That was one helluva week that was. I’m still reeling from it. And yet, it was also strangely good. Life is a perverse experience at times, one day I might get used to it. There was a whole bunch of stressful things planned… people…. meetings… into which another whole bunch of stressful unplanned things decided to insert themselves without asking permission…. and then somehow by the end of the week, even the unplanned stresses had managed to untangle themselves like unwinding a ball of wool after the dog’s been at it.
Tuesday morning the prison phoned to say the social worker was coming to interview us at ten o’clock. Sure enough, at eleven o’clock a marked car arrived, complete with social worker, psychologist and armed guard alias driver. The latter sat outside… to protect the people inside, or merely to ensure that our neighbours are persuaded that not only are we mad (as they already believe) but that we are also dangerous. Tuesday afternoon, I was driving with the grandmother from the village, when we were hit from behind by a truck. Luckily both vehicles were still driveable, but the visits to his insurer and ours took care of enough of the rest of the afternoon. Luckily he was deemed to be at fault. We’re still waiting for the damage to be officially assessed. So till then, our car is easy to spot in any car-park; apart from being the dirtiest (usual scenario), it is also the bent one. We’ve since heard that the professionals from the prison have given us a glowing report, so whatever they were scoring us on, it certainly wasn’t the tidy-ness of the house.
Tuesday evening the planned people started showing up. I know why the Bible says “blessed are the peacemakers”; because they jolly well deserve their mansions in heaven. And whatever God blesses me for, it will not be for any skill or grace of mine in conflict resolution. But his grace is bigger, so peace is made and relationships are restored, and hopefully we’ve all been strengthened in him, as well as in our relationships with each other. Like I say, I’m shattered, but it was strangely good. Now I merely need to come back to earth and do something useful with the week which we seem to be already halfway through (where did that go?), or that baby’s going to be showing up any day soon and I won’t be ready for him (is anyone ever really ready, or am I just pathologically underprepared?).