Parenting has been simultaneously one of the hardest things in my life and one of the most joy-filled, and joy-producing, things as well. It’s so hard to be woken up at 8:00 in the morning on the weekend, or in the morning at all on the weekend, but nothing compares to seeing that little man smile as he pulls himself up on me after he drinks his bottle and starts to play with us. He’s so happy and playful and it lights up the room.
That’s honestly one of the hardest parts about seeing him grow up. While I certainly hope and pray life doesn’t hit him anywhere near as hard as it did me, I know that part of growing up is becoming responsible and not being able to be as playful as a child, and part of me doesn’t want that for him.
And all of me doesn’t want him to be less playful or happy due to being wounded somehow.
The other night as I was cleaning the dishes I wiped off the grease from the pan Angela uses to cook bacon and cookies and other awesomeness I realized that there were spots that weren’t coming off. I began to scrub harder and got more soap and used the sponge and the rough side of the sponge and it just wouldn’t get any cleaner. I thought to myself “Well, it’s time to get a new one.” Then I looked closer and realized that this was the new one! We got that shortly after we got married two years ago!
That’s when it hit me that even though I was annoyed because I couldn’t get the thing any cleaner it was only stained because we used it to cook amazingly yummy things like bacon! While some may visit our house and look at this pan with a little disdain and question whether we cleaned it soon enough after use or used the right kind of soap, everyone who came over and saw this pan absolutely spotless would know that we never used it and ask why we even bought it in the first place.
By God’s grace, Angela and I will be able to look back thirty years from now and see how Calvin has grown from a little baby ninja into a grown man who can stand on his own two feet with a family of his own. There will be changes in attitude and outlook on life. There will be risks taken both physically and emotionally, and God willing as few scars as possible when he starts dating at 25.
All of this will show that he’s lived a life worth living, and that he’s been prepared by God to do something. And that he’s been bold and brave and stepped out and done that something, whatever it will be, instead of hiding from life and calling and adulthood.
By God’s grace, he won’t have lived a wasted life.