Tag Archives: children

OF MOTHERS AND CHILDREN (pt. 3)

Children are a gift from the Lord.

2014-9 stone house lake naomi nathanael aidan liam judah gareth liam 2

MY CHILD
Mischief, wrapped in skin, and innocence,
fingers terrorizing dog and cat
hands tearing all apart, leaving
shreds of everything all through the house
feet that carry her to hiding places
far from searching mother’s eyes and ears
turning mother’s once-dark hair to gray.
Angel child, with auburn, bouncy curls
big brown eyes and smiles that light the dark
kisses bringing laughter through the clouds.
Mystery of life and love, asleep,
Cuddled in my arms, next to my heart.
(2005)

NEW BABY BROTHER
My sons, Aidan, four, and Gareth, age one,
Were soon to be joined by another.
One day I asked Aidan, “What do you think
Of having a new baby brother?”

He looked up at me with his bright cheery smile.
“That’s cool,” said my little blond son.
He paused for a moment, his eyebrows went up.
“Hey, Mom, can we keep the old one?”
(2004)

OF MOTHERS AND CHILDREN (pt 2)

Children are a gift from the Lord. 2014-9 stone house lake naomi nathanael aidan liam judah gareth liam

The poetry book continues.

JUDAH AND THE CHEERIOS
“Cheerios. They taste so good.
I’ll put them in my mouth.
And such a pretty box they’re in.”
So now, the box goes south.
And all the little Cheerios,
Which graced the rug they sat on
No longer round and whole,
They grace the rug they’re ground in.
(2005)

A DOLL FOR DARLA
Five dollars and 100 one-ounce Mr. Peanut bags
for a Mr. Peanut doll,
a cloth peanut with arms and legs
and just enough polyester
to make him little more than a pancake.
Black stove pipe hat perched on his head,
monacle over one eye,
the image of Mr. Peanut
just not as handsome—
a gift for eighteen month old Darla.
A toddler’s sparkling eyes, a quick hug,
and off to play with her new toy.

Proudly he rides Wonder Horse,
the golden plastic stallion,
pencil arms sticking out,
pencil legs straddling his mount,
head held high,
looking straight ahead with the face on his front
and behind with the face on his back
as Darla wheels them around the room

Bedtime, end of ride.
The most beautiful doll in the world
rests in the arms of his mama—
a deal for 100 one-ounce Mr. Peanut bags
and five dollars.
(2005)

OF MOTHERS AND CHILDREN

Children are a blessing from the Lord.
2014-9 stone house lake naomi nathanael aidan liam judah gareth liam 2
They are messy and noisy and expensive but I love having children around–especially my grandchildren. When a society has few children, it grows old. And selfish. God loves children and teaches us through them. And so, I put together a book of some of my poems about children and their moms. Some of the poems are older ones, but there will be more recent ones. I will post them in several postings. Hope they bless you!

BUTTERFLY WINGS
Under my heart, butterfly wings
whisper that love has brought life.
My fingers caress the nest where you grow,
tucked safely under my heart.

Under my heart, butterfly wings
whisper that I am now two.
My body is home to a being not me,
tucked safely under my heart.

Under my heart, butterfly wings
whisper my life is now full.
My arms ache to hold this dear butterfly
tucked safely under my heart.

Under my heart, butterfly wings
whisper of what life will be.
What will you bring to me, dear butterfly,
when you are not under my heart?
(2004)

SHH!
Shh! You’ll wake the baby.
Not many months ago
We didn’t have to hush.
He would waken to our voices
But, secure in his nest,
He would disturb only his mother,
Turning somersaults,
Dancing on her bladder.
Then he would go back to sleep,
Lulled by the sway of her tummy,
Or maybe he’d just suck his thumb.
(2000)

FIGHT!

Thanks to Author S Mazing for the prompt Blogging Event #20. Anyone can join! Just go to her site and add your story to her prompt!

Finally! Boarding time! She made her way to her seat and stowed her carry on away. As much as she loved traveling she was not keen on this 12 hour flight. She sat down and fastened her seat belt, wondering who would sit next to her. After a quick look out the tiny window she started scanning the other passengers entering the plane, wondering who would eventually sit down next to her. She glanced out the window again and observed the busy world out there. Then someone sat down next to her.

Please continue. . .

Sue glanced at the woman who sat down beside her. She reminded Sue of her grandmother. She was a tiny lady, her gray hair pulled back in a bun, and a peaceful face. The woman smiled at her. As soon as she was seated and buckled in, the steward came down the aisle checking all the overhead bins and the seatbelts, telling passengers to put their tables up. Then the plan began taxiing toward the runway and in a short time, they were headed into the sky.

The woman turned to her. “Hello, dear,” she said. “How are you?”

Sue nodded. She didn’t feel like talking, but she didn’t want to be rude. “I . . . I’m fine. thank you.” She wiped an unbidden tear from her eyes.

“We have a long trip ahead of us,” the woman said. She frowned a little. “Is everything alright?”

“Yes. It’s just that you remind me of my grandmother.” That was true, but the tear didn’t come from that. It came from the turmoil at her sister’s. She never realized that divorce could be so ugly.

“I hope that’s good,” the woman said, smiling again. “Well, you remind me of my granddaughter. I’m on my way home from visiting her. She’s grown up into a fine lady and married a fine young man. A soldier. He’s stationed here in England. In another year, they are going to return home.” She sighed. “It will be good to have them closer.”

“I’m sure it will be,” said Sue.

The woman yawned. “Oh excuse me. I need to introduce myself. My name is Lydia.”

“Mine is Sue.”

“My, my. Sue is my granddaughter’s name. Well, dear, if you’ll excuse me, I think I might doze. It has been a big day!”

That suited Sue fine. She didn’t want to have conversation right now. She didn’t want to tell anyone she was on her way home from helping her sister through her divorce to tell her fiancé she didn’t want to marry him—or anyone. It scared her. She didn’t want to marry and have children and put them through that sort of thing!

The flight was quiet. A movie came on, but she hadn’t gotten the headset. She pulled out the magazine from the seat in front. It was hard to concentrate. She dreaded telling Philip she wouldn’t marry him. He was the best thing God had ever put in her life. But she couldn’t bear the thought of having that love end, going through a divorce, having children to put through that.

When the steward came by with refreshments, she chose a diet coke. Lydia woke from her nap and asked for coffee. It made Sue smile. Grandma had been a coffee drinker!

Lydia looked over at her. “Are you headed home?” she asked.

Sue smiled and nodded. “Yes. I was visiting my sister.”

“How nice.” Lydia sipped her coffee. “I’m the last one in my family. No parents or brothers or sister. I’m so glad I have my granddaughter and she will be home soon. I am thankful that the Lord gave her to me.” Her eyes had a faraway look. “I do miss the love of my life. He was the kindest man I ever knew. I almost didn’t marry. Cold feet at the thought of settling down.” She chuckled. “After fifty years of married life, I laugh at that.”

Sue listened and found herself wanting to know more about this sweet lady. “You were married for fifty years?”

“Oh, yes. We were nineteen when we married. How the years flew. I wonder how I could ever have had cold feet!”

“Did you ever come close to divorce?”

“We had some rocky moments, but we worked them out, some through talking with successfully married couples. We did know a few! And we talked with each other. We’d see couples sitting in a restaurant not saying a word to each other. They’d just be eating! Ed and I tried very hard, even when our daughter was young to talk together, to discuss the day.” She paused. “Oh, how we worked through some things! Probably would have been easier using boxing gloves! She glanced at Sue and smiled. “Not really. We talked a lot of things out, gave in sometimes. And we prayed!” She shook her head. “All that kept us together. It was tough, but it was worth it.” She paused. “Are you married, Sue?”

Sue shook her head. “No. I’m not sure I want to.”

“Forgive me if I’m prying, but do you have someone you care for?”

Lydia had such kind eyes. They pulled Sue in; she wanted to confide in this grandmother. “Yes. But I’m afraid. What if we have children, fall out of love, and hate each other?” Tears slid down her face. “I couldn’t bear that!”

Lydia put her hand on Sue’s arm. Her voice was soft and full of concern. “It doesn’t matter what we do, things can go south. But you can fight! If you love each other, you can work it out. They say those who pray together, stay together. That was so important. And talking together. When Ed and I got married, we went to premarital counseling. We learned about each other—simple things we never thought to talk about. Who made breakfast, who walked the dog, how many children did we want, was there an expectation that I would work or be a homemaker? All sorts of questions. Knowing all those things, plus a whole bunch more, helped us through those expectations that might be different for each of us. Don’t give him up if you love him. Fight for him! It means work, but it is worth it. Fifty years showed me that.”

Sue nodded. Lydia had given her a lot to think about. She put her head back and closed her eyes. Perhaps it would work to marry. She wanted to. While the movie flickered, Sue thought and prayed and argued. A baby cried and then she saw the mother carrying her child toward the restroom.

Something stirred in Sue’s heart. She wanted to fight, not just give up. If Lydia could make fifty years through thick and thin, she could, too. She glanced at the grandmother in the seat next to her. Lydia was dozing. Sue smiled and offered a prayer of thanks that God had sent this lady to sit next to her. She reached in her purse and pulled out the picture of Philip and herself that she carried everywhere. She had almost thrown it away when she left her sister, but then couldn’t do it. Philip was still a long ways away, but Sue knew he was waiting for her. She pulled out her cell phone and pushed in his number. His familiar voice said hello.

“Hello, my darling,” she answered his voice, hers trembling. “I’ll be home soon. I love you.”

GOD’S GIFT

 

Thanks to Author S B Mazing for her prompt for Blog  Event #19.

Finally everything seemed to fall in places. She couldn’t remember the last time she felt so happy and excited. Finally! She couldn’t stop smiling. What a wonderful day it was.
Please continue…

It couldn’t be more perfect! The doctor had made her world complete that morning. She put her hand on her abdomen. One of these days what the doctor said was inside her would one day be in her arms. It was so fitting that the day was warm—but not too hot—with a cool breeze blowing and the sky was blue with only a few wispy white clouds. She breathed a prayer of thanks. “Thank you, Jesus. If you had left us childless, I would have still loved you. But I am so grateful for this.”FAMILIfinishThe screen door to the patio opened. She looked up and smiled at her husband as he entered the room. He bent over and kissed her, then sat down in the deck chair beside her.

“Beautiful day,” he commented. “Well, my sweet, what did the doctor say?”

Her smile widened. “We are going to be mommy and daddy!”

She waited for his smile, but it was far too small. He shrugged. “I guess life changes, now.”

Lauren’s smile disappeared and she frowned a little. “Jeff, are you unhappy about the baby?”

He patted her hand. “No, Lauren, it is just unexpected. We’ve been married for seven years and I just never expected it to happen.”

“It did seem like it wouldn’t,” she agreed. “The doctor said, ‘will miracles never cease!’ ” Her smile returned. She wasn’t going to let his coolness to the news stifle her joy.

Jeff stood. “Think I’ll tackle that job I started.” He went back into the house.

Lauren looked after him, then turned her attention back to the scene of earth and sky. “Father,” she prayed, “let him get excited about this special gift!”

Lauren was so grateful that she only had a couple days of morning sickness, and then only certain foods made her nauseated. But that turned out good because those were foods she didn’t really need to eat: cakes, pies, cookies, and so forth. Some of her friends had been very sick with their pregnancies.

As the days went by, Jeff helped her set up the nursery. They took birthing classes. Jeff visited the doctor with her. Her tummy grew larger and she felt the butterfly movements under her heart. Later, she was able to have Jeff put his hand on the small elbow or foot that pushed outward. But Jeff seemed a bit distant, as if he was deep in thought. It made her sad, but she knew he was working through the implication of being a daddy and having a family. She reiterated to herself: I won’t let his attitude change mine. Thank you, Jesus, for this beautiful gift!

 

After the church service one Sunday morning, an elderly widow approached them. She was one of Lauren’s favorite people. Their friend hugged her and Jeff.

“Hello, my dears,” she said. “I am so excited for you.” She sighed. “How I wish Marlin and I had not decided we didn’t want to have children. It just seemed so freer for us to be just us. How I miss family now.” She looked at Jeff. “I think Marlin would have been a great father if we had given it a chance.” She smiled at Jeff. “And I think you will make a wonderful father! I often think now of what Pastor Jeffers says—and what the Bible says—children are a gift from the Lord. They are messy and expensive, but what a joy.”

They invited their friend to come to lunch with them, but she had some plans. Lauren was sorry. Their friend was always so encouraging. They talked for a few minutes, though Lauren noticed that Jeff was quiet. Lauren didn’t say anything about it; she had to let Jeff work through the changes that had come and were coming. They went to lunch, but he didn’t say much throughout the meal. When they got home, Lauren decided to take a nap.

When she awoke, Jeff was on the deck. She put her arms around his middle. He put his hands on hers and pulled her tight. She giggled. It was hard to be too close with such a big tummy!

Jeff turned and held her close. “Lauren, I am so sorry I have been so distant. I have been doing a lot of thinking, especially after the conversation with Sue this morning and after Pastor Jeffer’s sermon. Darling, I really do want this child. I do want a family. It has just been such a transition.”

“Oh, darling, I understand,” she said, her head on his chest. A prayer went from her heart, Thank you, Jesus, for helping him through this!

The next days and weeks showed that Jeff’s heart was settled about being a father. She was so glad. It was wonderful to have them on the same page with the coming baby. Soon it was time for the trip to the hospital, time to suffer through labor, but she was grateful that Jeff was there with her. Her labor progressed. And then it was time to push.

After a couple hours, pushing, the doctor said to Jeff that he might have to do a C-section. Lauren heard through her haze of exhaustion, but then she also heard Jeff’s voice of prayer. Suddenly, the doctor said, “Lauren, push once more. Your baby has decided to come see us!”

And then it was over. Their beautiful little daughter was placed in a blanket next to Lauren and they helped her begin to breastfeed. Jeff knelt over her and kissed her forehead. “Lauren, this is the proudest moment of my life. I got frightened there when the doctor suggested a C-section. But praise the Lord, He changed the doctor’s plans! You did great.”

Lauren smiled up at her husband. As she gazed at her baby, she was thankful. “Jeff, I would have loved Jesus even without this little bundle, but I am so thankful that he chose to give her to us. And I am thankful that he has given you to me.”

Jeff smiled. He indeed looked like the new daddy she hoped he would be.

 

SPRING IN THE PARK

Here is my post for Day Eight in Writing 101: Death to Adverbs
Today’s Prompt: Go to a local café, park, or public place and write a piece inspired by something you see. Get detailed: leave no nuance behind.
Today’s twist: write an adverb-free post.

I walked through the park, green with life. As the weeks have passed since the calendar said Spring was here, I have watched life being birthed on the trees. Some have remained leafless in the middle of April, but it was a joy to see buds turn to leaves on many of them. Daffodils lined the path that led through the park and when I passed the playground, I smiled at the presence of mothers and fathers pushing children, who begged, “Push higher!” The sun beamed on everyone striding on the path. Some stopped to play hopscotch on the diagram drawn on the sidewalk. Dogs on leashes danced down the path in front of their owners. All in all, it was a day to enjoy Spring and the warmth of the season. Rain may fall, but winter is done, and the sun is smiling.

Christmas and Family

 

Merry Christmas greeting
I went to my younger daughter’s place for Christmas–well not quite Christmas. I came back Christmas eve because they were going to my son’s-in-law family for Christmas. His sweet mother invited me to come along and share Christmas with them, but I decided it would be nice to spend Christmas at home with my sister and her husband.

Monday the six of us (daughter and 4 grandchildren and me) went to my older daughter’s house (about 2 hrs away) and visit her and her 3 boys. It was a full house with two sons of a friend of hers visiting for a couple days. Nine children, ages 14, 13, 11, 10, 10, 10, 8, 7, 5, made a full house. We were blessed that God sent a really nice day and all but the 14 year old ran around outside.  What a good day! It  was nice to have my daughters visit and to see their children together!

There was a lot this week to keep my mind off missing my mom this Christmas. It was neat time, though I was glad to get back last night to my own bed and the quiet!

I give thanks for this season.  I am thankful for the fun, good things, like family. But when the times are not good, the Christmas message gives me peace and hope. When someone loves me enough to leave His kingdom to come to earth to die to satisfy His justice and extend mercy, it shows I can trust Him to act in love in my life, even in the “negative” things. And so, as Christmas day winds down, I am left with the Christmas message for all of my days. I hope all my readers are experiencing the joy and peace of this Christmas message!

MESSIAH HAS COME

In the shadows of the night
the heavens burst forth in glorious light.
Angels proclaimed Messiah had come,
peace on earth, death’s power done.
God incarnate, sent from heaven,
gift of love to women, men
to set us free from evil’s hold,
free to live, to sing, rejoice,
free to live beyond myself,
free in peace’s sweet hold to dwell.
©2011