I promised my sweet friend many weeks ago that I would watch her one year old today--for six hours. At the time of my promise, I felt great. I had energy. I was not nauseous. I thought my husband would be home to help. I had a spirit of giving. The last few weeks leading up to the babysitting commitment, all that has changed. Being eleven weeks pregnant has brought with it feelings of less than greatness, very little energy, and nausea...every day from 3-9pm like clockwork I want to throw up pretty much nonstop. My husband accepted a refereeing assignment at a basketball tournament for the whole day. I have not felt the giving spirit much.
Another worry I had was the age...one year olds need constant attention and supervision. And I have one already! This would be like double duty! My one year old, Caden, is a blur of motion when awake (see expression above for example.) He makes me tired just watching his 26 pounds of stocky physicality move through the world. Caden loves his mommy a lot--he loves for me to carry him around, he loves to tug on me and whine when I am not paying attention to him, he loves to eat small things from my less than tidy floor that have no nutritional value and questionable sanitation, and recently he loves to run out into the middle of the street when I am not watching him and laugh hysterically as I scold him, "No street!" and return him to the sidewalk. He also poops like six times a day and seems to secretly enjoy making me cringe and turn away from the wafting effluvium of stinky smells.
(Side note: Thank you Lord for your protection from oncoming traffic on this quiet street of ours.)
I assumed that my friend's daughter had many, if not all, of these same one year old traits, which frankly worried me. I had visions of twin pack n plays, with crying trapped babies in them as I ran back and forth to the bathroom.
Not so! She arrived today happily seated in her car seat stroller. There she sat watching my children run around like crazy people until we went on a walk. Still in her stroller, she smiled at us and laughed at Kya as she pushed her (with my help) up the sidewalk. (I had Caden strapped to me in the Bjorn for safety...and a good workout!)
When she got out and wandered around our living room, she calmly focused on our fishy game for half an hour--without dumping the fishies out! She sat with our older kids and read books without banging them out of their hands or trying to rip the pages. After four hours of this perfection, she pointed to her car seat and grabbed her blankie. So, I put her in the stroller, put her blankie and stuffed turtle on her chest, pushed her back and forth about 10 times and she fell asleep!!!
I wheeled her into a bedroom, closed the door and set the monitor up, and that was it! Her mom came 45 minutes later! And her mommy arrived precisely 15 minutes before my afternoon nausea set in!
Again, I really think when we help others as God has instructed, we are able to benefit and prosper in ways we cannot when we are turned inward. My time today with this little princess of happiness reminded me that perhaps I do hope our new baby will be a girl after all! :) I forgot how very much less girls desire to destroy everything in their paths. It also reminded that I worry too much...about everything!
What a delightful day!