There is nothing like the feeling of hearing your baby cry for the first time. It is the single most emotional event in a woman’s life when she gives birth to her firstborn.
There is delight, fear, joy, exhaustion, excitement, nervousness, intense desire, and pure love all wrapped up in the newborn’s first vocalization.
I remember my first c-section. I had never had surgery before, so in and of itself that was terrifying. Then the doctors conveniently forgot to tell me whether I had just had a boy or a girl. I had a boy, by the way.
The connection between Giovanni and I was instant.
I cried silent tears as they cleaned my very hungry nine-pound baby and sewed me back up. He cried with me.
In fact, any time I cried for the first four years of his life, he would cry with me. He didn’t have to hear me; he didn’t have to be in the same room with me.
If I was crying, Giovanni would find me, with tears in his own eyes, and he’d start kissing away my tears and comforting me.
My son once laid on the floor in our living room when were stationed in Colorado Springs praying in the spirit with me for 45 minutes as I bawled on my face before the Lord. He was my partner in intercession. Although he’s only seven, he is a mighty prayer warrior.
My daughter has a bright, bubbly personality. She is a sympathy-crier, as well. She naturally will mourn with those who mourn, and she rejoices with those who rejoice (Romans 12:15). My kids are so drastically different from each other and us, yet we are all so much alike it’s comical. I love the rewards of parenting Giovanni and Giulianna.
I’m so thankful I don’t have to wait until my children are adults to be able to enjoy them.
We play games as a family. Giovanni and I play Scrabble. He’s getting quite proficient! He kicks my butt in checkers. Every. Single. Time. Uno is a toss-up, and he’s not sure yet if he enjoys Rook. We love Taboo in our house. This game is so fun! We play together at the beach, enjoy water wars with water guns, water balloons, buckets, and the occasional hose, and we genuinely love being together as a family.
Parenting gets a bad rap in a lot of ways because, frankly, it takes work to mold, to disciple, and to shape little people into humans you sincerely want to spend time with! What we’ve learned, though, is if we don’t take the time to develop and to guide them, to instill in them values they can live by that we all will proud of, someone else will.
And that someone won’t think like we do, they will not care about what we care about, and they will not love our children as we do.
That is why we laugh at jokes they tell that really aren’t funny (ex., “Why did the chicken cross the road? Because he’s a crocodile-head-bubble-gum monster!” See?). It’s the same reason we read books to them that I cannot believe made it into print, let alone into my house!
We invest in our children with our time, talent, and treasures because THEY are our ultimate treasures!
So, the next time you find yourself rolling your eyes at jokes that aren’t funny or wishing your teenager would just hurry up and move out of your house already, remember that someday they will be too old to take onto your lap and cuddle them. Enjoy them while you can.