Laura Grace

A little over a week ago, I visited a local hospital to see a wonderful friend of mine…..

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….. and her sweet Laura Grace who had just been born that morning.

As I walked into my friend’s hospital room, I immediately recognized the sacred feeling of entering the presence of a newborn child. The moment I saw her, I couldn’t stop smiling and I couldn’t stop looking at her.

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I restrained myself as long as I could and then I just had to hold her.  And as I held her, my smiles and stares got even worse.

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She was absolutely beautiful and I adored her beautiful name: Laura Grace.

So perfect.

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And it was about this time that my internal conversation began…..

“Oh my heavens, look at those cheeks!! I want to have another baby. Right nooooowwwww,” my heart sang out with beautiful chorus.

“Uh. Heidi? You, uh, you already have a baby. He’s sleeping in his crib at home. Remember?” my mind replied with confusion.

“Of course I remember him! I want him, too! I want him and I want a baby girl just like Lauuuuuraaaaa Graaaaaace,” my heart sang out with growing enthusiasm.

“Yes, she’s perfect and I can see why you love her and want a baby just like her,” my mind responded with mild alarm, “But the baby you already have right now is only six months old. And you might want to wait, say, at least a little longer before having another one.”

“None of that matters!” my heart laughed with delight, “Look at her! Just look at her! I want one! I want one! I want one!”

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This conversation continued long into the night until the next morning came and I was again holding my own baby.  But every time I looked at these pictures, the conversation returned full force.

And to be honest, it scared me.

Because if the desire to have a child is this strong in me when I am having children, what on earth is it going to be like when I’m no longer having children?  Because as much as I’d like to desperately pretend I can have precious newborns my entire mortal life, I know I can’t.  At some point in time, I will have to stop for one reason or another. And when that moment comes, what happens to that desire that’s beyond my control?  That desire that God gives His daughters so they will create, deliver and love His children?

Part of me hopes it will go away, so I won’t be tormented by it.  But the overwhelming majority of me never wants it to diminish.  Because I love it.  I love babies and I love children and I love being a mother.  And I don’t want to stop loving it.

So then I cry.  And my husband offers his shoulder.  And I soggify it.

And I feel a little better.

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Until I look at this again.

When I Least Expect It

It always happens when I least expect it.

Like yesterday morning after Bubbers got out of the bathtub.

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We were on my bed laughing and being silly.

And then I reached out and took his little hand to clip his fingernails.

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“Wow, Little Man!” I said, “I guess you were in the tub for a while. Look–you’re all wrinkled up!”

“Hee, hee, hee,” he giggled, “I’m aw wrinkowed up!”

After his fingernails, I reached for his foot to clip his toenails.

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I glanced at the bottom of his foot and then suddenly stopped. My heart skipped a beat and a smile crept into my lips as I gently held his foot and stared.

Instantly, I was there again, laying in that hospital bed full of exhaustion and euphoric joy…..

“Oh, Love,” my husband suddenly laughed with delight, “You have to see his feet!”

“What is it?” I asked with an expectant smile on my face.

I watched as my Prince Charming carefully laid our newborn son across my legs.

Gently, he reached down and held up our son’s feet for me to see the bottoms.

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“He’s Mr. Wrinkle Foot!” my husband laughed.

“Oh!” I exclaimed with surprise.

I laughed along with my husband as I reached out and gently traced the lines etched into the bottoms of my dear baby’s feet.

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As quickly as I left, I was pulled back again.

“Mommy? I’m aw wrinkowed up!” he said again.

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“Yes, you are,” I smiled through the lump in my throat.

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“Yes, you are.”

My new friend (by Sir Snuggles)

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Why, hello there!  My name is Snuggles.  What’s yours?

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“I’m Carter.  My mommy and your mommy are friends.  We were due on the exact same day.”

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Really?!?  That’s amazing!

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And so is your hand.  Did you know we have hands?

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It’s true!  Here’s mine.  It’s my favorite.

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And this is my big brother, Bubbers.

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He thinks we’re kind of funny just laying here on the ground like we’re babies or something.

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“Ha!  Babies!  That’s a good one, Bubbers.”

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Well, it was great to meet you, Carter.  I know we’ll be great friends.

“You, too, Snuggles!  I can’t wait!”

Flowers for Mommy

There’s a new tradition brewing at my house. A tradition that is quickly becoming one of my favorites ever.

And it all began when I was in the hospital delivering Sir Snuggles and my mother was watching the Bubbers King. We planned for my mom and Bubbers to come visit us the day after Snuggles was born.  And when the time came, Charming drove to our house to pick them up and bring them back to the hospital.

I rested in my hospital bed with baby Snuggles cuddled in my arms and kept an eye on the clock, eagerly waiting for them to arrive. After a time, I heard a sweet voice echoing down the hall and knew my little Bubbers was here!  I couldn’t contain my smiles as I tenderly sat up and slid my legs off the side of my bed to greet my eldest son.

Charming came in first with the video camera and started recording.

“Okay!” he called loudly, “Come on in, Bubbers!  Mommy’s in here!”

With a big smile, Bubbers charged into my room and held up a sweet surprise in his chubby little hands.

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A tiny tupperware full of wildflowers!

“Oh my goodness!!  Thank you, Bubbers!!!” I gushed with delight as I carefully took the little flowers he offered.

By this time, my mom had entered the room and she explained, “We went to the park next door to your house this morning and he wanted to pick the wildflowers.  I told him we could bring them to you.”

“Aw, thank you!” I said, absolutely touched.

My son had brought me flowers!

Little tiny flowers he picked with his little chubby fingers!

I couldn’t have loved a gift more.

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After he left, I reverently placed his flowers on my food tray right next to my bed to keep them as close as possible at all times.

They were beautiful.  And when it was time to go home, I carefully held them in the car as we drove so they wouldn’t spill or get hurt.

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And when we got home, I lovingly placed them on the counter…..

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…..  Along with my other treasures.

And that’s where they stayed for days and days and days.  Until they were hopelessly decayed and I finally convinced myself it was time to let them go.

Sadly, I poured them down the sink and rinsed out the tupperware.  Little did I know what would happen next, when more flowers began to bloom…..

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Including our hydrangea bush in the front yard.

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Ever since my mom introduced Bubbers to the idea of “picking flowers for Mommy”, he has picked (or attempted to pick) every flower he sees and then given it to me!

So when he saw a new and abundant supply of flowers pop out in our own front yard, he eagerly ran to them and called over his shoulder, “I want to pick flowers for Mommy!!”

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Of course, we let him.  And now every time he goes outside, he asks permission to leave the garage (“I want to pick flowers for Mommy!!!”) and then runs for the bush!

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And then carefully gives me every flower he picks.

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Or sets them aside to give me later.

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Or stores them in his new pencil box.

And I have to say…..

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I love every single one of them!