Yeah. This kid.
This little man just lost his two front teeth. He cuddles like a panda bear fast asleep in a bamboo tree. 7 years old and he is all man, and all baby, rolled into one adorable package.
This past weekend we celebrated his birthday with a great beach day party. Classmates, out of school buddies, and their siblings and parents joined us at the beach for grilled lunch, boogie boarding, paddle boarding, kayaking…you name it. It was a picture perfect day, which was a mini miracle in itself, as the weather was supposed to suck all day. So thanks God. Maybe a mini miracle, but a big one to me.
Which made me think about miracles, luck, chance, and timing.
I don’t reference it often, and I don’t dwell on it online or in word, but it is there with me. Every. Single. Day.
The memories. The reminders. Every time he gets a headache. Every time he is a little down. And every day I see him, yes, a part of me remembers.
We almost lost him. This little man who writes notes saying how awesome he is. This little man who loves to tell me my breath is stinky in the morning. This little man whose favorite thing to do is shock people by talking about balls. (We are working on that one.) Several years ago he almost died. 3 days in pediatric ICU, two more days in the hospital, and I was granted the most beautiful miracle. (here is the blog from that time….a tough but honest read https://thesweetfamilylife.wordpress.com/2012/08/17/a-long-absence-life-and-death-a-game-changer-the-hardest-prayer-ever-and-a-healed-child/ )
So on Monday morning, after a full weekend where the fun continued in church then a polo match with more friends and family, I hit the gym sort of sadly, since my great weekend had ended and real life intruded. And a song came on my play list and I just cried. Right in the gym, during my ab work. This is a song called “He’s My Son,” by Mark Shultz, written for friends who walked through pediatric cancer with their child. But so much of that song….the words….they were mine. My words. My heart. My thoughts. Yes, healing.
But there was also comfort, an awareness….this amazing little man. He is mine, but he IS NOT MINE. I can not forget that. As much as I adore and would do and give anything and everything for my children, they are really not mine, unless they are mine to release. Mine to set free. Mine to hold, only to watch as they leave my embrace and venture out as the people they are. Apart from me. For however long they are to be.
I am just privileged to have them for a bit. To share them….to share them with the Creator of their hearts and souls, to share them with the only one who can possibly love them more than I do. So I listened to that song, and did 700 crunches, as the tears fell and the memories rolled, good and bad, and I found joy in what should have brought fear. Five kids….I have no illusions life will pass them, and therefore me, by without a measure of brutality. Of loss. But I can revel in each birthday, in each skim boarded wave, in each goofy toothless grin, each tantrum…..all of it. Every beautiful painful messy moment. All of it.