Saturday, September 17, 2016

Because Sometimes McDonald's Makes Me Cry

I recently made the drive to Springfield, Illinois, to help welcome Dad and many other veterans home from their Honor Flight trip to Washington, D.C.

This involved a very enjoyable five hour drive across Indiana and part of Illinois.

I drove along taking in the beautiful sights of cornfields and barns, listening alternately to the radio and the silence.  Eventually, though, the predictability of interstate driving led me to nudge my speedometer past the approved speed limit.

Of course, I was not long at this excessive speed before I met a state police car.  Oops.  I decided rather hastily it was time for a pit stop and took the nearby exit ramp that fate had so kindly provided me.

I congratulated myself on avoiding a potential conversation with the Illinois state trooper I had just met.

And then....

As I pulled into the gas station/ McDonald's along this random road among so many that grid the state, it took my breath away and the tears immediately came.

I don't even know where exactly in Illinois this place is located,
but two short months earlier
  I had stopped at this very same restaurant to eat lunch...

With Mom.

Needless to say, I spent a few minutes in the car composing myself (not very well, by the way)
before walking into the restaurant.

Memories flooded my mind.  
Who would have thought such a small choice in July would seem so precious now?
Who knew that in two short months life could look so different?

Back in July, Mom and I took the kids to Chicago.
After a fun visit with Beth and Matt, we headed south to West Salem 
wandering back roads and enjoying the time together.  

We stopped here to get gas and lunch.

And this time?
I think it was God's tiny gift to me.
A gift that says He loves me and knows me.
 Not just in the big ways, 
but even in the smallest of places hidden in my heart.

 Places like a noisy McDonald's restaurant where Mom and I sat together 
and dined with my kids....
never knowing it would be the last time.

I'm sure McDonald's customers were curious as to the mental state of the lady crying and taking pictures in their restaurant.  

Let them wonder. I didn't care.

1 comment:

  1. Those sad but precious moments will come along from time to time. Memories are special!!