|A Little Piece of Heaven by Bessie Gutmann-all of her work is to die for, I LOVE it|
I have been going through a sort of grieving process. Over a few things. But one is over my Baby Cali. It feels like I have had a baby FOREVER. Kaden will be 14 in two weeks and so forever includes those years but I also include all the years of my life before that. For I have never lived in a house that didn't have a baby. The closest I came was after Scott and I were married and we lived in Scott's parents apartment. Scott's baby brother, Sammy was just down the stairs and he was 6.
That lasted all of about 15 months and then we produced our own little Kaden. Oh how he wrapped himself around my heart! I can remember sitting in the corner of the couch, my knees pulled up to my chest with my little blond new born sandwiched between-my cheek resting on top of that fresh from Heaven little head that smelled like sugar. I was smitten.
These babies have just been everything to me for so long that now that Cali is nearing three, this weird grieving has started to grow in my chest. In so many ways I am ready to set this chapter aside but a big part of my soul is just screaming for one more page. How could it be over so soon? And yet there have been very long days and nights that took everything I had to offer. Ear infections, colic, diarrhea, babies that only like to be held, lugging, loading, tantrums, diapers, spills and a million messes and a million sleepless nights. But I am so honored and mothering these babies has been a beauty that I can not describe. I will never regret the hours and the sacrifices I have given up for my babies. Babies that wanted a Mom more than a baby swing or a paci or babysitter. I will never regret that it was ME up at night, me in the rocking chair and me cleaning up the messes. What a privilege it has been to have my babies.
When I was a little girl my Mom had a painting hanging above the crib by Bessie Pease Gutmann. It was called "A Little Piece of Heaven" and it was of a black haired little baby sleeping. I was memorized by that baby face and a powerful love of baby was planted in my heart. It has been in these last 14 years that the reality of that painting has been fulfilled in my life and letting go is hurting me. Those babies really are a piece of Heaven and I can think of nothing else that has brought me closer to God than the love and the work of a baby.
There is no better advice I can give to a new mother than to say, you have the rest of your life to work, to go out, to sleep all night long, to travel, to be educated, just hold that baby while you can. Be happy that it's you getting up at night and you buckling that car seat and you keeping all those soft folds under his neck clean and you washing clean clothes for a delicate little body. The pay off may not always be obvious now and the sacrifice will at times be daunting but you will never grow old and say, "I shouldn't have held my babies so much." In fact when that last baby runs off to play with the big kids and you pack up your crib for the last time, you will fall to your knees in thanks to God for the chance to have been the steward of a priceless, one of a kind, Little Piece of Heaven itself.