Today I finished listening to Peter Pan on audiobook. Until today, I thought I had made great strides in overcoming the sadness of my babies growing up. But the ending of that story would surely uncover the most deeply buried melancholy in the most stoic heart.
Mine was not so deeply buried, though. I am the one who cried when I turned 10, not because I was in double digits, but because I didn't want my baby siblings to grow up. When I got married, I wanted children of my own, but if it hurt my heart to watch baby brothers and sisters grow up, how much more painful would it be to watch my own offspring?
Too often God has to remind me of his infinitely superior wisdom. Sometime after the birth of Thing1, after wondering if I was ever going to have the privilege of raising a child, I was comforted by shifting my focus from the precious little people in this world to the most precious One who blesses us with childhood and whom it is my sole purpose to serve and glorify. Why not do my best to help the babies grow up to know this purpose and fulfill it? And then why not rejoice when they do grow up into good people instead of wishing they would stay little forever?
I realized that too tight a grip on yesterday ties up my hands and hinders me from serving today. Since then, I have found that every baby and boyish stage, so far, has been my favorite. Like Peter Pan’s Wendy, I have smiled “wet smiles” at special moments like when Thing1 said he would love me for a thousand years or when I noticed Thing2’s feet hung to The Husband’s knees when he carried him, sleeping, to his bed. I am sure many more smiles will be wet, but unlike my 10-year-old tears, my grownup tears are grateful and content. Until I listen to a book like Peter Pan…