This week I’ve been playing mom to three kids and a teenager while their parents were out of town. I fed them dinner, bathed them, (well, not the teenager…), tucked them in, got up early, woke them up after I was ready, helped them get dressed, fed them breakfast, packed their lunches, encouraged them to bring jackets in case of rain, explained the day’s plan, packed them into my car, and dropped them off at school with well wishes for the day.
Last night Michael and I read “Are you my mother?” for the third day in a row. He said it was his favorite book and that he was excited to read it because he missed his mom. He started tearing up, but he didn’t cry. We read the book, and when I asked him, “Michael, what do you think baby birds like to eat? Pizza?” he said, “Oh yeah, and worms, and…” I laughed and said, “ICE CREAM?” and he said, “OH YEAH. They really love that!” (If you can read those sentences aloud with a five year old lisp, it’s much cuter!)
Having fake kids was great. I was really surprised with how easily we took on our roles and how well we got along. I’m always surprised by kids, though…their wit, their passion, their sense of discovery, their creativity, their wisdom. All this “mom” time stirred up old heartache and left me pondering my single and childless life. I wonder have I done something wrong? Is it too late for me to “settle down”?
Later I was telling my best friend about the heartache and the loneliness and she reminded me so powerfully (as always) that God is the author, and this part of the story is only part of an incredible design. Life is a gift, and every moment is an opportunity for growth. How did I forget? Paul said it, too in 1 Cor. 7. So, I’m embracing the truth and running with it, throughout this whole season.