Taking The Tour To Big Cedar Lodge

Posted: July 31, 2011 in Love and Marriage
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

365 days have passed since “the phone call” that changed everything and brought me back to my wife.  We now have just two final stops on the restoration tour.  Dreams do come true, and all things truly are possible to those who not only believe, but are willing to fight for what they believe in.

This year of restoration was all about healing and rebuilding.  It was a year of both of us saying up front, “I choose to forgive, and with God’s help, to forget.”  Either way, it was a choice that each of us made – to love unconditionally, even when it hurt – and with no guarantees of what the future would hold.  Love is always a choice, and if it really is love, it will stand through every test.

I can’t really imagine anything more appropriate than the fact that tomorrow, my wife and I will leave for Big Cedar Lodge for a second honeymoon.  We will be there during the exact period of time that I was moving back in and we were trying to figure out where we stood and what we were supposed to do last Summer.  At that time, both of us were wounded, fearful, and broken, but willing to take the chance that love really could not only save the day, but the rest of our lives.

That week, we tiptoed around and worried about all the unknowns, before ultimately talking everything through and beginning what has become known as the restoration tour.  This year, we will spend the week celebrating our reclaimed love, the healing of our hearts and minds, and everything that has become new and better in our marriage.  Yes, we are taking the honeymoon before the wedding, so to speak, but since we are already married, I don’t see a problem with that arrangement.

Big Cedar Lodge is a world-class resort near Branson, Missouri, where my wife used to work.  While in culinary school, she was hired to cook at one of their restaurants.  Eventually, she transferred to the bakery to pursue her real love, pastries.  She worked insane hours then, sometimes having to leave for work at 1:30AM and never really knowing when her shift might end.

In the winter, because of the remote location and the terrain, the employees sometimes got snowed in and had to stay overnight in one of the rooms.  During the terrible ice storm that we experienced while she was working there, there was a night when I thought perhaps I had lost her, even though this was long before she actually did leave me.

We had been without electricity for weeks and times were extremely difficult.  One night, my wife never called or came home.  Because of the road conditions, there was no way for me to go looking for her, and the highway patrol had no information, so I had to assume that she was ok, but not calling for whatever reason.  I figured that she was tired of living the way we had been and maybe some wealthy person at the resort had offered her an escape from it all.

I wouldn’t have blamed her had that been the case.  I wasn’t treating her right at the time, but she has far too much character to have done something like that.  The truth was, she had worked long past quitting time and then been sent to a room that was already occupied by other women who were also being made to stay.  There was no cell service and the room’s phone was unavailable, and she fell asleep without having the opportunity to call.

We went to Big Cedar as guests on two occasions once she was no longer employed there.  Both times, they were supposed to be really great, but didn’t quite turn out the way I hoped.  The first was over Mother’s Day and my wife’s birthday, and we got a two bedroom suite so that the kids could come.  We had fun, but there was also an edginess that betrayed the truth about where our relationship stood.

The second time, it was just the two of us, and it was supposed to be a very romantic getaway.  We brought lots of old musicals to watch and we actually got snowed in while we were there.  The rooms have kitchens and we cooked some great meals and watched the dvd’s while the snow piled up outside, but there was something missing between us.  We just didn’t have the closeness that two people who love each other should.

This time, it will be different.  This time, our dreams are all coming true, and when we return, we will say our new vows and rejoice with family and friends as the restoration tour arrives at its final destination.

  1. Debbie says:

    I quoted you in this post (and added the link back to you).

  2. […] ~excerpt from Taking the Tour To Big Cedar Lodge […]

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