“That desk is so big.” My mind reeled as we walked into his school room last night at the Welcome Back Student Picnic. “He’s much too small for that.” Ash whirled around his new classroom, brown eyes taking everything in. “Look, Mom! There’s fish! And here’s the reading corner. And here’s where I will hang my coat and put my lunchbox. And here’s my desk.” He climbed in and sat down. And lo and behold! That little body fit perfectly in that much too big desk.
When did he get so big? Wasn’t it just yesterday I was holding that tiny little boy in my arms, his huge eyes studying and soaking in the world that had just greeted him? What happened to those stumbling steps holding onto my hand as he learned how to move about in life? My hands are unclasping more and more each day as I learn what letting go is. He is strong-willed and determined, but not nearly as independent as you might think he would be. He carries about a mixture of Bri and me in him, this little boy moving into a new part of his world.
Last week we rearranged the boys’ room to bring in a desk for Asher. We cleared out old toys and unwrapped papers stuffed behind beds. Brian found me in the middle of the room surrounded by happy meal toys and drawings of Superman bawling my eyes out. He’s beginning that step away from the baby and little boy things. “He rarely plays with his little people anymore.” I whispered huskily. Brian joined me in the middle of the floor, tears mingling with mine. “Our boy is growing up.”
Questions flood over me. Have I done my job well? Is he prepared for this new transition? Will his feet walk in righteousness and love? I know every mom says it, but if I had these six years back I would do so many things differently. I agonize over the pain he has seen this last year as we have all suffered. The weakness he has seen in me, the failures will make him stronger, this I know. He has a heart of compassion and sensitivity that will bless others. He has an anger that, as we mold him and teach him self-control and softness, will turn into drive to succeed. And He has a love for His Jesus that is shameless and exciting. And I groan in prayer begging for him to be a child that forsakes it all for Christ. A boy that does not buy into the lies of the world, that grows into a man who always shines the light of Christ.
My emotions are raw right now. I am excited for him and all these new steps, but I ache with the loneliness of days here at home without him. And yesterday, guess what he did? He and Micah and Audrey got out all their little people and built a huge city in their room and played for 3 hours together without one single fight. Three hours, my friends. He’s still a little boy.
I know part of me will always think of him as my little boy no matter how big he gets. This morning he curled his lanky body into my lap and asked me why I was crying when daddy left for DC. “Oh, baby,” I whispered into his hair, “So much happiness and sadness all mingled together in Mommy’s heart.” He sat for a moment, then kissed my cheek and said, “I’m so glad you’re my Mamma.”
Me, too, buddy. How very glad I am!