So by now many of you have heard of our unplanned adventure last weekend as we traveled to Cincinnati for Nathanael's check-up. When we learned on Friday that we had two of the three pilots needed for our trip (through Angel/Grace Flight) we began to look for someone to drive us to Little Rock, AR. (Brad had just undergone a procedure that made driving for any length of time pretty uncomfortable.) Once some friends had been located for the job, I finished packing, put things in the car, and tried to get some sleep.
The next day the boys and I left the house around 6:00am, picked up our friends at their home, and were on our way - planning to meet our pilot around 11:00am. About halfway there we got a call from our pilot, who told us that he had tried to take off from his home in St. Louis, and had to turn back due to turbulence. He apologized profusely, but told me that it was not a good day to fly, as he didn't want any of us to get sick. We called the Angel/Grace Flight on-call coordinator, who told us that we could try on Monday to start again, but could not put together a whole mission (involving three pilots, flight plans - a complicated process) over the weekend. Since our appointment was Wednesday, our friends graciously looked at me and said, "We can keep driving...it's really important that you get there."
We knew my parents were en route from Milwaukee to Cincinnati, so we called them, and they were near Indianapolis. We looked at the map, and decided to both travel towards Tennessee to meet somewhere to help divide up the driving. We kept in contact and continued to check the map, and finally decided to meet in Jackson, TN, about halfway between Memphis and Nashville. We arrived there around 4pm (central time) and made the "hand off" where we moved the boys' car seats and all our stuff from the minivan into my parents' sedan. After we said our goodbyes (and thank you!) to our friends, we started the second half of our journey.
The boys were getting pretty tired and a little crabby. Jamison had not slept since 5:30am when I awakened him, and Nathanael had taken a few short naps in the morning, but was getting pretty tired of his car seat. At one point Jamison finally caved and fell asleep, but Nathanael continued to cry, so my mom sang to him (sitting next to him) until he finally gave up due to sheer exhaustion. Of course, when we arrived around midnight both boys woke up, but went back to sleep before too long.
Needless to say ALL of us were pretty worn out the next day, so after visiting with my parents, and brother and sister-in-law (who came down from Columbus) the boys and I all took naps! We were just SO THANKFUL to be there so we could see the doctor. It was so clearly God's provision that we had generous parties to drive us each half of our trip, AND, looking back, it was so good that we drove when we did, as all of the major highways were still passable at the time (though the flooding along much of our travel route was pretty extensive).
Please do keep in prayer the many people whose lives have been affected by the flooding and storms. Seeing it from the air on the way home was pretty amazing. Some farm houses looked like they were on small islands in the middle of lakes (formerly their fields), and rivers had swelled to twice their normal size.
In spite of how tiring car travel is (for the passengers, let alone the drivers!) we did enjoy our visits with our drivers, so that made the time pass quickly...well, more quickly than it would have without the good company! ;) So praise God with us for His provision for us.