Thursday, September 8, 2011

Bigger Picture Moment: The Unveiling

For her entire life, she's been the baby.  The rosebud-lipped, sweet-cheeked baby; the darling littlest one.  The girl who holds hands as if it's a lifeline to continued closeness.  The girl who would snuggle for hours if busyness didn't intervene.  There is still that special smell at the very top of her head that makes me remember her when she actually was a baby.  And the curve of her cheek is still sweet...

But now that I have her to myself for so many more hours each week, uninterrupted by an (inadvertent) attention-stealing older sister, I see clearly.  The gauzy curtains over my eyes are swept away and I see this little girl who is not a baby but will forever be my baby.  I see her, so tall and strong and imaginative. 

When I look at her now, it is not always against the backdrop of a big sister and it is not shadowed by babyish expectations.  She carries her own weight.  She speaks thoughtfully and with freedom.  She is a big girl, and a force to be understood without preconceived expectations.

Because the expectations -- quiet, reserved, yielding, passive, tiny, scattered -- are giving way to much more visible truths, now that I can see her.  Enthusiastic, expressive, decisive, growing, fluttery, feminine, thinking, loving, carefree, creative; THESE are the true shades of Lauren that had been hiding behind baby

These are the pieces that sometimes got lost in the shuffle.  In the conversations dominated by older topics.  In the games chosen by bigger kids.  In the life lived by tagging along.

And the reality is that there will always be this unveiling.  Years might pass during which I expect her to be one sort of person only to realize that she was changing all along.  Family dynamics will force me to see through lenses that are sometimes clouded.  Personalities will expand and contract moment by moment, day by day.

But the could become a daily ritual.  To look with eyes that will see, as soon as she comes into my view.  To look at my whole family with eyes that will see.  Because they're all too beautiful and colorful and dynamic to be categorized once, forever more. 

We're seeing the Bigger Picture through simple moments -- moments that force us to stop and take notice of the ways our worlds are important, meaningful, and beautiful. Please join us today at Lenae's place! Grab the button, link up, and then read a few others to encourage them as they walk this journey of intentional living.


  1. Beautiful! My mother was a strong sorter by nature --- you're the artistic one or the athletic one or the fashionable one... And it was limiting and frustrating. But, it's easy to see our children as they were or through the veil of the relationships that surround them, defining them in opposition rather then simply seeing (nothing simple about seeing).
    I have days of fresh eyes and days of blindness and the veil descends more often then I wish. But, knowing it's there, trying to see past it, pushing away expectations for truths... oh, that is the bigger picture.

  2. Oh goodness, unveiling indeed! When did she get so *big*?!

    I am caught off guard frequently by what seems to be a sudden shift in my childrens' personalities. We had many of them and we had them one right after the other, and I often feel like I'm missing the subtle bloom of their maturation. I'm always going through old pictures --from last season, last year-- and in doing so, I never fail to "catch up" with my youngsters and all they are becoming. Thanks for reminding me that the unveiling can be done daily; I'm excited to see what I start noticing.

  3. Ah, the sweet babies becoming sweet girls becoming sweet women. So fast. Too fast, sometimes...

  4. One of the best things about having Penelope home with me while Katherine's at school is that I'm getting to know her on her own terms. She plays different games, laughs at different jokes, chooses different snacks, and it's such a blessing to get to know her as a unique little girl and not just as the little sister anymore. You described this feeling so well!

  5. This piece reminded me of my mother.

  6. Oh yes indeed! I catch myself doing this with Nessie, too, constantly. there's something in me that INSISTS I have a Baby, even though she's really hurtling towards toddlerhood.

  7. I have loved sister-free time for getting to know Calvin, too -- the not-influenced-by-Lili version.

    It's terrific how unique each of our children can be despite them coming from the same gene pool and being raised by the same parents in the same home.

  8. So beautiful and so true. Just wait until she gets to be the BIG sister around, you will see her change and grow even more! It's been so fun to watch...that alone makes me wonder how you ever stop having babies! :-)


Hmm...And how did that make you FEEL?