Saturday, November 10, 2007

Thank you for the children

My body is screaming to get pregnant.

For the past five years, it has never gone more than seven months without something to love. I can hear my womb calling out to me, a la the Abominable Snow Rabbit: "Please give me a baby...I will love him and squeeze him and call him George." The answer is No, dear womb. No. You have performed well, so so well. Thank you. NO NO NO. As Walker never grows tired of saying, Womb service is closed. We send you off with a lovely Cross pen and a generous severance package.

The reality that Ike is the last baby I will give birth to (we still intend to adopt someday) has been accepted by the head, and, finally, even the heart.

The hormones are another issue Entirely. They sing to me day and night, using awfully subversive practices to try and convince me to relent. Hey, Crazy Aunt Estrogen, Walker is the one who made this decision, why don't you go torture him a while, eh?

What with the calling womb and the singing hormones and Shep's new drum set, it's kinda loud around here.

It has been a hard week of very low thermostat settings, quizzical, concerned looks from the husband, trips to the natural supplement aisle, and children adjusting to a very, very impatient mommy. Throw in unending laundry, aching bunions, and the curse of daylight savings time, and, I admit, I have been pretty stinking grouchy.

This same week the kids' preschool and our church began soliciting for Operation Christmas Child, a project run by Samaritan's Purse that accepts shoeboxes filled with toys to deliver to children in desperate places around the world.

Shepherd and Eva Rose and I headed off to one of my favorite places on the planet, the .99 Only Store, to shop for their girls and boys. I explained to them in the car that this was for the poor children, and was thrilled that they got it. As we went up and down the aisles they constantly called out "My boy wants dat fire truck" and "My girl needs a pwincess cwown." Their generosity had to be wildly contained, and I had to sneak a few items back that simply wouldn't fit in the shoe boxes. And this is a true Christmas miracle - no case of the "I want its." This was uttered exactly twice and was completely silenced by "remember, we are not here to shop for you," and their attention would turn back to their girl and boy.

At home after dinner, the kids joyfully filled the two girl shoeboxes and two boy shoeboxes with jump ropes and Matchbox cars and baseballs and toothbrushes and pwincess cwowns. The information that had been given suggested that after filling the boxes, you pray with your children for the kids who would receive it. So I said, "Okay kids let's pray. Dear Father ..." and I completely choked up. Couldn't say a word. And I don't even think it was the hormones.

I thought of the mothers of the children who would receive them, and wondered what they prayed for. I wondered if they pray for their child's next meal, or desperately for their child's healing, or maybe just for the money to buy their child Matchbox cars and plastic princess crowns.

My sweet four year old son took over when his momma couldn't speak. "Dear God, thank you for the children. Amen."

Yes Lord, thank you for the children, my children and the other mothers' children who will receive these simple gifts. May they come to know You as the greatest gift of all.

It really hasn't been that bad a week, after all.


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