This squishy little nursling is suddenly a curious, funny two-year-old. She was washing her belly button in the tub tonight and told me, “You be a tiny baby, Mommy. You go in my tummy.” She laughed, imagining it I suppose.
“It doesn’t work that way, baby.”
I look at photos from her first months and barely remember parts of it. Major life transitions and sleep deprivation are to blame. Only two-years removed, and I’m already overwhelmed with guilt sometimes, and wish I knew then what I know now.
I can tell myself, it doesn’t work that way.
Time is linear and fleeting. Wisdom is slowly acquired, often through difficult circumstances. Pain can’t be avoided. Memories are slippery.
Motherhood magnifies all of it–the beauty and the brokenness. Consider birth itself. Even when all goes as well as possible, the baby is left with a little wound. Our first scar forms at our belly button where our in-utero-life-sustaining connection to our mother is ended. It served its purpose for that season then needed to be severed in the interest of growth and development.
My prayer for my children this Mother’s Day is that I’m the one caring for their wounds, not inflicting them. That I call out their God-given gifts and speak life into them. That I remind them of who they are and allow them to do the same for me.