Becoming a mother transformed me from being a ‘doer’ to being a ‘pit crew leader.’ It is my job to fix things as they break and ensure that my kids can zip back into the fast lane of being children. I wait off to the side, tools of parenthood at the ready, waiting for the next flat tire. In this accessory role, I am realizing a new kind of pain, a more intense experience of pain. It hurts me to see my children struggling in a new school, missing friends, and attempting to catch their balance in our new city.
In the last two years, we’ve moved twice. In the last month, we crammed everything that would fit into our camper and drove from Anchorage, Alaska to Colorado Springs. While we are used to change, that never makes it easy especially in the middle of a school year. This week, my heart literally broke for my daughter as she flopped onto the end of my bed, rolled onto her stomach, and began leaking tears. “Mom, I miss Alaska!” she sighed. What does the pit crew do in this instance? I found myself grasping at straws, trying to comfort, but feeling every bit as bereft as she is. How do I soothe her heart? How do I fix this?
Then, if we look around us, everyone cries, everyone experiences some degree of pain. Are the tears we cry lost as they evaporate? Do they ever have an impact? Do they matter? I’ve been mulling this concept, and so I wrote this brief ‘poem’ for my daughter. We’ve read it together and I hope in some small way, she feels that her pain does not go unnoticed by her mother or by God.
My heart cries a stream of tears
Each one shimmering as a pearl
You catch them gently, one at a time
Stringing these gems like dewdrops
Along a blade of grass.
When eternity beckons
I’ll find not one was lost
Or cried in vain
And that You have kept perfect count!
You will finally show me what you’ve
Been working on all this while
Each tear a diamond in the crown
Fashioned just for me
Will take my breath away as
they reflect the splendor of