Monday, September 13, 2010

Like a weaned child

Disclaimer: This post talks about nursing, but in fairly general terms. Just in case you men out there would rather not read about nursing at all. This has been a public service announcement.

Second disclaimer: Blogger is defying all my efforts to make my fonts and spacing normal. Try to pretend everything is normal. That is all.

Early this morning, Dawson, my just-turned-2-year-old couldn't get back to sleep. It was roughly 5 o'clock in the morning and his little molars were hurting and his tummy was empty. It took me more than a few moments to wake up enough to realize this.

The house was dark and everyone would be asleep for another two hours. I knew his tiny body needed more rest, so I shook myself awake and tended to his needs.

Let me back up a little bit. All of my four children have been the crawl-into-bed-with-Mommy kind. Right up until I would have my next baby, and then they'd have to transition to staying in their own bed more often. Only this time, I haven't had another baby yet, so Dawson is still a nightly installment in our bed. The other thing about him being the "baby" (read: youngest, not actual baby) is that he is still nursing. Just a bit.

I never expected to be the kind of momma that would allow a child to nurse much past his or her first birthday. All of my other children were done much earlier with "momma milk." But so far, I haven't had another baby. And the fact that he now asks for "one minute more momma milk" only endears me more to him, even though I know that means the time has come for him to be done. That's a lot of talking for a nursing child. At least, relatively speaking. I know some countries still nurse their babes for years longer, but here at Casa de Floyd, this means he's about done.

I think that we'll be able to painlessly finish the weaning process this weekend when we go camping. Being out of our normal environment should be all it takes.

Why am I telling you all this? Because at 5:28 this morning, while I was sitting with a finally-sleepy Dawson in my lap, I began thinking about this Psalm:

Psalm 131 (NIV)

A song of ascents. Of David.
1 My hear
t is not proud, O LORD,
my eyes are not haughty;
I do not concern myself with great matters
or things too wonderful for me.

2 But I have stilled and quieted my soul;

like a weaned child with its mother,

like a weaned child is my soul within me.

3 O Israel, put your hope in the LORD both now and forevermore.


When I first read this Psalm earlier this year, I found myself wondering over the symbolism of the weaned child. After all, Dawson was still nursing full-steam, and any time he was denied momma milk (as I tested the waters of weaning), he was heartily incensed at my lack of compassion for him.

How could a weaned child be quiet? After all, you couldn't use nursing as a soothing mechanism anymore. I mulled it over and just wasn't sure. Wouldn't a nursing child be more calm with its tender parent?

But this morning, a nearly-weaned Dawson sat sleepy and safe in my lap, covered by a soft blanket, and did not try to nurse. He leaned contentedly against me and finally fell asleep.

And I realized finally what the Psalm was pointing towards.

As young Christians (read: dependent on the milk of the Word, rather than the meat) we are often restless, unsure of God, hoping that He will always be there for us. Still searching for many unanswered questions. But as we get to know God better, we start to feel safe with God. True, there may always be some unanswered questions (my two year old may not be nursing soon, but I betcha he'll still throw a fit when I tell him it's time to leave the park because he doesn't understand he needs a bath before bed...orwhy that's necessary.) but we'll get to the point where we can trust God more fully.

We can lean on Him contentedly, not demanding that He give us everything the easy way.

My baby, learning to go to sleep with a book.

My baby, learning to grow up.


Jon.Dieterman said...

OK, no comment on the blog post per se other than my love of Microsoft Live Writer for posting to my blogger and xanga blogs easily without having to mess around with fonts and such.

edie said...

Thank you, and amen.

Amber said...

So beautifully put :D

Chris said...

Wait. Countries don't nurse babies, women do. doh!