Monday, February 9, 2015

Mommy's Tears for a Broken Lolly Pop

I am 37 weeks pregnant, and a rare kind of emotional. Me. The athlete. I once played a quarter of a basketball game on a broken foot, a whole game on stress fractures; and contractions? Well, I'm never sure when they're real..until they're really real, because I can talk through them for hours, and they've never made me cry.

But, I cried over a broken lolly pop. As we were walking into church, our greeter handed each of my children a little sucker, in honor of Valentine's Day week. We had hardly gotten to our seats, coats still on, when the kids were asking if they could have them. My youngest, Isaac, still in his minion hat, held the sucker up, eyes wide, "Peas?" in need of help getting it opened. Of course they could have their special treat, and maybe it would keep them calm and quiet during worship.

I obliged. I undid the wrapper on Isaac's sucker, only to have 3/4 of the thing crumble into my hand. My poor child! I couldn't give him the crumbles. A stick-free, hard candy is not something I'm ready to trust my 2-year old with. My heart broke for him, whose siblings were happily sucking on their whole suckers, while I handed him his 1/4 sucker, but that's not really what did me in folks.

He took the sucker. He didn't question the pieces in my hand, which I walked to the trash can. He didn't cry. He didn't complain. He took that 1/4 sucker with...get this...a smile. He was content to have any of it at all. My sappy, pregnant eyes welled up with tears as I watched his joyful reaction to something anybody else might have thrown a fit or shed a few tears about.

I imagined, briefly, how I would have handled that. It didn't take much imagination, since I have recently dropped chocolate on the floor, or in the sink, and immediately muttered something whiny like, "Are you kidding me? Seriously?" As though, in a string of horrible events of my day, that just takes the cake. 

Then I remembered how we got nearly every green light on our way to church today, but I inwardly acted profoundly annoyed with the one or two red lights we still got. I remembered how much I have complained these last 5 weeks, having a cold return about every week and a half, but haven't taken the time to be joyful that I am carrying a healthy baby, and I did NOT test positive for gestational diabetes. That's a big deal!

My ankle hurts, every day, but I have two feet on which to walk, and even run sometimes!
My basketball career ended prematurely, but look at this healthy, beautiful family, I wouldn't otherwise have!
It snows in a lot, and often, fall and spring are non-existent, but our summers here are beautiful!
I could go on and on about all that lolly pop taught me today. 

How often do we focus on what we don't have, and forget to enjoy what we do have? Oh, the lesson I learned today from my sweet Isaac, so aptly named (he will laugh)! He finds joy in all occasions. He's been laughing, easily, since just days old, and he is incredibly grateful for the smallest of things, right down to that 1/4 lolly pop.

I, too, wish to be that thankful for all the things, even the broken. Lord, give me the grateful and joyful heart of a child! And may Isaac always find reasons to be so joyous and thankful!  

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