The Future in My Hand

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Babies have been affecting me for some time now. But lately, it’s been a different affection.

I increasingly marvel at them as small tiny miracles that I cannot get my head around.

I hold them in my hands, where three of my own once lay, and I wonder.

I like how biology makes it certain that most of the time, its young women who have children. Their backs are strong. Their minds are fresh. They tote few premonitions or prejudices. They go at motherhood with gusto and fervency, eager to remember each moment. They will memorize the day that dust motes played in that one’s children’s hair as he sat in a bright doorway… and would long to forget the aching fear -and would do so but for the jagged relief – when for an eternal moment on a regular day, for the briefest time, another got lost in a crowd.

When my three were wee I did the above.

But lately, I wonder that I had such confidence, in babes and me.

I held a babe today, I thought how marvelous he was. And then I thought how joyous I am that he’s not mine because I no longer have that innocent confidence required of motherhood in the early years. I think of what rests on his and all his ilk’s tiny shoulders, and as I rub my hand along his tiny back and pat his milk-swollen belly, the truth that he is, they are, the future, stills my heart. It’s this that never fails to humble me.

I hold the future in my hand and be they brown, black, red, white or a mixture of any and all, they are what is to come.

And so it goes.

I lay him down, and as I watched him smile, I wondered why did he do that? His tiny, fat cheeked face was pleased when I rubbed his soft nose with my own. It was pure pleasure to him, my holding and loving. He held my offered fingers and as he clasped I wondered. Will be heal sick bodies or maybe build houses? Will he preach the Good News or sculpt a masterpiece? Whatever he does, I hope it’s his fate, his choice, to learn true joy years from now.

It’s better to leave the tiny babies to strong backs and fresh minds, for it’s my time to rock them and comfort them, and sing them old songs because I am wise and know that they are capable. They were made for the job. And I won’t be shy and my own brand of old confidence will reach their tender souls as I silently pray, “Bless them Father, for it’s you that has big plans for them, and I am confident in You.. and because of that, them.”

Happy New Year.

6 Responses

  1. So beautifully said. The heart of every mother I know.
    Don’t underestimate your website abilities…this new site is awesome (& beautiful), just like you!

  2. Janet,
    What wonderful words. I found your blog from Theresa Bryant’s FB page. I’ve been thinking about babies lately as well. My oldest daughter is pregnant with her first baby, but her fourth child. Jennifer had been infertile for twelve years. She and her husband dealt with this and set about to grow their family through adoption. God blessed them with Isaac a four month old from Guatelama. What joy this sweet little boy brought to our family. They were so happy and realized adopting another would be costly and were content with this special little boy. God had a different plan. The agency called them with news that Isaac’s birth mother was pregnant again and asked if they would like this new baby to join their family. Almost two years later Caleb joined their family at eight months old. Isaac had his half-brother with him now. God is so good! The kids thought this was it and settled in to raise their family, but God had more. Jennifer and Drew having a heart for these children without parents wanted to be foster parents. They were so excited when they got the call to foster a baby girl only one day old! Katelyn joined the family by adoption fourteen months later. Thinking this is it, their family was perfect, but God had more. Jennifer was quite surprised when she felt sick and strange in the fall. She was pregnant! After all those years and trusting God to give them a family they get more! This surprise blessing is due the end of May. It’s a girl! Isaac will be 10, Caleb will be 8 and Katelyn will almost be 5 when this baby girl joins the family. Things will be changing around that household. When I read your blog about babies I just felt the need to share this special story with you about my babies. This baby girl will be my 5th grandchild as my second daughter gave me a sweet little grandson 6 years ago. Jennifer and Drew live in Burleson, TX and Steph and her family live here in central Arkansas.
    I agree with you about having babies in our youth! I love, love these blessings, but I’m more than ready to come home to my quiet house.
    Another quick note…I was born in DeQueen, but never really lived there! Interesting.

  3. ANYONE that truly knows me, know my children, no matter how old they are, REMAIN, “my life”! There’s no word that I’ve come across that honestly defines a “MOTHER’S” love. I thought witnessing my 3 being born, was the most amazing miracle in my life, UNTIL, I witnessed my precious daughter, 4 years ago, push, in the calmest, loving, and with a peace that passed ALL understanding, my grand daughter, Addiison Faith out! Once again, Ive not determined an appropriate word to describe the feeling that came over me! I know my entire body, from my head to my toes, experienced a supernatural feeling, one of such unexplainable proportion, I’m STILL searching for a honest and clear way to justifiably explain something that for AGES has happened a million times a day around this world. I just wish that every person who has the opportunity to witness something so “natural” could experience the feeling, the awe, the amazing power of a much higher BEING, that zapped me from the top of my head to the tips of my toes! My soul was essentially turned inside out. My brain, momentarily, could not comprehend, and my HEART, though instantly melted, was changed in such a way that my entire outlook toward life, my perspective changed in an instant, graciously to prepare for my handsome and hilarious grandson that was born 18 months later! I swore I would NEVER be one of those “grand parent ” nuts! I’m amazingly and proudly exactly that, times TEN!

  4. Janet, I am in awe of your strength and tenderness, your ability to put into words the deepest of human emotion and acknowledge the source of the miracle, not only of birth, but of the scarlet thread of love that our Father left for us. I feel so helpless yet so warmly protected in the witnessing of the grace that he has blessed you with. I am both proud and honored to have you as my friend.

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