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Monday, July 20, 2009

Box Day

I was agitated all day today. Every time a car went by, my ears perked up to see if the engine was rumbly enough to be the FedEx truck. Several times, I muttered to Jeff, "Where is my box?!"

Together, we speculated about its location. Maybe it was accidentally delivered to the church office. No, the office manager was still there. She would have called. Maybe it went to a house up the hill. Last month, we got someone else's FedEx package. Maybe this time, that someone got ours.

I went online and checked the tracking info again. "On the truck for delivery." Same thing it said two hours ago.

Had it been on the FedEx truck that went by around 10 am? Maybe, maybe not. Those packages would have been of the 'guaranteed by 10:30am' variety. Mine was FedEx Ground. NOT guaranteed by 10:30. Or noon. Or 2:30. Or 5:00. Or today.

But I had been waiting for this box not just all day, but all month. Its delayed arrival accounted for our extra week of summer. Its appearance at our door would mean the long-anticipated beginning of my very first year as a homeschool mom.

But the hours ticked on. 1:30pm. 3:00pm. 3:30pm. Such a long, long day.

Finally, around 4:00pm, I surrendered the arrival of the homeschool books to the Lord, assuring Him I would be fine if they didn't come today after all.

After ten more minutes of pacing, I resolved to put my mind on something else, and I headed for the front door to get a bit of fresh air (and watch for the FedEx truck).

Just as I reached the door, through the window I saw an unmarked FedEx-looking van brake as it drove past our house. But it kept going. I yanked the door open and trotted off the front porch and down the sidewalk in my bare feet.

My excitement grew when I heard the truck's back-up beeping noise. As the van came into view, the driver, amused at my wild wave, poked his head out the van window and grinned, "I have a box for you?"

I nodded vigorously. He jumped out of his truck and headed around to the back, asking over his shoulder, "How are you today?"

I said, "I'm very excited about my package."

He carried it to the front porch for me and I dragged it on into the house. James pulled out one of the books and sat reading it, entranced, for forty minutes. Good sign.

I pulled out the instructor's guide and began to frown at all the pages, unsure of what to do. There was a handy brochure, giving me all kinds of confusing instructions. I'd ordered the 4-day, but I found instructions for the 5-day. There were so many readers, and I wasn't sure if they were too advanced for James or not. I looked at the fifty or so books strewn about my living room floor and went numb.

By the time Jeff and the boys left for karate, I was in a bit of a panic. But I was thankful I'd have a few minutes alone to sort everything out.

I remembered an email I'd received from Sonlight. "Click here to see three nifty videos about 'Box Day'."

The nice homeschooling moms on the screen were so pleasant and reassuring that I just burst into tears. Then I chuckled. Just before Jeff headed out the door, he'd said, "Do something girly..."

Well, crying over homeschool materials definitely fits into the 'girly' category.

So, alone in the house and free to be as girly as I pleased, I just let myself cry tears of relief and hope and fear and anticipation, all the way through all three videos.

You see, I've been so excited to homeschool that I forgot all about the rest of my emotions. Beneath my all-encompassing excitement lurked something else: sheer terror. Good gracious. What was I thinking? What if James hates it? What if *I* hate it?

Can I even do this? Abba, HELP!!!

Then God reminded me that I was not alone in the house at all. He wrapped His loving arms around me and covered my soul with His incomprehensible peace.

And I had my answer:

No. I can't do this.

But God can.

Becky

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luke holzmann
Luke Holzmann
Filmmaker, Writer, Empty Nester
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box day
Box Day
Box Day stories and pictures from Sonlighters across the globe. Share your Box Day story!
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judy wnuk
Judy Wnuk
Sonlight customer champion and homeschooling expert.
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sarita holzmann
Sarita Holzmann
Co-founder and president of Sonlight Curriculum.
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