I volunteered today to babysit (all-by-myself) my two grandsons, one about 20 months old and the other a little over 6 months. In almost 5 hours I was whipped like an orphaned pup left out in the rain, plucked by ravens:
* I changed diapers – yes, those kind, (hold . . . hold . . . hold – ok, now breath)
* I fed and got that stuff puked right back on me . . . a little warmer now . . .
* I played, pretended, chased, got chased, wrestled, and acted like every barn-yard animal there is . . . made noises and faces that I would never do in public . . . I forgot how many times a little child can be fascinated doing the same old thing over and over and over and over and over – ad nauseam . . . and have so much fun.
* I laughed and giggled and acted like a goof in one minute like Robin Williams, and on a dime showed empathy and love and tenderness like Mother Theresa, then, in a nano-second showed seriousness, sternness – “don’t do that” with my Robert De Niro face – all within 15 minutes. Golden Globe Award please.
* They were “supposed” to both go down to nap at 1:00 pm. With the skill of a master choreographer . . . Ok. Peace. I think I’ll just squeeze in a nice 30 min. nap . . . BUT NOOOOOO. 5 minutes later: “wwwhhaaawwwwww . . .” Oh gggrrrrrrrrrr. The 6 month is teething . . . won’t sleep. Whew – the older one didn’t wake up. Ok – FOR TWO HOURS I TRIED TO PACIFY THIS 6 MONTH OLD WITH EVERY TRICK IN THE BOOK . . . BUT NNNNOOOOOOOOOOO. Finally, at 3 in the afternoon: he’s asleep. I think I’ll squeeze in a little nap now. “RRAGENFAGERN > > > B$#@()^%JILENa8w9e847570w&.” I hear sounds and sounds and more sounds coming from the older one. Nearly two hours went by while I was giving my all to the little one, and now the older one is up ready to take on the world like a Mutant Ninja Turtle on steroids. I think I’m going to die . . . I only got a 5 minute nap . . . just long enough to make me throw up my own lunch . . . I feel sick.
Ok. more food, more diapers, more play, more of me, more of me, more of me . . . WHAT is that sweet sound of heaven I hear????????
YES . . . is that the garage door opening – MOTHER is home. YES – I’m saved, saved, saved, elated and so euphoric – oh how happy I am! Oh my goodness I can’t believe how happy I am!!!!!!!!!!
This will take a full day to recover.
Therefore, here are my take-aways:
1. Little children are exhausting but they’re worth every bit of what it takes to parent a child.
2. Little children are not the center of the universe – Jesus is. That’s why I let the little one finally cry himself to sleep for the longest 10 minutes. I’ve done all that I can do . . . deal with it. Jesus is Lord, you’re not.
3. Mothers of little children are some of the hardest workers in the world. Hands down. No argument.
4. What great work Jesus must be doing every day to “mother” me through all my child-rearing – Sounds weird?
“. . . that you may nurse and be satisfied from her consoling breast; that you may drink deeply with delight from her glorious abundance . . . and you shall nurse, you shall be carried upon her hip, and bounced upon her knees. As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you . . .” (Isaiah 66:11-13).
“Happy Mother’s Day” is any day that you take care of someone else’s children. Be sure to tell a mom that you appreciate all that she does.
To my daughter, my son-in-laws wife, and the mother of my two grandsons: I’m so proud of you! Happy mother’s day honey.
p.s. I wished I had seen this great truth when I was in my 20’s raising my kids and watching my wife, a mother of three – pour out her life into our children, and praised her more than I did. I wish.