When I was young, the word “babies” gave me the creeps. Not just a little chill up my spine, but I want to crawl behind the couch, creeps. I have no idea what it was about that word, but I really disliked it. Perhaps I always knew I wasn’t drawn to the nurturing, mothering role, which makes sense because I never liked playing house either.
Babies mean much more to me now, as a mother. I have three beautiful children, of the sweet and sour variety. Sometimes I think they’re bipolar. One minute they are throwing toys, tantrums and toast, while the next minute they are kissing, cuddling, and cute. Regardless, most of my time is spent with my three boys, ages 7, 3, and 1.
My smallest baby has a blue, snot-stained, fuzzy blanket/bear, called “Bear” for short, that he carries EVERYWHERE. It’s his lovey, and when operated alongside the thumb in mouth, spell contentment for our little guy. No matter where we are, Bear will calm or thrill baby Finn in an instant.
So, imagine my surprise a few weeks ago when Finn, who at nearly two is now beginning to talk, starts to call his bear, “Baby.” It melted my heart. He is so attached to his baby. It is the first thing he sees in the morning and the last thing he sees at night. He kisses and hugs it, and sings to it and snuggles it all day long. And he named it “Baby” without even a suggestion from us.
Watching my baby love this little piece of fabric has given me new insight into the love I have for my own children, and the love God has for me. In fact, I’m pretty sure that this most recent revelation of cuteness is a direct message from God to me because of the last few difficult months of parenting.
Here’s what I think God is saying, or at least what I’m hearing from this message about babies.
1. It’s not about who is there; mother or father, it’s about the amount of love and time we give our children.
2. Babies are hard, of course they’re hard and from my experience, they just get harder, so take the good moments and cherish them (write them down!).
3. Everybody is born with some nurturing abilities (even my child who throw trains at his brother’s heads) and we should encourage them in boys and girls. This also means we should admire and recognize good fathers as often was we can.
4. God loves us because he puts people here to help comfort us, make us laugh, hug us, and just help us know that we are not alone in the world.
Yep, I learned this all from a little blankie bear and his baby.