Monday, April 16, 2012

Healing for the Hard Days

He's got the pencil in his right hand, squeezes it so hard the lead snaps clean off.

And those ears of his bloom bright red and he's all brimming and frustration rumbles from deep inside.

It's after he's stomped up those 100 year old stairs and slammed his bedroom door with a sob that I close my eyes tight and sigh.

10 years ago when I sat in an office building and felt that baby kick for the first time, I didn't realize how many hard days there would be.

Days when we both yell.  Days when I struggle to speak peace with a relentless tongue that won't quit.  Days when I'm sweet and gentle and his eyes are still all defiance.  I know my soul is a mess and I tap quietly on his door, whisper an apology to the silence on the other side.

Someone once told me I was too young to be a mother.  He was a baby then, balanced on my hip while I looked for all the world like the babysitter, not the mom.  I had burned in anger at the comment, dramatic youth determined to prove myself.  I had this.

Do I still?  Some days I'm not so sure.  I head into my own room where the breeze is nudging those curtains and the baby is sleeping still, tiny chest lifting soundlessly.

The babies get easier.  The pregnancies quicker.  But it's always the first child that throws you for a complete loop.  Each Mother has to re-invent the wheel of parenting.  We can read all the books and listen to all the advice, but when you are tossed into parenting for the very first time, it's all trial and error.

He comes into my room while I'm staring out the window, praying my heart.  He slips his boy arms around my waist and buries his head in my hip.  We stand together for a moment or two, and I think of how a boy loves his Mom and how a Mom loves her boy and aren't we just so fortunate, so blessed, so incredibly privileged to have grace cover it all?  The foibles and the failings, on both sides of the parenting equation.

 I hand him his pencil, sharpened to a point, and he smiles as he takes it.  There will be hard days.  Lots of them.  The miracle is the healing when we brush ourselves off, claim grace, offer forgiveness, and begin again.


  1. Wow. Sounds like life between my 10year old and myself. So thankful for mercy and grace!

  2. Yes, we go through this too (my eldest and I). Both too stubborn I expect. I'm working hard now on making sure that there is reconciliation that we both recognize as reconciliation before we move on....K

  3. This one made me tear up. Just yesterday working through things with my 14 year old firstborn (son). A raised voice at me got him sent to his room (homework frustrations). I sat in the kitchen, praying... feeling so inadequate to lead another life. Then my cell phone rings. My son calling from his room asking in a teary voice if I would come up? Tears, hugs, I'm sorries and I forgive yous followed. and oh yeah, grace. Always the grace. Thank you Lord.

  4. Yes Angie! I often feel inadequate in the leading of another thankful I'm not doing it alone!


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