The missing pages

From a blog post I did in 2007 about my failure in keeping the kid’s baby books.

The lead character in the musical, Oliver sings:

Who will buy this beautiful morning
and put it in a box for me?
So I can see it at my leisure,
whenever things go wrong.
And I can keep it as a treasure
to last my whole life long?”

I failed my children in baby-booking. I did.  I just stunk at it.  Their entire lives, the guilt of the knowledge that I had not filled out the dates on the teeth-cutting-arrival charts gnawed at me relentlessly.  Pages with the words paste photo here nakedly jeered at me, taunting my inability to create a wondrously meaningful book for posterity.

It wasn’t that I didn’t have photos to paste.  It wasn’t that I didn’t delight at the clink of the spoon on a newly-emerged tooth or want to remember every single, tiny moment of their first days.  I saved everything for each of my children from the second I knew they were coming. It was almost a sickness, induced, I fear, by having a dad who saved nothing.  We took untold thousands of photos of these 5 incredible children. They were also often undeveloped for a really long time

But somehow, I just didn’t do well at putting things in their books.  I think my perfectionistic tendencies (aka my all-or-nothing sickness) interfered.

Today I must focus entirely on the baby-book and fill in each line and glue the proper photos as directed,” was my heart’s desire, but didn’t happen, couldn’t happen, because life was happening.   When you are deeply involved in your husband’s ministry, right at his side AND almost annually producing a  new human being, leisure time to cut and paste and record gets put on the back burner – or in my case, books safely tucked into their original boxes, high on a closet shelf…{read the whole post HERE}

Life speeds up as we slow down

My really good friend {we’ll call her Amy Jo} is facing the end-of-an-era with her baby girl.  Healthy babies grow and it is good, but suddenly, as a mommy, you realize – “Oh,  we’ll never be here again.  Something I have treasured in this season is over and it is good and it is a sign of health and blessing, but – I wasn’t ready to move on.  I will miss this.”  It goes fast!

Like one day you can pick your child up and twirl them around and then one day, they are too big for that. But you didn’t know that was over…

amy jo and daughters

A group of us were discussing this, via social media, at dinner and through some comments here on the blog and another friend {let’s call her Heather ;) } lamented not keeping up with recording the life moments and the journals and records of her family as time is speeding by and they are growing up.  We feel like we let them down by not having kept a detailed record of life.  The moments rush by.

I totally understood.  Why not more photos and why did we not write down every cute thing all of our kids said and why didn’t we actually journal the stories of our family regularly?  We can all feel that.  But I was totally reminded, in that moment of empathy seasoned with a dash of regret, of a scripture in Luke 2.  The Bible says of Mary, as she watched Jesus grow:

“And Mary kept these things and pondered them in her heart.”

No missing pages.  No “you-big-fat-journal-failure-you!”  No.  Everything is there, written in our hearts.  We remember our babies as clear as a bell, their laughter, their crinkly-nosed smiles, watching their interactions and knowing what they were destined to become.  How could we have captured all that with mere words, anyway?

See?  It’s all right there, in your heart.  You’ll still have the stories to tell and the legacy to leave.  Don’t worry.  :)

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