No one told me. Or maybe they did and I just didn’t understand. How could a baby’s cry be so piercing? It could pierce the silence, pierce my thoughts, and pierce my heart. I loved her desperately—more than I ever thought possible. But her cry made me want to run to her and away from her at the same time.
How could a tiny being make such a mighty noise?
In those early days of new momhood, the car—that blessed cocoon on wheels—was my favorite piece of baby equipment. It would often lull her to sleep faster than anything else. On errand day, she’d be snoozing somewhere between Main Street and Moore Road, and I would go from one drive-thru to another: dry cleaner, post office, bank, Chick-fil-A, and Dairy Queen. Oh, yes—I’d have my quiet and chocolate shake too.
Once a week, we’d go visit my mom and dad, who lived about an hour away. Usually, she would sleep the last part of the trip and wake up refreshed for Nana and Papa. But on one especially sleep-deprived day (for me, I mean), she woke up too early and cried for 20 long minutes. I pulled over once to check on her; I talked to her, I sang, I prayed fervently.
When we finally arrived at my parents’ house, I handed my sweet little crier off to Mom and sank onto the sofa.
Through tears of my own, I said, “I can’t do this. I just can’t.”
Gently rocking her grandbaby in her arms, my mother looked at me and smiled. With tenderness, confidence, and the wisdom of a grandparent, she said, “But, LeAnne, don’t you see? You are doing this. You are.”
Her words sank into my heart and spread over it like a balm.
My mom knew me so well, knew what I was made of. Out of that knowledge came words that communicated something that touched me to the core: she believed in me. And if she believed I could handle motherhood, then I’d believe it too. Even when it was hard.
I have kept Mom's words close ever since, pulling them out every now and then (we are in the teen years, after all). They have staying power, as good words often do. And they inspire me to give words of beauty to others who just might need them, too.
Have you ever experienced words of beauty, when someone spoke just the right words at just the right time? I’d love to hear about it.