Still, as I handed my mother Noah's diaper bag and then the boy himself, I felt this strange, faint, yet very real sensation in my chest. As corny as it sounds, I felt a tug. A tug in my chest. I watched my mom walk away, and my baby watched me over his Bebe's shoulder. The tugging became undeniable. Then,when my baby disappeared into the back seat of my mom's car, the tug turned into an all-out pull, and I started to cry.
I pulled myself together by reminding myself that this was my loving mother and not a basket in the Nile river taking my baby away. Also, silly, emotional woman, you'll be picking the kid up in, like, three hours, so stop it! And I did get Noah back, and he was completely fine, and my parents were very happy to have spent an entire evening with their only grandchild. It was a happy and good event. So why the tug?
Four years ran by way to fast.
Noah wanted to play with his sweet friends Anne and Abby, who live a quick walk down the street from our house. Anne and Abby run over to our house often to play with both my boys, and I have dropped Noah and Witten off at their house several times. Today, however, Witten was napping, so I suggested he go play at the girls' house. He eagerly agreed.
Stephan was at the gym, Witten asleep in his bed, and I was soon to put Belle down for a nap, too, so I knew me dropping Noah off was out of the question. An idea struck me. Grabbing up my phone, I shot a quick text at Karen, the kind and patient and lovely mother (and fellow blogger) of Noah's friends. Could she maybe send one of her girls to escort Noah to their own house? My answer was a chorus of knocks on our front door an impressively short time later. Anne and Abby skipped through our house and out the garage, where Noah was waiting for them.
I helped him shrug on his jacket and then sent him off with the girls, then I stood in the doorway of the garage and watched him go. I don't think it was my mind making up stuff when I saw Noah proceed with great trepidation at first. He stood for a while in our driveway, watching the sisters dance around and tell him exciting things about what they'd heard from school or what they were going to do at home. Then, as the girls marched off, taking the short cut through the neighbor's yard, he pulled up the hood to his jacket and got to steppin' after them. By the time they moved out of my sight, Noah was jogging right along with the girls, clearly excited to play.He didn't look back once.
Again, I knew the place Noah was headed to. I knew the girls and their parents and even their grandparents would be right there, should help be needed. I could even hear their happy playing from my front yard, even if I couldn't see them. Sure, there were a few more risks involved, what with the residential road that separated our neighbor's house from the girls' grandparents' house where they were headed, but I could proceed with confidence, knowing my boy was safe. Yet once again, I felt that tug. And once again, it got harder the farther Noah moved from me.
I prayed, as I did on that day four years ago, that God would keep my first baby safe. I prayed it as if Noah was headed off to a week long camp an hour away from me. That kid is so disastrously tangled up in my heart strings that he cant leave my side without me feeling it in my chest. It's the same with his brother and sister, too. That over used saying about your children being your heart walking around outside your body is startlingly true. I love these three kids God gave me so much it physically hurts, sometimes, but in a good kind of way.
I'm glad to see Noah expanding his horizons and testing his limits. I want him to be brave and independent. I love the idea of him and his siblings running over to their friends' houses to spend the day playing outside and using their imaginations. But seeing my big boy, my first baby, walk away like he did today, well, it made me all emotional and inspired, so I wrote a blog post about it.
|my little, bald-headed baby|
|Where'd this kid come from?|