Little man Beck is 4 and a half months old.
He's a whole lot of awesomeness but that's not the point to this post.
Today, Beck chose to wake up at 1:30am, 3:00am, 5:00am and 6:00am. He didn't always want a bottle but always wanted me. And this made me a very tired mommy by the time my alarm went off at 6:50. I was able to put a smile on my face, surround the little man with pillows (since he finally wanted to sleep) and begin the process of getting Linley ready for school.
I successfully got the girl to school and mentally cheered myself on for wearing pants to the carpool drop off.
And then I used an old gift card from Starbucks for a Pumpkin Spice Latte. And then I went to Bible Study, though a nap sounded better, and promptly drank 3 cups of coffee. And then I made it home exhausted and tried to lay Beck down for a nap, hoping and wishing I could squeeze a little one in myself before leaving to pick up Linley...
And that little nap he took was exactly 7 minutes.
Nobody feels rested after 7 minutes of shut eye.
So I chose to pick up my firstborn son and rock him and sing to him. I tried all the mommy tricks and finally just settled into the couch with a bottle and a blanket and the choice to seize the moment and try to remember to nap when I get old and the kids are off with their own kiddos and life will be simple.
For thirty minutes I cuddled that sweet little fellow. He slowly and sleepily drank his bottle and played with my fingers. His head was soft under my chin and his chest rose and fell steadily and contentedly as he had what his little self wanted when he laid in my arms. His warm body was especially sweet to me in that tired moment...I wasn't sure why but I found myself thanking God for allowing me to stay in the moment. To enjoy. To love. To be.
A few short minutes after I had finished his bottle, I was checking Facebook and cleaning up spit up (always) and tickling Beck and watching him roll over and trying not to fall asleep on the job when I realized that Pipers story was published today.
She was one of 28 children chosen to bring awareness by their diagnosis and life to Childhood Cancer month. Mary Tyler Mom, over at chicagonow.com, had allowed me to share a tiny little bit of my girl...and can I tell you it took me over 6 months to write a 1000 word essay? Nothing easy about writing about death. Or tenuous lives. Or aches that grow or little girls who won't.
I was blessed to lumber through this and even though I have read and re-read my words a million times since submitting them last month, I laid myself back on the carpet and I sobbed.
Next to Beck and his giggles and spit up, I sobbed and snotted.
It's been seventeen months since Piper was warm next to me. I have since carried a son and delivered him and begun the process of raising him. I have held Linley and wept for what she misses and missed and will never be able to fully understand had happened to her world. And yet, I can count on one shaking hand the times I have allowed myself to lose myself in the hysteria and ache of losing Piper.
Each day is painful. Each reminder a kick in the gut.
But it's these few times of losing the strength to sit up, when my mouth forms words I cannot even speak and my heart feels like it truly has cracked in two..those are the moments I most feel how significant my life has changed.
It's also the moments I most ache for my God...for eternity...for what I was created to desire.
So today when I chose to keep moving my weary mommy body is when I chose to accept Beck and his desire to be close to me. When I chose to not see him as a burden is when I was able to honor Piper. When I remembered how easy it is to be worn down by my role is when I was able to keep moving and loving and then when I remembered the days I truly should have fallen apart but didn't.
I'm thankful that God kept me today.
Kept me focused. Kept me on my knees. Kept me prioritized. Kept me loved and loving.
(I have no clue how to link Pipers article up...I do know to suggest a good old fashioned google search of Mary Tyler Mom, chicagonow.com and Piper Jean.)