As of May 2, I took on a new role. I am now a mom. (Crazy!)
Declan Pearce Simons made his way into my life with the slow and deliberate pace of his father (thank you for that 25 hour long labor, young sir) and the hairdo of a hipster guitarist. Seriously, this kid was born shaggy and in need of a trim. But I adore it, so I have no desire to give him one.
In accordance with typical baby activities, Declan has started grabbing and holding onto everything. He curls his tiny, chubby fingers around and hangs on for what would appear to be dear life. He clings to fingers, collars of shirts, pacifiers, blankets, his other hand, my hair, and… you guessed it, his own hair.
The first time this happened Sean had “D” resting on his knees while they cuddled and made faces at each other. All of the sudden, Declan let out a scream. And I mean, a scream. This was not a “I think I might be getting hungry” cry, or a “I just need something to do” cry that is so common for him and other newborns… My son was obviously in pain. Sean immediately started looking for the problem — checking his diaper, his onesie, any possible external source! But I looked over and saw his sweet little fist clenched around his hair, pulling. Hard.
It made me wonder… How many times will I have to watch my son be the cause of his own suffering? How long will I have to listen to his actual or proverbial cries? Right now it makes perfect sense for me to rush in, caress his hand, gently pull it away, speak soothingly, and remove the problem for him. End his pain. But, I won’t always be able to do that. Or perhaps more accurately, it won’t always be good for him for me to do that. Though I’m pretty sure I will always have the desire to be his mommy-hero, to make it all better, and then just hold him close with both of us thinking, “Now aren’t we glad that’s over!?”
And how many times have I been the cause of my own suffering? How often has God looked down on me, with a deep heart’s desire to rescue me, but instead left me to my self-incurred consequences? To let me learn. To allow me the experiences which teach and mold me so that I wouldn’t be stunted or immature. Give me the time and space to realize, I am pulling my own hair out. “Oh! I’m doing this to myself. Maybe I should… rather, maybe I could stop.”
They say that you understand God in a new way once you have a child. I have only begun to experience that expanded awareness, but it is tangible. Real. Now I can all the more clearly see, those times when I prayed for a rescuer, it was actually more loving of Him to let me be. And I pray I will have the discipline to do the same for my son, when the time comes. For now, I’m glad I get to be the immediately available mommy-hero, his much appreciated rescuer.