This isn't so much a prayer...more a story, but I'll end it with a prayer.
My niece's birthday was last week, she's 2. Her mother decided that for her birthday we should go spend a day playing at a local boardwalk. There's an area where the kids can play in the water, several restaurants, a small aquarium, just a tourist-y kind of place. It ended up being my mother (mom), my sister-in-law (MF), my niece (EF), and MF's mother (SZ) (she's from an Eastern-European nation and doesn't speak English, but she understands a lot, and MF translates). We met up around 2pm. We started at the water, which normally EF would have LOVED, but she wasn't in a very good mood after a 1 hour car ride. We decided that we should have a meal, so we went to Chain Seafood restaurant. MF and I shared the shrimp plate, mom and SZ shared a fish and fries plate, and EF ate a little of all of it. The child ate almost as much as I did, and drank a HUGE glass of water. There was a lady who was making balloon animals, she made EF a NEMO ballon, it was very cute. After lunch, we all felt better, so we went back to the water, and EF had a BLAST. She would run into the sprinkles and water spouts, get soaked, then come back out laughing. She was so cute! We went to the small aquarium, oohed and ahhed at the fish, sharks, and eels, then went back out to the water to play. When we were done with that, MF took EF on the Merry-Go-Round, EF rode a flying pig. Then to a snack place for a funnel cake and some air conditioning. By then it was 6pm, and time to go home. Poor EF was almost asleep before they could get her to the car. I must admit that I was a little apprehensive about how it would work out, but we had soooo much fun together. Plus, with just the women, we had much more fun than if the men had been there. I don't know why this was, but it just was.
So, the prayer:
Dear Lord, thank you for the family. They drive me insane, I don't understand most of the decisions they make, they sometimes are a little judgemental, but thank you for them. Mom has a lung infection, and her breathing is sometimes a little difficult, but she has such a strong spirit. I know that one of these days I will lose my mother, but please don't let it be very soon. She is a very stable force in our family, and we need her.
Thank you for MF, she's so good for my brother, and such a good mom. Thanks for her mom, SZ. She's so great, and such a good 'Nanzi'. It must be hard for her to come here and be away from the rest of her family, but it is good for EF, and good for MF, so please give her peace in her time here. Thank you for the all of the children in my life, my niece and my many friends with children. I don' t know if it is your will for me to have children of my own, but if not, then give me peace with the children you put in my life. Thank you for a wonderful day on Saturday, for the memories we made and the pictures we took, so that one day we can tell EF all about her 2nd birthday on the boardwalk, with Just The Girls. Amen.