The last three years, ’13, ’14, and ’15, I participated in 31 Days of blogging challenges during the month of October. I had this idea that I would do it this year, too, but do you know what happened instead? I went the entire month of October without publishing one blog post. Not one.
And I love writing October: the way the light comes more golden and the sky comes more blue. The gradual giving way of green to shades of gold and brown. The way that I seem to find my footing in whatever new rhythms have begun in August and September. The inevitable nostalgia of fall, making me yearn for the things that are past and binding my heart to the things that are passing.
But now it is November, and I’m typing with eleven weeks of wonder asleep across my lap. He’s added five or six inches and seven or eight pounds since his arrival back in August, and I feel them in the ache of my shoulder blades and the small of my back, and in the ache of tiny clothes — was he ever that small? — which were put away under the bed yesterday.
I’m learning the rhythms of wee-hour wakings, of diapers to be changed and laundered, of housework and errands done in the intervals between the every-two-hours meals which he continues to need. I’m learning the joy and the cost of being needed 24/7.
And I’m writing: not with pen or keyboard, but all over a human soul who can’t yet say the simplest word, filling these first pages of his life, and living definitions that will haunt his later years. It terrifies me.
As he comes to fuller understanding, will he see Christ in me? Is it gospel which I’m living, life laid down for him? Will he see that the things I say are true by my doing?
He is too young to make allowances for moods and weariness in me, but old enough to feel if I am grumpy or impatient. And it doesn’t lie with me to summon joy when, lulled to sleep for the fifth time, he wakes again just as I’m settling to sleep myself, urgent in his cry to know he’s not alone. I love him excruciatingly, but I. Can’t. Do. It.
And yet I am mightily helped, daily thrown upon the grace of my gracious Father. There is never enough of me, yet He multiplies my meager loaves and fishes, keeps my oil jar supplied, spreads manna — morning by morning — on the ground around my tent.
My baby opens blue-gray eyes with a smile in them for me. This also is grace.
My Shepherd is the Lord. I shall not want.
©2016 by Stacy Crouch