A few days ago I watched M put a ponytail on one side of her head and an array of different colored hairclips stuck all over the other half of her hair. She felt beautiful and she was beautiful.
I hear her dreams for the future--to help people, to live with her best bear--Ben, to live in a pink house with a pink bus, car, airplane and boat close to us because she will miss us so much (her words). Really all dreams with happy endings.
But, my growing-up mommy heart knows that in a few years that beautiful hairdo will be the subject of ridicule. I know that there are unforeseen complications that interrupt and change dreams. Oh, to be able to shelter her from that pain.
We were never promised a life without pain. In fact, it's pretty much guaranteed. And so instead of sheltering my children, I get to be one of the people who helps prepare them and show them how to deal with suffering.
There has been much talk of what it means to be without a mommy, daddy, food or homes this past year as we have talked about adoption with M and T. There have been deaths in our family and so we have explained Heaven. And through it all we have told M and T that each person is created by God with a special and unique purpose and that He loves each one of us and that when we die with Him in our hearts we get to live with Him in Heaven in the amazing, beyond-our-wildest-imaginations place that He has created just for us.
...After the earthquake this past week, I tried to find ways to explain it to M.. How to explain so much loss of life, loss of everything. Even I struggle to comprehend it all.
It's a hard balance, I don't want to make her afraid, but I do want her to understand our world. That crazy concept of how we each have our own beds and multiple sets of blankets for each one, when many have one or no blanket to call their own.
So, yesterday I came across this news story on Yahoo News about this little 2-year-old girl (Winnie) who was rescued after 3 days by Australian television crews.
It led to some amazing conversations with M. She is enamored with Winnie. In fact she wishes that Winnie were her sister. :) M has given the idea of being all alone for 3 days and nights (in the dark) with no food or water some serious thought. And of all of the people who have perished from the earthquake, M thinks that there is no cooler place than Heaven. In fact she can't wait to get there. I told her that I hope that she lives a very long, full life and that someday when she is a grammy she can join me there. Umm...deep, hard, thought-provoking conversations with my 4-year-old. Thankful for the hope of Heaven and praying for the wisdom to be able to touch M's heart with the right words at the right times.