 'stuff' gets dropped beside the dining room table and drama begins again. Thank you Lord, I will say to myself. Things are back to normal around here!