Sunday, January 29, 2012

Coming Home

I am plopped on the top bunk trying to not bang my head or completely lose myself in the wad of covers.  It is the second born's domain and it. is. messy.  I peer down the ladder at him and ask which stuffed animal he wants to take to the sleepover.  The blankets are a given.  He has slept with them for 9 years and a week; I know they are going into the overnight bag. 

But, the growing boy surprises me.  He shows me his desire for autonomy, perhaps even a taste of manhood.

"I am not taking any animals.  Or my blankets."  I almost laugh out loud and tell him the absurdity of not taking his blankets.  I make it clear we would not be bringing him blankets in the middle of the night and that it really is OK to hide them deep in his bag for insomnia-induced-emergencies.

But, the boy, now small man, looks at me with fierce eyes.  "No.  They are all staying here.  They can have their own bunking party."

I feel in my spirit this isn't the right choice, but I also feel in my spirit that it is time to allow this boy-man to make decisions.  Eli gets dropped off.  The animals and blankets are left to themselves with the mess called his bed.

Things are going so smoothly.  The back of my eyelids greet me and I feel a deep sleep coming on.  Perhaps deeper than I thought, for I barely hear the ring of my phone.  My thoughts turn to my friend's girl, Lily, a long awaited baby that is due anytime.  The mantra "Lily is coming" carries my feet into the kitchen only to catch the voicemail.  Eli can't sleep.  We are bringing him home.

I greet my sweet boy-man at the door and put him to bed.  Eric awakens the next morning a little shocked that we have more than two children at home.  In his wise style, he pulls Eli aside and takes a reading of his heart.  He fathers with grace and mercy and understanding.  I am overwhelmed at God's goodness of giving me him to be their Daddy. 

"You know, when I was a little boy...."  And off comes another story of his childhood.  It cuts straight to the point.  Eric wants the boys to know that he was them once.  He wants them to know that he knows their hearts.  He wants them to know that they are accepted and cherished.  He talks with grace instead of anger or condemnation.  I have so much to learn from the leader of our home.

It is why I will always point those boys to their father.  For one, Eric was a boy and gets boys.  Second, he is the authority of our home.  Third, he scoops out mercy and grace as if he were putting sugar on plain Cheerios.  {And those boys know how to lick up the sugary leftovers once the milk is gone.}  Fourth, he can discern reality faster than I can.  He knows how to cut to the chase and deal with the matter leaving drama behind before it ever shows its head.

Eric often reminds me of the father of the prodigal son...allowing his sons to start to choose their own way, but always in the background with arms wide open when they simply need to come home.

Mercy always lets the boy-man come home.


Erica said...

love this

The cat's meow said...

Becke, I think you are amazing. I just started reading your blog for the first time, and am so blessed. Thank you for sharing so well. I am bookmarking you! :) Laurie

Anonymous said...

The"Boy-Man". What a sweet post and a sweet glimpse into our Son's life as a Father. Thanks for sharing, for turning those precious boys to their Father, and for the powerful concept of always allowing the "Boy-Man' to return home. We are so blessed by your family.
Love You, Barb