Normal Is A Good Thing


I’m over at Christian Women’s Online Network today. How about popping over there and checking out my post? I’ll love ya forever. If you like it please let me know by clicking the “like button” and/or leave a comment and we’ll talk about the post. I believe you’ll want to once you read it.

Today’s post is a prompt from The Red Dress Club, Red Writing Hood. we were asked to repost our favorite Red Writing Hood prompt. Here it is and I hope you’ll fall in love with the heroine Lina. This is a continuation from her story. If your interested in her past read I Never Left Her, The Prison Cell From Hell.

The buzzer buzzed and the large metal door opened. She walked through to the other side with a slow shuffle, making her way to the long table in the middle of the visitor’s area. Her visitors would be there soon, her babies would see her once again in this horrid place. They would smell the rancid body odor, see and hear things they shouldn’t and feel the shame… again.

Ben and Lacey lived with her sister now. Lynn had a spare bedroom with twin beds set up, ready and waiting for them the very day Lina was sent away to prison. The sisters had tried to better prepare the kids for their mother’s long absence by taking them shopping at Wal-Mart to pick out comforter sets. Kids get excited when they get new things right? The tears came quickly as she thought about the hugs and kisses they willingly gave her for the new bed sets and McDonald’s Happy meals on that last shopping day.

Did they understand what she had done? Could they love her knowing the kind of person she was? Forgiveness, was that even possible? Lina sat staring down at her hands. Thoughts of what those hands had done ran through her mind. Life could have been so different…

Every month when Lynn brought the kids to visit the same dread, shame, and guilt plagued her as she sat there waiting.  She felt like a  coward  during their time together.  Apologies, tears, and sorrow seemed to command their time as the three of them tried to be some sort of a family while in such a cold, barren place. Lina didn’t want this for her kids.
 “God,” she whispered, “let this time with my babies be sweet and special. You know how much I love them, let them know it too. Please take this shame and guilt away from me just for a little while. Maybe if I don’t feel it they won’t either.”

As Lina lifted her head Ben and Lacey ran to her, hugging her furiously, but were immediately whisked away by a tall female guard standing close by. They knew the drill but were determined to  hug their momma before getting caught.

Each had drawn a picture for Lina. Both were excited to show her their pictures and argued about  which one she would look at first. Lina took both in her hands at the same time.

Ben’s drawing was of a house full of people, 1 car in the driveway, and a woman standing large and tall in the middle of the crowd. He said, “That’s you Momma. You’re bigger than everybody else cause your specialer than everybody else.” Lina blew a kiss across the table to her little man.

Lacey’s drawing had 3 large red hearts and many smaller pink hearts all over the paper. She explained in her familiar analytical way, “See, the 3 red hearts are me, Ben and Auntie Lynn and all the little pink hearts,” pointing as she spoke,” are us telling you over and over we love you, we love you!” Lacey’s arms outstretched wide as she demonstrated to her momma how much they loved her. Where was the shame in that?

Today the three didn’t talk about forgiveness, or about how sorry Lina was for things, or how she should have been a better mother… No, today they talked about school, friends, Lacey’s new doll’s clothes and Ben’s 2nd base position on his baseball team.

Today Lina was a good mother who had raised loving, caring, smart kids. She even forgot for a while where she was and why she was there. Prayer answered.

On this visitor’s day Lina, Lacey and Ben were just a normal, ordinary family and that’s a good
thing.

Don’t forget to check out my other blog Grace Full Women for an encouraging word or two with a little inspiration added in and a lot of God’s love to boot.

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Comments

  1. What an unusual piece. I love her focus and introspection.

  2. I am going to go back and read more, but this piece of the story was touching. Love how you show God’s grace and mercy in your writing.

  3. Hi back, first time here.

    Love the sweetness of the story. Thanks for visiting me, I will definitely be back here!

  4. This is very well written. I started to care for the characters very quickly and the end was so bittersweet.

  5. lovely!!

  6. Oh Julie! I am crying…it is very good writing, and describes so much in such a small window. I have personal ties to this story line…a very dear friend of mine was separated from her children for three years and you really put in perspective what she must have felt like when she got a visit from her children.

    I can’t wait to read more!

    • I am sorry for your dear friend. I had a friend and a cousin who experienced this same thing and my heart broke for them. Sometimes we look at what people have have done and judge them then forget what they may be going through, I hope to touch on just a little piece of that part of the story.

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