On an autumn afternoon not so long ago, Emily Ann and Josiah David joined hands in front of their closets friends and family.
As she remembered back to that day bits and pieces of their vows rang in her mind. '..and the two shall become One; One in spirit seeking God's perfect union as Man and Wife..' Such sweet words spoken to them as a young couple; now almost 20 years later she was struggling and could not put her finger on any one things that was bothering her, she was in happy in her marriage, but something was missing and she was desperate to find that missing piece before her children or her husband become effected by this cloud.
"Em?" Josiah's voice brought her abrutly back to reality. "you feeling alight?"
"fine, why?" she hoped he didn't sense her anxiety.
"You usually have dinner ready by 6:00 and it is almost 6:30. Can I ask the girls to help do something ?"
"Oh my gracious, where is my head, I'll get it on the table soon. I'm sorry darling."
He reached out and gently grabbed her waist, "Emily, talk to me, what is wrong?"
"Guess I was daydreaming , I just lost track of time, I'm sorry dear" Emily was a pitiful liar but Josiah also knew not to push to hard or she would just shut him out.
"Come here darling" his voice was so calming to her anxious heart, " you know I love you with all my heart, even more than the day I married you, what if I ask Julianne to come stay with the children for a while and we take a short trip just the two of us."
"in the middle of the growing season? Who will take care of the crops? What if something happens to the animals?"
"it will be fine for a few days, the boys can take care of the crops and nothing will happen to the animals, it will be fine. I'm more concerned about you than anything else, sweet Emily" He drew her in closer, wrapping his strong arms around her as if protecting her, from what he wasn't sure, but he knew his wife needed him.
"Mama, I'll make dinner." Jaime Anne eagerly offered to help, "you go rest, maybe read a bit. Papa is soup ok?"
"Sweet Jaime, soup will be fine. I think I spied a loaf of Mama's wonderful bread on the end of the counter, lets have some of that with it." Smiling at his oldest daughter with gratitude he turned back to Emily with care and concern. "since Jaime has dinner under control, you go sit and rest for a while. How about a cup of tea? I'm sure Amelia can but a pot on for some tea?"
"No Thank you, but a glass of water would do fine." Her thoughts all seemed jumbled and fighting with each other for control in her mind, something had to give.
Settingling into the rocker near the fireplace Emily sat quietyly reading from the book of Isaiah with an open heart looking for answers. Josiah quietly sat on the couch across from her just watching his wife's face as she read. As he watched her read, his desire to comfort her overcame him. He loved this woman even more than the day they met. What seemed like only yesterday to him was almost 25 years ago at a church picnic. His family had just moved to the county and he was eager to meet people his age rather than the children that had been so predominate where he came from. At 20 he knew it was time for him to settle down and start his own farm and family. Emily Anne was the first young lady he met at the social and he knew the second he laid eyes on her , she was the one for him. She was simple but beautiful with long auburn hair, deep brown eyes, and a fair complexion. Most the young men looked past her as she wasn't as slender as most of the girls, Josiah on the other hand saw the strength in her. She was soft and gentle as she helped the younger children get their plates set on the tables. She was a natural with children, not showing any signs of wearyness, but only of love and sincerity.
Now the woman , his beautiful wife showed signs of weakness and of a broken spirit. He longed to bring back that beautiful spirit, 'oh Lord, help me comfort her, help me guide her back to the light that is your love" he silently prayed.
"Supper's ready." Jaime called from the kitchen.
"Oh good, I'm starving" Josiah smiled at his daughters as he entered the dinning room.
"me too" squealed Matthew the 3 year old and youngest of the children.
"Is mama coming to the table?" Amelia questioned her Father.
"I don't think so Amy, Jaime can you take you Mother a small bowl of soup."
"Yes, sir" Jaime's quiet demeanor and willingness to help was a welcomed relief this evening.
"Thank you Father for the blessing of this food and for the hands that prepared it." Josiah gave his children a gentle nod and they began to eat. Vegetable soup with salted beef was a wonderful welcome dinner especially with the sweet bread freshly baked yesterday afternoon.
There was little conversation as the children finished their meal. The older children cleared the table and helped the 3 younger ones down from table and to their bedroom.
"I'll get the little ones ready for bed Papa." Amelia stepped up to take her 3 younger siblings to bed.
"Thank you Amy,"
"You don't have to do that Amy, I'll take care of it" Emily's voice interrupted Josiah as she came into the room and picked up little Matthew giving him a squeeze and a gentle kiss on his forhead"
"Mama!" Matty squealed with glee. He loved to squeal any chance he could.
"Thank you everyone for stepping in for me this evening. I am truly blessed to have you all as my family"
Josiah stood and took his wife and youngest child in his arms gently kissing her cheek and hugging them both.
As Emily took her youngest 3 children to begin their bedtime routine.
"Mama read tory." Matthew bounced around their cozy room hoping for a story before bedtime.
"of course Matty, get into bed and I will read a story to all three of you." Emily pulled a smile from the depths of her soul to comfort her children.
Matthew, Luke, and Brandon quickly pulled their night clothes on and climbed into their beds eagerly waiting for their nightly bedtime story and prayer time with their Mother.
"What story would you like to hear tonight my little ones? "
"Jonah" Luke piped up
"Jonah it is" Emily opened her Bible to the book of Jonah and began reading (and simplifing the story as she read.
1, 183 of 50,000 words
*just a note to anyone reading these posts ***ww*** indicates a WordWar, a game we play as part of NaNoWriMo,