Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Lesson from a 6 year old

All I wanted was a little peace and quiet.
I had been up to my eyeballs in it for far too long
and had had quite enough, thank you.
I was on emotional and physical overload.
Life makes its demands; and feeling spent, I was not in the mood to give more.

So when she asked to go in the water, I said yes.
Images of her splashing about happily while I sat under the umbrella
reading and relaxing, iced tea in hand, birds singing and blossoms fragrant surrounding me drew my yes.
I would be left alone!

Of course, reality is another thing altogether.
We changed and headed out. Her smile brightened the sky and my day as I settled in, finally getting what I wanted. The scent was there, and the birds, the warm sun and the cozy chair.
But peace and quiet hadn't shown up. Just
Mommy, look!
Mommy watch!
Mommy come play with me!
Mommy, see what I can do!
Mommy, you aren't watching!

All I wanted was a little peace and quiet.
Can't I just have a little peace.
I thought of changing my name but knew that wouldn't help,
so closed the book (with a big sigh alright) and watched.
She was a dolphin diving;
then a mermaid magically calling all the fish to tickle her;
then holding her breath for the count.
I watched and praised, applauded; but it wasn't enough.
"Come in" she cried.

So I put my feet in, dangled on the edge.

My feet were in the water but my heart and head were annoyed;
I wanted that chair and book; not for themselves
but for what they seemed to signify to me – 'all' I wanted -
so reasonable, so deserved.
Lost somewhere in-between these two thoughts she broke in, "Mommy!"
Then a pause as I slowly turned my gaze full to her.

"This just won't work with you only half in!"

And I heard her.

Heard the words from the Teacher travel through her down to me.

Closed my eyes to the surprise of tears; and slid all the way under,
where 'all I want' could not breathe, stayed there dying under a kind of baptism. Then I rose taking a huge breath, gasping for new life as my ears filled with her laughter and delight;
giggling her yes to mommy full in!

We splashed and played and my plunge brought the surprise of peace to every part of me, happily engaged in such a moment.
Life full and God good.
My heart played its thanks. More dolphin dives, floating turtles.
We shared a sip of tea, listened to the birds singing and yes I could smell the blossoms. That would have been enough, really.

But then it happened. Quiet.

She swam to me; her hands cupped my face as she covered it in wet kisses.
"I love you mommy, all the way to heaven and back." She threw her arms around my neck, then pushed off back to the other side and sang out with gusto – no kidding –

Oh Happy Day, Oh Happy Day, when Jesus washed, when He washed, He washed my sins away!

1 comment:

Cizonor said...

Love this story. Well done. There are lots of times I try and get away with just dangling my feet in.