Technically, I do have that time today. But I won't be using it for that. In a few minutes, I'm leaving the house for something else.
Many, many years ago, during the baby era, I was visiting teaching a dear woman named Mindy who had exited her own baby years not long before. I was bemoaning how difficult it was for me to ever get to the temple. I lived about half an hour away at the time, and the temple I attended was so busy that it was not at all uncommon to wait in the chapel an hour and a half for a two-hour session.
When you have a nursing baby who refuses a bottle, being away for four or more hours is really not much of an option--or if you attempt it, the session is nerve-wracking and hardly the peaceful, spiritual experience it should be, because you know that back at home, your baby is screaming the roof off and wailing for your comfort.
Once or twice I got up early on a Saturday morning, nursed the baby, and raced out alone to do an intitatory session because they're shorter and I could get back before the baby needed me again.
Or there were situations where we'd be past the nursing issue and I'd get a babysitter all set up, but then the toddler would start vomiting or spewing out the other end ten minutes before we were to leave--and I could hardly expect a sitter to deal with that. Or something else would prevent us from going. I swear, there was always something. (Of course, isn't there always when you're supposed to get there?)
I sat in this sweet woman's house almost on the verge of tears. I wanted so badly to just get to the temple on a regular basis (at that point, I would have been happy with every other month). I knew she went every single Wednesday. All her kids were in school, so it was easy for her, and I envied her something fierce. Not to mention that I really felt guilty for not getting to the temple more often. It was just plain frustrating.
Here I was, her visiting teacher, supposed to be the one giving her comfort and support. Instead, she did it for me. She told me it was okay. To not worry so much about it right now. My time would come. We're all in different seasons of our lives, she said. There will be a time when all my kids would be in school and I, too, would be able to go to the temple during the day--even once a week, like she did, if I wanted to.
The time would come.
I have held onto that reminder for many, many years.
Today is technically the second day of school in our district, but with the way they work 7th grade, it's the first day all my kids are gone to school all day.
I promised myself years ago that when that day came, I'd be at the temple. So that's where I'm going.
To me, it's a sign of good faith to the Lord that I will go more often now that I'm in a different season.
And it's a nod to Mindy for her comforting words so long ago.
Plus, to be honest, it's also a bit because I really, really want to be there, and I can do that today without juggling any balls or doing back flips to make it happen.
So I'm going.
Hope no one minds waiting for the next installment for another week.