Monday, May 31, 2010

Loving Andrew

This morning, Andrew was off to a bad start.  Too little sleep the night before, a few big days of "holiday weekend," and just general fussies. He was bawling when Steve left for the gym, which isn't his normal self.

About 10 minutes later (most filled with tears), I said: "Hey, I need some help on something.  What do you think we should bring for our beach picnic?"

The cries stopped immediately.  His face lit up.  "Pancakes!"

So we made some chocolate pancakes together and packaged them up for the picnic.

When I get inside the mind of my children, their needs and wants seem so simple.  It's the external stuff that makes it hard to align with those needs, though.  Sometimes, things just have to move along because there are 5 persons in the family.  But sometimes, we get that chance to be what the individual child really needs.

Simone fell asleep on the way home from the party tonight, and Jack fell asleep on the floor of the living room.  So Andrew had us to himself for bedtime.  He cleared off the bed, then patted down the sides he wanted each of us to use.  He looked so proud and happy to have both of us there for bedtime. 

He cuddled into me as we talked about how he helped Simone's hand feel better after pinching it in the rocking chair - how he wiped it down with wet-wipes, stroking it so gently.  The wet-wipes were a strange twist, mind you... but she loved it.  :)

He fell asleep quickly, snuggled into us.  He seemed so at peace.  And I said to Steve: "You know what Andrew's soul needs?  To feel important.  To be a helper.  And to be snuggled and loved.  That's it.  And when he has those things, it's amazing how complete and joyful he seems."

Then I started thinking:  Even if we express it in different ways, isn't that what all our souls are really seeking?  We want to be valued by others...to give of ourselves and our gifts...and to have that connection with others?

Maybe it's not the simplicity of Andrew's spirit that was so striking, but that he's small enough and inexperienced enough to not have the coping mechanisms when those things aren't quite aligned? 

It feels good to have a clearer mission statement on loving' up that little boy.

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