Sometimes it’s incredibly unreal to me that we’re having a baby. In four and a half months.
In four and a half months–the same amount of time that’s passed since I found out I was pregnant (which, by the way, feels like no time at all)–we will have our own squalling, pooping, chubby-cheeked child. It will actually be in my arms. I’ll really be a mama. Clint will really be a daddy.
I mean, I still feel like I don’t know what I want my life to look like most of the time. But I’m living it anyway, moving right through it even though I’m entering into a life stage that doesn’t end until I’m closer to retirement than college. I’ve been preparing myself for this for years–all those years of babysitting, nannying, watching my own sisters and practicing to be a mom (although I don’t think moms steal quarters from their children’s piggy banks when they want to buy a coffee cooler from Sunrise Coffee… man I could really go for one of those right now). And yes, I did that. I was a terrible sister and a really sneaky liar. This is my confession.
Christine, Becca, I will pay you back, all in quarters if you want, to atone for my sins.
Anyway. I practice mothering on other people’s kids all the time. Heck, isn’t that practically most of what being a teacher is? But now I’m going to have my own little bundle of joy. I think about all the hopes and dreams I have for this child. I imagine all the perfect images of children that are collected in my brain from books and movies, those perfect childhood moments of running through the sprinkler, making snowmen, blowing bubbles in the sun on the back porch, and I want all this and more for our baby. But I also think about how likely it is that I could be extremely hurt by this child someday. I think of all the temptations that will be thrown at this little boy or girl once he/she has grown older. Temptations that could ruin this precious life, and bring so much hurt and sorrow to us.
(I will be thankful when I know if it’s a boy or girl. I’m tired of trying to be so inclusive and keep my singular subject/verb agreement).
I know, though, that this is the risk we take when we, whether purposefully or surprisingly, enter into the journey of parenting. Thank the Lord it’s not up to me anyway. He has a plan for this growing baby, and he already knows the end result of this child’s life as well as mine and Clint’s. I know I will not be perfect. And my kids won’t be perfect either. Their little sin natures will tempt them as soon as they are plunged into our world. But they are enveloped by prayer and mercy and grace, and I so hope that their little hearts (both this one that I can hear on occasion and the ones to come) will be opened to love Jesus and obey him.