Pup turned 3 a little over a week ago, and I’ve been savoring all the snuggles and kisses and “hold me”s I can. He’s been crawling into my lap and just asking me to hold him lately. Savoring it while I can — along with his chubby wrists and dimpled knuckles — while he’s still the baby of the family.
Posts from the ‘memories’ Category
It’d been a rough week with Cub, and I felt like I had been talking to him all week about foolish decisions, the way of fools, everything fool related.
So this morning, I pulled him onto my lap and began to tell him also of the beautiful things I saw in his life. Wise decisions he had made, kindness, thoughtfulness, his love for music and beauty.
And looking into my eyes, he smiled, and said,
“I want to touch your eyeballs.”
I’m learning Pup is a kid of passions. He’s fire and grit and kisses and snuggles. He feels things deeply and I love that, but I pray for his passions to be guided, directed, and confined by the Word of God. By the Spirit of God. He still runs at those he loves and grabs them in an I-LOVE-YOU-BOOM! kind of hug. (Maybe my kid after all?)
Yesterday, during our church’s evening service, he gave so many kisses to a friend’s dog. And he was so delighted when she gave him a lick back on the forehead. So gentle, so affectionate with dogs. And so gentle and affectionate with babies. (Next to trucks, puppies and babies are his favorite.)
Yet with those who bully him or those who have something he wants, he can be pretty pugnacious. Last night, as I was falling asleep, I heard him screaming, “No! NO!” in his room, the same way he would if he were being bullied or fighting with someone. I went in and he tossed and turned, but his eyes were still closed. He was dreaming.
Baby of mine who loves snuggles yet throws punches, did I give you the middle name James only to find that you’re a boy much like the son of thunder I named you for?
Yet that son of thunder was transformed by the gospel of the grace of God. And his ruling passion became Jesus, no longer his own tempestuous, self-seeking heart. And according to tradition, he became the first apostle to be martyred for Jesus’ sake.
May God do the same work in your heart, little boy.
Cub and I were walking to the store today on a busy street, cars zipping by. And I put him on the inner half of the sidewalk so I’d be closer to the cars. In the past, I had explained to him that umma and appa walk on the outside closer to the cars to protect him because we love him.
As I did that, he said to me, “Umma, when I become a man, I’m going to walk on the outside and you’re going to walk on the inside.”
“Aww, you’re going to protect umma?”
“Yes.” And he pulled his shoulders back and walked a little straighter. “See, I’m almost a man.”
While making pizza together for dinner tonight —
JE, sternly: Cub, are you eating the flour?
Cub, quoting Pooh: You never know with me.
Part of a note my mama sent to JE today (the original was in Korean):
You aren’t just like a son. Although I didn’t birth you from my womb, you’re a son birthed from my heart. I love you so much!
That mama of mine. And that husband of mine.
My heart is bursting with gratitude.
My mama-in-law’s Alzheimer’s has been accelerating into the final stages lately. Her body has become more stiff, and she’s very hunched over while trying to walk or — as it gets later into the day — hunched over on the floor, unable to rise.
Last night, when JE was there with Cub, JE was trying to get her off the floor and into a more comfortable position. Cub bothered him in the process, and he told Cub, “I’m trying to help Halmuni, because she’s sick.”
And Cub stopped bothering him and thought for a bit. Then he said, “When Halmuni gets to heaven, she won’t be sick anymore.”
Hope from a little mouth in the face of Alzheimer’s.
This morning, Cub asked me for some books from the top shelf. As I reached up to grab them, he said, “You’re the tallest!” I better savor the very, very short time I have before he realizes his mama is actually very far from being the tallest. 😉
After dinner, as the boys were playing, we were reviewing the names of certain things with Pup. And JE noticed that he ends every word with a glottal stop (e.g., map is ma’, pillow is pi-o’).
And as JE was bathing the boys right now, I heard him and Cub laughing as he tried to correct Cub’s pronunciation of steamroller. Cub kept saying steam-wo-wo and steam-ro-ror.
My favorite from today was when we were driving home from the beach and as we were listening to Shane and Shane’s Forever in the car, Cub said, “Umma, I remember the crown of thorns. And the cross.”
I hope my boys always do.
JE and I talked about how the artwork our parents hung in our childhood homes are seared in our memories to this day. He remembers the Korean Scripture that hung over his mantle, I remember the Serenity Prayer that hung in our bathroom, as well as other pieces our parents chose for the home. A quote here, an image there, a verse here, a portrait there.
So we’ve been thinking a little more strategically about the things we want hanging in our kids’ memories. A map of the world to hopefully give them a perspective and heart for the unreached. Our life verses. Hebrews 13:14, which I have yet to make. And a little square with just two words — But God.
I wondered at what age our kids would begin to ask us what “but God” means and why we have that strange, incomplete thought on the wall.
So I painted But God on an 8 x 8″ piece of watercolor paper today. Cub watched me paint it from afar as he was reading during Pup’s nap time. When I finished, he came next to me and read it. “But God.”
And then he said, “But God…..still loves us?”
He was asking if that was what it meant.
I was so surprised all I could do was kiss him.
This afternoon, while Pup napped, Cub read books and played in our room. After an hour or so, he picked up his blankie, duck pillow, and monkey Uncle Ted, and climbed onto the bed to “snuggle” with me, he said.
I happily cuddled him, and as I was giving him kisses on his head, he said to me — out of the blue, “Umma, when you become so older that you can’t wash your butt anymore, I will wash it for you.”
HAHA. What in the world?!