For the past month, I’ve had the honor of having Hang Time with New Orleans Hornet Ryan Anderson. (If you’ve missed it check it out here!) Because Ryan has multiple games in multiple cities every week, we do these chats via phone. But we decided it would be fun to get a picture of the two of us for our website. It took a couple of weeks to coordinate a time when we were both available, but we finally arranged to meet before a Friday night game at the New Orleans Arena. And I’d also be able to stay for the game!
And I was nervous y’all. I’ve been nervous every single time I’ve talked to Ryan Anderson for our Hang Time chats and that’s just via phone! So I did the hair AND the makeup. (And it’s rare that both of these are done on the same day.) And I psyched myself up as much as I could. Then, as I’m driving to the arena, my husband Doug called to say that our 3 year old son Finn busted his chin and probably needed stitches. When he said this, I was silent. But my mind was anything but quiet.
What is the correct thing to do in this situation?
Do I fulfill my station obligations that I’ve coordinated for weeks?
Do I drop everything and go to the ER with my husband and son?
What is the right thing to do here!?!
As a parent, my family will always come first. But I also feel a strong commitment to the work I do at the station. I feel God has placed me in this position, therefore I do not take my work responsibilities lightly. Fortunately I am blessed to work at a place that values family. I have not had many situations where I’ve felt torn.
After getting a few more details from Doug, I learn that Finn is calm and Doug feels he can handle this. So Doug and Finn head to the ER and I continue my path to the arena. My plan was to get pictures with Ryan Anderson, bail on the game, and meet my boys at the ER. But even after this decision was made, I questioned “Am I a bad mom? Is Finn going to get his first stitches without his mom, who is his comfort?” But I tried to put those thoughts out of my mind.
We arrived at the Arena, aka The Hive on Hornets game night. We were able to watch the team warm up. After warming up, Ryan Anderson came over to give us sweaty hugs. 6’10″ is even taller than it sounds. And he is just as nice in person as he is on the phone. We got some pictures and then he asked if we were staying for the game. When I told him that I was leaving immediately to head to the ER for my son’s stitches, he said “I’ll pray for him.” As I said, the NICEST!
Mission accomplished: we got an acceptable picture! I’m not the most photogenic person, so all I was hoping for was just one picture I was happy with. And that’s exactly what I got: ONE picture that I was happy with. Here you go!
We said our goodbyes at The Hive and bolted for our vehicles. Now that my station responsibilities were completed, all I could think about was getting to the ER! I just wanted to get there before they did the stitches. By the time I arrived at the Pediatric ER waiting room, I was almost in tears. And this sweet face greeted me:
Finn was fine. He was more than fine. He was great. He was enjoying the toys and the other kids in the waiting room. I arrived before any imminent potty accidents. And I saved the day with a cereal bar in my purse that sufficed as dinner. In the end, Finn didn’t need stitches after all. They were able to use glue instead, which is amazing, but traumatic enough for a 3 year old.
When I woke the next morning, I was thinking about priorities and I thought, “It’s hard being a mom.” But then I adjusted that thought to include all parents. But it’s not just parents, it’s all of us – balancing our many responsibilities. For me, all I can do is make sure the things to which I am committed are things I should be committed to. And then prayerfully consider one decision at a time. And trust God. I’m so thankful that God took care of so many details that night. Not only was I able to fulfill my work responsibilities, but I was also able to arrive in time to be with my son and husband. And even when I was not with them, God was taking care of them. And He was taking care of them much better than I ever could.