I have three younger brothers, so I know how crazy and wild boys can be. Lots of falls, cuts, scrapes, bruises, broken bones, and even a couple of head stitches. My husband has two younger brothers. He’d always tell how they used to jump from the banister down two floors onto the glass coffee table. Why anyone would do that, I have no idea. Pure madness and chaos.
Right now, I have a little baby boy who’s only seven months, but I know he will probably be just as wild as his uncles and dad. But that doesn’t mean I’m ready for it.
He’s already getting into EVERYTHING. I know it’s impossible, but I think he can crawl faster than I can walk. He wants to touch everything, eat everything, and pull everything off the shelves. I caught him trying to drink out of the dog’s water bowl. I can already tell he will rival his uncles in brute guts and strength.
So how do I prepare as a mother for a boy who will fall, scrape his knee, break his arm, or God forbid, crack his head open like my brother did? Twice! (He’s completely fine, just a scar hidden by his hair.)
He had his first fall last week.
He was trying to catch our puppy and crawled right off the bed and smacked his cheek on the rocking chair. His cry was a cry of pain, disbelief, and sorrow—the first of its kind. My husband was the first to reach him, to pick his little body off the floor. He tried soothing him, checking his body for any breaks, telling him it was going to be OK.
But our baby didn’t stop crying until he was in my arms. He put his little head on my shoulder and started squeezing my chest—his way of asking for milk.
As I sat down to feed him, I wiped away his little tears and held back my own. His first fall of many. As he grows up he’ll have more falls, mostly physical, then eventually he’ll have his first spiritual fall, emotional fall, mental fall, relational fall, and then some. All these falls that my husband and I may not be there to pick him up for.
I guess that’s why Jesus is so great. In times when we won’t be there to pick our son up off the ground, Jesus will be. Always. There’s no question, no doubt in my mind that my baby will be better than fine in the arms of Jesus.
Who else is there better equipped to comfort him than me? Only Jesus.
I know soon enough he will proudly display his broken arm in a cast and tell some wild story of how he fell off his bike doing some trick that seems entirely too dangerous for anyone to attempt. And I will probably go crazy. But we aren’t there yet, so right now I’m soaking in his little hands and arms. Kissing his bruised cheek, and am thankful that I was there for his first fall.
Even though seeing his little body on the floor made my eyes tear up and my heart rush, I know my baby is safe. All I can do as a mother is prepare him for the falls. So that he knows falls don’t define him. Perseverance comes from getting back up and trying again. No matter what falls he faces, his father and I will always be there to check for broken bones and wrap him in our arms.
I know in my heart there is nothing I can do to prevent his falls and that with each fall, he’ll learn to be stronger, learn how to get back up, and come to God with his hurt. Lessons that will develop his character to be who God called him to be, to grow into a respectful, loving, kind, caring, generous, and God-fearing man. But that doesn’t mean I’m not nervous.