Every minute of every passing day, I am rendered speechless by him.
He shines, brighter than the sun, breaking through the darkness between us to touch my spirit and my soul.
One by one, the smiles become brighter. His focus is more present. His eyes are somehow more aware.
He looks at me and his gaze sends shivers down my spine. He sees into me, through me, and I see myself through him. His hand reaches out to mine- a connection so real, so tangible.
Every day, more and more, my son chooses to step out of his world and into mine.
We connect and are one with each other, happily co-existing...different but complimentary, built for each other, despite our different outlooks and understandings. There is a growing peace between us. I no longer fear this unknown journey. He reminds me to always have faith that we are exactly as we are meant to be, perfect in our imperfections.
He is happiness, incarnate.
Today was Sammie's first Christmas concert.
It may sound mundane to some, but for me this was a milestone that I have dreamt of since I first began to envision my life as a mother. To celebrate family, peace, love and laughter with my child is, to me, the very essence of what it means to be a parent. It is a time that unites us and where every miracle seems possible.
Today was one of those days that reminded me of just how far we have come on our journey together. Today was filled with miracles.
As I walked into the crowded room, literally bursting with noise, excitement and anticipation, I made a rookie move. I couldn't help myself. I desperately wanted to see my boy- to show him that I was here, ready and waiting to celebrate this happy occasion with him.
It didn't take me long to find him, squirming in the arms of his aid, his piercing eyes taking in all the activity around him.
His eyes found mine, and we connected.
I was thrilled and waved enthusiastically to him! "Hi baby!"
It took him a second to register what was happening...Mom was here!
And he decided that he DESPERATELY wanted to say hi as well.
Of course, this wasn't the time for visiting. Sammie had to wait with his class. They were the first the go on the stage, and he needed to be ready.
And so there were tears of anger and frustration at being held back from coming to welcome me.
I'll admit, a part of my heart broke watching him struggle. I wanted to take him into my arms and reassure him that everything would be alright.
But there was also a part of me that was joyful. He *wanted* me. He *needed* me. He knew that I was there, was aware of me despite the crowd, and wanted to come to me. And while I wish he didn't feel so frustrated in that moment, my heart soared at the knowledge that he knew that he belonged with me.
There is always a silver lining....
I would like to say that the tears passed quickly. But his frustration was not abated by any of the efforts of his skilled team. My little guy knew what he wanted and would not settle until he got it. So he struggled his way though his song (Up On The Rooftop) and at the very end, gave a big smile when he was finally released. He ran into my arms for a great big bear hug!
We spent the rest of the concert together, dancing, holding hands and playing games with each other as the other classes did their presentations. When he felt overwhelmed, he rested his face into the crook of my neck, the way he did when he was just an infant. He found his safety and security in me.
And from the moment he jumped into my arms, no tears were shed.
Parenting expectations are funny things. I know many people who would have been frustrated, even angry, at their children for being "that kid" who cried through the entire song. I know many parents who would have been disappointed that his bow tie was crooked or that he had peanut butter in his hair. I know many parents that would have wanted to see him, sitting peacefully and obediently beside his teachers, waiting for his turn to be called.
In a different time, at a different place, I might have felt the same way. In fact, I know that I would have.
But if there has been one gift that I have been given in this unexpected parenting journey it is this:
Reality far exceeds expectations, if only you learn the cherish the what is instead of the what might have been.
We do not count the beads of sweat on the face of the victorious marathon winner.
We do not
The victories in life happen when and where we least expect them.