Wednesday Wisdom: Don't Blink
I‚Äôm old. Let me rephrase that. I feel old. Things hurt that shouldn‚Äôt, my hair is turning different colors, and my body has so many things popping when I get out of bed in the morning that it sounds like I‚Äôm walking on a bag of potato chips. More than the physical, I just have a hard time grasping just how fast life moves by. It doesn‚Äôt seem like that long ago when I went on my first date with Tiffany, but even that was almost 20 (!!!) years ago. As crazy as that sounds to me, nothing compares to how fast our daughter, Hannah Grace (HG), has grown up. You see, today is HG‚Äôs 7th birthday, and I find myself at an absolute loss to where the time has gone. It seems like it was just yesterday when we were standing in the delivery room. I can vividly remember each milestone in her life, from first steps, to first words, first recital, first day of school, first football game. I rolled my eyes when people told me how fast kids grow up. It‚Äôs something you don‚Äôt understand until you‚Äôre in the middle of it. I mean, in 6 months from now, she will be closer to sitting behind the wheel of a car than she will be to the day she was born and I. AM. NOT. OKAY. WITH. THAT. I‚Äôm reminded of the Gretchen Rubin quote ‚ÄúThe days are long, but the years are short.‚Äù Make no mistake, some days are a challenge. I‚Äôm still learning how to deal with the amount of tears shed on a daily basis. Coming from a house full of boys, there wasn‚Äôt much crying in my home growing up, but ‚Äúwe‚Äù cry daily in the Hinton household about everything from a stubbed toe, to a stranger‚Äôs missing dog, to not getting to watch a specific movie. But the years seem SO short. I am so excited and encouraged to see her character take shape, and at the same time, alarmed by some things I see. Parenthood is both my greatest joy in life and biggest fear. If I fail, I know Tiffany has the ability to pick up the slack. She can take care of herself if need be. HG can‚Äôt. Her success at this point in life is largely dependent on her parents, and that is a weight I wasn‚Äôt fully prepared to accept when she came into this world. It terrified me (still does really), but the Light in her seems like a daily reminder from God that He is in control. And yet, as much as I love Her, the Bible says that our Creator loves us more. Parenthood has taught me more about God‚Äôs love than anything else in my life. Psalm 86:15 says ‚ÄúBut you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.‚Äù This is a guiding verse in how I look at parenting. It teaches me to give grace. Bite my tongue. Be an encourager. Show mercy. Love deeply. Regardless of where you are in your parenting journey, I encourage you to do two things. First, never lose sight of your parental relationship with your Heavenly Father. He loves you as deeply as you love your own children. And two, don‚Äôt blink.