Me And My Buddy

This morning a very somber Asher curled his lanky body into my lap. He sighed deeply saying nothing. I held him quietly, gazing at his long eyelashes as they curled around his beautiful eyes. I love his eyelashes!

(I used to joke that my second-born would be a girl with short eyelashes and small eyes and she’d whine about how her brother was prettier than her. Not so! My second-born does have short eyelashes, but he has the strong chin and sweet dimples that fit his impish personality so well. Then there’s the redheaded baby who has the same beautiful eyes as her oldest brother and the charming grin of our middle boy. Each beautiful in their own way.)

After our silent snuggles, Asher sighed again. Of all my children, he truly embodies a buddy. He is loyal, conversational, loves to be with me. He wears his heart on his sleeve, and I can always tell when there is an internal wrestling. Today he didn’t want to talk about it. He just needed to be near me and know that I was here. These past months have been hardest on him.

“Mom?”

“What’s up, buddy?”

“I didn’t like it when you had your treatments.”

“Oh, Ash. What was the hardest part for you?”

“Well. It just felt like I didn’t have a Mommy. You were here, but you weren’t here. I missed you.”

Heartbreak. He feels so deeply and needs companionship. This morning he needed me–my presence. He was fearful. Today he had an appointment with his allergist because the pollen is horrific right now, and his eyes feel like there are ants crawling in them. The poor guy is allergic to trees, grass, pollen, dust mites, weeds, cats and who knows what else. He doesn’t ever want to go outside to play because he is miserable whenever he comes in. My heart aches for him. So we went back to the allergist to determine what is the best cocktail of antihistamines to help him.

I finally asked him what was on his mind. He asked me, “Mom, will there be more needles again?” Oh, he is his mother’s child. I could identify so deeply with his fears, and my heart went out to him. How do I explain to a six-year-old that his fear is okay? Life is scary sometimes. That there are seasons when we have to go through hard things. And he’s been through a lot of hard things lately.

He needed me to hold him. He needed me to be real with him. He needed his mommy this morning. So I was here, holding, soothing, calming, praying.

“You know what, buddy? Mommy was scared a lot when she was going through treatments. You know what I did? I talked to God. I told him everything. I asked for help.”

Asher’s eyes lit up. “I can pray right now, Mommy!”

So we did. We prayed. I sang to him, “When I am afraid I will trust in You…” Then I looked at him. He said, “I already feel some better, Mom, but I’m still scared.” I told him he could talk to God all day long and tell God about his fears. “You know what, Mom? It’s a good thing to need God.”

Oh, how I need to be reminded of those words, and how thankful I am that my six-year-old son grasps his neediness. “I need you, too.” he whispered, leaning tight.

And so I wholeheartedly embraced his longing. We read books in the waiting room, we played I Spy in the exam room, we looked at pictures of the inside of our noses, ears and mouth. We explored “Castle” by David Macaulay, and he began dreaming of being an architect when he grew up. I discovered that the four biggest things he is afraid of are monsters, dragons, ghosts and giants, and with great relief he grasped that none of those things are real.

He was very brave with the doctor and super polite with the nurses, and I was proud of the little man my boy is becoming. “Can we go on a date for lunch, Mom? Just you and me like you do with Daddy?” So we did. Lunch at McDonald’s and people watching. One of our favorite things to do is make-up stories about the people around us. So when a big bus-load of grungy, sweaty middle schoolers came in, Ash was elated. We imagined they were from California and they had come here to see fireworks and they all lived in one big house together eating ice cream for breakfast, lunch and supper. All I have to say is that I pity their poor mother.

On the way home from lunch, Asher prayed a simple prayer thanking God for helping him not be afraid and that it was a good appointment. Then we turned up the Vacation Bible School CD and sang at the top of our lungs together. “Our God is an awesome God…” “Come on, let’s praise the Lord…” “God is good, all the time…”

We returned home, and as he jumped out of the van, I told Ash, “I had a fun time with you, buddy.”

He grinned as he ran away from me up the sidewalk, “Right back atcha, Mom!” He glanced over his shoulder then suddenly careened to a halt. Turning, he ran back to me arms outstretched. Huge hug. “I love you.”

Thank you, Jesus, that I am here. It’s been a very good day.

7 responses to “Me And My Buddy”

  1. nothing I write is even worthy of being said after that blog…your kids are so unique/fun/beautiful in each of their own ways. your blog is an awesome example of how precious children are to Jesus and in the world. praising God with you for such a good day.

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  2. I love picturing you and your dear boy spending time together today. How funny Laney and I also call one another “buddies.” Today on the way home from school she told me she wants to be a conductor when she grows up (this coming from an orchestra performance they went to today.) As she ate her snack today she too remembered when I was so sick and in the hospital. She asked me to promise her I would never leave her again and told me how every night when grandma played her “Sleep Sound in Jesus” CD she would cry and miss me so much. Then as we read tonight before bed–she reading to me now because she loves it so much–always reading the author and illustrator out loud, asked me if I could write a book and she could illustrate it. I asked her what it would be about and she told me about a little girl named Laney and her adventures at school and her friends and her mom. I watched her shooting baskets with Dan after dinner outside, hitting most her shots already and dribbling like a pro. I could see myself, loving basketball and playing with my dad. It was a good day, wasn’t it? Our God is so good to us. Every second of this wild life is worth it–“We must go through the valley to stand upon the mountain of God!” I love you!!!

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  3. Angie, After reading blog after blog of how you really, REALLY enjoy time with your kids, I recently resolved in my head to really, REALLY “take in” all the moments with my kids. These past couple weeks have been awesome as I enjoy them more and more. I feel like I’m not just wasting away our days together as they grow up so fast. Thank you for that. I mean it. It has been awesome. Love, Kelly

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  4. What a sweet day! You have such a special boy, and Asher has such a special mommy! It’s so neat to hear you be real with your children and for them to long to be with their mommy who embraces them so well.

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  5. Rebecca Scheel Avatar
    Rebecca Scheel

    I want to cry! What an amazing thing to see such wisdom and understanding of God and one’s feelings in a boy of six. What a wonderful blessing to be reminded of God’s faithfulness through the life of a child.

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  6. Sasha Rothwell Avatar
    Sasha Rothwell

    Wow, Angie! You always leave me speechless. I am humbled by Asher’s sweet dependence and trust in the Lord. We really do need to be as the little children. I look forward with much excitement to the days when Annya will express her need and trust in the Lord and also her need for me! How priceless is your children’s love!

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  7. Jacquie Prather Avatar
    Jacquie Prather

    As I read this entry with my little thumb sucker on my lap I think to myself, “each new day with your child/children gets better and better!” I can’t wait to live in a house designed by Asher, for my ten children who eat ice cream morning noon and night!!!

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