Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Sometimes kids really do have superpowers.
Like the Saturday morning years ago when I stumbled into the kitchen, still in bedhead mode, my old bathrobe dragging the floor.
"Yey! Mommy's up!" Sam said, climbing down from the kitchen chair perch he'd pulled up next to the griddle. "Look what Daddy and I made you," he said, pointing at a mountain of pancakes. "Daddy said I could take your picture while you eat it. I'm going to do it all by myself."
"Just a sec, hon. Let me at least brush my hair first."
"Oh no!" Sam said, and threw his arms open wide, dramatically blocking the hall to the bedroom. "You have to stay just like that."
"But honey, Mommy's hair is all sticking up."
"I like it like that. It looks pretty. I like you in your pink robe on and your glasses all crookedy.
"Oh yeah?" I laughed and looked at my husband.
"Yes, Mommy, I'm serious. You look good. Don't move. I'm gonna take a picture."
I sighed, smoothing out my hair.
"Stop," he yelled from behind the camera. "You're messing it up." He held the camera steady but then put it down, smiling at me, as if as if trying to behold my bedheaded beauty.
"Mommy, I gotta tell you. You look HOT!"
Part of me wanted to grab that boy of mine and kiss all over his sweet baby face, and another part wanted to cancel cable and go back to PBS. And still another part of me was scratching my head that as much as I do to make myself look presentable (I don't do that much, really,) the child preferred me with no make up, my hair in Whoville mode, stumbling through the kitchen.
I've savored the sweetness for years now.
I guess my my tee shirt, bathrobe, and bad case of bedhead signaled to Sammy that I wasn't going anywhere. I was still dressed for snuggling, for lazing over a breakfast of syrup coated carbohydrates, for reading books and talking. I was clearly not ready to race out the door and strap him into the minivan for soccer or church, and I wasn't just hanging around the house, waiting for someone to ring the doorbell. My rumply hair meant that nothing was on the calendar except being with my family, for listening to whatever the boy and his siblings and his daddy had to say. For looking in Sam's eyes and eating his pancakes. And for posing for a picture that the blogosphere will never ever see.
Over the years I've replayed this memory countless times. I can't seem to let go of it, partly because it captures Sam's sweetness, and partly because it whispers something bigger to me.
I think of the way I run through life, not wanting to be slowed, and I'm sorry for the times that I wasn't present for others, in too much of a hurry to cross off my To Do list. Sometimes I'm the worst at this with my family, thinking they'll understand or that I can make it right later.
I think of the One I want to imitate, who always made time to really see the people around him, to be fully present, to touch them and give them time.
I'm so thankful for a God who is ever present to me, who sees me with my sticky-up hair and all my miserable imperfections and couldn't love me any more. Who wants to just BE with me. And I'm thankful for Superboy, who's great at reminding me of this very truth.
God, help me see the people around me and be fully present with them. Help me be ready to put aside my itinerary and be the loving presence of Christ for them.
Or maybe just be Mommy.
Do you ever struggle with being fully present with those around you? When is it the hardest? The easiest?
Have a wonder-full Wednesday, y'all!