Oh, my darling Judah Sean,
I finally cut your hair-and it was just as I feared. You look older already. But as every momma learns, no amount of wishing can stop the passing of time. And the truth is, that while I long to hold on to these moments that fly by so quickly, I am at the same time delighted with each passing day at the young man you are becoming.
Tomorrow you will be five years old. At five, you can read very well-and while you aren't confident in your abilities just yet, I know how well you can read because I sit and listen to you everyday. Well, most days. ;-). You are also doing well in math, and you love the Latin vocabulary videos along with the rest of us because they are so funny. (I think they give you inspiration for more jokes!) You LOVE to play outside, especially with your brothers. You and Ezra are very close, and I know you look up to him so much. Since quarters are so close around here, it is only natural that sometimes you two have some difficulty getting along here and there.
You are a very funny, goofy guy. You love to make jokes.
You and Evelyn love to sit on the counter and "help" me make dinner. The other night you were quoting a movie saying, "Should we put a little "kick" in it??" While I was cutting your hair, you also kept asking me, "Does it need a little "kick" to it? :-)
My sweet boy. You are the "kick" to it. You make life so much more fun. You give such great hugs and snuggles, and you have the most loving spirit. I can see the seeds and sprouts of what will be the most protective, loving young man, and it gives me such great joy. Never stop loving like that.
You were my biggest child. By far. Four children had come before you, and only one of them had broken the 7 lb. mark, and that one by just a few ounces. Then came my 9 lb. boy!!! I remember, at that time, thinking that it was too much for me-that it might break me.
Sometimes, life will feel like that. Sometimes it feels like so much more than we think we can endure. It seems as if there is no possible way we can come out the other side and still be whole. Whether it's life in general, or just a bike ride uphill, there are times where you will think you just can't make it. But Judah. You are God's precious reminder to me that some of His greatest gifts and blessings come through difficulty and pain. I can still remember the pain of your grand entrance into the world....and yet, now, looking back, that pain seems so minuscule in comparison to the great joy I have experienced in being your mom. And so, it turns out, perspective is always key to navigating pain. When life gets really hard, Judah, I want you to remember that our God promises us that the pain we endure now is small, lasts a short time, and is actually at work producing glory for us that we can't see right now. In the midst of pain, it feels never-ending. It feels unbearable and as if it will break you. But you and I, we are living proof that the other side of pain is sometimes more blessing than you could have ever imagined. I needed that reminder this year.
Judah means "Praise", and Sean means "God is gracious." It is so right and so fitting that one who praises God would be one so full of joy and laughter. No matter what this life holds in the days to come....keep praising God. Keep believing that He is gracious. Keep fighting for joy by laughing hard and loving big. The presence of God is the one thing that will give you the right perspective. It is the one thing that will allow you to see beyond difficulty, and to believe that what's ahead is far better than you could dare to dream. Thank you, for smiling and laughing and cracking jokes and reminding me to believe that difficulty and pain are never the last word for a child of the King. May your jokes and your joy spread like wildfire, welcoming all to come and serve the King who is Himself the greatest joy we can imagine.
I love you.
For the King,