It’s almost 8:00 on a Thursday night. Jacob is going to sleep in his room. Meredith is snuggled in by my elbow for a little evening nap. Mike is working at church as he does every Thursday evening. My mom just left after two weeks here waiting on me hand and foot and being Jacob’s sidekick from morning till night while I couldn’t lift him. The fog and haze and buzz and craze of new life’s arrival is slowly starting to clear for me in the past few hours as I figure out what normal is going to look like. For starters, I’m setting my expectations low. Today’s goal: keep my two kids safe and happy for 4 hours. That much I can do. I am not expecting to be much more impressive than that for the rest of this month but it’s where I want to be.
The most striking thing so far about having two kids is that I am craving their company. I’ve been genuinely missing Jacob, not just because I’ve been off-duty with him, but because I miss what he and I had going before the dynamics changed forever. Growing pains, and who’s to complain at enlarged blessings? But I am noticing how precious time is and I’m enjoying insanely-tired 3:00 a.m. wakings just because it’s time to spend alone studying my sweet girl. Compared with Jacob’s first weeks I feel like I’ve hardly even noticed this little person. And as for Jacob, he has grown into size 5 diapers while I’ve been distracted for the past three weeks. Not a significant milestone in the scheme of things, but my instinct is strong to hoard time now.
Thanks to Sara Groves for the reality check as I listened to her album for parents while making peanut butter and banana sandwich for Jacob and a bowl of cereal for me. We shared dinner with Meredith sleeping next to us and for the millionth time in the past three weeks I chose to multi-task less than my urge tends to be, settling for only as much multi-tasking as is now perpetually necessary since I want to love on both of these two little people at the same time, all the time. This is why I want to hoard the minutes – because they don’t feel like enough. And then Sara Groves was singing about the urge to hoard our kids, choosing instead to wish her boy a life his own, and she’s nothing more than lucky if she gets a peek or two. It clicked: I am the servant of these two, here to keep them safe and happy until they don’t need me. They are not mine to possess or hoard, just to love while I have the privilege.
Meredith Reneé, my sweet princess and lovely lady, welcome to our home and hearts. There is suddenly even more love all around than there was before.