The morning started like many others. Kids are up, time to get ready, shower, make breakfast, eat, clean up, and kiss daddy goodbye. It all seems so normal, so mundane, sometimes. But then this morning, in the midst of the normal, came a surreal moment that made me pause. One of the moments in a parent’s life that they capture in their mind, hope to keep forever, and live to see again. The older daughter turns to the baby daughter and blows her a kiss; then baby daughter mushes up her baby lips and blows one right back. Momma just smiled. My heart smiled. Life is precious.
In this moment it occurred to me that these people are mine. They are “My Tribe.” A tribe linked with blood ties, culture, hopefully religion too, and lots of love. We do not get to choose the darlings we birth. We do not know who they will be, who they will become, what paths they will choose, or even if we will get along. But we choose to love them…. no matter what. They are ours and we are theirs. No matter who they become these every day moments are the ones that will shape them. These moments, and how we choose to live our lives, will mold them. They won’t be copies of us, but they will carry us through life. One day they may blame us for their mistakes and failures; they may even praise us for their accomplishments, but we should be mindful that what we do today will determine who they will be. What we choose to teach them, and how we choose to live our normal, will stay with them a lifetime. So in this moment I stopped to think about our normal. A simple kiss goodbye can mean so much. It means love, security, and belonging. This morning it meant we are rubbing off on our girls, and what I saw brought happiness to this momma soul. I started thinking of what else I wanted to instill into their lives as we live out our normal. These are some of those things:
I hope to show them how to live, how to cry, how to struggle (with grace), how to love, how to have passion, and one day how to die at peace (prayerfully with them by my side). I hope they see passion an understanding; respect and forgiveness too. My husband and I won’t always be the perfect leaders, and we may not always be the best examples, but they should see that too. They need to see us forgive each other, and that it is o.k. to fail– as long as you get back up. As hard as it may be I hope to admit when we are wrong, and encourage each other to do right. I hope to fight fairly and have an open mind. Never to utter words I wish I could take back.
On the boring days I hope they remember our dancing. On the days they want to give up I hope they remember their parents working hard. On the days they want to cry I hope they cry, because they’ve seen mom and dad cry and adults do that sometimes. I hope they are honest because they haven’t seen us lie. That they make a stand for things they believe in because we took a stand. That they give to people in need because they’ve seen us pack up clothes, food, and belongings to give. That they care for others, respect others, and are kind because mom and dad saw others as image bearers of God.
I hope we grow and adapt together. That we respect each others differences and embrace our likenesses. This is my tribe, my people. They know how to love because their dad and I love each other. Their dad and I know how to love because our God showed us love first. The Bible says, “above all love each other deeply,” and that is exactly what I plan to do in these fleeting days; love them deeply!