Why I Didn’t Get Emotional and Cry Tears of Joy When You Were Born
First off, you are so very deeply loved and you have changed me, for the better, more than any other life event. Hands down. Ever. But I didn’t get emotional and cry when you were born, like I thought I would. I always heard people talk about an instant bond or connection with their newborn and an overwhelming sense of gratitude. It’s not that I didn’t have that, in my own way, but it was different than I had heard described by other moms. And it was different than I thought it would be.
I was surprisingly calm and I just wanted to look at you and figure out all the details of your brand new little self. I initially just thought maybe we’d just look into each others eyes and connect like old soul mates and be a little family of best friends, instantly.
My wife and son are away visiting family in the Midwest. It’s the first time we’ve been apart for more than a night since Cillian was born, and while great nights of undisturbed sleep have been cherished I find myself missing the comforts of family. My boy’s first smile in the morning when I enter his room. Watching him light up every time he sees his Mommy, and seeing them interact together.
My wife really is an amazing mother. We have an anniversary coming up, and while I was thinking about it in her absence I came across something I wrote for her a few years ago, pre-baby. It’s funny that as we’ve become parents, it rings more true than before.
As time has aged us
We assumed our roles faithfully
Creating our world while
Changing along the way.
You are not the girl I fell in love with
You are more…
Somewhere I lost myself
To become Yours.
Living for your every heartbeat
Existing for your very breath.
Even though luster has worn to comfort
You still fill me with awe…
a childish laugh.
Looking back at our beginnings
Admiring how we’ve come so far
I never imagined a life this full
A romance this deep.
On our second day in Haiti we got to do something new to most of us called a treasure hunt, which is a unique experience. We started the morning by spending time in prayer for specific things and characteristics of people to pray for. Only Pastor James, the missionary, knew anything about the area where we were going afterwards.
It seemed crazy how many strange and obscure characteristics we individually felt were present in that area and in the people of that area. It was also remarkable how many people came up with the same words when we compared notes. For example, some words a few of our team members felt were “fountain, statue, sister relationship, arched doorway, and Janet.” Yes, Janet. A name that is never heard of in Haiti.
The Radiant Church team arrived in Haiti on Saturday, June 8th with hungry bellies and full hearts. A close connection in Miami put lunch on hold as we departed for Port-au-Prince followed by quickly cramming in a van to begin what would be a 4 hour journey (but only about 120 miles and probably the craziest ride of our lives) to Gelee Beach, outside of Les Cayes.
The trip in the van was foretelling. Beauty. Despair. Destruction. Life. Loss. All glimpsed from a window, and all seen face to face once we stepped outside. The juxtaposition was striking, and even unsettling as we began to wrap our minds around the need.
In less than a week I will be setting foot on the sands of Gelée Beach in Haiti (just outside Les Cayes) along with a team from Radiant Church. Although I have worked to be prepared, I truly do not know what to expect. This is my first time outside of the United States for mission work and my first time to a third world country. I find myself to be a mixture of excited, grateful, expectant for amazing things, anxious, and uncertain.
Everyday I see people at a crossroads of change. It looks different for everyone (big life decisions, health, letting go of the past), but I’ve observed that there are people who consistently navigate change very well and those that stagnate on a regular basis. The funny thing is that they all are desiring a better life, so why do so many stumble along the way?
COMMIT AND GO
Early on I was fortunate enough to have a mentor that drilled this into me: success = decisiveness. The only wrong decision is simply not making one. What you can do is be prepared and informed, knowing that either choice will have things you are thankful for and things you regret, things that are hard and things that are easy. But the key is committing and not looking back - No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God – Luke 9:62.
I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase “use it or lose it.” When it comes to our physical health it is amazing how true this simple platitude is. Sitting has become the dominant posture in the workforce and an increasingly common posture in entertainment and relaxation at the same time chronic pain and disease are on the rise. Recent studies have even shown that as you spend more time sitting, you’ll spend less time on this Earth (regardless of exercise). More on that here, here, and here.
Why Motion is Crucial
When you look at the human body, you can see that it is expertly designed for motion. Motion is nutrition not only for your joints, but for your brain (through the firing of proprioceptor afferents). Motion changes your internal brain and body chemistry, aiding in the healing process.
Sometimes I forget to take a breath.
Moving from project to project, post to post, day to day, and diaper to diaper…
Visions, goals and dreams leading the charge, yet stealing the day.
Not today. Today I drew breath and soaked in the moment. Consequently I laughed, I played, I loved. All it took was a willingness to be still and enjoy my family. Because I was laughing, playing and loving, so was my son.
His laughter seems like magic.
You would think this was the first time I’ve had this epiphany. It’s not.