The days are getting longer, the sun leaving time for one more bicycle lap around the culdesac after dinner, the temptation pulling at the boys to sneak in a few more minutes of fun. As the days stretch out, the weeks, months, and years feel so short. I’m doing my best to be intentional in these last moments, because that’s all I feel like I have left…. a few more moments of pregnancy, a breath and she’ll be here. Her movements so clearly defined, an elbow here, foot there, the ever uncomfortable full body stretch in a home that’s rapidly running out of room. Hiccups. Watching the boys faces light up, absolutely mystified, at the ability to feel a tiny person still entirely enveloped safely within. Relishing the concern and protective overtures from Kevin, as he seeks out ways to provide comfort and support for his ‘girls’ in these last few weeks.
It all came full circle on Saturday. It dawned on me that the next 3 weekends are compromised with Easter activities, or leaving/returning from vacation, and then bam I’ll be 37wks. We decided it was time to start getting some things in order, and I set out clearing out the nursery. I could feel my throat tightening the second my eyes saw the enormous bin of Baby Boy clothes, and before I knew it tears were streaming down my face, and then I was laughing hysterically because I NEVER cry. It was really quite the moment. Excitement and anticipation for what life will be like with a daughter, while packing away the incredible memories of watching THREE AMAZING little men grow in and out of those clothes through the years.
(The, “I’m ridiculous face”…. Laughing and crying in the same breath)
(It didn’t help at all that Pandora was playing RIGHT into my emotions, with “You’re Gonna Miss This….” Playing while I was trying to pack everything up….. it was a divine conspiracy to force my hand with tears!)
How can I experience so many moments simultaneously? It is not lost on me that EXACTLY seven years ago, I was in this very stage of pregnancy with my first. Terrified. Totally CLUELESS at what to expect. GROSSLY naive as to what it would actually look like, and then Caleb arrived on Mother’s Day 2008, May 11. Baby girl has an expected due date of May 12. Almost seven years to the date. Now, rather than sitting captive to the internal movements of one, my hand rests on baby girl while my eyes follow the jerky movements of AJ, continuing to explore the ever expanding world around him, and my mind races to keep up with the young men emerging before me, in Logan and Caleb. Four beings that I co-created in love, with the creator of the universe, generating thousands of moments each day, each competing with the other for my undivided attention. It is overwhelming. Sensory overload in the very best sense…. though not always eliciting the very best of responses from me (if we’re being honest ;). I’m trying, trying to remain present, because its moving SO fast.
It’s crazy to think about how SLOWLY time seems to move for them right now. They’ve been asking about vacation for months, wondering WHEN it would FINALLY get here. Literally weeks after we go to Cox farm in the fall for their Fall Festival, they’re already asking when we can go again. When you’re entire life has been lived in only just a few years, it can feel like forever. I remember… it really wasn’t THAT long ago. Yet, in just 7 years I’ve had the ridiculous blessing of being witness to almost every moment of 4 seperate lives…. Literally if I blink I miss something…. so yes…. it moves FAST. If you’ve ever seen a small child move in public, you see how they operate almost entirely exclusive to their surroundings. They are the center of their universe… their wants, needs, desires, fears, are processed first, and they only become aware of their surroundings when they essentially collide with them (i.e. when my kids run into a zillion strangers on the sidewalk or at the store daily…. and I’m like… PUUUUULEEEASE watch where you are going, its so rude simply running into people). However, I see this same behavior in plenty of adults now-a-days as well. It’s not until someone collides with something SO massive, so immovable, that it knocks their reality right off their own personal axis. They’re finally able to see the world from a new perspective. MOTHERHOOD KNOCKED MY LIFE OFF ITS AXIS.
I’ve been in Proverbs lately (Lord must know I need some more wisdom ;), and verse 7 found in Chapter 4 has been sticking with me for a few days: “The beginning of wisdom is this: Get Wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding.” It might be the surest explanation I can provide on WHY we keep having these crazy kids :)…. More than I ever thought I had to give, they ask for, demand even, but there is no price I could put on all that I’ve learned through them. Every day provides a new revelation of God’s truth, uncovered (for me) only through the practice of parenting. Seeing the unique nuances they each manifest, loving them separately, but equally, and in a way that is all consuming. Painfully walking out the choice to allow free will, knowing that will result in choices that cause pain and tempts them to question my own goodness, when I have to make good on consequences. Agonizing over how deeply it hurts to see that question flicker through their eyes as a consequence comes, knowing not for one second did my love or commitment to the VERY best for them ever waver.
Understanding will cost you everything.
As I sit here, in awe at ALL that has transpired in the last decade of my own life, God’s using it to illustrate another divine truth that never made much sense to me before. The concept of 1000 years being but a day to God, and a day like a thousand years (2 Peter 3:8 paraphrased)….. Time continues to move for me at the same pace it always has, yet as I watch the lives of my 4 develop right in front of me, and I make choices that may not even have a direct impact for more than a decade or two for them, I get a glimpse of how God operates outside of our time. He is the witness to every life ever created….. time REALLY must just FLY for Him!
(Cheering on our Spartans for the win on Sunday…. LOOK AT HOW BIG HE IS?!? WHEN… WHEN DID THIS HAPPEN?!? Logan is not that far behind him either…. Love how into the game he got 🙂
(Brothers….. Enjoying lunch in the sun…. All the moments, going by SO. RIDICULOUSLY. FAST!)