Tarry a While

baby-shoesOnce in a while, Tom and I stop off at antique malls to just look around. Looking at the bits and pieces of living from the past tends to put time in perspective. Most poignant to me are baby things. Baby shoes, in particular, hold an attraction. Many times I have held up an old, worn pair and wondered about the baby who once wore them. Running a finger on the little scuff marks on the bottom made by feet long gone, I wonder, who was the child? What did they become? Who was the mother who once loved that baby?

The other day, Emmy was not able to sleep during nap time. She has never been a napper, but I make her stay quiet for an hour in the afternoons to give me a break and to see if she might fall off to sleep for a little while. She was restless on my bed, so I scooped her up (not easy these days as she is so big.) “I just want to rock you for a little while,” I told her. So she buried her head in my neck like the old days when she was smaller, and I stroked her hair, and we just rocked for a time while the world went by. I glanced over at my bookshelf next to the chair and saw the title of an old book I have called, Tarry a While. How fitting, I thought.

Babyhood becomes a distant memory so quickly. Emily will be four soon. Baby days are gone. The tighter you try to hang on to those days, it seems the faster they flee. Every season I pack away little clothes that will never be worn again, shoes that will never fit her feet. Wasn’t it yesterday I held her miniature feet in the NICU and wondered if they would ever be large enough to walk on?

Wasn’t it yesterday I held my first baby’s feet and marveled at how small they were? That was 26 years ago on April 14.

I get stressed out meeting the need of the moment, feeling exasperated at this or that with a preschooler’s constant chatter. But then I remember that it’s all over so quickly.

Sometimes we moms get so busy with the demands of life that we fail to notice how fast all our children are growing. Now I’m watching it happen with my little grandson who is growing so fast, getting ready to walk before we know it. This fall, we will have a second grandbaby!

Don’t rush growing up, Emmy. I’m not young, I’m not wishing you to the next phase. It will come fast enough. Today is precious. This hour is precious. Tarry a while, little girl.

6 thoughts on “Tarry a While

  1. Poignant. The song “Sunrise, Sunset” comes to mind. We do need a balance, though, and try not to feel false guilt if we need an hour’s quiet to rest and recharge for the remaining hours of the day. It is good for Emmy to learn to take a break, just to lie quietly, maybe thinking up a new story or reflecting on old favorites or reading one, and good for you to take a break from the endless chatter. Precious though it is, it can be tiring to hear for hours on end. A break will refresh and help give patience to listen until evening bedtime, and then not want to rush that time of prayer and tucking her in for the night, but able to have your smile be the last thing for her before she closes her eyes. You and Tom are doing a good job, and I’m praying for the Lord’s continued guidance in your life decisions.

  2. I agree, Carol. Children like Emmy who are almost like only children because of the age gap rely on their parents to be playmates, etc. No parent can do it all, so these kids develop bigger imaginations, talk to themselves, invent imaginary friends, etc. to stay busy. I insist that Emmy play by herself sometimes as a necessity. Children have to learn to occupy themselves at times, I’m a strong believer in that. It’s also a reason why occasional exposure to other kids is important, too, to learn how to share and not be the center of attention all the time. Sunday school and children’s church helps, but she’s also signed up for a couple of mornings a week at a preschool after Easter at a local church. She’s SO active and loves to move and jump and play physically. It’s a step of faith to pay for it, but I know it will be good for her. She’s visited and is very, very excited about it. We wanted to do it earlier, but God’s timing is perfect. She’s at the right age to learn, as she’s trying to draw and write now, and is so curious about everything.

  3. That’s a great decision to give Emmy a couple of mornings of preschool! The timing sounds just right, too. It will meet her needs and she sounds ready for it. Children become more social at her age and the interaction with peers is good to practice sharing. My daughter, my firstborn, greatly benefited from it. I’m sure that Emmy will, too, and will enjoy telling you all about it!

  4. Maybe you can see why caring for my little daughter is more rewarding now, Paul. The zip-lining “pastors” are God’s judgment on a whore church that long ago went to bed with the world and its entertainment. That’s why Jesus said, “Fear not, LITTLE flock.” It is a small one who truly love the Good Shepherd and who follow in his footsteps. Jesus said.

    “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” Matthew 7:13-14

  5. Our beautiful little son (Ethan) turns three on Sunday! I must admit, that I feel very tearful as I sense how fast the time is fleeting, yet I have no REGRETS…I have spent every opportunity possible loving him, never wishing away any phase or stage of his life away.

    “Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day…” – Hymn: Abide With Me

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