I watch you out the window as you run to our mailbox, eagerly anticipating the treasures in today’s delivery. Any mom who spends her days at home can relate to this simple highlight of the day. And just like you don’t want to miss the joy of the mail, I’m so thankful I haven’t missed the joy of you, my boy.
Your sweaty curls bouncing, your eyes lighting up and smile spreading wide when you see your mama’s there. You wave in excitement like it’s the first time we’ve seen each other all day and run to the door to report, “It’s boring mail today, Mama.”
I remember that other day watching for you, just five years – more like blinks – ago. What would it be like having a boy? How would I parent you? What new things would I learn?
And then I held you and knew it would be OK. That I’d learn about you and how to one day at a time.
And by God’s grace, I have.
Since then, I’ve learned that you are an early riser, even beating the sun up some mornings. You are immediately cheerful and busy from that first flip of your light switch. You throw open your drawers, get dressed and make your bed right away, ready to begin the play and conversation of the day.
I say conversation, because I’ve learned that you are a talker. Wow, can you pile up words! And I’m not always good at it, but I make myself stop and listen and look you in the eye, trying to make sense of how you’re trying to make sense of life.
I’ve learned that you have a tender and empathetic heart. You have ears that hear both the faintest ambulance siren off in the distance and the one blaring right next to us, and always want to pray for those in distress. Even you know all is not as it should be in this broken world and have learned to call out to the only One who can fix it.
I’ve learned that you are a classic extrovert. You love meeting new people and your energy level rises exponentially in comparison to the number of people in the room. The sooner you can get to know them, the better. You call our neighbors by name and make small talk with them from across the street. Your friends at the YMCA can’t wait for you to get there because everything’s more fun with Schaeffer! One of the employees who could have today off is actually coming into work just because it’s your birthday! You love people and people love you.
Along with that, I’ve learned that you do not lack confidence. Before your first ever soccer game you declared, “I’m gonna be good, Dad.” And when you head into a new situation with new people present, you’ve been known to say, “They’ll like me, Mom.” I tease your dad that you have what I like to call “male reality distortion” (shown humorously in the Dove ad parody, “Men: You Aren’t As Beautiful As You Think”). But whatever it is, prayerfully tempered with a good dose of reliance on God, I know it will serve you well in this hard world as you take risks and enter intimidating situations.
And because of all that I haven’t missed, Son, there’s so much that I’m going to miss about you when you head to kindergarten in just a few months.
But the Bible tells us you are another arrow for us to send off. So we’ll start with that first brave five-year-old step into a new place, meeting that new person God has already prepared for you to learn from. She’ll teach you things in a different way than I will, and it will be good for you to learn from her approach and to learn to respectfully submit to her authority. You’ll meet new kids God has hand picked for you to grow with. Some will make you cry and some will make you laugh (and some will make you do both!), and you can count on the fact that I won’t miss the opportunity to help you through it all with the only help I and your dad know, God’s Word.
We won’t miss the chance to apply it to your hurts and joys, your relationships – good and bad, your choices – easy and difficult, your education – what we agree with and what we don’t, and your sin – always warring within you, in school and out.
But for now, these last few months we still have everyday together, we’ll keep waiting for the mail, meeting new people, and praying for hurting ones.
And as much as I love writing about what a joy you are, I think it’s time to close this post. Because I hear you a few rooms away, already awake, I’m sure dressed in your superhero shirt of the day, ready to talk and play…and I don’t want to miss it!
Happy 5th Birthday, to our Schaeffey-Boy!
|Photos Credit to Robyn Moore|
Birth Announcement – here
First Birthday Tribute – here
Second Birthday Tribute – here
Third Birthday Tribute – here
Fourth Birthday Tribute – here