Thursday, September 30, 2010
Perhaps one of the greatest joys of having a son is getting to watch my husband become a dad. Granted he was "father" to the child biologically in an instant. His part as dad is constantly developing (and entertaining, quite honestly).
From the moment Noah was born, Dave has said the things that a dad should say: teaching him about life, about girls, about Jesus; telling him how much he's loved. He has always blown raspberries on his belly and exposed him to the fun of mischief. However, I was always the default caregiver, the one who read the books, the one who knew the answers (most of the time).
Two weeks ago, I returned back to work to a job that requires me to be gone from home in the evenings. Now, Dave is in charge of putting Noah to bed more often than I am. The first few nights, I wondered how things were going to pan out. I kept checking my phone, expecting to get an urgent call: "What should I do to make him stop crying?" or "Where is the pacifier?" or "Which pajamas should he wear?" That first night, I did get quite a few text messages. The second night, perhaps one. The third night, I didn't get a baby update until I got home.
On a recent night off, I got to be a witness to the routine that the two of them have established, only to be (I'm ashamed to say) surprised at how good Dave was at taking care of Noah. He gave him a bath, washing in all the cracks--my chunk of a son has quite a few, dried him off, cuddled with him, read him a story from his Bible book, walked with him, put him in his cradle and watched patiently while Noah drifted off to sleep, realigning the pacifier when necessary.
I can't put in to words how my heart swelled at the joy of watching my husband be a great dad. It is a transformation that I anticipated and expected, but one that I could not have known would be so wonderful to see.
Dave now knows Noah's needs now more intuitively, he's able to make him laugh in countless ways, and he really enjoys hanging out with his little son. The light in his eyes is illumined by the joy in his heart. He LOVES being a dad, and I am blessed to be witness to it.
As much as I dislike having to go back to work, as much as I wish I were home when there, as much as I grumble and whine about the situation, I am so thankful for the opportunity that my going back to work has opened in Dave's relationship with Noah and in building the character of "dad" in Dave. I see God at work in this, too, and I marvel at His provision.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
May your unfailing love be my comfort, according to your promise to your servant. Psalm 119:76
For the past few days, it seems that the only place where my son can find comfort is in my arms. This afternoon, he was in his cradle, wailing as loud as his little lungs would allow, trying desperately to get comfortable so he could fall asleep. I walked into the bedroom, scooped him up in my arms, and he instantaneously relaxed, stopped crying and got comfortable enough to fall asleep. (I'm sure the parenting books would have scolded me for it.)
The comfort that he finds in my arms reminds me of that which I should find in my Father's arms. So often, I get frustrated with this world. I'm tempted to wail as loud as my lungs will allow, angry and upset about the things that aren't right. Left to my own self, I'm sure I would continue to wail until I either grew hoarse or exhausted. Sometimes I refuse the arms that would comfort me, reasoning that they must not know what they're doing or that they aren't the right fit for me. Praise God that He continually offers to come in to where I am, pick me up and hold me close, enabling me to calm down and find comfort in His embrace.
As our nation stands upon a day in which we remember awful tragedies and look back and forward along our road of recovery, I pray that we would not reject the One who loves us and is reaching out to us to comfort us and draw us close to Him.