Davis turns 8 weeks old today. For those of you who hate that week thing, Davis turns 2 months old today. In some ways I can hardly believe it. In other ways, it seems like he has been with us for much longer. Sometimes when Tracy and I are driving down the road and Davis is asleep in the back, it feels like it’s just Tracy and me again. Then I glance back and see the car seat and am reminded that we have a little boy back there.
When we first brought Davis home, I have to admit, I felt overwhelmed. I felt like there was no way I was going to be able to continue doing the mom thing. I kept saying, “Oh my gosh, this is work!” Everyone said having a baby was the most awesome thing in the world, the greatest love you would ever feel. But, I have to be honest, although I loved Davis even when he was in the womb, I felt a little like, “Who is this person who has come in my home and taken over?” I couldn’t sleep when I wanted to, I couldn’t eat when I wanted to, I couldn’t leave the house when I wanted to. Notice all the I’s in that sentence. One thing is for sure, and I learned it quick, once baby is here, there is no more “I”, not ever. Before we got pregnant, I told Tracy that I was selfish and that I could not have a baby because of my selfishness. Well, let me tell you, having a baby will make you realize just how selfish you are. After having all the selfish thoughts, I would ultimately end up in an emotional whirlwind, thinking to myself, “How can I be so selfish?” I guess some of it is the result of growing up alone and having things my way a lot of the time.
When Davis arrived on the scene, he looked at Tracy and I with a furrowed brow as if to say, “Who and what are you and why am I here?” We were just as strange to him as he was to us. Well, now that Davis is 2 months old, that has been replaced with smiles and coos and looks of true affection. Because of these new interactions, a great deal of my selfishness has been replaced with nothing less than adoration for that little boy. I completely understand what people mean when they say, “You will never know a love so awesome.” I more completely understand Christ’s relationship with us and how he could give up his own life so that we could live. When I look at Davis and see him look back into my eyes like he knows I am his mommy, I would give up everything that I want or even need to make sure that he is okay.
Tracy and I have never really been country music fans, but we realized while driving down Highway 17 with Davis screaming in the backseat, that our son is. It’s the only music on the radio that he stops crying to listen to. So now, when we all three get in the car, Davis has us turn the radio to a country music station. If he cries, we know it means to turn it up louder. He has given us no choice but to begin to at least accept country music. Apparently we are beginning to like it because Tracy even listens to it when Davis and I aren’t in the car. The other day he came home very excited about this song by Rodney Atkins (I think that’s the guy’s name) about a little boy and his father. The little boy looks at his father and wants to be just like him. He surprises his father by uttering his first bad word. When his father inquires about where he learned that word, the little boy’s response is that he’s been watching his dad and basically wants to be just like him. In one of the final verses, the little boy and his dad sit down to pray at night and the dad is surprised by how well his son prays. When he asks where he learned to pray like that, the boy responds by saying that he watches what his dad does and he wants to be just like him.
Well, as I listened to this song, I was standing in the kitchen with tears streaming down my face. It made me realize even more what God has trusted us with – a person, to shape and mold and teach about God and how to treat others. I realized how completely overwhelming this parenting thing is going to be. Not because of having to let go of a little selfishness, but more now because we can’t just go around living accidentally. Every word we speak and every choice we make teaches Davis how to be. I am quite certain that at some point, we are going to be watching Davis do something that is completely unacceptable and ask him why and he is going to respond exactly as that little boy in the song did. We’ll feel like we’ve been punched in the stomach. Nothing like a child to make you see yourself for what you are. But, then there will be those times that he is being completely awesome and we’ll know for sure that we did something truly right and meaningful with our lives. And we’ll know for sure that relinquishing that selfishness will be the best thing we ever did for ourselves.